Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Poke Fun if you Mustache

I met E in September. First impressions: tall, dashing, beautiful.  Second impressions: the man can grow some facial hair. And he does. Every November, in fact. Before Movember was a thing (or a thing that we knew about), my man was growing his facial hair each November with nary a razor in sight. I could tell you it's for a cause but that would be a lie. The cause is for the sake of fun. He is incredibly tied to this. He calls it No Shave November. It is so near and dear to his heart that when he first came to meet my parents when we were dating, he looked like some sort of homeless creature just to keep up the tradition. He knew it was a risk. He knew he was trying to make a good first impression and the facial hair could put that in jeopardy. Yet, he stuck to his facial hair guns.  It worked out in the end. They love him.

As our years together have gone on, he's continued the tradition. And one could say he was a bit ahead of the time since facial hair has become so trendy in the November month. And many, many people do it for great cause. E has kept up his fun tradition, no cause-added, for each year (except for one--that's a story for a different time) we've been together.  Here's a pic of him a few weeks in, this time around:

 Yes, he enjoys his extra face warmth.  Well, this year he found an app that allowed him to add mustaches to his favorite pictures of me. Thanksgiving is a time of family, food, and football.  It also became a time of mustaches this time around. Each time I would hear my phone ding, I knew there might be a new pic of me with a different mustache.

Exhibit A

Exhibit B

Exhibit C

Exhibit D

I don't know if you are enjoying these, but I got tickled each time I got a new one.  He's a clever man, that one.  I don't think I'll be growing a mustache any time soon.

We have a friend who is hosting a mustache-related birthday for their little man this weekend. We really wished we could go but, alas, it wasn't meant to be. So E decided he would shave a mustache into his facial hair, we'd draw a mustache on me, and we'd send it to the fam in our absence.

Here's my man--he'll sell you a used car later if you're lucky (it'll be a real deal--guaranteed):

And me--I'll be touring with the Ringling Brothers in 2012

Really, we should have sent it as our Christmas card. Too bad they're already done.  Bennett, this one is for you. Happy Birthday!

I can't wait to write a recap explaining our weekend but alas, I must get to running.  Pun intended...

Have a great weekend!!

Monday, November 28, 2011

Little Man Monday

Hello Dear IC,

Oh how I think of you these days! According to FedEx, our paperwork arrived in Ethiopia today. Luckily for us, it won't take us as long--it's been on its way for a week now!

Little Man, we gave thanks for you this week as our family got together and a main point of conversation was about you! You are the center of attention even before you arrive and I have a feeling you will be the center of attention for years to come.

Your dad and I are about to run a big race together. It's one of our favorite things to do together. We go running early in the morning and we've done several long races together now. I think it will look a little different when you get here but we have a stroller for you, depending on what age you are when you get here.  Maybe you'll like rolling along with us as we jog.

Your dad and I were talking recently about what you will be like and what kinds of things you might like. Of course it would be fun if you liked running like us but we are just so excited to see what you are like. If you don't like running, I'm sure you will be good at something else.  Soccer, basketball, swimming--whatever it is, we will sit on the sidelines cheering with all our might.  Your dad was quite the swimmer in high school. I was a dancer. Maybe you'll take up dance... I think your Uncle Mark would like that quite a bit.

Whatever you do, whenever you do it, we are already so proud of you. We love you with all our hearts and are counting down the days til we see you. Even if those days are most likely in the hundreds.

With Love,

Mom and Dad

Friday, November 25, 2011


A day of gratitude is:

waking up and running with 100 other people in a small town, with all proceeds going toward a family in need.

setting a personal best in the 5k and watching all my family finish the race too.

drinking a good cup of coffee while making a birthday cake for my grandpa from scratch and watching the parade.

watching my mother and two grandmothers master Thanksgiving dinner with ease and patience.

seeing four dogs merrily chomp on their Thanksgiving treats shaped like turkey legs and squirrels.

seeing my mom cut out Connie Britton's son's picture and place him on the fridge so we could have a reminder of the one who will soon(ish) be at our table.

enjoying a glass of wine in a beautiful goblet with a puppy by my side and great blog posts on my laptop.

weeping during a prayer of Thanksgiving, knowing that I am more blessed than I deserve to be and probably more blessed than I will ever understand.

eating so many delicious things that I don't have room on my plate for turkey and don't care.

snuggling in with the husband for an afternoon nap on a weekday.

listening to my grandparents tell stories of their elementary school days and knowing I am blessed to get the chance to hear these stories.

watching HGTV with my momma when I need a break from everything else.

falling asleep with a full belly and a full heart.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Little Man Letter

Well Hello, Little Man!

Our paperwork will be on a plane to your country tonight. We are so excited. I've been thinking a lot about specifics of how our life will be together. This week, I've been thinking about how you will throw tantrums.

Ah, tantrums.

Knowing our age range request, you will most likely be a toddler when we see you, meaning you will be well versed in throwing a tantrum to let us know you aren't happy. I see a lot of toddlers throw tantrums each week at church and every little kiddo has their own way.  I wonder what you will be like. Will you be timid, afraid to tell us how you really feel? Will you be a back archer and be impossible to hold when we won't let you go down the slide just one more time at church? Will you do the cry and wail or will you be a screamer, so inconsolable we'll have to plug our ears?

Little man, I sometimes get a good chuckle by watching a little one try to get what they want but I fear it won't be that easy with you. I want you to know how badly we love you, how much we've longed for you to be a part of our lives. And I hope that I can still do that and discipline you. We'll learn together, Little Man. I have no doubt we'll learn each others ways. No matter how grumpy you get, I promise we will always, always love you.

I love thinking about the every day with you--what we will do on Saturday afternoons, what your bedtime routine will be.  It may be a while, Little Man, but you are worth the wait.

While our paperwork is on its way to you, we'll dream of the day we get to take that plane ride, too.  We pray you are safe and you know you are so very loved.

Mom and Dad

Sunday, November 20, 2011

What Happened Last Week?

  When we sent our paperwork off last week, we knew we would have most likely get the official "our paperwork is on a plane to Ethiopia" email on Friday. We could have sat all week pondering whether or not we would get the "all clear" email from our agency. But instead, we stayed super busy.  In these ways (yes this is a lame way of giving you a weekend recap):

Monday/ Tuesday were spent chillaxin (yes, I said that) at home. I have been perfecting the art of pressure cooker meals and we had some good ones this week.  If you haven't been on the Crockin Girls site, you are missing out. And if you have a good recipe for your slow cooker, tell me or I'm missing out. So far, we've tried sausage soups, bloody mary chicken, barbecue chicken sandwiches, beef stew and a delicious taco soup. Can you tell I've been in a soup mood? Tomorrow it's buffalo chicken soup. Mmmm. But seriously, got a good pressure cooker recipe? Send it my way or we're not friends.

Wednesday concluded our semester with the 4th graders.  It was bittersweet for sure. I've loved spending time with them, but God made sure they were all kinds of wound up so I would also remember that rest is good.  I have learned so much in this semester and I hope the kids have learned a little, too.  We trekked through the book of Mark, sure, but I also learned about how to keep things sane in a room of nine and ten year olds. I learned that letting them do popcorn prayer blesses me in a way I never imagined.  And I learned (or re-remembered) that being in fourth grade is hard, too.  All those things we deal with as adults? They deal with them, too. But they don't have our "seasoning" to make them calloused.  Cancer, war, divorce? We tackled all those subjects. I am not a pro on any of them but seeing their hearts impassioned for the kind of justice I, too, crave really made me remember how much we all have in common.

Thursday was all kinds of awesome. If you don't have yourself some good girl friends that can share life with you and make you laugh, sister, get on that STAT. Unless you are a boy. In which case, well, thanks for reading my blog. And find some guy friends, will ya? I digress. Anyway, I am blessed to have several groups of women who bless me in different ways. And on Thursday, I faked several of them out by convincing them I am crafty. Yes, I started two different crafts. Please do not ask me how many I completed. I am not able to share that privileged information. I will show you one in action though. Behold:

Yup, that's a wreath. And I started it. You are welcome for that knowledge. But really, the crafting was fun and inspiring but the conversation was about more than this weepy girl can handle. I laughed. I cried. I laughed til I cried. And when I think I had officially tired out the women (but not finished a single craft--whoops! I let it slip!) I headed back home to the adorbs hubs.

We were on pins and needles Friday because we were told this could be our "date." You know, the date that will define the rest of our adoption.  Our DTE date (dossier to Ethiopia).  I figured we would have to know around noon. So at one, I called to see if something was wrong with our dossier they just hadn't told us about.  The voice on the other end told me not to worry.  But then 4 came (that's 5 agency time--they are east coast) and we heard nothing.  I assumed the worst. Something was wrong and we weren't DTE like I thought we'd be.  Five passed. I was resigned it would be a week or two, depending on their Thanksgiving plans.  Then, at 6:30 we officially got the email: we are DTE. Our package will technically ship Tuesday because of the holiday, but our date is 11/18/11.  Fun times.  We then got to move forward with the fun we had planned for that evening: we went to the Missouri Contemporary Ballet! It was delightful and fascinating and for one second, I felt kind of grown up and proper. If you haven't been to a contemporary ballet production, take thyself. Or thy neighbor. It made me thankful for all the artistic talent in this smallish town.

I know this is getting long. This is what happens when I don't blog for a week.  I will do my best to give you pictures of the rest.  Final game at home. Sad game with no coach. I don't want to talk about it. It's over. And we won!!  Here is my brother, being one part cowboy, one part fan.

And then there's this guy.  He's growing a beard. Again, ladies, he's all mine. You are welcome for the reminder.

I will post about our Sunday adventure at another juncture. It's Christmas related so I may postpone it.

Happy Monday! I hope you are as excited as I am for this short week:).

Monday, November 14, 2011

Little Man Monday

Well Hello Sweet Little Man,

I am so excited to say we will officially be on the waiting list for you as of Friday. We have been planning for this day for years and actively working on it for months. I know we will still most likely be waiting through a few more homecomings, Thanksgivings, and Christmases before you are with us for those blessed events but we already feel you are a  part of the family.  We talk about life with you, plan fun times with you, and wonder what you will be like.  Last week we were shopping and Dad found an awesome penguin for your room.  We left him at the store but I am thinking he needs to be picked up this week sometime. It would fit perfectly with the blues and grays and if I have anything to do with it, you will be a penguin fan. They are just too cute not to love!

IC**, have I told you about our puppies? I think they are going to love you and I think you will be fast friends. Rigo, the little pup, is a little scared of babies but I think he will fall in love with you quickly. He loves us and we know he will see how much we love you and fall in love too. Gabby is the big pup. She's going to want to give you lots and lots of kisses. We are trying to train her now with other babies (your future friends) to be gentle and loving. She thinks love means jumping and licking.  We're working on it:).

Little Man, our community is praying for you in ways big and small. People in our church are praying for your safe homecoming, and we pray too. We pray for your health, your safety, your family, and that you will be a part of our lives quickly.  Dad and I are going to have a quiet night at home and we look forward to the time when our nights are a little less quiet and a little more boisterous.

Can't wait to meet you, IC**. Love you lots.


**Imaginary Child

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Weekend Past, Weekend Present

  I planned to post a recap of last weekend but I ended up having a ton of great, adoption-related stuff to post about instead.  So, you're getting a twofer. First up...the weekend of celebrations.

Last weekend everyone we knew was celebrating a baby or a wedding. I am learning to set boundaries in life (thank you Drs. Cloud and Townsend) so instead of trying to attend four events, Hubs and I decided to go for two out of four.  

But first, because we are both crazy and the St. Jude half marathon is coming up and we're raising money for the second year, we went for an 8.5 mile run.  By the time we got to my BFF's engagement announcement brunch, the day had already been in full force for several hours. I also thought it might be possible for me to eat ALL EDIBLE THINGS at the brunch. Still, it was lovely and kicked off what is sure to be an exciting and busy engagement time for my friend.  We're already scheming all things bachelorette and I am looking forward to being the co MOH for the first time in my life.  I would love to show you pictures of this blessed event but I was too busy chatting it up and eating, eating, and more eating to take pics.

Just as things were slowing down, Hubs and I headed off to the next event...I actually did take pictures of this one.  Hubs' coworker and our neighbors wed.  Here, the ceremony.

And then, the reception. It was incredibly beautiful but a little cold.  Thus, I had to put on my stocking cap. And then, as ladies know, I couldn't take it off the rest of the evening. I mean, the hair had officially been ruined.  Here is the evidence that I wore a stocking cap for the entirety of the wedding and reception.

Hubs didn't have a hat but he did look quite dashing in his coat. 

We were thoroughly exhausted when we decided to stop by Miss M's (the engagement chica, remember her from two paragraphs ago) to watch the Mizzou game. We quickly gave up on that when we realized we were losing to the Baylor Bears. Yes, sic em indeed. Ugh.

Sunday was officially Orphan Sunday, celebrated around the world.  We celebrated at church, wearing our 147 Million Orphan shirts, beads (just me, not Hubs), and attending the Orphan Sunday Simulcast at church.  Here are some photos of Orphan Sunday, where we prayed for orphans around the world and  was focused on the importance of the church seeking to help orphans around the world and in our own community.

When the simulcast was complete, we ate the most delicious cake EVER (no really! and beautiful!

Then while I cleaned up the cake, Hubs became the jungle gym for all children at the event. I apologize for the blurriness of the photos but the children and the man child were just too fast for me to get good shots of them.  But look at my cute hubs. Isn't he going to be a great dad? Also, I am going to need to get rid of all things breakable in our home.

Yes, I have a feeling in a couple of years, there will never be a calm moment in our home.  Also, I think we will sleep soundly at night. The sleep of exhausted parents.  When we get to sleep, that is.

So moving on to this weekend.  First, it was 11.11.11 on Friday (you probably knew that). The University Bookstore decided to drop 11,111 ping pong balls from the roof of their building. And some of them had prizes on them. It resulted in thousands of people watching and about six people actually getting to touch any ping pong balls. It happened quickly.  And it was kind of anticlimactic.  Here, the best shot:

Friday night we went to trivia night with E's work. We got 4th out of 24 teams.  Hubs proved his knowledge of science fiction and James Bond (although his boss is the true Bond pro. She owns every book). I, in turn, proved my knowledge in musical movies and historical period movies. I am clearly the fun one here. OK maybe not.  We both had the 90s TV in the bag.

Saturday, we went to what may have been the best game of the season. Mizzou had never beat Texas (the #16 team) under our current coach, Coach Pinkel. That all ended Saturday. Good thing, too, because it was our last time to play them. We announced last Sunday we're moving to the SEC.  Lots of opinions on that one but I will say, it will be really fun to play the teams of some of my favorite bloggers. Yeah, it's all about the blogs, baby. But seriously. The SEC contains BooMama, Big Mama, Kelly from Kelly's Korner, and Amanda from Baby Bangs. What more could a girl want? OK that's really odd, I know, since they don't know I am a person. But still. I think it's fun!

The game made me sick at my stomach and it is truly a tragedy that Poor Henry Josey hurt himself so detrimentally. Side note--Mack Brown, you are a class act. What an impressive thing to come pat our hurt hero on the back before the Gator took him off to the training facililty. Anyway, we had to capture the win. So here we are...

 Finally, today was our baptism service at our church. I had never been to a baptism service at our church (aside from baby-sitting during it in college) so it was so fun. Plus, two of my favorite babies (the only two babies in our small group) were dedicated to the Lord through baptism today. I cried at the beauty of so many individuals, families, and children being committed to the Lord. I took a picture of each family. Totally unidentifiable but here are our beauties. We can't wait to watch you grown in the Lord!

 Two weekends both alike in amount of hours but different in every other way.  So fun that each weekend gives us a little different experience. Next weekend is our final home game and we will be sad to see football season go but I'm hoping for a new start next fall.  I mean, it's not been so magical for us this year.

Welp, Kitchen Stadium is calling my name. Y'all have a good day and I'll catch you on the flip side.

Friday, November 11, 2011

A Little Photo Comparison

I was looking back at the photo  of us at Fed Ex late at night, ready to send our paperwork. Remember it?


 Well, it reminded me of another photo, where we were also thrilled but tired-looking.  Check it out...

 Younger? Yes. But a lot of things are the same. Blind enthusiasm for the next big adventure? Check. Exhaustion from the adventure that was just completed? Check. Love for each other that will be necessary for all the (unknown) events ahead? Check check check.

Also, we look exhausted a lot, apparently. It doesn't stop us from taking pictures.