Friday, July 31, 2009

Don't Let Me Go

I finished packing up the nursery.

It's done.



And just in case you have a very good memory and remember me talking about doing it
months ago, why yes, I did wait three or four months to finish it. I started it
a long time ago.

Then I didn't finish.

It's called procrastination.

And I am good at it.

So anyway, we have about 8 days until we move so I figured I'd better get on it.

It wasn't easy. I was thinking that I could just go in there and throw
everything into boxes and that would be it.

Of course it wasn't so simple. I started by taking everything down off of the
walls and toy shelves and out of the dresser and laid it on the floor in a pile.
My plan was to sort it into categories. Toys, clothes, décor, shoes, and then
place each items into their respective boxes and pack them up.

I started with the clothes. We have So. Many. Clothes. Cute little girls clothes. Most with the tags still on them, in a variety of sizes. Ninety nine percent of them were received as gifts.

I picked up each item of clothing. The memories of when and who I received it from came flooding back. I had some awesome secret buddies in the beginning of our journey, and also have received some cute things from friends and family.

Pretty quickly me packing up the clothes turned into me sitting on the floor crying. For a long time. But eventually I got back to the packing.

After the clothes were packed away I started packing up the toys. We have some fun toddler's toys. The hardest part for me was the dolls. I came very close to putting those brand new dolls in the "to give away" box. They are still in their boxes, and they are bulky and take up a lot of room to store. I thought to myself "Surely there is another little girl out there somewhere who would enjoy playing with these dolls?" It seems such a waste for them to sit in their boxes collecting dust". But I couldn't bring myself to do it. So into several boxes the dolls went, marked as "baby things: storage".

Lastly I began to take down the decorations. This was the hardest part for me. Joe and I lovingly decorated this nursery almost a year ago. We never in a million years thought that we would have to move to a smaller place and un-decorate it.

The whole process left me feeling sad. Extremely sad. I wish we had never decorated the nursery. I wish we didn't have a crib. And a changing table. And so many baby clothes and toys.

In fact, sometimes I wish we could let this adoption go so that I could have some closure.

There. I said it.

I'm tired of waiting and I'm tired of not knowing when (or IF) we will get our child.

I am tired.

I feel extreme guilt even typing those sentences. I feel vulnerable too. People can be very judgemental and mean. There are those who would say "You shouldn't 't be pursuing this adoption if you are willing to give it up. You should be willing to walk though fire to get to your child".

(FYI: I no longer allow anonymous comments here, so mean judgemental people BUG OFF)

I used to be willing to fight for it. I used to feel like there was no obstacle that could stand between me and my child.

But the years go by. Holidays come and go. Friends have two and three children.

And still no baby for us.

It doesn't get easier as the months go by. It gets harder. I don't feel like we are getting closer to our child. It feels like with each passing month we are getting farther away.

As I packed up those boxes I could feel myself slowly letting go. Bit by bit. Until there was just a tiny, thin thread to hang onto.

I don't know when I will be unpacking those boxes and (re)decorating the nursery again. Our new lease is for one year so it will be at least that.

I have been finding myself crying a lot lately. Mostly in the car. Music sometimes does that to me. Certain songs can set me off. But also because that is one of the few times I find myself alone. So if you live in the Orange County area and you see a blond girl in a white SUV bawling their eyes out at a red light, don't be alarmed. It's just me :)

The other day I was driving home from work and they played the new song from "The Fray".

It's called "Never Say Never" and the lyrics go like this:

Never Say Never-The Fray

There's some things we don't talk about
Rather do without
And just hold the smile
Falling in and out of love
Ashamed and proud of
Together all the while
You can never say never
Why we don't know when
Time and time again
Younger now than we were before

Don't let me go
Don't let me go
Don't let me go

Picture you're the queen of everything
As far as the eye can see
Under your command
I will be your guardian
When all is crumbling
Steady your hand

You can never say never
Why we don't know when
Time, time and time again
Younger now then we were before

Don't let me go
Don't let me go
Don't let me go

We're pulling apart and coming together again and again
We're growing apart but we pull it together, pull it together, together again

Don't let me go
Don't let me go
Don't let me go

This song took my breath away. Literally stopped me in my tracks. So much so that I didn't see the light turn green and the person behind me honked at me until I moved forward.

I felt like that song was playing for me.

(Stupid. I know. It was on the radio. Playing for everyone.)

And as I sat in my car, driving down the road crying I realized I am not quite ready to let go.

Nobody ever said this was going to be easy. It has been hard from the minute we started filling out the paperwork.

I will have days when I feel like giving up. But I have never been a quitter and I don't intend to start now.

We will ride this out. We will pack up our baby's things into boxes and store them in our closet at our new, smaller apartment until my husband finds a job and we can unpack them and decorate again.

Until our child comes home.

We will wait.

I know that there will be more "bad" days where I want to give up. I think that's normal. I have seen many friends along this journey make the decision to pull out of the China program and while I completely and totally understand their decision, I am not quite there yet. I might eventually get there, if the wait continues to stretch out to longer and longer times.

But I'm not there yet.

So for now we will wait.

I wanted to put the song on my blog but it isn't available yet.

You can listen to it and watch the video here

It's a beautiful song. You might need Kleenex. Or maybe that's just me :)

If you want to see what the nursery looked like last year when we decorated it, go here.

I also have pictures of the boxes that are sitting on the nursery floor with all of these items in them but I don't have the heart to post them now.

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Friday, July 24, 2009

San Diego

I got to spend a couple of days in San Diego with my Sees-ter and family while they were here on vacation this week.

We drove down there and back a total of 3 times. That's a lot of time in the car, as it is an hour and 40 minute drive each way. We had tons of fun though, and I even got to go to Sea World, which I haven't been to in years. Here are a few pictures:

We spent one night in Old Town for dinner. We love it there.


It is so beautiful

If you know me, you know I never pass up a chance to go to a candy store.

I went to Sea World on Wednesday. I let Lisa take most of the pictures there, since she had her good camera with her. I couldn't pass up this otter though. So cute!

We went on the roller coaster/water ride "Journey to Atlantis". So fun! Here's Cameron before our ascent

Grace had no idea what we were getting her into. Heh. I love this pic.

On Thursday we took Finn down with us and went to a dog beach. Here he is looking handsome. He ate a lot of sand!

The Smith Family

We found this bike in one of the shops at Ocean Beach in San Diego. I heart this bike. I want it. Orange is my new favorite color. I have serious bike envy over this bike.

I told you Orange is my new favorite color!
I know I look happy in this picture but appearances can b e deceiving! About 10 minutes before this was taken I was walking down at the pool and I slipped and fell flat on my back HARD on the cement. My whole back and rear end was dirty and soaking wet and I was(and still am) quite sore. No, my middle name is NOT "Grace". :)

The hotel had a "Dive-In" movie. The kids even had popcorn in the pool. So fun! I have seen other people on FB talking about their communities having these too. What a neat idea.

Finn chillin' at the pool.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

All Over the Place

This post is going to be all over the place. Sorry about that.

I have so much going on right now I'm not even sure where to start.

Work. Getting ready for the move. Dragon Boat practice. Doctor's appointments.

Let's start with that.

I saw my kidney doctor for my 6 month check up on Wednesday. Things are still looking good. Kidney disease appears to still be in remission. The protein in my urine did go up slightly from the last time he saw me so he wants to keep an eye on it and see me back in about 4 months instead of 6.

Oh, and my thyroid is low. Again. Which explains why I stopped losing weight and also why I have been so tired all of the time. So. Very. Tired.

The new meds will take about 3 weeks to kick in and then I should be feeling much better.

I had a bladder infection too(ouch), so I am on antibiotics for that.

I am loving Dragon Boat practice sooooo much. Only two more weeks after tomorrow and then the races. I will be so bummed when it is over. Oh how I wish we could afford to get a couple of Kayaks. I simply love paddling and being out on the water. It is so calming for me(and great exercise too).

Still no job for Joe. I am trying not to freak out about it. We are receiving unemployment now, so it helps, but we really need him to find a job.

I swear I never thought in a million years that Teachers would have a hard time finding jobs. Excuse me but isn't that one of the most important jobs there is? Oh, that's right. Not in CA. Sorry for the sarcasm. It just makes me sick. I can't even talk about it anymore.

My Sees-ter is vacationing in San Diego, so I get to hang out with her a couple of days this week. She dropped both of her dogs off at my house today. How is it that every time she goes on vacation I end up with either her kids or her dogs? The only answer to that is "because I am an awesome sister"! ;)

Last night I was notified via e-mail that I got tickets to be in the studio audience for one of my favorite shows "So You Think You Can Dance". I had put my name on the waiting list last season. The taping is on Thursday and normally I wouldn't be able to go because I would be working but I had asked for this Thursday off so I could spend it with my sister so Joe and I are thinking about going. I love that show!! We haven't decided if we are going to go or not but it sure would be exciting!

Then today on my way to visit my Dad the radio station I listen to was giving away free tickets to see Circue du Soleil to the 104th texter.

So I texted them while I was driving(which is totally illegal) and I won!

And the date the show is on is Joe's birthday! What a great(free!) birthday present!

So we're going to see Kooza at the Santa Monica Pier in October. I am already excited about it and it's 3 months away.

I have always been very lucky with winning things on the radio. I have won concert tickets three times, and a hundred bucks once and even a 5 day trip to Hawaii 8 years ago. It has been awhile since I last won anything. Actually, it's been awhile since I tried to win anything. So that might be why I haven't won. Too bad I'm not a gambler.

So it's been kind of an exciting weekend so far.

I hope yours is going well too!

Here is a picture of my sister's puppy "Finn" being all crazy. He sure is cute.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

For Jazmyn

I finished up the bracelet last night that Debz won in my giveaway. I think it turned out very cute.

Here are a few pictures:

I realize it looks almost exactly like all of the other name bracelets I have made but for some reason this bracelet is special to me. I have a soft spot in my heart for older children, and for the people who adopt them. Jazmyn is 4 years old. Often children who are older have a hard time being adopted. There is a little part of me that hopes one day we will be able to take a leap of faith and adopt an older child. I know that we aren't in the right place to do that right now. But maybe one day.

Plus I love the name they chose too. So cute.

I put two charms on this bracelet. The first one is the Chinese symbol for love. Since Jazmyn is 4 and she speaks Chinese I wanted to include something from her native language. I added the little ladybug for Debz so that when Jazmyn gets older she can tell her stories of how ladybugs were a part of her story while her Mommy and Daddy waited for her.

I enjoyed making this bracelet so much Debz and I can't wait to see little Jazmyn wearing her bracelet!

I will try to get your package out to tomorrow.

Got Junk?

We are moving.

I hate even typing that sentence.

Oh, how I hate to move.

Hate isn't even a strong enough word.

Abhor is more suited to how I feel about it.

I abhor moving.

To make matters worse, we are downsizing. I didn't realize it was possible to downsize from a 975 square foot apartment, but I assure you that it is.

The new apartment is 650 square feet.

And it is upstairs. So the balcony is half the size of the outdoor patio we currently have.

Don't ask me how we are going to condense all of our junk and our entire lives into 650 square feet. Because I don't know.

I just keep telling myself, "It's not forever. " It's not forever. It's not forever."

Right now it feels like forever.

We have a lot of stuff. Too much stuff. I can't for the life of me figure out why we feel the need to hang on to so much junk.

Because that's what it is. Junk. We have too much furniture, too many knick knacks, too many books, too many clothes, etc.

Too. Much. Junk.

What's that rule if you haven't touched it/worn it/used it in a year you need to get rid of it?

Well we have been abiding by the 16 year rule.

We have moved 4 times over the last 16 years and some of the stuff we brought here from our first house(and I'm not talking about just photos or family mementos either).

Every spare moment I have had when I am home over the last few days has been dedicated to sorting, cleaning, throwing away(or giving away) junk.

It is time consuming and exhausting.

I have been searching the internet looking for ways to make it easier to get rid of Joe's our junk.

In my internet searches I came across several companies that will come to your house and remove your junk for you. They bring a truck to your house(like a huge trash dumpster on wheels) and you simply point out the items you want to get rid of and they make it disappear.

Like magic!

This is just what I need!

So I went to their website to see what it would cost us to get rid of our junk.

This website I went to charges by volume, not by weight. The minimum amount of junk you must pay for is 1 item. So let's say you want to get rid of one dresser.

It costs roughly $130.

The next amount is 1/8 of their truck. It looks like this:

That costs about $180.00.

For 1/4 of a truckload, it is about this much junk and it costs around $300.00

This is what 1/2 truck load looks like:
That much junk will cost you almost $400.00.
To fill the whole truck it is approximately this much junk.

A full load will cost you almost $600.00. To take away junk that you don't want anymore.

Does that seem like a lot to you? Because I about fell over when I saw how much it would cost.

Let me just tell you that we have at least a full load's worth of junk to get rid of. Possibly even a load and a half.

Needless to say we will not be using this company and will be carting our stuff to Goodwill ourselves. I am also planning on using Freecycle and Craigslist for some of it. We don't have an extra $600 laying around to pay for the convenience of someone else coming over to our house and getting rid of it

It was nice to dream though.

I gotta go. I really should be sorting and throwing away stuff right now!

P.S. We finally received a check from the unemployment department on Monday. A full seven and a half months after we filed. I am beyond relieved about it. I truly thought we would never see a cent of that money. Now I can concentrate on getting ready for the move without constantly wondering what the heck was going on with that.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

And the Winner Is...............

(Insert drum roll here)


Her Blog is Sugar and Spice & A Little Rice. They received their referral not too long ago for a beautiful 4 year old little girl who will be named "Jazmyn".

Congratulations Debz! I can't wait to make the bracelet for your little girl. I will e-mail you for your address.

Thanks so much to everyone for playing. That was fun!
I see more blog give aways in my future :)

Friday, July 10, 2009

Blog Give Away Ends Tonight at Midnight

I had 28 people sign up for my blog give away.

Tomorrow I will put the names into a hat and have Joe pull the winner for me. Apparently there is some kind of "random name generator" you can put all the names into and it will choose one for you, but I'm too tired to go look up how it works so I'm just gonna do it the old school way.

I'm closing off comments as of midnight tonight so if you want to enter, do it now!

Here are the people I have signed up so far. If you don't see your name there, drop me an e-mail and I'll make sure you get entered. scrappermg(@)cox(dot)net


Rhonda (2 entries)


Suzanne O.


G Hadden(2 entries)


Kayce (2 entries)





Briana's Mom


A Tonggu Momma




Bill & Linda


Janice (2 entries)

Snowflowers Mum


Nikki- A Mom-in-W8ing (2 entries)


Since my blog posts all show up on Facebook also, I had a couple of people enter over there too. I don't want to put their full names here so I'm only posting their initials.


K.B. (Isabella's Mommy)


I'll post tomorrow afternoon who the winner is.

Thanks for playing and Good Luck!!

Wednesday, July 08, 2009

Book Give Away

My friend Kayce is doing a give away for some very cool books from Barefoot Books.

Even if you don't win the give away, you should check out her books and maybe order a few. They are such beautiful books.

Head on over there and check it out!

It must be the season for give aways.

There's still time to enter mine too!

Well crap

We just got two pieces of bad news and it's freaking me out big time.

It looks like the job my husband got two and a half weeks ago(the one he was supposed to start last Tuesday) fell through.

As in, no job for him. For now anyway. It turns out they are very slow right now due to the economy and weren't able to sell enough time(it' s at a tutoring center) for him to start working. The person in charge told him she was hopeful she could still sell enough for him to work the remainder of the summer but he couldn't start for a couple of weeks.

Uh.......yeah we kind of needed him to start now.

A few hours after that little bit of news we found out that the apartment we were planning on renting in the same complex we are in now was rented to someone else an hour before we went over there to sign the papers due to a "misunderstanding" (read: screw up) with the leasing office. Now we have to rent an upstairs apartment instead of a downstairs one, with half the storage space as the other one.

We need a lot of storage space to store all of the baby's furniture and crap stuff, plus we are going from 950 square feet to 640 so we need to store a lot of other stuff too.

We were going to rent a storage space but we can't really afford to. The reason we are moving is to cut expenses and they are insanely expensive.

Also, we haven't lived in an upstairs apartment in 20 years. Before we had pets. I know it doesn't seem like a big deal but have I ever mentioned that I hate change?

I keep telling myself that everything will be o.k.

Everything happens for a reason.


Wordful Wednesday

Not Wordless today. Because this post is full of words.

It's my day off. How I love my day off.

I had to go to the lab today to get some blood work done for the visit with my kidney doctor next week.

When I arrived at the lab, there were only 2 people sitting in the waiting room. I signed in and had a seat and waited for them to call my name. I know the drill.

Within 10 minutes that place was packed. Probably 10 or so people came in after me. I was reading my book and not paying much attention to the time when I hear them start calling names off the list. A lot of names. Then they start calling people to the back to have their blood drawn and I notice that the people they are calling were people who had just gotten there a few minutes ago, and after I had.

I go up and wait behind the line like they tell you to do and when it's my turn I approach the counter and the woman behind the desk says to me(without even looking up) "Please sign in and have a seat and wait for your name be called"

I was like "I did sign in. Like twenty minutes ago. I'm waiting for you to call my name."

She's like "Where is your name on that list?"

I point to it. It's about 8 or 9 names above the last name on the list. All of the other names are highlighted. Mine is not.

She does a double take and says "Oh. You got skipped somehow. Do you have your paperwork?'

I handed it to her and she asked me to have a seat again. They called me to the back 5 minutes later.

It was a mistake. I get that. Here's the thing though.

It happens every single time I go to the lab. And not just that lab. ANY lab.

They always skip my name on the list, or it gets highlighted and they think I have already gone to the back.

Seriously. Every time. Am I invisible or something?

It really is annoying.

While I was waiting for them to call my name a woman came in with an elderly gentleman and her two children.

Two beautiful little girls, about 2 and 4 years old. Huge blue eyes, blond hair. SO sweet. The littlest one sat on her Mom's lap and the older one sat next to her grandfather holding his hand.

Here's where I have a confession to make.

I felt a little stab of jealousy. How lucky she is, I thought, to have not one, but two beautiful little girls.

The smallest little girl was staring at me so I smiled at her and went back to my book.

A couple of minutes later the woman's phone rang.

I was annoyed. Did she really have to talk on her phone in the waiting room? Couldn't she go outside? Can't she see I'm trying to read my book here?

Jealousy can make you think nasty thoughts.

I resumed reading my book and tried not to listen to her conversation.

She seemed a little upset. She was talking to her Mom. The conversation went like this:

"Mom? It's me. Where are you?"
"I'm at the lab. I have Dad with me. I need you to come and pick up the girls."

At this point she was crying. I am trying to focus on my book and not let on that I am listening to her conversation.

"I have been bleeding. The Doctor says it doesn't look good. I have another ultrasound in 30 minutes and most likely a D&C after that. Can you come get the girls?"

They called my name just then. She had hung up the phone and was crying harder then. Her Dad was leaning over the little girl next to him and patting her on the back.

I felt like a horrible person for feeling jealous. But mostly I felt so badly for her. So sad.

You shouldn't assume things about people because you never, ever really know their story.

I hope I can remember that.

After I left the lab I went for a 45 minute walk around the lake near our house. I was walking at a good pace and getting a pretty good workout in.

There were runners zipping by me and even lapping me as I huffed and puffed my way around that lake.

Runners make me feel somewhat inadequate. Did you ever notice you never see any fat runners?

I wish I was a runner.

But I am so not a runner.

So. Not. I have never been a runner.

I'll have to settle for fast walker.

While I was walking around the lake I kept having to dodge these guys:

I try to keep a wide berth around them because I grew up at a stables and the geese there were mean. This one seemed okay.

But I still didn't let him get too close.

And lastly, on a totally unrelated note, when we get closer to referral I am totally going to park in one of these spots.

It's only fair. :)

Don't forget to enter my Give Away!! (Click Here)

You have until Saturday to enter!

Monday, July 06, 2009

Fourth of July 2009

Most of the pictures I took yesterday have other people's children in them and I don't post those here without the parent's permission so here are a few I can post.

Before we left for the party. Obligatory picture on the porch.

It was a block party so several streets were blocked off and the kids could roam freely without worrying about cars.

Joe and my good friend Carla. We have been friends for 26 years! Her family had the block party that we attended. Thanks Carla! We Had a great time!

This is Lilly. She is such a sweet doggie. She is a rescue that Carla found wandering the street(in heat!). Carla has gotten her fixed and now they are looking for a good home for her. She really is so sweet. Potty trained, not barky, loves kids. She loves to be carried around in a purse! Last time I visited Carla I put her in my bag(pretending to take her home. Joe put the kibosh on that). On Saturday I brought the same bag and she tried to climb into it! SO cute!

She is really tiny and she's done growing. Here is Joe trying to give you an idea of how small she is. So if you are in the Orange County/Los Angeles area, Lilly is looking for a home!

We headed home to watch the fireworks outside our house, like we do every year.

I took a few shot of the fireworks with my point and shoot camera. Some day I would love to have a nice camera that takes amazing photos of fireworks. For now, these will do.

We had a great Fourth!

Don't Forget to enter my Give Away!!

Sunday, July 05, 2009


In honor of my blog birthday last Friday, I wanted to do a give-away as a small token of my appreciation to the hundreds of people who read my blog everyday.

Ha! I crack myself up. I meant for the 5 or so people who read.

Anyway, it's not a huge deal, just a little something to say "thanks".

Up for grabs is this fabulous picture frame that my sees-ter made. Don't worry, she said it was o.k. for me to give it away. I asked her first :)

Isn't it pretty? I love the blackbird. This is a wood frame, with a little wooden dowel that you stick in the back to make it stand up. I don't believe it can hang on the wall. Unless you wanted to add a hanger on the back yourself.

I'll also throw in these cute little notecards:
And yes, I did pick these up at the dollar bin at Michael's. But who cares, they're cute, No?

To top it off, I will include a name bracelet similar to this one:

I realize that I already made a boatload of these for most of my Blogger friends, so if you already have one maybe your daughter has a little friend who would like a matching bracelet.

All you have to do to enter is leave a comment on this post.

I'll leave it up until the end of this week and on Saturday(July 11th) morning I'll randomly choose a winner.

Only one comment per person please, and spread the word!

On second thought, if you post about it on your blog I'll give you TWO entries! (But then I guess you would have to leave me another comment to let me know you posted about it.)

I'm new at this. Can you tell? :)

Thanks for reading and Good Luck!

Friday, July 03, 2009

Happy Blogoversary to Me!

Today marks 5 years that I have been blogging on this here blog.

Five. Years.

That's a long time. Especially for me, who never sticks to anything.

When I started this blog we were still trying to get pregnant. Oh what a wonderful time that was in our lives.


You couldn't pay me to back to then.

You all know how that turned out, and soon we changed tactics and started on our adoption journey.

It took us a whole year to finish our paperchase, due to the abnormalities in my blood test results, culminating in the diagnosis of my degenerative kidney disease. That was a scary and stressful time.

I try not to think about how much time that lost year cost us in our wait time now.

According to our agency's original letter, we should have been home a little over a year now.

Bwahahahahahaha! That's funny. The way things are looking now we still have another(at least!) 2 years to wait.

Oh well. It is what it is. We'll wait as long as we have to.

Even if it kills us. Which it just might.

Just kidding!

Anyhoo, I will be forever grateful for the support I have received through the blogging community and the awesome people I have met.

It has been quite a ride and I'm not ready to get off quite yet.

5 years.

Here's to another five, eventually with pictures and stories of my kid!

Thanks to everyone who follows along, both new and old.

*******I had every intention of doing a give-away on my blogoversary but it kind of snuck up on me and I am going to be really busy this weekend so it will have to wait until Monday.**********

Happy Fourth!!