Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Check out my new digs!

Hey - so I've moved...

You can find me now at Taste of Rue over at Wordpress.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Invitation to the Butterfly Ball

M's 4th birthday is not until next Tuesday, but because of schedules and availability, we had to have her party a little early... For months I'd been asking her what kind of party she would like, and every time she responded, "Butterfly party!" The local science museum is great for little kids and has a really impressive butterfly house, so we rented a room (the Kid Lab - it was cool!) and had a butterfly party complete with wings, antennae, and butterfly cupcakes. M had an absolute blast - she partied and then zoomed around the outside part of the museum with her friends. Here are some pics:

M and her best friend H compare antennae

Blowing out the candles

Cousin A eating a cupcake - he was a cupcake-eating machine!

Close-up of cupcakes... They turned out really well, if I say so myself :)

Happy girl!

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Happy Hannukkah!

Let's just say my elementary school Winter Concerts would have been much more fun with this song... Who needs "Dreidle, dreidle, dreidle"?

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Nurse, shmurse

So, it is all pink princesses and purple fairies at our house right now, which half-amuses me, half makes me cringe. M loves dressing up, and lately she has been trying on all sorts of identities. She and I were feeling under the weather yesterday, so I left work early and picked her up and took her home to chill out and watch D!sney movies. We were watching the Sword and the Stone, and we started talking about what she would be when she grew up... At first she said princess - good luck with that, kid - then nature fairy, then water fairy (we've been watching alot of Tinkerbell), then doctor. I asked if she would want to be a firefighter - she said no, too scary. I asked if she would want to be a nurse, and she goes, "eww, that's a boy job!"

Score one for non-traditional gender role models!

Sunday, November 8, 2009

exciting times...

So, we moved into a new house... Oh? Didn't know about that because I never update my blog? I will try to post pictures tomorrow. Ok, who am I kidding? I'll wait until my sister comes for Christmas, make her take pictures, and she can post them on her blog :)

It is a very nice, 1900sq ft, 4 bedroom/2 bath, tri-level built in 1965. That means we have nice wood floors AND good insulation. It is on a half-acre (in the city!), and has a playhouse with a dutch door and real vinyl windows and a wooden swing set. We have loved being in the new house - all that space! - and the transition has gone pretty smoothly. We only moved a block and my brother-in-law and his wife are going to rent our old house - both of which mean we have been able to move slowly, but also mean that the moving! It will never end! Where did we get all this crap?

In baby-related news (topics?), we're taking a leap of faith and setting up the third bedroom as a baby room. We painted over the ugly, depressing orange paint the previous owners had in there - the upper 1/3 of the walls are a clear sky blue and the bottom 2/3 are a pale yellow - and we will put up a simple, white chair-rail soon. Our crib and changing table are pale sage green, and we have a white iron twin bed to go in there. In a real tempting-fate kind of way, we even refer to it as the baby room...Note: Not "the baby's room," but the baby room, like we're raising babies in there like tomatoes. I may regret it, but I have to feel like we are doing something to move toward another child.

Speaking of which, while I'm totally solid on adopting - it is definitely the best choice for us - I still can't completely fathom that I will never be pregnant again...it is both a relief and an impossibility. But I know that if I were to get pregnant, I'm in for a world of trouble. But then I'll never get to feel a baby moving inside me again. But the delivery could be a disaster and there is no guarantee of a live birth... Lather, rinse, repeat. I think once we start doing something concrete, like writing checks to an agency, adoption will feel more real and I'll be able to get out of my head a little.

I hope you all have a good Thanksgiving!

Wednesday, September 16, 2009


I need a little...

Now that we've made the decision that we definitely want to pursue domestic infant adoption and we know which agency we want to go with, I'm eager to start the process. Unfortunately, the process takes cash - cash we're accumulating, but I wish it could go faster.

So, what to do? Sublimate! I could exercise so that I won't look like a cow in our profile pictures, but instead I'm choosing to read (surprise!). I think I've read every book on adoption in our library system. I've bought several on Amazon. Since K is a slow reader (and I'm insane), I've taken to marking sections he needs to read - using post-its, of course! Can't destroy my precious books with highlighter! The horror!

Thank god I have a built in distraction in M. Three has been kicking our collective heinies lately, though M seems to be mellowing-out as she approaches three-and-a-half. Right now she is ricocheting between hilarious, tantrum-y, too precious for words, and then major meltdown mode. The level of whining lately has been amazing - as in, I didn't know someone could whine that much. What's the Ames and Ilg subtitle for this age? Your Three-Year Old: Angel and Asshat?

In fairness, it does seem to be getting better, though, as she gets older and used to her new classroom (she moved up a class to the three-year-old class at daycare - a highly anticipated, yet still a little stressful event). I also think our employment of the technique we're calling the "Stephanie"around our house - "I can't understand you when you're whining" - seems to be helping shift her out of whine-mode. I shouldn't complain - between whining episodes, she is so funny...just full of moxie right now - it makes me and K giggle.

I'm going to try to post more often (yeah, yeah...I know), but in the meantime, here is a pic from our beach-week in the middle of Aug. M's first time at putt-putt - she thinks she's Tiger Woods...

Thursday, August 13, 2009


That about sums up our last 24 hrs.

We got a call late yesterday afternoon from a local adoption agency run by two adoption attorneys that we'd requested information from (not the IAC). They had an emergency placement of a newborn girl born at the beginning of August who had been oxygen deprived during birth because her mother suffered a placental abruption. Most (if not all, given that they were cold calling us) of their waiting families turned down the placement because of the baby's special needs, and they contacted us because we checked the "open to special needs" box on their information request form.

The attorney followed up with an email containing more information. That info was not promising. The baby was preterm, born at approximately 34 weeks. Mom had not had consistent prenatal care. The baby's Apgar scores at 1, 5, and 10 min were very low to low. She had a couple of seizures in the first days after birth. The MRI and EEG indicated brain damage due to oxygen deprivation. That brain damage was compromising the sight in her right eye. She had a high risk of developing cerebral palsy and epilepsy. Mom and dad have a history of drug use and incarceration, and the adoption would have to be essentially closed - just letters & pictures with no identifying information due to safety concerns. On the other hand, the baby was only on a respirator for two days and has since been able to breathe on her own. She has never been tube fed, but instead has been able to suck from a bottle - a pretty high-level skill for a baby. She was born at a decent weight and has been consistently gaining weight. Her progress is so good that the NICU wants to discharge her early next week.

The catch: We had to make a decision today. That's right, less than 24 hrs. to make a decision whether or not we could make this child part of our family. Forever and ever, amen. Oh, and by the way, we needed to sign a contract by Monday that we would pay $13,700 (the agency's discounted rate) on Wednesday if the mom picked us. And, frankly, why wouldn't she pick us to parent a child with special health care needs? My husband is a nurse, and I work in maternal and child health. We have lots of access to care. We have an amazing support system. We know realistically what to expect, and we know the importance of early and consistent intervention.

Yet, at 12:24 today, I sent an email to the agency that K and I have decided not to pursue this adoption opportunity. Knowing that we are able to parent this child wasn't enough to make it the right decision. The developmental ped at work gave me the realistic picture of what the baby's brain injury would mean for her growth and development... what a world of heartache, for her, for us, and for M. We were going to have to come up with a lot of money very fast, putting ourselves into debt even before we had a child at home who needs a lot of (expensive) medical and developmental intervention. The ridiculously short time frame felt manipulative and wrong. We felt like the agency was wanting us to make an emotional decision, not an informed one. Also, we have good reasons for wanting an open adoption that have less to do with us, and more to do with what is best for an adopted child. In this situation, that was not going to be a safe option for any of us, given the nature of the parents' crimes, especially the father's.

It was the right decision, but it was not the easy one. I don't think I really understood how sad it would make me to reject a child. I knew intellectually that it wouldn't be easy, but the reality sucks. Every child, but especially this child, deserves the best parents possible. Prayers and good thoughts that the right family is found soon would be appreciated.