New Year’s Resolution Time

family resolutionsIt’s that time of year… New Year’s Resolution Time!

Last year, we created some Family Resolutions. I am sad to report that the only one we achieved was running 3 races together as a family. We only had one specific game night that I can recall and that was in January. We did inquire about working with a local food pantry, but they didn’t seem interested in any new volunteers so we didn’t get far with that either. I plan to ask the kids if they want to set new family goals, but something tells me they won’t be all that interested, so I am planning my own resolutions.

  1. Run twelve races in 2014. I ran 10 races in 2013 so this isn’t a huge stretch, but I’m adding it to my list to keep myself accountable and consistent.
  2. Take a class. I’ve been stagnant in 2013. I crave expanding my mind. I haven’t decided what kind of class I will take just yet, but I will definitely take at least 1 class in 2014.
  3. Cross something off my bucket list. Whether it be traveling to somewhere new or playing paint ball, I am determined to cross something off my official bucket list this year.
  4. Create something. Whether I create a scrapbook or sew something, I MUST create something in 2014. I really miss the sense of pride and accomplishment I received through scrapbooking.
  5. Read more books. For pleasure, for education, simply doesn’t matter…. I enjoy it and I don’t do it enough so I’m adding this one to my list so I can do it guilt free!
  6. Get control of our finances. Not really sure what this will look like, whether it means creating a budget or finally pay down some debt, but one way or another, I need to make some forward progress.

[List subject to edits over the course of the next week]

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52 Lists | A Few of My Favorite [Famous] Adoptees

famous adoptees
Did you know that six out of ten Americans have been touched by adoption either as a relative, friend, or member of the adoption triad?  Its inevitable with those statistics that there are some “famous” adoptees! Here are a few of my favorites:

Do you have any favorites to add to my list?

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52 Lists | My Favorite Adoption Songs

Home by Phillip PhillipsI have always loved lists! Lists help me process my life and help me stay on track (when I use them, anyway). I recently stumbled on Moorea Seal‘s blog where she shared the following:

I love lists!  So I thought it would be fun to start a series on my blog for 2013 that focuses on List making, lists for fun, lists for self discovery, you name it.  And it’s all about participation!  Each week I’ll have a new list prompt for you to download.  I think it could be really fun to print out a page each week, collect them through the year and then bind them together at the end of the year as a little memento of 2013.

I can’t say that I will always follow her prompts or even reach 52 Lists in 2013. I’m going to share lists in my own way and at my own pace. (I don’t need any more obligations or pressures in my life right now.)

One of the things I have often searched for over the past year is a list of the best foster care and adoption related songs. So, here you have it, my top 5 songs:

  • Dark Side by Kelly Clarkson
    I think this song applies to many kids in foster care, especially ones with Reactive Attachment Disorder. Daffy has definitely made the connection to the lyrics and how it applies to her life. In many ways, I feel like she is still showing us her dark side and testing us to see if we will always love her.
  • I Won’t Give Up by Jason Mraz
    This song played while we were on our way to the courthouse for Daffy’s adoption. I HATE crying in front of the kids, but I couldn’t stop the tears from rolling down my cheeks. We didn’t give up and we WON’T give up.
  • Home by Phillip Phillips
    This song played during the A Home For The Holidays special and it truly could not be more perfect!
  • Temporary Home by Carrie Underwood
    Ahhhhh, what a tearjerker. I don’t know how anyone could listen to this song and NOT feel for children in foster care.
  • A Thousand Years by Christina Perri
    This is one of the first songs I dedicated to Daffy when she moved in a year ago. Cue more tears when a friend of mine made a video using this song and pictures of Daffy & me.

Hmmmmm…. I am seeing a common theme with my selections: TEARS! I guess thats par for the course given the struggles facing children in foster care as well as the powerful emotions evoked through adoption.

Do you have any favorites to add to my list?

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2013 Family Resolutions

family resolutionsAs I created my personal resolutions for 2013, I realized many were family related, so we sat down to come up with our first ever set of family resolutions! We decided that 3 resolutions would be a good starting point.

  • Family Game Night We have committed to participate monthly in a family game night. Weather permitting, some of our family game nights will include outdoor activities. We plan to purchase the board games Apples to Apples and HedBandz for sure. We also plan to get the Wii hooked up again and do at least one video game night this year!
  • Races We will be running our first race as a family on New Year’s Day. We have decided to set a goal of running 3 races as a family in 2013. We are really hoping to run The Color Run as one of our races, depending on the cost. (Anything times 5 is always a lot.)
  • Soup Kitchen Our goal is to volunteer at least once in 2013 at a local soup kitchen. Mickey is, by trade, a chef so this seems an appropriate way for us to volunteer our time and talent.

Daffy was quite worried that since we set only 3 resolutions that we would not be doing the “usual” things we do as a family. I reassured her that all traditions will continue and that these are NEW goals for our family to achieve. Honestly, I can’t wait to get started!

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Top 10 Posts of 2012

top 10The end of the year is not only a time to set goals and look forward to the future but also a time of reflection. It’s a time to look back on the many changes and events of the past year! Here are my top ten most viewed posts in 2012 (along with my thoughts now) which tell at least part of the story of our journey to adopt:

  1. 7 Practical Ways To Foster Attachment in Adopted Children
    The ideas I shared back in August are things I am still implementing more than 4 months later. Attachment isn’t one simple series of events but rather an ongoing process built over time. As I learned after Daisy and April were placed here in November, attachment with a foster or adopted child is fragile and there can be setbacks if their place is threatened. Our attachment journey with Daffy will be ongoing for years to come as she progresses through the different stages of her life and challenges, defines and finally accepts her role within our family.
  2. Ideas Needed for Party & Gifts
    The numbers of views this post got shows me that I definitely was not the only one in need of party supplies/ideas for adoption themed parties (especially non-baby). Hopefully Hallmark  or American Greetings are reading this, LOL
  3. Respite. Will it be enough?
    This question answered itself. No, respite was not enough. I really believed that our time with him would be something like remembering labor. I believed that we would look back on that time and the anxiety and fear would be dulled. Not so. It’s been more than 11 months since he left and I still get the same sick feeling in my stomach when I think about it.
  4. Connecting Through Humor (Lunch Note Jokes)
    I still believe that laughter is the best medicine and do my best to laugh every day!
  5. My Adoption Story, Part I: My Adoption
    When I started this blog, my intention was only to document our journey with Donald and Daffy, but quickly I discovered that the past is just as much a part of our journey as the now. It’s been wonderful to connect not only with other foster and adoptive parents, but also with fellow adoptees.
  6. My Adoption Story, Part II: The Search
  7. Fulfilling My Childhood Dream
    I love looking back on this post as a reminder of how much I have achieved in my life. I may not be a rich executive with a beach house, but I have much more than I ever could have dreamed of!
  8. Ten Things I Wish I Knew Before We Started The Foster Adoption Process
    This is still solid advice. That said, I would remind you again that THIS IS WORTH IT. Go into it with your eyes open and prepared for challenges, but GO INTO IT. Do not let horror stories scare you away from your happily ever after. A child’s happiness depends on it!
  9. My Adoption Story, Part III: The Reunion
    *sigh* This was hard to write. And Part IV is turning out to be even harder. I know it’s worth it, though. Writing helps me process and sharing helps me know that I am not an island. Thank you to all the fellow adoptees who have offered support and uplifting messages on my blog and on Twitter as i have shared my story. I truly appreciate it.
  10. Where to begin?
    Ahhhhh, one of the most challenging times in our adoption journey. I remember those days like they were yesterday, laying in my bed for hours at a time unable to stop crying. I was SO fearful of the power of the state. I was helpless to do anything to protect Daffy… or my heart. I couldn’t be happier that just a little over 8 months after writing this post we adopted Daffy to forever be our daughter.

Wishing you all the best in 2013!

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