Saturday, November 26, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving

Another first for our family. We gathered around the table and had a new face this year. It was a sleepy face, but we felt so lucky and blessed to have Olivia home this year. As I look at other adoptive parents going through the holiday season without their little one home, I am reminded of how last year felt. There was definitely a big hole in our lives. I want to just reach out and hug those people, because I KNOW how they feel. I KNOW how they ache.

This Thanksgiving did not dissapoint. Olivia and Annelyn wore matching shirts that my sister got them.

They played great while I cooked. Olivia got into the stickers, and we all had a good laugh.
Mom typically is cleaning dishes/pots and helping me in the kitchen, but this year it was dad. Mom had a bit more eye surgery on Tuesday, and couldn't lift or be near the oven heat. Dad was great help, and kept me right on track. Our Thanksgiving funny this year was as I, literally, was stirring the last thing for the oven, the oven blew. John and I packed all the food up into the car and went to his mom's to cook it. Once it was ready, we loaded it back up and took it back to moms. I figured we could just laugh about it. Its just food, right?!?!
After a great meal, and lots of full bellies, I took Olivia upstairs at mom's and rocked her to sleep for her nap. I sat there and remembered how I wished for this just a short year ago. I say short because since she has been home, time has flown! I can't believe it is Christmas time!!!
Annelyn and I took this time to play a bit, and then it was time for us to head over to John's family. We went to his aunts house this year, and enjoyed time with them for a bit. Olivia enjoyed yet another plate of food!
We went back to mom and dad's to play a bit more and to get Oscar. Olivia was obviously ready to go to bed since she got her story and got into the doll cradle.
So, we loaded up and headed home.
What a HAPPY Thanksgiving it truly was. I am so excited to enter the Christmas season. Not because I am hopeful for that one particular present under the tree this year, but because Olivia is home. Olivia gets to experience so much this season. From what I have heard, the elves should start visiting soon! I can't wait. We haven't fully decorated yet (a first for me), but as I pulled out a Santa, she kept saying, "back, back." She wasn't a fan at first, but she is liking him now.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011


This past Sunday, surrounded by family, Olivia was baptized. She wore her Hanbok for the baptism and then we took it off. Our minister did a wonderful job and was so considerate of the fact that Olivia was scared. She did not allow him to hold her, but did fine when he put the water on her head. She kept wanting Grampy throughout his small ceremony, but John and I held her. I really didn't get to focus on what was said, but what I did hear was perfect. After church, we all headed over to mom's for a great lunch and some family time. Our family has become super fun in the last 8 years. There are six kiddos now, and they all get along really well. Unfortunately, Ian is the only boy, but is the oldest and such a trooper.
We didn't get any pictures of all the kids together, but we had really good intentions. There weren't many pictures taken at church either. I hate that. I need to be more specific when I hand my camera off for someone else to use. :)

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Legally Ours....FOREVER!

9 months ago on meeting day (Feb. 14)

Our family 9 months ago when we first landed here at home. (Feb. 19)

Our family now (Nov. 18)

....notice the outfits on meeting day and court day. I know, cheesy, but two life changing days.

This morning we pulled Olivia out of the bed and gave her a bath, put on her smocked red, white and blue dress, and headed to our courthouse. Today was the BIG day for us. Today is the day that this long journey comes to an end, and our lives fully begin with Olivia. Today was especially special because we had the honor of my uncle being our judge. We were originally going to be in a small courtroom, but they worked it out so that we were in their main court room. Therefore, we shared space with general sessions. They allowed us to go first, so my uncle came in and gave the docket number and some legal information as to why he was up there. Then our attorney asked us a few questions before the judge. Such as "are you aware that as of today, this child will be yours as if she were born to you at birth." That is the best thing I have heard! She also discussed how we chose Olivia and how lucky we all are. This by no means was the typical court date. My uncle then said, "I see you brought family with you today." He said for us to come up and stand behind him while he signed the papers in front of us and our family.

He asked Olivia several times if she was ok with all of this. I kept thinking she would say, "no" since she says that for everything. It was very sweet! I couldn't have asked for more! He told everyone that he knows it is not the norm, but that we were going to pause and take some pictures.

Everyone in the court room waiting for their time was so nice. They enjoyed watching, and as we walked out there was a man there for something and said to John, "I see you finally got her. I came to your yard sale a couple of summers ago when you were raising money." --small world!!

Olivia and I coming out of the court room.

We finished up here and went to breakfast. I think Olivia ate some of everyones! After breakfast, we came back to our house so my aunt could see some of my sewing. While there, Olivia got her piano and she, dad, and Uncle Don sang ABC's and other songs. I love my family and couldn't enjoy their company more if I tried. We always have so much fun together! So, there you have it. The end to one long journey that leads us to a life together as a family. We are very blessed!

Monday, November 14, 2011

Sewing for a Sibling

Ok, the way to purchase a shirt can go several ways. You need to facebook me, message me on the blog, or call/text me. Tell me what you want, and I will send you an invoice through paypal.
This is just while I get started. I may start a facebook page or etsy page. I am not sure of the restrictions since there is not a business liscense involved for this.

If you supply the shirt ~ $12.00
If I supply the shirt and the applique ~ 22.00
add a monogram ~ $5.00
Send a friend my way and get a FREE monogram on your next purchase!

Shipping cost will be added to your total if I need to ship it.

You will receive your item (depending on urgency) within a week. If you need it the next day, let me know. We can work something out! :)

I have many appliques to choose from. Please tell me what you want: the colors of fabric, size of shirt, the applique (and site you chose it from), and monogram font. I will take a picture of the fabric/applique and send you a facebook message before sewing.

I don't want to limit your applique choices, so please feel free to go to,,,, or any other applique site you choose. I may already have the applique, but if not, I will get it for you!

Please remember that this is our main fundraiser to bring home a sibling. Spread the word!!!! We are starting from scratch. :)

Sunday, November 13, 2011

A BIG post!!!

Well, I have been trying to think of the order of events to blog this, so I have put it off. I decided I am just going to roll it all into one. The first BIG news is that we are in the paper chase to bring home a brother or a sister! Olivia has been home 9 months this Friday (which is very hard to believe) and we feel that with the current adoption situation in Korea that we need to get started. We feel like it will be minimum of 2 years this time, and we are ok with that. I figure we waited 11 months last time, so we can definitely wait two years. If we don't, and others don't, then I hate to imagine what would happen to these babies. So, we will wait. Please begin to pray for us and our sibling.

Next BIG announcement, with the paper chase going, the looming money that we don't have is hanging over us. So, we are SEWING FOR A SIBLING. I have made several samples, but the options are numerous. I will make a post of what appliques I have and pricing, turn around time, etc., but for now, here are some pictures of samples.

My cute little model. Notice her little brace under her shirt. She is doing better, but still not using that arm much.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Blogging all the firsts.....

....even the bad ones. Olivia has her first broken bone.
Yesterday was not an award winner day at the Parker house. Olivia was sound asleep in our bed, and rolled right off. Our bed comes at the very least up to my hips. It is a tall bed! She cried a painful cry and I knew she was hurt. Typically, she goes right back to sleep or playing. Not yesterday. She pointed to her throat and kept saying, 'hurt.' I wasn't sure if she had gotten hurt from falling off the bed or if she was getting sick. I have had a viral thing for the last week that started with a sore throat, so I thought that might be what hurt.
John stayed home and I called the doctor as soon as they opened at 8. I told John if for some reason they sent her for an x-ray to call me and I would be there. Well, about 9:45 he called. They wanted to x-ray her arm. Her throat and all were clear, although I could argue that today since she coughed her way through the night last night, has been sneezing and has a runny nose. So I left school in a rush and headed to the hospital. They called her back and after some massive coaxing, I got her to lay on the x-ray table. She was so scared, but did a great job! They told us to wait in the waiting room, and then they came out and told us to go back to our doctor. We got back and he explained the variations of collar bone accidents. Apparently, Olivia has a broken collar bone. So, for the next 2-4 weeks, she has to wear a brace that pulls her shoulders back to help realign her bones. She has to have it on 24/7. So far, she has been a trooper. She was in a lot of pain yesterday, but between tylenol and the brace, I think she feels some better today. She is moving it some today, and yesterday if she moved slightly it brought her to tears. If she moves fast or wrong, she is quick to tell us it hurts.
There was one spot on her shoulder on the x-ray that was apparently 'questionable.' The doctor pushed and poked, but she didn't scream. I assume that means they aren't too worried about that spot. We go back in two weeks for a recheck. We are so thankful that she is in a brace. I was worried that if it were her arm, we would be in a cast.

The pictures aren't grand, but you can see what the back looks like. It kinda makes her arms stick out.

You can tell there is extra padding under her shirt. At least it can go under. Getting dressed and getting in/out of the carseat is a challenge, but we will make it.

Say a prayer for our sweet little one to heal quickly and be in minimal pain.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Happy Halloween!

Yes, I realize this post is a few days late, but such is life. We had a great Halloween and Olivia seemed to really enjoy herself. There were a couple masks that terrified her, but she got over it quickly.

For the last month or so we have had her costume out and talked about it daily. We have all worn the puppy hat to encourage her to wear it. We have stood in front of the mirror and really tried to get that girl on board with dressing up. I wasn't sure how the evening would work, but she had her costume on from 3:30-9:00 and loved it! I think seeing others in a costume helped. My personal favorite part was her little tail when she walked.

We made it to get her picture done by 4, and then I made a stop to JoAnn's for some stuff (stay tuned for that post!).
We headed back to Nana's and Mickme's house and Olivia helped pass out candy.

Oscar enjoyed Halloween, too!

We loaded back up to go to my parents house. We got our fire pit up and running and I am quite sure I never even stood in front of it. We ate dinner and then took Olivia to a few neighbors. I wanted to take some more pictures, but my camera said my battery needed to be charged. I hate that! This Halloween was one I will never forget! I can't wait for the next two holidays!