The Five of Us, Spring 2014

The Five of Us, Spring 2014

Busy Blogger

I'm sorry I've been so neglectful of you all lately. I think of you often and plan entries in my mind, but never find the time to sit here and download it all.

We've been potty training Pea. Not a whole lot of fun, but we do what we can. Her first (and last!) accident-free day was Sunday, so we had a Potty Party for her. She got to choose dinner ("ska-betty") and we had lime sherbet for dessert. Then, each kid got to have the toy they picked at the beginning of the training. Punk was so excited about his--more than Pea! (He got a prize for being a good example and helping her remember to go.) He tends to take after me, wearing his emotions like beacons.

I was telling A the other day that this parenting business is doing more to kill my flesh than any amount of praying I ever engaged in as a young zealot. I spend more time wondering whether someone else has to go potty than whether or not I do. That's kinda humiliating in it's own way.

Yesterday I was fixing lunch and I turned to Pea and started asking, "Do you have to go potty?" But, before I got the first three words out, I saw that look on her face, that almost imperceptible squat to her legs and my question came out more like, "Do you ha...NO! NO! NO! Stop it! Stop the pee!" I think she stopped more out of being startled by the half-crazed reactionary mother-figure flapping my arms and running toward her than that she actually had control over herself, but stop she did. I scooped her up by the armpits and bumbled her to the bathroom. Then, we cleaned up the puddle (which Punk was eying mischievously--I think I got back in the nick of time). And life went on.

Ya know, that part of me that blurts out "NO! NO! NO!" is also the part that causes me to laugh easily but I'm getting to really dislike the "shadow" of that particular strength. Back in my previous life as a campus pastor, one of the veteran staff in our region offered to teach a session on "Reacting in the Opposite Spirit." I honestly had to ask what she meant by that. She said, "You know, reacting with peace when someone is acting in anger. That kind of thing." Oh really, human beings are capable of such incongruous emotional reactions, eh? Only in Christ, that's for sure.

Then I met Aaron, whose emotions can overtake him, like during our wedding, when Punk was born or when we met Pea for the first time. BUT, he is also totally the opposite of reactionary and he's capable of completely diffusing my fiery emotions. I'll always remember the first time he did this, shortly after we were married. I was making dinner and he was telling me he'd made an appointment for someone to come do something at the house the next day. "TOMORROW'S TUESDAY! It's the busiest day of my week! I don't have time to sit entertain some workman!!!" "Honey, I made the appointment for 4 PM. You're always home at that time." Oh. Yeah. Right. Okay. No big deal. Of course. Hmmm. How does he do that?

Fortunately, I think a little of him and a little of Christ has rubbed off on me over the years and I'm not as bad as I used to be, but I still need to get more centered under the sun of Jesus where the shadow of that strength disappears under his light. Sigh.

That little trail of confession wasn't actually a planned part of this post. Consider yourself blessed.

So, we went to the neighborhood pool the other day. Punk put his face in the water without any encouragement at all! It was so funny--he popped back up and said, "Guess what I saw under there?!" We were in the 1 ft deep toddler pool. "I dunno, what?" "Pink SHARKS! And turtles and seaweed and WHALES and fishies and LOTS OF THINGS!" Well, imagine that! :) I told him he was very brave to put his face in the water (he'd hold it under for a count of 5-7), so he was so excited to tell Daddy about how brave he was. He can't wait to take A to the pool so he can see for himself!

We've been working on the paint prep for the main living areas between other responsibilities and finally got to put some paint on some walls tonight! The great room and the hallway back to the bedrooms now has it's first coat of "Bran Muffin." Obviously, it's just another of the myriad tans out there, but I cannot believe what a difference it made to the great room which was a fairly dark shade before. After we get the second coat on, we'll be creating 12-inch wide horizontal stripes with a creation of my own I call "50/50" because it is 50% Bran Muffin and 50% Macadamia (the color in the Master 1 bathroom). It'll be subtle, but I think it'll be really fun and help that part of the house feel more casual than the formal areas at the front of the house. With the dark flooring, it'd be easy for all the rooms to feel heavy and formal, I think.

A is the sort of person who likes to finish a job, so he's really hating doing all this piece-meal. But, what else can we do? He keeps trying to devise schemes to make himself feel like he's completed something by the time he goes to bed. So, tomorrow night while I'm holding office hours, he'll be painting, not the second coat of Bran Muffin, but the first coat of Paprika (in the kitchen). He's afraid he'll only be able to get the edging done on the Bran Muffin because there's so much of it. But, he can get a whole first coat of Paprika on in one night because that area is relatively small. Hmm. Seems strange to me. But, I am really excited to see the Paprika because it'll be such a dramatic difference and I love, love, love the color. So, I'm not saying anything.

He's also trying to figure out whether we should do all the painting and then finish all the flooring or if we should complete each room in totality. I think we should paint, paint, paint and get that whole job done and then put away all those tools for a good decade or so! Then, we can focus on the flooring and have all those tools going until we're done with that job. He was thinking we really should do each room and get it done so that we can use it. Now, I get that, but I say we focus on the two highest use areas (kitchen and great room) and get those done first, but that we should do all the painting before the flooring. Any advice from my three faithful readers?

Oh, you'll love this. I got my first southern haircut today. By a 20 something gal who's lived her whole life here. Guess how big it turned out? BIG! She even teased it for me! Seriously! Yipes! I'm sure I looked like a fine southern belle running around the baseboards with my edging tool in my painting grubbies with the painted smiley face on my rump. Man, did Southern Living miss out on that opportunity. I just hope that the cut is forgiving and that it'll look just as good with it's less-labor-intensive-normal-poofless-lameness. I'll keep you posted.

3 comments:

DeniseinSC said...

Paint before floors!!!! Post pictures!! Love, Denise how's churchie doing?

Kim R. said...

Oh the joys of potty training! We are going through the same thing with Edi. Yet today we celebrate as she went #1 and #2 (to put it nicely) on the potty!! Just keep up the good work and Pea will be doing it all by herself and you will forget what troubles it was.

Tanya said...

I suggest paint before floors:) How did Sunday's church go? I agree with the potty training challenge. Also, I heartily agree with the "be like Christ" training we parents get when we are working to train our children!!!

My Man and Me

My Man and Me
married 7/7/2001

Punk

Punk
ours through biology, born 7/25/2004, home 8/1/2004

Pea

Pea
ours through adoption from Liberia, West Africa, born 7/15/2005, home 10/25/2007

Pup

Pup
ours through domestic adoption, born 1/15/2011, home 2/10/2011, final 8/3/2011

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Round Two Timeline

  • 9/24/08 Home study update home visit for Ghana adoption
  • 10/15/08 Dossier sent to AOHG
  • 10/15/08 I600A application sent to USCIS
  • 10/30/08 First heard about possible domestic private adoption
  • 11/18/08 Last spoke with contact about possible domestic adoption; expected to hear back about meeting with birthmother
  • 12/3/08 Withdrew application from AOHG
  • 1/6/09 Found out another family had been chosen for possible domestic adoption
  • 1/21/09 USCIS fingerprinting appointment
  • 1/8/09 Received USCIS fingerprinting appointment notice
  • 4/11/09 Sent Pre-Application to Covenant Care Adoptions for Domestic Infant Adoption program
  • 6/8/09 Social worker visit to update home study from International to Domestic
  • 7/24/09 Received completed home study update
  • 8/25/09 Went "on the list" for birthfamilies to choose from
  • 4/28/10 Found out a birth mom had chosen us
  • 5/8/10 Met the birth mom
  • 5/11/10 Got the call that birth mom changed her mind
  • 5/19/10 Birth mom's scheduled c-section
  • 11/30/10 Visit from DSS sw about foster parenting
  • 11/30/10 Got the call that another birth mom had chosen us
  • 12/21/10 Met with the birth mom
  • 1/15/11 @1:42 PM BB was born!
  • 1/19/11 ICPC (interstate) paperwork sent to GA for approval
  • 1/31/11 ICPC Clearance Approved
  • 2/10/11 Placement Ceremony and Pup comes home!!!!
  • 8/3/11 It's Official! Pup's Adoption Decree was issued