Wednesday, May 29, 2013

Family: Taken For Granted

It seems as if every day I tell my girl, "be nice to your brother, he's the only one you'll ever have" or I'll tell my boy, "be kind to your sister, she's the only sister you'll ever have". Every time I say it, I can't help but feel a pain that maybe our family isn't complete. Maybe, despite careful planning and prevention, our family is not done growing. Maybe, just maybe, my children will be lucky enough to have more siblings one day. Maybe I should be more careful with my word choices. Maybe I should say "be kind to your brother, because he is the only biological brother you will ever have" or "be nice to you sister, she is the only biological sister you will ever have". Maybe our family could grow through ADOPTION. Yes, adoption.
My heart has been heavy for orphans for the past year or so. Specifically, special needs orphans. My heart aches for them. I spend endless hours searching the web for adoption blogs, success stories, and horror stories. I spend countless hours looking at special needs orphan websites like Reece's Rainbow and other amazing sites. I google statistics. I mule it over and over. I pray about it. I discuss it with my husband, my sisters, my parents. I can't get it out of my head.

I know. I truly know that we are not in the best position to adopt at this point. Maybe within the next 5-10 years. Colt could deploy again in the near future. I am still finishing up school and my medical career is just taking off. I am still slightly undecided on whether or not I should pursue more teaching opportunities. We aren't financially stable enough to afford adoption. We have debt, tons of it. We have plans, selfish plans, with our small family. It doesn't keep me from wanting more.

Far too often, we take family for granted. We expect to come home and have our family love on us. We even expect them to get on our nerves and annoy us. We neglect our graciousness because we rely on family. What if we did not have the families we were born into? What if we didn't have mothers and fathers to call? What if we didn't have children to love and adore? What if we were like orphans. Family-less children who desperately need a family to cherish them? Family-less children who really just want love and affection and a place to call home with people to call family? What if? I can't imagine thinking of my two amazing children sitting in a place without constant love.

What if we were able to make a difference in the world? One person cannot help everyone in the world, but everyone can help at least one person.

I have been reading an amazing blog,, where this inspirational family took the plunge to adopt two incredible children.

I desire to be compassionate enough, gracious enough, and Godly enough, to grow my family through adoption.

In the mean time, as I continue to pray about it, talk to hubby about it (he has his doubts), and research it, I want you to look at this sweet face:, the face of an angel who just wants a family. I so wish she could be a part of our family. I know she would fit right in, despite her "special needs". My heart aches for her happiness. Maybe, one of you readers can help her find her forever family.

Praying for Iris and all of the other family-less angels in our world. XOXO!

Thursday, May 23, 2013

A Beach Wedding? Count Us In!

Yes, I realize I'm posting backwards. I apologize.
At the end of April, we had a beach wedding to attend. Hubby & the kiddos were in the wedding, so we couldn't say 'no', right? We totally wouldn't have passed up a beach wedding anyway. ;)
We had a blast the entire weekend, despite me finishing up finals the night we got there & the next morning. Blah.
The first night, we had the wedding rehearsal on the beach. Cohen couldn't get enough of the sand.

Then, the entire wedding party & the guests went to a go-kart track for a night of fun & dinner. It was so much fun!

The next morning, Chyenne and I attended the bridal brunch and had a ton of fun. Everyone adored little Chy, the little flower girl.

After brunch, we met the boys on the beach for some fun in the sun.

And last year, we gave into the 2-piece swim suit trend for Chy. She's cute in anything, but I still prefer her one-piece.

After fun at the beach, we headed back to get ready for the evening wedding.

Luckily, my kids look great in pinks & whites. ;)

They were perfect wedding babies and everyone ohhed and ahhed over them. Including me.
The reception followed the wedding and it wore us all out.
The next day, we spent some time riding jet skis in the ocean before heading back to Georgia. It was a blast! Cohen fell asleep halfway through our adventure. WEIRDO!

Can we go back to the beach now?!

Disney World & Sea World 2013

I finally got to experience my life-long (I'm totally not being dramatic here... really I've dreamt of this my whole life) dream of going to DISNEY WORLD!
Man, Walt Disney did NOT disappoint.
Oh it was wonderful. We went at the beginning of May and we're already trying to plan our next trip.
Sunday, we arrived at Disney World around 8am. We drove all night...well hubby drove all night. :)
We went to Shades of Green to purchase our military discounted tickets. Then we went to Downtown Disney to walk around and eat our picnic breakfast before we explored.
We loved Downtown Disney. Especially Cohen, who was able to build a dinosaur. He's a dinosaur fanatic. We then checked into our resort (Disney's All Star Movies) and the kids and I explored the place while daddy took a much needed nap. After daddy woke up, we went swimming in the several pools on property and had a blast. We got in bed fairly early.
Monday: Animal Kingdom super early for Extra Magic Hour park enjoyment. Then back to the resort to rest for a minute & to pack our dinner. We then went to Hollywood Studios around 5pm and stayed until Midnight! So fun.
Tuesday: Epcot & our princess storybook lunch.
Wednesday & Thursday: Magic Kingdom
Friday: Check out & Sea World then the drove home!
Saturday: arrived back home around 4am. Cohen had 2 soccer games (9am & 11am).
EXHAUSTED but so worth it!
Our kids were amazing the whole trip. Perfect behaviors. They WALKED the entire time (mind you, Chyenne just turned 5 at the end of March & Cohen won't be 4 until August) minus a few turns riding our shoulders. We literally stayed at the parks each day from the time it opened until they kicked us out. No meltdowns. It was incredible.
I won't bombard you with all of the pictures, but I will share a few favorites. I may do a character post due to the fact that we met so many. So enjoy these quick snapshots of one of my favorite weeks ever!


We Survived Pre-K

We survived Pre-K. Yes, we. It was tough but we made it.
Pre-K was interesting to say the least. Chyenne's social skills blossomed and she learned how to take direction from people other than mommy and daddy. She was disappointed all year long that she didn't get to take tests and do intense homework, but she still enjoyed herself. She was far too smart for her class and was given other work to keep her occupied. She also went to a different classroom for reading and math. She scored 113/100 on her Kindergarten Readiness Test. Um how is that possible? Well, she's just a smarty pants. She is excited for the opportunity to be tested for the gifted class in the fall. :) She's reading at an advanced first grade reading level and I am sure she will top that over the summer. I am so proud of her. So yes, we survived.

She even wore home a shirt to prove it.

You know, the shirt (long sleeve, mind you) that she just had to change into on field day (2 days ago) after I dressed her all precious like this?

Yeah, that one. The same one she had to put on today for her family picnic and "graduation", over her dress. Sheesh. Little pink pig lover.
Here she is in the drop off line unbuckling, eager to begin her last (or second to last...we're still undecided about sending her to school tomorrow) day of Pre-K.

And here she is with her teachers after giving them the gifts she picked out for them. (Ms. Lura is the one in the white and then the assistant (who was only there part of the year) is in the pink).

Showing off how big her backpack looks stuffed with end of the year goodies.

So for comparison, here she is on her very first day of Pre-K.
And here she is today! On her (possibly) last day of Pre-K.

Really, she's growing up way too fast! Didn't I JUST take this picture, YESTERDAY!?!

My baby girl has grown up so much in the last 9 months. I am already nervous about her beginning Kindergarten in August, but I know she will love it and she will have many more opportunities to grow.
Let's not forgot this sweet boy. He loves catching frogs and stealing mommy's heart. This big guy starts Pre-K in August, just a few days after his fourth birthday, so I'm sure I'll add another sentimental post all about him growing up too fast soon!