Friday, July 25, 2008

Home at last.

We survived. We are tired. We are dirty.

How come you go on vacation to relax from every day life, & then when you get home, you have to relax from vacation? Funny how that works.

We had fun. Lots of photos. I only forgot one little thing. One big, little thing. The video camera! Grr! I even purchased a camera bag that has it's own little compartment for a video camera - took the bag, forgot the camera! At least I had my Canon.

When we left on Monday, Mercedes had no teeth. None. Couldn't even see any or feel a thing. She came home today w/ two teeth. LOL No kidding!

Sarah - would you believe it is 'cooler' in Galveston than here in the DFW area? Yep. It was in the high 80's/low 90's all week. Probably partially because of hurricane Dolly & partially the ocean. When we arrived home today, my car read 106.

The ocean hates my hair. Or my hair hates the ocean. Not sure which. All I know is that I got a lot of "whoa!"s from my husband & one "your hair is alive!" from Bentley. Ha! I have naturally curly hair for those that don't know. It was one wild & crazy mess. Very scary indeed.

Everything at the hotel was great except...we had no hot water. Minor detail. I also learned that I take my washing machine for granted. I couldn't wait to wash clothes - already have a load in. If Mercedes' clothes come clean (due to veggies/fruits mixed with formula = icky reflux) I will be calling Shout myself to congratulate them.

Off to a hot shower! More to come later after we recuperate. Ü

Oh, wait! How could I forget? Now. What are the chances of traveling that far from home & running into a relative? Oh yes we did! I snapped his photo for proof! I really couldn't believe we ran into my brother! My children. How they love their Uncle. Ü

Sunday, July 20, 2008

I think I'm too tired to go.

Tomorrow a.m. we head out to Galveston for vacation! Yay! Ü

Do you have any idea what it's like to pack for 6 people, one being a 6 month old? Let's see here. In no random order we have -

Food. Lots of food. Tons of snacks.
Capri Sun, water & cokes.
Bottles. Washing all before heading out.
Nipples. Boiled some more new ones.
Bathing suits for all.
Life jackets.
Beach towels. Had to wash so they'd be clean.
Our paper towels.
Our body soap.
Our hand soap.
Clorox wipes.
Wet ones.
Baby food - including cereal, crackers, stage 1, baby juice, puffs.
Burp cloths.
Disposable bibs.
Tossable bowls, sippy cups & baby spoons.
Portable high chair.
Scratch above, add Bumbo Seat. Maybe. If there's room. If not, we'll use carseat.
Toys for 4 children.
1 suitcase of clothes. Had to wash all clothes so they'd be clean. I'm picky. ;o)
3 duffel bags of clothes.
2 beach bags.
Toiletries. Had to buy miniatures 'cause they take up less space.
Our toilet paper.
Cailyn's hair products.
6 bottles of formula.
Camera & accessories.
Video camera.
Cell phones & accessories.
Trash bags for dirty clothes.
Baby float.
Extra Wal-Mart bags for God knows what.
Quilted sheet for above. Had to wash so it'd be clean & even went to buy another - they were out. Ugh.
Blow dryer.
Makeup mirror.
Mini fan for noise.
Mini microwave for bottles.
Medicine droppers & medications. Ran out of Caibs medicine - 1st thing we have to do when we get there is get that filled. Oy!
Play blanket for Mercedes.
My hair products including clips & visors.
Hubby's hair products. Oh wait, he has no hair. Ü
All pairs of glasses.
Baby Bjorn.
Little Swimmers.
Visine. Cannot live without Visine.
*Adding dish soap for Katie. I don't have a bottle brush so I think I'll buy one or I'll try using a wash cloth. Thanks Katie! :)

I tend to overpack. LOL Ü

I wonder if there will be room for the passengers?

I also had to board Kosh & pack him. Yes, I pack for the dog. He is part of the family, after all. ;o)

Tomorrow a.m. we need to drop off Kosh (oh he's going to be so mad!), pay the yard man & grab some cash.

We are off! By then someone should need a potty break. LOL :o)

See you next week! Ü


(I uploaded this photo a while back & forgot to post it! If I have posted it, I can't locate it anywhere on my blog, so here it is again. Just in case. I think Jaguar is such a pretty little girl. Ü )

Every day I'm noticing more & more how delicate my Jags is. Maybe it's the fact that she is growing & getting taller? I don't know. But recently her tiny little bones have caught my attention. I've always recognized that her face is long & narrow. Just a dainty little face. It's hard for me to keep headbands in her hair (spite her big ol' hair) because her little face is just so thin. But recently, I have really focused in on her arms. They just seem like twigs to me! The more I look at them & feel them, it's like those little things could just snap right in half if I twisted it wrong. They seem so frail.

Not too long ago, Kerry had a post on her blog regarding her daughter Lily. Lily had fallen while riding her bike, but she didn't fuss much & she had no scrapes or bruises, so they thought all was well. Later they realized that when Lily fell, she had broken her arm. She's had a pretty pink cast that was recently removed.

Now I feel like I'm paranoid. Every time Jags falls, I'm having husband check her arms & legs thoroughly (I have him do it because he used to be a trainer & has an 'eye' for injuries - I'd have no clue as to what I was looking for unless it was more than obvious). Last night she fell in the shower & I just knew. I just knew she had snapped her tiny arm. But she didn't.

I wonder why our pediatrician hasn't mentioned her little bones in her arms and/or legs (her legs seem a little more stout)? I'm assuming it's because her tiny little bones are normal...? Having two boys first, maybe this is just how little girls are made & I'm not used to it. Audi is small, as you all know, but he's solid. He's tough. As a matter of fact, his tummy has a 6-pack! I'm going to take a photo of that & he's so excited. Ha! But that's a later post. Nonetheless, when I take Jags back to the pediatrician I will indeed ask about her delicate bone structure. And in the meantime, I'll just say some prayers. Ü

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Ours forever.

Somehow, she just knew. She knew what was happening today. She knew how important today was, & will always be. She was on her absolute best behavior, charming everyone who came in contact with her. She was a dream. She was the happiest I have ever seen her - & she's pretty happy all the time.
Today was our finalization & Mercedes Faith is now ours, forever. Legally. She knew that today was the day that would make her home permanent, & no one could ever, will ever, take her away. What a beautiful, amazing day.

Don't ever stop dreaming. Don't ever stop praying. God performs miracles daily. Our family was built on God's promise & our faith. Don't ever stop believing. Ü

Monday, July 14, 2008

Power napper.

Sunday morning.

Husband took the three oldest to church. Thanks to my insomnia & lack of sleep (ok, truth being I'm having a really difficult time just thinking about sticking my baby in the nursery), I stayed home with my Mercedes. Thirty minutes after they left, she fell asleep. I turned on all fans (noise makers) & put her in my bed. I did some laundry, searched the tv for some church programs but couldn't find any (go figure!?) so I watched some According to Jim (from one extreme to the other...heehee) & then realized I could sneak in about a 30 minute nap until everyone arrived home.

I go lay down. Ever so quietly as to not wake up Mercedes. As soon as I closed my eyes, I heard her stirring. I ignored her. Ha! Finally, out of fear of her rolling off the bed (cannot keep this baby in one location anymore - she is everywhere), I opened my eyes to find this. This was staring straight at me about 2 inches from my face.

LOL! She then ever so lovely leaned down, licked my arm & started sucking. Sweeeeeeeeet. Ü

She's up on all 4's now & starting to rock. I wonder when she'll take off & crawl? Too soon probably! She is wild & crazy & so far has managed to spill one full drink of ice water & one diet coke. My glasses are barely hanging in there. As well as my earrings (or should I say ears). :o)

*Power napper. This baby can sleep for 10 minutes & wake up as if she has slept for 3 hours. LOL I mean...grrrrrrrrrrrrrr. Ü

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Without her.

I wouldn't have him.

Meet Hillary. Audi's birthmother. She & Audi's birthfather chose us off a profile we had submitted to our adoption facilitator. All they knew about us was what they were reading & looking at, including lots of photos. We had never met - we had never spoken. Yet they must have felt something, & we were beyond honored. We agreed to the terms of the adoption & hubby, myself & Bentley flew out immediately from TX to CA to pick up Hillary's son - the newest member of our family. A beautiful 6 lb. baby boy. Who is now 4 1/2 & dressed himself for church this morning. With 1/2 his collar up. And folded up pant legs. I let him go just like that. :)
And ever since that day mentioned above, Hillary has broken every adoption agreement we had. LOL And I'm so glad she did.
I love her. Her & I - well - we share something. I have no clue what it is, but I do know I do not have 'it' with my other birthmothers. Just Hillary. And I love that.
She's like my now 21 year old daughter. Sometimes we talk frequently, sometimes we don't talk for months. And I love that too.
You know what else? Hillary loves my children. Of course Audi, that's a given. But the others as well. Over the past 4 1/2 years she has sent gifts to all of my children. She always talks to Bentley on the phone after she talks to Audi (Jaguar's been too little yet). She always asks about each of them. Every time. She includes them like they are a part of her & I appreciate that so much. She always says "kiss all of the kids for me" & it is so sweet. I treasure her.
I've even yelled at her before for one of her friends calling my home phone in the middle of the night. I was so mad. And like a good child, she said "ok ok, I'm sorry". LOL I still laugh about that. She makes me smile.
It's probably a good thing she lives in CA. If we lived closer, I don't think we'd have this type of relationship. And I cherish our relationship exactly how it is.
I love you Hillary & I thank you (& "M") for blessing my life in a way I never thought possible.
Oh, & about a week ago, she went & did this:

Now I'm a grandmother. LOL
Congratulations Hillary, Jessie & precious baby girl Y.
All my love, always. Ü

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Sorry to disappoint.

I know. I went 'green'. I was a 'green' cleaning fool. And I liked it. Hence the word liked. :)

Now I feel the need to express that I am yet again in love w/ chemicals. Chemicals including bleach - the whole nine yards. All of them. Ok, maybe not all of them. I won't touch Tilex & stuff like that. But almost all of them. :)

Ever since this Staph episode(s) - I can no longer clean green. I can't be confident vinegar is really a disinfectant, no matter what studies show and/or prove.

So I am loving Clorox - Clorox everything! Love the smell, love the clean, love the shine.

I've now added a label for 'Cleaning' & have deleted the 'Goin' Green' label. (Actually, I just changed the GG posts to Cleaning.)

Sorry Rebecca! Now don't you go & toss me out as a friend because of this! Ü

*Does anyone on here besides me love to clean? Anyone wanna swap cleaning tips? I'm open to any & all suggestions, including product tips! :)

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Thanks for commenting & a little background.

To you who commented regarding praying for dad & our family, thank you! Just so you know, I had some certain people in mind who didn't comment & I have yet to hear from them. That's ok. :) I wasn't referring to any of you but again, I thank you!

My dad is a severe alcoholic & has been for gosh, 40+ years. How he has survived all these years is beyond us. In 2006 we received 'the call' - the call we knew we would one day get, telling us our dad was dying. He was.

By the time we got to him (he lived down in the valley - 9 hours or so from us - us being my brother, myself & my step-mother who is still his wife even though they've been separated for years) he was pretty much a dead person still alive. That's the only way I can explain it. I will never in my life forget that day. We finally forced him to the hospital, in ICU, then in a regular room. His prognosis was grim. Very, very grim. When he somewhat improved, we transported him back home with us & put him in a nursing home. He still could not walk or take care of himself.

God performed yet another miracle, & healed my father in 9 months. He still has Cirrosis & Hepatitis, but was completely well enough to live on his own. After 9 months he left the nursing home & moved into his own apartment. And began drinking again.

Long story short, the drama has continued to unfold from that day. I finally confronted him about drinking again (I mean really, when you're pretty much dead from drinking & God heals you, why in the world would you be dumb enough to drink again?) & the 'fight' was on. He told me never to contact him again & I didn't. I needed a break from all this hell I have lived with for almost 30 years.

Evidently he fell in March & broke his hip. He was being evicted from his apartment for not paying his rent, so my step-mother moved him in her house 'temporarily' until he healed from his surgery & got back on his feet. My step-sister also lives there & her & my dad do not, & have never, gotten along. I knew this current living arrangement was a ticking timebomb waiting to explode. And it did.

Last Saturday is when my dad was arrested. For whatever reason, they released him Monday a.m. I had no clue what was going to happen next as he now was permanently kicked out of my step-mother's house. As a matter of fact, she had already left the house & went to her son's house because she just can't take it anymore. All day Monday he sat in his car (he had no key to the house). No food, no nothing. And it's 100 degrees here. Finally, as afternoon arrived, he had broken into the house. My step-mother happened to be there & they again called the police. This time though, the law protected him.

Half of that house is his (even though she purchased it without him...but they are still married) so the police could not make him leave. He's still there & will continue to live there since there is nothing anyone can do. My step-mother & step-sister have moved out & my step-mother has shut off all utilities. He'll live there anyway and/or he'll figure out how to have the utilities turned back on in his name. Really, who knows. He has alienated everyone in his life so this time, he has absolutely no one to help him do anything.

So that's where we are today. Even though I pray, pray, pray for this nightmare, it never seems to end. And it won't end until finally my dad's body gives up.

At least for now we have comfort knowing he isn't living in his car. That alone provides a little peace. He is a sick, sick man & he is never going to be able to fight this addiction. He will never receive help/treatment for his addiction, as we have tried to get him help for more years than I can count.

So for now we wait until we yet again receive 'the call'. And we will receive the call. It's just a matter of when.

The above is just the tip of the iceburg - I couldn't begin to tell you everything. Now you at least know how & what to pray for. And from the bottom of my heart - thank you for praying. At this point, praying is all we can do. Ü

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Non-stop talent.

Not bad for a girl that just turned 6 months old 2 days ago, heh? Oh she is just so gifted. She obviously takes after me. Ü

This little maneuver we call the 'airplane'. She does this all the time. I'll try to get a better shot. Both arms & legs are elevated & straight out. Too funny! :)

And now after all this difficult talent, my little princess has drifted off to sleep. :)

Thank you.

To those who are praying for my family & this situation - thank you. I so much appreciate it. My dad is out of jail & thanks to the law, he has somewhere to stay. We have no idea what will happen next but for now we take comfort knowing he isn't living in his car. This has been a long, hard road that hasn't ended yet. Thank you again for praying for us.

I have to admit, I'm a little shocked (saddened?) by the amount of people who did not offer their support. I guess this baffles me because I am a huge prayer warrior & I greatly believe in the power of prayer. I wouldn't have 4 children if I didn't. I'm sure there are many who possibly did pray for our situation, but didn't leave a comment. If so, I thank you. You know what they say - I guess it really is times like this when you truly find out who your friends are. I don't's just weird to me. Anytime I read a blog & they are requesting prayer, I always leave a response & yes I do pray for them! Maybe I'm just strange that way. And that's ok with me. :)

Stay tuned for blog news. Change coming/in the works. If I can get the sucker implemented. I'm trying! Ü

Monday, July 7, 2008

6 months.

My cutie. My chocolate truffle. My Mercedes. ♥
She had her 6 month well visit today. Needless to say, we did not need to discuss her weight. She's...well...large. :o)
19 lbs. 11 oz. (Jaguar didn't weigh 20 lbs. until she was 18 months old, so that tells you something :) - 26 3/4" long. Yes, she shrunk 1/4". Ha! Ah well. Close enough. :)

She's still happy, happy. Two times now she has worked herself into a frenzy. One at Wal-Mart & then on July 4th in the carseat on the way home. At 1:30 a.m. My Twinkle Twinkle song works every time unless she is hysterical. She doesn't appreciate my singing at that time. :)

She loves her toys. Loves them. I may have mentioned that. Too cute. She's very 'screamy' right now. Loves her voice. Us not so much. :) She's grabbing everything & I'm pretty confident my glasses are not going to survive this one. Or my hair. Ü

So far she is loving squash. And I love her. She is too beautiful & too spunky for words. :)

July 4th.

They are all mine. Forever. I adore them. Ü

Sunday, July 6, 2008

Can you spare a prayer?

My family is in desperate need of prayer. Without going into the entire mess - my father is sitting in jail & currently has no where to live when he gets out. If he gets out. He's been there 24 hours as of Sunday night.

We are sitting dreading the phone to ring & wondering what else could possibly happen next. And all the while our hearts are being ripped to shreds because after all, the man is our father & we love him. But we are unable to help him.

I was pretty upset last night but have calmed down now. My dad is not in good health & that just complicates my worry. However, I did speak with the 'jail' tonight & got some reassuring news - but darn it, my dad's in jail. How do you live/accept/get over that? He's 68 years old. I love him.

I know many of you who are reading my blog prayed for my dad & his situation 1 1/2 years ago. I don't have his situation typed on this new blog. I'm sure you somewhat remember his condition & I ask that you please pray again.

Thank you.

Thursday, July 3, 2008

My new BFF.

Holy pickles. I'm so excited! Isn't it cute? This teeny sucker is in my purse & ready for action! Yeehaw! :o)

Just think.

Public bathrooms, shopping carts/baskets, vacations, libraries (enter evil grin here :), school, work, public highchairs (if you don't use a cover which I do...but you know, emergency meals can & do happen :), changing tables, my father-in-law's house (LOL!! :) - oh the possibilities are endless!

It's the simplest things that make me smile. Ü That & some commercials currently showing right now. I crack up every time at the Ikea commercial. Love it. I love humor. I love to laugh. Seeing something comical can actually, in an instant, make a challenging day calmer. I know. Crazy. :)

Annual family reunion is tomorrow. Which means I've got a busy day today. Husband is coming home early, I have two haircuts to give to two little boys, showers/baths to give to all, I need to paint Miss Jaguar's toenails, set out clothes for tomorrow, run to Kohl's, fix all food we're taking & get packed. Yes we 'get packed' for a one day trip. Ü

Now we're quickly off to Sonic to retrieve my energy for the day! Happy 4th everyone! :o)

Wednesday, July 2, 2008


Bentley speaking to me:

So why did that lady want to report you to the IRS?

Hahaha! Ü

Verbally attacked.

Wow. This is 'the' best one yet.

I'm at Wal-Mart while ago. Quick trip - not much to get. As I was wrapping up shopping, Mercedes begins to cry. She then begins to cry harder & harder & harder. She then begins screaming. She then worked herself into a tizzy & became hysterical. Never has she done that before; she is quite content w/ me holding her all the time so I assume she was hacked because I wasn't carrying her.

It was the kind of screaming where EVERYONE stops & looks. Everyone was looking at us. I was hurrying as fast as I could to get to check out. I never picked Mercedes up out of the carseat because I never would have gotten her back in. And there was no way I could keep up with my other three, check out, pay, reload bags, put bags in car, etc. while holding an almost 20 lb. baby. So I let her cry because that's all I could do.

Finally we're leaving. She is still hysterical. People are looking & staring & pointing. Here comes some old woman on one of those electric carts screaming at me.

Her: Are you the woman with the screaming baby? How dare you! How dare you let that baby scream! You ought to be turned in to CPS!! I'm going to turn you in right now!!!

I looked at her dumbfounded. Are you kidding me? Yes my baby was hysterical but she was fine. I was hurrying as quickly as I could so I could get home & get her out of the carseat. But threaten to report me to CPS? (If you know me well, you know I have an extremely bad temper - especially when it comes to protecting my children) I wasn't really sure what to do but...when she metioned 'CPS' I walked over to her & said "excuse me?" She then stood up & got off her electric cart & she was going to hit me! LOL! She was coming towards me like a tiger going after a steak!

I looked at my horrified children witnessing all this & tried to rationalize. What I wanted to do was knock that frickin' old bat down (wouldn't have took much) across her cart & tell her to shut up. Then I would have gotten on her cart & ran her over. Or something like that. Ha! However, I decided that would not be a good choice. So...after looking at my children, I simply said "you want to report me because my baby is crying? I'll pray for you" & I turned around to continue walking.

By this time everyone was watching. All Wal-Mart activity had come to a halt. Ha! Here come the employees to 'break us up' even though I was walking off. As I began to leave, after telling the old bag I'd pray for her - here came the best part.

"You G** D*** F****** Liar" shouted at me at the top of her lungs. In front of everyone. I have pretty big eyes & I'm quite confident at that time they became even larger. :)

I then gasped, grabbed my children, attempted to cover their ears (yeah, like that mattered) & off we went.

I was already rattled from Mercedes screaming & by the time that episode was over, I was nearly in tears. I was shaking & could barely think. People never cease to amaze me.

As we were leaving, a real nice lady walked passed me, smiled, & said "I'm so sorry". I thanked her. Believe it or not, that one little comment calmed me a bit. Then my Jaguar looked at me, pointed her finger at me & said "that lady was mean to you!!" LOL

The other thing I find amazing is how you can look at 4 tiny people & instantly know what you must do, & not do what you want to do. Thanks for my 4 little people I did not commit murder & go to jail. And for that I'm thankful.

(Wouldn't you know, the minute we stepped outside of WM Mercedes quit crying & hasn't made a peep since. Ha! Not funny Mercedes!)

On the way home I explained to my children that there are many, many people in the world that are crazy. Then I defined crazy. LOL I then apologized they had to witness that. Such a shame.

I know I've said this before but I'll say it again - it's a miracle I don't drink. A lot. Ü

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

A tad of good.

Went back to the dr. today. She is getting a lot of our money. :)

She does not think this is another Staph infection. Yay! She thinks this issue is inflammed scar tissue from the last surgery. I'm on another antibiotic (on top of the one I am still currently taking) & still have to continue my list of to-do's. I shall continue with every instruction no matter how tired I am of them! And I'm pretty tired of doing this & doing that. Oh well. Come Thursday, should I be worse, I do need to return for another surgery. Yuck. As of right now, I am pain-free & feeling pretty darn tootin' good. Yeehaw!

Clean your house people! Evidently Staph is everywhere. In our homes & out of our homes. From what I understand, all you have to do is have it on your fingers (or skin) & touch an 'open' area on your skin & more than likely, you've exposed yourself. Blah! We have been taking Mercedes to so many dr.'s appointments, we could have contracted it at one of those. Hospitals are one of the main environments you can contract Staph! How crazy is that?!?!

Clean, clean, clean 'cause it ain't worth it! Trust me on this one! ;) I am now only buying products that state on the bottle/label that it kills Staph. Right now I'm obsessed. And my house is clean! Ü

Btw (1), previously I have heard on the news, etc. that Anitbacterial soap does not work. Just use plain ol' soap. So that's what I buy. my dr.'s office, guess what they use? Antibacterial! So if they use it, then I'm using it! I already stocked up last night & tossed all of my other (hand) soaps in the trash. I wonder if that (not using Antibacterial) had anything to do with this icky infection stuff? Guess we'll never know. :)

Btw (2), if you didn't know this about me, I loveeeeeeeeeeee to clean. I don't know why - I guess the gratification I get from it. Anyway, the other night I heard that computer keyboards are filthier than toilet seats! Yuck! I think I'll clean mine again. Ü