Thursday, September 17, 2009


I have been reading a little on this blog. It is an amazing adoption story. They are in a court battle with the birthfather right now after the baby being in their home for a year! (say a prayer for them please!)

They have an open relationship with their son's birthmom which is so wonderful. There are too many stereotypes out there surrounding birthparents. I hope you have a chance you read some of their story and maybe it will change any misconceptions you(or those around you) may have about the whole open adoption process.

Also..there is a cool video on the sidebar that I tried to post on here....but I burned my brain trying to figure out how to do just click on it there and watch it please:)

Sophia's and Nate's birthparents are amazing people. We pray for them and miss them. How lucky we are to know them.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

The Awesome "Great Wolf Lodge"!!

Look at the cool place we got to visit last month! It is the Great Wolf Lodge in Concord, NC. From the moment we drove onto the property we were wondering when we could go back!
Nate of course has to frown since we asked him to smile....but he is really enjoying himself!
We got there late on Friday night but were greeted by such friendly staff who were eager to get us set up for our weekend. We were blown away when we opened the door to our was beautiful! There was even a little package waiting for the kids....2 cute stuffed wolves!
The kids had their own space even with a small flat screen TV! It was sooooo cool!
And when we thought it couldn't get any better we saw these....4 giant cookies from their bakery and 4 chocolate covered strawberries! Oh...and these coupons for a free wand...this really got the kids excited for the morning so they could go see what the wands could do!!
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I guess I could have put these in better order;) Here are some more pics of our room.
That white blob on the bed was a towel folded into a wolf shape with goggles on:) it doesn't show up really well on this picture!
Nate didn't want to hold his wolf so I did. I am also sporting the cool wristband that acted as our room key and also could be connected to our credit card for purchases all around the lodge! Someone thought that through for sure! I mean....who wants to lug your purse/wallet to a waterpark and worry about it getting stolen...take care of that with the flick of the wrist....or maybe a wave under the red scanner-thingy at the register;) very cool.
Isn't this place gorgeous?
Throughout the day there are different programs in this lobby. We are standing in front of this cool treehouse where characters sing and tell stories. I believe there were 2 shows a day. We didn't make it there...too busy playing MagiQuest!
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Magi Quest

One of the coolest part of our stay was the Magi Quest game. As I mentioned before, the kids got a certificate good for a wand and the booklet and could not WAIT for the magiquest store to open the next morning so they could get their wands and find out what this whole game was about!

Basically it is a magic themed, interactive game that is played with these wand shaped remote controls. The guidebooks are called "The Ancient Book of Wisdom" and included all the clues to complete a certain quest. At the end of each quest the Magi was rewarded with a "rune...which is the most valuable commodity in MagiQuest. These ancient sources of magic will give your wand additional powers once you possess them"...taken straight from the booklet.

After purchasing your wand they program it with your name and Magi name....then it is ready to help you on your quests. The 2-4th floors contain pictures, statues and chests that contain the clues for completing the quests. Each floor has 2 hallways with different names like "Forgotten Halls" or "Piney Path" or "Enchanted Woods".

This "forest" is where you begin. All the chests, pictures, statues, etc were activated when you waved your wand at them... but before you started on a quest you had to "accept" it first (we learned that the hard way...thought we were through with a quest and then nothing was showing up on our screen!). To do this you came to a tree and selected the one you want to start with. One cool part is that your wand saves your quests so the next time you can resume right where you left off!

Magi "Sofiana" carefully chosing her next quest! You also came to the trees to check your status on a certain quest. We did a lot of running up and down to the 2-4th floors. There was an elevator but it was super slow and the stairs were located right off the hallway (see that exit sign?) so it was quicker to just take the stairs. And it was great for the kids to actually work for their fun!

When you pointed your wand at this statue it would light up and say "you have found the ___!". It was really cool. All the hallways were painted with different scenes patterned after their names...I believe this was either the Enchanted or Tangled Woods.

These hallways were right off our rooms so we felt safe letting them go out by themselves. This was the first thing Sophia wanted to do each morning. They were never far away and could easily be found. There were lots and lots of other children out doing the same thing. Another cool part was watching the kids helping each other. Sophia was always with a new group of kids when we would find her. She was either helping them or they were helping her.

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more MagiQuest!

This was the pixie was also the home of a bear (one from the Big Dipper)...all depended on the quest you were on. You would collect the necklaces with jewels to give the bear and some other items for the pixie. These all provided power to them. (i had Nate and Sophia explain that to me....still have to put into words!...bottom was awesome!)

Just another cool chest that contained money to help you along on your quests.

Oh look..we have a picture of the pixie giving Sophia the rune for completing this quest.
After collecting certain runes (ice arrow, freezing, protection, healing,and portal) you could try and defeat the dragon. Those runes helped in slaying the beast. It was really hard!
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the Water Park!

Here are some pictures of the fantastic water park...that was INDOORS! No worry about sunscreen! And towels...they provided those! Oh...and the lifeguards were the best I have ever seen. They were so attentive-always pacing the water's edge- never daydreaming.

This was our favorite....the Howlin' Tornado...and you can bet I was howlin' all the way down! We first went down like a regular waterslide and then it shot us into this "toilet bowl" looking funnel. We went up and then back down and eventually made it through the hole which was more turns before finally coming to a stop. It was very fun....but scarry if you were going down with your back to the action(which I did!)

We didnt' take many pictures while at the park because we were having too much fun! But here are some pictures taken from the internet...and it did look like this! Oh....and another cool thing was the water being warm! It wasn't freezing. It wasn't too warm but it didn't take your breath away when you got in!

Here are the shots I took while everyone was playing and I took a break. It was a blast and we all look forward to visiting the Lodge again!

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Thursday, September 10, 2009

Our life at the moment....

So our life has slowed down considerably since I am not teaching seminary(which I miss a lot) or preschool (which I miss more). That leaves me with too much time on my hands....(are you thinking of that song too??).

So I occasionally get frustrated with myself when I walk around thinking "what should I do now?" (key word here: occasionally). I never made this punch list of all the projects I would do with this extra time. I never thought I would get more organized or clean my house more. I guess that was my to solve it I made a list of projects I need/want to accomplish so when I am walking around going "what now?" I can look at my list and get to work. They are not big ones...just small ones that can be done during the time between taking the kids to school and heading to the gym to teach or the 2 hours before heading off to dance/soccer. One is to finish our Philippines Trip blog. Another is to organize my laundry room. Another is to work on my menu cards which will help me work on my 3- month food supply. Work on Sophia's dress she has been bugging me to make for too long now...shame on ME!:)

I secretly (guess it isn't a secret anymore...) wish I WANTEd to be more organized...but just can't find the motivation for that. Or I wish I WANTED to have clean countertops everyday. Or I wish I WANTED to __. Does it sound like I lack some movtivation?:) I dont' spend time comparing myself to my friends who have cleaning is much healthier to admire them:).

So I am just rambling let's move on:)

Nate has turned a corner. Last week he only moved his clip once....ONCE! He seems more relaxed. It is like he finally understands what each teacher expects of him. He GETS it. Man I was all prepared for a rough year but am so relieved that he is feeling better about all of it! I had a conference with his teacher and was so grateful that she understands him. She picked up on his anxiety and doesn't push. She seems to know when to push and when to let him work it out himself. Hooray for good teachers!!

He is also coming out of his separation anxiety. Last year I made the mistake of leaving him at a basketball practice to go into the van and read. He was crying and upset when I came back in. This set off his anxiety and he literally would panic when I mentioned leaving him anywhere! He still feels a little leary of being away from me or doing new things but he pushes through!

He is starting soccer and continues to do Cub Scouts. He will love soccer and doesn't really love Cub Scouts but we hope that will change. It is a great program and does a lot for the boys. He is a great kid but he says he doesn't have many friends:( He is going through the "i am not going to be your friend if you don't do ______." He thinks if someone doesn't say "you are my friend" then he can't play with them. Too funny...well not to him....

And I am a little perplexed about something that happened today.

In May I had a visit from the lady who does an annual report for my daycare license. All went well and I didn't have any violations. So I thought I was good for another year. Since I am not teaching preschool this year I have not been keeping up on all the rules and regulations...I figured I would get everything in order before May '10 when she would be returning. I would know by then if I would in fact be opening Learning Adventures Preschool for the '10-11 school year. i get a knock on my door and there was the lady. They had changed the rules and she was coming back for a visit. I informed her of my situation but she had to either close my daycare or do her report. I didn't want to close because of the lengthy process to re-open but I was going to have A LOT of violations if she did her report today and that would show up on the internet(you can see the reports of all the daycares in Georgia). Plus I would need to put a fence around my playground and i dont' have the money to do that right now so I decided to just close my daycare. She took my license and everything. It is just weird that this happened. it doesn't mean I won't have preschool here anymore....i can always get re-licensed...but it was just weird. The State has made a lot of changes for daycare homes and it gets to be a hassle...but it is to keep the children it is a good thing I guess.
So there is our life right now. I am going to write something about Sophia now:)


Well since I usually post about Nate I thought I would throw in something about Sophia. Usually the quiet one gets ignored;) Nate use to be the quiet reserved one!! ha

Sophia continues to thrive at school. She loves 4th grade and brought home 100+ grades on her progress report. She wanted me to write a comment on the form so I said "is that the best you can do?" hardy har har.

She hasn't entered into the "i have to look cute everyday" phase which I am sooooo glad...although I would love it if she was in the "i want my hair to be in bows and braids and barretts" phase because I love fixing her hair! But her simple ways makes getting ready in the morning very easy! She did wear a cute outfit on Tuesday- Red and black top with red leggings. And her pink flip-flops. I said I wish she had some black sandals to match....she was thinking of red high-heels:) One day she will have a nice shoe collection...and I dont' mind waiting!

She made it into the chorus also....she is VERY excited about this and is singing around the house more and more. I can tell she will take this very seriously and it will be fun to attend her concerts!

She also started back into ballet class. I was just as excited as she was. She has a dancer's body(long legs) and could be a great one (I think:)).
One great thing that has come from my extra time is having more time to be with the kids and take them to their extra activities. Time passes to quickly and I am very happy to not be so busy...although I miss what I was doing...they are my number one priority. When i told Sophia that I wasn't going to be teaching seminary or preschool anymore her reply was "so now you will have more time to spend with us". That is right baby-girl!