Sunday, January 30, 2011

My amazing sister

Yes, I have been on a major blogging hiatus, and no, I am not suddenly going to start posting frequently again.  But I am writing on behalf of my older sister, Rachel.  She and her husband, Ryan, have been unsuccessfully trying to have kids for some time now and have been actively pursuing adoption as well.  For years I harbored the misconception that if you use an adoption agency, the agency finds a baby for you.  Through my sister's experience, I have discovered that is not usually the case.  The agency they are using encourages prospective families to spread the word in all ways possible because it is usually through word of mouth that families get connected with birth mothers. 

Let me tell you a little bit about my sister.  She teaches high school, holds a very time consuming position in our church, and runs a non-profit in her "free time."  She is wonder woman!  But the thing I love most about Rachel is that she is not only impressive, she is also real.  She is loving, kind, and generous, and she always has her eyes open for anyone that might be lonely or sad.  I can attest that my sister is truly one of the most amazing people I have ever met and will be a phenomenal mother.  Please keep her in mind if you happen to cross paths with anyone considering adoption.

Rachel is an English teacher and describes everything much better than I can.  She frequently writes posts about her thoughts on adoption (as well as many other posts, often very amusing) on her blog. The address is  Their adoption profile is available here if you would like to read more about them and see pictures.

Thanks in advance for any help you can give us!  Please keep them in your thoughts and prayers.

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Why I love teaching

Some of you may know that I am working at a tiny, alternative, private high school/tutoring center right now.  Let me tell you what that really means--a place for extremely wealthy, extremely messed up kids.

While most of my kids are actually pretty good, I have one that makes me want to pull my hair out.  Literally.  He is a suicidal, manic depressive eighth grader with straight F's who has already been suspended three times this year for fighting and coming to school high.  Oh, he also hates his parents vehemently, lies continually, and cheats flagrantly.  He's a real peach.

So you might be thinking that this post should be entitled "Why I hate teaching" . . . Not so.  Working with him every afternoon has given me the rare opportunity to get a glimpse of the sweet, funny, real Quinn underneath all of the "issues."  This is certainly the exception and not the norm, but I love when it happens.

He came in on Thursday determined to be a butt head.  He hadn't done any of the make-up work he was supposed to, got kicked out of his dad's house, and was suspended for the third time.  I braced myself for a torturous hour of forcing him to do history worksheets one problem at a time.  Then, while perusing his lengthy list of missing assignments, I came upon an assignment to write a love sonnet.  I couldn't resist.  Even though he looked at me like, "You can't be serious," I persisted.  By the end of the hour, we were cracking up and having a genuinely great time together.

Want to see the finished result?  It may not have ten syllables per line or keep the same tense throughout, but I am proud of him.  I think it is pretty darn clever!

My Love Sonnet
My true love has hair like silk,
I love to see it blow in the breeze.
It's black as night and white as milk,
I love to see you play among the trees.

I love how you have so much energy,
You can always make me smile.
The sight of you fills my soul with glee,
I can't stand not to see you for awhile.

You are a shining star.
Just to see you makes me weep.
Without you I would probably be stuck at some bar.
I love it when you chase sheep . . . 

Of all the things that are precious to me,
I could never survive w/o* my border collie.   
*Yes, his final draft said w/o :)

And that is why I love being a teacher!  Days like that make all the crappy days worth it.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

You gotta love sisters

Rachel came and visited me a few weeks ago and just so happened to witness (actually be a critical part of) one of the more embarrassing moments in my life.  And, in typical sister fashion, decided to write about it on her blog!  Gosh . . . how nice of her. 

Anyway, now that the embarrassment has past and I am able to laugh at myself, I thought I would share the joy with you.  Anyone in need of a good laugh?  Want one at my expense?  Go ahead--I give you permission.  Check out Rachie's post (she is a writer and tells it much better than I could).  Enjoy! 

Sunday, April 11, 2010

A very overdue post

Our last visitors (at the end of January) were Sary and Cal.  But, when he heard they were coming, my dad couldn't resist coming too!  It seems silly to post about something over two months late, but we had a blast, and I want the record for my sake.  So bear with me.

We spent the week . . . 

Playing at the beach

 Eating delicious frozen yogurt
Can you believe that look on his face?  "Um, why is no one feeding me that yogurt?"

Chowing down on Mexican food
Cal went nuts over the re-fried beans and rice.  He couldn't get enough of them!

Exploring Seaport Village
Meow!  That's my very own sexy sailor giving me a smooch.

Taking a harbor cruise
Sam was in heaven to be out on a boat . . . Callum was not!

Enjoying scenic Balboa Park

Gawking at exotic animals in the zoo

And snuggling!  
 Sarah will probably not be pleased with me for putting up this picture, but Cal looked so sweet that I couldn't resist!

Saturday, April 3, 2010

This one's for you, Amy!

I have been way out of the blogging loop for awhile.  Amy keeps reminding me to post things for her "sew-and-tell," so I figured it was about time I got my act together.  Here you go, Amy . . . a conglomerate of sewing projects from the past month or so.

First, my nephew turned one!  I decided to make him a birthday onesie (but couldn't resist sending along a little propaganda while I was at it).

Want to see it in action?  Pretty darn cute if you ask me!

I also made this apron for my cousin's birthday.  She is a baker extraordinaire, so I thought she needed another sassy apron for her collection.
She is a good sport and let me take pictures, even though she hates them.  Doesn't she look cute?  Too bad her shirt was the same color as the tie . . . makes it kind of hard to see.  But you get the gist.

Thursday, March 18, 2010

A true chocoholic

It's official.  I am a chocoholic.

It has certainly never been a secret that I love sweets, but I am finally beginning to understand the depth of my addiction thanks to these bad boys.  I LOVE Cadbury mini-eggs.  More than anything else (even chocolate covered almonds), I can't stop eating them once I start.  In fact, I am given bags by friends every year who see them and "think of me."  That tells you how often I talk about them. :) So you can imagine my glee when my sister-in-law, Christine, sent me the link for those cookies last Saturday.  I made them Sunday . . . they were gone by Tuesday.

They say the sign of an alcoholic is drinking before noon.  What does it make me if literally one of the first things I think about when I wake up in the morning is where to find my first treat?  I start WAYYYYY before noon, I assure you.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Two birthdays!

I was going to title this post "Our birthday bashes," but neither of us really had much of a "bash" this year.  Both of our birthdays were pretty laid back.

 Sam turned 27!

 Sam is lucky because he had a little cutie to celebrate with this year (and doesn't the little guy look just thrilled?)


My birthday was marked by a momentous occasion--Sam made a cake!  All by himself. :)  And I have to admit, it was DANG good.  I am sucker for funfetti.

Monday, March 8, 2010

I live here

I have these moments when I look around and think, "Oh my gosh.  I live here!  People pay tons of money to come visit for a week, and I get to live here!"

To celebrate Valentines this year, Sam blindfolded me and drove me out to Coronado.  We went on a fun bike ride, walked along the beach, and had breakfast at an adorable French cafe.  It was 75 degrees on February 15th!  Isn't this gorgeous?

All of the houses on Coronado are adorable.  I want to live there someday. 

 I will never get sick of living near the beach.

Overlooking downtown from the island (the lighting isn't great, but you get the idea)

That's right . . . I live here. :)

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Secret Cupid

One of my favorite family traditions growing up was "Secret Cupids."  A week before Valentine's Day, my mom would set up a store in her bedroom, and we would each draw a family member's name out of a hat.  Throughout the week, we would leave that person little surprises.  Then we would all try to guess who our secret cupid was on Valentine's Day (and be just shocked at the results).

Although it is pretty obvious who Secret Cupid is now, Sam and I still have fun celebrating this way every year.  This year though, a different S.C. sent me something in the mail and stole the show . . .

 Talk about the cutest cupid of all!!!  Sorry Sam, but how could you compete with that?!?

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Ode to the World's Cutest Grandparents

Our second set of visitors was my precious grandparents.  I feel so lucky to have such loving and spunky grandparents that I get to see so often (but not often enough)!!!

We didn't take many pictures during their trip because it raised every single day they were here.  Total stink!  But I did want to include some of my favorite pictures of them from Christmas.

One night Granny and Grampy came over all dressed up, but Granny wanted to get comfy before we played games so she borrowed some of our clothes.  Doesn't she look tough in Sam's Navy OCS t-shirt?  They are pretty hard core.  And I just can't get over her in my gray and pink sneakers. Pretty hip, eh?

And I think Gramps is pretty handsome in Rachel's girly apron.

We did, however, get one stellar video while they were in town.  This is Josh (my cousin's hubby), Granny, and I doing the "shuffle off to Buffalo."  Not bad for an 80 year old lady!!