Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Now you will be all caught up!!

WHEW! Our dossier is in China, waiting to be logged in and the next steps taken with the Chinese authority to move our adoption forward, our I-800 (US authorization/permission to adopt document, second step)  has been filed and is being processed, our DS230( Immigrant visa application) is on its way to the US Consulate in China for our son's visa !! The next steps (after some fund raising )  are travel planning steps , I THINK!!!!!! All the copies of documents are in their appropriate file folders, the extra copes we do not need have been disposed of. There is room for more than just one human on the love seat again!
In other news, BOTH Noah and Isaac have after school  jobs, Isaac has been driving for a while now and both Noah and Leah have their learners permits and will be able to get their licenses in January.  Leah has had a job for quite a while now....my kiddos are really growing up!! Naomi an Rachel had a short term baby sitting job for a couple of weeks too.  The  2013-14 year started at the  high school today for Noah and Isaac, but basketball team tryouts were last week and yes, both Smith Brothers are on the team again this year! We will be cheering for our Stillwater PIONEERS!!!
Today is a bittersweet memory kind of day for me. One year ago tonight my mom had a heart attack, one of many which would rock her body over the next 3 and a half days , several very very severe and difficult to watch. On Sunday August 24, at 9:42 in the morning as I cleaned her mouth she drew her last breath and went Home. I am so thankful that my brother Len and sister in law Cheryl were here with us, that my aunt ( my mom's only sibling and her dear precious best friend as well) and uncle were able to drop their vacation plans and rush to be here as well. My memories of the boys transferring to the high school from home school  last year are woven together with memories of being in the ICU with my mom. It is hard to believe that it has been a whole year....................
In that year, Esther and Casey announced their second baby to be due in March,  Malachi and Sopheak announced their second pregnancy too, after a heart breaking miscarriage earlier, this baby due in April.  THEN, Caleb and Tiffany announced that THEY TOO were expecting a baby ...in May!!! Jael shared with us  at Christmas time that she too was pregnant and due in August. SO.... on . March 25, April 14, May 6 and August 9 , we welcomed grandbabies...Logan james to Esther and Casey, all 9# 4 oz of him, Enoch Leng at 6# 11 oz , Christian Titus at 9#oz and Macy Grace at 7# 3 oz...beautiful healthy babies .  Hannah had her own special event too: she earned her Bachelor's degree in Psychology and was graduated from OSU which we celebrated with a Louisiana crawfiish boil!
In between those babies, we went on our first family vacation since moving to Oklahoma. What a fun trip we had too!!! Three vehicle caravan we made of it: Gideon took vacation from work to come along, so he drove, Charlie took his truck and I drove my car. THAT was a really good plan!!!!!! (Bonus  hotel points from Charlie's many nights away from home during the year provided free hotel stays  AND made the trip possible!) First to   St Louis to see Charlie's brother Carl, on to Ohio to see a dear online prayer group friend, Polly Green and her family and her super sized family, as well as another  prayer group friend Mandy Litzke and her big bunch too. All together at  Polly's house I think we counted that 42 of our children were partying with us!!!!!! WHAT A BLESSING that so many of those are adopted children who are orphans NO MORE.  On to Michigan to see Charlie's mom and sisters and their families . Wonderful family times meeting married in family members, nieces and nephews who had grown up to adulthood since last time we saw each other, lots of babies ..............So much fun with family!
My cousin was getting married in West Palm Beach in later July and it worked out that I was able to take Isaac, Naomi, Rachel and Daniel with me to the wedding. SO special to spend time with more family that we had also  not seen in lots of years ! In light of my mom's sudden and unexpected heart attacks and her death, it became a lot more important to see family without an illness or funeral as the reason for the visits. I am so very thankful that we had the resources and the time and reliable vehicles to make the trips!   AND as an extra family treat, Caleb was graduating his last class of basic trainees at Ft Leonard Wood and was being honored as Drill Sergeant of the Quarter or his skills as a Drill Sergeant .Charlie and I went to spend a few days with Caleb and Tiffany, Bryden and Christian and be at the ceremony.  WHAT A THRILL!!!   I was at Caleb's graduation from Basic training, took him to the airport when he deployed two times, welcomed him home from those deployments , celebrated his graduation from Drill Sergeant school in south Carolina  2 years ago  and then, this.....watching him lead the ceremony, call cadence, open and close the ceremony.....
My mamma heart buttons were bursting!!!  ( But while we were celebrating Caleb, Jael went into labor and gave birth to Macy. Barely home from the ceremony she texted me to say "Call me" . Her words , "We have a baby!" brought more tears to my eyes!!!
And yes , in the middle of all of this fabulous family time, I was filling out adoption documents right and left!    This week is my pay bills and get the new school year curriculum organized  week. We don't start our home school year until after Labor Day and with the trip to China looming ,we ay re-organize that a bit too. God has blessed and sustained and blessed and maintained and grown us all in so many ways in this last year . I wish my mom could have met her newest great grand babies and her newest grand son as well, but I suspect she is having such a GLORIOUS TIME in Heaven that she won't mind waiting until we all get there to meet the family members who arrived after she left.

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