So our unofficial numbers haven't dropped, this is just the number of years your Dad and I have now been married. I will get to that, but first I promised you I would tell you about Aunt J's and Uncle C's baby shower for Han Solo.

All went well and was fun! It was held at Wildfire in Schaumburg and the food, as always, was amazing. Aunt J's cake lady once again did the cake (my all time favorite cake person) to match the theme of the shower.

Don't worry, Han Solo got lots of good stuff. Your Grammie made Han Solo this really cute diaper bag and matching small quilt in red and black to match Han Solo's travel system. Uncle C picked out the travel system. (I think he picked it out because of the Black Hawk colors.) I gave Han Solo her Step 2 Wagon today. I am thinking she is going to love going on picnics with her parents while in it. My favorite gift was from Aunt J's grandparents and was a tool belt for Uncle C to wear while taking care of Han Solo. It had a spot for a burp rag, bottle, binky, and other good things to have on hand. Han Solo also got A LOT of clothes. Hopefully she will be able to wear them all at least once before she out grows them.

The theme of Aunt J's shower was "She's Ready to Pop!" so there was a lot of popcorn. Plus, you know how we like to go over the top on things. (Probably why your Aunt J and I love the Gilmore Girls so much.)

On Friday I helped get everything together and had fun with Aunt J's sister and mom. We put together the center pieces and favors. (Plus, you know I enjoy spending time with M and D.) This also allowed me to spend time up in Schaumburg, as well as eat at Portillo's.

So today is your parents' 8th anniversary. (It is also your Great-Great Grandparents anniversary.) We got married in the church I grew up in and it was wonderful being surrounded by our family and friends. During the ceremony I was unable to get my vows out. R or Dr. Z said them for me to repeat and nothing would come out as the tears built up. All I could do was nod my head. They repeated the vows and laughingly told me I had to say them. (I think R made a comment about it being one of the few times I was speechless.) Eventually the words came and we just stood there holding hands with tears in both of our eyes.

Some day we will show you the video of our wedding. (We hopefully will have converted the VHS to DVD by that point. It isn't as funny as your Aunt Meg and Uncle Alex's wedding video, but it is us.) We will tell you about how we met in high school and started dating in college, our uber long engagement and the funny stories leading up to the wedding, the picture of M with the flowers, the meaning behind the flowers, the song Grandpa E sang, how C and C wouldn't go down the aisle with T, the kazoos, going to Whitey's before the reception, the pool story, and many more.


Single Digit?

Could it be? Do we really have a single digit? Unofficially, we do!!! Unofficially we have reached single digits for siblings.

Our unofficial numbers are currently:
Boy- 10
Girl- 16
Siblings- 9


because Luc asked. . .


One of Lando's White Sox shirts
By the time you are reading this blog you have learned about your Dad's love of Chicago sports. By the way, you got an awesome White Sox shirt today while I was out finishing up Han Solo's shower gift. So I am also guessing you have figured out another of my addictions, shopping. (I so can't wait to see you in this shirt and your Dad can't wait to take you to your first Sox game.)

Part of Han Solo's gift, more on that later. . .
Well for the past week or so, your Dad has been asking for me to post this for you. It isn't often that he requests something related to the blog, so I am humoring him and will put it into this post. You should also know, while at Grandma Kathy's this weekend, Aunt Kristi asked when your Dad was actually going to post something on the blog, so we shall see how long it takes.

First Black Hawk's jersey
Lando, I know you are probably asking, "What is the point Mom?," I am getting there. About a week ago, while shopping, I made an awesome discovery. On a sale rack for 75% off, you know your Mom's love of a good sale, I found you your first Black Hawk jersey. That's right, the jersey we took your picture in every year until it actually fits, was found on June 8 of 2011, while we were waiting for you. I have to apologize now to you Lando, if you are a Landa, you will not have a pink jersey for any sport. At least that is what your Dad is saying now, we will so talk him into it at some point. If we don't, I am sure one of your grandparents, aunts, or uncles will see to it. (We will have to watch some relatives baseball related gifts though, we can't have you dressed for the wrong team.)

So this is what your first jersey looked like before it was well worn and loved. (I think your Dad is a little disappointed it isn't his favorite player, #2 Duncan Keith, but they didn't have Keith's jersey.) I know, Jonathan Toews is better than Keith, he is also my favorite Black Hawk.

We wanted you to know the story of how you got your first jersey. We know you are going to love wearing it and enjoy watching the Black Hawks with us. (Unless you are cheering on another team to bust your Dad's chops.)

We love you Lando and can't wait to have you with us! So you know, tonight's the first game of the cross town classic, so you know it is an important sports night here at the house.


Happy Birthday Mom! and Happy Father's Day!

Just wanted to send birthday wishes to my Mom!
As well as Father's Day wishes to our Dad(d)s and Grandpas!

{Source: me}


June's Numbers

June marks the 11th month on the waitlist for us. I can honestly say I didn't expect us to be on the waitlist still at this point in our adoption journey. I know there are tons of unknowns in international adoption, but this was one I was hoping/wanting to avoid. I realize that the overall changes to adoption in Ethiopia are good, making sure that everything is by the book and above board, but it doesn't make the wait any easier. I don't know how families who adopt from China's nonspecial needs list wait the years they do for their child.

Officially this month we did see movement on the boys list. We actually thought we were lower on all three lists due to the weekly updates on the "unofficial" list we get every Friday. How did this happen? Families can choose which lists they want to be on and can make changes until they receive a referral. If you make a change to your homestudy's parameters (age, gender, number desired, etc), you go onto that list where you would have been placed when you originally went onto the waitlist.

So as of today, we are. . .

Boy List- #12

Girl List- #21
{source: it is a 21 oz box}

Siblings List- #12


My Addiction. . .

I have an addiction. I admit it. (Okay, let’s be honest. I have a couple of addictions.) My newest addiction though is a bit dangerous. I am addicted to cake pops. Eating them. Making them. Eating them. They are great!

It started in December when “E” introduced me to the wonders of cake pops at the Special Education Christmas Party. She made the adorable Santa hat ones and told me about the wonders of Bakerella and her book. I was hooked after the first bite of the awesome cake and sugary goodness. They are one word. Amazing. (As Luc says, “It’s cake on a stick. How can you not love it?") 


So after being introduced, I realized my acquaintance with cake pops needed to develop. I went out and bought the book the next day and life has not been the same since.  

Right away I went to work learning how to make cake pops. What better time to make them? When you need to bring something to the family Christmas gathering. I was intimidated by the Santa hats, I mean two colors and glitter-like stuff, it sounded and looked complicated. So I thought I would go a little more basic. Reindeer. 

  {source: me. My first cake pop made, note the drip and the "blank" eyes.}

I couldn't stop. There have been basic cake pops.

{source: me. I was trying for a marble look.}

Cupcake pops.

{source: me.}

Finally, today, there has been one more type. . .

{source: me.}

I LOVE making cake pops! It also helps that I have a fan base. Luc is my biggest fan and probably consumer of my cake pops. Our niece "L" is also a big fan. She's 20 months and is cute when she asks for "more cake please."

{source: me}


The Books. . .

I am a procrastinator/slacker. 

If you are reading this and know me, you are probably laughing and rolling your eyes at me, but I really am. (At least in my head I am.) In the 7 school days since the end of school, I am behind on my "To Do" list, but that is normal for me. The fact that I am only 7 days into break and have actually crossed several items off it, is pretty amazing. But to be honest, I put some pretty easy things on there to make myself feel like I actually accomplished something.
So you need an example?

Example 1
Well, about six years ago my father-in-law helped me wallpaper a wall in our kitchen (by the way, I am never buying a house that has wallpaper again). When my dad helped install the "floating" countertop about 18 months ago, a section under it had to be redone. I didn't do it until yesterday. It had been bothering me a great deal since then, but I didn't want to do it. So that is done. (It has been on the "To Do" list for awhile.)

Example 2
My best friend's sister gave me the task of designing the place cards for the upcoming baby shower. I want to say I was given this task in March. I have ideas. (M, don't panic. I really do have ideas.) I have even sketched out ideas, but in March there was still plenty of time. During Spring Break in April I ordered "special paper" for the place cards. (Sorry, the theme of the shower is a surprise, so I can't say what type the paper is until June 25th.) The paper is on back order, which has just added to the procrastination. So tonight, maybe tomorrow during the day, is craft time to turn the sketches into reality. M, again don't worry, you will get to see samples on Friday.

Example 3- The whole purpose of this post.
I am currently reading Attaching in Adoption. I have been working on it since the beginning of May. Since starting this book, I have also read maybe four other books for fun. I have difficulty getting through some of the recommended adoption books because they are so textbook-like. At times I feel like I am back in Dr. House's psych class my junior year where we looked at the DSM-IV too much. (I diagnosed myself with all kinds of things we read about.)

So like any good special ed teacher, I have tried to use my  knowledge to help myself get through this book. I broke the task up to smaller bits. I set deadlines for myself. I set up a reward schedule. Yep, the problem with this is I tell myself, "Kara, you know you are trying to manipulate yourself. You don't have read the chapter before ________."

I know what part of the issue is, I don't have an endpoint that has a date attached. I am great about getting stuff done, when there is a set date. Right now I know we are 11 for boys and siblings, 19 for girls. Plenty of time. Which is something I need to stop telling myself. I still have other adoption books I want to get through before Lando's referral, let alone before we bring him/her/them home. I don't have plenty of time. I need to keep reminding myself of this. I don't have plenty of time.

So what did I do today instead of read Attaching in Adoption? Well, I went to Jeffery Alans, Hobby Lobby, and Michaels. Joey and I played with his green ball (his favorite toy). I also made a list of all of Lando's books while watching the Monk marathon on "Sleuth." I think I have all of them, but there were some heavy boxes stacked up in the basement that I couldn't move. At the very least, I have a good list to work with when it comes to knowing what books we have for him/her/them. I am also thinking we need to get more diverse books. This has also been on the "To Do" list for bit, one more thing I can cross out.