Sunday, June 30, 2013

First Family Movie Outing

We have a movie theater in town that for several years operated as a discount theater showing movies that might still be in the theater, but definitely were not first run.  A few years back they closed with no fanfare.  Then a few weeks back we heard they were reopening.  Up to this point the girls have only been to a theater once with mixed results - last summer when a I took them to see Puss in Boots.  So yesterday we stopped by to see what movies were playing with the idea of trying to go as a family.  The theater was open with a couple of kid friendly films on the schedule, but there was a catch - they only take cash, we didn't have any and they don't have an ATM.  So we regrouped and decided to try again the next day.

We had a light lunch after church so we would enjoy our popcorn and headed out.  The theater is run down, but no worse than it was when we last went a few years back.  At least our feet didn't stick to the floor and they had cup holders.  The movie was $2 per person and along with a two drink/big popcorn special we all four went to the movies for $19.  The girls did great, we saw The Croods - it was a little intense for them in a few parts, but when it was over they wanted to see it again, which is always a good sign.  We will definitely go again.  

Oh and after we were so frugal at the movies we stopped by Toys R Us where the girls tried to convince me they really needed their own car.


Saturday, June 29, 2013

Last Day of Vacation Bible School

Friday was the last day of VBS.  After talking to the teachers about the kids laughing at Roni's glasses we had no more issues with anyone being bullied.  The rest of the week went well - the girls had fun every day.  On Friday morning the girls got up and while I was cooking breakfast they went to the bedroom and dressed theirselves.

Roni wore a coat because she says it is cold in "big church" and Rose wore a fuzzy vest.

After I dropped off the girls I talked to their Grammy and Pop Pop and found out they wanted to come to the VBS celebration that night - so I drove back to the church and got extra meal tickets.  When VBS let out that afternoon it was storming so after a mad dash for the car we drove home and the girls played until their daddy came home.  We went back to church for the closing ceremonies and dinner.  The girls participated in a performance with their class.

It was cute, but Rose was clearly not as into it as Roni was.

Then we ate dinner with Grammy and Pop Pop.  The girls barely ate because they were eager to jump in the bounce houses and get their faces painted.  Both girls had great fun jumping - they found a little boy who had been in their class and spent the entire jump time playing with him.  It was so cute.  Then they all three went inside and got their faces painted and had snow cones.

Rose chose butterflies

Roni asked to be a rainbow

Friday, June 28, 2013

Flashback Friday - First Days Home

The first Saturday at the house.

Reading their first books


Rose on a crazy drive ( a family tradition)

Roni on the same crazy drive

Dancing to Elmo

Playing in a box (they used this box as a playhouse for months)

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Rainy Days and Misc.

The forecast for the next week calls for rain - every stinking day for at least a week.  We need the rain - so I can't complain, but it sure puts a crimp in our summertime plans for pool time everyday.  So today we are watching Ice Age - the girls love it - especially Scrat.  

Other favorite rainy day activities are coloring, building with blocks, reading and their absolute favorite putting on a show - starring Rose and Roni. Both girls love to sing and dance with Roni being the biggest ham.  She is all about the costumes.

Rose coloring. 

Both girls building a castle.

Roni cuddled up with a book.

Roni striking a pose.

We got these dresses from a local dance studio's fund raising garage sale for five dollars a dress.

The other day I was complaining about tripping over Roni's princess shoes. I walked into the kitchen and saw this on my kitchen counter ......

Wednesday, June 26, 2013


Recently co-sleeping has come up as a topic on a board I read.  Apparently an adoptive parent mentioned planning to co-sleep with their adoptive child to her social worker and it was an issue for the home study agency. The agency consequently re-wrote that part of the home study slowing down the process for the AP.  This posting prompted thought provoking conversations on the subject.

When we were adopting I had no plans to co-sleep.  In fact I was afraid to co-sleep.  Would I accidentally hurt my child or would they love it so much that they would never leave my bed?  I had read stories about children being smothered by their parents (infants in the cases I read).  I personally knew parents who were struggling to evict their eight to ten year old kids from their beds. 

But co-sleeping was instinctual and gave our girls particularly Rose such peace that it felt like it was the right thing to do. At almost five they don't often sleep with us - Rose sleeps with us occasionally if she has a nightmare and the night before last they both were in our bed during a thunderstorm.  Every morning we have snuggle time on the big bed and I wouldn't have it any other way.  

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Bullies Stink

Today my sweet Roni was bullied and of all places it happened at Vacation Bible School.  Today when I picked the girls up, Roni, was sad.  On the way to the car she shared that some "big kids" during a game of freeze tag knocked her glasses off her face and laughed at her.  Rose confirmed that it happened and that it wasn't an accident.  Neither girl thought to tell a teacher and Roni told me she didn't want to go back and if she did she didn't want wear her glasses.  I told her she would be going back and she would be wearing her glasses.  Getting them to wear their glasses has been a constant struggle for us.  We talked about how some people don't make good choices and how it is wrong to tease others and to push them or touch them without permission.  I assumed her I would be talking to her teacher tomorrow about the situation and if it happened again I wanted them to go tell the teacher right away.  

Monday, June 24, 2013

Day One Vacation Bible School

The girls got us up at 6:30 am and immediately started asking when we were leaving for vacation bible school.  They were excited to go because last year the were too young and they are now "big" girls.  We left at 8:10 am - school was set to start at 8:30 am and it's a less the five minute drive to the church.  I am glad we left early because the registration was time consuming and a bit confusing.  When I finally took them to where their class was sitting they were pumped.

When I picked them up I got mixed reviews.  Rose did not like the big church part, but Roni said it was okay.  They both enjoyed the snack - cotton candy and the art projects.  They asked that I take their photo before we left for the house.

Sunday, June 23, 2013

The Builders

Today we went to Lowes after lunch for a Build and Grow Kids clinic - we were building a Monsters University school trunk.  We are big fans of activities we can do with the girls that are low or no cost.  We've have had great luck at Home Depots Kids Workshops, but our only attempt at a project at Lowes went badly and consequently I was not optimistic that it would be any more successful.  We arrived early to beat the crowds and were almost done building before it got crowded.

The store provides an apron and goggles that you get to keep, the tools to build that you don't keep, the kit, a certificate of completion and patch for the apron.  The kit this time was a little easier than the last, but it still had a lot more parts than the kits at Home Depot and was certainly not something a young child could build without assistance.  We wound up doing more of the actual building than the girls did.  But they had fun putting the stickers in place and were thrilled with the finished project.

Saturday, June 22, 2013

A Good Day that Became a Bad Day that Became a Good Day

Most mornings in our household start with the girls sneaking into our bedroom and jumping on our bed.  Sometimes it's just being silly and then there was today....

The girl on our headboard is Rose.  The day started out good - if a little crazy.

Then it got bad.  I had a continuing education class that I registered for a few weeks ago.  Both girls had cried much of the evening before because they didn't want me to go.  So DH and the girls took me to class and this is where it got bad.  We got to the classroom early so they could see where I would be.  No one was there and as time went by no one came. It became obvious pretty quickly that the class had been cancelled and I wasn't told.  This is the second class that has not happened this summer, the first was due to low registration (I received a call that it was cancelled) and I'm pretty sure this one was as well.  I called the continuing Education office which of course was not open since it is Saturday and left a message.  Needless to say I was disappointed and a little angry.

Then it got good.  We left the school and wound up at a Barnes and Noble bookstore - by luckily chance they were doing a kids event about the solar system.  The girls had a blast - they got to color stickers and then put them on a star scape.  Both girls really enjoyed the craft.  It took a long time because they both had to stick every sticker they colored on the star scape and there were a bunch of stickers.


After the book store we went to lunch at Ruby Tuesday where the girls enjoyed chicken noodle soup and DH and I had their Fit and Lite Fare which is yummy and still in theory, good for us.  

Following lunch we went to Sam's Club to pick up a few items.

Rose got a little container of cheese balls.

They both got a new dress.  

Friday, June 21, 2013

Flashback Friday - Christmas 2012

Last Christmas was the first one here the girls really got it.  They helped decorate the house inside and out.

They enjoyed opening gifts.

And putting them to use.

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Busy Day

Today was a busy day.  We got up and after breakfast (grits) a huge favorite of the girls they colored.  We got them a bunch of big coloring books for Christmas - they had colored in them a little and then lost interest preferring to draw freehand.  But recently they have started back drawing in them.  Their favorite is a Brave coloring book - they recently watched the movie again which sparked their interest in the book.  The book is huge and has the added attraction of having a big sheet of stickers.

After coloring for about an hour they played in their room.  I had to keep making frequent trips into the room to insure they weren't jumping from their dresser to the bed.  Then they did their favorite game - princess and pony.  Rose found a piece of white sticker and put it on her face for a "bridle".  They have such huge imaginations it always makes me smile.

After lunch the girls cleaned up their porch.  Then we went to the pool.  The girls had a huge break through yesterday on the swimming front. Roni has been "swimming" for a few weeks, but was not allowing me to be too far away.  Rose had tried, but decided her her body was not ready.  Then yesterday it suddenly clicked.  They spent two hours swimming back and forth between me and their Aunt DeeDee.  I had to drag them out of the pool.  So today we went back and the girls started to jump into the pool and swim to me.  When their daddy got off work he joined us and took a bunch of photos with a disposable underwater camera.  We left the pool and went to dinner - Daddy tried to drop off the camera at a CVS drug store, but the photography lab was closed.  The girls both drew pictures of bugs.

Then we drove to yet another CVS to try to drop off the camera only to discover they have no photo lab.  The girls entertained me with their toys while we waited for daddy.

When we got home it was bed time - the girls were asleep less than five minutes after getting into bed.

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

To Sleep - Perchance to .... Nightmares

Sleep - we were strangers for about eighteen months.  The girls were adopted at 28 months and they came to us with sleep issues.  Both girls fought sleep with every fiber of their being while in China.  They were going through a lot of changes so it is hardly surprising that they didn't want to sleep.  Naps didn't happen and going to bed was a two to three hour ordeal.  Roni had a self comforting routine that broke my heart - she would hold one arm stiff out above her head and rock back and forth violently.  While she was rocking Rose was crying as if her heart would break.  During the day our traveling group families saw two cute little girls, they didn't see at night when the fear and anger came out.

We got home and transitioned the time change pretty easily, but sleep did not improve.  We had elected to use toddler beds so both girls would simply get up and walk away from their beds.  Nap time was a battle - the only way they would sleep was to be rocked, but if I tried to move them to the bed they would wake.  Getting them to sleep still took up to three hours and neither child slept through the night.  Rose had night terrors.  I slept on a futon outside their bedroom and a night didn't go by that one or the other or both wound up sleeping with me.  

After six months the visits to the futon were less often and I moved back to my bed and they started coming into our room at night to sleep.  Our bedtime routine was still awful and putting them to bed still took forever.  It got to where Roni was staying in her bed most nights, but Rose was still showing up almost every night.  I was wearing down - for eighteen months I had not had a full nights sleep.  Then one day I mentioned to our pediatrician the sleep issue and she talked to them - that very night they slept in their own rooms.  Since that time they have been sleeping in their bed (they now share a queen size bed) and with a strict bedtime routine, teeth, potty, books and sleep our bedtime routine is now around 1/2 hour.  

But every once in a while Rose still has nightmares.  We have started to be more vigilant in the movies she watches, but there doesn't seem to be a common theme to what scares her.  Last night was one of those nights and it appears that Monsters Inc. is what scared her, but she has seen it before - so I am not sure.  When she has her nightmares she cannot go back to sleep in her bed - she is just too scared so she gets to come to the big bed with mommy and daddy.