Saturday, June 30, 2012

WE'VE MOVED (our blog)!

I just realized that I've forgotten to update most of my blog followers that I've been playing with a new location for my blog!

This past year, I've been dealing with a lot of spam on my Blogger site (where you're at right now!)  I have had to constantly review comments for my blog that didn't have anything to do with what I've been writing about.  It was time consuming and created a lot of maintenance work for me in the background. For my blog, I've always wanted a good blend of sharing on my end, but also wanted to make it easy for my blog readers to comment on my stories without getting a bunch of junk for solicitors or spammers.   A blog, after all, is a community -- it shouldn't be just me forcing my life on you without you being able to tell me how obnoxious I am.

I've dabbled with WordPress over the past six months or so and am finding it decent so far. I believe I've managed to export all of my old blog and move it with me to our new site so our archives have moved with me!

In comparing my iPhoto albums to my blog over the past year, I'm realizing I've missed some important events on the blog that I'd like to try to catch up on.  I'll still keep posting events from the past so our family story doesn't have gaps when we look at it later.  If you follow me on Facebook, my new blog will update my Facebook feed with a notice every time I post something new so you won't miss out on the fun!

Come check out my new digs!

Saturday, January 07, 2012

Her Love Letter

Shortly before Christmas, Em got to have a sleepover at Aunt Shell and Aunt Laura's house.  She was surprised with a few early Christmas presents while there and got to work right away on them. 

Aunt Shell presented us with this picture at Christmas.  Em was unprompted and had written this on her own without copying it from anything. 

I think I'll keep this one around as a reminder for those tough days. 

Thursday, January 05, 2012


There are some mornings when Em dresses herself and I just have to grin and shake my head. This was one of those days....

Monday, January 02, 2012

Adoption Support Organization

I recently ran across a new-ish organization that is supporting families that are interested in adopting.

The Sparrow Fund was started because they do not want anything to be an obstacle in the adoption process. They are committed to see ONE MORE child with a forever family and ONE LESS orphan in the world.

More from their website:
Thousands of U.S. families adopt internationally each year. The Sparrow Fund is an organization committed to encouraging and supporting these families as they prepare for the adventure of adoption. We do this by providing regular training opportunities as well as grants to families in financial need to enroll in programs specifically designed to provide counsel and comprehensive medical reviews of their referred child.
Adoptive families can become overwhelmed by the financial costs of adoption. Participating in a program like this is an added expense that is difficult to manage. There are so many unknowns when it comes to adoption, and we believe that preparation plays a significant part in making the unpredictable road of adoption a little more smooth. Worthwhile training and national programs staffed by professionals offer invaluable services to help prepare the adoptive family as well as their child.

First Eye Exam

We've been long overdue for some eye exams in our family.  When we did kindergarten screening this past spring, we received a referral to have Em's eyes checked.  They told us she was a borderline case and it wouldn't hurt to have her checked out by our family's eye doctor.

I was due for my exam as well so we turned it into a mother-daughter visit.

Em thought these glasses were the bomb!  :-)

A depth perception check.  (Which we later found out that she struggled with this exam... she couldn't see the shapes that were "floating" in the pictures.)


Emily is still "borderline" as far as needing glasses, but we were told that at this point glasses aren't necessary.  In another year or two when text starts getting smaller in books at school, we may be ready to check into glasses.  Em was a bit disappointed because I think she actually wanted glasses. 

In due time, girl... in due time.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

We're Going to DisneyWorld!

The following is just a recount of our recent trip (put together by my husband shortly after our trip) to Walt Disney World to help us remember all the details as time goes on.  You may find some tips if you are planning a trip (especially at the end) but this is mostly for our memory! =)

(Copied from and I added in a few tidbits and pictures!  -- jenni)

We planned our trip for the first full week of December which was GREAT timing! The crowds were low and the weather was great… The temperature was in the 60s and the 70s with only one short rain.

Sunday - The Surprise!
The moment finally came after church and our family was the last in the building. I set up our video camera in my office and we invited Emily in. The video reflects it all as Emily freaked out at the news and spent all her energy yelling and running in circles around inside the church and then outside in the parking lot.

After a quick lunch at O’Charleys, we drove down to the airport. I dropped mom and Emily off with the luggage and went to park the car. After a quick shuttle ride, we were reunited and headed through security. Emily was just as excited about flying as she was about the destination and she grabbed the window seat. Mom was in the middle and dad on the aisle…. the same both ways.

Killing some time in the airport while waiting
for her first flight (that she remembers!)

After landing in Orlando, we met our driver of the Towne car service we hired. He helped us grab our bags, get loaded, and started the drive to the cabins of the Fort Wilderness Campground. We really enjoyed Demetrious, our driver, and he had great advice. He also drove us back to our cabin after we checked in which was a great blessing.

We made it!

Since it was late, we followed the recommendation of the front desk and headed for Trail’s End Restaurant for a great buffet. After a filling meal, it was back to the cabin to get some sleep before our adventures.

Special Note: Our key card for the cabin also served as our tickets to the parks and we set them up so that we could charge on them, which was very convenient. You just have to be somewhat aware of what you are charging so you don’t go overboard.  We did our shopping on the room card and our food on the debit card. (We did not do the meal plan, which we did not regret for our case... we didn't need snacks throughout the days or desserts with our meals.)

The front desk is also where Emily got her “1st Visit” badge which was great as it starts good conversations in the parks and gets you some surprises as the week goes on.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

A Walk in the Park (Part 3 of 3)

Our final set of pictures from our family trip to Inniswoods Metro Garden.

What a fun time!

Caleb and Christian... We had a fun time guys!

Friday, November 11, 2011

A Walk in the Park (Part 2 of 3)

Part 2 of our family trip to Inniswood Metro Gardens!  

There's something to be said about giving a little girl a giant sucker in order to get in a few more photos...

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