Tuesday, June 29, 2010


Being responsible for the living and well-being of someone besides yourself can be beautiful, tiring, rewarding and at times horribly frightening.

I don't mean to sound dramatic but sitting in a tent on Saturday night in a nasty storm second guessing my every decision had me facing the extreme seriousness of being completely responsible for someone else's life.

As we headed into Saturday evening I knew that there were storms coming. I knew they could be pretty bad. After talking to Mel (in the other tent) we decided to stick it out because we were too dang tired from the storms followed by an early wake up the previous night.  I thought if I drove home to avoid another storm, we'd probably get injured when I fell asleep at the wheel.  No, get some sleep and drive home in the morning, who cares if the tent gets wet again.

I laid my head down Saturday night, and it was calm outside and SO HOT and muggy.  The next thing I knew I was startled awake by a loud clap of thunder. BOOOOOOM.  I sat up and zipped up the tent windows.  Then suddenly the tent kinda collapsed on itself, pushing into my back and there was this strange quiet.  I pushed the tent back up.  A deluge of rain started.  Lightening was all around us, I couldn't even distinguish space between the lightening and the following thunder.  I propped myself over Lucy (who slept through this) and turned on my cell phone.   Got a text from Diane.  

I had the sickest feeling in my stomach.  Here was Lucy, sleeping, trusting in a tent with lightening crashing all around.  I debated. I texted.  Finally I prepped the tent and faster then I ever could have imagined I could do I scooped her up, and jumped in our car.  Mel did the same from her tent to her car.  Cradling a now awake Lucy and avoiding touching the sides of the car I told her that we were seeking shelter from the lightening.   I rubbed her arm, she rubbed my cheek.  We talked about shadows.  I breathed a sigh of relief. 

When the lightening died down I buckled Lucy in her carseat and Mel and I in the middle of the night packed up our tents and sleeping bags, threw them in the cars and caravaned home.

I stayed awake the whole time. 
I think next time I am hiring a decision maker, to make the big decisions for me.  Take some of the pressure off.

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Sefara 2010

Sefara 2010

Forgive the formatting.  Just got back from two nights of camping with all the cool Ethiopia Adoptive Families (separate post regarding our surprise visit from the Papaya's coming later). 

This was our 2nd annual camping extravaganza and we played hard!  The weather played hardball too. We had two very stormy night with heavy rain (creating indoor water park in the tent the first night) and lightening. Some odd tent twisting wind got me very tense on night two and we ended up packing up camp in a storm lull at about 2 in the morning on Sunday.

We arrived at our campsite and Lucy knew what to do right away. After she helped me pitch the tent she got to work dragging our beds into our weekend abode.

Diane kidnapped her to do some canoeing.  When I finally found her she was soaking wet and having a blast on the little beach at our state park.

Morgan and Blueberry soon joined in the fun.

She was warming up on the hot sand making sand angels.

Lucy has discovered the joy of sand and water creations. 

Managed to squeeze the bike in, so fun to see her ride her bike around the campground.

the raspberries were growing all around our campsite and they were ripe and readily available
for snacking!

We were up very bright and early on Saturday morning. It was nice to have
visitors like Jon and the twins to wake us up a little.

Lucy's favorite friend this year. Peanut the dog.

Had a lumberjack breakfast at Paul Bunyan's cook shanty.
Possibly the best doughnuts I've had ever.
The adoration of Lucy and Wendim continues ...
Lucy was trying to distract Wendim from his food, not an easy task.
Here are the twins right before the NOON s'more cookoff.  E was trying to convince
everyone that only brothers could drink his special beverage because it had chemicals in it
that were not good for sisters or nonbrothers.

drove to Devil's Lake State Park to use their beautiful beach. Had to wait for the freight train to pass in order to get to the path to the beach.
walking along an active train track. Nice parenting huh?  We surveyed the situation and it seemed like
part of the Devil's Lake culture to walk on the tracks so hey, when we're camping we don't follow many rules.
Lucy and her kids on the ride back to the campground.

Interestingly enough. They held a separate smore cook-off when we
were not there. NONE of the winners were present at the noon cook-off, and oddly
the folks at the noon cook - off were not told about this here 7pm cook off.  Now that I think about it I believe our written rules stated the cookoff was at 8:12pm or something ...
Interestingly enough, the winners of the cook off were
not only the organizers of the cook off but the family of the
cook-off tally counter and announcer. hmmmm

the little kids having a sour candy eating contest.

taking shelter from the lightening strikes.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Dr LU.Little

These days Lucy has been calmer and more mature and the animals are
responding favorably. Lucy LOVES being responsible for the animals and really loves when they trust her and snuggle with her.  It's so cute, she sits really still and calmly calls for me to come watch.

Lucy and Zeppelin were snuggling and she was thrilled when Bailey's jumped right up to join in.
after dinner when momma and Lucy were doing homework at the table together
up jumps Azazel.  Azazel LOVES to get all over homework/books.  Lucy couldn't have
been happier!

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Fishing with Grandpa

To celebrate Father's Day we decided to put grandpa to work.  Load up the boat, haul the boat, land the boat, drive the boat, bait the hooks, unbait the hooks ...   we had such a great time!!!  Thanks grandpa/dad!

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Past couple days

The past few days we've seen a lot of Jacob. He's our baby turned big boy.
Now that's he's old enough to say "no" to Lucy she has a run for her money. He's still our sweetie and so very flexible and accomodating to her directives and demands. 
Lucy and Jacob had a little country music festival at my house on Wednesday night.

Jacob and his mom joined us at Stonebridge festival of the arts this afternoon.
The kids did a lot of dancing before and after the band started.
                               Lucy admired some beautiful art.

and the kids were rewarded with giant ice cream cones.  Soon after the ice cream cone eating, Lucy decided to flee sanity and took a nose dive into uber stinkerdom, not even a nap saved us from the brief [hopefully] regression to the nightmare that was her entire 3rd year.  Please Lucy wake up and be your wonderful 5 year old self.

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Weekend get-away

We were supposed to go camping this weekend but with forecasts of lots of rain/dampness and thunder for all parts of the weekend we decided to wimp out and head north to a hotel/waterpark for some fun and adventures.

Lucy took a moment before our evening swim to model her snowboard pants that I picked up for a real deal at a 2nd hand store (Oilily's for cheap cheap cheap, and O aren't they cute!)

aren't they just so cute and peaceful when they sleep?
next morning we were up and ready to hit the water park again.

Here the kids are in between attempts to get them to go to sleep. 
The mamma's needed a "safety break" the kids were being so so awful
and we needed to restart bedtime with a pep talk to both ourselves and the children.
It went something like this "remember, we really both wanted these kids ... we really love these kids, remember how hard we worked to get these kids in our lives???  remember the agonizing wait and how we couldn't wait to get them in our arms????   Yeah ... ahhh ... let's start this bedtime over, OK?  AND next time, we each get our own rooms how about that???"

the results were hard won and so worth it. i was too tired to walk
across the room and capture the sleeping mo mo.

  The next morning Mo teaches Lucy how to play leapster.
I think we checked out of the hotel around 8am.