The Missing Years

When totaled up, between our three adopted children we have missed 9 years and 9 months of their early years. We missed the entire pregnancy, newborn, and infant stage for all three of them. We missed the toddler stage for two of them. Our eldest became part of our family less than a month before …

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Solidarity

WHACK. The sound of my log against the chopping block echoed through the empty forest and to the hill across the creek. It was definitely still winter up here. Only the evergreens showed color. Everything else along the valley was bare, freeing the sound to travel loudly from one hill to another. WHACK. I can’t …

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But “What If?”

Do you ever play the “What If” game? You settle down for the night and then, instead of sleeping, you parade a variety of scenarios through your head, working through some of the possible outcomes. Eventually you may start tweaking smaller variables. You might begin with thoughts of the upcoming private school enrollment, and work …

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Retraining the Brain

As I was working at my laptop recently, our adopted daughter stopped by to wish me ‘good night’ before Austin tucked her in. As I turned to say my evening farewells, she wrapped her arms around me and leaned in to kiss me on the forehead. Without thinking, I recoiled, making her attempt at affection …

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Reverse Engineering Strife

As I have mentioned before, our family needs a lot of positive bonding opportunities. The most detrimental force against our family connection is by far, strife. Strife frequently rears its ugly head as competition amongst the kids (stemming from each one’s personal insecurities). Our children are very close in chronological age, but very different in …

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Commitment

I recently parted ways with a new(ish) friend. I had really hoped we would hit it off, but in a nutshell, we didn’t. And for all my best intentions, I couldn’t seem to find my way into her busy, nebulous schedule. I couldn’t convince her to commit any time to friendship-building. The ambivalence surrounding these …

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From Survive to Thrive

See that happy-family-walking-through-a-field stock photo at the top of this post? That’s not us. That definitely wasn’t us by the time we hit mid-October this year. The beginning of the school year tends to start a little rough, and while we mostly found ourselves in a routine by October, two of the kids were struggling …

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Humor is Your Ally

This was the moment. The next hour of my sanity was hanging in the balance. I stared at our daughter, who lay slumped on the floor, glaring back at me. We were assessing each other, each analyzing what our next move would be. This moment was all about control. The vacuum lay beside her, quietly …

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Vive el Momento

In my last post, I discussed the power of routine. To be sure, it would be hard to raise a family our size without it. In managing eight schedules, I certainly lean more towards routine than not. Like most things in life though, there are two ditches, one on either side of the road. It …

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