Monday, August 24, 2009

First workout

I have been gearing up for this day since I joined the gym 2 weeks ago. I promised myself that once I dropped the children off at school that I would go to the gym 3 days a week. And the gym has a class at 9:15 on Mondays and Wednesdays, so Fridays I can do what I want.

This morning I get on my workout clothes and get the kids ready for school. We drop the boys off first and then I take Hannah to her school. She is such a big girl. We put her backpack in her locker and then we go into the classroom. She picks out a puzzle and then she heads over to find her carpet square. Each child has a symbol that is used for everything in class, so her carpet square has her symbol on it. She sits down with her puzzle and I tell her bye and then I go. All is well.

So I head over to the gym, with a bit of trepidation. I looked at the name of the class last night and it was something like body boot camp. But I man up and head in. When I get there, there are only a couple of people in the class, so I ask where the back is-knowing that I am not very good at picking up moves the first time around, I want to be able to watch the others. This cute, skinny chick comes in and says that we aren't going to do what we normally do, we are going to do something different and you will hate it. Not 2 minutes in the class and I am scared spitless. She says by the end of our 45 minutes you will have done 140 pushups. WOW!!! I am not good at doing push ups-actually don't even think that I do them right, and this is how we are starting out?

The class goes as follows-We will be doing 10 rounds of exercises, each round adding a new one, so some exercises will be done more than the others. We start off with push ups, add 3 different arm and weight exercises, jumping jacks, jump squats, pliet sqats, this plank hold that you have to keep your behind down and I was totally doing wrong and when she showed me how to do it right, I couldn't do. No upper body-or middle body, and not much lower body strength. Then some other exercises that I have blocked from my mind.

So this is how my class went. Back of the class. 1sr round- push ups. Set of 12. Did okay. Adding exercises. 1st ten minutes think I have lost my mind and don't mind being out of shape. 10 minutes later desperately hoping the class is almost over. Still have 25 minutes to go. Ten minutes later want to quit, but to chicken to walk out. 5 minutes later sure that I am going to throw up and then I am going to die. 10 minutes later thinking the clock says class almost over and then devastated that I still have 10 more minutes. Still want to quit....and throw up. Finally class is over and teacher says this will not be done next week. PTL. Then I can look forward to going next week. Instead there will be a group activity, where we have to be in groups of 4. Shoot. I am no good and no one will want me in there group. Maybe I will have to work out on my own. Or maybe I just suck it up and give it another try.

I made it through. I am sore. I did not do 140 push ups. I probably did more like 80, but that is 80 more than I have done.......possibly ever, so that is a good thing. And I didn't kill the teacher and I never threw up-so score one for the work out queen !!!!!

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

1st day of school

School started this week. On Monday. It is now Wednesday. Hannah starts tomorrow. And I will post pictures after her 1st day so they can all be together, but I wanted to post some thoughts.

Jacob started 3rd grade and Sam started 1st. I love the start of a new school year. It feels like a new January 1st and Spring. What is it going to bring? And every year when school starts, I think about going back to school. Now, I am a terrible student, so I don't know why I think about going back, but there it is.

However, with my children, each new school year, while exciting, is also just a bit heartbreaking. I know this is what God intends. We grow a bit each year and become more independent. But as a mom, how do I know what is really best for them? They(okay, really Jacob) wants to walk home on their own this year. We live about a block from the school, so it isn't too far. And the route they would take, the streets they would cross have crossing guards and they walk past houses of people that I know. So what is the problem? Will Jacob make sure and get Sam? Will they come straight home? Jacob tends to get distracted easily-much like his mother. If there is someone to talk to, he will stop and talk. And he lolly gags-kind of like his grandpa. And many things. Jacob is ready, but I am not sure that I am. Plus, I am home and it really isn't any big deal to go up there and meet them. And Sam is only in 1st grade. Fears....I should just let it go.

Then we have school work. Jacob is going to be doing book reports this year. One a month. Projects really stressed me out when I was in school. They stress me out 10 times more for my kids. I want Jacob to be on top of his school work and to succeed in school. He does really well, especially reading and language, but math comes a little bit harder for him. How do I help him succeed and not feel the stress I did? He loves art and he enjoys music. And PE and recess are always a favorite. I am excited about his teacher. I met her on the first day, and even though I didn't spend more than a minute with her, I had a really good feeling. At the end of the day I couldn't find Jacob and his teacher said he had walked off with his nose in a book. She then said something else about reading-she already had him a little bit figured out.

And then there is Sam. My big 1st grader. A year of spelling tests and math and reading. He isn't quite as big a reader as Jacob. He does it, but Jacob will surround himself with (again, like his mom), while Sam would rather be outside playing catch. But Sam is a hard worker and will stick with anything he needs to get done. He is mr. right on top of it. If he has something that needs to be done, he wants to get it done. Which will help me, because I am a procrastinator-much like my oldest child. Sam is so easy going that he just takes things as they come. Again, I am excited about his teacher as well. We have been so blessed with wonderful teachers.

So a new school year. New crayons and backpacks and tennis shoes. New friends and new experiences. New opportunities to grow. Growing up and letting go. Who knew it would be so hard-on me?

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Kansas City

We decided we would have one last family outing before summer was over. Alan had to be in Kansas City for business, so he had us come along. We first ate at the T-Rex restaraunt, which has dinosaurs in it. We ate at one in Orlando, and since Jacob loves dino's. we decided to do it again. Jacob and Hannah each got a dinosaur, while Sam held out for a KC Royals cap. This is the 2 of them giving their dino's a bath.

Sam in the mouth of a dino.

Jacob in the mouth.

We ate right by this fish tank, which Hannah loved. She kept saying FISH. It was pretty cute. We all enjoyed watching the fish, except there was one fish who was at the bottom of the tank and never moved. We were afraid it was dead, but then when dinner was over, he swam away. Very weird.

The hotel where we stayed surprised us with a Coco Keys waterpark. We(the boys and I) had wanted to stay at the Great Wolf Lodge, but ALan was there on business and this was the hotel the company would pay for. So we resigned ourselves to this and we thought we would just go to the Schlitterbaun-which I wasn't crazy about because it was hot and I would have to keep putting sunscreen on everyone and it would be expensive and Hannah would get tired and, well you get the drift. So imagine how ever the moon we were to drive up and see the Coco Keys sign. ANd for the price of one day at the Schlitterbaun, we went everyday we were there at the hotel. We had a blast.

Here is a small view of the place. There were 3 big waterslides that Alan liked, 3 medium ones that the boys and I liked, and 2 small ones that Hannah liked.

Hannah coming off her slide. She did that over and over. She had so much fun.

One day we went to Union Station and did the Chronicles of Narnia exhibit and also did the Science Museum.

No pics were allowed to be taken inside, so we just have these 2. The exhibit was cool. It was props from the movies and set pieces and costumes.

And always, there are trains.

I don't think my boys will ever lose their love of trains.

Jacob digging for dinosaur bones. He was in 7th heaven.

We also went to a Royals game. There is an area that is for kids and it is so much fun. There are batting cages, a pitching cage-where you can see how fast and accurate you throw while throwing at a screen with a real ballplayer swinging, a carousel, a 5 hole mini-golf course and a little ball field. It was fun...and then there was the game.

Sam batting. He didn't hit any of the balls-they were coming in pretty fast, but he looked great swinging the bat. He even taps the plate like the pro's do. He sure does love this game.

Hannah on the carousel.

Jacob pitching.

Hannah's first ballgame. We had nachos, hot dogs, cotton candy, crackerjacks, and peanuts. And the Royals won. A good time was had by all.

Saturday, August 8, 2009

Happy Family Day

The start of our forever family. This was the day we finalized the adoption with China. You can see the fear, uncertainty, and "nothingness" in her sweet little eyes.
A year later, such a happy little girl. It has been a great year. One year ago, today, we came home from China. And life as we know has changed. And it is good. I am the luckiest mom alive. 3 happy, wonderful children and the greatest husband in the world.
I had this cake made for our family day. It is actually cupcakes. In the Chinese adoption world, ladybugs are very lucky. Happy Family Day to my wonderful family. I love each and every one of you!!!
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Thursday, August 6, 2009

Finalization Day

Well, here we are. Almost 1 year to the day of coming home from China, and we are FINALLY finished with the paperwork. We finalized Hannah's adoption today and we received our adoption decree from the state of NE. She is really ours, no backs. Which is funny, because I think if they tried, they would have to pry her from my cold, dead hands and then fight Alan and the boys. (And probably my parents too). It is amazing how this little thing just wormed her way into our hearts and it is like she has always been here. She adores her brothers, as you can tell from this picture. That is until they annoy her and then she is quick to shout "BO-EES". Don't know where she picked that up? She thinks she is the queen bee. Our judge was so wonderful. She had been adopted herself and so she loves to do adoptions. Our lawyer is an adoptive father-he has a daughter from Vietnam. Good people! When the judge came in, she asked the boys to help her turn the pages of the adoption decree while she signed. Hannah had been on my lap, but then she decided she needed to be in on the action herself. So the judge pulled her onto her lap and she sat there while the papers were signed. It was over pretty quickly and then we talked about adoption. It was such a nice time.

Our picture with the judge. Of course, Hannah wouldn't look straight ahead. She has decided she will have her picture taken when she wants it taken.
Hannah being silly. She really is a hoot. On Saturday we are going to celebrate our "Family Day". One year ago on 8/8/08 we came home and our family was complete. That is a lucky date in China and lucky for us. Very lucky for us....or more accurately, a big blessing from God for us.
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