Sunday, January 31, 2010

Sunday Tournament

I'm spending the day with these lovely ladies...
...and we're looking for a few W's.

Saturday, January 30, 2010

Saturday Afternoon Project

an interesting article

I read this today and found it though provoking.

Go. Read it. And then ask yourself, what do I have too much of?

Friday, January 29, 2010

Scenes from Campus

Colorado College

It's that time of year again.
Time for the Colorado College Scholarship Appreciation Project, one of my favorite each year.
I'll be hiking all over the CC campus for the next two weeks - visiting places like the library, art studios, ice rink, study rooms, science labs, and music studios and finding lots of great students to photograph. Check the photo blog in a couple of weeks to see the finished project.

Monday, January 25, 2010

Deep Clean

It's no secret that I'm not a domestic goddess.

In fact, just last night my husband threatened to nominate me for The Food Network's new reality show, Worst Cooks In America.

But this evening, my house went from very, very dirty to very, very clean.

Like, the kind of clean that comes from dedicating 5 whole hours to only 1,200 square feet.

It's the get-down-on-your-knees-and-scrub-the-lineoleum-with-a-little-green-and-yellow-sponge-and-dust-the-places-you-can't-see-because-they-are-above-your-head kind of clean.

And I did it all by myself. And it feels so good.

And I would be lying if I said I'm not quite proud of myself.

Come on over if you would like to enjoy the cleanliness. I would be happy to share it with you. As an added bonus, my house is still decorated for Christmas. So on top of being clean, it is also quite festive.

Weekend Away

I spent the weekend in the mountains with these fine ladies.
With a little shopping, a little drinking, a little hot-tubbing, a couple movies, some snow flurries, no kiddos, some great food, and lots of laughter, I think a good time was had by all.

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Good News

After 2 medical exams, 2 sets of fingerprints, 4 backgrounds checks, 5 personal interviews, 8 reference letters, 7.5 months, 89 pages of paperwork, and 8,500 dollars, our homestudy is complete and we have been approved to adopt by all parties involved.

What's next, you ask?

We applied for our Immigration form yesterday. This will be the last item we need in order to complete our dossier and be placed on the waiting list.

We've been told that the turn-around time for this particular item is 2-4 months.

Let's hope not.

I tortured myself yesterday by outlining all possible timelines and trying to predict when we will travel to Ethiopia to get our baby. It went a little something like this;

"If we get such-and-such form by April then we will go to Ethiopia in March, but it could be December or February or June or July. But if we get the form in June and then the wait is really long then it might be next September but if things go really well and we get such-and-such form by March, and then the wait is really short, we could go by November, or if this, then this, then that, then....wait, I'm not getting any answers here."

Turns out, there are about 57 possible timelines.

I'll probably try to not do that again.

Monday, January 11, 2010


This morning I got an email informing me that a $1,450 bill that we thought was due at the end the adoption is actually due now. It was a "get-it-in-the-mail-today-or-you-will-hold-things-up" kind of email.

Typically, a $1,450 bill would send us into a bit of a frenzied tailspin. But not today.

After receiving the email, I got online to check the balance of our adoption account to see what we would need to do to be able to write this check.

Our balance read $1,507. Just. Enough.

Just enough to write the check and not totally wipe out the account.


So far, we have raised/saved/earned/been given about $10,000 toward our adoption. As of today, we have spent just about every penny of it (all but the $57 left in the bank!) on various adoption expenses. And it seems that every time we get a bill, we have just enough. It's never more than what we need at the time. And never less. Always just enough.

God has been faithful to provide for us and has used many people to bless us.

Thank you. Thank you. Thank you to our friends and family, and even a few strangers, for being so generous to us and for playing such a huge role in our child's life.

I cannot wait for us all to meet him.

Two Dollars

On Christmas morning, my niece, Arlee, gave Mark and I a big purple envelope.

On the outside, she had written in her sweet, kindergarten handwriting;

From: Arlee
To: Becky
To: Mark

Inside were two homemade cards and two dollars.

We asked her what the money was for and she replied simply,
"It's because you're adopting a baby."
Oh sweet Arlee, bless your tender little heart.
Thank you for thinking, and caring, and being generous.
You saw a need and you responded without waiting or hesitating or being prompted.
Oh my, the things I could learn from you.
We love you so much and wish that you could be six forever.

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Best of 2009

These are my favorite moments of 2009. I tried to pick 10, but didn't even come close. I guess it was just that great of a year.

#1 - HSM on Ice
I took my niece to see High School Musical on Ice. She loved watching the show and I love watching her.
#2 - Snowboarding
Mark and I were blessed with many opportunities to go snowboarding this year. One of my favorite days was the day we took our nephew, Caden. Mark worked hard to help him learn and he was doing great by the end of the day.
#3 - Senior Trip
Mark and I were honored (and thrilled) to be asked to chaperone my sister's senior class trip to Winter Park. We had a fabulous three days playing, tubing, snowshoeing, sleigh-riding, rock-climbing, and shopping. We love these kids and already miss them! Why do seniors have to graduate?
#4 - New Belgium
In May, we toured the New Belgium brewery in Ft. Collins. Free beer and good friends. Need I say more?
#5 - Sharing our News
In June, we spent about a week confusing our friends and family with the news that we are adopting a baby. I made my mom a "grandma's brag book" and the first page said, "It's a boy." Her first response - "What?" It's hard to say "We're expecting, but we're not pregnant" and have people catch on right away. But after all the confusing, we have been so blessed by the excitement and support of our friends and family. Maybe next year "Picking up our baby in Ethiopia" will be one of my top moments of 2010.
#6 - Mark's Graduation
I was so proud of Mark for working hard to earn his bachelor's degree at the University of Phoenix and I loved celebrating this accomplishment with him.
#7 - Sister trip to NYC
We had a blast and I desperately want to go back and do it all again. Shopping, Broadway, pizza, Little Mermaid, shopping, Statue of Liberty, Ellis Island, Times Square, taxis, Central Park, carousel, shopping, ice cream, squirrels, fountains, exploring, and shopping. I loved every minute.
#8 - Vegas Baby
In May, I was honored and surprised to receive the "Coach of the Year Award" from Pikes Peak Volleyball Club. The prize? A trip to Vegas, of course. Mark and I had an amazing three days doing Vegas like we've never done it before. We got to stay at a nice hotel and everything! I think the highlight of the trip was attending "Beetles: LOVE" a production in the Cirque du Soleil family. It was simply stunning.
#9 - California
In late July, I had one last summer hurrah and spent four days in California with Emily and John. They were anxiously awaiting the birth of their little girl and I was blessed to share in those moments. A highlight of that trip was our maternity photo shoot on the beach. I'm not sure I'll ever have an opportunity like that again!
#10- Eliches
Mark arranged a trip to Eliches for my birthday. My nephew, Caden, was a fabulous roller coaster buddy and was willing to try anything. Hopefully next year, Arlee will be tall enough to ride the big rides.
#11 - Mark's 29th Birthday
Every year, Mark spends his birthday doing the same things. 15C - Chipolte - Tony's. Every year we have a blast. This year was no exception.
#12 - Little Sister goes to College
While I was completely heartbroken to leave my sister at college, the day we moved her in was so much fun. I loved that I got to be there to help her build shelves and put her clothes away. I am so proud of her and miss her terribly.
#13 - Colorado Springs Balloon Classic
This Labor Day tradition is totally worth getting up at 5:00 in the morning to attend. It's a beautiful "morning date" and you can get funnel cakes for breakfast. :)
#14 - My New Niece
Little Ava Grace was added to our family on September 29, and oh how we love her.
#15 - Our Big Win
Winning third place at the Junior High tournament this year was a wonderful experience. I know it doesn't sound like much, but it really was a major accomplishment for these girls. There truly is nothing like watching your team succeed after you've coached, and coached, and coached them.
#16 - The State Volleyball Tournament
After all these years of coaching, I had never attended the State Tournament before. It was thrilling to watch so much great competition and I am still dreaming of getting to actually coach a team at this tournament some day. That would be quite an honor.

#17 - Meeting Harper O.
I waited 4 months to meet this little girl. She is so special to us and it was amazing to finally hold her and get to know her. We are hoping that she doesn't grow up too much before we get to see her again.
#18 - Thanksgiving
My sister was home for Thanksgiving and I loved spending the day at my parent's home with my family.
#19 - New Year's Eve
We spent New Year's Eve downtown at our favorite bar with some of our favorite friends. I could not have imagined a better celebration.