Looking back

Today while uploading a video onto YouTube of our oldest dancing to the Christmas music we’re listening to, I was reminded of this video I put together 5 years ago for Adoptive Families magazine of our family’s story. This video has had 6,000 views to date.

Viewing this still warms my heart and makes me tear up ❤

And now 5 years later, I share this with you.  I hope you enjoy it as much as we do! Enjoy!

Day 22, #NaBloPoMo #BlogHer

National Adoption Day

adoption-2

The month of November is National Adoption Month and today, November 21, is National Adoption Day.  The significance of this month and day are not lost on our family as we are a family built through adoption.

It is my family that I am truly thankful for and at this time of year really feel the gratitude of how my family came together.  I know for our girls this is all they know and for us our family grew beyond just adding our two girls.

Because a family doesn’t have to be made from blood, just love, lots of it!

Is your family created through adoption?

Day 21, #NaBloPoMo #BlogHer

 

What are your boundaries?

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Wikipedia Definition Setting Boundaries:

Setting boundaries is a life skill that has been popularized by self help authors and support groups since the mid 1980’s. It is the practice of openly communicating and asserting personal values as way to preserve and protect against having them compromised or violatedThe term “boundary” is a metaphor – with in-bounds meaning acceptable and out-of-bounds meaning unacceptable. Without values and boundaries our identities become diffused and often controlled by the definitions offered by others.

There are many boundaries in our lives.  Some we set for ourselves and others that are set up for us either through professional expectations, educational lines or social codes.

As parents we set boundaries for our children that are part of their learning curve on behavior.  We have no hitting boundaries, no lying boundaries, no eating candy and cookies all day boundaries and many more.  Our children push and pull on the boundaries that we have set wanting to have none but needing them all and the boundaries change as they grow older. The boundaries are set with consequences for crossing over them as a way to teach our children.  It is the consequences we set that we are hoping our children to develop the knowledge of right and wrong.  A lot of these were learned as we were children and we may have tweaked them a bit to fit our family and how we are raising our children.

As a family built by adoption, we have set up some boundaries about discussions related to our family.  Now that our children are older we have taught them to choose when, to who and how they tell their family story.  Our family story is not a secret but as a family we believe it is a private matter and not to be shared without their consent.  I see that one of our daughters is more apt to share her family story and our other not so quick to share.  We are proud to see that they each have created their own boundaries for themselves.

What boundaries do you have set for yourself and/or your family?

This is day 2 of #NaBloPoMo #BlogHer

and the beat goes on …

fall mantle

We are already three days into the Fall season, the daily beat of our lives rolls one day into the next. Leaves are beginning to turn and our annual Indian summer weather is at its peak.

Our girls have been back into their school routine for a month now.  It is hard to believe our summer break has already been over that long. Our oldest daughter is now a 4th grader and our youngest a 2nd grader.

There have been some fits and starts to this school year. Homework from the first day of school proved to create anger and frustration for our youngest.  The class was working on the story Chrysanthemum the young mouse learning about her name.  What could the anger be towards such a sweet story?  Well our youngest wasn’t sure she wanted to share her story about how she got her name.  You see her birth mom, my husband and I all worked together in naming her and she didn’t want to share her whole story.  We talked about what she was angry and frustrated about this homework assignment. She shared she didn’t want to tell her whole story she didn’t want everyone to know our family story.  We assured her that was ok.  We reminded her how we all came up with her name sharing the name definitions that helped us to choose the names she has. This seemed to make her brighten knowing the whole story but also there was a part she could share that was appropriate for her class mates.

As our younger daughter seemed to struggle with who and what to share about our family story this year, our older daughter was struggling with a bully in her classroom and for a second year being in a classroom without any of her friends.  The bullying began during summer on swim team and just our luck this girl was part of this years’ class.  As the school year started up, a new student at school started to harass our daughter and now she had to deal with two who were in her class day in and day out.  We tried to give her the tools to find her strength to walk away, say stop or whatever was needed as an incident occurred.  At the same time, I was in contact with the school principal and her teacher.  The principal didn’t seem to understand the enormity of this trifecta, being alone and isolated, and 2 bullies in her classroom.  Her teacher shared that she wouldn’t allow bullying but you know what? it isn’t always going to be in her classroom for her to stop.  What is the emotional toll day in and day out for my daughter to be in this class?  We are here to support our daughter, I am at the school helping in the classroom, and we have given her an emotional safe place to talk about what’s going on.  I see her sadness and it breaks my heart. I am still working on correcting this with the district and school principal.  I’ve been through this too and survived it alone and I can share this with her and hope together we can find her strength to make her way through.

I never knew the full extent of how our parenting would have an effect on our girls.  What I am sure about, is my being a stay-at-home mom is helping to know what’s going on at school for our girls and be aware of their daily lives.

With the start-up of school was the return of Fall soccer, Girl Scouts and our continued dance in ballet.  Our schedules after school are full and tight.  Friday is the only day without a practice or dance class.  We have managed to find our new balance for our activities so far but the tipping point could be the start-up of Sunday rehearsals for the Christmas ballet that both of our girls will be performing in this year.

While our girls have returned to school, I have signed on to work at our school as a substitute (as needed) lunch & yard duty person.  Right after I submitted my paperwork to the district our school needed me so M-F from 11:30-1:30 PM you will find me at school fulfilling my role.  My end date right now is in mid-October.  The extra bit of cash will be nice and I like that the job is not always 5 days every week.

Now the days are shorter with dark coming before 8 pm, our schedules are full with homework, soccer, dance, girl scouts and we are full swing into Fall.  It is at our nightly dinners we talk about our day.

How is your Fall starting?