I can't believe it is January already. Heck, I can't believe it is 2013. Why is it the older you get, the faster the time flies? Every year I sit back in amazement that my kids are another year older already. Seriously, it just seems like yesterday they were babies, and now? They are 9, 8 and 6 years old (but only until May- ack!).
Speaking of time flying by, did anyone else feel like the Christmas holiday was over in like a nano second? I must admit, I felt deflated this year, and just had a hard time getting the Christmas spirit. First, I just could not stop thinking about the parents of the Sandy Hook victims. I could only imagine what this Christmas must have been like for those families, and it just made me feel so sad, and a bit guilty. I was one of those people who had to watch every video of the parents who were interviewed. It was like I could not look away. I felt their grief, and it just broke my heart. My Noah is a first grader. I kept putting myself in their shoes...
Second, the news that Russia was shutting down adoptions was like a double punch. Look at these sweet faces of my kids in these photo's. What would their lives have been like had they not been able to be adopted? Statistics indicate a life of prostitution, crime and suicide. To use these children in a political tug-of-war is unconscionable. There is no domestic plan in Russia to help them. In addition to the adoptions themselves, most of the orphanage improvements came at the expense of American dollars. My understanding is that they may allow adoptions to continue through 2013, and then cut them off, with maybe the exception of special needs children. Did you know that the special needs children will end up in mental institutions? We are looking to see what we can do to help, and we hope you will too. Please pray. They are all our children, regardless of where they live. "Whatsoever you do for the least of my brothers, that you do unto me"..
Here are some photo's from this Christmas.
Christmas Eve, 2012:
Christmas with the Grandma's:
My older brother, Mike, has been a "Big Brother" to Troy for many years. Troy stayed with our family over the Christmas season and is now living with my brother, Scott, and his wife, Amy. We love this little guy to pieces!
I've spent the past four months working on making the inside of our house feel like home to us. Mostly just paint, curtains and finding places for our stuff. Here are some before and after pictures of our new house. You'll have to excuse the flash, it was a cloudy, grey day in Ohio when I took the "after" pics.
Living Room, before:
Living Room, after: We painted the room a different color, and I had my window treatments from the last house cut down to fit these windows.
Dining Room, before:
Kitchen/Family Room before:
Here, we took out the ceiling fan, and replaced with this chandelier.
Master bedroom and bath, before:
And, after: we just painted and added window treatments to the bedroom and bathroom.
I'll post pics of the kids bedrooms next time. Current project, we are working on the basement- adding a bedroom and egress is our next step.
I went back to work in December (to fund all our home projects, ha!), doing some contract work at a big law firm downtown. It's been years since I've practiced law, but it has been a good transition back to work. I work from home two days a week, and on the other three days, I am home in time to get the kids off the bus. I'm very grateful for this arrangement. It allows me to take Anna to gymnastics and her tutor, Nick to piano and basketball, and both boys to Scouts. Speaking of Scouts, here is Zeke with the boys before the big pinewood derby race yesterday. Unfortunately, no one got a trophy. I know that
Daddy the boys were very disappointed :)
That's enough catch-up for one day. Will try to post more often! Hope you all has a blessed Christmas, and wishing you a peaceful 2013.