Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year! Here we are again, to catch up on all that has pasted this year. We hope our tidings find you well. This past year has been good to us, and we have great hopes that this New Year will add to our number, our family number that is. Before you walk up to Karen and pat her belly, let us add that we are planning that addition through a domestic adoption. Currently, we have handed in all our paperwork and are waiting for our homestudy to be conducted. The homestudy is 3 separate interviews done by a social worker from our adoption agency, Bethany. After this phase is completed and we are officially approved to adopt, and we can be picked by a birth mother as the parents she wants for her baby. Let me explain this a little in case you are not familiar with this. We create a portfolio of a letter and photos that describes our ourselves and our home. When a birth mother decides to choose adoption, she is given a few portfolios that are a good match for her. It is from these that she places the baby permanently with a family. This also means that we can be picked at any time – 2 weeks or 2 years. Hopefully somewhere in between.
Now, it is time to update the individuals. Ed is still a software engineer at Lockheed Martin, and he has had a very healthy year. Of course, he is still playing on the worship team at our church, he plays the keyboard. It is his passion to try to integrate songs with substantial and sound Biblical meaning into modern church music. This year Ed joined the Christmas choir, which is new for him. He enjoyed it very much. When he is not working overtime, Ed can be found playing with the kids, playing music in his man cave or scouring Craig's list for used Apple products. One of which is being used right now to write our newsletter!
Karen is still homeschooling the children, but she no longer works part-time at the Christian book store. Things are much more busy this year with 2 in elementary school. When she is not schooling, she can be found writing on her blog, reading, facebooking or her new hobby, couponing. Yes, she is one of those crazy coupon ladies with a huge binder full of coupons. In fact, she even taught a class about stewardship of money with her couponing friend. Last year, she never thought that there was anything she normally bought, for which she would use a coupon. Let alone get for free or be paid to buy, it has been quite surprising. The best parts are not having to work part time and donating to those in need at a time when we are saving every penny for the adoption.
G is now 9 and is in 4th grade. This year we are learning about different countries around the world, as well as ecosystems. She still takes Irish Dancing, and got to go to her first dance camp this summer. At her last feis, G won her first medal in jig (3rd). Like the year before, she competed in science fair and took art lessons. This year she started violin and really enjoys it. G is thrilled about a baby, but really, really wants a sister. When she is not doing school work, she can be found playing Wii, devouring the Narnia book series or talking to you about the movie Tangled and a variety of Apple products.
Z is soon to be 7 in January, and is in 1st grade. He also competed in science fair and takes art lessons. Last year, I completely forgot to mention that he was on America's Funniest Home Videos. He was the slightly husky preschooler who had the heart for the hula-a-hoop, but not the hips for it. G made a little cameo too. We didn't win anything, but he got a lot of air time and made a lot of people laugh. Z would like a baby sister because he says baby girls are cuter. When he is not doing school work, he can be found, outside running around, playing Wii, wrestling with his Dad, or playing with his little brother.
Last, but not least, our sweet, adorable JP is now 4. He is in Pre K and constantly informs Karen that he needs to finish his schoolwork, so he is taking it very seriously. JP is a block building, lego creating, thinking kind-of-guy. Z and JP are like two peas in a pod. They play all day together and sometimes even sleep in the same bed at night. JP is looking forward to getting a baby in the house. However, he made it quite clear he wants a boy, and he wants to buy him squeaky shoes and diapers. When he is not doing schoolwork, he can be found playing quietly, helping Karen or not eating what we serve for dinner.