family

Opening Day Memories

7 years ago on opening day, a much younger Julie went over to a friend’s house. They had just started spending more time together a month or two prior. Although she enjoyed hanging out with him, she didn’t want him to think that her calling and visiting every so often meant she was trying to pursue him. So she told this much younger Corey that she hoped he knew that she wasn’t interested in anything but a friendship with him. Then for several months they continued on as friends, both denying to themselves how they really felt about each other.

Beef sauteed with peas and onions

But today, possibly because of that very conversation, they’re sitting in their home on opening day with two kiddos running wild, feeling like the luckiest people in the world.

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Back After a Break (+ a Weekend With Family)

Sooooo, I know I take a lot of breaks from this blog and come back apologizing (as thought there are masses waiting to read what I’ve written. Ha!), but this time the my break was very unplanned and kind of frustrating. I’ve been having some technical issues with the blog and I had to get them sorted out before I posted again. It was really frustrating, mostly because I’m quite technologically illiterate. But thank goodness for good friends who help you out when you need it (and don’t make you feel dumb, even though you’re asking the most basic questions).

Anyway….

While I was on a break I had the very best weekend since we’ve been back. I feel like life starting moving at breakneck speed again once we touched down in RDU, and we really haven’t had many moments to just relax and soak up time as a family of four. But this weekend I took off work the entire weekend (Friday through Monday!!) and my sister and her husband came into town. The girls have been sooooo excited to meet “Bonboo and Marka” since FaceTiming with them in Uganda. We had such a wonderful time with the two of them. I think it’s safe to say that Teddy* and JJ* are pretty smitten with their aunt and uncle.

I’m including some pictures from our awesome fun-filled weekend below :).

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Uncle Mark brought the most fun puzzles for the girls. They have 5 layers and each layer is a different body system, so as you move down–or up–the puzzle you reveal muscles, internal organs, and bone. They probably put these together 100 times over the weekend (and they’re working on them again right now as I type this).

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On Saturday we went to the Museum of Life and Science in Durham and had the best time. The girls were thrilled with all the exhibits and it was so nice to just let them play as long as they wanted in each one.

Jojo

Other highlights included JJ getting a butterfly to light on her finger, then trying not to move a muscle so it would stick around. She was so sweet and so patient attempting to get the butterflies. I just love seeing her little personality on display.

Tendoanddaddy

We had so much fun that someone totally fell asleep and didn’t wake up until later that afternoon.

JB

This sister of mine. She let me nap for 2 full hours on Friday and got the girls up from their nap, dressed, and beds made all while I slept. I felt better than I had in weeks afterward. Thank you, Auntie Bonboo! I was in desperate need of that little break!

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Saturday night we made chapati and African tea, two of our favorite foods from Uganda, for Bonnie and Mark. I am loving my new-to-me teapot I’ve used several times for the tea.

That’s all for now. I’m so glad to be back here blogging! Let’s all just keep our fingers crossed that I can manage the new techie stuff here ;).

*I’ll be using nicknames for both the girls here and on social media just to maintain some privacy for them :).

 

 

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Is This What They Call Nesting?

Want to know what’s been on my mind lately?

 

::Start thinking about things that need to be done before our daughter comes home.
Make mental list of ways house needs to be fixed up. Bathroom painted, study straightened up, bookshelves built, table restored, chairs painted, ….
Panic and freak the heck out.
Repeat.::
Oh my goodness. It just seems like there is so much to be done, and not nearly enough time to do it all. Suddenly, I’m dissatisfied with everything in our house, down to the paint colors. And for the life of me, I cannot prioritize one thing over another. I want everything to be perfect right now, and I just feel like we’re so far from that. Sigh. My mom always claims she knew when she was about to go into labor because she felt like she just had to move all the furniture. You know, that feeling that if you just rearrange everything, that will make all the difference and suddenly things will be perfect and ready for a baby.
I know part of the reason I’m so nervous is because I want our daughter to feel welcome and at home in our house. And I feel like having a picture perfect house is part of that. I want it to look spectacular so that it feels like a home. The other part is that I want to just relax and have some time to adjust once we get home, and I don’t want a to-do list hanging over my head.
I keep reminding myself why we are doing this in the first place. Not because our home, our lives are glamorous. Not because we have something super special to offer. Not because of the opportunity living in the US could afford her. We’re doing it because every kid needs a mommy and a daddy. They need the security of knowing that someone loves and cares for them regardless of whether they’re good or bad, healthy or sick, happy or sad. We’re doing this because we are committed to being that for one little girl. For her lifetime.
So when she comes home we may still have that ugly linoleum in the kitchen. The dining room table may still need to be sanded and restained. Our appliances will most likely still be that terrible shade of off white. We may need to rearrange and re-do some things. And we will probably feel a little squeezed into our living quarters at times.
But you know what will be so beautiful? The love we have for one another. The giggles a little girl is sure to bring to our family. The fun we will have as a family of 3. Even the tears as we work through the huge changes.
I’m letting go of the obsession for a Pinterest-worthy house and praying that God will use us to shape this one little girl’s life. I’m shifting my focus from making my house a picture from a magazine, to a picture of God’s love and faithfulness instead.
These are the things, after all, that make a house a home.
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