Sunday, January 18, 2015

Something Noteworthy

January 21st marks the third anniversary of Abi coming home to our family. 

This weekend, she passed some significant social/attachment milestones. First, she went on a play date. I know it doesn't sound like much, but the fact that she was able to spend two hours at a friend's house without becoming dysregulated is not something she has been able to do before. I suspect it brought unconscious memories of being transferred to a different orphanage and thus sparked feelings of loss for her. 

This weekend, she seemed able to handle it for the most part. (She did get a bit of a six-year-old swelled head and bragged to her little brother unmercifully, but that's an entirely different thing.) I'm so glad she is secure enough with us as her family to go on a play date and know within the core of her being that we'll come back for her. 

The other thing she did was participate in a friend's birthday party. Crowds haven't usually been her thing and she gets pretty upset, or worse, gets in the creepy, attention-grabbing mode that she used for survival in the orphanage. This time, she did neither! She participated in the games and the free-play and acted like a regular kid. Part of the group. Secretly, I cheered the whole time as I watched her. 

Hooray Abi!!

Saturday, January 3, 2015

Keeping My Head Above Water

Despite the festive holiday season, and my family being (mostly) healthy and full of energy, I have really struggled with my health. First it was three weeks of bronchitis and sinus infection. 

Then, I guess because of the forced inactivity from being sick, I had a bad bout of depression. It felt like wading through molasses to get through the day. Abi was weird and upset during the holidays, and that never helps. Her grief and neediness never fails to pull me down.

This week, on New Year's Day, I treated myself to a movie: Into the Woods. Fun, but I really paid for it. The headache and low vision that had already been threatening hit like a sledgehammer and yesterday I was trying to do the bills when all I wanted to do was hide in a dark place. 

Ever since the heavy coughing, my sleep has been interrupted as well. Depression and insomnia go hand in hand for me, so I'll wake at 2:30 and stay awake for hours every. single. night. Those are the times when hurts from the past come back to reattack me and flay my spirit into naked, bleeding shards. My memory that can't remember anything I see retains everything I hear and old conversations or cruel words float to the surface and rip me apart. All I can do is weep and pray for help. It's not helping with recovery or feeling better!

I don't share all this to complain, but for honesty. Things, even when they're rosy, don't always feel rosy. Sometimes I need a little extra dose of grace.

New Year's Eve

We were so tickled to be invited to spend New Year's Eve with some new friends that I met while doing "Anne." We had a great time hanging out and playing games, although we opted to head home well before midnight! Still, it made the day seem festive. 

Snapshots: Still Hazelnut


During our break, Hubby and I decided to work on our house. We knew from experience that if we got bored, we'd fight, but working together goes much more smoothly. Also, our house was feeling a bit cramped and cluttered, which usually means that a little freshening and rearranging is in order. 

The first thing we did was replace the leaky bathroom faucet and shower head. 

Then, we repainted the big upstairs bedroom and moved Hubby's office, as well as Mister's homeschool desk up there. 

I used my electrician skills to replace the low-hanging fan with a simple light fixture. 

Our next business was to declutter and organize the basement playroom, including the creation of a Lego room. Hey, even a small house needs priorities!

I've also continued making progress on my hand quilting. Slow but steady. 

We've had a really nice vacation, although we're ready to start the spring semester. The best thing is that our little cottage is spruced up and feels fresh and bigger again. Using space efficiently and keeping down clutter means that the six of us can live quite comfortably in a small cottage, although it might be able to use a little more tweaking. More on that later!

Welcome, 2015!

Happy New Year! 

Friday, December 26, 2014

Window Repair

I love the vintage, original windows on our house. 

When Bean accidentally broke one a while ago, I knew  it meant a DIY project to get it fixed. 

Getting the glass out turned out to be the hardest part.

Also, I had to scrape away all the old glazing and remove the old glazing points. Some of it was rock-hard, and difficult to chip out. 

Finally, the frame was clean and ready to receive the new glass. Hubby had ordered it earlier from a local glass shop. 

I had to ask for his help inserting the new glazing points, since I couldn't push them into the wood. 

But I was all over the glazing compound!

Now it needs to cure for a week. Then we can re-paint and reinstall the window. 


It turns out that while everyone else got well, my bout with the flu turned into bronchitis and a nasty sinus infection. Finally, I went in to Quick Care and got an antibiotic and some cough syrup with codeine. Here's to feeling better soon!

A Quiet Christmas

This year, we chose to celebrate Christmas quietly at home. The kids received just a few gifts, since we all decided as a family that we were going to do a trip to Disneyland later this year. 

We opened the few presents we had, and thankfully the kids knew not to expect a big pile. Because of this there was no disappointment, and they still had a blast. 

For our feast, we made a brunch. Waffles, sausage, fruit, omelette, fresh squeezed orange juice. 

Friday, December 19, 2014

Recitals and Concerts

Abi had a tap dance recital with her BFF. Too cute!

Then Bean sang in his preschool Christmas program. Lots of happy jingling of bells!

Winter Spirit

Our annual trip to the holiday light park also included dinner with my parents, and dessert with my sister and bro-in-law this year. 

The kids had fun, but Hubby and I were still feeling under the weather, so we were tired.