"For I know the plans I have for you," declares the Lord, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future." Jeremiah 29:11

Thursday, November 28, 2013

Happy Thanksgiving

The flu.

That's how I spent my Thanksgiving.  How about you?

Yep, that's right.  The flu.  That blows huh?  See Amy went out of town on Sunday to a conference.  The kids and I were doing just fine.  Until Tuesday morning when I woke up.  I knew around 4 am that something was very wrong.  Very very wrong.  After texting Amy and other family members it was clear that I was going nowhere that day.  Amy's Mom came and got the kids to take them to school.  My Mom came and got me to take me to the urgent care clinic where I was, unsurprisingly for anyone, diagnosed with the flu.  Back home and in to bed I went.  Meanwhile Amy was back on the way home from Dallas and would pick the kids up.  

Behind all of this, orchestrating it all, was my wonderful wife.  Amy.  After picking up the kids she headed to the grocery with them all to pick up supplies for Thanksgiving dinner since we had now been uninvited to any family event, understandably.  I was banished to the bedroom and put into quarantine.  Where I have remained.  I only began to feel better earlier today so Thanksgiving dinner was put off until tomorrow.  My sister-in-law brought over leftovers for us so we could have something.

Do I need to go on about what I am thankful for?  I think my last 3 days summed up above do just that.

Amy.  Could I ask for a better wife?  No.  And to be honest I don't know what I have done to deserve her.  She has taken care of all of the kids (oh by the way Braeden is also flirting with flu-like symptoms in all of this), the house, and me.  She has recorded all of my medicine and has monitored by temperature religiously, tracking it all.  Brought me food and drink.  Sat with me, at a far distance, to keep me company while I have been in isolation.  Nope, I don't think it gets any better than this when it comes to a soulmate.  I am so thankful for Amy.  She is an amazing wife and mother, God has truly blessed me with her.  I cannot wait to enter into this next adoption adventure with her as I have, once again, seen first hand everything she has to offer to a child of ours, be they natural or adopted.

My kids.  They are amazing.  Helping Amy out, mostly, when she needs it.  Waving to me and blowing kisses from a distance.  Just being little laughter-inducing distractions when life desperately calls for a distraction.  I look at them and see the amazing people they will grow up to be and it is awesome.  And then there is the next addition we are pursuing.  Who knows when it will be, how long it will take, or what they will look like.  None of that matters though because in the end He has it planned out and has an adventure for all all set.  Now we just travel it.    

Family.  Taking care of the kids.  Taking me to the doctor.  Bringing us food.  Calling and checking in, while lovingly reminding us to keep a distance :).  Crazy though they may all be, we all seem to pull through for each other whenever it is needed.  But that's what family is right?  I hope that your family is the same.  That they make you feel the way mine makes me feel.  That they love and care for you as well.  Even the family you couldn't be with because the flu kept you from your previous plans of traveling to visit them for Thanksgiving.

Friends.  Texts and Facebook messages to wish me well.  Just little things.  New and old, near and far.  They are there and let you know it.  Hopefully you have friends that are the same, I am sure you do.  Just as family can do, they make like a lot more fun and enjoyable.

So, Happy Thanksgiving.  I hope that yours was filled with family, fun, laughter, and turkey.  Hopefully yours was not spent confined to a bedroom while you battled the flu.  But, if you were, I can only hope that you had someone half as amazing as my wife to help care for you.  Hopefully tomorrow brings a return to health and normalcy here in Drosche Land.  That was the end of the holiday break, at least, can be enjoyable.  As usual, this holiday has been far from what we'd expected, definitely an adventure.  Just not one that we would like to repeat.  Ever.

All is well, feeling better and thankful, in Drosche Land.    


Sunday, November 24, 2013

Deja Vu All Over Again


It's never truly left our hearts or minds.  It's been nearly 2 1/2 years since we had to stop the process with Margaux.  It was sad.  It was hard.  But we do believe that it was part of God's plan for us.  We have Stella.  

However, Amy and I have never stopped feeling a pull toward adoption.  

It's hard to explain.  We've tried.  To family.  To friends.  But honestly, it's hard.  We feel that God has placed adoption on our hearts.  That He has called us to do something.  We have spent the last 2 1/2 years trying to figure out what that something is.  Should we adopt?  Should we advocate for orphans?  Should we raise money?  Awareness?  We didn't know.  We discussed it at length and prayed continuously.  We waited.  And waited.  And you know how little I enjoy that!

About a month though it came up again.  As usual, just working its way back into our lives.  Adoption.  What to do?  So we talked about it once again and found that DePelchin, an agency here, was having an informational meeting.  So we decided to go.  We hadn't told anyone yet.  We thought, and hoped, that attending the meeting would help to guide us where He needs us.  So we went.  It was eye-opening.  Enlightening.  And it provided us with an answer and a direction.

Yes, Amy and I have once again begun the process of adoption.  Its quite different this time around though.  We are not seeking international adoption, for many reasons.  Instead, we are staying local.  We will be adopting from CPS.  The one similarity will be the fact that our child will likely be of an ethnicity different than our own.  No big news there.  I mean, we were in the process of an international adoption once upon a time.

So, the orientation meeting confirmed in us the calling to adopt.  We told our parents.  They were surprised, and understandably so seeing as how this came out of nowhere really.  But they will warm up.  Again.

Yesterday we began work on the application and have it nearly completed already.  Again, not our first rodeo.  Also, much of the legwork with gathering all of the documentation is already done and we will be able to use it all this time around.  So in that sense this adventure will be slightly easier.  Having said that though, we have a long road ahead of us.  We know that.  Again, nothing new.

The boys are both very supportive of an adopted sister.  Oh, yeah, we are looking to adopt a girl, between the ages of 2-7.  Again, much like before.  Braeden and Jackson both understand that she may look different (race) than us and they do not care.  They are excited.  They find it cool that Stella will have a sister.  

I guess that's about it.  It's getting late here and I'm fading fast, but I wanted to get this post out.  I've been mentally writing it all day.  Here we are again.  This blog started with the news of our adventures into adoption.  It then followed us as we planned for Margaux and eventually had to say goodbye.  It has seen the birth of Stella.  Job changes.  Life.  It's all been here over the past 3 (wow, almost 4) years.  And now we are back to adoption.  Another adventure.  Hope you're ready for the ride.  We are.

All is well, haven't we been here before?, in Drosche Land.                 

Sunday, November 17, 2013

Sunday Snapshot - Not Quite

Picture it.  Galveston Beach.  Columbus Day weekend.  2013.

(On a side note, are your totally channeling Sofia and one of her stories from Golden Girls, or is it just me?  Anywho, back to the post)

We finally found the time to take the camper out again for a trip!  This time with the cousins.  However, as is usually the case with us, the trip had it's share of crazy drama.  It was warm, not horrible, but warm.  We also had to camp on the bay side of Galveston State Park, not the beach side as we would have liked.  As we originally planned.  See, this trip was rescheduled from a summer trip we'd planned.  Back when Jackson broke his arm and could not get it wet, much less sandy and sweaty.  So we lost our beach side site.  But how bad could the bay side be?  Well, think mosquitoes.  Giant ones.  In swarms.  Yeah, it was that bad.  Stella ended up getting bites all over, leading to an infection.  But that's a post for another time.  Back to the picture.

I'm always taking pictures.  I always have my iPhone handy.  Posting to Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, texting them.  I'm always taking pictures.  But the busyness of life that has kept the posts here few and far between as of late also made for very infrequent photo sessions.  Hence the lack of a Sunday Snapshot in a very long while.

But we were at the beach and I of course had my iPhone.  I love beach pictures.  Who doesn't?  The scenery.  The lighting.  The water.  The fun.  You're bound to get a few good shots right?  At least one stunner.  See, that's what I thought.

So, there we are on one of our escapes from a swarm of mosquitoes jaunts down to the beach and I am following Stella around.  It's late afternoon and she is having a blast.  I'm in total Dad/iPhone photographer mode and am kneeling in the sand behind her as she runs around.  I'm calling to her and trying to get her to look at me, smile, laugh, anything.  Just waiting for the perfect shot.

Then, the moment comes.  The sunlight is behind her, the wind is blowing, she turns around and looks at me with a beautiful smile.  Snap!  Got it!  Woo hoo!  I'm feeling pretty good.  I quickly check it and it's stunning.  Ok, enough playing, I've got my shot and we can get back to having beach fun.

Fast forward to when the trip is over.  We're back home.  The camper is backed into the garage (quite easily this time!).  Laundry is started and we're getting ready to settle back in to our usual routine.  I get out my Macbook and pull up my Photo Stream.  There it is.  I can't wait to view it larger.  Edit it.  Play with lighting.  Black & White?  Sepia?  High Contrast?  Oh the possibilities are endless.  However, when I open the photo I notice something I hadn't that day on the beach.  See below for yourself.

Yep.  That's right readers.  There it is.  Smack in the middle of my "perfect shot".  A big line of slobbery drool flying out of her mouth and blowing in the wind.  Nice.  I laughed, how could you not?  Sure I may be able to edit it out if I tried.  Make the photo into the one I thought I'd snapped.  But why?  This one is so much better.  It has all of the elements I mentioned before.  Lighting, wind, the perfect pose.  And right there in the middle of it all - life.  Happening all the time, whether you expect it or not.

So there you have it.  No matter how you plan for and try to orchestrate things, sometimes it just doesn't go off as hitched.  Sometimes it's amazing and better than you'd hoped for, and sometimes it's not.  Sometimes it's a big string of slobber coming from your toddler's mouth in the "perfect shot".  Ahhhhhh, life.

Below is another "nearly perfect shot" very similar to the slobber pic.  It was taken just moments before.  The only flaw was that Stella wasn't looking at the camera.  It's the one I posted on social media.  But the true gem is this slobber picture that I have been saving for this post!  HA!

All is well, picture perfect, in Drosche Land.

Ni Hao Yall

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

Not What I Expected

So, last week was my birthday.  I turned 30+3.  Nope, still not ready to type the number. Oh well.  

It was a good birthday.  Nice and easy.  But it made me think a lot.  I mean, here I am in my (thankfully still) early 30s.  I guess I am now fully an adult.  No denying that.  Marriage.  Career.  3 kids.  2 dogs.  House in the suburbs.  Doesn't get much more adult than that does it?

But it got me thinking about how much life has changed in just the past few years, much less the last 10.  Is this what I expected 30+3 to be like?  I don't know.  Did I ever really think about being 30+3?  Probably not.  But I can guarantee you it was nothing like this.

Now, don't get all shocked and judgmental.  This post isn't necessarily heading in the direction you may think it is.  It won't be what you're expecting (ha, pun on the post's title).

No, this isn't what I expected my life to be like.  I never thought I'd be a teacher.  But here I am in my 10th year teaching 1st Grade and not a day goes by that I am not thrilled with my job.

I knew I would be married, I mean I am pretty co-dependent so it was a given.  But I could never have expected to have a wife like Amy.  One who supports me in everything I do.  Encourages me to be everything that I am and want to be.  Does the bills.  Cooks amazing foods.  Is an awesome mother.  Nope, I didn't expect any of that.

I wanted kids.  But these 3?  They far exceed anything I could have dreamed about.  Braeden, Jackson, and Stella all daily make me smile.  My heart swells and often I can't imagine loving them any more than I do.  Sure they test my patience (also a daily occurrence) but lying down to sleep at night I thank Him for these 3 blessings that I never could have expected.

Teaching at the same school I attended, and loving every minute of it?  Nope, didn't see that one coming.

To have met and made some of the friendships I have?  Again, I'm codependent, but these people are great.

I could go on, but I think I have made my point.  

Nope, I never expected 30+3 to be this.  To be everything that it is.  To be here where I am.  To have the blessings that I have.  To be as thankful as I am.  Nope, I'm still surprised.  God has given me so much to be thankful for that I am in awe.  Daily.  Sure, getting to 30+3 has been an adventure.  The road as had many twists and turns in it and has often been bumpy.  Hurricanes.  Adoption adventures.  Job changes.  So much more.  But it has led me here and here is good.  It's exciting to continue down this road and to see what comes next.

So, maybe this post is a bit sappy and sentimental, but it was a very contemplative birthday this year.  Guess that's what happens when you turn 30+3.  Didn't see that coming either.

All is well, but that's to be expected, in Drosche Land.

Monday, November 04, 2013

Birthday Eve

'Tis the night before my birthday and it's getting late, everyone else is sleeping as tomorrow I await.

Hello again.  Have you seen that movie from the 80s?  With Shelley Long?  I love it, it's great.  A great comedy from my childhood.

Welcome back.  Now the theme song from Welcome Back, Kotter is stuck in my head.  True, before my time, but I was a child of Nick at Nite.  Not the current one with original programming and stuff from the 2000s.  Ugh.  I'm talking about when it was new and they played actual classics.  The Facts of Life, Bewitched, Laugh-In, The Patty Duke Show.  Or have those become vintage and the 90s classics?  Am I getting that old?

But I digress and enough TV references, for this post at least.  So I'm back.  It's not been a whole month, we're a few days shy of that, so you couldn't have forgotten me yet.  However, this seems to be the theme for my dear blog this year.  Who knew 2013 would be so busy?  New jobs, new schools, a toddler.  Anywho, I'm still here.  

So, tomorrow is my birthday.  I can reminisce via this blog of the days when I was lamenting turning 30.  Oh how young and naive I was back then.  :)  I still can't believe that this year I'll be 30+3.  Yeah, I don't think I'm actually ready to see my age in digits just yet.  Yikes.

Another year older.  I don't feel a year older.  I definitely don't feel 30+3.  I think.  Then again, maybe I do.  Maybe this is how it feels to be 30+3?  Not much different than 23 or even 30 for that matter.  Just a little, ok a lot, busier and with more diapers.  But those things can be directly linked to the presence of kids.

The main difference I have found with getting older is the inability to think of gifts that I want for my birthday.  You're always asked.  I used to be able to rattle off an extensive list.  Nope, not anymore.  Am I wiser?  More content?  Probably not.  Maybe the list is just too long for me to single out particular items?  Maybe.  What about you?  Do you find it hard to think of what you want the older you get?

Well, this post seems to be walking the fine line of blogging vs rambling.  Maybe I've crossed it already?  Basically it could be summed up with 1 - Hey, I'm back!  2 - How have you been?  3 - Tomorrow is my birthday.  

Nothing fancy, just me.  Again.

All is well, almost 30+3, in Drosche Land.