Monday, February 19, 2018

and that's what love is

Ten years ago today a tiny, somewhat fragile, little baby girl joined our family.

It had been a long wait and after 2 years we switched to the special needs list. Our agency had called and suggested it and we knew it was time to take a second look. As I listened to Elizabeth Rose talk I knew she wasnt waiting for the list of children but that she had the babies information right in front of her. She rattled, off a few conditions, cleft palate, and nope and then she said, how about heart conditions and I said yes.

We have a little girl, she is 9 months old and she has PDA, she said. No sooner were the words out of her mouth I was on google. As I was reading about it she said, from what I can see it isn't a really serious heart condition as heart conditions go. I just said send her and she did and today is the day that, that conversation became a reality.

I could still tell you every moment of that day with glaring clarity.  It was one of the best days of my life.

We took the bus from our hotel to the Civil Affairs Office. It was cold and I was nervous.  Lily was so excited and Andie was as nervous as I. Hah.

There was no time to be nervous as the babies were being brought into the room. One by one the babies were handed to their families. Just. Like. That. Their worlds went topsy turvy and Rosie made it perfectly clear she wasn't happy about it. But I was happy, over the moon happy I knew it would be ok, I knew we would work it all out and this little family would get it all on track.

How am I going to stop you crying little one
2 babies, I have 2 babies
Civil affairs office
all those clothes
Later, much MUCH later, that day Rosie calmed down a little. She did not however allow for the removal of the eleventy billion layers of clothes she was wearing. I managed to get her undressed eventually but she clung to all her clothes as if her life depended on it. When she finally went to sleep she was still clutching them. So sad. Once she was fast asleep I removed them from her crib and carefully packed them away, they are after all the only remnants that she has of her life in China, one tiny little outfit was the sum total of her wordly possessions.

sweet dreams little one. You have my heart.
Ten years later she has left the little scared person in the shadows. She is one of the most loving children I know and the most loyal friend a person can have. She is an athlete, a great student, she is spirited and has a fabulous sense of humour. She ALWAYS roots for the under dog and wants nothing more than the love of her family. Kidlet, the first time I saw your face, I knew you were mine and I was ready to fight to make it happen. I will always be in your corner and fight with you and for you. Never forget, I love you more.

Sunday, February 18, 2018

school shooting

I like to think of this blog as a place where I store all the girls memories, the fun times we've had, the milestones we pass, the events we check off  and occasionally it's a place for my thoughts and life moments.

On Wednesday, Valentines Day, there was yet another school shooting in this country, the 18th so far this year. Just to help you wrap your head around that, it's 18 shootings in schools in 45 days!  This time 17 children never made it home. Although very much the same as all the others in as much as it is terrifying and heart breaking, this one was a little bit different, it was 40 mins from here. Shortly after it happened my friends were posting photos on social media asking for people to keep an eye out for this child or that child as they were missing and hadn't been heard from since the shooting at MSD High. It was chaos, absolute bone chilling chaos and it would be easy to lose your phone and you obviously can't talk when locked in a closet or whilst being marched with your hands in the air by the police, across the campus so these parents held on to hope but of the 5 photos I saw, I later saw them all on the news, DEAD. These young smiling faces were no more, their light extinguished at the hands of a murderer with a semi automatic weapon.

I am not a gun lover, I don't like them at all. My father had guns and I grew up surrounded by them but he shot clay pigeons and the occasional pheasant and rabbit. I knew there were loaded guns in the house and I knew never to touch them. Guns in my house were not for murdering other human beings they were for sport, and I use that term lightly.

On Thursday my first client of the day was firstly a family member of a little boy who spent 70 minutes on lock down hiding behind the trash can and surrounded by book bags to try and shield him, secondly he is a man who started as a teacher and worked his way up to Superintendent of Miami Dade Schools. His perspective was really interesting as he has been on both sides of the fence and as I would ask questions and offer suggestions we would tell me why it wouldn't work, been there done that, or a myriad of other reasons.  But the bottom line is this........


The gun argument is wasted on me, you do not need semi automatics and automatics, no one needs these. The constitution was written, including the second amendment, when people carried bayonets so it is now null and void. This current administration recently made it possible for people with mental illness to buy a gun. I could go on a complete detour about the current President but I won't but he ranks right up there with guns in my mind.

I shield Rosie from some stuff and only feed it to her in dribs and drabs so as not to scare the bejeezus out of her. This one we discussed at length. The Superintendent called with a recording later that night and said he was making sure that in this district we would have more police and more security guards in every school, starting the next day.

How am I supposed to let her know she will be safe when I send her to school when this KEEPS happening. I dropped her on Thursday and she said, I don't see the police Mummy, I said perhaps they were at the main entrance and she was fine with it. When I picked her up the teacher had spoken to them all at length and they practiced their drills. ( seriously they have to have drills for being gunned down by a mad man in school now)

Social media is full of ideas, full of suggestions to keep our children safe but for me I'm stepping it up. I had seen a few posts regarding bullet proof back packs and so I researched them and then, with a heart that is heavy because really it's too hard to fathom that this is even a possibility, I ordered her one.

If you do own an automatic weapon, I beg that you please consider turning it in. Keep your hand gun, if you must but you DO NOT need an AR-15 and the like.
Don't wait until this gets this close to your home.

Tuesday, February 6, 2018

f i v e

February is a deliriously busy month around here for celebrations.

2nd Rosie
6th Luna
13th Pancake Day
14th Valentines Day
16th Chinese New Year.
19th Rosie Gotcha.


The hound turned 5. F I V E

It's crazy to think that she spent the first 4 years of her entire life living in a kennel with a couple of turnouts a day. We are truly lucky to know her kennel handler and know that he truly cared about her. Her trainers I wouldn't want to meet as someone, somewhere didn't always treat her as kindly.

But now she is free and loved and she even had a party for her birthday.

But......I don't deserve this hat
the humility
for gawds sake hoomin
Go away
thats it, I'm on strike
Things didn't get much better from here for the poor little hound, we went outside for a little party.

presents from clients  
ha ha ha ha ha
fings is looking up
Sadly, for the hoomins but not neccessarily the hound, it started to rain so we had to make a run for cover. You don't mess around with Florida rain....its messy.
her birthday dog cookie
she approved
today was a pretty good day...lets try again tomorrow

Saturday, February 3, 2018

e l e v e n

Rosie is 11.

There aren't enough cliches in the world to properly express how I feel about it.

The plans were made, kayaking with just her fam on friday and then on the day bowling at a fabulous new place that has just opened called bowlera. And just as the plans were made the plans were cancelled, put on hold really, as the still 10 year old came home from shcool last Wednesday with a pretty high fever but no other symptoms. Thursday she was still crappy so she missed school and well basically I'll just put ditto marks right through until Wednesday. Her fever stayed strong the entire time but her other symptoms never really got going until Sunday night and then she got the nastiest most disgusting, cough until she couldn't breathe, cough.

Bronchitis and walking pneumonia. She was quite the shit show, poor kid, even the pediatrician was impressed.

But I digress, Rosie is 11. She had no odea what she wanted so I took her through store after store looking for ideas but nothing stood out and then as we were almost home I drove past a park and saw the b-ball hoops and I knew exactly what to get for her.

Her birthday was low key and thankfully we weren't able to get the entire hoop assembled on Saturday as we waited for her dad to show up to join the festivities but that didn't happen till 4.30pm. At least I didn't have to say, no you cannot play b'ball. Sunday though, well I had to let her have a go.

Urghhh all the photos are out of order but considering my current blogging status I suppose we should just be happy there is anything here at all.

this is what happens when you have a greyhound that likes to tear wrapping paper
pretty sure this won't play so I will go ahead and tell you it's Luna helping
no big cakes for tiny Girl, she likes cupcakes
awesome candles with different coloured flames
one sick pickle smiling dimly
Sunday afternoon
this photo should have been first. This is what greeted her when she woke up.
Rosie is eleven. so thankful she is mine to watch the years FLY by with.

Wednesday, January 31, 2018


When I first decided upon Tennessee I wanted to go to Gatlinberg because, well, everyone does. A nice cabin in the mountains with the rest of the world...ummm on second thoughts, NO! I never even gave Chattanooga a second thought until we drove through on our way to Lebanon. It was pitch black and we had been on the road for 15+ hours when suddenly we were on a mountain road over looking a lake and it was stunning, gorgeous...insert a myriad of your own adjectives here. We knew we would be back but since our trip was short it made no sense to drive 90 minutes south and then head north again.

I made the decision to incorporate it in to the drive home, albeit briefly. The drive down was just gorgeous. You cannot beat the colour of the sky on a day when it is sunny but the temperatures aren't abve freezing. THe views we amazing and I loved the big open sky.
A main highway and no traffic. I have more traffic in my hood.
A bridge. I leave it at that as my exuberence for bridges might overwhelm
A MOUNTAIN. I could have squealed
actual scenery.
crazy to think we were there.

The briefly part was a fantastic idea until we got there and realised we would be there a while. A quick drive around downtown to see what needed to be seen there and then off we went to the Chattanooga Chew Chew. Yes, that is spelt correctly, it's the name of the dog park.

From there we headed to Ruby Falls which was beautiful. Sadly it was massively under contsruction and no dogs were allowed. Fortunately they offered free kennels which were nothing more than concrete slabs with chain link fence around them. This wouldn't have made me bat an eyelid in the summer but this little hound would have frozen to death plus it resembled her racing days and no, just no. ( in another year I'll do it but not yet)

photos would be gorgeous usually but the chain link fences and construction mess made them awkward at best
you wouldn't know it was 11 degrees. 
Every thing was pretty
thats right
I might have been a bit nippy. I had been waiting outside whilst the girls hit the gift shop.
Ahoy below
happy girlies and hound
We ended up staying much longer than anticipated and a tentative plan to meet 2 lisas from the old blogging days, flew out the window. By the time we left out ETA for home was 2.31am. Zoinks. We stopped quite a few times but thankfully due to us getting in to Atlanta so late we were able to knock nearly an hour off the trip. We arrived home shortly after 1am and once inside the house the hound went absolutely stark raving mad. She was so happy to be home. We on the other hand, had mixed emotions about it.

woods, actual woods

After spending the day in Kentucky we decided to lay low and just find some quiet space. It really was as simple as walking out of the cabin and into the woods

that, right there is a frozen lake. I am serious!!!
2 kids on a frozen lake
such a novelty
look mum it's frozen
almost as incredible as the ice were these leaves. brown crunchy leaves
I love it when the trees are bare or nekkid as I call them. It offers so much hope for whats ahead. 
I love this
it wasn't the easiest walk as there were these mammoth holes everywhere, I forget what their proper name is but some went over my head
full. lol
we walked this in the dark one night oblivious too all these holes. 
crazy happy and free
marching off to parts unknown
tall and nekkid
those little irridescent blobs were all over the property. At night the place looked like a fairy land
I love all the colours and forms
to you it's a dead branch, the only ones we see are during hurricane season....this is epic.
I could have stayed forever