Thursday, April 24, 2008

Long time no see...

Can you tell I'm not too into this whole blog thing! Hey, I told you it was for the TRIP - the trip is over!:) We have been home 6 weeks now and things are a roller coaster of good moments and cry my eyes out moments. The first week was the hardest as we all came home very sick and exhausted. The babies were awesome on the plane, but we missed our flight due to customs and hung out in D.C. an extra 8 hours (31 hours total travel)! We still had a fabulous welcome home party waiting for us in Dallas.

The first week was brutal though. Dave went back to work right away, Piper and I had double ear infections, we thought Calvin had scabies so we treated everyone and everything - TWICE, Tegan started throwing up about 2 days after we came home and she also regressed in potty training and all kinds of temper-tantrum throwing, Calvin screamed his head off everytime I walked out of the room, he also had never been told no in his life, and Piper was up all day and night - sleeping in 15 minute increments. Thankfully, Noah and Charli were fantastic (and at school!).

Many a moment Calvin, Piper, Tegan and I were all crying together...if you can't beat 'em, join 'em, right? (Those moments still happen, just not quite as often! By the grace of my Jesus alone!)

To survive and not destroy our family entirely, after that first week (and me karate chopping Dave in the middle of the night to go take a turn with Miss Piper) we put them on a schedule and things have gone SO well since then. Everyone is in bed at 7, all sleep through the night, all take naps at one, and an extra one for Piper in the morning. And all are happy and love their mama! YAY!! Things seem so much more doable with sleep!

That's most of the bad stuff and now for the little wonders...both the babies are so cuddly and affectionate, they kiss and hug and love to be held, rocked, danced with and are so open with their hearts. My girls love them and more often than not it seems like Calvin and Piper have been with us since their beginnings. They just blend right in. Tegan slowly but surely warmed up to them and now she is happy to see them and play with Calvin and even kiss him! The first week she wanted absolutely nothing to do with them and would turn away when Calvin would reach out to her. She asked me twice when I was taking them back to "Upiopia - they're not so special" she said, she also wanted ME to go back to Upiopia so she could live with Grandma. She still has little moments she has to work through, but the babies are growing on her every day and I'm pretty sure she is becoming more and more fond of being a big sister.

Noah and Charli are just wonderful with them. There are no words to describe how proud I am of these 2 girls. They are so selfless (with Calvin and Piper, that is, NOT with each other! LOL!) and loving. They play and just laugh their little heads off, as Calvin, especially, is such a ham and a dancer to boot! He is quite a chatter box and already understands pretty much everything we say to him. He does talk ALL DAY, NON-STOP though! I'm thinking I would be a nicer person if I had ear plugs in all day. But he is a very sweet baby man and very eager to please. (It's nice to have 1 child out of 5 that is like that! Obviously "eager to please" doesn't run in our bloodline!)Piper is mama's girl, for sure, if she can see or hear me I better be holding her. She started clapping (so cute!) and can sit up unassited now. We are having an Occupational therapist and Early Childhood Intervention come out today to evaluate both of them.

I have given up on the dream of a clean house and perfectly groomed children (and a well groomed self, for that matter). I have forever said good-bye to the lie I was sold about a Pottery Barn spotless house, looking like Eva Longoria, and gourmet meals every night. I've given up on bathed children who know all Bible verses and stories and always wear clothes or even shoes that match (with a bow in their hair of course!)and are involved in every social event and extra curricular activity available to them. We are definitely minimizing and trying to keep life simple and enjoyable for us. We're just going to be 7 people who ask the Lord to invade our home and pour His grace and love all over us so we can survive and in the end know Him and love eachother more fully. At this point that is as much as we can do.

So there you have it. That's our little life in a nutshell these days. Thank you (most of you) for being patient with me, it's not like I have much to do or anything. Just veg out, watch Brazilian novelas all day, paint my nails and get a daily massage or two... :)

Oh, and before I forget, you wanted to know how I got everyone to sit still for that picture...Well, what you can't see is ANY of our faces (I can't recall if anyone was happy or crying), but I did also bring a huge bag of jumbo marshmallows, that I perhaps gave them after each happy snap! Candy...the secret to perfect children...

Calvin is standing at the door with his purse and keys, ready to go, he also has silver fingernails, (don't tell Dave). What's a little guy to do in a house with 4 sisters...?

Stay tuned as Dave will soon be posting a vido of our trip and all our yummy kiddos...



It's so nice to hear your update! I totally get ya too! Sounds like things are starting to gel and don't worry, I gave up on the clean house, clean children, etc too! There are some things that can wait while our children are growing up!! Clean houses will come when they all move out!! LOL

Love to you all!

the Steiger's said...

Sounds a lot like in our house!!! Hang in there girl!!!

Holly said...

Oh my gosh! You are hilarious!
Thanks for sharing your lives so transparently. We love you guys.

The Byrd Family said...

Yep...with transitioning new children (especially 2) into your new home and a new family...housecleaning and looking nice for yourself or your husband goes down to the bottom of the list!

LOVE the video!

mstum said...

Rae, I'm cheering for you, girl! I thought I had unintentionally landed on a different planet rather than home sweet home when we returned with Dosen! Glorious as it was to have him finally, we were exhausted! Integrating someone into our family was just plain challenging, but worth every tear!!! Can't wait to hear how things are going in another 6 weeks.

Andrew & Rebecca said...

Oh my goodness! I LOVED your blog. (Looks familiar! =) check out ours and you'll know why I say this!)
I am so excited for your family. We hope to be in a similar situation in a few months. We are requesting two under the age of two at referral!
Your family is beautiful. You must be so proud!
Congratulations, Rebecca

Team Dragovich said...

Rae, I can't believe you made it to 5 kids before you gave up on the clean house!! You are a stronger woman than I :D Thanks so much for sharing your heart and being transparent-- we all need to hear it and exhale, too!!
Shari from YG

Annie's Antics :-) said...

All seven of you are AMAZING and so insanely inspiring! I'm so happy for you and so excited to meet my newest cousins!! Much love to you - love your blog!!

Amber said...

Welcome to the Dallas Ethiopia group.I look forward to meeting you. I love your blog post and video. I love to hear all the details, good and bad. You make it so entertaining to read as I can imagine as I read it how crazy your household must be. Thanks for sharing. I'm going to add you to my blog so I can follow along.

The Copeland Family said...

I really enjoyed the You Tube video you guys made...absolutely powerful!

Albany Intercessor said...

Dave and Rae,
I rejoice with you! I am so very happy for you. I know it is wall-to-wall kid right now but it will level out (in about 20 years or so).
Love and blessing,