Our FOUR Little Ducks (formerly Our Three Little Ducks :)~

I'm a mom to FOUR amazing kids, one of which was adopted from South Korea. Our family is wild and crazy, and REALLY LOUD but lots of fun. Oh, and my new favorite quote is: "HAVING KIDS IS LIKE BEING PECKED TO DEATH BY A DUCK." So so so true.

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Location: United States

I am currently a SAHM, but prior to leaving my job I was a labor and delivery nurse. I really miss work, but I enjoy being home with my kids (most of the time anyway!).

Monday, July 31, 2006

Oh so hot

I think it's 100 degrees outside today. Yuck. I've only been out for a total of 1 hour today and I had to change my clothes from the sweat! The worst part is that tomorrow and Wednesday are suppost to be worse!!! We are suppost to have "record breaking" heat the next two days. COME ON WINTER!! (BTW~ I don't know why these pictures are so small!)

Friday, July 28, 2006

If only...

If only our agency told us when we have "EP". EP is the petition for immigration granted by the Korean government. Once EP is obtained, then your travel call is imminent (like within one month). EP is the LAST thing you are told prior to travel. Today on the forum I talk on, 4 people who received their referrals on 6/15, 6/20, 6/21, and 6/22 got EP!!! If you remember, we got our referral on 6/15 also. Here's the problem... our agency doesn't tell us about EP! It's so frustrating. The other problem is that in Korea they only grant these petitions in "batches" once every month, so I can't just assume that I also have EP. I could have missed that batch. ITS DRIVING ME CRAZY!!! So now, even though we were told (by one SW) to expect a call in October, the other SW said probably September but maybe August. UGH! All of that was prior to this whole EP fiasco though.

To help myself deal, I went shopping today. On the forum we call this "retail therapy". OF course I didn't actually buy anything for my family except for 1 new toy for Arie. Other than that it was all money toward gifts to take to Korea.

Well, we have a bet now. Ben's betting August for travel, and I'm thinking September... anyone else willing to guess???

Thursday, July 27, 2006

Re-living my youth

Last night Ben and I went to see Poison and Cinderella in concert! Poison was my FAVORITE band in middle school, so Ben got these tickets for me for our anniversary. I was totally psyched! We got to the concert early so we had PLENTY of time to "people watch". It was an interesting group to say the least. We were on the younger end of people there. Most fans seemed to be in their mid 40's. The clothes these people were wearing amazed me. Here's me and Ben wearing matching Birkenstocks,jeans, and equally preppie shirts, in a crowd of people who either forgot to look in the mirror, or looked in a trick one. The main idea behind the outfit selection of everyone else seems to be "wear an outfit that shows off EXACTLY how bad you have aged since the 80's!". Aside from the large rolls hanging out below the halter tops of the 250lb obese women, there were men sporting halter tops (always a bad fashion decision). It felt like we had walked into the fashion "DONT'S" section of a magazine. At least it made for some good entertainment.

After the first horrible opening band (I don't even know the name) Cinderella came onstage. Neither Ben nor I ever listened to them growing up, so we couldn't sing along. It's always fun to watch mid-50 rock performers sing. Everything was going fine with Cinderella until the lead singer fell down on-stage during one of the slow songs. I was worried that he broke a hip or something, but apparently he was just doing it for dramatic effect. Oh. Ok. Whatever works for you dude.

During Cinderella we realized that we were sitting behind of the most obnoxious girl at the concert. You know who I'm talking about. This is the girl who has to "act out" every word of the song.. and God help us all, she knew every song. I am not a violent person (I actually saved a trapped bat in the bathroom while I was there) but I REALLY wanted to just smack this girl upside her head. We were waiting for her to get too drunk to keep it up, but that never happened. Once Poison started, we realized not only were we behind half-drunk-drama-queen-girl, we were sitting next to the SECOND most obnoxious girl at the concert. She kept putting her arm around Ben telling him he "sucks". Apparently he wasn't EXCITED enough to see Poison, so somehow that made him "suck". Whatever. Our luck...thousands of people and we get stuck next to the best of 'em.

Finally at 9pm, Poison came on stage. It was really cool to see them live. I really did love them when I was little, so I enjoyed this part of the concert. The lead singer (Brett Michaels) was wearing his own band shirt though. I guess someone forgot to tell him that's not cool, but that's alright. He did change his shirt 3 times during the concert... but only to replace the previous shirt with another "Poison" shirt. They were great (as far as 80's rock bands go). We jammed out with them and they played all the songs I like. We ducked out in the middle of the encore song though... this was in part due to the guys in the row behind us deciding to take a leak behind our seats. I can deal with obnoxious drunk freaks, overweight half dressed females, even bats flying at my head (yes, the bat hit me in the head twice) but pissing on my shoes is JUST NOT COOL!!!

We had a great time believe it or not. I'm sure at some concert in my past I was once that half-drunk psycho girl. Concerts seem to bring out the "best" in people. I have done everything from use the men's room (with men in it because the line was shorter), to crowd surf and mosh in the mosh-pit. At one concert I even lost my shoes and had to ride the metro home bare-foot. I've done things MUCH crazier than that, but my parents read this, so I'm not sharing those secrets. I guess I'm just more grown up now... two (almost three) kids will do that to you.

All-in-all Poison was a blast. I would go again in a heartbeat. Although next time I'll be sure to wear rubber boots!

Wednesday, July 26, 2006

Bummer news

Just got an e-mail from our social worker saying that they expect our travel call to be anywhere from 3-5 months after our log-in date. The "log-in" date is the date that Eastern (the Korean agency) received our paperwork. That date is July 4th. That puts us at October 4th - December 4th for travel. I'm so bummed. I was really planning on September or maybe even early August! :( This just sucks. It really is hard having Arie so far away. Last night I was tucking Elaine into bed, and she said to me "I don't think Arie will ever come home". I totally feel her pain, but obviously I re-assured her. I don't know how people can go through an adoption more than once. It must be like labor pains... you must just totally forget after the baby is in your arms!

Fortune Cookies

So a couple nights ago we had chinese food for dinner. I was so excited to read Ben's fortune cookie! Here is what it said:

Of course we know it MUST BE referring to Korea and not, like, a "pleasant trip" to work or the bathroom or whatever. After all, the fortune cookie gods know all, right?! My excitment was short lived though, because Ben ruined the moment by adding "in bed" to the end of the fortune. Typical.

Friday, July 21, 2006


Ben and I went out on a date for his birthday tonight, and we came home to an e-mail from our agency with 6 NEW PICTURES OF ARIE!!! I can't believe how cute he is! He has gotten SOOO big too! It makes me miss him even more. I just want to go get him RIGHT NOW! They were taken 6/23 by the way. I'm off to send the photos to friends and family!

Monday, July 17, 2006

I want my boy home!

Now that we are done re-decorating, and done with all of our paperwork... I WANT MY SON! I'm really getting excited about getting him. I am, however, trying to enjoy these last couple of months with just 2 children. Today I took Elaine and Micah to the pool by myself. It's a busy community pool with an AWESOME baby pool (fountains, waterfalls, slides, etc). By the way... I can't believe I just called a baby pool "awesome".,, pathetic. Anyway, we had fun. We were there for 3 hours, and the kids are beat. They went right to sleep. I can't even imagine going with 3 kids by myself. I think I would probably have to invests in one of those horrible leash things. No, I could never do that.

After all of the "swimming" today (if you want to call it that), Elaine just woke up with bad leg cramps. She gets these a lot. I did too when I was little, and I remember waking my mom up crying in the middle of the night too. Normally Ben rubs her legs with Icy/Hot and gives her Motrin, but he's not here tonight (another business trip... sigh) so I had to do it for the first time. She told me that daddy does a better job. Oh well. 4 years of college to become a nurse, and my husband does a better job. Go figure.

One of the social workers at ASIA e-mailed me and told me that September sounds like a realistic time-frame for our travel call, but that we might be surprised with a quicker call! I'm not getting my hopes up though. We've been so lucky to have everything go so quickly so far. I don't want to jinx it! We need to start packing (like the stuff that we don't use everyday) but I'm actually procrastinating on that one. It's so funny, because in H.S. and early college I ALWAYS waited 'till the last minute... no I want to get whatever it is done so I can quit worrying about it!

Oh, and before I leave... check out the ticker at the bottom of the page! I think I've hit 3500... WOW! Thanks for having an interest!

Friday, July 14, 2006

I-171!!! WOOOO-HOOO!!!

Yesterday in the mail we got our I-171 form. We expected to wait 6-8 weeks, well we had JUST sent the application in on 7/8/06! That is like RECORD speed. This is the form that basically says we have been "approved" by the United States to adopt a child from another country. It has already been faxed to the American Consulate in Seoul Korea! They will need it for Arie's visa. On this end of the ocean, we are DONE DONE DONE!!! Once Arie's Korean "Petition for Immigration" has been approved by the Korean Ministry of Health, then we wait for his passport and visa and THAT"S IT! The petition may have already been approved, but we don't find any of that information out :( The passport and visa each take 2 weeks to process. What a great feeling to know that we will have our boy home soon!

Yesterday I worked all day and helped deliver one of my closest friend's baby! It was a beautiful delivery, but I cried more than they did... oh well. I'm sure she'll tease me for the rest of my life. CONGRATULATIONS JEFF and GINNIFER!!! You have a perfect angel!

Monday, July 10, 2006

Micah's big boy room!

Well, I finally finished the room. I'm exhausted and sore. I moved furniture, painted, hung curtains, hung shades, re-did the closet, etc ALL BY MYSELF! Ben was gone with the Army (again), and he told me to wait but I'm too impatient. These aren't the best pictures (taken at night)so they are a bit dark. Anyway, you get the idea. We had to buy a small changing table for the room too, and our friend is going to let us borrow her crib. I can't believe I'm going to have two kids in cribs and two in diapers! Might as well be twins. Oh crap. I just realized that we're going to need another high chair... sigh. I started a registry tonight just for fun. Believe it or not, even after having 2 kids, there are things that we need. I hate to buy duplicate items though (like the high chair) so maybe I'll see if I can buy one off of Craigslist. Today in the ASIA newsletter it said that the average wait for travel is 10-14 weeks (from referral... I think). That would put us at late August to late September (early October at the worst... we would hope anyway). In case you didn't realize AUGUST IS NEXT MONTH!!! That's awesome! Little Arie is just waiting for his mommy and daddy!!! Today we started referring to Elaine as "Nunna". That's what a little brother would call his big sister. She thinks it's neat. I think she's a little sad that she won't have a baby sister, but she'll deal.

Saturday, July 08, 2006

We got Arie's "LEGALS"!

Today in the mail, we got the legal documents from Korea (certificate of birth, etc). These are all needed so that we can send in our next form : the I-600. The I-600 is the "Petition to Classify Orphan as an Immediate Relative". This form goes through Homeland security (also called USCIS). We should be able to send them off to USCIS tomorrow. Hopefully all of this will go smoothly... we should receive "approval" from USCIS within about 6 weeks. When we receive this approval, we send it to ASIA, and USCIS sends it to the American Consulate in Seoul.

On Korea's end, they are currently translating all of our acceptance documents that we sent on June 26th, and once those are translated, they will begin applying for Arie's passport and visa.

Then we wait for the travel call. I know this is all so confusing for all of you reading this, just imagine LIVING IT! I'm SURE that something is going to get screwed up with our I-600 form. There has already been a glitch with our I-600a form (the pre-approval form for homeland security) and I'm worried that is going to mess up this form. In a nut-shell, our SW was supposed to send our home-study to USCIS in April to go with the I-600a form. She forgot, and didn't get it sent in until June. As a result, we have heard nothing from USCIS... and I'm worried that something has gotten lost in the shuffle. We'll see.

I painted Micah's big boy room all by my self this week! Ben is gone again with the Army :< Although the paint color looks great, I think it needs another coat... sucks for me. It's coming along though!!

Wednesday, July 05, 2006

HAPPY (Late) 4th OF JULY!!!

I was lucky enough to be on-call at work all day, so I got to enjoy the day with my family. We had a neighborhood block party with lots of food, alcohol, and of course fire-works. Elaine and Micah did great with the fire-works. Elaine use ot FREAK OUT and cry hysterically, but this year she was Joe Cool.

This year has really made me think about the word "independence". We are so blessed to be an independent country... To be able to make choices, say what we want, express our opinions about our government, etc. Since we're adopting form Korea, I have been following the North Korea conflict closely. It's scary to think about #1 Arie being so close to North Korea, and #2 traveling to Korea and leaving our other children here. It's scary to think that something could happen to us while Elaine and Micah are still at home. This mess with North Korea is worrying a lot of us that are in the process of adopting. There are so many concerns, I can't even begin to explain them all.

I wish that all of this crap would just go away, and that the leader of North Korea would grow up and quit trying to prove whatever it is that he's trying to prove. I wish that little Arie, Micah and Elaine could grow up in a world that is more concerned with feeding starving families and helping the environment than it is with war and the like. I know that will never happen, but I can't help hoping for it.

Happy 4th of July everyone... please appreciate the freedom. There are soldiers fighting for that freedom right now. Take a moment to remember them and their families. They have given you more blessings that you can count.

Our computer has been down...

We've been moving everything out of the guest room (including the computer) so we can redecorate and make Micah's big-boy room. Anyway, I haven't had a chance to post the pictures from Micah's surgery, so I'll try again now.

Monday, July 03, 2006

Surgery went well

Micah being put under general anesthesia

** I can't get ANY more pictures to upload, so this is it. I'll try more tomorrow or the next day, but I work tomorrow (July 4th) so I've got to get some sleep!
So Micah did great today. We had to wake up at 5:30am, and his surgery didn't start until (:45, so aside form being exhausted, Micah did wonderful. He was a hit in the pre-op area. All the nurses, doctors, and even the other patients were playing with him. When they finally went to walk us back, I went back to the O.R. Micah was so happy and smiley until we walked into that room, and then he looked like a deer in the headlights. Once the nurse anesthetist sat him on the bed, he lost it. They put the mask over his face and he SCREAMED!!!! I didn't think he would ever fall asleep, but after about 30 seconds he was out cold. I was fine until I left him lying there, but once I started walking away I had to hold back the tears. The surgery was incredibly fast (like 10 -15 minutes from start to finish). His doctor said there was "tons of fluid" and the nurse said that it was very "gluey"... ick. After the 15 minute wait, they called me back into the recovery room, but Micah had already woken up and was freaking out. I don't think I've ever heard him scream so loudly. The nurses were trying to get him to calm down (because there were like 5 other patients in the recover room with him), but they weren't having any luck. I gave him a paci, grabbed him, and he immediately calmed down. I love being a mama. Anyway, he took a 4 hour nap when we got home and has had some pain issues, but is doing fine. We had our fist struggle with ear drops tonight... oh, and ear plugs too. Lotsa fun! Thanks for the positive thoughts and prayers!

Found out today that our acceptance papers were sent to Korea by DHL on Friday June 30th! That means that processing will begin on the Korea side for our boy Arie!!! It's such a good feeling to know that things are moving along. The next thing we're waiting for is our I-600 approval. This is the description:
The I-600 is the approval form from the USCIS that the child can be adopted by the parents (if you haven’t filed an I-600A the I-600 also approves you as an adoptive parent). Approval comes in the form of an I-171 (in most cases).

Sunday, July 02, 2006

Micah is having surgery in the morning

IT's 10pm on Sunday night. I'm going to bed, but just wanted to post that Micah is having his tubes placed tomorrow morning. Surgery is scheduled for 8:45am, but we have to be at the hospital at 7:15. I'm nevevous only because he's never been under general anesthesia before. Luckily I know the whole surgical team (I'm a nurse at the same hospital) and we have a great team. Please keep him in your thoughts and prayers today! I'll update later and report how everything went.