Archive for July, 2014


just sisters

I’ve mentioned it before, but probably the most frequently asked question is if my daughters are sisters. So, I’ll apologize in advance for another mama bear rant on the subject. I’m usually pretty patient and can kindly say yes and move along, but it’s a stressful time and my patience and understanding are in short supply, I guess. Since the other night I was asked three times in under five minutes, really, three times in less than five minutes, here we are again. Yes, my daughters are sisters. If you ask, and I don’t know why you would, but if you ask I’ll tell you they’re sisters because indeed they are sisters. Although it requires no explanation… They each have a first mama who is not me and their first mamas are not the same. This does not make them not sisters; it just makes them not biologically related. Yes, they are sisters. They are not adopted sisters or sisters with an explanation. It’s kind of an insensitive and invasive question and maybe my daughters don’t want to very frequently revisit that painful past just to appease your curiosity. I know your goal is not to offend, but it is kind of offensive. I would never, absolutely never, ask if your children are siblings. Why is it okay if you ask me if my kids are siblings? We’re a family.  If you’d like information on adoption or our own personal story about it I’d be thrilled to talk about it. I love to talk about it! In fact, I have a blog about it! I don’t mind sharing, obviously. At a backyard party with my kiddos right there is not an appropriate time. We stand out and I get that. We’re different and I get that. To us though and especially to my kids, even though they know as much about their pasts as I do, we’re just a regular family. Kindly let us be just a regular family at friendly get-togethers, please. Also, what does it matter to you? What do you intend to do with that information? Seems like it would be totally inconsequential to you.  If you really need to know maybe rephrase a bit, ask if they’re biologically related, if you really need to know.  How could I be their mama if they’re not sisters.  If I answer no, what? I’m not the mother to either?  Only the mother of one?  I’m their mother, they are both my children. They have to be sisters!  Please, don’t ask, at least in front them. They’ll forever experience loss, sadness and confusion and so much more from the loss of their first mamas. It’s hard enough for them without reminders from curious strangers or acquaintances. I am their mama. Children with the same mama are siblings. They are not sisters with an explanation. They’re just sisters.  Really cute ones, I think!




stop and go

photo-15First day with a new bike!  I’m sure I’ll be chasing after them in a day or two, but today was a whole lot of stop and go.


things i’ve figured out

galac-ski = galaxy

Sorry to ‘rupt you mama.

Light-tricity = elecrictiy

Cracken fire = cracker fire = fire cracker = fireworks

I’m not one single tired!

That thing where we just sit and watch fire trucks = parade

You can be a pirate when you grow up and you can pick whoever you want to be on your pirate team.

Reffles = ruffles

Reffles = freckles

Mosk = moth

Mosk = wasp

Golf ball field = golf course

That dead place = cemetery

Lemolade = lemonade

If Milo dies Francine is going to “cry full blast.”

Imageration = imagination

The pleco and the snails eat the allergies in the fish tank.

Every mama is the queen of her house.

Flopsy, Mopsy and Jetson are the bunnies in that one book.

A really old aunt is called an ant-ique.

Keta likes to “push gently on Tiger’s foot to make her claw come out. It’s like a little pocket for her claw just like our mouth is a little pocket for our tongue.”

Pegus-cat = a cat with wings (some among us wish Tiger was a pegus-cat)

She was just born that way. Or she gots a bug bite.

Mama, why don’t we has earthshakes here?

Mama, my toe nails stayed on! (nail polish)

We live on Greenwood Avenude.

Me -What kinds of birds do you think we’ll see when we move?

K and F – penguins, flamingos and peacocks!

Collectioning = collecting

Eating fancy means sticking a pinkie out when drinking or taking a bite. If your hand is too small to stick out a pinkie while maintaining a grip on your water bottle, it’s acceptable and still fancy to stick out the pinkie on the other hand.

Things I have not figured out. This list should be a lot longer, but most things are so far beyond my comprehension I can’t even try to include them.

Dark white = ??? Maybe off white or cream, I don’t know.

Franken-style = ??? I assumed Frankenstein. I was wrong.



the zoo

We finally made our first trip to the zoo. We walked into a slightly wooded area right inside the gate and I found myself the clear leader of our little group of three. Seemed the two little ones were afraid the animals were just loose and would jump out at us around any bend. I reassured them the animals were in pens to keep them safe and to keep us safe and no animals were lurking and hungry for little girls. Not four steps later I nearly smashed a snake and naturally could not help but react. This did nothing to reinforce my efforts at convincing K and F of our safety. We had an awesome time though. Francine’s favorite part was the teepee and said that the snake “just freaked me right out!” Keta spent an hour after we got back home creating a mural of almost all the animals we saw, complete with an upside down bat, a snake all coiled and warm like the python we saw, and another stretched out and slithering away like that first one we saw.  We love the zoo!




moving info

We moved!  We moved from our little town on the plains of Colorado to a slightly less little town in the foothills of Colorado!  Here’s a few things I learned.

Driving a 26 foot truck is easy. Right turns in a 26 foot truck are slightly less so. Strap stuff down, it could get bumpy. Backing a 26 foot truck is to be avoided at all costs, ALL COSTS! It’s ok in this situation to play the blond girl card. Seriously, backflips while skydiving are less scary.

1965 portable lady kenmore dishwasher 2 farmer girls 0

If you’ve never before used or even seen or even really knew such a thing existed, look online for some user tips and how-to advice on successfully washing dishes in a portable dishwasher almost older than your parents BEFORE the first watery and disastrous attempt. Also, turn off water then detach, turn off THEN detach. You’re welcome.  Given enough time that fountain that shot onto the ten foot ceiling will dry, after dripping. And dripping. Blond girl. So sad.

You have more stuff than you think, a lot more. Some of it, you will wonder why you packed it and loaded it and moved it and unloaded it and unpacked it. Then you’ll wonder what to do with it. So, you’ll take it to the basement or garage so you can wonder again sometime later.

Pack clothes still on the hangers. Seriously, you don’t want to have to untangle a hanger disaster that makes you long for a mass of knotted Christmas lights and put hangers on all that stuff after you move. And no, packing clothes neatly with hangers for it all in the box is not just as easy. Also no, throwing it all in a heap-o-laundry pretending it all needs to be washed only postpones the inevitable hanger detangling.  Not good.

Some of your stuff will be lost forever, I’m guessing. Some of it will just be missing for several days only to be found in the most convenient and ignored places. Toilet paper missing for days only to be found in the box marked “bathroom” that you’ve been tripping over to get to the bathroom should not be a surprise. Yes, that box sitting outside the bathroom since day one shoved aside once or twice but largely ignored while painting the bathroom, that one has the toilet paper.  Also, just go ahead and buy laundry detergent all three times you remember you STILL haven’t found the laundry detergent. Be thrilled when original laundry detergent is finally located in the back of the vehicle you’ve been loading and unloading with all the new stuff your new craftsman house built in 1922 (I love love love our new old house!!) needs. Why new stuff? Try not to question it. No matter the ridiculous amount of old stuff, new stuff will be needed.  With that heap-o-laundry you’ll go through the extra detergent in no time.

Shoving stuff in drawers and closets of the correct-ish room is only a temporary solution and not really unpacking.  It’s refreshing and will make you feel like you’re making tremendous progress toward being moved in, but you might run the risk of being buried alive when you attempt to open the linen closet.  Worth it?  Maybe.

Five days without a stove is totally doable. Realizing that there’s no outlet within reach of the just installed gas stove is almost a crushing blow. Matches and those stick fire starter things, I have those. Packed. Somewhere. Now they’re unpacked and I have nine of them.

If you struggle for hours cursing and kicking then finally giving up for the day or week, to open the garage door, three times, don’t put stuff in there you might need later in the week or summer or later in life.  On the bright side, having no garage access will force you to find homes for all of that random stuff you’ve been shuffling around wondering why you packed it and loaded it and moved it and unloaded it and partially unpacked a few times.

Girls with complicated backgrounds struggle, a lot. Before moving they struggle. During a move, they struggle. After the move, they struggle. I think they’re actually surprised they still have all of their things. And me. They’re surprised they still have me. No matter how many times we went over it, no matter how many times they asked, they’re surprised. Moving before meant a complete loss of everything, more of a loss than I can imagine. No wonder they had concerns. No wonder they asked about everything. ” Mama, we get to move our beds? Even our clothes, Mama? What about our books? We’ll take everything? What about Tiger and the dogs? ……..” Endlessly repeated and reinforced with every. single. item in our old home.  So, in order to make them feel involved and like permanent members of the family no matter the location, you might be brave enough to let them pick out a color for their new room knowing what that choice might be and knowing you’ll have to follow through no matter what.  And when they pick out a color you insist on calling raspberry just so you don’t have to say hot pink you have to smile hugely and congratulate them on an awesome decision and how great will your new room look after we’ve painted all four walls this gorgeous color?!?  It’s perfect!  Then you’ll look and see it’s really called Hot Lips and you buy it anyway smiling the whole time and imagining it in all it’s hot pink perfection and you’ll start to paint and they’ll walk in and ooh and ahh and gush about how beautiful it is and “Thanks Mama!! You’re working so hard Mama! Can you believe how pretty our new room looks Mama?!” and you’ve never seen anything so great as them loving their new room and their new home and still struggling but bit by tiny bit realizing this move is ok and we really are a family, forever.  You’re exhausted and have so much moving in to do still and you’re frustrated they won’t listen and pick up their stuff and then you remember they really did wonder, they really have no idea what forever means and they’ve been worried about losing their family and everything they know, again.  So, you read and cuddle and play monopoly and go on a river walk and take a deep breath and walk by that hot pink room and smile and then you put on flip flops and hold hands and walk to a restaurant and forget that avalanche of stuff waiting for you in the linen closet.