Friday, November 20, 2009

It's me and Beck this NaBloPoMo

You may have noticed I went down in flames on the post-a-day thing. But clearly I was STRUGGLING for things to write about in those last few days anyway. It's ok, you can call me a Loser.

On a brighter note, or not so much since it's been an earworm driving me just this side of insane all week, here are everyone's favorite monsters singing along with R.E.M.:

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Photo Booth Fun

I have never heard of having a photo booth at a wedding but my friend, Janeece, had one when she wed the love of her life, Matt, last Saturday. The photo booth provided both entertainment and a wedding favor for the guests during the cocktail hour. Such a great idea!

Congrats Janeece and Matt. God bless you both.

Aren't we quite a bunch? Check out Kyle with his fedora!

The kids climbed back in with their friends, Keana and Nikolas, later in the evening -- check them out, totally unscripted! Poor little Niko is barely making it in the shot but he's there! Love it!

Monday, November 16, 2009

Technology is strange dichotomy

Where technology = satisfying my NaBloPoMo post for today on Bill's blackberry at least.

Shall I explain? Ok. On one hand it's supremely convenient to be able to get a post up without the benefit of an internet connection at home. On the other hand, however, I actually have a pre-written post saved on my laptop that I actually put a little thought into that I can't post without access to the web (inconvenient much? Hello dichotomy).

Instead, I am left to come up with something off the cuff again today and that sends my thoughts on a tangent about how this daily blogging is working out. There is no format - and only limited focus, as I'm sure you've noticed - and I've learned that I apparently can ramble on about any number of things that nobody cares about (except me...and sometimes even my own interest is questionable.)


Sunday, November 15, 2009

ACK!!! I almost forgot!

It's NaBloPoMo -- I have to post EVERY DAY this month! I'm posting, but it's gonna be short and sweet. It's time to settle in for the year's *BIGGEST* stressor on an otherwise close-to-perfect marriage: this year's match-up of the COLTS (yay!) and the Patriots (boo!)

Hope to be more interesting tomorrow.


Saturday, November 14, 2009

Ahhhhhhh Saturday...

We started the day with a patio sale at my sister and brother-in-law's. Then we got all gussied up for a wedding. Me being me, I rushed from the patio sale to Kohl's to buy Ky's outfit then home to shower and showed up just in time.

At Kohl's, Ky decided to flex his tween-age fashion muscle and picked out his own outfit - from the dress slacks and green dress shirt to the funky tie and fedora! He looks great!!! I'll try to get a photo posted this evening. Enjoy your Saturday!

Friday, November 13, 2009

I love Friday the 13th!

And no, I'm not being sarcastic for once. Katie was born on Friday the 13th and Bill's birthday often falls on Friday the 13th. For example, TODAY.
Happy Birthday, Love!!!

(unfortunately I don't have a lot of birthday pictures of Bill, so I am stuck with this one...taken SEVERAL years ago in Indy, hence the turtle necks!)

Thursday, November 12, 2009


Te celebrate the occasion, I was given the opportunity by Tribute Books to review two of their children's titles on adoption here on the blog.

The first was Red in the Flower Bed: An Illustrated Children's Story about Interracial Adoption by Andrea Nepa From the moment I started reading it, I loved it. It follows the journey of a poppy seed who was carried by the wind far from the place where is was "born" (but unable to grow) to the perfect garden for it to grow big, strong and beautiful. I found the allegory of the seed being unable to grow in the soil a lovely way to smooths over the rough edges of "why?" and really liked that the garden wasn't complete until there was Red in the Flower Bed. I know for sure that our family wasn't complete without Mariana and this book is something that my girls can relate to...but at very nearly twelve years old, the rhyming text and flower theme just doesn't do it for Kyle.

That's where title number two comes in. Second Chance: How Adoption Saved a Boy with Autism & His Shelter Dog by Sandra J. Gerencher is written from the perspective of a shelter dog who is adopted into a family with three other dogs and a little boy who is also adopted. It gently introduces adoption by conversations between the pup, Chance, and the little boy, Ryan. Ryan has autism and I was glad to see how this book explains a little about how he understands and interacts a little bit differently than others do but focuses on the similarities...not the differences. This is something that Kyle is learning more and more about as he learns more about how his new sister does things a little differently but that we are more alike than different. By far my favorite line of this book is when Ryan sums up the meaning of adoption for Chance by saying, "so I guess you can say adoption means to be loved forever."

Both of these books would be great resources for children who are experiencing adoption from any angle. I appreciate the opportunity from Tribute Books to review them and I would certainly recommend them. Our family is very interested in raising awareness and interest in adoption (for obvious reasons) and there are tons of things going on around the web this month to help do just that. Maybe you could take a minute today to pop around and see what you can find?

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

The snails weren't cute enough?

Try this:

What do you do on a RAINY DAY?

Well, I don't know what YOU do,

But WE play in the rain until we're soaking wet

And then we play with all our new friends who like to come out to play!

Now doesn't that sound like way more fun than hiding out inside all day?

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

This is tougher than it looks

A post a day is not as easy as it sounds. And I made it precisely 3 days into NaNoWriMo before I decided I don't have any earthly idea what to write a novel about, so I can't give up on NaBloPoMo or I would be TOTALLY lame!

So that means you get a limited access pass to experience the complete randomness of my thoughts - from the possible plans coming around the bend to my favorite classic literature to random conversations with my kid to whatever comes to mind when I sit down to do my post for the day.

Today it's the grocery budget for the week. I blew. But I mean I blew it BIG TIME. I started a (really short lived) blog on our grocery savings earlier this year. Perhaps I should go back to posting there - clearly, I require accountability in order to succeed.

Up tomorrow: running stuff, I think. Or maybe not. Depends on my ADD.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Car Conversations

[Upon seeing a high school athletic team running down our street]

Katie: Ewwwww!!! That guy has no shirt on!

Kyle: Dude! He's got a six-pack! I want a six-pack.

Me: Well, that takes a LOT of hard work...either that or some great genes.

Kyle: Maybe I have the great genes.

Me: Ummmm, buddy, you do have some seriously great genes but I've gotta tell ya we just don't have the natural six-pack genes.

Kyle: Well what do we have then? [Getting excited] 12-pack genes?

Me [snickering just a little]: Well, yeah, I guess you could say that.

I wonder when he'll realize that it's not at all the same thing?

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Candide, indeed!

So I'm one of those people who go through phases of longing for my college literature classes wherein I will thumb through the collection of anthologies that I have grown over the years (by my refusal to resell my texts from these courses) as some would thumb through scrapbooks. In fact, during these phases I often consider registering for an online literature class at the college here. Just because. I happen to be in one of those phases right now and, in my thumbing, came across a passage about the rules for success as a playwright (or any writer, if you ask me) that I had marked and flagged while reading Candide that I still find pretty cool:

"one must be new without being grotesque, frequently touch the sublime but never depart from the natural; that one must know the human heart and give it words; that one must be a great poet without allowing any character in the play to sound like a poet; and that one must know the language perfectly, speak it purely, and maintain a continual harmony without ever sacrificing sense to mere sound."

Sounds simple enough, 'eh? Gotta love Voltaire. And Milton - I am thinking of digging out Paradise Lost as I type this. Or Metamorphasis (Kyle would LOVE it, maybe we can read it together sometime). Or Madame Bovary. Or ... How do I even decide?! I just started Firefly Lane, sent to me by my best girlfriend. Not to mention I just borrowed the The Vampire Diaries from another good friend. I could just read them and save the heavy hitters for another time. But I can't help but wonder what else is out there that I need to read? I need suggestions. A little help? And you know what else I'd love to know? What did you "have" to read that you ended up loving? Those, I think, are the best little surprises.

Saturday, November 7, 2009

I hear I'm weird...

I don't really get attached to stuff. I mentioned before that we are contemplating a cross-country move. Having made several (at least 4) long-distance moves in the past couple of decades, I have developed a rudimentary philosophy that goes a little something like this: if it doesn't fit in the car it doesn't go. Period. I sell off the rest and move on.

Now, granted, "the car" has gotten progressively bigger over the years, and this time we're moving a family of 5 not just me (or me +1) as in the past, but I still don't think it's weird to shoot for as LITTLE heavy lifting as possible in a long distance move. I'll probably be looking to sell the house at least partially furnished and to undergo a major stuff-purge if this cross-country move actually comes to pass.

'The More The Murrayer' goes for the loved ones in our lives and the memories we make, not the material stuff that turns to junk and clutters everything. At least that's my take on it. Who's with me?

Friday, November 6, 2009

What do you say when there's nothing to say?

Today has been rough. Ups and downs and lots of emotion and I'm just plain tired. BUT I committed to this a-post-a-day thing even if I don't have the energy to make a post worth reading. Sorry about're the one who suffers, I guess. So today I've decided to send you over to another blog to check out some great photos of people I don't know (and maybe one or two of us too, if you look hard enough!) If you're local and looking for a photographer Rebekah's your gal - she's terrific! - and if you're not you'll probably enjoy looking at the photos anyway -- she's terrific! Hoping for more to say tomorrow.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

I don't know why I always smirk when they say history repeats itself...

Very nearly four years ago, in a quiet guarded little corner of the web, I began a blog~ish thing I liked to call "House for Sale," for the sole purpose of recording our adventure of preparing our house for sale and, more importantly, killing time. It dragged on a bit too long and ended poorly. Now - ready the smirk - history repeats itself and we are again preparing our very same house for sale!

That being said, I am toying with the idea of a new feature on this blog: kind of a "House for Sale, then and now," if you will, that will summarize the then blog post and follow it up with the now goings on. Imagine "This Old House" meets "Nobody Really Cares What You're Saying, You Know That Right?" So what do you say? Interested? Not really. I get it. I haven't fully decided on how or whether to do it. I'll get back with you.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Guess who finally got to meet her Papaw?

We were treated this Halloween weekend to a surprise visit from my Dad. He works in the Virgin Islands and hadn't been able to make it back since we've been home from Colombia. Too bad the visit was so short!

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

What do you suppose it means when my dreamtime is spent running away from Angela Pudding?

I mean, Fluid Pudding is one of my "must reads." And even though I don't personally KNOW Angela, I have a sneaking suspicion that she would be one of those people who make me feel incredibly self-conscious and render me incapable of intelligent conversation because I'd be all "I LOVE the socks you made -- I so wish I could make cool socks," and "Lady, you MUST give me the playlist from your iPod, not many people get my musical eccentricity," So what gives? Why am I randomly dreaming about having the whole fam piled in the mini-van and suddenly she's trying to climb in the we drive down the freeway between Miami and Fort Lauderdale (by the way, did y'all know Angela Pudding can run REALLY FAST?)...and then all of a sudden, just after I peel her fingers off the rearview mirror and she disappears from sight, she's gaining on us as we are running through a crazy escalator-filled mall/flea market/downtown Seattle/Indiana lake cottage lane??? All the while she's looking at me knowingly with a gleam in her eye that says, "Face it, girlie, you'll never be as cool as me." And then I woke up. Crazy; I know.

Maybe it's the socks? Anyone who knows me at all knows how much I love funky socks. Angela Pudding knits some super fly socks and I don't know how to knit but I did just crochet my very first slipper-sock...which is turning out way better than I expected it to but is still not nearly as cool as her multi-colored funky socks. Not to mention my slipper-sock is pink, which is enough to give anyone nightmares. ANYWAY...why don't you check out FLUID PUDDING for NaBloPoMo. She's random and funny and fun to read and apparently my subconscious believes she is way cooler than me.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Just look how big I am getting!

Mariana is now eating two meals per day by spoon and has started holding her own bottle!
Big Girl!!

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Welcome to November! It's Na-"such and such"-Mo!

It's November 1st and there is a LOT going on:

November marks the beginning of Reece's Rainbow's annual Christmas Angel Tree Project, which I hope you guys will check out.

November 4 will mark TWO MONTHS at home with Mariana. (I have SO MUCH to update -- she's growing so much, so fast, and it's been two whole weeks since I've posted. I'll get there, I promise!)

And, last but not least, November is also National Blog Posting Month (NaBloPoMo) AND National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo). These Na-"such and such"-Mo's focus on a blog post every day of the month and completing a first draft of a novel in one month, respectively. Interesting concepts and certainly a fun challenge.

Day 1, NaBloPoMo -- check!

Reece's Rainbow 2009 Christmas Angel Tree -- today's the day!

Reece's Rainbow - 2009 Christmas Angel Tree

 Announcing our 4th Annual


The Reece's Rainbow Down Syndrome Adoption Ministryis a 501c3 charity which promotes and facilitates the international adoption of children with Down syndrome.  

In only 3 years, more than 225 children with Down syndrome and other special needs have found their "forever families" at the end of Reece's Rainbow!  

Your gifts have made that possible! 

The Angel Treeis our most important fundraiser each year, and this year we have (166) orphans with Down syndrome around the world who are in need of grant donations (and adoption!)

From November 1-December 31, 2009, each of our orphaned children is praying that YOU will be their "Christmas Warrior".   Please help them raise money in their adoption grant fund so a *forever family* can  afford to rescue them from life in a mental institution.


There are families lined up and waiting to save these children,but they need financial help to do it!    With an average cost of $25,000 to adopt internationally, every penny helps.  Even the smallest donations really add up, and can truly change the course of a child's life!

*** With your donation of $35 (or more), you will receive a beautiful, porcelain Christmas ornament with your sponsored child's photo on the back. ***

This is a special way to share Christmas with an orphaned child, and to make it possible for them to  spend NEXT Christmas at home with their new family!

Regardless of your faith, ethnic background, or nationality, your gift is life-saving in nature.  Our goal is to raise $1000 or more for each of our waiting children.  You can help by donating and sharing this Angel Tree with others!    This is a very meaningful and personal gift idea for the holidays too!

Your additional gifts to our Voice of Hope fund help keep our ministry operational.

Give the gift of a family this Christmas!

International sponsors welcome!

 *** Be SURE to watch and share our new video (click link to the right)....powerful, moving, compelling, and definitely worth watching!  It really captures the essence and urgency of our work! ***

We also ask you to please just hit *forward* to everyone in your address book, and share this official Angel Tree announcement with everyone you know!

Visit our home page at throughout the year for more ways to bring our children into loving families.   All donations are tax deductible to the fullest extent of the law.  EIN 20-5466141

This email was sent to by Andrea Roberts, Executive Director ( To ensure that you continue receiving our emails, please add us to your address book or safe list. Click here to remove yourself from this mailing list.

Reece's Rainbow Down Syndrome Adoption Ministry | PO Box 4024 | Gaithersburg | MD | 20885