Saturday, November 12, 2011

Catchin' Up a little...and more advocating!

First of all, one of my favorite China homes...Eagles Wings has put out a really touching video about their work...they do such wonderful things for the special needs kids in China and I've seen so many of their milder kids come home, they give such great care there!! and if you visit my blog regually at all, you know my love for sweet Charlie...this is where he lives...there are a few glimpes of him in the video! Check out the 'tude in the photo of him! He's so stinkin cute...he was pouting at one of the volunteer and put his little hands on his hip and told her ALL about it!!!

the little girl in the photo next to Charlie is Lilli DOB 12/09...I've advocated for her before and she is available for adoption again with Wasatch...she had a family that chose to release her file for complicated reasons. I have tons of info on this beautiful baby...her eye tumor and file has been evaluated by @3 different pediatric optholmoligist specialist thanks to my wonderful doctor who has forwarded it on to different specialist. The latest is at the "Wills Eye Hospital in Philidelphia" !!!!! Fortunately, they are all giving this little doll a cautiously optomistic report about her tumor being of benign and not cancerous and easily treatable!!!

PLEASE email me if you are interested in any additional info in either of these sweet children!!! Charlie is on the shared list and can be accessed by any agency! PM me for his chinese name and dob!!!

and please....someone explain to me why all week, I drag, kick and plead with the children to get out of bed and get moving and here at 7:45a on Saturday morning when mom's trying to blog, have a little coffee and quiet time they are all standing before me bright eyed, bushy tailed and wanting breakfast!!!!! GGGRRRR family catchin' up to come later!!!!

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

I could have SOOOOO written this, and really wish I had!!!!

Man I wish I could take credit for writing this article...I can't TELL you how many times I've heard this....and I'm going to say it now...THE DESIRE TO ADOPT AGAIN HAS NOT LEFT MY HEART....SO THERE!!!

Will it happen again...shrug...can't say right now, but I can't tell you how many people said the first few weeks off the plane with Will

"how sweet, your family is complete"

Like we'd already surpassed the social norm so there just was NO WAY we'd ever do THIS again!!! CRAZY!

I know it wasn't ment in harm...but..just read - she says it so well!!!


Over the years, starting even when we had just two kids, I have heard statements (from friends, family, and strangers alike) such as “you don’t need any more kids,” “you have enough kids,” “well, surely now you have enough kids” and “why would you adopt again? You have enough kids already!”

These types of statements used to make me feel like I had to explain our decisions or they used to make me feel like I needed to be a better parent because maybe if they saw that I was the best parent in the universe, they would think that I could “handle” more kids.

I have tried (in vain) to explain to people that we are adopting children WHO DO NOT HAVE A FAMILY, kids who NEED A HOME, but this does not seem to matter to those who continue to make this statement after or before each addition we have made to our growing family. I know that some of it has been said by those who are concerned because they do not want to see us overwhelmed or having a harder life than we could have if we chose the easier path, but this is the path we have chosen, and all we need need is support.

Recently, a family member said to me again, “you have enough kids” and for the first time, instead of feeling like I needed to justify our decisions and make excuses and explanations, I felt angry. I thought about all the other times that people have said to me similar things and I realized that many of those things were said before the addition of some of our kids, kids who those same people now love and adore. Kids who now have a home and a family. Kids who are no longer orphans. Kids who I could not be more proud to call my children. Kids who have made our lives richer, not harder. Kids who have taught me more than I have taught them. Kids who have given me more than I have given them. Kids who we would not know had we thought of our family in terms of “enough.” And, I was angry.

I have listened to well-meaning friends or family members over the years say things that have hurt, badly, and for the most part, I have remained silent. Some people said this when we only had two kids or three or four, if four was “enough kids,” then what does that say about the last three?
Another reason it has me so upset is that we are talking about human beings here, precious children, not possessions. To say that one can ever have “enough” children sort of sounds like they are shoes or something.

Another is that I have never seen how it is deemed okay for people to question our personal decisions and give unsolicited advise and judgments, but it is not okay for us to do the same to them. What I mean is that when it comes to things that go against the norm, things like adoption, having a large family, and homeschooling, it seems that everyone and their neighbour thinks it’s somehow acceptable to tell us what a terrible thing we are doing.

Can you imagine how inappropriate it would be for me to say to a friend that I thought it was a selfish decision to go back to work full time when their baby was 4 months old because they wanted to pay for a nicer vacation or to say to a family member that it sickens me to think of all the starving children who could be fed for the cost of one of the brand new vehicles they buy for themselves every year? People judge it wrong that we went into debt to pay for an adoption of two children, but think nothing of going into debt themselves for a newer car, a bigger house, or even the latest computers, gadgets, and fashions!

I do not walk around telling people that they should not move because the house they have is “enough” or that they should not get another TV because the two they already own are “enough” or that they should not buy the latest iPhone because they just bought the last version and that should be “enough.” And, if you are shaking your head thinking, “yeah, but those are things, not children” then you are starting to get the point here! It is actually pretty uninformed to say “you have enough kids” as though they were objects. If there were ever anything I would want “too many” of, it would be children. Children are a blessing.

In response to the inevitable question, “are we going to adopt more kids?”, the answer is this: I don’t know. If you look only at logic, then the answer is…probably not. Logic dictates that seven children is nowadays, in North America, a huge family. Logic dictates that seven children is a huge expense. Logic dictates that I have a husband who is much more rational than I am and is less apt to make decisions based purely on emotion. Logic dictates a lot, but it does not dictate the size of our family. For now, we are done. That could mean forever. Or it could mean that tomorrow we will start the process for another adoption. Because God trumps all logic in my mind and in my heart. Our family size will be determined by God. He has called us to adopt, and I know that He is still working in our family.

As a message to our friends and family and to the friends and families of others who choose paths that are less socially acceptable…
Please support and love us where we are at, on the path that we have chosen. Pray for us, because the path that we have chosen is not an easy one. We know that you did not choose this path and we are not asking you to adopt yourself or have a large family yourself. We are not even asking you to understand or like the path we have chosen. If you choose to come and visit us on this journey once in awhile and ask how we are or offer your help, we would appreciate it greatly, but if you can only offer judgment and harsh words, please heed the wise advise of Thumper in “Bambi”…”if you can’t say somethin’ nice, don’t say nothin’ at all”!

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Oh my aching Advocating Heart....

Oh, sweet Charlie, how I'd love to add him to the DeLuca clan...he still waits, click below to read about him or copy/paste the link didn't seem to work, sorry

What a sweet smile this 6yo boy has!

Remeber Lillianan? Click below to read about her story...she's still waiting....

This is Reed, he just turned two in steal my heart!!!

First of all, sorry for the absence. Blogging sometimes slips to
the bottom of my priority list. I wish I was one of those really cool bloggers that could slip in a few fab pics and a few well written lines that seems to sum up all things going on in their lives, but I just haven't seemed to master that talent yet. You'll figure it out when I do. Then only thing that sums up our lives right now is I'm shopping for a minivan with a toilet in it so I don't ever have to get out and could be more effiicent since all I'm doing this school year is driving..constantly!div>

BUT what hasn't slipped to the bottom of my priority list is my love of advocating for the waiting children in China. I still take time most days of the week to answer questions, offer medical advise when I know what I'm talking about, review files when appropriate and sometimes fall in love with a few and really push for them. I enjoy it...I love seeing families formed, and I'm getting better I'm a "slueth"now if you will. I can help pre adoptive families find information. I know things, I know yahoo groups, which agencies are involved where, who's doing what...I just love helping...I'm not the BEST out there, but I help....I've said before, I knew the second I met Sam and traveled to that orphanage in China God had opened my eyes to a big my passion in life..I wasn't sure WHAT all I was suppose to do, but I knew I was forever changed.

Sometimes it's hard though, sometimes your heart just aches, sometimes you just want to scream and yell for the precious ones sitting there "WHERE ARE YOUR FAMILIES? WHY ARE YOU STILL THERE?" I cry for them sometimes....I pray for them alot. You hate to watch the ones you get attached to have a birthday. A day likely noone recognized, another year older, statistically now less likely to be adopted, a sad day in a way....

Adoption isn't easy, it's not for everyone, but I just want to shake people sometimes and say...can't you see, don't you care, how can you leave them there, it's not THAT expensive, ....and then I can I leave them there? and then my husband threatens to divorce me and take away my laptop if I show him another baby that needs a Mommy - **sigh** How many kids CAN you have and pay your mortgage and be sane??? shrug?? Truth is, we are just feel so helpless sometimes....

Thanks for letting me vent, and cry a little on this gray Saturday while I sit with a fever and bronchitis missing soccer games listening to Will and Sam play at volume 1 million...why ARE they so stinkin loud?? could I handle the noise of another child?? Good Lord NO!!!

div>As mention, the faces above are those who wait who have stolen my heart....please contact me if interested.....

Monday, August 29, 2011

I decided not to name this blog post......

I had to many options to play around with when it came time to name this blog post, so I just decided not were some of the ones I DIDN'T choose and why...


Ok, I know I haven't posted in since what? August 9th or something and the entire month went by in this crazy blurr! And I really have no excuse except busy as always, and trying to squeeze the last bit of fun out of summer...which I think we did....and hubby had a business trip in Nashville the week school started and left me home to send everyone off alone. Which I handled pretty well since I had time to prepare, only ONE mental breakdown which I thought was pretty good!!! but CERTAINLY left no time for blogging

2. AND...THEY'RE OFF.....

that's a Kentucky Horse racing pun I was going to use to intro the first few days of school, but that was two weeks ago so I missed my opportunity for that one...BUT my oldest did start high was a bit tough to watch her walk away that first felt alot like preschool, she just looked to darn little to be going they let 85lb-ers in? Isn't there a weight limit to get in?? haha, I'd never tell HER that, girls can be just as sensitive about being small as they can be about big...She is enjoying school, it's stressing her some, but having alot of fun joining every club we will let her and attending every social gathering possible...and my big 2nd grader and 5th grader are also off to a fabulous start. Will and Sam start preschool next week. Will is still undergoing his SB evaluation and saw a PT last week who wants him to have some regular work on his left hip...but she was overall VERY impressed with his strength and flexibility and said he could do thinks not many SB kids could. I was glad to hear that....


I think that one speaks for itself...can't decide if all the extracurricular activities and having five kids at four different schools with 3 different drop off times and 2 different pick ups three days a week is wearing me down, or am I really feeling forty??? **sigh** I think I should try the nap and see ;) explain some of the above photos...the creapy lite photo of Brynn next to the door was taken right before Mike slammed it to pull out her front tooth...yep, no kidding...look closely, you can see the string going to the door knob...all three of my girl have lost their front teeth that way, and it really doesn't hurt...although I don't have the courage to do it...

Brynn in the sassy pose was taken after she announced she was my shoes, glasses and purse and was going out for the night...she even tried to shove my dog in my purse Paris Hilton style....(Which I don't do FYI) Nelly was a great sport, but of course wouldn't fit!!!! But she had some serious "tude" and was full of poses for the camera!!!

The first ones where taken at a fund raiser called "Touch a Truck" They had all types of wheeled vehicles from race cars, motorcycles to backhoe loaders to 18 wheelers for the kids to climb inside, push the buttons, toot the horns ect....and yes, the boys just about lost their minds and had the time of their lives!!! BRILLANT idea! I didn't think we'd ever get them to leave!

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Happy Family Day Sweet Sammy!!!

It's been 2y since we walked into a hothot Civil Affairs Office in Nanjing China to meet our sweet, curious and smily Zhang Jiang. It truly was a fairy tale gotcha day...not a tear or whimper. He spit the M&M's behind the coach, but giggled endlessly at rolling the cars under the coffee table. His first words to us were "Hi Mamma, Babba...I Love you" Coached I know, but my heart went to goo none the less. He could count to ten in English and ID his body parts, in english. I was completely charmed....Love at first love affair with the Chinese orphans happened that moment....please pray for them all....I'm still working out with God what all I'm suppose to do...

It's been a wonderful journey with Sammy, we are so blessed to have grown our family through adoption and I can't wait to see what's to come


Friday, August 5, 2011

Bikes and Camp and Kitchens...OH MY!!

Jessa and Cooper (molly and evan)

Kenna, standing in back - green puppet

Sam and TingTing - true love!

Chinese princesses!


Kitchen - after

Kitchen - before

That about sums up the last few weeks in our house! All five kids had camp. Jessa had 2 1/2 weeks of drama camp and was in a fabulous rendition of '13 the Musical'....she had the time of he life!! She learned TONS, made great friends and came out with her second boyfriend ;)

Sam Will and Brynn went to "Chineese Camp" It was a week of Chineese culture, games, basic Mandrin learning colors, counting, greetings and crafts. It was for children adopted from Asian countries and their siblings and was just FABULOUS!!! The family that hosted has been convinced to continue monthly meetings and learning sessions...can't wait....Sam had a HUGE crush on the Chinese teacher Ting Ting and told her he was going to marry her, you can see how smitten he is in the picture!!... Cutest thing ever...he's quite a charmer that Sammy!!! At the end of the week she said she never expected to get engaged hanging out with 4-8 year olds!

Kenna attended 'Puppet Camp' put on at the same local of Jessa's camp. Jessa was able to be a counselor there. They both had a great time and her performance was SOOO nostalgic...Muppets, Sesame Street ect...and OH SO CUTE!!!

Loved all the camps!!

Brynn finally got the courage to take off the training wheels and is cruisin' 2 wheeled on her bike! and Will go his FIRST bike...(he and sammy have been sharing one until now) He loveslovesloveslovesloves it and all he says is "that MY bike Mommy" "My bike is red Mommy" so cute, so sweet!!

AND.....drumroll....the kitchen remodel is OVER....wootwoot! Well, the cabinet guys have to come back in 2 weeks to fix a shelf and lay trim...BUT I still consider it over!!!! Happy me! It's very pretty, and a HUGE improv't from my 15 yr old builder grade cabinets! I hope I can start feeling a bit more greatful for getting a fabulous kitchen for little money soon...the intrusion and timing just about drove me bonkers....remodels are stressful, especially having no way to cook for a family of 7 for @3 weeks! BUT now it's time to enjoy...**SIGH** Lots of "good" stressors for the DeLuca family the last five kid, new job for Mike,new kitchen...some NOT so good stressors hernia surgery water leak and 13 doctor appts for Will for his Spina Bifida...all that being said, there were times the only thing keeping me sane were God, humor and vodka (in that order) and there were times I was horribly human and was just plan overwhelmed and mean to my family...I'm just looking forward to and praying for some good ole regular life for awhile!!

We are going to try to enjoy a few more weeks of summer before school starts! Hope you can do the same!!

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Lillianna needs us....

I'm copying the email I've sent to my friends here on my blog along with her picture...PLEASEPLEASE pray for everyone involved in this tragic story and direct anyone you know who might be interested in this child to the CHI:

This little girl has anal atresia, and the University of Cincinnati has the best program in the country...I'm advocating HARD and HEAVY for her....I'm attaching some recent posts about her...Her story is VERY tragic...her recent family just lost their father/husband in June on vacation in a tragic white water rafting accident in Colorada, Mom is a OB/GYN in Ohio,...her agency fees are waived for the next 30 days with CHI... please forward this to ANYONE who might be interested or can advocate for her...pray hard friend...this little girl NEEDS a home prayer warriors and advocates!!!!!

"How much tragedy can one family and one child endure? Recently we shared with
you the unexpected drowning of Curtis Waters. If that was not painful enough,
the family was processing the adoption of Lillianna. Due to the needs of the
this family, they can no longer proceed with Lillianna's placement. They are
absolutely heartbroken.

So are we.

This is the THIRD family that Lillianna has lost. She was abandoned by her
birth family in the most dismal of places. She met her first American adoptive
family just before her second birthday. They apparently felt her need was just
too much for them and they disrupted the adoption and went home without a child.

Now she has lost another family and that loves her so much and she needs a new
placement. She has imperforate anus and has had surgery in Shanghai which
completed the first stage of the 3 stage surgery to repair her need. She
currently has a colostomy. We were trying to get her home to have the next
surgeries here but if she has to wait much longer, she will need to have those
done in China.

All the agency fees for Lillianna are anticipated to be covered with donations
and grants. The CCCWA has given us 30 days to find a new match for her.

I have put her pictures in the .Special Focus 3 photo album including an updated
one of her. This child absolutely needs the angels to attend her to help her

You can contact Stefani at Stefani @ infowest dot com.

Children's House is wonderful and Stefani loves each of the children she is
entrusted with. Please help find Lillianna's family.


this is from the Mom, Cindy....

I have followed this group, asked questions, and enjoyed the kindness that
all have extended.
> My husband and I were at the i800a approval stage to adopt a beautiful 4.5
year old little girl
> From china. She is in foster care, has had a protective colostomy but no pull
through procedure.
> She is described as very bright, very clever.
> My husband died June 16 in a tragic white water rafting accident in Colorado
while we were on vacation. I am heartbroken, and left to watch my 4 year old
daughter and 14 year old son struggle to understand. I am now a single mother,
and we are 3 souls just trying to keep breathing. I cannot complete this
adoption now, but so care for this little girl.
> Thru various sources, the agency fee will b covered. She is with Childrens
House International.
> I am asking if anyone here feels they could parent her, take her with their
other child to Cincinnati, that would be ideal. I wish for her a family that
understands his defect and is not frightened by it. We would have been a perfect
family for her. But we are now not the same family. Please contact me if you
wish any further info or contact info for agency.
> Cindy Waters

Her photo is attached...



Sunday, July 17, 2011

and, the summer's half gone.........

....................................My favorite vacation picture!!.................................

Future Charlies Angle????

...............................................Why is my stove in the dinning room again????

Digging a hole, Brynn's vacation friend, Nia

Nanny and Sam

..................Brynn made friends with the cheerleading squad!...................

Pool side activities for the kids....hulahoop winners are the Kentucky girls.................

................................... crab eating party on the balcony................................

......the view from our balcony, aaaaaaawwwwwwww..........great for morning coffee!

Will's first time in the ocean!

but we sure know how to keep the fun going! Some of it is old news, pool time, fun with friends, park ect...The fourth of July was alot of fun, but apparently I let my camera behind...bad Mommy.

My kitchen remodel is under full swing and mostly finished! A BIG thanks to my dear friend Cara and her family who stayed at our house while we were on vacation and put up with most of it and watched my beloved furry babies! For ONCE...a contractor OVERESTIMATED the time of a job! The quoted 3-4 weeks for a completion and I came one week one to find it mostly complete...FAINT!

Oh, and did I say VACATION! Just back yesterday from FABULOUS Hilton Head Island and a week with Nanny and Pappy. Will's first experience at the beach and he really liked digging and filling buckets....the ocean was fun until the water got in the eyes.

Here are some highlights:

Poor Sam got stung by a jellyfish and never really got comfortable again in the water, but who can blame him...funny thing was he kept saying he got stung by an octopus and he couldn't go back in the water because it would sting him again and take his arm off!!! Not to many 4yo survive an octupus attack!!!

Mike, Pappy and family have been avid crabbers since their first summer in HHI (over 35ys ago) My girls love it too, I however prefer NOT to stand in dirty murky water holding a string with chicken on it while getting bit by shrimp ("sprite water" as Kenna calls it) Plus, I like my food dead under celephane from Kroger's....NOT the hissing snapping pissed off things that come home in the coolers....THEN the horrid!!! noise they make when you throw them in the boiling "old bay" water....NO THANKS! I love the crab meat, just not the horror it takes to get it.... This year a few escaped while being tossed to their death and their are three snapping running crabs on the kitchen floor.....Pappy's yelling and chasing them with tongs, the boys think its great and are watching the action from the bar stools and I'm yelling "Let them live, they have a will to live" Pappy comes over and pinches me with the tongs once they to are boiled to their death....I guess it's a good thing I wasn't a cavewoman huh????? It would have made a great funniest home video....

Brynn and Kenna won the hulahoop contest along with a 6yo boy....they were the last ones left and noone could stand on one leg and successfully hullahoop...I bet they will be practicing for next yrs competition! (and if I may brag I'm a MEAN hullahooper myself...hahahaha)

Saw the last Harry Potter movie....tear!!! LOVED IT!!!! Missed Jessa, I've always gone with her, but it was fabulous and I went with another hometown girl and Mike!! (Hi Olivia)

Jessa's is continuing her 4H rifle team and has had a few competitions...a bit difficult for a mom who really doesn't love guns, but when you've got a kid with a crazy talent to hit the target and when you find out there are LOT'S of girls scholarships and when UK rifle team wins has won the SEC championship repetitvely the last 5yrs...and when the economy wipes out your college fund and you got 5 kids to help through college....SHOOT GIRL SHOOT!!!!

She also took her first flight home from HHI Monday by herself so she could start Drama Camp which she is LOVING...did great, got herself home safely, but the carry on bag got lost....coached her through it all, what to do if..... EXCEPT forgot about what to do if the plane from HHI to Charlotte is so small they don't let you take your carry on with you and put it under the plane...YIKES! Props to US Air for getting her bag to us despite No pink/yellow tag...only an ID tag on the bag!! THANK YOU so had 2 weeks of clothes since she stayed with family/friends while we were gone and it would cost me a FORTUNE to replace all that stuff...Not to mention the nearly paniced crying 14yo I got on the phone when her luggage didn't make it home!!! WHEW close call!

WOW! Long post, lot's of pics, hope a FEW of you made it to the end!!! ;)