Featuring Joy & Geoff, Big Brother , Little Brother , Sis , and various household (and outdoor) critters...

Friday, 27 June 2008

Moving forward...

Well, our agency has just announced a new adoption program in partnership with Ghana. And like Zambia, we've got some connections...primarily through a couple at church from Sierra Leone, who lived in Ghana before coming to Canada. Very neat! We definitely picked a great agency!

Tuesday, 17 June 2008

Bag Pics Are Ready!

I finally posted pictures of the Africa bags on Facebook - so you can go there to look at them if you're on my friends list, or you can send me a comment through this blog, with your email address, and I can email you the photo album! I just posted them last night, and already have 9 sales as of this morning - wow!!!

Since I only had 15 left BEFORE selling 9 more, I guess I'd better get busy...

Thanks for your support :)

Thursday, 5 June 2008

Long-term Parenting & Schooling Reflections

Just getting some recurring thoughts in writing while they're on my mind yet again. In the 10 years since I began my career, my ideas about how we will negotiate the work/parenting roles have certainly shifted. Early on, being the primary income earner & loving my job, we always discussed the possibility of me continuing to work full time, while Geoff became a full time stay-at-home parent. Seemed like a great balance - Geoff would get to keep cooking & cleaning (something I don't relish taking on as a primary responsibility - pancakes again, anyone?) and I would get to spend evenings with the family in quality time mode. Well, as easy as that would make things logistically, things have changed. Geoff loves his work, while mine has lost some of its lustre for a myriad of reasons. As a result, we are now looking at Geoff continuing full time in his job, which leaves me in the less-than-desirable position of having to consider very part time work - we would both prefer that the stay-at-home parent be at home full time. So, over the next year or so, there are some big decisions to make about what that picture will look like. And in the back of our minds is the hope (not fully unreasonable) that things may change a bit for Geoff so that I can be home full time. If I do have to work a bit, I have no idea what that might entail, and there's a part of me that also harbours the thought of home schooling (a big MAYBE - we have two lovely, small schools right in town) if I am not working...Anyway, we're trying to take it easy, knowing that things have a way of coming together. Our biggest desire at the moment is that Geoff's job will eventually mean that I can stay home full time (willing to work a very minimum number of hours to maintain my professional license), and that these things will become clear at least before my parental leave ends, if not sooner!

Tuesday, 3 June 2008

Preparing & Keeping Occupied

We've got way too much stuff lying around! So in thinking ahead to clearing space for babies AND clearing our minds knowing there's not as much disorder hiding in the closets, basement, and garage...on May 31 we held a garage sale, which went really well - thankfully, as we found our first attempt last year to be pretty tiring & not always pleasant (I don't particularly enjoy the whole price negotiation aspect of things). Anyway, we sold a significant amount of stuff, and had a steady stream of customers from 7:00am to nearly 1:30pm, when the torrential downpour & hail arrived. It was a good day - we had signs about where some of the money is going (see Kids Alive & Blood Water Mission links), and were asked lots of questions. All the responses were positive, and there were a few fun interactions. First, one boy in a group of teens on bikes who stopped by asked about our signs, as his sisters have been to Zambia with Kids Alive. By his features, I figured out right away who he was (although he doesn't know us, being the youngest, Geoff & I were youth leaders at his church while his oldest sister was in high school). Later, a woman stopped by who had also been to Zambia with Kids Alive, and had her pictures in her purse! Turns out she is the aunt of some former classmates of mine. One customer told us about how she and her siblings are all adopted, after finding out in the process of conversation that we are adopting, and another man talked for a long time with Geoff about his experience adopting two children 20 years ago. Then my uncle from out of town, on a long haul to the States, showed up for a quick visit, which was fun! The next day, most of our remaining odds & ends in the driveway (a throw-away vacuum, two chairs, and some glassware left to fend for itself in the rain) were scooped up by some Mennonite folks who happened to be driving by...and who kindly gave a small contribution even though Geoff kept insisting all the leftovers were free. Being on a main rural roadway between suburban areas helped business a great deal, and with all the customers, it was a great opportunity to interact with pretty much every segment of Southwestern Ontario society! Another meaningful connection coming out of the weekend started when an old friend from university stopped by the garage sale & discovered our plans to adopt. She lives in town, and our only contact is brief and unplanned. She ended up calling on Sunday afternoon wanting to give us her remaining baby items in support of our adoption. We stopped by to have a look, and ended up visiting for a couple of hours & enjoying a lovely visit with her and her husband and children, complete with home-baked loaf & ice cream!

Other than trying to sort, organize, and downsize unnecessary "stuff", we're keeping pretty busy in general. I am somewhat anxiously watching time fly by for thesis work, and am finding that it continues to be such a slow process, but with increasing pressure to finish (both internally, and based on my official timelines). This is more than a little stressful some days...

We continue to have more after-work commitments & busy weekends than we usually aim for, so we're pretty much up & running all the time. I'm hoping to find some time to plant my flowers over the next week or so, before my second annual hike on the Bruce Peninsula! To cope with the pace, I'm trying to keep our lists comprehensive & prioritized as best as possible.

There hasn't been much chance to keep up with adoption reading over the past weeks, but it has been refreshing to keep squeezing in baby product research & thinking about our eventual trip to Africa. So, that's just a bit about what we've been up to lately, and where things are at for us. Thanks for your continued thoughts & prayers & support!