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Monday, July 20, 2015

Wow, has it been that long?

It seems like it was just yesterday that we received our referral, & now we've been home for just over a year! Our little man has been growing & thriving & being wonderful (if slightly annoying, but that comes with every toddler, I guess). The transition from being a couple to being parents has been rocky at time, but I feel like we are finding our feet. We brought Nata home on Canada Day 2014, a quiet, frightened baby, & now he's loud, outgoing, little boy. He's grown about 5 or 6 inches, gained 10 lbs, he talks up a storm all day & most of it is pretty easy to understand. He's always tried to make himself heard, when he was younger he would babble away at us, always talking with his hands, but now you can carry on a full conversation with him. It's very cool! He is very fashion-consious, he wants to pick out his own clothes every morning. Woe to you if he doesn't like the t-shirt you've picked out for him. He LOVES the Minions, so his preferred shirts are his Minion shirts (or "gummy shirps", as he calls them - he calls the Minions "gummies", as he had gummy candy shaped like them once). He is constantly taking in his surroundings, he notices pictures of things he likes, like Minions or monkeys or bananas, that his daddy & I don't even see. He'll yell, "Monkey!!!" in the grocery store, & we'll look at each other all confused, but sure enough, there's a picture or a stuffed monkey somewhere in his eyesight. He loves music & he can carry a tune easily, so he must be pretty musical. All in all, we love him to bits & can't imagine not having him in our lives. Having said that, it's time to get out for a date-night sometime soon, a little no-kid time never hurt anyone!

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Here comes the son....

It's almost a month late, and everyone already knows, but I am here to finally announce that Andrew & I have finally received our referral! We were referred a 9 month old baby boy, named Yonata (in my head though, I call him YoYo). We got the call on Tuesday, November 5, and to say we were stunned is a bit of an understatement. Our social worker was a bit confused (and concerned) at our reaction, or rather, our lack of reaction, but when you've waited 5.5 years to be parents, the reaction can go either way - ecstatic (which did come later) or stunned-ness. The joy spread once we started calling friends & family, and it's continued to grow in the last month. We've got all the essentials ready (car seat, high chair, stroller), and have started to slowly acquire clothes. As you will recall from reading the rest of this blog, we were initially hoping for a girl, so most of the clothes we have are distinctly feminine. We're going to bring them to the orphanage when we travel for court, or to pick YoYo up after his visa is issued. The next step is waiting for a court date to be issued. We had to update a couple of pieces of paperwork in our file, so that is being sent off to the agency today. We also need to wait for the Ontario Ministry (of children's affairs) to approve the match. Once that happens we will start receiving updated pictures & stats at the end of each month (we've missed out on an end-of-November update - BOO!). We hope to travel for court in January, but realistically (with all that needs to happen with our file - authenification & translation, plus Canadian Christmas & Ethiopian Christmas holidays), I think it will be February or so.

Here is the information we currently have about YoYo.
Birthday - 1/29/13 (Aquarius, I wonder if he'll be a good swimmer)
Weight - 7.2 kg (15.8 lbs)
Height - 68 cm (26.8 inches)

We can't wait to get him home & start our adventure!

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Um, hi....

Hey, would you look at that - it's been 6 months since my last post. How did that happen? Oh, I know, it's because I'm not really much of a writer. So, how have I been? Good, can't complain, really. It's not like I haven't been busy in the last 6 months. Ever since I joined Crossfit in April 2012, it's been like a whirlwind of busyness. Well, not really, but I'm definitely busier than before I joined. I still go twice a week most weeks, sometimes more. I've been gaining strength - I can now clean 105 lbs, snatch 75 lbs & deadlift 205 lbs, so I'm definitely improving. I need to work on my mobility, my cardio &, well, everything but weightlifting, really. Not that my weightlifting doesn't have room for improvement. It totally does. I've made so many friends at my gym, though, so even though I'm still as lazy as ever, my friends keep me coming back.

So, what else has been happening? Andrew & I travelled to the UK again, in May. That was a blast! Andrew had to go for work again, so we were in London for the first 3 days. We stayed in a pretty ritzy area this time - Mayfair. It was still within walking distance of the cafe I worked at when I lived in London during the summer of 1992, so I walked up there a couple of times for lunch (once with Andrew, once without). I love exploring that part of London, lots & lots of money there! On my way from the hotel to the cafe I passed 4 luxury car dealerships (shopfronts, really) - Porsche, Jaguar, Rolls Royce & Bentley (where I saw a Bugatti Veyron, for reals - when I told Andrew that he had to go check it out for himself!), several antique galleries (really ancient Roman, Greek, oriental antiques - very very cool), fashion boutiques, a yacht "store" (just models in that one, but even the yacht models were gorgeous - and that's coming from someone who is NOT a fan of watercraft). Of course I had the same crepe I've always had at "my" cafe - chopped bacon, cheese & sour cream, folded up into a parcel of yummy, yummy goodness. I had the same thing both times I went to the cafe this time, and I was so happy to be able to finally, FINALLY bring Andrew to the cafe for a crepe (chicken & asparagus, in case you're wondering), after 22 years! After London we rented a car & drove to Birmingham for the day, so I could check out the huge security show they hold in the UK every year. It was a chance to meet my European customers & salesguys, plus it was free & had free wi-fi, so it was a chance I couldn't pass up! I hadn't told my Toronto co-workers that I was attending, so they were very confused & surprised to see me. That alone was worth the trip! From Birmingham we headed to Shitterton, to stay again at the 500 year old farmhouse that we stayed at the last time we were in the UK 4 years ago. We were able to spend lots & lots of time at Monkey World this time (last time we arrived 1 hour before closing, so we really had to rush past all of the apes & primates), it is such a wonderful place! One of my favourite places ever. It's right next to a tank proving ground (you know, army tanks, not storage tanks), so after Monkey World we headed to the tank museum next door. Had a lovely lunch, then checked out hundreds upon hundreds of tanks. Well, Andrew did - my feet gave out after the main hall. The next day we headed for Cardiff, to the Doctor Who Experience, which was totally geek-tastic! Well worth the drive! We had lots of yummy, yummy food, including a great lunch at Jamie Oliver's Italian (we'd eaten there in London too, for a "work" dinner). Really really good food! We also checked out the local Crossfit box to get some shirts for our Crossfit friends. From there we headed back to London for our flight home. It really was a wonderful trip, and I can't wait to go back.

Since we got back it's been a whirlwind of family visits, Crossfit parties & get-togethers, BBQs with friends & just general living. Andrew's mum has been here for a visit for the past 2 weeks, she heads home tomorrow. One free weekend, then I'm off to the Ladies Fall Fit weekend, which I'm pretty nervous about. I'm not fit at home, let alone in the wilderness, camping & such. Plus the current forecast calls for buckets of rain that weekend. Figures, doesn't it?

Adoption-wise, there's been no news. The program continues to evolve, which will impact us, of course, but we're not sure in what ways. It's still open, though, so there's that. Still we wait, 5 years & 4 months since we started the process. Not sure how much waiting I have left in me. We met with the agency director in July, which was a good meeting, and very informative, program-wise. He couldn't say how long we would be waiting, though, which didn't surprise us. So we continue to wait.

Well, I think you're caught up now. I can't promise that I'll write more often, but I'll try. Maybe my next post will be a really, really good one?

Monday, March 4, 2013

4 is the loneliest number....

I'll start off with a hearty HELLO! to everyone (all 2 of you) that missed my blog. Sure, I'm posting today, but I can't promise that I'll keep posting regularly so I hope you "enjoy" this post. It's likely to be kinda sour, though, so have some sugar, or syrup, or a soft drink or something beforehand.

So, here we are. We've been waiting 4 years (officially) for a referral, and no end in sight to the wait. I will admit, I am more bummed out about this adoption at the moment than I have been at any point in the past 4 years, including the bankuptcy. I don't know if it's been the upcoming 4 year "anniversary" looming ahead (& now behind) that's been bothering me, or the fact that I've been married 18 years & am still not a mom, but it's been weighing heavily on me. We recently had a baby shower at work for 2 girls who are due within a month of each other. The shower itself was okay, but going into a kids store to buy gifts for the babies was almost overwhelming. I had to hide myself in the baby girl section to get ahold of myself, because God forbid you show emotion in public. I'm sure the kind sales-ladies would have understood, but still.... That's never happened to me in the last 4 years, I've always believed, in the back of my mind, that I'd be a mom, but now, I just don't know. Andrew is still optimistic, he still believes, and he tries to cheer me up, but nothing seems to work. I emailed the agency a couple of weeks ago, to see if they could give me a grain of hope, something that I could hold on to, knowing that they likely couldn't tell me anything. I mean, we changed our gender request to include boy or girl, so I had hoped that would have increased our chances (which it has, don't get me wrong). The answer I got from the agency, while cautiously optimistic, didn't improve my mood at all. Basically, their response was "we cannot guarantee when a referral may occur, but according to the statistics we sent out in the last update, we believe you are in very good standing to receive a referral by the end of this year". Apparently we are number 6 on their "amalgamated list", which doesn't really tell me anything. I asked them if that meant we were #6 on the list of people waiting for a boy or girl up to 18 months at placement, or if were #6 overall on the list of families (approx 60) still waiting. I never got an answer. What does that mean? We were #4 or 5 on a list of families waiting for a girl up to 18 months at placement, have we put ourselves further down the list by changing our request? I just don't know what to think. I had a dream the other night that we had a baby (it was unsure if we had adopted or had been able to have one the old-fashioned way). When I woke up, I thought, "that was cruel & unfair". A year ago I would have thought, "it's a sign!!!". Guess that's a pretty good example of my state of mind. I just can't get my hopes up anymore. I'm so tired of putting my life on hold for something that might happen.

In other news, the kitchen improvements continue. Since early December we have replaced our bottom of the line dishwasher with a shiny stainless steel dishwasher, and have done the same with our fridge. This new fridge is much bigger than the old one, which is SO NICE, and has the freezer on the bottom (fancy, I know). One weird thing about it, though, is that the front of the fridge is not magnetic (which I would think that stainless steel would be). Sure, it looks great with no magnets on it, but now where am I going to put my collection of magnets? Right now they are on the dishwasher, but I don't like that as a long-term solution. Just this past weekend we finally replaced the light fixture in the kitchen (which was a bare bulb after someone - Andrew - broke the glass globe that covered the bulb). The new fixture is brushed nickel & is super-pretty, and was chosen & installed yesterday by Andrew. Go Handy Andy!

Well, that about brings you up to date. Perhaps I'll be back soon, when I'm in a better frame of mind. Until then, don't worry about me, I'm getting by.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

You Like Me! You Really Like Me!

The lovely & talented CinnamonOpus (one of my geek-tastic soul sisters!) has nominated me for the Liebster Award! I am VERY honoured to be nominated, especially since I have not posted anything on my blog in many a month (soooo laaaaaazzzyyy). According to my friend Cinn, this award is a way for bloggers (even very occasional ones) about other, small blogs that they have discovered & enjoyed. My blog, she sure fits the “small” description!

Anyhoo, along with this nomination come some responsibilities (and a sash? Maybe? Miss Liebster 2.0 2012 should have a sash, am I right?), and some questions to be answered. First, I must share 11 facts about myself:

1. My favourite number is 3. Yup, it’s true.
2. I am a big Doctor Who fan (I have a small squishy TARDIS on my desk at work that makes TARDIS-y sounds), but mostly of the “new” Doctor who, starting with the 9th doctor. I find the ability to time travel very attractive in a man.
3. I am also a big fan of the movie Nacho Libre. Yes, I realize this may set me up for some ridicule, but I don’t care! It’s a sweet, hilarious movie that’s fun for the whole family.
4. I was an exchange student during my grade 12 high school year. I spent 10.5 months in Minas Gerais state in Brazil. I LOVED it there, especially once I learned the language & made some friends. I dream about getting back there one day – the food is TO DIE FOR. Mmmmmm, churrasco…..
5. I was once in a band. No, really! It was when I was in Brazil. A guy that I met at “school” (as an exchange student I was required to attend school, which I did – for a while) was a member of a local rock band, and when he found out I played the organ (I know, how cool was I?) he asked me if I wanted to be part of his band. Mostly it involved hanging around with the band (all very sweet young gentlemen) during rehearsals, and I played one show. My brief touch with “fame”!
6. Since July 1984 I have been a huge fan of Duran Duran. If you’re counting, that’s almost 30 years. I’m still a big fan of their work.
7. I LOVE CHEESE, in most of its forms. Cheeses I don’t like? Blue cheese, stinky cheeses, swiss cheeses.
8. Related to # 7, I LOVE PIZZA. It is my go-to comfort food when I am upset, or feeling too lazy to cook.
9. I am a Crossfitter. I have never been an active person, so this is huge for me. Everyone at my gym is very supportive of me & my efforts (successful or not). Turns out I have an aptitude for weightlifting – who knew? I recently participated in our local Santa Claus parade, requiring me to walk the entire 3km parade route, with stops to work out. If you’d told me a year ago that I would do that without complaint, I would have told you to get lost (in less kind words).
10. I love the Mythbusters – it is one of my all-time favourite TV shows, and Adam Savage is one of my favourite TV personalities. That man’s laugh never ceases to crack me up – he has such a love for what he does, it’s contagious.
11. I have 2 cats, neither of whom enjoy the company of people other than my husband & I. Andrew & I are their people, they see no need for anyone else. Pippin is much more vocal in her protests than Willow is, with much hissing & some growling.

Second, I am to answer some questions posed to me by my nominator.
1. What’s your favourite hobby? I don’t really have one. I used to make jewelry (beads & wire, mostly) but I haven’t done that in a while. Does Crossfit count as a hobby?
2. What colour looks best on you? Green, I think, but I don’t have many green clothes, because I’m very picky on the shades I like.
3. What is the most memorable place you have ever visited? Hereford Cathedral. I love the UK in general, but I love Hereford Cathedral the best. I saw it on an episode of Nova (I think) before I went to the UK in 1992, I think the show was about computers but they showed & talked about Hereford Cathedral’s medieval chained library, and right then & there, I knew I had to visit. Hereford is a fairly small town (city?) near the Welsh border, so it wasn’t super-easy to get to in 1992, but it was totally worth it. Andrew & I went back there in 2009 (I think it was 2009) & it was just like coming home. For some reason, I feel really connected to the cathedral, like it was part of one of my past lives. I just love the feeling of peace & wonder I get when I visit.
4. Have you ever Hammer danced? Not that I can remember, but then again, I am NOT the best dancer.
5. What language would you like to become proficient at? One of the languages I already know – French or Portuguese. I also know some Spanish, which is a by-product of working with several people from Latin America.
6. What book(s) have left a lasting impression on you? Diana Gabaldon’s Outlander series. It’s the whole time-travel thing again.
7. What is your favourite holiday family tradition? Spending Christmas Eve with old friends in the village I grew up in. We don’t get to do it every year, but when we do, it’s pretty darn cool.
8. If you could suddenly be a rock star, would you be the drummer, the keyboard player, the guitar player or the lead singer? None of the above. In a perfect world, I would be the bass player, cuz I just love the bass guitar. In real life, my short T-Rex arms & stubby fingers don’t really say “bass player”.
9. What news publication (if any) do you read? Sydney Morning Herald (for all my Aussie news), Toronto Star (for all my local news).
10. What is something you are really good at? Sit-ups. Seriously – I’ve gotten compliments from many coaches at the gym on my sit-ups. ABS OF STEEL! (cloaked in a covering of cheese & butter….)
11. How would you like to be remembered after you’ve left this life? As someone who was kind, intelligent & funny. A loyal friend, a fierce protector.
I’m going to nominate my friend Vicki’s blog, Something Else. She updates about as much as I do, if not less!

Wednesday, October 3, 2012


Three years & seven months waiting for our referral. There isn't much else to say. We're updating our homestudy/paperwork to open up our request to boy or girl, but my heart just isn't in the whole paperchase this time. Now that the Hawaii trip-of-a-lifetime has come & gone, I feel like there is little to look forward to. I guess I'm just bummed - gotta fix that somehow, but I'll be buggered if I know how.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012


Did I tell y'all that I've lost an inch each off my chest, waist & hips since I started Crossfit 3.5 months ago? Well, I have. Huzzah! I've also done things I never thought I'd do, like flip a tractor tire about 50 times (with help, I'm not that big of a badass yet!), lift more than 100 lbs (at once), do 110 back squats (with a 45 lb bar on my back) in one workout, row for 2 km in one workout, etc. I am empowered. Don't make me angry, I just might flip your car over (but give me another year of Crossfit before I attempt that!).