May 27, 2008

Is once a week enough?

I wish I could rattle off a list of things I've been doing over the past week as an excuse for not blogging. I can't! In my on and off blogging I've probably reduced readers down to my sister and my addicted friend in Mobile (you know who you are). I do appreciate you two!

We are maintaining a level of sanity, cleanliness (unless you count yesterday), and happiness that I wasn't expecting before we came home. By the end of the day all of the maintainance on my part has me totally worn out. Then, evening comes and I get to wake up twice to keep the chunky monkey...well...chunky. Occasionally, one of the older four children will do the muscial bed routine with Seth and me. It's pleasant--three bodies crammed into the double bed. Real cozy. Josiah wants to sleep with us, and usually he gets his wish at about 3 am. My mommy mind is so groggy that I...just...want...sleep. He sleeps with his legs and arms spread eagle, by the way. I kick the older child out of bed to make room for the baby. Does it sound like it's nuts? If you saw me you would probably say I look tired. I am tired.

I'm also happy. All of the kiddos are doing well. Today, Salomae and Eli had a true brother-sister moment. They fought. It was so sweet. They are becoming best buddies (though a lot of what I say is sarcastic, this really isn't, Eli is the favored sibling). Which is completely unexpected. That said, this afternoon, we put up bunkbeds in the girls' bedroom and that become serious bonding time. Ella and Salomae were dancing around the room singing, "We got bunkbeds!" Oh, happy day! They have been in bed for 2 hours and they are probably still awake with giddiness.

On the medical front: we will see a specialist tomorrow for Salomae. I'm planning on posting afterward to give everyone the full scoop on what we are dealing with. I haven't wanted to go into detail and have to recant what I said. So I've waited. Sorry, I think most of you have wondered and worried since the situation seems to be shrouded in mystery. It's not exciting. It's not communicable. Hopefully, prayerfully, it's not as bad as we are expecting.

I think, honestly, I've been lax in posting because I still can't get my mind around everything we saw in Ethiopia. I'm busy, but three weeks later, I still find my mind reeling from our experience there. I keep looking at our kids with disbelief. I don't remember having these moments with the older three kids. Poor Josiah, I can hardly keep myself from covering him in kisses everytime I hold him. He laughs and laughs.

Salomae probably thinks I'm weird. She starts jabbering all the English she knows at me, "Daddy, ciao, work? Fettie, banana? Juice? Mommy? Shoes? Jacket? Bye, bye, church?" It lasts a while, because she returns to the beginning of the routine and just starts over.

I just stare at her as she talks. I'm astounded at her ability to overcome all she's been through. Occasionally, I find myself with my hands on her cheeks. Just because she's here.


Carpenters said...

Apryl, I know just what you mean about still reeling about the experience in Ethiopia. It has been life changing. I'm glad you are maintaining a level of sanity. It took us a while to get into a new normal. (Who knew becoming first time parents, quiting my job, and being home with a baby and a toddler could upset a routine so throughly?) It is so worth it though. Somehow the kids still want to be picked up even when they get smothered in kisses each time I do. I just can't get over how precious they are.

Isn't it wonderful? I'm so happy for you all. We'll be praying that the doctor's visit goes well.

With Love,

Christy O said...

I know the exact feelings you are talking about! My boys (came home Sept. 1, 2007) still astound me as I sit back and realize all that has changed for them and for us, for all of us. I am so grateful, and so tired. We now have five ages 8 to 13, two girls and three boys. You will be so amazed as time goes on as they grow and develop more English and truly enjoy life. My Ethiopian sons simply live in the moment and enjoy it to the fullest!

I, myself, still have not processed all that I saw and experienced in Ethiopia. I think in some ways I have simply shut some of it out, because it is too painful to contemplate. To look at what we take for granted here, and know what it is like there, is simply painful. I just want to bring one more, one more, one more. To try to give hope and life to one more. If I let myself focus on the need there, I just despair. So, I hug my kids, try to be a good mom, try to be a good steward of what I have and to do what I can where I can. But sometimes that isn't enough. I know the day is coming when I need to mentally revisit that trip and process it all, but I also know that it will wring me emotionally.

A dear, dear friend just got her referral yesterday for a one year old little girl from Ethiopia and while I am beyond excited for her and am loving sharing in her joy, I find it bittersweet in the smallest way. I want to do it again. At the moment I will content myself with helping her, and looking forward to babysitting her little one when she returns to work! I am not sure why it is so bittersweet, maybe because I know what things are like there, and that this little girl, who is already loved by so many on two continents, is only one of so many, many of whom may die before a family can love them.

Enjoy loving your kids! And yes, when they start to squabble like siblings, you know everyone is adjusting well! Ours started fighting like siblings after six weeks, and now they are all well bonded. They tease each other, love on each other, fight with each other, and generally live life as if they hadn't started out on separate continents. Enjoy, but yes, the exhaustion is part of it! LOL!

the Steiger's said...

I check your blog daily:)
I know what you mean by being tired. I still cann not recovery with laudry since our lice week. I am tired just thinking about it. You are doing great.

cjsanderson said...

Apryl and Seth,
Enjoy reading about your family and you are in my prayers!!! Wanted to let you know there are more than two or three reading your blog. :-) Love and miss your family - cannot wait to meet the newest! Connie

Dana C said...

Hi Apryl,

I am sorry that I have not contacted you. I am never on the YG and now that it's moved I have not taken the time to join up. I apoligize. I never have been involved totally in the AWAA circles (except for just a few friend i have made along the way), so i did not know you all until you commented on my blog. Thanks for your comment! I am always glad to get to know people- thanks to the blog world!

I would LOVE some more pictures or anything you have of my baby girl! Please send them to me at my email address-

I love seeing your beautiful family. Josiah looks like he is a happy guy- too sweet! All of your children are absolutely beautiful! Isn't it just amazing to look at each of them and actually be able to touch makes me want to cry as i think about what life is going to look like in the coming weeks. These little ones are such gifts from God...

Thanks for tracking me down!

dana cordell

Caleb and Becca's Ethiopia Adoption said...

praying for happy to hear that things are going so well...can't imagine the craziness!!! thanks for posting the pics!

Renee' said...

You have more than 1 addicted friend in Mobile! : ) If I could have figured out how to post a comment sooner I would have been picking on you about what in the world you could POSSIBLY be doing with all your spare time that keeps you from posting (at least) DAILY for those of us who keep checking!!! I'm SOOOOO happy for y'all!!!
Renee' L.

Renee' said...

You have more than 1 addicted friend in Mobile!!! : ) If I could have figured out how to post a comment sooner I would have been picking on you about what in the world you could POSSIBLY be doing with all your spare time that keeps you too busy to update us AT LEAST daily... You must be taking too many naps or watching too much TV or something...

or maybe you're just feeding kids, cleaning up after kids, bathing kids, changing kids, refereeing kids, homeschooling kids, teaching English to kids, playing with kids, hugging and kissing kids,... then doing it all again... and again... and again...

I'm SOOOOOOOOOOO happy for ALL of y'all!!!

Renee' L.

Carpenters said...

I also wanted to mention that Lenka gave me the link to watch "A Walk to Beautiful" online at

I have watched it and it's great. I haven't read Hospital by the River, but I found that it's available at our library. I'll definitely pick it up next time we're there. Thanks for the recommendation.

With Love,

Penny Smith said...

See! There are a lot of us still reading! :)

OK, I STILL do that with all my kids... I look at them, and I am amzed! "No way! Not us!" Yep... it's crazy! I am SO glad to hear and feel the love over the internet even!

Prayers to you and your WHOLE big family! :)

Shanyce said...

You still have one addicted cousin and an aunt in Arkansas!!!

I had bunkbeds when I was a kid! and when we were too old we could take them apart for two separate beds!


E said...

Sigh. So many odd points of your post resonated even though our situations are totally different. :) It's wonderful catching up and reading...and I am eager to read about the medical stuff.

I'm still processing what I saw in Ethiopia and my experience there. I think it'll be a long time before I really have a good grip on it all...and we're continually astounded by Abel. His resiliency amazes us. His joy and his happy spirit.