Showing posts from October, 2011

Fall Family Traditions

October has been full of some of our fun fall family traditions as well as a first for all 5 Brownies. Pumpkin Carving This is something the kids and I enjoy every year.  This year, the boys got to help by removing the icky, slimy guts from the pumpkin! Before the carving Pulling out guts! Our owl, Hedwig Visit to Oklahoma to meet The Brown Grands The boys did fabulously!  They had a great time visiting, playing with their cousin Emily, riding bikes, driving RC cars, and riding around in Grandpa's "tractor."  It was the boys' first overnight stay away from home (still with us, of course) and they didn't seemed phased a bit!  However, the look of deep love on Travis' face when we pulled in at our house told Ken and me that he knows this is home.  Travis smiled, laughed, and would have wrapped his arms around the house to give it a big hug if he could.  It was heartwarming to witness. Grandpa driving the boys. Putting together the airplane.

Wordless Wednesday


Hero Mom

Click here to vote ! My friend, Adrienne, the same friend who nominated me for the Distinguished Mom Award, has yet again nominated me for 's "Hero Mom."  The grand prize is $2500 from Allstate , most of which she says she plans to give us to help pay off our remaining debt from the adoption, which I admit would be a blessing to us! First of all, may I take this chance to publicly thank my sweet friend, Adrienne?  She has been there for me in so many ways, encouraging me in Christ and in my daily life as a mom, wife, and homeschool teacher.  Her friendship to me is priceless.  Oh, and if you want to learn to speed clean your house using non-toxic, green products AND want to learn how to teach your kids to do chores well, check out her website,  She has an excellent DVD that teaches parents how to teach their kids to clean.  She and her husband spent a lot of extra time and money getting their DVD closed captioned, which means

The Things People Say

In the past week, these questions have turned up in one form or the other. “Why didn’t you get a fully functional child instead of a deaf child?” (To his credit, the person who asked this is a 12 year old kid.) A grown woman in her 60s asked, regarding Travis, “Oh, he’s deaf and dumb?”  Sigh. A Home Depot worker spoke to Ken.  Ken, who had the two little boys with him, indicated that he was Deaf, so the worker jokingly gestured toward the boys, “How much did they cost?” then laughed, thinking he was pretty darn funny. One of my passions is educating anyone, especially older kids and adults, about the Deaf World and now adoption, but some days, these types of comments can just rub the wrong way.  Other times, I revel in the chance to enlighten someone.  Recently, as some Deaf friends and I were discussing the issue of hearing and how hearing people place so    much    value    on hearing and speech, we had the chance to educate a hearing onlooker who didn’t have a lot of experience wit

Don't Adopt!

Yeah, the title got my attention, too. Since it's been a week since my last post and I don't have a new post ready right now, I thought I'd at least share what I thought was a fabulous blog entry by Russell Moore , the author of Adopted For Life.

Downsizing Adventures: Six-Month Update

This month marks a half year that we have been in our new digs.  I blogged about our downsizing adventures right as we moved.  It's fun to go back and read those thoughts.  Not a lot has changed.  The pros and cons are unchanged.  Every time we come home from a trip, Ken and I agree that we have no regrets regarding our decision to downsize.   A couple of weeks ago, I sat down to work on our budget for the first time since we've been home from China.  It felt useless to try to follow a budget during the last few months before we traveled, so it's been quite a while since I worked up a budget.  I was pleasantly surprised!  We're still tight coming off the China trip, but by the end of October, we'll be able to breathe and be back on track again.  We actually have extra cash to give and save.  We've not been able to do either for a year now.  Finances are a huge part of our decision to move, but there are so many more benefits.   This week, we were all very sic

Deaf Girl Hears for the First Time?

There has been a lot of buzz online about this video, now gone viral. Let me begin by saying that the news and bloggers are correct, this video is touching. I love her reaction!  Whatever her past hearing issues have been, she's obviously thrilled with the results of this Esteem implant, not to be confused with the more widely-known cochlear implant (CI), that has just been activated.  ( This link explains the differences in implants for those who might be interested.)  I'm happy for Sloan because a: she's 29 and has every right decide to pursue an implant like this.  b: the implant is doing exactly, if not more than what she expected it to do.  It's fun to watch her and her heart-felt joy is sweet. Did you guess I'd have a problem with it, too?  You were right!  Here's my problem with the video.  I hope that when she's interviewed (her video has over 2.5 millions hits, so I'm thinking the news stations will pick this up), some of my questions will