Soon I will be a grandma for the second time!


For these fun girls to get to Florida tomorrow!

Don't Blink!


My First full day in Florida

I saw a new bird for my bird list! A crested caracara!


Ah Florida!

In January I had opportunity to go to Florida. Twice! My Becca got a job at Delta airlines and it came with some fabulous perks for her AND for me :) It seems an employee's parents can fly free on standby!
I first went down at the beginning of December for several days on the beach, ALONE! Nice, quiet time spent mostly with God on long beach walks. It was a much needed time to reflect, pray and plan.
Then on Epiphany I was happily able to go to church in Jacksonville Beach where my BFF and her husband were singing. Then my friend, who was celebrating her birthday! and I went to our oceanfront hotel room where we enjoyed the Atlantic surf, though we were slightly less than warm. Even these skimmers were hunkered down against the cold wind that kept all but the heartiest of beach combers indoors.

Last week I flew down to pick up a car I bought (why buy in the frigid north when you can take a free flight and spend some time --ok a couple hours really-- in the Florida sun? It was a trip of adventures.
First, as many know, when flying standby you are not guaranteed a seat. I did not get on my second flight so my daughter rerouted me to Detroit (I have always liked the Detroit airport... I love their fountain!) where I could not get a flight until the following day. The next day was a great flight, but after I arrived in West Palm Beach I found I had lost my bird book... With my life list in the back... Rats.
Still I had a quick birding stop with my BFF and her husband and picked up a new bird to put in my NEW bird book and list. A warbler (I will have to check the name later and update this... Warblers are a lot like sparrows to ID ... And I had just spent time this past summer getting positive IDs on several sparrows, recorded of course in my lost book).
I had a good drive home for the most part. I did not even turn on the radio except to make sure it worked. I got caught in Winter Storm Luna halfway through Illinois and spent the afternoon and evening reading in a very nice, brand spanking new hotel right off the freeway in Rochelle. The next day I made it home, a day and a half later than I planned, but again a good time to reflect and talk to God as the miles and time passed.
I am off to Florida again in another week. I never would have thought when I was younger that I would be a snowbird, but in my mid fifties now I am totally on board! This is my annual vacation with my best friend to the beach we discovered a few years ago.  A true escape, you must get there by boat and there are not even any cars on the island. I am looking forward to spending part of the time with three of my girls, sharing my favorite place in the world :) We have our playlist set up for dancing on the deck, our fins in the bag ready for the surf and our cabanas packed just waiting for the sand and sun!
Oh Lord, who am I that you are mindful of me? Your blessings upon me unending, I thank you for caring about me, comforting me and giving me so much undeserved goodness. May I never forget your mercies in my life and the salvation you have provided for me in your Son!


Science Fair Time and Blog Renewal Time

Ty's Hypothesis: Objects fall faster through
hot water than cold water (By golly yes they do
 for the most part)

 Time once again for the public school science fair.  Four projects needed to be done at home this year.  Last night the kids and I managed to finish them up and get the particulars on tri-folds for the presentation today.

Tony and Tamira's Hypothesis:  Salt water freezes faster than plain water.
(Yes it does, but it never freezes hard)

Tinia's Hypothesis:  A poinsettia leaf deprived of light will
turn partly red and stay partly green (that is not how
it turned out)

Mary's Hypothesis: Warm cream will turn to butter faster
than cold cream (also found to be false)


Circus of the Heart

On Sunday I took the kids down to the big city to the Circus of the Heart, a party/carnival put on by Minnesota's adoption support community.  Kat and Reubs came with me to help keep track of the 10 kiddos we brought.  Oh what a great day!  I was so very proud of everyone and how well they behaved :)   I knew full well that 13 people in a van for a 4 hour trip each way could be an unhappy event, but no!  We even brought three pups along for the ride, which unbelievably turned out to be a great idea!
We drove clear down to the city, stopping to change out of jammies and into decent clothes to attend a worship service with a praise band worship team and everyone loved it.  We got there with about 5 minutes to spare before the service, 13 of us being greeted by many friendly people, headed right to the chapel and along the way Tony threw up.  Well, we really know how to make an entrance I guess.  Turns out he was just nervous about the whole deal and perked up after that... after all they had cookies and juice boxes and all kinds of good snacks!
Circus of the Heart was lots of fun for all the kids... So many adoptive families and tons of kids.  The short program beforehand was inspiring and reminded me of the reasons we adopted in the first place.
After that there was more food, face painting, t-shirt making, fingernail polishing, games, prizes, pony rides and a fire engine.  I even ran into Claudia
The kids had a great time:


Jackie is a TEENAGER!

My Youngest Birth Child is a Teenager!
Jackie turned 13 yesterday, All Saints Day!  Around here you can get your ears pierced on your 13th birthday (if you want to!)  Jackie and Molly wanted to do this right of passage together, so Jackie got her present early, back in April, on Molly's birthday. 
What beautiful girls!  God has blessed me tremendously with these two sunshines!

 13 Year Old right of Passage

Getting the 13 yr Present Early

Sisters and Best Friends!


Life Bird List

I got to add SIX new birds to my life bird list on my recent escape  :)   I am going to add my life list to my blog sometime or other, but while I am awaiting free time for projects to materialize, I will just start with these six birds:
Pearly Eyed Thrasher

Masked Booby

TriColored Heron

Puerto Rican Green Mango


Green Throated Carib