Pumpkin Pie

Sam is serious about his pumpkin pie. In fact, he loves pumpkin pie. In years past, I have attempted to make him one of these much-adored pies, however I just can't seem to get it right. Either the crust comes out burnt or the middle is runny. So I gave up making [and ruining] pumpkin pies.

But, this year, Sam proved he actually can navigate his way around the kitchen. This hankering for a pumpkin pie has turned into somewhat of a cooking-obsession for him. When I do a grocery run he specifically asks for crust, pumpkin and evaporated milk. All the other ingredients are household staples [he let me know], so as long as I keep our pantry stocked with these three ingredients, he can get his bake on.

And since Sam has been making at least a pie a week, Max has joined the cooking club.

And this is how you crack an egg...

And pour it ever-so-slowly...

Fresh out of the oven.
It is quite a masterpiece, isn't it? 

Enjoy Boys!

And Happy Thanksgiving Everyone!


Gotcha Day!

Max with mommy & daddy
in the courtroom on Gotcha Day!
Dear Maximus, 

Today, November 24, 2008, is a very special day for our family. It is your adoption finalization!

Do you know?
We prayed for you before we knew you. We dreamed of you before we held you. We prepared for you before we were "expecting" you. And we loved you before we met you. 

And the moment we laid eyes on you?
We melted forever. You, sweet Maximus, were chosen for us. And we were chosen for you.

We are so proud to be your parents. Everyday you teach us something new. You make us smile bigger, laugh harder, dream higher and love deeper. Our lives are forever changed because of you!

Today we celebrate our forever family.

We love you!
Daddy & Mommy



Happy Happy Holidays

Oh how I have waited for this moment:

I am so excited I am about to burst. 


Thank you Pottery Barn for engraving these stockings.
Thank you UPS man for delivering this package so promptly. 
Thank you Sam for understanding the importance of this holiday investment.

I might have to get a jump start on my holiday decorating. The first thing I am going to pull out? My stocking holders. Three big silver letters that say "JOY". And each letter has a perfect little hook for each stocking. This year, is the first year, that three stockings will hang from our mantle. 

I find myself being completely overwhelmed with the little things. The little reminders of how life is different now. 

Maximus, thank you for bringing such JOY to your mommy and daddy this holiday season! 

And thank you Jesus for stockings!


Home Makeover

With the help of Sam's awesome mom, I was able to give my eating area a face lift with a new paint color. Meet Caroway. A lovely olive green. Doesn't it have a nice ring to it?

And in all seriousness, there is no one better to call than Sam's mom when you need a new paint job. She shows up ready to work and with all the supplies. My only responsibility? Get the paint. 

And what did Max do today to keep busy? Well, watching us work [which was my bright idea of keeping him busy] only lasted a mere 10 minutes. He wanted to join the painting party [of course], so I rolled one entire wall with the little man on my hip.

Thanks Max...you were a huge help today!


It's Snowing!

Max is officially ready for the cold weather...and good thing! It's SNOWING!

Bundle Me car seat fuzzy cover. Check.
Hat with silly pom-pom on top. Check.

Let's go enjoy the winter weather. Brrrrrrrrr...


A Tale of Two...Hockey Jerseys?

Do you remember this post? I don't know if I have ever seen Sam more excited. His little man, all dressed up in a CBJ jersey. 

We have had season tickets to the Columbus Blue Jackets for years and it has become a passion for Sam. Not only does Sam watch every game [sometimes more than once]; he takes his fan-ship seriously by spending way too much money on clothes and paraphernalia. That would explain why Max was the proud owner of his first jersey [several sizes too big in a 2T] at the small age of only 5 months. 

Oh. But. Wait. Sam recently discovered that they started stocking the Blue Line [a store dedicated for serious fans like Sam inside the Arena] with an infant size jersey. 

[Imagine a chorus of angels singing 'halleluiah' and shining a bright light over the jersey as Sam enters the store.] 

There was no talking him out of it. In fact, I am pretty sure his heart stopped beating for a second or two. And do you think he stopped to even glance at the price tag? No way. So when I did [I know, shocker, right?], and mentioned to him that it might be a bit expensive for a teeny tiny jersey [I mean he does already have one], Sam looked at me like I was speaking alien. 

So Mr. Max is now the proud owner of two Blue Jackets jerseys. One for now [that actually fits and looks adorable]. And the other, hanging neatly in his closet, for later.


Another First

For the last six months, at least four times a day, I [or Sam or grandma or aunt or friend] have fed Max his bottles. In fact our day tends to revolve around the bottle - when he last ate and when he will want to eat again.  

So whether we are at home cuddled up on the couch, or out to lunch or the mall, everything pauses for 20-30 minutes when it is bottle feeding time. And can I please mention? It is quite difficult to multi-task with a baby and a bottle in your hands. In fact, I have only mastered two things while feeding Max: cradling a phone between my shoulder and ear, and holding a TV remote in my hand [and to do it correctly, the remote must be in the same hand as the baby because you can't hold a bottle and a remote at the same time - this is valuable information for all you rookies out there!].

I am happy to report [ok, maybe I am a bit sad too] that we have reached a new chapter in our bottle-feeding journey.  Max...holding his own bottle!

This means hands-free for his mama!

Good work little man, good work!



This was an afternoon play date with Max, his cousins, his aunts and his grandma!

What a great looking bunch of kids, huh?

29 is Just Fine!

Today is my 29th birthday.  

I only have 365 days left of my twenties. And then I start a new decade.  Scary, but exciting, thought.

I am the type of person that loves birthdays. I milk it for months. I am always providing family and friends with the countdown. And I love to plan something special to celebrate [or even better have someone else plan it in my honor!].

The last few years have been difficult. Don't worry, I still mustered up the strength to celebrate my big day. But, it was a reminder to me of another year gone by...without a sweet baby in my arms.

This year is different indeed!

Taking a small glimpse back to just one year ago:

We were in the midst of paperwork and our home study.
We had only shared with a couple of people our hopes of adoption.
We hadn't heard of a girl named Emily.
And we certainly didn't know a baby boy named Maximus.

God has been so faithful. So good to me this past year. I am so thankful to be celebrating this birthday with my sweet baby boy in my arms.

I am overwhelmed by God's goodness.

A HAPPY birthday it is!


Max and His Meals!

Max loves mealtime. Bottles will due if that is all that is provided. But food? I can't feed him enough!  And I definitely can't feed him fast enough. He usually resorts to banging the high chair and screaming out loud until I can get another scoop of food in his mouth! [Can you hear the stress in my voice as I type this?!]

His palate includes baby food jars of organic bananas, pears, apples, sweet potatoes, peas and carrots. In fact, he has exhausted all the varieties of the small "starter" baby jars  [and frankly, still seems hungry after I feed him 2-3 jars at a sitting] so I decided to graduate him to size 2. The jars are twice the size and have a wider variety of foods. Once again, he didn't disappoint. Size 2 jars? Please...bring it on! 

Seriously, the boy likes to eat!

It can't be all gone?

More please? Please? Anyone?



That's right, every vote counts. So that is why Sam and I made it a priority to cast our vote for the presidential election today.

And what a rock star we have as a hubby and daddy! Sam went early to grab a place in line [it was a short 40 minute wait!]. By the time Max and I got there, we only waited for 10 minutes. Thank you Sam!

Want to hear something mind-boggling? While Sam and I were waiting in line we tried to calculate when Max would have his first opportunity to vote for a presidential election. Not until 2028! Twenty years from now, our adult son will be able to cast his vote too!


Six Month Update

Can you believe it? 

Maximus is six months old. WOW.

The little man had his six month check-up today.

I am happy to report: All is well!

He weighed 17 lbs 5 oz - 50th percentile.
He measured 28 in long - 95th percentile.

We have a tall little boy on our hands!

Our pediatrician absolutely loves Max. She thinks he is the most adorable baby ever! She told us to keep doing what we are doing. He is happy, healthy and growing like a weed!  

I love a perfect report!