Friday, August 25, 2006

Summer all gone bye bye

The kids have all started school. Except the baby of course. Maren- our 3 1/2 year old aged a couple of years in one morning- a week ago we took him to the dentist and lo and behold he has big kid teeth- he is actually between 5 and 7 years old. This really threw us for a loop. We knew the ages were probably off- but when they are off by that much it can really turn your world upside down. Not in a bad way- just in the way you perceive things...for instance- he was not wanting to nap every day- well he probably doesn't always need one- and when he acts out- do I give him a 3 minute time out or a 6 minute time out? :) More importantly, we were trying to get him into the 3 year old ece program at our neighborhood school- but when he is probably going to end up with an age of 5 do we do kindergarten? or shoot in the middle with the 4 year old class? We ended up late Friday afternoon getting him into the 4 year old class. He was very nervous- he said, "No School, Maren Scared." He was very nervous about it- but frankly I was pretty much a wreck about it myself- constantly questioning whether I was doing the right thing. He has done very well this week..he says, "Mommy, everybody sing 'ABCD, LMNOP, HIJK' but Maren Quiet..." but yesterday, I picked him up and he said, "Maren sing 'ABCD, LMNOP, HIJK...with everybody!"

On Sunday we hosted this enormous gathering of local families who are adopting from Ethiopia. It was an amazing event with 90+ RSVPs. Our courtyard was full of families - many Ethiopian Children and the pastor from the local Ethiopian Evangelical Church. We ad Ethiopian Food and we made some American fare for the kids- I should have taken a picture of the food at the end of the day- the Ethiopian food was wiped clean and there was a TON of the Ziti and Mac and cheese left over! :)

We figure by next summer the picnic will have to be at a local park or something it will be so huge. Mark said it will be like the AIDS Quilt- back in the fall of 1992 we were volunteers for the
  • Names Quilt
  • when it was displayed on the Mall in Washington DC- and that was supposed to be the last time they ever thought it could all be displayed in one location had grown too big...and that was 1992. They showed it in its entirety one last time in 1996.
  • The Names Quilt in 1996

  • Just think if we made a quilt piece for all of the people in the world who die each day of HIV/AIDS- an estimated 9,000 people die each day- what that would mean is every 4 days we would have a quilt the size of the one displayed in Washington D.C. in 1996!

    In 1992, the year Mark and I worked at the quilt in D.C., the year we were married, there was a reported 23,000 deaths due to HIV/AIDS in the US alone- that was about 64 people a day...but at that time we had no idea what was happening in respect to this disease half way around the world. No idea. And in the next few years, the number of orphans in Africa threatens to reach 20 million. A number so big- it’s hard to even begin to wrap your head around it. But you can wrap your arms very easily around a single child. And depending on how many arms you have in your family....


    PastorMac's Ann said...

    Look at those beautiful kids! Wow, you are indeed blessed!

    So glad to hear that the picnic was successful! Sorry we had to miss it. Maybe, hopefully, w'lle be able to come next summer. Maybe hopefully we'll be able to bring along our own little Ethiopian beauties.

    Thanks for the update. Helps me stay hopeful.

    Raskell Party of 8 said...

    I know the feeling of thinking you are getting a 3 yr old and end up with a 5 yr old! They both start kindergarten in a couple of weeks. I was there in DC that year. I have pictures of the quilt from the Washington Memorial. Amazing. Thank you for sharing your passions with us. Love, Sandra

    shelley said...

    Thanks for your great post. All day I dreamed about moving to Africa and helping HIV kids/adults. My husband got to the point of "Shelley, we are called to be here right now, deal with it!" :) Your passion is evident and encouraging. Our boys head to the dentist and to get xrays soon. Wonder if I will have a similar story.......

    Laura said...

    Hi Em -- just thinking about y'all. Hope school is going well.

    blondie said...

    I have just stumbled across your blog (when I should be finishing adoption paperwork) and loved it! You have such a beautiful family - I look forward to popping in to read more of the post-adoption stories.