It was the best of times, it was the worst of times. Okay, so maybe quoting Charles Dickens is a little extreme, but allow me to explain. Today was an incredible day! As far as behavior and getting along, this was the best day we have had since we arrived in Colombia. We began our day with homeschooling, which they all usually perform fantastically, but that performance is generally accompanied by pouting, whining, and "I can't do it"s. Not today! It was like a little slice of heaven around the kitchen table. Without first being shown, Samuel wrote upper and lower case Is, Lilly Grace starting sounding out some simple words, and Alex got many shapes correct. They colored a ton, painted, practiced letters and numbers, and then we read several books. All of you mothers out there who homeschool kids that are different grade levels, I commend you. I am exhausted after an hour or so with two four year olds and a two year old.
Because they were so good, school didn't take long today. Assuming it was a fluke, I was waiting for the screaming and gnashing of teeth that was inevitable. It never occurred. Brent and I are being pretty strict here, and trying to establish boundaries so that the kids can be accustomed to getting along as a family of five. That way when we get back to the states, we can be a little more lax since the kids will have the rules ingrained and understand there are consequences. However, today not a single child had time-out, the girls did not get popped, nobody was sent to their room, LeapPads were not taken away, and everybody deserved dessert! Let me interject here that our methods of discipline differ from our adopted son and our biological girls.
Even dinner turned out to be good tonight. I cooked bone-in chicken, which I have never done before. Bones in food seem kinda creepy, so we always have purchased skin-less boneless in the past. In Colombia, you buy what is available. The chicken turned out great though! Super juicy and tender. We also had green beans, pan-fried garlic potatoes, french bread, bananas, and oranges. It definitely was best home-cooked meal thus far. For dessert we had delicious pastries Brent and I found at the grocery store.
Aside from a lot of playing, especially with Nana and Papa, school, meals, and the normal daily routines, Brent and I had a mini-date to the mall. We grabbed some frozen yogurt, looked at kid shoes, and went to the grocery store. Grocery shopping with my husband is a blast, especially in comparison to shopping with young kiddos. Honestly, I am not trying to sound mushy, but it is such a blessing to be married to such a fantastic man for 6 years, and to still enjoy spending time doing trivial things like grocery shopping together.
We got home and all three kiddos were still napping! Nana and Papa played with them so hard they were worn slap out! We eventually had dinner, and while I cooked and while Linda cleaned, Brent and Tim had a pool thrown down. We have a pool table in our living room here, and Brent said he wouldn't go to sleep until he finally beat his dad in pool. He finally met with success!!
After FaceTiming great-grandparents and tons of energy usage, we bathed the kids and put them to bed. That gave us adults the opportunity to go through Samuel's photo albums, scrap books, and medical files that his incredible foster mother sent. It was incredible seeing photos of Samuel from the time he was 3 1/2 months on. He has always been a beautiful child. We saw photos of him immediately post-op, at birthday parties, playing with friends, with his foster family, and at day-care. His foster mother had even arranged for all of his school friends (really their mothers) to write letters wishing him luck with his new family. Oh it was beyond precious! I am so glad he will have these forever, and it is a blessing to have baby pictures so we can partially witness the years of his life that we missed.
Clearly you can see how today was the best of times. Why then was it also the worst of times? Tim and Linda packed their bags this evening to leave around 4 am tomorrow. Having them here was such a blast, and the week completely flew by! We aren't ready for them to go. Even more devastating is knowing that Brent is leaving Sunday morning. He is such a pro here! He looks Colombian so he isn't called "gringo" nearly as frequently as I am, and his Spanish is spectacular. I am incredibly anxious about being in a foreign country without my husband. The kids and I are going to miss him immensely, but fortunately he will only be away for six days.
Back to the best of times... my parents are arriving tomorrow night! I cannot wait to see my mom and dad and for them to meet their new grandson. They will be here for a week, and I expect it to be a marvelous week! Have a great weekend all you folks in America, and we will celebrate the weekend here in Medellin.