Sunday, December 8, 2013

Oh, Christmas Tree!

I love the Christmas edition of Victoria magazine, Christmas displays on Pinterest and in fancy stores, Christmas episodes of decorating shows.  I love the color-coordinated and/or themed trees so many feature and wish I could have a tree in each room of my house, each decorated differently.

Due to time, money, and physical energy constraints, though, I have one smallish tree in the living room.  

I used to try to make this tree all color-coordinate and look like a magazine photographer was due any minute.  I don't think I ever truly succeeded in this goal, but that was what I longed for.

Over the years, though, I have come to embrace the hodge podge look of a family Christmas tree.  It's true that I like to keep a maroon and gold theme going, but when that doesn't happen, I figure a mass of white lights will cover a multitude of mismatching sins.  

The beauty of the hodge podge tree, of course, is that each ornament has a particular memory associated with it.

John and I bought this ornament at Old Economy Village at a craft fair when we were engaged: Christmas 1994.  John played the French horn through high school and some in college.

This ornament we received from my Uncle Steve and Aunt Ellen and contains a picture of our sweet little William.  He was just a month and a half old on his first Christmas and that was a precious time.  Columbus, Ohio. 1997

This bi-wing plane is a replica of the Wright brothers' first plane, built in their hometown, Dayton, Ohio.  We lived in Dayton for several years, and learned to be fiercely defensive when North Carolina claims "First in Flight."  They only provided the wind, we provided the plane.  

These little skates hung every year on my Grandma Edgar's Christmas tree.  I love them because they remind me of her, and of Christmas when I was a child.

This one was a gift from John's mom the first year we were married.  1995

This one was from my college roomate, Kim.  Geneva College, 1993.

These two are from our dear friend, Pat, and remind me of our church family in Minnesota.  

This is also a Minnesota reminder, a bird bundled up against the cold!  I bought this one myself at Target, a Minnesota-based company.  2012.

This is one of the prettiest ones we have.  It is from the Biltmore Estate which we visited on our first family vacation in December of 1998.

See that cute, adorable little boy in there?  That's Micah at about 6 months old.  This ornament has driven me crazy many years because it has a recording device, so the kids love to get ahold of it and record themselves being "funny" and then playing it back, ad nauseum.  Some years this one has "disappeared" until after the holidays!  This year I threatened to take it away immediately if it wasn't left in peace.  It has been unmolested on the tree so far.

And here it is in all its glory:  Shaw Family Christmas Tree, 2013 Edition.

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

Christmas Explosion

Christmas has exploded in my living room!

Send reinforcements!

Adoption Update

I was kind of hoping that by now I wouldn't have to give adoption updates!  But here we are.

The bad news is that we are still waiting for the finalization.

The good news is that we are NOT waiting for a birth mom to pick our profile.

We are NOT waiting for a baby to be born in another state.

We are NOT waiting to meet our brand new baby girl.

We are NOT waiting to see if that baby girl will really come home with us.

We are NOT waiting for a trial to see if our baby can stay with us.

We are NOT waiting to hear what the judge will say about our case.

We ARE waiting for that decision to be put into the official Court Journal.

At the moment, the lawyers are wrangling over the wording in that decision.  From our perspective, the opposing lawyer is putting up road blocks just to be obnoxious.  He probably has some sort of justification in his own head, but the fact is that he lost the case and should move on.

Not that I'm biased in saying this.

Once the decision is put into the court journal, we begin the 30 day wait to see if the birth father will appeal the judge's decision.  

If he does, the process will continue to drag out indefinitely.  Even if he does, though, we are as certain as we can be that no judge would overturn the original decision.  This would only delay the inevitable and cost us a whole lot more money.

That is as we understand things now.  Our understanding of this whole process has been sketchy at best, at least until after the fact.  We thought that after the trial we would finalize, maybe even that day.  How wrong we were!  We certainly are learning to live by faith and not by sight or human knowledge!  

So, here we are again, asking for prayer.  Please pray that the decision would be entered soon, that the birth father would rest his case, and that we could finalize our adoption.  This calendar year would be ideal.  

Sweet Miss E's birthday is coming up and it would be so wonderful to celebrate with no cloud over our heads.

Whatever happens, though, we are so thankful to have Miss E. in our family.  She is a blessing to us.