Baby pictures!

Here in the Rowan household the only hotter topic than the Elf on the Shelf is the imminent coming of our Irish Wolfhound puppy.

I mean, this is BIG NEWS people! Worthy of classroom show and tell, discussion with the cashier at the store, and constant surveillance for new pictures. Speaking of which… The pictures you all have been waiting for…

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(Collective AWWWW….)

One of those little tikes is going to be our pup! There were four girls and ofour boys born in the litter to mom Glory and dad Torrin.

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Right now, they are living in Northern Alberta, growing under the watchful eyes of their mom and the breeder. They are 4 1/2 weeks old! But will be ten weeks when we arrive to pick out our little guy at the end of January. There are two breeders ahead of us, so we will get the third pick of the four boys.

A few more pictures of the parents, so you can imagine what they may look like, grown… They are lovely, aren’t they?

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My mom and I have a little road trip planned for that last week in January. We will zip over and spend a night in Calgary, go up to pick up the pup, spend another night in Calgary, and then come home. I think I’ll take Laughlin with us, to get him used to the puppy right away.

The pup will be bigger than Laughlin, though, even at that age. Likely he will be about 30 lbs (Laughlin is about 18lb.) so he’ll be slightly lighter than Maggie, but a tad taller.

Any, stay tuned for more pictures as they grow. Such cutesters!!

Adoption tennis: Are they interested too?

Adopting through fostercare is very different that adoption through a traditional international adoption process. Most of our friends who have adopted from Ethiopia, China, etc. can relate to suddenly seeing your kids’ faces one day in an email, and then affirming that you do, indeed, want to adopt these children proposed to you.

(a little trip down memory lane..)

Fostercare adoption is more of a two-way street. Everyone has to be interested in each other, and it goes back and forth. We enquire – the kid’s case worker then asks for our homestudy. (We’ve put in several inquiries so far on waiting children, and only a few of the children’s case workers have asked back for a homestudy back. Are we so unattractive as a family? Nope – understandably, most case workers want their kids to be adopted in state.)

Last week we sent off our homestudy for the most interesting sibling group. We saw their video, and we couldn’t get enough of it. I think we’ve watch it 20 times now. We are pretty jazzed about them… it could be an amazing match. This Monday we had a long discussion with their adoption recruiter about the kids. The agency seemed pretty interested in us, and we are even more interested in the kids, knowing some more background. Now the ball is back in their court. Will the kids be interested in us? Would they want to move so far from what they know? Would they take a chance on a multiracial family? Would they like twin 8 year old sisters?

It would mean a new life, in a new culture, and to be in a family for the first time in many years. That’s a lot of change, and a big leap of faith to take, to become permanently a part of a family.

Mid week, and counting… hopefully we will hear something positive back at the end of the week, or early next. And then, the ball will be back in our court, finding out even more about the kids. It’s kind of like adoption tennis.

Superbowl: Transracial Adoptees

My husband is a huge NFL football fan, and he’s been a 49ers supporter since he was a teenager. So this Super Bowl, coming up on Sunday, is a huge deal for him!

One cool thing about the Super Bowl is that 2 of the star players are transracial adoptees. Jason has been great about pointing this out to the girls, showing them pictures of their families, and making them excited about the Super Bowl too.

Colin Kaepernick and parents Rick and Teresa Kaepernick. He was adopted at 6 weeks old.

Colin Kaepernick and parents Rick and Teresa Kaepernick. He was adopted at 6 weeks old. Colin plays for the San Francisco 49ers.



Michael Oher with his adoptive family Sean (from l.) and Leigh Anne Tuohy and their children, Collins and Sean Jr. Oher, now a rookie lineman with the Baltimore Ravens, was adopted at 16 by the Tuohy family and their story together was turned into the book and movie "The Blind Side."

Michael Oher with his adoptive family Sean (from l.) and Leigh Anne Tuohy and their children, Collins and Sean Jr. Oher, now a rookie lineman with the Baltimore Ravens, was adopted at 16 by the Tuohy family and their story together was turned into the book and movie “The Blind Side.”




One downside of all this attention, however, is that the players’ lives have been on parade. Michael Oher seems used to it, since his adoption story was made into the fabulous movie “the Blind Side.” But for Kapernick, this intense scrutiny of his adoption story is new.

Most of us hold our childrens’ stories quite close as they are personal family history, but these fellows have their adoption stories out there. I know that if they weren’t adopted, their fmailies simply would NOT be making the news – can you imagine the headlines? “Nuclear Family still has exactly the same family structure as when XYZ player was born!”

As if. It’s a great example for our kids, but it’s also a reminder fo rme that there is a lot of piblic novelty attached to transracial adoption. Transracial adoption is a norm in our lives, but for many, it is newsworthy.

Let’s hope all this publicity does inspire some people to consider families they may not have previously, or at least make transracial adoptees families more “normal” in the public eye!

Chocolate Bread Pudding


Ok, so first you have to put on Carla Bruni or some other delectable music. This really makes you feel legitimately self-indulgent.

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  1. Buy some awesome chocolate rye bread. We get ours from Okanagan Grocery, who makes this slightly sweet dark rye with a big slab of dark Bernard Callebaut down the centre. IF you can’t find chocolate bread, buy some regular dark rye and some chunks of dark chocolate to sprinkle around.
  2. Chop up bread in inch sized cubes. Cubes is a liberal way of saying bits. Try not to squish it.
  3. Pour 1/4 cup melted butter over the bread and toss. Set into a buttered casserole dish.
  4. Use the same bowl – less dishes! Beat 5 eggs, add 1 tsp sea salt and 1 cup of some kind of sugar – I used a mix of brown and organic raw cane sugar for this batch. Grate an orange’s rind in, and add 2 tsp of vanilla. A little tipple of booze makes a nice substitute for the vanilla. Try it! It doesn’t look pretty, but trust me – it will taste good.
  5. Heat up 3 cups of milk to warm/hot, and slowly add into the eggs while stirring with a whisk. Spice and I are lactose intolerant, so we just whip up a batch of powdered milk whenever we bake, since we don’t have the stuff around the house everyday. (Except when Grandpa is here.)
  6. Pour over your bread and bake for 30 minutes at 350 or so until the custard is hot. Let cool a bit to warm, and sprinkle icing sugar over top for special effect.
  7. Dig in!

Letting Go….

I’ve been blogging for 6 years now… our blog chronicled moves, our family zoo, passing of loved ones, seeing our girls for the first time, traveling to Ethiopia and other locales, and most importantly – 3.5 years of life with our girls. Three weeks ago, the blog imploded and we lost it all.

It shouldn’t be a big deal; but it was. We lost a journal of our family, our friends, and our girls growing up. I tried everything I could for a few weeks to recover it. The memories, the pictures and the thoughts. But it wasn’t to be.

I wasn’t sure if I should still keep blogging. After all, it’s work. Taking pictures, writing, editing. But I enjoy it. So finally I asked my girls. “Sugar” and “Spice” were very sad that I couldn’t get that journal back… they liked knowing that there was a record. But they asked me to keep blogging anyway – to show Nona and the rest of their family what they are doing. And to start that journal anew.

So I’m letting go – of those 6 years. but I’m also looking forward to many more. After all… life is in the moment. Let’s share it.