Saturday, December 18, 2010

The first Snow of the Season

This was our first snow. The boys were so excited to get out and play. They played on the deck even before the grass was covered. We got a call from Grandpa Barbee telling us it was already snowing there. I think they got more intially but ours still hasn't melted. The wind blew so hard the night before it took out the slide.

Once we had a little more snow the boys did some sled riding.

Andrew has been trying to do standing sledding. He talked Uncle Gabe into trying this past weekend. Gabe survived without major injury. He has a lot further to fall than Andrew.

Well if it doesn't get warm we will have a white christmas.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Simple Craft Idea

I had two boys on a rainy day and they need something new to do and this is the result. I took pipe cleaners and what they call pony beads and had the boys string them. I made a loop at one end so they could be an ornament for the tree but they could become bracelets necklaces etc. I found the pipe cleaner easier for Aaron to thread than traditional string. We then bent them into shapes.

The result entertainment that made Christmas ornaments.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Thanksgiving Part 2

We enjoyed thanksgiving part 2 with the graffius and bond families. We had a little bit of a rough start when Mama ended up with a sore hip and Uncle Joel got called back to Florida. However we went on to a have a good thanksgiving. We enjoyed the fact that David and Kim came up with Anthony and Sophie. We also had a friend named Verne with us. We took sometime to say thanks for the good things God has done for us. Due to Mama's hip we ended up at the yellow house the church uses for fellowship and bible study. It worked out great. Here are the kids playing before hand.
Andrew showing off his thanksgiving hat. He made it in school.

As usual I failed to get a picture of the actual feasting but here is a shot of the clean up. We also got in a hand of cards before we were done.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

Barbee Thanksgiving

We had a great visit to North Carolina. I got to check out the new place that I had been hearing about. We also enjoyed seeing the extended family. As usual I forgot to take pictures of the actual event. The boys had a great time with all the space. Aaron found it to be great fun to get in Lucy's cage. As you can see Lucy is not convinced.

Andrew thought that he should give it a try. As you can see it is a little cozier for him. It is hard to believe that in less than two years he has grown 5 inches. I am having fun trying to keep him in pants that fit.

Perry's family was great about giving Perry and I a chance to rest. I also enjoyed doing a little shopping with mom barbee. It was great time and too short as usual.

We eventually had to head north. The boys did well but we wish for a telaporter. 8 hours in a car is a long time for a 3 and 5 year old.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

A trip to JB Tree Farm

We occasionally do an outing with the Cove Adoptive Family group. We loved this one. One of the things that I like about Cove adoptive families is that my boys can look around and see families where other kids don't look like their parents. Also it is nice to hear each others story because each is unique and the reasons for each is special. Some families adopt domestically and some internationally and some from the foster family and some from private adoptions each is perfect in its own way. Anyway we went up towards Huntington to this tree farm. It was wonderful and I appreciated the fact that it wasn't haunted...I have a boy who gets scared of cartoons.
The kids got to roll and play with pumpkins while we waited our turn for the hayride.Some were heavier than Aaron could lift but that didn't stop him from trying. He usually decided that rolling was easier.Here is one of the hay wagons in front of us. We drove along the roads between the Christmas trees Here we are riding along in the wagon. Mom came along to help me out and make life easier. Thanks mom.

They also had two reindeer you could pet.What trip to the farm is complete without climbing in the hay. This place had a little tunnel for the kids to crawl through. King of the hay mound...

There is also a giant corn maze but we settled for the kiddie version which Andrew went through several times. All in All a great time with great people.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Baseball sort of...

This video which is sideways is an afternoon. It was spontaneous fun which makes it even better. This baseball with a bouncy ball and oil funnel and a three old pitcher. Also dad and mom enjoying the silliness.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Psalm 139

I am a momma in happy reflection at the moment. Andrew was asking a lot of questions about how God could see everything? He is also into playing hide and seek and wanted to know if he could hide from God. I said no of course but I said that the Bible in Psalms tells us that there is nowhere we can hide from God. I ask Andrew if he wanted me to show him. He said yes. So after reading from his Bible story book, we got out the Children's NIV(I think they have changed the name recently but you get the point) and turned to Psalm 139. I read it to him and he thought it was amazing the places God was able to know where we were. When we finished he asked if we could read another so we did we flipped the page to 141 and it was titled for us A prayer for Safety so we read that as our prayer. A pretty awesome way to end a good day.

Thank you God for little boys who ask questions and may my prayer be that I can give him the answers that lead him to You. Amen

Sunday, October 17, 2010

In Honor of Cafeteria Ladies

About a week ago I made a food that reminded me of my 12 years of eating cafeteria food. I don't know what most of your experiences were but mine was good. Our cafeteria ladies cooked real food and cared about the students. As a child I ate breakfast school cause you could have pancakes, french toast, eggs or cereal depending on the day. Not only that but before the schools combined if you ate the two pancakes you were served you could come back for a 3rd. Also you could ask for double open. We weren't charged extra. They knew some kids liked Peanut butter on their pancakes and they would have some out. They did the little things they didn't have to do. The head cook at our little school was Mary Ellis who has passed away many years ago at this point but my good memories are linked to cafeteria ladies that cared. Later when the schools combined we were convinced that on the days that Mary did not serve that the food was better because she had cooked it. Probably crazy but if nothing else we knew she cared.

But what sparked this memory was chili. I know that sounds strange but at our school you could have your chili with or with out rice scooped on the bottom before the chili was put on top. I suspect that this was a way to make the chili go further but it tastes great. Now my 5 year old wants rice with his chili. The other distinct food memory was cinnamon roll day which is probably not allowed anymore. But on the day that ham green bean and potato stew was served(yes this is regional), there was always homemade cinnamon rolls with sticky icing not the white stuff. This only happened every couple of months. It only got better. The next day if you ate breakfast you got the rest of the cinnamon rolls. I am sure that schools now have food catered in but I would not trade the love and the care that went into the food for all the premade pizza in the world.

So with this blog I want to say thanks to all the people who work hard in non glamorous jobs that make a huge difference. Cafeteria ladies are the best.

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Getting Ready

I am sure every family has their getting ready for school routine but here are a couple pictures from ours. Aaron wants to go to school so he and I have school on days that we don't go swimming and sometimes we have it more than that. He is beginning to recognize his letters and loves to color and trace.
The deep thought of the last couple weeks is this. Mom I have two heads. What says mom. Aaron says I have a head and a forehead. Can't argue with that to easily. He is pretending some now and he says he has a teacher named Mr Rouseo and kids which vary but sometimes include a Micah and an Abigail. Also he is trying to figure out why Anthony doesn't always live in the apartment of Aunt Cindi's. Andrew is still loving school. He is beginning to recognize words. They are doing phonics so our magnet letters on the fridge have found new life. We have also started Book it. Don't know if this is a regional thing or not. But the child is read to or reads a certain number of books. The number assigned by the teacher and they earn a certificate for a free personal pan pizza at Pizza Hut. So we have begun that adventure and he likes it. Movies still make Andrew nervous - he said he asked the teacher to turn off the Lion King because he was scared *note even so veggie tales scare Andrew*. We have parent teacher conferences in a couple of weeks and it will be good to get the teachers perspective on how he is doing.
Wednesdays are chapel day and Andrew must wear a shirt and tie. It is really hard to find short sleeve dress shirts for little boys but we succeeded.

Thursday, September 30, 2010


Queue music...Announcements announcements what a horrible way to die, what a horrible way to talk to death, what a horrible way to die, announcements announcements...

On a serious note about 5 years ago we started this blog to keep people informed about what was happening in our adoption of Aaron. Since then we have brought home two boys that have changed our lives forever. And this is a good thing. So we have decided to do it again.

We have decided to go to the Philippines for our 3rd adoption. When we began to look again we initially thought we would go where we could ask for a girl. The more we got into the more Perry and I felt we were to go to the Philippines. Why this matters is in the Philippines you can not declare gender. So we could be adding a boy or girl to this adventure or maybe even a sibling group. Our one request is to maintain birth order which we did not do last time.

Why announce this today. Well today we sent in our Dossier. For those who are unfamiliar with the process of international adoption. This is a large amount of paperwork that has to be done and then you begin a period of waiting. You are done with the part you can control and must learn to trust others to take it from here. With Aaron it was almost 2 years and with Andrew it was only a few months. With the Philippines it somewhere between 18 months and 3 years generally. So it may be a long wait but we feel this is right for us.

So what do the boys think. Andrew said we should have 5 more but doesn't want another Aaron. I take this to mean he wants a sister. Aaron likes the idea but wants to know how long. To help Aaron get an idea we use kindergarten. Aaron knows he has to 5 to go to kindergarten so we are telling him his brother or sister will probably come when he is ready to start school. Andrew wants to make sure the house is big enough. I think this might be due in part to Grandpa Barbee getting a new house. Andrew wanted to know if we have to get a new house to have a new brother or sister. We answered no but he now wants to know where Abuela is going to sleep. Our present spare bedroom is called Abuela's room because Abuela has sometimes slept there.

So we begin again. I don't expect this process to be fast. I must reset my mind because Andrew was so quickly. So I must learn once again to be patient and trust God's timing. So adoption updates will probably be infrequent but we just wanted to share our big day.

We begin our wait...


Tuesday, September 14, 2010

This and That

We have been working on finding a routine. I think that we are getting close to finding it in a new year. Aaron has started back to swimming and I am actually getting more of my house work done. Andrew is loving school. He is taking soup everyday and still likes his pink lunch box. He likes school but when ask he usually tells you about recess and lunch. Every weekend he asks when he can go back to school. At least for now this is the match for him.

One of the kids in Aaron's swim class is Andrew. I introduced the boys and Aaron on the way home informed me that he wanted to keep the old Andrew. This led to talking about the fact Andrew would always be his brother and other Andrews would just be friends. Also he is telling everyone that when he is 5 he will get to go to school.

We have been talking to the boys about things on TV that are pretend especially cartoons. As result Andrew was watching a car race and said it was pretend. We then had explain that this was real because you could actually go to the place and watch it and it just wasn't on TV. Andrew was not convinced.

Both boys have had headers recently. Andrew joined the fun with a fall. Somehow managed only to scrap his forehead and lodge a small stone in there for good measure. Perry successfully removed it and after convincing me that no stitches were need, it has healed nicely.

So this is this and that from the Barbee house.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Part 3

We checked out the Aqurimum. Here is Aaron checking out the sea lion. We did do one day at the amusement park. Aaron loved this ride and was allowed to go by himself since he was big enough. He wanted to try the roller coaster like Andrew but was too small.
Both boys loved the bumper cars and Andrew was allowed in the "big" ones with and adult. As you can see I am the passenger on this ride.

We ended the night with fireworks which Andrew loved and Aaron thought were loud. We had visions of the boys sleeping in the next morning. Nah...
We ended the week with two visits to Uncle David and Aunt Kim's. We were glad to see them and the boys were so excited. We checked out Uncle David's work one day and the boys had fun running airplane to airplane. Yes this was a mommy plot to burn energy. We enjoyed some pizza back at David and Kim's. The next day after a traffic delay we had a whirlwind trip to the zoo and a picinic. It ended with a trip for ice cream. Grandpop would have been proud.

To end the retelling of vacation here is Andrew on one of the rides. He loves rides and the shows as well. Uncle Gabe in a few years we are going to need you to take this boy upside down.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Part 2

The next few days we checked out some sites in Norfolk and at Jamestown. This is Andrew at the Nautilus trying to steer a boat. We also took a two hour cruise but we didn't end up on Gilligan's Island just back where we started.
The boys on the boat. Aaron napped through a greater portion of the cruise. Uncle David waved to us from work. Andrew was thrilled.

As I mentioned earlier, we made another visit to a historical site at Yorktown. The boys enjoyed the boats and watching how they made canoes. It was a nice morning. It should be noted both boys were free at the historic sites and Perry and I got a reduced rate for doing both.

We only ate out one meal a day so we tried to avoid fast food. But we also wanted kid friendly. This was a place called Jungle Jim's. The food was good and the boys got a kick out of their menus.

Besides site seeing the boys enjoyed swimming. We probably could have done nothing but swim and they would have been happy. Oh yes and play at the parks around the place we stayed.

Monday, September 6, 2010

The Last Trip of the Summer Part 1

We began our last trip of the summer in Williamsburg, VA. Perry and I got up at O dark 30 and drove to make the trip easier. We arrived at Yorktown on Sunday afternoon. We thought we would try the history thing and if it was a wash we would know better for the rest of the week. It did work but it should be noted if you want to leisurely read the signs or really teach history a 3 and 5 year old only get so much. It did work and we later checked out Jamestown later in the week. It should be noted that August was game in the colonies. Andrew especially liked trying the games. Aaron and I having a snack before going in to the park.
Teaching how to shoot a canon. They asked Perry to take Aaron off his shoulders. This turned out to be a good thing because Perry jumped when they fired the canon.

One of the things Andrew enjoyed was following the paths and counting canon at the different points. These were embankments made for the defense of both sides.

Andrew getting to hold the musket. Overall an enjoyable start to the holiday.

Monday, August 30, 2010

School Update

Andrew is still unable to contain himself with excitment for school. He asked Sabbath when he went back to school and wanted to know why he couldn't go Sunday. He is liking school. He is having to learn to stay quiet for longer periods which is going to take sometime getting use to doing. He has made friends - it took all week to learn one girls name. He is taking his lunch to school. He is still taking soup which I thought would end after the first day. However, when he took rice he got mixed reviews so it may be a while before he tries that again. He is sleeping like a log at night and has already had homework.

Pray that Andrew continues to adjust and love school.

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Some Summer Fun

These are someways we entertained ourselves this summer. Andrew is combining to of our favorite activities. One is running through the sprinkler and two playing in the swimming pool. Andrew enjoyed this. He called it being in the rainforest. Yes he is watching quite a bit of Diego right now. Here are two pictures from Bradley's visit. He has moved farther away but cam in to Aunt Grace's for the weekend. The boys are combining their two interests. Andrew's love of anything with wheels and Bradley's love of animals. They had a large set up going by the time they were done.

This summer we also did a good bit of park playing. We also made one trip out to Martinsburg to swim this might have been a mistake. Andrew keeps asking when are we going back. The boys have also helped me pick vegetables and weed the garden which still has way to many weeds. They also love to "wash" dishes. We also take walks down to the stream to see if there is any water and pick walnuts to throw in the water. Overall a great summer.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Water video

As I noted in the last post the boys loved the water at the zoo. This is Andrew running through the water and Aaron in the background checking out the big water ball. Aaron also joined in the the water running but not in this video.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Catching Up

Well I will start with the weekend of July 16th we headed to Virginia Beach for a very important birthday. It was Anthony's 3rd birthday. So the boys, Grandpop, Abuela and I headed south. The plan was for a trip to the zoo and a party after nap time. So here are a few pictures from the adventure. Anthony opening up presents.
One of my boys favorite parts of the zoo.

The whole crew checking out the reptiles which is one of Anthony's favorites and we got to see an armadillo actually moving. The boys loved seeing the animals even though it was a warm day.
Here is Aaron checking out the snake. Speaking of Aaron he completed his trip to Virginia with a trip to the emergency room. He fell off the bed as I was moving the table away that we had used the night before to keep him from falling out. I sent Andrew for Grandpop and Abuela. Then we made a plan - Abuela and Andrew to see Anthony again and Grandpop Aaron and I to the hospital. Aaron was such a good fellow. They were even able to use little band-aids and glue on his cut instead of stitches because he held still so well. I should note this was a children's hospital as it turned out. They had someone come in and show him what was going to happen and he got to practice on a baby doll. He also managed to charm a blanket, ball and sticker out of the lady that came to help. He now sleeps with the blanket. It was made by a lady name Georgina and a group makes them for the kids. Now he is all good except for a little scar.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

The First day of School

Well the day has arrived. Andrew was so excited this morning. I was excited for him but part of me - is going no not my baby I have only had him a short time. I am also hoping and praying he is going to adjust to the structure and still love to be there. I am sure that some of you noticed the pink lunch bag. I let him pick and this was the one he picked. I am hoping that it doesn't get him teased but the boy loves pink. I have a back up plan if it does. He also wanted to take soup for lunch we will see if he is still a soup guy when he comes home tonight after comparing notes with the other kids.We had also been getting ready for school by eliminating nap time for Andrew and making his bedtime earlier. He didn't object to either though he has still taken a couple of naps. We may have to go even earlier to bed; we will see how that goes. Grandpop and Abuela came over to wish him the best on his first day. The school van picked him up a little before 8 AM and is supposed to bring him back about 3:15PM.
My house is suddenly very quiet. Aaron and I enjoyed playing with playdoh this morning and I was able to get the dishes cleaned up and the kitchen floor mopped and the wood floor swept. I feel like I have accomplished a ton and Aaron and I went down and played in the graveyard for a little bit. (No I am not crazy there is a walnut tree in the graveyard by our house and the boys love to collect walnuts and throw them in the air and we also like to go look for letters in the graveyard). Well huge change in the Barbee house I will keep you posted as everyone adjusts.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010


Yes things are always changing. I know this but it has been on my mind lately because Andrew is about to have a big change in his life. It will also be a big change in mommy's life. Andrew is going to start kindergarten. After a great debate last year we opted not to do preschool. I don't have any regrets but I know that there is pressure both ways. It was this pressure and the unusual experience for me of working on the same day with Perry that has brought together some random thoughts and experiences.

The first reflects back to Perry and my journey through infertility. My parents have a dog called Tina. She is a golden retriever and Goldens have a tendency toward tumors. When these occur each family must decided what they are going to do. They may leave them go; or they may have them surgically removed knowing they may come back or they may opt for chemotherapy or radiation. As you read this you may go I know what we would do and how far we would go. However you may talk to someone else and they would say your crazy I would do this. At some point which ever option you choose you as a family will say this is enough we are done. This experience made me look back and reflect that this was how it was during our treatments and the decisions we made along the way. We had several options and many people had opinions on what you should and would do. We made our choice and there came a point we knew we were done. It wasn't an easy decision but we knew it and it was okay. Where that point is for every family is different but it doesn't mean you wanted it any less. Just as the choice you make for your dog doesn't mean that you don't love it but you know when you are done. I should note Tina had a tumor removed and she is getting better day by day. What happens next I don't know but right now she brings joy into my boys lives and I think that they keep this 11 year old dog young.

The other big thought was brought on by a day when both Perry and I worked all day. Miss Grace and Miss Katrina watched the boys and did a great job of course but it got me to reflecting. It made me ask what was I missing. I am blessed and spoiled by the fact that I can stay home with my boys. Many do not have this choice. As much as I asked questions I still felt like I had missed something. It made me understand a little more why some choose to homeschool. When Andrew comes home from school no matter how many questions I ask I can not have experienced it with him as much as I may want. Because we have made the choice to send him to kindergarten this mother must learn to adjust to change. I must learn a new way of being in his life. Aaron will go back to being an only child during the day. I think he will like it but I think that it will tame Aaron's adventurous side in his attempts to keep up with brother. I look forward to learning new ways to lead and guide my children.

Finally I must brag on my oldest son. And also thank the Lord for his Sabbath school teachers. We had taken Tina to the vet and in his office the vet has a Noah's Ark border. The vet asked Andrew if he knew what this was. Andrew told him that God told Noah to take two of every animal into the ark. I then prompted what happened next - Andrew responded it rained and God said he wouldn't flood the earth again. The vet then asked is your husband a preacher and I said no he is just a pharmacist. To every teacher that wonders if your children are listening they are. Keep telling and teaching the stories it is worth the effort.