Category Archives: Everyday Life

30 Days of Thankful: Day 13

Today, I’m thankful for Lena. Lena is remarkably sweet. I rarely see her get mad at someone for longer than the pain they inflicted. Gus pulls her hair, and she gets upset just until I unclench his fist, and she moves on. Reed calls her a name, and she shrugs it off like nothing. When I compliment her, she always says “yes.” “You are pretty.” “Yes.” “You are a good big sister.” “Yes.” I occasionally remind her that “thank you” is the polite thing to answer, but truthfully, I think we should all take compliments a bit more like Lena, “yes.”

She has handled being the middle sister so well. She plays with Gus very well and is always patient with him. She and Reed are great friends, too.


I love this sweet girl.

30 Days of Thankful: Day 12

Today, I’m thankful for our walks. I love going for these walks– with the kids or without them. It is always a good time to play with them and for all of us to burn off some energy. If I’m alone, it’s a great way to clear my head.


Today, we played Superheroes and villans. Reed was Super Batman– since he was deciding who everyone was, he kept changing what he was to be the best superhero. Lena was rain girl, she could rain on us. Gus was Cry man– he could fly wherever he wants, get lost and then cry and cry and cry. First, I was fast girl, I was faster than any other women– ha! Then, I was goo girl– I could throw goo on all the other women. I told Reed I wanted to be nice, and could I please be cookie girl? I’d throw cookies at all the other people. But in a nice, loving way, not to hurt them.

A deer ran out about 25 feet in front of us– we’ve seen a lot of deer this fall. I think this is the 9th time I’ve seen them.

At the end of our walk, Gus was in the baby carrier on my back. Reed had his arm wrapped around my leg, leaning up against my side (yes, it is hard to walk like that!) and I had my arm around Reed, Lena was leaning into Reed and we were holding hands. Just cuddling and walking.

A year ago, we had no idea Gus would be a part of our family. Actually, we hadn’t even met Alyona yet. Here is a photo taken on November 18, 2011. Right before we went to Pennsylvania for Thanksgiving, and then from there, we went to Russia for the first time.


Shortly after Gus came home, July 2012.

I love all these memories and I’m thankful we have the opportunity– the health, the open space, the time, to go for these walks.

30 Days of Thankful: Day 11

Today, I’m thankful for our dogs. They are great companions and we enjoy their company. All 3 of them are incredibly patient with the kids. ¬†And, I appreciate having them as our own personal security detail. I’ve never been in a position where I felt like I really needed it, but there have been many times when I’m grateful for the 200lbs of dog between me and another person or animal, even if it just means getting a solicitor off of our front porch a bit faster!




One of Gus’s latest things is that he says “A doe!” anytime he sees a dog. He loves his dogs, too. Actually, all 3 of them do.


30 Days of Thankful: Day 9

Today, I’m thankful for Reed.

Reed is a loving and affectionate big brother. He loves Gus and Lena and they love him. He is always looking out for them and trying to help them.


Reed is smart and funny. He has his school conference last week, and his teacher and I were talking about how we’re confident he’ll someday be at least bilingual, if he choses. He is inquisitive and always asking to learn new things.



Reed is just awesome and I’m thankful to be his mom.