Bears Fan

24 01 2008

Ok, if you’re a Green Bay Packers fan, or think that Brett Favre is a god, I’m warning you: you may not like this.

I am not a Packers fan, though I don’t detest them or anything. I just prefer the Bears, and the Vikings, and then the Packers. But I wasn’t rooting for the Packers the other day when they played the Giants. I’m sorry, if you love the Packers, but it was just what I needed, for the Giants to win. I’m not exactly sure why. Anyhow, the next morning, there was a front-page spread about the Packers’ loss.

100_8084_brett.jpgNow, I don’t love Brett either. I don’t detest him. I am just tired of him. And his waffling back and forth about returning or not each season has bugged me. But, I admit that Brett is a nice guy, apparently a very nice guy, and I give him credit for that. And after the Giants’ win, I was very impressed to see Brett approach Eli Manning and congratulate him. Good move, Brett. Very impressive.

On Tuesday morning I opened my mirror/vanity cabinet to grab my toothbrush, and burst out laughing. Jim had taped the previous day’s front page on the inside of my mirror. And it made me laugh, which was a very good thing. Thank you, Jim.

Wanted: a Decent Panang Curry

23 01 2008

We’ve been on a four-year quest for the best Thai food in Madison. We’ve tried most of the Thai restaurants in town, and while we like a couple of them, they haven’t met our high standards yet. My own Thai cooking seems to have gone downhill as well, so I’ve begged the Thai owner of one of the Asian food stores to teach me how to make Thai food–but she said she’s too old. We’re not looking for fancy, nor perfection, just really good Thai food.

The other night, Jim was reading Madison Magazine, and found a review of a Thai restaurant we had never heard of. We’ve driven by it numerous times, but perhaps didn’t know it was also a Thai restaurant, because signs on its windows say “ICE CREAM” and “SUB SANDWICHES”.

Monday we decided to go try it out. I had my doubts, because it is run by Laotians. I have nothing against Laotians, nothing at all. But when searching for a good Thai place, I kind of hope for Thai cooks. But hey, Laos is close enough to Thailand, that some dishes are quite similar, so I thought it worth a try.

We walked in, and were certainly in a convenience store: candy bars, gum, pop, chips, pringles, expensive cleaning products.. But no signs of a restaurant. Until we saw the sign–literally. A white board with “Today’s Specials” written on it, and 3 curries listed. #1: Yellow Curry. #2: Panang Curry. #3: I don’t remember. There was a brief description of each. Hmmm, I thought, those sound good, and “Panang Curry” is always my test dish at new Thai restaurants. But we wanted to see a menu anyway, to see what else they offer.

We walked into a room on the left, and a woman immediately walked behind the deli counter, getting ready to make a sub. There were three small tables, which could each seat 2 people. Two of the tables were pushed together. We asked for a menu, and the lady looked at us a bit puzzled. Another lady walked in and began speaking to us. It seemed as though Lady #1 spoke little to no English. So we asked Lady #2 about a menu, and she pointed back to the Special Board. This is what we have today, she said. Ah…. we said. I said I would take Panang. Jim looked at the Specials again, and said he’d take the same.

Ok, they said. To go? or to eat here? Eat here, we said, and we sat down at the two tables pushed together. Lady #1 went back into a kitchen, and returned with another rice cooker pot. Lady #2 grabbed two plates, and began dishing up our rice and curries. “You can go grab something to drink, if you want.” So we walked back into the convenience store and grabbed two drinks, and then sat down to eat our Panang Curry.

And…. it was decent. In fact, better than decent–it was great. I loved it! Jim loved it! We devoured the food.

I’m so happy. I only hope that our next experience there brings decent “whatever the special is”. Because I could really get into saying, “Found: a Favorite Thai Restaurant, serving Decent Panang Curry.”

Thank you, Alka Seltzer

19 01 2008

The other night I did not sleep too well… lots on my mind. In fact, “did not sleep well” is putting it mildly. I managed to watch 2 episodes of “Samantha Who?” on the internet (from my side of the bed, earplugs in); I prayed; I listened to music on the radio; I listened to an online prayer site; I read; nothing made me tired. I tried everything I could to sleep. Nothing worked. Until finally, at 6 am, I slept-for two hours.

So last night, too tired to even function, I took an Alka Seltzer Nighttime pill…. thank you, Alka Seltzer! I slept for 11 hours.

Bruised reed… not broken, supposedly

15 01 2008

Years ago, when Jim and I were first beginning our attempts to get pregnant, I began seeing a Spiritual Director. It was overall a powerful, healing, renewing experience. But at that first meeting with her, I was so full of hope. Things were beginning to be difficult in the church, I was struggling with fibromyalgia and fatigue and everything that accompanies FMS… but I was excited to begin trying for a baby, which would, naturally, come quickly.


At that same meeting, my then-Spiritual Director told me God had given her a verse for me: Isaiah 42:3. “A bruised reed he will not break…” I liked that. I liked the verse, I liked the hope it represented at that time, I liked the fact that my SD had felt God had given her that verse for me. That it represented God’s activity and presence in my life, and I should hold on to that as a promise.

I’m thinking there must be another verse for me at this point. Because every time I hear that verse, I flinch. I am so bruised it’s not funny. I have always bruised easily–physically and emotionally. Now spiritually as well. But that’s ok. That’s life. However… now, 6 years after that verse first came to my attention as one for me, that verse only serves to represent how wrong I was to hope.

I know, I know… I have many things to give thanks for, many relationships that sustain and renew me, many situations for which I am eternally grateful. I’m not so self-centered (at least I don’t think so) as to think that just because God hasn’t given me all the desires of my heart, that God is not present. Nor do I think-now-that because my SD said this verse was for me, that God was promising to never let me be broken. But I kind of thought that at the time. Naive? Yes. Too optimistic? Probably. Still, it’s a bit ridiculous…

So maybe I’m not as broken as I think I am, and maybe I’m just extremely bruised, bent, bumped, bewildered, battered, bedraggled, betrayed, b-b-b- yep, I still think the word is broken.

This all came up for me because last week’s bulletin cover at our church featured this verse, Isaiah 42:3. And I simply wanted to cry. I wanted to–and still want to–cry for the brokenness that has happened. The broken friends, who are tired of being bruised and beaten by life… for the broken systems that contribute to our brokenness. (and sometimes cause it). For the brokenness that is all around.

2 Year LID Annniversary

12 01 2008

2 years of waiting, after more than 3 years of already waiting.

1 more visit to Milwaukee’s Immigration Office to re-do our fingerprints. (and one more to come, probably, since our re-fingerprints expire in June ’08).

24 email updates from our agency, each one with worst news than the last one.

Many delayed plans, but 2 vacations because of the delays…

Countless days and nights of tears.

Approximately 600 times I tried to give up hope, then tried to hope, then tried to give it up again.

“Happy”-2-Year-LID-Anniversary to Us.”


photo on a different blog

8 01 2008

A photo of mine is on another blog again. The green blogger “Green Talk” who used my reindeer photo… Check it out. Interesting article, as well.

Putting Christmas away

7 01 2008

This is how I begin the process of putting Christmas away…


And this is how Abby begins putting Christmas (in particular, a Santa Claus toy) away…


Mental Health Break

3 01 2008

It’s been stressful. Life, in general. This latest adoption update (see yesterday’s post) hasn’t helped. And, by the way, one thing I forgot to mention about the latest adoption update: a couple who received a referral in this latest batch had requested an infant, yet received a referral for a 3 or 4 year old. Just when I was starting to think, again, that we might actually get an infant, or a young toddler. Anyhow, I digress…this adoption stuff… other stuff… It’s been stressful.

Today I talked with a friend I hadn’t caught up with in too long… That was good mental health, and emotionally nourishing for me, both to talk about my life, and to hear what’s been going on in hers. It was a good thing. And part of our conversation was while I was walking slowly through Michael’s, then Bed Bath & Beyond, and finally Target, and for some odd reason that was mentally good as walk slowly through these stores, through many aisles.. simply browsing, while talking.

Somewhere at Target I lost my list. You know, my “things to buy/places to go” list, scribbled on a bent, torn sticky note. Sometimes I work on these lists for awhile, until I can justify the gas to do the errands. Today I knew I had lots to do and buy, but more than anything, I really wanted to go out and about. So I had scribbled this list down in the minutes before leaving the house. Maybe it’s the stress, maybe it’s being 37, maybe it’s that I just have a bad memory at times. I don’t know. But when I realized I had lost my list, I suddenly forgot everything on it. Good thing I had already bought some items. Too bad I forgot the ones I needed. Oh well.

I did remember, however, that I had contemplated going to Half Price Books. I have been reading The Irrational Season by Madeleine L’Engle, but the copy I’m reading (which I purchased at Half Price Books a couple of years ago) is literally falling apart. So I thought… if I could find another cheap copy, then I could finish the book without having to literally pick up the pages. I never found that book… but I spent two hours browsing the store. I haven’t book-browsed in a long time. Way too long. It was so much fun. Granted, probably half of that time was spent looking at books that could potentially help me in the various stresses I am trying to manage/resolve/ignore… but aside from that, it was so good. So nourishing, so fun, so needed.

Good way to spend time I didn’t really have. And good mental health break.

Adoption Blues

3 01 2008

Yep… that time again. Time to sing the adoption blues. Apparently some referrals came in over the past 2 days… and those referrals didn’t cover much ground. In other words, only families with LID through 12/20/05 received referrals. So it’s slow going, still. There had been some rumors of things speeding up… rumors that I shouldn’t have believed, but somehow, somewhere in my hardened heart, I found it in me to believe in that hope. Ha. I’ve learned my lesson again!

Now, this news is yet to be confirmed by our agency, though the online rumor mills have been bustling since yesterday. These online reports have even included the orphanage photos of the recent referrals, from families who received these referrals. Eeesh… It’s looking as if we may not receive a referral in February after all. If things continue at this pace, we may not receive a referral until May or June.

So, the adoption blues continue. Oh well. I’m actually kind of numb right now. Which is a good thing, I guess.

Another good thing, completely unrelated to adoption: I feel much better physically, today. I’d say, at this point, I’m probably at 95% of my “normal” health status. Thank you, God.

the past week

1 01 2008

Just some pix. I’ve been sick, exhausted, and on vacation. Aside from those first two negatives, however, there have been some fun times in the past week. So here are some moments in pictures…

Sledding on Christmas Day

Our Christmas tree… I love our tree… I’m going to miss it.

Al’s Breakfast in Dinkytown, Minneapolis. Best pancakes in the world: Wally Blue’s.

Hiking with the dogs… along the Mississippi River.

Minnesota Wild game… after we won in overtime.

After the game.