Driving back home from a long weekend of camping along the Hood Canal/Puget Sound with my extended family – the feeling of dirt forever packed under your fingernails, and hours of laundry ahead! An annual family campout, (25 years strong, at least!), this year we had an added twist of adventure: a state-wide burn ban throughout Washington, no campfires allowed. We have some great creative snapshot memories – our campsite with all of us sitting around our outdoor propane patio heater, me attempting to “toast” my English muffin by holding it up to the heat shield of said propane heater, 35 family members roasting marshmallows and playing games around a $69 portable propane “campfire” (complete with cute little evergreen tree cutouts along the edge!)…great memories, for sure – including waking up at 1:15am and hearing/feeling an apparent massive air strike on our campground which turned out to be the longest/loudest/scariest thunder & lightning & downpour storm I have ever experienced!
As we talked through the adventure, and looked forward to next year, we realized that quite possibly next year could look much differently for us! If we have our little man home by then, we may not be going on the trip, or – if we do – how absolutely insane the practice of camping could seem to a 4-7 year old boy from a third world country!
Things like, “why in the world would you want to go sleep in the woods in the freezing cold with the wild animals and cook food over a fire, drink water with dirt in it and not bathe for days?? I just got adopted OUT of these conditions and you guys do this for FUN??” … or “look guys. I know you’re into this bonding thing, but I just got a house with too many walls to count and a roof and a bed of my own and only have to share a room with one kid instead of 18. I really want to sleep in my new bed, and now you’re telling me I’ve gotta sleep on a blanket in the dirt. Not cool!”
And this is all going to go on in his head in another language! 🙂
It’s so fascinating to us to think of all of the things that will be new experiences for him that the rest of us take for granted! Simple, everyday things like…
Flushing toilets, putting paper IN toilet not in trash, clean & clear water dispensing from fridge at the touch of a button, or from a strange and magical spout in multiple rooms in the house; toothbrushes, more than one outfit option each day, a pair of shoes that matches in style and color (and lots to choose from!) and shoes that actually feel good and are the right size, a dog that lives INSIDE my house and wants to sleep in my bed!, riding in a vehicle instead of walking, pools of water that are for playing in, not for cleaning purposes; a massive building with rows and rows and rows of all different kinds of food, that I can just pick whatever you like and take it home in my cart, a black box on the wall that has little people inside of it that we sit in a cushy seat & watch; walking around on soft carpet, a small closet that I can open at any time and it is full of more food than I’ve ever seen in my lifetime; ice cream!, crayons and markers and clean white paper that is mine to keep, a mommy and daddy and brother and sisters who cuddle me whenever I want, snuggle me into a a cozy warm bed at night, and are still there in the morning when I wake up.
Every day we come across yet another random small thing that we take for granted that our new child will think is new and amazing, and sometimes terrifying! (Airplane & self-flushing toilets?? Soap & shampoo? Potato chips? Hot dogs? – super weird for me also, but still!)
We cannot wait for the adventure that awaits – for the roller coaster of meeting with new challenges each and every day, and for learning with every turn to take every small piece of life and filter it through his fresh perspective where the ordinary becomes extraordinary and where love, joy and a simple smile are always enough.
We have been so blessed already by the outpouring of support and love and simple acts of kindness that you all have showered upon us!
Our garage is quickly accumulating piles of donated items for our Labor Day weekend garage sale fundraiser –
THANK YOU!! – if you aren’t aware, we are accepting donations between now and Aug 29th for our fundraiser garage sale to be held Aug 29th- Sept 1st in West Vancouver(WA) – please contact Laura or comment on this post for more info!
Coffee sales blew us out of the water! We offered up pre-orders and roasted 45lbs of Adoption Blend coffee beans last weekend. This week we have sold ALL of the 45lbs and already have 25lbs pre-ordered for this coming week’s roast! God is good! Keep your orders coming! Our blend will change slightly from week to week also, so each time you order from week to week you’ll usually get a new blend! (Keep your taste buds on your toes!)
We are also looking at putting together a benefit auction/benefit concert event – within the next 6mos. Sooner than later! We would love suggestions for locations or venues in the Vancouver/Portland area that could facilitate an event of 100 people or so, for this event and would be willing to consider a very low space rental fee, or a donation of their space. Also any caterers who might be interested in donating their services or donating partial fees.
Please comment or contact us with suggestions or info – we would be open to venue space or someone’s personal property/barn/home as well!
Watch for upcoming links on this site also for a new fundraising option – a jewelry designer has offered to create one-of-a-kind pieces specific to our “Capture My Heart” adoption process – the retail fee is $30 per piece but she donates all the profit (after her cost) to our fund! I can’t wait!
Thank you everyone for following our blog and our journey! We are blessed to have you alongside us!