Getting into fall

September 16, 2014

We are starting to get back into routine with school.

Hockey is starting up again soon. Piano lessons have been going for a couple of weeks

Things are going to be crazy before we know it.

Our church is participating in The Family Project, produced by Focus on the Family. It looks like it will be a good series.

Reflections on the summer

September 7, 2014

The summer of 2014 was an unusual one, in many respects.

After a long, extremely cold winter, the weather gurus were calling for a hot summer.  They missed the boat.  There was one day that hit 30 degrees Celcius in June.  July and August were cooler and wetter than normal.

The days have slipped away.  And they are becoming shorter.  Last night, it was pretty dark by 8:30.  When it is cloudy, it can be very dark by 8:00.  The same thing has happened in the mornings.  Before long, it will be going to work and coming home in the dark.

It was a short summer, as school went untll almost the end of June, and school started in our area on September 2.

The last few days of August were nice and hot.

For the past several years, we have had passes to a local water park and Canada’s Wonderland.  We didn’t get to either one as much as we have in prior years.  LIfe has been busy this year, for a number of reasons.

We have had a foster child for just over a year, and he has been attending camps, activities, and visits with his family.

Reid has transitioned to kindergarten.  He has a modified day, as he gets picked up about halfway through the day.  He needs his sleep, and that helps him (and us).

Tate has moved into third grade in French immersion.  His teacher is impressed with him and his insights.

Activities will ramp up over the next few weeks.  This weekend has been quiet.  Hockey starts again in a couple of weeks. 

September brings a return to routine, and an opportunity to think about what things we like in our lives, and what behaviours and attitudes maybe should change.  In many ways, it is a more appropriate time for resolutions for change than January is.

It is important to be busy.  However, it is more important not to be too busy.  We need to leave margins, or space around the edges of our lives, so that we have room for things that come up, or go wrong.

Think about it ….. how often does an opportunity come up for something that we have to decline because we are too busy?

Back to school again….

September 3, 2014

We have started to settle back into the fall routine again.

Back to school.  Back to friends.  Back to routine.

We had some nice weather the last weekend before school started.  Finally.

Life is getting back to normal.  Whatever that means……

Interesting day

July 21, 2014

We had a fairly quiet week last week.

That was not the way this week started.

About 12:30, we heard the smoke detector go off.  I got up and tried to use a button to silence it.  After a couple of attempts, it also started saying that there was carbon monoxide.  After double checking the house, I went outside and took a look to make sure nothing was going on.

I called the fire department, and they came out.

We got everyone out and hid out in the van.  Reid was excited, as he is enthralled by fire trucks.

There was no carbon monoxide and no smoke.

In the morning, we saw a dump truck in front of the house.  A few minutes later, another truck showed up.  A backhoe showed up a couple of minutes later.

What do little boys like more than fire trucks?  Construction equipment!!  And in action!!

They dug out a couple of sidewalk slabs to be replaced.

After they were done, the worker asked if we would like his picture taken in the truck.  How could we resist?

It made his week.

And kudos to the city worker for going out his way to entertain a child .

We got Reid up for the show.

Hopefully our week is a bit more quiet after all of this excitement.

Preview of school?

July 18, 2014

Our church ran our annual Vacation Bible Camp (or school as many are used to) this past week.

We enrolled Reid, as it was open to four-year olds.

He will also be entering Junior Kindergarten this fall.

We have had some meetings to help his transition into school be as successful as possible.

It was only three hours long.  There were several group activities.  Some were quiet, some ere not so quiet.  By the time the third hour rolled around, it was becoming quite a bit for Reid.  By the end of the week, I spent some time in the class with him to help keep him settled.

It seems that this may have been a preview of how school may go in the fall.

Soccer with Reid

July 3, 2014

Last night was the first session of a “Me and my dad” soccer program with Reid.

We weren’t really sure what it would be like when we signed him up for it.  We were hopeful that it would be playing soccer.  

This particular program is through Sportball, and is about developing basic skills, like dribbling, trapping, and kicking.  It is nice that every player gets a ball and jersey – with the same number.

It is good to learn the basic skills. 

It will help us focus Reid on listening to instructions from teachers and coaches.  And his dad.  I am the one with the hardest time getting him to listen and pay attention.  I need to be more patient.  God, please hurry up and grant it to me.

Cross cultural experience – at home

June 9, 2014

We have had a foster child, J,  with us since September.

It was a bit bumpy at first, but he settled in after a couple of weeks.

He comes from a Vietnamese background, and attends a Roman Catholic mass in Vietnamese.

We had arranged to take him a couple of weeks ago, but it didn’t work out.

There has been a bit of a shift with access visits over the summer.  The agency will still be supervising two visits per month.  We will be supervising visits at soccer.

We will also be taking him to attend the Vietnamese mass about once per month, as our schedule permits.

Sunday was the first day I took him.

It was definitely a different experience.

We attend an evangelical Protestant church, where the dress is quite relaxed.  I haven’t wore a suit to church in a very long time.

I felt very underdressed, compared to most of the adults there.

It was also a long service, close to two hours, as they were celebrating the ordination of a new deacon.

It was something different to sit through a church service conducted in a different language.

It was also different to attend a mass.

J loved seeing his family.  It was good for everyone to see each other.

After church. we went for supper with J’s mom and grandma.

It is good to see how other Christian denominations conduct their worship service.  It can also be part of fostering.

It was been over eight years since I did that, and we flew to Africa to do that.

1 Family in Every 3 Churches

June 4, 2014

ouradoptionexperience:

A blogging friend, Instant Mama made this post earlier this week.

Over the years, I have heard many stories of entire churches that have been involved in adopting children.

Not everyone is called to adopt. It can be a tough road. I get that.

Children come into foster care because something has happened in the family of origin. It is serious business for parental rights to be terminated. There are challenges as families come together.

For those not called to adopt, they can be a support in challenging times in many practical ways. Be a friend. Have coffee. Hang out. Help out with chores that get pushed aside. Anything that you can think of that would be helpful.

There are many places to go for information on adoption – showhope.org, endthewait.ca, davethomasfoundation.org, davethomasfoundation.ca to list a few. Each area has their own children’s aid or child protective services to work with families in distress. There can be problems. Many arise from the low priority that governments place on the vulnerable.

For Christians, we are called to protect the vulnerable and defend widows and orphans. How can we do that in our own lives?

Originally posted on From Instant to Forever:

A friend posted an infographic on Facebook yesterday (view it here) that stated some statistics about adoption from foster care.  I’ve seen several.  The numbers are always so sad.  But I hadn’t yet seen this statistic.  It said:

If 1 family from 1 out of every 3 churches adopted, there would be no more orphans in the US.

Did you see that?  It isn’t saying one-third of all families need to adopt.  It isn’t saying a third of the families in each church need to adopt.  It is saying that for every three churches (and some churches sure have a lot of members), if only ONE FAMILY out of that group of three entire churches would choose to adopt, then there would be no more orphans in the US.  None.  AdoptUsKids and all those other wonderful sites like it would be blank, because all the children would be AT…

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It’s June???

June 1, 2014

It’s hard to believe it is the first of June.

It seemed the winter would never end.  April was cool and wet.  May was cool and wet until the middle of the month.

In the last couple of weeks, it has been nice to have spring and even summer like weather.

This past weekend was beautiful.

We have two in soccer, and one more beginning it July.

We have Reid signed up for a “me and my dad” program, which should be fun.  He is pretty good with the ball.  His attention span may be the biggest challenge.  If nothing else, it gives us some physical activity.

We have been able to be out biking, playing, and getting dirty.  Typical boy stuff.

May

May 24, 2014

May has been a busy month.

It was nice to have a relatively quiet month in April, with little in the way of activity.

Soccer has resumed.  It has been a challenge due to late start to the growing season.  Last weekend, all the sports fields in our area were closed due to heavy rainfall and to give the fields a chance to dry out.

We have become involved in Special Olympics soccer as well.  It is a low cost program for athletes with an intellectual disability.  The cost is quite reasonable.  There are a quite a number of other sports available as well.  However, potential athletes must be 8 before they can register.