Lilypie Countdown to Adoption tickers

Lilypie Countdown to Adoption tickers

Friday, April 30, 2010

One year ago

So much can happen in one year. One year ago today I had open heart surgery. Here is my top twenty of experiences, memories and milestones since surgery (in chronological order):
1) Waking up from surgery and seeing Sam and my mom. There couldn’t have been a more comforting feeling to come out of surgery and having your husband holding your hand.

2) Monday Bachelor Nights with the girls and my mom during the time my mom cared for me after surgery. Good wine, friends, and trashy TV. What is better? I am not sure who loved this more, though, me or my mom?

3) Recuperating at my parent’s cabin for a week after surgery. I was fortunate to have this time to spend with my parents. Our parents are not to be taken granted for. I love you mom and dad.

4) An amazing dinner with my bro and niece. It is not too often I get one-on-one time with my bro and we truly had a wonderful time. Not to mention he is a great cook.

5) Trip to Chicago to see Uncle Dennis and Cubs game at Wrigley Field with Fritz and Melis.

6) Swimming in the Mississippi at sunset – it doesn’t get much more beautiful than this (the pics don’t do it justice).

7) Wishing on a wish lantern with my mom on her 60th Birthday, my mom wished on us being able to bring home our babies.

8) Stella Louise Skinner, our niece, joining our family on October 6th.

9) Running my first 5k with Sam, Tara Swedberg and Kellen. This is not a big feat for many, but I was not able to do something like this before having surgery.

10) Hosting Thanksgiving Dinner to follow the 5K with the Skinner side of the family and my parents. This was our first big holiday hosting. The first time I was able to use grandma’s china too!

11) Sam’s first diaper change. This is a more a milestone for Sam, but it will also greatly benefit me so I had to include it!

12) My sister making it home from Denver on Christmas eve morning during a snow storm. Christmas just isn’t the same if you are not able to celebrate with family. We picked her up from the airport and I made a sign that read “oh, the weather outside is frightful, but Laura home for Christmas is so delightful.”

13) New Years Eve in Rochester with friends and family, we also celebrated Sam getting his new job!

14) Visiting my grandparents in Harmony and the Sam and I went snowshoeing on the Root River trail that was lit up by candlelight. This was the last time I saw my grandma.

15) 2nd Annual Girls Ice Fishing Trip – need I say more?

17) Submitting our Dossier to Ethiopia!

18) Date night at Dakota Jazz Club to celebrate the submission of our Dossier. It was a tribute to Micheal Jackson. I remember the band doing the song Black or White and feeling it was a perfect culmination to our adoption process and I am the lucky one.

19) Book Club – It is more about the friends and wine then it is about the book though!
20) Twins game at the new stadium! Go Twins!

So that is my year one year from today. Nothing earth shattering here, no lavish trips and I didn’t climb Mount Everest. But that is okay. It is the small things in the world that we can so often take for granted that make the big difference in our lives. It is having a cup of coffee with your grandma, hugging your sister, having a dance party with your nieces, cooking with your husband and sharing a laugh with a friend over a good Merlot. My last year was filled with friends, family, laughter, tears…and health. At the end of the day if we don’t have these things, what do we have?

Wishing you good health to you and yours!

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Another Note -

We are blessed and fortunate to have such wonderful friends and family who support us. I also wanted to commend my Mom and Melody for pulling this off after a week of grief. We hope in some way that this allowed them both to focus on something positive and uplifting. When it rains it pours, but after the calm of the storm comes the rainbows.

Also, everyone raved about the pulled pork sandwiches! We have my dad and my brother to thank for that!

Thank you all to those that participated. Our children will be grateful to have such wonderful people in their lives.

PS - Our children will also be known as Jack and Hayley.

Adoption Benefit - We want to say thanks

Christina and I were recently provided with an organized, action packed and well attended adoption benefit. The location was provided free of charge and was located at Starks Cafe (or maybe Saloon based on the orgainized country line dancing and dj). It was an extremely large venue and our amazing friends and generous family joined us to raise money for our adoption fund and travel expenses.

Melody & Glen Leimer, Kathy Stiles, John and Beth Taylor were some of the key organizers, but everyone was open to helping and having some fun. We held a silent auction for prizes that were donated by friends and family. Brent Taylor donated a MN WILD, VIKINGS (All-Day) and TWINS (Mauer) jersey. We raffled off the Mauer jersey in a seperate setup. It appears the benefit will pay for 1 of the 2 trips required for both of us to Ethiopia. We are so thankfull.

I'm amazed at the genorosity that was demonstrated. It motivates me to be able to "pay it forward" and help others after we are more established in life.

We are off to Pat and Suzan's wedding this weekend in Austin, MN. - Sam

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

For Every Daisy I Will Think of You

To my grandma who loved dandelions more than daisies, but we gave them to you anyway and you accepted with a smile.
Daisy Timeby
by Marjorie Pickthall

See, the grass is full of stars,

Fallen in their brightness;

Hearts they have of shining gold,

Rays of shining whiteness.

Buttercups have honeyed hearts,

Bees they love the clover,

But I love the daisies' dance

All the meadow over.

Blow, O blow, you happy winds,

Singing summer's praises,

Up the field and down the field

A-dancing with the daisies.

Two Months Down

I really can't believe that we have been waiting two months. It is so exciting knowing that we could get a call in the next 2-4 months! I can't wait, but at the same time I am feeling very anxious. I feel like I am not nearly as prepared as I should be, we have only begun to start getting baby stuff and the room is nowhere near ready. However, we have said that we want to wait until we get the call to start on all the baby stuff! We want to be a bit more official before we move into full nesting mode (I will feel bad for Sam when this happens, if you know me, you know what I mean).
This last month, was a hard month. My grandmother passed away and I would have loved for her to be able to meet my babies. Although, I know she still will meet them, just not the way I had envisioned. She will be missed for all of that she was to so many people. Her strength, sense of humor, smile and sayings will forever be engraved in my memory.

I have included the eulogy that was read, she was an amazing lady as you can read:

Good morning! My name is Sally and I am Mildred’s niece. Mildred had one

brother, Melvin - known to many of you as “Mike” and I am the youngest of

his four kids. My older sister always likes it when I put that plug in.

If you’re still wondering who I am, if you have visited Mildred any time

in the past 7 years you’ve no doubt have heard about and seen pictures of

“the twins.” Well, I’m their mama!

That is one thing that will always stick out when I remember my Aunt

Mildred - her love of children. Brent and Kim, Nick and Tamsen - you gave

her three very precious great grandchildren and she was awfully proud of

them. If anyone questions that, just take a look on the bureau or

refrigerator in Harvey and her apartment. Tina and Sam - she was excited

for you to become parents, too. And you can believe that when your

children arrive, your Grandma will be smiling down upon the four of you

and wishing you nothing but the best.

Missy, she was pretty proud of you being a policewoman. I don’t know that

she was crazy about it, but she was proud nonetheless.

Laura, your Grandma loved it when you fixed her hair. I can see her with

her Aunt Mildred nod - many of you know it too - “She does such a good

job, too.” As if we needed to be convinced after all the celebrities’

hair-dos you’ve done! She wasn’t sure why you wanted to move WAY out to

Colorado. But I think she knew that just meant she would see you less and

she LOVED her grandchildren. Each and everyone of you!

But Aunt Mildred’s love didn’t end just with her grandchildren. Dennis,

Beth, Melody - the three of you helped to sustain her during the difficult

time of Daryl’s passing. She was very aware of the love and care you gave

during his illness - not only to Daryl, but your folks as well. You may

not have felt like it at the time, but you were a strongthold for them.

She said so often, “They have been so GOOD.” You can hear her

overemphasis on a certain word - another Mildred trademark.

Well, I have to believe that you learned to be so GOOD from a person who

defines the word GOOD!

Have you ever eaten Aunt Mildred’s mashed potatoes?

“They are so GOOD.” Never had a lump in them. I still haven’t gotten it

down. Tell me, does she boil the water before putting the potatoes in the

water? I always thought it was that big mixer thing that did it.

Have you ever eaten Aunt Mildred’s donuts?

“They are so GOOD.” She would eat them with her coffee - of course

Mildred could drink coffee with just about anything. My Dad LOVED

Mildred’s donuts, but he HATED coffee. She knew it too, but still would

tease, “Mike would you like some coffee with that donut?” He’d reply, “I

don’t like that coffee slop!” If I didn’t go with them to Mildred and

Harvey’s and she had made donuts, Harvey always made sure Mildred sent

some home for me. She always did, but I think she also had a hunch that

my Dad ate the lion’s share of those donuts!

Have you ever eaten Aunt Mildred’s pies?

“They are so GOOD.”

I can remember my Grandma Kleppe making pie and she would always have a

little bit of crust left over. She would sprinkle cinnamon and sugar over

it. They were so GOOD! Mildred must have learned it from her. Melody,

Beth - I hope the two of you are carrying on the pie crust tradition,

because I know Konnie and I - well, our crusts come from the freezer

section of the grocery store.

Have you ever eaten Aunt Mildred’s lefse?

“They are so GOOD.” Melody and Beth - I hope you haven’t let this

tradition die either because if it is up to Konnie and I - it’s dead.

Have you ever eaten Aunt Mildred’s rolls?

“They are so GOOD.” So good that she never even batted an eye when I

asked her to make them for my wedding. “I’ll be glad to.” You see that

is another Aunt Mildred thing - she was always willing to help, always

will to share a smile. Weddings, graduations, writing jingles for

retirements or 80th birthdays - she was so GOOD at helping out whereever

she was needed.

Now Gosh all Friday, I would be missing a few things if I didn’t also

mention that there were some things that Mildred just didn’t care for -

topping her list might have been her nicknames that my dad had for her

“Jake” and “Stick.” She also didn’t care for his imitation of her on the

phone, “Hello Vivian. What did you say?” Nor was she fond of being

called, “Millie.” I never quite figured that one out, but I know she did

NOT like it, not one bit!

She also didn’t like the fact that she cut the off the tip of her finger

while making brownies at Sara Lee. If you ever noticed the stub, then you

probably heard the story -she never minded sharing the story of how it


Mildred didn’t like olives thrown into her drink - just ask Tina and Laura

about that.

Aunt Mildred didn’t like just staying at home. She loved to travel -

especially when she could. She made trips all over - including Norway.

One thing is for sure - if Mildred was on a trip, you would get a

postcard. I think that was her way of “having you along.” While

traveling she liked, going by way of Amtrack she did NOT like - too noisy.

“I’ll NEVER take a trip like that again.” And you know, I’m not so sure

that that may have been one of her last trips. And when she was told she

could no longer drive - she was forever grateful to Swede for driving she

and Harvey different places.

And Uff-da! She passionately hated snakes - Melody, Beth - Konnie and I

have you covered on the tradition this time. Neither of us care to see a

snake either.

Mildred had taken a fall earlier this year and spent some time in the

Harmony nursing home recuperating. She never seemed to mind it there, the

people there were “so GOOD” to her, but she was not one bit happy the day

they served her an egg salad sandwich - “they could have at least said

they were sorry” - she wrote in one of her letters. Mildred hated eggs!

And milk! I never could figure that out - didn’t she live on a farm?

And as for flowers - dandelions were prettier than daisies in her book.

For whatever reason, she didn’t care for daisies. And I think I remember

at least one time when Daryl teasingly gave her daisies - you know Daryl -

he acted like he didn’t know she didn’t like them. We heard about that,


But I think the one thing Aunt Mildred liked least of all was for anyone

to be unhappy. So today, as we say our goodbye to Mildred, a good friend,

a neighbor, a card playing partner, a sister-in-law, a great-grandma, a

grandma, a mom, a wife, an aunt - let us remember and treasure all that

was GOOD about her - and there was plenty - her faith in God, her knowing

the power of prayer, her love of family, her hospitality, her sense of

humor, her phrases, her nod, her emphasis on certain words, and last but

not least - her mashed potatoes. So don’t leave here unhappy - Aunt

Mildred wouldn’t want it that way.