Monday, October 31, 2011

Quest for Candy

Well, today is Halloween. Shy will be dressed as Cinderella and apparently I will be the one that ushers her around thorugh the neighborhood tonight. (DW has decided that she will give out the candy at our house) The area is quite dark so we will be sure to take our flashlights with us. We have no idea what to expect, or how far we will be going.

This is an interesting part of moving that I had never thought of before. The first few times DW and I moved, we did not have kids who went Trick or Treating, so it wasn't an issue. The one time we moved, with children of Trick or Treat age was 28 years ago. I barely remember much about that year or the Halloween (except that some people in the neighborhood took glasses with them when they were trick or treating with their kids, and expected a libation for themselves....does anyone else do that?) Anyway, that was a move into the first home we owned. It was in May, and our oldest was only 5. Halloween was the furthest thing from our minds.

Today, however I am wondering how it will go. The house we lived in the last few years was not in a "halloween friendly" neighborhood. We actually drove to another neighborhood last year to take Shy on her annual quest for candy. It was a great meighborhood. People were really into the Halloween spirit and it was a fun time.

This year....who knows? We live on a street that has about 25 homes and no sidewalks. The street runs between two other streets that also don't have sidewalks and are a bit busier then the one we live on. Will it be "Halloween Friendly"? I guess I am going to find out tonight.

DW doesn't know how much candy to buy. Neighbors are non-commital as to what happens on Halloween. Apprently it difffers greatly from one year to the next. There is just so much to think about when it comes to a first halloween in a new neighborhood. I wonder what Amy and her husband are doing. Their neighborhood I would guess is definitely NOT Halloween Friendly as they live on a major street and there aren't a lot of homes in the are where they live.

Well, I hope it is an eventful evening and I have lots of news to report tomorrow about how the night went. In the meantime, I have to get back to work. I have a lot to do if I am to get done in time today to take Shy on her annual Quest for Candy!!!


Friday, October 28, 2011


So Shy had a half-day at school yesterday. With the kids gone from the school, the PTA took advantage of that time to begin setting up for a "boo-fest" tonight. I am sure I will have something more to say about that on Monday, but for now, back to the half day.

DW is involved with the PTA and so she went to the school to help set up. That left Shy getting out of school early, and of course, I had to take time off of work to get her at the bus. I love the cahnces we have to spend time with just the two of us, so I was more than happy to oblige. When I picked her up, she infomred me that she was hungry and wanted to get something to eat.

I suggested a little deli type mini-mart that is up the street from our house. She had never been there before and asked if they had tuna. I said they did, and it was agreed that we would go there for lunch.

When we got there they had a little sub type tuna sandwich that was about 8 inches long. I showed it to her and asked if she wanted to share it with me. I would cut it and we could each have half. She thought that was a great idea.

Then I said to her "Why don't you get a bag of chips we can share"

She went over to the rack with the chips and picked out a bag of Doritos and agreed that we could share that.

I saw some Twinkies on another rack and since I know she likes them I picked it up and said "Do you want to share the Twinkies for dessert? We can each have one"

She declined that and said "I would rather have cookies"

We went over to the cookie rack and she picked up a 4 pack of Chips Ahoy. That caused the following conversation to ensue:

Me: "Are we going to share the cookies too?"

Shy: "Yes, we can each have 3"

Me (seeing this as a teachable math moment) "There are only 4 cookies in the package"

Shy: "Well then I will have 4 and you can have 2"

Me: (trying to be patient) "Shy, there are only 4 cookies total in the package"

Shy: "well then you can have 4 and I can have 4"

Me: (getting a little frustrated) "No Shy, there are only 4 cookies total in the package"

Shy: "Well then I will have 4 and you........ can get your own"

So, I got Fig Newtons....I like them better anyway.


Thursday, October 27, 2011

Swimming and Girl Scouts

So last night Shy had her first swimming lesson. Unfortuntately I was unable to attend. (I had to go to Girl Scouts, but I will get to that later). DW said the entire time that she was in the water she had a huge smile on her face. She was thoroughly enjoying it. She didn't know any of the other girls or boys who were there, so yet another opportunity for her to make new friends.

When I got home from Girl Scouts, it was after she was in bed, but as usual she was still awake. I could tell she had a great time at swimming and is ready to go back. Considering we live so close to so much water, it is great that she enjoys swimming and will learn to be a good swimmer. Our son Barry was a swimmer in high school. Who knows, maybe she will be too. She seems to be a lot more athletic then the rest of us.

So....Girl Scouts. While DW and Shy were at the pool, dear old dad was at a Girl scout Troop Formation meeting. Yes, I was the only male in the room. Yes, I was also the oldest person in the room. I actuaally felt like I was in a room of Girl Scouts, not in a room with parents of girl scouts!. They were all so young. They also wanted to be sure I had the opportunity to be a troop leader if I wanted to. Now, I am not sure I would want a male to be a Girl Scout Troop leader, but for some reason they saw no problem....Don't worry, when they mentioned that Daisy's could be up to 10 or even 12 five and six year olds, I knew that put me out of even considering it.

The good news is that they are only going to meet for 1 hour every other week. So it won't be too much for Shy. The other good news is that it includes a lot of girls from her school from other 1st grade classes. More opportunities for her to meet new friends.

By the way, thanks for yesterday's comments on how much she should be doing and about over-involvement. There is definitely a lot to think about. I think it will be much easier for us to get play dates and other type activities set up once we get to know some of the other parents better. Unfortunately, Shy does not come home with last names, and the only phone number she came home from school with was unreadable (I was just as glad. His name was Anthony and he is an older boy on the bus).

I think it is on DW and I. We have to get to know some of the other parents so that we can find these things out. DW is doing a good job of that by being involved in PTA. As a matter of fact she will be at the school this afternoon getting a halloween thing ready for tomorrow night.

Anyway, Shy is doing well. She is looking forward to Girl Scouts. She is LOVING swim, and so far, no real problems. We will certainly keep a close eye on her though.


Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Just Wondering


I am beginning to wonder if there is too much going on for Shyanne. She has been behaving differently, and at first I thought it might be because of the move, but now I am wonderfing if she is "over-involved".

DW is calling a person today to try to set up some aapointments for Shyanne to see someone, but until then, we have to deal with it ourselves, I guess. But how does one know when a child is over-invloved.

Right now she has Sunday School on Sunday, Dance on Monday, Swimming on Wednesday, and Basketball on Friday. We are also preparing for Girl Scouts, but that has not started yet, and we are not sure when/how that will run. I don't know if that is too much or not enough. Maybe part of the problem is she needs more stimulation on the empty days and in between the times of school and the other activities.

It is all kind of new to us. When our older kids were Shy's age, there wasn't as much available for them. the girls never did more than one or two sports/activities at a time. No one did in those days. Of course it was easier to let kids go outside and play without worrying about them at that time too. Now, you have to watch your child constantly. You never know what can happen to them and that is especially true with her.

While her bio parents don't know where we are, they know who we are and in this technological era, it wouldn't be too hard to find us.

So, if anyone has any good ideas on what constitutes too much or not enough for a first grader's activities, we are always willing to get other's viewpoints.



Monday, October 24, 2011


This weekend we went to Maine to visit with family and friends who we left behind when we moved.

Amy and her husband had just passed papers on the house they bought on Friday and we got to see it. Empty, in need of cleaning, in need of some work, in need of love. I know they will provide all of that, and it will be a wonderful home for them to spend the next chapter of their life in. DW and I are so happy for them.

We spent our nights at Kari's house with her husband and our handsome grandson. It was a great time there too. (except that our grandson didn't feel like letting anyone sleep on Friday night). Apparently he preferred screaming to sleeping. We slept downstairs in their "guest room/office". Well, I did end up on the couch both nights as Shy decided she wanted to sleep on the bed instead of in a sleeping bag on the floor. The double bed isn't quite big enough for three of us.

We had a wonderful breakfast with old friends on Saturday morning, and an equally wonderful dinner with other old friends on Saturday night. It was great spending time with them. As yet, we have not found good friends like that down here. I am sure we iwll given time, but right now, all we have are aquaintances.

Shyanne got to visit with two of her biological brothers this weekend as well. The one who is closest to Shyanne in age is, by all appearances, a very happy boy enjoying his new adoptive life with a wonderful man who he calls dad. The next older brother that she got to visit with, does not appear to be as happy a boy. His adoption has been final for a few months now, and the family he is with is truly wonderful, but he just doesn't seem to be very happy. I think he remembers only good things about his past life, and wants that life back. Unfortunately, that is not to be, nor should it be. Their parents were turly unable to provide a safe environment for them.

I am glad Shyanne got to visit with the happy brother last. I think that made the trip a better one for her. I know there was no discussion with him about their past life. Neither of them really have much memory of it. They are both just "only" children at this point, and they truly do love and adore playing with each other. They were running around Chuck e Cheese's playing all the games, on the rides, and in the playground, while we sat around talking. I know Shy had a great time.

Thanksgiving we will be in Maine again, and that will be another opportunity to visit with her biological brothers. It would be nice to get the two older brothers invovled in a visit, but the foster parents they have don't seem very interested. They have been the same foster parents since the beginning, but as far as we know, the adoption is not yet final. It is really too bad. I know the two older brothers have had most of the problems, so maybe it is better this way.

I just want Shyanne to stay connected with her long as it is a healthy connection.


Wednesday, October 19, 2011


Our son Barry lives in Alabama. He has been there since 2007 and I think he enjoys it there. He has made some good friends, and I think friends that he will maintain for a long time to come. The problem is that we don't get to see him very much because of the distance.

He called yesterday to tell us about jobs he is applying for. Two of the most recent are in Boston and Oregon. You see where I am going with this? Absolutely. While I want him to progress in his career and do the things he wants to do and live his life the way he wants to live it, I can't help but hope that he doesn't get the job in Oregon.

Now I have nothing against Oregon. I am sure it is a beautiful state. There is Mt. Hood, the Oregon Coast I am sure is beautiful as well, and the city of Portland would be nice to visit. It is just that living in New England it has been tough enough to see him when he lived in Alabama. What would it be like if he moved to Oregon? That is our fear.

So, while we are not hoping he doesn't get the Oregon job, we are hoping real hard that if he gets any job, it be the Boston job. It would be so nice to have him back home. I know Shyanne and his biological sisters would love to have him close by. We all really miss him a lot.

So, what does that have to do with Cheese-Its???

Absolutely nothing. But yesterday when we told Shyanne where we were going to go to meet her biological brother on Sunday, she told us that she was excited about seeing him at "Chucky Cheese-Its" :)


Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Busy , Busy, Busy

Shyanne is certianly busy these days. She has had soccer on Saturday mornings. Dance is held on Monday afternoons. Soon she will start basketball on Friday evenings, and I think swimming starts soon and that will be on Wednesday evenings. Oh, I can't forget Sunday School. (I'll let you figure out when that one is). In any event, she is certainly keeping busy here in our new town. She had dance and Sunday School in Maine, and she had some swimming a couple of years ago when she went to pre-school at the Y, but all the other is new to her.

This weekend will also be a busy weekend!! We are going to Maine for a visit. She will get to visit with her sisters Amy and Kari, whom she misses and adores very much. We have also arranged for visits with two of her biological brothers. They have both been adopted and we are trying to maintain contact with them as much as possible. They are the two younger of her biological brothers. Unfortunately, the two older ones we have not had any contact with or been able to set up visits with. She has not visited with them since last Christmas.

We have every meal planned for the weekend. Friday night dinner with Kari and her family. Saturday morning breakfast with Amy and her family. Saturday lunch with a biological brother. Saturday dinner with friends. Sunday morning breakfast....(I'm not sure on this one. have to check with DW) and Sunday afternoon lunch with the other biological brother.

So, as I said, we are busy, busy, busy.....and I for one, am enjoying it very much!! I think Shyanne is as well.


Monday, October 17, 2011

Painting Shutters

This weekend I painted the shutters on our house. It is not that big a deal to paint shutters, but it is all part of making this house our home and having it reflect a little bit of us. It will take a while to get there, but I am sure over time we will put our stamp on this home and it will be come more and more ours as time goes on.

While I was putting the shutters back on the house on Sunday, Shyanne came up to me and said she didn't like this house. When I asked her why, she couldn't really say why. I mentioned how she had friends that she was playing with right next door, and she didn't have that in Maine. She agreed that was nice.

I mentioned how nice her new swingset was here, and she agreed that she liked it. (although she doens't like the amount of spiders that get on it down here)

I mentioned that we had a fireplace where we could start a fire with real wood whenever we wanted..... I lost on that one. It seems with the gas fireplace at the other house was better because she could start the fire with just a flip of the switch on the wall if she wanted to. She doesn't yet appreciate that glow and smell of a real wood fire, but over time I am confident she will.

I mentioned that our driveway was now flat and she could ride up and down it without any problems, and she agreed that was nicer than the hill we had for a dirveway in Maine.

After our discussion, she agreed that there were things better about this house, but she still said she didn't like it. I know the house in Maine was special, and it will always remain as a special house to all of us, but I am confident that over time, that will change and the house in Maine will be just a distant memory. A nice memory, but just a memory of the past.

So why doesn't she like this house? I don't know for sure as she couldn't answer that for me. I think it is a combination of being new to us.....being far away from her two older sisters whom she adores.....things being different for all of us.....and who knows?

What I do know is that this is a wonderful place to live, and I am confident over time, we will all come to love it here, and enjoy ourselves.

By the way, the fire in the fireplace last night was truly wonderful.


Friday, October 14, 2011

Family Makes the Day

Yesterday was a great day. first, it was Shyanne's birthday and those celebrations with her are always wonderful.

It was made a little more special by cousins visiting from Martha's Vineyard. My first cousin, her husband and two children came over to the Cape for a nice dinner and conversation. The kids had a great time playing together and I made one of my favorite meals (Chicken Marsala) that we all enjoyed.

I had picked them up from the ferry at 3:15 and brought them back to catch the last ferry to the Vineyard at 8:30pm. But they weren't the only visitors we had. We ended up with a very unexpected last minute visitor who spent the night.....

My sister. She lives in Texas and due to some difficulty in planning a trip to visit some friends she found herself coming to Massachusetts with no place to stay last night. She called me yesterday morning, which was quite unusual, and explained her plight asking if she could spend the night.....Of course she could. she's my sister. I would never turn her away...

So when I left to bring my cousin back to the ferry, DW left to pick up my sister at the bus stop. They arrived at the house shortly after I did, and we stayed up talking until about 11:00pm. It was really nice and made for a fine end to a great day.

Family is truly wonderful. I love them all....and more importantly.....So does Shyanne!!


Thursday, October 13, 2011

Shyanne's Birthday

Today is Shyanne's 6th birthday. She has been with us almost 4 years now, and next month will be a 1 year Adoption Day celebration. I can no longer remember what life was like without her in our home, and I don't want to because it is absolutely wonderful having her in our family and spending every day with her. She is definitely a special girl. Everyone in our family loves and adores her. More importantly, she loves and adores all of us.

Since we are in a new area and she hasn't had a chance to get to know a lot of the kids yet, we are putting off her actual "kids" birthdya party until the end of the month. These days it is difficult to get informaiton from the schools about people's last names and addresses, and they frown on bringing invitations to school. As a result, it makes it difficult for a new child coming into a community close to their birthday.

In any event, we are planning and will get a good party for her with her new friends in a couple of weeks time.

Today, cousins are coming over to visit from Martha's Vineyard. They wil be here for dinner, so it will be like a mini family celebration tonight. Of course the way DW goes about buying birthday presents, it will be far from "mini" on that end of it. (Yes, I did participate in the buying, but when there are way too many presents, I feel the need to blame DW).

Happy 6th Birthday Shyanne!!! I love you!


Wednesday, October 12, 2011

A New Spin on an Old Problem

Since I missed so much time here on the blog, I am going to try and get you caught up. Back at the end of August we went to Shy's new school for an open house. It was the Thursday before Labor Day, and the classroom was all set up and ready to go. Shy would start first grade the day after Labor Day, and she was quite excited about it.

She found a place at a table with her name on it. This was to be her seat. Table 4. There were 5 other children at Table 4. There were 3 boys and 3 girls to be sitting there when school started on Tuesday.

Jump ahead about a week.....

As a lot of families do, we go over our day at the dinner table with each of us taking turns as to what we did during our day. Shy always goes last. We were only a few days into school when Shyanne mentioned a game she was playing on the playground with some of the other children. We asked if they were children that were at Table 4 with her.

That is when she told us she was no longer sitting at Table 4. It hadn't been that long that she was in school and we were wondering why there had already been a table change, so we asked. Her answer was surprising.

It seems that (at least as Shyanne saw it) she just wasn't talking enough with the children over at table 2, so the teacher thought it would be better if she sat with the children over at table 2 so she could talk more with them.

When asked if she was sure it wasn't that she was talking too much to the children at her old table. She went on to the next thing she did that day at school.

Definitely a new spin, and I thought, quite original.


Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Where have I been?

My daughter was tweeting last week and wondered if I would ever update this blog. It seems like a good question. I was trying to get caught up, but then there was the move, and my mother's visit, and getting ready for everything with Shy starting a new school. It has been very hectic.

I am still hectic at work. There is a lot to do at a new place, and this place has been no exception. There are so many good people though, so that is a help. There has been so much happening since we moved and getting settled that I have a lot to write. Unfortunately, I never percieve myself as having the time to do it. I am going to make an honest effort to correct that and try to write something and keep everyone up to date as often as possible.

Expect to see more here