Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Heinz 57

If my mom were still alive, she would say I am a Heinz 57. What that means I don’t exactly know, but I am hoping in my lineage somewhere is a drop or two of Irish blood to reap the benefits of this 4-leaf clover presented to me today. The significance of this nature made lucky charm runs deep for this mom who dreams of adding another Indian princess to her brood.

Mentioned in an earlier post, our first clover was bestowed upon us just days before our referral call revealing news and our first glimpse of our precious Devi. Timing being everything, it came at a time when we were uncertain that our dream of International adoption would ever materialize.

This clover, discovered in full bloom during a friend and co-workers backyard retreat, was delivered this morning, wrapped tenderly in a paper towel. Cat, who follows the blog, figured we could use this kind of luck for adoption number two.

She figured right, as I have added another year to my age and, at the risk of sounding like a broken record, this makes us a combined total of 91 years, technically too old to adopt an infant from the land of peacocks, sarees, bangles, and incense that has captivated our hearts. Days before blowing out my candles, the anxiety over that dreaded approaching prime number had reached an all time high. Would the door to this dream suddenly slam shut on my birthday? Prodded by this unanswered question, I phoned our agency representative looking for closure but hoping for assurance. Suffice to say, that we are not throwing in the towel just yet. Though direct questions regarding the specifics of this adoption can not yet be answered, we were left with a possible “within a year” time frame to find a daughter and sister for the three of us, which is more promising than I had hoped for.

Not quite ready to change the name of the blog to "Princess-es Born of India" just yet, we are at least newly refueled with hope once again and ready to continue down this chosen path armed with a little bit-o-luck. Thanks Cat!!

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Hold On To Your Hats And Keep Your Arms Inside the Car

Planting with Oma on Mother's Day

Beep, beep, beep!!! While that may be the sound of an alarm clock in most households, in ours, it is the signal to hold onto your hats and keep your arms inside the car; the roller coaster of life is leaving the station with
mommy, daddy and a two and half year old in it. Navigating our way through a busy day can bring the thrill of a 50 foot drop, the swell in your gut that comes with making a loopty-loop, and timeless uncontrollable laughter when the fun you're having makes the realities of the world disappear. Our amusement park like attraction is only 34 and 3/4 inches tall, weighs 23 pounds and answers to the name of Deviroo.

The other night, I was standing at the front door chatting with our neighbor Carol. Daddy and Devi were just returning from a walk and joined us on the porch. Devi ran up to Carol and gave her a big bear hug and said, "Carol, would you care for a glass of wine?" We all burst out laughing...she has become a little hostess all ready!

A few days later, the t
hree of us were blessed to find some sunshine on our front stoop. We were all sitting there basking in the rays, when Devi noticed that we had had a new phone book delivered and she asked if she could read it. She took the book, and with her back to us, squatted down with her hands in her lap and began to flip the pages. I just love it when kids do this squat is so darned cute. Anyway, she entertained herself for a while, flipping a page or two and then slammed the book shut and came running back to us saying, "I'm done with the was a boring read!" Another gut wrencher! I don't know where she picks up this stuff, but her comments flabbergast us every time.

Making cookies, even those made out of Play-doh, can only be for one person....Santa Claus! We made a whole plate full of tasty morsels for old St. Nick in every color in the rainbow. When playtime was over we began squashing our delectable treats back into the containers when Devi said in a very sad voice, "Sorry Santa, sorry Rudolph, sorry Olive the other reindeer" It was very dear that she felt bad that we were not leaving them out overnight for them to try. We explained that Santa and his reindeer are at the North Pole making toys for good little girls and good little boys which spawned, "Am I a good girl?" :) (An angel...most of the time!)

Lately, she has become very interested in all things India. Devi is very aware that she was born ther
e, but mommy and daddy were not. We frequently find her saying "Namaste" to her animal friends and she has taken to drawing on my hands with sidewalk chalk. She tells me the chalk is henna and she is doing mendhi on my hands for me. She loves Indian food which we prepare often, but you could tell her a pb&j was Indian food and for her, it would suddenly become more delicious!

Just like last year, the weekly farmer's market is still a huge source of entertainment for us. Devi has a much better understanding of it this year and asks every time, "The farmer's grow the vegetables? The farmer sells the vegetables? We buy the vegetables?" We let her carry her own cloth bag, pick out a piece of fruit and pay for it herself, which is the highlight of her trip. Daddy and I prefer a tasty baked good, but to each his own.

Cooking away
on her pretend stove top the other day I over heard Devi adjusting the temperature of the burners. According to her, her stove has "Hot", "Cold" and "Mirium"!

Daddy & Devi make Eirekuchen!

Thus ends another couple of weeks of life's roller coaster ride. The highlight of this week was breakfast on my second Mother's day made by my hubby and daughter....Eirekuchen, or German pancakes. She gets a bit over zealous cracking the eggs, saying Uh-oh and invariably we end up scooping them off the counter and into a bowl. The recipe calls for slightly beaten, so there you go.

We spent the after
noon taking a delightful walk through a Rhododendron garden and Bonsai tree exhibit with Oma. The sun managed to peak it's head out just long enough for us to complete both and then came the rain drops. In a dry spell of the afternoon Oma and Devi shared a fun moment planting flowers in pots together. Devi chose marigolds, which seems so appropriate since they are a flower used to celebrate festive occasions in India. With the planting we came to realize that Devi can't stand to get her hands dirty. Shoveling, adding plant food and watering are okay, but don't try and make her touch the dirt!! "It' yucky" and that is a quote. A wonderful grilled fish dinner topped off with my personal favorite - rhubarb pie rounded out my wonderful Mother's day. The day was like heaven - a true gift to spend it with family...our family of three created by the selfless act of a woman half a world away. It is to honor her - Jhuma - that Devi's marigolds bloom.

Marigolds for Jhuma

Saturday, May 02, 2009

Here Comes Peter Cottontail!

Dying eggs with Aunt Joan

Armed with a whole repertoire of songs, somehow Devi occasionally gets stuck on a personal favorite. We were relieved when she recently took a shine to Here Comes Peter Cottontail, because this new tune finally retired Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer, which she has been hooked on since long before the Christmas holiday! Now, nearly a month past Easter, we would gladly welcome any other holiday composition. Know of any Memorial Day songs?

Our family is full of some pretty fierce competitors, and the annual Easter egg dying event is not to be left out. In years past, my dad was the judge as we would send photos of our eggs to him in Arizona and describe the dying processes we used on each one. Always impartial, he found merit with each of our egg creations, siting the similarities of constellations and other natural formations in our multicolored masterpieces. Although Devi is not quite ready for some of the experimental dying processes we have tried, she still found her own creative rhythm. Her technique was speed. We couldn't get the eggs in and out of the dye baths fast enough for her! W
ith Aunt Joan coaching at her side, we managed to cajole Devi into letting a few eggs sit long enough to get past a pastel shade and didn't crack a one...much!

First Easter Egg Hunt!

Devi and mom with her loot!

Living in a small town has some perks, one of which is our annual Easter Egg Hunt. This was Devi's first hunting experience, but she was very aware of the goal - put eggs in basket - not knowing what was contained in the colorful plastic containers. Try as I might to keep the "candy" part a secret, she figured us out and was delighted to try her first Reese's Peanut Butter Cup.

After church, we found the Easter Bunny had made a stop to Oma's house.
Devi is wearing a dress that was hand made and purchased in India the day after we were united.
She is also recently become the master of the cheesy grin...hope this passes soon!

During our church service the next day, the children were invited up to the pulpit for story time. With plastic eggs as props, the story teller first showed a "full" egg explaining about how the tomb was closed with Jesus inside. Later in the story, she showed two empty egg halves and explained how Jesus left the tomb and had risen. Devi was very attentive, but remembering her discovery at the egg hunt from the day before, was eyeing those full eggs. Naturally, at the end of story time, the children were released to join their parents and were each given a full egg to take back to their seats. Devi took her place beside me and with breakneck speed, managed to crack that egg into my skirt and whip up the 4 or 5 malted ball eggs and stuff every last one of them into her mouth before I could wrestle that slippery egg out of her hot little mits. That was the most candy that child has ever eaten in one sitting and boy what a transformation. With sugar almost immediately racing through her blood stream, she was gone - poke a fork in her, she was done. Sitting still one more second would have been a unbelievable phenomenon. She promptly went to the nursery :)!

Oma prepared out Easter Sunday meal, that was scrumptious as always. We manage to gorge ourselves on Easter Bread that she makes annually; a recipe handed down from her German mother. It is a good thing we only are allowed to enjoy it once a year because it is dense with butter and served warm is like heaven! The Easter Bunny's helper always manages to send a whole loaf home with us, which becomes our steady diet until it is gone!

Daddy and Devi playing "hop hop" Easter bunny.