Wednesday, March 28, 2012


So, over the past 8 months I have spent a lot of time blogging about how Chris and I have been doing with this whole foster care thing.  But I haven't really written at all about how the boys are doing.  Maybe this is because I have to be careful of what I write and, of course, confidentiality is important but everyday I am encouraged by something new they are learning.  Just being in a school environment and having interactions with both other children and caring adults has made a world of difference.  About 6 months ago, Chris and I had to write a list of things that concerned us about the boys' development.  It is saved on my desktop at work and a few weeks I opened it and honestly had to laugh at out.  They have come SO far.  Here are a few examples.
6 months ago here is what we wrote...

                       They do not seem to know/recognize the following:
-numbers (no ability to count or comprehension of numbers)
-what age they are (cannot answer when you ask them)
-animals (we took them to the zoo and everything was a “horse”)
-animal sounds (no response when you ask, “what does a dog/pig/cat say?”)
-shapes (they were not able to do the eye exam at the doctor’s office because all the shapes were a “star”)
-opposites (frequently ask to put the window “up” in the car when they actually want it down, also they don’t seem to always understand the difference between “yes” and “no”)
-letters/alphabet (no letter recognition or letter sound recognition)
                        -book recognition (if they hand them a book they don’t always hold it right side up)

I am so pleased to say that they have made tremendous progress on EVERY SINGLE ONE of these.  Colors, shapes, animals/sounds, their age, answering questions, opposites, holding books the right way...none of these are a problem anymore.  They still have a little bit of trouble with numbers (they can count to 20 but sometimes miss a few numbers here and there).  They are recognizing a lot of letters and know the letters in their own names.  For example, if they see a "C" they will say, "that letter is for Chris".  So, they are picking up on things and that's encouraging.  They are still not exactly where they should be in order to go to kindergarten in the fall but they are so much closer.  
Their speech has improved enormously and you can actually hold a "conversation" with them.  They are so funny and try to mimic what we say.  For example, I say the phrase "I have no idea" a lot.  Well, the other day, Chris had one of the boys in his truck and I had the other in my car on the way home.  Chris beat us home and I turned to the backseat and said "how did Chris beat us home?"  He looked at me as serious as can be and said "Abbie, I never had an idea!" So, I guess we need to be careful what we say around them!  Their vocabulary seems to grow by the day.
Also, much to my excitement, they are showing a little bit more interest in books.  For those of you who don't know, I am a huge bookworm.  In fact, my first word that I ever spoke was "book".  So, when the boys didn't want to sit and read books with me, it would drive me crazy.  Now, I wouldn't say they are crazy about books, but they will sit and listen (at least for a  book or two).  I cherish the moments that they will actually snuggle up to a good book with me.  Their favorite (mine too!)  is "Goodnight Moon" because they like to find the mouse on every page.
Like I said, Chris and I are very encouraged by the progress they are making.  We pray that whenever the next months and years takes them, they will be in a place where their education and development will be nurtured and made a priority.  Because, all kids deserve at least that.

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Cakes...and more cakes

I have made several cakes since I last posted about cakes...
  The first was a "tie dye" theme cake where the actual cake itself was tie dye.  I basically took one cake batter, split it 4 ways, and added a different color to each one and poured it into the pan.  I also made some tie dye fondant.  It was a fun cake to make!
I also had the pleasure of making several cakes and cupcakes for a little boy's 1st birthday. Since he was born on 3-21, they naturally had a 3-2-1 blastoff party!  The cakes were all classic white with vanilla buttercream.  The cupcakes were half strawberry and half devils food cake.  The giant cupcake was used for his 1st birthday photo shoot. I'm looking forward to seeing the pictures!
The last cake I made was another owl theme baby shower cake.  This time it was for a boy so I used blues and browns.  This was the first time I used a fruit filling and it turned out really well!  So, the cake was classic white with raspberry filling.  The icing was vanilla buttercream.
And here's the photo dump...

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Not "Plan B"

So, a few days ago, I was talking with someone that I know fairly well and they asked me "I don't mean to be nosy, but do you and Chris want kids of your own?"  Honestly, maybe I've been naive for the past 8 months, but it never crossed my mind that maybe people thought foster care was a "plan B" for us.  So, to clarify, as far as Chris and I know, we can and will have our own biological children one day.  We just felt a strong leading from the Lord to do foster care first.  And, our hope is that we do treat these kids like they are our "own" for however long we have the privilege of fostering them. 
Since before Chris and I were married we have been in agreement that we want to adopt at least one child someday.  It is something that both of us are very passionate about.   My passion comes from the many international mission trips I have taken- the greatest influence being my two trips to Haiti.  Chris' passion comes from the fact that he has a sister who was adopted from China. (But oddly enough, we are pretty sure we want to adopt domestically instead of internationally).  Foster care seemed like a logical first step and God made it clear that it was suppose to be our first step.
I pray that the Lord blesses us with biological children one day but I also feel very strongly that children do not have to share a blood line with you to be your "own".  So, yes, we will have children of our "own" however the Lord sees fit.  And no, foster care is most definitely not a "Plan B".
You can read more about the beginning of our foster care journey here.

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Our night away...

Last weekend Chris and I had the opportunity to get away for an evening.  For Chris' birthday I had bought him tickets to see Casting Crowns (an awesome band if you've never heard them) in Charlotte.  My parents generously got a hotel room for us so we could make it a night get-away.  My good friend Alison and her husband kept the boys for us (THANK YOU!).  However, on Saturday morning a few hours before we were suppose leave, I wasn't so sure we were going to be able to go.  One of the boys was running a fever and Alison is 26 weeks pregnant so the last thing I wanted was for her to catch a bug.  So, I called her and explained the situation but she assured me that it was fine.  I felt sort of guilty leaving but we had planned this trip for so long, and Alison and Paul insisted it was fine, so off we went. You guys are the best!!
The concert was absolutely amazing.  The music itself was awesome but the testimony of the band was the best part.  They obviously have a big heart for kids/orphans and it really showed in both their music and words.  They even had an intermission where they had World Vision representatives set-up all around the arena and also had a information table about America World Adoption.  Mark Hall, the lead singer, and his wife adopted a little girl from China and really have a heart for adoption.  It is incredible to see people really living our God's plea to his people to "care for the widows and orphans".  It encouraged Chris and I a lot.  If you know us, you know that we want to adopt someday whether or not we are able to have our own children.  So, to see "celebrities" who are exemplifying this is awesome to us.
On another note, this was our first night away in 7 months.  We really did miss the boys.  It was sort of sad not putting them to bed that night but I knew they were in very good hands with the Hicks!
Here are a few pictures from the concert.  Sorry they are terrible quality because they were taken on my phone but I couldn't post this without at least one picture!

Monday, March 12, 2012

This weekend's cakes

This weekend was a super busy one!!  Chris and I went out of town for the evening on Saturday but before could go I had two cakes to deliver. The first was for a little girl's 7th birthday.  It was in "ice cream" themed cake.  The cake itself was vanilla cake with vanilla buttercream with fondant decorations.  The ice cream cones were filled with vanilla buttercream.  The second cake was for a bridal shower.  It was red velvet cake with vanilla buttercream icing and piping.  The bottom was embellished with a blue ribbon and the bow on top is fondant.  I'll be honest, my husband made the bow on top!  Check out the cakes below.  I'll blog about our evening at another time...

Thursday, March 8, 2012

The new normal

Life has changed a lot over the past 7 months (that's right, we've had the boys for 7 months today!).   There have been so many days that I have said (selfishly) that I am looking forward to life getting "back to normal".  But, lately I've realized that this is the new normal.  This is how life is suppose to be, for however long it's going to last.  Let me tell you a few things that are "the new normal".

  •  Waking up Being woken up between 6 and 6:30 every single day.
  • A messy house.  It seems that no matter how many times I pick up the random toys, socks, clothing, etc. around the house, it mysteriously re-appears in a matter of minutes.
  • Having songs like "Old McDonald" stuck in my head.  
  • Noise.  Constant noise throughout the house.  Unless of course the boys are sleeping.  Thank goodness for naptime!
  • Doing at least 6 loads of laundry a week.  At least.
  • Dinner time taking at least 30 minutes now instead of 10.  We have issued a new dinner time rule.  No talking until you are done eating.  Think that sounds mean?  Come and join us for dinner one night and you will see that it is not mean but, in fact, very necessary.
I think I could write a book about the changes we have experienced around the Wrights household. But, like I said, it's getting more and more "normal" everyday.  Honestly, Chris and I can't imagine having a house without kids now.  Sometimes we'll look at each other and say "how did we even spend our time before the boys came to live with us?"  We honestly, despite how difficult it has been, feel so blessed to have these two little boys as part of our "family" right now.  We don't know what will happen in the next weeks, months, years to come, but for now we're enjoying this crazy, chaotic everyday life!