Thursday, October 8, 2015

When Love Returns {Review}

When Love Returns is book 3 in the Zimmerman Restoration Trilogy series and continues the story of Suzanne and Alexa, a mother and daughter team sorting out the past.  This book opens up with Suzanne back in her family home in Kansas running Alexa's B&B while Alexa is in Indiana looking for her birth mother.  Both women struggle with birth relationships during this season.  Alexa wavers between wanting a relationship with her birth mom and wanting to suffer for abandoning a helpless baby.  Suzanne aches for the daughter she never knew while fearful of loosing the daughter that saved her life.  Will these two women finally be able to sort out the past and move forward?  Or will family relationships forever hold them back?

This book is the culmination of all 3 books, building on the characters that we've come to know in this trilogy.  Paul, the lost love who is also a part of Suzanne's past... Shelly, Suzanne's sister that struggles with her own hurt feelings... Anna-Grace, the adopted cousin who preparing for her wedding... Linda and Tom, lifelong friends of Suzanne who come alongside Alexa in her journey...

All these characters collide in the third book of this series as we discover what's to ultimately become of this mother and daughter.  The themes of adoption, forgiveness, and reconciliation all ring true as they struggle through very real realities of life.  A very satisfying ending to a well-written trilogy.  

*Disclaimer: I was given this book free of charge by the author for my honest review.  All opinions are my own.

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Preschool Activity: Marble Painting

5 Things I'm Loving This Week

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Flannel Sheets
  It's finally getting cool enough to put the flannel sheets on our bed.  They're extra soft and snuggly in a way that cotton sheets just aren't.  And I'm loving this new sign of the season.

Reasonable Plumbing Bills
  Just before we left for the weekend, we noticed a major leak in our kitchen pipes.  Thankfully it wasn't draining into our walls, but still it was a huge inconvenience considering weekend plans and overtime.  So we headed out of town with plans to have it fixed Monday morning.  As Monday morning came around, I was dreading the plumber call.  Luckily, as it turns out, it wasn't that bad.  Living in an older home, plumbing issues make me nervous, but this time, it was just a T joint that needed being replaced.  A couple of hours and I was seeing clean dishes again.

Learning to Draw Books
  Lydia's taking an Art class at school this year and the teacher's focusing a lot on sketching.  And Lydia's really caught the bug.  So we've been checking out How To Draw books from the library and she's studying how it all relates to shapes and design.  It's really feeding into her creativity.

Pumpkin, Pumpkin, PUMPKIN!
  Tis' the season, right?  I've been loving hanging out in the kitchen baking pumpkin chocolate chips muffins and pumpkin desert loaf.  And loving the smell of all deliciousness baking... despite the 80 degree weather.  It may be hot outside, but it's fall in my house.

Being Outdoors More
  Since it's turned a lot cooler, we've been hiking, and trail walking, and waterfall exploring... we've been discovering all sorts of new natural treasures.  To see the look of wonder and amazement in my kid's eyes makes all the prep worth it.  We've been loving it.

What things are you loving this week?

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

2015 Fall To Do List

 Well, I'm a few weeks into fall and just getting around to making a To Do List.  This is my favorite time to celebrate the season and we get to celebrate lots of birthdays as well.  And it's the gateway to the holiday season.  What's not to love about fall?  So without further ado, here are just a few items on our 2015 Fall To Do List:

*Celebrate Noah's 10th Birthday
*Go to the Pumpkin Patch
*Scrapbook through the summer
*Carve pumpkins
*Toast pumpkin seeds
*Try 2-3 new pumpkin recipes
*Make leaf rubbings
*Plan ahead for Christmas
*Plan ahead for Lydia's birthday
*Attend a couple of field trips
*Attend lots of Fall Ball games
*Go to a Harvest Festival (or maybe two)
*Take the kids' annual photos
*Hike a volcano
*Do a pumpkin science experiment

What's on your Fall To Do List?

Monday, October 5, 2015

13 Television Characters that are Adopted

Having walked this crazy foster care/adoption road, my eyes have been opened to how adoption is portrayed in media.  And for the most part, it's hard to find healthy adopted characters in film and television.  I want my son to see that adoption isn't a disability.  One can be adopted and functional and ... human.  So I did a little research and came up with a list of 13 Television Characters that are adopted.  Do any of these names ring a bell?

Victor Graham, Parenthood

Clark Kent, Smallville

Buddy the Dinosaur, Dinosaur Train

Natalie Green, Facts of Life

Punky Brewster

Albert Ingalls, Little House on the Prairie

Lily Pritchett-Tucker, Modern Family

Arnold and Willis Jackson, Different Strokes

Claire Bennett, Heroes

Amanda Tannen, Ugly Betty

Joey Donavon, Gimme a Break

Zola, Grey's Anatomy

Henry Mills, Once Upon a Time

Where else are you seeing adoption normalized in television?
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