Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Love Found a Way

Let me just start out by saying how honored I am to have my story told. My wonderful friend Connie offered to do my story and I was more than thrilled.
This subject is very close to my heart. I thank my parents every day for all they do. For the unconditional love they show me on a daily basis. The part at the bottom always chokes me up. Both of my parents proudly show off all 4 of their grandchildren. No one would suspect they are not biologically theirs. But they might as well be.

I typed out the entire article at the bottom.

Amber Hughes Shoemaker, Parnell, is very aware of the positive effects adoption can have on a child.

Shoemaker was born March 3, 1981, and was brought to her adoptive parents' house on March 12. She was just eight days old. Shoemaker and her brother Steven were both adopted through the Edna Gladney Center for Adoption.

Jim and Tanna Hughes had a deep desire for children. Although they had tried for years, Tanna was seemed to be unable to conceive.
They went to a fertility doctor. Tests were administered. Treatment was prescribed. Nothing was working.

"When the doctor told my parents they wouldn't be able to have their own children, he had tears in his eyes," Shoemaker said. "My parents adopted my brother shortly after that--in September 1976."

When Shoemaker was 7 years old, she remembered asking her mother questions about babies. Had she really been a baby in her mommy's tummy?
"That's when my mother told me about being adopted," she said.
She told me my birth mother loved me enough to give me to someone who could take care of me.."

Shoemaker grew up knowing she was adopted. It just felt natural.
"That's how it was and how it's always been," she said, "We were their kids. My brother is my brother. He picks on my like any other brother would pick on his little sister."
Shoemaker's was a closed adoption. When she became an adult, she realized nobody in the family looked like her. "Matthew looked identical to my husband," she said.

All the information Shoemaker has about her birth parents is in a manila envelope. A few medical details are inside. She knows eczema runs on her mother's side of the family. Both her birth mother and father wear glasses. There was also a list of some of the activities her birth parents enjoyed. She knows her birth father is Irish.

But that's where it stops. Shoemaker has no medical history about her birth parents. She worries about her sons, Matthew and David. What if they were to have a medical concern in their future?
She decided to look for her birth parents; however, she has discovered she can't get any information about them. The records are closed.

Shoemaker said she has talked to people who have considered adoption but were concerned they wouldn't connect with a child that is not their own.
"My parents never had that problem," she said.
"When I had our second son, David, my dad went around at work showing everyone his picture.

People were telling Dad how much David looked like him. He didn't tell them any different. My mom and I both have green eyes. My dad and Steven both have brown eyes.

Editorial Note: November is National Adoption Awareness Month

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Monsters and Marios

We had a fantastic time Trick-or-Treating in the Maryville Square this year. We had a pretty tight budget when it came to costumes so I tried to be as creative as possible.100_4892

Cookie Monster and Mario…a.k.a. David and Matthew


David is our little Cookie Monster, he lives up to this name on a daily basis. So when we found this shirt at the store one day, we just HAD to get it for him.


I tried to make it a little more “costume-y” by drawing horns on him. Matt insisted they were eyebrows since the original Cookie Monster doesn’t have horns. Either way, he looked pretty stinkin cute.






The tale of Matthew’s costume: One day I went to St. Joseph and stopped by this awesome thrift store. I always find lots of clothes for the kids at super cheap prices. I was stoked when I found these red overalls. I immediately thought of Matthew and how he had been raving about wanting to be Mario for Halloween. I couldn’t wait to get home and show them to him. I just knew he would love them…and he did. But then later, he gently broke it to me that Mario actually has blue overalls and a red shirt. He even gave me a reassuring pat on the back, saying that he was completely ok with it. He said he would just be “reverse-Mario.”

I think about these times when I’m pulling my hair out with him. Because in the end, he’s a pretty amazing kid.

So, Matthew loved his costume. I added a mustache with liquid eyeliner and he pulled it off amazingly. He posed up and down the square so that I could get an adequate amount of pictures.




He posed…


…and posed…



…and posed…


…and posed some more.

Funny story:  While we were walking down the square, Matt scooped up David and put him on his shoulders because we were getting ready to go through a big crowd. A few minutes after we passed them, Matt stopped and said with a frightened expression “Wait…where’s David?” It only took him a second to realize that he was on his shoulders. Of course I took a picture as a reminder of the hilarity. 



The kids got plenty of yummy goodies that Matt and I thoroughly inspected and tested. (as only a good parent does.) A good time was had all around. I can’t believe that Halloween is already over. Where did the year go?

Did I mention that Matthew posed a lot?