Beach 2014

written by Tuesday, July 15, 2014 0 , , , Permalink 3

We just got home from one fantastical week at the beach. We are tan, sandy, a bit lazy and rather sad to be home.

Each year, for as long as I can remember my family traveled north to the Jersey shore to visit and vaca with my ‘rents dear friends the Nardi’s. Well the tradition lives on. Now instead of staying with the Nardi’s (because our family has grown) we rent the house next door and my sister Molly, Mimi and the Nardi’s and their kids all meet at the shore the same week. It is so fun.

It is a really great week for all of the cousins to play, for us to catch up with old friends, for my sister and I to just hang out and really for all of our families to just be together having fun.

There is so much to do in Wildwood. Every day was filled with excitement…and really great weather. We brought our bikes and rode all around town, to parks and to dinner. We played mini golf, we spent one afternoon on a Pirate Ship and we visited the Cape May Zoo.  Nearly every night we walked the board walk and rode rides, the kids loved it. Jonah would go nuts “driving” the little cars and the big boys got their first taste of bigger roller coasters. They both rode the log flume and thought it was the MostSuperFunRideInTheWholeWorld. We ate way too many donuts and ice cream but had a really great time.  And we spent hours on the beach digging in the sand and splashing in the waves.

Summer Days

written by Sunday, June 8, 2014 0 Permalink 1

Even though Joshua has one more week of school, Summer is well under way here at TC HQ. We have been swimming, camping, eating popsicles, running through the sprinkler, bike riding and doing all things SUMMER.

The big boys have even gotten summer haircuts. Mohawks. They are not my favorite, Isaac seriously looks like Mr. T without a beard. But they are fun, for now.

Jonah has even started the summer in a new bed, he is so tall that he would easily swing his legs over the top of the crib and just leap out. He is 38″ tall–apparently that is too tall for a crib. The transition to his bed has been easy, he doesn’t like to sleep under covers yet, but we are hoping he likes them by wintertime.



Isaac’s Graduation 2014

written by Thursday, May 29, 2014 0 No tags Permalink 2

Before we dive into the details of Isaac Graduating from PreK. We must look back. Look how much the dudes have grown.

This is Joshua's first day of preschool, February 2012

This is Joshua’s first day of preschool, February 2012

This is Joshua's first day of PreK, Sept 2012

This is Joshua’s first day of PreK, Sept 2012

Isaac at his graduation, spring 2014!

Isaac at his graduation, spring 2014!



























It is amazing to watch them grow. Isaac looks like a little man. Look at him in his tie!

So Isaac’s graduation was just so great. It was filled with sweet songs like, “This Little Light of Mine” and “You have a Friend in Me” and cookies and lemonade and first friendships.

During the ceremony, the pastor gave each child a blessing, a characteristic that she has seen grow in each of them.

Do you remember for Joshua, she blessed him with the love of Christian Music. If you know Joshua you know that is very accurate, he knows every word to every Chris Tomlin song and every Toby Mac song. He often is singing hours after we have put him to bed.

For Isaac, she blessed him with Faithfulness and a deep love of God. What else could I ask for? Nothing.  Mike and I are very blessed to be his parents. He is a true gift.

Delish Dinner. Salmon with Sriracha Cream Sauce

written by Wednesday, May 21, 2014 0 , Permalink 0




This is a keeper. 4 fork rating.

And to be clear,  I am talking about the sauce. So tasty that it would be good on really anything including bad fish or a plain spoon.

Last Friday after we put the dudes to bed, Mike and I had a date dinner on the couch. We do that sometimes in order to have dinner conversation about something other than fire trucks and how many more sleeps until the next exciting thing…

I was inspired from this blog I found on Pinterest. I followed her recipe except I used bottled teriyaki marinade for our salmon.  I served our salmon with jasmine rice and a simple green salad.

The Most Amazing and DELISH Sauce that would be Tasty on ANYTHING

In a small bowl, combine

2-3T  Sriracha

1/2 C mayo

2-3T sweetened condensed milk

Stir together until it is sweet/hot to your liking.



Mama’s Happy Day

written by Friday, May 16, 2014 0 , Permalink 1

Last Sunday was what Isaac called, Mama’s Happy Day! Indeed it was.

I got my toes painted Barbie Doll Pink with Molly, Mimi and Maggie. Mike bought me fancy new sunny glasses (picked out by me) and the big boys made me an excellent video. It is a bit long, but hilarious. You, most likely, won’t find it as funny as Mike and I but it is worth a view when you are folding laundry or putting dishes away.

Here are some highlights:

  • Isaac’s face when Joshua sings (min 4:46)
  • Joshua’s face when Isaac sings (min 5:25)
  • one of Joshua’s favorite thing that I do is clean his room and take him to the movies for popcorn and water
  • Joshua has a very sweet way of introducing himself
  • Isaac finishes his talk with a hardy AMEN!
  • –And apparently my hair smells beautiful. So there is that!

This is the fourth Mama’s Day that Joshua and Isaac have been home. I experienced three Mama’s Days when we were somewhere in the process of adoption. If you are somewhere in the process, I am sorry I still remember that feeling.

To the brave, strong and beautiful women who carried and loved and birthed Joshua and Isaac–Thank You. Happy Mama’s Day to you.


Isaac Loves Being a Brother

written by Monday, May 5, 2014 0 No tags Permalink 1

This is the everyday-sweet-stuff that I don’t want to forget.

This morning I sent the boys upstairs to get dressed while I cleaned up the breakfast dishes. After I put the waffles in the freezer and milk in the fridge, I made my way upstairs. I peeked into Isaac’s room.

Isaac was dressed (orange tshirt, grey shorts).

Jonah was on lying on Isaac’s floor (perfectly still might I add), undressed. Isaac was getting him dressed (orange tshirt, grey shorts).

Isaac wanted them to match. So Isaac was quickly dressing Jonah before I came upstairs and had a chance to do it!

They both thought it was hilarious that they matched. The clothes don’t actually fit, since they are Isaac’s and a few sizes too big… no one seems to care because it is much more important that they match.

They may not be from the same biological line and their skin may not be the same shade but they are brothers and they most certainly MATCH.



Jonah is 2

written by Monday, April 28, 2014 0 Permalink 0

And just like that,  Jonah is 2.

Jonah is just a gift. He makes us smile and laugh all of the time.

He loves to play in puddles and to get dirty. If he sees mud or water or a stick he is in it.

Our little dude is by far the loudest of the three dudes. He talks constantly. He says all sorts of things like.



What Happened?


I-sac, where ARE you? (he and Isaac love to play together)


He looks for race cars and fire engines and ambulances while we are driving, just like his brothers.


He likes to sing songs like Amazing Grace. Twinkle Twinkle. ABC’s, Jesus Loves Me.





My Favorite Post of ALL Time.

written by Friday, April 25, 2014 0 No tags Permalink 11



This may be my most favorite post in the history of ever.

Do you remember the story waaaaaay back from Joshua’s first week of school? The one about Joshua finding a new friend in his class who had hurt legs? Do you remember how Joshua came home from the first day and said that he met a boy who reminded him of an old friend from GSF? Do you remember?

Well, Joshua and that little dude, Bridger, continued to be buddies all year. They play at school, they play outside of school, they even went to Chucky Cheese together. True Buddies.

I am thrilled that Joshua has his own friends.

Bridger’s mom is thrilled that he too has own  friends. It is special.

Well, yesterday we got this letter in the mail. And it honestly makes the whole relationship, just so much more sweet. The letter reads in part…

“On behalf of the LCPS Special Education Advisory Committee and the award selection committee, I am delighted to inform you that your child, JOSHUA CLARKE, has been selected as an award recipient for the 2014 Recognition for Excellence in Supporting Special Education. This award celebrates the significant impact that recipients make in the lives of students with disabilities through motivation, encouragement and support.”

The letter also includes the most kind letter from Bridger’s mom. It is the type of letter that you keep forever. The one that you read at graduations and weddings and big life events.

I am just so proud of Joshua….

….and bummed that my dad isn’t here to join us for the awards ceremony. He would be even more proud than me. I know it. My dad would have been Bridger’s friend, too. He was a teacher and he had a way of celebrating the kids who were just a little bit more special.

I am  proud of Joshua for being like my dad.


What’s for dinner? Tamale Pie

written by Wednesday, April 23, 2014 0 Permalink 0

I am constantly searching for new recipes, and by searching I mean scrolling the pretty pictures on either Pinterest or on Food Gawker. I am looking something NEW. Something exciting. Something easy. Something tasty.

This week, I am 1 for 2. Yesterday I tried a new Tamale Pie. It was DELISH. Everyone had seconds. Tonight, however I made “Easy Pad Thai” it was terrible. So I also made Peanut Butter and Jam sandwiches.

Tamale Pie


1 Rotisserie Chicken Shredded

1 can red enchilada sauce

1 C white cheddar (or yellow) cheese shredded

2/3 C flour

1/2 C yellow corn meal

3T sugar

1/4 t salt

1T baking powder

2T veg oil

1 egg

1 can diced green chilis

1/3 C milk

1 Can cream corn


Preheat oven to 400

Whisk cornmeal, flour, sugar, salt, baking powder. Stir in the oil until the mixture is crumbly. Whisk the milk and the egg together, add the corn and the chilis, stir.  Bake in a 9×9 or a 9×13 (depending on how thick you want the breading base to be…) for 25 min. The base will be mushy, it isn’t dry like a cornbread.

Poke holes in the top cornbread  and pour half of the enchilada sauce over the top of the base. Mix the rest of the enchilada sauce with the shredded chicken. Spread the chicken over corn bread and top with cheese. Bake for 20-25 minutes or until the cheese is bubbly.

Serve with chips, avocado and sour cream.


Hilarious. And so true.

written by Wednesday, April 23, 2014 0 Permalink 0

A friend and fellow adoptive mama shared this video with me. The title of the video is, “If you wouldn’t say it about a boob job, don’t say it to an adoptive mama….” that really says it all, doesn’t it?

I find the video to be  hilarious.

When your family looks a little different, for-whatever-reason, people feel like they can then ask you all sorts of questions. This video is about such questions.