Saturday, January 30, 2010

Good ol' snow days

Here is my favorite picture of our 3 days inside. My kiddos loving on each other. My favorite because they generally did more crying, whining and 'I am just so tired of you' type attitudes, so I am relishing on this hug.
This was Nehemiah. Cutting 6 teeth, not eating or sleeping well, constant fussing, running nose and has a cold. And he made it well known that if his mother dared to walk through a room without picking him up that all his baby-drama would ensue.
We did play a few games. Here is the surprise game.
Brother learning to be surprised.
I made a new Valentines day skirt for Avi Joy. Used up some old ribbon, white tulle and cut some red hearts from an old jacket I had. Gotta love hot glue and the results were cute.
Nehemiah wanted his turn in the Valentines skirt. I know he will not always want to participate in our girly fun, so for now, I always let him : )
I told Avi Joy she could do anything she wanted on Friday morning because it was a snow day! She chose to move her whole bed (by herself) and living room chairs to make a dinosaur train to play in for the day.
Daddy got to "work" from home. Working like this seems pretty doable.
Then we made a cookie craft. ANY parent can do this, so go do it! Pick a country and make it out of cookie dough! We used our Silpat (love, love) and made a Vietnam cookie. I do not like cookies, but I am head over heels for cookie dough.
My favorite indoor moment of the weekend... Korean Barbie at the haircutting station.
Kristin, a long time girlfriend and hair client, I fully expect you to do this next week when you come for a haircut. Clothes are optional, the flip over the chair with hands in hair is required.
Avi Joy watching the snow coming down. Adam said we got about 6-8 inches.
After brother went to bed, little joy joy and I did a craft. We took a breadcrumbs canister, some scrapbook paper, glue and rhinestones and made a cute craft.
She is SO crafty. We have decided her birthday party theme this year will be arts and crafts. Even I, an art teacher by trade, needs some help keeping this crazy cutting, drawing, art gal busy.
Adam and Avi Joy played in the snow. She LOVES the snow!
We made snowcones...
And they were very yummy.
Brother beggin daddy for some of his. I did end up sharing with him, but we are trying not to spread too many germs. But that is nearly impossible being the mama, right?!
We shared a little bit about Haiti...
Here is a scripture that pretty much sums up how we feel right now:
"Now to Him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to His power that is at work within us, to Him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen" Ephesians 3:20-21

The Perryman Family

Monday, January 25, 2010

Vietnam Family Camp

Before I jump into camp, I want to extend an invitation for local (or any) families to attend a Vietnamese lunch for Lunar New Year. We have two local Vietnamese churches in Tulsa and both have invited us to celebrate with them on February 14th at noon. They have a huge lunch, games and fellowship. Our family attends St. Joseph's as we are enrolled in their language school. We get to see them all the time, so we are actually going to attend the other LNY celebration with Pastor Le at the Baptist church. (That is a hard decision, frown!)
PLEASE join us on 2-14-10 at 12:00pm at Vietnamese Baptist Church (101st and Elm) for lunch. Pastor Le is precious and beyond supportive of our children and the adoptive community. If you have any questions you can leave a comment and I will contact you. Thank you!

2007 Family Reunion- Few Pictures
2008 Vietnam Weekend Pictures
2009 Vietnam Weekend Pictures

Vietnam Family Camp, June 10-12, 2010 in Tulsa, OK. Held at Green Country Event Center.

The Third Annual Vietnam Family Weekend has been extended a day this year! Join us for a reunion of families, friends, travel buddies and newcomers! Help your children explore and take pride in their Vietnamese heritage and birth country.

The committee met for the 1st time last week to set the schedule for the weekend. ALL schedules and ideas are tentative and subject to change before the final date. The information that comes in your registration packet will contain the "final word". : )


9:00am-1:00pm -@ Tulsa Zoo Trip (optional) *Parents bring lunches and meet at 12:00 in a designated area to eat lunch as a group.

1:00m- 4:00pm- Rest and prepare for Camp

4:00pm-8:00pm - @Green Country Event Center
Opening Ceremony
Ice Breaker Game
Dinner from (Jason's Deli - tentative)
Parent social time, dessert and coffee
Child free play time watched by staff

9:00-9:30 Registration

Crafts/Traditional Dance/Cooking time for Children
W.I.S.E. Up Sessions by R. Hackworth for Parents (1/2 parents will attend 9:30-11 workshop while the other half help the children. Then from 11-12:30 the other 1/2 that helped with the children first, will attend the workshop) That way, all parents get to attend the workshop AND spend time with their child/children and help with others kiddos as well.

12:30-1:30 Lunch (Chick-fil-a - tentative)

1:30-4:30 (optional or rest time)
OR meet at Leep'in Louies pool at the Radisson

5:30- Green Country Event Center
Parents and Children ENCOURAGED to wear Vietnamese dress
Group pictures will be taken in traditional dress
Traditional Vietnamese Dinner will be served
Vietnamese Music and Dancing will be performed

SATURDAY, JUNE 12th @ Green Country Event Center
10:00-12:00- Camp Olympics and Soccer Play for Children
Q&A Workshop time for parents

Lunch - (pizza - tentative)

Closing Ceremony
Dragon Dancers

If you have comments or suggestions the committee wants to hear ALL your input! PLEASE email or call Whitney at Dillon. (918)749-4600 or THANK YOU!
Kerrie has also made a Facebook page! (Its under Vietnam Family Weekend)

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Here is a little shout out to Party of Four. Nehemiah has been totally gaga over baby Drew's picture that dropped of the fridge this week. He has been carrying it around for 3 days saying, "Baby, baby." It has now been folded, wrinkled, kissed on and stuck in every pocket. Baby Drew has been well loved!
Sweet girl and all her 10,000 faces. My mom and I went to Nam Hai market this week to find her a new Ao Doi (traditional Vietnamese dress) for our upcoming Lunar New Year celebration. While we were there we couldn't help buying some Vietnamese mini-banana's. They ripen within 2 days and are so yummy. We have them over cereal, oatmeal, yogurt and make banana bread.
Avi Joy and Sidney off to Bible school. I have known Sidney's mom since I started high school. Her grandma takes her to CBS and she and I just love reminiscing about how she met me when I was 15 and now have kids of my own. She mentioned to me this week about praying for my kids, how she knows I do it now, but how I will reallly do it when they are teenagers. (Reading between the lines here, I know she was praying for her daughter and ME when we were teens! Thank you!)
Favorite activity of the week. Bathing Korean Barbi in the sink. Everyday, sometimes twice a day.
Lovie time with mama. She makes my heart sing. In big news for her, we are not putting her in public school next year. She "should" be starting in the half-day 5 day a week program at our local elementary school, but we are choosing to do school at home and stay in our extra activities (Bible school, dance, community group). I have loved the learning center she has attended one day a week (for two years) but that time has come to an end because when she turns four they increase the required hours of attendance. Most likely Nehemiah will start one day a week and she will get to do more projects or school on those days. We will see how it all unfolds!

Before my girlfriend left for Africa (two weeks ago) we were hanging out at her house and I noticed this Pray Often sign. In passing I said, "I have never noticed this sign in your kitchen... I really love it. What a great reminder to have." Welllll, before she left she blessed us with 3 tubs of boy clothes (she has 3 boys) which we really needed. And sure enough as I am opening the tubs, she wrapped the Pray Often sign in one of the tubs. I immediately teared up (and am even now!) and let out a long sigh. How I love this lifelong friend. This reminds me to pray for them in Africa and to always bring everything before my Father. Love you sister.

Learned more this week than I can possibly share. I put a few thoughts down on my personal blog, but here is one scripture that particularly touched my heart...
"You establish peace for me. All that I have accomplished, You have done in me. O Lord, my God, other lords besides You have ruled over me, but Your Name alone do I honor." Isaiah 26:12-13

Adam, Natasha, Avi Joy and Nehemiah

Saturday, January 16, 2010


Sister and Brother
Peeking over the couch
Playing games for Sum Hop Day
Favorite activity is Playdough
Lighting her 5th birthday cake candles
Love those curls, in her robe with a unicorn sticker.
"With your hat turned sideways" Think A.I. Here...
Cookin with mama
Gaming with daddy
More cookie dough pllleeaase!
Funny face competition
We know where they came up with the phrase
"Oh Brother!"
"I will sing of the LORD's great love forever; with my mouth I will make Your Faithfulness known through all generations." Psalm 89:1
the p's

Monday, January 11, 2010

Second Staffing for future child

My day in a nutshell.
Today is our second staffing with DHS. (We shared what a staffing was a while back...)

And mama was attacked hard core. Lies and fears, all straight from hell.

BUT lots of prayers were said for our family, for future kiddos and peace that passes all understanding.

Some will not "get" this. That is ok. My husband and support team understand where I am weak. Supermom was superfallapart today.

What did I learn?

That I can live in imagination so much so that is alters my body and mind. Think on whatever is TRUE! (Phil 4) And to pray for deliverance and discipline myself against fears and lies. HARD stuff people. Maybe not for you, your "thing" maybe something else, I am sure that is hard.

Tomorrow is a new day. Not wanting sympathy, just keepin' life real. NHP

Monday, January 4, 2010

Nehemiah's First Sum Hop Day!

Sum Họp in Vietnamese means, "To unite, to come together."
ONE year ago today, January 6th, we were united with our child forever!
As part of our celebration we dressed Nehemiah in a traditional Vietnamese Ao Doi and took pictures.
I went to a craft show a few years ago and saw a sign that said:
BOY: A noise covered in dirt.
I laughed then, but now I reallllly get it.

Our boy is all-boy for sure. He is loud & lovey, fantastic & funny, wild & whiney, marvelous & moody and of course, curious & charming!
Picked out a few of my favorites from this year...
The moment we met.
Only 16 days later heading home.
Here is the LOUD...
And more Loud...
And so tired and sweet...
And ready for bed...
My top pick (If that is even possible, because they ALL are perfect and hold a "moment" in time. I also love some of the ones we just took today in Ao Doi!) BUT... here we were on Fathers Day making banana bread for my dad. He was just sitting at my feet in the kitchen enjoying a banana, but this looks so him, precious.
We chose his name, not only because we loved the book of the Bible, but because of the meaning of Nehemiah, it means, "God's compassion." We know that our Lord had compassion on our son and us. And out of all the families in the world God chose us to be a family forever, pure compassion.

Like all parents we think, "Where did this year go??" We have enjoyed our little guy so much. He adds a lot of spice to our home and we love seeing our two kids together.

"We will celebrate Your abundant goodness and joyfully sing of Your righteousness." Psalm 145:7. Like all families we have our own very bad days and struggles. BUT today we choose to put those "things" down and celebrate one year with our son!

Thank you for following our journey. We pray for many more blessed years to come.
The Perryman's

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Lets take a trip to Chicago!



Be prepared. THIS IS A LOOOONNG POST : )

This year we decided we would take a winter family vacation to Chicago. We have both always wanted to visit the city, but we were either saving to adopt/had a new baby or the summer plans to travel just didn't work out. But the way this calendar year fell Adam would get more time off than usual, so we ran with the winter vacation idea.
We asked for all our Christmas gifts to be "Chicago or Bust" themed. (Warm clothes, tires, gas cards, car games, etc.) The best part was being able to add-in spending time with family and friends along the way. We began our adventure on December 26th through January 2nd.

Day 1: Left the Tulsa snowstorm behind. It was a bit sad to leave not celebrating Christmas with our family, but Chicago or Bust was the theme so we pushed ahead. It took us TWO hours just to get out of Tulsa, but thankfully we were safe and ready to push on to Springfield.
My cousins, Hannah and Jansen, live in Springfield and that was a perfect place to stop. We hung out with them, ate lunch and played for a bit. Then back in the car as we were heading to St. Louis to spend the night.
All my dad's side lives in St. Louis and were getting together to have Christmas left-overs. We pulled up to my family's house and we're able to spend quality time with all my aunts, uncles and cousins. We spent the night with my cousin and his wife (thanks so much!).
The kids enjoyed playing the family piano. Aunt Debbie chased the kids around with endless energy. They loved their Pez dispensers and extra sweet treats after dinner.
Day 2: We woke up and headed for Chicago. Both days were supposed to be 6 hour car rides, but with the snow and stops, both days were 8 hour rides. They did awesome on the way there (note- on the way there) and we were all excited to arrive at our hotel.
My friend works for Paramount Productions and got us a sweet family and friends deal at the Hilton's Palmer Hotel. We are totally a Holiday Inn Express type family and although we missed the free Internet and free breakfast, the ohlala of the hotel was a fun experience.
When we walked out of the hotel we were directly in the heart of Chicago...
One of the best C or B gifts we received was our stroller cover. We used it everyday and we saw that most people there used them with their strollers. It blocked the wind and snow flurries and after the initial weirdness of having it over them, they loved it. This day was exhausting to say the least so we ordered in Chicago style pizza from Giordano's, watched a movie and went to bed.
Day 3: We started off each morning at the same Corner Bakery. And yes, as creatures of habit, we sat at the same table (to be able to watch the cityfolk) and for the most part had the same breakfast. It was a great time to prepare for the long day ahead of us.
We walked through the streets and enjoyed all the sky rise buildings. This is one of my favorite pics- I love this old Chicago sign. We then hailed a taxi and headed on with our day. I realized that the whole flagging the taxi, getting in, telling someone where to take you and arriving was awesome. I did everything but pay the man and Adam let me enjoy my taxi experiences. I also loved not having to put the kids in carseats. I have no idea why they allow this, but it was very Vietnamish to have them on our laps. Now only if it was on a motorbike it would be authentic and we would surely be jailed.
We were dropped off at The Children's Museum of Chicago to meet up with the Cartwright family! They live on the outskirts of Chicago and drove in to spend the morning with us. Our families met after we both accepted referrals of little boys in Vietnam. Not only did they share the same birth province, but they shared a room as well (along with Levi who we see later!). It was wonderful (to say the least) to meet up with this precious family. Our boys are only two days apart in age and are so much like!
The very first meeting. HUGS for everyone!
The Museum was great... they were firemen, played in forts, went fishing, created art, bathed babydolls, dug dinosaur bones and built pipes in waterland.
Before heading to lunch Avi Joy made a Chicago dog. We ate lunch with the Cartwright's at Bubba Gump Shrimp then said our goodbyes to them.
We hopped into a taxi again and headed over to the History Museum. Monday's are free so we could not miss the opportunity. You may be thinking how did the kids stay awake?? Well Avi Joy "rested" in the front of the stroller and Nehemiah went in the carrier (borrowed from the Homan family) and fell right asleep. This was our routine each day and worked our PERFECT! Our favorite part at the museum were the belongings of Abraham Lincoln. Like his coat and you know a little thing called the Declaration of Independence. We headed back to the hotel for dinner, a movie and bed!
Day 4: We met the Elyse family at The Field Museum bright and early in the morning. We actually live in the same city, but they were in Chicago on business and stayed to play! My friend Heather and I met many moons ago because one of her foster children was in my class at school. We were instant soul sisters who had a heart for adoption. She has since adopted 5 more children (to the two she already had) and is now a proud mama of seven. (All through OK state.) She is quite amazing to say the least. She founded Dream Again Foundation, is a writer and has several books about to come out. But most of all she is fully and totally reliant on Jesus and He just seeps out of her. She treated our whole day in Chicago and we were very grateful. Our crew...
Adam's favorite exhibit at the museum were the Tsavo Lions. They hunted down and killed over 150 people in Africa in 1898. They stored their bones as trophies, Adam didn't want me to forget that... check out the movie Ghost in the darkness.
The museum offered a gorgeous view of the city!!!
My favorite (and I am talking of the whole Chicago trip here) was the third floor of the Field Museum. Dinosaurs were everywhere. Amazing. Huge. Awesome. The exhibit took you on a journey through "time." From the worldly perspective of Evolution of course. BUT even then it was SO clear that their is a Creator. I loved it. I feel like watching Jurassic Park right now!
We grabbed the famous Chicago dogs for lunch, then Heather and I dropped off our kids at the hotel for naps. We then escaped for a two hour mommy retreat. We went to Renew Spa where we both had massages. It was THE BEST massage I have ever had! AND the greatest thing was that she said hers was the best ever as well.
We said goodbye to their family and headed for an evening out. We went to dinner at Hot Wok Cool Sushi, had to hit one sushi house for Adam, then to Millennium Park. We saw the Cloud Gate, otherwise known as "The Bean" and watched the Zamboni machine prepare the ice for the rink.
Day 5: Our last day in Chicago we walked to The Art Institute. We saw tons of famous painting by Monet, Degas, Renoir and Seurat, just to name a few. Simply amazing, seriously. It reminds me that people are capable of so much more. They used to spend their time, you know, like creating! We now watch t.v., blog and go out for entertainment. It kinda makes me feel sad, yet inspired.
Nehemiah took his morning nap in the sling and we spent about 2 hours looking at all the fine art. It was a confusing building to get around and after days of walking mama finally broke. I could NOT get on one more elevator and look at one more map. I did enjoy it, but had to get on to some chocolate. Like now.
We hit our final spot on our Chicago must-do list. The Ghirardelli shop. We had the sinfully good sea salt hot chocolate. It was beyond amazing, my mouth just watered thinking about it. Their smooth chocolate topped with whipped cream and sea salt. If you have never had that combo, its out there these days, a perfect pairing. Adam and the kids shared some ice cream with hot fudge. It was the prefect way to end our time in Chicago.
Too bad parents and kids couldn't swap at this moment. We were pretty tapped! We headed on a three hour trip west to see our good friends.
Our time in Chicago was great. Not too cold and I knew everything we were going to do before we got there. We have a small regrets list of things we didn't get to do...
- Ice skating at Millennium Park: We had planned to do it, but the line was up to an hour and a half wait and it was starting to snow flurry. Avi Joy cried, but we pinky promised I would take her once we got home. I am looking forward to it, Adam not so much, that boy cannot skate.
- Skydeck at Willis Tower: It was planned at the end of the day and by the time we got there, again it was an hour wait and they told us we had to stay up there for 25 minutes. My anxiety did a backflip and I just could not do it. It was like the hell I went through up in the St. Louis arch. Sounds cool until you are up there. Hopefully I will grow-up in this area and be brave.
- Riding all the public transportation: We wanted to experience the bus, subway, train and the elevated trains, but everything we had planned was in the city near our hotel. It was quicker and about the same price to take a taxi ride. Adam thought about going out one night to take an El around the city, I reminded him that if had chosen a different wife that might of happened.
- Wrigley Field: We wanted to go on a tour, to the gift shop and even heard the public could ice skate on the field, but everything opened Jan 4th. We were a few days short of this experience.

We drove out to see Tracy, her finance Bret and two kiddos Rachel and Levi. We also met because we accepted referrals of two precious boys who shared a room. We were close to traveling to VN together, but God had other plans. I am so thankful to maintain relationships with other families whose children were born in the same provinces as my son and daughter.
As we were heading out of the city towards her house all I could see was snow and farms. I am a mid-city girl and was shocked at that much vastness. Adam comforted me when he said, "Look, we hit a town, there is a Dollar General."
The children meet again. That evening was filled with laughter, a homemade meal and sharing stories. And then yes, everyone headed to bed early!
Day 6: Rachel (16) offered to babysit kids and let Bret/Tracy and us go on a date. They took us to a nearby town called Galena. Hometown of President Grant and the town has stayed in the 1850's. The architecture was gorgeous and the best word I can come up with to describe the town is quaint. Adam picked out One Eleven on Main for us to eat and it was divine. We all enjoyed our drive through the country, a wonderful meal and adult conversation.
Rachel and I enjoyed playing dress-up for her New Year's Eve party with local youth group. I got to do her hair, make-up and be her official stylist. This was a highlight for me. LOVED IT! I can think of several callings I have missed in life, one I think I could have been was a personal stylist. Taking phone calls, booking events, doing hair, etc. Good news is that I will have teenagers soon enough and I'm pretty sure I will get to use this calling- ha!
Day 7: We hugged our friends goodbye (which bytheway we did not get even one picture of us together!) and headed to Kansas City. We ate some good ol' Kansas City BBQ at Jack Stack's and headed for our hotel. You may be like enough with the food already. Sorry, food is part of the vacation and we are total foodies!
We could have pushed through and went home, but like I said earlier, the way there the kids did great, the way back was rough. Avi Joy is the perfect traveler. I can hand her an activity (dolls, stickers, books, movie) and she is happy. Nehemiah is a different story. Just the worst traveler, poor kid. He is uncomfortable, hates playing and throws everything down, does not watch movies at all and gets carsick. Soooo, we did the best we could. We needed some run around time and a good nights sleep before we headed home.

Day 8: Great vacation, but there is no place like home. And we celebrated Christmas with family!

My last two pics (phewh) are just ones for fun.
This Chicago church made me laugh out loud: The Moody Church. Mood Issues Anyone?? This church can help. After looking through the website, it actually looks pretty cool.
My little Cleopatra at The Field Museum. They had a replica of a pyramid, full of mummies, scrolls in hieroglyphics, bowls and jewelry. But she was the cutest thing there.
Thank you to all our family that helped make this trip possible. We loved being able to visit Chicago, see our family, spend time with friends and as with all trips, through the highs and lows, we made memories!
The Perryman Family