Tuesday, June 18, 2013

Summertime Projects (a.k.a The List of Doom)

So, being a teacher has its definite benefits....all the sticky notes you could ever want, an endless supply of 3 inch broken pencils, and every kind of red pen known to man (seriously).  But what we're most envied for is the coveted SUMMER OFF!  I'll admit....it kind of rocks!  However, with this time off comes the pressure to finish all of those lingering honey-do's that don't get done over the school year.  Now there aren't any excuses, other than sheer laziness, for not marking things off the list; therefore, I proudly present....The Romey List of Summertime Projects (enter cymbal crash!)

1.  Finish the baby room

- I TRULY believe this kiddo is coming soon!  Right now it's a white box with Soph's old furniture thrown in.  I don't want to bring home our baby to room that's just thrown together!  I mean that would surely damage his psyche in some way right?  I just envision him sitting in a therapist's room somewhere in the future saying, "I just don't feel complete...."

2.  Clean out and organize the garage

- after looking like hoarders for the past month (due to collecting stuff for our garage sale) I think our neighbors would appreciate me moving this one up to number 1! I mean it's bad.....so bad....like I won't even open our garage door anymore bad!

3.  Paint the shelves on our built-in

-my dad and George finished those shelves in March y'all....March!  All I had to do was paint 2 shelves white.  Hey, I was helping to mold young minds (or something like that).

4.  Get our carpets cleaned

-Again, we can't possibly bring home a baby without clean carpets!!!

5.  Touch up paint alllllllllllll around the house

-this will require being able to access our painting stuff from the previously mentioned garage. 

Well, there you have it - it may not seem like much...but in the 8 weeks of summer I have left off, time moves fast!  Below, please enjoy pictures of our garage - but please....don't send these into TLC...I swear, we will get it fixed!


Saturday, September 8, 2012

Bring it on.....I think....

Well, we have a few updates since the last time I posted (which yes...was a million months ago).  Lots of changes have been happening in the Romey house that I need to document for my own spiritual sanity....so here it goes:

#1:  We have moved into a HOUSE!!

Ok, I realize to the outside world that this sounds mundane, but for the Romey's it's HUGE - BIG - JUMBO-SIZED! (like the vocabulary?)  Our whole married life we have been living in apartments and then the condo (which I loved).  Unfortunately, with the Colorado adoption laws, after Soph turned 4, we legally could not bring a baby in to live in our condo.  There is some weird stipulation that children of opposite genders cannot share a room if one child is 4 or over...hmppf!  This left us in a tough situation as we were about $30,000 upside down in our mortgage.  We couldn't sell and weren't sure about renting...... (enter God).....

At this time my sister and her husband were looking at renting/buying a home in Greeley.  This got us on the bandwagon too.  Many late nights were spent perusing websites and craigslist looking for homes to rent - all to none avail....  I became pretty discouraged and retreated into my fleshly mindset of "we're never gonna find a house!" (said in my best pouting 4-year-old voice).  My sister suggested we pound the pavement and just start driving around neighborhoods we like....."yeah right," I thought (again in pouty voice - only this time my arms were folded! (enter God)...........

Two days later, we were driving to my parents' house and we passed by a cute little brick ranch home - with a FOR SALE sign in the front.  I remember seeing this same house for sale a year earlier....and it's still for sale!  Curious, that night I hopped on line and looked it up - two words: PER FECT.  I then wrote a three page email to the agent explaining our "situation", telling her how much we could afford, would they be interested in renting, and on and on (all at 11:00 at night)

Cut to 7:30 the next morning....I get an email back from her saying, "They are all for it....when do you want to see the house???" This was on a Wednesday. :)

So our next hurdle was finding renters for our dearly loved condo.  After seeing the house (and LOVING it) on a Sunday morning, we came home and prayed, feeling that this was God's plan.  We prayed very specifically for wonderful renters who would take great care of our condo.  2 HOURS LATER.....that's right 2 HOURS LATER.....we get a call from my aunt Patty asking if they could rent our condo!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!  (George was standing right next to me and I slapped him so hard that I could have been reported for abuse!)

So now here I sit, in our gorgeous 4 bedroom house (ready for a baby boy), with a finished basement, and backyard that opens up to a park and I say, "HOW GREAT IS OUR GOD?" (Can I get an Amen?) 

#2  We are crazy and need a few miracles

Let me explain:  a month ago we were approached by our adoption agency with the possibility of joining a new agency that they partner with: Parent Match.  In a nut shell, what PM does is search the United States for birth mothers, who for some reason, are having trouble fiding adoptive parents for their child (race, preferences, etc).  With this agency the wait time is around 2 to 6 months for placement!  Because they are new to our agency, Adoption Options is waiving the usual $2,000 registration fee. 

Of course my adoptive ears perked up and I instantly called our case-worker!  The only downside to this is that you will have to pay the birthmom's agency's fees and will most likely have to travel and stay in the state up to 2 weeks.  We have no more money, and very little time off.

Wah, wah,wah........so we filed that idea under: trash....(enter God)

So neither George or I can get PM out of our heads.  In my prayer time I kept coming back to it, only to immediately dismiss it - because in my understanding it can't be done.  Then last week at church, our pastor was preaching about people who do big things for God are rarely viewed as logical - in fact, the decisions that they make (to the outside world) look illogical.  The entire service I felt God's finger poking my chest and after communion I looked at George and said, "I think we need to pray with Aaron (pastor) about PM."  He agreed and we both boohooed the whole way up to the stage.

We are not wanting to force our will here - but we are both feeling, with much certainty that PM is where God wants us to go....so we went!  Our profile is now available to be matched with a birthmother from anywhere across the United States.

Yes, we are terrified!  Yes, this is completely ILLOGICAL!  Yes, I obsessively pray, Lord is this where you want us to be?   I continue to hear the answer, Yes, in my heart.  So I am trusting HIM and not leaning on my own understanding - because to me....there's no way.

So here's where we are asking for prayer:

1.  That God will supply every single penny of the new agency's fees, travel expenses, and missed pay that we will incur.

2.  That God will work it somehow that this will minister to others around us...as well as ourselves.

3.  For this birthmom somewhere out there...she needs strength, and power for this difficult task at hand.

4.  For continual assurance that we are in fact doing the right thing....our hearts are saying yes, but my brain is screaming no!!!!!!!

So....bring it on...I think!

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Waste not.....

Hi, my name is Debby and I've become a food hoarder. I've said it...the first step is admitting the problem, or so I'm told. Honestly, since discovering Esh's (a discount grocery store in Evans - which by the way, if you haven't gone, you need to!), I've started....well....hoarding food. It's just that the deals ARE SO GOOD and that particular item might not be there next time, therefore, the only logical solution is buy, buy, buy!!! Who cares if I already have three boxes of snack bars....these are only $1.00!!! I mean, peanut butter Captain Crunch for $1.50??? Can you see my logic?

So, this thinking (and buying) has got my fridge and pantry busting at the seams! So, this week I've decided that we would try and do something radical....wait for it....wait for it....THE ROMEY'S ARE GOING TO EAT WHAT THEY HAVE!!!! I know this sounds ridiculous, but what would happen if just one week per month we didn't go shopping and just ate the food I've accumulated over the rest of the month? How would it change our budget? How would it affect how we see food and our "need?"

So this week I only bought things we had to have: milk, bread, & eggs (and saline solution...a girl's gotta see!). All of our breakfasts, lunches, and dinners are coming from what we already have. I'll be honest, we're going to have to get a little creative - but isn't that the point?

It's only day two, but this challenge has made me realize just how incredibly blessed we are and how much excess we truly live with. With that said, please don't judge my husband and daughter on their lunches this week. They may be eating snack bars and Captain Crunch for lunch, but hey - at least we're eating - there are many in this world who can't say that!!

Wednesday, February 1, 2012

A deleriously written blog...but I want the memory!

I just have to declare my thanks and praise to God for His provision and blessing. Today we got the news that our grant application was accepted and our adoption fees are paid in full. This means that we can now be shown to potential birthmothers...one step closer to bringing home Tait.

It's been an emotional day and my heart is overflowing with love and gratitude. Thank you Father for taking such good care of us. We truly believe that we are in Your perfect will and that you have a little one out there who you want back...we are ready.

Let my heart not forget this day -ever - and always remember that His plan is best. We might be in for a long wait, we might not...regardless I will praise Him!!

As I did dishes tonight (listening to Pandora - Newsboys station) I was praying and thanking God. Humming along to a Newsboys song I glanced at the computer and saw the album cover...I thought, since when is there a black guy in that band? Upon further inspection, I realized it was Michael Tait from DC Talk!!! I was instantly transported back to a dark time in our lives - when we were waiting for Sophie.

We attended a prayer group at church and the room we met in was the teen's rec room. One of the posters on the wall for the band Tait and had a large picture of Michael and the name TAIT in big bold letters. I spent a lot of time staring at that poster, the name, and the man.

In this instance God was speaking to me to let me know that our Tait is on his way...I will hold onto this hope and memory! It's amazing how God weaves everything together!

Sunday, August 7, 2011

Yummy! Butterscotch Zucchini Cake

So in my quest to be a frugal, part-time, stay-at-home-mom who also works outside the house, I thought I would start posting some recipes and pictures of my favorite "go-to" meals and treats. This is my first one, so I'll see how it goes!
Butterscotch Zucchini Cake
This is recipe comes from one of my best friends EV-ER: Kelley Stanley. I ate so much of this at her house that I finally begged her for the recipe. It's a great way to use up some of that summer zucchini that starts to pile up this time of year. (BTW, shredded zucchini lasts up to 6 months in the freezer!)
2 cups of sugar
1 cup of oil
2 eggs
2.5 cups of flour
2 cups of shredded zuchinni
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp of cinnamon
1 cup butterscotch chips
1/2 cup of nuts (optional)
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Combine dry ingredients and set aside. Cream sugar, oil, and eggs until fluffy. Add zucchini, mix well and add dry ingredients. Pour into a greased 9x13 pan. Sprinkle chips on top and bake for 40-45 minutes.
Now....if you want try a healthier version, see below. It's just as tasty, but with less guilt!
1 cup sugar
1 cup splenda
1/2 cup oil
1/2 cup natural applesauce
1/2 cup egg substitute
2 cups flour
1/2 cup quick oats
2 cups zucchini
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp salt
1 tsp baking powder
1 tsp cinnamon
1 cup butterscotch chips
Follow the earlier directions!

Sunday, July 17, 2011

The Glory of a Garage Sale (It's A Long One)

Ok, so now that we're through with our latest traumatic event, i.e. the Adoption Garage Sale, I can take some time and reflect over the past few days.
First off, the sale was a tremendous success! We made enough to complete our homestudy and then with the money we have saved already, we will be able to pay the next chunk off with only an additional $858!!! Can't tell you how excited I am. In biological parenting terms, it's like I just felt the baby kick for the first time. I know that $8,000 seems like a lot, but compared to Soph's adoption costs, this feels like nothing!
I have to do my "Oscar Thank You Speech," now. Huge, Giagantic thanks to my mom and dad who helped soooooooooo much! They gave up their garage for a whole week (3 car garage), went and got donations & tables, helped clean up, and worked their tails off during the sale - well, sweated their tails off (who has a garage sale in the middle of July??) Thanks to Mom Romey who got up at 4 a.m. yesterday to come watch Soph. To Karen Sutton who helped take money, to Laurah Unruh who donated half the items & gave my sister a whole new wardrobe! To Jen and Kel who made the clothes tables look beautiful (even if it only lasted 30 seconds). To all who donated: Dave (btw, we sold EVERYTHING of yours!), Laurah, Brooke,Toni, Jessica, Grandma and Grandpa, Dawn and John, Heather, Kim (those jeans went like hotcakes), Kayla, Bethany, Brittany, Jess, Courtney, Mr. Chase and Miss Kelley, all the Aims peeps and probably more who I'm forgetting....whoever gave us the bags of baby boy clothes - see below!
Ok, so now for some highlights:
If you've ever done a garage sale you know how aw-ful they are. We had our garage filled a month ago and then had to start filling my parents. The logistics of getting ready, the panic of "what if we don't have enough stuff?" and the fear of failing had all been weighing on me for at least a few weeks prior; however, God (as alway) TOTALLY came through. Here are some ways:
  • Right before we closed a woman drove up in a black SUV and walked up to me and said, "We don't want to buy anything. I'm adopted and want to support you. She handed me a $20 bill." This happened throughout the day too - but that one really stuck out!

  • We had an entire table filled with little baby boy clothes. A very pregnant hispanic woman all-but cleaned us out! When she found out I was only charging her $8 this look of amazement and wonder shone from her eyes. Her friend told me she was about to have a boy & didn't have any clothes for him! (I guess God was answering some other people's prayers through this sale too!)

  • 1/2 an hour before we closed, we started passing out Wal-mart bags and telling people to fill them for a dollar. There were countless children who ran excitedly through our sale and filled those bags until they were ripping. 3-4 moms also had bags busting at the seams with clothes for their kids. These were families who drove up in cars that were nearly falling apart! It felt so good to feel like our sale was providing for them in some way, so when one little girl (maybe 8 or 9) asked how much the bike cost, I told her she could have it for free! She told me she'd never had a bike before...and if I hadn't sweated out all the moisture in body already, I would have cried right then (don't worry, I am now!)

  • I was able to have countless conversations about the blessing of adoption & hopefully plant a seed in some hearts that will reap a bountiful harvest for orphans everywhere.

God is so good to us & throughout both of these adoptions I tend to forget that it's HIS kids we are adopting. He loves them waaaay more than I ever could and He will provide every cent to bring our little one home.

The greatest moment I've had in this adoption journey was a few weeks ago at church. The teens had come back from CIY and when we were singing, "Oh happy day, happy day...." they all (plus the sponsors) came running in and danced before the stage singing. There was an African American girl that caught my eye and I watched her as she jumped and sang, "No, No, No...forever I am changed!" I flashed-forward 13 years imagning that it was Soph, and I suddenly realized the true reason for adoption: by choosing to adopt Sophie she will be raised knowing the love and saving grace of her heavenly Father. She will live a life filled with His Holy Spirit and some day rest in His love and peace. THAT is the redemption of adoption....not just that her life is redeemed, but that her heart is redeemed for HIM!!!

This is my calling and I am honored to answer it! Even if it means spending two days sweating in the heat fighting with people over $.25 for the price of a picture frame!

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Sweet Endings

So tonight as I am kneeling next to Sophie's bed, she asks if she can sing me a song. Sure I say. Put your head on my lap she demands....amused I obey. She then proceeds to sing (in her sweet little voice that can't yet pronounce the "r's" correctly), "Lullaby and goodnight....." the whole way through. All the while she sings, she is stroking my head - just like I do to her every night. I couldn't help but let the tears run down my face! Truly a moment I never want to forget all of my life.