It is Christmas break at our house. I am working hard to try to spend less money and find cheap and fun activities around town. We have a membership for the Y so we go there often. We have also been taking frequent trips to the library and book store. The kids love looking through the books and I love watching them learn to read. Jacob is now reading easy chapter books and can read alone or to someone. Matthew is trying to learn to read in English and Spanish. He is also doing a great job but doesn't have the same passion for it that Jacob is developing. I am hoping he will enjoy reading more as he gets better.
Today we are off to get free hair cuts at JCPenny Salon. They give free hair cuts to children 5-12 years old every Sunday. The salon hopes that it creates more foot traffic through their salon and store. I can say that it works for us. I am horrible at remembering to schedule hair appointments for myself and will often go three or four months between appointments (sometimes longer). It is easier to remember to take the kids in since it is easier to tell when they are due for another cut. I have been better about getting my own hair cut since I started taking the kids for their free cuts. I can make appointments for all of us although I try to get my appointment on a day when the kids are at school.
This time of year is also a time to remember how important family is and spend a little extra time with them. I have known two families suffering loss and scary emergencies in the past two weeks with their sons in their early 20s. There was the school shooting in CT where the victims were all the same age as Jacob. It was hard watching that coverage and not thinking about Jacob and his friends at school. Matthew is only a year behind those kids and will be 6 in just a few months. It is scary to think that anyone could look at children their ages and see anything other than innocence. It is also scary to think that there could be anyone out there who may want to hurt my children or any children. I have seen a lot of very disturbing things in my careers in law enforcement and social work yet the amount of evil someone can possess continues to amaze me.
I have been like a lot of other parents and spent a little extra time hugging my children and appreciating them. I believe that as an adoptive parent who had to work hard to become a parent means that I can never completely take my relationship with my children for granted. I often wonder why I was the lucky person to get to parent them and be called mom. I am forever grateful for them and for the people who helped bring them to my home. With all of the recent news of children being hurt, firefighters attacked and mentally ill adults harming people for no apparent reason, I appreciate my children and the time I get to spend with them a little more. After all, no one knows what tomorrow will hold. All I can do is enjoy today and hope that I get to spend many more wonderful days with my family.