when i was a kid i saw the musical "annie" and wanted to be an orphan so badly that i didn't talk to my parents for 3 days. true story, and case and point of why my parents should have known then that nothing in my life would be ordinary. i remember thinking it would be so glorious to have daily musical numbers with all of my friends whose beds were lined up down a row from mine and swing mops around as props. to this day i still want a dog (that's right, i never had a dog as a kid. don't you feel sorry for me?) for the sole purpose of naming it miss hannigan.
fast forward about 20 years and guess what? i still don't live in an orphanage...
but my kids do.
in november of last year i became involved with 2 year old twins in an orphanage located in sierra leone, west africa. in february of this year the adoption ban that had us contained to weekly skype calls and annual visits lifted, and i stated my intent to adopt gerald and geraldine (couldn't make those sweet and hilarious names up if i tried). that very same week i met my boyfriend. oh yeah. what a super sexy package i was. "oh hey cute guy, i'm adopting twins. you want in on this baggage??" i mean, who wouldn't? oh yeah that's right, every single guy everywhere. every single guy except mine. he jumped right on board. then a week before my first trip to go meet the twins their older brother and sister, mohamed (6yrs) and mamie (5 yrs), became available for adoption... sooooo... we are currently in the process of adopting 4, yes 4, kids. go big or go home.
so no, i never got to live in an orphanage. but this summer i got to spend 8 days with my kids at theirs. and it is a wonderfully happy place. they are well cared for and loved immeasurably by their caretakers. they are wholeheartedly provided for by a variety of generous sponsors. they go to school. they go to church. they even go to the beach. in my opinion, they hit the orphan jackpot. while they are waiting to come home to us they are happy. and happy is a hard feat to accomplish when you're working in orphan care. (shout out to the raining season, the organization that runs the orphanage)
emily over at the anderson crew started an amazing link up to her embrace the camera project. after realizing that she was all too often the photographer and was never in her photos with her kids she decided to flip the camera around. after my one week adventure of 24 hour a day parenting and my incessant need to document my trip on film so i wouldn't forget it when i had to return to the states, i learned that she was dead on.
here are some of my sweetest and sweatiest moments with my kids in my arms:
ps - thanks mama kat for the perfect writing prompt today. i'm off to scrub my bathroom til it shines like the top of the chrysler building.