Monday, December 17, 2007


Our first snow was followed by rain and is now solid ice. Word to the wise: although it looks like good sledding out back, it is not for the faint of heart. Ben pulled 3-Gs sliding down the driveway, up the mulch pile, airborne on the back side and flew into the brush. I won't even tell you how my ride ended, let's just say she who laughs hardest, falls hardest.

Oh, and Erin, a canoe is not the same thing.

Saturday, December 1, 2007

give thanks.

Another wonderful Thanksgiving weekend was had by all. This beautiful tradition gets better every year - lots of good food, napping, bonfires, creativity, laughter, beach walks and did I mention napping? Erin and I were on duelling sewing machings making a bunch of reusable, reversable gift bags out of fabric scraps from our endless scrap drawers. Evan holds the record for longest naps amidst the chaos of our living room. He also was our in-house IT guy, once again, hooking up my web-cam so we can talk to Grandma and Grandpa with video - awesome for the kids to see them regularly and have a bedtime story from Grandma! Paul and Desi get this year's cutest couch napping picture award! Thank you, friends, for being such an important part of our family!

Friday, November 2, 2007


Yes, that is a worm-infested, vomiting jack-o-lantern.
My personal crusade to counter-act the Disney-princess, mass-marketing, nauseating plastic spectacle that I still believe can be the wonderful Dia de los Muertos.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

here we go again...

Well, it was Peace Fair weekend again and, true to form, the boys are passed out on the couch. Evan, Benny and cousin Leon all passed out after one of Paul's famous breakfasts. What is it about the boys and this couch?!?

Friday, August 31, 2007

summer favorites...

I was just recording some of our summer favorites in the kid's journals and thought I'd share a few. We'd love to hear your fav's from this season!

music: anything from Michael Franti, 'Sons and Daughers' -M. Ward (thanks Annie!), 'Why Can't We Be Friends'

kids' books: Owen & Mzee (awesome!), Frog and Toad, Hooray for Diffendoofer Day, the books Ben made in school, any firefigher/rescue book (Ben), Very Hungry Caterpiller (Desi), I could go on forever...

movie: Bridge to Terrabithia (gave Desi this summer's catch phrase*) and the movie David made on his visit this summer "Train Ride to Boston"

catch phrase:
Desi: "Free the Pee! Free the Pee!"* (great potty training mantra)
Ben: "Rock on." (seems to apply to almost anything)

food: blueberries (picked ourselves at URI's farm!) and Del's lemonade

activities: beach, of course (includes beachcombing, boogie boarding, sandcastles, rock climbing...) and backyard bonfires

Ben: firefighters
Desi: dogs

My favorite thing about this summer was watching Benny and Des get even closer (and making brother/sister day official on June 28th!). It's not always easy around here, but at the end of the day, there's nothing better and no place I'd rather be.

Wednesday, August 29, 2007


Ben has become quite the boogie boarder this year. He could spend all day, every day in the water...I love it! We are in the surf every chance we get!

Doesn't this beach look so New England?

This is our summer... can see he likes order in his world.

Desi and her friend/kindred spirit/sitter, Devon...the girls love to play sea monster, covering themselves with mud and roaring at the top of their lungs!

We've spent a LOT of time at the beach this year - the CA transplants have found an awesome beach: easy to get to, a stones throw from home, decent surf, clean water and parking so close it's embarassing. Even Paul gets to the beach more than he did in SD! Who'da thought?!

Friday, August 24, 2007

Desi goofing with Mike

Having a hard time turning this one right side up...eeesh.

More fun at camp!

Is that Minnie Mouse?

Passed out...

Our friend Mike was back from London for a visit and we met him at camp to swim, boat, hang out. Benny had so much fun he fell asleep sitting up.

Clay Camp

This was our first group of clay campers this summer. They REALLY got into it...they were working the recycled clay each day - here they are elbow deep in slip (hard to see on the picture). What an awesome group!

Tandem Throw

I told Eden and Grace about Mudfest in San Diego and they wanted to try their hand(s) at tandem throwing. Actually, they did quite well (not surprising as they are joing at the hip most of the time anyway).

"Rock Climbing"

This is what the kids call rock climbing. We explore the critters living around the rocks near our beach. Lots of perimwinkles, mussels, Mama even found a starfish last week!

Daddy and Benny

My boys, too cute, I can't stand it.

Beach days...

Our best days this summer have been spent at our town beach. How cute are these guys?!

Party Animals...

Nance and Brian dropped in for a visit...we must not be very exciting company.
This happens to us a lot.

Grandpoo taking a snooze...

Part lizard? This must be where I get my rock-napping habit from...


Our favorite past-time in Narragansett, also a favorite on Block Island.

Ferry Ride

It was a little windy on the ride over but gorgeous once we got there!

Heading to the Block Island Ferry...

We went to Block Island this summer with Grandma and Grandpa. Such an awesome trip - we caught a quick ferry down the road and spent an afternoon exploring this awesome little island...

Sunday, July 15, 2007

It's official!

We've been a family for a year but the Rhode Island courts made it official! We finalized Desi's adoption thanks to a last minute change of heart by her birth mother - she voluntarily relenquished her rights and let us proceed with the adoption without the additional 15 months of appeals we had anticipated! What a gift!

Desiree Ruth del Rosario was so christened by the courts on June 28, 2007! During the proceedings, when I was asked by our attorney if she had assimilated into our family, Desi echoed "absolutely!" with such enthusiasm even grumpy Judge Mudder couldn't help but laugh. This event was made even more special as Grandma and Grandpa were there to share in the special day!

We have been blessed with two amazing, beautiful, happy, loving children finding their way to us.
Our family is full and happy; we thank you all for your love and support that helped us get to this day.

On a walk with Grandpa (and Grandma behind the camera) on our street during their summer visit. I love all the trees....wish you could hear all the birds and bullfrogs! The kids and I try to imitate the sounds we hear - be glad you can't hear that!

Playground antics...

Wednesday, May 2, 2007

mother's day musings...

As Mother's Day approaches, I think of all the mothers my children have had...birth mothers, foster mothers, and, ultimately, me. In legal terms, I am called surrogate parent (legal title), foster mother, pre-adoptive mother and, by those who matter most, Mama. It is so easy to pretend I am the one and only, but that doesn't acknowledge the women who also, at some point, were mother to my babies. It was a bumpy path these two souls have taken to find their way home.
We operate under many assumptions to get through our day: driver's will stop at a red light, the guy in front of you at the bank doesn't have a gun, there will always be more food at the grocery store, and mothers will take care of their children. While any of these assumptions can fail us, sometimes the latter just is not possible, not to the degree we'd hope. These women, these birth mothers, who gave their children life perhaps without thinking of what that life would be like - it is so easy to judge them (believe me). How could they bring a life into this world addicted to drugs, without a home, in an abusive environment? How could they insist they have rights to this child when they are unable to hug her, or talk to him without screaming? In my frustration, I have bellowed these rants myself, only to feel worse afterwards. On Mother's Day, please take a moment to think of these women.
Please send a small thought of lovingkindness to those who have had a life filled with so much pain. It is easy to love our friends, but maybe we can love these women for letting me become Mama. Or maybe we should love them just because they need it.

Thank you Restituta, for bringing us Benny and letting him go with love. You cared enough to meet with us, hug us, and give us your blessing. It was the greatest gift you could have given us all.

Thank you Erica, for bringing us Desi and showing your love by fighting for her. We know this has been so hard for you but we see you are ready to start letting go. This will be your greatest gift and you will not be forgotten.

Friday, April 27, 2007

Buddha Bath.

Desi is washing off the 'offering' a robin left on Buddha. It's the little things that matter...

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Nice do, Desaroo

toddlers and electricity don't mix...

I don't even know what to say...

Desi and Ben turn 2 and 6 in February!

Well, these two are having fun discovering life as brother and sister. They love singing, bouncing, beachcombing, clayplay and practicing karate....all together. They also, as most siblings do, love to pull pranks and blame each other (or the dog).