The Blended Life

Bereavement, Being Black, and Back to School

  The day of Michael Brown’s funeral I stood in the bereavement card aisle. My three children danced and swirled about me pulling open cards that loudly played “We Are the Champions” or “Celebration” as I stood frozen, hands sweaty, with a card that read ‘We lost...

Crow, Hawk, and A Little Boy’s Pain

Crow, Hawk, and A Little Boy’s Pain

I was sitting in the hallway outside three classrooms overflowing with first graders. It was moments after morning exercise when it seems that the kids are most awake, engaged, and happy. Something about bopping along to 'Dynamite' together makes their brains release...

Helping Kids Through Trauma

The Blended Life has been quiet for the past month due to a serious accident in our family. All my time and strength has been invested solely on the home front to aid in the healing of my husband. As I look up from an intensely emotional and trying time I find that...

The Happiest Memory

She slipped the photograph between sheets of plastic to protect it, careful only to touch the sides of the picture. This girl whose clothes, used tissues, and eraser bits lay about her room in heaps, held the image cautiously and lovingly, like a newborn, tucking it...

Spring Break Staycation

My expectations have always been set fairly high for spring break vacation. This year I wanted to flee south for spring break. To sip something beachside and watch my kids play in the surf. But my husband went east and we stayed put. No sipping, no surf. {Let's all...

A Blended Life

My house is full of birthday celebrations this week which has left me short on writing time. I wish you a great weekend full of spring sunshine! Here are a few reads to keep you company. Two interesting articles by adoptees on reunion. The first by Liz Fields and the...

The Truth About Reunions

This week one of the trending topics on Facebook (and everywhere else) was the reunion of the "Burger King Baby" with her birthmother. Awhile back Katheryn Deprill took this photo of herself detailing what she knew about her abandonment as a baby in the bathroom of a...

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Valuing the Adoptee Voice

Yesterday I asked my daughter about joining a tween adoptee group. The group gets together to watch movies, hang out, and debrief together both their adoption stories and their voices reflected in the movies and media around them. She jumped at the chance. “Mom, that...

On Blended Sisterhood

My favorite summer moment happened this morning between my girls.  I have written some about my girls in the past and how watching them grow into sisterhood is heartwarming for me. And yes, they have their moments and will continue to have them. And yes, I’m trying to...

The Value of a Birth Story

It wasn’t too long ago that I overheard this conversation between my girls in the kitchen: “Mommy has a baby in her tummy. And soon she is going to have to push it out!” My oldest said. “Oh. Hmmm. Like how she pushed you out?” Said my youngest. “No. But you grew in...

Interview with Sundee T. Frazier and a Giveaway!

Last week I reviewed Sundee T. Frazier’s The Other Half of My Heart which you can read here. This week I connected with her and she graciously agreed to an interview.  She answered questions about being multiracial in America, the impact of that personal identity on...

Dinners Around the World – December

  December! We are at the finish line friends! We have cooked around the world for one full year! I think it is fair to recount where we have been... January – Italy February – India March – Israel April – Thailand May – Vietnam June – Germany July – China August...

Diversifying Your Home – Part 2

My middle daughter is a self-proclaimed chef. She enjoys being in the kitchen, wearing her apron, and helping in whatever way she can. I think to some degree all kids love to get in the kitchen and have new experiences with utensils and to see what Mommy or Daddy...

The Happiest Memory

She slipped the photograph between sheets of plastic to protect it, careful only to touch the sides of the picture. This girl whose clothes, used tissues, and eraser bits lay about her room in heaps, held the image cautiously and lovingly, like a newborn, tucking it...

The Benefits of Open Adoption

November is National Adoption Month in which we remember the over 101,000 children waiting in foster care and hoping for placement with families. I am happy to introduce you to Sarah Baker. Sarah is a fellow adoptive mom who blogs over at Cincinnati Parent Magazine...

Alpaca Hats

A few months ago while anticipating the arrival of another niece (horray!) I began thinking about what to make for the new family addition. If you are a knitter like me, you may have an overwhelming stash of yarn odds and ends. I was pleased to find in my stash the...

Five Must Have Back to School Chats – #1 Adoption

I am 26 days from the first day of school. 26 days from all three of my children going to school. Not just two – all three. Not that I am counting (never mind that giant calendar in my office that has red X’s through every day of August so far). I jest (a little), but...

Why I Read Essence (and you should too)

  Sometimes people do a double take. They see the overspill of magazines from my ‘magazine bin’ and turn back peering at the faces and names looking back at them from the covers. I have Portland Monthly in there yes, and my husband’s entrepreneurial rags espousing...

That Pesky Family Tree

While helping my mother sort through a number of boxes that had been left untouched for years I stumbled across some old photographs that my great-grandmother Emma had placed in an album. By old, I do mean ancient. We gathered around them staring and squinting and...

Where Are the Girls?

My girls have a new favorite book. Each is taking a turn reading it, considering, and then just like girls from Jersey, they talk amongst themselves. Grace for President by Kelly DiPucchio is a book about an African-American girl who upon studying the presidential...

Te Amo Mucho: On Birth Culture and Birth Language

Lately I have been thinking quite a bit about the power of gifting our children's birth language to them post adoption. This can be a dicey subject among adoptive parents and just so you know, I have landed firmly in the belief that parents of adoptees, whether...

World Adoption Day, National Adoption Month, & Flip the Script

November is National Adoption Month. Every year the month of November creates awareness of the need for adoptive families for children in foster care. Since its formation in the 1990s, National Adoption Month has grown into an all encompassing recognition of adoption,...