Sunday, December 25, 2011

A Grandma that personifies love

This is an everyday occurrence, but still from time to time we capture it with the camera.

My Mom is really happy to have sacrificed her eyesight and the use of her legs for the sake of the adoption costs. All she wants is to have many moments like this one.

The rest of the pix speak for themselves.

Our Thanksgiving Day 2011

Am I lucky or what? Catherine, Warren (left), and Gerard (right) took care of all the cooking--the same as they do on a daily basis!!! And they always find ways to engage their younger brothers as well (keep on going over the pix).

Oooops! How did this Halloween picture of Stephen get into mt Thanksgiving post? I don't dare press the "remove" button. What if I end up deleting them all?

Gerard and Warren are working on the turkey.

Yuck!!! Catherine thinks that touching the turkey is gross. She just did it, and is holding her hand up in the air. Actually, towards the evening, rather than looking forward to having turkey, all three of them were more regretful than the poor creature was dead than eager to eat it at the Thanksgiving table. My Mom refused to have any turkey. She's never been a "pet person," but hearing so much about how to cook what had been a living creature before. From school, Thomas and Nicholas had brought home whistles that resemble what some hunters use to attract game. My Mom could not tolerate the sound of those whistles either. My Mom's compassion for the poor turkey brought memories of my Grandma, my Mom's mom, who used to be so very close to me as my Mom is to my kids. My Grandma had never been a "pet person" either--but one day, when a large German shepherd had been hit by a passing vehicle and was viciously moaning on the road, while other self-proclaimed "pet lovers" ostensibly declared how very sorry they were for the poor animal but how dangerous it'd be to approach it, it was only my Grandma who went to get water, took it to the injured dog, and called a vet, ready to pay for the bill. The German shepherd died before the vet's arrival. After having some sips of water, the moaning had stopped, as if the pain was easing--and the dog had peacefully closed his eyes.

That's what I meant when saying that they always engage their younger brothers. Nicholas cracked an egg perfectly--without wasting one single egg in the process!!!

A deer appered only a few meters from our front door. Immediately I thought about how to get a perfect picture-and was able to capture Warren as close to the deet as possible without scaring the animal away.

Apparently the deer decided that Warren didn't look like posing any threat--and those leaves seemed to be delicious!

As Warren apprached a little more, the deer ran away into the woods that are part of the property--and yet, after getting some reasonable distance away, the deer turned back and looked at Warren, who, in turn, waived back.

Do you see how delicious pumpkin pie that Catherine was making looked?

Can't you almost smell the aroma of pumpkin, cinnamon, and brown sugar?

Nicholas is always very eager to participate--and to help!

No words needed (and keep on scrolling down!)

The turkey was finally ready. Although they were not so happy about having turkey any more, still I got them smile for a picture showing all their good work.

All the work they had done had to be memorialized in some pix! Yes, we'd be having our Thanksgiving dinner at our kitchen table. Our dining-room table is still in storage in California. Except for an in-built curio display case, our dining room is almost empty now--which, for the time being is great, with lots of space, and no need to cry for the damage or loss of any family heirloom from Italy that are all that remains from a much more illustrious past. Yet, and even if getting a little off track, this is a good moment to clarify something. Although there is no doubt that had we had our antique furniture and china with us, there would have been some casualties to some pieces to regret, it'd have been entirely accidental. I do admire those moms that put up with purposeful physical aggression and destruction of property by adopted kids. Thanks God, it never ever happened to us.I'm not going to claim that Thomas, Nicholas, and Stephen are always little angels who don't misbehave. Although very cuddly and very loving, Nicholas is stubborn, and when unwilling to do something, it's almost impossible to make him cooperate. But he no longer bites. He still may pretend to do it--and yet bites only with his lips. Although Thomas may cover us with hugs and kisses, at the very first opportunity he finds, he gives in to his fascination for electronics and miscellaneous devices, including the computer, laptops, cell phones, and alarm clocks. He may send out random e-mails from my draft folder, or change the time on the clock in the master bedroom. But he is always willing to help. From time to time he may hit me softly if really angry--and one moment after is kissing me and asking for forgiveness. Although having very good feelings, Stephen has some moments of anger during which he may threaten to punch someone or break something--but nobody ever got actually punched and nothing got ever actually broken. He may say some hurtful things--but there is not one time when he did not apologize in the end. In summary, I do have so very much to be thankful for!!! Most of all, I must be thankful for all the examples of unconditional love, unparalelled self-abnegation, and unlimited devotion that my younger children get from my older ones and my Mom--examples to which they were receptive from the very first day, which were God's instruments of change for those three little ones, and which operated the miracle I witnessed. Thanks to all who are following this journey.

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Lots of fall fun in RI--but I was in CA!

Warren with the fall landscape in the backgound.

Catherine took them to the Roger Williams Park, in Providence, where they had a great time by the pond.

An older brother's prank: He would not hesitate to throw himself in a shark-infested ocean to save Nicholas (or anyone of them)--but playing a little harmless prank was irresistible!

Actually, Nicholas was enjoying himself. He very well knew it was just a prank!

Hello, Mr. Potato Head!

Nicholas made it to the top!!!

Gerard and Stephen going down the slide.

Be careful, Catherine! The water would have been pretty cold!

Catherine and Warren
At home, everyone worked to rake the fallen leaves into a pile in order to have some autumn fun.

Watch out, Warren!!! Thomas is too close to you with a big rake!!!

Look at Nicholas' expression!

Stephen is having a great time.

No need for words.

Stephen is sticking his tongue at the camera.

Look at this picture!!! A treasure to cherish forever!!!

Gerard and Nicholas are throwing leaves at each other.

Where is Stephen?


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