Who is your family? Who is there for you?

Imagine you have been preparing for a huge milestone birthday celebration for, oh, maybe a year. You’ve talked about it since your child was little. They knew it was coming. They were just waiting for that one big birthday.

You picked out the special dress. You booked the hall. You booked the church and the band. You made sure there will be enough food and cake. The bar is taken care of. The special girl and her attendants need transportation because they aren’t old enough to drive and that special dress won’t fit in the minivan, so you rent a limo. Decorations are made to coordinate with the theme. Everything is moving along well, although it has been a pain in the backside to get everything coordinated for the same day.

All along, you’ve been telling the rest of the family to save the date. You have made certain they know because it’s a big deal. You’ve talked about your dream of it since they placed the tiny Mexican-American girl in your arms. You want her to know her heritage.

Yes, she is adopted. She is your sweet daughter. She has special needs. Her birth mother drank alcohol when she was expecting your sweet baby. Birthmom liked to party. She didn’t realize it would cause birth defects, brain damage and hurt her entire central nervous system. Your sweet girl has bones missing from her forearms, she has ARND (alcohol related neurological defects). Her CNS (central nervous system) has been very damaged by the partying. Still, you and your family celebrate the adoption and you learn to live life with short arms and ADHD.

Now, Miss Sweetie has her big day coming up. It’s a month before the quinceañeros, the celebration of a girl turning 15 & becoming a young woman. The dress is in the final stage of fitting, things are settling in as they should be, even though your stomach and brain are a nervous wreck, trying to remember if you have everything right. Invitations are sent out and RSVP’s aren’t coming in.

Your entire family turns you down. Oh, they know how much you have been planning, how long you have waited but there’s this bike tour that’s the same weekend. “We would love to come but this is a really neat bike tour and we all signed up. No refunds. Sorry. We will catch you another time. Maybe Christmas if it’s not too snowy?”

Tears of anger & frustration well up in your eyes. What in the world are you going to do? The entire family just bailed. You have paid for everything and there will be about 8 people there.


You put out a plea to a couple of your Facebook support groups, asking if anyone is able to get to your town to help your daughter celebrate. Above, you will see the moms who made the trip to help Miss Sweetie enjoy her quinceañeros. We came from many different states with husbands and kids. We are your family, your support family. We can’t pick up and get there every time but we will try. We will make sure to keep you in prayers, we will send cards and messages, we will listen to you and read your posts and texts and return them with words of love, encouragement and support.

We had a PARTY! It was wonderful! It was perfect!

Families who have adopted children with special needs aren’t surprised by family making other plans and shunning them. It still hurts though.

See those kids in the pictures? Nearly every one has some type of disability. For the most part, they ‘look normal’. I hate hearing that. You have no idea how un-normal our family life is. But, we partied and celebrated and had loads of fun. We were, and still are, a FAMILY. Family is there for each other. Family loves each other. Family helps. Family prays. Family sacrifices.




PS–This story is about my friend and her daughter. She gave me permission to write about the heartbreak and love in the adoption/special needs world. Thank you, Linda.

SOLD!!! Sunrise on the Water Beach Bag


Price: $20 includes shipping, USA only

Product Details
Another tightly crocheted beach bag to hold your book, sunscreen, camera/phone, crushable hat, wallet & still a bit of room for kid toys & such. The sand falls out & the necessities stay in. Most accurate color is the one with my hand.

Machine wash, gentle, lay flat to dry.

This is 100% cotton, so it will shrink if washed in hot water. It will also stretch with wear.

–SOLD–Sunny Beach Bag!

This is one CUTE little bag!

100% cotton. It is 7.5″ across the bottom & 10″ tall. It seems small but it really stretches! With the tight single crochet stitches, your pens, glasses & sea shells will stay inside but sand will filter out.

Machine wash delicate, cold water and lay flat to dry.

Sold! 😊❤️



New store!! Reef Tank Yarn Creations

I have opened a shop on Facebook! Please pm me with questions or if you would like to buy any RTYC product.

Contact me: mama2russians@gmail.com  I will send you a PayPal invoice. Shipping in included in US prices.

100% of money will go to Kensington Church from now (28 March 2017) through the end of July (31 July 2017). From 1 August 2017, going forward, 10% will go to charity.

Current offerings:

Kauni Wings, $125 A beautiful shawl that looks like lacy bird feathers in 100% wool. Kauni 8/2 effektgarn wool is hand wash only, lay flat to dry. It will felt if you put it in the washing machine. With care, it should need little washing. It is 60″ across and 24″ deep.

Spiral Cake Blanket, $60 A versital 80/20 acrylic/wool blend. It can be machine washed, laid flat to dry. Good for a snuggling blanket or a baby blanket. It is 3 feet across. What little boy wouldn’t love to drag this through the mud a few times?!

Easter Seals zoo walk

Sunday August 7th was a fun day! We got up early to be at the zoo by 7:30 in the morning. We received our tags and t-shirts and walked to the pavilion inside the zoo.

As you can see, we saw lots of animals, took some fun selfies and ate well at Recipies Restaurant in Troy after the walk. I had the Very Berry French toast croissant (powdered sugar covering it) and Gabby has the short stack of strawberry pancakes!

Yes, I was the family spokesperson again. I’m getting better at it. I’m very thankful for my radio training at Pepperdine University so I am used to talking into a microphone & being able to keep my thoughts straight. I am thankful to Norb Promo, Craig Sharum and Brent Wirth at Easter Seals for giving us the chance to do all of this this year. I keep hoping we have not disappointed in our representation of Easter Seals. We have just been enjoying the ride and trying to show our appreciation for being chosen.

Our next big Easter Seals outing is to the Detroit Tigers game on Monday, September 12. All 4 of us get to go on the field and Duncan gets to throw out the first pitch! Lord, You are so GOOD to us!

Who am I, oh sovereign Lord, and what is my family, that you have brought me this far? … Is this your usual way of dealing with man, oh sovereign Lord?

2 Samuel 7:18-20

Just over a week till the zoo walk


Hi there!

There are only 8.5 days until our Easter Seals zoo walk.Would any of you like to join us? Would any of you be able to donate to our team? We would love either one!

[That’s a lower case “L” before the 8 in the link on the photo above.]

I hope some of you will be able to donate.

Next week will be a quick week. The kids will be at camp from 10-2:30 Monday through Friday. CARE of Southeat Michigan has a wonderful camp call Project FOCUS. They help at risk youth learn to say no to drugs & know how to respond to police, fire & other helping people in their lives. This will be their 3rd year.

After CARE’s camp, Gabby has Math Camp at school. The bus will even pick her up & drop her off! It goes from 8:30-12:30 every weekday. Duncan will be having Cursive Camp while Gabby is gone. He learned cursive in 2nd & 3rd grades but the kids were never required to use it. Now he can’t read it! I’m sure there will be lots of whining but I am hoping he will persevere & learn cursive well.

Only a little over a month until school begins again and I have 7th and 8th grade kids! How the years fly by!




I’m asking for donations

Yes, I’m blatantly asking for anyone reading this to please donate to our Walk With Me team for Easter Seals.

The one mile zoo walk is August 7 at the Detroit Zoo. We would love to have local, or even semi-local, friends sign up to walk with us. You can register by clicking on the ‘Join’ button on our team page.

Those of my friends scattered around the globe can donate via the ‘Donate’ button on our team page.

Easter Seals is a wonderful organization for helping people of all ages. The money they raise goes to helping people, not to big salaries or advertising.

So, please join us to walk! Please donate!

Thank you!!! ❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️❤️

Join or donate here: Curving Path team page


We are Easter Seals Ambassadors!

imageYes, the kids are the co-ambassadors for Easter Seals Michigan! We were called in late December, asking us if we would let the kids be their representatives for 2016. Of course I said yes! The guys came over to talk with us about it right at New Years time. As you can see by the SNOW ON THE GROUND IN OUR PICTURE, our professional photo session was in February. 😳😳

Our activities as ambassadors so far, have included the kids each getting to choose raffle winners for cars & cash, speaking at the Easter Seals Michigan annual meeting and doing a zoo walk in Grand Rapids, Michigan. We will be at the Detroit Zoo walk on August 7! PLEASE join us, or donate to our team if you live too far away to join. Our team page for joining us and donating


We went to Maine to meet Gabby’s running buddy, Sarah. Gabby was in 7th Heaven! I was too, getting to meet my email pen pal, Barb. That’s Sarah’s mom. We also met all the rest of their family & a few friends. The kids said it was better than Disney!

Since returning from Maine, the kids have been bored! (3 days…) It’s gonna be a long summer… At least I have 2 camps scheduled in there! Yay, me!