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Monday 26 January 2015

A Personal Note on my Family

Dear Friends of The Kitchen Door,

I haven't posted a personal update in some time and I thought it was time for a New Year post. I have always been told that life speeds up as you get older and I would agree with this statement, but add to it. Life does move faster, as it becomes more full. Let me just say I have been living in the fullness of life lately... That sounds so romantic, but there have been some heavy moments and some wonderful ones too.

It was November 2013 that we officially became a foster family to our beautiful little lady baby Zo. Her birth mother chose us to foster her and she came home from hospital at three days old. We are what is called a Family to Permanence, meaning if possible we will be Zo's adoptive family also. Of course that was over a year ago now and since then that little girl has brought us such joy and so much blessing! All babies are precious but this little girl just loves life and enjoys everyone she meets. She is funny and strong and crazy and now that she is one year she is also full of mischief and can trash the house or grab a chunk of Tricia's hair in the blink of an eye (Tricia turns 6 in February - how is that possible??). We remain Zo's foster family but have high hopes that we will become her adoptive family in the not too distant future.

Becoming a Family to Permanence took a step of faith for Ryan and I as it is without certainty of permanence that we would be bringing little people home. We felt fearful of the potential loss for ourselves and for Tricia. We felt excitement and apprehension about regular contact with birth family (3 visits a week since Zo was born). We also knew it was what we were supposed to be doing. So, we changed our status from Adoptive family to Family to Permanence and in short order Zo came home. We can confidently say we made the right decision. I wouldn't trade a minute of the last year and a bit. As is prone to happen, we have grown and learned so much and are better for it. In reflecting over the past year Ryan and I agree that we have learned most importantly to live in today without expectation of tomorrow. We have learned to celebrate growth and enjoy each moment (even the chaotic stressful ones) because we have no guarantee of more to come. We have learned to let God grow our family in His timing and not our own.

Well wouldn't you know that our growing Zo would have a half brother born one year and eight days later? We did not expect this wee man to be apprehended but when he was we got the call to come pick him up at the hospital when he was just 1 day old. Now we have Irish twins and life has changed dramatically again. We have even less assurance that this little guy will be ours forever but regardless we are in love and enjoying each day despite some borderline severe exhaustion! Seeing our crew grow so fast and watching the girls fawn over little man has been remarkable to say the least.

So we continue this 'fullness of life' adventure and the only thing we are lacking is sleep (like all young families). If you think of us, we would love your prayers for stamina and for the adoption of Zo to take place sooner than later. In the meantime, thank you for sharing in our journey, you know I will post tons of pictures as soon as I am allowed!

With love, Katie

Monday 5 January 2015

Recipe of the Day - Franks' House Dressing

I have been meaning to post this recipe for a long time now, but alas I had lost my recipe card... It's not a tricky recipe but it is amazing if made to these specifications. This salad dressing is used by my sister in law in New Port News Virginia Beach and by my mother in law in Frederick Maryland. Each of them make it slightly differently but both with great results so I have posted two versions and you can choose which suits you better.

Note: This dressing is shelf stable meaning you can keep it in the cupboard until you need it, which will likely be on a daily basis and thus you won't have to wait for it to warm up before using. Enjoy!

Franks Family House Dressing - Maryland Version
3/4 cup olive oil
3/4 tsp Tabasco sauce
1/3 cup red wine vinegar
1/3 cup honey
1 1/2 tsp salt

1. Combine all the ingredients in a jar with a lid or a salad dressing shaker and shake well to combine. Shake before each use. Store at room temperature. Makes: 1 1/2 cups

Franks Family House Dressing - Virginia Beach Version
1/2 cup olive oil
1/2 tsp Tabasco
1/2 cup red wine vinegar
1/2 cup honey
1 tsp salt

1. Combine all the ingredients in a jar with a lid or a salad dressing shaker and shake well to combine. Shake before each use. Store at room temperature. Makes: 1 1/2 cups