Monday, January 28, 2013

Hoarding vs. helping?

If you didn't happen to see it, "Clean basement/create foster resource" was listed on my resolutions for '13.

Here's the thing: we've lived in this apartment for over 4 years and instead of going through the items in the basement and being intentional with them, we've just sort of spread ourselves out and added more crap.

Our basement has lots of space. Our basement has lots of crap.

Or it did, I should say. I've been working a few hours a week down there. Throwing stuff away, adding to the very large donation pile in the corner, selling stuff on Craigslist, giving other stuff away.

I've had this on my to-do list for 4 years. But now I'm actually doing something about it. (that doesn't include throwing a lit match down there and running for it.)

One day it clicked. I could actually use my basement for good (a foster resource) instead of evil (hoarding).

Our church has a growing orphan care ministry that I'm blessed to be apart of. While we don't feel like we're supposed to foster in this season of life, we want to support those that can. Over the last few months I've encouraged moms of young kids to keep their stuff they would normally sell or give away and wait for someone to need it, thinking "If only we had a space we could house and organize it all..."

Captain Obvious reporting for duty!

That's been the magic motivation I needed. I've got plans. I've got dreams. Maybe this is my Space Jam...


Here's where I help you, help me, help them!

I need your stuff! Have you and your fam decided you were "done"? Still have boxes of baby clothes?

I'll never forget January of 2011 when we were suddenly readying to adopt a newborn and didn't have anything for him. You guys rallied like no other. I still remember sitting in the nursery going through bags and bags of stuff people gave us and crying. (not because it was ugly, but because everyone was so generous. Just needed to clarify...)

This will *hopefully* be an on-going ministry. So, keep us in mind as you pack up stuff your kids are growing out of. Fo real.

What's your Space Jam?

If you haven't watched KidPresident before, it's time. This is a great one to start with and then I recommend his talk on diabetes.

And more Dez faces!

It was sweet of Sasha and Malia to rock the Dez!

Thursday, January 24, 2013

Check 1/12!

Russ asked me what I wanted for my birthday and I knew immediately. INK!
So, why "story"?

I've had that word bouncing around in my head for months.

Whether it's how Russ and I met, got engaged, taught several years, maneuvered Eliot's international adoption, experienced foster care, started businesses, started bands, experienced the rise and fall of domestic adoption or the constant awkward interactions with people in public, there's always a story being told. There's always a story to choose.

Lisa and I were talking about the fact that the kids in their freshman year of college are exactly half a lifetime younger than us. It got me thinking about 18year old Katie.
(Let's go with "ahead of her time")

18 year old me was shocked at herself for leaving the comfort of home to go away to college. 18 year old me was full of entitlement, uncertainty and a whole lot of fear. I didn't even want to cut my hair. All my "what if"s led to my demise.

At 36, my world is full of "what if's" but they all lead to some pretty exciting results. Maybe. Maybe not. The last 18 years have been hard but they've shaped who I am at 36. They are my story.

And if you haven't read my post over on Wynnes blog and you still don't get why I would put this word on my body for the rest of my life, head over there now. It's linked here.

I know our story isn't done. I know there are going to be hard roads ahead and seasons that will be more simple. For now, in this moment, I'm thankful for my story.

Friday, January 18, 2013

Gotcha Day! (Dez edition. or would it be addition?)

This happened a year ago.

A year ago.

To read about that day, click here.

A year ago.

It's the whole, "Days go by slowly but the years, quickly" thing.

Couldn't be more thankful for this addition to our fam.

Love you, Desmond Mohr.

Wednesday, January 16, 2013


Remember Wynne? and her cute babies? She asked me to share on her blog yesterday for her series called "Anybody." Click here to check it out and then if you're not already following her blog, add it to your reader. Trust me. Good people and good stuff. Go.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

Do The Desmond!

So...Dez makes this face a lot:
So I posted this:
And then this happened all over my Facebook wall...

I have funny friends.

Thursday, January 10, 2013

The Switch Out.

We live in a great apartment. It's not too small for 4 peeps. Until you add all the stuff . All the stuff we decided we needed along the way. Half of it we don't even remember we own, honestly. It's overwhelming at times and I'm sure overstimulating to the boys. Not to mention, the kids play with the top layer of all of the toy baskets mostly. The bottom ones seem to be perpetually benched.

I'm not sure where I first heard this idea but we're trying it out. We're calling it The Switch Out. The last few days we've started filling boxes with half of the toys/books/puzzles/games. (Because the majority of our space is filled with kid clutter.) The plan is to put those boxes in the basement for a few months, then switch out the first set with the second set. Essentially rotating two sets of toys/books into circulation.

So far the kids haven't asked for anything that's already packed up. It feels more simple, less chaotic. Makes me a little giddy. I'm also looking forward to the boys seeing their packed toys in a few months! It'll feel like Christmas!

After we'd already started this, a friend sent me this article on Apartment Therapy. Good stuff if you're needing some guidance on how to get through it all.

Now, to help Dez and his spoon hoarding issue...

Tuesday, January 8, 2013

I Instagram so I'll remember.

I have a terrible memory.

My brother will bring up some story from our childhood and I have absolutely no recollection of any part of it. I recently posted a pic of my 6th grade class on Facebook and most of us were tagged in it and started sharing memories. I didn't remember even half of them.

It's terrible. I'm the best person to confide secrets to since I won't remember them long enough to gossip them.

I sometimes worry (People Pleaser alert!) that I overwhelm people on my Instagram, Facebook or blog feeds with pics and stories of my kids. (I obviously don't care enough to slow down.)
Yes, I'm obsessed with my family but I also want to remember every single detail. I know they're growing up crazy fast and even though I'm excited for the stages to come, I want to remember how obsessed Dez was with spoons for a month straight, and how SERIOUS Eliot's face gets when he plays noise on guitar (we're not calling it music quite yet...).
My average follower (that sounds super weird) looks at them for a second and then moves on. I look at them constantly. Over and over. I sometimes go back and read my blog from this month 5 years ago, just to remember Eliot at the stage Dez is in. I don't blog/IG/FB for my peeps. I do it for me. I'd rather have too many to look back on than not enough.
I also kinda consider myself our historian. I want the boys to be able to look back and enjoy seeing pics of everyday life, as much as they want to. I want them to see themselves at every stage. I want them to see Russ and I dating each other and taking silly pics with them.
I want my posts to fill in the blanks of their stories as best they can.


Remember when I gave Russ 12 dates for Christmas a year ago? Remember when the last you heard of this was 7/12? Remember when Russ got a job in August that claimed every weekend after that? Remember when I scheduled a ziplining date for the same month as hunting season so they said we couldn't go?

There's still 3-4 dates that are still waiting to happen, so we're not quite done. And for the record, we did date during the last 4 months, it just was same ol', same ol' type stuff we could do on a weeknight.

However, I'd been waiting and waiting for Decembers. The best for last!
We scheduled a reservation for a dining experience called Entre Underground. Russ used to work for the guy who runs it and we've always talked about going but never made it.

When you sign up, the menu and location are unknown. They change every time the event is held. The day of the event you get an email with both. To be honest, looking at the menu I was not very excited. I would never choose to eat 85% of what was listed. But nevertheless was excited for date night, especially right before Christmas.
Did I just eat purple cauliflower soup and freakin' love it? Did smoke just come out of that smoke infused cranberry with the foie gras creme brulee? What?

We showed up and to our surprise we were at the childhood home of T.S. Eliot. The owners gave us a the tour and then dinner started. That lasted 4 hours. And was without a doubt, the best meal I've ever eaten. The people at our table were fascinating, the food was perfection, the house amazing.

I can't say enough about this experience. It's an unforgettable evening, a great memory maker.

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Wanna see me run in a full costume for 13.1 miles?

If you saw this post you know that I'm running another half. This time I'm using my commitment for good, for a bigger cause than justifying my ice cream habit.

As also mentioned before, my friend Erin and her fam are in the process of adopting from Uganda. It's oh-so-appropriate in a it-all-comes-full-circle kinda way that this is the avenue in which I'm offering her my help.

Erin taught me to run.

A gazillion years ago I was getting lazier and unhappy and Erin was the perfect friend in that season. She was an experienced runner and created a C25K for me before those existed. I couldn't even run for 3 straight minutes when Erin took me under her wing. My fav memory was her running next to me and I was CONVINCED I.was.dying and couldn't run the next ten seconds and she started SHOUTING AT ME in the park as loud as she could to KEEP RUNNING. People thought I was getting attacked. They called 911. (that part may be falsified.)

Now, 4 half marathons later, I have her to thank.
And now she needs my help. To bring home her son from Uganda.

Done and done.

Here's where you come in:

I'm running the half marathon here in St. Louis in April. I start training on Sunday. (12 week running sched, thankyouhalhigdon) Let me be clear: EVERY PENNY YOU DONATE GOES TO THEIR ADOPTION EXPENSES. I'm paying for the race out of pocket, etc.

You have three options:

1. Pledge $X.XX/mile of the RACE. (13.1 miles) i.e. $1/mile= $13.10, $10/mile would be $131.00 or anything in between or more or less.

2. Pledge a set amount.

3. Pledge nothing but run it yourself on my "team" and gather pledges from your peeps.

Here's where your entertainment comes in:
If I collectively raise:

$200: I'll wear silly socks
$500: I'll wear silly socks and a tutu.
$1000: I'll wear silly socks, a tutu, and something silly on my head
$2000: I'll wear a full costume of the donor's choice (there will be a vote) (appropriate choices only, duh.)

Contact me ASAP to join in the fun! katie l mohr @ g mail. Pledge commitments due by January 31. Pledge payments can come later.

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Dream big! Er...somethin'...

I can safely say that the goals I made for 2012 weren't met. Not even close. However, progress was made and all in the home are happy and healthy so we're good.

With Russ settling in nicely to his new job, Dez getting more independent and Eliot rocking first grade I feel like 2013 has lots of potential.

I'm shooting big, peeps. Stealing/copying an idea from a friend (best copycat wins, remember?) I've set 12 goals for 2013. Some are on-going, some are one time shots. I'm hoping to be able to check one off a month. Realistically if I hit 6/12, I'm happy. Feel free to ask me how it's going throughout the year. Unless I look angry, then just tell me a funny joke and move on...

(Side note: posting this from my phone since my laptop is unwilling to help. Hope it looks okay...)