Friday, December 23, 2011

Mele Kalikimaka Everyone!

Boy has this Christmas season been the craziest experience ever. We are light-less, decoration-less and present-less. BUT.....

"Where do you think you're going? Nobody's leaving. Nobody's walking out on this fun, old-fashioned family Christmas. No, no. We're all in this together. This is a full-blown, four-alarm holiday emergency here. We're gonna press on, and we're gonna have the hap, hap, happiest Christmas since Bing Crosby tap-danced with Danny f****** Kaye. And when Santa squeezes his fat white ass down that chimney tonight, he's gonna find the jolliest bunch of assholes this side of the nuthouse.". Christmas Vacation, the ultimate Christmas experience!

just couldn't help myself! Our seemingly absent Christmas spirit this season is within reason. And besides, it's not the outwardly show of spirit that truly matters, although beautifully meaningful in its own right, it's what you carry in your heart and share with those around you that truly envelopes the meaning of Christmas.

On January 1st, 2012, we begin an experience of a lifetime.
Our family is moving to Hawaii, Oahu to be specific. We will leave behind our home in the desert and enter a new home residing less than one mile from the beach.

Why? Well first of all why not? However, the most notable reason is due to my health. The Mr applied to several places all over that had more temperate climates and oh my gosh by golly, Oahu picked us! This move was so meant to be that we are simply showing up---God has arranged everything for us.

I miss writing/blogging, it's what I love to do, it's what I hope to do more of from our seaside dwelling. Also on my list? Reconnecting with my camera, what better place to do so than paradise?

Merry Christmas to you all. May the new year bring to life new dreams, health and happiness.


Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Drumroll Please....(ddddddddddddd)

"In the spirit of the Clark family Christmas...." I'm only kidding but gosh do I love that movie. "That" being the good old family classic Christmas Vacation.

In all seriousness I would like to attach a letter I sent out via email to close friends and family. We are incredibly excited to help the children that are still in Leila's orphanage, many of whom we took food to while there to take Leila home. I think of the past few years and all we have accomplished in Leila's life: The therapies she's received that have helped place her in the "typically" developing category, the bonds formed between grandparents, aunts, uncles and cousins, multiple facial reconstruction surgeries and the list goes on. Then I think of the children we met there, that are still there, surviving on the small amounts of love the orphanage staff are able to give with so many children and so little time. This is why this year we are choosing to help the children in Kyrgyzstan orphanages not only celebrate Christmas but to provide the essential vitamins they need to survive throughout the entire year.

Would you like to help us accomplish our goal and honor Leila this holiday season? Please read the letter we sent out below. You will find the link to donate should you feel called to do so.

It's here!  "Pie Challenge Time" is here!  I feel totally out of my comfort zone asking for money.  However, I  will make an exception and swallow my pathetic pride to benefit some very precious children in Kyrgyzstan.  Every year our family does something for others at Christmas whether it be for a military family or families who have a loved one dying on hospice and are unable to provide food and gifts at Christmas for their children. This year we have chosen to help the innocent orphans in Kyrgyzstan that have been unable to leave the country due to political upheaval and the same red tape we had to cut through to get our precious Leila home. 
     Our little girl is in a family where she is loved, safe, provided for, protected, well fed and receives excellent medical care.  Many children of Leila's birth country are not so fortunate.  Most of the children in the orphanages of Kyrgyzstan are merely surviving and many will have life long medical issues due to institutionalization and lack of proper nutrition.  This year's Pie Challenge has a new twist.  The donations will provide not only a small Christmas gift and a meal out but, a year's worth of vitamins for each of the 2000 children that will be sponsored this year.  Here in the United States vitamins are often just an extra added boost to our nutrition.  In Kyrgyzstan vitamins can truly be the difference between life and death.  
     I understand that the holidays are fast approaching and money will be tight.  Five dollars is a huge gift to these orphans.  Many charities and organizations send you information and a place to check off a box with $20-$100+ leaving most of us to feel like cheapskates if we can't contribute that much.  The Pie Challenge is not like that.  Honestly, the change you dig out from under your couch cushions can be used to greatly bless someone.  
     Between now and Thanksgiving would you please join me in praying for these special children?  PRAYERS AND PENNIES ARE POWERFUL!  If you would like to donate you can follow this link:  There is a "DONATIONS" button on the right side of the screen beneath the list of Pie Challenge participants.  Please be sure to put my name in the memo if you decide to donate so that it can be applied towards my total so that my children can take turns hitting me with the pies ;)  Jalyn has agreed that he will take a pie in the face with mom if we can reach our family goal of $500.  We will post the pictures on my blog:  Together we can bring hope and health to the orphans of Kyrgyzstan.  Thank you so much for your prayers.

Kelli Al-Mutawa and Family

Monday, October 3, 2011

Just a quickie


1st- need to start blogging again.
A) I get to live life twice
B) it's therapeutic
C) some really amazing things are happening in my life right now

Now back to the rewind button:

Since I last wrote I was diagnosed with sjogrens syndrome. I have started chemotherapy in an effort to tame my stinking immune system. Yuck.

Leila had massive reconstructive surgery to her face which is turning out beautifully (thank you Dr. Leighton, or dr dude, as Leila refers to him as. Yes I will post pictures, at some point.

Just stopped by to say hello and write a quick update. I need a keyboard for this darn I pad before I can type more---never have hit the backspace button so much in my entire life!!! But I do love you oh I pad, I do!!!


Friday, May 27, 2011

You Asked For It......Sulta-li-a-no!

I haven't a clue why I bestowed him an "Italian-themed-nickname," it simply flew from my mouth as freely as the word shit crap does.

I will never forget the night Sultan arrived.  His flight was late therefore the Mr picked him up alone.  I remember the Mr calling and saying "we've got our self a big one," like he was out fishing for another son or such.  Men. 

If I may speak type openly and honestly, as a mother, I certainly had my reservations about a young boy moving into a home with two young children----I believe any mother would.  As with most decisions, I went with my gut (and the mr's) and our guts didn't lie. 

That amazing, miraculous, wondrous night, was the beginning of a family taking a new shape--a rounder shape--a completed circle. 

What he has taught our children, heck! what he has taught us about teenagers, is priceless. 

But I bet what you really want to know is HOW he came to be OURS.  His father is a friend of our adoption agencies liaison whom accompanied us to Kyrgyzstan for our first visit.  One night, he took us out to dinner and dancing (and I had to eat horse).  We immediately clicked, despite the fact that we spoke no Russian and he spoke no English.  One would say something then wait for the translator and the table would erupt in chuckles.  We exchanged e-mails and kept in touch. 

Sultan is a US citizen but lived in Kyrgyzstan with his family until his sophomore year of high school in which he was sent to live with extended family in Colorado.  Unfortunately for his senior year, the extended family underwent a financial crisis and could no longer look after Sultan.  His dad called us in a panic one evening and we agreed, just like that. 

Jalyn and Leila refer to Sultan as "brother" as well as Leila.  We are privileged to call him a son and will forever look after his needs, guide him through life and laugh at all the silly, and sometimes inappropriate jokes we share together.

Life is certainly a little more sweet these days.

Now----were off to Michigan!  Can't wait to catch up with old friends, family and feel the arms of Michigan firmly wrapped around my soul. 


Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Random Ramblings

So you found me eh??? Being back here feels a bit like coming home.....I feel comfortable here.
I don't have much to say, really. I feel like poop most days as my joints ache, burn, swell and become stiff. Putting two feet on the ground in the morning simply takes too much effort and energy at times.
Docs think it's RA (rheumatoid arthritis) and now their out to prove it. I just want medicine to make it better already. Feeling crummy can be down right depressing---especially when the children's laughter echos down the hall and into my bedroom and I am reminded of what my body is keeping me from enjoying.
I am counting the days until I can see my mama and daddy, feel their warm hugs and enjoy that beautiful Michigan breeze. We are ALL hubby and Sultan this time! The kiddo's are beyond thrilled and I'm counting the days til I can wrap my arms around this turkey:
Just look at those baby blues---and to think I haven't held her since she was newly born (insert sad face here). I miss out on so much being here in Arizona, away from my Michiganders. My mom, dad, sis, bro, aunts and friends all do their best to call me often, fill me with updates, throw Peyton on the phone so that I may sing with her---all in an effort to help me feel closer to home. I crave the support of having my mother live close to me, especially these days. I need her more than ever. Countless days I would have called and asked her to come sit with me, talk to me, love on my babies. I would have begged her to get me out of the house and have lunch together, something, just to help me feel human again. Then again, I know I wouldn't have to beg as she is always one step ahead knowing just what I need.
It gets so lonely here in AZ while fighting an illness when all you want is your mom, who just happens to be over 2000 miles away. Melissa, two rock! Your support is unyielding and your friendship only grew stronger during difficult times and will never be forgotten.
I don't always have pleasant thoughts to write about, therefore I haven't written. But with the support of my friends and particularly my Aunt Daleann, I will write----even when I feel I have nothing to say that anyone would want to read.