Here you will find the chronicles of the crazy crook crew...enjoy!

Here you will find the chronicles of the crazy crook crew...enjoy!
I want to live in each season fully, celebrate the chapters as they end, and anticipate the next with only joy! God gets all the glory for the story He's written for our family! A family designed and defined by Him through foster care and adoption. If you've got some time, stay a while...and grab a kleenex;) Each chapter is beautiful and heart wrenching and breathtaking and God is ALWAYS good!

Thursday, January 10, 2013 need proof of citizenship for a cruise?

So if you read my blog yesterday then you know that this trip was hard for us.  If we could have went back in time to change things, we would have never booked the cruise.  And despite my scary sad visions and anxiety over leaving sick kiddos, we did it.  We left.  We arrived in Miami around 12:30 on Thursday afternoon.  Right away we found a driver, actually he found us, and we got in his giant, somewhat scary white van (I have a fear of giant white vans but this one had windows so I got in) and made our way to the cruise ship.  He dropped us off and we headed over to the luggage guy who asked for our passports.  We didn't brings ours...they were expired and passports were not required for this particular cruise.  He then asked for our birth certificates.  What?  We don't have those either.  My visual wrath was turned directly to my other half whom I had asked at least THREE times if we needed our birth certificates...including right before we walked out the door on d-day.  I am a detail person, he is not, this part of the trip was his baby.  That's all I'm saying.  The luggage guy was less than kind about our response and sent us to stand in a long line with our bags to talk to another friendly lady.  I was in disbelief...this couldn't be happening...or perhaps my vision was legit and God was doing everything in His power to keep us off that boat.  Did I mention our ship was named "Destiny"?  So many much stress.  One lady lead us to another, then another, and another...we ended up sitting in an area with several other people who were not yet grown ups either, or who didn't speak English (everyone but us).  They told us we could get a copy of our birth certificates faxed to Carnival, or even have someone take a picture of them and text it to us which we would e-mail to Carnival.  Okay...there's hope.  I called my beloved sister who was home with our three crazies.  I told her to look in our safe box...she couldn't find them, a black folder full of adoption ppwk, nope, a bag in the closet full of adoption ppwk, nope, I was getting ready to send her to the next possible location when the sound of my sick children crying in the background forced me off the phone.  I told her to take care of them and I'd call her back.  Next option...JT and I both called our moms.  My mom wasn't home...40 minutes away from home actually, but she had a copy and was going to rush home to get it.  JT's mom was at work and she didn't think she still had one. this point I was praying for another type of where I could see exactly where those birth certificates were...I was going crazy.  What else, what else...I told JT to call our adoption agency and I would call our county Department of Child Services and see if either of those places had copies.  I wasn't sure but thought maybe we had to have them when we went through the adoption process or when we became licensed foster parents.  The adoption agency was no help...but my amazing friend at DCS was on it.  I'll never forget her words "yeah, you had to have those.  Let me grab your file and I'll fax it right away".  And that's exactly what she did.  There you have it, we were a 'go'.  We had decided against our anxiety and fears to go on this trip, flew to Miami, and we were getting on the ship after a dramatic 2 hours of limbo.  Some of our other friends sitting in the 'we forgot our proof of citizenship' area were not so lucky and I was sad for them.  I guess it happens every cruise...some excited vacationers make this mistake and are very disappointed.

But we were on our way...out to sea...on a ship named Destiny.

We had to turn around two hours into the cruise and head back to Miami because one of the singer/dancers was seriously ill and needed what they called "stateside care".  So our 1st port in Key West was canceled due to our delay and a shortage on time. Oh worries from these two Crooks, we were just happy to be on the cruise:)  I've got more to tell but my blogging time has expired...we really did have a good time.  So glad my husband is a rational man and he didn't let my worrisome weirdness thwart our plans to celebrate a decade of wedded bliss!  To be continued...

~A Cruisin Mama Crook

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Crying over a Cruise...

This Friday, January 11th, we'll be celebrating ten years of marital bliss.  Ten years of doing this crazy life with my best better, more grounded half:)  This past June, we decided we were going to do something big to celebrate and we booked a cruise.  It seemed like a great idea at the worries, only anticipation.  However...the closer we got to departure, the more anxious I became.  I've never been away from the kids for more than one night...I eat, sleep, and breathe them.  They are my every day and they make my every day.  I mean seriously...scroll up and look at those three faces again.  And the closer we got to our four days of freedom and relaxation, the more nervous/stressed/overwhelmed I became.  So many thoughts ran through my wouldn't believe most of them...because I'm nuts.  For example, I sat on my couch one evening a week prior to our trip and imagined that JT and I were going to die on our cruise...leave this earth and be with Lord.  It didn't stop imagination then took me to our funerals, our lives were celebrated together and our families had to decide whether or not to take our children.  They decided that the kids should see their parents one last time and in my "daymare", our youngest, Rowan, was being carried by his aunt to say goodbye to us.  He was screaming and crying and reaching for my lifeless body and my sister was trying her best to calm him and I could literally hear his voice screaming "mommy, daddy, mommy, Nooooooo!"  So as these thoughts/visions are running through my mind, and tears are streaming down my cheeks, I tell my husband that I don't think we should go.  I explain a little of my "vision" to him and he just stares at me...blankly...with a certain look I've received alot over the last decade.  And my worries are not taken seriously...not even for a second.  Easy for him...he didn't see what I saw...but whatever.  My stress level increased and decreased quite a bit leading up to what I'll call "d-day".  I'd talk to a friend who'd encourage me and talk sense into me...remind me how important my husband is and how good this uninterrupted time together will be for us.  Then a certain 5 year old got so constipated she had a fever and a certain 2 year old got the all too familiar ear infection.  They were fussy and clingy and we were leaving the next day...really?  The night before we left, we were sitting at the dining table adding up the math...our plane tickets and the cost of the much we would be throwing away if we just stayed home.  And this was not just husband is the numbers guy and he's the one who started adding it up.  The thought of leaving our sick children was not sitting well with him at all.  Now...I must tell you, we were leaving them with their favorite aunt and she was coming to OUR house.  So daily life was going to be basically the same for them and we had faith in her...we've seen the way she loves and cares for them.  She rocks.  That being said, I also love and care about her and thinking of leaving her with sick Crook kids for 5 days did not help with my anxiety.  But she came...ready and excited...referring to her time at our house as an "adventure".  And there was a part of us that was still excited by the idea of our trip.  Those two things combined with the $ already invested...inspired us to walk out the door.  Mind you, we spent the 1st leg of our trip talking about how excited we'll be when we get back home and feel their little arms around our necks.  But we left just the same...we did it.  There was no turning back.  Or was there?  You'll have to find that out later.  Why are we in our 30's and still not grown ups?  That's how it felt anyway.  I cannot believe we did what we did...or should I say, didn't do.  I'll get into that part of the story tomorrow.  It's been too long since I've written...
One Very
~Crazy Mama Crook