Day 13…

As I sit here typing, Tyler is having a stand-off in the living room holding our oldest son & telling him that he loves him.  This evening feels like Day 1, our oldest has been sick & has been living a bit like an only child.  Sleeping alone, having his own toys & not having to share, not having to help with meals, showering alone, medicine time with Abuelita alone.  Well he is healed and back with the group, refusing to follow instructions, stating that he is not a our child, angry because it is not his way, telling us that he does not love us, wanting to be back alone away from his siblings.  That´s okay we are not going anywhere, we are staying consistent with the rules & constantly affirming him that we love him & that he is a smart, handsome & good boy.  That he needs to listen to Papi y Mami, that he is not the boss in this family & that he is in fact a our child.

It´s been a hard day friends.  It is our 2nd day being completely in the apartment & it has gone surprisingly well, thanks to all of the great suggestions from my facebook friends.  We built forts, colored, played with shaving cream, played hide & seek, watched one movie, & had pancakes for dinner.  Tomorrow everybody is back to well & we are going to try to go to the park for a short while just to allow the kids to run off some energy.

Today we got to enjoy the aspect of having 5 children.  They are all so different and delightful, they all play together differently & they all react to the good & bad differently.

Our oldest is still struggling of letting go of the role of the “boss”, he is defiant, challenges everything if it does not go his way, bosses around his brothers & sisters, and is selfish.  He is smart, loves helping his brothers & sisters, he loves helping his family any way possible: in the kitchen, at the park, pushing the stroller, he is creative, likes to go fast, he gives out lots of besos & abrazos, he is quick to understand & enjoys playing with his Papi.

Our oldest daughter is the little mama, she does not enjoy being corrected, never thinks that she does anything wrong & bosses around her siblings, sometimes she says mean things to Papi y Mami.  She is smart, creative, kind-hearted, hates to see anything suffering, she is beautiful, she loves to teach & is constantly assigning everyone homework, girl loves her family.

Our middle son is sneaky, selfish, cries if he doesn´t get his way & picks on his little brother.  He is funny, adventurous, has a ridiculous laugh, enjoys a good joke, enjoys being a boy, he likes to take care of all his belongings but will share with his brothers & sisters,  & really really really loves his Papi (choose him everytime :))

Our youngest son lies, takes things from others, yells if things don´t go his way, & pesters his siblings to no end.  He is also hilarious, adores his big brothers, plays the “monster” in every game willingly, helps his sisters all of the time, shares with his siblings freely & loves to help set the table.

Our youngest daughter is defiant, screams if she doesn´t get her way, hits her siblings, and bites Papi & Mami when she is mad.  She is also super funny, loves her big brothers & sisters, will play any game with any of them, loves animals, she likes to swing and she loves being tickled & bath time.

I asked my mom in the kitchen tonight after we had put all of the children to bed & Tyler was having the moment with our oldest if we are doing okay as parents, are we expecting too much, are we giving them a chance to succeed & find confidence in their new family. My mom responded with sage advice, “Children have to learn to submit to their parents, if they do not learn it will be that much harder to surrender their lives & submit to the Lord.”  WOW!!!  We are on a hard road, but I am thankful that the Lord has entrusted His children in mine & Tyler´s care.  We will submit to His instructions.

So how did the stand-off end with Papi & oldest son…our oldest son just called in Tyler to say goodnight & tell him that he loves him.

“Trust in the Lord with all your heart, do not lean on your own understanding.  In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight.  Proverbs 3:5-6

“But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves. For if anyone is a hearer of the word and not a doer, he is like a man who looks intently at his natural face in a mirror. For he looks at himself and goes away and at once forgets what he was like. But the one who looks into the perfect law, the law of liberty, and perseveres, being no hearer who forgets but a doer who acts, he will be blessed in his doing. If anyone thinks he is religious and does not bridle his tongue but deceives his heart, this person’s religion is worthless.” James 1:22-26

Hanging out in the fort

Big brother was in his own fort until 2:00pm & he had been fever free for over 24hrs!

Big girl assigning the family homework to do before they could come back into the school “fort”

Papi hanging out in the fort

Playing around in Mami´s shoes

“I just want to go outside!”

You know it´s been a great day when your hair started out in a perfect french-braid & ends like this!

At the dinnermesa,


7 thoughts on “Day 13…

  1. Vicki lindsey says:

    Several of the negative characteristics you have attributed to the Nichols children could be used to describe to many (maybe even most) children of those ages/stages. Hang in there! You are doing great!

  2. ticavida says:

    Beth! I love reading about your family! It is so intriguing to me that you and Tyler would take on such a monumental task of FIVE children that are not your ow, and have all of their own issues. I have to say I have an even higher level of respect for you (if that was even possible!). I love that you are not afraid to be vulnerable on here, and be truthful about the nitty gritty of parenting. I have seen you around the kids at the Y, and you are a perfect combination of “fun and strict”. I even remember having a breakdown at Bebensee with one of our kids and you came strolling in the back door. I remember thinking, “Oh crap, we are going to be in trouble for this,” but instead, you were the one who was able to calm the kid down. They LOVED when you would come for a visit! I have been meaning to write you for a while now and encourage you in some way. It looks like you guys could use all the encouragement you can get right now! Seriously though, you and Tyler seem to balance each other out and compliment each other in the amazing ways parents should. I look forward to future postings! I’m SOOOO impressed you get them out so consistently!! Oh, and I had a question. Do you speak to your children in Spanish or English? I’m assuming you both and your children are each picking up a little of the opposite language?? Just curious! Keeping you in my thoughts.

    -Whitney Schellhammer

    • dinnermesa says:

      Thanks for the kind wordy Whitney! Love your blog too, isn´t it crazy/fabulous being abroad! We are definitely speaking more Spanish that they are speaking English, our vocabulary has tripled within 2wks! It is still pretty terrible for example the other day I asked my son to give me a trash when I meant to say give me a hug…needless to say there is still a lot of charades going on around the house to help each other out but we are learning & they are anxious to learn English. A lot of the time when we pray or especially when we are eating they will ask us to repeat or teach them the word in English. We try to learn at least 1-5 new words a day, us & the kids. Thanks for reading & responding!

      • ticavida says:

        It IS very interesting being abroad. You are probably learning Spanish way more quickly than me, seeing as you are surrounded by 5 speakers all day, lol. It also helps that they are small. I learn a lot from the Kindergarteners because their vocabulary is about the same level mine’s at! It’s so good that they are excited to learn English. They will definitely be challenged with that once they get to the States, but it will be so awesome that they will be bilingual. It may be a good idea that you and Tyler keep up with the Spanish, too. Don’t want any shenanigans going on when they become older…lol. Plus, who doesn’t want to learn another language?! And you guys have personal tutors!! Still love reading your blog, and don’t get disheartened by negative Nancy’s (or Ned’s). I know that Costa Ricans have a huge problem coddling their kids. It can bring about conflict with me as their teacher when I try to discipline them. I’m not saying that Columbians are like Costa Ricans, but I just think every country is different and probably thinks their way of raising kids is right. When really in the end, it just depends on the kid. The last part was all in response to your post from Day 14 or 15 I just read. You know your kids better than some crazy landlord. Good luck and I can’t wait to hear more!!!

  3. Keep on keeping on. Although we adoptive parents miss out on so many things when our kids are not with us since the beginning of conception, I think there is one benefit we have that bio parents don’t have–OUR AGENCY full experts to help us! 🙂 That’s something I am very grateful for!!! I also think that the additional resources we’ve read, researched, been exposed to help us (well, sometimes they hurt us because we are aware of way too much stuff to be concerned about!) to raise kids who can not only submit to us as parents and to God, but also to society. There are rules in society that they must submit to regardless. Its much better for them to learn that in the home than when they break a major rule and end up in the legal system. So, hang in there! But, I know its really hard on those hard days! Knowing each day is a NEW DAY helps tremendously!!!! And hopefully tomorrow will be better!

  4. Sharon says:

    These words of description about your kids are so insightful. As parents, we need to be truthful about both the positive aspects of our kids’ character as well as the challenges we face with them. I heard a speaker yesterday say that the first job of a leader (and I’m including parents in this, obviously) is to define reality. Good job. Now, lead on!

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