Brickman’s Picnic!

One of the events I look forward to each summer is the picnic put on by Bob an Marilyn Brickman. This picnic is for the families who have adopted from South Korea through Children’s Bridge – and lucky for us, it is located about 10 minutes from our house. We went again this past Saturday, it was the fourth time we have been able to attend. I love going and seeing all the little boys and girls as they grow up – especially Alex’s “Seoul Siblings”! Luckily this year, most of our group were able to attend.  There was Barb, Andy, Daniel and Matthew, Belinda, Steve, Adam and Benny, Emily, Jeremy, Xander and Belle, and us.

Like last year, the boys flocked to the pond in search for fish and frogs. Daniel even picked up a few!

Saturday also happened to be little Isabelle (Belle)’s birthday! She turned two so all the kids celebrated with cupcakes.

The mommas had a nice group shot – thanks to Andy our photographer.

We then attempted a kids group shot… well. You know how difficult that can be!

I’m hoping one of the other moms has better shot…

We missed you Karen, Kevin & Lucas – hope we see you again soon! Thanks Bob and Marilyn!

 

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Children’s Bridge Gathering

Earlier this month we were fortunate to attend a gathering of a number of families who have adopted from South Korea through our agency, the Children’s Bridge.  And lucky for us – the gathering was only 10 minutes away! The gathering was at the home of Bob and Marilyn Brickman, a wonderful couple who have been nothing but amazing to both Matt and I since they first learned that we were adopting for Korea.  This was our third time at their picnic, the first was in 2008 and the second in 2009.  Last year we couldn’t go because of our vacation schedule, but this year we worked around vacations so that we could attend.

It was an absolutely perfect day – lots of sun, not too hot, and great friends to hang out with. Most of our “Seoul Sibling” families were able to attend so we got to catch up in person – amazing how much can change in just a few weeks. The highlight of the day was definitely discovering the new pond area that the Brickmans’ had put in a couple of years ago.  The boys were hunting for frogs and they loved going for boat rides. It was really a beautiful and peaceful area – we may have to go back for a visit!

I really enjoyed seeing all the families and the kids who have obviously grown from year to year and the families who have grown since we last saw them – there were quite a few new babies… sigh.

So here’s what everyone really wants… the pictures!

Lucas going in for a 'slam dunk'

A tad blurry, but Alex and Xander having fun on the swing set

Not sure who is more into the frog catching... the kids or Jeremy

Matt getting a ride from Alex and Adam

Belinda and Ben resting on the dock

Who would have thought the play doh station would be such a hit?

Well... I tried.

Got a smile out of Isabel!

Seoul Siblings

Well, the name has changed. Our local group of little Korean boys now has a little girl in the midst!  And we met this little darling on Sunday, along with the other Seoul Sibs at Storybook Gardens in London.   For those who are new to our blog (and I know there are some of you out there!) the Seoul Siblings now consists of:

Like all the other gatherings, we had a great time.  Even with the sub artic temperatures!  So much for June warmth.  The boys had fun on the amusement park rides, playing on the amazing climbers, chasing the geese, checking out the animals, and riding the train and merry-go-round (except my son when I removed him from the merry-go-round.  That was not a pretty sceen.  The moms and dads all chatted and got caught up – it was so nice to see everyone again.  The last time we were “almost” all together was back in October! Way too long.  Luckily we will see most of the group again in July at the annual “Brickman Picnic” (thank you Brickmans!).   So here it is… the photo dump from Sunday!

Ahh... nope. Not going down this slide Momma!

Moments before Alex peed through his pull up... all over the equipment... sigh.

Jump Lucas Jump!

Matthew & Isabel hanging out.

I'm standing in front of Adam - that's how high up he is!

Daniel also loved the climbers.

I just like this one.

The frog shot - a must at Storybook Gardens

Daniel, Adam & Alex

Run Geese Run!

Very cute pic of Adam

Butterflies!!

Alex and Xander on the elephant ride

Emily & Isabel smiling

Getting boys to pose... not so easy. Lucas? Where did you go?

Sigh...

Passed out... (after a honey dip donut fix)

Seoul Brothers #5

Yesterday we had the Fifth Seoul Brother’s Gathering at our place.   It was exciting, because not only were little Daniel, Adam & Lucas (and their families) coming, but so was Xander (and his family!)  Unfortunately, Lucas, Kevin & Karen had to cancel (feel better Kevin), so we were down 3, but even then, it was a full house with 14 people! 8 adults, and 6 little boys. 

We had a great time. It was so nice to finally meet Emily, Jeremy & Xander.  We had 2 play dates during the summer scheduled, but they didn’t happen for various reasons, but now we have finally met.  For those who haven’t met Xander, he is the sweetest little boy with the biggest smile.  He was so kind and easy going – a real cutie.  And loved goldfish crackers!

Getting together with Barb (Daniel) & Belinda (Adam)’s families was fabulous too.  It really is so funny – we all just pick up where we left off.  Even though we have met only a handful of times, I often think I’ve known these girls so much longer!  The boys are getting sooo big, and it was great to meet Matthew, Barbara’s newest little guy, and see Ben again – he was just about walking… last time we saw him he was still pretty little.   I don’t know how, but I somehow missed taking their pictures!  Adam and Daniel are talking a mile a minute, and are so funny.  Daniel who is just three days younger than Alex is talking so well, and was counting the fish in Alex’s tank.  Adorable!

While Alex was much more reserved, he got along great with the other boys.  They played with I think each and every toy in the house – and they were all over the floor.  I didn’t realize we had so many toys – it doesn’t normally seem like so many!  Alex wasn’t keen on sharing… we will have to work on that.  They also were hanging out outside, despite the bitter cold.   And I’m sure many of you have figure it out already – but it is soooo difficult to get a group of little boys to look in one direction at the same time – especially when there is food or toys in the vicinity.

From left, Daniel, Adam, Xander, Alex

We had a fantastic meal.  There were appetizers brought by Belinda (mmm… cheese), a salad by Barb, we supplied the potatoes (which I forgot about in the oven, so they were a tad crispy… ) and the steak, and Emily brought the desert… yum!  She and Jeremy also brought some kimchi – it was sooo good… and hot.  I forgot how hot that stuff could be! 

From left, Daniel, Adam & Alex

Before everyone left, we got the boys all in their pjs, and took the “pj shot”.  This year they all wanted hockey sticks.  So, as you can imagine, the shot got even more difficult with hockey sticks everywhere, but hey – the pictures are still extremely cute. 

Love this one of Alex & Adam.

We then did the mommy shot.  Now I have to explain two things. 1. Somehow when I was changing Alex into his pj’s my top button came undone, and no one mentioned it to me – I do not normally walk around revealing so much… 2.  I’m not a behemoth.  It just so happened, we were on a love seat and I was sitting more forward than everyone else.   It also seems to be difficult to get all the moms to look in one direction.  I guess we had way too many cameras going…

From left, Me, Barbara, Belinda & Emily

We then had the dads.  They were pretending it was a team shot – hence the hand on their knees.   By the way – the guys get along great! 

From left, Jeremy (Xander), Andy (Daniel), Steve (Adam), and Matt (Alex obviously)

We normally have curtains on that second window… but somehow they were pulled down – not sure how… 

We love getting together for the Seoul Brothers.  Can’t wait till the next one!

Seoul Brothers #4

I’m finally back online at home and catching up on some posts – enjoy!

On March 13, Matt, Alex and I traveled to Guelph to Karen, Kevin & Lucas’ place to meet up with the other Seoul Brother families (Barb, Andy and Daniel and Belinda, Steve, Adam and Ben).  This was the fourth get together so far – and as always we had a great time.  We spent most of the time catching up on what’s been going on with our boys, and discussing similar issues (sleep, naps, speech etc), issues finalizing adoptions and our future babies.  The boys played together, “sharing” toys and communicating to one another in their own toddler language (which was quite hilarious to watch).  We had dinner, and before we knew it, 4 hours had passed and it was time to leave.  Thank you Karen and Kevin for hosting – we had a great time and can’t wait to see everyone again later in the spring!

Kevin showing the kids how to use finger puppets – from left, Alex, Kevin, Daniel, Lucas and Adam

The short lived couch shot of the boys – Lucas, Daniel, Adam and Alex.

The mommy shot – sadly it is quite blurry… Karen, Belinda, Barb, Me, and Adam 🙂

Seoul Brothers Get Together #3

On Saturday we travelled to Grimsby to meet up with the three other families that we have gotten to know who have adopted from South Korea.   We went to Barbara and Andy’s place, they are the parents of Daniel, and also there were Belinda and Steve, parents of Adam and the brand new baby Benjamin, and Karen and Kevin, parents of Lucas.  The four of us all brought home our boys within 4 months of one another.  We had a lot of fun – as always!  It is so cool being able to see the boys grow. The first time they were just all trying to walk.  The second time they were walking, but not quite talking or running.  Now they are all over the place!  There are so many similarities between the boys.  All of the boys are on the verge of talking – but still lots of grunting and pointing going on.  They all throw their food (which made me feel a lot better!).  And the parents are just worn right out (in a very good way).  It was also really exciting to meet Benjamin – the newest addition to Belinda and Steve’s family.  Ben arrived just 3 weeks ago and I was lucky enough to hold him for a little while.  He is so small!

I unfortunately forgot my camera (and Alex’s shoes) in the rush out the door – but I “borrowed” some pics from the other parents.  Enjoy!

Weee!!

Checking out Daniel's Truck

Mmmm... Cheesecake

Lucas, Alex, Adam and Daniel

And… Alex slept in until 9am the next morning!! Woo Hoo!!  Guess the boys wore him out!  (either that or he was tired from being up from 12 – 2am on hours Friday night)…