The House Is Full

Guess what?

THEY SAID YES!!!

The House Is Full

Tonight we asked Rory and Heath if they would be official Zanzibars, and they agreed!! We didn’t scare them or bore them away! *laughs*

We asked them in a surprise way, since that’s how we roll around here. Aldwyn had suggested to me last week that we ask them by flying a spaceship up into space. I have a space ball we have used before and planets that explode [which everyone loves to do!] and so we decided that it would be fun to ask them that way. I decided the aliens could greet us “in space” with the sign. Of course, the ride to space was… well, it’s US. What can I say? We’re just US.

Help Help Police!

But we eventually made it to space, and the aliens were holding the sign, and there was a flurry of “YES!” and “YAY!” and screams and everyone was just incredibly happy. ๐Ÿ™‚ Then the time came for them to accept their new names.

[21:01] Second Life: Heath Matters (Heath Pevensey) is now known as Heath Ryan Zanzibar.

[21:01] Second Life: Rory Matters (Rory Larnia) is now known as Rory Olivia Zanzibar.

We really could not be happier! When Aldwyn and I had talked about possibly adopting again, probably late last summer, we had planned on just one kid or perhaps just being godparents again. But these two just slid into our lives so perfectly and are exactly the kids we needed to complete our family. This is it – our last adoptions.

I think we did brilliantly. โค

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Back On The Wall

Our Heritage panel expired yesterday. I thought it wasn’t time yet, but they do expire after 20 days and after counting back, yep, it was the 20th day.

Part of me thought, okay well that’s that. But the other part of me said, “Let me revamp our notecard and we’ll try again! Woo!” I think I’ve gotten used to all the spam from Heritage, and it’s now part of my routine to head down there every evening to read some panels after the family has gone to bed. But we still haven’t really seen anyone who fits what we want since the first girl. ๐Ÿ˜ฆ

Back On The Wall

Now, granted, we are picky. Anyone who reads our own panel notecard will see that. We have certain things that we look for in a family member. You SHOULD be picky when going into this. I’ll say that again.

You should absolutely be picky about who you are choosing to go on trial with.

That being said, it amazes me that people wouldn’t put their best foot forward while writing out their applications. So here are a few things that make ME immediately delete an application that I’ve read. It might be of some help to you if you are looking to be adopted and are having problems getting your panel Liked. Now these are just my opinions. Some families might not care about any of this, some might care about all this and a whole lot more besides. But this is just how it is for me.

1. You have written NOTHING. No. Seriously. You have to fill out the application. Just throwing the app in the panel without even your name is not going to do you or anyone else any good. My favorite was the kid with the almost blank notecard. All it said was “Please talk to me.” No name, no information. Nothing.

2. You haven’t written anything that lets anyone get to know you. The application has a lot of very straight forward questions on it. What is your name, how old is your RP age, when are you online, etc. But it also has questions that can let your personality come out a little, especially in the freestyle area where you can kind of talk a bit more about what you like and what you’re looking for. 1 out of 5 applications I’ve read, this area has been left blank.

3. You have way too much backstory. Some people are much bigger roleplayers than I am and I get that. But I feel like there are some kids out there who write too much “story” about their life prior to Heritage and it’s almost a bit weird. But, again, there are families out there who are a 10 on the RP scale and want to know NOTHING else about your outside life. But I’d say the average family doesn’t require a huge story about how you ended up at Heritage in the first place.

4. You don’t really know who you are. When we first met Abby, she told us she was 8. She felt 8. She IS 8 in SL. When we met Birdy, she said she was 7, but felt she could go slightly younger or older. I feel like [and she can correct me on this!] that it’s because she came from a heavier roleplaying background and sometimes you change to fit a story. But around her first adoptaversary, she settled in at 5, and 5 seems to fit her very well. Some of these kids on their apps say that they can be “2-15.” Or they have 12 different avatars where they’re “2, or 6, or 13, or 16, or 27” on any given day. And even worse, they write their application as a 4 year old, then slip in that by adopting them, you’re adopting their 17 alts that are all different ages from 18 months to 48 years old. No thanks.

5. I can’t understand a dang thing you just wrote. Look, I get it. Kids don’t always speak correctly. Changing a few words here and there is endearing. Writing an entire notecard in crazy “baby talk” is NOT endearing. If every question “are answordeds wike dis becuz mees is fwees years olds an ebberyting is wonnerfuls,” I’m going to delete your card and not look back.

And this isn’t really a dealbreaker or anything, but just a suggestion. Get a good photo for your panel. I know, I know. Don’t judge a book by its cover. But who picks up a raggedy, boring looking book? A lot of the panel pics are the kid basically just standing there at Heritage. You don’t need the most professional photo in the world, but a nice, clean picture will draw someone’s eye to your panel. If you don’t have a computer that takes nice pics or the ability to figure out what looks good, there are a lot of people who will take a nice photo for you. Heck, IM me. I’ll do you up a quick panel picture in less than 10 minutes if I have the time.

Next up – Parent Applications. Lord, if you thought the children were bad….

Don’t Have To Convince Myself To Believe

So I’ve had some people asking me about how our Heritage panel is going for us. Well… We met the girl that I wanted. She is delightful and sweet, but unfortunately at this time, probably not a good fit for our family. At least, not as a daughter. And yeah, I’m slightly disappointed about that.

Don't Have To Convince Myself To Believe

I kind of feel disappointed in myself in how I feel, which is nuts. *laughs* I had told myself over and over to NOT get my hopes up too much. I told myself that there were a billion reasons why this wouldn’t work before I even met the girl. But I guess there was that [very naive] part of me that couldn’t fathom that someone wouldn’t work as part of our family if that’s what I wanted. After all, the 2 times we’ve adopted before worked out beautifully!

But, it’s not going to work with this girl. Not right now anyway. And it’s a shame because she had so many qualities that I was looking for when looking for another kid to call ours. Our family simply doesn’t work for everyone, and I understand that, even though I think that we have loads to offer. ๐Ÿ™‚

I’m not sure if we’re going to keep looking for now. I mean, this whole thing really was just because I liked this one girl’s panel, not that were actively looking for another kid or anything. I don’t know. I guess I can let it run for the 20 days and see what happens. But if you guys know any super cute, smart, preferably blonde, sassy little girls who like shopping, Skype, and plurk… let me know. *laughs*

Sometimes You Take A Chance

On October 18, 2006, someone I was close to at the time said, “I’m sure you’ve heard of this before, but there’s this thing called Second Life and it’s like The Sims, but you play with other people.”

I was in a really bad place in my life at that time. A few days ago, I was looking over some things I’d written in the couple of years before I joined SL and it made me sad at how damn hard I worked at proving I was fine. I wasn’t fine. I was deep into my eating disorder [numbers were my thing – counting calories, carbs, Points. If I could count it and play with the numbers, I was good]. I was drinking like a fish. Things were bad. So I came to SL, lied about some things, got caught up in a life that wasn’t mine, and hurt people who hurt me, too.

But I’ve talked about all this before. No use rehashing. Let’s just say that grief makes you someone you don’t recognize if you don’t allow yourself to grieve. And eventually, it comes out no matter what you try to do to push it away.

Nine years, though. That’s a heck of a long time. But in many ways, it’s not that long at all. I discover new things all the time. SL changes, we get (hopefully) better at it. It’s all good and there are a lot worse things I could have been doing in the past 9 years, that is for sure!!

Sometimes You Take A Chance

That all being said, like many milestones in my SLife, I’m starting my technically-9th year with the possibility of a new adoption. Or at least, we’re hoping to match with the little girl that I mentioned in my last post. We put up a panel at Heritage tonight so we could Like her panel. I’m hoping that we match with her. If we don’t, hey, no harm, no foul. As I told the girls, they are more than enough to make me happy and I am very very happy with our family. And there are a million reasons why this girl would not work out. The times could be all off or she could be rude or she could look at our panel notecard and think, “LOL NOPE.” I know a lot of prospective parents IM the kids once they like their panel, or sometimes even before, but I don’t want to push it. Sometimes you just take a chance and let the chips fall where they may. If she sees and likes our panel and we match, I’ll know my feelings on this were right. If not… whatever. I’ve still got 2 great kids. ๐Ÿ™‚ Either way, I’m a winner!

That Didn’t Go As Expected

I always threaten the girls [and sometimes the rest of the family] that I’m going to put them in a box and leave them on the front steps of Heritage. Or that I’m going to go to Heritage and get a “stand in” kid to replace them in pictures. I’m never serious about it, which they know. It’s just a silly joke. [So don’t be looking for them on panels any time soon!!]

Last night I got this idea in my head to blog about my little threat, and then talk about things that turn prospective parents off on your panel notecard. But as it’s been a while since I’ve read any kids cards, I thought I should go to Heritage and check some out.

What I didn’t expect was to be immediately drawn to a little girl’s panel.

We’re really not looking to expand our family at this time. If we met someone who clicked with us and the rest of our family, who hung out with us sometimes, plurked with us, etc… well, I don’t know. We wouldn’t exactly say no to that. But actively looking at the adoption agency? Nope. Not right now. So for me to be drawn to this panel…I just don’t know.

Part of me thinks I’m drawn to it because she looks like me. Blonde hair, blue eyes, smiling in her photo. Her notecard was well written. She’s at the upper age that I would consider adopting. She seems cute and fun, much like our own girls.

But then the other part of me thinks that maybe I just want to share what we have. I mean, not to brag too much, but my family is really more than amazing. We’re respectful and loving to each other, we have a ton of good, family friendly fun, and we’re always happy when friends join us when we’re having a party or watching a movie or something. I feel like I want to share it with another kid and let them in on our family wonderfulness.

Or I’m just emotional this week for no dang reason and I don’t even know what I’m talking about. That’s always a possibility, too.

I don’t know. I’m sure someone will snap this little girl up soon because she is adorable. And I don’t really feel like looking for a new house right now, which we would have to do if we adopted again because we only have 3 bedrooms and I like each kid to have their own space. It was just weird and unexpected for me to be just so pulled towards a panel.

Oh, but eventually I will do the post on what might turn prospective parents off while reading your panel notecard, and maybe get the girls to help me write about what would make a kid reading a parent notecard not want to get to know them. But not tonight.

That Didn't Go As Expected