Day 16 – A Walk in the “Cat” Park

Yep, you read it right. This morning we decided to take a walk in the Cali Cat Park. I don’t think that is what it is really called, but it describes it well. We visited this last time and Cameron has been talking about seeing the cats every since we got here (not that he remembers them, but he has seen the pictures a couple of times since then

After a walk through the park we stopped by a couple of stores to do a little window shopping and get some necessities, then back to the hotel for lunch and naps. Just as the boys laid down to take a nap, the rain started. Not really hard, but nice and steady. That is the way that we remember Cali from last time. It rained for a little bit each afternoon, cooling off the air and making everything nice and green. I am actually sitting on the stone porch of the hotel right now listening to the sounds of the rain falling on the trees and stone, mixed in with the sounds of the city. It is truly a magical place…

…sorry, had to take a moment and just take it all in. =) Someone just walked out of the hotel and scared me half to death, so I am back now. =)

There is something that I have been meaning to write about since the day that we met Cooper for the first time. There is a paper that you have to sign when you take custody of a child that you are adopting. One of the paragraphs says something like this:

“By taking custody of the child you agree to be there when they scrape their knee, break a bone, or just need their nose wiped. You agree to console them when the fail and celebrate with them when they succeed, and when that girl breaks their heart, you will be right there to assure them that it isn’t the end of the world. You agree to guide them and protect them from making bad decisions that destroy their confidence and sends them down a path of moral degradation. You agree to teach them right and wrong. To teach them how to use this knowledge to become men of integrity and honor. You agree to provide for them. Give them food, clothing, and a place to live, put them through school and give them every opportunity to learn and succeed. You agree to stand by them as they make the biggest decisions of life, who to marry, what to do, where to live, and how to raise their own children. You agree, without fail, to be there for them…always.”

Actually, it only says, “You agree to provide for the child in all aspects of their emotional, physical, moral, and economic needs.” But when I was sitting there listening to Magnolia translate the document, all of that other stuff was going through my head. What a responsibility that Mary Ann and I have accepted. What a responsibility all parents have to these little people that we have agreed to raise. James Dobson, in his book Bringing Up Boys (yes, I figured it was time to read it) talks about the focus of the book…

“Our purpose in this…will be to assist mothers and fathers as they ‘play defense’ on behalf of their sons – that is, as they protect their boys from immoral and dangerous enticements. But that is not enough. Parents also need to ‘play offense’ – to capitalize on the impressionable years of childhood by instilling in their sons the antecedents of character. Their assignment during two brief decades will be to transform their boys from immature and flighty youngsters into honest, caring men who will be respectful of women, loyal and faithful in marriage, keepers of commitments, strong and decisive leaders, good workers, and secure in their masculinity. And of course, the ultimate goal for people of faith is to give each child an understanding of Scripture and a lifelong passion for Jesus Christ. This is, I believe, the most important responsibility for those of us who have been entrusted with the care and nurturance of children.”

May God grant us the ability to do right by both of our boys. There is no way that we will be able to do this on our own.

Cameron saw some YouTube videos of a kid reviewing about some angry bird products. He picked up the items in this video and told me what he did without any prompting. He is too funny.