Welcome to the KingZoo and Funny Farm, where we learn to live, laugh, and love together. Here you'll find snippets of life in our zoo, parenting tips we've learned along the way, reflections on shining God's light in this world, passions in the realm of orphan care, and our journey as parents of a visually impaired child with sensory processing disorder. Have fun!

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Introducing . . .

It is humbling to realize that my little blog has expanded beyond my realm of influence, and my husband's Facebook friends, to include perfect strangers. Because of this, it has been suggested that I include some more specific information about the children, for those who don't know us personally. This suggestion was cause for some interesting dinner table conversation.

There are the privacy and safety issues to consider. But since I've already given out names and even birthdates, maybe this is a moot point.

So then we wondered if I should go back and change all of the kids' names in past posts.

But what should those names be?

I know that some bloggers refer to their children as first letter only. In this case I would have to start writing about A-, J-, M-, S-, I-, E-, and H-. An understandable choice for some, but looks more like a game of Boggle or Scrabble to me. At least I did insist on naming each child with a different letter of the alphabet so maybe I shouldn't throw this option out.

Then we thought about using the nicknames that we use around the house. However, there are a few problems with this idea as well. For example, these nicknames were lovingly and thoughtfully chosen but to those who do not know us well, it might appear as if we were offending each other. Additionally, John wants his nickname to be Doc, and we just refuse to do that.

Jesse voted to make up new names for each child. Within a short amount of time the children had come up with the following options*:
Son #1 - Rock King
Son #2 - Joe King
Son #3 - Lee King
Son #4 - Poe King
Daughter #1 - Ima King
Daughter #2 - Ura King
Daughter #3 - Sheza King
John could still be Doc King. Nah.
But really, I can't always remember each child's given name when I want them, how will I remember their new, fun names?

And besides, I'd have to go back through my whole blog and change every child's name to fit with whatever option I've chosen. So in the end, we're going to stick with their given names. And pray for protection.

In answer to the request for a short bio about each child, let me first explain that these will be brief and fairly general. I do wish to respect the privacy of each child and always ask permission before posting a blog which mentions any child by name. In the interest of time, and since I already did the work once, I am just going to cut-and-paste from our King's Strings website. You could check out "The More the Merrier" posts for further information on each child.

And one more thing, this time specifically referring to the request for information on each child's entry into our home. I have always been cautious about sharing personal information about the backgrounds of our foster and adopted children. First of all, it is illegal for me to share the biological information about foster children. While it may not affect an infant too much if I told you the status on his/her birth parents and why the child was placed in my home, it could certainly be embarrassing to an older child and is a confidentiality breach for the parents. I also don't believe it's wise to separate the children into categories: biological, foster, adopted, etc. I have heard adopted children talk about the stigma of being adopted and in particular, the feeling of not belonging when introduced as "my adopted son." (For more information on this topic, I highly recommend the book, 20 Things Adopted Kids Wish Their Adoptive Parents Knew by Sherrie Eldredge which I shared in a post on January 10, 2011.) You'll just have to figure this one out through pictures and other posts. And if you can't, maybe it really doesn't matter who grew in my "tummy" and who grew in my "heart".

So here goes:

Andrew, 16 (well, not until tomorrow, but who's counting?) - Andrew has been playing the violin since he was 5 years old. He enjoys videography, photography, and being an all-around "techie". He is a 10th grader and enjoys history and journalism. Andrew is a very competitve person and enjoys the challenge of cross country and track. In 9th grade he received the coach's Rookie of the Year award in cross country. The 2010/2011 season was another great one for him and he was honored to attend districts. He is a member of the teen leaders team in the church youth group and often plays on the worship team there. He also helps to lead a small group of middle school boys. This past summer he participated in a missions trip to Costa Rica and Nicaragua.

Jesse, 14 - Jesse began playing the violin when he was 5 years old and played the instrument for three years before switching to the cello. Jesse is an 8th grader and enjoys entertaining his teachers with his creative side. He enjoys playing soccer. He was in a commercial for a local TV news station in 2007 and the same year played Young Scrooge in Allenberry Resort Inn and Playhouse's (Boiling Springs, PA) Christmas production. During the Christmas 2009 season he had the lead child role in Allenberry's Christmas show, "Santa's Christmas in the Country" and in the summer of 2009 he played Louis in "The King and I." This past summer he was seen as Harvey in Theatre Harrisburg's production of "Bye, Bye Birdie". He enjoys being around younger children so much that he helps in the 4 year old class at church. Jesse enjoys ballooning and has started his own business called Balloon King. You can check out his website at www.easysite.com/BalloonKing

Mariana, 12 -Mariana is in 7th grade. She has been playing the violin since she was four. She also plays keys for the youth worship team. She likes to act, sing, and dance. Mariana has her eyes set on musical theatre as a career and has played the role of Molly in "Annie", and has been seen in "Oklahoma", "Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat", "The King and I", and 2 Christmas shows at Allenberry Resort Inn and Playhouse. In the winter of 2008 she was in "Daniel" at Sight and Sound Theatre (Lancaster, PA). During the Christmas 2009 season she starred in "Home Sweet Home for Christmas" at Hershey Park's Christmas Candy Lane and this summer she played Sad Girl in "Bye, Bye, Birdie" at Theatre Harrisburg as well as dwarves Snoozy and Dippy in "Snow White" at Allenberry Playhouse. She was back at Hershey Park for the 2010 Christmas season. Mariana has also led her own preschool dance camps.

Shoun, 10 - Shoun is in 4th grade. He has quickly picked up the cajun and nose flute. His viola lessons started just a few weeks ago and he'll be on stage with us shortly. He loves to read and to draw. He recently registered for fall soccer and is already counting down the days until that begins. He is quick to memorize historical and scientific trivia and loves to share that information with us.

Isaac, 10 - Isaac is in 4th grade. He started to play the violin when he was 2 1/2 years old and switched to the viola 2 years later. Isaac likes to play soccer and in 2010 he enjoyed the challenge of playing the goalie position. He has been in several Allenberry Playhouse (Boiling Springs, PA) musicals including "Oklahoma", "Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat", "The King and I" and the past three Christmas musicals. Many people still remember him as Tiny Tim when he was just 6 years old. In the summer of 2010 he was a member of the kids' chorus in "Bye, Bye Birdie" at Theatre Harrisburg. This past Christmas he could be seen as an elf in "Becoming Santa" at Allenberry.

Eden, 6 - Eden has been playing the violin for 2 years now. She is thrilled to join her siblings on stage. She is finally in kindergarten where she enjoys reading and creating with scissors, glue, tape, stickers, and recycled products.
She also takes ballet and tap lessons. Following in her older siblings' footsteps she was in her first production at Allenberry Playhouse, playing the littlest elf in "Becoming Santa."

HopeAnne, 4 -HopeAnne started viola lessons in September. She already adds much to our rehearsals and concerts as she usually finds a front-row seat from which she can sing and dance along. She made her performance debut at our November 9 concert so look for her at a concert near you! She was born to dance and takes ballet and tap lessons. She loves to talk, sing and move.

And there you have it, the King family in a nutshell. Thanks for asking.

*If you haven't already figured this out, the boys' names all end up sounding like -ing words: rocking, joking, leaking, poking. I'd say you have to be a teen boy to enjoy this but since John's older brother is the one who came up with the idea, threatening to give his own children these names, well, that's just the way some people are.

1 comment:

  1. Awesome! Thank you! That was actually a lot more detail than I was expecting! I should have known the legality issue regarding foster children. I appologize. I just didnt think. And about segragating biological and adopted children, again, I can totally see your point. As a future adoptive parent, I like being encouraged by the stories of how children found their family, that's all. We pray for our children who are or will be growing in other wombs. My husband and I often say we're merely outsourcing labor and delivery from here on out. Thank you again for sharing. Your family is a testimony and an encouragement. :-)