Sunday, March 30, 2008

The Book

Well, here is the front of our portfolio. I have to say that I was really at a loss for how the front of this book would come together, but I actually really like how it turned out. :) These are the colors of paper that I used throughout the rest of the pages too. There are LOTS of pictures inside this album...hopefully it's not overwhelming for anyone, but if I were choosing a family for my baby to become a part of I feel like I would want to see as many pictures as possible. I pretty much only have two pages left to create and for some reason I'm having a difficult time. It's the two "Holidays with Family" pages. I think it may be a couple of reasons....we always have SO much fun at the holidays and I don't feel that any pictures convey the depth of what our holidays mean to our families. Secondly, I don't feel like I have very many great holiday pictures so that makes it even harder! I guess what I don't have many pictures of are Christmas and Thanksgiving and these are two of my favorites....I have lots of Halloween photos though! :) It's hard to convey just how special Christmas morning is for us and now all of the little ones....especially with not many pictures. What's a girl to do??
Anyway...the important part is that it's almost complete! I will take it with us up to our agency and then (hopefully) get approval to make the copies. We will need to make 5 copies. I'm going to have them spiral bound and then tie short ribbons along the spiral to give it a more "homemade" feel. It's kind of a bummer that you go to all the effort to make an album and then all the birthmother gets to see is a copy of the album. :)
Hope you're having a lovely Sunday!

Thursday, March 20, 2008

Whirlwind of Motion and Emotion

What a whirlwind life has been lately. I feel like I have temporarily stepped out of my life and into the fastlane of paperwork, decision making, reminiscing, dotting i's and crossing t's, digging deep and trying to remember to eat.

We had our first phone interview with our adoption agency in Oregon on Tuesday. I was feeling very anxious about it...not worried, just anxious. I think because it was over the phone I was feeling insecure in the way it would all play out. Will she think we're friendly, will we talk too much or not enough, will there be awkward moments, will we not have the answers to her questions, will she be friendly and on an on. It's enough to drive a person crazy. But, it all turned out fine. She was friendly, we were friendly...all was good. :) We will be taking a trip up to meet them in person within the next couple of weeks and we're excited about that. I'm hoping to have our photo portfolio completed to a point where they can review it and let me know if it's okay to go ahead and make the copies needed to leave at the agency for the birthmothers to review. It will consist of approx. 18 pages of photos organized within certain together and apart, our families, holidays, things we like to do, places we've been, our pets, our home and should close with a special message, poem etc. I've started pulling all of the photos together and trying to place them on pages of decorative paper, but I can only work at the rate that my mind will allow it all to come together. I have to take breaks and let it all sort out in my head before I can continue. This is sometimes frsutrating and under normal circumstances the creative juices would be flowing I'm sure, but since we're trying to make an "impression", I keep re-thinking my decisons. I need to just let it go...and let the story be told.

Our pool fence is being installed today!! :) I'm sure many of you are very happy about this addition to our home. We are too, although I'm not sure Molly will be. She won't have access to the pool whenever she wants to cool off and she won't have access to check with the dogs next door to us to make sure they all still know how to bark loud and clear. BUMMER! She's really going to be upset when she discovers that "T" can still get through. Yes, I can hear the whining already...

Monday we have our final homestudy visit with our agency here. After getting several documents notarized tomorrow, we will gladly turn everything in to our social worker! YAY! Hopefully at that time we will learn if they have received our fingerprint clearance back yet. If they haven't ...they will have to wait for those before they can write up the homestudy and send it to the judge for approval. If they DO have our clearance back, they will write up our homestudy withing 72 hours and send it to the judge. The judge will typically get it back to the agency within around 3 weeks. At least that's what we were told. :)

So, things are coming together! This process has brought moments of excitement, diligence, self reflection and to be honest...lots of fear. There are so many emotions involved in defining who you are, what you believe in, what your discipline style is, what type of child you are willing to take into your home and what your lifelong plan is for the rest of your existence on this earth. (that's what it feels like anyway). I think ALL parents should have to sit down together and figure all this stuff out before they're able to even think about conceiving. Maybe not...I might never get a baby then! Sometimes it seems that we've had to concentrate for so long on even getting close to this goal of parenthood that when it actually seems like it could happen ~ terror hits and I wonder if I even know HOW to take care of a baby! It's kind of like "yay, we have a baby! wait ~ now WHAT??" It's just been Matt and I for so long....sometimes it feels weird that at some point there's going to be another member of our family. In the past it just always felt like it was something unobtainable...soon it will be a realistic goal! WOW ~ sometimes this is all so overwhelming. But good overwhelming at that.

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Thank You!

I just wanted to put a big "thank you" to all of you who took the time to send us some wonderfully useful information. We really appreciate it and know that it will help us make these difficult decisions.
Have a Beautiful Day!

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

"Drug" Related Issue

Sometimes I wonder why we couldn't just have children "the old fashioned way"?! (okay, I wonder that A LOT, but that's beside the point.) Someone mentioned that a comment was made to them regarding their adoption that they "decided to get a child the easy way". If anyone ever said that to me I'd literally wring their neck! How could someone be so insensitive and naive...
Anyway...that topic is not what this post is about.
Our agency has asked us to research and describe in detail, what (if any) amount of drug use by the birthmother is acceptable to us. Well, if we were able to have our own biological child he or she would not be exposed to those things at we don't want this child to be exposed to any either. However, this does not seem to be the norm so we are asking for help regarding this matter. If any of you for any reason know about legitimate effects the following drugs could potentially have on a child, will you please let us know? You are welcome to post here, or if you would rather e-mail me you can do that too. (
Meth, Speed, Heroine, Cocaine, Marijuana, Tobacco, Alcohol

Thanks for any information you can share with us. :) I know that most of you probably don't have experience with these drugs, but if you know anything about their effect on a fetus/baby while in utero it would help us make our decisions. :)
Thanks so much!!

Saturday, March 8, 2008

Happy Birthday Miss Beth

I hope you have a very wonderful day full of special people and special surprises. I hope the sun is shining, the birds are singing, the flowers are blooming and that all is perfect in your part of the world. (if not, you can come on down here!)
So thankful for this day 27 years ago! :) Enjoy your beautiful day!!

Sunday, March 2, 2008

This Girl...

" This girl" has been on my mind lately and I think she deserves some recognition. :) There probably isn't anyone who I have ever met that has a more helpful, sincere, caring disposition than she does. She has become such a huge part of our family and is always jumping in to help in any way she can and always comes through with more than you ever expected. She's there every year to lend support at the 3-Day walk (even toting kids around). She's there at parties brining food, taking photos and sharing her cheerful disposition. When things are not going so well for you she wishes you sweet words of support and encouragement and sometimes even leaves sentiments of thoughtfulness on your doorstep. :) Our family has been blessed by her friendship and we're grateful for everything she adds to our lives.
(I'm hoping that she won't mind that I "stole" this photo ~ I didn't list any names so I thought it would be okay. :)
Wishing you "sweet girl" a wonderful day! :)

Saturday, March 1, 2008

Homestudy Visit #1

We had our first homestudy visit last night! Two women from the agency we are doing our homestudy through came to our home around 6pm....we were done around 8:15pm. This only means one thing...lots of paperwork. :) This visit was to explain the paperwork and documentation in great detail, take a look around our home to make sure it is a safe environment and let us know of anything that we need to do to make it safer. Fortunately that list is short. We need a pool fence (which we already knew and are in the process of scheduling), receive our CPR and first aid certification and post a listing of important phone numbers next to our phone (poison control, emergency, etc.)
All in all it went really well. There were 3 documents that the agency needed to receive back as soon as possible due to the time it takes to process them. (fingerprinting, cps clearance, etc.) Well, for those who know me, it will be no surprise that those forms are already on their way back to the agency...fingerprinted, filled out and signed! :) The process is underway!
For the remainder of the day, I will be filling out even more paperwork. The most daunting part is going to be writing my autobiography....Matt and I both have to write one that is an average of 6-8 pages!
We are just so excited to be on this new path...I have read, received, heard about information and stories that just touch my heart so much. It's really all God's divine plan isn't it! For the first time in a really long time I feel like I can breathe! hmmm, peace...yes, this feels good.