Thursday, September 30, 2010

Happy Birthday!

My two favorite girls turned one this past week, so last weekend, their parents had a party.  It was small, just family, and us, because we're "Aunt Jenn and Uncle Trav".  Hey, it works well when you have built in babysitters right next door!

I haven't taken pictures off my camera, but these are from their mom's facebook... please tell me my husband is not SO ready for a little girl  (which by the way, I made their tutus!)

Uncle Trav helping their big brother walk down stairs (he celebrated his 2nd birthday at the party too).

Home Study

So it's almost 10, the night before our home study... my floors aren't clean, though my bathroom's are thankfully, because my husband did them while I was away at class.

Which by the way- my brain went blah for part of it.  Did you know that 7-3=5... ya, didn't work so well for the solution of my problem!

Anyways, back to the visit... we found out yesterday, that the back to back visits weren't going to happen.  Apparently it's against the law.  Also, our social worker has never done one by herself, she's shadowed someone, and updated one, but never done one alone... so they want another social worker to shadow one visit with us...

Which means that we have to mesh two social workers, a recruiter, and a teacher's schedule... ya, that's going to work easy!

So anyways, it's almost ten, my house isn't all clean, and I'm blogging, watching The League, (which might have the best 1-liners AFTER The Office!), drinking a beer.  Maybe it's just so funny because I am drinking a beer?!? hmmm... that's a good question.

I guess I'll update you tomorrow, either when he's getting interviewed, or after the whole day. 

Sunday, September 26, 2010

damn, damn, damn.

It happened.... she lost the baby.  My heart aches for her.  So much, that it happened earlier this week, and this is the first that I can actually bring myself to write about it... and this is about all I can write.


I hate that I know exactly how it feels, even more currently then I care to admit.

Apparently my husband is such a stud, he can knock me up even when we aren't trying.

When we're working on an adoption.

A week before our home study.

Of course, since he can knock me up on birth control, when the hormones end... so does the pregnancy. 

Double damn.

It's been a hell of a week, let me tell you!

Over the phone, the doctor said that then next option was surgical... we're not sure that we are ready for that.  We've not committed to NEVER having children of our own, just not right now.  Right now we know our first born will come to us through the gift of adoption.  That's what we want, that is the desire of our heart, and that is where God has led us.

We have an appointment on Wednesday to talk with Dr. S about where to go from here.

Friday, September 17, 2010

Home Study Date

Because of our schedules, and our social workers, the earliest we can meet up is October 1st.

I have to remember, its on God's time and not ours...

Tuesday, September 14, 2010


Our neighbors recently made a long trip out California to get some things that they had in storage and move everything back here.  They needed to go through their garage and clean out what they didn't need, so they could make room for what was coming home.

We helped them one night, and were given permission to 'scavenge' what they were getting rid of.  I got some martini glasses (everyone needs a few more of those!).  They had set this apart for us before we got their.  They are foster (about to adopt) parents, and brought twin girls home from the hospital.  The hospital gave them two car seats, which they only used for a few days until they got a whole travel system. 

They knew that we had decided to buy just the necessities before a baby is placed with us.... call it guarding our heart, but its what we need to do, for us. (car seat, a few bottles, a can of formula, a pack of diapers, a pack of wipes, a few gender neutral outfits.... granted- we'll go all out once the baby has been placed (and so will our families!) so don't think our child will be neglected!)

So.... officially, this is our first baby thing we have gotten.  Oh, and the duck.  My husband is the KING of those dumb claw machines... give him $.50, and he'll come back with a stuffed animal.  A few years ago, right after we lost our Sea Monkey, he got this baby rattle duck thing.  He said something sweet, about it being for the baby God meant for us to hold.... that's the baby we are going bring home through adoption!  It only seemed fitting to have it wait for that baby in the car seat that will bring that baby home.

The car seat is wrapped back in plastic (with the duck), and put in the guest bedroom closet.  This is where it will sit, showing we are ready for our baby, until we get to unpack it to bring our baby home.


With the news last Friday that we had been approved from our Packet II, and were now officially in the homestudy process, we had excitement.  Then the realization that people would be coming to our house.  There were several things that we wanted to get done before that happens. 

We both know that it doesn't matter how our house is decorated, or what kind of furniture we have, but for us, we don't feel like our house 'fit' us yet.... we were still working on making it 'our home'.  My mother in law thinks we're nesting.... I think Travis is nesting, and I'm just taking advantage of loosened purse strings.... (more on that later)!

Next weekend is a huge weekend for Travis (recruiting duty....), so the big projected needed to be done (or at least started) this weekend.  We painted our bedroom, the last room in the house that needed to be painted.  Also, in January, we had begun looking at furniture.  Ours was on it's last leg.... it had gone through several moves (and military movers are SO careful!), plus a few years where we allowed the dogs on them (big mistake).  Plus, even though we had washed all the fabric we could- it's been in a house with 3 dogs for FOUR YEARS.... and it kinda smelled like dog....

We had decided that if we were going to get furniture, it had to meet some requirements:
- Leather
- Reclining
- No 'western' studs (nail's?)
- Dark color (not redish)

Ok, so we're not so picky.... 

We have been looking off and on, but hadn't found anything we loved.  For some reason, we decided to go look again while we were out running other errands this weekend (again- maybe loosened purse strings?)

We found a set, that hit all our requirements.  We could pay cash.  We knew it was a good buy.... so we did!

Besides a house or car- this is our biggest purchase together.  It was kinda scary, but we knew we were making a wise decision. 

Since we paid cash for it, we took money from our 'extra money/adoption' category.  I should be able to make the amount back within the month, so it really only set us back a month as far as budgeting for the adoption.... and at the rate of our schedule (trying to match up with the social worker on a night I don't have class....) it will probably take that long to get our homestudy done.

The love seat reclines on each side, but also rocks, independently of each other.... I'm thinking that could be helpful when we need to rock a baby!

The puppies weren't sure they liked the new addition.  You can be SURE they will not be allowed up.... ever.... even if they give us a sad face!

Mom- that picture is for you.... I told him to "Smile for Mom".... doesn't he look comfortable!  The middle section folds down, and though it wasn't on our list- the little black square you see.... ummm ya, that's the place where you turn on the vibrator for each side.  Not a bad upgrade!

Cord Chaos!

We have a flat screen tv that is on an entertainment center, and then there is a pole that goes up and it hangs on it, and that swivels left and right.... ok, kinda got it?  That being said, we have a four inch wide pole to hide all the wires that need to be connected from the blu-ray player, Wii, and cable box up to the TV. 

Let's just say, it's always been a mess.  Lots of wires going every where.

Maybe it's us nesting, but it finally put Travis over the edge- he spent an hour trying to organize it all.... but really, you can't organize that.  So what's the next best solution?


Even better if you can hid it in a pretty basket!

Now, this is all that you see.... a single power cord plugged in, and the split cable (one goes to the modem, one goes to the cable box).

And this is the wirey mess that is now nicely hidden inside.... (that WAS a wirey mess you could SEE before)!!!

A stick I love

Last week, the principal at my school was carrying a stick.  She was on the playground, walking by my classroom, headed to the dumpster. 

It was love at first sight.  AND I knew EXACTLY what I was going to do with it!

I saw this post a while ago, and wanted to do it so bad... but you can't just use any old stick.

You have to have a special stick.  A stick like the one I fell in LOVE with.

But then I had to get ready for the stick.... I bought a whole bunch of frames with great textures from the dollar store.

At midnight, I began the task to paint them (we were waiting for the final coat in our bedroom to dry....)  Can I just say, this is the first time ever I've used a trash bag .... (much to Travis' dismay).  I've committed to continue using it.... to keep our back porch spray paint free.... after he spent a LONG time power-washing all previous spray painting projects off. 

I used cheep white spray paint to 'prime' them.... I was going to put a darker color over it, and distress it so that a bit of the white would come though.... but plans changed.

While I was trying to pick out the color of brown I was going to use, Travis mentioned that we should keep them light, so that they pop like the trim does now (after we painted the bedroom walls a darkish brown).

Who am I to argue when my husband actually makes his opinion known!  I've painted the three on the right with the "Antique White" color, the other ones are still just primed (just so you can see the difference).

I put some eyelet (is that what they are called) at four different places on the stick I LOVE. I used picture hangers to hook them to the wall.

Once the frames dried, I glued twine to the inside of the backing, and re-assembled them.

I hung them.... so far, so good.  But wait!  Look how crooked they are?

This is them from the side... sad.

I ended up hot gluing styrofoam blocks behind them, so that they hung straight.

Because we are going for a more 'earthy, calming' mode for our bedroom, we picked pictures of our family and had them printed in sepia tone.

So, as my facebook status said:
"has a stick that she is in love with.... and is even more in love with the idea of it holding photos of our amazing memories. It will be hung over our bed in our newly painted master bedroom, in a color that I love, that was picked out by my favorite love! (he picked out the color)!!!"

Saturday, September 11, 2010

holy crap

so.... after we celebrated that we are a 'homestudy family', we soon realized that we will now have home visits....

Novel idea hunh!

There were two big projects that we both wanted to accomplish before we got to that stage, painting our master bedroom (then all the painting will officially be done in our house), and steam cleaning the carpets.  Yes, yes, we know neither will truly matter to our social worker, but it's what WE want the house to look like. 

Next weekend is a big event for Travis (and his Air Force Recruiting life), so this weekend quickly got rescheduled from our previous plan of "enjoying fall", to painting, organizing, cleaning. 

And apparently buying things. 

My mother in law thinks we're nesting.  I think maybe Travis is nesting, and I'm taking advantage of his newly loosened purse strings (he's the budget master in our house!).

So... its now midnight, and we are waiting for the second coat of paint in our bedroom to mostly dry. 

And I'm starting a new painting project.

See- I found this stick, and I fell in love.  And I now have a new bedroom color, that will look great with the stick, that I love.  So I bought frames at the dollar store, to put pictures that I love in, so that I can hang them on the stick, that I love.

I'll show pictures once it's done, because I'm sure I'll be damn proud of it... or maybe not.... but at least you'll be able to see a stick, (and you'll feel the love too!).

Ohh, and I'll also show pictures of the nasty cord mess that was our entertainment center.  Travis spent over an hour this morning trying to straighten them.  I convinced him to come with me to Hobby Lobby (GASP!), and buy a basket (that HE picked out- double gasp- he liked it because it had a lid...).  See what I mean about loosening purse strings (though I did have a 50% off coupon....)

It looks AMAZING.  We now just have this basket on the bottom of our entertainment center, that has two cords running out of it (cable and power).  The power cords to EVERYTHING are contained, along with the modem and router!  He is SO good!


Today my family and I remember that day, my freshmen year of college. My mom called me and woke me up, because I had stayed up late working on a paper. UNM had canceled classes, so my boyfriend and his family watched the events in my dorm room. His Dad was at the Pentagon that day. I will never forget the anxiousness we held every time the phone rang....

So, today, we remember the lives that were lost that day, the hero's that were made that day, and those that we have lost in the War on Terror following those events.

Friday, September 10, 2010

last minute Friday...

Our agency seems to like to wrap things up on a Friday.  I'm not complaining though!

I got an email at 4:09, and a call a bit after that saying that our Packet II was approved, and that we were officially a 'homestudy family', meaning that is the step that we are currently in.

She said that our social worker, who I really like, will call us early next week (or maybe even this weekend), to set up a time for her first visit....

Guess now is the time to get the carpet shampooed.....

We decided to meet for happy hour at a local sushi restaurant before we went and picked up my step daughter.  The agency called while I was waiting for Travis to come, but I couldn't call and tell him right away because he was going to ride his motorcycle there, so I had to wait until he actually got there.

We enjoyed some sushi and decided to celebrate tonight with Aleigha over a campfire (and marshmallows of course)!

I also bought some mums that will need to be potting, and the things needed for our first 'fall craft'.... it's my favorite season, so I tend to go all out....


Thursday, September 9, 2010

Our New Song

Now, I've heard this song hundreds of times in the past (what can I say, I'm a country girl!)

I heard it on the way home today from my college class, and just started crying.  It so fits us, now.

Our wedding song was "God Blessed the Broken Road", by Rascal Flats.  That fit us then.  Granted- our road has still been bumpy, but we've traveled it together for the last six years.

Travis has always been my rock, through everything.  Maybe the reason this song hit me straight in the face today was because of the surprise announcement this weekend, and my immediate reaction was literally to lean back into him (he was standing right behind me). 

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Half way wait

Our adoption agency gave us a time us a timeline for hearing back from them.  Four to six weeks. 

After they came back so fast for our packet one (they said 2-4 weeks, it was three days), I had my hopes up that this might have an 'accelerated' timeline.

Monday was the 3rd week.  If we look at the longest time frame, we're half way there.

So much has happened in three weeks.  It's amazing.  And Scary!

We did our first lab (with water!) in fourth grade... and I ummm... have some modifications that I'll pass on to the other 4th grade teacher before she does it on Friday!

Overall it went well, we only had one 'solution' spill, and it was after they had filtered out the iron fillings (with a magnet), rocks (with wire mesh), sand (with filter paper)... so really, it was just salt water, that we now need to wait until it evaporates to get the answer....

I might speed the process up by 're-making' the saltwater solution but with less water.

Does that make me bad teacher.  Please tell me other teachers 'modified' experiments when the kids weren't around to speed them up!

Since we live in the Midwest, there is not much that can count as a 'flavor of home'.  I do miss New Mexico.  Especially at fall.  Fall means Dixon Apple Farm, the State Fair, Green Chile harvest, and the Balloon Fiesta.  I get none of that here.  Except, to my surprise, a local grocer brought in HATCH Green Chile!!!

My husband and I bought out two stores.  So the last few days have been full of roasting, peeling, chopping.... ugh!  Can we say!!!

I prepared a majority of the Chile so that it could be frozen and used in individual dishes, but decided to get adventurous and make green chile jelly (jam?).  

I chopped 18 chiles up, but they are currently sitting in a bowl in my fridge, because I'm exhausted, and know I don't EVEN want to begin the jelly (jam?) process.... so it will be done tomorrow. 

Monday, September 6, 2010


Do you ever 'get over' being infertile?  Or having Recurrent Pregnancy Loss? 

Even when you are so happy with the decision you made to adopt.... does anyone know?  Because some hope would be swell.

Maybe its not the fact that I don't have a baby right now that this is so much harder, but instead, the fact that I've been pregnant 5 times...  maybe that's it.

Let me set the scene:
Labor Day weekend, my in-laws bring the boat down.  We're on the lake for several hours, having fun.  We go into town where they have an outdoor shopping mall/area.  We eat at Joes Crab Shack (yum!).  We start walking around the outdoor mall.  There is a ton of people, live music being played.  My husband runs to a desert place to see how late they were open, we were stuffed from Joe's, but still wanted to make sure we would make it back there in time.  My MIL looks at her phone and notices my husband's Aunt had called, (this Aunt was the Mother of the Bride to the wedding we went to a month ago... it's important-read on....)

 By the time that Trav got back, she was on the phone, so we were all standing around her when she joyously yelled, "She's having a baby" (meaning Trav's cousin.... who just got married....)

The next several seconds went in slow motion, at least for me.

There was a range of emotions and thoughts.  "That's great!", "how fun", but those were quickly replace by "holy shit", and then the tears came, and my chest got tight.  I tried to fight it back, because the kids (my husbands little brother and sister) were cheering.  It didn't work.  The tears came.  My MIL immediately gave me a hug and stopped the conversation to give "Jenn a group hug".  I KNOW she meant well, but I had to get out of there.  I didn't even try to tell Travis where I was going... I didn't know, just away from them, to get lost in the crowd, to a small dark nook where I could hide my tears.

I eventually pulled it together, and wound up in the Disney Store.  It's always been one of my favorite places, but haven't been in one in forever.... Travis eventually called me, and they all came and met me there as I was walking out. 

My MIL hugged me, and with tears in her eyes, apologized.  She knows.  She understands.  She always has.  She knows the pain first hand, and knew right then exactly how I felt.

I don't blame her.  It is truly something for our family to celebrate.  A shock- yes, but still joyous. 

However, maybe now I'm just cautious, because I know all to well, just because you see a positive pregnancy test, doesn't mean you have a baby in your arms in nine months.

And maybe I'm one ever screamed for me when they found out the news "Jenn's having a baby!".... by the time I got pregnant, with my history (two miscarriages before I got married) it was always a very cautious "ok, we'll pray for you."..... not one of the five pregnancies with Travis were we ever 'out of the woods."  Never to the point where we could celebrate. 

And even though we're adopting.... they still aren't going to scream it, because we know all to well, just because we're matched, doesn't warrant "Jenn and Trav are having a baby".  Things could still go wrong.  When we bring the baby home, she still won't be able to scream it.  Not until the judge signs the paper.... and "They've... umm.... had a baby" just doesn't quite work...

You ladies in this community know all to well, a positive test doesn't guarantee much, so if you have some extra prayers to send our cousin, please do.  I pray that she has a healthy, happy pregnancy, and never knows the heartbreak any of us have experienced.  If you could too, that would be swell!