Saturday, December 31, 2011

One Year Ago

A year ago, we were heartbroken.

A year ago, all seemed lost.

A year ago, we didn't know how we'd go on.

A year ago, we sat in each other's arms and cried.

A year ago, our match failed.  After we had been there when he was born, spent the whole night with him, went back the next day.  After we were completely in love.

It was a really shitty way to spend New Year's Eve.  And an even worse way to start 2011.

If only I'd known then that a year later, I would be holding on to him, maybe it wouldn't have hurt so bad.

Or would it?



Friday, December 30, 2011

How It's Changed

Where I used to lounge and take bubble baths while reading a book and sipping a drink
There is now a babies bath tub sitting.



Right outside the shower, where I would spend a long time under the hot water

is a bouncer, where my little man can sit while I rush through my shower.



On the counter where we used to make our dinner,  (and pour my wine!)
Is now a baby bottle tree



Our kitchen table that used to never be used
is where we now where we get our son ready for his outings.


The fireplace that we would turn on and cuddle on the couch
Now has a swing in front of it.


Our entryway nook
now houses an exersaucer.


It's amazing when I look around our house, to know that 6 months ago, none of this was here.  Our house, our arms, and our hearts were empty.

Looking around now, there is evidence of Isaac every where.  

And that makes my heart happy.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Vacation Time

I'm on vacation, (and have been for several days) so I'm limiting my computer time, but I did want to drop in and ask all of you to go send some love.

When we had our failed adoption, my readers were amazing!  You lifted Travis and I up in prayer, said many kind things, came back to check on us, and you loved us as we grieved.

So I'm asking, will you please do that again!  A failed match isn't easy ever, but it especially sucks during the holidays.  I know, ours failed on December 31st... what a way to ring in this year!


Please go over to Being Joyful Always and flood her with the same support that you gave me.  She needs the love, hugs, and prayers.

Friday, December 9, 2011

Snow!

Ok, not much snow, but it snowed here...

I tried to take Isaac out in it.  I knew we had gotten a snow suit thing in some of the hand me downs, but it's 0-3 months, and though he still wears 0-3 months in 90% of his clothes, this did.not.fit.

So, what else is a Mom to do but take a picture on snowflake fabric?!?

Trav ran by on the way home and got a snow suit that fits him, so we'll be ready for our next snow!


Thursday, December 8, 2011

An Award

I REALLY suck when people give me awards, I always mean to go do the fun conversation part of it, but alas, I don't.  So now, I just read the comment... and I'm doing it!!

I'm not sure if you read Michelle @ Greetings From Nowhere, New Mexico.  Besides the obvious fact that she's awesome because she's from New Mexico (where I grew up).  She's a fun gal who is currently taking a short break before they dive back into fertility treatments next year.  She has always been so kind and supportive, and I love reading her blog.


1. Thank the person who awarded you.
2. List 7 things people may not know about you.
3. Pass it on to 15 (Holy Crap!) other bloggers and don't forget to notify them.

So... for seven things.


1.  Today was my very first day working since we got Isaac.  I might have cried a bit after I dropped him off, but once I got there, actually had fun.  I subbed for a class that I know well, I had about 1/2 the students for 9 weeks last year during a long term sub position.  The were a great class to 'get my feet wet' again.


2.  Marshmallows are my downfall.  I can eat a whole bag while watching an hour tv show... and have done it several times!


3.  I'm not really sure how it's going to impact Isaac's story of adoption, but I think I have a pretty unique view of adoption, because I'm adopted, and now am an adoptive mother.  I thought it was interesting as we went through the process the oponions/comments that my Mom and my birth mom had.  It was kinda funny!


4.  I HATE not being organized for Christmas (like knowing what gifts to get everyone/where to buy them/when we're delivering them...).  Guess what... this year seems like total chaos!


5.  My little brother is about as opposite as can be, but we have this funky bond that even our parents don't understand.  We can not talk for weeks, and then he calls me, estatic, about a grade he got on an Art History paper (92%!! Way to go Ben!). He's 7 years younger then me and a foot taller. 


6.  If I hadn't married my husband, he would have been my biggest regret.  Luckily, we fell in love, got married, and have lived happily ever after.  I'm blessed to celebrate seven years with him next week!   


7.  My husband had benefited greatly from my pinterest obsession... he's never had more home cooked meals. Granted, some of the pins get 'deleated' right after I make them... but I'm trying new things, and for the first time, am sorta enjoying it.


I'm supposed to tag 15 people, but I suck at that part too, so if YOU wanna have some fun and do this too, consider yourself tagged... annnddd GO!



Wednesday, December 7, 2011

First Snow

We had our first 'dusting' of snow, but that was enough to break out the snowflake fabric and take some pictures!!!



I got a new camera for Christmas from my parents.  Well, really it's "our" camera, because my parents combined  our anniversary present, his Christmas present, and my Christmas present.  Did I say it was a really nice camera.

I've had it since Black Friday, and have taken almost 800 pictures.... my computer is filling back up, I'm going to have to transfer all the 2009 pictures to our external hard drive soon!

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Thanksgiving



Holidays are so different when you have a family.

I need to have a fairy craft mother... or something.  I get these great ideas at say...9 o'clock at night that results in me being up until after 1 am, hand sewing my son's first Thanksgiving shirt.  Seriously.  I need a craft intervention.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Three Years

I remembered on the one year anniversary

I remembered on the second anniversary.

But, it's been three years today.  Three years since we lost our best hope.  Three years since we lost our Sea Monkey.  I wouldn't have remembered had I not seen my sister in laws post wishing her son a happy birthday.

One baby was born, one was lost.

Little did I know that this would not be the last loss, but it defiantly was the hardest.  We saw a heartbeat.  That's all you need, the risk goes down after that right?

Not for us.

I've not had another pregnancy get that far.  

Three years ago, we lost our Sea Monkey, but tonight I'm holding our son.

Does the pain go away...

Not really, it just sorta changes.

It's not all consuming anymore.  It hasn't preoccupied my day.

When I told my husband, he was like "Oh, wow".  

We've gone through so much since that day.  The day that 'officially' started our road down the infertility path because this pregnancy was the 2nd loss for us (but my 4th).

We've had 6 more losses together.  We've started our adoption journey.  We've had a failed match.

But now, as I look across the living room at my husband feeding Isaac, I know.  We have OUR son.

The son that has always been in the plans.

The child that was made for our family.

Backed up

I've not blogged much lately, and when I did the Adoption Interview project, I told her that I hoped it would get be back into the swing of things.  One of the fun things that has happen in my 'lack of blogging time' is we had not-so-newborn-newborn-pictures.

They were a gift from a dear friend of mine, and fellow adoptive Mom!  Isaac was about 6 weeks when we got them done, and I love them... I can't decide which one is my favorite, so I'll post several!










Sunday, November 20, 2011

The rest of the story

As I promised Seriously?! during our adoption interview project, here is a bit more of Isaac's story.

If you've not read this post, Isaac William, or about our Whirlwind month, read those first, then come back and read the rest of this post.

While we were waiting for a match, we were entertaining the idea of taking in a foster placement.  The baby was still in utero at the time, but we had met with the caseworker and they were taking immediate custody once the baby was born.  We knew the baby's biological siblings, and loved them.  To make a very long story short, and without getting into many details, we never felt peace with this decision, even after many many prayers.

I was home alone when I got the phone call that we were matched.  To be honest, I wasn't quite sure how to react, since we knew we wouldn't be able to take both the foster placement and the match.  For so many months, we had been discussing the foster placement, as the baby came closer and closer to term.  I told our agency I needed to talk to Travis.  I drove to his office and just sobbed.  We called the agency together, and found out some more details of the match.  In any other situation, we would have been thrilled, but the foster baby weighed heavily on our heart.  It was about 3pm on Tuesday, and we asked for some time to talk and pray about it.  They gave us until 8am the next morning, and then they would need a decision so they could either plan the match meeting, or re-match the birth family.

We prayed, and cried, and talked.

At the beginning of the year, when we found out about the foster placement probability, we decided then, that no matter what, we wouldn't jeopardy a match with our agency for this possible placement.  We kept coming back to that comment during our discussions.  It was almost as if God was trying to tell us "No, you are not supposed to take that foster placement, what do I have to do, put another baby in your life?!"

We made the decision late that night to accept the match, and then called the next morning to let them know.  This is Wednesday, if you're keeping track!  The baby boy was due August 10th.

They set up a meeting for that Friday.  It was an 8 hour trip there, so we left EARLY that morning.  After our failed match, to say we were uncertain would have been an understatement.  We arrived at the restaurant and changed clothes (we were in 'traveling clothes', yoga pants and sweats).  The local caseworker and the agencies domestic supervisor met us about 1/2 an hour before his birth parent's met us.  It was nice to get to know the caseworker (we hadn't me her before), and get a bit of her history with them.

The lunch went well.  We defiantly wern't BFF's, but there was a mutual respect, and appreciation I think.  They were both well spoken, and had made some decisions about the birth, and their plans at the hospital.  The night before, she had a dream, and she saw the baby's eyes, and wanted to keep him.  That reinforced the idea that she didn't want to spend time with him at the hospital.  She said she knew she was going to be emotional, and didn't want the emotions to get in the way of the decision she already made.  We could respect that.  They told us of their desire to have a semi-open adoption, and we told them if at any point, they wanted to have a fully open one, we were ok with that.

We left lunch (three hours later!) taking a few pictures, and then we said our goodbyes.  On the way home, we talked a bit about how we felt.  They seemed to have a better plan on how to deal with the emotions they would be going through.  But we were just sorta in suspension.

We had been burned before.  We had gotten to excited.  We planned to much.  We weren't going to let that happen again...

We found out less then a week later, when she went on Thursday for her ultrasound that we were not going to have an August baby, but he would be coming soon.  Her amniotic fluid was low, so they were sending her for an induction.  We quickly made arrangements for our dogs, and headed out about Midnight so we would be there about 8am.  She labored through the night, but didn't progress much.  We found our hotel, and were able to get into our room early and slept for a few hours.   I think the rest of the story picks up on this post for his birth story.

Since then, we haven't had any contact with his birth parents.  We've sent a letter at 1 month and 3 months, and I just sent off a Thanksgiving card that has his feet prints as the turkey feathers.  They were going to move, and didn't want anything forwarded to them until they got settled into their new place.  I've found them on facebook, and I saw that they just moved, so hopefully we'll have a letter back from them by the first of the year.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Adoption Interview Project

I was so excited to find out that my partner for this fun interview was someone who I regularly follow!  Seriously?!, over at Still Seriously?!.  I know that she has gone private, but if you would like to find out more of her story, send ME an email, and I'll forward it on to her (really, this gal's amazing!)

She and I have a lot in common including Recurrent Pregnancy Loss.  I HATE it when I know someone in this 'club' because in all reality, this club sucks!  However, she and I at times share the same wavelenght, and there have been posts she has written that I have commented and said "yep... EXACTLY".

Now... On with the questions!


Starting with an infertility question, since we both have RPL, I often wonder… Do you think it’s better to have the ability to get pregnant (but not carry to term), or to have never seen a positive pregnancy test.

Good question.  I’ve debated this forever.  So many people have told me “you’re so lucky you can get pregnant”.  But alas, for us RPL girls, pregnancy has become a double-edged sword. However, I always go back to those first few moments before RPL invaded my life.  That feeling of hope and excitement about the future is hard to explain.  When you’re pregnant (the first few times before ‘pregnancy despair’ shows up) it’s like you have an extra spring in your step.  It was a wonderful feeling.  You almost feel like you can do anything.  Or at least, that’s how I felt. Because I had such a late loss with Mikayla, I know what it’s like to feel a baby flutter to moving around in your tummy.  I could poke her and make her move.  I loved it.  I also know what’s it like to give birth.  So, in a sense, I’ve been able to experience it ‘all’ despite not having a baby in my arms at the end of it.  But would I wish that away??? No.  Not for one minute.  As hard as the RPL has been, at least I am able to ‘cross this off my bucket list’ so to speak.  I cherish my time with my daughter in my womb.  Although miscarriage and stillbirth has been devastating, and I wouldn’t wish it on anyone, I feel like I have become a more compassionate, loving, stronger, and understanding person because of my journey – 5 sets of double pink lines and all.  Like the old saying goes, I guess for me it is somewhat true but bittersweet:  ‘Tis better to have loved and lost, than never to have loved at all’. 


How has infertility affected your marriage?  

We got married on January 4th.  By February 3rd, I was pregnant: A COMPLETE SURPRISE.  Our marriage was thrown into the pregnancy trenches and it wouldn’t take long for miscarriage to rear its ugly head, over and over…and over again.  We had such the smallest window of hope and joy as a married couple.  And for just about 4 years straight, we’ve battled the worst things a couple could go through.  In our first year, we had a miscarriage at 13.5 weeks and the stillbirth of our daughter at 24 weeks.  Eight months into our marriage and we had to deal with a funeral home, ashes, and naming a daughter we would never get to see grow up.  It sometimes feels like we barely got off the ground.  Certainly, there was no ‘honeymoon period’.  2008 went Kaput.

To be honest, really honest, it’s been very hard.  We’ve been to counseling…thank goodness for that, turned out our counselor had 9 miscarriages herself.  That was very helpful for M because she could explain the whole range of emotions that us RPL girls go through.  We worked at trying to be just a ‘normal couple’ and scheduled time to reconnect.  However, we’ve also become very resilient as a couple.  We now know how each person grieves and what we both need to feel ‘ok’.  Despite all of the despair and sadness, we are very close in a way that is almost indescribable.  Loss can either bring you together or tear you apart.  We fought through the battle, and have hopefully come out a much stronger couple.

‘Reconnecting physically’, however, has been very, very difficult.  Sex has now become associated with pregnancy, which then becomes associated with miscarriage, which then becomes associated with heartache.  We are not the ‘active’ couple we once were.  It’s kind of sad.  It’s been really hard on M that way.  He has really struggled trying to find the motivation to rekindle things.  He says he feels kind of scarred from it all.  So it feels like our intimacy has gone Kaput too.  Ugh.  I wish I could report differently.  It’s something that we need to work on.  Thanks RPL for that.


Has the adoption process had the same trials, or different ones?

We really struggled through the education component.  Sometimes we felt like the reading was condescending.  We found that we were voicing a lot of our anger about us ‘having to do this’ while ‘others can parent and pop out kids and nobody cares’.  But we learned that this was most likely part of our grief from the past.  We come from a perspective of ‘loss’, so it also took some time to discuss and understand what an ‘open adoption’ might look like for us.  We were surrounded by fear - we didn’t want someone coming to take our baby away again.  But through lots of discussion and listening to that fear, we’ve been able to have a better understanding of the various ‘openness’ agreements and I think we’ll find that it will be a lot better than we had initially thought.


Who first brought up the idea of adoption as a means to grow your family?  How quickly did you tell other people in your family (close relatives) of your plans? 

I did!!!  After my fourth miscarriage, I started investigating internet sites of agencies in our province.  I wasn’t quite ready yet, but once I was, I think M didn’t need much encouragement.  We were both tired of hitting our head against the wall with constant failed pregnancies.  There was no hope anymore with that route. Did we want to parent?  YES.  Did biology have to be the only way we could do that? NO.  It took M a little longer to get there, but he got there.

Once we decided, we shouted it from the roof-tops!  We FINALLY felt hopeful again.  It had been a really long time since we felt that feeling as a couple.


Was your plan to adopt accepted easily/quickly by them, or did they need some time to “warm up to the idea”?   What about extended family and friends, do they know yet?

We have received very positive responses for the most part.  Everyone likes to share their story of ‘someone they know’.  That was helpful.  But the announcement also came with some very cautious tones from some.  Some shared an adoption ‘bad story’ about a life gone wrong for an adopted child…surely it had something to do with ‘the adoption’.  Gasp!  Insert eye roll.  Others talked about the horribly looooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooong wait and ‘oh how that will be hard for you’.  One, bless her, always retells me the story of her sister and getting the call so last minute.  That’s exciting.  It’s really been a mixed bag.  But one thing is for certain: EVERYONE HAS AN OPINION!!!

And then there’s my mother.  She’s a whole other story.  Her comments this past year have been: “Are you sure you want to have kids?  You know you can’t give them back”.  Gee, thanks Mom.  That’s helpful.  She’s been really slow to openly discuss adoption.  So I’m not really sure what her perspective is, but it sure hasn’t been a congratulatory one.  The biggest irony, she claims to be very ‘Christian’.  So that’s been hard for me to wrestle with.  Her reaction has been very disappointing and sometimes, very hurtful.  It makes me sad.


Have you talked about what you want your adoption to look like (in a perfect world?)

No, not really.  We just really want to FINALLY have a family.  In our minds, that is when perfection will come.  We’ve had so much disappointment around ‘expectations’, we’re better off not having any I think. Just plop that baby into our arms and let’s call it a day. ;)


Do you think adopted children are extra special, like they were fought harder for?

I know that I would definitely treat all of my children equally.  That’s a tricky question.   However, Adoption itself is unique and special.  One that requires handling with care, sensitivity, and love. It’s hard to answer this now, but I can sure tell you that this little one that comes to us is REALLY gonna feel the love from us.  They will play a big role in restoring the Hope we feel like we’ve lost.  Mending our hearts is a big task, so perhaps that is an expectation/hope for this child…but I’m pretty certain that we will tell them just how incredible and meaningful their arrival to us was.  So this child sure will be extra special in our eyes.





As a teacher, do you think you have a different view point on adoption (seeing kids that grew up in bad homes, knowing that you’ve worked with kids exposed to drugs in the womb, and thinking ‘I could handle those challenges as a Mom’?

ABSOLUTELY!!!!  Being a teacher has opened my eyes to so many experiences for kids.  The good, the bad, the ugly.  I’ve wanted to take many of my former students home to help make things better for them.  That feeling has driven my passion for teaching.  I think that’s why I was able to embrace adoption so easily because I knew that I could love any child.  In fact, for the past 8 years since being in the same grade, I’ve come to love even 12 and 13 year olds in all of their finest, hormonal glory.  Attachment takes time, it takes work, but biology ain’t got nothing on my love for a kid. (Pardon the grammar but slang is fun and sometimes right to the point!) ;)  So yes, being a teacher sure made the switch to adoption a whole lot easier.  I think that I walk through this adoption path with a whole lot more confidence because of it.

I know we have gotten grief about adopting domestically instead of internationally, have you experienced anything similar?

No, I think most people are just happy for us that we feel hopeful again that our family is going to actually happen one day.  Some people have asked about ‘the kids in Africa’ but we’ve maintained that we need to choose a situation that we’re both comfortable with and one that we can afford.  Remember, I might be ‘the teacher’ who can see through every child right to their heart, but those who haven’t been exposed to children as much, take more time to get there.  To be honest, we also can’t even afford an ‘international’ adoption to the States…it’s more than twice as much as a domestic one.  We’ve really educated a lot of people about the difficult, emotional, and financial process/frustrations of adoption.  Most people don’t have a clue that it can be so costly.  And our friends and relatives are starting to realize that it’s not as easy as most people think.

Many of your readers (like me!) are in the United States.  I often wonder how adoption changes when you cross boarders.  Would you give a brief outline of what your process is and if you know any areas that are different from the processes in the US?

I’ll try to make this right to the point and provide as much as I can remember off the top of my head.  In British Columbia, Canada, adoption guidelines are:

·         all work for a newborn infant is to be completed through a private agency.  You pay them, and they arrange the homestudy, the education component, criminal record checks etc. One stop shop so to speak. The process from making your first payment to becoming ‘active waiting parents’ takes about 4 months.
·         The fees are approximately $20,000 for a local infant (typically we can only adopt from our own province), $40,000 and upward for an international adoption, not including flights etc. International includes the States for us.  The fees for all local adoptions, regardless of race, culture, special need etc, are all the same, province wide.  International adoption rates can vary depending on the country you are adopting from.
·         the birthmother has 30 days to change her mind, no questions asked…EEEK!  Not good for an RPL girl.  Our BIGGEST fear will be during those 30 days.
·         our agency ONLY does about 18 adoptions A YEAR
·         there are only 6 agencies in our entire province
·         upon homestudy approval, our 2 page profile goes into a binder.  The birthmother looks through the binder at various couples’ profiles, there are about 40 couples on average, in no particular order or classification, and she chooses the couple she’d like.  Then she looks at their big book/picture essay and makes it final.  There are no wait lists, no numbers, no priority.  Essentially…we could ‘wait’ forever if nobody picks us.
·         Open Adoptions are STRONGLY encouraged and supported
·         BC’s ‘Waiting Children’ are children who are in foster care or have been recently taken from their birth family because of abuse, drugs, alcohol, or other forms of neglect
·         Adopting a ‘waiting child’ is free.  Children are typically older, not newborns but can be infants to teens, and usually have some form of special need or need extra TLC because of the prenatal damage or neglect/abuse in the home
·         We’re excited to say, that we are now going to adopt both privately through an agency, and through the Ministry for one of BC’s Waiting Children.  It feels incredible to be able to reach out and provide love and stability to a child who REALLY needs us.  Win, win for all of us.

(and some non adoption ones just for fun!)
What is your favorite memory that you and Mike have made?

Ha!  You’re so cute.  Ok, well, we both think that it probably has to be our wedding in Cuba.  We were engaged and then decided to run away together and get married on the beach.  Cuba had horrendous hurricane-like weather, but the skies parted just before our ceremony.  It was incredible.  It was one of the last times that we were both so happy and hopeful as a couple. The world was our oyster!!! RPL sure did a lot of damage, but it can’t take away that moment.  We’re thinking the next one will be after our 30 days with our ‘forever baby’ in our arms.  Oh man, I can’t wait!


If you could travel anywhere with Mike, where would you go? What about a ‘girls’ only vacation with your best friends, where would you go?

Mike and I love to travel.  He’s been all over the world.  I’ve been to Europe, the States, and the Caribbean. But he’d like to take me to Egypt, Greece, and Italy.  Three places that I haven’t been, and where he absolutely loved.  We sure hope to do that together, one day.

Girlfriends???? I LOVE GIRLFRIENDS!!! Well it would have to be an all-inclusive trip to an exotic beach somewhere to suntan our butts off all day, drink umbrella drinks, and watch the cabana boys.  ;) Mind you, I did NYC with some gal pals and that was pretty fabulous too.  I could totally do that again.


So, it seems Seriously?! and I will be headed to the beach somewhere soon.... any of you want to join us!

xoxo friend, I love that you have shared this journey with me on our trip to Isaac, and CANNOT WAIT until we get to rejoice with you and your little one!

Monday, November 7, 2011

Phone Pictures

I think that I take way more pictures of our 'everyday life' with Isaac on my phone, because I take a picture some time, every day to send to my Mom

Isaac's first smile on camera (his 3rd or 4th ever)




I hate the bumbo!

Look how good I hold my head up!

Cutest Pumpkin Around

My Mom started the tradition of having my brother and I be a pumpkin for our first Halloween.  I knew whenever we had a family, our first baby would be a pumpkin too.

It was so hard for me to find a costume I liked, and I'm lucky to have a friend who is a magician with her sewing machine, and could make the necessary alterations.

I decided last minuet that I was going to dress up too, as a scarecrow.  Not inventive, but it worked, a scarecrow and her prize pumpkin.


He always has the gummiest smiles! I love them!


Happy Halloween!!!

Thursday, October 20, 2011

almost midnight

It's almost midnight, and I'm exhausted....

I can almost crawl into bed, but not quite yet.  I have to wait for one more buzz of the washer, so I can finish off my crazy day.

My Mom is in town, and we are dedicating Isaac at church this Sunday.  We went to lunch at Panera (They don't have him where she lives) and then went to the mall.  My son has a ton of cute clothes, but we were wanting something a bit 'dressy' for the dedication.  We looked, and looked, and looked... and didn't find anything in his size.  Well, we found one sweater vest that was $32.00, and a 'big' newborn sized. He would fit in it perfectly now, but it wouldn't last much longer.  And that's dumb, to spend that much for basically one day.  So he'll be cute in something we already have.

After the mall, we ran by the only grocery store in town that carries our flushable cat litter (I will never use anything but flushable... it makes life so easy!)

We came home and did the following:

Vacuumed the living room/hallway twice (we have 3 dogs... it takes 2 times to get all the hair)
Steam cleaned the living room/hallway
Made cake balls
Gathered all the veggies left in the garden before tonight's freeze
Made chocolate chip pumpkin muffins
Washed the dog's bedding that they sleep on in the bedroom (again, three dogs... but we just do the covers of the orthopedic foam beds they have in there, so all one load)
(meanwhile, my husband washed the dogs so that added a load of 'drying the dog' towels right here)
Wash the dog's bedding from their crates (three dogs, bigger, poofy beds, so three loads of laundry)

Man, when my Mom is around to take care of Isaac, I get so much done!  She even made us dinner!

Once the last bed finishes spinning in the washer, I can go throw it in the dryer so it will dry over night, and be ready for the morning.

Oh.... it just beeped, dang that was good timing!  I'm headed to the laundry room, and then to bed!

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Remembering

I am one in four.

Though right now I just put my son down for his morning nap, we struggled for many years to have a family.

As he sleeps right now, I'm crying remembering the little ones that I have in heaven.

Eight of them.

Some boys and some girls, I'm sure.

I'll never be able to hold them here in my arms, but they will be waiting for me.


Loosing them has hurt more then I can explain, and is something I would never wish on anyone.

But because of the loss, I've made some of the best friends.  Some that are far away, and some that live close.  There is a special bond that I have with others.  We both know the pain.  We can both cry for each other.

We both know how bad it sucks when you have to continue with your life, or the events you have planed, knowing that each twinge is your body failing you.  I hate that I (and others) know just how to 'suck it up' because we've been there before...

So, for my friend in Florida, who lost her first just a while ago, or my friends down the street who have lost as many as Trav and I.  I think of you.  Today I'm remembering your angles, as I remember mine too.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Cloth Diapering

So... we jumped into cloth diapering about 4 weeks ago.

I wasn't sure how long it would last.  I bought 2 packages of diapers (size one and two) the other day and spent $40.00.... ya, those cloth are going to stick around!

A good friend of my does the cloth diapering thing, and has told me as long as I've known her how great it is.  I was curious, but not on board yet.  She's an adoptive momma too, so she totally get's the 'baby budget' as in, we need to pay off this one, and save for the next one.  That was her angle.  That's how she hooked us!

I will say right now, I'm doing it for the money (savings) and not for the environment... granted, helping the environment is a plus, but it's not the primary reason.  That being said, we still us disposables, when we're traveling, when someone is watching him for us, when we go to church.

We were able to get 24 diapers brand new diapers with inserts and 3 wet bags (for when we're out and about) for just about $110.00.  We were lucky, it's not normally that cheep.  I went and bought PUL fabric (it's sorta laminated, its what the diapers are made of) for my friend to make me a bag that fit's in the trash can.  We don't soak ours, we just put them in the trash can (with a lid that closes tight), and I was every 2 days.  There is also a wetbag hanging on the back of the bathroom door for the poopy ones.

I experienced my first home improvement project fail.  We needed to install a sprayer to our toilet line to rinse out the poopy diapers.  It took two trips to Lowes, one to Home Depot, three to Ace Hardware, and two to a specialty plumbing shop.  The sprayer was installed, there are no leaks, but I still consider it a project fail.  Well, I guess it wasn't a total fail, but we sure paid for it.  As in about $15.00 of unused parts that were unreturnable (because we had cranked down on them to stop leaks)
Travis during the sprayer install

All of the colors we have!

Isaac and his first cloth diaper!  

Seriously, he's so tiny, the cloth diapers are the ONLY reason his 0-3 month pant's stay up!

Like I said, we've only been doing them for about a month, and we're still trying to get in the routine. But, so far so good.

Cloth Diapering

So... we jumped into cloth diapering about 4 weeks ago.

I wasn't sure how long it would last.  I bought 2 packages of diapers (size one and two) the other day and spent $40.00.... ya, those cloth are going to stick around!

A good friend of my does the cloth diapering thing, and has told me as long as I've known her how great it is.  I was curious, but not on board yet.  She's an adoptive momma too, so she totally get's the 'baby budget' as in, we need to pay off this one, and save for the next one.  That was her angle.  That's how she hooked us!

I will say right now, I'm doing it for the money (savings) and not for the environment... granted, helping the environment is a plus, but it's not the primary reason.  That being said, we still us disposables, when we're traveling, when someone is watching him for us, when we go to church.

We were able to get 24 diapers brand new diapers with inserts and 3 wet bags (for when we're out and about) for just about $110.00.  We were lucky, it's not normally that cheep.  I went and bought PUL fabric (it's sorta laminated, its what the diapers are made of) for my friend to make me a bag that fit's in the trash can.  We don't soak ours, we just put them in the trash can (with a lid that closes tight), and I was every 2 days.  There is also a wetbag hanging on the back of the bathroom door for the poopy ones.

I experienced my first home improvement project fail.  We needed to install a sprayer to our toilet line to rinse out the poopy diapers.  It took two trips to Lowes, one to Home Depot, three to Ace Hardware, and two to a specialty plumbing shop.  The sprayer was installed, there are no leaks, but I still consider it a project fail.  Well, I guess it wasn't a total fail, but we sure paid for it.  As in about $15.00 of unused parts that were unreturnable (because we had cranked down on them to stop leaks)
Travis during the sprayer install

All of the colors we have!

Isaac and his first cloth diaper!  

Seriously, he's so tiny, the cloth diapers are the ONLY reason his 0-3 month pant's stay up!

Like I said, we've only been doing them for about a month, and we're still trying to get in the routine. But, so far so good.

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Pumpkin Patch!

We have a local 'working farm' that is owned by the park board.  It's open for visitors all the time, but they had a big Harvest Fest a few weekends ago.

Trav, Aleigha and I had SO much fun.  Isaac slept.

We saw sleeping Pigs


Isaac and Daddy rode a tractor

He wasn't fond of the chickens (or maybe just hungry?)



The horse tried to eat my arm, I laughed!


We picked him a pumpkin shortly after this picture, then went to eat kettle corn and listen to bluegrass music. It was then that he decided to wake up, so I made my family go BACK and retake family pictures in the pumpkin patch!


My little Pumpkin, and his first pumpkin

Thursday, October 6, 2011

sorta caught up

My world is sorta caught up...

I took my shower at 5:45 tonight.  I was hoping to get it done by noon!

We went to a pumpkin patch, and had a lot of fun!

I've finished a bunch of projects, some for Isaac's room, some not.

We've started cloth diapering (so far so good!)

He grew out of his very first outfit we got him, and I cried.

I've almost got my thank you cards... made... now to write them and send them out!

I finished my friends growth chart for her 4 kids, now I need to make one for Isaac!



Tomorrow we have his 2 month shots, and my little boy will be 10 weeks!

I've spent most of today ordering 300 prints from SnapFish (they were having a special (a penny a piece!), so that I can scrapbook our life upto Isaac, and then I'll get started on his... yes, 300 prints... I'm THAT far behind (like 6 years), but after the scrapbooking night I went to (that I didn't scrapbook at all at), I've got everything organized, so I'm ready to go!

If I can spend as much time tomorrow working on other stuff as it took to go through 3 years worth of photos, then *fingers crossed* I'll be able to post some photos tomorrow!

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

First Letter

A few weeks ago, we had to send our first letter to Isaac's birthparents.  It seemed like such a daunting task.  I wasn't really sure what to say.  Or how to start, or what not to say.  Our agency included a example, topics, and a few adoption articles to help us with this first letter. 

I read them all, and then sat on it.  For a few days. 

I sat at my computer and started to write.  And I wrote, and wrote.  They suggested 3-5 pages, on 'nice' paper.  All I could come up with for 'nice' paper was the paper we printed resumes out on, so that's what they got.  We had to do two letters (they could be the same) but addressed to his birth father and birth mother.  And had to send in duplicate set's of photos.

I told them about the time we spend in Kentucky, what we did while we were there, the trip home, our routine, and other things that had happened, like the baby shower friends held for me.   He was able to meet all his Grandparents within a week of each other, so we sent photos of them each holding him, told about his room and routine.  We wrote of how much he has changed our lives, and brought a whole new level of joy to our family/marriage/lives.

And then we sent it off.

His birth parents requested a semi-open adoption, even though we were willing to have an open one.  I hope that they write back to us (and said that in the letter).  I also included an 'adoption contact specific' email address for them to email to us if they would like to.

Being adopted myself, I didn't have much information on my birth parents.  My first few months of contact with my birth mom was all about questions.  Who she was, why she placed, what other family I have...

I don't want that for Isaac.  I want him to know how loved his is by both of them.  I want him to know where he gets his gorgeous brown curly hair.  I want him to know them.  I want him to love them, just like we already love them. 

I hope they respond.  I hope they write back.  For him.  For us. 

Back's a Crackin'

I love my doctor.

Like LOVE, love him.

He's old school.  I think I talked about his 'old school-ness' when I was sick (really sick-whooping cough undiagnosed for several weeks sick) last winter. 

He has no problem giving you a shot of antibiotics to skip the whole 7-10 day pill thing.

He'll hook you up to a 'super pack' IV full of immunity recharger's (it's yellow, I think it has potassium in in? and other good stuff) right there in his office.

If I'm sick (strep), and my husband starts to get it (he's both of ours doctor) , he doesn't make him go in, just sends in another prescription for the same thing I was on.

Well, this whole new rocking, swaying, carrying a car seat baby thing has JACKED with my back.  I tried Motrin, hot baths, having Trav rub it, but it got bad.  I went in and he cracked it for me!

Now, I'm a HUGE fan of chiropractic care, but my health insurance doesn't cover it... but he's had the training, and so he can do it right in his office!  LOVE IT!  I went back on Monday for my second round.  It's getting better, I'm doing stretches and strengthening things for it too, but until it stops hurting, it's nice to know I'm a phone call (and a no co-pay office visit) away from feeling better!

Monday, September 12, 2011

So tired!

I never understood how new moms couldn't find time to blog... all you do is stay home all day with a baby.

Ha.

I get it.

I so get it.

We are here, we are healthy, we are happy.

Trav goes back to work full time on Thursday. I've loved having him home, and it will be interesting to see how our schedule changes once that happens.

I have the most amazing husband ever. He knows me so well, and know's when to tell me to go to bed at 9pm, and take all the night feedings, and let me sleep in...  even if it means he does it 2 nights in a row!  I'm so blessed that he's such a great Dad.  I love watching him with Isaac, he's so gentle.  He talks to him, feeds him, reads to him, plays with him, rocks him, and is just amazing.

We had our 'not so newborn' newborn shoot today... and oh my gosh.  Since Isaac is over 6 weeks, he made us work for it!   Our photographer has posted some 'rough' sneak peaks, (non edited) tonight, but a new one comes up about every hour, so I'll wait to post them all.

Seriously, my son is awesome.

Just freaking awesome.

And he'll be up in 2 hours to eat... so I'm going to bed!

Friday, September 2, 2011

changes

There is something amazing (and sexy) about watching your husband become a Daddy! 


Sunday, August 21, 2011

Whirlwind

That is the perfect description for the last month.

We found out we were matched on Tuesday, July19th.

We met Isaac's birth parents that Friday, July 22nd.

He was due August 9th, but at her appointment the Thursday after we met them, her amniotic fluid was low, and so they sent her to labor and delivery for induction.

We cleaned the house, packed our bags, and headed to Louisville about midnight.  We drove all night, and got there about 8am Friday morning.  She still had not had him, but continued to labor, so we checked into our hotel, slept a little bit, grabbed lunch, and waited.

About 6:00pm , they decided to do a c-section, because she only progressed to 4cm.

I was running (jogging/walking/whatever you call it trying to train for a 5k) at the gym at the hotel, so I ran upstairs, told Travis, and jumped in the shower.  We arrived at the hospital right after he was born, and was able to hold him quickly in the hallway before they took him to the nursery.



He was in the nursery for about an hour before we could go in and see him, and even then, he had to stay under the heat lamps for about another hour.  Once we finally did get to hold him, they let us go to the 'family room' (also used for nursing) attached to the nursery, and we stayed with him until about 3am.  We were able to do all his feedings, talk, sing, pray, cry, and simply be amazed where we were.



He loved the swing in the nursery, and still loves it!

We had the most amazing nurses, they were so supportive of us, talked with us, showed us what to do (to say we were overwhelmed might be an understatement).  We spent so much time with the nurses in the nursery, we've become friends, and took Isaac back to see them while we were there.

The rest of that weekend was spent either at the hospital with Isaac, or at the hotel sleeping.  

On Sunday, he got released, and we headed home. 
The last picture we have of him before we left Kentucky.  

In Kentucky, they don't have 'legal risk' placements, so he had to stay with a foster family, who had adopted from our agency before.  The 8 hour trip home that Sunday was the worst trip ever.  We cried when we left the hospital.  We cried when we passed the state lines, each city that went by.  We had left our son, and already we missed him.

His birth parents had to wait 72 hours to sign the termination of their parental rights, but since he was born so late on Friday (6:21pm- after business hours), they signed Tuesday morning.  

We were blessed by the foster family.  They were always welcoming to phone calls and emails, and sent us several pictures every day. 


His first doctors appointment




The weekend between when he was born, and when we went back was my 28th birthday.  This was the best present I could have received.  I will never be able to thank his foster family enough to have captured those days for us on film.  They are pictures/time that we would have missed out on entirely.  

We knew not to expect a court date the week the birth parents signed, so we prayed (and asked everyone around us to pray) that we would find out a date the second week.  We were told it could take 2-3 weeks. On Tuesday, August 9th, I got a phone call from the case worker in Louisville.  She told us we had court on Thursday  and I said "oh, awesome, we have a little more then a week" as I was thinking about everything that had to be done between now and when we left.  She laughed and said, "No, in 2 days!".  Panic.

Two days, we just wanted to know the date of court, never expecting it would be that soon.  Our God is an awesome God, and herd our prayers!

The next two days were frantic, trying to get things ready, packing, preparing our house/dogs for the pet sitter, trying to figure out what baby things we needed for the first few weeks of his life, and what other things (cutting board, mixing bowls, etc) we needed to live in a hotel for 2-3 weeks (the possible estimate of how long we would be there).

Court was that Thrursday morning, we were somewhere in Indiana when we got the call that everything was done, Isaac was ours!  The adoptive parents are not represented at all during court, so there was no need for us to be there (and it was suggested we don't show up).  The case worker had another piece of business to attend to downtown, so we planned on meeting her at the foster families house.

Reunited at last! My two favorite guys!

Our first family picture... well, once court was done, family picture!


There is a baby... in MY car!

So that is the beginning of the story, sorry I've been so absent.  I'll try to get our 'Kentucky Adventures' post done soon, with of course, more pictures!