Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Step One - Check!

So our formal application for adoption has been mailed! WooHoo!!! (Feel free to do a happy dance since that’s what I’ve been doing since yesterday!) It feels so amazing/awesome/exciting/terrifying to be taking this first step towards our adoption dreams.

I was just a tad OCD with the actual mailing of the envelope though. Since there were a lot of pages to mail and I only had a regular sized envelope I taped it... very well…. then it seemed heavey so I put extra stamps on it. Since it was raining that morning I did not want to leave it in our mailbox so I decided to take it to work and mail it on my lunch break. Instead of leaving it in the car or in my purse I left it on my desk… so I could keep a close eye on it – in case it ran away or something??? (This was after parading it around the office and showing it off to co-workers “in the know”) As I was driving to the post office it occurred to me that I should probably make sure that it got there especially since there was a check inside. I filled out one of those little green return receipt cards and waited in line. The nice post lady had me fill out another little green sticker for the front. Then she stamped the front and added more postage. With the large green card now taped to the back my nice neat little envelope was starting to look well secured and a little cluttered. Oh well, at least I would know that it made it there. (Which it did – I know this because I looked it up online on the USPS website this afternoon!) My only concern now is that they will take one look at the envelope and instantly decide that they have no desire to work with “those kind of people”.

Now we sit and wait for the giant stack of paperwork to come in the mail. In it will be all kinds of fun stuff like background checks, fingerprinting instructions and an extremely in depth personal study. As I wait for that to come in the mail and for our agency assigned social worker to call, I have begun to address the next hurdle….money. We took this first step towards adoption trusting that as God has called us to adopt that He will also provide the funds needed. Since I’m fairly sure He isn’t going to just drop a wad of cash in our mailbox, we need to get cracking on some serious fund-raising.

**This is where I need your help**

My previous knowledge of fund-raising involves a seriously failed lemonade stand, an equally failed home car wash and of course the infamous Entertainment books. Since this isn’t a “normal” fund raiser we need to think outside of the box. I have already enlisted the help of a BFF who has awesome fund-raising skills but we need some out-of-the-box ideas to help out.
Any ideas or suggestions that you guys have would be vastly appreciated.

The one idea that we are running with initially is a fund-raising garage sale. If you have any items that you would like to get rid of and are willing to donate please let me know. I’m hoping to have everything ready for the weekend of October 23rd. Also, if you’d like to volunteer to come keep me company that day you are welcome to do that as well :-)

Thank you to everyone that has supported us and prayed for us. It is greatly appreciated!


Sunday, September 26, 2010


Well, the formal application is completed, signed and ready to mail (along with the first of many checks with a scary number of zeros on it!). We are just working on the last piece of the puzzle, our personal statements of faith. Since we are adopting from a faith based agency they require a personally written statement explaining your walk with God, personal story and your general thoughts on Christianity and Jesus. Despite the calm reassurance from the nice lady at the adoption agency ("Don't lose sleep over it, just write what you feel like sharing.") I am still stressing more than I should about this.

Maybe it's the fact that this piece of paper will join our "permanent adoption file" and will be read by everyone that we deal with at the agency.
What if it sounds stupid?
What if my grammar is wrong?
What if they read it and say "Wow, these people have no clue what they're talking about-they certainly don't deserve a baby!"?

See what I mean? I have the feeling I am seriously overthinking this! I know that I need to let go because this is just the beginning of the questions and quite frankly the judging that we will have to face in the next few months. At first I was kind of offended that there will be a group of people who will be responsible for determining if we are fit to parent a stranger's child.

Then I started to think about it from the other side. What if I was a birth mom who had made the absolute most selfless decision in the world by giving my child to another family to be raised? Wouldn't I want to know that these people were capable, and moral and loving? While it doesn’t ease all of the anxieties, it does help to remember why all the questions are important.

We hope to have everything ready to be mailed tomorrow. Even though we know that God is calling us to adopt it is still scary and a little overwhelming to think of everything that will be happening in the months to come. Please continue to pray for us as we take this incredible step of faith.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

6 Months

6 Months ago today I pulled my little girl up onto my lap and explained to her that her baby brother had gone to heaven. I answered her questions, held her while she cried, then took pictures as she opened her birthday presents. She then spent the rest of the day (her fourth birthday to be precise) with friends. I heard that she had a great time looking for butterflies at a local garden, but I'm sad that I wasn't there to see it myself. I wonder if this (or really anything else from the last 6 months) will scar her when she is older. She seems to be so well adjusted and just such a sweet little girl but I still worry.

Yesterday was the 6 month anniversary of the day Jack went to heaven. In 6 months he's been joined by a couple pretty special people. Even though I know that he is in great hands up there it is still so incredibly hard to be here without him. Our day started with an eventful trip to the pediatrician. Mackenzie had an ear infection and a pretty nasty cold :-( We picked up antibiotics, juice, snacks and of course doughnuts for breakfast then headed home to lounge in p.j.'s for the day. We spent the day watching disney movies (Up, Toy Story - twice and Elf - once and a half) and napping. (Sadly I did most of the napping - but still managed to get several loads of laundry done) I realized later that I was sleeping to avoid dealing with the day and what it meant. I was literally climbing into bed and pulling the covers over my head.

It wasn't until after she was in bed that I could actually let that wall down and deal. I won't say that it was pretty because it was far from it. It still hits me so hard sometimes that I can't breathe, but other times it's like life is returning to normal. The biggest thing I'm struggling with right now is how to move forward with our life while still grieving for Jack and remembering the past.

We're going through a study right now on the book of Ruth. (You can listen to it here: ) Very challenging but at the same time hopeful. That's what I'm trying to focus on. In the midst of everything I feel like God has given us hope. The day that we went to that adoption seminar I felt like God had given us a glimpse of our future, the reassurance that He does have a plan for us. Most of all, he's given us hope. Not just about our short term future, but about our long term future as well. God has given us hope through His son Jesus who died on the cross to forgive our sins. That is what I try to focus on.

Thank you so much to everyone that has stood by us and supported us through everything. We have been so blessed by the people that God has placed in our lives and every day we thank Him for you all.


Wednesday, September 8, 2010


Wow, so we are now offically dealing with the fallout from vacation. (We arrived home safely by the way - very late, very tired, but safe) All of the laundry has been done (thanks to my wonderful hubby!) but there is still tons to put away. Instead of continuing to unpack and set things to rights I figured I would do what I normally do when trying to avoid responsibility....I'll blog.

The house may be on it's way to being set to rights, but the occupants are not. We are dealing with the concequences of taking an extended vacation - busy at work and a 4-year-old who is not readjusting. Mackenzie has decided that she would prefer to continue sleeping wherever we are instead of in her big girl bed. I can understand why she has come to this decision but what I have not figured out is the best way to ease her back into her routine. We are trying to stay strong and maintain the sleep-in-your-own-bed-at-home guidelines but that did not prevent me from waking up with a kid curled up at my feet like a puppy this morning. Tonight was even worse. She refused to allow daddy to put her to bed and had an all out fit when he had to carry her to her room.

I know that I need to continue to stay strong, but it is difficult in the face of this radically different behavior. (We may have tantrums but very rarely if ever have we had the hysterics that we had tonight.) Anyway, what I tried tonight (after we finally got her into bed and calmed down) was tucking her in then setting the kitchen timer for 5 mins at which point I went back to check on her. Cuddled for a bit then back out and timer again at which point she was asleep. I think it worked for tonight and hopefully will hold out for tomorrow as well.

My question is this: Moms (and Dads) how do you handle bedtime tantrums?

Can't wait to read your advice!


Monday, September 6, 2010

Not Me! Monday – The Vacation Edition!

I did NOT have to convince Mackenzie that although we were in the mountains it was still summer and no, it was not going to snow….no, seriously Mackenzie, It’s NOT going to snow.

I did NOT forget to buckle my kid back in after a potty break. I was NOT sitting in the passenger seat buckled, ready to leave and staring expectantly at hubby wondering why he wasn’t moving the car yet. Yup, that’s right this time hubby was the responsible one NOT me!

I did NOT have the following phrases come out of my mouth:
~Let go of the puppy’s face
~Stop licking mommy’s face, yourself, the car, etc.
~Stop throwing rocks at the fish, at the trees, off the mountain, etc.

I did NOT hear the following words come out of my daughter’s mouth:
~“God Bless America”…every time we passed a flag…yup, every single time…
~"Mommy, I’m ready to go home so I can go back to school….because I miss my boyfriend."
~"Mommy, look there’s slobber on my face, that’s so hilarious…"

I did NOT eat an entire cow worth of beef jerky…wow…yeah I really admitted that. Can’t help that, jerky is my weakness…

I did NOT allow my husband to buy large quantities of fireworks most likely deemed illegal in our home state…I’m definitely NOT planning a rockin’ New Year’s Eve party to “dispose” of said fireworks.

I did NOT allow my daughter to play in red river clay in a white skirt. I mean I knew we were going to walk to the river and she would probably get muddy, but I did NOT put two and two together on that one…Thank heavens for bleach!!

I did NOT get woken this morning with “Guess what mommy, we go home today! Hooray!!” Yup, someone was NOT excited to get home.

I did NOT turn 30…nope sadly that one happened…

Can’t wait to hear what you guys were NOT up to this week!


Wednesday, September 1, 2010

I have NOT...

Fallen off the face of the earth...or off the side of a mountain.
We are on Day 7 of our vacation and I have literally hundreds of photos to sort through and eventually post. (Key word is eventually!) We have wandered our way into the Great Smokey Mountains and will be leaving tomorrow morning and heading to stay with family in Eastern North Carolina.
I am journaling through our journey and hope to have a blog posted after we get back that will walk through our trip. But in the mean time I am just entirely too tired to be clever.
Post again soon,