I don't remember where on earth I got this little stocking from. Probably with a gift or stuffed with candy at work or something. But over the years this little stocking has come to represent our hope that one day we'd have a lil tyke to add a third stocking for. Every year when I'd get out our Christmas decor I'd see this little stocking and hope silently that next year would be the year.
I made his snowman stocking! It's as big as he is lol
This year we're a 3 stocking family! We couldn't be happier or more excited!
I came across that little stocking again this year and it made me reflect on everything that's happened over the years, especially within the last 6 months. I don't care what Santa brings me, he can't top what E brought us this year for Christmas!
Since you're my son, your first word should probably be "woot". You may want to start working on that. "Daddy" or "Mommy" are acceptable alternatives. I'm afraid you're learning "hi" since I say it to you all the time. I'll try to help steer you in the right direction by using "woot" more frequently.
I had originally chosen Prayer for this letter, but thinking about it more Patience seems to fit too.
Prayer goes without saying when embarking on adoption. It starts with prayers for a child, then prayers if you should adopt, then prayers about which agency to use, then prayers about that dang what-kind-of-child-would-you-like form, then prayers that it will happen "soon", then prayers to get you through the waiting game, then prayers if this child is meant for you, then prayer upon prayer of gratitude when IT happens.
So prayer is definitely a huge part of adoption.
Patience, that often elusive virtue all of us mean to acquire one day.
Yes patience has had a huge role in our road to parenthood.
I recently came across a blog post that explains what the whole process is like here. Feel free to read it. It gives a true insight to what it's like to be on this side of the fence.
There are many things I'm grateful for that our path to parenthood has taught me and one of them is patience.
I used to be notoriously impatient. But trying to become parents through adoption and dealing with infertility is definitely a "hurry up and wait" game.
First you have patience as month after month you are not pregnant. Then you have patience as doctors put you and your spouse through test after test to try and determine the problem. Then patience as you fill out the massive amounts of paperwork to adopt. Then patience waiting for your background check to come through (all the while grateful that you never committed any serious crimes lol) Then, patience to be chosen by a birth mother.
To me, this was the hardest part. Because I really just had to wait. And hope. And pray. And wait. And as Inigo Montoya said "I hate waiting." There wasn't anything I could do to speed this part up, except advertise more. Spread the word more. Blog more. And wait.
Gavin and I have often talked about the road that led us to Nathan and we wouldn't change it for anything. Even before Nathan came into our lives we felt blessed to have been given the opportunity to go down this road. It's by no means been easy. Or always pleasant. But there are so many things we've learned that just aren't worth trading for anything.
I feel like I've got a much better handle on this patience thing than I did 5 years ago. I know things happen in the time they're supposed to. Life doesn't accept your own dictation, but goes by what the Master calls. And as always, He knew exactly what we needed :)
I've thought a lot about what I might say about Open Adoption. And this is a tender subject to me, but one that we're still learning how to define and what we're comfortable with. Let's see if I can get through this :)
O is for Openness Open Adoption is different for everyone. At it's most basic level it may mean letters and photos in set parameters of time.
That's all we had planned before we met E.
After we met E things changed. Once August hit I realized I was starting to feel sad if I couldn't see or text or talk to E anymore after he was born. For a while I didn't know what to do about it. I didn't want to make her uncomfortable with pushing her into something she maybe didn't want. After weeks of feeling this way I finally broke it to her. I was SO happy when she said she felt the same way!
Openness for us means the following: -texting E pictures and updates as they come along -having E over to visit -being able to turn to E as a friend -adopting E's parents as a third set of grandparents for Nathan (couldn't help it, they're adorable!) -wanting Nathan to grow up knowing his half sister, along with E and her parents -sending photos and gifts to E -having Nathan "call" E to leave grunting messages and squeal at her in the phone -cherishing our relationship with E and her role in bringing Nathan to us
Someone once cautioned me before Nathan was born about how close E and I had become. They said: "You know you don't have to share him right?" I didn't understand what she meant at first. Then I replied, "Yes I know." I know what she meant. And I've seen other adoption bloggers address it. Open adoption isn't co-parenting. I know there's a difference between sharing the parental role for Nathan and sharing his life with her. But you know what? I couldn't imagine not sharing Nathan's life with our E. She means too much to us for us to forget her or leave her behind. So for us, Open Adoption means sharing our joy with E. Sharing those precious moments and inviting her into our lives. It means we love her for who she is and care about her. It means we're concerned when things aren't going right for her or she's sad. It means we can't wait to tell her what new developmental stage he's entered or how he learned to open his fist.
It means we're not afraid to share Nathan's love with her. We have pictures of them together in his baby book. We have her letter to us saved for him to read. We have precious text messages between us recorded so he can grow up knowing how special she is.
First let me sincerely apologize for being gone so long! We've taken turns having the flu over here (thankfully Nathan was excluded) and it's taken me a while to get back to my blogs. I've been so inspired reading others' adoption themed posts that it spurred me to come back and continue my A-D-O-P-T-I-O-N string.
D is for Decisions I think everybody can understand this one. Adoption is full of decisions from start to "finish". First was our decision to adopt. I remember it was April 2009 that at the end of Family Home Evening one night Gavin said in a serious tone that he wanted to talk to me about something. I remember being terrified because he's normally not that serious (we're very much kids at heart still in our house). We talked of adoption that night and I admit I cried. I felt like our failure to produce our own offspring was final. We prayed about it that night and there was no doubt in either of our minds, despite any misgivings of our own we may have had, that adoption was the road we were supposed to be on at that time.
Our next decision was what route to adopt were we going to take? Come to find out, there's several ways to adopt that are available. After a lot of research we chose to go through LDS Family Services. We started the paperwork and started to feel excited.
Our next decision was one of privacy. We decided we were not going to tell anyone we were adopting until we were picked or had achieved something a bit substantial in the process. After 5 years of comments, questions, and well meaning prodding we were done with broadcasting our road to parenthood.
Our next decision was what kind of child we wanted to adopt. Can you imagine the weight of that decision for a second? You're given a paper listing everything from gender to ethnicities, to diseases and handicaps. As if you're ordering a baby. That form was really hard for us to fill out. We decided to be extremely open to whatever came our way. We figured with any opportunity to adopt we would pray about it to see if it was right for us. We didn't have any scruples with ethnicity. Loves comes in all colors. But the handicaps and diseases were harder. We wanted to be the best parents we could be and had to analyze the care needed for each one. It was hard. There were a few we decided would not be a good fit for us, for the child's sake, because they would need care we couldn't give. It was so hard.
The next decision we had to make was how open did we want our adoption to be? We had the opportunity to attend a weekend seminar by LDS Family Services where we got to hear of different kinds of open adoptions. That was a huge blessing for us and completely wiped away any fears or misgivings we had about an open adoption. We know preferred an open adoption after that as it seemed the healthiest option for everyone involved.
The next decision we had to make was whether to tell our family or not. It was around Christmas time and we were pretty much approved to adopt. We decided that was a big enough step to tell everyone we were adopting. I admit, I underestimated our families and friends. I fully expected the worst. Instead I was shamefully surprised and touched by everyone's excitement. It was a relief! (Plus I'm none so good at keeping my own secrets lol)
The next decision really didn't come until we were notified of E, our birth mother (our fabulous radizzle birth mother thank you very much!) Thankfully, this one required little to no thought. As soon as I met her and talked with her I knew. By the way I felt I knew. It was an amazing experience that I'll treasure always, meeting our E.
This is our own story and every adoption story is different. But they're all filled with decisions the family has to make. It can be quite stressful, navigating through decisions, paperwork, background checks, laws, etc.
In honor of National Adoption Awareness Month I decided to do one of those acronym thingies (technical term anyone?) where you pick a word each letter stands for. I'm going to be writing about this over the next 9 days so bear with me!
A- Adventure D- Decisions O- Openness P- Prayer T- Time I- Inspiration O- Optimism N- Never giving up
A stands for Adventure As I thought about the adoption process, it's definitely an adventure. Isn't starting a family an adventure for everyone? This adventure of becoming parents had several twists and turns for us. Like any newly married couple we soon decided we wanted to make the leap to parenthood. 4 years later, along with multiple fertility tests, tears, and heartache, we felt that adoption was the route Heavenly Father intended for us to take. Looking back, we both feel so blessed to have been able to participate in this amazing adventure called Adoption. Ours seems like a whirlwind once we were approved to adopt. Though we had been longing to become parents for 5 years we felt very nervous about becoming parents with only 2 months notice! We felt blessed, but definitely nervous :)
To anyone else out there longing to become a parent or who is in the middle of their adoption adventure, keep going! Everyone's story has a happy ending, just a different timeline!
The R House issued a challenge to blog every day something about adoption in the month of November, since it's National Adoption Awareness Month. I'm so excited to get to participate in National Adoption Awareness Month this year! I suppose I could have last year but we were still keeping our adoption plans on the DL last year (look how far we've come!)
I'm all willing to take the challenge but 30 days about adoption? Heck, 30 posts in one month is a new feat for me! This will definitely require me to take my blogging more seriously.
Just a couple words about Adoption...
I can't think of a sweeter miracle that has ever blessed my life than the sweet miracle of adoption that has brought our Nathan to us. I was playing with him yesterday when I realized I really can't imagine this lil guy being anywhere else but with us. We have E to thank for all eternity for listening to the promptings of the Spirit and bringing this lil Angel to our family. What a treasure it is to be a parent!
Even though our journey to Baby #1 is (almost) at an end, I feel in the future we'll be blessed to embark on this journey again for future Baby Holt's :)
So, what can YOU do to help others adopt?
1. Word of Mouth: the biggest help you can be for someone you know who is adopting is to help spread the word to people you know. Whether its through conversation, blogging, etc this is a huge help! So many couples I know were united with their children through word of mouth. Ours was through a blog post by a friend... that our attorney saw... who contacted E, and the rest is history. So please help out your friends and loved ones by letting others know!
2. Be sensitive: If you know someone who is trying to adopt, please be sensitive! It's a hard process to go through, with a lot of waiting (and who among us likes to wait?). I cannot stress this enough. Families trying to adopt need lots of love and support and little to no advice, well meaning sentiments, etc. Trust me, less said is probably the better route to take! Also, read up on adoption, the process, and laws in your state. That way you will be able to offer an educated shoulder to lean on, which is very appreciated!
3. Pray: Prayers are always appreciated by those trying to adopt! The one thing I never got tired of hearing throughout this was that we were in other people's prayers. It's a sweet sentiment that can't be misunderstood :)
To all my adoption friends I have made through the wonderful tool of the web-
My sister-in-law and her husband are trying to adopt a little girl and are still searching for her. You all have been such a help to me with your love, support, blog comments, etc. I was hoping to ask you head over to her blog and show her the same support I have so generously received. We're all in this together!
Here's her blog link: http://jennspieceofheaven.blogspot.com/
The title should say it all. If you haven't already heard about the Similac formula recall, well we're part of it!
I had luckily saved all our formula cans and containers to reuse so we were able to go to their website and check out the serial number. Well, the large container we had been using was contaminated! Which totally explains why for a couple of weeks he had major tummy pains, would scream in pain, and couldn't poop hardly at all! Needless to say I was livid!!! I'm not your sue happy type of gal but BUT they're just lucky there were no lasting effects because that might have gone down differently! No wonder he was in pain- apparently infant digestive systems can't digest beetles. Go figure. (seeing RED here!)
Anyways, they're sending us a refund and we're happy to announce that he's now a pooping machine! Instead of being clogged up we can't get him to stop! lol We finally know what it's like to go through a lotta baby wipes.
Anyone else have a run-in with the beetle Similac?
I have not blogged in forever! But then my days are very different than what they used to be! As I've previously blogged, taking a shower is a big deal still. Hopefully as we head into our 7th week of parenthood Mr. Nathan will be sleeping for longer stretches of time which = more time Mommy has to do things, Yay!
Don't get me wrong, I love days where all I do is hold him, feed him, and change him (I did wait 5 years for this after all) but, there are definitely moments where I'd appreciate the time to clean my kitchen, shower, work out, etc. That will come with time I guess (right? right?)
Here are some recent photos of our handsome Nathan :) We sure do love him!
We've all been scammed. You may have been told false descriptions of paradise. You may have been told paradise looked something like this:
Lies, all lies!
Let me enlighten you to the truth of paradise my friends.
Firstly, paradise isn't a physical place. It's not a secluded tropical island somewhere in the Caribbean. There's no empty hammock serenely swinging in the breeze. That, is retirement my friends.
Paradise is in fact right in your own homes. It's having a tiny baby completely dependent on you for everything. It's a baby who prefers to sleep in your arms rather than their own bed. It's a baby who screams like their heart is breaking when they're constipated.
In Paradise, you don't sleep. Only babies have that privilege, but then they're too young to know they're in paradise. The women in paradise are far from exotic. They may not have showered in days. Their wardrobe mainly consists of tee shirts and sleepwear, ready for a nap whenever the baby finally dozes off. Women in paradise don't shave. Since showering is scarce in paradise, because free time is rather elusive, shaving is a luxury and completely dependent on how long the baby naps.
Paradise is having a husband who fights you for the chance to wake up the precious baby to feed him. There's a stark decrease in intimacy in paradise. Instead Paradise offers lots of cuddling and passing kisses. (Wait, sounds like purgatory...)
In Paradise the women trade in their cute purses for a practical ready-at-any-moment diaper bag. Heels get pushed to the back of the closet as sturdier shoes become a staple for those walks balancing a car seat on your way to the car.
Brushing your teeth is optional in Paradise.
Paradise is having a little baby sigh against your chest and snuggle in close as he drifts off to sleep. Paradise is keeping the lighting low and shades shut so that he'll open his beautiful blue eyes at you. Paradise is watching him smile in his sleep.
I realize I've been slacking on my blogging lately but I've been busy with our precious little boy!
I wanted to take a quick moment in between naps to update everyone on his amazing arrival.
I'll try to make this brief, but no promises!
Wed, Aug 11th, we had a routine Drs appt. "E" was dilated to a 3 and felt some pressure "down there" but nothing we were alarmed about. Oh and she passed her mucus plug that morning. But either way I wasn't alarmed since 1. she always got contractions after a Dr's appt and 2. passing the plug doesn't give a good indication always when the baby is coming. After the appt we talked for an hour in the parking lot. She kept saying he was pressing down on something. I jokingly offered maybe he was trying to find the exit! An hour later she texted us that she thinks the pressure was really contractions. I still didn't feel the need for immediate alarm. I had felt he was coming soon but figured over the next couple of days. I went around the house packing things for the hospital unknowingly following the promptings of the Spirit.
I had just finished packing for the hospital and had gone into our bedroom to tell Gavin that I was going to the store for more baby things when she texted me, at 5:02pm, that her water broke.
So we quickly grabbed the bags and headed to the car. She called me during this in active labor and said they were waiting for her Dad to get home and for us to meet her at the hospital. We decided on our way there we'd stop at Smith's grocery store for some snacks. As we were walking towards the Smith's entrance she calls again, still in active labor. She asked us how quickly we could get her to the hospital and we said pretty quickly. Her Dad still wasn't home and she was worried that she'd have the baby on the side of the street if we didn't hurry! Hurry we did! We picked her up at her parents. Again, this woman is in active labor. We helped her get in the front seat, I got in the back as she's squeezing my hand, and Gavin- dear amazing Gavin- got us to the hospital (on the other side of the valley!) in 10 MINUTES!!!! Yes, there undoubtedly were angels helping us! "E" was oblivious to how fast we were going I think and was mainly worried about getting to the hospital before the baby arrived. I was just worried that we were going to die lol.
We arrive at the hospital around 5:45pm. We get her into a wheelchair, I wheel her in while Gavin parks the car. I rush her back, she gets a room, changes, gets on the bed and is yelling for an epidural. The nurse checks her and she is dilated to a 9!!! So sadly, no epidural for her :( Probably a minute later she starts saying she has to push. A Dr shows up and 4 pushes later little Nathan was born! It was an amazing experience that I'll never forget. I was crying (of course!)
"E" is amazing. She walked to her room after the delivery, sipping on a soda no less. After natural childbirth!!! Did I mention NATURAL? As in NO drugs whatsoever?!
So that tops off the birth story lol. I know I know. I will try to get to much more posting about the days that followed. Thanks for being patient!
We added one of those semi-creepy baby widgets to our blog! Despite it looking a little creepy I love seeing lil Baby Bob here on our blog! It's exactly 14 days till he's here! Unless he arrives earlier...which I'm trying not to think about :)
In light of some recent events I felt like I had to post this. And my apologies in advanced for the lack of eloquent awesomeness :)
As we near the arrival of little Baby (insert name here), we are getting excited! So excited its driving me bonkers. I call it the second waiting game. First you wait to get picked. Now that we're so close to his arrival, we're in the second stage of the waiting game. I'm having a hard time trying to wait lately! 20 more days seems like forever! Gavin kindly reminded me last night that I've already waited 5 years, so what's another 3 weeks?
But she's dilated to a 2 I keep thinking. And 80% effaced. It truly isn't nice of Baby to play tricks on Mama already. If he's planning on cooking for another 2-3 weeks the least he could do is to save any progressing labor signs till then. For my sanity.
To help keep my sanity I try to remind myself of the things I wanted to accomplish and get done prior to Baby's arrival. This also involves me doing lots of cleaning around our home so as not to think about Baby's pending arrival. And making baby blankets so as not to think about his pending arrival. Oh and doing his laundry so as not to think about his arrival. Reading baby need-to-know books so as not to dwell on his pending arrival. And making very conscious efforts to try and think of anything but his pending arrival. (Can you tell how well that's working??)
It would be really helpful if there was at least college football right now :\
I am so grateful and happy that everyone we know is soo excited for his arrival. You are all awesome! But if I ever appear/react distant or cold while you are excitedly reminding me of his pending arrival or asking for updates, it's because I'm trying not to dwell on his pending arrival. And also because there are no updates lol. I'm better than CNN folks. If there are updates, you will ohso hear about it!
So my apologies but it's really for my sanity at this point.
Everyone knows when you undergo the miracle of adoption that you're going to fall in love with the Baby. It's a given. But what about when you love the birth mother?
Right now I'm having a hard time with the realization that once the baby's born I won't get to see E anymore. There'll be no more Dr's appointments or visits planned etc because we all agreed that we wouldn't do visits once the Baby was born, for his sake.
But this has all taken me completely by surprise. I had hoped to like the birth mother and be friends but this is something else entirely and I'm afraid I'll cry tears when more distance is created between E and I. (Except for late night texting!) I know its for his sake; I don't think we want to cause him any confusion or conflicting emotions before he's old enough to understand our different roles in his life. But I can't help but selfishly wish that it didn't have to be that way. That she and I could hang out like normal Mommy friends with our babies. We're both so comfortable in our roles and callings in this little guy's life that there's no awkwardness. But I guess its not really fair to push that on him. Does anyone have any advice?
It would be a lot easier if I only liked E. But I freakin' love her. I've rarely felt so close to a person before. She's as close as a sister. The thought of never seeing E again makes me want to cry. So that leaves me either with us pushing Baby into possible confusion (not a good idea) or me hanging out with her alone. Hmm, this could be a good idea yes? I dunno.
Again, any thoughts O' Cyber World of Adopting Parents?
Ok everyone, I have an important announcement to make.
E & I would like to announce that we're Soul Sisters
Yeah, that's right. Soul Sisters. As in Train's "Hey Soul Sister"!
Not only do we have the whole being in love with Baby Bob in common, but a trillion of the basic personality quirks, likes, and traits that constitutes a Soul Sister. ahem. Let me give you the lay down here ;)
1. love of pizza rolls -for those who know me you know how much Totino's pizza rolls owns my soul 2. love of antiques and Victorian houses -if you were to break my soul like a puzzle a huge piece belongs to these 2 loves! 3. addicted to milk -yeah, I seriously need a milk fix every day. I thought I was wacko. Thank you E for being wacko with me lol! 4. a sincere conviction that our souls are hispanic haha! -pretty much since I discovered spanish music, dancing, the language, and Cafe Rio I've been convinced there was a Rosa or Rosita in my family tree somewhere. Maybe I am Rosita. But hidden in a pale white skin. E is the exact same way lol! Love it! 5. The desire to paint an accent wall in POLKA DOTS -are you kidding me?! I found someone else like me that wants a polka dot wall?!? Unreal! 6. Same taste in movie genres -no scary movies for us! blech! 7. being hyper sensitive to meanness -yeah, we can't watch or read about it. No way. She saw Shiloh as a little girl and cried. I cry at all movies when life or people isn't being nice to someone. Go figure. I thought I was uber over sensitive. But she is too! 8. Verbage and phrasology. -sometimes its weird for me to get a text from her that I at first think I sent it to myself on accident, lol!
Thank you E for making me feel somewhat normal ;)
In all seriousness I thank my Father in Heaven for blessing us with E. I had hoped that our lil angel's birth mom would be someone I could be close to. No effort needed with E! Love her to death!
Ok its finally story time! I'm so sorry I've not kept up my blogging. For those of you who are parents you know how crazy the prep time can be, but now take that 9 months and shrink it to 2! lol
So since all great stories (or the ones I like) start out with "Once Upon a Time..." I figured this one should too!
So, Once Upon a Time:
There was a boy and a girl, we'll call them Gavin & Shauna. They were big nerds but really wanted to experience the joy of parenthood. However, when they placed their order for a baby they incorrectly chose the wrong shipping method; they chose UPS and not FedEx! They were sadly informed that their baby would take a lot longer to get to them as a result.
Not deterred by lame UPS, Gavin & Shauna decided to continue to prepare themselves to be parents so that they would be ready no matter when their Little One arrived.
Meanwhile, there was a girl we'll call E. E was beautiful, smart, and essentially awesome. She was blessed to conceive pretty much the most perfect little boy I'm sure there ever will be. E fell in love with him and wanted to give him the world. She especially wanted him to have a great role model of a father. She asked her close family friend, who is an attorney who's done many adoptions-including hers, to find the perfect couple for her lil guy.
The attorney talked with many couples. One day he was looking at his daughter-in-law's family blog and he saw a photo of Gavin & Shauna. It was our blog ad spreading the word that we were adopting. The Spirit told him these two were the ones and asked his daughter-in-law for our information.
One quiet Monday afternoon, I got a call from Gavin while I was at work. It was unusual because he never calls me at work. I took my cell phone to the hall and picked up. He told me an attorney had called him today and wanted to meet us that very evening if we could because he knew a girl who was looking for parents to adopt her baby. Oh and the baby was due at the end of August. And for some reason I thought I heard it was a girl. Uhm, of course let's meet with him! I said.
After work we nervously went to the attorney's office. I was all nervousness until I met the attorney. As soon as I saw his face I felt instant calm. We talked and agreed to meet the birth mother either Tues or Wed night. I found out she was having a BOY. I wonder if my face communicated the comical thoughts that went through my head when he said BOY. Instantly pink thoughts went away and in came the blue, the soccer cleats, and the football. I decided a boy was definitely ok :) We walked away not daring to hope but feeling pretty excited at the possibility.
We met the birth mother, E, on Wednesday. I felt strangely calm all the way to the attorney's office. Gavin was nervous haha. Once I sat down and was waiting for her I started to feel nervous butterflies. Once she arrived I felt fine. Ok. Calm. Chill. (there will be moments in this story where words do not do justice to all feelings presented)
We all talked and it was decided that we would be the parents of this little boy. I can't even tell you the sweet warm feeling that came over me at that moment that we said Yes. I reached for Gavin's hand and we just held each other under the table. When they brought out the ultra sound photos it was a pure feeling of magic that went through me. Awe. Wonder. And Love. I couldn't believe this little guy was coming to us. I also fell in love with E. I left there pretty convinced that she had the cutest and most infectious laugh I had ever heard :)
We left the meeting and got in the car and were silent for a while on the drive home. It felt like one of those moments too special that talking would ruin it. I finally broke the silence and we expressed our joy in what had just happened and then I, ever practical lol, asked where were we going to eat dinner to celebrate? We went home first and thanked our Father in Heaven for this miracle. Then we gorged on Texas Roadhouse YUM!
After dinner we started making the rounds to our family's homes to spread our exciting news. And show off the ultra sound photos. I was convinced he was the cutest lil alien ever (b/c don't all babies look like aliens at first?)
It was all pretty surreal at first to be honest. It went from being surreal, to me being in shock (I had Gavin pinch me at dinner haha), to being sooo happy and in awe and wonder that this was happening. And I must say I was completely and entirely in awe of E. There is no doubt she loves this baby more than life itself. I can't wait to tell our son about the amazing woman that brought him to us.
So that's the story of how we were found and how this came to be in the works :)
"You can't tell me the success of Kevin Bacon doesn't have to do with the fact his last name is Bacon! You don't see people lining up to see a Kevin Hotdog movie." -Jim Gaffigan
Thank you Jim, well said :)
We are searching for the right name for our bebe. For instance, Butch. Who could possibly be serious naming their boy that? So it can't be a ridiculous name. It can't be a pansy name either. Like, Skipper or Lyle. It can't also be a name tied to a celebrity - Edward, Charlie (Charlie Brown), Brad, etc. We also don't want a name that its a gender neutral name - Taylor etc
I really like names that mean in Hebrew something about being a gift from God. Because he is our present from God (and an amazing woman) we feel.
There are a couple of names we're contemplating, but nothing definite yet! So for now, he remains Bob the Baby. I know I know, we need something better stat!
Gavin brought home the what to expect during your first year book yesterday. I've been reading and getting brain cramps I think. So much to learn in 49 days! (yes thats right, around 49 DAYS!)
One thing we have to do asap is choose our pediatrician for zee baby. The last thing I want is to have to find a Dr when I need one b/c the baby is sick :\ That's not a good time to find a Dr.
We'll also be registering soon for baby stuff! People are starting to plan baby showers, so surreal!
Thanks again everyone for all the love, support, and prayers over the years! We're almost there! This has been an amazing journey and experience and we wouldn't trade any of it for anything!
We just wanted to take a moment to let you all know that we've been chosen by a birth mother today! Everything went well and our baby boy will be here by Aug 22nd! We can't wait to meet him and are so excited to welcome him to our family!
We realize most of you are not familiar with adoption, so if you have any questions, please let us know :)
We don't have a name yet, but hopefully will soon!
Here's a pic from his Feb ultra sound! I have about 52 days to get everything ready. No stress! lol
Thanks everyone for your prayers! ~Gavin and Shauna
If you feel our blog is missing something it used to have, you are right! We no longer have our button available to our regular blog. There were concerns about my lack of maintaining privacy in that blog (using last names, etc). So we no longer have a path to that blog on this site. However! If you'd still like to follow that one, please email me and I'd be happy to send you the link. It's still public so anyone can access it. Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
We're almost ready to order some pass along cards for our adoption profile, yipee! We'll be going through Spaces for Faces and feel like this is the next step in searching for our little one!
This is where we'd really like your help!
We need people to help us spread these cards. If you'd like to or be willing to help pass these cards out, please email us at email@example.com with your name and address so we can mail them to you.
Who to pass these out to? Everyone! Drs, OBGYN's, etc teachers neighbors friends family etc!
Thank you so much everyone for all your love and support!
Normally I don't vent on my blogs but....today I really feel the need to :(
Today we encountered more insensitive infertility remarks and misguided advice to "fix" it. It seems to always be my grandparents, either side. Not because they're trying to be mean. But I think they just simply don't understand; like so many others.
We were again told that maybe we're doing "it" wrong. Really? Is that even any of your business??
We were again told we just need to "relax". Wait till all those infertility Dr's find out they're gonna be out of a job once all of us infertile folk learn how to "relax". I wonder what other diseases or disorders relaxing can cure?
I really don't mean to be rude, but how hurtful are comments like those? I'm pretty sure that after 5 years it could be assumed we did our due diligence in trying to get pregnant naturally. More importantly we followed the impressions of the Holy Spirit and let the Lord direct us in how we should start our family.
There will always be people who don't understand. And it's not their fault. And I'm not mad at them, just upset at their ignorance. I feel it totally undermines everything Gavin and I have went through so far to become parents. Too bad I didn't know before the painful HSG test that all I needed to do was "relax". You wouldn't tell a cancer patient to relax in order to be healed. Why do people assume infertility isn't a real disease/disorder?
Whenever I get comments like these I'm hurt and a little upset. But I know the next day I'll wake up and be totally fine. Despite the pain of infertility, I wouldn't trade our experiences for anything. I love the people we've become from going through this. I love the things I've learned. I can't help but feel grateful for a loving Heavenly Father for sticking it out with us through all this. I have a neat dream I had that I'll share that for me, put this "trial" (or blessing) into perspective for me. Maybe it'll help you too.
I dreamt that Gavin and I were in a hospital waiting room. There were many couples there and one delivery room. There were nurses rushing in and out of the delivery room giving couples babies. Gavin and I were excited to be there and patiently were waiting our turn. After a while we started getting antsy and started talking to some of the nurses. They assured us we were on the list but it wasn't our time yet. Ok ok, we sat back down to continue waiting. More waiting. More couples coming and going with sweet babies. Where was ours? We finally got fed up of waiting and left. In my dream I then recalled all the fertility struggles we went through in real life, leading up to the point where we prayed and decided to adopt. After that decision was made and we knew it was what we were supposed to do, I walked kind of stormily back into that hospital waiting room and right into the delivery room up to our Heavenly Father who was the one who had been delivering the babies.
Upset I asked him, "If you had wanted us to adopt all along, why didn't you just tell us in the first place?" Lovingly he turned to me and asked, "Would you have listened?"
I get teary every time I recall this dream because I know the answer is No. I wouldn't have listened. I don't look back on these 5 years as wasted efforts to become parents. I look at them as the road necessary to get where we are right now.
I hope this helps put our adoption into perspective. Love you guys!
I'm always a little afraid of getting too personal on here, or too silly, but since that's completely my nature I figure I'd make the exception today :)
Last night Gavin prepared a wonderful FHE. Sunday night we had the privilege of meeting some descendants of the Prophet Joseph Smith. It was amazing. The son we met looks so much like all the art of the Prophet I've ever seen! So last night for FHE, Gavin had us read the First Vision as a family. It was awesome. I'm so grateful for this gospel and a loving Heavenly Father! And a wonderful husband who prepares wonderful Family Home Evenings.
When we first started having FHE we were a newlywed couple. At first I thought it was silly. There was only 2 of us and we were together every day! Why did we need "Family Time"? However we felt strongly that our small family still needed this and prayerfully moved forward. It has been such a blessing to our small family over the years and I'm very glad we didn't wait until we were blessed with children to start it!
On another note, a coworker sent this to me yesterday and I have not been able to stop laughing over it!
Ladies and Gentlemen, I present to you the (epic) Swagger Wagon!
You know we'll have a swagger wagon one day! LOL, Have a great Tuesday everyone!
In FHE tonight we read a great quote by Gordon B. Hinckley from his book Stand A Little Taller:
A Good Home
No power or influence can or ought to be maintained by virtue of the priesthood, only by persuasion, by long-suffering, by gentleness and meekness, and by love unfeigned. -D&C 121:41
"Good homes are not easily created or maintained. They require discipline, not so much of children as of self. They require respect for others, that respect which comes best from acceptance of the revealed word of the Lord concerning the purposes of life, of the importance and sacred nature of the family, and recognition of each member of the family as a child of God."
I loved this quote and thought I would share. "Good homes are not easily created or maintained." That is so true. We hope and pray we'll be able to welcome a little child into our home. We have worked hard these past 5 years to make our home our own heaven on earth. Gavin's sister and her husband have created another heaven on earth in their home. We pray for Gavin's sister and her family as they pray that my new little niece will be able to forever call their family "home". Love you guys! We're praying for you!
Yesterday was Birthmother's Day! Happy Belated Birthmother's Day to all the wonderful birthmother's out there!
And, Happy Mother's Day everyone! We enjoyed getting together with family celebrating the wonderful Mother's in our lives.
Some exciting news in our lives... Gavin's oldest sister and her husband are doing foster-to-adopt with the state. They have 4 children but still felt like someone was missing. This past Thursday, our anniversary!, they welcomed a little Princess home into their family!! Right now its only temporary but we're all anxiously hoping it will become permanent! We've all fallen in love with her! She is so precious! On Sat morning her foster father gave her a Priesthood blessing. Gavin's sister started bawling because she realized that little girl wouldn't have a father or the Priesthood if not for foster care. No matter the outcome, we're all very glad this little one is with us and pray for the birthmother as well. What a miracle families are!
Today is our fifth anniversary, or as we call it: Our 5.0 Anniversary! :)
This morning I started off with Rhode's cinnamon rolls, my favorite! Then I snuck a back of plain M&M's (Gavin's favorite!) into his backpack with a note that 1 M&M is for each time I'll think of him today, with 1 M&M=1 million of course :)
Then I presented him with a stack of secret letters I've been writing him over the past 2 months. That was a tender moment :)
Here's to a great 5 years! Can't wait for these next 5!
I'm sorry I haven't gotten a chance to catch up yet, though I did post a small bloggy post on our regular blog today! This may be short, or I may start rambling, but brace yourself! lol
First, can I just say how much I loove the R House blog? She always has the greatest things posted there to uplift and inspire me to not be mopey! As most of you know, the "wait" period is the hardest part of adopting. Gavin and I took inspiration from one of the General Conf talks this past April, I think it was actually from the Priesthood session: Don't just endure, but endure well. So we're taking that to heart and whenever I get discouraged Gavin lovingly reminds me of this. It does help when I have fun summer plans to stop me from pining away for a little addition to our family. I'm still pining, but at least the fun summerness pushes it to the back burner!
Second, our 5 year anniversary is this Thursday! We're so excited. Being somewhat nerds Gavin and I decided on that day we can say we've been married exactly 5.0 years! Rather than "5 years" which indicates rounding up or rounding down. But a decimal point means exact! At any rate yay for 5 years!
I didn't hesitate to give him suggestions on what we should do after work for our anniversary. After going to the temple (a tradition) I suggested he take me out to dinner with flowers. For which he burst out laughing and I was severely tickled. It was only a suggestion! ;) I even went as far to venture that perhaps where we eat dinner should be a surprise to me lol. I think he's taking my advice, can't wait to see!
Have a great Monday everyone! I'll be better at posting once school is over on Tuesday! YAY!
Ok time's up! Since there were only two people that left comments (sorry Gavin but you can't win these contests lol) then I decided hey, why not let them both be winners?
So Alicia and April you win! lol
Go ahead and email me your address to mail this to at firstname.lastname@example.org.
In other news I bought more books. Yes more books. It's the only thing that I allow myself to buy for future sweet baby. Clothes are too risky. I could see myself buying a truck load of the cutest baby girl clothes and then what if it's a boy? Or vice versa! No, better stay away from clothes. But books? Books are fantabulous. Books are safe. Books are something I can use (I'm a child at heart) while we're waiting for our little one. And I'm a sucker for vintage children's books. Here's what I got at DI the other weekend!
So cute! I couldn't resist. I loved books like these and still do. Can't wait till we have a cute lil munchkin who hopefully will enjoy reading as much as Gavin and I do!
There won't be any new blog posts for a while, we'll be in St George soaking up the sun! Or dodging rain drops if the weather man is right...but he's never right....right?!
We'll have tons of fun photos once we're back! Have a great week!
Today we're excited to announce that we now have 301 hits to our LDS Adoption Profile!! woot!
We were hoping to catch the 300th, but missed it :)
Yay for milestones! We consider this one. The more its looked at the closer we get to becoming a family of 3, yay!
In other news next week we'll be down in St George celebrating (a couple weeks early) our 5 year anniversary! I can't believe it's been 5 years. It's gone by so fast! Married life rocks and I'm so blessed to be married to my best friend! We have lots of hiking plans for next week! Despite that blasted weather.com indicates there could be rain for our first three days! :( (prayers!!) Even if rain comes, we'll still explore what we can. We can't wait!
Have a great Thursday everyone! And thanks for all the hits to our blogs and profile! We appreciate all your support and love!
I really try not to get all emotional out in blogger-space but today will probably be different, just a warning!
I'm an English major and still working on that rad degree. Last semester was the first time I wrote about adoption and infertility. And wrote I did! And this semester. I can't stop writing about the amazing miracle of love that adoption is, nor the pain that comes with infertility.
Last semester I wrote about 4 women I knew around my age struggling with different levels and stages of infertility for one of my papers. Earlier this semester I found out one of them became pregnant! I don't think you can imagine my joy and excitement for her and her husband! She had been trying to nearly 6 years and been through so much (she's my hero). And then one month they miraculously got pregnant on their own! YAY! She had also experienced 2 miscarriages (did I mention she's my hero?) and yesterday they heard a LOUD and healthy heartbeat at their ultrasound! YAY again!
Then, last night I discovered another one of those 4 women I wrote about is also pregnant! I was ecstatic!! (both of these lovely ladies are cousins of mine and I can't say enough how much I love them)
When I told Gavin he jokingly said I should write about more women lol. I'm wondering myself, do I posses some magical writing-real-life power? Which leads to, if I do then should I write a paper about us? ;)
In all seriousness, and how can I describe this?, my joy for them was overwhelming. My heart was full and I thanked my loving Heavenly Father for blessing these two women (and their husbands!) with this miracle.
But there is of course a flip side.
I couldn't help hear this tiny voice in my head timidly ask: Why not me? Why not us?
Though I wanted to push this nonsensical question away, I knew I needed to let myself grieve. Later that night, as Gavin was saying his personal prayer in our living room, I went to our bedroom, dropped to my knees, and let myself bawl as I poured out my heart to Him. I like to think I'm pretty tough, I was none so tough last night and was grateful for a loving Heavenly Father to lean on at that moment. I didn't ask him why we weren't pregnant. I already knew the answer to that. I didn't plead, I didn't beg for our child to come to us soon (as in past prayers). I simply pleaded for strength, comfort, and peace and to feel His love for me right then. I'm not sure if I've ever uttered such an honest simple and heartfelt prayer in my life. I went to bed knowing that this is all in His hands and without worry. Between the peace I felt from Him and from crying (crying sometimes does wonders lol) I felt so relaxed! Those blankets haven't felt that soft in a long time lol! I slept amazingly well and woke up this morning to a peaceful and bright outlook.
Trials are for a time, a reason, and season.
I am so grateful for a loving Heavenly Father who lovingly guides us through hard times.
On Monday I happened to see a show on BYUTV where they were doing a special about adoption. It was on the Living Essentials show. It was an one on one interview with a LDS Family Services case worker talking about adoption from the birth mothers view point. I found it very interesting and learned new things. They also had a few clips from birth mothers talking about there experiences. I would encourage everyone to see it. I tried to find a youtube of it but couldn't so you will either have to see it on BYUTV, they will be rebroadcasting it Saturday April 10 @ 12:00 AM, or you can go online to byutv.org click on the tune in now button then on the BYU television tune in now button, wait for the viewer to load then down below the player there is a box that has the dates and also the shows according to time, click on Monday, Apr 5, 2010, then scroll down to 10:00 pm Living Essentials. This will load it for you. Hope you enjoy it as much as I did! Please comment if you like it or not.
I wanted to leave my husband's blog post up a little longer because I love everything he wrote and its very educational to those not familiar with adoption. So please! Scroll down and read it if you haven't already! (He'd also love any comments or questions!)
But I wanted to share something I came across today. I am an avid reader of this fabulous blog. I love her sense of humor and straightforwardness (is that a word??) Today she posted something that hit home. I'd encourage you to all check it out here, especially if you are not adopting but know others who are! (*cough* like us haha)
It's all about how it's often assumed that infertile or adopting couples don't know what they're getting into when they're trying to become parents. But does anyone really? Until they're there? But the blogger goes on to say that we don't assume it's going to be a party. We are well aware that life will change! Date nights will change. Making out and other amorous activities will change. Me being able to look decent during the day will totally depend on how much time I have while I'm caring the baby. We know all this. Promise ;) We aren't mistaken what line we're in, we know this ain't the line to a fabulous Mexican cruise, but the ride of Parenthood.
Why do I bring this up?
Lately we've been getting some remarks along the lines of "You just wait..." and other remarks implying we'll regret becoming parents. Regret becoming parents? Is that possible? I find it very irritating that someone would assume that after fighting for 5 years to become parents that we would expect a perfect non-crying, non-vomiting baby who always sleeps through the night, never becomes sick, and never interferes with our current social life.
So please, read the articles I've added links to! We are so excited to become parents and are so grateful to all our loving friends and family who have been so sweet throughout all this! While we're definitely enjoying the luxury we still have to get a full nights sleep (insert laugh here, b/c what college student really gets a full night's sleep?), nothing will be better than when the emptiness of our arms is filled and the ache in our hearts is abated.
This post was inspired by an email that Shauna got. Well in fact it was actually a facebook post but I say it as an email. Any who, the post pretty much asked: When does the adoption stuff all start for us? Well in answer to this question I would like to explain the adoption process more. To set right some myths, and how all of you can start today on being apart of our adoption process.
Well first some facts about adoption. On average, throughout the nation, unwed mothers that place their child for adoption is about one percent. Those that choose to abort their child are about 50%.
Now How Adoption Works. For the adoptive couples: first you go through loads of paper work and interviews and all sorts of stuff to reveal every aspect of your life to show that you are qualified, according to "a professional", to be a parent. Not a fun process but Shauna and I have finished that process and have been approved. Approval is when a committee of case workers get together and go over all of your info and deam you "OK" to be a parent. What does it mean to be approved? It just means we move to the next step of the adoption process- the finding and being found stage.
The Finding and being Found Stage. This can be the fun and exciting part for us. But at the same time can get emotional and depressing at times. This is where pretty much we wait for a birth parent to pick us.
What this means: With adoption the placement of children with adoptive couples is pretty much left all up to the birth parents. They choose who they feel will be the best parents for their child. If you think about that deeply you can now see the great responsibility and love that these birth parents have. Their child's future is in their hands. They go through much work and prayer to find the right couple. God bless them for all they do and who they are.
So you may ask why do we call this the finding process. Well we, Shauna and I, try to do everything that we can to get our names out there so that birth parents will have us as a choice to be their couple. We have done this by creating this blog, joining different adoption networks, (going to) distribute pass along cards, and have our LDS Family Services Adoptive profile. The biggest is by word of mouth. Of course a lot of prayer and fasting so as to be led to the right places so the birth parents of our future child will find us. Yes, we believe and know that there is a particular child that is suppose to come into our home, so the finding that we are doing is to find not just any child but to find the right child.
Info Well from the statistics as shown above there aren't a lot of birth parents that place their children for adoption. My own personal feelings to the reason for those low numbers is from the lack of knowledge about adoption not only for birth parents but for the world as a whole. With our wonderful media that we have... they have shown many negative sides about adoption that are not true. Adoption is a wonderful thing for all involved. Because this post is getting long I'm not going to go into all of that, but in a later post I will talk more about it- giving stories and more info so stay tuned for that. But as far as the LDS church goes adoption is the encouraged solution to a unwed pregnant mother, so that as per the Proclamation to the Family a child can have both a father and a mother to raise the child.
How do You Get Involved Get the word out. Mention to your family and friends that you know this "amazing" couple that is adopting and that they are looking for birth parents. The way most adoptive couples find their birth parents is because they know someone that knows someone that knows someone that was considering placing their child for adoption. Also nicknamed FOAF- Friend of a Friend. This means we need you to be that someone. Also you can write your own little post about adoption on your blogs or Facebook, send emails out to families and friends, you can help us pass out pass along cards, pray that more birth parents will go to the LDSFS (LDS Family Services) offices, etc... and whatever other way that you think you could get the word out. One huge thing that you can do though is talk to your bishop about having LDSFS come out on a fifth Sunday lesson and do their presentations they do for wards. You, and your whole ward, will learn so much from that meeting that you never knew about adoption. That's when I learned tons about adoption myself and many misconceptions were set right. In fact one of our case workers said in our last FSA meeting that her husband loves going with her to those meetings because he learns so much and they are great meetings. And if your bishop has questions you can have them get a hold of us at email@example.com and we will hook them up with the right people to make it happen. I know that typically the LDSFS agencies have surges of birth parents after those ward meetings.
LDSFS LDSFS is a wonderful organization the church has made. It is not only the agency that we are going through but for birth parents that are members of the church they offer free support and counseling to birth parents. They help them discover all the options they have before them. They have group meetings for them were they can interact with other birth parents going through similar circumstances. There is a new Riverton office that just opened up at: 3740 W 13400 S, Riverton, UT 84065 phone number 801.566.2556. For those on the south west end of the Salt Lake Valley, and to find other agencies in your area, please go to www.itsaboutlove.org for more information.
So in conclusion of my book I just wrote, please please help us in our process by getting the word out. There is so much all of us can do to increase this wonderful work and to help couples, like us, find their children.
We attended our first FSA meeting Thursday night! I wish we could have attended the first meeting but my school schedule normally doesn't allow it. This week was my spring break so we jumped at the opportunity to go.
It was a good experience. We met at the new Riverton agency office and lemme just say, WOW. What a beautiful building! Not only is the Riverton agency located there but a lot of the Church's worldwide offices. Pretty neat.
We learned in the FSA meeting that there is so much work to be done to get the wonderful word of adoption spread more widely and to educate the public more. We signed up for some things and can't wait to help!
We also met some new couples. One has been waiting for a year for their first child. I hesitate to say this but I just hope that if we have to wait that long that I can always remember to be happy and optimistic. It's hard to stay optimistic while you're waiting, there's a lot of support groups FSA offers in fact for the "waiting period". However, since we've not even been approved for a full month yet we're still full of optimism!
Also, we've been contacted by a birth mother. It happened yesterday. I won't divulge a lot of information yet except that we'll see what happens. This may not lead to our baby but at the very least its really good practice for us to learn what to do when we're contacted. When the email came through we just stared at it for a while, like "now what?" lol. On a more serious note, I can only imagine what a hard decision this must be for any birth mother and I do not wish or want to force that decision on anyone. It's definitely something between them and Heavenly Father (and the birth father if present). We just continue to pray for all the women out there struggling with this decision.
We'll continue to keep you updated as things progress! Have a great weekend!
Most of you probably have never heard of FSA before, but it's a wonderful organization!
We have a meeting tonight with our agency's FSA group and we're excited to get involved!
Some of the things FSA does: -Outreach: goes to high schools/clinics etc handing out adoption materials to spread the word about the wonderful choice of adoption -Education: does seminars and workshops to educate about adoption -Support: plans parties and activities for us adopting couples/families that love being surrounded by those who understand what we're doing!
I know there's more, but that's whats on the top of my mind this morning. Consequently, they're the areas I'm most interested in volunteering for lol. Go figure ;)
FSA is all volunteer, I love being involved in a great cause! We both can't wait to go tonight and find out how we can help!
This is definitely a wonderful blessing to keep us busy while we're waiting for our little one and the wonderful birth mother we'll get to work with. I feel so blessed to be a part of a wonderful thing like adoption. Like we've mentioned before, this is not where we intended to be but we feel so blessed to be here. We've learned so much; about faith, about hope, and about love.
I'll have some recent photos to post soon from my sister's bday party on Sunday. We got to spend lots of time with our way cute nieces! I love seeing Gavin spend time with all our nieces and nephews. He's so sweet and I love getting those glimpses of what kind of Daddy he's going to be one day...which is the best in my opinion! :) [not that I'm biased or anything lol]
Hopefully I'll get to post those photos tonight, I've been meaning to all week.
Hope you're all having a great week and thanks for reading!
Well the first week of having our LDS profile published is over, and our profile stats are doing well! We're hopeful, we've seen that 106 people (current stat!) have looked at it so far. Yay! We know this process will take time to bring the right people together, but we're happy to know at least we're being looked at :)
I came across a sweet poem I wanted to share. It's called "The Legacy of an Adopted Child", author unknown.
Once there were two women Who barely knew each other. One is in your heart forever, The other you'll call Mother.
Two different lives, Shaped to make yours one. One became your guiding star, The other became your sun.
The first gave you life, And the second taught you how to live it. The first gave you a need for love, And the second was there to give it.
One gave you a nationality, The other gave you a name.
One gave you the seed talent, The other gave you an aim.
One gave you emotions, The other calmed your fears. One saw your first sweet smile, The other dried your tears.
One gave you a family, It was what God intended for her to do. The other prayed for a child, And God led her straight to you.
And now you ask me, Through your tears, The age old question through the years. Heredity or environment... Which are you a product of? Neither, my darling...neither, Just two different kinds of love.
We were so excited to be approved today! We had been waiting for almost 2 months to be "officially" approved. Hurray!
We decided to celebrate this big event in our steps towards expanding our family!
Gavin donned his nice white polo (hehe) and surprised me by taking me out to Applebee's. Can't beat their 2 for $20! We love it!
Afterward we went shopping for a crib mattress. We're not buying too many things before we're chosen but we have our crib and some other things (like books! Very important!) We also need a dresser (vertical) but that's the last thing we'll buy before we're chosen (since it could take years for all we know).
Here's some photo highlights, we made sure to document it :)
in the car, arrived at Applebee's...can you see what I'm thinking? (mmm steak...)
Got Faith? Our table did lol, Gavin was taken back by the huge Faith staring at him. I thought it was kind of her to make it to our celebration. I didn't remember sending out invites!
My sweet husband :)
Moi, plate also empty, yay!
Sealing our dinner with a kiss lol
G'bye Applebee's & thank you for hosting our celebration! woot!
Our purchased crib mattress yay! We looked at a couple of places and picked this one.
Got it at Wal-Mart for $38.47
(Vent: Tax was $2.47!! I feel robbed)
Headin' home to study for a test (him) and do homework (me)
I know my eyes look crazy, but there's no photoshop fix for crazy eyes lol
And that was our little party! It has been such a joyous journey! I know that sounds weird because there was infertility & there's uncertainty mingled in our journey but we both feel very blessed! We can't help it! We get to work with a wonderful birth mother (or aka, first mother) who's out there somewhere and get the blessing and privilege of raising that cute lil baby. What's not to feel grateful for?