Wednesday, November 30, 2011

No pregnancy horror story here

Today I was at the park with several other moms and their kids.  And as often happens, the conversation eventually led to everyone sharing their pregnancy horror stories and why they weren't quite ready to have more kids.  I obviously didn’t have much to add to the conversation as I have not been pregnant and am not anticipating a pregnancy.  And El Guapo runs around quite a bit at the park, while the other moms have girls who are a little calmer.  And this park has a duck pond where El Guapo loves trying to catch the ducks and run into the pond after them, so I wasn’t able to really stand around and chat.  El Guapo and I eventually made our way back to the swings and as I pushed him and another little girl in the swings I could imagine how it would be to have two kids.  So with a smile, I told the group, “Well, I’m ready for two kids”.  I also told them it sounded like I got the better end of the deal and that I hadn’t missed out on anything by not being pregnant. 

It is funny, because while in the thick of infertility treatments, when I would see a pregnant lady I used to think I was really missing out.  But I don’t think that at all anymore.  I can’t even really imagine being pregnant, it just isn’t part of my life story, and that’s just fine with me.  When the topic turns to pregnancy woes I often think of El Guapo’s birth mother and how much I admire and love her for all that she went through to bring El Guapo into the world. 

I also wonder about the future and what it holds for our family.  I wonder what our second child’s birth mother’s pregnancy and birth story will be.  And I can only hope that pregnancy and child birth will treat her more kindly than it did to the moms who were swapping stories at the park today.  

I was also reminded of this quote "Not flesh of my flesh, Nor bone of my bone, But still miraculously my own.  Never forget, not for a minute, You weren’t born under my heart--but in it."
Fleur Conkling Heyliger

While my children are not "born under my heart", they are definitely "born in it".  And that my friends, is one of the beautiful things about adoption.  No pregnancy horror story, just all the love and happiness that comes with arrival of a new member of the family  :D

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

I can hardly wait!

Big NEWS my friends,

Our adoption profile is live.  Granted, it just barely happened, so hardly anyone knows, but I know, and I just let a few people know and now that I have done that I can hardly contain my excitement.  I just want to tell everyone that soon we will have another little bundle of joy.

Aaaaaaaah!  I can hardly wait.  Deep breath.  I have no idea how long or how soon till we adopt again, but now that our profile is up, it is like it could happen any day.  I won't think about the fact that it might not happen for awhile, or that sometimes these things don't work out.  Right now I will find joy in this feeling of excitement and anticipation of the arrival of another little baby to our home and to my arms.

I just took that moment.  It was wonderful.  This definitely calls for a celebration!

p.s.  this is the link to our profile.  Feel free to spread the word that we are hoping to adopt again.

Also, you will see that in the profile and in my new family blog, I refer to El Guapo by name.  I would ask that you still refer to him here as El Guapo, as the profile and blog will be closed out after the adoption is finalized, and I want to keep his cyber footprint as small as possible :D

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

My monkey

Last week I took my little monkey to a trunk or treat.  As you can see, he had a fabulous time.  He is such a joy to have in my life.  I am thinking of all of you who are still yearning for children.  I know holidays can be so hard when all you want is to be able to share them with a little one.


Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Birthday Boy

El Guapo is 1 yr old!  We had a good time celebrating with a few friends--we all enjoyed watching El Guapo eat his cupcake.  I will let the pictures tell the story.  He also liked his presents--trucks, balls, monkey costume, etc.


the cupcakes


the cake


El Guapo is ready to get that cupcake


Down the hatch


Yum, this is good.


Ice cream too?  Yippee


My chocolately boy


Enjoying his new truck


In his monkey costume


That's all folks.  

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

"He could be your son"

"Well that's good, because he is."

The more I have thought about this recent conversation I had with an acquaintance of mine, the more I have mixed emotions about it.

I feel bad about it.  I also feel a little frustrated and tired of the "he looks just like you" comment.  And I just wish this innocent conversation and comment had gone better.

El Guapo was in his stroller, and when Jen* (not her real name, there are a million zillion Jen's out there, so  I figured that was a good name to use) came up to say hello.  And don't get me wrong, this is a really nice person, and I don't want her to feel bad if she ever somehow came across this post.  Anyhow, so she said hi to El Guapo and asked how he was doing.  I told her that he was almost walking, and we were doing good.  Then she said, "I can't believe how much he looks like you, he could be your son."

Side note--for some reason, I have never really understood this comment.  And I get it a lot.  Because, yes, El Guapo and I do have the similar skin color, and we both have dark eyes and dark hair.  But that's where our similarities stop.  And that is perfectly fine with me.  I don't know when people say this if they are trying to make me feel better about adoption--to which I feel perfectly fine and great about adoption and having a child that looks different than me.  Or is this just one of the first thing that pops into people's head when they don't know how to respond to the fact that you have a child who happens to be adopted.  I don't know.

I always just say, yeah, he does look a little like me, but not so much like his dad.  (my hubby is pretty fair skinned).   And then I usually say, that he actually looks a lot like his birth parents--which he does.  I really don't think he looks at all like me.  And why would he?

Anyhow.  After Jen told me that El Guapo could be mine son, I replied as stated above, that, actually, he was my son.  I didn't mean anything by it, and I think it was just a knee jerk reaction and that I responded that way b/c she said he could be my son.  She felt really bad, and started apologizing profusely and saying, "Of course he's your son", and "I am so sorry".   I told her not to worry about it, and that I didn't mean to make her feel bad.  And I meant it.  I told her the same stuff about how he doesn't look like my hubby and that I was just joking (b/c I was actually joking and laughing when I told her that it was good he could be my son, b/c he was my son).

This is quite a long ramble.  But I just felt like writing about it.  I will just leave the conversation where it is and hopefully when I run into Jen again, she won't feel awkward--but I think she might.  "sigh"

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Here we go again...

We are in the process of completing our application to begin another adoption.  It mostly exciting, but it also makes me a little nervous and overwhelmed.  Nervous because there are so many other people hoping to adopt, and as I let that nervousness overwhelm me I can't help but wonder, how in the world will we be chosen again?  But at the same time I am hopeful and excited because I know it can happen.  Our little boy fit into our family just perfectly, so I have confidence that when the time is right, the right baby will be placed with us.

So now, I better get work on our application.  Thankfully we don't have to fill out as much paperwork as before, but it is still a process.  I will let you know when our application goes live.  It is probably still a few weeks out because we need to have another home visit, get reference letters sent in, and do a few other things.  But it is exciting that things are moving in the right direction.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Getting close

El Guapo is almost 1 year old.  I am excited to celebrate this special day with him.  This year has flown by and has been so fun.  It is amazing how much a little baby changes and grows in one year.  El Guapo has such a fun personality and is a joy to be around.  He makes friends where ever we go, and gives the best hugs and smiles.

I am not a very good party planner, so I am a little nervous about that.  I think we will just do something ultra small w/ a few friends and family.  We also have a small house so it doesn't lend itself to big groups and lots of kids.  But I think having a small get together is more my speed anyway.

I really want to make a cute cake, I have been looking on the internet for ideas, and have seen some cute ones.  Here is a link to one site that has some fun ones.  http://www.parenting.com/node/122102  Of course, I like the monkey one.   But I also like the football and dump truck ones.  I just want to make them all  :)  Good thing, there will be many more birthdays to come.  


And now some pictures for your viewing pleasure.




Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Where Oh Where Have I Been?

I have been here and there.  I have been busy with my little sidekick, and then I went on a fabulous vacation to Alaska  :D

I seem to have lost my blogging mo jo.  I don't quite know what I feel like writing about.  I look at your blogs, and comment occasionally, but for the most part, I have taken a sabbatical.

I am so happy for those of you that have success in your efforts of having children, and my heart aches for those of you who continue to experience setbacks and loss.




Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Pregnant ladies at the pool playdate

* I will also refer to "my little guy" as "El Guapo"  (Handsome)

Last week I took El Guapo to the pool for a little playdate with some other families that go to our church.  A lot of people are out of town because it is so hot here, so only 3 other ladies were there with their kids.  It just so happened that all of them are very pregnant. 

Well, one of the ladies had just moved into the area, so we were talking and getting to know one another.  She asked about El Guapo, including how old he was, and when his birthday would be.  I told her it was in the fall.  She then told me that she was due with her 2nd baby in the fall.  She proceeded to tell me, how she was already so hot and didn't know how she would make it through this hot summer being pregnant.  Then, the best part was, she said, "but you know how that is, if your baby was born in the fall."  

Ha ha ha.  I just laughed and said, "Actually, I don't"  :)  And I told her that my husband and I had adopted El Guapo.  

It was pretty funny.  I got a good laugh over it.  

We then talked a little about the adoption, and enjoyed the rest of our pool time.  

Friday, July 15, 2011

Strange, but true

Yesterday I went shopping--alone.

My little sidekick was at home hanging with his grandma while I was kicked out of the house.  It was very strange to be out on my own.  I just wandered around the stores taking my time.  It felt really weird.  I was reminded of how I used to feel before my little guy came along.  I was really bored.  Maybe another time I will love the free time.  Maybe because I didn't really have any errands I needed to get done and I was really just wasting time waiting until I could go back home that I felt the way I did.  Because I have left my little guy with others in the past and haven't felt the way I did yesterday. Though, I will admit, it did make it a bit easier to shop.  :)

Oh, and I think my little guy is finally finished with his bout of barfing and diarrhea.  Hallelujah.  This was one first (first sickness), that I didn't enjoy.  I have done way too much laundry for my liking this week.  And I have missed going to the pool during this heatwave we have been having.  But, I definitely didn't want to be the one with the kid who made the water murky, so we have steered clear of the pool this last week.

Friday, July 8, 2011

Sick :(

My little guy has been sick the last few days.  It is so sad.  Yesterday I decided to run a few errands, and less than 10 min after entering my first store, I looked down, and my little guy had barfed all over himself and his carseat/stroller.  Since then he has barfed a few more times and had a lot of diarrhea.  I happened to have a well child checkup visit scheduled for him today so that worked out well.

He barfed while at the doctor's office right before I had put him back in his newly cleaned carseat.  Thank goodness he didn't barf in it, it was difficult to take apart, clean, and then the hardest part was remembering how to put it all back together again.

My little guy has been a trooper though.  He is hanging in there, and hopefully will get some sleep tonight and feel better soon.

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Showing off his teeth

I finally managed to get a decent picture of my little guy's two bottom teeth.  They may be small and cute, but beware, if you stick your finger in his mouth you will learn that they are also very sharp.



Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Would you like some juice?

I like this picture I took of my little guy today.  I know it's nothing fancy, but it reminds me of the fun time we had together today.   My little guy has a new hobby.  It involves chasing the empty juice bottle as it rolls around under my kitchen floor, and then occasionally trying to see if he can get any juice out of it even though the lid is on.  He is so much fun to have around.

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Busy Week

Well I had another busy week.  My little guy is quite the explorer these days.  We have been working on baby proofing our house, which will probably be an ongoing process for the next while.
Just when we thought his crib was low enough, he learned how to stand up in it.
My little guy likes to shove anything and everything in his mouth.  I prefer him to stuff food in it, but he likes the non edible items as well.

But the funniest is how he likes to lick everything.  He especially likes to lick the kitchen floor and refrigerator.  It is hilarious.  But it also requires me to try to keep my house spick and span--not an easy task.

Just a reminder, there is still time to enter the giveaway and read my review about the Baby Orajel® Naturals teething gel.  Click on this link to view it.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

The pain of miscarriage

Last night I read about my dear friend Augusta's miscarriage.  As sadness filled my heart I have thought what can I do?  What can I say?  How can I convey my love and concern for her, her husband, and her friend who donated a precious egg who are all mourning this loss?

I suppose I will simply write that my heart goes out to her and to all who had such hope and joy in the arrival of their child.  As I mourned this loss I returned to the age old question of:  Why?  To which I say, I don't know.  I only hope there will be people close to Augusta and her husband who can be sensitive and kind to them during this painful time in their life.

I did read a few articles from my church's website this morning about miscarriage, that helped me learn more about the pain it brings.  I also read an article about one woman's story of what she learned while bedridden during a pregnancy that ultimately resulted in a miscarriage.  I will add those links should anyone like to read them.

Easing the pain of miscarriage: How can you help when a loved one is suffering?
The unconfined heart: sometimes our struggles increase our ability to care

Augusta has such a big heart and has been a dear friend to me on my blog.  In fact, while she is mourning her loss, she still visited my blog to comment on a recent post about my little boy.  She is strong, compassionate, and kind.  I hope you will visit her blog and let her know you care about her.

Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Brand New Tooth

My baby grew a tooth.  It is so small, but it's there.  I discovered it during lunch.  I tried to get a picture of it, but my little guy kept it hidden the rest of the day.  I had to double check to make sure it was really there by running my finger along the bottom of his mouth.

Over the weekend my little guy had very rosy cheeks.  I wasn't sure why.  I wondered if maybe he was allergic to something, but I couldn't think of anything new he had been exposed to.  I ultimately asked internet about it, and one explanation was that a tooth might be on it's way.  I hoped that was the reason for the rosy cheeks.  Well, the rosiness subsided, and a tooth appeared.

Who knew I could get so excited about a tooth.  And this is just the first of many to come. 


A few weeks ago my baby was fussy and having a hard time settling down for the night.  After trying every tactic to get him to sleep: taking him on a walk, trying to feed him without success, changing him, holding him, and playing music for him, we wondered if he was experiencing some teething pain.  Thankfully I had orajel on hand, so while my husband tried to console my little guy I quickly read the instructions on the package and opened the tube of pain reliever.  I rubbed a bit on his swollen gums, gave him his pacifier, and held my breath.  Would this do the trick?  My little guy settled down for a minute, but still acted a little fussy.  I decided to offer him the bottle one more time.  He took a few more sips, and then fell asleep.   I think the orajel helped him.

    I was so happy I had my Orajel on hand that night.  The night would’ve been much rougher and stressful if I had to run to the store and frantically scour the shelves looking haphazardly for something to relieve my baby's teething pain. 
  
     I love seeing my little guy smile.  He has the cutest smile I have ever seen.  His smile makes me smile.  Some of the things that make him smile are: people, tickles, funny noises, funny faces, looking at himself in the mirror, and playing in his exersaucer. I don’t dread my baby’s teeth coming in knowing I have the ability to relieve his pain. 
I try to imagine how my little guy will look when all of a sudden he smiles and I see a tooth in the middle of his mouth.  It will be so fun to see.  I can’t wait to take a picture of him with his toothy grin.  I bet he will love looking at his new tooth in the mirror too.  It is so much fun to see my baby growing and changing, and the arrival of his first tooth will be quite a milestone. 

Monday, May 23, 2011

No teeth in sight

My little guy was teething a lot a few weeks ago and was experiencing a lot of pain associated with it.  But since then, he seems to have settled down.  No more teething pain, but no teeth to show for it either.  As a newbie at all of this, I guess I will just wait and see what happens next.  In the meantime, I have my Orajel® on hand, so I am set.  The Orajel® really seemed to help him when he was teething and I was glad I had it available.  Check out my review of the first time I used Orajel® for my baby.  And don't forget to enter the giveaway after reading it.

Friday, May 20, 2011

The Joys of Formula Feeding

For quite some time I have wanted to write about why formula feeding will not sentence your child to a life of obesity or stupidity along with the other myriad of things you hear when breastfeeding is touted over bottle feeding.

I have held off because I did not want to put up with hearing how wrong I was and how "breast was best".  I get it.  Breast feeding is natural, difficult, and great for some people, but it's not for everyone.  Not everyone can or wants to breastfeed.  And whether you do or don't breastfeed for whatever reason, mothers should not have to overcome some guilt trip about it.  I know the benefits of breastfeeding and always planned on breastfeeding my baby.  But then again, I used to always want to get pregnant and have a natural birth as well.

There are all sorts of issues that occur with breastfeeding that can make it difficult and reasons why mothers don't breastfeed--supply issues, anatomy issues,  and medical issues of both mom and baby just to name a few.  And then there is just a woman's situation and personal preference that needs to be taken into account when she is determining whether to breast or bottle feed, or to do both.

When I found out we would be adopting our little boy I didn't have much time to get ready.  One thing I did was research a bit more to decide what formula I would to give my little guy.  And as I read websites and information, some of them start to talk about how bottle feeding is not as good as breastfeeding and I began to feel guilty that I would be formula feeding my baby.  Crazy, huh?  Well, I got over it.

So my little guy has bottle fed and done fabulous.  And frankly, I cannot imagine breastfeeding.  Bottle feeding is easy, convenient, and nutritious.  My baby is smart, healthy, and amazing.  I am proud to say that  my baby has formula fed.  If you decide to formula feed for whatever reason, don't feel guilty about it.  It is a great way to feed your baby.

Monday, May 16, 2011

Teething Baby? Try Baby Orajel® Naturals

My baby has begun teething.   I had no idea teething took so long and could hurt so much.  I was asked by BlogHer to review a product called Baby Orajel® Naturals.  You can read my review of the first time I used it at this link here.  After you read my review, be sure to enter the giveaway contest as well.

Friday, May 13, 2011

Why bother?

Many times I have wondered why I should bother filling out medical forms.  From my experience they don't seem to be read.  I cannot count the number of times I have written my medical history on forms only to have to then verbally explain it all to the nurse or doctor who has my form in front of them but didn't bother to read it.

A few weeks ago I took my little guy to the eye doctor.  On the medical history form I had to fill out there was actually a box where I could check that he was adopted.  I thought to myself,  "What a great idea.  One less thing to explain when I am asked about his medical history."  Furthermore, as I continued completing the form, when I got to the family eye history portion I clearly wrote: "Birth mother:" and then "Birthfather:"  when I wrote in familial eye information.

I guess my diligence in filling out this form was purely for my benefit and to give me something to do in the waiting room.  When the nurse was asking me about my baby's eyes, she said, "Oh, and I see that you wrote that you wear glasses and that, and that your husband is near sighted, (or whatever it was that I had put down)."  I then corrected her and told her that actually,  that information was about my son's birth parents.

She seemed a little embarrassed and flustered, but it didn't' bother me.  You see, I am used to people not reading medical records.  I do admit that seeing the "adoption box" to check on the form had gotten my hopes up that it would be read.  Oh well, that's life.

And by the way, my baby's eyes are just fine.

Friday, May 6, 2011

Hoping

I am hoping that all of you are able to get through this weekend as well as possible.  I know how difficult it can be.  I hope that the child you are waiting for will join your family soon.

Know that I am thinking about all of you this weekend.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Infertility Myth Buster

For National Infertility Awareness Week I decided I would participate in Resolve's "Bust an Infertilty Myth" blog challenge.

The myth I have chosen to write about is well known and I am sure many of you have heard it.  It is:  "Just adopt and then you'll get pregnant".

Many people who knew my husband and I were hoping to adopt a child would tell me, "You know, once you adopt, you will get pregnant."  And then after we adopted our child, invariably some people just had to tell us about some random person they knew who had adopted a child and was now pregnant.

When people say this is I really don't think they are thinking about what they are saying.  Do they really think I adopted my child in hopes that once I did so I would become pregnant and have a biological child?

Adoption is not a means to becoming pregnant.  In fact only 5% of couples who adopt later become pregnant.  It is a very insensitive thing to say to someone who has adopted a child.  And when I am told this, I cringe, take a deep breath and try to explain in the nicest way possible that this is simply not true and I that I don't appreciate hearing this statement.  I cannot imagine our family without our little guy who came through us through the miracle and blessing of adoption.   I would hate for him to think that we adopted him only in hopes that by doing so I would then become pregnant and have a biological child.  Love, not blood, is what binds my family together.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Finalizing our Adoption

Last week was busy and exciting, and this week, it seems to be just as busy.  Here is it Thursday and I don't really have time to write, but I figured if I didn't do it now, I wouldn't catch another free moment later.

In order to finalize our adoption we needed to go to court and receive legal custody.  Over the past 6 months we have had physical custody, but our agency retained legal custody for a period of 6 months.  We needed to get a lawyer and have him do some paperwork in order to complete the process.  So last week we were able to go to court to receive legal custody.  

We drove up to the court house, but on our way my husband asked if I had my wallet and ID.  Did I?  Of course not.  I had forgotten it, but told him I didn't think I needed it.  But he wanted me to have it just in case.  So we turned around, drove back and I retrieved it.  This put us arriving 30 min late to the courthouse. So I was a little nervous.  Who wants to be late to court?  Not me.  We were told that the judge would randomly call up the cases to be heard and when we were called we would go up.  When we arrived the room was quiet and pretty empty.  I was a little nervous.  Were we too late?  What had we missed?  The judge was nowhere to be seen

We saw our lawyer and sat on the bench with him and apologized for being late and explained what had happened.  He said, no problem.  I asked him where the judge was and if we had missed anything.  He told me that the judge hadn't arrived yet.  Thank Goodness.  I breathed a huge sigh of relief.  I still don't know what would've happened if he had called us up and we weren't there.  We settled in our bench to wait.  Five minutes later, the judge arrived, and guess who was called up first?  Yes, we were.  

Our little guy was asleep, but I wanted him to be awake for this occasion.  So I rustled his blankets a little and his eyes popped open.  So then I lifted him out of his stroller and held him for the few minutes it took for the judge to hear our case.  When the judge saw our little guy looking at him and listening he laughed.  Then the judge stated we were our child's legal parents, took a picture with us, and everything was finalized.  

It was great.  A very fun and adventurous morning.  Then we went out to breakfast to celebrate.  :)

Oh, and some of you might be wondering, did I need my ID?  Nope.  Nobody asked for it.  But, we did need a check, which we didn't have.  Who carries a checkbook around these days?  Well, we found out that my mother in law does.  So that worked out well.  We needed to write a check so we could get our little guy's birth certificate sent to us.  That reminds me, we never paid her back for that.  I guess I will have to get a check in the mail to her for that.  :)


Friday, April 15, 2011

Busy Week

It has been a busy week here.  Between company in town, getting our bathrooms remodeled, and finalizing our baby's adoption we have been quite busy.  Yes, you just read that right!  Our adoption is finalized!  Woo hoo.  I will write more details about it next week.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Time flies

when you're having fun.
And we have been having a lot of it.
It has been an amaizng 6 months.
  

I just love this little guy.

Thursday, March 31, 2011

Do Your Best and Forget the Rest

Over the last 2+ months, my husband and I have been doing the P90X exercise DVDs.  It has been hard, challenging, good, sweaty, and fun.  I have done more push ups and pull ups than I ever thought was possible.  And I also actually have a decent bicep and a 2 pack of abs.  (Still working on the 6 pack).   The trainer on the DVDs, Tony Horton, is actually pretty entertaining.  The workouts go fairly quickly, and I feel so great afterwards.  It has also helped me get a good start to the day.  It is also helpful to be doing them with my husband, because we help each other wake up and maintain our motivation.  

Anyhow, one of my favorite lines that Tony always says is, "Do your best, and forget the rest."  I have liked this line, because when a hard day rolls around, I think of this line and it helps.  All I can do is my best.  I can control that much of a situation.  And then I just need to forget and not worry about the rest.  

Maybe someday soon, if I am courageous enough, I will post a picture of my muscles.  Doubtful, but you never know.  My husband and I like watching the videos people make of their transformation from this program.  Some of them are pretty amazing.  It sure is nice to fit into clothes I hadn't worn in years, and to now have the problem of needing to purchase some belts so my clothes will stay on.  

 

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Poem: Just the Same

My church puts out a monthly magazine called the Ensign, and the April issue arrived the other day.  I was so happy to see an article about infertility in it.  Unfortunately, the electronic version is not up yet, maybe it doesn't go up until April begins.  When I am able to post it for you I will.  But in the meantime, I happened to see a poem in the magazine and as I read it I realized it was about adoption.  I thought it was a beautiful poem, so I thought I would share.

Just the Same
By Diana Lynn Lacey

Sometimes--
God sends rain
Straight from the sky
To nourish the young flower
and it grows.

Sometimes--
God sends rain from the sky 
To the mountaintops,
Then over hills and through valleys 
Until it reaches the flower
and it grows, just the same.

Sometimes--
God sends a child 
Straight from His realm
Into a mother's arms
and love grows.

Sometimes--
God sends a child
From heaven to another's arms,
Then over hills and through valleys
Until he reaches the arms of his mother
and love grows, just the same.  


Monday, March 21, 2011

Open Adoption

When people hear about our adoption a natural question that is asked of us is, "is it open?"  Usually, the person asking this doesn't even know what he or she is really asking.  An open adoption is such a broad term and is different for each birthparent and adoptive couple.

Before our adoption was finalized my husband and I attended an adoption conference.  At this conference they had a panel of birthmothers who shared their experiences and answered our questions.  I learned many things from them, but one thing that I learned was how different each of their "open" adoptions were.

And the interesting thing was that for each one of them, how they had their communication and level of openness set up, worked for them.  I was reminded not to promise to a level of openness I was not willing to commit to.  Equally important, these birthmothers shared how the thing they feared the most was that the level of openness decided upon would not be honored by the adoptive family.

Everyone has heard horror stories of this happening and understandably, nobody wants it to happen to them.  Our son's birthparents were concerned about this happening to them as well.  No one enforces your relationship with one another after placement, it is between you and your child's birthparents.  The tricky thing about adoption is that not until after papers are signed and our son was placed with us, we didn't have the opportunity to prove ourselves and that we were good for our word.  Our son's birthparents had to trust us at our word, which is a hard and scary thing to do.  We could often sense that they were nervous about this, so we tried to be proactive and remind them of our commitment to them and the level of openness we had decided upon.  So this was also nerve wracking for us.  Prior to the placement, we trusted them in their commitment to the adoption, and then after placement our son's birthparents would have to trust us in our commitments to them.

Is our adoption open?  Yes.  What does that mean?  Well, in our adoption we send emails and pictures.  We felt that the first few weeks, and then also on holidays and birthdays would be especially difficult for our son's birth mother.  So we sent texts and pictures on a daily basis the first little while.  We also told her that if she was having a hard day and just wanted to see a picture of the little guy, to call or text us and we would send one.  She always sends a text saying hello when he turns another month old and I send a picture of him to her.

Our son's birthparents asked if they could visit the little guy at Christmas time and give him a gift.  We told them, "Of course."  It was nice to see them and they seemed to enjoy seeing the little guy.  I am happy with how the communication we have with our son's birthparents. They are great people and we care about them.  They gave us one of the most wonderful gifts we had ever received, and I will never forget them for that.

I am happy with the relationship we have with our son's birthparents.  And I am grateful for the love and respect they show to us as well.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Like Magic

Whenever my little guy is tired and I can't get him to sleep I take him on a walk around the block and like magic, he falls asleep.  I love that circle.  Tonight he was fussy and tired, so I decided it would be easier to put him down to sleep if I took him on a walk first.  Dressed in his dinosaur pjs, out we went.   He was crying a little as I closed the door behind us.  My neighbors were outside playing catch and they made some joke about how my baby was mad b/c I didn't take him out earlier.  I laughed, but didn't have time to stop and chat b/c I needed to settle my little one down.  A minute later he had stopped crying and I was able to make him laugh by shaking a toy on his stroller at him.  A minute later his eyes were droopy.  And then 3 min later he was asleep.  I smiled victoriously as I rounded the corner to home.  I was hoping my neighbors were still outside.  I was not disappointed.  They looked at my baby and said, "Is he asleep?"  I replied, "Yep, I call this walk the "magic circle".  I love it.  It works every time."  

Then I wheeled my little guy inside and then carefully picked him up and set him in his crib.  It was great.  

Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Humbled

That is how I feel right now.

I just reread some thoughts I had written a few months ago about my journey from devastation, sadness with infertility to one where I faced the unknown future with hope and peace.  As I read it, I felt humbled and I was filled with love and gratitude for God and our Savior Jesus Christ.  In some ways it felt like I had gone back in a time machine.  As I read it I felt the sadness I had felt and then the renewed hope and joy that I also felt during that trying time in my life.  It also seemed so long ago.  I almost feel like I was a different person then.  Just trying to keep my head afloat and not let the despair of childlessness drown me took a lot of effort.  It was so difficult.  I have a small knot of dread and nervousness in the pit of my stomach right now as I think about how I might fare this next time when we try to adopt another child.  I would be naive to think things would go as quickly and as well as they did this time.  But I guess I can still hope.

I will go into it as a completely different person though.  And as difficult as it might be, it really does help and bring comfort knowing that I have an amazing son that I love so very much.

Today was a great day.  I love watching my husband interact with our son.  He was such a proud papa today.  I took our little guy to meet him for lunch at a duck pond near his work.  As we pulled up to the site, my husband told our little guy, "your mom and I talked about bringing you hear a long time ago."  That is true, but I had completely forgotten about that.  It had been so long ago, back when we thought it was easy to get pregnant and have a baby.  My husband showed our son all of the ducks and it was so sweet to see him with him.  It was such a wonderful day.

So with that memory fresh in my mind and then with having read those words I wrote in the past, I couldn't help but feel filled with gratitude and humility for the wonderful son I have been blessed to have in my home.

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

A whole new wardrobe

How would it be to wake up from a nap and find that you had a whole new set of clothes waiting for you? I would love that.  And if I could wear these clothes for  3 months and then have it happen again.  Even better.

Today I am cleaning out my little guy's clothes.  He keeps growing and growing.  The first few months he breezed through his newborn clothes and had jumped into his 3 month clothes by the time he was 2 months old.  Then he took his time enjoying those clothes, but is now wanting to get a chance to wear his 3-6 month and 6 month clothes before he grows out of them.

Baby clothes sizing is so tricky.  I am looking at the 6 month clothes and they say they will fit babies 12-16 lbs and 24-26 inches.  Well, my baby is 17 lbs and 27 inches.  And they are just now fitting him.  Or maybe they would've fit him sooner, and now I am worried that he will only get to wear these clothes a few weeks.  Aaah.  I guess it's good to have these types of problems to worry about.  I am sure he will help me out by drooling and spitting all over them so he can wear 2-3 outfits a day.

I hope these clothes don't shrink in the wash, or I'll really be in trouble.  So far I haven't had any trouble with his clothes shrinking.  I have learned a little bit more about the many knobs on my washer and dryer and what they mean.  I know, technically I should wash them before he wears them, but I don't.  He had so many 3 month size clothes and I thought he would wear them just a few weeks at the rate he had been growing that I exchanged some of them for 6 month size clothes. And now it seems like I have too many 6 month clothes. Oh well.  I'll just see what he gets through and then if he doesn't get to wear some of the ones with tags on I will exchange them for a bigger size.  But he will probably have just enough and my worries will be for naught.

I am a bit concerned about the clothes I have that say they are a 6-12 month size.  That is quite a range.  I am hoping they will fit him when he is 9-12 months old.  

It has been both sad and exciting to organize my little one's drawers.  Sad to put his cute little onesies I love away, but exciting to see the new ones he will wear.  I think of the people that gave him those clothes and the love they have for my little guy and it brings a smile to my face.  I have such happy memories when I look at the clothes my little guy has worn.

Who knew you could get so sentimental about clothing?  




My husband's aunt gave him this pj outfit.  He looks so cute in them.  I will be sad when he no longer fits into these.  I am glad I put them on him early.  The size said 6 months, but they barely fit him when he was 3 months. And then they seemed to stretch out a bit and they still fit him.  I think he will wear these to bed tonight.


 Our son's birthfather's sister gave him this outfit.  It was so thoughtful and nice of her. 


One of my brothers gave him this Letterman's jacket.  I love it when it is cold enough for him to wear it.  And I get sad when he gets too warm and I need to take it off. 


Another brother of mine gave him this outfit.  I was feeling "bananas over my baby" and had fun making two of him with the photobooth feature on my computer.  :D  You can never have too much of a good thing.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Rice Try

This week has been filled with adventures for me and my little guy.  He started eating rice cereal.  The first time I gave it to my little guy he did not know what to do with it.  It reminded me of when a dog is fed peanut butter.  The dog just moves it around in his mouth and his tongue goes crazy and then it all drools out.  That is what happened for us and rice cereal.  I like to think that if my monkey could talk, he would've said, "rice try" to my attempts to feed him.

He has done better all of the times since then, except today.  I was feeding him in his bumbo chair where I can sit him up a bit, but he kept trying to get out of it so I went and sat on the sofa, and then held him on my lap and tried to feed him.  We have done this before, without any difficulties.  But not today.  The rice cereal spilled and made a mess.  Oh well.  I tried to clean it up and was afraid I had stained the sofa, but it is looking better now.  I am guessing this won't be the last stain my sofa gets.  I can just imagine kids throwing up on it or spilling on it, and then if they don't I'm sure I will drop something on it.  But I will think twice before I try feeding him on the sofa again.  I now have a better understanding as to why parents are so adamant that their kids not eat on the sofa or carpet.  It is hard to clean up.  

Monday, February 21, 2011

Finding Joy in Life Talk

This was the talk I gave in church yesterday.  I think it went well.  You never know.  Everyone will always tell you that you did a good job, but I decided to believe that they were sincere.  I think it did go pretty well.  At the very least, I know I did my best.  And that is all I can do.  

One neat thing was when I stood up to give my talk, my friend who was holding my little guy said that as soon as he heard my voice over the microphone that he turned around and looked at me.  I remember seeing him look at me and that brought a smile to my face while I was trying to give my talk.  

side note, leaders in my church are often referred to as Elder or President, so that is what you will see written here.  

Finding Joy in Life

We are here on this earth for a divine purpose.  We came here to be tried and tested.  Not to be “endlessly entertained” or to be in constant “pursuit of pleasure”.  So, if, as the Book of Mormon prophet Lehi declared in 2 Nephi 2:25 “men are that they might have joy”.  How do we obtain that joy while dealing with the trials and difficulties that come our way?  Because although we are meant to have joy, we also know “it must needs be, that there is an opposition in all things”  (2 Ne 2:11) 

In Elder Scott’s talk: Finding Joy in Life (ensign 1996), he said, “Sadness, disappointment, and severe challenge are events in life, not life itself.”  While these events or challenges in our lives are difficult and at times seemingly never ending, we cannot let them “become the confining center of everything [we] do”. 

What trials or challenges might any of us here currently be facing?  Difficulty in school or work?  Challenges in our marriage or family?  Illness?  Death of a loved one?  Could our patience be waning as we continue to wait for the righteous desires of our heart to be fulfilled?  Are any of us weighed down by sin? Could some of us here be questioning our faith in God or struggling to live, and accept the gospel of Jesus Christ?

With these trials we are facing, how in the world are we supposed to find joy in this life?   Do we wait until our trial is over?  No. We can experience joy now. 

Pres. Faust said, “Happiness is not given to us in a package that we can just open up and consume. Nobody is ever happy 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Rather than thinking in terms of a day, we perhaps need to snatch happiness in little pieces, learning to recognize the elements of happiness and then treasuring them while they last.”  (Our Search for Happiness", Ensign, Oct. 2000)


Elder Scott said that our joy in life depends upon the faith we exercise in our Heavenly Father and His Son Jesus Christ, and in our level of faith in the ability of God’s plan of happiness to bring us joy. 

It doesn’t depend on whether or not life is going on as we had planned.  Because if you don’t know already, you will soon discover that life does not usually go as planned.

As the scripture states: “men are that they might have joy”.  From this we learn that our joy is conditional upon our actions.  We must choose obedience and we must choose faith in God if we are to experience the fullness of joy the Lord has in store for us. 

Elder Scott compared our trials to a pebble.   If we hold a pebble close to our eye, it seems like a huge, insurmountable obstacle.  But, if we cast the pebble on the ground we can see it in its proper perspective.  In this  perspective we can prevent this pebble or  trial from “overtak[ing] our vision, absorb[ing] our energy, [or] depriv[ing] us of the joy and beauty the Lord intends us to receive here on earth.” Are we like “rocks” or “corks” when thrown into a sea of problems?  Do we sink like a rock and drown?  Or do we fight to be free and bob up like a cork, determined to overcome our challenges? 

Elder Scott also said, “The Lord is intent on your personal growth and development.  That progress is accelerated when you willingly allow Him to lead you through every growth experience you encounter, whether initially it be to your individual liking or not.”

We can also find joy in life as we pray in faith, search the scriptures, and as we learn from others who “have made peace with their challenges and live with joy amid adversity”. 

Learning from the people of Alma in the Book of Mormon, has given me strength and has taught me to have patience and faith in my trials.  The people of Alma were a righteous people who had made a covenant with the Lord to follow Him.  Yet, in Mosiah 23: 21 we learn that the Lord saw fit to try “their patience and their faith”.  While they were in bondage to Lamanites the people of Alma cried to the Lord for help.  As they did so, the Lord promised them, “I will also ease the burdens…that even you cannot feel them upon your backs… and this will I do that ye may stand as witnesses for me hereafter, and that ye may know of a surety that I, the Lord God, do visit my people in their afflictions…And…the burdens…were made light; yea, the Lord did strengthen them that they could bear up their burdens with ease, and they did submit cheerfully and with patience to all the will of the Lord”  (Mosiah 24:13-15). 

The people of Alma did not “concentrate on what [they] didn’t have or [had] lost”.   Counting the blessings we have rather than the ones we don’t have will bring us joy.  Elder Scott reminds us that the Lord has promised to share all he possesses with those that love and obey Him.  Elder Scott also encourages us to seek out the “compensatory blessings in our life when, in the wisdom of the Lord He deprives you of something you very much want.”  This might be added patience and strength much like the people of Alma received.  Or it could be a strengthening of testimony as when we see that the Lord does visit us in our afflictions.

We can also find joy in this life as we give willing service and focus on others allowing ourselves to forget our own problems.  

Being creative also brings satisfaction and happiness.  President Uchdorf teaches us, “We were created with the express purpose and potential of experiencing a fulness of joy.  Our birthright—and the purpose of our great voyage on this earth—is to seek and experience eternal happiness. One of the ways we find this is by creating things.” Our creativity does not need to be limited to playing a piano or painting a picture.  We can create family memories or happy homes.  (Happiness Our Heritage talk)

In the women’s conference I attended yesterday, (Saturday), the theme was “living after the manner of happiness”.  President Riding counseled us to trust in God, because as the scripture in Proverbs 16:20 states, “whoso trusteth in the Lord, happy is he.” 

“God’s love brings peace and joy” (Elder. Scott).  When we trust in God we will feel of His love, and will feel joy.  With my most recent seemingly never ending trial of my faith—waiting for a child to come to my family, I found that the times when I placed my trust in God, I was happy and felt joy.  God does visit us in our afflictions.  He does love us and wants us to be happy. 

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Finding Joy in Life

I was asked to speak in church this week, and guess what my topic is?  Yep, it is Finding Joy in Life.  When I was told what I was supposed to speak about I laughed inside.  How appropriate for of all the topics I could've been asked to speak on, that this would be the one.

I am trying to gather all of my thoughts and condense them into 7 min worth of material.  A scripture and talk I was asked to reference are ones that I already wrote about in my blog here and here.  So I have been reviewing those items as well.

As you can see, I am procrastinating.

Ok, back to work.  Baby's sleeping, I need to take advantage of the little pocket of time that I have to pull this together.

Maybe you can all help me brainstorm:  How have you found joy in your life despite the challenges you face?

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Flying with an infant

My trip was great. I had a good time visiting with family.  My little guy touched the pacific ocean for the first time.  It was a bit cold, so he didn't like it too much, but it was still fun.  He enjoyed meeting new faces and being held by old and new friends.  One thing I had been a bit nervous about was flying with my little guy.  I had asked some friends and family members for tips on the logistics of bringing a stroller and formula on and if they had any tips for what to do while in the air, and they were quite helpful.

Traveling on the airplane with my little guy went pretty well.  The way there was slightly harder.  The flight was full, so I had to have my little one on my lap the whole time.  I had a window seat and I was a bit nervous about that because I knew I would be stuck in my seat the whole time.  But I had read that moms recommend the window because you have a little more room to set up your stuff and you don't need to worry about getting bumped and stuff by the flight attendant's cart and stuff.  Unfortunately, my little guy needed a diaper change immediately after getting up in the air, but and the guy next to me had just fallen asleep and the guy next to him was engrossed in his iPad.  I didn't want to bother them and make them get up, so I just changed his wet diaper in my lap.  It wasn't bad.  Later when my neighbor was awake I did get up to change my little one in the bathroom.  I didn't want my neighbor to get upset or scared that he might get sprayed.  I was a little nervous about changing him in the bathroom because I had no idea where the changing table would be.  But as soon as I walked in I found it.  It was above the toilet seat.  I had never noticed it before.  And it was good size and the diaper change was easy to do.  It was nice to get up and we had fun looking in the bathroom mirror and smiling.

The 3 hr flight seemed longer than usual.  Probably because I had a baby on my lap and I needed to entertain him most of the time.  I was told to try not to have him sleep until he got on the plane, but of course he took a little cat nap before we boarded and didn't want to go back to sleep.  I usually fall asleep on airplanes, but not this time.

The pressurized cabin didn't bother him.  I had him suck on his pacifier and/or drink his milk when we took off and landed.  One friend had told me of a tip she had learned from a flight attendant that can also help.  Here is the tip:  Mix hot and cold water to make lukewarm water.  Pour it into 2 styrofoam cups, then put enough napkins or paper towels in the cups to absorb the water.  Then cup the cups over your child's ears.  She says it works every time.  I ended up doing this for my little guy when our first flight was landing because he was wide awake, not hungry, and at first did not want to suck on his pacifier.  I am sure my seat mate thought I was crazy, but hey, maybe it worked.  My baby didn't cry at all.  I wish I had 2 extra hands and I would've tried it on myself, because my ears always hurt so much from the pressure of coming down.  I may have to construct a little headband type thing for next time.  And I will let you know how it goes.

The way home was a breeze.  Another full flight.  Another window seat.  This time I got on the plane a little earlier and had more time to get myself situated.  The man next to me said he had been visiting his 4 1/2 mo old granddaughter, so he was very nice.  The lady next to him was a bit grouchy and complained that her seat was broken.  She said the seat cushion was uneven.  So she was moved to a different seat.  So my neighbor moved to the aisle seat.  He said it felt exactly the same as his middle seat;  and I had an open middle seat to lie my baby down on or to put my stuff on when I was holding my baby.  It worked out great.  Also, my little guy slept for most of the flight, and I was able to get a little nap in myself.  The flight seemed to go much faster on the way home, so that was nice.

Gate checking my stroller and car seat was easy and it was nice to have those to push him around in at the airport.  It was a little tricky taking it all down and putting it up with one hand when I needed to go through security with my baby in my arms, but I managed.  I appreciated the help I received from people along the way at every stage of the journey.

Would I do it again?  
You bet.  I'll go anywhere and do anything as long as I can do it with this little guy.  

Sunday, February 6, 2011

Everything but the kitchen sink

At least that's what it feels like.

I am going on a trip with my little boy.   And just the packing alone about did me in.  It takes me forever just to get out the door for a trip to the grocery store with him, so you can imagine how long it took to pack and make sure I had everything I might need for a week away.

I hope the flight goes well.  I will pray for no delays, no big spit ups or blow outs, and hopefully my fellow passengers won't regret sitting next to me.  It looks like it's a full flight.  My hubby is staying home, so it is just me and the little one.

Wish me luck.

We will have a fun time.  My little guy will get to meet more of my siblings, cousins, aunts/uncles, and one more set of grandparents.  We are looking forward to it.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

From flip flops to snow shoes

Saturday and Sunday I was enjoying the lovely winter weather outside in a t-shirt, shorts, and flip flops.  Today I am sitting inside watching the wind blow while the snow that fell begins to turn to ice.  I ventured out of my house once to see if the mailman had come.  Apparently he took a snow day.  I don't blame him one bit.  I was sad it was too cold to go out and play in the snow.  One of these days I will build a snowman for my little guy.  I am excited to do that.  I have built snowmen alone, with friend's kids, and with my husband all in hopes that someday I could play in the snow with my little one.  I know my little guy can't play in the snow with me yet, but soon he will, and when he does, we will have "snow" much fun.

Monday, January 31, 2011

Adventures in Couponing

So I have decided to try my hand at "couponing".  I hadn't realized that the act of using a bunch of coupons and groceries for next to nothing had it's own verb.  I have clipped coupons off and on for years, only to lose them, forget them, or have them expire.  But when I saw a recent FB post of a friend talking about how she was "couponing"  I was intrigued.  We are now a one income family and I wanted to work a little harder at saving money where possible.  And I thought, if I truly can buy things as cheap as "couponers" say you can, maybe I can donate some of my items to a local food bank.  I have been looking for ways to help in my community, but it is a little tricky with my little one.

Another reason I stopped clipping coupons was because I thought that I don't need or buy half the stuff that are on the coupons.  I don't eat frozen foods, and I try to avoid all of the boxed and processed stuff as much as possible.  I try to stick to the periphery of the grocery store.  But, I do use some canned foods like beans, tomatoes, and corn.  And I buy pasta and toiletry items.  All of those items have coupons regularly.  So I decided to give it a go again.  I looked at a few blogs and sites, got organized, and then, because I had to pick something up for tomorrow I decided I would go to the store tonight.  The sites I read recommended you go at a time when the store isn't busy--morning or evening.  My baby was in bed, so I decided I would go to the store tonight, and I would pick up my 3 coupon related items and then the other item on my list.

Well, apparently tomorrow it is supposed to get cold around here, so that was another reason I decided to just go tonight so I didn't need to go out with my little guy tomorrow.  Well, the store was packed.  And then the items I wanted to buy with my coupons were almost completely out.  Apparently, I am not the only "couponer" out there.  But I might be the only rookie.  I got my items, and some of them, if you bought 10 of the items (that would cost me 20-30 cents) I would get $5 off at the checkout.  That sounded like a pretty good deal.  So I did that.  And thought, cool, I will be a coupon expert my first time and have a receipt total of something like $1.

Too bad things didn't work out quite the way I had hoped.  I got it line.  No one was behind me until I got to the front of the line.  And then I had 2 people pull up ready to get checked out and on their way.  My items were rung up and it came to $15.  First of all, I have no idea how it all those cans came to $15, but I had people behind me, and I didn't want to squabble over every little thing.  But, I did tell the checker that she didn't take $5 off.  She said, I only bought 8 eligible items.  I said no, I counted them them as they went down the conveyer belt, and that actually I had purchased 11 items.   She pulled out the receipt and said nope, only 8.  So I said, "ok, can I run and get 2 more cans?"  She said, "okay", but her face said, "are you kidding me?"

She was less than thrilled.  I wasn't too happy either.  And the people behind me definitely weren't either.   I ran and got 2 more cans of corn.  She rang them up, and said, "those didn't work".  I said, "they were on the shelf with the sale tag.  What do you mean they didn't work?"  She told me, I got the mixed yellow and white corn, and the deal was only for the yellow corn.  Now I was the one thinking, "Are you kidding me?  I thought this couponing thing was supposed to be a cinch."  I asked the checker if she could just override it.  But apparently a can of yellow corn and a can of yellow/white corn is that big of a difference and she wasn't able to do that.  I asked, "Do you mind if I go grab the different cans then?"  I apologized to the people behind me and then ran even faster to get the correct cans.  You can imagine how happy they were at this point.  I ran back, finished my transaction, and got out of there as fast as I could.

And that was my first experience in my attempt to become a "couponer".  To be completely honest, I am not looking forward to the next time I go "couponing".  It doesn't sound as exciting as it did last week.  I am not sure all that running around was worth saving $5, if I even saved that.  I was so confused by the end, and just wanted to leave.  But, I am not one to give up so easily, so I will give it the "old college try" again.  

Wish me luck.  I'm gonna need it.

Friday, January 28, 2011

My dream job

is the one I have.  I had no idea I would go through such a rigorous process to become a mom; but I am so grateful I made it.

I no longer work outside the home, and it is so wonderful to be at home full time to care for my little one.

I remember the day I found out we had been matched for our adoption I was talking with a friend who had come by my hospital that day.  As I was walking her and one of her kids out to the car we were chatting and she told me that I had her "dream job".  I replied, "And you have mine.  Wanna switch?"  She is a sweet friend and knew of my infertility issues, so we always talked freely about everything.  The funny thing about this conversation was that I hadn't told her yet of our hopes to adopt.  And I didn't receive the call from our agency until later that afternoon.  So it was fun to call her back and tell her that soon I would be getting my dream job.

I love being a mom.  Last night my husband and I were sitting on the couch making faces and sounds with our baby.  And he would laugh and coo and it was so fun.  This was what I had been waiting for all this time.  He has brought so much happiness and joy into my home.  I can't imagine life without him.  It makes me look back and be even more at peace with all the negative infertility treatments, because if they hadn't failed, I don't know that we would have pursued adoption, or if we had it would've been much later and we wouldn't have our little guy with us as part of our family.




Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Wordless Wednesday: My child loves his birth mother


Okay,  I can't not write anything under this picture.   My little guy is such a happy, smiley boy.  This is how he greets me when he wakes up from his nap. Ready to play and have some fun.  I enjoyed seeing my little boy in this shirt all day yesterday.  Every time I looked at it I thought to myself, "I love your birth mother too."  She is such an a amazing, courageous, beautiful, and loving person.  I consider myself very blessed to know her and to have had my life changed by her.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Birth Stories

Last week a friend from work invited me to hang out with her and her mom group.  I decided to join her and had a nice time.  At lunchtime we went to the food court and while there I overheard some of the ladies discussing their children's "birth stories".  I was a few seats over from them, so I wasn't engaged in their conversation, but over the noise of the food court I heard the words: labor, epidural, dilated, tired, and c-section, just to name a few.  I wondered if they would ask me how my child's birth went, and I wondered what I would say.  To be honest, I felt a bit like an outsider.  If I had a birth story like theirs I might have been tempted to join in.  But, I didn't, and I wondered if it would be awkward if they were to ask me and I then related how my child was adopted.

Trust me, I am not embarrassed in the least to tell about my child's adoption.  You just never know how others will react, and I didn't know these ladies that well, and it just didn't come up.

But, the more I thought about after the play group was over, the more I wished I had been asked about his birth.  I would have told them about how anxious I was to hear news about him on the day of his delivery.  I know a few details about his birth that I could share.  And then I could tell about how stressful it was getting the flowers delivered to his birthmother.  And how I was an emotional mess when there was a glitch with the flower delivery.  I would tell them about how we went out to dinner to celebrate our little guy's birthday.  Not many ladies can do that.  I could also tell about how we packed up our favorite snacks and all of his gear to take with us on our travels to meet our little guy for the first time.  I might also tell them how the social worker and I were wearing the same style and color shirt when we went to meet up with everyone in the hospital for the first time.   Our little guy was so cute and little.  I fell in love with him the minute I laid eyes on him.  (I loved him before that, but to see him and hold him, was so special).  I would tell about feeding him while I was there and how I was praying he would be a good eater and not be fussy when I held him.  He was great!  I might share  how we finally found a hotel in that area with a semi-comfortable bed to sleep on, for what few hours of sleep I was able to get with everything going on.   And then if I were asked if I was nervous about getting everything finalized I would reply, most definitely.  But I would tell them of my love and respect for our little guy's birthparents.  There were a few bumps in the road, and I was a nervous wreck that last day, but everything worked out in the end.  I might share about the gifts we gave our birthparents and that we were able to meet some of their family members.  And then I would share that we traveled home with our baby in the backseat calling our family members to share the news as quickly as we could.  I would share how happy we were and how excited everyone was to hear the news.  And by that point in my story my smile would be wide, my eyes would be wet, and I would feel a great happiness in my heart.  How do I know that?  Well, because that is what is happening right now as I type this.

And that is my child's birth story.  I think it's amazing and I love it.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

I hate being on my period

Why do I have to get so crabby, irritated, and emotional?  No idea.  I really want to just go to sleep and have a new day to start fresh on, but unfortunately I took a late afternoon nap and don't feel tired at all.  Bummer.

Having a unicornuate uterus with a very thin lining makes it so my bleeding is next to nothing.  You would think that would come with the additional perk of very little irritability and emotional ups and downs.  But no such luck.  I think I will put a request in to the "Man upstairs" that He gives those of us dealing with infertility a break when it comes to dealing with this monthly visitor of ours.  I don't think that is too much to ask.  Also, you would think that with dealing with this month after month for how many years, I would've figured out how to ride this wave of irritability.  Nope, sure haven't.  I think one mistake I made this month was thinking I had figured it out.  I guess the bright side is, I will get another opportunity next month to see if I learned anything.  Don't hold your breath on that one.

I like to think I am easy to live with the rest of the month, but right now I am really not so sure.  Right now I just don't remember what my excuses are the rest of the time.

Enough of this already.

I guess I will go peek in on my sleeping baby and that will bring a smile to my face and make everything better.  Looks like he is awake and wants a little snack and some snuggle time.  I am happy to oblige him.

*update*  Yep, the snuggle time with my baby did the trick.  There is something about holding him and listening to his heavy breathing that just brings peace and happiness to my heart.  Now, I am off to try and get some zzzzs as well.

Friday, January 21, 2011

It's that time of the month again.

Yes it's time for ICLW.

And yes, Aunt Flo is visiting as well.  I think the thing that bothers me most about her is how she gets me irritated and moody.  I have come to terms with the realization that her arrival means no baby, but I wish I could just not get bugged with my closest friends and family when she comes by.  I am working on that.  I think I did a better job this month.  I'll have to ask my hubby.

I haven't done a welcome ICLW letter for awhile, so I thought I would do one this time.  You can see the info on the side bar of my blog.  But here it is quick and dirty.  I spent a lot of time, money, and energy doing infertility treatments and dealing with insurance companies.  None of which turned out well.  I spent some more time, money, and energy devoted towards adoption, and have reaped the benefits of it.  I have a beautiful baby boy who is a joy to be with.  He has such a pleasant, happy personality and is always smiling and laughing except for when he's not.  :D  Which isn't too often.  :D

As you can see from my header, my blog is about finding joy now, today, not later, and not tomorrow.  In the throes of life and the ups and downs it brings, I have found that if I can keep my perspective and focus on being happy, then I can get through anything--even infertility treatments and the stress of adoption.

I still write about infertility and adoption.  But now I also write about being a mom.  I also write about ordinary things like exercise, crafts, and whatever else I feel like at the moment.  I enjoy photography, reading, being outside, and learning most anything.  I am working on my cooking skills and am hoping to find pockets of time in between naps to learn how to garden, work on some crafts, and edit and digitally scrapbook my photos.  I hope you will stick around and join me in finding joy in life.

Monday, January 17, 2011

Date Night with Spit up on my Sleeve

That is my kind of night out.  As I was looking in the mirror right before my hubby and I walked out the door for our first time out without the little one I saw that I had a small trail of dried spit up on the red sleeve of my sweatshirt.  I considered changing, but then I thought,  no I think I would like to wear it.

This was just another moment that reminded me how going through such great lengths to have a child has completely changed my perspective.  Other people might groan and be upset that their child spit up on them again and they have to change to look presentable.  But not me.  I was happy to have this be a part of my outfit.  It was like a badge of honor.

My hubby and I had a great night out.  We saw the movie True Grit.  I highly recommend it.  And then we went out to dinner at a Thai restaurant.  We cleaned our plates which was just as well because we already had a doggie bag waiting for us at home.  (see the picture below)

This is my little guy in his pajama sack.  Some call them potato sacks, we prefer to call this one his "doggie bag".  They are great pjs because just one zip and you are done.  This is him first thing in the morning.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Keep Calm and Blog On & Great Video


Thank you for your kind comments and words of encouragement.

I do enjoy writing my thoughts and feelings, and knowing that you are out there whether you comment or not, encourages me to keep writing here.

On a different note. I watched this video today, and I just love it. So I wanted to share it. Enjoy.






Friday, January 14, 2011

To blog or not to blog, that is the Question.

I have been wondering lately if I should continue this blog...

I have drastically seen my visitors and comments decline, and I just don't know if I have anything I feel like sharing because I don't know if anyone cares to read it.  When I first started blogging I didn't think I would have many people read my blog, nor did I care all that much.  My focus was to record my joyful daily moments and not let the pain of infertility envelope me.  I soon found that I belonged to a group that welcomed me in with open arms.  Now, I am not so sure if I still belong to this group.  I am still infertile.  I would still like to have other children join my family and I am pretty sure whether that is through infertility treatments or adoption, that it won't necessarily be a walk in the park.  I think we would all agree that we would much prefer to have a baby over a blog.  And while I thought I would do both, --have a blog and enjoy my baby when he came, now I am not so sure.

I don't really feel all that motivated to blog.  I can write in my journal about all the memorable experiences I am having with my boy.  Or I can write them here and feel that no one cares that I shared it.  And maybe that is partly my fault.  My little one has kept me pretty busy and I don't visit too many blogs anymore.  And I don't comment on the ALI blogs as much anymore because I don't want the person whose blog I commented on to then come over to my blog and end up feeling sad that she doesn't have a baby to hug and hold.

So, if you would like to continue reading my blog and having me add to it please let me know.  Also, I would like to know if there are any things in particular you would like to hear about?

Monday, January 10, 2011

Adventures in Nail and Hair Care

I have officially declared war on my son's sharp nails and cradle cap, (unaffectionately also referred to as cradle crap).

I will focus on his nails tonight.  I file them everyday but to no avail.  They keep growing, and they are always sharp.  If my little guy isn't careful, he will live with socks on his hands until he learns to stop scratching his face.  Any ideas when that might be?

I tried clipping his nails, that was quite a feat that I was unable to repeat many times.  I would wait until his was asleep, try to clip them, only to end up waking him up.

Then I started filing them, and that has worked out better.  We actually have a little system down.  While he drinks his milk, I work on his nails.  Thank goodness for the art of distraction.  But like I said, by the end of the day, or for sure by the next morning, at least one of his nails will be sharp, and my quest to keep his nails smooth continues.

Thankfully, he doesn't scratch his face too much, but I hate it when I see a fresh scratch.  I obsessively check and feel his nails to figure out which one caused the damage.  Then I find a bottle of milk and my trusty file and continue my adventures with my child's nails.