Welcome to our corner of the web! Here you will learn about our family and our journey of a family member adoption. In July of 2010, after 9 years of trying to add to our family and 5 years after we started our adoption journey, we welcomed baby Emily Rose. Emily's birth mom is Sharon's adopted sister. We look forward to someday adopting more children but for now, we are enjoying our time together as a family of 4!

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Hope and Love

Recently we went to our wonderful photographers house to have Emily's newborn photos done. (It is in the middle of wedding season and Ashley has been booked solid. So it was easier for her to fit us in if we went there. Normally she comes to you, but we wanted to make it easy on her so we went to her house.) The photos we have seen so far are nothing short of stunning! Stunning I tell you! I will share more later, but the one I wanted to share right now is this one.

If you have been a long time reader of my blog, you know the story of my necklace. In case you don't, or need a refresher, or you're just bored and want something to read, here it is.

Infertility has been a long time struggle of ours, like it has for so many other couples. We decided after 4 years of unsuccessful attempts to have a baby, that we would adopt. We decided to adopt through the states foster care system (not the same state we live in now). We signed up and were quickly approved to be not only adoptive parents, but to be foster parents as well. A few months passed by and we ended up having the sweetest, kindest, 8 yr old boy in our home. "I" was so great. Sure, he had his issues that we had to work on, what 8 yr old who has spent his entire life in foster care wouldn't. But together we worked on them. And he made huge improvements in our home. We applied to adopt him but were turned down by his caseworker because of my husband being military and possibly deploying. We were heartbroken. To make a long story short, it was another couple of years before I could think about adopting again. It has been almost 4 years since that horrible day we had to say goodbye to him. To this day I miss "I" and will always feel like he is our son.

Time went on, and eventually we felt it was time to adopt again. Not knowing if we could go through the heartache of losing another child in foster care, and after a lot of prayer and thought, we decided to adopt through our church's agency. We were going to wait till we moved back to Utah, but for some reason, on a Sunday afternoon in January of 2009 we felt we needed to start the process right then. So I called the agency the next morning and within a few months time we were approved. We expected that since we felt that urgency we would be chosen soon. Months passed and nothing. Our profile was being viewed but not a single prospect came up. Sept. rolled around and it was time to pack up and move to Utah since Jacob's time in the Active Duty Army was drawing to a close. Completely confused as to why we would have felt the overwhelming feeling that we had to start the process only to wait and wait we decided to put our efforts into getting settled into our new home and getting our file moved from the New Mexico agency to Utah. Mid-November came and we found out our file was updated and we were once again approved to adopt.

Right around this time I saw a posting on mrs. r's blog for her new business called the r house couture. She and her two besties make hand stamped jewlery and adoption wear. They have ready made peices, and custom made peices. I decided to get a custom one. I chose a design that had two circles with two beads. One circle says love. This represents the love that I have for my family. The other says hope. This represents the hope that we have that our family will grow. The beads are Jacob's birthstone, and Tamara's birthstome. The ladies at the r house did a beautiful job and far surpassed what I thought the necklace would look like.

So on Thanksgiving we went to my dad's house with pass along cards in hand and spread the word to the family who was there that we were hoping to adopt. A couple more months passed and I got a phone call. It was January 31, 2010. The person on the other end was my dad. He asked if we were still hoping to adopt. I said yes. He asked if we were with LDSFS, I said yes. He asked how he could see our profile online. I walked him through the how to's. Then he said he had to go. I told him he couldn't leave me hanging like that and had to tell me if he knew someone who was considering adoption. His answer, "we'll see, maybe." My next thought came out in the form of a question. "Is it K?" (As most of you know, K is my little sister, adopted by my dad and stepmom. Go here to read the rest of that story, it's an amazing one.) His answer was we'll see, maybe. A week later I asked my dad and stepmom if K was the person looking to place. They tried to tell me no, but somehow, we knew it was. (they didn't want K to feel pressure to make a decision knowing that we knew, so that is why they told us no).

On March 10, 2010 we got the call we had been waiting for. K had chosen us to be her baby's parents. And the baby, was a girl, due on July 29th. After a few months of dr. appointments, I contacted Lindsey and asked her for a new stone to put on my necklace. This stone would be a ruby. Little Emily's birthstone. After Emily was born I placed the stone on the necklace next to Jacob's and Tamara's stones. K had not yet signed the consent for the adoption, but it was my way of showing faith, hope and love, that things would work out. A week after Emily was born, with a smile on her face, knowing and at complete peace that she was doing what she needed to do, K signed the papers allowing us to be Emily's legal guardian's in preparation for the adoption.

So this picture to me, respresents what adoption is all about. Putting your trust, faith, hope and love in the Lord, that things will work out. Albeit in his time, and sometimes in very unexpected ways, but they will work out.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Will she be a fish?

I gave Emily a bath this morning. Her first that I didn't have to sponge her down. I actualy ran the water over her. I thought she would SCREAM! I was wrong! She LOVED It! I think she is going to be a fish. When I was washing her hair she actually arched her back so she could get her head more under the water. Seriously, I didn't know 3 week old baby's had this much personality! I think we're in trouble. LOL

Friday, August 13, 2010

Can she get any cuter?!

The answer to that would be yes! YES! She can get cuter. And she does! But seriously, just when I think she could never be any cuter, she proves me wrong. So I have just stopped asking myself if she can get any cuter. Because I know now the answer is yes. ;o)

Emily is now 2 and a half weeks old. We had her 2 week check up on Monday. The dr. said she is a happy, healthy, perfect baby! Emily has gained in weight and height. She is now 9 lbs. 10 oz. and is 21 and 3/4 inches. She is in size 1 diapers (the newborns have always been tight on her. They had to actually order size 1's in the hospital for her because the didn't have any. LOL) She has very few newborn clothes that fit her. She is mostly wearing 0-3 months. Emily can also hold her head up by herself (she is still slightly wobbly, but can hold her head up for minutes at a time). She also is trying to push herself up while she is on her tummy. She smiles a lot and LOVE'S to kick! She laughs, but only while she is sleeping. We are loving every sleepless, wonderful, blissful moment of our new lives as a family of 4!

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Home Sweet Home!!!

We're home!!!! We got a call Sunday morning from the dr. asking us if we wanted to bring the baby home. She was well enough to leave the hospital! The heart murmur wasn't detected, the rapid heartbeat is gone, the infection is gone, blood sugar levels are normal and the jaundice is gone! We were, needless to say, thrilled!! So after Emily's last round of antibiotics at 3 and then a couple of hours of bathing, changing, taking her newborn pics from the hospital and feeding her one last time (cause she was a hungry girl and couldn't wait) it was time to go!
After leaving the hospital we went to Emily's birth mom's house to visit. Such a wonderful visit.

Then we went back to the hotel

Monday afternoon (my dad's birthday, and Emily's 1 week birthday) was court where K signed relinquishment and consent forms and since there is no agency involved in our adoption, the judge signed legal guardianship of Emily to us.

Then it was time to come home!
What a wonderful few days it has been. K is never far from our thoughts. We owe her so much!

And finally, 9 years ago today, I married the most amazing man! Happy Anniversary Jacob!