Wednesday, December 14, 2011

A Good Thing

I've been absent for a while.  The truth is, we've just been waiting.  Waiting for our references and background checks to come back.  Waiting to hear from the agency.  Waiting so that we can wait even longer.  Very boring stuff.  Sometimes it's easier for me to not even think about the process.  I like to distract myself with life.  Now that I finished final exams today, there will be less to distract myself with.  I am planning on working as much as possible over the holiday break though.  That will help.

I actually feel guilty for not posting in November.  It was National Adoption month.  I felt a responsibility to say something about it, but I ignored that nagging little feeling.  Tyler and I did attend an information meeting at our church, hosted by the adoption group there.  There was a lot of information about the community and adoption resources.  Overall the meeting wasn't helpful for us, but it was nice meeting people in the adoption group.  I also recently approached the CEO of the hospital that I work at, regarding the Adoption Support Program at Parker Adventist Hospital.  I shared with him what the program does at Parker and that I believe our hospital should be doing something similar.  He listened and I believe that he will follow up.  

So why the sudden post?  I received an update email from our adoption counselor.  Apparently she's quitting and this Friday is her last day.  The woman taking over for her is nice (if it's who I think it is).  I may even like her better, so hopefully this is a good thing.  I didn't always like the way our previous counselor communicated with me.  I felt like I was very clear with my questions, but wouldn't always get answers to what I was asking.  I liked her, but it felt like I was forcing myself to trust her.  I think it's important to have a good relationship with the person helping us through this process, so it's weird to have to switch counselors in the middle of this process.  I really do hope this is a good thing.

She also said that our background checks and references have come back, so the new counselor will be contacting us in the next two weeks to start our homestudy!  This is extremely exciting and nerve racking news!

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Last week we attended our newborn baby care class for adoptive parents at Parker Adventist Hospital.  They have an amazing adoption support program.  It's designed to benefit birth parents and adoptive parents and is the only such program in the United States.  It is ran by an amazing woman, Rebecca Vahle.  Rebecca recently received a 2011 Angel in Adoption Award for her work.  You can listen to a podcast about Rebecca's adoption journey and her work at Parker Adventist Hospital here.

Sadly, we did not get to meet Rebecca at our training, as she was in Washington, D.C. rubbing shoulders with congress.  None the less, we had a great experience.  The training started out with the scary stuff, SIDs and Shaken Baby Syndrome.  Then we learned the basics: how to swaddle, bathe, feed, and change dirty diapers.

Here's what I learned during class:

A)  Baby powder is not for babies.  I didn't know this had changed.  Apparently there are studies that link it to the high rates of asthma in the U.S.  I did not bother to do my own research and am just taking our instructors word.

B)  It is no longer recommended to clean the umbilical stump with alcohol.  Apparently it doesn't help it to fall of any sooner.

I'm sure there's lots more for both of us to learn, but I think a little common sense and a whole lot of love will do just fine.

Thursday, October 6, 2011


A lovely video I had seen before and was reminded of by Steve Jobs passing yesterday.  I hope you enjoy.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Wonderful Anniversary Weekend

Last friday we celebrated our fifth wedding anniversary.  I was really looking forward to our day!  Five years just seemed really comforting to me.  I can honestly say that our marriage has gotten better over the first five years.  I think we're closer, we communicate better, we're more patient and understanding with each other.  I just really love him and love being married to him!

I worked in the morning, but in the afternoon I came home to some flowers on the table and a sentimental card.  I got Tyler a charcoal smoker, knowing that I would get to enjoy it too.  When I went upstairs to shower, I was surprised by a second bouquet (a dozen roses) and a funny card.  We went out for sushi that evening and then returned home to watch a movie, but ended up watching diner's drive-ins & dives and the season premiere of Grey's Anatamoy.  We indulged in dessert on the couch, champagne and chocolate covered strawberries made by Tyler.  We enjoyed the weekend off together trying out the smoker, watching the Husker vs Wyoming football game, baking a cheesecake, and checking out a new trail with Bailey.  Pretty much a wonderful weekend if you ask me!

Pretty Flowers

Surprise Roses

Before Sushi

Goofing Around

Smoking Chicken


Family Walk

We also finished up the majority of our adoption paperwork!


Thursday, September 22, 2011

We're Totally Certifiable

It’s official!  All of our friends can now entrust us with their little ones while they enjoy a date night.  We’re CPR and First Aid Certified.  Seriously, we promise not to ignore your children while we make out on the couch. Or to be on our phones the entire time they’re here.  See, we already sound way better than the fifteen year old down the street.

The classes weren’t bad at all.  Brenda, our instructor, had quite the sense of humor and had plenty of stories to tell.  This was great for Tyler, as it helped to keep his interest.  Tyler’s favorite story was about a little boy that discovered he could see his sphincter muscle in the mirror, and while watching himself he somehow decided that it would be a good idea to hide his toy car in there.  It was pretty funny to hear about, but I bet his parents were mortified.

I left the class wanting to immediately turn the water heater down, change out all of the fire alarm batteries, write our fire escape plan, and purchase all the safety equipment we need.  But in the name of not wanting to be a neurotic overly worried parent, I haven’t done any of those things yet.

Coming up in October, we have our Adoptive Baby Care class and our 13 hours of Domestic Infant Adoption training (over 2 days).  We’ll then have the 16 hours of training that Colorado law requires.  We’re also turning in our completed contract and formal application paperwork along with our initial payment next week.  Then it’s time to start preparing for our home study.

Monday, August 8, 2011

Unless You've Recently Been Arrested

Recently we visited the Louisville, Colorado Police Department.  The Louisville Police Department was one of the few places that offered fingerprinting in the morning.  Most were afternoon or evening hours.  It was much easier for us to go there in the am, before Tyler had to head to work just down the street. 
We both actually felt a little nervous on the way there.  We don’t know if it was a little bit of excitement or nervousness, it kind of felt as though we had done something wrong.  As always though, it was exciting to get one more item on our Adoption To Do List, done! 
            We arrived earlier than our appointment, so we signed in, wrote the check, and had a seat.  When the lady peaked her head out of a locked door, she called out “9:45.”  We briefly debated over who should go first and the woman then asked if we were together.  Because we had consecutive appointments, she let us go back at the same time.
            We passed through the security door and walked down a long corridor, planked with meeting rooms and offices.  We turned left at the end of the hallway and then through another secure door, with a little blue sign on the wall that read, “booking.”  Hopefully that will be the only visit either of us ever makes to a booking room.
            Now, unless you’ve recently been arrested, fingerprinting is not what you think it is.  We took our turns standing in front of the fingerprinting machine as the woman entered our demographic information into a computer.  After she verified our information, the fingerprinting began.  She sprayed our fingers with water, then held them on a glass plate, where a red laser “photocopied” or fingerprints.  That’s our best layman’s explanation anyway.  She then printed our fingerprint cards and showed us the way out.  Chelsie managed to snap a picture of the process and then we posed for some goofy celebratory pictures outside…

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Give Thanks and Answers

Since our announcement we have received so much support!  Thanks everyone for your thoughtful and caring words.  You're love and prayers are appreciated, now and always.

We've also been asked several questions.  The best of which was, "What country are you adopting from?"  Great question!  If anyone else is wondering, we've chosen domestic infant adoption, in other words a newborn from the United States.  Tyler was adopted as a domestic infant and it's exciting to be able to do the same as we add to our family.  A domestic infant adoption also allows us the possibility of having an open or semi-open adoption.  This was something that sounded scary when we first started looking into adoption, but now we believe that openness will provide everyone involved with rewarding relationships.

Another good question has been, "how long will it take?"  We really are just starting the process.  Getting certified entails us getting a lot of paperwork filled out and submitted.  We also have to complete 16 hours of specific training.  We'll have to take a CPR certification course and background checks have to be completed on both of us.  Then our agency will complete our home study.  The agency will visit with us in our home, both together and individually, over several different interviews.  They'll also inspect our home for certain safety, cleanliness, and space requirements.  Getting through our home study should take us 4 months or more.  Once we have successfully completed the home study process, we will be in the profile or wait list stage.  Then we just wait and pray for as long as it takes.  Wait times vary; it could take a matter of days or even years.  So, we really have no idea.

We'd love to answer any more questions you have.  Just leave any questions in the comment box, and we'll be sure to answer.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

It's Only The Beginning

It's official, we're starting the adoption process!  I guess you could say we're expecting to be expecting!  We're also going to try our best to share the process with our family and friends.  We are looking forward to this journey.  We're excited and hopeful.  There's a lot to do, but it feels great.  We welcome prayers during this time.