Friday, January 27, 2012

Are You Pinning? Do You Pin?

** Disclaimer~ I will in no way be held responsible for any and all addictions that one may start as a result of this post... ;-) **

If you're not on Pinterest, you should be :-)

Pinterest, for me is a 'healthy addiction, a mindless hobby, a way to retreat and dream and learn how to be creative (because I'm not).

If you're new to Pinterest, here's a summary of what it is;

* A place where you create virtual cork boards
* You and your friends swap ideas;
~ Home decor
~ Nursery decor... everything baby!
~ Recipes (YUMMY one's!)
~ Fashion (haircuts, nails, shoes, etc)
~ Wedding/ party ideas
~ Do it yourself crafts
~ Photography ideas

Pinterest is a member-only area to swap ideas (free, of course) so if you're not pinning and you're in need of a mindless,  creativity-building, and just plain fun addiction hobby ;-) email me at, send me your email address, and I'll send you an invite to pin with me!

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

The Post That Comes After Church When Your Pastor Says Something and You Turn Bright Red and KNOW That He's Talking to You... Even Though He's Not; God Is.

This is one of those posts that you write because of a conviction about judging people when you're secretly praying that no one judges you because you do unfairly judge people and you probably deserve their judgement...

Hence; the title :-)

As I struggle through this wait to bring our next precious baby home (and lately, it HAS been a struggle), I've realized that I used to consider myself 'accepting' of other people and of the choices they make, especially when they pertain to adoption and/or infertility. On Sunday our Pastor said something that ... well, you read the title. On Sunday, I realized just how judgemental I am...

I am NOT the mom (and wasn't even the non-mom) who judges the mother of a screaming child in a grocery store.

I am NOT the woman who judges a teenager or single woman or her boyfriend when she gets pregnant.

I am NOT one who judges the parents of teens who are making bad choices.

I am NOT the wife who judges another couple's marriage.

I am NOT a young twenty-something year old who judges another young couple when they say they aren't ready to have kids.

I am NOT the teacher who judges the parent of a special needs child.

I am NOT the mom who judges a new mom when she decides not to nurse her baby.

I am NOT the adoptive mom who judges another adoptive mom when she decides to nurse her baby.

But here's the thing....

I AM someone who judges a homeless person who holds a sign on the side of the road.

I AM a mom who judges another mom who chooses to nurse her child until he/she is a toddler.

I AM someone who judges parents who take their child to a family doctor instead of a pediatrician.

I AM a parent who judges other parents when they practice co-sleeping with their baby.
I AM all of those things. I don't want to be and please understand that just because I struggle with making those judgements doesn't mean I care less about the people I'm judging... even though that sounds all wrong :-/ I love those people and I respect the choices they make... but I don't always agree and disagreeing with someone often-times leads to making a judgement; intentional or not.

Our life experiences tend to lead to learning and growth (even though that is the LAST thing I want to be hearing right now in this wait). THIS experience has taught me just how much I judge so as of this weekend, I can honestly say that

The waiting adoptive mom who judged other waiting families who's wait went past a year.
(We all know that a year is a dreaded 'milestone' for any adoption wait)
I used to judge a family based on the pictures they chose for their photo album, as if I was the one they needed to 'appeal' to.
I used to judge large adoptive families because it seemed as if they were 'collecting children'.

I used to be those things. I am working on narrowing down my long list of 'AMs' but I am happy to say that I am NO longer the one who judges waiting families... no matter how long their wait has been. Those judgements hurt. Unfortunately, it took my first-hand experience to realize those things but I AM thankful for the reminder that came to me in church;

“Judge not, that you be not judged. For with the judgment you pronounce you will be judged, and with the measure you use it will be measured to you. Why do you see the speck that is in your brother's eye, but do not notice the log that is in your own eye? Or how can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when there is the log in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your brother's eye.
~ Matthew 7:1-5

I spend many days lately asking myself, "What's wrong with us?"  I KNOW there is nothing wrong with us... believe me, I've asked MANY of the people who know us well and would be completely honest with me. We're not perfect but we are a strong family and we have a wonderful track-record with Hannah's First Parents.... one that's not perfect but one that we work really hard on.

SO... if nothing else comes out of this awful, painful, gut-wrenching, often-times-throw-up-worthy year, I have at the very least dropped a long list of the adoption-waiting-related judgements I used to make. For that, I really am grateful.

NOW, time to work on that other list....

Saturday, January 21, 2012

What I Want You to Know: Recovering After an Abortion

I am new to the blog Rage Against the Minivan but Kristin's What I Want You to Know posts have quickly become some of my favorites.

Today's post is an important one... one I felt I needed to share. I hope you'll read it...

* Please consider leaving a comment thanking this anonymous writer for her transparency... that couldn't have been an easy post to write but it's an important one *

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Getting to Know Each Other

I have had such a fun time lately getting lost in other people's blogs! I got to thinking that, unless my readers leave a comment, follow our blog, or email me, I really have no way of know who you are and what your story is. I thought it would be fun to 'meet' each other so if you have a blog (personal, adoption, infertility, anything!) will you link it up? Link up even if you and I already know each other, too :-)
** Linking to a favorite post or blog works, as well... thanks for asking, Amy!**

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

January 17, 2011

If you've been here for a while, you're aware that I have another blog; it's private, no one has ever read it, and it's more of a diary than anything... though sometimes, it's just an outlet, a place where I scream and cry...  in writing. Once in a while, I'll look back through that blog and remember what was going on in our lives a year or two or three ago... and once in a while, I'll copy and paste a specific post to share here.

Today is a special day; it's my Daddy's birthday... and if you know me at all, you know me to be a Daddy's girl. He is the one person who is able to make me cry with just a look, or crack me up with an age-old "Daddy joke", or make me relax with a simple, "How are you doing lately?", or make me cringe with the word 'disappointed' in any sentence directed at me. He's the epitome of what a wonderful husband, Daddy, and "Tata" (Grandpa :-)) should be... and the man I married is a very close clone ;-)

Since today is Daddy's birthday, I went back to my other blog to see what was going on today last year. I was right about one thing... today last year was a big day and it's funny how quickly I forgot it; I'd call that 'selective memory' and I am convinced that selective memory is one of God's greatest gifts to us when we go through painful experiences. Today last year was one of the most exciting and exhilarating of my life and also one of the most terrifying, too. It was the day I received this text from "M"...

"It might be my belly but they're YOUR babies."

It was the day that "M" chose us to be her baby boys' parents. It was also the day I called my Daddy with some exciting news for his birthday... twin boys!

Here's my post... you all know by now how it ends (if not, read here and here) but I think it's helpful to look back sometimes and remember the fear and paralyzing emotion. And the truth is, I think I knew... deep down, I just knew...

 We are at the end of what will go down in history as 2.5 of the best years of our lives. I can sum them up in one word.


She's amazing, She's smart. She's beautiful. She's contagious. She's ours.

She's also about to become a big sister! ... and here I am again. Patiently Waiting. The thing is... I'm not so patient. At all. I never was. I never will be.
We began our second waiting period about 9 months ago. We completed our home study in July and signed on with a small local agency in September. They're  a small agency so we decided to do what we could on our end, too... about 6 weeks ago and started a Facebook page.

Through our Facebook page and / or our main blog, we have had opportunities to pray for and pray about a set of twins, a baby boy who was born with Spina Bifida and another set of twins.

That's where we are now. Identical. Twin. Boys. We've fallen in love with their first Mom, "M". She CHOSE us. We've pictured our incredibly exciting, never dull future with them. We've told Hannah. We've named them. They'll be here before April 16.

This is a dream come true!

Yet here I am. Untrusting. Unbelieving. Mainly, undeserving.

I smile when I think about them. My heart stops when "M" texts me. I day-dream all day. I count the minutes. I WANT so badly for it to all be good enough. The truth? I don't think I can relax until they're here.

And then... guilt.

I want it to be good enough. I want THIS moment to be one I never forget. I want to learn all the lessons God wants me to learn so I can move on.

At the same time, I never want to experience this moment again. I don't want to wait. I don't want to hurt. I don't want to doubt. I don't want to learn.

Oh... but I am.

I'm learning to wait. I'm learning to trust. I'm learning to deserve.


The first time wasn't enough... the result, our baby-girl, was perfect and more incredible than we could ever imagine. Yet, here we are again. In our plan. The one we have no control over. I feel God smiling at my earthly struggle. I see His sweet, compassionate face just smiling at me.

"You will learn, daughter. We have time. You won't wait forever. The truth? I chose YOU. Trust Me. Trust the plan I have for you. It's bigger and better because you deserve bigger and better. I love you. I haven't forgotten you. You're my child."

I imagine, before I know it, that I'll be saying similar things to Hannah.

I understand so much... in my head. The challenge is convincing my heart to understand and BELIEVE the same things. His plan is THE ONLY plan I want. Not trusting the path He's leading us on is only evidence that I don't fully trust His plan.

Not ok.

At the same time that I trust His plan for us, I have to trust His plan for her. For them. That's tough.

Wanna glimpse inside my head?
"Does she regret choosing us? Does she really know how much we already love them? Does she even know how much we love her? Will she meet another couple? Will she change her mind? If she does, can I really handle that?"

Funny thing: God probably wonders the same thing sometimes. Do they know that I chose them? Do they know how much I love them? Will they choose to follow someone else?

But He says... "I WON'T change my mind. They're already mine. Signed. Sealed. Delivered. No matter who they end up with... they're already mine."

That sounds nice. That's comforting.

I'll still cry. I'll still panic. I'll still choose, at times, not to trust.

My prayer? That HIS plan. His love. His faithfulness... will stay forefront in my crazy, disheveled, untrusting mind.

And here we are. I know where the boys are... they're not with us, and they're not with "M" but they ARE with their parents.... the one's chosen for them. I'd be lying if I said that I didn't think about them all the time and yes, even miss them but my greatest prayer for them is that wherever they are, they will be given the opportunity from a young age to know Jesus, to understand that their incredible story came to fruition because of how much HE loves them, that they'll always hear and be able to see firsthand how much their First Mama loves them. I pray this for them every day.

I pray this for our baby, too... for his or her First Mom. That no matter where she is and who she's with and what she's doing, that she knows that we love her... and that she feels God's protective, loving arms around her every second of every day; when she's scared to death about the future, when she's sick from pregnancy, when she feels those precious kicks in her belly, when she argues with herself over what is 'best'....

What she doesn't know is that I'm right there with her, needing to feel His presence when I'm paranoid about the future, sick from crying and from the pain of waiting, and when I argue with myself about the Plan for our family and how sometimes, I think I could do better.... even though I know I can't (a fact that's been proven in my life over and over and over and over again).

I am not only waiting for the day we bring our next baby home... I'm waiting with open arms for the day when I can wrap them around the woman who is my baby's First Mama.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

From Homeless & Hopeless to Hopeful and Home

A sweet friend shared this video with me a few weeks ago and labeled it a 'must see'. It's long and I didn't have a chance to watch it until this morning but I so want to share it with you! It doesn't require much explanation but in short, it's an adoption miracle story... I hope it touches your heart as much as it has touched mine this morning :-)

Chapel's Adoption Story | the feature from stillmotion on Vimeo.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

An Adoption Break.... I Need New Recipes!!

I need an adoption break! No blogs, no discussions about being patient and growing stronger... I need some new recipes! I am AWFUL at thinking outside of the box.. I don't have any sea food recipes, very few creative pasta recipes, and zero appetizer recipes.


Will you share with me??

Pretty please? :-)

Link up to an old recipe post or a new one... I can't wait to try something new!
(If you don't have a blog but have a recipe to share, leave it in the comments! If your fav recipe comes from another website, just link to that site!)

PS. I also need a good pizza dough recipe... :-)

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Risky Business... Don't Adopt!

You know those times when you shouldn't do something but it's virtually impossible not to do it so you do it and then regret it?



I just shouldn't do it.

Oh, but I do.

Now, I understand that these pages are for birth mom support... not for me. You know of the burden I have felt lately for First Moms. While I've learned so so much from reading some of these pages recently, all they really do in the end is piss me off.


Here's what I've learned; First Moms, they love each other...unconditionally, regardless of the situation that brought them to place their child in someone else's arms. Some of them were pregnant as a teen, some are married, some were raped... the list goes on. They're all First Moms and the support they offer each other is truly inspiring to me.


I've also learned that the adoptive parents, not EVERY adoptive parent, but the ones who don't keep their promises, who don't do all they can to provide unconditional and un-ending support to their child AND his/her First Moms... they give us all a bad rap. If you want to read about our bad rap as adoptive parents, check out a birth mom Facebook page.

Have you heard the saying, 'It takes 5 positive remarks to erase 1 negative'?

I wish we could make those negatives positives for these moms... we're the only one's who can.

I'm addicted to those Facebook pages. I crave any opportunity to know more about these amazing women... I want so badly to hug each one and know more about their story. My heart breaks for some of them; closed adoptions, broken promises, severed relationships, isolation...

They all took a risk... on us.


1. exposure to the chance of injury or loss; a hazard or dangerous chance:

What are the risks that you've taken in your life?

Maybe leaving a good job to take a new one. Maybe entering a relationship that others' have advised you against. Maybe you've taken risks with your finances; tithing, stocks, 401K's, savings. Maybe your risk involved your desire to have kids; infertility doctors, IUI, or IVF....


We, all of us adoptive parents... we have 'risk' in common with these First Moms.

I want First Moms to understand this, too... while you took a risk on us, we also took a risk on you.

That doesn't seem fair because the ball ultimately ends in our court. Hence, our bad rap.

Why can't we just throw the stinkin' ball back, sometimes?!?

All of our risks involved our emotions, our health, our finances, our futures... and a child's life.

It seems like a Catch 22.

I don't like those... I like black and white.
Adoption is not black and white.

Prospective Adoptive Parents~ If you're looking for the perfect child, a happily ever after, or a dream come true, a life and family all your own...

don't adopt.

Adoption is a risk... it has the potential to be a hazard. Adopting carries with it a dangerous chance of hurt and loss. It takes work... hard work. It takes emotional, physical, and financial sacrifice and in some cases, it requires... no, DEMANDS forgiveness....

For adoptive parents AND for First Moms.

 We share the same risk.

While I was reading through some birth mom Facebook pages, and was getting more and more frustrated by what I was reading, the word RISK just stood out to me. What really stood out to me when I looked up the definition of 'risk' is the example they gave when used in a sentence...

It's not worth the risk.

And that's where we differ...

It IS worth the risk. I believe that a child's life is worth the risk of pain, dangerous chance, hazardous results... no matter if you're a First Mom or the one she chose for her child.

If you're not prepared to face those risks, to rise above them, to welcome them into your journey through adoption with open arms and to make them part of your story....

don't adopt. 

If you're ready to embrace a life that is different from the norm, to expand your family not only with a child but with his or her First Family also, to place your trust (no matter the risk) in the Lord,  to forgive with the potential that you'll have to do it again and again and again, to trust people even though you have to fight to break down your protective walls, sometimes repeatedly...

and if you're willing to risk everything you are and everything you have...


If you're ready for and expect all of those things, and if you're prepared to be a 'positive' in our reputation as adoptive parents....


If you fit all of that criteria and you do adopt... you'll know a First Mom's heart; her pain and worry, the hazards she'll approach, and the unknown that she faces, ONLY THEN will it be

 the best risk you (and her) have ever taken.

Monday, January 2, 2012

A Big Day For A Big Girl!

Can you tell what today was?!?!

Today was our baby-girl's first day of (pre) school!!

Joey and I have been feeling for a while now that moving, potty-training and school are such big life-changes for our girl and now that we're settled into our new home, we wanted to be in a routine and have those transitions complete before Baby #2 arrives (whenever that may be). Babies are big life-changes, don't you think? Especially for a toddler!

Hannah is social, independent, potty-trained, and SO ready for school! After 'interviewing' about 3 schools, we are so excited about the pre-school Hannah is attending! She'll be in school 2 days a week and will have Spanish, Science, Chapel, and Music each week... and she's THREE! I'm amazed at how much has changed since I was little... this is NO day care, friends; our girl's in school :-)

Hannah had a wonderful first day... and was chosen as 'line-leader' for the day so she led the class to Spanish and Chapel (oh, the things a 3 year old gets excited about... well, 3 year old's Mommys, too ;-)).

She was EXHAUSTED when she got home, took a long nap after lunch... and this is how we spent our evening;

it was perfect :-)