Saturday, November 30, 2013

Our Journey to Adoption {Part 1}

{I began to journal our journey to Caleb as soon as I received word we had a placement. Please forgive me for jumbled thoughts, emotions and using a mixture of verb tenses and horrific grammar. I wanted to get it all down, but it took a while to do so. Thanks for bearing with me.}

October 30, 2013
Around 1pm today I got a phone call from our social worker.
We were matched.


My heart nearly pumped out of my chest.


I sat on the bench in the dining room staring out the window as she explained how it happened.

The birthparents were very specific about two things; they wanted a big family; they wanted a stay at home mom.

They saw our book and video and chose us.

Us. They chose us. Our family. Us.
I cannot  even begin to explain the way I feel.

Ecstatic. Elated. Euphoric. Joyful. Blissful. Overjoyed. Delighted. Thrilled. Exultant.

I had no idea that this would make me literally jump for joy. I was jumping in the kitchen with Ella chanting "BABY! BABY! BABY!".


A baby boy.

Praise God for adoption and for the amazingly brave decision these birth parents have made. We are eternally indebted to them.

October 31, 2013
We got word that our birthparents want to meet us (all 5 of us) in 2 days. We are still full of so much hope and excitement.

November 1, 2013
We received a phone call from our case worker (she's amazing, by the way) that our birthmother was not feeling well and might have to cancel our meeting planned for tomorrow. We are sad, but hopeful!

November 2, 2013
The birthmother canceled our meeting this morning. She says she's sick. Our case worker is reassuring us that everything will be just fine, but we can't help but feel anxious. We are worried she will be changing her mind; she is having second thoughts. It is such a low compared to the high we felt a few days ago.

November 4, 2013
It has been a long couple of days with no word from our social worker or our birthmother. We were told she would be going to the doctor (which would be wonderful, as we still do not have a due date). After a few failed attempts at contacting our birthmother, our case worker finally heard back from her. She was really sick, but is starting to feel better. She never did go to the doctor, but is planning on seeing one in 2 days. Our case worker says she will take her to the doctor, to ensure she goes. From the worry we felt the past few days, we are trying to guard our emotions. We still feel hopeful, but I can't believe the roller coaster this has been in less than a week. The highs and lows are crazy! We were warned…but wow! I am praying so often; for her, and for the birthfather, and for the baby.

November 5, 2013
We have just confirmed a meeting with our birthparents scheduled in 2 days. James will take off work and we will meet. We are super excited to get together with her!

November 7, 2013
Our nerves were high as we drove to meet our birthparents. We were praying for peace, but feeling the pressure. I won't lie, I have not been that nervous in a long time (I canned my outfit three times before we left the house). When we walked into the room they were sitting down. They stood up and I couldn't help but grab her for a hug. If you know me….you know that I'm not a hugger, but I couldn't even help myself. The meeting went so great. It is such an odd thing to do; to sit down and meet the mother carrying your child. Her belly was big, our son was in there. I don't know how to put into words, what that felt like.
She looked so healthy; tired, but healthy. She was beautiful. You could feel the pressure in the room begin to dissolve as we chatted and just got to know each other. I would love to say that our bond was instant, that we fell in love with them immediately; but that wasn't the case. We loved them for their choice and for their strength…but again, such an odd relationship.
They were so sweet, so young, and so wise in their decision to make an adoption plan.
The thing that stood out the most to us was when our birthfather said they chose adoption because he did not ever want to have to decide between feeding his baby or himself. Our hearts broke. We felt their  pain, sorrow, grief, and heartache.
We left the meeting feeling so full of hope. We loved them for what they were doing for our family. I love her for her strength and courage.
The kids came in and spent a few minutes with all four of us as well. A huge factor in their decision for us was our family size. They loved a big family with lots of kids, and a stay at home mom.
And I want to give so many thanks to my mother for keeping the kids occupied so that we could get to know the hearts of our parents as well.

November 26, 2013
After a couple of weeks of trying to schedule another time to get together with the BP (birthparents) we were finally able to sit down with them again. We met them for dinner in downtown Denver. This time was a bit nerve wracking as well. Our case worker would not be with us, unlike the first time. Dinner went amazing. All of our nerves were at ease and we were just able to connect on a more personal and comfortable level. We told them how proud of them we were. We told them how excited we were. Her and I developed a deeper connection. She is truly amazing. As dinner ended we were able to take a photo together (what a gift to frame for Caleb one day). We hugged goodbye and made plans to see each other in a few days. As James and I were driving home we spoke about how great meeting with them felt and commented on how large her belly was looking. She looked ready at any moment.

To Be Continued…

:::Read Part 2 here:::

Monday, November 18, 2013

Window Chalkboard DIY

You guys…..

I have been so crazy, busy lately. Seeing as how blogging is pretty low on the priority list, I haven't been able to get to it.
A lot of the "busy" has come from projects that I have been doing. It's pretty bad, I have been so busy that I'm wearing myself out. I'm exhausted. But….that's what I get. I just can't sit still. But here your go…here's one of my newest projects.

I won't lie…I LOVE it!

My dad and mom are revamping their lodge and with that came new windows. Yay for me! I just had to turn the old ones into a chalkboard/corkboard…right?!?

So there ya have it. It did take me all day (granted I had to take 5,000 breaks due to small children). But it was super easy. I just hot glued the wine corks to the glass and painted the other panes with chalkboard paint. I kept the original hardware, but painted the frame. It's perfect in this room. I really couldn't be happier with it! I also put sawtooth hooks on three sides so that I can hang it any direction I want.

Not a bad little afternoon project. Now…breaks over, time to get back to canning 24 jars of pumpkin butter.
I told you, I'm driving myself crazy!!

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Boy's Room Closet Makeover

The last time I posted on a room in our home it was excessively pink. This time…it's excessively blue. What can I say? I love color.

The boys closet has always been such a drab spot in the house. It was pretty empty. It just had a few odds and ends in there. Random Christmas trees, clothes too small or too big, and pull ups were about the only thing in there. Clutter…that's all it was.
And then one day we woke up and decided to completely change it; and then did it in a weekend. We are so impulsive and we get an idea in our head we've got to get it done….immediatly!

So here it is in all it's newfound glory.

Here is the before and after…because no blog post can be done without a before and after…right??

The goal was to clear up some space in the boys room, and what do you know….the dresser was a perfect fit in there!
I had already painted the dresser, thankfully so!
The plan for the closet was to hang some cubbies above the dresser. When doing some hunting I realized they are incredibly heavy. I was feeling a little weary to hang two rows of cubbies over the dresser and "SpideyFish". They also were more than twice the price of shelves. We found the shelves and brackets at Home Depot (we love that place). 
James is now a pro at hanging selves. He got all the practice he needed when we updated our garage
I was already planning on adding the bins to the cubbies, so that was in the budget already. 
I found these bins a couple of years ago at Wal-Mart and I've been buying them since. They are $4 each. I have never seen any as inexpensive as that. They aren't that big…but they are the perfect size to fit onto the shelves. 
The solution to hanging their clothes came in the form of $2 tension rods. Because they are boys (and not "snazzy" dressers for that matter) they only have a few things that need to be hung. I can get all of their clothes neatly hung on the inside corners of the closet. I love those darn rods. 
The total cost of the closet renovation was right around $88. 

I still plan on adding some Command hooks between the dresser and shelves to hang their ball caps.
I am so happy to turn an unused space into something really functional and totally practical, and kind of adorable. It freed up so much space in their room.
It is truly amazing what can happen when you remove closet doors and add a coat of paint. I'm so happy we did this. I am sure Ella's closet will be on the "to do" list soon. That will be super fun to do!

Ok…now back to my children who are being completely neglected right now.

Friday, November 1, 2013

Trick or Treat

This was our first "theme-less" Trick or Treat experience. 
A bit bittersweet. But hello! It's so adorable!

We've got Raphael, Cindy Lou Who, and a Power Ranger.

Here's a Flash Back

2012 {The Avengers}

 2011 {Peter Pan}

2010 {Buzz and Woody}

 2009 {Batman and Robin}

Back to last night….

It was freezing, but they were bundled. Always super fun to watch my children beg strangers for candy. What a weird holiday…right??
The candy situation was out of control this year.
Now, to figure out what to do with 48lbs of candy….