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Thursday, May 29, 2008

Meeting Today

We meet with our birthmom tonight. I'll post either tonight or tomorrow to let you know how it goes. If all goes well, we'll get the official word that we're chosen. We're leaving on vacation tomorrow morning, so I won't be posting much in the next week or so. Love you all, and thanks for your support.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

So busy!

It's been a busy week.

We spent the weekend at my parent's house, and we really enjoyed our time there. Mark got to work on milling the walnut, and Tate and I got to play with Grandparents. We also got to enjoy our beloved Pinochle, so the weekend was a success.

Tomorrow we leave on our vacation, and, more importantly, we meet with our potential birthmom. We are very excited, and a little nervous. I will try to post after we meet, but I can't guarantee anything.

Ok, I'm off to finish packing. I've got about half of it done. Have a great day!

Thursday, May 22, 2008

"In our first trimester" so to speak

We got word today.

We have a meeting scheduled with a birthmom on Thursday! We couldn't be more excited, and yet, nervous. What do you say to the woman who is potentially giving birth to your child? Thank you seems so inadequate.

I feel so humbled that someone would want us to adopt their child.

I feel unworthy.

I feel grateful.

I feel jittery.

I feel like crying.

I feel like laughing.

I feel like kissing! and hugging!

I feel like I am at the center of God's will.

I love it here.

Thursday's Ramblings

-I really love Crystal Light to go. I am so tired of drinking water, and this is the perfect solution. I fill up my water bottle and I'm good for a few hours. Not only am I enjoying the taste, but I'm drinking more and eating less, therefore, losing weight.

-I lost 1.5 pounds this week. I still have 9 to go until I feel really good about myself, but that's the biggest drop I've had in a while.

-I love my crock pot. Every time I use it I say that, and promise to use it more. I never do. But, maybe this time it'll be different.

-I am really happy with myself for swimming this week. It's been hard getting up early to work out, but the time by myself has made me a better wife and mother. I think. I'll have to double check with my sources and get back to you on that.

-I really, really, really want another baby.

-However, I am very content in my relationship with God right now, and if he continues to ask me to wait, that's ok.

-I miss my brother. He's going to be home in a few weeks and I can't wait to see him.

-I'm nervous for the Farmer's Market this week. Again. I'm afraid no one will like my stuff. It's silly, because they did last week, but I'm still insecure.

-Finances scare me silly sometimes. It's way more fun being irresponsible.

-I can't wait for my sewing lessons after our vacation. It's another hobby that I probably don't need, but it's also a very nice skill to have.

-I miss teaching Spanish and I want to be practicing it more. I'm afraid to lose it.

-I have a love/hate relationship with my dogs. Because they are shedding so badly, right now it's mostly hate. I vacuum every day to no avail. I hope they're done soon.

-My kid is so cute when he gives Eskimo kisses. I love it every time.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Not anything concrete

I got an email from our social worker yesterday, and here's the skinny. The birthmom that's been looking at our profile had 3 to choose from. Out of those three she chose us!! However, there are now 3 more for her to look at as well, so we'll have to wait some more. I really have a lot of peace about it-if it's supposed to happen it will, and if not, then we'll just keep waiting. Bottom line: we're in the final four, so to speak. I will post anything as soon as I hear!

Thanks for your support!
Love,
Jenni

P.S. I put up a new link for our 'adoption support store'. Really it's us selling the stuff we make and all the proceeds go to our adoption. Check it out if ya want!

Monday, May 19, 2008

Farmers Market

We had a great weekend at the Farmers Market in Kingston. I got my products out there and was very warmly received by the community. There was one woman and her daughter in particular who were great encouragers. I hope to see them again in the near future. I'll get some pics and post them later when Mark gets home and can help with Tate. I'm playing fetch with him right now...I hope you had a great weekend!

Love,
Jenni

Thursday, May 15, 2008

So annoyed with myself

Have you ever had one of those days that is so difficult that at the end of the day, something happens that normally wouldn't bother you, but it seems like such a huge deal at the time?

That was me yesterday. Tate is teething some back molars, and it's a bear. The poor kid is just miserable, even with Motrin, and he's sleeping a lot more than normal. Plus, his eczema is breaking out, so we're in full on conquer mode with that. Anyway, I should have known better when he woke up before 7 yesterday crying. Tate only wakes up crying if he's not ready to get up, or if he's not feeling well. I tried to get him to to back to sleep, but he wasn't having it. So I got breakfast ready for him, which he ate, and then he threw himself on the floor crying. I gave him the Motrin, and he just cuddled with me and went back to sleep (this was by 8:00). I did a devotion, cleaned the kitchen, did my emailing, and decided to take a nap, too. Usually when he wakes up is one of my favorite times of day because he's so happy, we read stories and play games...it's really a blast. It just takes it out of me when he wakes up grumpy.

Anyway, various things happened throughout the day, and by 3:00 I was very, very discouraged. Then Mark calls and tells me there was a meeting yesterday with a birthmom and she chose another family. (For the record, we don't even know if our profile was shown because she may not have wanted there to be an older child). I was so upset! I didn't cry, but I was deeply affected by the news. The same call said that we're down to the last three for another birthmom, so that was good news, but I could only focus on what was "lost". I'm so annoyed with myself! They weren't even our babies...they (it was twins) never were! If I really truly believe that God is ordaining this (and I do) then why do I get so worked up over this? It wasn't failure, and I can't even imagine having three kids under two. It would require a new vehicle (we only have our truck, and it will fit two car seats but not three), and various other things. I'm just irritated with myself because instead of trusting and being joyful that we are one step closer to Sam, I was mourning the loss of babies that were NEVER MINE! I hate that about myself. I really, truly am happy for the family that was chosen, but it wasn't my first instinct. My first instinct that I embraced and ran with was to be discouraged that it wasn't us. Anyway, all this to say that I truly feel the need for a Savior who gives grace and mercy. And, I really, truly am totally thrilled for the couple that got the call yesterday that their wait is over. I find true joy in knowing that their family is being expanded, and God is in charge of it all. And, I know that it's all in God's timing, and he's in control but sometimes it's just hard for my head to tell my heart to buck up.

So, enough rambling for today. I guess we'll hear in a few days if we were chosen for this next round. I have no premonition about this one. I am just going to wait and pray for a better reaction this time. I have no control over what happens (thank God), I can only control my attitude and my actions. Please pray that I am better able to do that, will you?

Wednesday, May 14, 2008

WOW!

Tate woke up on the wrong side of the bed this morning...can you say GALACTIC GRUMP!?!??

He's back in bed, napping, and hopefully we can have a fresh start when he wakes up.

I'm going to go and attempt to regain some sanity.

Love,
Jenni

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

More New Words

Since he woke up from his nap. Included in his new vocabulary are: Spencer, SeeSaw, Swing, Skipper, Mara, Buzz, Jessie, and Pig. Pretty good for a half hour, I'd say!

Today's Words

Tate is learning a bunch of new words today, and I am thrilled about it! The last few days have brought us waffle, outside, off, help, (I may have mentioned those already, but he's actually using them in regular conversation now), slide, and now turtle. Lucky for him I have a turtle stuffed animal due to my SHS Swimming days and my nickname (Turtle Dancer). No, I won't tell you the story, I just 'fessed up to Mark about it a year or so ago. It's quite embarrassing. Anyway, I got a stuffed turtle at our awards banquet many years ago, and Tate hasn't shown any interest in it until today, when he learned what it is. He is now carrying it around and won't let it out of his sight. Pretty cute.

We have some new birthmom stuff going on in the next couple of days, so please keep that in your prayers. I want to share as much stuff as possible with you all, but for the sake of the birthmoms out there, I'm not going to put up names, etc. until we're chosen and I've been given the go ahead. We're feeling content in our wait (today) and are praising the Lord for bringing us this far.

I hope you're all having a great day. I've got to go and do my devotional and some dishes while Tate is napping.

Love,
Jenni

Monday, May 12, 2008

Doo Dah

I've got a bad case of the Mondays. It's hard to go back to 'work' after having such a great weekend!

On Saturday we went to the Farmers Market in Kingston (where I am setting up a booth...more info to come). They had a bluegrass band and Tate played in the park area. We met another couple who had an adopted son who is Tate's age, and he is from Guate! As soon as I saw him I told Mark he was a Guatemalteco. Mark didn't believe me right away, but when we asked, sure enough, he is! They are actively involved in Kitsap Adoption Group as well, and we exchanged information. His mom's friend came up and started chatting as well, and she goes to Bayside, the church Mark and I are attending. It was really neat to feel a little bit connected.

My parents came over on Saturday and we had a great time! We played our Pinochle game (girls won!) and had a great dinner, and we also walked on the beach. The tide was really low and an eagle was hanging out near us. It was so amazing. I really enjoy having my parents over. They are good folks.

Yesterday I was completely pampered, Mark made waffles for breakfast and he got me SEWING LESSONS!!! I am so excited to use my machine! We went to church and then took a nap...so relaxing! Afterwards we transplanted my sunflowers, and played outside with Tate. He can climb up the slide now all by himself.

Anyway, I had a great weekend, and now it's back to the daily grind. I hope you are all doing well, and Happy Monday!

Love,
Jenni

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Our Flaw

(I've seen this before and loved it, so I want to share)


One Flaw In Women

By the time the Lord made woman, He was into his sixth day of working overtime. An angel appeared and said, 'Why are you spending so much time on this one?'

And the Lord answered, 'Have you seen my spec sheet on her? She has to be completely washable, but not plastic, have over 200 movable parts, all replaceable and able to run on diet coke and leftovers, have a lap that can hold four children at one time, have a kiss that can cure anything from a scraped knee to a broken heart -and she will do everything with only two hands.'

The angel was astounded at the requirements. 'Only two hands!? No way! And that's just on the standard model? That's too much work for one day. Wait until tomorrow to finish.'

'But I won't,' the Lord protested. 'I am so close to finishing this creation that is so close to my own heart. She already heals herself when she is sick AND can work 18 hour days.'

The angel moved closer and touched the woman. 'But you have made her so soft, Lord.' 'She is soft,' the Lord agreed, 'but I have also made her tough. You have no idea what she can endure or accomplish.'

'Will she be able to think?', asked the angel. The Lord replied, 'Not only will she be able to think, she will be able to reason and negotiate.'

The angel then noticed something, and reaching out, touched the woman's cheek. 'Oops, it looks like you have a leak in this model. I told you that you were trying to put too much into this one.'

'That's not a leak,' the Lord corrected, 'that's a tear!' 'What's the tear for?' the angel asked. The Lord said, 'The tear is her way of expressing her joy, her sorrow, her pain, her disappointment, her love, her loneliness, her grief and her pride.'

The angel was impressed. 'You are a genius, Lord. You thought of everything! Woman is truly amazing.'

And she is! Women have strengths that amaze men.

They bear hardships and they carry burdens, but they hold happiness, love and joy.

They smile when they want to scream.

They sing when they want to cry.

They cry when they are happy and laugh when they are nervous.

They fight for what they believe in.

They stand up to injustice.

They don't take 'no' for an answer when they believe there is a better solution.

They go without so their family can have.

They go to the doctor with a frightened friend.

They love unconditionally.

They cry when their children excel and cheer when their friends get awards.

They are happy when they hear about a birth or a wedding.

Their hearts break when a friend dies.

They grieve at the loss of a family member, yet they are strong when they think there is no strength left.

They know that a hug and a kiss can heal a broken heart.

Women come in all shapes, sizes and colors.

They'll drive, fly, walk, run or e-mail you to show how much they care about you.

The heart of a woman is what makes the world keep turning.

They bring joy, hope and love.

They have compassion and ideals.

They give moral support to their family and friends.

Women have vital things to say and everything to give.

However, if there is one flaw in women, it is that they forget their worth.

Saturday, May 10, 2008

Happy Mother's Day!

I just want to wish everyone a Happy Mother's Day. Being a mom is the single most important job you'll ever have (just so there's no mistake, wife is the most important title, it's not a job). I have been blessed in my life to have an incredible mom, and several other wonderful mom figures. I nominated my mom for America's Favorite Mom, and even though she didn't win, I think she's the best. Here is my tribute to my mom.


My mom is a loving wife, a supportive mother, and an amazing preschool teacher. She raised me and my brother, took in a foster brother and raised our cousins. She put her career on hold while my brother and I were young to stay at home and give us a solid foundation. When we were both in school she decided to go back to work part time, but was always home when we got home from school. She reserved that time for us-she was never on the phone or busy with other things, she just wanted to hear how our day was. She knew everything that was going on in our lives because she listened.

I was a swimmer growing up, and Mom made it to every meet, and woke up at 5:45 every morning in the summer to take me to practice, and sat on the horribly uncomfortable bleachers during every practice. When I was in junior high, my parents decided to take in a kid from our youth group who was homeless. He lived with us for a year before he decided to move out and move on with his life. Even though he didn't live with us long, he still calls frequently to check in and for advice.My mom is also incredibly nurturing. My husband and I were stationed in Virginia, and he had to move back to Washington for his next billet. I couldn't go because I had one semester of school left, and a 3 month old baby. My mom took a leave of absence from work, came out to stay with me and do childcare which enabled me to finish my bachelor's degree. Right before I graduated we got the news that my husband was going to Iraq for 7 months, and instead of having me move to a new area while my husband was gone, my mom opened up her home for me and my son during deployment.

My mom is also a great preschool teacher. I think what makes her great is that she accepts nothing but the best from her students, and empowers them to make the best of themselves. While this isn't uncommon in teachers, I think her approach of working with her student's parents to be better parents is quite remarkable. Several of her past parents have become friends and even colleagues, and made changes that made them better parents and role models for their children.

One of the best lessons that my mom taught me was the importance of family. The summer after I graduated from high school my Uncle fell from a 40 foot tree and was in a coma. My mom had Power of Attorney for his kids, and cared for all four of them, ages 12, 11, 8 and 4 for over 3 months while we was recovering. She had to drive 250 miles one way every 4 days to drop them off at their mom's house, and then pick them up drive the 250 miles back for four days and then do it all over again. She never complained. The kids are incredibly close with her, and continually go to her for advice and support.

She has consistently showed her love to all of us, me, my husband, my brother, my son, and most importantly, my dad. She is my hero!

I love you, Mom.

Happy Mother's Day to all!

Love,
Jenni

Friday, May 9, 2008

I was right...

The birth mom due in July gave birth last night, 11 weeks premature. She has decided to parent. I am a little disappointed now because I was looking forward to finding out whose family was being expanded. Oh well, that's the way it works. God obviously has something/someone else in mind. Thanks for your prayers, friends.

Love,
Jenni

Thursday, May 8, 2008

Some News...Kind of!

Hey friends!
We don't have any news, but another birth mom is going to be looking at our profile either tomorrow or early next week. The baby is due in July. We won't know anything right away, but if you could just be praying. I don't feel like this is "it" in my gut, but I could be wrong. I am still feeling that one of the babies due this fall is going to be it. However, God has Sam picked out, and whenever we find out who "Sam" is, we'll be thrilled. It's just nice to hear that things are moving and people are having their families increased. I can honestly say that when we find out someone else has been picked, I have only joy in my heart. I know that God is orchestrating this whole thing, so how can I be upset? I do have days of disappointment that the waiting is taking forever (can you believe I said that? It's only been a couple of months!), but I try to keep reminding myself that the wait is worth it, and when we have Sam in our arms, we won't even remember it. Here are a few quotes from the book Visoneering that have been sustaining me (along with the good book, of course).

"While we wait and wait and wait, and trust and trust and trust, God basks in the glory reflected back to him by his faithful servants."-pg. 65.

"Before God can entrust you with the rewards that accompany success, you must be dependent. He brings you to that place by stretching and even straining your faith. But as the capacity of your faith increases, so too your potential to pass along to him the glory he deserves. So be encouraged." -pg. 69.

I hope those quotes are as profound to you as they were to me.

Have a wonderful night!
Love,
Jenni

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

10,000 husband points



to Mark.





We haven't had a date in who knows how long, and he took it on himself to plan one for us on Monday. He found childcare, cancelled his plans for the evening, and even printed off movie times so I could pick what one I wanted to see! He even got me flowers! It was amazing! We had dinner at Taprock in Poulsbo (so good, I highly recommend it), and went to see Baby Mama, which was really funny. It was an amazing night, and so, I say publicly, props to you, Mark! I love you!

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Fun with HATS!!

I know, I'm cool!
Hats are so much fun!
Look at that concentration!
He's practicing to pitch for the Mariners!
Isn't he something?






Monday, May 5, 2008

God is good!

I had emailed Becky (our social worker) last week to see if there was any interest in our book...and there is! There are a couple of birthmoms who, for various reasons, are interested in us! They aren't very far along (usually moms choose families in the 8th month) so they are getting a lot of counseling, and will not choose families for a while, so we're keeping it in the back of our mind, and not worrying about it. It's so encouraging to know there's something happening, though. God is so good!

Sunday, May 4, 2008

Birthing and stuff

Yesterday was one of the most emotionally draining days I've had in a really long time. I got a call from my dear friend, Gayle, that her friend is in the hospital in labor, and no one is there with her. Without going into detail, the baby daddy isn't in the picture, her mom lives in Idaho and she had very little support. Gayle asked me to come and take pictures because she really wanted them. I was unsure about going because I don't know her, I'm completely and totally baby crazy, and I didn't want to get in the way. I prayed about it and felt like I should go, so I did.

I got there when she was about an hour away from pushing. It was a really good thing I was there. Gayle and I ended up coaching her through the birthing process (holding her legs, counting during contractions, etc). Her dad and his girlfriend did show up, and did a friend of hers, so she wasn't alone. Plus, she had Gayle (aka Superwoman) to help. Anyway, I was able to pray for baby Braylen and his mom before he entered the world, and I felt like that was my purpose, to introduce Jesus into his life and pray over him before and as he was born. The cord was wrapped around Braylen's neck, so the first 15 minutes of his life were very touch and go, but he more than made up for it with his crying afterward :) He was 6lbs, 10 oz and 18 inches long. I am glad that I had this opportunity to serve and share Christ's love with someone else.

As I got in the car I just cried. I want a baby so badly. It almost hurt to hold him. I know you're probably thinking either "stop being greedy, at least you already have one" or "then why don't you and Mark just try to have one?" I really believe that if Mark and I were to try to get pregnant it would be a sin right now. We wouldn't be trusting that God has a baby out there for us, that adoption is really the road we are supposed to be on. It would be telling God that his way for our family isn't the best, so we'll just take it from here. So, I sit here and trust that God has a baby picked out for our family, hoping that we get to meet him/her soon. I really do trust, it's just so hard to wait and not know. If I were to know that we'd be picked the 5th of July 2010, it would be frustrating, but at least we would know and could occupy ourselves until that time. But, that's not the reality of it, and, in truth, some of the fun is not knowing...having it be a big surprise (I love surprises). It's still hard, though, not to question everything. Is adoption really what God wants for our family? Because financially it would be easier to just get pregnant again. But, I really, honestly feel that we are supposed to be adopting. We could have a dozen kids biologically, and there would still be a hole in my heart because I believe we are being called to adopt. So, I wait and hope and trust. And wait and hope and trust. Thanks for waiting and hoping and trusting with me. When I get discouraged it's nice to know that you all are praying for our family. Your friendship means so much to me.

Love,
Jenni

P.S. While I was gone yesterday, Mark taught Tate to say "I love Mommy!" It was the perfect thing to come home to afterwards. Thanks, love, you're the best!

Friday, May 2, 2008

It's MAY!!

I love this month. It seems like the beginning of beautiful weather, vacation season, and such a great summer. September is my other favorite month. The weather is getting cooler, the leaves are changing color, and the days are getting shorter, but it's not bleak like the dead of winter. Plus, baseball playoff races are shaping up, and it's almost football season. May and September, they are my favorites.

Mark is on the softball team at church, and they had their first game last night. Mark got a hit, and scored, too! He played shortstop and did well, even though he was nervous about it. He's usually an outfielder, but they have tons of outfielders and needed someone at short. Tate did really well until about 8:45, then he lost it. In his defense, that's about 1 1/2 hours past his bedtime. At least he slept in today.

We're planning for a relaxing weekend. I've been filling out grant applications until I'm blue in the face, so we'll see how those go. Mark's going to take Tate to open gym tomorrow and I'm really excited to hear what he thinks about Tate's 'skills'.

Life is pretty normal around here. I've been good about working out these past couple of weeks, and I'm sore from my lift yesterday. It's a good sore, though. I hope you all have a great weekend!

Love,
Jenni