Our Family ~ April 2017

Our Family ~ April 2017

Thursday, September 28, 2017

Our Newest Additions and our Final Chapter- Part 1

Back in Nov of  2016, myself and Brandon were very content loving on our beautiful children. Our house was brimming with squeals and giggles and the occasional bit of sibling rivalry and loud noises. We were gearing up for the Holidays and couldn't be happier. One cold night as we snuggled in bed, we were recalling how quickly our kids were growing up and how blessed we are.

"So, Do you think we are Done now?" I asked Brandon, as I had man other times. His response was the same as it had been the last two months. " I don't really know." And for the next weeks this question would keep coming up.

Finally, 2 weeks before Celise's finalization for her adoption to be made complete, I asked again and he answered almost the same as He had before. But this time I said " If we are not sure now, then we are not done. We are not complete. " Brandon quietly responded " Yeah, We aren't done. " What followed was a week of contacting our casework to do a home study update BEFORE Celise's adoption was closed or we would have had to start the home study process all over again. That means finger prints, background checks, home visits, interview and miles of laborious paperwork. And of course, it costs so much more.  So, together we decided to give our selves 3.5 more years and if nothing happened, that would be it for us. It never felt right saying we were done and Yes people thought we were nuts ( i still think we are nuts, actually).

When I told my father that we were planning to adopt again whenever God and the Universe saw fit He said " WHY?" I said "WHY NOT? We have enough love, time, resources and the Desire is undeniably there. " " Good answers. " He chimed back.
 I asked and prayed for guidance through this process and although I had very vivid prompting and personal revelations about Celise and her birth mom, Dausi, It wasn't the same this time around.
I mean, I had peace about the whole process and that never left me once but, no clear distinct path as to how this would all come about. So, onward we went.

" How do your other kids feel about adding another child? Are you open to age, siblings, twins?" Asked Emily F,  our LFS caseworker. " More than once our children had brought up things like I can't wait to have our last kids. I feel like we are missing some children still, mom. Said Brielle. I don't think we are all here yet mom. And when asked if we would get chosen for a boy or a girl, Slade would answer "both of them, A boy and a Girl" ( oh how wise are those tiny children so close to God and his Angels) He never really deviated from saying BOTH of THEM, either.

"Yeah, Yes, we are open to children 0-3.5, siblings etc" he responded to Emily. I actually waited for B to say anything before I opened my mouth.  He felt what I did, except for all the fatherly pressure He carries on his shoulders, that I do not- weighed on Him  in that very sentence.

Over the next weeks we redid our profile book, got physicals, and filled out just a few forms this time. Uncle Josh still lived with us
 ( Gavin's birth dads younger brother) and We knew at some point He'd be looking at a place of his own to purchase. We didn't mind helping him out and love him very much but, we needed a room back before any baby could come here. Brandon also decided He didn't want to adopt again in this house. So, we looked at what was coming up for sale constantly on the CHFR site.

Slowly, over the next few months I started to receive some strong personal revelations that came to my mind and heart about this upcoming adoption. I didn't ask to know or find out details from God and the Universe- I guess you could say I was just OPEN to whatever.  I remember talking to my friends Abby, Christine and Jessica about this info I was receiving. I knew without a doubt that the next Birth mom to come into out life would Be older or of a sisterly age, closer to mine and I knew that she'd have CHILDREN- not a child but, more than 1 kiddo. I also talked about siblings and more than one with my confidants. They kept saying " You know its more than one, don't you?" And I did feel like we might adopt a sibling set but, never thought twins because, let's be Honest for second, who'd chose a family with 5 children already?

Well, we pressed on with our home search during the months to come instead of focusing on when or where or who would be coming our way.


Lot's of homes were just wonderful, that came up on the market and we were certain we'd sell this summer. As the summer approached, we were now more focused on vacations coming up and visiting with friends and family. We planned a BIG trip for late June and the bulk of July!  So, with that in mind we lined up some workers to finish projects around our home and realized we just wouldn't finish on time for the summer season to sell our home so, we put it on the back burner. Two days after We got home it was time to focus on getting ready for the UFA BIRTH PARENT RETREAT coming up. I came home to multiple projects going on in the house, my hubby converted the inside storage room to a reptile room and boxes were EVERYWHERE! I felt overwhelmed but, alas, I had to press on and get these boxes sorted and out to the shed and to focus on the retreat. My friend Christina came over to help me one day with birth mom Swag bags. She walked down my hall and into my dining room and exclaimed : " Did you See that situation with the Expectant mom who is having TWINS, on the Premier site?"

"No, I'm not re-registered with them yet. That's going to be so HARD for someone. I bet she picks someone with one or no kids. My sister has twins and I watched her juggle and struggle those first few years It was exhausting for her! But, read her bio to me just for kicks!"

" Birth mother J is expecting twins in August/Sept , has 4 children, is 36 yrs of age ( at this point my ears perked up and waves of tingles and the Spirit washed over my being) would love an open adoption with the family she chooses, is open to traditional couples, christian in theology and open to couples with children already in the home..."

I am sure Christina watched my face as it went from mere interest to OH MY GOSH! I HAVE TO APPLY FOR THIS SITUATION!" She looked at me with a puzzled look and within an hour or two I was on the phone with Isabel over at Premier. I chatted with her about it for a second and her basic response " We have MANY couples interested in the babies already with us and...( I kindly cut her off) "It's less about the babies for me and more about this Emom. Twins are going to be hard and I'm not in LA LA LAND about what it will take. I do feel it's of course very special but, reality is it's going to be tough for a long time." I told her about my spiritual impressions and how I've only applied to 2 other situations since we  went down this path again. I told her about the confirming chills and peace I had no matter what. I even told her I'd happily be at the back of the line and no need to show us until all other families could go first. We are not in a rush but, trying to just be OPEN no matter what.

At last, she decided that she'd be happy with us getting our digital profile over and yes, we'd be at the back of the HAP pool/list what-have-you and our profile would not be shown immediately and I was totally fine with it. Whatever is meant to be, will happen. I went To bed that night with peace. Our digital profile pages were in her hands and the rest was not up to me.


 And luckily the agency knew us quite well because we had just adopted Celise through them 16 short months ago and we had referred a ton of couples and families to them! So, we had a small sliver of a chance but, like we said were in no RUSH at all...


Wednesday, June 28, 2017

GO with Your GUT...

...When picking your path to find the missing pieces of your HEART!

I am asked quite often " Who should we pick for an agency/ attorney etc?" "What do you think about fostering to adopt?" " What worked for your family?"

All legitimate questions and guess what- the ANSWER is different for each person and family!


Gavin at 5 days old after placement
I wish I had a rote answer- it might be easier that way but, honestly, my advice is to SEARCH out the agency, facilitator, attorney, foster program and ponder on what you are being led to. If you pray- do that too- a lot! With our last adoption, I found the agency on the Internet and then I asked a colleague of mine what He thought ( he has been working in the adoption field for 30+ years) about this particular agency. He had great things to say about ethics and good practice of adoption laws. I researched them more, prayed about it, and reached out to them to see if they'd even be interested in a family like ours.  They reached back before we were even done with our home study and i filled out a bunch of forms and got on their waiting list ( sigh) for 3 months. We were off the waiting list about 3 weeks before our home study was approved and it was zipped over to Michelle our new case worker over at Premier Adoptions. I sent over  our books the very next day. I also, relied heavily on God's timing. This process cannot be rushed but, sometimes it is- and for good reason like with Brielle's adoption.

Here's a few Tid Bits on things to be aware of/ Advice when choosing an agency/attorney:

~ Pick with your HEAD and your HEART- do not be swayed by a Lower cost option if you heart is calling you somewhere else. God and the Universe will line up the funds for you to bring the right child home and to support the Expectant parents. Use effort in obtaining these funds and be strict in your spending as you are on the saving path but, don't let $$$$$ steer you away if you feel RIGHT about an attorney or agency.

one of our favorite books about adoption
~ IGNORE the People who are negative about An Agency ( unless there are more than 10). But first,
LISTEN to their complaints. See if they are Selfish or Legit. Selfish complaints are things like " All you care about is birth moms not adoptive couples!" -which is untrue most times but, you have to consider your source. A disgruntled person who had a failed match or placement may want to scream out how this agency is so bad when, it's actually the Emoms choice to place or not to place. You can't be MAD at caseworkers for Her decision. And for that Matter- its HER choice- not the couples choice to make.

"They only want your money at ____ Agency!" guess what? That's usually wrong too. Legit agencies are focusing on CARE for all involved and that requires a lot of TIME and often funds to support birth parents/expectant parents pre and post placement.  Research before you spout off things.  And LISTEN if MANY say that a particular agency is being unethical/ extorting couples- promising one set of fees and then sticking you with more bills post placement- LISTEN to your voice of reason and use caution. Generally speaking- most GOOD agencies will have many happy clients and families but, will always have a few whose experiences were not what they had hoped for. maybe it wasn't the right fit or right timing or they truly weren't meant to be placed with that agency.  Sometimes an agency is just the one doing your home study and sometimes they match you in a  few weeks- it's contrasting for everyone.

~FIND Agencies who only ASK for an APP fee  UPFRONT and no other $$$$$ until MATCH ( if your home study and training are already completed that is and if it feels right). Check them all out and see if one speaks to you.
 Reputable APP only Agencies are
  : Adoption Choices of Colorado, Premier Adoptions, Thurman Law Group, and some who work with Legally free children like the Adoption Exchange.
IF and ONLY IF this route feels right- go forward. I'm a huge proponent of this style of agency but, it's not right for everyone. Steer clear of facilitators if you are already with an agency as well. Often times you are paying 5-18k on top of agencies fees to make you a match- if you can afford it, it feels right and it's legal in your state- go for it. But, be on your guard with Facilitators. Also, your agency should DISCOUNT your costs with them if they did not make the match. so, you should have some savings there too.

~INTERVIEW AGENCIES/Attorney- call them all, meet them all if you wish and chat with REAL people to get a sense of what they are like. Not all shoes fit all people. Same with Agencies. Be candid- do not put on a front with them and ponder on what Direction you should take.

~ UPFRONT COST AGENCIES you can TRUST- Many Agencies require 5-10k or more upfront or post adoption training. It's not because they are greedy or anything like that, It's because they advertise a lot and actually pay their staff. Happy employees work better when a consistent check can be made out to them. Can you imagine only getting paid when a placement happens and what that would look like? It would change the face of adoption into a HUNT for expectant moms in dire circumstances- this would be Horrible b/c no one wishes an unplanned pregnancy on anyone- ever. it's Hard enough as is.  ASK for a list of costs and where funds are going and how payments can be spread out if a quick placement happens. Often, they will be happy to work out an arrangement. Our first placement happen in 10 days so we spaced out our agency fees over 4 or 5 months. ETHICAL agencies will disclose all costs and give you an expected number of costs for birth parents needs on a case by case basis. DO NOT proceed if they won't disclose it as well. And in my Opinion- placement fees should not exceed 35/38k EVER!!! That's just bogus but, sometimes they do and some people are happy to pay 40-60k in adoption costs. Likely the majority of that  ( 20-30k) is lining the pocket of a greedy attorney/agency. and likely the other 20 is actually for birth parent expenses and overhead/staff/advertising.
Also ask about wait times/ stats on how many placements per year, what form of advertising they do and if they have socials for their adoptive families and support systems in place.

Laura & Jerad are hoping to Adopt
AGAIN- go with your GUT and Follow your heart-

GREAT FULL COST AGENCIES that ask for HALF upfront do this to make that Big number a bit more attainable. It's hard for most to write a HUGE check all at once and then sit and wait to me matched.

REPUTABLE FULL AGENCIES  ARE : Adoption Options, Adoptions By Heart, Colorado Christian Services, Lutheran Family Services, Creative Adoptions and Lifetime Adoptions. MOST of these agencies can just do you home study as well and you can independently apply to other out of state agencies but, you must know they are vested in the clients that they serve and who have done training and such with them so, don't expect them to bend over backwards if you are just there to get your home study done. These agencies have reputations to uphold and DO put Expectant Parents FIRST - as all should do, and educate these women about options and choice- not pushing adoption as the only choice on them. Adoption can not happen with our Emoms and Dads so, cut them slack and put yourself in the caseworkers shoes or the Emoms shoes for a minute before you get all Huffed up.  If a HAP is calling to get an answer to a simple question that is bugging her and the caseworker is on the line with an Emom who is struggling to pay rent or get evicted- who should she take care of FIRST? Feel my drift?


THE Emom and the BABY COME FIRST and Please check with your agency and make sure that Post placement services are  in order for Her after care. Support, resources, counseling and the like are beyond necessary.


ALL IN ALL- there's no Adoption Cookie Cutter- GO WITH YOUR GUT and FOLLOW YOUR HEART!

Sunday, May 21, 2017

10 Stupid things People do to Mess up their Profiles...

Hey Hopeful Adoptive Couples!
 You know, I'm totally FOR you adopting a baby or child, right? Good, because I want you to take some POINTERS from this Momma who has adopted (or has been matched) 3 times in under 6 months! First adoption was 10 days, second was just about 6 months and third was 2 months till we were matched and 9 weeks later CeCe was born. ( learn more about our adventures by checking out our pages or our PODCAST on the Adoption Now Radio Show)!

SO, I'm giving these pointers as a play on this awesome Dr. Laura Book ( there is also a MEN's version)  mostly, so I don't have to keep repeating myself to unsuspecting and under-educated new adoptive hopefuls.  These things come from a 11.5 year devotion to adoption advocacy, parenting, working with birth parents and running the non-profit for adoption which is heavily involved in birth parent advocacy and support for over 8 years. ( FSA AND UFA)

*disclaimer: no two expectant parents are alike- all will be looking for someone or something different and there are NO guarantees that if you follow these pointers that you will "get a baby" within the time frames that worked for us.


10. MAKE  PROMISES/ TALK ABOUT THE FUTURE - 
unless you are fortune teller/ intuitive please refrain from going in to much depth about what you will and won't do as parents/ with you relationship with Expectant mom etc. It's just bad form- Tell them what you HAVE done already. Proof is what you have already accomplished! It's obviously okay to say a few things about your future plans just not in an abundance. Especially when you have no idea as to what her life situation is or her hopes/dreams for her baby.

9. BE TOO VAGUE- Saying "We love Ice Cream and We love the Outdoors" does not give the reader much insight or specifics on who you are so Be SPECIFIC and say" Mint chip in a waffle cone is my way to beat a HOT day after a long hike in the Rocky Mountains of Colorado"  get my drift?

8. REPEAT TOO OFTEN- no wants to here that you love the beach and your dog on every other page or that your child will be cherished or I like Tacos repeated- so just go through your book and look at your letter and your closing page and everything in between. this is your chance to represent your true self in every word! Be Creative! Make your words Matter


7. LEAD W/ YOUR INFERTILITY- ugh, this happens too much- Remember who your Reader is- a woman or a couple facing unplanned pregnancy, a victim of rape, abuse, a younger or older woman who is finding her self in this very tough position of "Searching for Parents for HER
baby" So, although you want to share your heartache and story- save it for a later page or better yet- write that you will discuss it further in person, if she wishes to know. It's totally such a touchy subject but, for once- just put yourself in her mind for a second- your glamorous life spread out on a beautiful book while your opening words are about how you "have pcos and miscarried 3 times or how you spent 40k and 8 years you will never see again" is jut not a way to start off and It's sad/ negative so START with engaging information about who YOU ARE!

6. BRAG TOO MUCH/ TALK ABOUT MONEY-
It's wonderful you have two boats and go to Hawaii every year because the Expectant mom is looking for a blissful , fun life for sure but, after like 6 pages of all vacations and THINGS or too much of your giant house- it yet again, feels intimidating and maybe, just maybe she can't envision herself in your wild and fun life ( or her child for that matter) seems too Good for me or too good to be true. And NEVER talk about money- ever.  EXPERIENCES are wonderful to share THINGS not so much ( pictures of your cars are not necessary guys!)

5. BE A POSER- Too many posed pictures and no candid pics are a no-go! If everything is so posed and perfect all the time- it feels too intimidating or like your hiding somethings ( like your organic true selves) So put in those phone pictures or ones where you aren't directly making eye contact but interactions are happening. ACTION photos are even better- show us your wake board skills or your FLIPS or your tumbling playful selves. Here's one I love in our home just cooking with my oldest!




4.TALK ABOUT YOUR BABY- so yeah, this child is HER baby- not yours until papers are signed so, do not refer to the baby as YOURS  like " we will love our child as though it was our own"- gag me please now! And BTW you better love this child like a million times more -lol. And do not call her a birth mom in your profile- she is not a birth mom until the act of placing happens. She is a woman and mother just not a birth mother yet. It's a title all birth moms hold very sacred.

3. NOT CROP YOUR PHOTOS - GET CLOSE UP!
Real connections start with your eyes and your smiles! LET'S SEE them ( just not every picture needs to be posed)- here's a GREAT example off of parentprofiles.com ( and yes they are available- so cute!) 

2. HAVE A FUZZY/ UNPROFESSIONAL OPENING PIC OF YOU-
Worst thing ever - don't do it- even if you do look perfect in that dress you love- if its not clear or looks dull- save it for another spot in your slides/book/profile. Set up a quick photo shoot with your local photographer for your adoption profiles pics/ head shots- spend the money - its worth it.
And might i add- MAKE IT POP and not like everyone else out there you see!

1. RUIN YOUR BIRTH PARENT LETTER WITH THESE SENTENCES/Statements:

"Dear Birth Mother," - she is not a birth mom until placement. As my good birth mom friends said- some women in crisis have not even admitted to themselves that they are pregnant, let alone placing their baby yet. Address your letter as if you were speaking to a friend. Suggestions were " Hello there! Hi, We are the____, Dear Expectant parents, Dear Expectant mom, or whatever you are led to!


" I can't imagine what you must be going through"- DUH your not in her shoes so just don't say it.

"I know this is such a hard decision"- another one _ really? you think so?

 " Words can't Express how grateful we are that you are looking at our profile book/ Considering us" _ everyone says this and you are RIGHT words can't express this- at all. so don't try. They know you will be grateful. But, a E mom is not "grateful" that she is in this position and having to make this choice at all. This wasn't Her plan so, although you are grateful- and you mean well, it's like you are saying " I'm grateful you got unexpectedly pregnant and will have to rip your heart out now" UGH too much. 

"this is such a difficult time for you" .- Uh, Yeah, I got that already!!!

 "We know that you probably feel a lot of different emotions right now, ( how'd you guess?) not all of them may be so easy. ( yup) Although we have never met you, we just want to say, you are special and amazing. " ( um, you haven't met me so how do you know that?- I personally am at fault of this one- although. i do feel and have felt very connected long before i ever met our three birth moms, it just comes off sometimes as insincere and off putting. )

 Is that what you really meant to say?
" We want to first say thank you for considering an adoption plan. We realize that it takes a great deal of courage, love and selflessness to make this decision" ( everyone is saying these same things- and YES it doesn't take courage but, guess what- part of why someone chooses to place has nothing to do with adoptive parents- it has to do with where an EM is at in her life and situations not concerning AP's- frankly!)

" If you choose to place your baby with us, we will always be grateful that you trusted us with the most precious gift that life has to offer. You would make our dreams of becoming parents come true. ( um, every adoptive couple feels this way- it's not unique to you and don't assume every reader will want to hear that their baby is a "GIFT" like something you can register for at Nordstrom or Target. Yes, there is an act of giving involved but it's called PLACING a child with another not Giving a Child away.)

 SO these are the TOP 10 Stupid things People do to mess Up their Profiles! Now YOU are informed and can write your letters/ profiles and all things geared towards expectant parents with more LOVE, understanding and clarity.
 

As Always, Love you all so much

* And I hope you find your DREAMS will COME true in and out of Adoption. Also, Remember to Pray for guidance as you write these very important words ( or meditate to mother Earth- whatever floats your boat!)

~CC

TELL US WHAT YOU THINK and Birth moms - any thing I'm missing???? Comment!

Friday, May 12, 2017

Picking and Choosing- Destiny or Desire

I'm going to try and NOT be mean to my own kind here ( adoptive couples/hopefuls) but, I want to give you a bit of RAW advice. It's nothing new or something that hasn't been said before by someone else- It's just time for a reminder- a reminder to your HEART...

START with your HEART, listen to it, find a peaceful place to meditate and listen to your spirit as it connects to your heart and enlightens your mind on  this somewhat of a heavy topic...

WHY are YOU PICKING and CHOOSING, When GOD and the UNIVERSE are trying to line things UP for you to be blessed with a child?

Here's a bit of what I WROTE for Premier Adoptions Newsletter published back in February...
"
To Hopeful Adoptive Couples- I have been in your shoes- I have suffered 5 miscarriages, 2 almost adoptions and brought back a foster baby. This is a tough spot to be in but, It’s WORTH IT! Every time you think you are losing Hope- turn it over to that Higher Power. Open yourself and your heart up as BIG and as freely as you can. I encourage you to check over your  “Wish List”- every so often and make some changes where you can. Don’t expect that God and the Universe are just going to grant you exactly what you want, when you want it. You need to be at least Open enough to Receive what They have in store for you.

goldbox.jpg   Imagine a box all packaged and taped up with a gold ribbon and beautiful paper adorning each side of it. This box is perfect but, IT’S CLOSED! Now try to put something in this box without opening it or messing up the wrapping. Guess what? Yep, you figured it out- you can’t! This box is like your heart and soul. If you keep it wrapped up and safe, you limit the amount that you let in and in turn, actually keep goodness and blessings from coming into it, or coming to you. Look over your profile and your list and ponder on how important some of those things are. How much more vulnerable can you be? How big can you open your heart this month, the Month of LOVE? Do not let Fear hold you back from changing a few things around in your life. Do not the let lack of education stop you from checking that scary box on what you will and won’t be open to. Research it and imagine that if you were biologically going to have a child, and that child came to this Earth with this issue or detail- would you still love and care for the baby? This may be a lot to ask of you but, it is in our Stretching and Bending that we find the truest Growth and Joy! And P.S.- I love you all & Hang in there!"

So, I often here that when people meet their child for the first time- it feels like Destiny! What a grand feeling of connection that is so Meant to be. The Heavens worked together to bring this amazing family together. How incredible and GUESS WHAT? THEY ARE RIGHT! Every single time with our three adoptions- it felt so Powerful, undeniable, that This child , this birth mom, all of us were brought Together for this Higher purpose- LOVE- the love of a child we will all share. 

Why does DESIRE get in the way of Destiny?

Often our Desires are GOOD things but, at times they lead us into places we shouldn't be- into selfish temptations or endeavors we need to now, find our way out of. It all depends on where our desires are coming from- a Place of LOVE/ SERVICE/LIGHT/GOODNESS or a place of FEAR/SELFISHNESS/DARKNESS/HURT etc. for more- look at these LATIN roots of the word . 

SO assess where your desires are coming from- and if it's NOT a place of love you might want to face some hard truths of why you feel this way. 
How is it playing into your PICKING and CHOOSING? How is this FEAR or greed getting in the way of your DESTINY?

Take more time and sit awhile on this. Work through your scary dark places in your heart and start
making room- room for light and love to enter in. I PROMISE YOU- God and the UNIVERSE will guide your path so much more than you ever thought. And remember when a situation that is presented to you seems not right for you- you can always say no. It may just not be the one for you and your family but, at least you are open enough to be receiving these opportunities. 

I truly LOVE the work and guidance I am a tiny part of in this world. You adoptive couples, birth parents and adoptees truly have such a HUGE place in my Own Heart. It's filled with love so much that I can't hold back on pouring it out and sometimes helping in the constructive criticism ways as well. Sorry of any of these words sting a bit- if they do- consider re-reading this or pondering at a later date. Love is always the ROOT of my words ( unless otherwise noted)

Best of luck and all Blessings to all!  


Wednesday, May 10, 2017

BTG

This amazing Gal I Know has been a friend for about 5 years now! BIG TOUGH GIRL! Please consider donating or purchasing some cool swag for your adoption peeps!
She runs an incredible company called

Check out her whole site and her goal of Lifetime Healing!

Did I Mention she is also a birth mother , mother of two and married to a big teddy bear hunk?
YEP! She owns it where ever she is! Love her realness and kind heart! She is a woman of GOD too:)



Thank you Ashley for Supporting adoption and healing and Owning Your Story. You are a life changer in Every way!

Monday, May 8, 2017

Adoption Now Podcast!

I recently had the pleasure of going on the Radio show/ Podcast show Adoption Now, with April Fallon.



She is a STELLAR busy adoptive momma of 4 with her own unique stories too!

I got to share a good bit about our stories and I LOVED it. The only regrets that I have are that I feel like I didn't get to tell Celise's story enough ( we ran out of time ) and we left details out of Brielle's story too.
Brandon listened with me last week as we were folding clothes and said " I should have told this story with all the details!" I agree that He is a terrific talker and I think You may here a podcast from Brandon himself, soon ( cross your fingers). His POV is a bit different than mine and as an adoptee He has very different experiences. Also, some of our story will not be shared- its those intimate details that stay between birth parents and adoptive parents. It's not secret info, its just sacred to us. During birth and placement-  is such an extra special time and we give an incredible investment of love in this process.  Bonds are formed that make us want to have our own special details that only We know about and will rarely share with others.

Any who- Enjoy listening HERE and check out all the other people's stories too!



Friday, April 14, 2017

Upcoming UFA Events

As you know I help run the local CO chapter of United For Adoption.  I do not make any money but, get paid in positive energy and love! Helping families, expectant moms, birth parents and adoptees connect and have a sense of community is so needed and a HUGE part of my heart!

Here's what on the Horizon for MAY...




Here's this YEARS Birth Parent Retreat too!
If you are reading this and want more information on any of these events- leave a comment of message me!

Adoption support and community is so important to all involved and we are blessed to be surrounded
by many adoptive families here in Evergreen, where we live. In my kids' school classes there are at least three-5 adopted kids in EACH class- its pretty awesome and pretty normalized here. 
Have e wonderful SPRING!

til Next time!

Thursday, April 6, 2017

In All Fairness...

Over the last couple of days, I have been talking with different Agencies and attorneys and I needed some time to reflect upon all this new information I've been processing. I've been talking to ones in the East and MAN, they do things very differently over there and I'm kind of taken aback- like WAY BACK- 50 yrs or so... WHY? Because one agency told me they are TRADITIONAL meaning they are not FOR open adoptions at all. In Fact, you never meet the expectant mom before she has the baby and you don't come to the hospital or anything until papers are signed.

In my heart, that's not right- how would you NOT want to form a relationship with the woman who is choosing you to parent Her child? And in that sentence, I realized that back even 15-20 years ago- most women didn't even have the choice to meet the couples hoping to adopt. That just wasn't the way they did things.

Any who, now things are different and We have the choice to build relationships if that's what the expectant mom wants . And right there is where My heading comes from! IF THAT'S WHAT THE BIRTH MOM/PARENTS WANT...

SO, in all Fairness to the future child/ren we adopt- WE MUST choose the side of love and OPENNESS with whomever chooses our family. I'm sure this will be something they want too- it will be more natural and not forced but may look differently than what we have now.. I can't have my three kids now getting visits ( however they may look) and have one or two kids getting no visits/letters/ packages/ chatting on the phone with them etc. My kid's birth parents are all unique and different and we love them- as they are and of course, hope for only the best in their own lives. I'm blessed every day that they choose to communicate and love on the kids and our whole family. Every visit is treasured, even if it's short. Even if it's just asking each other lots of questions or a quick bite to eat or visit at the Park. Not every vacation is going to be like Peru or Hawaii together but, Each is important and I can't deny one kid that while the others have it.



I've watched from a distance my friends kid have horrible depression b/c she watches her brothers' birth mom come and visit and her birth mom hardly ever sees or calls her. Its too hard on a Kid and MORE LOVE IS ALWAYS BETTER. But, of course if the birth parent needs to step back for a while- then of course it will happen. We all heal in different ways and times of our journey.

 SO, I will not Willingly and knowingly go into a closed or semi-open ( meaning only pictures/letters once a year) adoption. It's just not gonna happen. WE love our kid's birth parents, cousins, aunts, uncles , grandmas & grandpas WAY TOO MUCH! Totally blessed by you all!!!!

PS- we had a visit with Kara last week for 3 days, Jessica for two days and in FEB had a trip to Peru with Dustin and Gma Tammy. And if you didn't know- Josh ( uncle josh who is Dustins little brother- lives with us currently)

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Being Vulnerable

Oh My Word- this has to be one of the hardest things for most of us to do. Like how often do you meet someone you want to impress and just unload all things private and sacred in your life on them? Practically Never! The same goes for Being In the Adoption community/world. It's a HARD space full of judgement on all sides. And most of those things we all judge each other on, are irrelevant in nature!

Who Cares if you are a stay at home or work at home mom or if you cook dinner ever single night for your kids with 3 different tastes. Who even cares if the expectant mom is living on a diet of kool-aid and Cheetos.  The THING I've learned through adopting 3 times is that YOU have to LET things GO that don't matter and you have to LOVE someone where they are at! You can't wish someone better or change the fact that the Adoptive parents let the kid read Goosebumps at age 9 when you think they are too young. Just Stop it.

Let's focus on Building each other UP and seeing the best in one another- even when we aren't at our best.  Prime Example: A friend of mine who is just looking into adoption made a comment to me about the circumstance of an EM who is... ( how do i say this nicely;/) an Escort. My friend continued to berate this womans' choices that led her to the place where she is at ( placing baby for adoption soon)
She criticized her lifestyle choices and said she didn't deserve all this help ( birth mom expenses) when who knows what she has been doing with her life, baby's health might be etc. It was tough truth coming from my friend but, not what we should be focusing on.

Instead she could have said something like this " Although, I'm opposed to her lifestyle choices, I'm glad she sees the choice to place as the best option for this baby- what a Strong will this woman has to think of the baby first and try and get out of the occupation she is in. I'm happy to help out a woman in need with some financial help and happy to apply to adopt the baby , if she sees me as an option. " 

Godly Love, is something the World over- lacks! When we see other's as God sees them- it's simply easier to Love our fellow brothers and sisters, without judgment.
Let's Face it- we will never see completely eye to Eye with everyone. I don't even see eye to eye with my hubby on everything. The Married couples who say they never ever fight are either lying or one is repressing their own voice to appease the other and not being true at all times. Yet, we still need to be WISE with our sharp tongues and be able to think before we speak as we share our opinions, emotions, views and experiences.

SO, Here we are- Being vulnerable to ALL THE CRITICISM of the World again. I know it's coming and i will pull down the shades to IGNORE the crap out of it. Because the RIGHT people who are FULL of LOVE and real with themselves- won't sit there and judge us.  YES, we do have 5 kids, YES, life is a bit chaotic at times but it's nothing we can't handle together. Chaos only lasts for so long. Dishes can stay in the sink over night and every LIVES! Surprise-  You are a GOOD PERSON- YOU - the PERSON reading this POST! Yep, you are DIVINE, WONDERFUL and BEAUTIFULLY MADE to shine in this world like no one else can!  AND YOU can BE Vulnerable as you Share your Heart with the World.

I won't listen to haters and i will be TRUE to who I am and who I am Becoming through Christ and His Atonement. So, Here's some vulnerable facts/ info that you may or may not like...

I hate cleaning ( its downright sucks) and my house is NEVER perfect ( unless friends are coming over and true friends know i have a counter full of clutter almost every other time they stop by) BUT, i still have to do some of it and I HIRE out help- so what, right?

I am currently working on my whole Health right now. My body is NOT where i want it to be and i need to drop some weight ( like 12lbs ish) It hasn't been the same since i did the hormones to try to Nurse Celise. It was worth the effort for bonding that first couple weeks but, the hormones screwed my metabolism and hypothalamus up big time. I've lost 6/7 already but it took 6 months and I'm undoing this mess i created in my body now. ( hormone balancing therapy to come) I'm not lazy- i work out about 4-6 times a week and i LOVE being outdoors - tomorrow I'm snowboarding) So, i won't be trying to nurse our next adopted baby/child either. My kids received donated Breast milk for 4-6 months each and i use formula- hope you don't judge me for either of those.

I actually HATE receiving GIFTS unless you know i need/want them or they are extremely heartfelt. I always have. BUT, i love GIVING GIFTS- so odd, right? And i like them to be purposeful and needed as well as cute when possible!

KONA, HAWAII ( I freaking LOVE the OCEAN)
And I cannot wait for Summer- I HATE homework and being in charge of helping our kids to get cap like that done ( unless its fun like crafty and dressing up for a character or writing a story etc) But, I do it anyways or get a tutor.

What about YOU? leave a comment- Tell me something about you we might not know!
( comments will be viewed then approved to share! )






Until Next time- GO AND LOVE YOURSELF AS YOU ARE and BE OPEN AND VULNERABLE- we all need authentic, honest, raw truth with ourselves and our friends/ community. Be THAT!

Going to conquer my mountain of dishes now- wish me luck!


Monday, March 27, 2017

WHAT A DAY!


Our Court Day was Epic! Of course a few things
had to be changed up... like our judge, our courtroom and a few people getting lost in the changes but, overall. It went well! The kids got to answer ?'s and it was unlike any other court date we have had. I hope and pray our kids will remember this and retell Celise about the Day she became an Official Christian Family Member!


Here's a CUTE shoot i did of all her sweet little rolls, creases and bit parts too. It's so important to enjoy every day as kids grow so quickly and life on Earth is short.

As a mom, i feel like I'm becoming the Mom on The Goldbergs ( if you haven't seen this show- it's hilarious and about the 80's90's). I want to KISS and snuggle my schmoopies until they can't take it any more. I know why my mom always wanted a hug , a kiss a time with just me- because time is fleeting! In a blink- they are off to college and starting families of their own ( well not quiet a blink but, you feel me, right?). 

And Now there are only 5 short weeks until our little CeCe Girl turns 1! Oh the planning and preparing is commencing and ordering all her sweet things and creating a Fuss is happening everywhere. I can't believe it!

As for her birth parents, Dausi, is doing well in Her Center in SJ and learning a lot about how amazing she really is, free from her vices. She is learning of God's love for her and gaining some great friends while doing it. It's not all roses and rainbows but, she is doing the best she can and we are proud of her!  Eljay ( formerly known as Alan) is doing well too! He and S are looking for place to call their own to raise A in and she is such a sweet peach. I totally look forward to seeing both Dausi, her mom, Eljay and his family this summer on our long road trip. Each experience brings us closer and we are growing step by step and learning about each other as we do! Eljay has a job and is working on an undergrad school program  as well. We are so excited for all of them!

We get to text and talk with Eljay and fam usually every other week-ish and with Dausi, we can just send letters and packages right now but, soon we will get to chat on the phone again. I called her center and begged for us to do facetime on Celise's birthday so, i think we will get to do that too!


Well, on top of that - we have been enjoying Snowboarding, playing outside, digging and planting of 
flowers, finishing house projects and currently enjoying spring break! The kids are excited to play with friends, go to the zoo and just veg out a bit more!


And all our goings on can be found on our FB pages so check out our sidebars for those links!


Till Next time
~CC

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

Almost at the finish line

Sheesh! It's seriously going by so quickly and I can't believe Celise is 9 months now and we had a few hiccups in the court doc process ( nothing negative- we had a judge who wanted a few things the agency thought they wouldn't need)and now in a week- we will be Adding CeCe to the official Christian Clan roster! Woot Woot!

Enjoy some pics from the last couple of months of this growing beauty!

at Disneyland! Nov 2016

5 months

the Cast of Alice in Wonderland

At Santa's boots

Christmas Eve night 2016

9 months old

Garrett & CeCe Buddies forever!