December 30, 2015

A 3 month old Andie Girl

Once my babies turn 3 months I want time to slow down!!!
The first 12 weeks are so hard, tiring and such a blur that you aren't aware of what is up and what is down.
But some magical button is pushed at 12 weeks and life is manageable and you start showering  again.
And now that things have mellowed out some, we want to freeze time to take it all in.
We want to remember everything!

We love having Andie in our family.
She is such a happy baby!

She has discovered those fingers and puts her thumb into her mouth.
I love when she brings both hands together under her chin and just holds them there.
It so sweet.

She is becoming a big fan of dad. 
I'm not sure who is loving on who....

Andie is doing awesome on tummy time.
Every night during Miles bedtime routine she lays on the quilt grammy made and plays.

(oh that face!!!)

She loves her play mat, and cracks me up every time I check on her...she's always in a new spot and new position.
Andie has started to roll from her tummy onto her back.
Its not a daily thing but it has started...

She is pure joy.
She coos and gurgles when you talk to her.
She is so quick to smile back at you.
She started using those hands and grabbing for toys...(she made that discovery on the airplane returning from Boston. I had no baby toys in the diaper bag yet, so a wipes container it was)
She loves her pacifier!
The girl can scream so loud when she wants that thing and we regret every second of it if we forget one!!!(we now pack 2-3 pacifiers anywhere we go)
She is the most happy when she is fed and well rested...(aren't we all?)
She shoves all her blankets into her mouth.
She is a HUGE spewer!
No really, she doesn't just spit up...she opens her mouth and everything comes up and out and down.
Lots of outfit changes, burp cloths, and laundry with this one.

Happy 3 Months Andie Girl
we love you!

November 29, 2015


It was no surprise to me when I asked Miles what he wanted to be for Halloween and his answer was 
 The boy loves them!
So I started thinking what goes with a frog...
then it clicked...
So here is the darling PRINCESS and the FROG.

 Our church put together a Trunk or Treat where we had dinner, dessert and the kids got to trunk or treat in the parking lot.
Miles and Andie won "best couple".


(Party on Wayne)

These two boys are buddies!
They love to play together and are very sweet.
This picture cracks me up because it was herding cats just to get them to take a picture and then THIS..... 

After the trunk or treat we went to our friends house.
We let these kids go trick or treating together.
Miles, Tyson and Adele stuck together thee entire time running up to each door.
The big kids just took off. 
Miles is a pretty shy, timid kid.... but not when it came to getting candy.
He'd push his way to the front ensuring his pumpkin bucket got candy.
I was cracking up.
Silly boy!

Happy Halloween 2015.
I cant wait to see what is in store for next year....

November 26, 2015

Back at Disney

It's past midnight and I am still up waiting for my laundry to be done so I can put clothes in the dryer.
So while I wait, I thought I should blog and attempt at catching up.

A few weeks ago we headed back to Disneyland so that Miles could see the Park decorated for Halloween. 
This was our first time back since last spring.
Miles was so excited to get back and get on the rides.
He absolutely adores his daddy and was so happy he was there with us this time. 

Miles driving the car on Autopia.
It is hilarious to drive with him.
You are literally all over the map when he drives and may have whip lash after. 

Tea cups never disappoint.

Andie did great.
She slept most of the day and hung out in her stroller.
I don't know what it is about The Casey Jr. Train that is a MUST.
It just makes everyone happy.

 It was a perfect day with hardly any lines.
Dumbo was hardly any wait.
This is one of Miles very favorites.
This picture just makes my heart happy.
I'm not sure who is happier.

We ate dinner at a Restaurant that would allow us to see the Parade easier.

We ended with yummy Ice Cream and called it a night.

Oh Disneyland, you never disappoint!
We can't wait to go back.

November 6, 2015

Andies Adoption Story Part III

We got into St. George at 2:00am, we were so tired. 
When our alarm was going off at 6:00 I saw that there was a text from our birth mom that she sent at 3:00am. 
She said she was barely dilated to a 3 and to take our time.
So, we went back to bed.
We had a slow morning (I will take full responsibility for the slowness), mom and I went through all the baby things she had bought and made.
Mid morning we finally got into the car and waved goodbye to my boy who kind of looked confused as to why we were leaving him.

We were only in the car an hour when our birth mom texted and asked where we were.
She said she was at a 5 and that the doctor thought she'd be pushing by 5pm(ish)
Our GPS said we'd be there at 3:00--we had time!
30-40 minutes later she texted again saying she was at a 7.
Then 30 minutes later she texted that she was at a 9!
I was freaking out.
I was texting our family and friends dying that we were not there yet.
Then we didn't hear from her.
We were getting updates frequently and then NOTHING.....

Then we got the following text:

 We were dying!!!

She sent us this picture.
 I just stared at her for hours as we drove as fast as we could,
and I fell in love.

We got to the hospital and rushed up to the labor and delivery floor.
Our birth mom was still in her delivery room and they let us in to see her.
We hugged our birth mom and she quickly informed us that Andie was in the nursery.

Miss Andie girl had fluid in her lungs, a fast respiratory rate and a fever.
They wanted her on antibiotics for 48 hours while they ran cultures and wanted to watch her closely for the fluid and breathing.
Our birth mom kicked us out pretty fast telling us to get to the nursery and to be with Andie. 
(words cannot describe how amazing she is) 
We were introduced to the nurses and they gave us a wrist band.

We went down the hall to the nursery where we flashed our wrist band and walked into a quiet, peaceful room with a blonde baby sleeping in it.
My heart melted.
I was finally meeting the little girl we had be waiting for for the last 2.5 years.

After her second dose of antibiotics we got to hold her.

She was tiny.
She was perfect.
She was heaven sent.
I was praying her little spirit would understand this complex situation and know I was her mommy.
I prayed she would respond to my voice.
I prayed she would be at peace with her placement into my arms.

We spent 5 days in the nursery where we watched her wean off the IV machine, eat more, wake up and work out all the extra fluid in her lungs. 
We loved the nurses and staff who made two extra chairs for us as comfortable as possible.
During the 5 day stay there were ups and downs.
I will leave that out of the story for respect for our birth mothers family.
But ultimately we know it is the mothers decision to place her child for adoption and no one else.
Despite any of the downs, we always felt peace and knew Andie was meant to be in our family.
 Every.Single.Time we spoke with our birth mom she reaffirmed her decision and told us how confident she was.
We just had to endure.

The night before our birth mom was to go in front of the judge to relinquish her rights my heart was sad.  
Even though this is what she wanted, what she chose, what she thought about for 9 months, my momma heart felt for her. 
She was a mom who loved her baby.

Thursday morning we kissed Andie goodbye and left for the courthouse where her birth mother would sign the adoption papers.
We waited outside a court room quietly wondering what was going to happen. 
The attorney called our birth mother away to go over some things.
While she was gone,
Our birthmothers mom told me it was calm at their house that morning and that she was at peace.
Finally, there was peace in their souls.
Prayers were answered.

The attorney returned for one second and told us the judge was ready for them.
So we again waited outside the courtroom.
Wondering what was going to be the outcome.
Was she really going to sign?

Eventually the big brown doors opened and our birth mother walked out and congratulated us.
I just hugged her!
Then it was our turn to stand in front of the judge.
I felt small and vulnerable, so I just cried as the judge told us how strong and brave our birth mother was and how beautiful adoption was.

We went back to the hospital to be with OUR baby.
She was really ours!

Friday morning Andie decided to finally gain weight, wake up and be perfect.
She was able to be discharged.
She just needed to be ours before she could show off.
We called our birth mother to tell her the exciting news and asked her to join us for a while.
We sat alone in a room together, the three of us and baby Andie.
She held Andie and told us all the reasons why she placed Andie for adoption.
She told us what life she wanted for her.
She told us that Andie was ours and was always supposed to be.
I sat there and cried.
Lots of tears in adoption I tell ya. 
We had an amazing, very personal conversation with her that I will always cherish.

After we were discharged we went to lunch with our birthmother and her mom.
We had a great meal and were just waiting for the phone call to go back to court where we would stand in front of the judge again but with Andie.
We got word to be at the court in an hour and that it was time to wrap things up with lunch.
I got Andie out of her car seat and handed her over to her birth mom.
We took pictures and my heart just ached for her.
She looked at her baby with smiles and sadness.
She kissed her one more time and gave her to me.
I cried and cried and hugged her.
We wiped our tears and walked to our separate cars.
We got in the car and I immediately texted her "I love you" and then cried again.
I know what a mothers love is now and my sensitivity towards her just hurt.
I called my mom and tried to explain that I felt like I was taking her baby-- but I wasn't, but I was, but I really wasn't.
I felt guilt, but joy.
I was just a ball of all sorts of emotions.
We drove to the court house once more and were presented to the judge.
She met Andie and we signed papers alone with one witness in the room.
No one knew where we were or what we were doing.
But we were in Utah adding to our family, experiencing emotions that we didn't know existed, we were growing as a couple, and having life experiences added to our resume.

This was the plan all along.
This was what needed to happen to allow our family to grow.
I wouldn't trade any of it.
Adoption is hard.
It is messy.
But it is beautiful.
It is selfless.
It is love.

October 11, 2015

Andies' Adoption Story Part II

(the weekend we found out we had been chosen by our birthmother)

We came back to California with a pretty fun secret.
It didn't seem real, but it was still a very fun secret. 

Within a couple of days we had been in contact with the agency about what was going to happen next.
They told us that our birthmom marked on her paper work that she was open to texting once a week with the adoptive couple that she chose.
I was so nervous about that.
We are not new to adoption, but, texting with a birthmom was new to us.
So, over the course of 18 weeks we began texting about once, sometimes twice a week.
Sometimes, it was a quick "have a great day" and sometimes we had long conversations.
We asked each other questions and learned about each other.
She always told us how her dr. appointments went.
She asked us what names we were thinking about, how the nursery was coming along, and she constantly told us how happy she was for us.

With adoption you never know what the outcome will be.
So I didn't want to put together a nursery.
I didn't want to get attached and then be heart broken.
I was talking with my sister one day and she said "JUST DO IT!"
So, I did.
Against everything I believed, I did.
But to be safe....I made it gender natural with black and white. 
It was so fun prepping for little miss in that back bedroom.
It helped me love her, it helped time go by, and it helped me not be consumed with all the crazy adoption emotions. 
 (Andies nursery)

When our birthmom hit her 30 week mark, panic set in.
My "honey do" list go longer, I started washing the blinds, baseboards, cleaning out cupboards, organizing the pantry, and started talking about it with Miles.

(Miles helped build, clean and helped with making and freezing cookie dough) 

When she was 35 weeks pregnant we were in Park City, Utah for my Dads 70th Birthday and had the chance to meet up with our birthmother again.
We met in Salt Lake for lunch where we visited for hours.
At the end of lunch we talked about "the plan".
We hugged, and with a big full term pregnant belly in between us and she said
 "okay, I'll call you when I go in to labor."
That was that.
I was excited, and nervous, I doubted, and I was confident in her all rolled into one.
I wanted a crystal ball so badly to know if she really was going to call, and that this really was going to happen.

At 38 weeks pregnant, just two weeks from her due date,  Romney was packing up to go to a swift water rescue class and would be gone from Sunday - Friday.
A full week.
I was kinda scared she was going to go into labor while he was away.
So we made a plan ourselves.
I texted our birthmom to see how she was feeling and let her know Romney was gone for the week and to let her know we had a plan.
During that week he was gone my house got cleaned, cookie dough was made in put in the freezer, I detailed the car, the car seat got cleaned, the swing, bouncy seat and stroller got cleaned.
I stayed up late every night finishing up the rest of my nesting projects.
Wednesday I got a text from her telling me her swelling was super bad, and that she had to buy compression socks and bigger shoes.
My mom wondered preeclampsia when I told her. 
But, no one else seemed worried. 
So, I wasn't. 

Friday late afternoon Romney made it home and jumped into the pool where he found us when he returned.
I was relieved he got to go to his class for work and not have to leave early.
That Saturday we ran a ton of errands and had two weddings to attend.
We were both so tired but glad all the things got done that day.
Sunday mornings are usually low key around here but this particular Sunday, we both were busy.
Romney bathed the dog, I did ALL of the laundry, washed the diaper bag, wiped down the cupboards etc...
And we did all that before 1:00 church.
It was 3:30 when my phone vibrated while I was in my church class.
It was my sister, so I pressed the button that sent her to voicemail.
It vibrated again, so I sent it to voicemail once more.
A few minutes later, I flipped my phone around and saw that the second phone call wasn't from my sister, it had been from our birthmother.
My heart skipped a beat then started pounding!
I had my 12-13 year old girls end the class and I listened to my voicemail.
Her message told us that they found protein in her urine and that she had preeclampsia.
She then said that she would be getting induced that night and to please call her!
I ran to Romney and wide eyed said "we gotta go, she called!"
I called my sister freaking out and she said "it's okay, you're ready"
She was right.
 We drove quickly to a home that had been cleaned, a dog that had been bathed, laundry that had been washed, a diaper bag ready to be packed, and a car seat 100% ready to be installed.
We were ready.
My dear friend Rachel came over immediately to help me pack and to help me see clearly.
 I was kinda a hot mess.
She unloaded my dishwasher, got my dog sitter  taken care of, and told me
"I want you to know, this is JUST as exciting as going into labor personally".
I really appreciated that comment, because I felt that way.
I was excited.
 (My friend Rachel in the back came to my rescue and Alyssa came to dog sit. They were heaven sent)

We called my mom and said "we're on our way" and headed for Utah at 7pm.
We called our families and closest friends when we got on the freeway to let them know and asked for all the prayers that they could muster because joy and hurt was on the horizon. 

September 16, 2015

Andies' Adoption Story Part I

(a sweet pink gown was on our bed when we got back to my parents house after we found out we had been picked)

We have been waiting a long time for little miss Andie to join our family.
We put in our papers with hopes to adopt again through LDS Family services when Miles was 14 months.
That was a couple of years ago.
He is now 3 1/2  years old.
We had a couple opportunities come up but they just didn't work out. 
It was frustrating and hard.
Then in December of 2014 LDS Family Services announced that they would be no longer facilitating adoptions.
We weren't even sure what to do and where to go.
Our caseworker from LDS Family Services kept suggesting a specific agency for us to check out over that last year but it was triple the cost (why does it all have to come down to money?)
Anyway...when LDS Family Services was done, we decided to give that agency a call to "just see."
We called in January of 2015 and had a great consultation.
We didn't sign up with the agency right then, but were very interested.
We still needed to save a little bit more to do it.
We went down to meet the staff a month later and really hit it off with one of the employees. 
Her name was Jessalyn.
She herself placed a baby for adoption 7 years ago and now works with birthmothers all over the U.S.
She and I became friends on Facebook and Instagram.

A month later we had all the money we needed and could finally sign up with the agency.
Romney was driving to the bank depositing that last chunk of change when I got a phone a call from Jessalyn saying there may be an opportunity for us.
The problem was we hadn't signed up with the company just yet, and didn't have a profile to show off.
I told Jessa to give this expectant mama our blog address, our facebook page, and our profile that was out on the world wide web and crossed our fingers.
 Jessa called the next day and told us that this girl really liked us but she also liked another couple.
It was between us and another couple hoping to adopt.
She was a girl from Utah and we were going up there in April.
We wrote her an email expressing our humble gratitude that she would even consider us as a couple and that we were going to be in her area in April then asked if she'd want to meet up for dinner.
....and she said yes.

April 3, 2015 we met up in Utah at the restaurant of her choice.
She brought a childhood friend to make things easier on her end.
She shook hands and hugged and sat down and all took a deep breath.
Within 5 minutes of visiting she told us that she was having a girl and showed us ultrasound pictures.
But that was the extent of baby talk.
We went on to talking about work, our hobbies, our lives and had an easy conversation.
It was getting late and the night would be coming to close and we hadn't really talked about "adoption."
So I just flat out started asking questions about her situation.
We learned that she got pregnant when we were doing our homestudy, we learned that she signed up as a birthmom through the agency when we were having our consultation with them also.
The day Romney was driving to deposit the money was the day a couple she was talking with originally wasn't a good fit and that she was so frustrated.
So on that frustrating day, she was presented "us" as a couple that would be signing up later in the day.
"The stars had aligned" for us to find each other and it was awesome to see it all unfolding right there!

We hugged goodbye and we went our separate ways.
We wondered what she thought of us.

Saturday April 4, 2015 the agency called us and said

We had a baby girl coming in 20 weeks!!!

August 25, 2015

Big Brother

Miles has been so sweet to baby Andie.
He wants to hold her at the most inconvenient times.
(but we always say yes)
He pokes her forehead softly with his pointer finger and says "you're so silly"

He has counted all her long skinny toes.

He has given her so many kisses.
This is huge! 
Miles is an anti kissing kid!

He sings to her, brings her stuffed animals, and waves hello to her.

He is quite the little helper.

when she cries he says "I'm comin" and gives her a pacifier. 

I hope he will continue to be sweet towards her as he gets older.

We cannot believe we have children.
Two kids!!
They are both amazing and we are so happy they have each other to grow up with.

August 23, 2015

Little Miss

Through selfless love we introduce Andie Linnea 
Born August 17th, 2015 
6 lbs 3 oz
19 inches
We are over the moon happy she has joined our family.

July 8, 2015

Sweetness Overload

Age three is hard.
It is sweet and sour....
Oh buddy, is it ever!
The sour is SOUR but the sweet is OH. SO. SWEET.
Lately Miles has been killing it with sweetness, cuteness, funny phrases, and style.

I love taking random pictures of him doing random things.
This post is FULL of what I think is "sweetness."
This post is for me to remember these moments when my heart fluttered with so much joy!
This post is all of just Miles and it's a ton!
You have been warned.

 Miles likes to take down all the pillows after I freshly make the bed....
make a pile...
and jump!
(the party hat is my favorite)

Miles is OBSESSED with his "little green froggie"
I swear it has 9 lives.
We loose it all the time but it somehow manages to find its way back into his life.
I love his sweet face waiting at the bottom of the slide while the frog slides down.

Miles rocks his "spy goggles" around the house.
It makes my heart happy.

We got a new mirror and Miles was totally playing with his reflection.

I seriously cannot stop laughing how great this picture is.
He really does love those goggles and his "shark with letters in it" hat.
Most mornings he puts it on first thing.
It's adorable.

Miles has almost mastered getting dressed all by himself.
This particular day he wanted to wear his shorts on top of his jammies.
It was pulling teeth to get him to NOT wear this outfit to the store.
He's a funny one.

He loves his dog.
He still calls him "Mamis"
He's been going out back and sitting with him a lot lately.
I love it!

This boy wants to help with everything!
"Im a good helper" and
"I can do it all by myself" are the two main things I hear.
He has so many bruises on his shins from running full speed, tripping over something, while yelling
"I wanna do it" when I say I'm gonna feed the dog, wash the windows etc....

He picks me flowers and wears backpacks in public....
do I need to explain the sweetness?
( I mean come on....look at his shoes on the wrong feet)

I think it is so sweet when he sits criss cross apple sauce!
His little body is so cute.
He loves working on his puzzles.
I love watching his wheels turn.

I adore his voice!
I love that he loves books.
He was reading his book while I was paying bills the other day.
I had to stop so I could listen to him.
So sweet, I tell ya.

 I know I will miss this phase in my life because I already miss yesterday hearing him squeal with delight while swimming with his daddy.