Thursday, July 30, 2009

Aha Moments

I started something tonight that I hope to do every night, I layed Daniel down (who was already asleep) and I just stood there and watched him sleep. I thought about what a blessing he is in my life and how I thought the day would never come when I would finally be a mom. Then I decided that I would literally pray over Daniel aloud, in a soft voice. Maybe somehow Daniel would hear me in his dreams praying over him and each night I do this.... bring him one step closer to God. I asked God to help me never take for granted the blessing a child is... because one day, like when he's a teenager... I know I'm going to wonder why I wanted kids in the first place. I, of course, prayed for other things too. We are so lucky, no... blessed, to have a creator who loves us and listens to us and wants what's best for us and those we love. I knew that in becoming a mother, I would understand a different dimension of God.

Another thought I had today was about something I realized when I was helping dad go through mom's things, it really hit me hard... how everything she owned was left behind. She didn't take ONE thing with her, not even her wedding ring. It really opened my eyes to just how insignificant THINGS are. Then I thought about how distracting those things can be... the world gets so caught up, I get so caught up in stuff! We forget why we're here and lose focus on the purpose of who and what we are. Dad and I just shook our heads and thought about all the stuff mom didn't need and left behind. We knew this, of course before... but it was so "in your face"... going through mom's things. I pray that I don't let THINGS keep me distracted from God and to always remember what riches are stored up in Heaven.

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Hello, I'm back!

I know it has been too long since I've blogged on here. Bear with me... my life has been turned upside down on me. As most of my family/ friends who care to read this knows... the Good and bad... we now have a baby boy and my mother died.

I am doing well. I am thankful each day for the wonderful blessing Daniel is! God had perfect timing, He knew I would need Daniel as a distraction in life for dealing with the death of my mom. I miss her and have my days when I have a good hard cry, but then I start thinking about where she is... Heaven... and I immediately feel better. The selfish side of me wants mom back... however; I think about the way life was for her right before she died and am reminded that it is better that she is not here.

I don't know if any of you out there, who are reading this, are going through some hard times or storms in your life... if you are... hang in there, God hasn't forgotten you. I was married over 12yrs before I was finally blessed with a baby. Many times I wondered if God was hearing my prayers and when my mom was diagnosed with terminal cancer, my prayers became even more urgent. I don't have all the answers and am not a genious in the prayer department... but one thing I know for sure... is that God listens. He doesn't always answer our prayers in the time frame we would like, but He does answer them. I am amazed at how beautifully God orchestrated Daniel coming into our lives and mom leaving our lives. God's hand in all of that is so "in your face", you can't help but see how He really does see the big picture. I'll explain this more in my next post. I also plan to type in a prayer I wrote out on paper the night mom died.

So.... that being said... forgive me for not posting on here in a while. I was at a loss for words... didn't know where to begin on trying to put my jumbled-up feelings into words on here. Thank you for your patience. :)

Monday, March 9, 2009

Lions and Tigers and SNAKES!!! Oh my!

Well today was a first for me! I was in the laundry room loading the washer, when all of the sudden my mother inlaw starts yelling, "Heather, come here quick! You've gotta see this!" I was expecting to see my dogs catching a squirrel or something, since I'd just let them out. But when I came to the foyer (where my mother inlaw was standing).... I found a baby snake instead! It was only about 4-5 inches long. I'm not really afraid of snakes... but wasn't to thrilled about sharing my house with one either. I grabbed a broom and a dust pan, swept up the snake, and dumped it out onto the street. Then killed it with the side of the broom. (I would've kept it alive, but I didn't want to find it back in the house.) I've seen a few baby geckos in the house during the summer months.... which is fine with me.... but I was pretty surprised to find a snake. Hopefully my last time to find one!

Monday, March 2, 2009

Baby Themes

Here are pictures of the boy and girl bedding we got an awesome deal on. (I talked about this in an earlier blog entry.)
the diaper stacker

toy bag and diaper pad w/ cover

There are 2 blankets that come with this set, the summer blanket (draped over the front) and the winter blanket (draped over the back of the crib.) The sheet is super soft and is solid baby blue. Also, to the right, you can see the clothes hamper.

You can see the blanket my grandmother Warder made for me.

the window valance

a close-up view of the toile

The night light Robert bought. I thought it was so sweet that he even thought of little accessories such as this. (He bought this bedding without me being there.)

Now... on to the girlie girl bedding....

This set came with one blanket, and no pillow, clothes hamper, toy bag, or valance. I didn't mind.... I thought the materials were gorgeous and so soft!

He, of course, had to buy one for the girl too!

Sunday, March 1, 2009

The Blessings From Life's Storms

I found this cross in a baby store back in December when mom and I were just looking around at what's out there. I immediately knew I wanted this hung in our future child's bedroom. This verse rings true in my heart. When I was living in Louisville, I began attending a support group for women who were struggling with infertility and/or death of a baby. As many of you may know... this is a very emotional and painful experience. I would say this hurts (for me) more than losing a loved one. You feel so alone and are constantly reminded of what you are missing out on... by just being out in public. You notice every pregnant woman, you notice every baby, you see children interacting with their parents and wonder if this will ever be something I will experience. Friends try to comfort you and don't know what to say. People try to make light of the situation and it ends up hurting you more than making you feel better. You start to feel guilty for being so jealous of mothers. I have never been a jealous person.... until I went through this. Now... most days I can look at mothers and be happy that God has blessed them and hope that that mother realizes how lucky she is to have that experience. But every-now-and-then... I do get that jealous feeling. I'm not bitter about this experience. I used to be. I now can see how much this trial has made me a better person. I have learned that God is where I get my strength! God loves me even when He hasn't given me what my heart desires. God listens to my prayers and comforts me when I grieve or am in emotional despair. He hurts when I hurt. I have become a much more compassionate person towards others. I am very careful with the words I use when I am trying to comfort others... I don't try to make light of the situation... I mostly listen. I hope to one day lead a support group here for women who are going through this. It meant a great deal to me to be able to talk to other women who truely understood what I was going through. They understood why I dreaded and stopped attending baby showers and would avoid going to church on Mother's day or baby dedication day. I didn't feel alone any more. The book we read and discussed was called Hannah's Hope. It talked about Hannah's struggles in her life spiritually, mentally, physically. I had never related to anyone before in the Bible like this. It was an amazing group. That's why... when I saw this cross with the verse from Samuel... I had to have it. I don't want to forget this experience. It has helped me become the person I am today... drew me so much closer to God. I can now honestly say that I am thankful for this experience. It made my friendships deeper, my marriage richer, my heart stronger, my faith grow.... I have looked for God's presence and have found Him here, right beside me. How can I not be thankful when I have gained all this from this experience? I know that one day I will be a mother. And I am content in waiting. I have a new feeling of peace... knowing that God is in control and that He plans to "prosper me..., to give me hope and a future." (Jeremiah 29:11.)

I hadn't planned on writing about this tonight. I had planned to add pictures of the baby bedding... but when I saw this picture, I couldn't help, but explain why this scripture means so much to me.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Exciting Times Ahead

Well I guess we're ready to let all know that we are in the process of adopting a baby! The company we are using is called Adoption Network Law Firm, based out of California. We found them on the internet and really liked what we read about them. We researched them and looked them up on the Better Business Bureau and decided to go with them. We said we would take a boy or a girl or even twins. They said the average time is 4 months. We have been very busy getting all the documents and paperwork together to show that we are qualified to become parents. We have our home study this Saturday at 5pm. After our social worker types up a summary and sends it to our adoption company, we could get that anticipated phone call any day. The company we are using features couples wanting to adopt on the internet, on 3 different web sites, and has flyers in various places such as hospitals, help centers, etc.

We are extremely excited and are patiently waiting for all to fall into place. We know God is at work in all of this and know that He already knows everything about our baby. I decided not to work this year because I knew it was time to adopt and wanted to be ready at a moments notice to be a stay at home mother. We have already bought baby furniture and have it all put together in a bedroom upstairs. Over the Christmas holidays, dad and I climbed up in his attic and found the bassinet I slept in when I was a baby, found a beautiful blanket my grandmother Warder made for me when I was a baby(in the above picture), and found some baby clothes my mother saved for me to use one day. Just recently, we went to the baby crib store (where we bought the furniture) to pick up the side rails for our baby bed (we bought the kind that can become a full size bed) and while we were there... we looked around at all the baby bedding. Well turns out... the owner of the store found out a local company, that made high end baby bedding, was going out of business and was selling all the bedding off at a great price. So... he bought all that was left and was selling it in his store. We loved a few of the bedding sets he had and knew we would never be able to find it at such a great deal, so we said "what the heck..." and bought a boy and a girl set!!! Both sets are BEAUTIFUL!! I promise to take pictures and post them on here. The boy bedding is baby blue and white colors. The fabrics are so soft, perfect for a baby. The main fabric used in the boy bedding is toile with a nursery rhyme theme. I loved it! The girl bedding is pinks and greens... with lots of chenille and floral print. It is beautiful! We didn't buy it the first time we saw it, I told Robert we should sleep on it and think about it. Well the next morning, Robert left to go buy both sets and the owner gave us an even better deal since we were buying two sets. While Robert was there, he decided to get 2 night lights that matched each set, a diaper changing pad with covers matching both bedding sets, and an extra crib sheet. He is just as excited about this baby as I am. I thought it was so sweet how excited he was about buying baby stuff. We also have purchased a car seat... red, black, and white (of course!) What other colors would a future red raider want? When we were in Dallas 3 weekends ago celebrating our 12th anniversary... we looked around at baby strollers. We found the one we want, but decided to wait until we got the baby/babies... in case we got twins. We didn't want to have to return the stroller.

When they finish making our 3 webpages that feature us, I'll post the links, so you can look at them if you want. We've been working on all this for 2 months. We found over a hundred pictures for them to use of us and sent them to them on a disc, we have written 2 different "Dear Birthmother" letters, answered a 25 questionnaire about us, and written a 3 paragraph paper on us. On top of that, we have had FBI, Texas, and Kentucky background checks... financial statements, a doctor's note stating we are mentally and physically fit to be parents, proof of income, proof of health insurance, a copy of marriage liscence sent, employment history, 4 references, copies of drivers liscence and social security cards sent, residence history typed up, and I'm sure there is something else I'm forgetting. I just found it interesting what all kinds of information they wanted and thought you might find it interesting. We also filled out a 10 page or so form for the adoption company. The mothers wanting to put their baby up for adoption have to fill out a 50 page form! I didn't realize all the paper work adopting involves! I'm glad they want to know almost everything about a couple to make sure the baby is being placed in good hands, but it is a lot of work and very time consuming. I know it will all be totally worth it, and it really wasn't that bad, just surprising. The home study is going to take around 2-3 hours and Robert and I will be interviewed together and individually. I'll let you know more about it after this weekend.

I know of quite a few couples considering adoption and wanted to share this with you, so you would have an idea of what adopting is all about. So far, it has been a fun experience. I enjoyed reflecting on and sharing my life with a possible birthmother. I am in such awe at the love it would take for a mother to put her baby's needs above her own and give her baby to another couple. I can't even imagine the kind of faith it would require to give the greatest gift of life away to another couple. What a miracle! Please keep us, the future baby, and future birthmother in your prayers. This is such an emotional and exciting time! :)

This is the dresser that came with the furniture set. I think I'm going to keep the brass bed in there since the baby room is upstairs... I want to be able to sleep in there near the baby if I need to.

This is the baby bed that can be transformed to a toddler bad and a full size bed. (The back of the crib will become the head board and the front of the crib will be the foot board.) You can see the blanket my grandmother Warder made for me draped over the front of the crib. Also in this picture is the hutch that came with the set. This will be where I'll change diapers. :)

Sunday, December 14, 2008

White Rock Marathon

My parents came out to visit me this week and weekend, so we could go together to White Rock Marathon in downtown Dallas, TX. This was my first marathon to ever attend. And no.... I was a cheerleader, not a runner. My brother, Brad, ran his first marathon. So.... we got up at 3:30 am and got ready and made the 2 hour drive to Dallas. When we got there the traffic was horrific. Mr. McDermott, Brad's father in law, called us and told us where to meet them. We decided to by-pass the start of the race and catch up with Brad at mile markers 3, 7, 12, 21, and 26. It was neat to see all the people standing on the sides cheering for loved ones and complete strangers. There were cow bells, pom poms, signs, live bands playing, and lots of cheering and clapping to encourage the runners. We ran into a few friends that had a family member also in the race. (How cool is that?) Brad ran the 1/2 marathon with his father in law last year. He began training for this during the summer. I am so proud of him!!! What an accomplishment!

Here are a few pictures I snagged from my sister in law....

The picture on the left is of a sign Lisa, Brad's wife, made for him. Lots of runners would smile and point out the sign to other fellow runners. Seeing the cheerful face of my beautiful niece, Claire, seemed to cheer everyone up! Lisa, Brad, and Claire are in that picture. It's a photo taken right after the race ended. Thank you, Lisa and Claire, for supporting Brad during it all.... the countless hours of training that took away many, many hours of time with you. My brother is such an amazing, inspiring person. Way to go, Brad! :)

** I know the pictures are very small, I will add bigger pictures later when I snag those from my dad and download a few from my phone. :)