Monday, December 20, 2010

Average Waiting Time

We have hit a milestone! Our agency (IAC) says that the average wait time from when you have your profile up ( after you've finished all of your paperwork and homestudy) to when a child is placed with you is 6-18 months. The beginning of December marked our 6 month point! I have to admit, the time has just flown by. It feels as if it were just yesterday that we went to our intensive weekend at the agency, when in fact it was February. And I really am having a hard time grasping that Christmas is on Saturday! Remember when you were a kid, and the month of December just dragged, and Christmas Eve was the longest night of the year? Now the year just flies by. Which is why you have to enjoy all the little moments, even though sometimes, for some reason, we find it easy to forget that.

Yesterday, my mom and I baked cookies for about six hours, and I still have dough in the fridge. I think I will get back to baking tomorrow night, as I want to bring some cookies in for our Secret Santa gift exchange on Wednesday.

I hope everyone is enjoying the little moments!

Tuesday, December 7, 2010


Well there is not much news to report. We have been busy with work, and the holidays. We had a great Thanksgiving with my sisters at Disneyland, and then we had our turkey dinner on black Friday. I am someone who loves this time of year, so I have spent the past two weekends decorating and doing crafts. I would have thought that this season I would have been more glum, since this will be another Christmas where I will not be a mom, but I am not depressed at all. At Disneyland, we saw so many cute little babies all bundled up, probably on their first trip to the park, and that did send a pang through my heart. However this pang did not linger, because I know we will get that call or email soon, and before we know it, we will be parents! So I am just enjoying Christmastime, since most likely, this will be the last one without an added little stocking next to ours.

Having said all of that, I received an email from our agency a couple a weeks ago, showing me how to make a facebook page for our adoption in order to get more exposure. So I thought it was about time that we did something to market ourselves a little more.
Check out our page.

I hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving and your holiday season is merry!

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Happy Halloween!

We just finished carving our pumpkins are are officially ready for trick o' treaters! Doing all of these fun holiday traditions are great to do now, as they bring back memories of doing these things with my parents and brother. I can't wait to have our little one to pass on these traditions and make new memories!

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

New Car!!!

Just a quick post today. Last Friday, I convinced Adam that we should go test drive a Mazda 5. This is the car that we pretty much had settled on ever since we saw it at the auto show two years ago. But what if we didn't like how it drove? That was what I said to Adam to convince him to go to the dealer. So we went, and found a used 2010, exactly the way that we wanted it. We test drove it, and told the salesman that we were looking to buy in the next 4-5 months, but just wanted to see if we really liked it. He said, would we want it today if he could knock $3000 off. Long story short, we got a new car. There is so much more room in this than my Neon, and it actually is a tad shorter too! My mom's walker can fit in the back, and so can a stroller. So now we are really getting ready to add to our family!

Monday, September 27, 2010


I am a bit of a Disney fan, and I was really into collecting figurines some years ago, until I moved many times and the lack of room stopped me from adding to my collection. A couple of years ago, Adam and I cleaned out the garage, and I brought some of my favorite pieces out from their long slumber in cardboard boxes. The piece pictured, the Beast, is my favorite. Unfortunately, the gargoyles arms, which held up the table, the rose, and the glass case around the rose, were broken. However, you could maneuver the table top to stay on top of the broken arms, and I felt like this was a good fix, especially if I used some crazy glue. Weeks past, well honestly months passed, and the table still sat on top of it's broken arms, sans crazy glue. Then, one day as Adam and I were sitting on the couch, the table suddenly tumbled over, taking the glass case with it. It shattered on the ground, and I was heartbroken. I still kept Beast on the shelf, with the broken table top and the sad, bended rose sitting next to it.

Fast forward a few weeks later to this evening. Adam called me from the driveway, to help him bring stuff in from the car. He handed me my chocolate shake and a box from the post. He told me the box was a present. I am sure you can guess what was inside. A good as new, Beast. I was so surprised, and so happy at his thoughtfulness. I pressed him with questions, like "how did you find it?" It was after all, over 10 years old. He went on to tell me of how he searched online for weeks, and finally stumbled upon it on Ebay. I don't know how he can keep such a thing as a surprise, I know I would have had a hard time if the roles were reversed. So, that is just one example of how wonderful Adam is.

On a completely different note, I also wanted to show the progress of the afghan that I am crocheting for our wee one. Bear in mind, that I just learned how to crochet (and do a granny square) last week. I have to say it is very satisfying to see something that you are making with your own two hands. It is in the colors we will be painting the nursery, yellow, blue and green. The green is hard to see, it is mixed in the white, along with yellow and blue. But for some reason I didn't get the solid green, as I did for the yellow and blue, and now I think it needs that. But here is what I have so far.

Monday, September 20, 2010


So there is some exciting news in our blog world. A waiting couple has been matched!

Since following these blogs I really feel as if I have gotten to know these women, and it is comforting to go through these ups and downs with others that can relate to the adoption experience.

I don't think I have mentioned my love of photography here before, but this past weekend I did a photo shoot with my favorite models, my sisters. Some day, of course I can't wait to take pictures of our little one too!
Here are a few of my favorite photos from this past weekend

Hannah, Bonnie and me

Friday, September 10, 2010

New Crib

So we finally decided to get a crib! Even though we still have not switched bedrooms and painted (luckily this won't ship for a while) But I found a nice crib at, which came with the changing table for free. I thought that seemed like a good deal, especially since I was not completely certain that I wanted to spend money on a changing table. But hey, you can't beat free and I think it will make for nice shelves later on. I debated between this color and white, but finally decided I liked the expresso color better.

Today we went to California Adventure, as we have season passes to Disneyland. We really wanted to see the new World of Color. However, we left early as I wasn't feeling that great. But here is a pic of me, while I still felt fine.

Monday, August 30, 2010

It has been a hard couple of weeks.

I really have not been inspired to come on here and write, for a couple reasons. One being that there is nothing to report adoption wise, and the other is that we lost a dear friend a couple of weeks ago. Leslie was only 38 years old, and she died of complications due to pneumonia. I have to say that pneumonia is an illness that should be taken seriously, and it has affected our lives in many ways now. Adam's mother died of complications from pneumonia as well, and my mother was in ICU for a couple of days with it over two years ago. What they all had in common was that they had/have autoimmune diseases, which made/makes them susceptible to infections like pneumonia. Both of our mothers had/have MS and Leslie had a disease called ITP. The frustrating part about all of this is that doctors really know very little about what causes these diseases, but of course research is ongoing, so hopefully breakthroughs will come sooner, rather than later.

Leslie's passing was really a shock to me, as she was very sick in the hospital in May with the same thing. She was getting better. Each time I saw her, she was stronger. Then we get a horrible phone call on the morning of the 19th. I really still have a hard time believing it.

Leslie was a loving mother to her two children, ages 5 and 3. And it really breaks my heart that she missed her daughter's first day of kindergarten, as she was so proud of her. Leslie was a wonderful friend and teacher. She loved to do crafts, and she showed me how to knit. She was also a computer whiz, and she taught me Photoshop. It was her encouragement and patience that helped turn me onto graphic design. She had a quirky, perverse sense of humor, similar to mine, so we could usually laugh at things that most people may have found inappropriate. She was kind and caring, and she was so supportive of Adam and I becoming parents. I will miss her very much.

If anyone is interested in learning more about ITP or MS or want to donate to help find cures, please visit:
Platelet Disorder Support Association
Bunny Gass Memorial page

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Nothing New to Report

So, we have been 'live' or 'paper pregnant' for just about two months now. Even though that is a relatively short amount of time, it feels as if we are in this limbo state. Before, I felt like we were moving one step closer to adopting, with every question we answered, and every form we filled out. But now, it seems less real. Before, when people asked how the adoption process was going, I had an answer "well, we just did our fingerprints...." or " we just finished designing the birthletter" Now, it is "we are waiting'. I can already tell that people don't bring it up as often as they did, maybe for fear that it will hurt my feelings, and for the most part I am glad there are less questions, because how many clever ways are there to say "still waiting"? On the other hand, the less it gets talked about, the less real it all feels. I am not sure if that makes any sense.

I have bought a few baby outfits, so that helps. But it is hard to escape the fact that it feels like I am pretending. Pretending to get prepared for our pretend baby? I think this is exaggerated even more because I feel like I am the only one getting excited over baby clothes, or that others think its weird to buy clothes for a baby that is not there yet. Maybe that is all in my imagination or maybe I am just in a mood.

On a lighter note, I see that I have six followers now! Yay! I hope that my downer of a post doesn't scare you all away!

Thursday, July 22, 2010

It's been a while....

I know that I have not posted anything in a while, but since getting promoted at work, I have way less downtime on the job, which is when I was doing my posting. In the three weeks since my last post not much has changed as far as the adoption is concerned.

We did get our first "letter count" from the agency. Each month our adoption coordinator emails us how many of our letters ( and by letter, they mean our hard copy of our profile) went out to potential birthparents, and if our profile on the website was "saved" as a favorite. Two of our letters were sent out in June, to birthparents that fit our criteria, and we fit theirs. Since our letters did not arrive at the letter office till June 11th, we don't have a full month to go by. I asked our coordinator if 2 was average, and she said since it was a shorter month for us, it fit in with the average which is like 3-4 letters a month. She also said our web profile was saved as a favorite, which they find doesn't happen all that often. So either one of our family members or friends saved us, or someone found something in our profile that they liked. That did give me a bit of a boost, I must admit, even though still no contact from anyone as of yet.

Another really interesting tool that I have been just facinated with is Google Analytics. Basically you link your website up to it, and then you can go and check on the traffic to your site. It gives reports on what countries and states you have had visitors from, how they were directed to the site, how many visitors by day have gone on your site, how many visitors are new, etc. I really find the whole thing very cool. If you have a business website I think it would be a great tool to use as well.

I hope everyone is doing well. I have also been behind on my blog readings, so I will have to get caught up!

Saturday, June 26, 2010


So we have started looking into the stuff that you need to get when you have a baby in the house, and all I can say is that it is so overwhelming! I mean, I have never paid much attention to this stuff beforehand, so it is a lot to learn about. We were going to go register next weekend, so I want to be as prepared as possible, but it seems as if there is a lot of unnecessary stuff out there!
Some of my questions:

Bassinet vs. pack n play? A lot of them seem very similar, can't you just use one for both purposes?

Bottles; what is a good, BPA free brand?

What is a good infant seat? Do I want to be able to attach it to the stroller?

I guess I will stop there, as that covers the three main areas, sleep, feeding and transporting.

On a small side note... has anyone been watching the World Cup? Today's loss was pretty heartbreaking, and this is coming from someone that has never paid much attention to the Cup. But there was something about this time, that seemed to capture America's interest.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Open Adoption and Extended Family

When Adam and I told our families that we were going to adopt, they were all surprisingly positive and excited for us. I say "surprisingly" because I have read all of these articles about families not being as supportive as some would have liked. We explained what open adoption is, and why we thought it was best for all involved. Some family members, I won't name names, voiced concern about the possibility of a birthmother turning into a stalker. I hope we put that concern to rest. But it does show that our families probably have not done all the research that we did before we decided on adoption, so giving them a learning curve is probably a good idea. Reading this blog post by our agency reminded me of this fact.

Does anyone have a good booklet, or book that is not too dense that would be good to give to family? This thought keeps popping up in my brain, but then I forget about it. But I really think it would be beneficial for all of us, for family to have a resource to look to when they have questions.

Also, our profile is up at Check it out!
Adam and Kammie's profile.

I hope everyone is doing well!

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Marketing & Outreach

So now that we are officially waiting to be matched, I have been reading up on the ways to market ourselves and get the word out there that we are waiting to adopt. I have to say that I am very uncomfortable with this aspect. I have heard many stories of how waiting families have met their birthparents through a friend who knew someone who was pregnant and thinking about adoption. I have never been someone who was able to market myself well, as I think back to certain job interviews. And it just feels kind of slimy going around and asking people if they know of any opportunities for us to get a baby!

How do you guys feel about this? I think it may be different if you have an outgoing personality, but I am pretty shy and quiet around people that I do not know well, and Adam is pretty introverted too.

Over a year ago, after we pretty much had made the decision to adopt, I was in a CVS drug store buying something or other, and I was in the aisle with the feminine hygiene products and pregnancy tests. Something caught my eye hanging off the shelf in front of the pregnancy tests. As I got closer, I realized there were several little business-like cards hanging on some of the tests. They were from a couple that was waiting to adopt. I was astounded! As I read the card about this family, I noticed they were using the same agency (IAC) that we were settling on. I hoped we weren't going to be expected to do something like that! Of course, it is up to us if we want to do any of our own outside marketing. As of right now, I don't think we will do much of our own outreach. But ask me again after we have been waiting for six months and have had no interest in our profile!

So have you seen any creative marketing ideas out there? What are you planning on doing in this regard? It is always so interesting to see how different people have different approaches to certain situations.

Friday, June 4, 2010

An Apt Analogy

I just read this on and I thought it was such an apt analogy in how it can feel when becoming a parent doesn't happen quite like how you expected it to.

Deciding to have a baby is like planning a trip to Australia. You've heard it's a wonderful place, you've read many guidebooks and feel certain you're ready to go. Everyone you know has traveled there by plane. They say it can be a turbulent flight with occasional rough landings, but you can look forward to being pampered on the trip. So you go to the airport and ask the ticket agent for a ticket to Australia. All around you, excited people are boarding planes for Australia. It seems there is no seat for you; you'll have to wait for the next flight. Impatient, but anticipating a wonderful trip, you wait--and wait--and wait. Flights to Australia continue to come and go. People say silly things like, "Relax. You'll get on a flight soon." Other people actually get on a plane and then cancel their trip, to which you cry, "It's not fair!" After a long time the ticket agent tells you, "I'm sorry, we're not going to be able to get you on a plane to Australia. Perhaps you should think about going by boat." "By BOAT!" you say. "Going by boat will take a very long time and it costs a great deal of money. I really had my heart set on going by plane." So you go home and think about not going to Australia at all. You wonder if Australia will be as beautiful if you approach it by sea rather than air. But you have long dreamed of this wonderful place, and finally you decide to travel by boat. It is a long trip, many months over many rough seas. No one pampers you. You wonder if you will ever see Australia. Meanwhile, your friends have flown back and forth to Australia two or three more times, marveling about each trip.

Then one glorious day, the boat docks in Australia. It is more exquisite than you ever imagined, and the beauty is magnified by your long days at sea. You have made many wonderful friends during your voyage, and you find yourself comparing stories with others who also traveled by sea rather then by air. People continue to fly to Australia as often as they like, but you are about to travel only once, perhaps twice. Some say things like, "Oh, be glad you didn't fly. My flight was horrible; traveling by sea is so easy." You will always wonder what it would have been like to fly to Australia. Still, you know God blessed you with a special appreciation of Australia, and the beauty of Australia is not in the way you get there, but in the place itself.

By Diane Armitage printed in the April 21, 1995 "Dear Abby" column.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Thoughts on baby shower

So I was wondering what your thoughts are on baby showers? Does the idea of having one while waiting to adopt feel awkward? Will the gifts serve as a painful reminder that you are still waiting? Or do you feel as if it is one of those cultural milestones for couples about to become parents? Maybe it helps to make you feel prepared for when baby does arrive? Maybe it will be a fun way to get your family and friends involved in preparing for the little one?

I must admit that I am in the latter group. Adam's Stepmom and one of our friends are going to throw us a shower, most likely at the end of August. I am so excited about this. I think it makes this seem even more real. Even though we are now "paper pregnant", it still feels as if the idea of us actually having a baby in our house is an abstract concept, I am sure many couples have felt this way with their first child, biological or adopted. Even though we might be in for a long wait, I think that these steps help us prepare, and I do not think I will be bothered by reminders around the house that we are still waiting.

So tell me what you think. I know everyone has different feelings towards this subject, and I would love to hear your thoughts.

Just a quick link....

I found this link a few weeks ago on someone's blog. Sorry, I cannot remember where, as I find myself addicted to reading these and have read so many! Anyways, this seems to be a great project that was started in 2006 by a photographer that was touched by the adoption journey of a family that she photographed. Hopefully there are some photographers in your area that participate.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

We are official

Yesterday I received in the mail, a letter that stated, that our file and letter(dear birthmother) have been approved! So now we will be officially waiting. I know I grumbled about getting all of the paperwork and other stuff done, but at least that was in my hands. I was actively doing something to get us closer to becoming parents. Now, I have to let go, and see if our website, or profile letter sparks something in a potential birthmother.

For anyone that knows me, they will tell you that I hate waiting. I think the hardest part is going to be the unknown time line. We can go months without any contact, or we can be matched quickly. Luckily for us, we have a lot of preparing to get done for our bedroom and the second bedroom. Since our room now will be the nursery, and the front bedroom will be our room. We need to get rid of some more stuff in the front bedroom, and redo the closet, and then paint. Also the nursery will need to get painted. We were thinking that a painting party with some friends and family might be a fun way to get a lot of work done, and also involve them in the preparation process. This weekend, we hope to purge more stuff that we do not need, and then we can go from there.

So, yep.... we are official! I am pretty excited and nervous, and Adam is calm and cool as per usual.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

What IF?

What IF? A Portrait of Infertility from Keiko Zoll on Vimeo.

I found this video on another blog that I have just started reading

I like the way this addresses some or all of the feelings that couples, and especially women feel when they are faced with infertility. I have to say, I have accepted the fact that I cannot have a baby without help, and I have been fine with that for a number of years now. In fact, when faced with the option of going through IVF, which is very costly and it may not even work, I began to entertain the option of adoption. Now I have never seriously considered adoption before. I had always thought that wasn't something that fit with my personality. Meaning, as someone who can be very private, I didn't think the idea of some other entity deciding I was ok to be a mother was something I wanted to go through. Which is why I was somewhat surprised by this new openness to the idea. After discussing this with Adam, and doing research, we found that we just wanted to be parents. We just wanted to add to our family, it didn't so much matter if that addition was biologically connected to us or not. So, for us, we didn't think that even trying IVF first was the way to go. And now, having gone through the home study, I can say that I felt that our social worker is on our side, and is not sitting there judging every little thing that we say or do. The system just wants to make sure that these children are placed in safe homes.

Having said all that, this video brings up valid points in how society looks at infertility and adoption. I think a lot of women feel like infertility somehow makes them less than a woman. To me, I have always just kind of thought of it as one of those things that you have to deal with. By that I mean, everyone is not perfect, some people have asthma, some people have poor eyesight, some people have learning disabilities,some people are infertile, and everyone has to learn how to live with these obstacles. I am not trying to belittle anyone's feelings on this, it is just how I look at it. The one point of the video that I really related to was the facebook login "what if." It did seem as if everyone was having a baby at the same time, and that does make you face the fact that you are not having one.
Ok, I kind of went off on some tangents there, but I hope the video brings some attention to the fact that there might be some of your friends or family that may be feeling some of these things, and hopefully you can see where they are coming from.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

Home Study Report

Last Friday, J, our home study worker emailed the report that she has been working on. Amazingly, the report is 10 pages long. Who knew there was so much to say about us! So we went over the report to see if there were any spelling errors, or anything that we didn't communicate to her during our interviews. There was only like 3 minor changes that we sent back to her. She also had about four questions she wanted to clarify, or that were left out of our interviews, so we sent those to her to. All that being said, the end of the report states
" Due to the above mentioned, it is recommended that the home study for Adam and Kammie be approved for up to two infants (0-12 months old)."
So it looks like we are going to be approved! Hopefully the revised report will be done soon, and sent over to our agency. Oh, and it says two infants because we said we were open to twins.

As for the birthletter, I made some small changes to the hard proof the printer sent us, and am now waiting for a new proof to arrive, which should be today or tomorrow. I am thinking that we may have the 150 copies by the end of next week. So everything is coming together, and we should be 'going live" soon.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Film "Mother and Child"
Monday night we went to a screening for the film 'Mother and Child' starring Annette Bening, Naomi Watts, Kerry Washington, Jimmy Smitts and Samuel L Jackson. This film is about adoption and how it affects all in the triad (adoptee, birthmother, and adoptive parents). When I say adoption, the main story deals specifically with closed adoption and how harmful it really can be, which confirms all that I am reading about why open adoption really is more healthy for all involved.
Spoiler Alert! Back to the plot, Annette Bening's character, Karen had a baby when she was 14. It appears as if her mother coerced her into putting the baby up for adoption. Karen is now 51 and it is clear that her whole life has been stunted by this event. We get glimpses of how the unknown preys on her mind in the letters she writes to her daughter but never sends, since she has no idea where her daughter is, or if she is even still alive. Naomi Watt's character, Elizabeth is her daughter, and she is someone who has distanced herself from everyone, excels at her work, and uses her body to gain the upper hand when she feels threatened. We learn that Elizabeth is not close with her adoptive parents, and there is a scene where Elizabeth is asked about her mother from someone who does not know she was adopted, and Elizabeth answers referring to her birthmother. This is where I had to cringe a bit, since I found it hard to believe that she didn't think of her adoptive mother as her mother. However, we do not really get to see into what her relationship is, or was with her adoptive parents, but clearly, not knowing anything about her birthmother, and/or maybe the fact that she was lied to by her adoptive parents about being adopted, has had a great and negative impact on her life.
Then we have Kerry Washington's character, Lucy who along with her husband is going through an open adoption. So we get a viewpoint from each of the components that make up the adoption triad. There are a few things that I really liked about this movie. First of all, it was nice to see a movie about people that are, for want of a better word, real. Annette Bening is a beautiful woman, and here she is playing a character that is her age, without tons of makeup, or digital help. Everyone just looked like people do, in your day to day life. I also really liked the pace of the movie, even though some may say the film is too long, but it was nice to let yourself go in a film that gives you some credit for having an attention span. The acting is superb, it really is nice seeing Samuel L Jackson playing a "normal" guy. Of course the other reason that I liked this movie is that it covers a topic that I am becoming intimately involved with. From what I have read and heard from others, there are a lot of misconceptions out there concerning adoption, so to have a major motion picture shedding some light on adoption is refreshing.

Friday, April 30, 2010

Second interview down...

On Monday we had our second interview and home inspection. This time we were to be interviewed one on one, and my mom was interviewed as well. J arrived at 6:30, and I went first. She asked about my childhood, my previous marriage, my relationship with Adam, and my mom, if I will be working after the baby comes, and if so, have we thought about daycare, etc. We spoke for about an hour, and it really flew by. She is very easy to talk to. The she spoke with Adam for about 45 minutes, asking similar relevant questions. Then she spoke with my mom for about 15 minutes, mostly about her thoughts on us adopting.
J then went through the home inspection checklist. This took like 10 minutes at the most. Our home passed, since we were not told that we had to fix or change anything. As she was getting ready to leave, she told us that we should start thinking about cribs and stuff, and since we are changing our bedrooms around we should start doing that, since it could be quick, and it is better to be prepared, and for us to update her on everything. So we took this to mean the whole process went well, and she would be recommending us to be parents. She will type up the report, (this is the hard part, as she has up to 6 weeks to turn it in, although I am hoping it does not take that long) and email it to us, so we can go over it and make sure all the facts are correct, and what we said is really what we wanted to say, etc, and then she sends it to the adoption coordinator.
On the birthletter front, I have received the go ahead to order our hard copy proof from the printer. Once that is approved, we will order the copies to be sent out to prospective birthparents. All of our paperwork, and letters of recommendation have been turned in. I am putting some finishing touches on our webpage, and will then submit that for approval. So we are almost there, then the real waiting will start.

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

One interview down....

So we had our first interview with our homestudy worker, J, this past Sunday afternoon at our house. It is amazing how nervous I was right before she got there. J had told me on the phone when we made the appointment that she likes the first interview to be at the home, so she could take a look around and see what we need to do before the actual home inspection, which will take place on April 25, along with our second interview. With that knowledge, we wanted to be as prepared as possible during this first visit. We finally installed the smoke detectors that have been sitting in the packaging for a very long time. We purchased fire extinguishers. We installed a lock on our bathroom cabinet with medicine in it. And I know that we have to put our cleaning supplies up higher, but I hadn't done that yet.

As for the actual interview, I think it went alright. Adam on the other hand, thinks it went really well. For the first interview we were together as she asked us questions. For the second one, we will be questioned alone, and so will my mom, who lives with us. Most of the questions were what we already answered on our questionnaire, like what brought us to adoption, how we felt about religion, discipline and spanking. This is where I think I blew it. I had said I didn't really believe in spanking, except in the case that your toddler was about to do something dangerous, and since you can only reason with a toddler so far, that a spanking on the butt might be appropriate. I really wish I had just stopped at " I don't believe in spanking", but I did not want it to seem that I was only giving answers that I thought she wanted to hear, so I expanded. J then went on to explain that it was not allowed through our agency ( or the state?) for children under the age of two to be spanked, and after two only on the bottom, through pants with the flat of your hand. After hearing this, I had kinda felt as if I had answered " yes, I believe in spanking, in fact, I just bought a new belt for just that occasion". So I am not exactly sure how she took my answer, so of course I have been obsessing over it, ever since.

She also asked us how we met, and since we are not married, how we feel about marriage, Adam got a little squirmy here. She also asked if we had thought about daycare and what our workplace policies were on family leave when the baby comes home. We then walked around the house, and really besides the cleaning supplies needing to be moved, we need to tidy up the wires near our desktop computer. The whole process took about an hour and ten minutes.

So, as I said, I feel as if it went ok. J did say if we wanted to elaborate, or add anything to what we said, to feel free to call her. However, I do not want to revisit the spanking discussion again, for fear that it will look like I am really obsessing over it.

In other adoption related news, I pretty much have the layout done for the birthletter. It needs to be approved. And I need to get started on the web profile. So hopefully, if things go well, we should have everything done by the time the homestudy report is done, so we will be able to go 'live" soon, I am thinking maybe sometime in the beginning of May. We shall see how that timeline pans out.

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

First Appointment

So our first appointment with the homestudy worker has been set for Sunday, the 11th. So this gives us some time this weekend to put all medicine in a locked cabinet, cleaning supplies higher up, and general cleaning. This past weekend, we finally hung up our smoke detectors and bought fire extinguishers. Now I get to wonder what types of things we will be asked....

Monday, March 29, 2010


So I left off in my last post with how all the work was to begin. It has been just about a month since Adam and I went to the Weekend Intensive at our agency, and I am proud to say we are just about done with all the paperwork. After all of that rushing, and writing, and urging Adam to write, we are now at a standstill, waiting for the next step.

For those of you interested, I will go over what needs to happen in order to have a domestic infant adoption.
The Home Study
This is basically the steps the state takes in order to see if you are fit to be parents through adoption. If you were to do a private adoption through an attorney, you would still need to hire an agency or the state to conduct a home study. I am pretty sure each state has different criteria, but I bet they are all somewhat similar. In California we need to each answer a questionnaire, which has questions on it like:
" How do you plan to discipline your child?"
"What aspects of child rearing are important to you?"
"How would you describe yourself? (personality, strengths, limitations)
"Describe your spouse's/partner's personality and strengths. What would you change?"
As you can see, you really have to think about what it will be like to have a child and how will you discipline them? And everybody loves writing down their strengths and weaknesses, right?
We also need to write an autobiography, which thankfully, they give a guideline as to what they are looking for. This was really fun.
"Describe your childhood."
"Describe your relationship with your parents and siblings during your growing up years."
"What do you remember about your parents marriage?"
"What parental expectations and messages did you get?"
"What rebellious experiences did you have as a teenager?"
"Outline your work history from your present job, including dates, job descriptions and your reasons for leaving each position."
This is just a sampling of what they want to know. Other items needed for the home study:
- Live Scan fingerprinting for every adult living in your home.
- DMV driving record.
- Your doctor needs to fill out a Physical form attesting to your good health, along with a form that you fill out with your health history.
- TB test results
- 3 letters of recommendation from non-relatives.
- Employment verifications
- Criminal Record statement.
- Marriage, divorce certificates if applicable.
- School records of your children if applicable.
- Proof of medical insurance.
We also need to have two interviews with our Home Study worker, one of them at home, so they can inspect our house.
So, after all that, we are given a pass or fail grade on if we are ready to be parents. That is just a tad bit nerve wracking.
Right now, we are waiting to hear from the home study worker, so we can make appointments for the interviews.
While doing all of this, we are also in the middle of writing our Dear Birthmother letter. This is where we try and give the birthmother an idea of who we are. There will be tons of pictures in this as well. I have already sent in the first draft, and corrected half of it. I am just waiting for the second half corrections, and any additions or deletions we need to make with our photo choices. So you see, we are in a waiting phase at the moment. Which is hard, because we really want to get this going, after waiting for so long already.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

My first post

Hello. This is my first blog, where I actually am going to write something, so bear with me. I want to be able to customize this page, but I need to figure out how first.

The purpose of this blog is to document our adoption journey, as the title might suggest. I thought it was important to document this major life event, since it will, despite how we feel now, go by quickly and I want to be able to look back with our child and see how we became a family.

You may be wondering how Adam and I first got on this path? (wow, I sound so zen) Like so many other couples, we wanted to start a family. I knew that I had fertility issues, and we went to doctors and had tests, and we were told that in order to get pregnant we would have to do in vitro. We then took a break, and really thought about what it was that we wanted to do. Suddenly, an option that I had never really considered before began to take root in my mind; adoption. After much discussion, we both came to conclusion that adoption was the way that we wanted to add to our family.

Then came all the research, and I learned about open adoption. Here is how our agency describes open adoption:

Open Adoption includes birth and adoptive parents meeting one another, sharing full identifying information, and having direct access to ongoing contact over the years. In open adoption, birthparents and adopting parents select each other. They have control over all critical decisions in their adoption, including the amount of ongoing contact.

Open adoption has been the subject of intense study in recent years, and it has been found to be psychologically the healthiest form of adoption for birthparents, children, and adoptive families. Research has shown that the more open an open adoption is the healthier it is.

As someone who doesn't like secrets, this seemed the way to go for us. So we went to a couple adoption seminars, and we then made our choice in agencies. All of this happened at the end of 2008. We were all set to sign up, but we were a bit nervous about the economy, and how slow things were at Adam's job, so we waited. Sure enough, Adam was laid off for about 2 months, luckily it wasn't longer. To make a long story short, we finally signed the contract this past February. Now all the work began......