Family of Three

Hello there! Long time no update. If you haven’t been following along on Twitter or Facebook then you may not have heard that we matched back in January  (hence the lack of updates here). Yesterday the adoption was finalized. We have a daughter! And we couldn’t be more thrilled.

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We won’t be updating here anymore but we are leaving the site up in case we decide to try for #2 down the road. One thing at a time though, one thing at a time. 😉

December Digest

It’s that time again! Time to update everyone on what we’ve been up to this month. AND it’s the end of the year so perhaps an end of the year recap is in order.

DECEMBER:
Honestly this month was not nearly as exciting as last month. Since we traveled last month to see John’s family we did not make our usual Christmas trip to San Francisco. Instead we stayed in Seattle and spent Christmas with Alex’s brother’s family and his Kiddos. Santa brought the Kiddos a foosball table! So we had fun playing foosball on Christmas Day. As well as playing board games and eating lots of yummy food. We enjoyed it so much we forgot to document it in pictures. Oops. 😉

We did, however, take pictures of the largest tree we’ve ever had. Our star tree topper wouldn’t even fit on top. But it is such a beautiful tree. And Moxie really loves being under the tree so we moved her bed there.  Christmas cat pics!
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Unfortunately both Alex and John were sick this past month so there’s really not much else to recap. But we’re all better now and ready for whatever 2016 brings!

2015: A year in Review
2015 has mostly been all about adoption. We did our home study. We’ve read adoption books and attended adoption seminars. We set up this website, our Facebook page, our Instagram account and even a profile on Adoptimist.com. All our friends and family have us spread the word that we are hoping to adopt. They say it takes a village to raise a child. Well, sometimes it takes a village to find a child. Thanks to everyone for all your support!

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To recap our 2015 you can view previous posts like August Sailing, Swimming with the Kiddos, our fun filled November, fun with hats, our Home Study, our thoughts on Open Adoption and our Dear Birth Mother letter.

Happy New Year!!!

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Dear Birth Mother

Dear Birth Mother,
Last month we listened to a panel of birth mothers speak. While we didn’t exactly hear anything that surprised us it was both emotional and educational to hear those 5 brave women share their stories – in some cases for the first time. Although each woman had a unique experience and story to tell, there were many common themes in their stories. We can only assume that you too will experience those common emotions. Emotions such as grief, loss, and powerlessness.

Some of these women were older and were essentially forced down the adoption path by their families in a time long ago where all things adoption and unwed mothers were hidden and young girls went to “stay with a sickly aunt” when they started to show. They weren’t even allowed to see their babies.

Others were coerced in some way. Whether by well-meaning social workers or unethical lawyers. Only 2 of the 5 women were able to make the decision entirely on their own. Despite this, most of them had no (or few) regrets about the decision itself, only the circumstances under which the decision was made.

Our hope is that you will decide, on your own and without coercion, that you want us to raise your child and that that decision will be be made out of love. That the child will grow up feeling loved not by one family but by two or more. We hope that you will be able to navigate your way through the inevitable grief you will feel. If there’s anything, anything at all, that we can do to help you through it, please tell us.

One common theme we heard from the birth mothers was how important pictures are.  Several of these women were promised pictures on a set schedule and either didn’t receive any or only received the first installment and then…nothing. Some states have legally enforceable open adoption agreements (like Washington state where we live) and others don’t. But we can promise you that we will send pictures if you want them. As often as you want them. Alex is a shutterbug so there will be no shortage of pictures. If we ever get busy and forget to send them, a gentle reminder is all we will need. Never feel afraid to speak up and ask for what you need from us. We will do our best to accommodate you without you needing to ask, but no one is perfect and we aren’t mind readers. All these women (except the one in a very open adoption) felt so helpless and powerless. We don’t want you to feel that way. If you need something from us we will do our best to support you.

In short, you will be giving us a gift that we can never repay. The least we can do is respect you.

Sincerely,

Alex & John

Orchard Adoption Cards

November Wrap Up

Once again it’s time for our monthly update of what we’ve been up to. So many things! So many birthdays!

First Up: Alex went to Jenny Lawson’s (a.k.a. The Bloggess) book signing. She’s hysterical. And really, really sweet.
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Then John and Alex went to an adoption educational seminar where we heard a panel of 5 women tell their stories. These brave and strong women had all placed their babies for adoption and were kind enough to share their emotional stories. This is worthy of a post all its own but we’re still digesting it. We will update with a link here once that post is up. UPDATE: That post is here.

Next Up: Trip to San Francisco to celebrate birthdays in John’s family. We saw his Mom, his brother and Alex’s uncle as well, and we celebrated dual birthdays ON A BOAT. Yup, John’s Dad and Aunt booked a brunch cruise to celebrate their birthdays.

It was exactly like this:

OK, so it was really more like this:

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John and his Dad

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imageAlex and her Uncle (Not on a boat)

As soon as we returned to Seattle it was time to celebrate Alex’s brother’s birthday. And then later, a belated birthday celebration for Alex’s Mom. [Seriously, what is it with the November birthdays?]

And then…THANKSGIVING! TURKEY! PIE!
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Alex offers her apologies for all the blurry pics. Apparently that’s what happens when she’s not the one taking the pictures. 😉 Stay tuned for the December digest which will surely have lots of cats with Christmas lights.

Sep/Oct Happenings

What have we been up to? spending time with family mostly.
John’s Dad came to visit.
John had a birthday.
John’s Mom came to visit.
The twins (niece & nephew) had a birthday.
All the Kiddos stayed at our house for a weekend.
Then SIL had a birthday.
Then there was Halloween!!!!

All of this meant a lot of family dinners, board games and family fun. SIL even managed to get TWO birthday dinners!

Here are some outtakes:

Weekend with The Kiddos: Blanket fort!
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Weekend with The Kiddos: Learning to play with cats
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Halloween Dress Up: Silly hats! Courtesy of the local thrift shop.
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November promises to bring more family time with more birthday celebrations and of course THANKSGIVING.