Friday, August 28, 2009

Events of the Summer

Thought I'd share a quick break down of some of the events this summer. Life has been so busy that we've hardly had a moment to stop. So, here's some pics of the events....
We've spent lots of time at the pool this summer because Bailey was lifegaurding and it was fun to watch her in action.

Me, Reiko (Levi's BM) and Michelle (Bailey's BM)

Addison and our friend Lalo

Bailey and her friend Lauren

Gabby, Reiko's husband works out of town quite a bit and so she spent a lot of time this summer with us and we loved it.

This is Gabby...

He works building stores and has no fear of heights. This would freak me out!

On the 4th of July we had a BBQ with Reiko, Michelle,Kathryn, David (Michelle's hubby) and our Pastor Chris, Megan (preg. with twins) and their son Josiah.

Getting ready to go see the town firework show. Reiko was ready to pop...she was pregnant and due anytime.

Speaking of Reiko being pregnant... We spent lots of time waiting in Dr.'s office with Reiko's weekly baby checks. Gabby was awesome and would watch Levi and Addi so I could go in with Reiko to the check.
(Thank you Gabby...I know he was a wild boy most days)

And then... Heidern (spelled correctly but pronounced Heiden with a silent "R") was born. It was really great that he decided to arrive while Gabby was home and able to see him being born. God is so good!

Poor little guy had a rough start and was born a bit early. He sure is a fighter and was doing much better the following week.

Once Heidern was born, things were no where near slowing down. We had my niece, Amanda's wedding. She married a very sweet guy name Colby. Couldn't have picked a better person for her to spend the rest of her life with.

They had a garden wedding in Colby's parents back yard. It was BEAUTIFUL and she was a very pretty bride. I couldn't have been more proud.

We no more finished Amanda's wedding and had to start the crazy business of getting ready for Reiko and Gabby's wedding a week later.

The ceremony was gorgeous. She held it at the overlook with the lake behind them. The weather was wonderful. Addison and little Gabby (a relative of Gabby's) made beautiful flower girls.

Their little family is such a blessing!

Now summer wouldn't be summer if we didn't also play on the lake with Bailey's BF's family.

Even with all the events we've had going on I still managed to spend some time fixing up our junk room and turning it into my new doula room where I can meet with my clients.

(A doula stays with a laboring mom and offers her encouragement, support, and suggestive birthing positions during her time of labor and birth.)

Here is the process before...


And after.

Levi is demonstrating just one of the many laboring positions you can do with the birthing ball. LOL

This is our little house all cleaned up after the mess of creating the room. The rustic French doors on the left is where the doula room is.

We love our tiny little house and feel it keeps the family close, always in each other's business and promotes family bonding. I think even if I had a million dollars I'd still live in a little tiny house. lol

I have been doing the work of a doula for a long time with our ministry. It wasn't until this year I decided to go ahead and get my certification. After much prayer, decided to do that certification in Springfield Mo. (a 3 hr. drive each way) During some of the training I bonded deeply with the director, Julie. She opened her home to me and for the other trips to Springfield, I've stayed with her family.

(Thank you so much Julie!)

This is her and her beautiful little Addison. (I love that our children are named the same) I still have two more trips to Springfield to wrap up the required training hours, read a few books, and write a paper to become certified.

I can't wait to see my dear friends again. I think our relationship was for much more then just my certification. God has lots in store for our future together and I'm excited.

Along with my travels to Springfield and back this summer, I also served as a doula for three births. These births were pretty much back to back ...4 if you also count Reiko's. Each birth was amazing! Doing the work I do, you can't help but bond deeply with each and every one.

This couple had a rough go at it but, the Lord has blessed them with a precious baby boy.

And this one had a beautiful little girl.

And finally, this couple had a very sweet baby boy.

Doing the work of a doula is something I love and can't believe the Lord has opened this door for me. To be in a place were a new little life comes into the world and to see the joyful tears as the parents lay eyes upon their precious child for the very first time... is truly AMAZING! It is often times a painful yet sweet adventure as I watch unfold before me something I've never experienced for myself. I always promise my clients that if they focus really hard on pushing for me, I promise to cry really hard while they are doing it... and I do every time!

Me holding one of my doula'd babbies.

Thank you Jesus for the gift of life and for allowing me to witness it time and time again. You are an awesome God and I thank you for all You are doing with me.

Jeremiah 29:11
"For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the Lord, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end."

Birth Family Sleep-over

Thought I'd share some pictures of the "Birth Family Sleepover" we had in January. Not everyone was able to come and originally this event was called a "Girls Night" but when Travis and TJ and Levi ended up with us and it turned into much more.

Here are the kids
Top Row: Kathryn (Bailey's BM's daughter), TJ (Addison's BFamily's son)
Middle Row: Tyler (Addison's BFamily's daughter), Addison (our daughter), Madison (Bailey's BF's daughter), Bailey (our daughter), Levi (our son)

Even though it was a girls night... Travis (Addison's BF) dropped in on our fun. I loved that he was there. But I felt so bad that I didn't have Will (Bailey's BF) with us as well. He and Travis would have had a great time. Travis was so sweet... He even fixed my broken kitchen drawer. Thank you Travis!

We had a massive game of solitaire going on. What a crazy mess..but OH THE FUN!!!

We had pizza, veggie & dip, snack foods, pop and everything you could imagine to feed this hungry crew.

Kathryn was watching Wall-E on the tv.

Tyler getting her nails painted. They had some pretty wild colors

The girls made princess party hats and wore them the entire time. :)) I thought they were really creative.

This is down in the game room when we were winding down and getting ready to sleep. This was us all passing around the lotion. Michelle slept on a make shift bed in Bailey's room. Kathryn slept in Addison's bed upstairs, Shay slept on the couch, and the three younger girls slept on the floor in the game room. Levi and I slept in our own beds.

This is Morris our cat... poor Morris had never been loved so much. hahahaha He did eventually end up sleeping with Michelle.

This is breakfast the next morning. We were still so tired and Shay brought the most delicious coffee and creamer to wake us all up. Thank you Shay. :)) Yummm

This is the girls playing dress up. They looked like such beautiful princesses.

Even Kathryn joined into the fun of dress up. It was so cute.

And what party would be a party if you didn't get your hair curled?

This was Tyler and Addison in the car as I was driving her home. Tyler touched my heart as they were preparing to go home. She had tears in her eyes and I said... Tyler are you crying? She said... No but I knew that she was. I said...Tyler, all you have to do is call me anytime, make me feel guilty by saying that you miss me and I'll come get you any weekend. She smiled and said.. Okay. I then hugged her and went into the bathroom. While in there I heard her tell the other girls what I had said and then she and Addison started practicing how they should whine and cry to be affective when she calls. hahahaha Those girls are a hoot!

Madison and Bailey

I looked a mess... didn't get any sleep...

played my heart out ....

and LOVED every minute that we were all together.

These ladies mean the world to me and I LOVE THEM!!! We are all talking about a camping and canoe trip this summer. Michelle has never slept in a tent and I don't care where we go as long as we are all together and having a great time. That's all that matters to me. :))

Although these are some pretty awful pictures...I needed a shower and some much needed sleep!!! I wanted to post them anyway because they are so special and show how beautiful open adoption truly can be. :))