child of God

It was important to us that Adam’s Dad, Michael, be the one to do Lainey’s dedication so a trip to Mississippi was planned! She did awesome on her first trip, of course. She even continued to sleep through the night there which was great (she has slept through the night (7-10 hours) since she was 5 weeks old!).

tired mama...tired baby

tired mama…tired baby

Her dedication was done the last Sunday in March at their church and was wonderful.

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Brother Carter (Pawpaw) challenged us and all of the parents there that day to raise our children for our Lord. I will admit that when I look back at this photo I think of Simba in the Lion King and the song The Circle of Life is in my head!!! (you know you are singing the same song in your head right this minute!!) bahaha

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The gown Lainey wore is a family gown from my side of the family that my Mother and all eight of her siblings were baptized in. Almost 70 years old, a Feltman Brothers gown, it has been repaired by hand in several places in the back. Lainey spit up a small amount on it while wearing it. While I hand-washed it once we were home, I imagined my Nana doing the very same thing nine times before me years ago. Wow!

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Our Lainey girl met so many more family members, including her great grandfathers! This is precious to me as I never met any of my great grandparents.

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Great Grandaddy checks her out!

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Meeting Great Pawpaw Carter

This little gal is so loved by her family! We hope to make a trip to Florida this fall for her to meet the rest of my family next!

“So we have dedicated her to the LORD; as long as she lives she is dedicated to the LORD.” 1 Samuel 1:28

Rock and Roll….and the naughty restaurant

When I was young I loved Saturday nights. My parents would have a radio station of some sort playing that would play rock from the 60s and 70s. They would have contests where you had to call in the name of the song to win a prize. My Dad always knew the song. Always. He would tell me the name and I would run as fast as my little legs would take me to the kitchen (where our only phone was!) and I would quickly dial the station. I never got through but he was always right. I’ve mentioned before that we absolutely love Cirque Du Soleil-like lurrrve it! On our trip we went to see Love-for the third or fourth time! The Beatles always bring me back to those Saturday nights.

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I like it more each time I see it and I see things every time that I didn’t see before! If you ever have the chance, you just have to see it! Confetti shoots out of the ceiling a few times and there are speakers in the seats so you are in the music. Here is the way the show opens- (it is awesomesauce!):

We also saw Rock of Ages for the first time. It was great-brought us back to slow-dancing at junior high dances, making out at the softball field (sorry, Moms!), big hair, neon-ness, tight-rolled jeans and mullets.

When entering the theater they gave us these lighters-that were LED for us to wave during the concert! Perfect!

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We wished we had these costumes with us from an 80’s party we went to a couple of years ago!

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We ate a restaurant called Dick’s Last Resort-awesome burger place. We thought it may be kind of like Ed Debevic’s in Chicago, where the servers are rude on purpose and entertain while you are eating. It was similar only in more of an adult-sort of way (duh, look at the name). They make hats for the diners with sayings on them. I was kind of a smarty-pants to our server and he got me back with my hat-we aren’t comfortable ever.repeating.what.my.hat.said. EVER.

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Happy Birthday Jesus

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Here we are in Vegas, feeling like we are in an alternate universe licking our wounds. It is odd….so very odd. It is by far the busiest we have ever seen it here-what in the world are all of these people (including families with children!!) doing in Las Vegas at Christmas?! I mean, I know why we are here…what about them? As a side note- we have never understood why people bring children here-there are too many things their sweet innocent eyes shouldn’t see.

Another thing, it cost $100 (!!!!!) to check one bag on our flight!!!! And, they now charge $5 to print out your boarding pass ( we had ours already but, WOW!).

Interestingly there is very little Christmas music throughout the places we’ve been so far…we are actually listening to Christmas carols on Pandora right now. I tried to plan ahead and got reservations for supper last night and tonight knowing we wouldn’t want to stand in line somewhere. We ate at a fancy Italian restaurant, Zefferinos…actually too fancy for us!!! No cheese and crackers here!! Check out the “seafood” salad that came with my supper! Do you suppose that is octopus?!

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We spent our flight yesterday watching some adoption education videos and will likely do the same today. It is nice to be obligation-free and be able to focus together.

We hope your Christmas is blessed. Cherish your children and sing Happy Birthday to Jesus! xo

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The holidays after losing a baby

We lost our third baby, Noelle Lynne’ just a few days before Christmas last year and it was just awful. Having to pretend around family that all was well in our lives (when the reality was that all we wanted to do was stay in bed and hold one another) was near impossible. But, we did it. We went through the motions celebrating our family’s traditions during both Christmas Eve and Day and I cried on the way home both times.

I am so angry that it is one year later and here we are again. Having just lost our fourth we clearly do NOT feel like celebrating….anything. We had plans to be in Montana with my brother and his family. Great plans. Adam was going to go snowboarding while I (of course I couldn’t ski as I was pregnant) thought about perhaps spending the day with my infant nephew and maybe even get a prenatal massage somewhere. We would have Christmas Eve supper at a restaurant at one of the local ski resorts and celebrate His birthday at an evening service at my brother’s church! We would see the torchlight parade-a tradition of skiers holding torches skiing down the mountain in the dark-so beautiful from afar.

But, now none of this sounds appealing. NONE. OF. IT. We actually do not even want to be around family. Talk about guilt-inducing feelings! Here we are during this wonderful time of year and there is no way in heck we are feeling jolly! Our tree is up and ornament-less! We simply do not have it in us.

This feeling of wanting to be a recluse has got to be normal, right? I am absolutely sure of it. Perhaps this is just my way of making myself feel better but I do think that it is normal to not want to surround yourself with others that are celebrating something while you, yourself are sad. We are grieving. We are grieving the fact that our lives changed forever on December 2, 2014. We will never have a biologic child. Ever.

Interestingly enough, during the week of uncertainty before our most recent loss (I will share more soon) one of the things we discussed was getting away. Just the two of us. This was one of our “coping mechanisms” last year after losing Noelle also…when we planned our Mexico trip. It is as if we could go somewhere isolated (preferable warm!) and just be with one another and be surrounded only by people that do not know our sufferings, things will be better. I know one of the stages of grief is denial and this has denial written all over it. I’m fine with that, though. I just need some time. Some space. I need distraction.

We decided right away that we would (OBVIOUSLY) prefer somewhere warm but I’ll tell you what…finding somewhere reasonable over Christmas with only a couple of weeks plan-time is like winning the lottery-not gonna happen. So, where can you go 365 days per year for fairly cheap airfare (even last minute)? Vegas, that’s where. At first I was a little concerned that it was sacrilegious to go to Las Vegas over Christmas but as long as we celebrate our savior’s birth and continue to live for Him, I think it is all good! We’ve been multiple times for medical conferences, never just to go. But, we are. And, we are looking forward to it. To the people watching (there are some definite weirdo’s out there), to the shows, to the spa (Adam loves ashiatsu massages…ahem, speaking of weirdo’s), to the food, to the shopping, I could go on. We don’t drink and we don’t gamble but this doesn’t mean we can’t have fun!

So, to our family….we love you and our absence this holiday has nothing to do with you and everything to do with us. Muah!! XO Oh, and be sure to wear your National Lampoon’s Christmas shirts and celebrate the Griswolds as we always do!!

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something to look forward to

One thing we decided right away after losing Noelle was that we should plan a trip to give ourselves something to look forward to. Something to aimlessly “google” while planning. I most definitely recommend this to anyone in a similar situation. We spent hours in bed on our laptops trying to decide where we should go, what we should do. We’d never been to Mexico and chose an all-inclusive resort in Cancun. It would be perfect. We chose to be placed in the adults-only area of the resort in an ocean-view room and scheduled spa appointments! The first week of April couldn’t come soon enough!

First let me say that in April Mexico is not all it is cracked up to be-ha! People had told us it was like Hawaii, only cheaper (we.love.hawaii). It was not at all like Hawaii. I mean it is near a body of water but that is the only thing similar. It was hot and humid just like at home in Nebraska in August! We quickly learned that the place to be was literally on the beach and then….then, it was awesome!

The arrival at our resort left a lot to be desired. To say we were disappointed does not even get close to what happened. Initially we were dropped off at this beautiful area where they greeted us with fancy drinks. It was quiet and dark with a lovely smell of some sort and beautiful music was in the background.

Stop. This is as far as the beauty went. =)

We were (very) quickly informed that due to an over-booking problem they did not have a room for us and that instead, we needed to go to the “family” side where there was a room waiting for us. I kid you not (ha, no pun intended). When we walked in to our “new” resort there were those little cars that your child can ride in while you push behind them. They all lined up just waiting for people to use. The food area where snacks/beverages were included juice, milk and fruits and veggies all cut into finger-food/bite-sized for kids. There was a “candy” section.

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The mini-bar in our room was not stocked in your typical way. It was full of chocolate milk and bug juice. We went out our balcony and the only thing in view (certainly NO ocean) was a huge kiddie pool with inflatables, slides, etc. They delivered milk and cookies to our room at bedtime. There were potty pads on the beds under the sheets. Are you laughing yet? It is kind of funny……..now. The problem was that we had spent over three months using this trip as our focus to “get through” each day. And it was not AT. ALL. what we had imagined it would be.

The next morning Adam left me in the room and went to the adult’s only side to speak with their manager, trying to explain that being in an “all-child” zone 24 hours per day was not in our best interest-they offered him a drink! Of course, there was simply nothing they could do. I could not (could. not.) stay there for $500 per night. There was simply no way. I was ready to fly home right then. In comes my little brother, aka boy. Being a world-traveler (literally) he had some connections and within two hours we were in a taxi on our way to the Riviera Maya. When we pulled up to this, we knew all was right with the world….

Entrance Day

The picture says it all. Boy was our hero and there was a happy ending!

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