17 March 2009

Finalization Update

Well remember we said we had a March 2nd court date to terminate paternal rights? Well, everything went well and the case went to our attorney to finalize for us. He found one problem however, they terminated paternal rights to a baby boy not a baby girl. This means that the termination is invalid and will have to go back to court...in two and a half months! We are so sick of waiting. We are waiting for the finalization to go through before we can change Bailey's name legally, file our taxes, bless Bailey and be sealed in the temple. What a pain!

16 March 2009

Baby Steps

video

So cute!


video

14 March 2009

Adoption


Going through the adoption process has helped us to see that there is a lot of misconceptions about the whole thing. Jennifer and I feel strongly that we need to clear some of this up. Our friends and family are scared for us everytime we have contact with the birth family. I hope that I can put your fears to rest and help you to see this through our eyes.

We have been nothing but blessed by the relationship that we have formed with Bailey's birth family. They are kind, warm people and we absolutely love them. To let them see Bailey from time to time is to let them know that she is alright and that they made the right decision.

Birth mothers do not place their children for adoption because they do not love them rather it is because they do. It would be far easier to save yourself the pain and to rear the child in a less than perfect environment, which so many people do. Or to even have an abortion and to save yourself from all of the pain of the pregnancy and the challenges of raising a child thereafter. This is not to suggest that those who place their children for adoption could not raise them themselves because many of them could. They want however, more for their child. Things that they know they will not be able to provide. It takes a lot of maturity to take such an honest look at your station in life and to make that decision.

A healthy relationship with the birthfamily does not threaten the relationship of the adoptive family. Here I stress the word healthy. We have all heard horror stories I know, but these are in the distinct minority. More often than not various forms of contact serve to reassure the birthmother that everything is alright and help to form a tie between her and her child. The child so placed never has to wonder why they were placed they can instead take comfort that they have two mothers that love them and would do anything for them.

I suppose that is all I have to say at the moment but this will be a topic that I will revisit from time to time. I want you all to know how much I love my daughter. I also love the birthfamily that comes with her. Adoption is far more common than we might realize and it is not something to be ashamed of. The mother who places her child can be assured that outside of a few anamolous cases they are healthy happy and loved.

If you know someone who is pregnant and in trouble please help them to know that adoption is an option. It is because, someone told Bailey's mother that we have Bailey with us today. Now I could not imagine our lives without her.

Wow, what a fun day!



So the visit with the birth family was awesome! They are the absolute warmest people that you could imagine. I believe they could make anyone feel right at home. Before we even made it to the front door Bailey's brother and sister came charging out of the house shouting, "Bailey, Bailey, Bailey." Brandon who is three and Sierra who is five buried Bailey in a barrage of hugs. They wanted to hold her carry her, they just couldn't get enough.

We visited for a bit inside and I think we were all grateful to be more open in our relationship. They got to see Bailey do everything that she can do now. She took little steps, laughed and played with her Brother and Sister. In their backyard they have a playground set which they have dubbed "Sierraville". Bailey was not thrilled with the swings but she loved the slide. As soon as she got to the bottom she would try to crawl back up it.

I did commit one etiquette faux pas however. I was playing with Sierra who was rolling a soccer ball down the slide. The game was simple, I just rolled it back up to her. Well at one point she said, "You can't get me" and preceded to dodge around. Well I threw the soccer ball and nailed her right in the face. I felt like such an idiot. She cried and cried but eventually she forgave me and gave me a hug. Aren't kids great.

We also got to see their Bailey tree. It is a tree they planted after Bailey was born to remember her. It was really touching to see Bailey play around this special tree. That is the picture above. It was an amazing day, and I am so glad to have them in our lives and in Bailey's life as well. Bailey will never wonder if her birth mother loved her because she will be able to hear it directly from her.OK guys, you can get me down at any time.

We had a hard time rounding up the kids for a picture so we were just happy with what we got.

Sierra playing with her baby sister.

Brandon was so cute. He kind of hovered around Bailey almost the whole time.

13 March 2009

BIG NEWS

I just got off the phone with Bailey's birth mother. We are going to get together with her tomorrow! We are so excited. In addition to her birth mother, Bailey's birth grandmother, brother, sister and aunt will all be there. It feels really exciting, we are of course nervous but we'll let you know how it goes.

08 March 2009

Want to see a cadaver?


No I'm not posting pictures of it but I did get asked that exact question. I am taking Biology this semester and my professor is apparently an anatomy expert. We were recently doing a lab wherein we mutated bacteria to make them flouresce green under UV light, (see the picture above) and my teacher asked who was interested in seeing a cadaver. Out of the whole class there were ten brave souls.

I went in there not expecting to be affected much. It's just a husk I told myself. Well when he unzipped the body bag it was eerie, I have to admit. I wasn't the only one because there wasn't one of my classmates that was standing withing three feet of the slab. My professor, Dr. Burke, finally said "She's not going to hurt you, she's dead" and invited us all to gather around. We pulled in close as he removed the skin flaps and lifted the rib cage. It was amazing seeing the human body like that. Everything in there just like in the pictures, only not as tidy. We listened as he pushed down on her arteries and we could hear the accumulated cholesterol make a crunching noise. He was sensitive to us and promised to keep the face and hands covered, apparently that makes it easier for a novice to endure. By the end of course he asked us, "Do you want to see the face?" I got see the human, heart, liver, lungs, stomach, intestines everything. It was an experience I'm glad that I took advantage of.

Okay, I have to admit, I did almost pass out. I blame the smell of the preservatives though. I guess that I looked so pale that he stopped his presentation to ask me if I had to leave and assured me that it would be alright if I did. I stuck it out though and became a vegetarian for the rest of the day.

Home Teaching

Recently my Elder's Quorum President reassigned my home teaching route. He paired me with a member of the quorum named Tom. Tom is a nice enough guy but he is severely mentally challenged. I liked the guy but he had a weird habit of calling me "Joe". I don't know where that came from. I have a hard enough time home teaching that I thought this would simply be too much, but I was proven wrong. The day after we got our assignments Tom called me seven times. I was at work of course so it was getting kind of old for Jennifer but I appreciated his persistence. Since then he has called me every Sunday to ask if we are going home teaching. I have modified my attitude and I think that this will work. I am excited about us getting to work together.

07 March 2009


I just got back from our companies annual management meetings in Santa Cruz, well a week or two ago anyway. The picture is the view I had, normally you can see the ocean on the horizon but it rained all weekend. Of course as I was packing Jenn grabbed my umbrella but left it out after I assured her there would be no need.

Anyway, there was a training on time management that really impressed me. The trainer began by defining the words "important" and "urgent". Important things carry with them serious consequences and urgent thing require immediate attention. An urgent thing is not necessarily important however. For example, a ringing phone is urgent, it demands attention, however, it might not be important. The call could be a wrong number a telemarketer etc. Without boring you with all the details what I left with was the need to focus on those things that are important but not urgent. This includes things like planning, excercise and relationship building. There is no buzzer creating urgency about excercise or example but is does carry serious consequences either for good or for ill. Also I liked that he listed relationship building. Friendships can slip apart because while they are important to us they don't have a sense of urgency and so they are put off.

The other thing that I came away with was a desire to make lists. He urged us to have a system that was integrated and portable. The idea being that it would always be on our person. When we have a question about how we should be spending our time we can consult the list. Or when we remember something that needs attention but can't be dealt with presently we write it down. I hope that this training will stay with me as I am one of the worst time managers. Wish me luck.

01 March 2009

Kids these days.



So kids these days are texting younger and younger. Bailey managed to open the program and everything.

Dirty Diapers?




So Bailey has this weird obsession with her dirty diapers. When we change her she bolts right for it. She is not nearly as interested in the clean ones. Do other babies do this? Of course I had to take some pictures, I'm not actually concerned I just think it's darn funny.