Friday, December 21, 2007

What a great week!

This has been a great week. First we found out we are in PGN, then we got two different sets of pictures from people who are in Guatemala visiting their kids (thanks Jane and Pippa!!!).

The first set we got on Monday, the day we found out we were in PGN. Filipe and I were so excited to be in PGN and I had been thinking all day that I wished I could be with Shiloh to celebrate with her. That night I got pictures from Jane that were taken that very day! It was so fun to look at them and think, "This is what Shiloh looked like today."

Then last night I got another batch from Pippa. She said that Shiloh was very happy and contentedly playing alone in her crib while the little girl next to her was trying to get her attention:) It just warms my heart to get any little information about her! I also love seeing that they put her hair in little ponytails! Hopefully it will be one less thing she will have to get used to once she gets home, because I can't wait to put all kinds of things in her hair!Shiloh, mommy and daddy miss you and love you so much and are praying for you to come home ASAP!!!

Monday, December 17, 2007


We are finally in PGN!!! I am so happy, so thankful and so relieved!!! We were submitted on the 14th and we are with the first reviewer. For those of you who don't know a lot about this... PGN is where they go over all the paperwork with a fine tooth comb to make sure everything is right. It is the last really big, long hurdle we have to go through. There are there are three stages. The first reviewer, the second reviewer and then Sr. Barrio gives the final review and sign off. The second reviewer is usually what takes the most time. The average stay in PGN is around 8 weeks. Occasionally it can be shorter, but sometimes they will find errors in the paperwork and the case will get kicked out of PGN. Then you have to fix the errors and be resubmitted into PGN all over again. Please be praying for us and that we will have an extra short stay in PGN with no kick outs! It would be a real relief for this to go quickly and smoothly after all the problems and delays we have had throughout this process!!

Monday, December 10, 2007

Ice Ice Baby

We have had a really mild fall and winter. It has been in the high 60's for about a month now. I love the cold, the snow and the frosty wintry weather, so I have been a little sad. It's been Christmassy inside, but not so much outside. Well, things changed this weekend. The temperature has dropped to 25 degrees and we have had a constant flow of freezing rain. This morning we woke up to an icy winter wonderland. I know it hasn't been good for the people who have to still go to work in the ice or for the many people who are without power right now because of falling tree limbs and power lines, but for me... my husband is home with me on this Monday morning. We are sitting in front of our Christmas tree in our pj's watching Elf. Perfect!

Even the grass is coated in ice

Warm and toasty inside!!!

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Our little turkey

We got new pictures yesterday! These are the Thanksgiving pictures. They definitely went all out on the decor and the outfit. It warms my heart to see her little smile!

Friday, November 30, 2007

At Last!!!

We are finally out of the black abyss otherwise known as family court!!!! I am so excited and feel so relieved right now! I know that this isn't that big of a step for a lot of people but it has been such a huge hurtle for us. Our agency said that it may take a couple of weeks for preparations and then we are off to PGN!!! So hopefully we will be in PGN before Christmas. I know this may not mean a whole lot to some of you who aren't as familiar with the whole adoption process, so I am going to put a time line on my blog this coming week to help clarify what is left in the process. Thanks so much for all the prayers, thoughts and fasting! It has been such a blessing and gift! Keep us in you thoughts!

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Prayer and fasting

There is a group of people out there who have dedicated today for prayer and fasting for us, Shiloh and our case. I just wanted you guys to know that we are so thankful for you! We are so touched and feel so blessed that you are taking this time and making this sacrifice to pray for us! Thank you so much!

Monday, November 19, 2007

New Pictures

We got new pictures! They are a cheesy Halloween theme, but she still looks so adorable! I miss her so much! I have been so down over the last month, but I am really working on letting it all go and chilling out about it all, but it is really hard. I'll be totally cool and fine one minute and then the next totally bummed out. We had a good sermon at church yesterday about not worrying. One of the things he was talking about was seeking first the Kingdom and letting God worry about the rest. It kind of hit home for me. I feel like God has worked on me and drawn me closer to Him in so many ways through this whole process, but I feel like I haven't been seeking His will and His Kingdom first, I have been seeking after this adoption first through Him. I don't know if that makes sense or not. Basically I have grown a lot closer to God but a lot of my prayer life and focus in reading the bible etc. is all so focused on Shiloh coming home, when she's coming home, what is happening in the process. I guess it is time to grow a little bit more and make my focus God and what he wants to do through me and in me and release the rest of it into His hand for Him to take care of (since that is what is going to happen anyway) and not worry about it. It's hard and still so emotional for me, but I do feel a little less of a burden than I have been feeling over the last month. Anyway, that's my thought and feeling for the day. I'm sure it will be different tomorrow.

Now on to the pictures...

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Looking for advice

So lately I have been wanting to read up on what to do with your adopted child when they are home, specifically about bonding etc. For example, I want Shiloh to be able to sleep in her own bed when we are home with her, but I had also thought that went we went to Guatemala to pick her up, it might be nice to have her sleep with us while we are there to be able to have that bonding time. I just don't want to make it hard for her to adjust once we are back home. Also, I want to be able to rock her to sleep initially if she needs it, but eventually I want her to learn how to fall asleep on her own. At what point are you bonded enough to be able to go into more of a training mode. (I know, I over think things way too much. It drives my sister in law crazy.) I haven't checked out too many books, but the ones I have looked at all talk more about how to tell your child that he or she is adopted, how the adoption process works, how to deal with tough questions you child may have when they are older, and the few that I have seen that do talk about bonding are more about bonding with an infant. Not really what I am looking for. I am wanting something practical. Something that is more about, "your home with your not newborn baby, now what?" I know that a lot of it will come naturally and depends a lot on the personalities of the child and the parents, but as a first time mom and first time adopter I just wanted to see if any of you had any good suggestions for any books or websites, or for those of you who already have your little ones home, what has worked for you and what hasn't? I am open to any thoughts or ideas about anything that you might have. Thanks!

Monday, November 12, 2007

Our posh little girl

*Update below*
Many people are rushing to get their hair as stylish at Victoria "Posh Spice" Beckham's new hair cut. They are spending millions at salons and on hair products. Fortunately for Shiloh, she is naturally posh. No hairstylist needed for this styling girl's hair. See the evidence for yourself...

On a more serious note, we are supposed to be getting a new update some time this week. I am getting so nervous! I am hoping and praying that we will see some progress. I am praying for that miracle that our process will have moved farther than we could have thought possible, but I am also nervous and aware that we could once again get the same update we have been getting since August: that we are still waiting for the social worker to schedule an interview with the birth mother. I am in such turmoil. One minute I will be at peace about it, the next I will be stressed out. One minute I will be full of hope, and the next I will be "trying to be realistic" which is really another way of saying looking at the bad side of things. Please be praying for us! Pray that we will see some light at the end of this tunnel instead of the constant black hole we have been stuck in for the last few months! I'll keep you all posted once we find out.

*Update- Well, I got our update today. The social worker did the birth mother interview on the 9th. Now she needs to visit Shiloh and do the homestudy for her. This still isn't scheduled. I know that I should be happy that we finally have a social worker that is doing something, but instead I am just disappointed. I feel like the smallest amount of progress that could have been made is what happened. Like instead of even making a whole step forward in 4 weeks, we made a 1/4 step. I should be happy that any progress was made at all, since nothing has happened since August, but I was just hoping for a little bit more. I am just so tired of this wasteland that is Family Court, and this isn't even supposed to be the hard part. If this is what family court looks like for us I am afraid to see what PGN will be like. I am just so so tired with no end in sight. Sorry if this is such a downer, I am just really really bummed right now. Please keep us and Shiloh in your prayers.

Thursday, November 8, 2007

Shiloh's room

Here are the pictures of Shiloh's room. We still need a little table next to the chair for her lamp and need to get new blinds, but other than that it is pretty much done. The pictures don't totally show the right color (it looks better in person) but you get the idea.

This is a panorama of the room. It's a little distorted, but gives you a bigger picture of it all.

We got these little paintings in Antigua

Inside her crib

I got this chair at a garage sale and recovered it. It used to be an old blue LazyBoy.

Thursday, November 1, 2007

Giggles and the paper chase

So I was going to post something else, but changed my mind. Instead... this is a video I have been wanting to post for a while, but I had to figure out how to do it first. I love it. It makes me smile every time I watch it because I love hearing her giggle and I love to see her daddy playing with her!

In other news... I always figured that we would be working on our next adoption before I had to do the paper chase again. Silly me. We are in the process of updating all of our paperwork so that we can send an updated homestudy to USCIS to extend our I-171h. Anything that is over a year old (which is everything) besides official documents like marriage license and birth certificates have to be redone. So once again I am running around getting medical exams, reference letters, employment letters, bank letters etc. On one hand it is a total pain, on the other I guess it gives me something that I can feel like I have a little bit of control over (since I definitely don't have any control over anything else.)I really can't wait until all of this is behind me! I am so ready for the next season of my life. I am ready to be a parent instead of waiting to be a parent. Please keep us and Shiloh in your prayers! I'll post pictures of her room next time, I promise.

Monday, October 29, 2007

I have been tagged- Part 2

I have been tagged by Whitney, but first I wanted to share some new pictures we got this week (thanks Amanda!). It was so bittersweet to get the pictures! I love seeing her sweet little face and see that she is doing ok, but it also makes me so sad that I'm not with her!It has been a very stressful week this past week between birthdays, baby showers, fall nights and pumpkin carving days, but it looks like things are going to settle down a bit now. The good news is that in the middle of all of that I am pretty much done with Shiloh's room! I am still missing a little table to go next to her chair, but I will probably put the pictures of her room up anyways in the next couple of days.

Ok, here it goes...
Jobs I have had
Working in one of those little carts in the middle of the mall (not so fun)
Gymnastics coach
Baker (self employed)
Floral designer/Sales
Sales Manager at a wireless company
Part time nanny

Places I have lived
Phoenix, AZ (where I was born)
Flagstaff, AZ
Gainesville, FL (Go Gators)
Denver, CO
Lisbon, Portugal
and now Oklahoma City, OK

Foods I love
Spaghetti (Boring, I know, but I get it at every Italian restaurant I go to in search for the best spaghetti. On a side note, I got some while we were in Guatemala from the hotel San Carlos. Very good!)
My mom's tostadas and chimichangas

Places I'd rather be
In Guatemala picking my little girl up
Portugal (or anywhere in Europe for that matter, but I'd have to go to Portugal first)
Sitting on the couch at Borders drinking a hot tea and reading a book (that may have to be a project for later today)

Books I love
Pride and Prejudice
Harry Potter
Really I am pretty open. I just love to read.

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Please pray for us!

I know a lot of you in the adoption world heard about the fight at PGN last week. For those of you who don't, here is how our agency told us what is going on,

"PGN had summoned an underage birth mother and her parents for an interview. This birth mother had already relinquished the child as her parents said that they were unable to support her and a baby. PGN separated the birth mother from her parents and kept her in the "psychological section" of the PGN in an attempt to "change the birth mother's mind about her relinquishment". Her parents were extremely upset that they were detained in another part of the facility.

Susana (our lawyer) was summoned by the foster mother of the baby. When she arrived there was an attempt to detain her by locking her in a room along with the parents of the birth mother.

Unable to summon help, they broke down the door to the room and in an attempt to leave the building (which was locked) Susana kicked a door which broke the glass and severed 2 arteries and her Achilles tendon. It is fortunate that she did not bleed out but she was transported to Centro Medical where repairs were made to the leg.

As of yesterday, Susana remained hospitalized and on morphine. She is due to be released today but faces 2 months of immobilization due to the severed tendon, not to mention months of rehabilitation. Barring unforeseen medical complications, there is a favorable medical prognosis. Only time will tell!"

I know that she is planning on continuing her cases and has already hired a driver to drive her around.
Unfortunately, the latest update on our case is that it still hasn't moved, and unknown to me (I thought we were almost out of Family Court) we are still waiting for the social worker to schedule an interview with the birth mom. We have been in Family court since around Aug 16th and they have just been sitting on in and there is nothing we can do but wait. Many people in the court and PGN are trying to hold up Susana's cases. She is going to file a petition today to have the court change social workers for our case.

So my family and I are devoting today to pray for our case, for Shiloh's protection and for her to come home quickly. I know that God can move mountains and that He is bigger than all of this! I know that He can work and move to bring her home quickly and safely! Please join with us today in praying for Shiloh and our case, for Susana's quick recovery, and that the courts and PGN will stop holding things up and start moving these cases through! Please be praying that we get a new social worker quickly who is pro adoption and who will schedule the birthmother interview as quickly as possible!

Thank you so much!

Wednesday, October 17, 2007


Well, here we are at home. Life should be getting back to normal, and yet somehow it all feels different. I have been pretty down the last couple of days. I miss my daughter so much, my agency is driving me crazy and even though I love the cold and the rain, it is making it very hard to get motivated to get out and accomplish things. In the midst of all of this I have really been trying today to remember to trust in God and hold onto the hope in Him. That he is more powerful than any agency, lawyer or government. That He loves us and Shiloh and that He will be working to bring us together. Please be praying for us that God will be with us and with Shiloh while we are away from each other, and be praying that He will have His hand on our process and that He will be moving it along quickly! Thanks so much! It is so comforting to know that we have support from so many people out there!

Now here are a few more pictures:

Monday, October 15, 2007

We're home

Well, we're home. We are missing our little girl so much! It is amazing how spending five days with someone could change our life so much and how we could miss her so much even though we were only with her for such a short time! Coming home, our house feels emptier, like something is missing, even though she has never been here. But in spite of all of this, God has given us an amazing peace about it and a hope to look forward. That each day we are away from her right now means we are one day closer to being with her forever and that He is working and moving to bring her home! Our time with her was so amazing and so special! I am so thankful that we were able to go and meet her!

We took so many pictures! I think it was like 1500 (we are having trouble fitting them all onto 2 DVD's!) So I have decided that I will just slowly share them with you guys over the weeks to come since there are too many to put them all into one or two posts.

The hotel we stayed at was very family friendly. I think the only people staying there were families either visiting their children or picking them up. We all sat in the sitting areas and talked. We would rock our babies to sleep in the halls and leave the doors to our rooms open during the days. it was great to be surrounded by people going through the same experience as we were. On the last day we took some pictures with a few of the babies. They are a little hard to see, but you should be able to click on them to see the bigger view.

I'll be posting more pictures later, but right now my husband is home sick (I think he got "The Bug") and we are trying to get DVD's and pictures out to different family members who don't live here.

Wednesday, October 10, 2007

More pics

This little girl is a heartbreaker! Seriously, Filipe and I are so smitten! She is so much fun! She has been a lot more talkative today and has been doing a lot better at sitting up and holding her head up (she was pretty shaky the first day.) Tomorrow there is a photographer coming to the hotel who is going to take our pictures. In the meantime, please be praying for us and Shiloh's process! It seems like things are moving a little more quickly in PGN with other cases. Be praying that our next update has good news that we are already in PGN so that we can catch this wave of quickness. I am so much more anxious to have her home now that we know her I don't know how we are going to be able to leave without her! I am trying not to think about it too much, but it's hard! I don't know if I am going to get the chance to post again before I go home. I don't want to do it while she is awake and by the time she is asleep we are exausted. I'll try, but I make no promises. In the mean time here is a dose of sweetness to hold you over.