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Saturday, January 31, 2009

curious little boy

I heard some commotion in the guest bathroom this morning and this is what I found. I have always heard stories of children doing this. And now I can say that mine has. But will it be the last time? I’m not so sure.

Friday, January 30, 2009

Dear daddy,

Hi! It's me, Holden. I just wanted to tell you HAPPY BIRTHDAY since I was asleep when you left this morning! I also wanted to tell you a few of the reasons that I love you so!
1) Mommy says your eyes lit up the first moment you saw me. :)
2) You comfort me when I don't feel well!
3) You let me watch football with you!
4) You take me fun places.
5) Sometimes you nap with me.
6) You read to me.
You are a wonderful daddy and mommy tells me we are very blessed to have one another! I am excited to celebrate YOU!

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Transracial Parenting Workshop

To those in the OKC area that are thinking about adopting transracially or to those that have already done so:
Deaconess Pregnancy and Adoption Services is hosting a workshop on Transracial Parenting. It is scheduled for February 28th from 10:00am – noon. It is only $5 per couple. Can't beat that! Please click here for all of the details. You must RSVP by February 23rd.
Having been to their adoption seminar last February before beginning the adoption process, I have complete confidence that it will be full of great of information. And I hear from this girl over here that they will be putting together a list of families that are interested in regular outings and playgroups. This is great news because Holden and I just love to play! And I also hear from her that they will be talking about hair, amongst other things. Sound good? Then click here for more info!

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Holden's new do

Ok. Despite the wisdom shared with me at the restaurant Friday night, we did go ahead and give Holden a haircut. Well, just a trim. Here’s the deal for those that never see him in person . . . he had rubbed most of his hair off the back of his head at around 4 months. So it was very thin on the back with a ton of hair at the crown of his head. And it just always looked so disheveled. So Jeremy gave him a little trim today. And now he has a perfectly even helmet of hair. And he still looks cute as can be. And I am pretty sure we did NO damage to his future hair growth. :) And now that it’s all even, my plan is to let it grow and grow and grow. But I do have to admit that it is easy breezy at this length. He looks like a different baby boy to us now.
Here we are before the hair cut. I was actually trying to show Jeremy how cute Holden would be on the beach this summer. (Trying to persuade him into a vacation!) And doesn’t he look so cute in his swim shorts?! They’ll fit him better in May. Anyways, before the cut . . .

And here is what we chopped. I forgot to save it!!!!!! In fact, we washed it right down the drain! So sad, right? I can't believe I forgot to save his first little locks of hair!! Oh well. At least I have the picture of those precious, fuzzy locks! And here is our happy mister with his new do!

Articles on Adoption

Okay I have been waiting for this issue to be available online. And now it is so I can share it with you all!
About a month ago my dad surprised me by mailing me a Southwestern News publication. He receives them periodically, since he attended seminary there. But he sent this one to me because the entire publication was all about ADOPTION!!! You know that made me excited! And it was a great read. There were several adoptive families, all somehow associated with the seminary - professors, students, alumni . . . There were stories of international adoption, private domestic agency adoption and state adoptions. All unique stories of how God put together their little (or sometimes very large) families. I was instructed to mail it off to my sister once I was done reading. And so I did. But now it is available online for your viewing pleasure. :) And if you give it a look, I know you will be blessed. So check it out here.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Talking about adoption

Tonight we went to dinner with a group of friends. Our waitress was a young African-American girl. And she was smitten with our Holden, as most people are. :) She had some different questions. At this point, I never really know what to expect from people. And it seems that oftentimes I am caught off guard by the comments and questions. But I like to think that I hide my surprise better these days. So she asked if Holden was ours. She was bold and asked if I couldn’t have children. I just tried to answer her questions honestly, wondering what question might be around the corner. Sometimes I dread how these conversations will take place when Holden understands more. To be honest, I don’t even like to think about it. Because I’m just not sure that people will be any more sensitive with the topic than they are now. I am starting to realize that some people have no tact. And lucky me, I get to come face to face to face with them on a regular basis. But to set the record straight, our waitress was a very sweet girl and very accepting of our family. The lady I met later didn’t seem to be quite as accepting. As Jeremy went to get the car in the cold weather, Holden and I waited by the door. The other lady also worked at the restaurant and she was probably around the age of 50, also African-American. Our waitress was sharing our story with her from a distance, but I could hear everything she said – “they adopted him and brought him home when he was 1 week old”. Both ladies came over to us and we discussed hair products for Holden. And I was instructed NOT to cut his hair before 1 year or it would stunt his hair growth. Honestly, I think this is a fable. Just think about it. It just doesn’t make sense! Anyways, that is here nor there and has nothing to do with the story. My mind has not yet gotten over how the middle-aged woman mumbled “Sometimes I want to kick those young mothers,” as she is swinging her leg pretending to kick. The young waitress kept talking to me and so I never really spoke to that woman. And so I’ve been reflecting on it. I know sometimes people don’t like to see a transracial family like ours. And I more often get this feeling from African-Americans. It’s such a mixed bag. I mean, sometimes people are thrilled for us. And other times I get a strong hunch that they do not like what they see. And maybe it’s a fear in them that Holden will lose his identity and possibly like country music. (just a little humor!) I kind of understand where they are coming from, but I will probably never completely get it. A very tiny portion of my brain contemplates, maybe in an ideal world black families would adopt black children, white families would adopt white children, Hispanic families would adopt Hispanic children, Asian families would adopt Asian children and so on. That way every family looks the same. But to be completely honest, I don't think that way at all. And I also want to say to that – how boring! My heart and head agree that in an ideal world we would quit staring at color! Why so much division! Welcome to 2009! I am getting very much off subject. I want to go back to this lady’s words. It was like she was angry with birth moms that place for adoption. I think that some people see it as a lazy choice or irresponsible decision; while those on the inside of adoption know it to be completely the opposite. The choice to place for adoption is so far from selfish. I have not carried a baby in my womb for 9 months and then given birth. But most mothers have done this. And most mothers could easily admit how difficult it would be to place that baby in someone else’s arms and leave the hospital empty handed. No matter your situation. That is a selfless decision. Perhaps the easy decision for them would be to take that baby home and give it their best shot at parenting. Then they could avoid heartache and mourning of the loss of a child. But some birth mothers, like Holden’s, want more for that little life. Not more money. Nothing like that. But they want a dedicated father. A 2 parent home. A stable environment and roof over their baby’s head. These women are heroic and shouldn’t be kicked at. Why doesn't everyone else see it?

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Naptime with daddy and playtime with friends

Jeremy was off work on Monday for MLK Day. And in honor of MLK, Jeremy and Holden enjoyed a long afternoon nap together. I’m almost positive that Jeremy is THRILLED that in the last 8 months I have taken several pictures of him sleeping. You know it’s only because Holden is in the picture and it’s just so sweet. The cuddling and all. My advice to Jeremy . . . you should know better by now! And Holden has become quite the socialite lately with all of his playdates. Well, that is actually a lie. We are lucky to get in one per week. But I always look forward to them. Just a chance to be around some other mommies. So today we played with (from left to right) 9 week old Graham, little Miss Sophie, Holden (I think you all know him) and soon to be big brother Michael. Thanks for the invite Season and the delicious lunch!

Sunday, January 18, 2009

So far in January . . .

And were off to another enjoyable month with Holden. Can the fun possibly continue!? As you can see from my previous post, he is mobile now. My how that changes things! No more setting him down to play and going back to the office to check out everyone's blogs. I have to keep a closer eye on him now. And the words "no sir" are becoming more regular in our house. And though Holden flashes us a big grin (that melts my heart each time) when we say those words; so far he is normally obedient.
Along with crawling he has begun to try and pull up. He normally just makes it to his knees, then gets stuck and wants help getting back to his seated position. And then we go through it all over again. And again. And again. I actually helped him up to a standing position in this picture. And unfortunately it's a bit blurry. Holden and I had to get out of the house on the coldest day last week. I think it was around 11 degrees that morning. I was off to learn about Esther, while Holden enjoyed some playtime with friends. At church we have just started Beth Moore's study on Esther and it should be good. It's nice to have Thursday mornings with other ladies and Holden gets to see his Sunday School friends from church. I think he was less than thrilled of me taking a picture this particular morning. Within the last couple of weeks, Holden has mastered his coordination of finger foods. He has been eating fruit puffs. Pinching them with his thumb and pointer finger and into his mouth they go . . . normally. On occasion they might end up in the seat of his high chair, on the ground for the dog to eat or stuck to the baby food on his face. But he loves those fruit puffs and I think he is beginning to like the independence of doing it all himself. When I pull out the container he either yells with excitement or starts saying "ooooooh ooooh oooooh". It makes me laugh each time. The boy truly lacks patience when it comes to food. It seems like it has been a long time since I have posted. But things must be in ORDER for me! And I wasn't moving on with the blogging until I had the video downloaded so that everything could be orderly . . . just as life should be! :) Until next time . . .

Saturday, January 17, 2009

going . . . going . . . gone!

This all began on the morning of January 10th. It was a Saturday and so Jeremy and I were both home to see. And I can only imagine that life will never be the same for us.

Thursday, January 8, 2009

A Few Mini-Milestones

It seems like every time I would turn around this week, Holden was getting the hang of something new. I can see his little mind at work. He is twisting and turning his body just so that he can normally get where he needs to go. But still not crawling. I sit and watch and think that any moment it’s going to happen. And I don’t want to miss that moment.
Holden finally learned the sippy cup. I haven’t been too consistent with it because it felt like such a waste of time. For the past couple of months he would have much rather have watched that cup fall to the ground than drink from it. And since it’s a “no-leak” cup, it takes some major oomph to get the water out of the thing. But on Monday it happened. He finally got it! And a taste of water was the grand prize.
He isn’t pulling up to a standing position yet. He is just on his knees in this picture. But we did decide to go ahead and drop the crib that particular night.
I think ball might eventually be his first word. Since he is a little boy, we have been given a few of these little balls and he laughs when I say the word. And here he decided to use his little basketball as a chin pillow. How very clever of him!

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

God's grace and peek-a-boo

I watched Holden roll around and play this morning. He kept looking to see if I was watching and then we would both laugh at one another. But as I was watching him, I remembered these words.

Your grace still amazes me.
Your love is such a mystery.
Each day I get on my knees
‘cause Your grace still amazes me.
So I had a small moment of worship. Just me, Holden and God. Holden is often a reminder to me of God’s miracles and blessings in our lives. I know I don’t deserve these blessings, but I’m so thankful that He pours them on me.

Five minutes later, Holden had scooted himself into a corner and was initiating his first game of peek-a-boo! It was all fun and games until his leg got stuck behind the entertainment center.

Friday, January 2, 2009

Occasionally a mama’s boy!

The doctor warned me. She told me that Holden might start having that anxiety where they don’t want to play alone. She said he might fuss when I leave the room. And 2 days later he started this. He is pretty okay to play alone. And sometimes he’s fine alone in a room (which by the way has quickly come to a hault with him moving backwards). Sometimes I leave the room for 1 minute and return to him stuck under the ottoman or right next to the Christmas tree and all those shiney ornaments. So during those fussy times, sometimes I let him fuss. And other times he plays by my side. So, as I was cooking, he played in the kitchen.

Here he is displaying his tupperware for all of our viewers.

Holden is 8 months!

On New Years Day Holden turned 8 months. That sounds so old to me. Seriously, my baby can’t be 8 months old?! But indeed he is. And we have enjoyed every single minute of it.
We are beginning to see more of his little personality develop. He is a sweet natured boy that will do things for an applause, a “good boy!” or a “yay!”{said with enthusiasm}. I always cheer for him when he claps his hands. So randomly, he will clap his hands to get a response from me. He is very cuddly and affectionate. Giving lots of kisses, sometimes even to peoples pets . . . which we are trying to steer him away from. :) He is a very trusting baby that has yet to shed a tear when we have dropped him off somewhere (church nurseries, Blake and Lauren’s, Kevin and Andrea’s). Sometimes I think one little tear would be oh so nice. But I know part of it is his age and part of it is his laid back personality, which I am grateful for.
When he is overly tired or exceptionally hungry, he knows how to throw a fit. By throwing his head back and arching his back, kicking his legs or wiggling so much you can barely hang onto the child. These occasions are rare, but they do happen. It really makes me look forward to him being a toddler{sarcasm}. Lord, help us all!
He is making a strong attempt towards crawling, which is fun to watch. He gets himself up on his knees and rocks back and forth. He can easily move himself backwards, but hasn’t learned the art of forward movement. I think it may happen soon, so we are baby proofing this weekend!
Holden is somewhere between 21 and 22 pounds. A growing boy that eats well for us. He now has 6 teeth. The last 2 came in at the end of November, I just failed to mention it on his 7 month post. He tends to be getting 2 teeth at a time, which perhaps is lucky for him. So he has the four on the bottom and now 2 on the top sides. He did not get his 2 front teeth for Christmas (as many joked about), so he looks a bit vampirish when he smiles. But cute all the same!
He loves to sit in a lap and listen to us read a book to him. He will “oooh” as we read. And sometimes he will attempt to eat the book.
Holden is a daily joy for Jeremy and I.
trying so hard to move forward!

Christmas with family

This year we spent Thanksgiving with some of Jeremy’s family, so we had Christmas with my family. It was a lot of fun for both of my sisters and their families to be at my parents house for several days. Family is irreplaceable and I am so thankful that God gave me this bunch!
attempting to get a picture of the cousins. There are 5 now!
Sweet Bella, Carson holding brother Cameron and Hope holding Holden.
Cousins Bella and Cameron trying out their new toys. There is only 5 months between the 2 in age.
A present for Holden
New drums from Nana and Papa J! He loves to bang on everything. Perfect!
My parents. Dad opening a special gift from all of us.
And guess who in their Christmas jammies. Read the shirt. Seriously, could Jeremy and I have asked for a better gift than this little guy!

Christmas at our home.

It was fun this year with Holden. Just as I had expected. The 3 of us celebrated Christmas at our house on the evening of December 23rd. It was a special time for the 3 of us. Well, at least for Jeremy and I. It is etched into my memory, with the help of some pictures. I had already forgotten that Holden had a mini-meltdown when Jeremy wouldn’t let him play with the Bible, until the pictures reminded me today. And here are a few pictures from our evening.

Christmas, Birthday and Adoption Celebrations

All rolled into one night! Our wonderful friends, Kevin and Andrea were on a mission trip in Africa during Holden’s adoption finalization. We were so, so sad when we realized that they were going to miss the big day. They are in the process of adopting a baby from Ethiopia. So a friendship that has already become so special to us is deepening in a new way as our families grow through adoption. Kevin’s birthday also came and went during their trip. So early in December we had a big celebration.
some boys worth celebrating
Holden getting a little taste of icing!
Thanks sweet friends for celebrating with us! We love you!