Tuesday, December 30, 2008


What a wonderful Christmas we had this year. I didn't feel as though I was prepared, but in the end it didn't really matter. We all just loved being together.

On Christmas Eve, we played games, played with Sullivan (see how strong he is) and cooked goodies through out the day.

Every year, Jeff reads the girls a ton of Christmas books (including Luke 2). I love that my girls look forward to this tradition.

The girls helped make some yummy cookies to set out for Santa and even left 12 pickles for the reindeer. I guess reindeer like pickles!? That night we let the girls open one present from under the tree and Kamryn ended up getting an art kit from Grandma. This entertained the girls for quite awhile while Jeff and I finished up some last minute details (cleaning mostly). They ended up drawing pictures for Santa and they left them by the cookies, milk and pickles. Santa must have loved them because everything was gone in the morning.

We warned the girls that they weren't allowed to try to wake us until 6 a.m. However, in our family it is usually Jeff or myself that is too anxious to wait to open presents and this year did not disappoint. Sullivan woke me up at around 4:45, so I told Jeff that instead of going back to bed we should wake the girls. He literally jumped out of bed (such a kid at heart).

Santa left a few presents (definitely not as much as he's left in the past). Kamryn got a pink Nintendo DS with 2 games. She loves it so much and I can tell already that we might have to set up new rules with how much she has been playing it. Though, having a DS on road trips has been so, so nice.

London got a swimming baby and a container for all her Barbie's. She loved those as well.

Sullivan by his presents from Santa. He could care less about the presents. His was just happy to have Daddy playing with him.

After discovering what Santa left, we moved on to all of the family presents.

Sullivan's first Christmas. These show my pathetic attempts at being a creative photographer.

Sullivan modeling some of his Christmas goodies.

Sunday, December 28, 2008

Pre-Christmas Doings

My little sister had her 5th baby, a girl. Noel is a little thing, 6 lbs 6 oz. but is doing great despite being born early. We can't wait to meet her this weekend.

I honestly tried to get a Christmas card out this year, but so many other things took precedence. Consider this blog a history of our doings this year. We did receive the sweetest Christmas card from Kylee's family (our birthmom). Here is a section I want to have for remembrance sake...

"We found out Kylee was pregnant. Lots of decisions needed to be made. Not being married and wanting to go to school this posed a problem for her. After a time she decided to keep the baby but we both felt troubled with this decision. When I was at work Kylee had texted me and asked if Jeff and Jennifer were still looking at adoption. I responded with what a great idea. We both just felt that warm comfortable feeling. After that our feelings were overwhelming and felt this was the best decision. I look back now and realize that the lord guided us, and has blessed Kylee with such strength and comfort all along the way. Kylee knew deep down that she wanted her baby to have a mother and father to raise, love and support him. This was not an easy decision even with the divine guidance we all received."

My testimony has been strengthened. It is so comforting to know that Heavenly Father knows us and we've seen him direct both families in this adoption. Their have been too many "coincidences" in Sullivan's adoption to be labeled coincidences. I call them tender mercies from a loving Heavenly Father.

My attempt at getting a good Christmas card photo :)

Kamryn was a Christmas tree in her school Christmas program. She looked adorable and did a great job at saying her lines loud and clear so that everyone could understand.

Mr. Sullivan has had his first true, non gassy smile. It was precious and adorable and all that I'd ever dream it to be. Their is nothing like a smiling baby, in my book. I'll try to take better photos of him smiling at a later time.

Jeff is rubbing it in my face that he got the first smile out of Sullivan.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Newborn no longer!

Gasp, Ahh, *tears*...I love this picture. My friend Emily is an awesome photographer and has captured some cute pictures of the Sullster. In this photo I see his amazing blue eyes...I love them. I also do not see a newborn any more. He's growing up. That first month went by too quickly.

At a month old, Sullivan does the following...

-Sleeps 6 hours straight at night.
-Loves to snuggle up in my neck.
-Holds his head up really well.
-Tries to roll over when he has tummy time.
-Does not fit in Newborn diapers any longer, however I am trying to use up the last bag that we have and it is causing extra loads of laundry this week.
-Weighs approximately 10lbs...according to our scale.
-Has the worst plugged tear ducts EVER, poor kid.
-The most common compliment that we get about Sullivan (besides, aww...he's so cute) is usually about the shape of his head (weird, but true).
-Loves to show off his strong legs.

On a different note, Sullivan was born with a little cyst on his neck that is leaking fluid. We have an appointment this coming week with an Ear, Nose and Throat pediatrician to see exactly what it is and how it should be taken care of. I've been reassured that it is probably just a gland that wasn't formed correctly in the womb. Honestly, deep down I know everything will be okay, but as his mother I still worry a little. Please keep the Sullster in your prayers. It is much appreciated!

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Christmas Performance

Both girls were in Tavaci this year. I was a little worried about how London would do. She is quite attached to me and is shy, doesn't really like to do anything without me. It took her a little while to be comfortable attending classes. When we took her to the waiting room right before the performance, she froze. She wanted me, started to cry a little. I gave her a little pep talk and then went to wait for the performance. As soon as they walked out on stage, this is what I saw...

She was the only one that froze. She stuck her finger in her mouth and looked like she was about to cry. I really wanted her to perform, especially since some of Jeff's family had drove down to see them. Finally half way through the first song
London warmed up and was eating up the attention she was getting.

Kamryn has been a natural in front of people since she has been born. She did a great job and loves to perform.

Better late than never

I've been meaning to post our Halloween pictures for awhile. For Halloween we went to my parents house. It is always so fun to be there for this holiday because they are some of the few people who go all out for Halloween. The girls had fun trick-or-treating with their cousins and luckily it was warm enough that I got to walk around with them for a bit.

This photo looks weird to me. Sullivan feels like he has been apart of our family forever and to see what we used to be, just a family of four, looks incomplete.

We were invited to a dress up halloween party. Jeff and I never dress up, though I've wanted to. We finally came up with the Moses/10 commandment costume and I think I got the lucky end of the deal.

Out of all the places to sit, the devil himself was surrounded by Moses, an Angel and Encarnacion (a nun).

More Halloween activities.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

To lotion, or not to lotion

The bath.

Still a happy boy even after I pull him out of the bath.

Then I put on the dreaded lotion.

I thought it was because the lotion was cold, but I warmed it up before putting it on him and he still cries. Jeff says he just doesn't want to smell like a girl, to which I reply the lotion doesn't smell girlie, just babyish.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008


We just had the most fun ward Christmas party this year. So much work went into every detail. The girls had so much fun. And, Sullivan didn't cry when he sat on Santa's lap :)

Sad, but funny story...
I took Sullivan in for his 2 week appointment a week ago. He was given his last PKU, where they prick his heel and squeeze some blood out. I had him swaddled and I was holding him to make it as easy as possible for him. The nurse was on her knees working on his heel while London was standing by the nurse watching. I was really focusing on Sullivan and trying to comfort him (though he was hardly crying) when I saw London laying on her belly in the middle of the floor. I thought to myself "Wow, that is a weird place for her to take a nap. She must really be tired." Again, my attention went back to what was happening and then the nurse finished up. I look over and London is still face first on the floor, so I ask "London, are you okay?" Then I hear her groan and say "Mommy." I put Sullivan down and went to pick her up and she was ghostly white. Finally, it dawned on me that she had passed out while watching the blood come out of Sullivan's heel. She proceeds to tell me that the blood made her feel sick. I guess this isn't so funny, unless you know Jeff and that he "got green in the gills" while Sullivan was being circumcised.

I just love his sweet profile!

Sullivan 3 week Facts
-Wakes up twice a night @ 2 a.m. and 6 a.m.
-Loves to be swaddled.
-When he is awake and alert, his arms are always moving.
-Has smiled for Jeff, though I have a hard time believing it was a full fledge smile.
-Sneezes come in two or three's, not a single sneeze yet.
-Loves the bath.
-The only time he really cries (other than when I am not quick enough with the bottle, and usually that is just a series of grunts and major hand sucking) is when I put lotion on him after his bath. He hates it and cries everytime!
-Very studious. When he is awake, his eyes are focused on you or something close (aka: Christmas Tree lights).
-Not fond of the binky (makes him gag), but I am still hoping.
-His hair is growing and is strawberry blonde. But, depending on the outfit, it can look very red at times.
-Is already downing 3 oz. every 2-3 hours during the day.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Sullivan's Adoption Story

So, here goes...this is long so bear with me.

Monday November 17, 2008
We take off early in the morning for a 7 hour drive to Washington state. We are extremely happy that gas prices are below $2. I love road trips, but this one was mixed with anticipation so I didn't get to relax and enjoy it.
We were also very blessed to be able to stay with friends while in Washington which also cut costs.

Tuesday November 18, 2008
The day that Sullivan was supposed to be born. They started Kylee's induction early in the morning. Kylee and I have been communicating only through e-mail up until this point. From what I understood, she wanted us to be at the hospital to bond with the baby, but that she didn't want contact with the baby. I guess I am terrible at "assuming" things, but I really didn't think that we'd see Kylee pregnant. I thought that we'd be waiting in the waiting room the entire time and that the nurse would come and tell us when the baby was born. So, when we walked into this very small hospital and was told by the nurse that we could go see Kylee, I immediately broke down in tears. We all walked into Kylee's room and found her with her Mom and sister Ashley. I was embarrassed because you could tell I had been crying. I probably looked like an idiot standing their blubbering. But, they immediately put us at ease and we joked, laughed and shared stories most of the day. Ashley even taught Kamryn and London how to knit and Kamryn got everyone to play Go Fish with her.

Around lunch time my parents arrived and were able to help us out where needed (taking everyone out to eat, watching the girls for us etc.,.) They were wonderful and I appreciate them so much! My Mom (bless her sweetness) made sure everyone knew how much Kylee meant to us. She really said what I wanted to say but I was too scared to say. My Mom even brought up the fact that Kylee chose to do this before she came to earth. Every time I play this scenario out in my mind, tears come easily.
Time went by smoothly and quickly. Unfortunately, at the end of the day Kylee hadn't dilated and her doctor felt it best if she rest through the night so that they could try again in the morning.

Wednesday November 19, 2008
It was a restless night for me. Kylee had an ultrasound which revealed that the baby weighed 9 lbs. 4 oz. She again labored most of the day as they tried different things to help her dilate. Nothing worked so Kylee was given two options 1). C-section or 2). Go home and come back in a week to try again. She decided on a C-section because the baby was so big.

At this point, we had been waiting for so long that it just didn't seem real that we'd see our baby within the hour. After they took Kylee for the C-section, that is when I really started pacing and biting my nails. Everyone thought the baby was a boy, but I kind of just brushed it aside. If you can't tell the sex of the baby during the 20 week ultrasound then the baby is most likely a girl, in my opinion. We both really wanted a boy. In Jeff's family we have 7 girls with one on the way and only 2 boys. In my family we have 8 girls with one on the way and only 2 boys (Monte and Misty don't know the gender of their baby just yet). We are definitely lacking testosterone :).

Okay, back to the story...
Kylee had been gone maybe 20 minutes when a nurse walked in and asked us to change rooms. We all left (16 people total, lots of support for Kylee) and as we were walking to the other room, Kylee's nurse announced "It's a BOY!". This moment will be frozen in my memory forEVER! I did a couple Tiger Woods fist pumps and then the Icky Shuffle, according to Jeff. I just remember running in place while crying uncontrollably on my Mom's shoulder and then I moved into Jeff's chest (yep, I am that short). I was so unbelievably happy. I am sure I was on display and thinking back I am a little embarrassed by my happy dance, but I don't regret it.
Baby Sullivan arrived in the tiny nursery. He was adorable. Thirty minutes later, we had a placement where Sharon (Kylee's Mom) placed Sullivan in my arms. It was very emotional. She told me she knew that this was the right decision, that he was with the right family and that she was confident that we will do a great job raising him. My heart goes out to her/to them. We focus on adoption being difficult on the birth mom, but it really does affect everyone.

We got some alone time with Sullivan and then we left to get some much needed rest.

Thursday November 20, 2008
We arrived at the hospital early. We were given a room where we could bond with Sullivan. The doctor came and checked him out and gave him the go ahead to leave. Wow...that was fast. But, before we could take him home we needed the caseworker to come to the hospital to release us. At this point, I don't think that Kylee had seen Sullivan (not sure though) and again, I thought that she didn't want to see him for fear of it being to difficult. But, we got a text later that morning telling us that Kylee wanted to see all of us. We happily went, but in the back of my mind I am slightly worried. It was a great day. We hung out with them most of the day, though we tried to take off often so that they could have some alone time with Sullivan. The caseworker came and left by lunch. We could take Sullivan, but Kylee and her family need more time with him (which we totally understood). So, since Sullivan is already released from the hospital, we got to take him home for the night but the birth family wanted us to bring him back in the morning. That first night was fun. We just laid in bed as a family and loved him. He was quite awake and studying all of our faces. I didn't sleep much that night. I awoke quite often to lay my hand on his chest to make sure he was still breathing.

Friday November 21, 2008
My Mom (whose at home now) called and let us know that they wanted us to drop off the baby and let them have the day with him. The same thing happened with Kamryn's birth mom, so it didn't come as a shock to us...we understood. So, Jeff and I went to the nearest big city and spent a small fortune on mini adult looking baby clothing. It was fun and the girls needed the break from the hospital. We were to go back at 8 o'clock to pick up Sullivan for the final time. We walked in the room with a prayer in our hearts. I never know what to say in moments like these, nor can I control my emotions. Kylee asked to say goodbye to Sullivan alone...yep, I started crying all over again. We were out in the hallway waiting, Sharon went in to check on Kylee after a bit and then came out with the car seat and Sullivan. Can you just imagine how difficult this would be? I can't. It breaks my heart and I often feel guilty about...

How my greatest Joy...

caused such pain and sorrow. :(

Kylee, not only do I tell Sullivan how much you love him, but now the world knows.