"So promise me you'll never forget...that you aren't an accident or an incident...you are a gift to the world, a divine work of art, signed by God. You were deliberately planned, specifically gifted, and lovingly positioned on this earth...Flooded by emotion, overcome by pride, the Starmaker turns to us, one by one, and says, 'You are my child. I love you dearly.'" Max Lucado, God Thinks You're Wonderful

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

More pics

This picture just about captures the fun we have!!! Notice Owen's new pose???

Sadie playing peek-a-boo. I love how she doesn't hide her eyes!

We had a wonderful weekend with the family. On Sunday we went to the zoo and had so much fun at our new children's zoo!
I love Cooper's face in these. He is SO way cool!
Sadie was a bit nervous about the bird on her stroller. They were so funny eating the crumbs from her snacks!

Monday we celebrated Owen's Gotcha Day! These are always so much fun to remember our journey to our forever family. We had donuts before school (whew, a lot of donuts lately) then we went out to dinner with Gigi and Papa to celebrate!

And Tuesday brought a wonderful visit for me with C and baby. It was so good to see them. It's amazing how big she has gotten in 3 weeks. Please continue to pray for everyone in this situation.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Crazy week

We had a pretty crazy week last week, but its been good at the same time.

We had some great time to play with friends at the park and run around at home. Owen has recently become a shut-in. Just kidding. But we are realizing how much he is starting to be a home body like his momma and daddy. Part of us loves that, that he just likes being with the 5 of us...but sometimes we really need to get out of the house and we have to convince him that we'll have fun. I think he would LOVE to be home schooled...no lie. But then when he does go to school, he has a blast and is in the best mood. I am super nervous about next year though and how things turn out! I have a hard time thinking about him going to school everyday even if for only 2.5 hours. Yes, I am becoming that mom!

On Thursday we loaded up and headed to Tulsa for a couple of days. It was great to see some of our family and we got some great pictures of the kids playing with Grandy, Papa Max and dyeing eggs. Owen let me take some pictures of him and I was tickled to death! He is so camera shy that I ate it up!!!

Noonie got the kids these cool donuts. Sadie got a Hello Kitty donut but she destroyed it by the time I could get a picture!!!Touching creatures at the aquarium in Jenks. This just happens to be within a couple of miles of my parents house! Sadie LOVED the fish. Isn't this a sweet pic of her looking into the huge tank?
Cooper is at such a fun age. He is SO sensitive (I say that in a good way). He is just sweet, sweet, sweet. Even when he's being a crazy nut, he's absolutely adorable. Blake and I giggle so much at him because he's so stinking funny, but he HATES when anyone thinks he's funny because he thinks we are laughing at him and not with him. I so remember that feeling. My sisters used to think I was so cute and they laughed at me lots and I misunderstood it to be they were making fun of me. Remember that girls? He is very independent and wants to do everything himself, without any help. He'll about bite your head off if you ask if he needs help! Notice the shirt below...he's been dressing himself and I LOVE IT! He's got some serious basketball skills and neither of the boys can wait until it's warm enough to play golf. I love that they enjoy that so much with their daddy!!! Noonie and Cooper before eating the donuts! Everyone was so cool about his shirt being on backwards. No one really said anything and he was so proud of himself!!!
I love to watch kids color. I love their faces when they concentrate!

Little miss is into everything and it's quite hilarious. She's a hoot. She is talking so much more now and her voice is SO sweet. All we've heard is HIGH pitched screams for so long we had no idea what her talking would sound like...it's precious! She says Noonie, Papa, ball, no ma'am, dog, mommy, dada, Owen, Pooper, Bella and lots more. Yes, I realize this list is behind what's normal for her age but I am just so excited she is talking! I know she'll catch up in no time. Last week she found nail polish, opened the bottle and painted a nail before I caught her!

Here are some pics of her after playing in the sand box with the boys. Notice how she's not bothered at all by the sand? She cracks me up!

Blake and I are loving life. Even in the midst of this adoption process where things are so up in the air, we are trusting God to handle that and we are not wasting a minute worrying about what will happen. We will find out in a couple of weeks where we will go for fellowship and we are so excited about that! We also found out that we are going back to Aspen for 3 months again next year. To clarify, that is not for fellowship but just part of his elective rotation for residency...you may not care, but I know it's confusing. We are really excited about that because it was such a blessing for us in so many ways! Grandy took us for donuts before going to the aquarium. Seriously, how much fun is our life??? Then Papa Max met us at the park and brought the kids McDonalds happy meals. Life is great!!!
I adore this one. Papa took the kids out to walk the bridge and look at the water in the creek.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

I love Wednesdays!

Sadie can't get enough of her brothers! Owen giving sissy some loving!
After our St. Patricks Day fun with green the boys thought we could just celebrate every color. So this is red oatmeal with (peanut butter). That smile is a little forced, huh buddy?

One of the very few down sides to having our kids close together in age, is that we rarely separate them. We all love being together all of the time and find it hard to pry the kids apart so that we can have time alone with each of them (you know like all of the parenting books say you should, oops!).
So, this semester at school we decided to put Owen in preschool alone on Wednesdays. Oh my, how I LOVE Wednesdays. I hate being away from O, but it is so much fun to see Cooper by himself and how different he is without Owen there. It's been such joy to see so many sides of him that I usually can't see because of the way the boys interact. They really are best friends, but they feed off of one another and are more rambunctious together. Don't get me wrong...I love their "boyness"...but it's just something different and its been a treasure for me.
Cooper is still obsessed with basketball. Right now he prefers to play with no one play defense. How funny is that? This guy LOVES playing by himself!

I typically let Cooper pick what we are going to do for the morning after we drop Owen off. He is so easy to please and so far all he's requested that we go to the mall and ride the train. He is such a sensitive guy and a great helper. Today he even asked me to get Owen a treat from the candy station in the mall after he got a piece of gum. He does a great job of sharing and watching out for his sister. He chased her around Payless playing peek-a-boo when she got tired of being held. Of course, this led to some loud squeals from Sadie...but it was priceless!

Someone likes being naked!!! Daddy was giving baths while I cleaned up from dinner. I heard squeals and the pitter patter of wet feet!!! This is what I saw running to me! We are SO blessed!

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Being Totally Honest

This week has actually been really good. I have felt that ever since Tuesday's turn around, things have just been getting easier and easier and God has so healed my heart.
We had a wonderful play date on Thursday and one of my sisters, Becki, her kids and my Grandy came to meet us at the zoo. It was a blast.
Grandy pushing Sadie on the swing at the zoo! I have to brag here, Grandy just turned 89 and spent all morning with us at the zoo! She amazes me, I forget her age and what most 89 year olds are doing!Cooper pushing Sadie and Grandy pushing cousin Ragon! We had so much fun and you'll see below that Aunt Becki spoiled us by buying the kids tokens for the rides!
Sadie even got to ride on the train! So much fun...her hands don't just look huge, they ARE huge!
What a treasure to have family close enough that they can come and play for a day!

Friday was pretty fabulous because of the weather. We stayed outside most of the day and even had a picnic!
And then there was Saturday. Ugh. It kept hitting me all day that Kennedy was 2 weeks old. I kept having to pray and remind myself that God is in complete control and it does me no good to focus on it. It was just a day that it was a battle for me to keep my spirits up. The weather was yuck here so it didn't help that we couldn't be outside playing.

Blake was a pumpkin though. We slept in and when we finally made it out of bed (8:00) he made us all waffles. Then he made my heart smile by riding around the house on the plasma car. He wouldn't let me take a picture of him, but oh how funny it was! Poor guy, his whole life is blogged and he has to request that certain things not be photographed and put on the Internet...sorry sweets! Sadie loves playing basketball too!!! See how long her legs and arms are too?!?!

I find myself wondering how normal this is...to still be talking about it two weeks later. There is no handbook on how to handle failed placements, when to move on and not hope she'll change her mind. We've been through this before, so one might think we'd know how to do this...but those situations were different. Our last one we never met birth mom or baby. We planned on placement for about a month, so that dream was lost...but goodness its been harder that we knew C and love both her and Kennedy.

Sorry to go on about it here, but quite frankly it's great to be able to get this out and journal what's going on in my head.

Today was wonderful getting to go to church and refocus my heart back where it should have been yesterday. We are so blessed by our church family!

"You're blessed when you feel you've lost what is most dear to you. Only then can you be embraced by the One most dear to you." Matt 5:4 The Message

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Seeing Green

Lunch was even green with Mac N Cheese and green yogurt for our apples! So fun!

They had a blast adding the food coloring and stirring it up! Notice the green plates too ;)

Even though my 3 and 4 year old boys can't seem to open the play dough by themselves, my Sadie had that booger open in no time! Holy moly!

We've never really gotten into St. Paddy's Day before, but we needed a little something to do today and I thought it would be fun to go all out...of course I mean in Shockley style, which really isn't anything big.
We made green eggs (no ham) and green milk this morning. It was so much fun!
Even Sadie was impressed. Not really, she's just a happy girl!!!

This afternoon we get to see Mama G and we are so excited! It's always fun getting to play and visit with our birth moms. And with what we've been through in the last couple of weeks, it makes us even that much more thankful for the sacrifices made for our children to be in our home and family.
I've not been really open about all that's gone on with Kennedy's situation, and while I still don't want to go into great detail about it, we've continued to go through ups and downs with her placement. So many people have asked when we tell them that we don't have her, "Is there a chance that she could change her mind?" Yes. And one might think that would make this loss and pain a bit easier. But when that possibility drags on, it becomes quite unbearable. It's so hard to grieve the loss of a child that you think still might be yours one day. I find myself doing everything I can to not think of her.

There are reasons I am talking about this now. One, we would like to ask you for prayer for peace for all of us, C especially. We've felt it strong and we know God is still near to us. Second, we want others to know what this feels like, not for sympathy, but others that are thinking about adoption to understand the realities of it (both good and bad). Disrupted placements are not what you hear about in the media, but they do happen. And last, I've never felt more frustrated that Cooper's Law is not in effect. My heart is so heavy for what our birth mothers have to go through in our state as they choose adoption for their child.
One of my friends said to me last week, "How are you? And you don't have to lie to me." She has been through this herself and she knows all to often when people ask that, they don't necessarily want to hear that your wondering about your baby. Thank you Kim for being so ready to listen to my heart.
All in all, we are doing well. Each day seems to get better, but I have to say that the fact things have been in limbo have worn me out. Yesterday, we decided that we are moving on like this will not happen. Again, I don't want go into the details of it because I know you are wondering why we didn't do that last week!
I came upon this verse yesterday and it spoke volumes to my heart. Hope it does the same for you!
"We now have this light shining in our hearts, but we ourselves are like fragile clay jars containing this great treasure. This makes it clear that our great power is from God, not from ourselves. We are pressed on every side by troubles, but we are not crushed. We are perplexed, but not driven to despair. We are hunted down, but never abandoned by God. We get knocked down, but we are not destroyed." 2 Corinthians 4:7-9

**Check out Owen's ashy knees! Mercy! I love that Sadie loves necklaces and jewelry!!!**

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Now what?

I am pretty sure some of you are thinking, so what happens now?

Well, our profile is back in the mix! So much of that is wonderful to know that it's a part of us moving forward. But I would be lying if I said that I am totally over this. It is hard when you get to cut their umbilical cord, watch them take their first breath, watch their first bath, smell them, kiss them, diaper and feed them. I have no idea what to do with 100 pics of her. Mercy, I can't imagine what a birth mom feels saying good-bye. We also got so excited about Sadie and the boys having another sister. I grew up with 3 older sisters and they are such treasures to me. They are my best friends to this day. I want that for Sadie.
But we are trusting that God knows what's best for Sadie, as well as all of us!
Our profile should go online with the agency in the next week or so.

We have still been talking with C in hopes that she understands we love her without condition. Even though we met her because of Kennedy, we want to support her and pray for her regardless of where Kennedy ends up. Please join us in praying for her, that she feels peace about her decision.
We hope and pray that in our efforts to share our adoption journey and the realities of it, that we haven't scared people off from joining us in this! I realize to so many that this looks scary, and perhaps a little insane. But from our perspective, even though we've experienced pain and loss, the blessings are overflowing and it is so worth the heartache and uncertainty. It is an incredible feeling to have Christ pick up the pieces, mend us and hold us. There are so many things that we've experienced this last week that we can't help but be thankful for...but nothing more than our faith and hope in Jesus.

I took the kids to Tulsa to see my family this last week thinking it would be a great distraction, and it was. It's amazing what talking will do for your soul. Thank you to my family and friends who allowed me to share the story, yet again. You have no idea how refreshing our time was with all of you!
We had so much fun playing with the kids. Okay, Grayson wasn't so much loving it at the moment!
Yea, I don't really fit on it...but those buggers are a blast! And they are wonderful therapy for the soul! SO HILARIOUS!
Thanks Becki for making me laugh! All of my sisters and my parents dropped everything to hang out with us! You all are the best!

Someone learned how to climb the stairs! OH NO! Doesn't she look mischievous?
Music has been so healing this week. This one has been particularly close to my heart as it's what got us through our time with Cooper's journey. Hope Natalie is okay with me sharing the words!
Who told us we’d be rescued
What has changed and
Why should we be saved from nightmares
We're asking why this happens to us
This is what it means to be held
How it feels, when the sacred is torn from your life
And you survive
This is what it is to be loved and know
That the promise was when everything fell
We’d be held