Monday, September 19, 2016

Happily Ever After Day

When we got married, my maid of honor concluded her toast with, "Now let's raise our glass and cheers to love laughter and happily ever after."  While I thought our life would surely be that of a fairy tale, I was wrong.  In our first few years of marriage; my husband survived a horrific brown recluse spider bite, my father was tragically killed, and devastatingly we received the news of infertility.  

Thank the Lord our adoption process was on the brighter side! We were matched pretty quick and then graced with Baby Finley's presence 9 weeks early. We spent a few very stressful weeks in the hospital awaiting our legal gaurdianship and we spent many sleepless nights praying about our preemie and the health of her future. 

When she got to come home, it was as though she just filled up our home with joy via her sweet spirit! It was indescribable. I get tears just thinking about how amazing it was. 

Then, a year later, on September 19, 2014 we were getting ready for what we anticipated to be a simple court hearing. Since we'd considered ourselves Finley's parents from day 1, we expected to just sign some papers and be on our way. Nothing could have prepared us for the impact of this process. Our friend, Brian Perry (Perryfield Films), had witnessed a finalization court hearing before with the adoption of his neice and nephews, so he understood what was about to go down. I'm so glad he was there to capture it and that our sweet photographer friend, Rebecca Ryan, offered to come take beautiful pictures to document it!

I will forever cherish them.

Someone once told me, "When our lives look exactly like we imagined, we’re probably not following God’s will, but our own instead." This road the Lord has us on is not what I thought I’d have chosen, but here we are: Parents to one very special little lady. 

We are the luckiest. 

I chose the use the popular term "Happily Ever After Day" to give this date extra special meaning. It was the day that my husband and I signed our first birth certificate. We became legally parents to a child. Our child.

I'll never forget this day, it's one of the fondest memories I have. As always I must say thank you to Finley's birth parents for choosing life and then choosing to place that life with us. Adoption is an incredible thing! Today was the day we got to literally feel what it means to live "happily ever after"- thanks to two amazing people. 

Here's the link to watch our Adoption Video, you may want to grab a tissue! 

(You'll hear a beautiful guitar in the background of our video. Our friend Brian, wrote that for his son that passed away at birth. It means so much to us that he used this song for our video. You can read more about their journey at 

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Newport Beach FD Dares to Dance!

A few weeks back an old friend asked me if Fifi and I would be interested in making an appearance in the Newport Beach Fire Department's Dare to Dance Challenge Video. (Boy, say that 10x fast!)

I thought to myself, "I really want Finley's Birthmom to get to experience this." Afterall, Leelee would text me often and say how amazing every single video she saw was. I knew I wanted her there, and luckily the NBFD was very accepting of my request! You may be thinking, ofcourse they were accepting.. No- not always the case. I recently told a <newer> friend that I wanted to have Leelee join in at an upcoming event and she said, "Really, why?!" Like why would I want to include her in an event I didn't have to.  I technically never have to, I get to. 

 I'm aware that our open adoption can confuse people or make them uncomfortable. And that's okay.  I guess it's just like everything else that's not perceived as 'normal' and some people just don't understand it. You see, it's my job as an advocate and as a member of an adoption triad- to do my best to make it feel normal to people. 

Part of why Open Adoption is so amazing is that I get to share my thankfulness constantly. The woman that chose to give life to her child and then chose to place that life in my hands gets to see how grateful and in love, with said child, we are. She gets to experience parts of our daughter's life & Finley will get to experience parts of her birthmother- something that wouldn't happen if it were a closed adoption. 

This doesn't mean either of us are extra "strong" or "selfless" - it just means we cumulatively want to continue to do the best for Finley. 

So, there's my two cents on that! Haha! #endlecture - I'm so excited to share this video!

Thank you so much to everyone who came out to participate in the video and everyone who had a hand in creating it! 
We love it! 

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

The Happy Hour Podcast

Last week I had the pleasure of chatting with Jamie on her Podcast, The Happy Hour.  I'm still getting used to doing interviews, they always make me so nervous!  I never want to say the wrong thing... but I'm human, it's a certainty at some point that i will say the wrong thing.  I was super comfortable chatting with Jamie, it definitely felt like we had known each other for years! She's a published Christian Author, which is intimidating! BUT she's also a wife, mother, and fellow adoptive mama and she made the interview really fun.  She was cracking me up!   

We discuss the challenges of special needs parenting, adoption, exercising patience, and the tragic loss of my father.  I haven't really spoken too much publicly about my Dad, so it got emotional.  I was pretty much bawling uncontrollably. It was hard to listen to that part of the podcast- but ultimately thats all part of my story, and its what got me to where I am today.  

It's about an hour long. Our interview was pretty early in the morning for me- so I was struggling to find some words -lol- bear with me, folks! 

Are there things you would like to know? I would love your feedback:

Hope you enjoy Happy Hour #105!

To hear the Podcast click here