Before and After

~Before baby: on Sun nights,  I would dread the new week, dread work, dread getting up early.

~After baby: on Sun nights,  I look forward to the new week! Getting up early to feed baby, getting to know
  her more and introducing her to the world!

~Before baby: I came straight home from work to make dinner. Everything was rushed.

~After baby: I don't even have to make dinner! I just wait for a phone call, answer the door and a sweet lady from my church has made us dinner! j/k, that's the way it is now. Soon I will begin dinner in a more enjoyable and leisurely fashion.

~Before baby: I squeezed my quiet time in before running out the door or during my lunch break.

~After baby: (I know this will change too) I make my coffee and sit in the recliner and take my time
doing my quiet time.

~Before baby: I would frequent Babies R Us and Target, print another person's registry and buy for them.

~After baby: I get to go to Target and Babies R Us for OUR BABY! (I still love shopping for shower gifts, but I have waited for this time:)

~Before baby: we routinely watched the 10pm news, went to bed and bear would fall asleep to the tv in our room.

~After baby: we plop down on the couch full of the casserole we enjoyed by some sweet Sunday school class member, begin watching tv and by probably 9:30 we are all 3 layed out asleep! (then wake up when little missy needs to eat, about 11.

~Before baby: I ate a good breakfast, on the go, ate two snacks a day and a good lunch (on an hour lunch break) then a good dinner at home.

~After baby: grab a banana or bowl of cereal between feedings, grab a spoonful of peanut butter and breathe a sigh of relief when that lovely casserole arrives.

~Before baby: I would squeeze household chores in to a few nights a week, usually washing clothes when Bear says, "dear, I don't have any clean underwear."

~After baby: I gladly wash clothes almost daily because baby goes thru a lot of outfits, burp cloths and bibs. I just love washing those sweet little clothes!

~Before baby: we prayed often that the Lord would answer our pleas to expand our family. We praised him for our situation despite our pain. We waited...

~After baby: we praise our Heavenly Father for answered prayer. Thanking him that he knows the perfect time to bring blessings to pass. Praying for his will as we raise our sweet daughter to love and fear him.


Oh Baby!!!

Here are pics of our new addition~Amelia Rebecca Rose. Enjoy!

first family photo
first time we met Amelia
all decked out and ready to go home
snoozing with my daddy
with my "Mem", who I am named after "Rose"
first trip to Jerry's


September Blessings

A close friend and our pastor, Rob Mullins, has said many times, "Obedience begins in pain and ends in blessing."  Bear and I have found that to be true.

I would like to take some time to fill you in on the journey we have been on in seeking to become parents.  It began almost four years ago in November of 2006.  We began trying to concieve at that time.  Like most people, we were nervous at the thought of getting pregnant right away.  We naturally thought it would happen fast.  For the first few months, I spent countless dollars on pregnancy tests.  To no avail, all were negative.  We have it more time, trying to be optimistic.  We knew that the Lord's timing was perfect.  We felt from the beginning of our marriage that the Lord wanted us to be parents one day.  I ALWAYS wanted to be a mom.  I never aspired to have a sucessful career outside of the home.  Any job, regardless of the rewards, always became mundane, because I ultimately wasn't satisfied with the "9-5".  I have longed to nurture and be a mom.

As the months passed, my annual check-up approached.  I shared with my doctor our struggles.  He went ahead and prescribed Clomid for me because I have a thyroid condition that sometimes can cause it hard to concieve.  I felt that I had a second wind.  I read the entire pamphlet that went with the meds.  I especially freaked Bear out when I read the part that said we could have multiples, while being excited about that inside. :)

The months passed, we increased the strenghth of the Clomid to the highest dose.  I was going nuts emotionally.  After six months of the meds, we decided to stop taking them.  I felt that much more of that and I would be in the looney bin!

In the summer of 2008 we went to a fertility specialist.  They are the best in our area.  We went through a series of tests and were going to try and do IUI.  I got really excited, but was terribly disappointed to find out that because of complications with both Bear and I, this procedure would not work.  In September of 2008, the doctor sat down with us and explained that we would most likely not concieve.  Because we both wanted to adopt one day, we left the office with hope.  It was still an emotional day that I will never forget.  The gravity of the news still hit me like a ton of bricks.

We decided to take some time and get through the holidays before taking the first steps toward adoption.  In January of 2009, we met with a couple of agencies in Memphis.  We felt led to go with Life Choices of Memphis.  This is an agency that I have known about my whole life.  My church has always sponsored it too.  We began the paperwork with them in the winter and turned it in June of 2009.  We felt like we had written and illustrated out life stories. 

So the easy part started...NOPE!  We waited....and waited...and waited.

The Lord constantly reminded us that His timing was perfect.  He had a plan.  He was working on us and preparing us for the baby that HE had for us.

Several situations came up and quickly dissolved.  Many leaving us emotionally drained.  The Lord stayed the same.  Constantly reminding us that He is our strength.  He would see us through.  We must cling to Him, even when we don't know what is going on.

In June of this year, my sweet friend (and practically a sister) Leah Budinsky, told me about a young friend who was due in September.  We began praying about this situation, sent her a profile of our family and...waited.

Things didn't really pan out.  We decided that this, too, was going to dissappait like the others.

Off and on, the Lord would bring that particular situation to mind over this summer. I would pray for the birth mother and that baby.

So skip to present time...

Through a not coincidental meeting, Leah talked with the birthmother Friday, August 27th, she decided to meet with us Saturday the 28th, baby girl~Amelia~ was born Sunday, August 29th and then...guess what??...we waited...and waited...Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Thursday, then Friday came.  We were at Chic-fil-a with the Dawkins and we got THE PHONE CALL. (Laura has a pic on her blog).  I screamed! We found out that we would be meeting and taking our sweet girl home that very night!

We spent the rest of the afternoon in hasty but excited preparation! After a wonderful time at the cradle care family's home, we walked into our door with our sweet Amelia Rebecca Rose! There was a house full of family and friends aka Prayer Warriors waiting to catch a glimpse of this little lady.  It was truly a sweet time! My sis, Michelle, had surprised us with pink "it's a girl" balloons and banner in our den! There were gifts of clothes, diapers and wipes on our table.  We were so excited!  Basically we have been rejoicing and, literally, partying ever since! I don't think the partying will subside until October is over, we will have a break and then it will be baby girl's first Christmas!!!

Very soon, most likely, Tuesday night, I will be able to post pics of this precious blessing.

I just want to publically thank YOU for praying for us through these years and though this past year.  You have been a blessing to us! We are so excited to see what all the Lord does in and through this baby girl's life. 

"Now to him who is able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think, according to the power at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, forever and ever. Amen."  Ephesians 3:20, 21