Wednesday, December 30, 2009

1 in 3

We met this week with our adoption agency to update our home study. She sent our letter, pictures and home study off to the other agency. Now we wait for the Birth mom to make her decision!! We were told they have narrowed it down to 3 families. So we have a one in three shot at this, I like our odds. Please keep praying, we are hoping to have a decision by mid next week!!  Yikes

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Re-cap


It has been a rainy, icey, snowy few days here. Thankfully it didn't hinder our Christmas plans! We had yet another WONDERFUL holiday with our families. Malachi enjoyed opening about 2 gifts and then lost interest, especially after we took the paper away so he wouldn't eat it. But we had fun opening his gifts for him. I think we have had more fun playing with his new toys than he has.


This was the first year Josh and I really spent money on each other. Let me tell you I was spoiled. I got a Keurig AND an Ipod Touch not to mention lots of other little things!! Josh got a bunch on video games and a few seasons of Lost! It was so much fun to spoil each other this year, I REALLY enjoyed giving him lots of things he didn't need. Hopefully next year we will be in a position to spoil each other again!

We are also spoiled by our families!! Man I tell you, it sure didn't seem like people were cutting back. Joshes mom and dad got us a Wii (totally un-expected), My mom and dad got me a vacuum cleaner and Josh a Nintendo DS. We also got enough gift cards and cash to buy a new tv for our bedroom (we like to watch movies in bed) along with some Wii games and accessories. And that was just the big ticket items, we got cloths,books, movies, and some other fun things! We are so thankful for all of these things but the thing we enjoyed most was spending time with our families laughing and making memories. Those things are so much more important than all the "stuff." But the most important thing is to remember Jesus is the reason we celebrate Christmas. We truly had an amazing time and are thankful for all the gifts!!

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Red and Green

I can't believe Christmas is almost here!! Tomorrow afternoon we will be going to my mom and dads house for a day of family fun. Around dinner time my extended family will come over and we will enjoy dinner together. My most favorite part about Christmas Eve with my family is playing the white elephant game for house. We don't buy just one white elephant gift, we buy multiple so we can play all night. It's always a wonderful time full of laughter! We can't wait, we've got some good ones this year!

Christmas day we will wake u and open presents, just the three of us. This year Malachi will actually be able to open his gifts, we cant wait to take pictures. Josh and I actually got gifts for each other this year. I am so excited to see if he likes what i picked out! My parents will come over Christmas morning for breakfast before we head out to got to Joshes brothers house. There, we open presents eat a late lunch and enjoy watching the kids play with all their new toys.

We wish you all a very Merry Christmas! Give all your kiddos a hug from us!!!

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Whats in a name?

     My name, if you don't know, is Erin. A strong Irish name. My parents picked it because, at the time of my birth, it was uncommon. I have grown to like my name, but it would not have been my first pick if I were given the choice. I'm not a huge fan of unisex names nor am I a fan of common names. My children will never be names Michael, Emma, Katie or even Josh (all are perfectly fine names, just not my cup of tea!). I like unusual names, ones that are not often found on a teachers roster or on a key chain at Disney. Malachi, for example, is unusual. Hence the reason we chose it for our son. We adore the name Malachi but even more importantly is the meaning of Malachi. Messenger of God. Perfect for a little boy who has taught us all to Love like Christ.
    As Josh and I sit and think about this little boy who may be joining our family, we can't help but think of names for him. Unusual, meaningful and strong names for this little child. I am asking you, dear friends, what are some names that you like for sweet boys? Here is our short list....

Keaton (Joshes favorite)
Rylan (my favorite)
Nolan
Easton
Camdon
Emmerson

What do you think? any stick out to you? Send a quiver down your spine?

I think we like the "on" ending!!

Monday, December 21, 2009

HELP cont....

In my last post I talked about the help we needed financially. I am so amazing at people's generosity, we got an e-mail today that our agency is going to waive the ENTIRE cost of this adoption!! Did you read that correct? They are going to wait the cost of the ENTIRE adoption!!

WOW. I am speechless.  I'll let you process what I just said for a moment.

That fee that was just waived for us is at least $10,000. What an amazing Christmas gift! God is good, sooo good.

What now? Well, we have to scramble to get a letter written describing our family and our desire to adopt children with special needs. We need to meet with our case worker and update our home study and pray. I believe there are 3 other families interested and the birth mom gets the final pick.

I am still in disbelief that such a huge cost has been lifted with the snap of a finger! Only God can move mountains like that! We will step through the door that has just been open and continue to give all the Glory to God, pointing our hearts toward the only One who is bigger than it all! I don't why we have been chosen when we are so unworthy, but I am thankful, thats for sure.

Friday, December 18, 2009

HELP

So, I spoke with JM (Our adoption worker for Malachi) briefly today. She said all parties are willing to work on adjusting the finances. There is a little glimmer of hope out there for us! We are going to continue to pursue this adoption with open hearts and minds just like we did with Malachi. Josh and I both trust that God will provide one way or another. Josh and I have been called to speak for these children who don't have a voice. We believe our purpose here on earth is to show Christs love to these sweet orphans. Our eyes have been opened and we can not turn away. Forward we march, willing to follow Christ where ever he leads us.

Anyone know how to set up a fund for donations on a blog? I NEED HELP!!!

Thursday, December 17, 2009

My Heart Breaks

Why do adoptions have to be so expensive? Why? I just got another e-mail from our foster care agency about a 6 week old little boy who was born with DS. They are looking for a family to adopt him. He is not a ward of the state, his parents simply can not care for him and his medical needs (heart surgery needed, NG tube fed all the usual for kids with DS). The agency needs $3500 for a home study and then $400 for each follow up visit after the placement. Ugh. My heart breaks for this child and if we had that kind of money we would scoop him up in a heartbeat! For now all we can do is pray. Pray for God to move the mountains that lie in the way, prayer for finances to magically appear, prayer that they can find a family for this sweet little boy and prayer that one day adoptions become more affordable for families.. I HATE that finances prevent children from going to perfect homes. We would gladly take donations :) because im sure you all have money burning a hole in your pocket!!

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

New hardware in, old hardware out

Malachi has surgery today in Madison WI. We drove up last night and stayed in the Ronald McDonald house so we could be close to the hospital the following morning. We were able to enjoy our evening last night and all three of us got a good nights rest. This morning we were able to get up, shower, eat breakfast and play before we had to head over to the hospital. Malachi's surgery was scheduled for 1:55pm. They took him back right on time. They knew going in the he needed new tubes and his adenoids taken out. His ENT also wanted to do a more detailed look in his mouth while he was asleep to determine if he needed his tonsils out. About 40 mins after they took him back we were told he was done and that they didnt take his tonsils out because they were not enlarged. Recovery was a little hard, I could tell he was in lots of pain but with a little dose of morphine he relaxed enough to eat. After he got some food in his tummy he was better. About 2 hours later we were discharged! Woo hoo no over night hospital stays, which makes me one very happy mamma! So we are now home and Malachi is sleeping (restlessly) in his own bed. And I am on my knees thanking God for a successful and uneventful surgery!!

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Brothers and Sisters





These are Malachi's siblings, Gwen(2), Raven(3) and Josh(5). Today was the first time we had all 4 of them together and it was amazing. I just sat there in awe. The journey these 4 children have been on is nothing short of Amazing. Lets start with Josh (the oldest) He was found in Chicago in a dumpster, left to die. Next is Raven, she was born 3 months early weighing only 1lb 7oz., the fact that she is here today is a amazing. They were told she would never hear, talk or walk. Today she is thriving and defying the odds. The only outstanding complications she has is SEVERE asthma. Then there is little Gwen, born EXACTLY 10 months after Raven weighing 4lbs 10oz. (the biggest of them all). She too spent many weeks in the NICU due to drug exposure and under developed lungs. Then there is Malachi who is exactly 1 year younger than Gwen. We all know Malachi's story. There is one thing we know for sure, these kids are fighters and although they got a rough start in the world, we can proudly say today they are all doing amazing. Malachi and the 2 girls have the same dad but we think Josh has a different day. They are all soooo cute and well behaved.

We are so thankful we got to spend our sunday with them and their parents. On the way home I was thinking about this journey we have been on, all the people we have met and I was brought to tears. What would life be like if Josh and I would have said no to God's call to be Malachi's parents? We listened, although we knew it wouldn't be easy, and have been blessed with a new family. We talked today about family traditions we wanted to start with the kids, we talked about what we wanted their relationships with each other to look like and we talked about our new family. I can't wait to see them all again, to hug them and kiss their sweet little cheeks.

As we find our selfs celebrating Christmas with our loved ones please remember to say a prayer for Malachi's birth mom, she has made some HORRIBLE decisions in her life, but if it were not for her, we would not have Malachi or our new family. Pray that she is safe, warm and healthy. Pray that she knows God and understand that He has forgiven her and that one day we can all celebrate, together, as family in Heaven.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Yearly IFSP

Yesterday was the big day, Malachi's yearly IFSP meeting. Josh, Malachi and I gathered with every single one of Malachi's therapists (Yes they were all there, in person, sitting at our kitchen table. I demanded this, and they obviously listened and have learned that this momma is not going to settle) to discuss his progress, goals for the next 6 months and any issues we were having. The wonderful new is that Malachi had advanced leaps and bounds in the past 6 months especially in gross motor. He still needs to work on the fine motor (30% delayed), and speech (verbal at 3 months comprehension at 10 months). His gross motor is amazing, he has normal muscle tone (which is virtually unheard of in kids with Down syndrome) (aside from his ankles and feet, that is) and if he wasn't diagnosed with DS he wouldn't be eligible for PT. WOW. The meeting went surprisingly well. Speech was increased to weekly, thank God! Here is what his schedual looks like.

PT-Weekly
OT-Weekly
DT-Weekly
ST-Weekly
VT-Monthly

We also discussed adding music therapy to the mix, however there is still a wait list, so it may be awhile till we start that, but it was also be weekly when it does start. Wow, we are going to be busy!! But I will do anything to help Malachi be the best he can be. He is simply amazing, and our little hero.

We are preparing for surgery on Tuesday next week. We called and got our room at the Ronald McDonald house in Madison for the night before. We are hoping to go home the same day as surgery, but are planning for longer just in case. I will be pushing for his tonsils to be taken out. He is 17 months old and still not eating solids, he gags. I think maybe his tonsils are to big and they don't allow room for his food. We will see that Dr. M has to say. If they do get taken out, we will surly have to stay overnight.

We are preparing for a major snow storm to hit tonight. The weather man is predicting 12 to 18 inches of snow. Ugh. I love the look of snow, but hate driving in it. Since my husband is a teacher, it looks like he will be having a snow day. Maybe we will take Malachi sledding??

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Sick

I have been missing in action! Malachi has been sick since thanksgiving, hes been the the pediatrician twice and was treated with antibiotics, tamiflu and some antihistamine's with no success. We have has lots and lots of thick boogies and some coughing but never had a fever, until yesterday morning. I took it right when he wok up and it was 100.3, I then had Josh take it about 20 mins later and it was 101.6. He was extremely agitated, like i've never seen. I was hold him trying to comfort him and he literally was crawling up me and shaking. I knew something was wrong. He was winey and was having trouble breathing. We decided to take him to the ER. They got us in right away and his fever was over 104. The nurse gave him Tylenol right away and shortly after he had a breathing treatment.  The doc. wanted x-rays to check for fluid in his lungs. Those came back negative, so they decided to test for RSV. About and hour later we got the results and they came back positive. Ugh. I thought for sure we were on our way to being admitted. The doc came back in and said he was sating well (in the mid 90's), eating well and peeing well so there was no need for us to stay. Since this isn't our first rodeo he sent us home with breathing treatments and instructions to return if anything was getting worse. By the time we got discharged his fever was down and he was acting more normal.

Malachi woke up this morning feeling much better. He has no fever and is crawling and playing. I am hoping he can get over this quickly.

He is still scheduled to have surgery on the 15th. We went up to the hospital last week and met with the NP, education nurse and anesthesiologist. We are hoping to be discharged the same day, but if they decide to take his tonsils out, then we will be there for the night.

Thats about all. Have a wonderful rest of your weekend. We are skipping church and staying home watching movie all day!!