Thursday, June 30, 2011

June is Over?!?

How did that happen????
Today is the last day of June. Looking back, we got a lot done in June!

Adoption connected:
We got our profile up on Parent Profiles (see our profile here)
We started a blog (thanks for reading!)
We tweaked our LDS Profile (see our profile here)

Not Adoption connected:
my birthday
our anniversary (I can’t believe it has been 8 years already!)
 Father’s Day
 the end of the school year (that is always so much work- testing, paperwork, cleaning everything, etc!)
I moved classrooms
I read several books
June has been a busy month!  I have been thinking about what I want to get done in July. It is easy for the days to slide by with little getting done. I saw on another blog a list of things the blogger wanted to get done. I’m going to try the same thing!

Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Baby Birds!

We have lights on either side of the garage. Behind the lights are bird nests. Look what we found inside:

These birds seem to be mostly beak and fuzz!

We think each nest has three baby birds. The mother birds are very busy getting worms for them and we try to go quickly and quietly by when we get in the car. We try to get a peek at the babies and see how they are doing. The birds aren't agressive (we haven't been pecked yet!)
We’ll have to see how fast they grow!
The birds in this nest seem to be older than the first nest.

Tuesday, June 28, 2011


My brothers used to read Choose Your Own Adventure books.  You don’t read the book from cover to cover; you read then make a choice and go to another page based on your choice. You can reread the book many times and it can turn out differently based on your choices.
I didn’t like not knowing where the choices would lead me so I often read both choices and then made a choice depending on what happened. Of course, this ruins the whole idea of the book being different based on the readers choices.
Most of the time, our life is filled with choices that lead us on different adventures. Some choices are big and have a large impact. I chose in college to be an Early Childhood major instead of English major. I met different people and had different experiences because of that choice. I have even had a different career because of that choice. Sometimes the choice had a smaller impact i.e. choosing this apartment instead of that apartment. One apartment gave me different roommates and I met different people because of it. Either apartment would have been fine.
There are times when the choices are clearly right and wrong. Should I steal this car? Ummm, no that is a wrong choice.  Unfortunately, life is full of choices that aren’t as clear and the lines of right and wrong seem to become more and more blurred every day.
In one of the Harry Potter books Dumbledore says to Harry “Are you going to do what is right or what is easy?” I think more and more big choices take that kind of courage to make. It takes courage and strength to get everyone ready and get to church. It is easier not to go but the right thing to do is be there. It takes courage to tell your teenage kids I’m going to chaperone the dance on Friday night.  It takes courage to be the coach of your kid’s soccer team when you don’t know anything about soccer. But it is the right thing to do.
Most of the time our days are filled with choices where either is fine. Some are very obviously right or wrong and then there are those when it takes courage to make the right choice. 

Friday, June 24, 2011

Helping at the Food Bank

Jake and I went to help at the Second Harvest Food Bank yesterday with some members of our church. We sorted hygiene products for them. They had boxes of donated items that we had to sort; all the toothbrushes, shampoo, soap, shaving cream, razors and toothpaste were together and need to be in separate boxes. Anything else we found in the boxes went into another box to go somewhere else.  We also had to mark through the bar code and pull off any papers that were taped on.
From what I understand Wal-Mart donates lots of items, the volunteers sort them and then those who need them can come to the food bank and “shop”.  It wasn’t hard work but there were some decisions to be made.  Some packages were completely open. We had to look and see if the items were used or just open. At first a lot of things were deemed no good but as our time went on we started thinking in a different way. If you had no soap would your really care if the package was ripped? If you had no toothpaste would you care that the box was crushed?

I know by the end we were doing a much better job.  I am glad we went and hope we can go again. Now that I know what to do and how things work it will go better.
Jake and I picked up the missionaries and another fellow from our church. One of the missionaries had be to the Food Bank and helped a lot so he really knew what to do and we were able to ask him questions when the main person in charge was not available.  It took us a long time to get to the food bank and a long time to get home mostly because of picking everyone up.  Jake and I have the missionaries over for dinner once a month and Jake helps them out as often as he can. I didn’t know the other gentleman very well but he was very nice and was able to get us quickly to his house from the food bank (it is REALLY easy to get lost downtown!)
Thanks for reading!

Bucket List

(or Big Dreams we have for our kids)
Some people have a bucket list for themselves. Jake and I have a bucket list for our kids.
We want them to:
Do well in school
Go to college
Serve a mission for our church
Have opportunities to play sports or musical instruments (or both)
Be hard workers
Be independent and self sufficient
Be dependable
Be successful
Know that we love them-no matter what
Be happy
I’m sure that we will add to the list once we have children. We also know that there comes a time when everyone needs to make their own choices. Our job as parents is to prepare our kids to make choices in their lives. To help them have a plan and goals so they know where they are going and what will and will not get them there.

Thursday, June 23, 2011


Wilson Hall- JMU image from

I loved college. I had lots of friends and a great job. Many LDS kids decide to go to Brigham Young University. I went to BYU for a tour. They put us in a golf cart and drove around and then took us to the top of the Kimball Tower to point things out. The campus is VERY big and there are LOTS of students.  When I got into the golf cart I thought maybe this isn’t the place for me. Then when we had to go to the top of a building to see everything, I was convinced.  
I’m from Virginia and going so far from home was scary and to know that it was such a big place was too much. I chose to go to James Madison University. I loved JMU. It was smaller, closer to home and I had a friend going.  

I was able to get a job at the dining hall. I did lots of different things there. I helps serve food, make food, bring frozen things up from the basement, and clean the building (I only did that once). It was a great place to work with lots of flexibility and I could work a lot or a little depending on what was going on that week.

I was close enough that I could go home to see my family whenever I wanted. That happened less and less as the years went on. I also had great jobs in Virginia and the bosses wanted me to work when I was in town.  I was very lucky to have such an easy time in college.

Utah Valley University image from

Jake wasn’t quite so lucky. Jake struggled in school and was scared that college was too hard.  He tried several community colleges in Arizona and was able to make some progress but it was slow going.
When he moved to Utah he tried Utah Valley State College (now Utah Valley University).  There were some false starts and it was slow going at first but he was able to make progress and once we got married the progress really picked up and he graduated! There was a time when he said If I graduate and now he talks about going back to school for a masters degree!

My Dad

Since we just had Father’s Day here are some memories of my dad.
My dad has tons of patience. There were lots of nights he spent helping me with math homework. One year it was all word problems. He spent time every night helping me understand what the problem wanted me to do and helping me draw a picture to help me solve the problem.

My sister, Mom, Dad, me!

He loves science fiction movies and books.  Dad enjoyed watching the original Star Trek TV series and I remember watching episodes with him.  I still enjoy those now because they make me think of my dad.  He watched the Star Trek Next Generation also and all the movies. One year Jake and I gave him all the Star Trek episodes on DVD. He loved them. 

Dad is also hard to buy presents for. His birthday is in January and so we work so hard to get a good Christmas present and have to get a birthday present so soon.  One year I saw the perfect gift- a Mustang calendar. He loves Mustangs and at one time owned 4! I got a restaurant gift card to go with it (but that is really more for my mom) and was really excited about the calendar. Christmas morning came and he opened my calendar and another and another and another.  My brothers and sisters all had the same idea. He got 5 that year! 
My dad loves being a grandpa. He loves having us visit and going to see grandkids.  My parents are semi-retired which give them the freedom to travel to baptisms, dance recitals, football and baseball games and other important events in their children and grandchildren’s lives.  I’m so lucky and grateful to have the dad I have.  When I called him today he said, “Thanks for being such and great kid and making being a dad easy.” Having him for a dad made being a good kid easy. 
Thanks for reading!


Mom, Dad and all us kids!

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Why Adoption

When Jake and I got married, Jake was working 2nd shift and going to school. I was teaching. Since there aren't many 2nd shift teaching jobs, we only saw each other (awake) on the weekend. We knew we wanted children and thought that our schedules might make it take a bit longer to get pregnant. So we started trying soon after we go married.

When we didn't get pregnant right away, I was sad but not too worried. We hardly saw each other! After Jake graduated from school, we moved. We did get to see each other lots more after the move. After a while I did start to get a bit worried. I found a doctor and we tried some medication. Then I found a more specialized doctor (actually a whole team of doctors) and we tried more tests and medication. We weren't able to have the baby we desire.

Jake and I want to be parents. Through this whole process we have prayed not only for children but to know what to do next. We know that adoption will give us the opportunity to be parents. We love the idea of an open adoption where we know the birth parents and they know us. We plan to exchange cards, letters, emails, pictures and visits if that is what everyone wants. I imagine this is like adding more family to our family. Much like when Jake and I got married and added our families together.

I am excited to see how open adoption will work for us!

Thanks for reading!

Contact Us

Comments? Questions? Contact us! We would love to hear from you!

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Our Expectant Parent Letter

Dear Friends,

Thank you for looking at our profile and taking the time to get to know us. We hope you feel peaceful and comforted as you make decisions about your precious child. We can’t imagine the emotions you are feeling but know we are praying for you.

We are excited to meet you and get to know you.  Choosing a family for your child is a huge decision. We hope our words touch your heart. May you feel love, blessings and peace at this important time in your life.
We are excited to build our family through adoption. We hope and plan for an open adoption. We want your child to know you and you to know your child with a level of openness that works for all of us.

We enjoy spending time with our extended families. We are able to see our brothers and sisters, nieces and nephews and even cousins on both sides of our family. Our parents, brothers and sisters are spread all over the country and we keep in touch with email, phone calls, and visits. Everyone in our family is so supportive of adoption. They are all hoping and praying that we will have the opportunity to be parents soon. We are excited to build our family through adoption. We hope and plan for an open adoption. We want your child to know you and you to know your child with a level of openness that works for all of us.

We enjoy spending time with our extended families. We are able to see our brothers and sisters, nieces and nephews and even cousins on both sides of our family. Our parents, brothers and sisters are spread all over the country and we keep in touch with email, phone calls, and visits. Everyone in our family is so supportive of adoption. They are all hoping and praying that we will have the opportunity to be parents soon.
We are best friends and have wanted children since getting married. It was a little disheartening when children did not join our family right away; and more discouraging when fertility treatments did not bring us the children we continue to hope for.

Both of us enjoy doing different things and we enjoy doing things together. Jake is out going and great with numbers. I (Terri) am more reserved and good with words. Jake enjoys sports (both playing and watching) and I enjoy crafts and gardening. Jake enjoys making up and playing games and sports with our nieces and nephews. I love reading aloud to children and watching them grow, learn and discover the world. Together, we think Jake’s strengths even out my weaknesses and my strengths even out Jake’s weaknesses.

Some of the many things we enjoy doing together are: cooking, traveling to historical sights, playing tennis, home improvement projects and spending time with our extended families. We are a great team and enjoy spending time together.
The thought of becoming parents is very exciting to us. We have many hopes and dreams for the children that join our family. We want our children to know our love for each other and for them. Our faith is important to us and we plan for our children to be involved in our church also.  We know children are a blessing and a responsibility. Knowing we will learn many things on this journey, we take the responsibility of raising children very seriously.

We admire your courage during this process. It is hard to answer all the questions you may have with this letter. We look forward to talking with you to answer more questions and get to know you!

Terri and Jake