Sunday, June 28, 2009

Girls Getaway

Chicago was so much fun! My friend, Barb, and I got back yesterday. We were just there for a couple days, but it was the perfect amount of time to sightsee and shop!

We stayed at the Hilton was such a beautiful hotel. This was our view from our room:

The first night we took a walk and had dinner at a great Italian restaurant named Gioco. The food was so good!

On day 2 we went shopping down the "Magnificent Mile." We had lots of fun window shopping and we even got our makeup done at a department store.
(This is us with our makeup!)

We went to dinner that night at Kitty O'Shea's, an Irish pub in our hotel. They had a band playing, so we got to hear some great music while we talked.

Friday we decided to walk over to the Shedd Aquarium. What a great place! Even the walk over was beautiful - we walked right by the marina across from the hotel. On the way back, we walked past the Taste of Chicago food festival. I took this picture there:

That afternoon we went to a spa and got our nails done. With all of the stress from the last year, it was really nice to be pampered a bit!

On Saturday afternoon, we flew back home. We had such a good time during the whole trip. I know I can't wait to go back there someday - what a great city! I'm really lucky that I got to spend such a nice weekend with my friend.

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Leaving on a jet plane...

I'm getting ready to go to Chicago for 3 days with my good friend, Barb. She called me really recently and asked me if I would want to get away for a couple days with her. She's flying in from another state, so we'll meet at the airport and then go on to our hotel together.

We are both really excited. We haven't seen each other since Christmas, and we're both in need of a get-away and some fun. It's pretty fun to plan something like this right before you go - feels kind of spontaneous! I will take lots of pictures and then post some of them once I get back.

I got some great suggestions on things for us to do from my online friends, so I'm excited!

Photo from Wikimedia

This Past Sunday

We had a really good day on Sunday. My side of the family came over to celebrate Father's Day. We offered to host it at our house this time. We had lunch together, talked, and my Dad and Steve opened some gifts together. It was really nice.

We're treating my Dad to a baseball game, and we gave him a t-shirt he can wear to the game, too.

I gave Steve a little outfit that says, "I Love My Daddy," a frame, and a little baby book. My parents also gave him some bibs and a little book, and my sister gave him a card.

I took some pictures and as soon I can get my new camera to upload, I'll post a few. We had my Mom and my sister, Janice, take pictures of us outside, too. We thought we should probably try to take a few throughout the summer in case we have to update our profile later on.

I asked Steve how he felt about celebrating Father's Day and if it was hard at all for him. He said that it actually made him really excited to think that our baby is out there somewhere. I'm glad that he and my Dad had a really good day.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Waiting Families

On Thursday (June 11th) we attended a Waiting Families meeting at our agency. They host one every few months. We met after Steve was done with work and drove over together. For this meeting, the agency invited a birthmother and the adoptive parents to talk about their open adoption experience. We were so glad that we went to the meeting. I recognized the couple from our agency's website; they had been on the site back when we were deciding to go with the agency. They shared their experience of going through the home study and getting their profile ready. The birthmom talked about how she chose adoption and then about how she chose the couple. After meeting and getting to know each other, they decided the adoption would be an open adoption. They communicated through emails and texts and met up with each other for appointments as well. They have a similar relationship - emails, phone calls, visits - now as well.

It was really good to hear about such a positive experience on all sides. The birthmom seemed very happy with her choice of adoptive parents as well as with her choice to have an open adoption. The adoptive parents said they couldn't have dreamed of a better situation all-around. Their daughter (who is just 7 1/2 months old) was sitting with the three of them and kept hamming it up for everyone there!

We're both glad we went. We feel like we learn more each time we go. So far, we have heard from a birthmom and her family (her mother and her sister) as well as the adoptive couple and birthmom from Thursday night. We've also heard from another couple who adopted domestically, as well as a woman who (along with her husband) adopted internationally from Russia. We haven't heard any talks from the birthfather's perspective yet; maybe we will in the future.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Blogging Our Adoption Journey!

Our agency just started a blog called Adoption Threads. The blog is featuring news for waiting families and articles about ways that waiting families can network in their journey to adopt. Our caseworker had asked me a few weeks ago if I could write a short article about why I started blogging and about how it has been helpful as we moved from infertility procedures to adoption. I said yes right away! If you click on the link above, it will take you to what I wrote. You can also check out the rest of the blog. It can contains info such as agency news and updates, how the waiting can be difficult, and handling difficult days (such as holidays.) I think it's great that AAI created the blog. Everyone in the adoption process can use some extra support!

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Two More Times

Our case worker emailed us yesterday with our June update: our profile was shown twice in April! That means that our profile has been shown 4 times since it went 'active' in December. We were told not to expect to be shown much (if at all) before we had been waiting for at least 6 months. The people who tend to be shown the most often are couples who have been waiting the longest. So it sounds like something in our profiles has matched what some expectant parents were looking for. We weren't chosen, but it's good to know we're being shown. We're close to 6 months waiting right now.