Thursday, December 22, 2016

I'm not dead and we're still trying to adopt

So my last post was all about yay! A contact but then she turned out to be working with multiple agencies.
So instead of matching with her after texting for almost 2 weeks we said good-bye and good-luck.
So now it’s December, almost the end of it actually and I realize I’ve seriously neglected the blog.
We were featured in our friend’s blog post this month and for that we were extremely grateful.  She was lucky to adopt this year after an excruciating wait and for her to feature us and a few other friends still waiting was a blessing to all of us especially since she doesn’t update the blog often because you know new parent, work, and school. She’s quite busy and extremely happy to be.  I can’t express how thrilled I am for them, seriously even though we are still waiting it’s amazing to see our adoption friends become a family.
Christmas is upon us and I’ve been ready for a few weeks.  I called early in the month for gift ideas, made my choices and they’ve been delivered and wrapped beneath the tree for a couple weeks.  This year was an order, ship, wrap season.  I hope everything we got works for everyone but if not I tried my best with my limited knowledge.  Turns out we’ll be having 16 people for Christmas this year  (I thought we’d have 10 which is doable) and my @400sq ft is going to be stretched to the max.  You see our house is a 2 story so most of the upstairs is bedrooms/bathrooms/kitchen leaving about 400sq ft.  The basement which we turned into our living room is also about 400 sq ft so not much respite there.  If I had known we’d have so many folks I’d have suggested a restaurant banquet space so we’d all have room and seats. 
What bums me out is I can’t cook us a Christmas dinner.  I mean I can but no one has a place to sit so I opted for appetizers this year.  I’m going to miss the family dinner. I love cooking for family and so this is a huge bummer for me; although I am still making my cheesecake (drunken cherry cheesecake) for dessert.  I refuse to give that up.  I’m also making my Pumpkin bread to share. 
I find myself this season giving all kinds of positive reinforcement for others in our agency and it’s often not easy (seriously for how long we’ve been waiting this sucks not because they don’t deserve it but because we’ve been passed over so often! But I refuse to be a Debbie downer it’s not me) but you know I know it makes a difference. The waiting sucks!  Period! No matter if its 5 months or 5 years but the difference is those waiting 5 years are seriously thinking it’s about time to quit vs those who just signed up thinking it’s gonna happen anytime.  I remember those days and then watching those days slide past as others dreams came true.
I can only hope that our dream can come through before I say enough is enough.  I’m tired of the almost, the failed matches, the failed placements.  I try to keep the faith that our family is out there. Since our resent contact was contacting multiple agencies and therefore we didn’t match with her my faith is restored in our agency diligence but I wish it’d been before we’d been contacted. It’s the downside of open adoption.
I’m also disappointed in our other agency who called me after we opted for a small partial refund (thus ending our contract).  As soon as the check cleared our account we received a call asking if we’d entertain an EM due a month from now.  I was asleep and even my asleep self said No. You aren’t getting me to re-sign up after our failed placement.  If you had this mom you could have presented her before we said no thank you. I have no faith in them and I’m done but it doesn’t mean I don’t get upset saying No, or that I don’t cry with the possibility I just turned down because I do.  I get upset every single time!
Someday we hope to be parents but I hope it happens before we say no more as each year looms closer to the no children option. When May rolls around and we have to update our home study and FBI clearances I guess we’ll see where I’m at.  It’s not a cheap process and if you have not gotten leads it’s a discouragement and a why? I’m also bummed our social worker is retiring this month so we’ll be working with someone new next year.
I love our social worker and am so bummed she wasn’t/won’t be here to witness our family being built. She adopted her 4 kids and has shared such great stories; I’d really hoped she’d been in our corner but 4 almost 5 years in she’s retiring. I sent her a card I hope she’s received.  She can’t explain why we haven’t been chosen and then neither can we or our AC so you know we just plug along.
So that’s December – It’s an emotional mix of emotions and themes.
So here’s Our Christmas tree this year and some of the presents under it.

Tuesday, October 25, 2016

A Trifecta? Maybe and I hope so....

The Trifecta?:
Ok, It’s a normal everyday Monday and I had to run errands because, well lazy weekend.  I got our 3 year LMHL letter in the mail today.  YAY!  Now to fill it out and send it in!
Then our AC returned our call from late last Friday regarding some up-coming changes to the website I had some questions on.  While she couldn’t answer them outright she did send for more info so I should know within a few days.  Again I see this as a win.
Oh, look a call from ?? from IAC ok why are they calling.  Holy Moly someone is looking at us and uh YES!
Oh but wait what I actually said is please find out more because we just had our lives shattered a few months ago and I don’t want to be considered if we won’t be a good match.  Now you know 6 months ago I’d have immediately jumped yes, yes, yes call me!; Today not so much.  I am THRILLED we are being considered but I want to be sure it’s a good fit.  This is the sad face of adoption.  This is the reality that happens that most of us don’t talk about if we’re long waiters. I want this to work out and be the ONE but I’m also resigned to the fact she could choose another family or to parent.  Adoption is amazing and beautiful if a painful, emotional route to a family but I still keep the faith it’ll happen for us one day.
To me, on paper she is a perfect match for us but until we talk I won’t know. Here’s the one thing I do know, this potential match if it happens, no one will know.  I cannot put my family and friends through what we went through previously.  Only if it’s a success will anyone know.  Sorry family and friends but it benefits us all in the end.  Yes, I’m all for Open adoption but not the heartache that can happen from it not happening.  (Believe me someone or two or three in my adoption circle will be hearing from me because um high emotions but I trust them to say nothing and let me vent). I’m hoping our check in tomorrow gives us good info to move forward. I hope we can connect and get a rapport going.  So many emotions on all sides if you haven’t been here you don’t explicitly understand. I don't expect you to but please don't suppose because I posted this that we are matched; we aren't. It's  simply a contact and most of those go with the wind, I hope not here but I always hope that way but the fact is until we match, get relinquishment, and then get home it isn't a done deal. Even then we have to go through extensive post-placement reviews by the state to be sure everything is going as it should. So it's a brutal few months even after the birth/placement (should it happen). 
I may sound harsh or cold but honestly I’m not.  I’m protecting everyone’s’ hearts, including our own and the mother in question, it’s her child until she signs relinquishment's. I want nothing but the best for the child and their mother and I do hope it’s us but if it isn’t; it isn’t. I can’t help and won’t change who we are or what a mom may want for their baby. I want nothing more than to have a mother we really connect with who has a support network and open adoption in her heart.
Let’s rally! Go team Davis!

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Sunday, October 2, 2016


It’s been awhile but we did go to Dragon Con.  We had an absolute blast with our friends.
We did discuss what happened in TN and then we moved on.  It was the best medicine!
We went to concerts, Balls, and a rave.  We had our Best. Con. YET!

We can’t wait until next year! Our tickets are bought and another of our friend’s from Seattle is also planning to go.  We’ve asked her to go the last couple years but it hasn’t worked out so next year should be great as well.

The unfortunate issue is Don picked up a cold and on our flight home it started to manifest.  A couple days later I was down for the count.  His was a head cold of a few days with a slight cough that cleared up within 5 days.  I got the lung infection of Bronchitis that had me way under.  When I first got sick I thought ok in a few days it’ll go as his has; that didn’t happen ( I haven't been sick like this in years - a couple days of sniffles but not down and out sick like this was!).  I got the cold and it started on day one as a sore throat and a head cold and by day two it was in my lungs.  I waited it out with over the counter meds and lots of sleep for a week but then it was clear it was more than a cold.  I went to the clinic and the doctor was worried I might have a severe case of Phenomena.  Luckily my X-rays showed it was just Bronchitis. A bunch of prescriptions later I was sent home.  So for the next couple weeks I took my steroids, Antibiotics, inhaler, cough medicine, and cough syrup and I was beginning to feel better.   So that was my September. 

I was fortunate to be better and was able to make my friend’s wedding.  I was thrilled to be a part of her special day.

Now it’s October and it’s a reminder that soon we’ll be a part of the National Last minute Hospital List for our agency.  Honestly I thought we’d have the paperwork by now but I guess it’s a couple weeks out so there is still time for the letter to arrive.

What is the last minute Hospital List?
It simply means we’re on the list for all the areas our agency is involved in (meaning where they have offices). It’s really just a finite second chance because they really don’t have that many last minute placements but it is something better than nothing and a hope for a future of becoming parents.
So I await that letter so we can be included in Last minute hospital situations. We are also not far off from the top 50 longest waiting families so again more hope of even more exposure in our wait.

Until then I look forward to friends and family days (yesterday was a friend game day and it was 13 of us so I can't wait to see how it happens the next few months!) and look forward to the holidays this year.  My brother and his family moved home in August so I can’t wait to spend it with them after 4 years away. I’ve really missed them and am looking forward to this year. Today they were supposed to come visit but something happened and they couldn't so hopefully soon they can come visit.

Our agency site

Friday, August 26, 2016

We Survived a Failed Placement

So I’m starting this post off negatively but if you’ve wondered where we are it’s because we had a failed placement and it's taken me awhile to process it and write it out.  

Now before we get into the thick of it let’s talk basics.  Back in May we signed with a second agency and after a possible match, which I was dragging my feet on and then on day 3 the agency said wait, whoa don’t send in the match fee, we moved on and would eventually match with K. (yes another K name).

Now K was a quiet but an honest young lady.  Our attorney however put a doubt in our mind and it would cause some chaos that I’d maneuver in just a few very stressful days but it worked out.
We matched the end of May and by June I was working the attorney circuit looking for an attorney to represent her and I planned to go out and meet her and her son.  It was an awkward meeting because again she was a quiet person and I’m not good with small talk.  However, I found her to be sweet and her son to be a typical 3 year old.  I enjoyed meeting and spending time with them both. 

So we were texting everyday or every few days and things seemed to be progressing in a natural way.  She was working on getting herself in a better position once birth and placement happened and we were trying to make sure she had what she needed as she needed it.

Now the rub is; looking back; that she hinted at the things that would eventually undo our adoption plan.  Her family was happy she had an adoption plan they didn’t support her at all.  She used to be close to mom until….(not important). So ya the signs were there but I didn’t catch them per se.  I think I instinctively got it because I was so guarded but it wasn’t there at the time in the fore front. They always say in adoption literature and blogs if the family isn’t supportive it’s a BIG RED FLAG! Because 9 out 10 times they come forward at the hospital and offer support thus screwing the adoptive parents who’ve been supporting them for months as was the case with us.
Incoming RANT: 
Oh how I’d love to be able to get restitution on what we spent on support but you know it’s not an adoptive family friendly environment, in fact we have zero protection in these matters.  Honestly we’re the ones taking the financial and emotional risks (and the damn scammers that come with that – hello emotional trauma; again no recourse – WTF!!!!).
Ok Rant over and I feel better, moving on…..

So what happened in our case? Well the very simplified version is she asked for a day alone to reflect and have time to which we agreed.  Our friends were coming into town that day from out of state so we’d only planned on stopping in to visit her and the baby in the morning and then heading out.  She however then sent the late night text the night before asking for a bit of space so we obliged.

We met our friends at a restaurant/pub in the area where we were staying.  We had talked of going to the zoo or maybe visiting another local historical home.  Unfortunately while my friend and I were outside I got a text asking me to come by first thing in the morning that she needed to talk to us but everything was ok. I showed my friend and said that’s it it’s over she’s going to parent.  My friend the forever optimist said no, you don’t know that, just keep the faith.  I knew.  She’d call less than 10 mins later to tell me that she couldn’t do it and that she was only doing it because she didn’t have support and now she did and she just couldn’t go through with it. So bottom line is mom abandoned her when she was pregnant and homeless with a 3 year old but as soon as baby was born in the hospital no way could baby go to a family outside theirs.  

Now It actually happens quite often but if I’d read the signs properly I’d have had those questions answered before we ever got to delivery. There were other signs, some quite blatant but I’m not into the details just the basics here.  Mind you during this time my mom is excitedly asking me if she can post pics and info and I keep her at bay for 2 days and then this happened and I texted “She is going to parent” ya that’s not how I wanted this to go.  As much as I wanted it to be right, it wasn’t.  I wish her the absolute best, honestly. She is a good, kind-hearted, and loving lady.  She has 2 boys to raise and I do hope that offer of support for her and the kids continues to be there for her. I will never not think of her and hope she is doing well.

Now the best part is we have friends in with their son from out of town visiting when I get the phone call.  Don, our friend’s hubby and their son are off playing games and I want Don to have a good day.  I walk off to the bathroom not once but twice during our visit to cry in a stall.
My friend agrees not to say anything and buys me a shot of vodka (so glad to not be driving!), which woo took me a few sips to finish.  We then decide to go downtown and walk around (mind you my friend knows we’ll be leaving and wants us to see the city we’re in before we go.  Also note Don doesn’t know yet!).
After our trip to downtown Nashville to shop, walk, goof off, and eat, they drive us back to our car and follow us back to our friend’s place where we are staying.  It wasn’t until they left that I told Don what had happened 10 hours earlier.  We talked and he went to bed, I then went downstairs and into the family room of our friends where we are staying and told them.

Now I have no idea how I was able to keep it together for 10 hours before telling Don but I did because I wanted him to have a good day with our friends and not think about the adoption.  He even said why didn’t you tell me and I told him X and X were here and I wanted us to have good memories and a great visit.  Mind you we normally take a trip to Atlanta for Labor Day so we’d cancelled that because hello, becoming parents is top priority, but ya now it’s cancelled and we aren’t. So the trip home was rather somber as we explained where the baby was.  We had a car seat and stroller combo and a newborn sleeper that had to be shipped home.  I even had my carry on pulled by TSA because of baby stuff (my carry on had our diaper bag with clothes, diapers and wipes) and we had no baby; ugh!(side note the guy was super nice he was just doing his job).  However the best part was we could’ve taken the baby stroller/car seat combo and baby wrap back for a refund but we chose to bring it home as a symbol that we will be parents! We both still know we’ll be parents but we’re waiting for the right person to come along and make it happen for us and expand our family.

The planets must have aligned because next week we are going to Dragon Con and meeting our friend’s.  We definitely need this trip to be ourselves outside this process. We found new cheap flights and free hotel which is beyond abnormal (bye-bye points we’ve spent you all and then some).  I’m super excited because just last week we couldn’t go and I was a bit mopey.  I’m super excited to go even though half our friends can’t make it.  We’ll have a great time with our friends who experienced our heartbreak with us and helped us through that. Did I mention I'm super excited!

So where does that leave us now:

We are coming up on 3 years live in a short few weeks and we’re only 8 families out of the top 50 with our agency, which means the 50 longest waiting families so maybe this is where we are meant to be. Who can say for sure?  I do know that yesterday I opened Instagram and I saw this posted by a friend and fellow long waiter in this process, who has recently adopted, and it really struck me so I asked if I could share it.
So that's it we've survived a failed placement and are so very lucky for our support network. We have adjusted and are moving on in the right direction. Hopefully our meant to be is just around the corner.

Monday, July 18, 2016

It's Summer

Wow it's July and I haven't posted in quite awhile.  Life has been crazy busy since our last post in May.

So after our trip to Florida we settled back into the daily life, Don going to work and me working on the adoption stuff, pretty much non-stop.  We did a bunch of things around the house to keep busy and Don helped me in the garden to weed the overgrowth.  Sadly I've been busy and the weather hasn't cooperated as much as I'd like so the weeds are back and I have a ton of work to finish up out there.

In June I flew to Nashville and met up with some friends I'd never met.  I know sounds strange but I've "known them" about 9 years thanks to World of Warcraft and we were finally able to meet up in real life.  Now, I've actually met one of their sons 2 years ago in Atlanta for Dragon Con and Don has met 2 of their sons who also played with us so I wasn't worried. Some of our best friends we met through our guild in game.  Of course it was over the course of years before we agreed to meet anyone but they have become some of our best friends and being able to see them is always great! I even drove to Knoxville for a few days to spend time with my best friend. Don was on a business trip but was able to drive from Ohio down to TN on Thursday and we stayed with our friends then left in the morning to catch flights out of Nashville.  It was really a great trip.

Summer upon us we planned for our friend and his son to come for a visit.  That is always a great time over the fourth having them here.  I really wish we saw them more than 2-3x a year but it's life and we all move to where we live and work.  We're lucky to still be in active (not just Facebook friends kind of contact) contact over the years we've known each other.  We had hoped to stay here for the fourth of July and then drive to Oregon with them but it didn't work out.  You see we'd won a weekend stay at the beach through a charity auction last year and we needed to use the time. Unfortunately, his Son is in swimming so they couldn't go due to his matches but we did the weekend following their return home.

 Cruising the lake on the boat
  Jack loves being on the boat - it wasn't warm enough to swim but still a fun day
 The 4th of July BBQ
One of the fireworks

The drive to the beach on the Oregon coast was interesting.  It's a part of Washington and Oregon we don't usually see.  In fact we've never been to the Oregon coast so it was fun to see and visit.  The beach was great albeit cold.  We unfortunately had a weekend where it poured cats n dogs 90% of the time.  We did get a respite on Saturday morning and took the opportunity to walk the dogs down the trail to the beach and then along it.  Two miles later we were back at the house just in time as the rain re-started with a fury about 30 minutes later. We decided to leave on Sunday instead of Monday so Don could get a full days work in and boy that was a drive home.  The roads in and out are two lanes so we get 30 minutes past Astoria and then we're at a stop.  Accident Road closed the vehicle says as it passes our parked vehicle.  Ah ya ok so how long to wait? Well we debated the wait and turned around. Needless to say our 3 hour drive turned into 6.  It was a long day and made me glad we'd come home a day early.
 Our view from the beach house
 I'd say they loved their beach walk
 The trail to the beach
 Little beach shrine on the trail
 When we said we were going home - ya they didn't want to go
As soon as the car was packed (mind you it had been raining) this was our last view from the house

Next month we are flying to visit friends in Atlanta and will hopefully hear that their foster daughter is their adopted daughter (meaning mom has signed in front of a lawyer so the adoption process can begin).  Things are in motion but it's Foster Care Adoption so anything can and has happened to them.  Crossing our fingers this one comes to pass.
Happy Summer to All!

Friday, May 13, 2016

A Crazy Busy 2 weeks

All the crazy is over and our 4th home study update is done.  Every year we get that email from our adoption coordinator that our fingerprints are due and it’s the signal that our home study update is due shortly after.  The fingerprinting is part of the FBI clearances due every year.  It’s always a difficult milestone to reach but this year they added additional papers to be filled out that I didn’t know about so it took a few trips to the police station and a phone call plus a print, form fill out, scan and email in order to get our fingerprints processed.

On top of the complications with getting all the correct paperwork for that was the notice that our doctor was closing.  Insert panic! We were able to get the scheduled appointments but I am so upset she is moving and closing the office.  We’ve been going to her for 13 years and in our small community she is like family, she knows us. We both saw her today for our updates and I wished her well but I will miss her.  We hugged and said good-bye but I always imagined her taking care of our new family once we adopt.  She was perfect as she adopted her 2 kids and knows how much it means to be personal and not judgmental.  I hope we find a new doctor who will be the same.  It’s part of my interview process now.

Our home visit also brought us some sad news that our social worker of the last 4 years is retiring at the end of the year.  I honestly felt a heavy brick hit me when she told us.  I, again, pictured her seeing us with our family for post-placement visits.  I love her she is such a great woman doing an amazing job who also adopted 4 kids so she completely understands the emotional roller-coaster of the wait, the paperwork, and the parenting of adopted kids she’s often shared. 

Fast forward a week of scammers trying to get us in their web and missed international phone calls and emails (which we couldn’t help anyway since we are going for domestic adoption) and she forwarded an email with some situations from an agency she’s worked with many times before.  So after reading tons of legal paperwork, I signed us up.  Yes, we are now with 2 agencies on top of our complete on-line presence.  I am hopeful that we will connect this year with a birth family. So if you know anyone thinking of adoption please forward our website, blog or agency page.

Monday, May 2, 2016

Three Days and Three Theme Parks - Our Mini Vacation

The time for our mini vacation to Florida started at 5am on Saturday and all was going well and it looked like we'd be leaving a few minutes early but then our flight out of Seattle was delayed an hour. We arrived in Orlando at 5pm and luckily the rental car was really easy to pick up so it took us no time to get out of the airport and on our way to the hotel. Before heading to the hotel Don wanted to find the area that used to be the naval training base where he was stationed and we found it - some buildings are still there but it's been turned in houses and lots of parks so then we headed to the hotel to check in. It turns out the hotel was just a couple miles the other side of Disney and recently opened in February so at night you could see some of the fireworks which was cool. The other amazing thing was no thunderstorms the entire time we were there which has never happened before.

On Sunday, day one, we went to Universal Studios and Island adventure.  Island adventure was a blast.  Loved the Jurassic world water ride and then we moved on to Hogsmeade where we rode the rides, we had lunch at the Three Broomsticks complete with a butter beer (sweet butterscotch cream soda), and then moved into Dr. Seuss land.  We didn't take the train to the other park though the wait time was an hour. After making our way through the Island Adventures areas we decided to walk over to Universal Studios which takes about 15 minutes. I really wanted to ride the minion ride and even though it was a long wait time it was worth it.  It was such a fun ride. We also went to King's Cross and took pictures with the night bus.  I wish Don had taken some video of the interaction because the shrunken head was hilarious.  It was getting close to closing time so we watched the parade from a park area within the park and then walked back to the city walk, bought a couple shirts and left for dinner.
 Island of Adventure Harry Potter World

Butter Beer - a sweet Butterscotch Cream soda
 It indeed leaves a mustache

 Great themed area for the kids

Monday was Epcot, which is having the flower show right now.  I really didn't know what to expect at Epcot outside the Themed food areas.  We really enjoyed it and the best ride was by far the Test Track. It was a nice leisurely day and we followed it up with a trip to Medieval Times for dinner.
The couple on the left of us was actually from Seattle which was cool and then a couple with their kids came in a bit late and were from Upstate New York.  I had a blast talking, laughing, and cheering with her and her 9 year daughter.  We had a blast!
 Morning arrival
Couldn't resist Lady and the Tramp pics 
 Bought some teas I've never seen in stores here
 Piglet and Eeyore Topiary
 The match was over and our Knight lost but we had a blast!

Tuesday we left Orlando and drove to Tampa to Busch Gardens, another park I wasn't sure what to expect outside lots of roller coasters.  I knew when I bought the tickets ahead of time they had Giraffes, Zebras, Antelope that you could pay extra to go out and feed but what we didn't know was it's actually a conservation zoo for animals from Africa and Southeast Asia.  Loved it! Favorite ride of the day was Cheetah Run.  We finished out the day with the river rapids ride and of course we ended up under the waterfall so we were thoroughly drenched! We walked around trying to dry out before getting back in the car to find an Italian restaurant we'd looked up while planning in the park where to eat dinner in Tampa.  Amazing dinner! We seriously loved the ambiance, food, server, and owner who does all the cooking. They really made us feel like family so if you're in Tampa and want great food try La Terrazza.  It is in the historic district and so worth the drive. We drove back to Orlando feeling completely satisfied and tired from the day.
 Loved this recycled art of a cat and dog

He followed me everywhere I moved - I think he loved the bright blue case on my phone
 Only one set of tigers were out but hard to photograph 

 Feeding the birds fresh apple chunks

We took the train around the park and the Zebras started running after us

We had planned on driving to Daytona on Wednesday to kill some time before our flight but with the work week traffic it was going to be an almost 2 hour drive there and back so we scrapped that and I found an alternative in Orlando.  We visited the Botanical Gardens instead and that was amazing.  I've never seen so many huge oak trees or that many roses in one place. It was a huge garden and was a great way to fill the last day in Florida. I also like that the food grown is donated to charity, they have a vegetable and herb garden along with a ton of citrus trees.  We then went to the airport and bonus our flight was going to land about an hour early.  Huge Bonus because it usually takes 6 to 7 hours to fly home from the east coast and it only took 5 meaning we got home early enough on our late flight to unpack and relax a bit before bed.

 One of the oaks with a large vine coexisting together
 The arid area was filled with varying cactus blooms
 One of the largest rose gardens I've seen
I liked the colorful foliage
Thursday was an early day since our social worker was coming out to start the home study renewal, which is due by June and includes her coming out to the house.  She told us she's retiring in December and that kinda bummed me out.  She has been so great the last 3 1/2 years with doing our Home Study and checking in on us to see how we're doing that I hope we adopt before she retires so she can see the baby and us as parents in the post placement visits.

Friday, April 15, 2016

Learning to make an Adoption Video

So making an adoption video should be easy right?
Well, not as easy as it may seem.  I spent 7 hours on Saturday uploading and editing to create a video only to upload it to You Tube and have it watermarked the whole way through smack in the middle of the video.  UGH!!! So much time wasted and now back to square one which is buy a different program and download it.  So I bought one and it wasn't the same at all to the one I had used before, although from the same company meant back to that learning curve I'd had the day before.  That turned into another frustrating experience so I read a bunch of reviews and bought yet another program.  Back, again, to square one after download.
So I'm getting the hang of this new program but it's still time consuming because it comes with only 2 templates and they are in no way what I wanted so I spent Monday downloading templates, titles, etc into the program.  I then started a project, got half way through and tossed it out.  Tuesday I actually produced the video and it was pretty good but now I needed to learn the audio so off to You Tube school I went.  Audio was pretty intuitive but I was just missing one key component Thanks You Tube guy!
So now the audio is done and I plug it into the video so I produce it and can't get it to save in an up-loadable format for our website, so I stopped because after 4 days of roadblocks and frustration I needed to step away.
Wednesday was our 20th Anniversary but Don is out of town, so I'm determined to get this thing done and uploaded.  I produced it a few times and then made more changes and long story short I finally got it to save in the correct format for upload to the website so I upgrade our website to handle video so I can forgo using the you tube video and it keeps having an error on upload.  I went back and produced every usable format of the video to try uploading, none of them work.  I sent in an email to customer service and thankfully they were really nice about the situation.  I was able to load the video to one drive, share it and they were able to upload it directly to our website for me.  Turns out the loader was timing out before the video could upload and looping which was causing the error.  So while I had no trouble uploading it to You Tube, our internet connection was too slow for their timeout (Life in the burbs).  Thankfully, as of next week our internet speed will triple (and still be behind the cities) and it shouldn't continue to be an issue.
Learning new things can be frustrating but I am so glad I took the time to learn them.  It will really come in handy later when I am piecing together videos and pictures of our child to share with the birth family (if they want them) and our own families.  I plan to get making videos of our travels until I get all the components ingrained and no longer have to think about what I'm doing.  My aunt does this for the family but she is the only one until now.  As frustrating as it was I was having fun in the end learning something new and useful once I got the right program for me to use.
If you're interested in our video it can be found Here
In other news Don and I are actually doing some fun stuff for our anniversary this year (although late) and I can't wait to share it all once it's over and I have details and pictures.
Have a great week everyone!
Fun in the sun with family on my cousin's sailboat

Tuesday, April 5, 2016

Remembering grandma and Family time

Remembering Grandma
Two weeks ago my uncle called to say he was planning a trip up the following week to spend time with family and to see grandma.  So we talked about getting together while he was here, etc.
Well, grandma passed away two days later surrounded by all of us who live here.  Other family from out of state called to say good-bye.  It was heartbreaking since losing grandpa 7 months earlier and she'd been doing pretty well until that day.  She was laughing and joking around just the day before and then she was ready to go.  I got a text from my mom and aunt that Thursday afternoon telling me it was time to say good-bye. Don was working from home that day so we got in the car and headed down. We stayed as long as we could and I got hug and kiss her and tell her how much we loved her. It really means a lot to me that I got to be with my grandparents before they passed away.  I got the call 15 minutes after we left that she passed.  I'm glad Don was driving us home. My grandma was the rock in the family, She always gave great hugs, advice when you asked for it, and her laughter was infectious.  She loved playing games, usually won, and she loved us all so much.  She also loved traveling with my grandpa all over the US, Mexico and Canada.  Later on they took a bunch of long cruises and went to China, Hong Kong, Panama, Antarctic and Australia to name a few and always shared their trips with us through stories and pictures.  Grandma's memorial was this past Thursday and everyone had such great memories to share and my aunt even had a recording of my grandma from the week before that she played and it made us all laugh when we heard grandma say "Where the hell are we going?" The service was beautiful and a great way to remember the amazing lady that she was.
October 31, 1931 - March 24, 2016
 I love this picture of grandma and I 
She loved to laugh

grandma in 1947 - she was 16
 With my grandma - I was a year old 
 Always loved the double exposed picture my Aunt took of my grandparents
 Grandma as a child 
Family Time
So my uncle flew up here for the week and I met him at Snoqualmie Falls on Wednesday.  We talked, walked around and took pictures before heading back to my house where Don had gotten off work early and was waiting for us.  We showed him all the changes we've made to our place and then went to dinner.  We talked and played games and had a great time.  He had to get up early to go pick up my aunt so we met up again at the memorial.  He was heading out to my cousins place for the weekend and we went out for the night on Saturday.  So much fun.  We hadn't been to my cousins new place since he moved last year so it was great on all fronts.  We got to spend time with family and see the island they call home.  They picked us up at the ferry terminal on his sailboat and we cruised back to the island.  The dogs loved it and it was a gorgeous day to be on the water. We met some of his neighbors at the BBQ that evening and they had 4 of the sweetest girls who hang out with my cousins daughter. We talked about adoption and it was great having someone who understands the process. They adopted their girls and they are so loved. One day it'll be our turn.  We hadn't planned on staying the night but we were invited to and we did.  I'm glad we did we had a great night hanging out with family having a few drinks, lots of food and lots of stories.  I liked what my cousin said when I said I didn't have stuff for us but at least the dogs had everything they needed and he said "That's why you're going to be awesome parents because they come before you." In the morning we were driven to the ferry terminal and said good-bye.  It was the first time the dogs had been on a ferry but they loved it.  Don will be seeing my uncle again next weekend since he'll be in CA for the weekend to see his parents. He offered to give Don a tour of CBS where he works so that should be a fun day for them.
  All Aboard Selfie
    Happy Happy
My aunt took this picture of us last week
The dogs meet my cousins puppy who wore them out