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We met the birthparents yesterday face to face for the first time and it was so natural and relaxed. We thank everyone for the prayers…lunch was truly another answered prayer. We are excited to go with them to the last doctor’s appt tomorrow before the scheduled c-section on Friday. We will get to hear Miss M’s heartbeat. Please continue to prayer for everyone’s health and our time at the hospital as there are many unknowns and lots of details to work out.

Also, we are finding that it is all more emotionally and physically draining than we expected. Yesterday just involved a 2 hour lunch but by the time we got back to the hotel we were exhausted like we had worked a full day. Please pray for minds, bodies and souls to get plenty of rest the next few days before the delivery on Friday.

Today, we checked into the Homewood Suites we will be staying at for the next few weeks. I immediately set to unpacking. I really hate living out of a suitcase. I was also excited to see that we have a two burner stove in the kitchenette with pots and pans so we have already made a trip to Wal-Mart. Between the hotel’s breakfast and weeknight dinners and the kitchenette we will only have to eat out when we chose to which is a huge bonus. I love eating out but it gets less exciting when you have to do it every meal.

On our way to the hotel, we made another stop at a Food Network, Man vs Food, Travel Channel highlighted resturant…Chaps. I got their classic Pit Beef Sandwich and it was good. Bob got “The Raven” with beef, turkey and corned beef. It was excellent. If you can’t tell, we are very much foodies and the Food Network is almost always on one of our TVs. I have another food story about Sunday, but I keep that for tomorrow.

After 21 hours and 1,277 miles, we are in Maryland!!

The road trip was great. We left at 4:20 a.m. Friday and made it to Sevierville. The highlight of Friday was our stop in Nashville at Las Paletas for a popsicle. Bob had seen it on Food Network, and it did not disappoint. Bob had a chocolate with peppers pop as well as a coffee pop. I had a lime pop and a rose petal pop. The rose petal pop was amazing. It actually had little pieces of rose petal in it. I could have eaten a whole box of the rose petal…so, so yummy!

The trip up 81 and around the Washington Beltway was crazy with traffic, but Bob did great while I closed my eyes. Yesterday’s highlight was dinner last night. We wanted somewhere close and didn’t even care what kind of food it was or if it was even that good. We were just tired and hungry. The front desk suggested this restaurant call G&M Resturant so away we went.

Oh my gosh…it was amazing. Driving to it, we thought they had sent us on a wild goose chase as it is down this back road, but when we pulled up in the parking lot we got the last parking spot so we decided it was worth a shot. Walking to our table, we saw the biggest shrimp we have ever seen and the most amazing looking crab cakes. We split an appetizer of crab cakes and then the seafood linguine. The crab cakes were all crab with no filler and this amazing sauce. The seafood linguine had amazing shrimp, scallops and crab meat. Even splitting it, we still left almost 1/3 of linguine. Have I mentioned the restaurant’s other speciality is homemade New York Cheesecake?? So we had to get a piece to go. It was the perfect bedtime snack!!

Here is Bob looking sadly at his last bite of crabcake (excuse the picture quality…I took it with his phone)

Please also remember my granddad. He had a small heart attack on Friday evening, but the doctor was able to get him into surgery as it was happening. He is stable and back in a regular room with minimum damage.

This time tomorrow our physical journey of adoption begins. I am excited, nervous, overwhelmed and amazed. But we go confidently knowing that this is God’s journey for us and we have a whole army of prayer warriors behind us. As we travel and start this journey, would you pray for:

1. Our trip up to Maryland.

2. Our first meeting with the birth parents on Monday. Both sides are super nervous. Please pray that everyone will feel comfortable and that conversation will flow.

3. Our birthmother as she is very anxious about the delivery.

4. Everyone’s health especially our birthmother and Miss M.

5. Our time in the hospital together especially for the birth parents as we leave the hospital.

6. For God’s peace that passing understanding to be amidst this journey.

Lots of love-Kate

I love lists…I am talking seriously love lists. I have at least one To Do list per day and on a good day two. You can only imagine the checklists (catch that plural) I have for packing, prepping the house and other stuff. After our false alarm call on Thursday, I feel like we are living on borrowed time before we get the real call or our scheduled departure on Friday comes. So I have been a woman on a mission this weekend getting all my lists checked off. A few highlights:

1. Find every charger for every electrical item we are taking. Just looking one charger doesn’t seem like much but when you get them gathered up, you realize you are far to dependant on electricity.

2. Get a cute hair cut. Check. Love my new hair, and I have even styled it myself which is always the true test of a hair cut. Also, it cuts down the required time to fix it which I felt was pretty essential with a baby coming as I don’t think Miss M would have patiently waited while I dried my hair for 30 minutes and the flat ironed it for 20.

3. Weed the gardens. My least favorite item on the list and all I can say is that it is done.

4. Clean out the garage. My second least favorite item and it is done.

While getting my lists checked off, I also managed to throw in a fun girls night with the girls from my Sunday School class. My husband brought me breakfast in bed in honor of my last Saturday morning to sleep undisturbed for the next 18 years which was super sweet of him. We attended church at our current campus for the last time this morning as they will be moving into our new building while we are gone. It was an awesome service. Tomorrow morning at 9:00 is the last essential item I have on my list and then I enjoy my time at home.

From about 2:30-4:30 yesterday, I thought this was going to be an entirely different post because our case worker called to say our birthmother was headed to the hospital but they weren’t sure if she was in labor. With a 20 hour drive ahead of us, I didn’t have time to waste while we were getting confirmation. So I started packing…dirty clothes.

Never in my life have I packed a suitcase full of dirty clothes to head out on a trip, but I did yesterday. I am not exactly sure how I functioned but I did. I managed to call Bob and tell him to come home. I got our suitcase of dirty clothes packed. I found enough clothes that were clean that we could wear for the next four days and got my toiletries packed. I even remembered to grab my cell phone charger. By the time Bob got home, I was ready for him to start loading the car. Did I mention that our air conditioner had also gone out yesterday and I was doing all of this in an 85 degree house. As soon as we found out it was a false alarm, we both collapsed. After we recovered from the shock and adrenaline, I immediately started the laundry. Our suitcase is now packed and the air conditioner repairman should be here this afternoon.

The next step in our adoption journey has officially started. We sent the pups home with my Dad and nephew Saturday morning. I cried…dramatic I know, but I just couldn’t help it. She has been with us through a lot and it also started everything that is to come over the next few weeks. I am a crier so tears are normal…just cleansing from within 🙂

We are so excited but nervous and scared at the same time. We have all the normal fears of first time parents but adoption adds a whole new set of fears as we have to give up control. I am trying to go against my natural tendency of worrying and embrace the journey God has set before us realizing that He doesn’t always call us to the comfortable or easy. But at the end of the day, I have to admit that I am a little scared but I think that this normal. I just can’t let that take over.

So I am taking each day as it comes. Today was day 11 before we leave and 17 days before little Miss M’s schedule arrival. Today, I finished a project I have been working at work on since last October, sterilized all of the bottles/pacifiers (a total first time parent move I know!), mailed a card to our birth parents and packed the last few items we needed for little Miss M. I survived. I flourished. Today was good. Now onto tomorrow.

For a short week, last week was kind of long. Nothing was terrible, but it was one of those weeks with lots of life.

1. The hard drive on our personal laptop crashed. It had been acting funny so I had a full back up but it still meant hours on the phone with Dell Tech support.

2. A strange man knocked on my door while my hard drive crashed. He apparently bought our old car from the dealership we traded it into and rather than ask them the questions he had he decided to come to our house. Needless to say, I was totally freaked out which led to a whole conversation with the dealership about their customer’s privacy. I mean who just shows up at someone’s door????

3. I have completed more than 600 pages of content edits in the last two weeks.

4. The second oxygen sensor went out on my car in a month which meant dropping the car off at the mechanic and all those details.

5. We moved our travel dates for the adoption again which put me in freak out mode for about 24 hours which also means the chain of reservations will have to be adjusted again.

Needless to say by Thursday I had seen the walls of my home office for way to many hours and dealt with way to many big girl moments so my friend Lindsey and I went for coffee which turned into lunch which led to TJ Max where I found the absolutely cutest black and white floral table for only $13 and a huge (like the size of a three-year old) green glass vase for $15.

Ahh, isn’t life better when we stop and enjoy it for even just a few hours?