Tuesday, July 29, 2008


How did attachment go during your first year? Describe what you did to prepare for attachment as well as the joys and challenges of attachment during your first year home?

Well, we haven't been home with Max Rup for a year yet, but attachment has gone much smoother than we thought it would. We know we're lucky, and we know that much of this is because of the wonderful care he got in India. He was held, rocked, comforted, and cuddled by his Ayah's and it is obvious. Thank God for those sweet, amazing women.

We really expected more sadness and confusion from him. When we first left the baby's home, he slept for a long time. But he woke up quite happy and ready to play. He wanted to be cuddled, and would just lay on my shoulder for hours. I'd keep asking, "Is he asleep?" Nope, just cuddling. I enjoyed this as much as he did, I'm sure. The title of my post on Gotcha Day - "Meant to Be" - says it all.

When we got home, he was pretty social, but did not want me out of site. He was clingy when we were home alone, and when I'd leave the room, he really did seem afraid. This got steadily better over the first month or two, but continued during the night. He'd wake up really scared until we went in to get him. We started out co-sleeping, but he is such a wiggle worm that he would fall off the END of the bed at night. Now that he sleeps a bit more restfully, we put him to bed in his own crib, but bring him into bed with us when he wakes in the night.

We read all the books and articles that we could on bonding and attachment, but I still think that the most important thing is to just be in tune with your child's feelings, and moods. Play, but also be there when they are screaming, fighting, and hard to deal with. This is when they need us most. Be consistant. This is important throughout our childrens' lives, so begin now.

Max still loves to cuddle - not only with me but the rest of the family - especially Maddie and Myles. He's also a fan of big, wet kisses from the dogs.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Starting Again

I've been debating whether to post anything about this, but I've decided that it would really be unfair to me and my family to leave it out.

We are starting the process again, looking at an option for another adoption from India. This is an odd situation. We are starting this process before we have finalized Max's (although we've been told that we are on the high priority list at the probate court).

I'll just say that we didn't expect to do this again so soon, but sometimes you can't fight where God is leading you.

We are at the very beginning stages. I have contacted a different local agency for our homestudy, since the international agency we are using isn't partnered with our old agency. For those of you who know us well, you know that this doesn't break my heart. The agency I have contacted this time around is much bigger, lots more resources and avenues of seeking support.

So we are treading lightly into this familiar journey, with lots more knowledge, but on a pretty different route. We know that this journey will probably not goes as quickly or as smoothly as our last, but we're up for the roller coaster!

Friday, July 11, 2008

New additions and the 4th

Most of you know that we've got a few critters around here. We've been selling our eggs for a tiny bit of extra money - duck and chicken eggs. Then we noticed that our ducks were, well, attempting to procreate, so we left those eggs alone. The other day Dan was greeted in the morning by a bunch of cute little ducklings, following their Mom all around the yard. SO CUTE!

The 4th is also known as Madeline's birthday around here. She thinks she's pretty hot stuff since there's always a gang around for her birthday. We always do lobsters, and have a blast down at the lake. Usually Dan's band plays at the Lewiston fireworks, but this year they didn't. Madeline was pretty disappointed, but fortunately the next door neighbors set off some nice ones during the bonfire. Illegal, perhaps, but greatly appreciated :) On the 8th we were going to Boston to meet one of my sorority sisters for the day. She was visiting from Colorado, and we couldn't pass up the chance to meet, however briefly. We went to the Aquarium, and since my sister wasn't feeling well at 8.5 months pregnant, we took Auriana along with us. The kids were really good, for the most part (meltdown at the end due to heat and being tuckered out), and we had a great time. The Anaconda was a big hit, as well as the sharks and rays. Max Rup kept on pointing to the fish and saying, "Big, Big Momma."

As we were getting loaded up to come home, Meg called and was all casual asking how Auriana was. Then she says, "well, I'm in the hospital 4cm dilated, so can you and Auri get here as soon as you can?" We didn't quite make it back in time. Derek (her hubby) just barely made it from work in time for the C-section. We did get to enjoy Mr. Austin James Armandi while Meg was in the recovery room. I still can't decide who he looks like, but he sure is gorgeous, and Auriana is very proud of her little brother.

After Dan dropped Auri and me off at the hospital, he took Madeline and Myles to their 1st T-ball game of the season (which Derek was supposed to be coaching). We don't have any pics since I stole the camera for the hospital. But Madeline did really well in the field - remember that last year her and Auri just sat down and talked in the middle of the field. This time she went after the ball and got to it twice. Myles hit the ball on his first pitch! He had a rough time running the bases the right way, but he'll get it. He is very proud of his helmet and can't wait until the next game.

So it's been a pretty eventful week or so for us.

Blog Buzz Money Question

“How do I do this, moneywise? I want to adopt, but it seems so overwhelming. We don’t really have $20,000 in the bank, ya know!” Please blog about your experience, ideas, insight, fundraisers and other ideas that worked for you while raising your adoption money.

Well folks, this is the type of question I was both afraid of, and excited about. We don't talk about the money part, because it is certainly the most difficult for us. If you are looking for brilliant ideas to raise money, don't look here. We simply used our home equity loan to fund our adoption. We will certainly utilize the adoption tax credit, whenever the county decides to let us finalize.

I know that there are lots of adoption loans, grants, scholarships out there. We didn't apply for any. I felt guilty. When we began this process I still felt like adoption was first and foremost for folks that could not have biological children. One of the reasons that we steared away from domestic adoption was because it felt competitive. We didn't have a strong pull toward domestic and didn't want to feel that we were competing with folks that did feel strongly about it and didn't have the option of biological children. The money was the same way. What if we were taking money away from folks with no children?

I do feel like we were called to adopt. We will do it again. Next time we won't have a choice - we will have to look at other avenues for financial assistance. We will be doing more fundraising, perhaps become a bit more public with our situation. We'll do what we need to do because we know that the end result is worth it. And we know that this is how our family is supposed to be formed. Anyone who has seen how amazingly well Max Rup fits in will have no doubts that he was meant for us.

For friends and family - I promise I'll post some good pics soon. We've got baby ducks, and baby Austin, and the 4th of July. Whoa - I'm behind.