Friday, July 23, 2010

Recycledness

I've had MANY friends on FB comment on my outfits that I've revamped! I hope you gals were serious about me needing to sell my stuff. I'm putting on my blog for now. I don't really want to deal w/Etsy at the moment w/their never ending fees! We'll see if anybody really wants me to make them something. I'm using recycled garments if possible b/c there are so many gently used clothes out that - why not?? It makes the costs less than brand new, and it sorta helps the planet. Right?

You can check out what I've made so far on the RECYCLEDNESS - Images page. Prices can be found on the PRICING GUIDE page.

Even if you don't want to buy anything, nice comments always give me warm fuzzies!

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Adoption Training, Adoption Book List and other stuff

So B and I are required to turn in a log every three months about the adoption training stuff we are doing to prepare for the baby. Since we bought a house, painted a house, moved into a house, fixed up a house, got chosen by a birthmom, met our birthmom, went to a sonogram, met our birthmom's mom, and set up a nursery, we sorta forgot about our training log till the other day :-) Ooops! We just have to do one thing every 3 months to show how we are preparing for placement- read a book about adoption, do a training video (8 required videos @$15 a pop!), take a class, etc. I ordered our last 4 videos and am waiting for them to come in. After we finish a video, we have to take a quiz on them. The quizzes are so stupid. True or False: The instructor in the video was a man. Like I said, the quizzes are LAME-O! We aren't required to have the videos completed before placement. We'll have them done before that anyway.

My blogger friend Maru of Adoption Journey said her agency/case worker did not give her and her husband a book list, which upsets and baffles me. Here's the one our agency gave us!

BOOK LIST - Gladney Center for Adoption recommended readings, presented to us in Nov 2009
(Never buy a book brand new! Buy them at half.com (by eBay). I've been buying books there since college. Gently used books for way less than 1/2 the price usually!)

Dealing with infertility
Adopting After Infertility: The Decision, The Commitment, The Experience by Patricia Johnston
Resolving Infertility by the Staff of Resolve with Diane Aronson
Understanding Infertility: Insights for Family and Friends by Patricia Johnston
Surviving Infertility: Linda P. Salzer

Before Adopting
The Adoption Resource Book: Everything you Ought to Know about Creating an Adoptive Family by Lois Gilman
The Complete Adoption Book: Laura Beauvais-Godwin, Raymond Godwin
The Family of Adoption: Joyce Maguire Pavao
The Unofficial Guide to Adopting a Child by Andrea Della Vecchio
Adoption is a Family Affair: Patricia Johnston: Suggested and a recommended read by Maru from Adoption Journey

Adoptive Parenting
Parenting Your Adopted Child: Stephanie E. Siegel
Raising Adopted Children: Lois Ruskai Melina
Secret Thoughts of an Adoptive Mother by Jana Wolff - Highly recommended by Tiffany from All Aboard the IF Train!
Twenty Things Adopted Kids Wish Their Adoptive Parents Knew by Sherrie Eldridge


DISCLAIMER - At the moment, I can't personally recommend any of them b/c I haven't read them! I plan to buy the 1st or 2nd and 4th (for sure) book under the Adoptive Parenting section.

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Kristi B's suggested books about adoption
DISCLAIMER - I have only read the 1st book on my list and plan to buy several of the others after sampling them at books stores. Then I'll go to half.com and buy them! I already have the books I want on my wishlist. Half sends me an email once a week or so letting me know they have more copies available and how much!

The Tummy Mummy: Michelle Madrid-Branch - Such an amazing book!!! We will be referring to our birth mom as Khloe's tummy mummy.
A Is for Adopted: Eileen Tucker Cosby, Norma S. Strange
Angels of Love: Lynda Arnold - Interracial adoption - didn't get a rave review, but don't think there are that many interracial adoption books out there.
Over the Moon: Karen Katz - International adoption (Guatemala in particular - but when reading to your baby you just substitute the location to which you traveled) - rave review
How I Was Adopted: Samantha's Story: Joanna Cole - Looks really cute, rave reviews, Samantha "Sam" tells the reader to story of being adopted.
My New Family: A First Look at Adoption Pat Thomas (Good Reviews on Amazon)
The Open Adoption Experience: Lois Ruskai Melina,
The Open Adoption Book: Bruce M. Rappaport Ph.D.
Tell Me Again About the Night I Was Born: Jamie Lee Curtis  - Recommended by Maru and my MIL
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I have to go to the doctor to get a paper signed (since the one I turned in last year is expiring Aug 18) saying that I'm healthy and physically able to take care of Khloe. If placement happens after Aug 18, the one on file will be no good, and we will not be able to bring Khloe home :-( I moved to a place with TONS of doctors - too many doctors actually! When I find a new doctor to go to, they aren't going to know me like my old doctor's place :-( I have to fill out all that paper work and remember my life's and family's medical history -Booo! Speaking of doctors, I have to find Khloe a doctor too! I've got hers narrowed down to two. I have to find childcare for a few days a week. So much to do!

Saturday, July 17, 2010

1st attemp at the pillowcase dress

It's ok. You can laugh. I'm laughing myself :0) Even though it turned out not-so-good. I learned so much! Bias tape always get sewn to the correct side of the fabric :-) Make sure the fabric is straight before cutting. I can't sew bias tape to frayed fabric. Use bias tape that matches unless you want the contrast. I had to start somewhere. I have no where to go but UP!!

The good top hem.

The bad inside hem :-) LOL and horrible sewing job on bias tape - b/c of frayed fabric not because I didn't know what I was doing :-P

Descent hem job at the bottom!

Friday, July 16, 2010

Whitley's finished artwork!

I just finished the artwork I made for Kim V's baby!! The hardest part was prepping the paper and putting down the pattern! The easy and fun part was painting it!! I hope she likes it!!

I love this painting so much! Wish it was for my house!

Getting Crafty!

So I asked for a sewing machine a few Christmases ago. I'm made a few things, but I want to make dresses for Khloe so bad! I've found awesome sewing and craft blogs which are very inspirational. I have very good intentions of making cute dresses but will I ever actually make this stuff? Oh yeah, my nurse friend Amber has taken me to Canton (a crafter's dream!) a few times. The website doesn't do it justice at all. It's kinda like Etsy in person.  I spend more time taking pictures of everybody's stuff than buying them! I have a hard time buying stuff that I know I can make myself. 
 
I got the idea for this painting in Canton by an amazing artist. Don't know her name though. 


 
This is in my kitchen :-)


 New artwork for friend Kimberly V's daughter Whitley. I'm going to paint a cross w/heart on top.





 Something else I've made that I'm really proud of is my Love shorts inspired by a very expensive pair that Amber bought at a fashion party. Amber is great shopping buddy, if you couldn't tell. She came over yesterday to hang out. I wasn't supposed to buy anything b/c I went shopping the day before. I didn't spend THAT much ;-) No really. I didn't. Tell them, Amber!! Anywho, one of our stops was the fabric store. I'm going to finish a dress that Amber bought at Old N. using the same technique as the Love shorts. It's an idea we got in Canton of course! 

I told her NOT to buy that $50 dress b/c I could SOOOO make that for her if she just bought the fabric! Her fabric only cost a few dollars!! Now, I just need to find a template of a cross (which won't be hard at all), and we'll be in business! Before I can actually sew her design on her dress, I need to practice some more. Since the Love shorts were my first experiment w/that technique, I made a few errors :-) 


I'm making a patch for myself. It's not as complicated as the Canton dress, just has the same concept :-) Not sure where I'm going to put it. Hopefully my craft friends can give me some suggestions!! That is, if it turns out descent :-)



Future Projects!
The Long Thread: Ellen shares lots of sewing and craft ideas. I especially love her Summer Dress idea! Looks easy enough! We'll see :-)

Fave Crafts Twirl Dress (very advanced - may be a few years before I try it :-) They have tutorials of everything-under-the-sun regarding crafts!

Prudent Baby: Jacinda and Jaime have TONS of stuff on their site!  Crafts, sewing projects, recipes, etc! So glad I found them on The Long Thread! I especially love Prudent Baby's Pillowcase Dress idea!! I plan to make this one very soon. I even bought several colors of ribbon just for it!

Betz White: Shoe bag tutorial!! Had a friend that paid $10 or more for these @ a shoe store. No thanks! I'll make my own! I know I'll actually do this one b/c it looks so easy, and they make great gifts!!

Hope Studios: Jennifer Juniper has lots of great sewing projects! Love her ideas, especially the Scrunchy Gathered Scarfs!!

Monday, July 12, 2010

Nursery Update!

So I decided to get a little crafty these last few days :-) I see wooden letters all the time on Etsy, but I knew I could make them myself for WAY less! Here's how they turned out!

Since I did the letters chocolate brown and a lime color, I decided to change the bedding. I decided I no longer liked the original bedding I picked out. I used a gift card from family friend Carol R. to buy the new set I wanted! It came with really cute lime sheets with white polka dots. I also bought a choc brown sheet as well. Now I just have to find the matching dust ruffle! I have one other nearby store to check before I ask MIL to check in the Denton for it!! :-)


Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Wow! Wow! Wow!

Wow! Have I said wow yet??

Dinner was great. B and I had K and her mom laughing the whole time. Thank goodness I'm a talker b/c we would have had a silent dinner otherwise. I felt like Barbara Walters giving a Dateline interview! Thank goodness the CW gave us the background info for K's family, so I could come up with questions to get conversations started. B felt like the dinner was awkward with Mom there, but I didn't feel that way at all. He felt it was awkward b/c she wasn't starting any conversations or asking us questions. Also, the adoption is like the elephant in the room that no one wants to talk about. No one brought up the name we picked out. I really wanted to talk about placement and how all of that would work. I did finally say, "We told our families about the reception, and they are really excited to be there and meet you (K) and your family." That conversation pretty much ended there.

Anywho, on the the wow!

We are standing at the restaurant entrance after taking pictures. I finally mentioned "the hospital." I've talked to my CW, but I don't know how soon the info get passed on to K. I just said, "I don't know if your (K's)  CW told you, but we want you (K) to know that we feel your time in the hospital is for you and your family to be with the baby. Don't feel like you need to invite us." K gave her mom a look, and I was like what's going on? K said she gets to have two people in the delivery room with her. She asked me to be one of the two along with her mom. I was floored! I couldn't believe out of all the people she knows that she would pick me to be the second person. I was getting misty-eyed, but I wanted to wait till I got to the car to cry. I let Mom know that the invite was very unexpected and not necessary b/c that was their family's time. Mom said that it was my time to be with the baby as well. I couldn't say thank you enough or give enough hugs. K is such a special girl. She is such a sweetheart and definitely knows how to put others first. Now the only problem is, will I be able to make it to the delivery b/c I live 2 hrs away, and I might be in orientation or in-service. I'm not going to worry about it. God will work it out if I'm meant to be there.

Monday, July 5, 2010

Dinner Date/Reception/New Job

B and I are having dinner with K and Mom this week. On our very first phone call, we ended by saying that we would really like to meet K and K's mom. We are keeping our word and driving to Fort Worth tomorrow!

After the sonogram I was worried we wouldn't be seeing K again until placement (2 months later). She reminded me about having dinner with her and her mom. I was glad to be reminded that we would get to see each other again. I think it's very important for K to know that we want to see her and that we care about her. Even if this situation does not work out for whatever reason, K knows she has a friend in us. We have told her over and over again that she will always be in our hearts no matter what. I feel that our lives have been crossed for one reason or another.

K has begun making plans to have a reception at the agency for Khloe's placement. We are going to have immediate family only (Granny that includes you too), and K is bringing some immediate family and 2 close friends. K wants placement to be more of a celebration than a parting. K and her family/friends have a few gifts for us for Khloe. They want the reception to be like a baby shower for us. I think it's so sweet that K wants to give us a baby shower type reception. She's so very selfless. She's already told me she's made 2 blankets and scrapbook for Khloe. We will have a special gift for K as well. Will share all on Wed.

I need to get to my classroom to clean it out cause it ain't my classroom anymore :-( Gonna miss you RJH! I got a new job closer to home and with quite a bit more money. It's going to be sad to leave the only teaching job I've ever known - 6th, 7th and 8th grade art at a junior high/middle school. Now, I'm going to a high school and will be teaching 5 sections of art 1. The material will be exactly the same - I challenge my JH kids :-) I've been searching and found some great projects for my soon-to-be HS kids. Khloe's timing couldn't be worse though! I'm starting this new job with new orientations and new in-services and brand new kids. I'm required to be at school on the first day (duh!). I don't know how it's all going to work out. I know God will find a way to make it work. B/c I'm a brand new employee, the handbook doesn't make it seem like I qualify for FMLA to take nonpunishable leave for the adoption. I don't want 12 weeks like FMLA allows. I want like 4-5! I'm going to be talking to the principal when he comes back from vay-cay to see what we can work out. Keep your fingers crossed for me and Khloe!

Thursday, July 1, 2010

What's in a name?

I would have posted this earlier, but I was waiting to hear back from K to make sure she liked the baby name before posting. She said she loved it! Yay! I was so scared she would hate it. You'll see why...

At our face-to-face lunch, our case worker CW brings up the question to us if we have any names picked out. I was really hoping CW or K would not bring up this topic b/c I felt like it was too soon. I told her that my favorite name was Blakely but that B hated it b/c he says it sounds like some snobby parents' kid's name. Told her we also liked the name Brinley but sounded too much like my niece's name Kenley. We told her we also liked the name Khloe. K commented back that she really liked Khloe and had thought about using it to give the baby a name. K also said something happened in her life (we assume a death of a family member) which led her to calling the baby June. I made the comment about how cute Khloe June was and that I really liked the initials K.J. I told K we would try to incorporate/consider using June in the name but that I also really wanted to use my middle name (Lynn) too.

 Later that night, we decided that Khloe was our favorite name. My name starts with K, and our BM's name starts with K. It just made since to me to go with Khloe. Deciding on a middle name would take a whole 'nother night.

The next night B and I were sitting at our dining room table for dinner (for the first time) when I mentioned that I really liked the initials KJ b/c B's dad loves to call kids by their initials. Not many letters go with K. I didn't want KD or KT b/c I don't want ppl to think her name is Katie - not that there's anything wrong with Katie b/c there's not. It's just not the name I want :-) Anywho, coming up with a J name to go with Khloe was a bit of a challenge. My cousin Mac's middle name is Jae, and I love that name. B wanted to spell it Jaye - don't ask b/c I have no idea. So, I was fine with the interesting spelling Then, I got the idea to combine the J from June and my middle name. I came up with J-Lynn but needed a way to spell it. Mommy Dearest's name is Janet Lynn, so J-Lynn would have a double meaning. We decided on Jaelyn b/c Jaelynn seemed too long. We are pronouncing it j-len b/c saying jae-lynn just didn't sound right. There you go: Khloe Jaelyn.