Wednesday, February 23, 2011

10 Months Old Today!

Joshua is 10 months old today! It is hard  to believe he will be a year old in just a couple months.

I am wondering how he has changed since the last photo we were given, which is either 2 or 3 months old (the agency didn't have this information or wouldn't go out of their way to get it). I am wondering what new milestones he has reached. And I am just feeling sad today that I am missing them. It is hard to miss so much of his life.

I hope and pray we get another update soon. I have heard of other families getting lots of pictures and even video. While I am happy for those who have received them, it just makes me even more sad that we haven't. One of my most frequent prayers is for us to receive a photo album of pictures of Joshua's life with his foster family in Korea when we travel to Korea. I know they will be so important for him to have. I have heard about 50% of families receive these pictures. Please Lord let us be among them.

In other news, we got all of our paperwork for our home study update turned in last week! We meet with our social worker on Monday for our update interview. That should be it; all in all the update process has been relatively painless. But I would appreciate your prayers for Monday, because you all know I am a worrier :-)

Monday, February 21, 2011

Praying for Your Children

Lisa asked me to post a picture of the prayer card ring I was given at my 1st baby shower and I am finally getting around to posting a few pictures. I believe they are done on scrapbook paper and then laminated.

Each card has a prayer on the front and on the back is the corresponding scripture. There are 31 cards total, one for each day of the month. The first one says, "Our prayers for Joshua JoonSeo" (on the back is Col 4:2 "Devote yourselves to prayer, keeping alert in it with {an attitude of} thanksgiving." Here are the prayers and the corresponding scripture references:

1. That he "would obtain salvation that is in Christ Jesus, with eternal glory" early in life - 2 Timothy 2:10
2. For God's guidance in his life - Psalm 119:105
3. To be strong & courageous in his character and his actions - Deuteronomy 31:6
4. For his parents to have wisdom & discernment in training - Proverbs 22:6
5. To love obedience & justice - Psalm 11:7 & Micah  6:8
6. That he will be faithful - Luke 19:17
7. To be rich in good deeds, generous, and willing to share - 1 Timothy 6:18
8. To learn the secret of being content in every situation - Philippians  4:12-13
9. That he will hate sin - Hebrews 3:13
10. For his future spouse - Proverbs 18:22
11. That he will learn to regard your Word as more precious than gold and sweeter than honey - Psalm 19:10
12. That he will respect those in authority - Romans 13:1
13. To learn to live a life of love, through the Spirit who lives in him - Ephesians 5:2
14. To persevere in all he does, and help him run with perseverance the race set before him - Hebrews 12:1
15. To have  a love for and commitment to family - Deuteronomy 6:5-7
16. To make every effort to do what leads to peace - Romans 12:18, 14:19
17. That he will grow in and extend to others the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ - 2 Peter 3:18
18. For God's abiding protection in his life - Numbers 6:24-26
19. To know joy and laughter that comes from the Holy Spirit - Proverbs 17:22
20. To develop a servant's heart that he may serve wholeheartedly - Ephesians 6:7
21. For wisdom to choose friends wisely - Proverbs 27:17
22. To find security and confidence in the Lord - Proverbs 3:5-6
23. For an understanding and appreciation of his own unique gifts and personality - Ephesians 2:10
24. That he will learn to be alert and have self - control - 1 Thessalonians 5:6
25. To be kind and gentle - 1 Thessalonians 5:15
26. To fight the good fight of faith, taking hold of the eternal life to which he is called - 1 Timothy 6:12
27. For emotional and physical purity - Psalm 51:10
28. To overflow with hope and hopefulness by the power of the Holy Spirit - Romans 15:13
29. To have compassion for others - Colossians 3:12
30. To be responsible, for each one should carry his own load - Galatians 6:5
31. To show true humility towards all - Titus 3:2

These are the ones given to me, but they could easily be modified or other scriptures could be substituted. I see these prayers as a jumping off point to pray for Joshua and not some rote thing to recite every day. Many times as I am praying for Joshua, I see my own shortcomings (which are many) and find myself praying that these things would first be true of John and I, that we may be able to model a life that is glorifying and pleasing to God for Joshua.

I think it makes a wonderful gift, so hopefully others will find this useful.

It is never too early to start praying for your children (or future children in a step of faith)!

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Thank you (and a funny video)

Thank you all so much for the helpful advice! Looks like we will definitely be going with a crib. Honestly, I never felt peace about the toddler bed, which is why I posed the question. The crib feels right to me. I really appreciate all the other suggestions, they definitely gave me some other options to think about as far as other items we may or may not need. John and I are aiming to register the weekend of March 12th (the day after my last day of work!) and I am beginning to scour craigslist for deals.

I have to confess that I have never bought anything off of craigslist before. I am definitely not a "money saving mom" or in my case a money saving mom-to-be. But I aspire to be one. Feel free to leave me a comment with your best money savings tips. I will pass along one I learned about recently, though unfortunately not soon enough to score an Ergo at half off - unless I wanted a pink one, pretty sure John would never use it ;-)  (There are two "steals" every day)

Switching gears, I came across this Mompetition video last week on the Adoptive Families website and just had to share it - pretty funny and from what I hear very true!

Okay, I actually didn't care for the "dumped at the hospital by a mind-changing birthmom" comment, because 1) a woman isn't a birthmom until she places a baby for adoption, 2) a woman has every right to decide to parent her baby, and 3) I don't believe that is the primary reason most people decide to adopt internationally. On the "now that you've adopted, you're going to get pregnant" incredibly annoying comment - I have a whole post saved in my draft posts on that one!!!

Monday, February 14, 2011

Baby Bargains and Some ?'s for the Moms (Advice Please!!)

About 2 weeks ago I went to meet Grace for lunch (I got to meet choi boy!!!) and since I arrived a little early, I went into Family Christian Bookstore to browse. I ended up stumbling across a copy of the newest edition of Baby Bargains*, which I purchased.

This is my third time owning the book. The first time John's sister gave me her old copy not long after we starting trying (because we were going to need it soon, ha!). The second time my mom gave me a copy for Christmas when I was pregnant. I gave that copy away to a friend (and former neighbor) who was pregnant.  And so now we try again. I think there have been 3 or 4 editions of the book since that first copy John's sister gave me.

I have finished reading through it, skipping the sections that don't apply (breast pumps and items that are only needed for infants), and am now trying to compile a list of the things we need.

I know I want an Ergo baby carrier, pretty sure I would like a Britax car seat (not so sure about the price), and a Graco Pack 'n' Play to name a few items.

My sister gave me a Chico stroller, but I think I would also like a BOB or something like it for hikes/jogs.

She also gave me a booster. I think for now we will hold off on buying a high chair since at 16 or 17 months old, Joshua should be fine with a booster. Am I correct here? Part of what I am unsure of is how/if Joshua's prematurity will factor in. But since we already have the booster, I think we will try it and if it doesn't work, it will not be a big deal to go buy a high chair.

But what I am really unsure about is whether we should get a crib or a toddler bed. Google has been no help - I have read anywhere from 12 months to 3 or even 4 years old. Both of my sisters who are moms say toddler bed. I guess I am unsure if this is the right move though because of his prematurity and because Korean children tend to be smaller. Initially, I thought we would co-sleep, and we still may do that, but I have heard from a number of families who said their children took to their cribs right away and/or that co-sleeping just didn't work for them. In addition, my hubby is what I call a "grumpy sleeper," any little noise or disturbance bothers him, so I have realized that any co-sleeping arrangement would probably involve Joshua and I sleeping in his room. Also, I have no particular attachment to the idea of a crib in terms of setting up the nursery. I am at peace with the fact that we are not adopting an infant. As long as I get to decorate his room, I am happy.

A convertible crib would seem like the logical solution, but I am hesitant because they cost more and I really don't want the full-sized bed feature. I would prefer a twin bed or possibly bunk beds ( for Joshua's future brother, Lord willing, when we adopt again!).

Please weigh in. I would love to hear any thoughts or opinions.

*I would not recommend this book to anyone who is adopting unless you are feeling very secure in the fact that you are building your family through adoption. It is as if the authors of this book have no idea that there is any other way to build a family other than childbirth. Yes, I realize childbirth is the way for most people and therefore it makes sense that the book it targeted to the largest segment of the population. I wasn't upset by the book, but there was a time when the constant reminder of what I didn't and wasn't experiencing would have been very hurtful to me, which is why I mention it here.

Saturday, February 5, 2011

4 Months Down

Today we have officially been waiting 4 months of an estimated 11 months until we travel.

Assuming the estimated wait time is correct, we have at most 7 more months to go before bringing Joshua home.

After 6 years of waiting, 7 months is feeling like nothing. Right now it seems like the shortest wait we have had. I think it is because for the first time, we have a definite endpoint.

I also know that in the months to come, this waiting is going to feel like to longest wait of the entire 6-7 years we have been waiting for a child. Because now we are waiting for our son. We have seen his picture. We are longing to hold him. And as we  get closer to finally having him in our arms, I have no doubt the waiting will become incredibly difficult.

But for now, I am enjoying the anticipation of motherhood. I am enjoying showing off his picture (to pretty much anyone and everyone!) and I am enjoying beginning to prepare. Initially, I felt bad that I didn't feel ready to even begin the process of preparing as we waited for a referral. Even after we received a referral, John asked me to wait until after Christmas to begin preparing because he felt like having a bunch of baby stuff in our house and no baby would just make him too sad. But now I am so happy that I am completely unprepared because it gives me something to do during this last leg of the wait.

4 down, 7 to go!

Thursday, February 3, 2011

New Pictures of Joshua!

How cute is he!

I love that his overalls say "Military Kid's" and "Special Member."

When we got the news that he was hospitalized, there was also a very brief update. 

Joshua now:
  • Eats solids
  • Drinks 200 cc of regular formula every 3-4 hours
  • Rolls himself over "well"
  • When shown a toy, puts out both hands and grabs it "well"
  • Weighs about 21 pounds
I am more in love with him everyday!

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Thank You Deni!

I received these in the mail from Deni this past week. What a blessing! I love these books and I can't thank you enough Deni! I teared up reading them. They are going to be a such a great way to start talking to Joshua about adoption. The book on the bottom left is a memory book that is specific to adoption.

Deni's gift was especially meaningful because she experienced a horrible loss this summer when she and her hubby were the victims of an adoption scam. For her to take her pain and bless me through it is just amazing. But praise God, that is not the end of her story, she will be bringing Cala Fay home in July!