A lot has taken place since Step One was shared with you all.
We finished our first round of our adoption application and sent it out in the mail!
So if you’re keeping track. We have finished steps 1 through 3 so far.
Attend Information Meeting
Discern about children with special needs and your skills/abilities to meet their needs.
Mail Permanency Resource Family Survey to State Program Office
State Staff – Initially screens for compatibility with Program.
Initial Screen In – Noticed by letter and assigned for In-Person Screening Visit
In-Person Screening Visit with Public Adoptions Staff
Public Adoptions Staff consults with supervisor about visit.
Adoption packet is mailed out. We complete and return materials. Can enroll in Public Adoptions education classes with returned application.
Application is assigned to an adoption home study worker.
Adoption worker schedules visit to begin home study.
Licensing Timeline – Varies depending on schedules, visits completed, meeting education requirements, all materials completed and returned to home study worker.
Filling out the first round application was a bit depressing. If you ever want to feel like a judgmental person, then fill out this form. We had to go through pages upon pages of checking off behavioral, physical, etc conditions that we have experience with and what we’re willing to “accept” out of our future children. After my going through infertility for so many years, shingles, vestibular disorder, and Jason’s cancer diagnosis, we would really prefer not to have a child with a bunch of physical disabilities or serious health issues (i.e. feeding tubes and such). Jason and I had a hard time answering these questions. We talked about that if we conceived on our own and gave birth to a child or children with these conditions we would still love and take care of our kids. We would do whatever needed to be done to make sure our kids were taken care of and provided for no matter what. We also talked about how we could easily adopt a “healthy” child that could later on in life get seriously ill or injured. Again, we would still love them and do our best to take care of them. We would never turn our backs on someone in need, especially our own child. Again, it was not fun having to answer these questions, but we did have to be honest with our answers. We did find that we are more open to behavioral issues, though. We were given different situations and had to respond with how we would react or handle those situations. It was a bit challenging. They were situations you usually wouldn’t have to consider or think about unless you were going through adoption. I will say, filling out this application helped Jason and I connect more and communicate about our desires and future plans. We had to get past the part of where Jason would just agree with whatever I would say. I kept having to tell him that it’s not about what I want, it’s about what WE want and what WE can handle as a team. In the end, we both felt pretty low of ourselves and how we had to truthfully answer these questions.
As for what’s next, we get to patiently wait and see how our first application goes and hopefully receive a letter that we have been approved for the next step.
We replaced our washer/dryer and oven. We found a scratch and dent place about 30-40 minutes from our house and will definitely go back for other items as needed. We saved quite a bit of money shopping there. After spending too much money every month at the laundromat for almost a year, it was time to finally buy a new machine. Our dryer has been kind of frumpy lately, too, so we decided to replace it and purchase a set instead of dealing with replacing it later. Then our stove decided to die on us, too. So back to the store we went.
We went out to the tennis courts to hit a few balls around. I used to play tennis way back in the day and have been wanting to drag Jason out to the courts for awhile. It was a fun but tiring experience. We both could hit the ball but with very little aim. It was definitely a good workout!
We had our custom ordered loveseat ordered and delivered from Biltrite. We love this place. You get to pick out the fabric/colors you want and whatever styles you like. Our items have a lifetime warranty on everything, and it’s heavy-duty Amish made.
Installed curtains in all our rooms to hopefully save some energy this winter.
My sister came to visit us around Labor Day and we had fun bowling, golfing, playing pool and shuffleboard, etc with her. This was my second time out at a golfing range and it was an interesting experience. We were all a bit rusty. haha Plus it didn’t help that it was insanely hot and humid outside.
Jason bought me some beautiful sunflowers for my birthday. I absolutely love sunflowers and it was the perfect gift for me.
We celebrated mine and Jason’s birthdays in September. We had a delicious dinner with hibachi for my birthday and Brazilian steakhouse for Jason’s birthday. I absolutely love hibachi foods and usually only get to enjoy this for my birthday. We tried out the steakhouse and it was delicious. We’ve never been to a Brazilian steakhouse before, but I think we’d go back again. I’m not a huge meat eater, but it was fun trying out the different meat selections.
We had a big end of the year volleyball tournament the end of September. We didn’t play so great, but we all had fun. We were at the tournament for five hours and were very much exhausted when it was done.
We attended a huge classic car show earlier in October. Over 555 cars! It was awesome. We made it just over halfway through and were too tired to continue on. After playing five hours of volleyball the day before, we were wiped out.
We finished writing the last of all our thank you’s from our adoption event from July. (Yes we’re a bit late on doing this)
We paid off 2 more of my school loans! That makes it 4 down and 3 to go! Our plan is to be as close to debt free (besides our mortgage) by the time we adopt our kiddos.
And lastly and most importantly, we finished our first round of our adoption application and sent it out in the mail! You can read about this experience, here.
So what’s next for us? We’re coming up on our 11yr wedding anniversary this coming weekend, and then next week will be 15 yrs from when we met and started dating. We look forward to our annual tradition of doing our scenic fall drive throughout our state. It’s a great time for us to talk and catch up with each other and learn new things about each other. As for our adoption process, we get to wait and see how our first application goes and hopefully receive a letter that we have been approved for the next step.
Here are a few pictures from our experiences the past few months. Stay tuned!
We’ve been pretty quiet around here. We have been dealing with random items breaking on us or having to be replaced, while also going through our home decluttering and getting things safe and ready for children to enter our home. Our wash machine went kaput in October last year and we’ve been going to the laundromat ever since. We’ve been having a love-hate relationship with our dryer, too. Our dishwasher died sometime last year, and now our stove has failed. We had to replace our mattresses since they were over 10 years old and causing my back and hips to kill and sleeping on the couch for more than a week just wasn’t an option anymore. The car we fixed in May, died again…so now we have to figure out what is causing the battery to drain. One thing after another, and just trying to keep our heads up above water during all of this. Thankfully Jason has been able to work overtime this year so that extra money has been helpful during all these costly replacements. I spent all of last weekend clearing out our garage so we can actually park in it again (well, at least one car until we finish selling the remaining items that we need to get rid of). The main floor of our house is pretty much all put together, just need to finish decorating and working on random house projects (light fixtures, smoke detectors, carbon monoxide detector, etc).
We have a long list of people that we have to write thank you’s for as well. Sorry there has been such a long delay; we feel pretty awful about that, but they are coming! And we have to fill out the first set of application documents for our adoption. I’ve been so focused on trying to get our house situated and everything back into working order that my mind hasn’t even been focused on thank you’s and the application.
We finished off our co-ed summer volleyball season this past Friday and finished in 5th place. Now Jason has been gearing up for fantasy football and dartball. He gets his fun, and I get my fun of house projects, cleaning and organizing, decorating, etc. (and yes I actually do consider this to be fun).
That basically sums everything up around us, unless I’m forgetting something. Thanks again for all your support. Prayers are always appreciated and we still have a long ways to go to reach our fundraiser goal if you’re willing to help us out. Thanks again!
As mentioned in a previous post about Scrambled Egg Muffins, I made these Apple Cinnamon Oatmeal Breakfast Cups to balance out my breakfast. The recipe is pretty easy to follow and tasted delicious. They came out of my muffin pan with ease. I may try out the other variations of these muffins, which you can find in the link provided below. Enjoy!
4 cups old fashioned oats, gluten free certified if necessary
2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon baking powder
½ teaspoon salt
2⅓ cup unsweetened almond milk
¼ cup coconut sugar or brown sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
⅓ cup pure maple syrup
1 cup small diced apple, I used granny smith
Pre-heat oven to 375 degrees F. Add all ingredients to a large bowl and mix well until everything is combined.
Spray a muffin tin with cooking spray and scoop oatmeal mixture in using a large ice cream scoop or a 1/4 measuring cup. The mixture will be a little watery, so it’s important to mix well before each scoop to make sure you get an even combination of milk and oats.
Bake oatmeal cups for 20 minutes, or until cooked through.
You can find this recipe and recipes for other different types of oatmeal muffins here.
I usually try to eat breakfast in the mornings, but sometimes I run out of time. I hate having to stop and buy something before work or being hungry at work. I wanted to find something that I could easily grab-and-go and I found these. I chopped up broccoli, tomatoes, orange bell pepper, and some shredded cheddar cheese, and actually ended up over filling my muffin cups due to having too many veggies. Instead of pulling out another muffin pan, I decided to just deal with the overfilled mess (as you can see in the picture below). Would I make this again? Probably. But I still do prefer to just scramble up my veggie and egg mixture every morning or do a big batch in the beginning of the week. I made these egg muffins along with some apple cinnamon oatmeal muffins (which will be posted in a new post), and it became a balanced breakfast.
You can use any ingredients you like, but here is the recipe I used as a guideline:
1/2 pound Jones Dairy Farm All Natural Pork Sausage Roll
12 large eggs
1/2 cup chopped onion
1/4 cup chopped green pepper
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
1/4 teaspoon pepper
1/2 cup shredded cheddar cheese
Preheat oven to 350°. In a large skillet, cook sausage over medium heat until no longer pink; drain.
In a large bowl, beat eggs. Add onion, green pepper, salt, garlic powder and pepper. Stir in sausage and cheese.
Spoon by 1/3 cupfuls into muffin cups coated with cooking spray. Bake 20-25 minutes or until a knife inserted near the center comes out clean.