Last Thursday, our little H graduated Kindergarten and become a 1st grader. It seems like just yesterday she was toddling around in a cloth diaper quoting "Moo, Baa La La La!" to me. H loved school this year and made great strides in reading and math. She won the "Helping Hand" award for being helpful to others in her class. On Thursday, we attended her closing ceremony and both sets of grandparents were able to be there. It was a special day!
H and some school chums
H with her teacher
H and M with their grandparents
Family photo with our graduate!
Grandma and Grandpa J were able to stay and visit several days with us. M enjoyed opening her birthday gift from them, while H got a special treat for graduating Kindergarten.
H and M were able to give Grandma her Mother's Day gift. You can't see it very well but they painted butterflies on this flower pot with their feet. They also picked out the purple flower especially for Grandma. It was really hard getting a photo where we could see Grandma's face, as you can see from out outtake below...
M and Grandpa spent some time relaxing together.
H enjoyed reading her Winnie-the-Pooh book with Grandma
We also enjoyed a trip to the Children's Garden with Grandma and Grandpa!
Grandma asked M to smile for a picture after seeing her peek through this window. Instead, she sat down in it. Typical M...
Grandpa and M had a lot of fun together. Those two are so silly!
Besides having a great time with family over Memorial weekend (we got to visit my parents too and pick strawberries!), we've also been busier with some adoption things. We are currently presenting to three moms and have decided to go ahead and have our profile book professionally done. It's pretty expensive to have a book professionally made and we decided to try presenting with one that we made ourselves for a bit at first. Since we haven't matched, our consultant suggested that we go ahead and have one made. Hopefully, it will be finished in about two weeks. We will continue to present in the meantime with the one we have. I was both glad and sad for her suggestion. I'm always a "second guesser" on big discussions and have a hard time with wondering what if we had just gone the professional route in the first place. It's kind of a hard topic--professionally made books. We want to put our best foot forward and have the birthmom be able to see our family and really understand the love we have for her and her little one. If a professional book accomplishes that task better, then we are on board. It's just hard to swallow the cost (which I know is worth it for the work, but it's hard when you are saving every penny!). I don't want to feel like we are "selling" our family either, but the reality is that the book the birthmom sees is the only glimpse she has of the future family for her child. At least this way, we'll know we've done all that we can do! Ultimately I know God is in control and He clearly has a plan for waiting and for the route waiting is taking us. Waiting will take us to the right moment to meet the right birth mom and our son or daughter.
I also finished two grant applications this week and sent those off. One is for a "regular ol' grant" but the other is through an organization called Both Hands. This group presents the opportunity for us to help a local widow in need while raising money for our adoption! We'd basically get a team of around 10 people, who would in turn get sponsors, and then we would be able to work on various tasks for a widow one day (mowing, repairs, cleaning, painting, etc.). We're pretty excited about this opportunity! We feel like so many people have already helped us and that this gives us a way to serve someone else through our adoption. From reading stories from families who have participated, it seems as though they were able to raise funds pretty easily and had great work days. We hope to hear from them soon and find out if we are approved.
We're ten weeks closer to meeting our little one...