OUR FAMILY VISION
Here we go! This is where we will talk about the deeper aspects of our beliefs, goals, and passions relating to family and our future together.
HOW WE GOT HERE
Everybody has a story. In the adoption world, these stories are very personal and close to our hearts.
Ours began before we even met. We both grew up in big families, and have always wanted families of our own. Long story short, that vision began to change as we entered our teenage years.
Ashley was diagnosed with a couple of autoimmune diseases that, at the time, we didn't think would have any impact on having children in the future, but after getting married, we found out otherwise.
Up to this point, we have not been able to carry a baby to term. The hardest was a little boy we lost two years ago when Ashley's water broke on Easter Morning in our second trimester.
Since then, we have decided it would be healthier and safer to explore other ways to bring children into our home. Now, here we are!
THOUGHTS ON ADOPTION
We were talking recently as we did a puzzle on the living room floor and began to see a lot of neat parallels between adoption and a puzzle.
Every piece is a different shape and a different color, but each belongs and is necessary to complete the picture
Each piece fills a different piece of the whole and none is less important than another (ever finished a puzzle to find ONE PIECE missing???)
A puzzle is really just a sequence of tiny little successes - a lot like the daily successes that buoy up a family.
Adoption is both hard and beautiful. Adoption involves loss and grief on all sides. We are not ignorant of that. Adoption also involves love, beauty, and the expansion of hearts.
Our hope is that we will have an open adoption (to the extent our birth family is comfortable). We want the child to be intimately connected to their roots, identity, and biological family.
It really does take a village. <3
RELIGION & SPIRITUALITY
In short: We are Christians!
In long: We are members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints who believe in God and Jesus Christ and work every day to strengthen our relationships with Them. <3
One of our core beliefs is that family ties can extend beyond death. This has a big influence on the way we live our daily life. Family is one of, if not our greatest priority, and we believe that including God in our daily routines can strengthen us and bring us closer as a family.
We are very religiously active in our local church community. We also consider ourselves very spiritually active. We deeply value personal, private spiritual reflection and growth. These things center us and bring us closer to those around us.
We wouldn't be where we are today without the help of our Heavenly Father and Savior. That faith and hope make the hard road worth it.
Worth it 100 times over! <3
Well....these are basically all the random details that are rather important, but we didn't know where else to place. ;D
We live in a cute little home in Utah. Our home consists of the ground floor and Ashley's brother and his wife live in the basement apartment. We have about a third acre of green yard (that grass is Justin's baby) with a garden, little DIY firepit, a pear tree, lots of shade from our big trees, and a coop full of sassy chickens! This little corner of the world has become our haven, and we're excited to share it.
We are also lucky enough to have family a few minutes down the road and even more within an hour's drive. We LOVE to spend Sunday dinners and holidays with all the grandparents, aunts, uncles, and cousins (especially now that everyone is getting their COVID vaccine! Woohoo! It's good to be together again!)
Age: under 3 yrs old
Medical Conditions: case by case
Substance Exposure: mostly open, case by case
Adoption Type: preferably open or semi-open (mostly whatever the birth family feels comfortable with)
We want to use this snippet to share a sort of vision or "day in the life" of our future children and family.
We start our day like anyone else. Justin is an early riser, Ashley is...not! Currently, we both work from home (though Ashley's dream is to be a full-time mom someday in the future), so it's easy to sneak in little moments as a family during the day. Be it a meal together, puzzles in the living room, playing in the backyard, or a quick TV show (typically a cartoon...'cause that's how we roll around here!), we usually carve out a break in the middle of the day to hang out.
Evenings are made up of dinner together (family dinners are important together time for us), cleaning up, and typically some kind of relaxing or "project-ing" as we say! ;D We like to work and create new things in our spare time, so it's not uncommon to find someone or the whole family with a paintbrush or power tool working on some kind of crazy new idea!
The evenings end with winding down (think books & cuddles) and family scripture study and prayers before bed. Hugs and kisses follow before we finally go to sleep.
Though very simplified, these are the little things that make up our family. We say "I love you" like there's no tomorrow, we work out our differences through understanding and talking (a LOT of talking!), we cry when we need to, and then laugh off the remaining tension. Jokes are always welcome as are hugs and snuggles. In our home, there are times to make a mess and times to clean it up; there are good moments and really sucky ones.
In the end, we are a goofy, loving family just trying to live the most whole life we can as we grow together.