10.27.2009

tag... you're it.

What are your middle names? Kacie Linh & Andrew Thomas
How long have you been together? It all began in May 2008
How long did you know each other before you started dating? A month of e-mails and phone calls.
Who asked who out? He asked me!
Whose siblings do you see the most? Mine. We live so close! We wish we were closer to his though!
Do you have any children together? One darling baby girl.
What about pets? Been there. Done that.
Did you go to the same school? Nope.
Who is the most sensitive? I'm a chick. Of course, me.
Where do you eat out most as a couple? Wherever is cheap or free.
Where is the furthest you have ever traveled as a couple? Massachusetts.
Who has the worst temper? Me. I'm a force to be reckoned with!
Who does the cooking? Duh. Me.
Who is more social? Me. Totally.
Who is the neat freak? Mostly me...
Who is the most stubborn? Tied.
Who hogs the bed? Andrew. Hello? He's huge and has a habit of stealing the covers and sneaking my pillow in the middle of the night.
Who wakes up earlier? Andrew. Unless I'm up with the baby.
Where was your first date? The day after we met.
Who has the bigger family? Andrew- one of seven.
Do you get flowers often? Not often, but enough for me.
Who eats more? Andrew.
Who sings better? Neither.
Who does the laundry? Me.
Who is better with the computer? Andrew. Smarty-pants.
Who drives when you are together? Both.
Who picks where you go to dinner? We are both terrible at making decisions. But, usually me... because eating out is my absolute favorite thing to do!
Who is the first one to admit when they are wrong? Me... but in a girly way, expecting him to say it too! Terrible, I know.
Who wears the pants in this relationship? Secretly, it's me. Not to kill his ego, but I keep us together ;) haha
Who eats more sweets? Does this question even need an answer? ANDREW.
Who cries more? Does this question even need an answer. ME.
What's your best day together? Saturday. Just us.
Where did you honeymoon? The islands of Hawaii. We always talk about how much we miss "the cruise."
Favorite date night? Eating out. Movies at home.
Couple I imagine us growing old like? The Notebook couple. We are so super cheesy and love to cuddle. I see us still being that way in our old age.

10.26.2009

splish. splash.

Londie Lou is loving bath time! She kicks and talks... and blankly stares at me as I sing made-up songs that make no sense... but usually rhyme and have something to do with her being cute in the bathtub. Tonight, we used her new hoodie towel that Auntie Steph made and sent us a couple weeks ago. It is so big and cozy for lil' miss Londyn. I especially love the pink polka dot ribbon!
Thanks Steph! We love it!

mothers.


Here's a thought provoking part:

Tears showered my face as I walked to the couple, the parents I’d chosen for her. My lips quivered and my hands shook as I placed her in their arms. The emotions I felt were so intense, like none I’d felt before. Inside I just went back and forth, battling how I felt. Was I doing the right thing? Could they love her as much as I did? Then I looked at them. Their happiness was so sincere; their love was pure and true. This was my baby’s family. I just knew.

Birthmothers are incredible, amazing and loving people.
If you know one, she deserves all the respect you have to offer.

must have.


My amazing and talented cousin Kayti Oldham has opened her very own etsy shop, featuring embellished crocheted headbands. These fabulous creations are so chic and stylish.
I can't wait to add them to my own wardrobe!

matching monday

*****
Washington
Kimberly ... 10.
Kimberly is a darling girl for whom dance is an important part of her life. It is her love of dance that helps her to focus her high energy in healthy ways, garner the attention she craves, and feel good about herself. Currently she’s involved in several types of dance classes including ballet, jazz, and tap.

Kimberly also enjoys playing with the animals that are in her current foster home.

Kimberly thrives on routine and structure, as well as clear rules, expectations, and boundaries. She is very responsive to praise and loves to be a “helper.”

Washington
Brandon... 2.
Brandon is a darling baby boy who continues to live in the same excellent, loving, and highly skilled foster home where he was placed following his premature and complicated birth.

While Brandon is able to sit, stand, crawl, walk, play with toys, and feed himself using his hands, he has significant development difficulties, some of which will be life-long.

When Brandon was born 10-weeks prematurely, he was not breathing and had to be resuscitated; at the same time, he suffered a severe brain bleed. All of these circumstances have left him with significant developmental challenges, including vision impairment. He is only able to see peripherally from the lower and outer corners of his eyes, which affect his abilities in many areas, e.g., he cannot yet use utensils to feed himself and he has to feel around with his hands to find the toys he wants.

Washington
Dewayne ... 9.
Dewayne is an extremely bright, high energy, and assertive boy of African American and Caucasian heritage. He is fascinated by sea creatures and really enjoys fishing. He also enjoys playing soccer. He is, reportedly, such a good player that ‘he could beat all the other teams on his own!’ DeWayne loves monster trucks and has actually been to some of the rallies. Among his favorite playthings are remote control toy cars.

*** For more information on these children, click on their names in bold. Feel free to visit and view more waiting children at the Northwest Adoption Exchange.

10.21.2009

Veterans Eat FREE at Applebee's

In recognition of your service to our country, all veterans and active duty military personnel are invited to eat free at Applebee’s Neighborhood Grill & Bar Restaurants this Veterans Day, Wednesday, Nov.11, 2009.

Proof of service includes: U.S. Uniform Services Identification Card, U.S. Uniform Services Retired Identification Card, Current Leave and Earnings Statement, Veterans Organization Card, photograph in uniform or wearing uniform.

For additional details, visit: www.applebees.com/vetsday

10.20.2009

oink oink

This is what Londie Lou looks like every night on our walks.

trick question.

how many diets does it take... to lose the baby weight?
In my preggo state, I gained exactly 60 lbs. The naive part of me... was no doubt, in denial... as somehow I figured that ALL 60 lbs. were "little" miss Londyn. WRONG. To my dismay, Londie Lou weighed in at 9 lbs 5 oz at birth. Not even close to 60 lbs. Granted, there was lots of nasty labor garb in there too. For the most part, the first 30 lbs came off by the end of the first month. But, in the last 3 months- I have been attacking the remaining 30 lbs like an Asian in a Jackie Chan flick.
Overall, the weight loss has been a journey.
I started out with the HCG diet... which led to much controversy and hunger pains. I lost 14 lbs in 30 days with that sucker. Next, I tackled the Medifast diet, which led me to a 6 lb loss in 3 weeks and more freedom in my diet. Now, I am currently on the Atkins diet which I have done in the past and found great results. With all of these diets, I have combined discipline with exercise. Not one cheating day on my record.
Why is losing the weight so important to me? More importantly, being healthy is key. When I was pregnant, McD's was my home away from home. When Andrew and I would get into a disagreement, he knew how to get me... and would bring me a 10-piece chicken nugget meal with a LARGE fry and a LARGE Diet Coke... then, all was right in the world.
The other reason for my extreme desire to lose the weight... is because the Marine Corps Birthday Ball is on November 6th and I am determined to fit into the gown I wore last year... not only to meet my goal of reaching pre-preggo weight, but because we really cannot afford another dress. Some may think I'm crazy... I won't disagree. Nevertheless, I feel much healthier, stronger and more energized.
10 more lbs- BRING IT ON!
p.s. I miss french fries.

you are coming, right?!

You do not want to miss out on this!
Not only do we have a FABULOUS conference planned for NOVEMBER 6 & 7th but we have some equally fabulous DOOR PRIZES as well! Door prizes are given at the close of the conference and you must be present to win. Trust me you want to be there!! Why? What if you won free finalization (filing fees exempt) from a local and well-known adoption attorney? It's possible, but only if you are registered and in attendance at the closing of the conference.

"Families By Divine Design", the theme of this Regional Conference, reflects the belief that God's influence and love helps create and shape families, especially families that come together through adoption. Whether you are a couple or family interested in adopting children, or a family that has already adopted children, or the birth family of an adopted child, you will enjoy and benefit from what this conference has to offer. Additionally, LDS Church leaders will benefit from learning about the LDS adoption services and support systems available, as well as gain greater insight into the tremendous ways in which adoption blesses the lives of everyone involved, adoptive families and birth families alike.
The General Sessions will include talks by Lindsey Redfern, well known in the world of adoption as "mrs. r", author of the popular blogspot the r house, Elder Marvin T. Brinkerhoff, of the Seventy, and Katie Shelley, a birth mother who has shared her story on the LDS Family Services adoption website ItsAboutLove.org. A broadcast of the keynote address of the National FSA conference, given by Troy Dunn, of the popular series "The Locator", will also be shown.

If you have not registered don't delay, register today by going to: https://www.123signup.com/event?id=jmdhy

10.19.2009

matching monday.

*****
Oregon
Kollen & Kayden ... 5 & 3.
Kollen and Kayden are adorable! These boys are often seen laughing and having a good time together. Kollen, who is loving and affectionate, is a very active, athletic four-year old who loves sports. He also has an adventuresome spirit and lots of curiosity so he needs attentive supervision to keep him safe. His favorite playthings are toy cars, and he and Kayden often race them together. Kayden is a cheerful two-and-a-half year old whose bubbly personality is one of the first things people notice. Kayden is very independent and wants to do everything for himself. He is currently working on potty training and takes great pride in how far he has come. Kayden’s favorite plaything is Ruff Ruff, his stuffed dog, and he will not go to sleep without him. Kayden is enthralled with big vehicles, like buses and construction equipment, and screams with excitement when he spots them. Both boys are currently attending pre-school and take pride in their accomplishments. Their art work is hung on the walls of their foster home for all to see.

Oregon
Annahbelle "Bella" & William "Willie" ... 5 & 4.
Bella and Willie are cuties with blond hair and blue eyes who have amazing spunk and personality. Both children are usually on the move whether they are climbing on the play structure outside or on the floor indoors with toys or puzzles.

Washington
Jason ... 10.
Jason loves to play outdoors, riding his bike, shooting hoops, and playing with others. He also enjoys watching cartoons on TV and coloring. Jason, who needs help in structuring his time, absolutely loves to have adults interact with him – he is very responsive to hugs and affection and to parental encouragement and praise. Jason typically follows parental requests and house rules without any problems. Most of the time, he is happy kid. He enjoys going to school and learning new things. He also has a real interest in being part of whatever is going on in the family – he especially likes to help out around the house and to participate in various projects. A handsome boy with a slim build, large, dark eyes and curly hair, Jason has been described by recent foster parents as loving and wanting to behave.

*** For more information on these children, click on their names in bold. Feel free to visit and view more waiting children at the Northwest Adoption Exchange.

10.16.2009

celebrate.

What a fabulous birthday I have thoroughly enjoyed. Not only did I get tons of sweet birthday messages and cards, I had a well spent day with loved ones. My very first birthday present was Londyn waking me up 3 times in the night ( to be the first to wish me Happy Birthday... or something like that), then I had lunch with my sis Jenelle, sis Bec and friend Steph at my favorite teriyaki joint, Bon Teriyaki. THEN... enjoyed some pampering and went Target shopping with Mama Mia- plus dinner at Red Robin. AND... to end the evening, my man got home early @ 8pm and we watched Parks & Recreation and The Office- our two very favorite shows.
Since I didn't get to celebrate my birthday with Andrew yesterday, due to his crazy schedule- today was my birthday in our home! If you know me at all, you would know that I wasn't at all opposed to celebrating two days in a row! Bring it on! So the celebrating began when I had lunch at my favorite Mexican joint, Ixtapa with my friends Erin and Josie. I love those women. Then, I came home to a spotless house and a very sweet surprise on the kitchen table. Andrew knows how faithful I have been to my healthy eating habits, so he prepared an unconventional but creative birthday cake- just for me. He prepared a delicious cucumber with drizzled vinegar and salt and pepper. Then- (this is the best part) he sterilized a drill bit and drilled 5 perfect holes down the center for the candles to fit. That's my man. Next, I opened the card and inside were two tickets to the premiere showing of New Moon and a handwritten disclaimer which states that he will not make fun during or after the movie about anything that takes place in the film. Impressive. Plus... dinner at the restaurant of my choice!
My favorite gift of all... time spent with the Mr. We dropped the baby off at grandma's and went out to dinner- just us. Then rented a Redbox flick and watched a movie in the comfort of our own home- just us. Best part of my birthday...? Just us.

10.15.2009

Fall chill.

It's getting pretty chilly here in the Northwest, so we dug out the winter coat and hat (because grandma said so). Here is Londyn, not so sure about the extra layers.
Rockin' the additional fluff.

meet Doodle.


Londyn's favorite friend is Doodle... her lil' pink poodle. Doodle goes with us everywhere and anywhere. Every time Londyn sees Doodle, she lights up and laughs. I'm not quite sure how Doodle got her name... but it's stuck.

Londie Lou and Doodle too.

23.

A year ago today, it was Andrew and I- in our rabbit hole of a basement apartment in S. Provo. Both of us working full time, enjoying newlywed life and beginning our story as husband and wife. I had no idea that just a short year from that time, I would be back living in my hometown, cleaning and cooking in my own home, working off the baby weight and celebrating mommy-hood. How quickly a year goes by.
The last year has been a whirlwind. Sometimes I wish that I could just slow the clock down... and recapture all the sweet moments that pass by. I am realizing how short this beautiful life is and that nothing is holding me back from capturing the sweet moments, but myself. All too often, I get caught up in the motions of life and forget to breathe. I am far too blessed to stop, give thanks and have joy.
As I sit and ponder on my 23rd birthday, I can truly say- I have been blessed with the life I had always dreamed of. I have my prince charming, my princess and my castle. As a little girl, my greatest desire was to love and be loved. Period.
I have so much love in my home, family and heart.
I am blessed.

Here's to the next 23 years.

10.12.2009

roly poly.

Londyn has started rolling over and what a bitter-sweet happening it has become. She loves to continuously roll over but then when the end result takes place (on her belly) she makes it known that she is unhappy. It has become a little trying because now when I put her down, she rolls... then screams. Since the rolling started, she now likes to sleep on her side and wiggles herself awake in the night. She is starting to sleep better, now that we put her in between a sleep wedge at night, to keep her from going all over the place.

Londyn has also found her giggle! We absolutely adore this new development! She laughs when we make silly noises and give her Doodle (her favorite toy poodle).

video

matching monday.

Oregon
Anthony & Adrian ... 9 & 5.

Anthony wants to do well and to make the significant adults in his life proud. He is eager to please and likes to help. He follows directions easily, is always willing to help, and will ask if there is anything else that needs to be done before going to play. Anthony wants meaningful relationships with others. He enjoys school and loves spending time with his brothers.

Adrian is a joy, according to his foster parents – loving, adaptable, and affectionate! He thrives on attention. Adrian, who is almost always smiling and makes good eye contact, likes to tell jokes. He is very inquisitive, too, and always wants to know why, how, when, and what. Generally a happy child, he is eager to please and help out – he especially enjoys helping with laundry. Very active and very adventurous, playing basketball is a favorite activity; he likes playing other games, too, and going to the park to swing, run, and climb.

Oregon
Ruach, Navah & Nachum ... 6, 3, & 1.

These brothers are energetic and playful, and most importantly, love to be cuddled.

Ruach is a charmer with beautiful green eyes, freckles, and a smile that can light up a room! Ruach thrives on attention from adults, is extremely bright for his age and loves to learn and experience new things. He is more than ready to begin kindergarten in the fall.

Navah is the quietest of the boys and will take a little longer to "warm up" to new people and places. He often looks to his big brother for reassurance and security. Navah has warm brown eyes and a shy smile that will melt your heart!

Nachum is very close in height and weight to Navah. Nachum has dark brown hair and brown eyes and is a very good natured baby who sleeps through the night, eats well, and is just starting to say words like "mama" and "dada." He is now walking, and is always on the move exploring his world!

Washington
Kenneth ... 6.

Kenny has been making wonderful strides over the last months. He is now talking in complete sentences and can make his wishes known (he will tell you if he is tired of doing something). He loves music, playing outside – and he has mastered his two wheeler bike – without the training wheels!

Kenny, who is eligible for DD services, has symptoms characteristic of children who have autism. To help him improve his behavior and speech, he goes to weekly therapy with his foster parents. He also is in a developmental school program, with an individual education plan to assist him with his delays, communication and behaviors..

*** For more information on these children, click on their names in bold. Feel free to visit and view more waiting children at the Northwest Adoption Exchange.

10.05.2009

matching mondays.

As a grateful adoptee and advocate for adoption, I have been inspired by a fellow blogger, mrs. r from the r house to start a new weekly feature on my blog, called Matching Mondays. Matching Mondays is a segment that I will post every Monday, featuring waiting children in the states of Oregon and Washington. This is just one more effort that I can provide in adoption awareness and helping waiting children get more positive exposure to find their match. As an adoptee, I was once a waiting child and was fortunate to have been matched with my adoptive parents, whom I have been blessed with eternally. So many couples and children are out there, looking to complete their families with each other. I hope and pray that my small effort can reach and inspire others in the efforts for adoption.
*****
Oregon
Cierra & Asia
... ages 8 & 4.

Almost eight-years old, Cierra is a very bright, high energy girl with a great sense of humor. She likes being busy and enjoys gardening, art, dancing, going to her Tae Kwan Do class, and taking care of her chickens. In school, Cierra is academically on target.

Asia has energy to burn. She likes to take long bike rides, help with cooking and playing outside. Asia also has lots of fun doing creative art projects such as painting and drawing and building things with her Legos. With a mind of her own, Asia is not afraid to stand up for herself or for her sister. Asia will continue in preschool for the 2009-2010 school year, where she is expected to do well.

Asia and Cierra are two great little girls. Making sure that they have the stability, safety, love, and guidance that help them feel secure will be keys to helping each child realize her full potential.

Washington
Brandon ... almost 2.

While Brandon is able to sit, stand, crawl, walk, play with toys, and feed himself using his hands, he has significant development difficulties, some of which will be life-long.

When Brandon was born 10-weeks prematurely, he was not breathing and had to be resuscitated; at the same time, he suffered a severe brain bleed. All of these circumstances have left him with significant developmental challenges, including vision impairment. His vision impairment has to do with the visual systems of the brain not consistently understanding or interpreting what the eyes see. He is only able to see peripherally from the lower and outer corners of his eyes, which affect his abilities in many areas, e.g., he cannot yet use utensils to feed himself and he has to feel around with his hands to find the toys he wants.

Oregon
Cole & Brendon
... ages 7 & 2

COLE (7/04) and BRENDON (3/07) are carbon copies of each other with their short blond hair, bright blue eyes, and mischievous smiles. They are both active little boys who, seemingly, have limitless curiosity. Cheerful and charming, these boys are quite adept at engaging socially with adults and other children. Cole tends to shine when he is one and one. While he enjoys playing with blocks and trucks, and looking through picture books, he especially loves being outside getting dirty. He is very gentle with the two cats in his foster home and loves animals. Brendon is bold and confident, even at his young age, and has already demonstrated that he has a love for risk and adventure. He’ll test limits and boundaries and has very clear opinions about what he wants. Both boys love attention and flourish with one-on-one activities and quiet cuddling with their caregivers.

*** For more information on these children, click on their names in bold. Feel free to visit and view more waiting children at the Northwest Adoption Exchange.

promotion.

This past weekend, we received the exciting news that Andrew was being promoted to Corporal. He has officially been in the Marines 4 years now and it's about time! He is so deserving as he has truly dedicated to himself to the responsibilities in the Marine Corps. Congrats babe!

10.02.2009

Semper Fi

We survived pre-drill week! Every week before drill, it's a lil' bit of Grumpsville around here as Andrew is not too thrilled about his "awaited doom" of a weekend. This week, Andrew was so focused on school that it flew by. He woke up this morning at 3am to get out the door and up to the base by 4:15am. This weekend they will be at Camp Rilea which is out near the coast. With the expected rain, I'm sure it will be a long weekend. I am so proud of Andrew for enduring through with his chin up and fighting for our freedom.
Andrew will be finished with the Marines two years from this November... not that we're counting or anything.

rylee & me.


Yesterday, we had my friend/neighbors' daughter Rylee come over for a couple hours to play. Rylee is almost 4 years old and full of spunk! Rylee and I did a makeover, played with her 3 bags of toys that she brought from home, watched some toons and ate snacks! Londyn loves it when Rylee plays and chats with her.

my first solid food feeding.

Londyn has been enjoying a little rice cereal before bedtime. So far, she is loving the experience! Although, she likes the new taste and texture, she really loves taking the spoon from mommy.