Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Christmas Card Memory Lane *updated*

Inspired by one of my favorite blogs, here is our family's memory lane of holiday cards!

This one is from 2004. This was our first Christmas in Kansas. We had just celebrated our second anniversary.

2005. Our first Christmas with Lucy.


Sullivan Christmas 2007



2010. Josiah was 3 weeks old when the family photos were taken. He was one week old in the photo with Santa.






Thursday, April 28, 2011

Josiah's Scrapbook

I'm doing my best to stay on top of photos of Josiah. I feel like I've missed capturing so much already! I try to take at least a snapshot of him a week, and I have a goal of Scrapbooking one layout (2 pages) a month. Only five months in, but doing ok!

Check out his scrapbook here.

And his weekly photos here.

My favorites.
Josiah 24 copy

Thursday, January 27, 2011

A Family of 3


We began the adoption process in 2008. We had been becoming more familiar with adoption as a few of our close friends were in the process, but it really hit home with us when we found out that someone close to our family was expecting. She was 15. I cannot imagine being that young and expecting a child. Parenthood is hard when you’re prepared for it! I wanted so badly to hug her and tell her that it would be ok. She ended up parenting her son with the help of family members after considering adoption. But we knew we wanted to be ready should something like this come up again.


We used an independent social worker to do our homestudy, and we had our first visit the fall of that year. We were ready (homestudy approved) by April of 2009. We were constantly developing a network of adoption contacts and always hearing of situations that got our hopes up. We were thinking about working with an agency in Florida as a few of our friends had worked with them, but it never felt RIGHT. (We know now, it just wasn't meant to be.) We also talked with an agency in Dallas and a small agency here in Kansas.

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Meanwhile, through an adoption connection, I signed up to be on a Yahoo! Group. The adoption connection found her daughter through contacts she made on that group. We never could bite the bullet and sign with any one agency. It just didn't feel RIGHT. We were Sacred Selections recipients and we wanted to use the funds granted to us wisely and we just weren't sure where we were going to do that. We did, however, sign with a few smaller agencies and a referral service that I found on the Yahoo! group. They basically just keep your profile on hand (for a nominal fee) should a situation come up with an agency and they didn’t have a family that fit. We were turned down from agencies for being too "church of Christ". We were quoted exorbitant prices ($40-50k) from some agencies. We were taken aback by some agencies callous attitude toward children of different races (BTW, I am not saying that interracial adoption is for everyone - everyone has to make decisions for his own family, but the attitude that children of a different race are somehow LESS was appalling to us – and it was from more than one agency!) This adoption thing wasn’t easy!


After many months (and many tears) and with a kick in the pants from a few dear dear friends, we signed with Lifetime Adoption. We mailed the signed contract on my birthday (September 8, 2010).


We were excited. We were making plans. We were ready to become parents. We were SURE we did the right thing with Lifetime (and I still believe that). Then on October 6, we got a phone call.

I had gotten many calls from Heaven Sent (the referral service we had signed with) telling me about situations. She would fill me in on the details (boy or girl, race, when the baby is due, costs involved) and then she would ask if we wanted our profile shown to the expectant mom (and the answer was always yes!). So when I saw her number on the caller ID, I just figured it was the same song different verse. However, she said there was an expectant mom in Indiana that wanted to talk to me. RIGHT NOW! WHAT?! I didn't even know our profile was being shown! I've never talked to an expectant mom! What do I say?! What if I say the wrong thing!? AHHHHH!!!! But the expectant mom put ME at ease. And she wanted us to be her son's parents. She saw our profile and she "just knew". She couldn't give him the life that she wanted for him. She loved him. She was due in 6 weeks.

Our church friends threw us a “Travel Shower” which was snacks for the road, gift cards for restaurants, change for vending machines at the hospital – What a blessing!! It was wonderful to know that we had support back home for the journey ahead.

We headed to Indiana the day before he was born. We met up with the lady from the agency at the hospital the morning of November 23. Our baby boy - Josiah Timothy - was brought to us just a few minutes after he was born (via c-section). We got to love on him and bond with him for a couple hours before he was taken to the nursery for his bath.

1stPhoto  Daddy

However, due to some difficulty breathing, he ended up in the NICU for 4 days before we could take him home. We went every day to visit him and hold him and feed him and change his diapers. He spent most of this time sleeping!

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On December 1, there was a court hearing to terminate parental rights and he was our son! We went to lunch that day with Josiah’s birthfamily to celebrate our new extended family!

Leaving NICU

Due to the Interstate Compact for the Placement of Children (ICPC) laws, we were "stuck" in Indiana for 10 more days. This allowed for us to snuggle with our new baby and enjoy the amazing hospitality of some wonderful Christians in Indiana. But how we longed for home!


We got the call on Friday, December 10th and headed home! We drove straight through and Grandma was there waiting for us to meet her new grandson.

We have made many new memories and enjoyed so many milestones. Adoption is truly a blessing and we are amazed every day at this gift we have been given.

Photos of Josiah


Hospital photo taken on Thanksgiving morning.

Josiah's first time at worship services (he was 5 days old).

One of our first family photos at the McMurray's home in Anderson, Indiana.

Photo by Audra Buchanan

Josiah's first Christmas

Josiah with Grams & cousin Olivia

Grammy came to visit!

Josiah's first Buffalo Wild Wings

Josiah at 8 weeks

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Fully Contracted


As of this week, we are fully contracted with Lifetime Adoption. We are very excited to be taking this plunge after exhausting what feels like every other avenue out there! I talked to as many as 10 adoption agencies in a week some weeks. "We have too many families right now" "We only do about 6 adoptions a year" "You're not the right religion to work with us" "Our fees are $40k" "We don't have many expectant mothers that we're working with" "We can't work with you if you didn't do your home study with us" "We not licensed in the state of Kansas".

We feel very confident that Lifetime is where we need to be. From our first conversation with them, we felt like they were just different. I'm feeling like I needed to go through the past year of ups and downs to fully appreciate what we have and where we are.

We are excited.

Our contract on its way to Lifetime...


Dana even took a photo of the FedEx lady when she mailed in our Sacred Selections grant funds! HAHA! She's excited for us, too!


Thank you for your prayers so far on our journey! We still have a ways to go, but at least now we know what path we are taking. :)

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Welcome Home Lily!


Joshua and I had the privilege of welcoming home our friends - Jeremy and Sharon - and their new baby Lily from Ethiopia!


So awesome to see Lily meet her brothers - Logan, Colton & Owen.

And I even got to hold her for a minute. Isn't she beautiful?!

Check out Jeremy & Sharon's journey at their blog - Texas to Ethiopia.