Saturday, October 20, 2012

broken hearts

Two weeks ago my 15 year old nephew, Clayton, died tragically.  We are all so shocked and broken and just sad.  I debated on writing on our blog because this is our happy journey to our precious baby girl.  However, this is part of our journey.  My sweet sister and law posts a comment after every update -she has been one of our biggest supporters and can't wait to spoil her niece.  This blog is in honor of Clayton-we love him and will miss him forever. 

Clay was such a happy and goofy kid!  My kids loved it when Clay came to visit-he would do anything they asked and play whatever!  He and Connor would disappear for hours playing "big kid" stuff (video games of course), then he made time for the little ones.  Horseplay with Grayson and wii Just Dance with Brooksie.  He was just happy to hang out with his cousins.  When I was pregnant with Connor, Clay was just 3.  He was so excited about getting a cousin to play with-but you can imagine his disappointment the first time he saw a baby and realized it would be a few years before he could actually play!! There are so many happy memories of Clayton.  It isn't fair-we were supposed to have many more.  I know God has a plan for our family, even in our time of grief and such sorrow. 

A few months ago I had planned on writing a blog about "first and last". It hit me on the first day of school how many facebook posts I saw that said first or last-first day of preschool, first day of kinder, LAST first day (seniors), first day of college, etc.  I saw a picture of my nephew-first day of sophomore year.  I remember looking at that picture and commenting - WOW- because I knew it wouldn't be long and he would be posting LAST first day.  Also, I knew it was his LAST time to be driven to school-next year he would have his drivers license! If you stop and think about it, our entire life is made of "first and last".  For us in this moment, it is the first time my kids lost someone they love.  Unfortunately, it won't be the last. 

I also have spent moments thinking of our daughter in China.  I can see God's plan for our family at work.  We will get our referral when the time is right for all of us.  She is going to be a blessing for us-a ray of sunshine when we so need it.  I think she is going to be a place of healing for us, my parents and my brother and sister and law.  All of us need her now.  Every one keeps telling me how blessed she will be and how lucky she will be to have us.  I don't see it that way-I feel like SHE is the blessing to all of us and how lucky we are!

We love you Clayton!
cousins - Brooks, Connor, Kiley, Grayson, and Clay

Friday, September 21, 2012


I can't believe it but we are LID! Our dossier was mailed to China on the 13th, it was received on the 17th, and logged in on the 19th! The agency told us to expect it to take 3 weeks after receipt and it happened in two days!! I am in shock today! Now we are officially available for a referral!  Everything has been moving super fast and I hope it continues! We'll have our little one before we know it-although there is still much more waiting to come-one HUGE step forward today!!

Friday, September 14, 2012


Our dossier was mailed to China yesterday! Woo HOO!!!! I've been too busy to stop and post, but news this big couldn't wait any longer! I'm excited, nervous, in shock! You name it and I'm feeling it. I can't believe we've come this far thru the process. We are so ready to get a photo and file on our little girl. One of the boys mentions her every day. The sweetest thing I've heard this week was when Grayson and Brooks were talking about her and Gray said "our baby sister is waiting for us to come get her.". Brooks followed with "yes, she's saying where is Connor? Where is Grayson? Where is Brooks?" I'm so proud of our boys and how they have embraced this sweet girl on the other side of the world. They love her and they don't even know her. Haven't even seen a picture of her yet. It's an amazing example of the ability children have to love unconditionally.

I'll post pictures of the room progress soon! Now, I will say the boys have been in her room a few times looking around-one of them was brave enough to ask if ALL of that space will be her room! Haha! We'll see how that turns out when it actually looks like a room!

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Small Steps

Small steps today....

The framers are here decking out the rest of our attic so we can move all of our treasures out of the walk in attic that will become a bedroom for our sweet little one! While we were building our house last year, our walk in attic turned out to be such a cool space that Eric had it insulated and prepped for a/c and electrical so we could build it into "something" later. We just didn't realize that "something" would become a little girl's room one year later! 

Our VERY LAST document needed to complete our dossier was hand delivered to the Chinese consulate in Houston today! As soon as they certify it and stamp it, we are officially DONE with the dossier! This is huge in the adoption world! The dossier is all of our paperwork, financials, home study, family photos, passport photos...pretty much our entire life, past and present, wrapped up in a nice red folder.  So what does this mean??? The minute it gets mailed to China (within the next two weeks), we are eligible for a referral! Which means they will start looking for the perfect child to become a Newberry!!

Saturday, August 4, 2012

my first blog...

Well here I am, doing something I never thought I would do - BLOG!  However, I know it is the best way for family and friends to follow our family journey to China to adopt our little girl!  

We are a family of 5 and it is crazy every day in our house! So we decided to add to the crazy by adopting a little girl from China!  Eric and I have discussed adoption since the beginning of our marriage, 14 years ago.  Even though we have 3 beautiful boys, we struggled with infertility and knew that adoption was always an option for us.  We thought about it before kids and then between kids!  After our third was born, I still felt the desire to adopt, but of course, my hands were FULL. I even remember holding the baby and watching the olympics in 2008 with our then 7 year old and telling him we were going to adopt from China someday.  I was totally kidding!  Then life got busier and the kids got older (and easier), and I stopped thinking about adopting.  Obviously, God still had a plan for our family.  All of a sudden, adoption was everywhere I went.  We met a neighbor in our new neighborhood who just happened to be part of our adoption support committee at our church and was also in the process of adopting a child.  Another friend from the city we had just moved from very unexpectedly adopted a baby. I took our dog to be boarded before vacation and he stayed in "The Great Wall" room.  Not even kidding-the shocked look on my face was funny I'm sure-the owner said "you know-like in China?" haha!  Then, our old neighbors and friends of 7 years moved to the town we had moved to, two houses down, exactly one year to the date from our move.  Guess what? Yep!  They were adopting a little girl from China.  She said "you're going to do this too!" .  I would laugh and say "nope, I'm good with my 3!".  Pretty sure God moved them here to be an example of an adoptive family and to show us that yes it's hard, but it's possible! Some of you know this family, the Coco's!!

As I said before, God's plan was different than mine.  I had a big long list of all of the reasons I did not want to add to our family.  I really thought I was nuts to even be considering another child!  Seriously-life was just getting easy! But I had one thought in my heart that never went away-we could do this.  If we can give just one orphan a home and a family, why wouldn't we?  My big long list was all selfish reasons.  So I kept praying, I kept talking with Eric (who also had the same list and told me I was crazy!!), I read every book I could get my hands on and asked tons of questions, prayed ALOT more and here we are. Once we let go and decided to proceed, all of our doubts were gone!  There are still things we worry about - but who doesn't have worries when they're expecting a new addition to the family?  We are at peace and know that we are honoring God's will for our family.   

Our thoughts on adoption have always been simply to give an orphan a family.  When all of this began, we had no idea where our child would come from.  We were open to most anything-domestic or international, girl or boy. I really can't even tell you why we chose China, but I can tell you that we are so excited about this journey we are taking to bring home our little girl. Our boys are over the moon!  They talk about her every day like they already know her and they are excited to meet her. Funny-they even pick out "girly" things we need to buy for "our baby sister".  I truly believe everything in my life before Eric, and with Eric, have led to this moment.  We are meant to do this.  So here we go!!!