Family of Fans

Family of Fans

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Notes from two incredible birthmom's...who I like to call my friends.

You DON'T have to take our word for it...

Hi. My name is Anne. Jeanette and Paul adopted my daughter March 23 rd 2006 and it has been an amazing experience. They have been so kind and loving towards me and my family throughout the past 5 years. I love that I can see Marquessa throughout the year and get so many pictures of her. Jeanette takes millions of pictures and I love it. They also invited me to one of her dance performances and I was so gratefull that they wanted me to be a part of that. They really try to make you a part of thier family. I love them both so much! They are amazing parents. They are exactly what I wanted in parents for her. They deserve to have an amazing family!

(This picture was taken July 2011)

Hello! My name is Sara Jane. I placed my baby girl, Courtney, in Paul and Jeanette’s arms on February 19, 2008, four days after she was born. Although I had known since October 2007, the day I met them, that they were meant to be Courtney’s parents. From that day forward I felt so good about my decision and what was best for Courtney. Paul and Jeanette are amazing parents and I am grateful everyday knowing she has such a wonderful family.

From the second I first thought about placing my baby for adoption I knew the only way I would be able to do it was through an open adoption. Some people questioned me for that and said it would be harder… Not for me. I needed that. I needed to be able to know her family and build a strong and lasting relationship with them. I knew it might be harder to find someone so willing to have the open relationship I needed with open adoptions being such a new thing for so many people. But to me it truly is amazing. And I feel lucky to have been able to find that.

They are all such a big part of my life. Paul and Jeanette are such incredible parents but most of all I know Courtney is so loved. Jeanette is SO good at sending LOTS of pictures and I love it. She constantly keeps me updated through letters and email and I feel so lucky to always know how Courtney is doing. I feel so blessed to have her in my life.

We have had many meals out together and different excursions and every time I come away from it so happy and blessed. I usually see Courtney 2-3 times a year now. She has changed my life and I love her so much. Paul and Jeanette do such a good job of including me and making me feel like I am, in a funny way, a part of the family. I love it and appreciate it so much. Knowing that she is happy and healthy and loved is all that matters to me and with her parents I know they will always show me that and they do.

Thanks for listening to me ramble on. I truly know Paul and Jeanette would be remarkable parents to not only your baby but amazing friends/family to you. They have such great qualities and values and I feel so lucky to have them in my life. I know it is such a hard decision, but having an open adoption has helped me so much. My thoughts and prays are with you during this difficult time. I know what you are going through and it isn’t easy, but my decision made it all so worth it and I have found such peace and happiness through my experience and still do as I continue to watch Courtney grow and interact with her family.


Sara Jane

(This picture was taken September 2011)

Friday, December 9, 2011

Profile Profile Awesomeness!

So, I've decided...our profile is kind of lame, and a lot boring.

Hello!? We are not lame or boring. And, since I get kinda "funny" and find myself especially hilarious at 2:00 in the morning....well, I decided to work on our profile.

My vision is to make a professional-looking brochure, introducing our wonderfully-quirky family. Here's what I've got so far. This would be the front cover:

Hoping To Adopt

Adoption Makes Our Family Part of Yours

Then, the first page of the "brochure" would go as follows...

Introducing: Paul

(I could get in a LOT of trouble for posting this picture...but it's just so funny!!)

Also known as: Big Daddy, The Man of the House, and Momma’s Sweet Hunk of Love….The King of this castle

Paul is the sports broadcaster in the family. He is “broadcasting” a variety of sports from the radio, the T.V., the internet, the newspaper, as well as his iPhone at nearly any given hour of the day. Who knew there were so many sports, and so many games/tournaments/bowl games?

We’d also like to recognize his efforts as a butcher…he brings home some mighty fine “bacon”!

He is also the family "collector". Now I'm not talkin' cards...I'm talkin' cars and not in the "Matchbox" variety.

You’ve never met a comedian like him. He’s got a gift for laughter. And if it’s true what they say: ‘laughter is the best medicine’, well that makes him the family doctor too.

No other “Big Daddy” could fill his shoes…ask his girls.

Genie (from Aladdin) would tell you: “You ain’t never had-a friend like [Paul]”. Paul cares more and has more love for people than anyone knows.

Paul is “The Rock”…the very foundation of our happy home. And, he’s hot.

Introducing: Jeanette

(In my Redneck glory...)

Also known as: The Queen to her King, The Taxi Driver, The Chef

Jeanette is the “everything-but-the-kitchen-sink” kind of mom…oh, but she does the ‘kitchen sink’ too.

Move over Julia, Martha, and Rachel Ray…You’ve got nothing on this kitchen vixen!

She "whips" up cookies, brownies, and decorates cakes and can dish up a meal worthy of finger-licken.

Her girls sit on the counter making dinners and goodies, her sou-chef’s in training

She "stirs" up things to see and do, adding "spice" to each day whether sunshine or raining

Cousin play-dates and camping are thrown in the "mix"

Up her sleeves are "batches" of good tricks

One thing she’s unable to do is to get a "bun" in her "oven" and have it bake too

Hoping you’ll please share your "recipe" and add another "bun" to our crew.

And, in case you were wondering...she’s pretty sure the song “Redneck Woman” by Gretchen Wilson was written about her.

Introducing: Marquessa

(Check out the shoes on my little fashionista!)

Also known as: Mar-quesadilla, usually “Dia”, Bug…or bug-a-licious, The Princess

Marquessa is the family’s “party animal”. She thinks life is a party thrown just for her. If it weren’t necessary to sleep, she wouldn’t.

She’s a stellar kindergarten student. Reading on her own, writing words and numbers…watch out Harvard!

She’s a born romantic. (Loves watching the “kissing parts” on movies)

She thinks “Captain Jack Sparrow” is hot.

Marquessa’s theme song would be: Party in the USA by Miley Cyrus.

Although, I’m thinking ABBA (the band) would serenade her with the song: ‘Dancing Queen’. Seriously, you should see the girls moves…

Her dream job: a hairstylist, a teacher, or a game tester for Milton Bradley or Hasbro. She loves to play card/board games, play “class” and style her doll’s hair, her sister’s hair…mom’s hair…

Introducing: Courtney

(Those are grapes in her cheeks!)

Also known as: Jane (her middle name), Janey, Janer, and Angel, Princess Sister

Courtney is the family cheerleader. She is very good at recognizing and praising everyone's work and efforts.

Courtney is an amazing swimmer, and has often been called lil’ mermaid or lil’ fish. We keep looking for the gills, fins and scales...if we don’t find any she could be the family’s first “Olympian”! If we do…uh, what do we do!?

Theme song: I wonder if she’d choose something from Little Mermaid or Finding Nemo? “Just keep swimming, just keep swimming…”

Perhaps we might have a future American Idol on our hands. She’s got serious skills with her pipes! Courtney might just be the Taylor Swift of her generation. (She’s a T.S. fan)

Courtney’s dream job: a movie critic, an author or an editor. She loves her some good media; always asking if she can “watch-a-show”, or you might find her nose buried in some book. No one can stop a smile when hearing her giggle at something she finds funny.

This preschooler has the stubborn determination, independence, energy, attitude and “smarts” to go after what she wants. We know she’ll get it too.

Now Accepting Applications

To belong to this incredible family!

For a limited time only...

Call, text or e-mail now!

You won’t find a better offer

For more information

visit our blog:

You don't have to take our word for it.

(Testimonials from Birthmom members of this family)

Alright...thoughts? Suggestions?

Sometimes, this waiting and looking business really blows...seriously.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Preschool and Tears

It's hard to imagine that almost 3 years ago, a post to this blog would have been about the finalization of our adopting Courtney. How quickly time passes...because instead, today I'm posting about Courtney starting pre-school.

She was so excited! Courtney is incredibly smart, witty and has more energy than any other 3 year old I have ever known. She has been counting down for weeks to go to Miss Barbara's for school. The look on her face says it all.

Courtney LOVED preschool. She asked me when I dropped her off if I was going to throw her a big party like Marquessa's first day of school. (I had only planned on doing this little tradition when starting kindergarten, but I couldn't break her heart over something so easy.) So, I told her it wouldn't be a 'big party', but we'd have a little one.

She was quite pleased with her balloons and M&M's. She hugged me and said, "Thanks mom. I love little things..." It's true, it is the little things that make life better. Courtney is one of the little things that makes my life better.

I've already admitted to being a tad emotional. So, bear with me as I shed a few tears over this one.

For the first time in over 5 years, I had an hour and a half to myself. I keep hearing things like: 'you'll get used to it', or 'you're going to love having them both in school', and even 'you won't have time to miss them'.

News flash! I have time to miss them; I actually like having my kids having them in school is hard for me. I know I'll 'get used to it', but when planning out my life I didn't anticipate having 2 kids in school and not having more kids at home. That realization, and that understanding that I cannot plan for, or know when to expect to have more kids at home...well, it struck a bit of a sensitive cord today.

Taking Courtney to pre-school was so much harder for me than sending Marquessa off to kindergarten. I cried more today than the whole day of Marquessa's first day at public education.

We also celebrated the "Back-to-School" season with SaraJane, Courtney's birthmom. Courtney chose Pei Wei (again!). She wanted chicken, noodles and "pick-up sticks" (chopsticks). It was so much fun being able to visit and catch up for a while.

I am so incredibly grateful for my sweet girls and my marvelous man. Even through these little struggles, I know that I have so much to be grateful for, and I can see that I am blessed beyond belief....

Friday, August 26, 2011

First Day of Kindergarten

Marquessa has officially started Kindergarten. I have no idea how it happened. I'm pretty sure I blinked, because just a few months ago I was holding a 4lb 5 oz baby girl in my arms trying to believe that I'd really been chosen to be her mom. But, it's happened.

Okay, I admit it...I'm emotional. I'm a crier. I come from two families of criers, I got a double-whammy in the gene pool...I couldn't escape it if I'd tried. But, honestly, I did pretty good at holding them in this time. Marquessa gets a little bit of anxiety over my tears, and I didn't want to scar her for life on her first day.

School is fun, exciting, new...and I always want my kids to be excited and look forward to school. I wanted to start some "back-to-school" traditions. So, we threw Marquessa a first day of school "party".

(Welcome Home!)

(Cupcakes and balloons!)

That night as I was tucking Marquessa in bed, I asked her if she liked her surprise after school. She told me she did, and asked if there'd be another surprise for her the next day. I smiled and explained that was just for the first day of school. After calculating my words for a few minutes, she responded with: "Well, tomorrow is my next day of school."

What a kid!

I miss her like crazy when she's not home. But, when she runs to me with her arms wide open when school is out...that right there makes it all worth it.

"Real" Camping

When Paul and I first got married, he was a virgin camper. His family had the mentality that "camping" meant a Super 8 or Motel 6 that didn't have ESPN or SportsCenter.

You know you're really camping when you either (A) have to squat in the trees, or (B) have to do your business in an outhouse. (Sorry ESPN, no SportsCenter, and not even cell service!) I have to say, that after 13 years of practice, my man is pretty good at real camping.

When I was growing up, we would always camp in the Uintah's just east of Kamas, UT. My parents, along with us and my brothers and sisters-in-law, have been making it a point to get to our favorite campground every year.

It just so happens that we always seem to see moose while camping. This year was no exception.
(Here's the little fella...not the BIG man on campus)

Marquessa got up close and personal without meaning to. She walked out onto the path at the same time the moose did, and they spooked each other. Back at camp, I only heard the scream (and my heart literally skipped a beat), and looked up to see the biggest moose I've ever seen.

But, to hear Paul tell the story Marquessa jumped straight out of her shoes and ran off without them, just like a cartoon. Walking back to camp, he was carrying her in one arm, and her shoes in the other. The moose (two of them) stuck around our camp the 3 days we were there, but didn't get as close again.

We also went fishing.
(Courtney's first fish!)

Why? Because Courtney wanted to catch a fish. I don't particularly enjoy fishing, and I don't eat fish...but, we go because that is what my family likes to do. It was hilarious to watch Courtney get excited about the fish, and then...not so much!, when the fish flopped off the hook straight at her. Poor kid almost peed herself screaming in fear.

Uh...we're having bad luck with the wildlife this summer. First the "camel incident", then the moose, and now the fish...oh, boy.

Here, in the mountains, on this river (his river)...this is how I will always remember my dad, fishing.
Not to worry folks, he's in fantastic health and not going anywhere, anytime soon. This is the dad of my childhood memories, that's all.

(the Utah Cousins hanging out in the eagle's nest)

We'll keep the rest to ourselves...we've got to have a few secrets about a few of our favorite things!! ;)

Window Crayons

Some people think I'm crazy. Some have even told me I'm crazy. But, what you are about to witness, may solidify your opinion on the matter....

One of my favorite things I've come across for my kids, are Window Crayons. I love to let them draw on the storm door, the windows, the sliding glass doors in the kitchen.

It's so fun to let them be creative and expressive, and watch them get excited to share their masterpieces with the world.

And heck! If I have to wash the windows/doors anyway...why not?!

Bear Lake

Believe it or not, Paul and I have both lived here in Utah our whole lives.
And neither of us had ever been to Bear Lake before this month. We had SO much fun!

Trivia time: Paul and I met on a blind date, set-up by my Uncle Todd and Aunt Mindy nearly 14 years ago. We were celebrating our 13th Anniversary the weekend we went to the lake. And, we happened to be camping with Todd, Mindy and the kids.

Apparently, there are a few things that cannot be missed when in Bear Lake, especially during raspberry season. (Who knew there had to be a "season" to get a good shake?!?)
Getting our shake on...

A moment to share some tidbits of glory about Paul, though it might not make sense for a minute - bear with me.

Paul served a mission for our church (The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints) in Belem, Brazil. One of his favorite mission companions, Curtis Mouldenhauer, happens to own/run the KOA campground in Bear Lake. (Ah! connection!) And that's where we ended up camping.

It was fun to spend a little bit of time with Mouldenhauer and his family. What incredibly generous and neat people! Fun to find out some mission stories I'd never heard before the TV in the attic to watch basketball playoff games?! (Yeah, I heard the story Paul. You only watched "one"...mmm-hmm!)

Though we had an amazing time, we decided that KOA camping isn't our preferred method of camping. The girls sure liked the swimming pool and the playground, however!

We also took a drive up the road to Paris, Idaho. My great (4x) grandparents were settlers of Paris/Fish Haven. It was fascinating to be able to connect to that part of my heritage.