Sunday, August 22, 2010

So Excited!

Meet Rachel: Rachel and I met our freshman year at BYU and through a mutual friend ended up living together at "White Gables" our sophomore year. Perhaps it was because that year was particularly challenging for each of us, or because it was just meant to be - but Rachel, our other roommates and I have remained close ever since (7 years later). What I learned about Rachel that year was that she is an AMAZING (award winning) writer, has a big heart, loves to work with people with disabilities, has a personal relationship with our savior, 2 sisters that make me still wish that just one of my brothers had been a sister, loves to snuggle, is a dedicated student and runner, loves brownies more than anyone else I have met (and I am a McKean and a Sherwood so that is saying something) and upon occasion was known to say dramatically "Stress is overtaking my body". Ha ha!
Meet Ryan: Ryan is an Idaho boy who had returned from his mission to Russia when his buddy set him up on a blind date with none other than my Rachel. Since I was already married and no longer living at 'White Gables' I heard bits and pieces of their relationship. My earliest memory of Ryan was hearing about the guy that brought Rachel a peach the week after a date. It was adorable. He seemed to compliment Rachel in every way. The summer that she went to El Salvador to volunteer at the Hogar he worked her usual summer job in Colorado at a camp with kids with disabilities.
Fast-forward 5 years: Rachel and Ryan are married and living in Buffalo, NY. Rachel is teaching high school English for her 5th year and Ryan is in his final year in dental school. Together they started their neighborhood 'cookie club' inviting kids to come over and make/eat cookies. There are knocks on the door for Mr. Ryan to come out and play. They are still in love, still happy, still hard working and still good friends of mine.
Why am I so excited: Rachel and Ryan were recently approved through LDS adoption services to be adoptive parents! The way this service works, prospective parents put their profile online for birth mothers to browse through. The birth mother (aka an angel in my book) then chooses the couple that she would like her child to be given to. It is an incredible process of self-lessness, love and compassion. Often times birth mothers also hear about couples by word of mouth. That is my intention with this post. If you know anyone that is considering adoption, please mention Rachel and Ryan. They have so much love and will be amazing parents. I am really truly excited for them to be parents. I think I'll feel like a brand new aunt again :)
Click here to view Rachel and Ryan's blog. (It is worth your time, she is a fantastic writer)
Click here to view Rachel and Ryan's adoption profile.
I have added a button to my sidebar - you are welcome to post it on your own blog to help get this exciting new out! To do so visit Rachel and Ryan's blog, copy the jibberish from underneath the button on their page and paste it into a html/java script gadget in the sidebar of your own blog. Thanks for helping spread the good news!

Monday, August 2, 2010

Highlights of Summer

'Highlights of summer?' you might ask. Yes, it is still 100 degrees outside but I feel like with the beginning of August, school starting and a few thunderstorms it feels like the perfect time for a good summer wrap up post. So here goes:
10 Great summer moments of 2010:
1. trip to Colorado for David & Clara's wedding reception: Of course their cute reception was only the beginning of the trip, but we enjoyed the next 10 days playing with grandma's, grandpas, Uncle Jake and cousins. The kids are in heaven when we are in Colorado. At my parent's house Annabelle watered the garden each morning, planted flowers and snuck treats. Asa watched intently at the walking trail out the window for dogs, conned people into taking him outside and practiced taking steps between grandma and grampster.
Every time we drove up the the Sherwood's house I would find Asa asleep in the backseat. I guess a car ride was his only downtime from all the fun :) Annabelle on the other hand would race down to the water feature in the front and eagerly agree to just get her feet wet. Yeah one soaked girl later we'd go on to the next activity of crafties, crazy Dr. Suess games, reading with Grandma, treasure hunts with cousins and so on. Asa loved the attention and outside time with Papa.
2. swimming: Annabelle took several weeks of swim lessons with friends. She can now swim underwater, come up for air and keep going. She learned a lot, but of course put her own spin on it. Instead of keeping her body stiff and straight, she would practice her 'dolphin' swim, in which she would shake her hips and bob her bum up and down. Hilarious.
We also enjoyed weekly swim play dates. Asa quickly warmed up to being in a pool and loved to 'splash' the other kids.
3. tuesday morning matinees: It was a sweet deal, $7 for a summer of movies. Annabelle looked forward to it every week. 'Mom, is it movie day yet?'
4. Asa learned to walk: he had been taking funny practice steps for about a month when all of the sudden one day he just decided he was done with crawling and started walking every where.
5. hearing a 'whoosh-whoosh' sound: I had a great Dr.'s appointment at the beginning of July and heard baby #3's sweet little heart beat. We're excited for the new addition. My official due date is 01/11/11! How cool is that?
6. celebrating the 4th of july in Prescott: we escaped the heat and the big city and enjoyed camping, watching a parade and getting rowdy at a rodeo as a family. Best family weekend of the summer for sure. Oh and Asa's first time camping. He was a champ. He just snuggled up to his momma and zonked out.
7. girls reunion: my best friend's from college and I got together for a much needed reunion/retreat in Utah for a couple of days. We went for a hike, outlet shopping, I got my first pedicure, ate junk food, laughed, stayed up way to late, reminisced and enjoyed a beautiful ride up the ski lift at sundance. It was just what I needed an more.
8. Mike & kids retreat in Utah: coincidence? I think not! Mike and the kids enjoyed time with family playing. They saw Mike's grandparents as well as his brother Sam and his family. From what I heard it was awesome, hiking, playing in the mountains and some quality cousin time for Annabelle and her hilarious cuz Isaac.
9. discovering the yummiest slush recipes to date: of course, I'll share it with you!
Blend together: 2 cups orange juice, 2 cups sherbet, 2 cups cold water, 1 tsp vanilla, 1/2 cup sugar and 3 cups of crushed ice. Enjoy!
10. family reunion: the 14 children of Mike's great grandfather have an awesome annual family reunion up in the White Mountains of Arizona. This was my first time going. It was green, beautiful, fun to meet all the other 'Arizona Sherwoods' and what is even better is that 7 of them came back to home with us for a week :)