Becoming Road

Becoming Road

Monday, May 12, 2014

....and we just {LAUGHED}

I couldn't help but record these funny moments with Ethan and Nyah that just happened recently.  We've had some harder days lately and these moments of pure laughter are like soup for the soul.  I love these little ones of mine so very much!

Nyah was fussing about eating an apple with her lunch one day (usually she loves them but not so much lately...) and Marty decided it was time for a teaching moment. 
He asked her.... "Nyah,..don't you know what they say?  An apple a day keeps........."
And then he paused to let her answer. 
Instead,...Ethan proclaimed immediately,...."the HOLY GHOST!" 
We all just laughed an laughed and laughed.  Yep, apple a day keeps the Holy Ghost buddy!!!

We just recently finished reading the entire Book of Mormon.  We started when the twins were 3 1/2 and it took us a little over three years to complete it.  We read steadily but had the twins help us read which just took a while but was so worth it.  As a reward, Marty bought the kids each their own Book of Mormon Stories reader.  One night,...Nyah was reading the chapter about Nephi and his brother being commanded to go retrieve the plates from King Laban.  Nyah stopped in the middle of one of the sentences she was reading and said....

"King Laban was wicked!  Laman was wicked!  Maybe they are WICKED BFF's!" 

It was soooooo funny!  She delighted so much in our reaction and laughter that she repeated it over and over again and each time is was just as funny!   Love that girl and how her cute little mind works!

Saturday, April 26, 2014

...wrong {ROADS}

This past month has been a whirlwind for our family!  It is a gift to know that oftentimes when the storms and winds come, there is most assuredly a calm that follows and a brightness and warmth that could have not been felt without first weathering the storm. 

Marty and I (and let's be honest,...Ethan and Nyah too!) have been praying earnestly for the past two years to add to our family through adoption.  For the majority of this time, we have felt a sense of calm and have been patient and willing to wait for that blessing to come. 

This past Christmas, we felt a sense of urgency to get things moving with adoption and didn't feel as content to sit still and just wait.  We passed out adoption cards to our friends and loved ones in hopes of making a connection   We also shared more details within our social network using facebook.  It was really hard for us to step out of our comfort zone and take what is so private and sacred to us and share it with essentially everyone!!!  Even so,...we were willing to give it a try.  We were hoping that someone would lead us to our next adoption, much like what had happened with Ethan & Nyah.

In the meantime, we were approached with probably a dozen adoption situations that were way out of our budget and with each situation we became more and more frustrated with having to say no because of financial limitations.  Aside from LDSFS,...most agencies were asking for $25,000-45,000.  And while we would have moved heaven and earth to put away this kind of money it was nearly impossible with Marty's income and me staying home. 

And then a crazy thing happened.  We were referred by a friend to a local adoption agency who was seeking a family for a birth mother who wanted to place her little boy in June. Marty made the first call to the caseworkers and was overwhelmed at how amazing it went.  We continued to text and email questions and info.  Her circumstances were such that she needed substantial help with living expenses and medical costs throughout the remainder of her pregnancy and after placement.   The agency disclosed that  the fees would be approximately 45,000 or more depending on medical costs.  Once we found out about cost I immediately told Marty,..."Well....I guess this one isn't meant for us!"  ...feeling totally frustrated and overwhelmed once again with the fees and costs of yet another situation.  Little did I know,...Marty felt differently! 

Here is what he put out there to the world that very night on social media....

Ok my amazing face book peeps, we have got a warm lead on the possible newest addition to our family,, He is going to be born in June and it is a closed adoption.... GREAT NEWS.... The draw back is the financial approximately 48k .... Yeah more than most people make in a year, for some unexplained reason I am not bowing out this time as I have in the past, I'm not just going to say well, guess I should have been a high roller instead of a teacher... Nope for some unexplainable reason I am going to chase this one down... So who has ideas for How a nerdy, poor seminary teacher can come up with 48K ... I know this is almost laughable... But again feeling strongly to pursue... Throw out anything.  No ideas are unworthy or too far fetched for consideration.... I love you my friends and look forward to some crazy awesome feedback...

P.S. Try not to tell Brigette she is going to roast  me for posting this, she is as private as they come.... the pass along cards we sent out for Christmas about killed her....
And sure enough,....many loved ones shared some amazing ideas and began to brainstorm ways we could come up with more funds for adoption.  Marty came to bed (I had since passed out) and woke me up to tell me what he was feeling and how hopeful he was! 
At that point we were waiting to hear back from the agency with a final word on if we had been selected.  Originally, the birthmother wanted the agency to choose the couple and desired a closed adoption.  And because we were the first couple to contact them and were a perfect fit for what they wanted,..we really felt secure in moving forward.  We knew the financial side of it would be a strain, to say the least, but we felt hope for the first time that we might be able to do it.  All of the sudden doors were opening financially that weren't even possible a month before!  We also felt like Marty feeling compelled to MOVE with this situation meant something great was in store especially since we had turned down previous situations that were even less than this one. 
A couple weeks went by and we received word from the agency that we were NOT going to be the parents of this little boy after all.  The birthmother changed her mind and decided to look at profiles  of couples and had selected another family.  We don't even know if we were even part of that process since we didn't have a current profile with that agency and were not really contracted with them.  We were heartbroken!  I remember handling the conversation well and almost feeling relief because of how much anxiety I felt with the financial part of things, but soon after our phone call ended, I was a mess.  What did the Lord intend for us to gain from this disappointment?  Why had Marty felt so good about moving forward?  How could we possibly tell all those who had been rallying around us, that it had fallen through?   Marty shared this with our loved ones....
My dear friends.....we have some great news and some not so great news. The great news is that friends and family from everywhere are pouring out incredible amounts of support for both our online donation efforts and our bucks for baby adoption yard sale. It has been so very humbling and inspiring. Even so... We are heartbroken to share that the potential baby boy due in June, is meant to be someone else's blessing.

We were informed recently that the birth mom / agency has chosen another couple. We are as heart broken for ourselves as we are joyful for the selected couple. When Brigette and I started this journey we both went in knowing the child meant for our family, is through God, going to make it to our family and any child that doesn't, was meant for another family. This is sometimes a bitter pill to swallow but a truth undeniable.

So we need your prayers more than ever. It is times like this that make us so grateful for everyone God has put into our lives and for the truth of the gospel plan:

President Uchtdorf this past weekend shared powerful truths that have sunk deep into our hearts (especially with the recent news)...

" In his plan there is no true endings, only everlasting beginnings" - Dieter F Uchtdorf

We have to see this as one step closer to finding our child, not a loss of one that might have been.

"How much of life do we miss by waiting to see the rainbow before thanking God for the rain"
- Dieter F Uchtdorf

And The Lord has truly made it rain!! ......with blessings, reconnecting with old friends, contributions not a few, hope of accomplishing an overwhelming task, prayers unlimited in our behalf, faith and strength to look to the dawn of a brighter day, and the scared blessing of an addition to our family...

"Being thankful in our circumstance is an act of faith"
- Dieter F Uchtdorf

And thankful we are, for a Father in Heaven who loves and trusts us enough to make us wait until the child/ children he has planned and prepared to be specifically in our family comes along...

Amazingly...Some other prospects have come to our attention in the last few days. In order to avoid dragging you, our most beloved friends and family on the emotional roller coaster the process of adoption can sometimes be, we are going to continue in our efforts to raise money but categorize it as a non specific adoption fund until the time when warm leads translate into a selection. At that time, we will immediately and joyfully share that blessing with you. We consider what has been and will yet be donated/ raised as sacred funds and will anxiously anticipate the day we can utilize them as such... God bless you all for who you are and what you have and will yet do to aid in this special cause...
And so....we keep moving forward!  We felt so blessed to have had this experience as it has propelled us into having our finances in a place where we can actively be seeking out adoption situations that  otherwise would have passed us by.  We have since held a yard sale (with the help of my amazing sisters, friends, and family) that brought in an amazing amount of money.  People donated items from all over our county and we filled an entire 3-car garage with no room to spare with items to sell.  People donated baked goods and boutique items to sell.  It was a miracle!  We have dear friends who want to hold additional yards sales, 5k races, silent auctions, etc.  We have also set up an online fundraiser which has already resulted in significant funds which is SO VERY humbling! The outpouring of love we have felt has been astounding and we feel so amazingly blessed. 
We continue to pray that the Lord is preparing a way for us to add to our family!  Until then....we will continue to  ".....pray and trust, and be believing.." and most importantly enjoy and marvel at the blessing of our little family now! 

Elder Jeffrey R Holland says it perfectly....
"...Why did we feel, after praying about it, that the right road was the proper one to take, the correct one to take, and it wasn't?"
"...I think that the Lord, His wish for us there, and His answer to our prayer was to get us on the right road as quickly as possible with some reassurance, with some understanding,  that we were on the right road and we didn't' have to worry about it, and in this case, ....the easiest way to do that was to let us.... go on the wrong road and very quickly know without a doubt, that it was the wrong road, and therefore with equal certainty and equal conviction that the other one was the right road." 
"I have absolute certain knowledge, perfect knowledge that God loves us.  He is good, He is our Father and He expects us to pray, and trust, and be believing, and not give up, and not panic, and not retreat, and not jump ship when something doesn't seem to be going just right.  We stay in, we keep working, we keep believing, keep trusting following that same path and we will live to fall in His arms and feel His embrace and hear Him say, "I told you that it'd be okay, I told you it would be alright.' "  (Wrong Roads-Jeffrey R. Holland)

Sunday, March 16, 2014

...saying {GOODBYE}

We lost Marty's brother, Damon a couple of days ago.  It was unexpected and heartbreaking for
all of us and yet we feel so blessed to know that death is not the end.  He leaves behind five young children, his wife and many loved ones.  Marty and Damon were best friends growing up as the youngest two boys in the family.  Marty spoke at his services and did an amazing job sharing some fun and memorable experiences that brought a lot of joy and tears into the room.  There was an outpouring of love from friends and family that was incredible.  Marty's siblings and mom put together a very beautiful program that included amazing music that Damon would no doubt love.  Marty shared these words on social media soon after his passing:

My brother Damon (37) passed away, Tuesday morning... I was far from a perfect brother but I love him, and will miss him.  Growing up he was my best friend. We decided early on to walk different paths. I look forward to some time being best friends again....

   I love the truth that death is not the end....

Damon had a beautiful heart and a deep soul.  He loved serving others and often came to the aid of his family when they needed help with anything needing to be fixed.  He was so talented with his hands.  He was kind and gentle and loved his children.  He loved to laugh and was an amazing musician.  He will be missed so much.  We are grateful to know that he will now be able to rest from the mortal anguish he often endured with the trials he faced in his life.  We love you Damon....

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

...just like {GRANDPA}

 We spent the night at my parents house the other weekend and I came into the office to find this little cutie pie, with Grandpa's reading glasses on, "working" on important matters at Grandpa's desk!  Oh my...this boy takes my breath away!  He is so pure and so genuine and adores those he loves.  He adores grandpa and wants to be just like him and when I asked him what he was doing, he giggled and told me I was FIRED (fi-yuwd)!  (another cute thing he has been saying lately...)  
"Mom!  I am doing very important things here!  .....just like Grandpa!" 

Wednesday, January 1, 2014


We dedicate a lot of our time together as a family! We love to go on picnics, play at the park, go camping and boating, play silly games at home, swim, have family movie nights, sing together, go on vacation, and spend time with our extended families which are very close and a big part of our lives. Marty and I feel very blessed to live close to our extended families and have opportunities to spend time with them often. 
 Here are some of the fun traditions that we enjoy as a family:
Our Little Family:
Bedtime Books, Singing & Prayers
Family Dinners
Daddy-Daughter, Mommy-Son Dates
Father-Son Outings
Girls' Day Out
Spring and Fall Mini Vacation Getaways
Christmas PJ's
Christmas Advent Calendar
12 days of Christmas Service
Pumpkin Patch/Carving
Family Home Evening & Scripture Study
Birthday Surprises
Family Movie Nights
Saturday Work-Then PLAY days
Marty's Family Traditions:
Game Nights
Birthday Lunches with Nana
Grape Harvesting
Father's Day Campout/Vacation
Cousin Parties
4th of July Breakfast
Christmas Karaoke Party
Christmas Eve at Nana and Papa's
Brigette's Family Traditions:
Sunday Dinners
New Years Eve Dice Game & Party
Soup-er Bowl Gathering
Easter Dinner & Egg Hunt
 Summer Time-Share/Vacation
Camping & Boating
Sister's Fall Getaway
Halloween Bash
Christmas Lights
Christmas Day Brunch & Gift Exchange

Monday, December 23, 2013


..."They belong in an asylum...the whole lot of them!"  -Ebeneezer Scrooge

 Marty and our nephews performed in our local community theatre's production of SCROOGE:  A Christmas Carol.  The boys have been performing in the play for the past five years and this is Marty's second year!  Each year there are auditions and luckily they were cast once again this year.  Marty and I have always loved musical theatre and it is so cool to actually see how things work behind the scenes with directors, stage directing, lighting, the music, the cast dynamics, and all the drama behind the drama. Aside from being away from us while practicing, Marty loves it and Ethan and Nyah have loved it even more.  They know every line he delivers and every song in the play!  The kids and I decided it would be fun to sit-in on some rehearsals this year.   It was really cool to see how it came together.   Nothing compares to the live shows when the cast feeds off the audience and the energy is so electric!  Marty is hoping that we will consider joining him next year and the kids are already talking about what parts they would like to play. 
 Marty played two roles in the play along with being in the support cast during larger musical numbers.  Here he is as Courier taking a quick picture with us before the show.   In some of the very first scenes of the play, Courier and Ives petition Scrooge for funds in support of the needy and poor..
 Austin and Adam played several key roles this year.  They were also asked to be dance captains for many of the scenes where youth are learning steps and choreography.  They opened the show in their role as Chimney Sweeps!
 Tanner was also a dance captain and is a favorite of the directors for sure.  He has landed several speaking parts and always does a good job in the support cast! 
 We loved having Machelle and Kristy watching the show on closing night with us!
 Marty also played Mr. Fezziwig, a jovial socialite who throws a grand party in celebration of Christmas.  He has lots of lines, music, and dancing to perform in this scene and his performance is well received!  It just comes naturally to him to be funny and the life of the party!  Mrs. Fezziwig took a moment to take a quick photo for us! 
 Jacci Florence, the director AND the Ghost of Christmas Past is a HOOT!  She is the most dynamic and comical actress.  The twins LOVE her scenes and she makes the show along with her real-life hubby who has played SCROOGE for the last 18 years!
 The Ghost of Christmas Present is wonderful in this production and the kids love signing along during his scenes with Scrooge.  "I like life.....Life likes me!"
 Nyah used to be really afraid of SCROOGE because of his grumpy nature in the play.  It has helped this year to have gone to some rehearsals because she gets to see him out of character and playing with all the kids.  He always took the time to wink, high-five, or talk with her in between scenes and she has grown to really adore him.  She just giggles now when he is grumpy!  Kim Florence, who plays Scrooge is a gifted actor who is the heart of the show.  This version of A Christmas Carol is heartwarming, comical, and the music is contagious!
Ethan and Nyah wanted to take a ride in the Ghost of Christmas Past's Sleigh!

Monday, December 16, 2013

...a letter for {CHRISTMAS}

We were preparing to do Christmas cards this year and realized that if we wrote a letter to our loved ones, we could get the word out about our desire to adopt again.  We included adoption pass-a-long cards that we had made in hopes of making a connection.  
We {WISH} you a Merry Christmas!
And while we are it, we thought we'd share our Christmas wish list for the year!                                        All we  {WISH} for Christmas is....

Less Pounds and Better Health!  Usually people want MORE for Christmas but this year Marty has been working on losing unwanted pounds!  He is doing a fantastic job and has put his heart and soul into getting healthy!   Marty wishes to continue working on his health in the new year.
Home Improvements!  This past year Brigette wished for a larger garden, new shade trees,  and some new paint in the house!  The garden did well, until our sprinkler system busted and watering became an issue but hey...who doesn't love dwarfed tomatoes!  Marty planted two beautiful maple trees and well... the paint is still in the works! This year she wishes that her many projects will get finished so she can start new ones.
Time to Dance!  Nyah, our compassionate little swimmer, completed her first clogging class this year.  Her teacher often commented on how well she listened and how quickly she learned new steps!  She has enrolled again this year and is enjoying the harder dance steps but just recently told us that she wishes to join a soccer team!  A girl has a right to change her mind!
More Sports!  Ethan, our tender-hearted social bug, decided he really wanted to join a wrestling club.  He practices with his club during the week and attends local meets on occasion to practice his skills.  His favorite part is shaking the opponents hand and performing escape maneuvers.  He wishes that he can continue wrestling and be as good as his daddy! 
More Time with Family!  Marty has been happy this year teaching his seminary students, serving in his calling, volunteering as a wrestling coach, and doing side jobs to help supplement his teaching income.  He was also cast in the musical Scrooge: A Christmas Carol and will be performing throughout the holiday season.  The kids have loved attending his practices and seeing him perform.  They know all his lines and songs!  Marty wishes that Brigette and the kids will consider joining the cast next year so we can have even more time together.
Time Standing Still!  Brigette loves being a stay at home mom but doesn't love how quickly the twins are getting older.  They started Spanish immersion kindergarten this year and Brigette enjoys volunteering in their classroom.  When their teacher went on maternity leave, Brigette helped the sub create lesson plans and a schedule for the class.  It was fun to put her "teacher hat" back on for a while.  While she is happy to see Ethan and Nyah grow and experience new things, she wishes she could slow time down and keep them little, longer!
 A Chance to Grow!   Now is the time to set goals heading into the new year.  Marty loves to write and he wishes to take his writing to a new level and work on some professional development projects within the workplace.  Brigette wishes for more opportunities to play piano and plans to spend more time this next year creating pieces she can publish and produce.  Ethan wishes to conquer his fear of swimming and Nyah is wishing for a trampoline this summer and is making a plan to earn the money for it. 
Joy for you All!   In a world that is changing rapidly in many ways, our sincere wish is that each of you are finding happiness anchored in family, hope, service, a relationship with our Savior, and eternal treasures.  We consider each of you a blessing and gift in our life.
A little One!  We are so BLESSED!   We have our health, our home, a stable income, and most importantly our family and dear friends!  There is very little that we want or truly wish for.   Well,..except for one little thing.....  
We sincerely desire to add to our family and this may be our greatest WISH of all! We are hoping the Lord will provide a way for us to adopt again this year.  We have enclosed adoption pass-a-long cards in hopes that a connection can be made.  These cards are the latest tool for adoptive couples to find potential birth parents.   We would be so grateful if  you would keep us in mind when you become aware  of someone who is navigating through an unplanned pregnancy and may be considering adoption.   It would mean the world to us if you'd prayerfully consider passing along these very important and potentially effective tools. We have heard of connections being made through hair dressers, doctors, friends, neighbors or acquaintances.  As you may know, Ethan and Nyah came into our lives through a friend who referred us to their birth family.  We believe that when adoption happens it is because the Lord is directing it!   

We love you all and hope that your Christmas is filled with the PEACE that comes from our Savior and the JOY of family and loved ones!
 Love,  Marty. Brigette. Ethan. Nyah