Emily & Jason

Hoping to Adopt (Oklahoma)

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Our fondness for Fall

The falling leaves and crispness in the air make this time of year our favorite season of all. From looking at buggies, counting leaves and the wind picking up, this family is all about our Fall Favorites. You'll find us outdoors every afternoon - rain or shine because it's puddle time! We've had several visits to the lake to give fishing a go and had a blast hiking and throwing rocks into Mimi and Grandpa's pond. Cullen's been a big fan going everywhere in his boots his Auntie Jackie got him for his birthday and even had a visit to his mama's studio in them! He's very into learning to potty now and teaching Teddy how to put on a diaper. We know he's going to be a big help and great big brother. He says he's going to sing to his little brother or sister when they get here. He's been practicing his favorite songs... rain rain go away and baa baa black sheep. Mom and Baba have been busy this season celebrating friends birthdays, working on new house projects and preparing for a new playground the kids will be getting for Christmas! We've recently been listening to a lot of country tunes and enjoying getting to know each other more as parents.This is such a great journey we are on and are so blessed to have been given the opportunity to adopt. We wouldn't change anything for the world! If we don't update until after the holidays, have a happy one - we plan to!

Chugga Chugga ... two two!

October is definitely one of our favorite months. For starters, we were blessed with Cullen by his birth mother, J, two years ago... so, of course, we celebrated Cullen's birthday chugga chugga... two two! All of his friends came over and celebrated on the Cullen Express Train, played with trains, buses and ate train cookies. With football in full Fall force, weather just right and one of our favorite Holidays, October proved to be extra special this year with Cullen playing soccer, learning to catch a football and gymnastics. Our family celebrated with family on both sides Baba (Jason's) birthday as well and went to our first Thunder game! Of course, we can't help ourselves, we went to the zoo many times, but the most fun weekend was when our little Elephant toddled his way over to the real Elephants and squealed. Now that it's November, we have big plans to visit the big corn maze, Thanksgiving at the ranch and a little fishing getaway. We are so blessed and enjoy living our best lives. To whomever reading this - mother, father, awaiting family, birth mother making a tough decision, adoptee or you fit in another category - if any take away from our profile leaves with you, by you being here, you are already on a journey that will forge the right path for you. Just remember to stay strong and stay positive. The world is a great experience to explore.

We painted pumpkins!

It's that time of year... Emily's favorite season... Fall. And, of course, Emily couldn't wait two more days for the official start of Fall so in typical fashion, we painted pumpkins! She is currently decking out the house with pumpkins and fall decor - prepping for Cullen's second birthday in the next two weeks. It's going to be a train party! Chugga Chugga Two Two! The end of summer has been great with a lot of lake trips, swim lessons, gymnastics and outdoor excursions. With the peak of summer hitting over 100, we spend a lot of time at museums and science centers to stay cool. Cullen started picking up soccer and his Baba has been showing him some moves. We did have a hard August - we had to put down Cullen's dog, Ike. Unfortunately, he had lymphoma. Explaining to an almost two year old about death is difficult and Ike passed way too young (seven). We read a lot to Cullen so we picked up a stuffed dog and book about dog heaven and read to him each time he asks for Ike. He's adjusted ok now that it's been a month and we've kept busy. One of those busy items was Cullen transitioned to a big boy bed and his new forest green room opening back up the jungle nursery for his sibling. Cullen can't wait to be a big brother. We tell him we are waiting to adopt our second child and read him adoption books each week. We love that we can be open and honest with our son and his journey to better understand his siblings as well. For this coming weekend, Cullen and Baba are going to the ranch to visit Yaya and Papa where Cullen can feed the baby cows and ride on the tractors with Papa. Yaya mentioned getting a mud pile ready so he can get dirty and make mud pies.... what a great first fall weekend! As for mom? She's doing her annual girls getaway with Jackie, Cortney and Jill. They are going to the lake for the fall festivals and some R&R. Cullen's Mimi is coming as well as a family friend - Petra (but shhh, it's a surprise for Mimi)!

Eleven Years of bliss! Among other updates :-)

Jason and I snapped this photo celebrating our eleven years married! He surprised me with a night out of tapas and sips around town with a special rooftop getaway for the weekend. This past month has been full of surprises and fun! This past month, we did the following... Emily's family typically celebrates a family reunion each year at Mimi and Grandpa's lake house, but Covid put a damper on things last year. This year, with everyone vaccinated, the family got to get together and enjoy Uncle Larry's Fish Fry, Aunt El's Southern BBQ and Jess & Em's Breakfast Bonanza while spending time laughing, playing giant jenga, waterfalls, wave runners, tubing, fishing and more. It was so great to get the little second cousins together. Emily set up a tie dye event so we have memories of the "After Covid Fam Reunion." The fam bam also took a trip to the science museum and learned about sensory fun that included light objects, stacking un-level rocks and how shadows work. Cullen loved playing with the water objects and learning about different sounds from the drums to trumpets. However, his favorite part was the aircrafts and airplanes. Future pilot, maybe? We will support whatever his dream is and ensure he has the opportunity to learn about differing ways to succeed at a happy life. Conner (Jackie's son) turned FIVE this month so we had to dino safari and dig up dinosaur bones, explore what dinosaurs are and what happened to them. Although hot, we had a blast and Cullen got his first dinosaur toy. Now every chance he gets it is time to "ROAR." All in all, it's be a great summer so far. For the upcoming months, we've got plans for more lake trips and ranch expeditions... perhaps it's time to teach Cullens how to frog hunt? Feed a baby cow? Climb a mountain? ... Maybe all three?

Early Summer Updates

Bumps have turned into babies this Spring and early summer Summer! Our little niece Lottie was born this May and we couldn't be more happier to have her apart of our family. We are so in love with this squish - the only thing that could complete it is another baby to join our friendship family. Next up, our internal family had a vacation to start the summer at the lake! We went on boat rides, went fishing, to an aquarium and ate much needed good grub. Mom enjoyed working on some internal projects to fulfill her creative side while Dad played ball, trucks and work outs with Cullens. After eleven years together, we are just growing to love each other and our family/friend units more and more. Someone recently asked us if we could pick a stage in our lives that is our favorite and we both said "now." We would not trade it for the world. From a mimicking toddler to cultivating the most cherished friendships to date, Jason and I are the happiest we've ever been. There is so much love in our house and we can't wait to share it with anyone who wants a touch of it!

Springtime updates

We've been busy this Spring. Weekends full of family activities, friend visits, sport events and cousin time. Our family is big into outdoor activities so some highlights we've done the past few months now that it's warming up include: park and zoo visits, hiking at the ranch, boating at the lake and teaching/learning new activities for the little man using STEAM program tactics. We had an amazing Easter hunting eggs in our front yard with Cullen's cousins, consuming a full-on Easter ham, scalloped potatoes and roasted carrots the Easter bunny left behind. Afterwards, we played outside with bikes, sidewalk chalk and water table fun. It was one of the best days we had. Just enjoying the moments and sharing our love and joy. We were able to continue that the following weekend going to Jason's in law's Ranch where we hiked, played outside and saw Yaya and Papa. Cullen learned about cows, turkeys, birds and otters. This past weekend, Emily hosted her best friend's baby shower for little Lottie Fran - the second girl to join the gang. Her mom, Jackie, was showered with loads of pink, bows and frills. Her auntie em mighta coulda spoiled her a lot.... We told Cullen he's got a new cousin coming and explained to him about babies and how he's going to be a big brother just like his cousin Conner. He knows what a baby is and has now been going around the house saying "baee baee" "baee baee, mine." like he's already owned the role of a big bro. This next weekend we are off to the lake again with Mimi and Grandpa. Grandpa bought a new boat and we've got to go take it for a test drive, of course. We will be fishing, grilling and enjoying the sun. Cullen's never had marshmallows before... he's going to get his first s'more. More news to come, but for now, we've got to go wrangler a toddler.

Expressions!

After a crazy snowstorm that hit Oklahoma, Cullen, Mama and Baba (as Cullen calls his dad) worked on learning words and expressions. Cullen's verbal word count is at 26+ words and counting! Crazy awesome for only a almost 17-month-old. We've been working hard with books and flash cards, but he's so chatty and smart, that's not all too hard - he's actually surpassed his sign language and let's us know when he wants to "eat eat eat" "more more" and "drink drink" as he knows the words vs the signing (although we very much continue to promote signing).  Onto the expressions! Cullen's very much into books. So much so, he'll mimic all books and expressions for people. There is this book called "Baby Faces" by Indestructibles that has all sorts of expressions in it and he LOVES IT RN. It's amazing. The photo captured here shows him mimicking mama and baba doing the expressions. Can you guess what the expressions are?  We are very big into learning by the STEAM program and teaching our children to embrace all that encompasses STEAM. If you have any questions, let us know!  

Girls Road Trip on Route 66

Emily's gal pals have a once-a-year trip/getaway for her birthday. On this trip is Emily's life-long friend, Jackie, who is an Auntie Jax to Cullen, and Jill, another close friend Emily met during a networking event six-plus years ago. For the big 3-3, Jax and Jill thought it would be fun to hit the 6-6 and take a road trip. We visited Tulsa's Center of the Universe on the way up to a winter lake cabin getaway. It was cold and windy so the warm of the cabin and overall scenery was like seventh heaven. We played dominos (our favorite thing to do), ate some great food and did girlie things (like old-age facemasks & nails). On our way home, we hit up 66 again and visited Catoosa's Blue Whale among other things. It was a great time seeing friends and enjoying each other's company!

Jump Jump Jump, around.

COUSIN TIME! The older littles were far too quick to grab photos of, but the boys jumped much slower at 18 and 15 months old. River and Cullen seen here were socially celebrating River's big sister's three-year-old birthday party at a trampoline park in the city. They enjoyed getting tuckered out, eating pizza, cake and enjoying each other's company for so much needed family time after the holidays.  Cullen got his cousin a unicorn kite, sticker book and doodle pad. This family is continuing to grow! We can't wait to introduce little sis or little bro to Cullen and our nieces and nephews. 

Our Favorite Poem

Footprints in the Sand One night I dreamed a dream. As I was walking along the beach with my Lord. Across the dark sky flashed scenes from my life. For each scene, I noticed two sets of footprints in the sand, One belonging to me and one to my Lord. After the last scene of my life flashed before me, I looked back at the footprints in the sand. I noticed that at many times along the path of my life, especially at the very lowest and saddest times, there was only one set of footprints. This really troubled me, so I asked the Lord about it. "Lord, you said once I decided to follow you, You'd walk with me all the way. But I noticed that during the saddest and most troublesome times of my life, there was only one set of footprints. I don't understand why, when I needed You the most, You would leave me." He whispered, "My precious child, I love you and will never leave you Never, ever, during your trials and testings. When you saw only one set of footprints, It was then that I carried you." Jason and I love this poem. We think of how we can be better people, parents, friends, mentors - everyday. This journey is remarkable. It changes lives. It alters futures. It shows an immense amount of love from all involved. I can say without hesitation that adoption is an experience that has made us be the best of ourselves - fulfilling, worth the wait - and we can't wait to finish filling our family with another loved one.

Our Home

Our home, nest, or the place where we hang our hats - whichever phrase you prefer - is tucked away in a secluded neighborhood of acre lots, rolling hills and a nature park. Fireflies, creek beds and a lawn large enough for playing sports, we can't wait to continue to fill our outdoor space with love, laughter and fun. Inside, we love to hang out in the den with the fur family watching movies, TV series and playing Trivia. There is a large play space for Cullen and new sibling to play. You'll also find us in the kitchen every night cooking together. We love to explore different types of foods and have fun cooking - it's like a date every night! Cullen joins in on the fun too and watches us cook. His favorite thing about dinner is throwing food to Harvey and Ike so they can join the dinner party as well. :-).

Jason & Emily's Favorites

Some of our Favorites Jason vs Emily The Pawn Book  Petey Blue Color Grey Exploring Childhood memory Bedtime stories Alaska Destination Zurich Milk Drink Apple Juice Golf Hobby Art, coloring 4th of July Holiday Halloween Seafood Food Sushi Chocolate Chip Ice cream Chocolate Marshmallow Shawshank Redemption Movie Importance of Being Ernest Everything Music Indie Basketball Sport Swimming OKC Thunder Sports team St. Louis Cardinals Shameless TV show Grey's Anatomy

Cullen's Favorites

Some of my favorite things... Book - Touchy Feely Dinos Color - Orange/Red (more like sunset) Drink - Pedialyte Food Meat - Meatballs & Spaghettis Food Fruit - Grapefruit Food Veggie - Peas Food Starch - Rice Food Dairy - Cheese cubes Hobby - Stacking Blocks & Exploring Music - Old MacDonald Had a Farm, EIEIO Sport - Swimming Touch - Soft, noisy surfaces Thing to Do - Eating! Thing to Chew - All food! Toy - Balls Word - Ike, Ball and EIEIO

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