First Time at an Adoption Party

One of the people that I admire most in the world is my sister.  Although she is 12 years younger than me and the baby of our family, she has always been a force.  As I have watched her get married and raise her kids, and our relationship evolved from big sister/little sister to peers, that esteem has only grown.  She is an outstanding mother and a person of deep faith, and unlike many people who just talk about their faith she has put her beliefs into practice.   Since she was about 15 years old she has talked about adopting.  It was always a major goal of hers, but not something that ever came to fruition.  So a couple of years ago, when the opportunity to foster an infant came into her life I wasn’t surprised that she jumped at the chance.  I did think  she was crazy :).  Her own kids were 10, 13, and 15 and she was in the “home stretch” of child raising by my estimation, but Wendy and her husband Josh were committed.  So began a two year long labor of love which is finally culminating in the adoption being finalized in May.

The baby Abram has grown from a very small 1 month old to a very solid toddler with a wonderful personality, and an infectious smile.  He knows his own mind, not surprising in a child raised by Wendy, but he is also incredibly sweet and loving.  The last two years have been really tough though.  Severing parental rights (even in the case of drug use and criminal activity) is necessarily a long and thorough process, but the ups and downs, starts and stops have definitely taken a toll on Wendy and Josh.  Throughout it all though, their faith that God put this child with them for a reason has not wavered, and finally the adoption day is set.  Wendy has been planning to have a party since the beginning and when she found out we would be in the area in April moved the date up so we could be there.  My parents and brother also came down from Columbus, so for the first time since Katy’s wedding we are all going to be together.

What I didn’t expect through this process is how much Lee and I would grow to love Abram.  Family to me is more than just a blood relation, but since we haven’t spent a ton of time with him over the last year I am surprised by how quickly we have grown to love him.  Lee and he have a very special relationship which is really a joy to watch and Abram adores his uncle Lee.  Unfortunately we can’t post pictures of his face until the adoption is finalized but he is cute as a button and his smile lights up the room.

Abram and Lee

Abram and Lee

Someone is tuckered out and it wasn't Abram!!

Someone is tuckered out and it wasn’t Abram!!

I also got to spend time this week with my niece and nephews which was awesome and I got to see two of Alec’s soccer games.  I have been honing my photography skills on birds, but try keeping up with a bunch of 12 year old soccer players.  Thank heavens for the sports setting on my camera! Alec scored three goals in the game (he’s really good) and I had a blast taking the pictures.

 

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My little number 10!!

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I love the way he throws his whole body into every play

Alec holding a picture of his Aunt Tracy from high school. We even had the same hair!!

Alec holding a picture of his Aunt Tracy from high school. We even have the same hair!!

We also gave the kids their presents from Mexico and had several meals together and with my mom (who came in on Thursday) and bought us all lunch and KFC for dinner one night.  I told everyone upfront we were on a strict budget and everyone was really cool about understanding that.  We did splurge and go to Anna J’s though for breakfast one day.  Lee had to get his eggs and catfish!!

Bryce even wore this to school. Thank heavens he loved it

Bryce even wore this to school. Thank heavens he loved it

Alec with his serape

Alec with his serape

Bailey modeled her prom dress for Mom and I. She was a good sport about it

Bailey modeled her prom dress for Mom and I. She was a good sport about it

Mom playing with the baby

Mom playing with the baby

The whole family at Anna J's ...sorry I had to block out Abram's face

From left: Wendy, Lee, Abram (blocked out pre-adoption), my brother Eddie, my dad, Alec, Josh (my brother-in-law), Bailey, Mom, and Bryce

We had a great few days prior to the party and then party day we all gathered together and helped put it together.  One thing I love about my family is they all pull together when there is work to be done and everyone pitched in.  My brother was an absolute rock star running all those last minute errands that always arise and Kyrston and her boyfriend Jeremy came up from Charleston and were super helpful.  You may remember Jeremy was my mental lifesaver during Katy’s wedding and once again he jumped in to help. The poor guy… every time we see him we are putting him to work.  I am really looking forward to next week in Charleston where we can just hang out with him and Kyrston.  The weather was beautiful and the lake venue my sister rented was great and it was really nice to all be together, especially since we wont be seeing them all for awhile.

Wendy setting up at the party

Wendy setting up at the party.  That’s her “yes, yes get back to work” face.  Some of you may have seen that look on my face a time or two lol

Jeremy and Kyrston stringing balloons

Jeremy and Kyrston stringing balloons

Bryce and his girlfriend Skylar who were super helpful

Bryce and his girlfriend Skylar who were super helpful

Dad working on his important silverware stacking job :)

Dad working on his important silverware stacking job 🙂

My sister is super crafty..she was on Pinterest before I even knew what it was

He rocked it.  By the way my sister is super crafty.  She was on Pinterest before I even knew it was a thing and she actually does the stuff she sees there.

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She just made up this sign on the spot

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The room was coming together

Kyrston (my oldest) has been taking a lot of pictures

Nope that’s not me…it’s my oldest Kyrston

Josh's parents Tommy and Cathy

Josh’s dad Tommy and his girlfriend Cathy who are a ton of fun

Bailey and one of her best friends Savannah helped Eddie all day with the errands

Bailey and one of her best friends Savannah helped Eddie all day with the errands

The lake venue was great for the kids

The lake venue was great for the kids

We setup ladder ball

We setup ladder ball

And croquet

And croquet

Plus Abram had a great time running around. 50 adults was about how many we needed to keep up with him

Plus Abram had a great time just running around. We finally had enough adults to keep up with him

Wendy gathered us all together to say thank you for all the support before the meal and say a prayer

Wendy gathered us all together to say thank you for all the support before the meal and say a prayer

The Herndon's

The Herndon’s thanking everyone

One of my favorite things was she bought special shirts for the family to wear. Here's the front

One of my favorite things was that Wendy designed these shirts for the family to wear. Here’s the front

And the back

And the back

 

From back: Josh, Bailey, Wendy, Abram, Bryce, and Alec

From back: Josh, Bailey, Wendy, Abram, Bryce, and Alec

From left: Jeremy, Kyrston, Dad, me, Mom, Wendy, Lee and Eddie

From left: Jeremy, Kyrston, Dad, me, Mom, Wendy, Lee and Eddie

So glad we got to spend time with family.  Next up Charleston, a city that I love, and a visit with Jeremy and Kyrston.

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4 thoughts on “First Time at an Adoption Party

  1. What an awesome reason for a party! So happy for your sister and whole family! Babies have an amazing way of bringing joy to anyone they meet! Of course you and Lee love him – how can you not?

  2. Such a strong family resemblance here! What a great time for your sisters family and how special you were able to share it with them! I hope your trailer is fixed soon so you have plenty of time to spend with your daughter. ps, your sister has a pretty awesome sister too 🙂

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