Monday, June 9, 2014


Josh and I attended a two day class at Gladney's campus in Fort Worth a few weeks ago called, Pathways. First, let me say the place is beautiful. Walking into the building we found the only adoption museum in the country. We took times during breaks to check it out and it is pretty neat.

The class was well....Interesting. The people who taught it were amazing and made it as enjoyable as possible and we were fed very well! (SCORE!) They were VERY honest with us about issues that some older children (2 and over) experience after being in the foster system or an orphanage and some things were very rough to hear. I won't bore you with details but when we left the first day I felt very overwhelmed and was doubting myself. But after talking about the class with Josh and a good night's sleep, I was ready for day 2.

The second day was less scary and overwhelming. It was more about learning how to deal with a child who may have attachment, sensory, or other issues they have seen with children. I was very glad we attended this class because let's face it, we are going into this completely blind and I tend not to do well in those situations. So any help or advice from professionals is welcome in the Franklin house. Here is a pic of all the families adopting from China that were at Pathways with us:

Next step: we scheduled our home study for July 10th and we actually met our case worker at Pathways so it is nice to have already met her before she comes into the house. In the meantime we were fingerprinted and have even more paperwork to fill out! YAY!

Please continue to keep us and our daughter in your prayers. I have a very strong feeling she has been born and is waiting for us so we pray God watch over her and keep her safe until we can get to her and bring her home.

Thursday, May 15, 2014

First Major Hurdle Down!

Happy Thursday All!

I just got back from sending our initial paperwork via FedEx to our caseworker in New York. Over the last two days I have gone over every paper twice to make sure we didn't miss anything. So fingers crossed that envelope makes its way to the big apple on Monday and I haven't missed anything. I spoke with our caseworker this morning and looks like I may have been an eager beaver on the dossier paperwork. (I requested a few things I know we will need last week, marriage license, birth certificates) But for now I think we just wait while they go over all the paperwork I just sent in. After that, we should be hearing from the person who will be doing our home study to get that all scheduled and going.

AAAHHHHHHH!!!! It's all so exciting and scary at the same time.

I'm not sure if I have any other would be mothers who read this. In my head, I'm pretty sure it is just my mom and a few friends that check this blog out. But if I do have any one who is struggling to become a parent, I wanted to share a text I got from my SIL on Mother's Day. The sentiment applies to you even if you are still trying to conceive, doing fertility treatments or going through the adoption process. We all do things for our children before they are even conceived, born or with us. THAT is what TRUE LOVE is.

It really touched my heart in a way I don't think a single text ever has on a day I have loathed for years. Our daughter may be lucky to have me but she is also lucky that she will have the sweetest, most caring, selfless Aunt who thinks of other people on her own mother's day.

Saturday, April 5, 2014

Put a fork in me, I'm done!

This morning, I woke up and went to the park between the Ballpark (I refuse to call it Globe Life Park) and Jerry World (I don't refuse to call it AT&T Stadium, but I think Jerry World sounds way better) and I walked my 3 miles to train for the Susan G Komen 3 Day in November. I walked around the park and all around the stadiums and even at 9 AM this morning, I saw TONS of Florida & Wisconsin fans. I can't imagine what it is like right now. INSANE! Here are some pics I snapped. The one in the lower right hand corner is a bus being escorted into stadium by police. There was another bus behind it, so I can only assume it was one of the teams. I thought it was kinda cool.
After my walk, I came home, ate lunch (so I didn't get HANGRY when working on paperwork) and we started. We literally read EVERY. PIECE. OF. PAPER. This is a huge commitment, no way was I going to sign anything blindly. I had notes on top of notes on these papers. My beautiful binder was torn to shreds as I had papers all around me, reading, signing, organizing, and writing. I'm just going to say it: It wasn't THAT bad. We have a few more things to get done but nothing too big. I got my physical last week so that is all done EXCEPT my TB test. I went in on a Thursday and since you have to get it read 2 days later, I wasn't able to get it. But no worries, my Dr. said to come in next week and she would do it real quick. So, I will be going back up there on Tuesday. Josh still needs to get his and he will in the next two weeks.

Good News: My binder is back to it's beautiful organized self complete with sections and sticky notes sticking out for the pages we still need to finish. As long as I keep this organized, I think we will be good. Josh is very impressed with my organizational skills. I realized I never really use them to their full potential unless I am at work.

Doing this makes me want to organize our entire house and I am thinking I better do it now. I have a feeling in about two years I may not have as much spare time on my hands :)

Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Small Update - I'm a paperwork wiz

Josh and I have both been under the weather the last few weeks so we haven't tackled the adoption paperwork like we had hoped to by this point. But fear not my dozen or so followers, we are both feeling better and I am really really good at organizing. I don't think you understand, paperwork is my thing. Not to toot my own horn, but I am like a beautiful mind when it comes to paperwork! (wow, can I sound any dorkier?)

AND it just so happens that one of my best friends is a notary. So in a way, I guess you could say I have my own personal notary. Yeah, I'm kinda a big deal... So we are going to knock this out faster than a jack rabbit on a date.

Today I took the initiative and organized all the paperwork into three sections that Gladney recommended so that it isn't just one big pile of overwhelming messy paperwork that would make me sob like a baby. Instead, it is now a thing of beauty, if I do say so myself. And is sitting pretty on my desk waiting for Josh and I to get after it on Saturday afternoon.

aka "the playbook III"

Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Conference Call with Judy @ Gladney 3/11/2014

G'day Mates!

Yesterday we had our orientation conference call with our girl, Judy at Gladney. It was pretty much all information on the process and fees and after the call I was VERY overwhelmed. She went over each stage of the adoption process but I have decided to take the same advice Bob took in the great piece of cinema brilliance, "What about Bob?" and take baby steps. "Baby steps to the elevator...."

1st Step: Formally request Application and pay application fee, which we will be doing this weekend. Once they receive the request and payment (which we will be making on our Advantage card, we are going to need a LOT of points to get to China! If you have any miles just laying around collecting dust, feel free to donate them to us!) they will send us the official application and reference questionnaire. Get ready, we will be contacting 5 people to write letters and fill out questionnaires on our behalf in the next few weeks. One professional, one from our community, the person who would be the legal guardian of our child if something were to happen to us, one family member (which we think would be the same as legal guardian) and the rest personal references. 

To end, I wanted to let you know that I have been praying for our child every night and sometimes randomly during the day. Chances are she is either about to be born or is already out there waiting for us so please if you can remember her in your prayers or in your positive thoughts, or whatever it is you do, that would mean a lot to us and will be very special to tell her later in life that she was loved by so many before they even had the chance to meet her.


Thursday, March 6, 2014

Let's play catch-up!

Well, I'm  back and I am happy to say that I am in a way better place than I have been in regards to starting a family. For those of you who aren't aware of what goes on in my day to day life, here are some highlights and low lights since my last post:

  • February 2013: After a long battle, I lost my Aunt (dad's younger sister) to lung cancer. This was the first kick to our family and I don't care how much you prepare yourself for it, it still hurts like hell. But at the same time, my cousin and her husband adopted their daughter from China brought her home during all this and it makes me happy to know that LJ got to see her before she passed on. It was such a whirlwind of emotion, there is really no way to describe it. 
  • June 2013: I am not sure if I ever blogged about this in the past (and I am way too lazy to look it up - or maybe I just don't want to see what I wrote about it back then) but my dad was diagnosed with throat cancer and what we were told should  have been an "easy thing for him to beat" and it eventually took his life in June. Pretty much it is all a blur to me but my husband and I were there when he passed away peacefully and even though I miss him more than words could ever express, I am so glad he is not in pain anymore. 
  • Summer 2013: Two new sweet babies have blessed my family and friends. My sister in law (SIL) and one of my best friends, M*, both had sweet little baby girls this past summer and I am happy that I am finally out of the "why not me" place and can just be a good "KK" to them both and spoil them along with their big brothers! I also found out one of my other best friends, S* is expecting her first baby! She is due in May and I am over the moon excited for her. More on that down the page though....
  • November 2013: Another of of my best friends, L*, and I took part in the SUSAN G KOMEN 3 Day. This has always been on my bucket list and I am one very proud walker! It was seriously one of the best weekends of my life and we have vowed to walk it or crew it every year. We have already signed up for this November. I don't want to sound like one of those people who "drank the kool-aid" but it was one of the best, most inspiring weekends of my life! If you have ever wanted to do it, sign up! I am telling you, you will not regret it. Do what I did and go to a "Getting Started Meeting" and you will be all pumped to sign up. But just know that is nothing compared to the way you feel when you get to opening ceremonies, walk all that way, meet women who are survivors or walking in remembrance of a loved one and when you cross that finish line. I cannot tell you how many times we cried that weekend but we laughed and got horrible blisters and it was all worth it. The website is: Susan G. Komen 3 Day (note: Susan G Komen is not paying me to say this stuff, but maybe they should! - hahaha)
When S* told me she was pregnant it really lit a fire under my butt to get this adoption thing going. I have been in "mourning" over not getting pregnant on our own long enough. S* and I have been life long friends LITERALLY. Our dads lived down the street from each other when they married our moms. I am 6 months older than she is and her mom used to come to our house down the street to practice feeding me when she was pregnant with S*. This isn't "we met in 1st grade" type story. This is the REAL DEAL. She is not like a sister, she IS my sister. All I kept thinking after she told me this was "I want her kid to be best friends with my kid" I know it may sound incredibly lame to some people but its the truth. Is it the only reason I want a child? Of course not! I wanted a kid long before but this was the catalyst to get me back in the game. Also, I am pretty stubborn and determined and knew one day we would have a child. Looking back, going through everything and it not working out, really has me to believe this was always in God's plan for us it just took a lot of time for me to realize it.

In case you were wondering why we are going the international route, we want a closed adoption. After everything we have been through, this gives us the most peace of mind. It's a personal decision and I hope everyone can respect that and understand. If not, ask us! We are more than happy to give you more insight into how we came to this decision.

We originally selected China or Bulgaria when we sent in our information. Last week I had a conference call with the reps from China and Taiwan (they offered so why not!?) and they gave me information on the types of children to come out of China and Taiwan. Brief explanation: Taiwan has children who have been abused or neglected; the children from China have more physical issues (heart murmur, cleft lip and pallet). We said we would go up to a three year old but from everything I read the youngest we could get would be 18 months) I never heard back from the rep from Bulgaria and after talking it over with Josh we are so excited to have selected China. We already know a few people who have adopted from there and we feel the most comfortable with dealing with Gladney here in the US. With Taiwan, we would deal with an agency over there and we aren't 100% comfortable with that. We originally had said either on the sex but when I let the Gladney rep know we chose China, we changed it to a little girl.

Our next step: we have another conference call with Gladney on Tuesday to give us more details of what to expect and to set up an orientation. Josh and I are both so excited to get the ball going. The estimated time should be 18 months if we don't hit any hiccups (fingers crossed) China or BUST!