Sunday, April 27, 2014

A few of my favorite things:

Oh man, the last three weeks have been chuck full of so much joy! Lots of challenges, but lots and lots of joy! I just feel so lucky to have Sophie and Eli in our family! I wanted to document a few if my favorites from the last three weeks so that I can always remember them! In no particular order:

*the way that Sophie says "Eli you have one kiss coming your way!" And then she always proceeds to smother him in a bazilion kisses....

*the way that Eli loves to be tightly swaddled into a tight burrito...I love that if he is starting to get frustrated, I wrap him tighter in his burrito and hold him close to me and most of the time he stops crying:)

*I love that Sophie took two naps today! Both times in one arm while Eli was snuggled in the other...that is a life of bliss I am telling you!

* I love that last weekend and this weekend was full if relaxing and lots of visits from family!
That is what weekends are supposed to be. Yesterday I was supposed to go to a bridal shower but just as I was headed out the door. I took one look at who I was going to leave behind and I couldn't do it!

*i love that my sweet husband will help with night duty and also let me sleep in on the weekends... He watches the kiddos while I snooze and it is oh so needed and appreciated!

* I love that Dan took Sophie to church today so that I could stay home and have some one on one time with Eli...our time  alone is few and far between so it was super nice to snuggle without Sophie "smothering" him the whole time!

* I love that we have all decided to comit to a healthier lifestyle! We are limited screen time to about 20 minutes a day at most! We are trying to not eat any sugars and we are being very selective iof carbs and prossesed foods.. This has been something I have been wanting to do for awhile but you know...I'm just glad to start now! We are also doing some sort of family exercise everyday....usually it is a walk /run to the park and then play on the playground...it is good to be active with our families!

*I love that Sophie calls Eli her buddy! It is seriously the sweetest!

*i love that everyone in the whole house gets super excited when Eli poops! Sophie always shouts " good job buddy! I knew you could do it!" Like she us the proudest sister in the whole world!

* I just love the feeling of a new baby in the house! I'm pretty sure this is what heaven is going to like! There is rarely a disagreement, and everyone is always so willing to help where they are needed! Even Sophie will say "I will make Eli a bottle mom!" Whenever she thinks he is hungry

There are loads more things but I am needed elsewhere so I may continue this post another day!

Much  love ,
 Em

Pd : if you have any yard sale items, you would like to donate, please let me know! Thanks!

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Blessed by the Gifts of Others!

 


Throughout our marriage, we have been blessed by so many generous gifts. When Dan needed a kidney transplant,we received many meals, people fasted and prayed for us, and  family and friends donated their time to drive Dan down to Salt Lake 3 times a week for dialysis. Our dear friends, the Paces organized a fundraiser to help raise money for us, they also bought us a pig from the fair and got it ready for us to eat! A pig! seriously! I feel so blessed to be able to say that I have been given a pig as a gift! People cleaned our house, did our laundry and we received so many anonymous donations of money to help pay for Dan's medical bills. Not to mention my best friend donated her kidney to Dan! It was definitely a year of trial but we felt so loved.
      When we adopted Sophie, we had many generous family members donate to the cost of her adoption. My brother, Paul, put together a race and we had so many people come and donate and run for us! It was so sweet and we appreciated it so much!
       Dan and I are humbled by our very brave birth mothers who chose to place Sophie and Elijah with us. We are humbled that Heavenly Fathers trust's us enough to raise these strong and beautiful spirits, even though we are far from perfect. Tonight I am humbled as a sweet almost three year old freely accepted my apology and loves me despite my impatience with her.
       Again, as we have started asking people to donate to our adoption fund, we are humbled by the many people who have been so generous and kind to us. My long time friends Cami Fairbanks and Amelia Hale, and my mom and sister are organizing a super fun yard sale, care wash, carnival extravaganza to help go towards Elijah's adoption costs. I really hope that you can make it to the party on Saturday, May 17th...it will be a really fun Morning/afternoon and it will be great to see you all!
        One thing that we are asking for right now is donations for the yard sale. If you have any items that you would like to donate...please call me or Facebook me and we will come get the items from you or you can bring them to my house:) It would be so very much appreciated! you can even leave a comment on this post or on Facebook if you would like:) Also, if you have any talents that you think would be beneficial at an extravaganza, let me know! Anything like face painting, making balloon animals, cooking hot dogs, or if you just would like to volunteer your time that day, please let me know!!! Thank you! Thank you! Thank you!

Much Love,
Dan, Emily, Sophie and Elijah Furse

PS for those of you who do not live in Utah, or cannot make it to the party on May 17th, you can donate online by clicking on this link http://www.gofundme.com/80siik

 

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Eli's Adoption Story

Dear Family and Friends,
hi! How are ya? So, most of you have heard by now but maybe some of you have not...we have a baby!!! His birth story is so special, I just really wanted to document it and so here it is...this is the long version so you may want to grab a snack:)

Almost exactly one year ago, we were in Stake Conference and singing the closing song when all of a sudden it hit me from my head to my toes...it is time to start the adoption process again!! I told Dan and he said he felt the same thing! So, the next day I called LDS family services and sat up a time to meet and start working on the paper work. We had our meeting and they gave us the large stack of papers to complete. One of them is a recommendation from our bishop saying we are fit parents. We gave it to him the next Sunday. We were kind of frustrated it was taking him so long to complete the paper work...while we were waiting, I kept hearing rumors that LDS was going to stop doing adoptions, we kind of just put that in the back of our heads and kept on working on the paper work. I kept nagging and finally, a few months later he had it done. By this time, it was early fall and we were starting to second guess our idea to go through LDS Family Services. We ended up not going through them, but in January we started looking at other options. We realized that we could get a home study done for about half the cost as LDS Family Services and then other adoption agencies can use it. So, we got our home study done in February, and started completing paper work for lots of agencies in Utah. I never even thought to call the agency we adopted Sophie from. There was one agency who promised us a baby within 6 months so that is kind of what we were thinking.
During this whole time, I just kept thinking, " I think that we will get a baby when Paul goes on a mission...the blessings of having a brother on a mission are so very powerful!"
One Sunday the end of March, I think it was the 30th, I got an email from the social worker of the agency we adopted Sophie from saying "I think I have a baby boy for you....birth mom is deciding between you and a couple other families...I will let you know soon...baby is due may 5th." So, we kind of got excited, but knew that this baby might not be ours, but we couldn't help getting excited to add a little boy to the family!
so, our social worker is seriously one of the very most Christ-like people I have ever met. She just drives around all day, answering phone calls of how she can help people. When I asked her why she thought of us after having no contact for 3 years she simply said " I have been having a feeling to find a little boy for you family and I just know this little guy is perfect for you."
 On Tuesday, April 1st, I got a message saying the birth mom had picked us and that our social worker will get back to us sometime next week to work out some details. we were Super excited and made a big announcement to the internet:


I was so happy to be a mom again and I was so happy that we found out before my spring break began...Wednesday, Thursday and Friday were spent cleaning the house, getting a nursery together, and I even wrote a few general sub plans...inspiration and nesting instincts kicked in and I am so grateful for that!
Saturday, April 5th around 8 in the morning we got a call saying that our birth mom's water had broke and we needed to get to Kansas!!!!! The baby was coming a month early! Wow! So, we packed as quickly as we could, took Sophie over to my moms, and headed to Kansas. my dear sweet husband drove the whole way because he wanted me to sleep so I could be awake for when we got to the baby. last picture of a family of three:


we got the call around 2:30 in the afternoon that our baby had been born with this sweet picture:


we had been texting different names back and forth with our birth mom but when we saw his sweet face, we just knew he had to be an Elijah. I received a text from our birth mom the same time I sent a text to her saying "he is definitely and Elijah!" So, we double knew his name is supposed to be Elijah. We chose the middle name to be William which is my dad's, brothers, grandpa's middle name.

We got to the Hospital around 6 am and found our sweet birth mom and sweet baby. We talked to her for a little bit, and then she wanted us to go in our own room with baby Eli so she could think and we could bond. over the next day we were able to talk to Eli's birth mom and really develop a friendship with her. It is so much fun to share the love we have of Eli with her. Whenever he is doing something cute we send her a picture and she sends back a cute response. I am so happy to have a friend in Eli's birth mom. She told us about how he liked to kick a lot while he was still in her belly, especially at night. he hated it when she would drink cold water, she didn't really crave anything
and it was a pretty smooth delivery with her only pushing three times.

On Monday we go to go home...and when I say go home I mean to the home of the social worker. she and her husband who is the lawyer let every adoptive couple stay in their home, eat their food, and even invite people over to stay, seriously the nicest people ever!

Wednesday we appeared before the judge who gave us legal guardianship and we set up the day of May 22nd to be finalization!


Friday, we were hoping to be able to go home, but when I called Utah ICPC the lady on the other line made it sound like we wouldn't get to leave until Thursday or Friday of next week, I hung up the phone and cried and then we ate lunch and I felt much better! Food always helps! I decided to call back and see if there was anything I could do to expedite the process. when she answered the phone, I pretty much started to cry saying we had a three year old at home that we needed to get to. she said that she would look over our paper work and call the head person at home so that we could possibly leave that afternoon!!!!!!!!!!!!! Yay! two minutes later, she gave us the ok to head home! we packed our bags and started to drive! We decided to stay the night somewhere in Wyoming and we were home Saturday early afternoon.

Sophie loves her baby brother! so much! She loves to hold him, kiss him, feed him, scream, I mean sing in his ear, poke his eyes, try to carry him around the house, and tickle him. Before we knew Eli was going to be a boy Sophie was set on having a girl named Ruby...so She will sometimes call him baby Ruby:)

This boy is so sweet! He rarely cries, sometimes hi whimpers. he loves to be swaddled. he is having a hard time gaining weight (he was born at 5 lbs. 12 ounces and was down to 5 lbs. 2 ounces and now he is 5 lbs. 8 ounces) so the docs have us on a every two hour feeding schedule which is very exhausting so I am hoping he gains some weight soon so we can get off it:) he loves to be snuggled, rocked and held.
I just wanted to thank you all for your kind words! Also, mark your calendars for May 18th because we are going to have a fun fundraiser to help with our adoption cost's! There will be a yard sale (if you have any items you would like to donate, please let me know!) car wash, food and lots of other fun activities!





Wednesday, February 19, 2014

My thoughts on the movie frozen

Hello,

I have been reading a lot of controversy on facebook in regards to the movie, Frozen. Usually I do not like to get involved with controversial things, but today I feel strongly about what I got from Frozen and the many beautiful messages I believe it holds. I have seen this movie at least 5 times now and I loved it every time I saw it!

I would like to start with Elsa. I love that Elsa is a strong female leader! I see Sophie so much in Elsa... Elsa's parents squashed her power and talents, taught her to conceal, and not be true. For many years, she was not free to be her powerful self! I never want Sophie to feel squashed or that she has to hide her talents. I want her to know that she is powerful and has amazing talents! I want her to use her influence and energy for good! I want her to feel....feel the love she has for others and the love other people have for her. I feel confident that if I teach her to be confident she will use her confidence and influence for good!

When I hear and sing the words to the song "Let It Go", I am reminded that in order for me to be my best, most powerful self, I need to "let go" of my sins, my insecurities and my judgements of others and trust in Heavenly Father's plan for me!

When I think of sweet Anna, I hope that I can have the same courage as her, to give my life to my husband, sister, daughter, and/or friend! Sure, she is impulsive (just like me!), but I love that she learned from her mistake (getting engaged before getting to know Hans)  and was humble enough to try for love again in Christof!

When I think about the song "Fixer Upper" I realize that everyone is hurting, even though I don't know about it, or can't see it, it's there! I need to be mindful of others and always have a kind heart and smile for others! my favorite line from that song is "true love brings out the best!" Isn't it Christ's love that brings out our best? 

When I think of Olaf, I hope that I can be the same type of friend...offering a listening ear, friendly advice, and perhaps a joke or two! Am I willing to melt for the ones I love?

"Beware the Frozen Heart" in the opening song "Frozen Heart" is a great reminder that we should always have an open heart to the people we love!

In conclusion, I feel that when you view, read, or listen to great art (like Frozen) then you will take what you want and need out of it! People can find the good, the bad or the ugly in just about everything so lets always try our best to find the good!
Much love,
Em








Saturday, January 25, 2014

spread a little kindness

Today I attended the funeral of a very good friend. I was very inspired by the words spoken. One person said that she had never heard her say a mean word or unkind remark about someone. That she was a bright star, always striving to be kind, good and Christ-like. She was loved by everyone who knew her. Her kids and grandkids spoke about how she always had time for them and made them all feel so special by the little things she did.
I pondered on my own life....I know that I have not always been kind and that mean words have came out of my mouth. I cannot change the past but I can change the future! I am going to strive to be more like my friend Kris. I want my home to be a safe haven where my family can come and feel loved and special and know that mean things are not allowed! I want my family and friends to feel like I always have time for them. I want to be someone who is positive and doesn't complain, and is kind!!!!
love,
Emily

Thursday, January 23, 2014

on finishing adoption paperwork, hairstyles, family pictures and sleep training!


So, Ms. Sophie has been a horrible sleeper lately. We will put her to bed around 8, sometimes she goes down pretty easily, other times she will fight us for 2 or 3 hours. Then about 2-3 hours later, she will come in our room and beg us to come in our bed. We sometimes give in and thus she has developed this little habit. Well, last week we decided it was time to begin the war (we have done this like 3 times now) and get her to sleep in her own bed!!!!!!!!!!! Oh man! She has for sure won more battles than us, but the war is not over!!!!!Her new schedule is follows:
(she has not been taking naps in the afternoon)
7:00: go to sleep
10:00: wake up and scream to come into our bed four 2 hours
12:00: go back to sleep
2:00: wake up and scream to come back into our bed
3:00: go back to sleep
6:00: wake up for a fun day!
FYI: we have tried putting her to bed later and she still wakes up at 6:00:(
ummm, I am tired and kind of irritated that she is sleeping worse now than as a newborn:(
Monday we were busy running errands and getting our hair cuts done, so we didn't get home until about 8 at night...oh and it was pretty much a hair disaster for me. I think that I must not be able to explain how I want my hair because on anyone else, it would have looked great, but on me it looked like a mullet from 1970.
Tuesday was pretty normal.
Wednesday...I wanted to be at work 30 minutes early so I woke up an hour early and between cleaning up poop and all the little things that came up that morning, I didn't get to work until 10 minutes late...and we ended up being late to everything that day! School that day was one crazy thing to deal with after another, and I was feeling quite stressed. I had scheduled an appointment with the hairdresser to fix my hair, it was in Brigham and I left 20 minutes early (it only takes me about 12 minutes to get there) well, there was a wreck and we sat in traffic for 15 minutes, therefore I was 10 minutes late!!! Sophie ran and ran around the salon, the stylist fixed my hair...(I am not in love with it, if anyone has a hair dresser they love, please let me know!) we rushed to Ogden to make the train cause we were going to meet Dan in Salt Lake to get our family pictures done. Well, the train drove off as Sophie and I were running....so, I decided to take her to the museum for an hour while we waited for the next train. At this point, my stress level was to the max. Sophie wanted to do art so we go up to the art room. Can I just say that I am so grateful we got the year pass?
I can take her to the museum anytime of any day and she can do an activity that she loves and I can just sit and watch and adore her! She isn't making a mess of my house, and she gets to be social!  I struck up a conversation with another mother and it was just what I needed to get me through the day. my nerves were calmed down and I was ready for the next challenge! Guess what? we made the next train, met Dan, ate a quick dinner, changed our clothes and got to the picture studio only 10 minutes late!!!:)
We had so much fun getting pictures taken! The lady was so so great with Sophie, getting her to laugh and really show her little personality, we even got a couple pics of Dan genuinely smiling, which never happens:) we went and got an ice cream cone and an hour later, we had all our pictures on a CD and our prints in a bag!
we got home at 1030 that night!








 
Thursday I took Sophie to her Playgroup at the Peak and then ran more errands.
Friday our friends Cami and Zane came over and it was just the fun we needed! I am so grateful for friends!
Saturday was spent deep cleaning our house and gathering our documents together because the man doing our adoption home study came Saturday night!!!! So, last week I would say that between completing paper work, cleaning my house, making a birth parent book, and gathering documents, I probably spent 40-50 hours on our adoption! but guess what? I AM DONE! I HAVE COMPLETED ALL THE PAPERWORK!!!! Now, all we do is wait...its no longer in our hands...
  • wait for the agency to read our application
  • wait for the social worker to complete our home study
  • wait for the adoption agency to get our home study from the social worker
  • wait for the adoption agency to approve our home study and then approve us
  • wait to get our Shutterfly book to give to the adoption agency so they can give it to the birth parents
  • wait for a birth mom to choose us
  • wait for our baby to get born...
 
we just need to trust in our Heavenly Father that he will get the right baby to us:)
We have seen it work before, we know his plan is better than ours, but sometimes it
is a little difficult to have PATIENCE!
So, please! If you have any toddler sleep training advice or a superb hair stylist, let me know!
much love,
Emily
 

Sunday, January 19, 2014

New Years Resolutions!

So, I have a love hate relationship with January! I hate January because winter is over and therefore I am ready for Spring to come and the snow to go away! The weather is so gloomy and it is very rare that I have a 3 day weekend in January. I love January because I love the newness, the fresh start, the excitement of what is going to come that year! Every year I set a bazzilion goals and rarely make it through the first two weeks...so this year I have decided to do something a little different. First, I am starting my (healthy) goals a little later than usual due to lack of sleep:) and because mentally I cannot start a goal half way through week:) second, Dan and I have chosen kind of theme that we want to follow for the year, it is: Be happy, healthy, kind and Unplug! I am going to get it in some vinal lettering and hang it in our house:)
Be happy: I feel like some days when Dan gets home, it is kind of a stressful time. He gets home around 630 or 7 most nights and we start Sophies bedtime routine around 730, so it is a mad rush to get dinner eaten, cleaned up, books read, teeth brushed, and yada, yada that we just forget to talk and be happy! I want our children to remember a happy childhood!

Be healthy: Oh man! This is such a hard one for us! We love candy! We love chocolate! We love chips! All things that I want to purge from our house! I have done it before and need to do it again! I don't know if you guys know this but from Spring to summer, I lost 22 pounds!!!!! That is a lot! Then Thanksgiving came. Oh boy, there were all sorts of treats in the faculty room and I just knew that I would hate myself and binge on something if I deprived myself. So then I was like, well if I'm eating this crap for Breakfast, I might as well eat chips for lunch and by this time I had already ate about 3,000 calories and there is no way I can burn that many calories doing T25 so why do it? So yeah, I havent exercized in forever and i have been eating crap! So, I gained about 8-10 pounds which my friend Kae says is just my baby weight since we have started the adoption process:) I need to loose it! Also, Dan has some wieght to loose and I want Sophie to have a healthier, more rounded diet so here is to use eating healthy in 2014!

Be kind: I could go on and on about this one, but I am only going to say this: I want to have a kind home where we talk in kind tones and say kind things to one another!

unplug!: It has been all over facebook, this need that everyone has to stop being on our cell phones and start living in the here and now! I only got my cell phone a few months ago and I swear sometimes I am addicted to that thing! My goal is to put the phone away and only use it when Sophie is not in the room! I want to be with her! So, I am only going to get on my phone in the morning before she wakes up, during her nap time and after she is in bed...please pray for me!:)

Do you make resoltions? what are they?

love you!
em