Sunday, May 30, 2010
Uncle Adam is our Hero.
He and Monson, as his helper,....got Laila's playhouse put together.....finally.
It was been sitting in our garage and back yard in boards and pieces for almost 2 months.
I had to keep my eyes up to avoid making contact with it, or I would get peeved.
Now I'm pleased!
I went away on the BHS choir trip and came home to a finished play set......YEAH!
Laila and 4 cousins are breaking it in tonight with a celebratory sleep over!
Thursday, May 27, 2010
Tuesday, May 25, 2010
Sunday, May 23, 2010
Saturday, May 22, 2010
Wednesday, May 19, 2010
1. Thankful that Laila day went well. We went to Yogurt stop and loaded up our chocolate yogurt with candy and cookies. Then off to see the movie Babies. It's a documentary that follows 4 babies from birth to one year old. It was really interesting to see how different the African, Mongolian, Japanese and USA babies are raised, and how a like they all are too. It didn't make me baby hungry. It did make Wayne have a nap.
Monday, May 17, 2010
Saturday, May 15, 2010
The airplane arrived at 9:00 pm and we drove home to show the boys their new baby sister. Boy, were we ever in for a grand surprise.
The boys with Aunt Cyrrena Welch and friend Laura Belnap and a few of my students, had decorated with balloons, a white stork statue and banners, our entire front yard.
“She’s Here,” the sign said over the garage and she really was. It was so great to come into the house and have so many anxious and supportive family and friends there to welcome the newest Welch baby.
The brothers all took turns holding her—no one else, others could only look at her—Laila was a trooper. So many people to say “hi” to her, and to see how beautiful she really is. Laila was peaceful, just looking around and greeting everyone.
After everyone had gone home, we knelt together in our new family unit –7 of us. We said a prayer of thanksgiving for this wonderful baby girl that the Lord had brought to our family. We all put our hands in the center at the end of the prayer—with Laila’s gorgeous brown baby hand added, and said, “Forever!!!”
Life is wonderful—Laila is finally here!!
Laila’s story: I was born January 22, 2002 in New Jersey to a woman named Roseanne. I don’t remember much about my first 3 months, but I do know that my birth mom wanted to give me a better life—so she gave me to the Welch’s . She loved me enough to want more for me. The Welch family had always wanted a baby girl—they just didn’t know who. They say I am an angel and a blessing. I met my mommy and daddy for the first time on May 15th—it was love at first sight. Our hearts matched. I didn’t grow in my mommy’s tummy. I grew in her heart!
I got to fly on my first airplane that day and come to my home with 4 brothers and Stephi the dog. My brothers, Addison, Landon, Truman and Monson all adore me. They laugh with me and hold me and feed me and they can’t believe how perfect I am.
Life is wonderful—I am finally here!!!
...and we all lived happily ever after.
(Laila meets Best Friend Heather Kofford.... 4 months)
Thursday, May 13, 2010
When Wayne got home we discussed at length the possibility of this baby being an answer to our prayers; of a dark haired—dark eyed beauty being Latina instead of Chinese? We were convinced it was. Money was the big deal—all of the money we already spent was for naught. Where could we come up with all of the money at once? Wayne, being ever wonderful—figured it all out. Wayne’s family helped and other avenues opened. We said, “yes”, and sight unseen, began preparing to fly out to Philadelphia in 5 days.
Word got out and people and relatives began bringing us all sorts of baby stuff. We had anonymous diaper drops at our front door. Bags of baby clothes began to show up. We had a swing and a bouncer and a crib just appear. Sandy and Tami brought Laila’s traveling diaper bag with all of the things we would be needing for our little girl. We are so blessed to have so many good friends and family. We scrubbed down the old cradle that all of the boys had used. We took the boys shopping to pick out the outfit that Laila would fly home in. It was exciting!
ON May 14th, Wayne and I flew to Philadelphia to pick up our little Laila. I had not stopped crying and praying for 5 days. NO matter what anyone said to me, I burst into tears. The night before we were to go to the adoption agency, neither of us could sleep—I wrote in my journal endlessly, about my hopes and dreams for this little daughter of mine. Wayne felt the same way.
We couldn’t stay in our hotel room any longer on May 15th—we had an 11:00 appointment and so we got in the rental car and drove through some pretty interesting and scary parts of Philadelphia. We arrived at a tall apartment looking building on Pine Street . Boy was I ever nervous. I couldn’t believe what was about to happen. We were having a baby! We got in the elevator and went up to the 7th floor and entered an apartment that had been converted to offices for an adoption agency. The people were so nice—we knew we had arrived very early, but we didn’t have any place else to go, so we thought we might as well be nervous there. We read magazine articles and pamphlets on adoption while we waited and finished our final paperwork.
There are moments you remember all of your life. Like a snapshot. This was one of those. The striped couch, the Noah’s ark themed room, the many pictures of happy adoptive families. I just took it all in. Then the big moment finally arrived. The front door opened and a worker said, “Here’s your baby.” She swung the infant carrier around and plopped an angel from heaven down on the coffee table in front of us. I couldn’t believe my eyes—a more beautiful baby I had never seen. Black curly hair—soft like feathers, dark eyes, long eyelashes and a smile that said, “I’m yours.” I started crying, of course, and Wayne reached for the video camera. “Hello baby—hello—we are your mom and dad.”
Laila was incredible--just peaceful and calm. I couldn’t wait to hold her, and snatched her out of the car seat pretty quickly. She felt so wonderful. She was dressed in a cute light pink outfit with rose buds across the front. How appropriate coming from her birth mother, Roseanne.
I remember on the birth of my boys, when the doctor presented the baby to me and the flood of emotion I felt having this new little one in my arms, fresh from heaven. It’s just indescribable. Well, I felt that same way when I first laid my eyes on Laila. She was definitely ours. She filled a place in my heart immediately. Our hearts matched. I just couldn’t get over how gorgeous she was.
We were supposed to meet with the birth mother and waited and waited but she never came. It would definitely be hard to come back and see Laila again, after deciding to give her to us. I can’t imagine what kind of selfless love this lady would have to have. We like to think she was probably there, in the lobby or in the parking lot just watching to see what kind of people had this little angel.
Laila was ours, now we just had to get all of the way back to Utah. The flight wasn’t going to leave til 5:00, so we just waited at the airport. We called all of our relatives and told them about beautiful Laila and how wonderful our day had been. How at peace we both felt. This was an amazing experience. Laila slept like an angel and when she was awake she gooed and smiled. We had so any strangers at the airport an on the airplane comment on our beautiful baby---we just smiled and agreed.
.....to be continued.........
Tuesday, May 11, 2010
May 15th is Laila Day. That's the day we celebrate every year......it's the day we brought Laila home on the airplane. I wanted to share the history behind this day. I decided to share what's in my journal and Laila's baby book about this time in our family.
Laila Shanae Welch’s Story—Written Summer of 2002
Melinda’s story : It all started around Christmas time of 2001. Aunt Lynette and Uncle Lynn Poulter were in China teaching English and they wrote home to us about all of the abandoned baby girls that “no one wanted.” The orphanages were full of discarded daughters. Our hearts were touched. For the past 3 years the boys have been begging us to adopt a little girl. We kept saying our family is done—4 is plenty—but there was always someone missing.
At Christmas it seemed everywhere we turned there was an adoption story. Someone’s cousin, friend or sister was adopting from China. We started thinking, “What if we got a little girl for our 4oth birthdays?” It seemed far out, but it definitely made Wayne and me smile. We fasted and prayed about it all and as a family. By the first week of January, we knew we had to adopt a black haired- dark eyed baby girl. I couldn’t stop crying.
People thought we were crazy. It was easy having our 4 boys—we could get up and do whatever we wanted. They pretty much took care of themselves…the youngest being 9. It felt like the Lord was comforting me and helping me sort out all of this emotion. We needed a little Laila in our family. I thought Wayne needed a little girl. I still got all of the smooches and loves and closeness from the boys, but as they got older their dad was being left out. Our family needed the softening of a girl spirit.
We started the process for a China girl. I am sure there are faster ways to adopt—but we didn’t want to take an opportunity away from a couple who can’t have children—so the idea of getting a girl that “nobody wanted” felt right. The boys and Wayne all thought an infant would be best—but I was pretty set on a 2 or 3 year old. I knew this would be harder—the language, for one thing, would be hard—plus she would have attachment issues and nutrition problems most likely, but I was pretty adamant about NOT getting a baby . I am old—40 this year and the idea of starting over was scary. I convinced the family to do it my way.
We filled out a ton of paper work. We talked to a lot of people and even went to the Chinese New Year event sponsored by Families for Children from China. We paid out a little money here and a lot of money there. We got our home study done, our FBI background checks and we also paid $1000.00 to the department of Naturalization and Immigration services. We were told it would take from 1 to 2 years before we got our little girl.
The waiting already was horrible. At times I felt like—“why was I putting the family through all of this?” All I could think about was our little Laila. Was she born yet? What was she doing? How was she doing? I had dreams about a dark haired little girl—but not from China. Money was getting tight—but I knew we were doing the right thing. I kept making deals with the Lord. “Ok—if Wayne stands and bears his testimony this week, then we are really supposed to adopt.” He would bear his testimony. “If Sarah Rigby ( who is adopted) sits by me in Relief Society, then we are supposed to adopt.” Sara would sit by me. It was crazy. I knew I was pushing harder for this than Wayne or the boys, but I really felt strongly about Laila being a part of our family by this time. “IF we are asked to be the witness couple at the temple, we are supposed to adopt.” We were asked.
May was here and more paperwork showed up, I wanted to cry –again. Wayne kept telling me it would all work out. We paid more money for fingerprints again. We kept praying that the adoption would happen quicker.
The next day, while I was teaching at the high school, Wayne called and said that cousin Paisley Poulter Callister had called him about a little Hispanic girl that “nobody wanted”—out of an agency in Philadelphia. They had no family ready to take her, and had been calling adoption agencies all across the country trying to find a family that was ready for her, with their background checks and homestudies all in place. There was no one. They contacted an agency in Spanish Fork that Paisley had adopted from last year. They called her. She called us. We had to decide in the next 24 hours. She was wondering if our hearts were open to a 3 1/2 month old Spanish baby—or if we were set on the China route?
Were our hearts ever open!!!
But this was a baby—not a toddler. Well the boys were thrilled. Just what they had in mind all along. Wayne said, “We can get the 2 years old in 2 years, or have this little baby who needs us, right now.”
Now it was all happening too fast. Nothing was ready—we were going to have 1 to 2 years to get all of the bedrooms and money figured out. Now we had to pray and decide immediately. It was turmoil.
....to be continued.......
Friday, May 7, 2010
Tuesday, May 4, 2010
Monday, May 3, 2010
Saturday, May 1, 2010
Before: I made this quilt 2 1/2 years ago. I love the red, brown, cream and blue of it. I had a red catch all bench at the foot of it. The quilt was fun to make and I've enjoyed it on my bed....but I wanted to lighten up my room and I crave CHANGE....so....