Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Moving On....

I've decided that this blog has served it's purpose and it's time to move on.  Journey to Forever was my way of documenting Griffin's adoption process, and now that we've finalized his adoption there just isn't much else to talk about.  Yes, I'll be working on getting him a social security number, but that will probably be frustrating and boring.  AND I have a new blog that I can use to bore you with that kind of stuff!

Yup!  I've already got a new blog up and running and I'm so excited.  It will be MY blog so it'll be filled with all things that I love or hate. :)  There will be lots of daily life stories and pics, recipes that my family loves, stuff that I love or want to love, and just about anything else that I feel like talking about.  I'm going to *try* to blog at least two or three times a week, but don't hold me to that.

I have to say...saying goodbye to this blog has me a little sad.  I'm excited to change addresses, but it also makes me realize how fast time is passing by.  I can't believe it's been almost a year and a half since we sent our application to Holt.  And now our son is home and he's legally ours!  Application to finalization in a blink of an eye.

Will you please follow my new blog?  I'll be honest...I love seeing that people actually read my stuff.  Makes me feel special! :) I love it even more when people comment!  It's nice to know that whatever I wrote was worth their time to stop and let me know what they think.  In fact, I'm working really hard to be better about that with the blogs that I read.  One of my many New Year's resolutions! :)

So, here it is!  I hope you'll join me at my new address.  I'm really excited for all the fun things this new blog and 2012 is gonna bring!

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Pretty Perfect Christmas!

WARNING!!!  Long, picture-filled post ahead!

Christmas really did feel pretty perfect this year.  Not only was Griffin home with us this year, but both kiddos are old enough to really get into all the fun Christmas traditions we started.  Elf on the Shelf was fun this year.  Both kids knew to look for him every day and Kinley knew that he was watching and reporting back to Santa.  There were several times she was refusing to finish her dinner and Kip (our elf) worked his magic and Kinley would finish those last few bites.  We also did a little Santa's beard advent calendar that the kids really loved.  There were 25 spots under Santa's chin and each day we filled one spot with a cotton ball.  Actually, about every third day we were glue three on but whatever.  The kids really enjoyed it!

The kids loved our Christmas tree, but we did have a couple "accidents".  Broken glass bulbs and tiny bare feet are not a good combo, so while I cleaned up the mess they had to sit and watch.

Christmas eve was a lot of fun.  We stayed home and watched a couple Christmas cartoons, talked about how Santa was coming that night, and did some fun activities.

First, we wanted to celebrate the real reason for the season, so we baked some birthday cupcakes for baby Jesus.  Both kids love to help me in the kitchen!  Mostly, I'm just keeping hands out of the cupcake batter, that's what it's all about, right?!

While we were waiting for the cupcakes to cool we mixed up our reindeer food which consisted of oats and red sprinkles.  Glitter makes the food extra magical but I didn't have any at the time.

After we had the reindeer food prepared, we headed outside to sprinkle it on our lawn.  And this is where my camera battery died, so I only have a few, really bad pictures.  Here's one I'll share.

The kids really loved this and had so much fun!  We sang Rudolph the Red Nose Reindeer and had fun throwing reindeer food up in the air.  Great family memory!

When our little plastics bags were empty it was CUPCAKE TIME!!!  Anything Kinley really wants to do she turns into an event.  CANDY TIME!!!  MOVIE TIME!!!  PAINT TIME!!!  She thinks her excitement will convince me that she's right, and it usually does.  Anyway, no pics of cupcake time because my battery was still charging.

We finished the night with a new favorite movie, The Polar Express.  As we were getting ready for bed Kinley kept reaching into the pocket of her Christmas pajamas and telling me her bell was gone.  So sweet.

Kids went to bed late which meant Santa got a late start staging Christmas.  I brought everything down from our spare room and filled the stockings while Blake put together Griffin's train table. 

So fun!

The next morning was nothing but excitement and drama!  The kids were totally overwhelmed by everything, especially the train table.  They didn't even want to open any gifts because the train table was so fun!  After we got everything opened the kids mostly fought over each other's toys.  Christmas morning was actually kind of stressful.  My parents, brother, and his fiance were coming for lunch so I had to get the ham in the oven and prepare some of the sides.  I had already prepared a dessert the night before so most of the work was done.  But between the kids arguing and the deviled eggs I finally had to just go lay down on the couch.  I was kind of Christmased out!

Things settled down and the rest of the day was wonderful.  The kids ate lots of candy, didn't take a nap, and were both in bed by 6:45 pm.  Yes!  That was perfect because I was TIRED.

Pics of the madness.....

We ended the night with glow sticks in the bath tub!  Lots of fun, and a great ending to a Pretty Perfect Christmas!

Friday, December 23, 2011

1st Christmas

We had our first Christmas of the season last Saturday with Blake's mom and dad.  Kinley and Griffin loved hanging out with Granny and Papaw and here are some pictures to prove it.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

It's Officially Official

Yup!  He's ours, now and forever. 

It was a really wonderful day.  Our hearing wasn't until 1:30 pm so we had plenty of time to get our day going, get the kids fed a couple times, get all dressed up, and even take some pictures before we left the house.

My kids are so funny....

Anyway, we headed downtown to the courthouse and didn't have any trouble with traffic this time.  The first go round was terrible!  We went up to the 2nd floor and waited for our attorney, Sid, outside Judge Welch's courtroom.  One case was seen ahead of us and then we were up!  The judge welcomed us and asked us to raise our right hand.  He then asked us if we would tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth.  I snapped out of my Law and Order moment and said yes.  Then Sid asked us a series of questions basically telling us once this is final, it's final and we're expected to treat Griffin like he's our "own biological child".  Yup, he is definitely "my own".  Forever and always.

After Sid said everything he needed to say the judge told us that Sid worked very hard for us and all our paperwork looked perfect.  Judge Welch then signed the adoption decree and it was a done deal.  Such a wonderful feeling!  We took a picture with the judge, he told us numerous time that our children are so beautiful :) and congratulated us again, and sent us on our way.  It was a really nice, quick experience.

We headed outside and took a quick picture with Sid and discussed birth certificates and adoption decrees.  Then we were all done and we exited the Oklahoma county courthouse an official family of four.  The significance of finalization didn't really hit me until we left the courthouse.  But I found myself looking back on our adoption process and realizing....we had done it!  We survived!  We made it from application to finalization.  And now he's REALLY ours.  In our head and heart he's always been ours but now it's for real.  Feels good!

And my favorite pic of the day....

It's like she's saying, "He's ours!  He's finally ours!!!"

Yes, he is.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011


Soooooo....we were supposed to finalize last week but that didn't happen.  After jumping through hoops for the public defender last Monday we showed up at the courthouse Tuesday morning ready to go.  After waiting for three long hours (with two kiddos that were wonderful but had had ENOUGH) it was apparent the same public defender was not going to show up with our paperwork.  Frustrating to say the least.

But have no fear!  We have a new court date and tomorrow *fingers crossed* Griffin will become a U.S. citizen and a Chambers.  Oh happy day!

And because I can't leave you without a picture.....

Monday, November 28, 2011

Time Keeps on Slippin'

November absolutely flew by!  I know it's technically still November but it sure doesn't feel like it with the Christmas trees twinkling in the windows of all the houses in our neighborhood.  Including ours.  Decorating the tree was fun, but I'll save that for another post.  Thanksgiving was nice and the day before Thanksgiving was a very special day.  I wasn't able to blog because we were on the road that day but November 23 marked the one year anniversary that we received our referral of Griffin.  You can take a look back at that day by clicking here.  I truly can't believe it's already been one year since we received that call.  It feels like Griffin has been with us forever, but is time really slipping away that quickly?

I wanted to share the four pictures that came with Griffin's referral file.  I think I shared my favorite picture one year ago, but here are all of them.

Wow.  I have to admit I haven't looked at these pictures in months.  Definitely not the newborn pictures.  Looking at them now makes me feel differently than I did when looking at them while Griffin was still in Korea.  That baby is my son.  I don't know how to explain it but I could somehow feel a connection to the picture of the smiling, chubby six month old.  But I never really connected to the infant.  But today, right  That's my baby boy.

In other news, we received word today that we have a court date for finalization!  On December 13th at 9:00 am Bak Hyeon-wu will become Griffin Lee Hyeon-wu Chambers, a U.S. citizen, and legally ours forever!  Can't wait to celebrate such a special day!

And last but not not least, a taste of Christmas pictures I took today.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

18 months

Griffin is 18 months old today!  How did that happen?  It's amazing to me how much my little man has changed in the six months he's been home.  He's sweeter (if that's even possible!).  He's happier.  He speaks English! :) He's really settled into our family perfectly.  He's the yin to Kinley's yang.  Oh my, those two are SO different!  Griffin eats like a champ.  Kinley is super picky.  Kinley is my awesome sleeper, and I had to work hard to get Griffin on a good nap schedule.  Pretty sure he could do without a nap but his mama NEEDS him to give her a break during the day.  Kinley is super laid back and minds really well, while Griffin has a hot, little temper and is constantly testing boundaries.  Kinley loves to watch TV, but Griffin has no interest.  I could go on and on about their differences, but one this is for sure.  They love each other and they love to irritate each other.  Such a typical brother/sister relationship.

At 18 months, Griffin is saying lots of words.  No sentences yet but he'll repeat just about anything I tell him to say.  He is running!  He's been running for a month or two but is finally getting to where he can do it without bouncing off of and running into stuff.  Actually he still kind of does that and we love it and think it's hilarious.  He had his 18 month well check today and he's 31 3/4 inches and 24 lbs 8 oz.  The doc said he's growing just "perfectly" and is in the 25-50th percentile.  That's my boy!

I know I say it every time I talk about Griff, but I love that kid more and more every day.  He is so sweet and funny and cuddly and precious.  Eeek!  Just talking about him makes me want to walk upstairs, pick him up out of bed, and kiss his sweet cheeks.  Ok, maybe I don't really want to wake him up but I'll definitely save those kisses for the morning. 

Happy 18 months baby boy!  I love you so much!!!