Dad Does Disney Song Mashup

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Adoption Update (Enter A Hundred Exclamation Points Here)

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I’m sitting at work on the phone with a customer and, just now, I get a text from Sarabeth:

“Adoption Date!!!!!!!!! July 22 @ 9:45!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!”

Yes, friends. After having Baby A. be a part of our home for the last 548 wonderful days, she will now officially be recognized as a Toy by the state and the world.

Sitting here at work at my desk, it’s very hard not to break down and cry right now.

Next week, we will be revealing Baby A.’s real name and so much more! Keep checking back for updates.

July 22nd 2015: The best day of our lives so far…

Follow the adoption updates closely here!

Baby Music

If you have a baby or have raised one, you know the importance of music. And in this day and age, the importance of apps designed to lull your fussy babies to sleep.

We play a lot of Disney music for Baby A., but that can get kind of old after a while.

Neither Sarabeth nor I are into VeggieTales, and I like all the old hokey country children’s songs like “Big Rock Candy Mountain” and “You Are My Sunshine,” but Sarabeth doesn’t, so I can only play that sparingly.

Anyway, I want to start a discussion where you all share your favorite children’s songs and music. Please indicate whether they’re songs for playtime or for bedtime. Also, some good Bible songs would be good, too.

Here’s a few of my favorites so far.

For Playtime

Raffi_-_Baby_Beluga_cover_artRaffi – Far as I can tell, this guy wrote “Baby Beluga” (come on, who doesn’t like that song?). He’s got a couple of CDs up on iTunes and I’ve picked a few songs to go on Baby A.’s playlist.

Disney Pixar CD SOundtrack createstDisney/Pixar’s Greatest Hits – The great thing about this CD is that it’s just plain awesome for everyone. Plus, most of it is Randy Newman music, and you can’t go wrong, there!

julie-fowlis-1Julie Fowlis – I don’t speak Scottish, and most likely Baby A. isn’t going to either, but she’s certainly going to have an appreciation for foreign music. Julie Fowlis isn’t a children’s singer, but she sang all those enchanting songs in Brave, and it turns out, the rest of her CD’s are just gorgeous and very soothing. A great play/sleep transition.

For Bedtime

sound sleeperSound Sleeper app – This app has been a lifesaver for us and I believe has gained us a few extra minutes of sleep. You can set the sound to play “Rain” or “Ocean waves” or a few other soothing settings. And yes, including “Womb.”

A_Beautiful_Mind_cdA Beautiful Mind soundtrack – If you can only handle so much Baby Einstein, the great composer Howard Shore is the way to go.

finding neverlandFinding Neverland soundtrack – The only soundtrack that’s better than A Beautiful Mind

shireShire music – Because I want to prepare her for the greatest epic adventure of her life. And really, our little girl is still in the Shire of her own life.

From Barren to Blessed

Here on AdoptingJames we talk a lot about pop culture, faith, and writing. One institution we like to highlight  – as suggested by the name of the blog – is adoption.

Meet Caroline. She is a woman of God who struggled for many years with the despair of infertility. She struggled so much so that she chose to let her pain come between her and God, as so many of us do. Eleven years ago she decided to take her aunt up on her invitation to come to church, and she still attends to this day, being drawn closer and closer to her loving Father.

In 2006 Caroline and her husband decided to become Foster parents and God was gracious to give them their first placement the day they became licensed. They worked closely with the child’s mother who could not keep him, and they officially adopted him to be their son when he was 20 months old. They received their daughter, who had been abandoned, at seven weeks old. They adopted her when she was just sixteen months old.

They are currently no longer fostering, but are working in child welfare, and their passion for the children is immense. I encourage you to read their story. I have provided two links for you to check out. Caroline is currently writing a book about her life.

Fostering His Will

Around the Fire

Returning the Gift

Please welcome Greg and Jackie. (Names have been changed by request.) Jackie was adopted as a child and when she married she decided to return the favor to another boy who needed a home. Here is their story:
I [Jackie] was adopted at birth, I only know that my Mother was unwed, didn’t feel she could care for me.  My … father left the scene shortly after the pregnancy was announced.  I have names, but not searched more than cursorily on line.  Of course I am grateful for my adoptive parents, there was some hurt and anger I had to deal with, more as an adult than a child.  I alluded to some attachment issues, (not feeling like a member of my family) but overcame that through therapy, which I choose to do as an adult.
My husband and I met and married years before we fostered, it was actually a TV special in the early 90’s about foster-parenting that piqued our interest, we had a large farmhouse, extra space, and both simultaneously came to the same decision(although he would never admit it, it was [definitely the] Holy Spirit.  I never really thought about the connection to Christ/adoption until you – [AdoptingJames] – mentioned it, but [definitely] do recognize Jesus’ fingerprints in Chris coming into our lives.  Only completely loving him unconditionally will ever break through his “issues” he lives in such a place of shame- we have not successfully overcome that yet- yes, at times, but then he goes back into shame again, and withdraws (common [behavior] for adoptive kids – they expect rejection).
 Here’s how the adoption itself went down:
[It’s] pretty straight [forward], we became foster parents, went through the classes, and were not really in the “market” to adopt, but fell in love with our foster son Cole, so after talking it over with his social worker, and asking him if he wanted us to adopt him, we did.  We had him in our home for about a year before we decided to see if he was interested, and from the time he said yes, to his adoption was about 8 months.  He came at age 10, we asked him at 11, and he was almost 12 before all was said and done.  There are so many children languishing in foster-care, who need good parents.  I won’t lie to you, parenting Cole has been a challenge, he is 25 now, and still [making] not great decisions, he is spotty at keeping in touch with us, but all of his counselors over the years have confirmed for us that he [probably] would have committed suicide if he hadn’t been adopted, and I def feel like God will work in his life in the very near future, I feel like I have a promise there.  So in the meantime, we keep financial boundaries, help occasionally where we can, and when he is in touch, offer as much emotional support as we can, and pray.
Do you have any advise for people who are thinking about adopting, or are in the process right now?
The best advice I can give is to TAKE THE FOSTER PARENTING/ADOPTIVE PARENT CLASSES usually taught by your state foster/adoption services, it was “Family Services” in Kentucky.  Great people, great class.  It prepared us better than anything could have- ever.  THEN, talk to parents who are adoptive parents, for support.  It is a tough job, but worth it, and support is worth it’s weight in gold.  Other than that, pray, cry when you have to, and practice love, those are the best suggestions I can give.  I have no ideas about foreign adoption, I’m sure it is very different.
Check out their blog: www.hearinggodtoday.wordpress.com
If you have been affected by adoption in any way, we’d love to hear from you. Please email us your story at adoptingjames@aol.com. Maybe your story will inspire others…