Ashley & Todd

Hoping to Adopt (Texas)

Posts

Somewhere over the Rainbow!

There is something amazing about a Rainbow! It was just the other day that I looked up while I was walking and saw this beautiful Rainbow. I couldn't believe my eyes! It was a double Rainbow too. It was faint, but if you look close, it is there. It was a sunny day, but then it started raining out of nowhere. It was still sunny, but a little sprinkle of rain was pure magic in the moment. Sometimes God sends messages to you just when you need to hear it. Today, I felt that message in that moment and it was beautiful. Hugs, Ashley + Todd

Volunteers at Meals on Wheels

Lillian and I have been enjoying some field trips this summer. Lots of fun ones! We also have had the opportunity to continue driving my Meals on Wheels route. I've had the best times being able to volunteer for this wonderful program to help feed our Seniors. And I just love it when Lillian can join me! Most of the times I drive, she is in school so she isn't able to. We even invited a few friends to join us this summer. Todd and I feel it's so important to volunteer in our community and to show our children how we can all make a difference in this world. Lillian gets to see how this program is more than just a meal. We hand deliver the meals to the Seniors on the route and let them know that they are loved and cared for by all of us. And every time we go, Lillian ends up saying she has the best of time! Of course, we always have a favorite playlist on repeat! All the best, Ashley and Todd

Adoption is Love

Waiting is hard, but we know in our hearts we were meant to adopt. The journey to grow our family through adoption started a few years ago now. But it also took us several years before we had Lillian, so we are remaining hopeful. We're here and getting ready for that day we are asked to become parents again. Adoption is love, but we know there is heartache as well. We are thinking of those Birth Moms/Parents who are brave and courageous and who love their child so much, that they are creating an adoption plan for him/her. And when our paths cross, we hope we can give you a big hug for being so amazing, so selfless and for helping us complete our family. Love, Ashley & Todd

Date night!

We love each other. We love spending time together. Our solid foundation has helped us weather some of life's ups and downs with grace. We laugh (a lot), we cry! It's the best. Feeling lucky to be on this journey of life with this man. He's my best friend who is an amazing husband, and an incredible dad already. ~Ashley

Summer vacation at the Beach

Life is so sweet at the beach! We fell in love with 30A in Florida this summer. We have found our family beach destination. The water is clear, and shallow allowing for all ages to enjoy the water together. Of course, Lillian made a friend at the beach and they played together. That girl can make a friend anywhere she goes! We can see our family spending many more summers together here. We rented a cute beach house not far from the beach. It had 3 bedrooms and an awesome kitchen. We enjoyed morning coffee on the porch each day. We took in as much of the beach life as we could in a week. The sunsets were beautiful too! It was a quiet beach with lots of young families all around us, it was definitely family friendly. With the clear ocean water and the white sand that feels so good under your toes, I can see why it's a popular family beach vacay. We look forward to making more family memories here for years to come. We're hopeful that next time, we will need to use that 3rd bedroom. ~Ashley & Todd

Things that bring us joy!

-Being Outdoors -Spending time with family -Playing cards and board games -Traveling to new places -Hiking, dancing, baking -Cooking, eating, reading

Fun Facts About Lillian

-She is tall too and is a fifth grader. -She is kind, sweet and loves to be around kids. -She has always asked us about having a sister or brother. And keeps asking us! She's been helping us get prepared. -She loves Christmas, Halloween and Thanksgiving. -She also loves April Fools Day! -She plays volleyball and softball right now. -She’s a daughter, granddaughter, niece, and best friend. -She is SO funny and makes us laugh! -She looks out for others around her, and is always thinking of others first. -She is a good student and teachers love her. -She is on Student Council and loves it. -She is a really good dancer too! -She has 13 Aunts and Uncles who adore her and are excited to meet their newest niece or nephew. -She LOVES to play with her little cousins and they LOVE it too. They call her, Cousin Lily.. -She says she wants to be a Lawyer and Mom when she grows up. **Pictured here with her cousin in March. She loves pictures with her little cousins.

Fun Facts About Todd

-He's tall and has brown hair and blue eyes. -He's caring, smart and so funny! -He is the first to wake in the morning and makes coffee. -He graduated with Bachelor of Science in Computer Information Systems. He's currently working in IT. -He's a husband, dad, nephew, brother, uncle, best friend. -He's a really good ping pong player. We like to play, but he usually wins. ;) -He's an assistant coach for Lillian's softball team and enjoys encouraging the team. -He loves to play with Lillian and is the first to throw a football or volleyball with her or even play catch. She loves it! -He volunteers at her school through Watch Dog Dad program, helping students and playing board games with them. -He enjoys being active. He played soccer in High School. He likes to run, ride his bike, play tennis or play basketball (we have a mini court in our backyard). -He is a baker and makes amazing bread, bagels and pretzels. -He is a hands on dad already and is excited about adding another child to our family. -He likes to plan vacations and enjoys traveling with his family.

Fun facts about Ashley

-She's tall, and has dark blonde hair and brown eyes -She is fun, loving and has a big heart. -She has been known to be called a "mama bear." In a good way, of course. -She has her Bachelors of Science in Marketing Management. She spent about 15 years in Marketing, with the last 10 years in International Marketing. -She's a wife, mom, granddaughter, niece, sister, cousin, aunt, best friend. -She volunteers at Meals on Wheels. She's a stay at home mom, but has recently started substitute teaching while we wait to Adopt. -She loves to dance and sing karoake. She loves to travel with her family. -She enjoys cooking family meals. And baking cookies! -She loves to plan family scavenger hunts and birthday parties. She's a planner and organizer at heart. -She loves to be active by playing tennis with her family. She played tennis in High School, but now just for fun. She also likes to ride bikes. -She talks to everyone and no one is a stranger. -She loves being a mom and is excited to add a child into our family..

Our favorite family quote

This quote is special to our family. We hope you read this and it resonates with you too. We are thinking of you today. If you decide to place your child for adoption, we promise to love your child with all of our hearts. We will honor you in our home and they will know how much love you have for them. Love makes a family. We've learned so far in parenthood, that there are so many small moments and big moments and everything in-between. We will be there every step of the way holding their hand. We are here and waiting with open arms and hearts. All the best, Ashley + Todd

Substitute teacher...This time for Lillian's class

The day finally came! Or at least that is what Lillian would say. Her teacher needed a Substitute teacher and she reached out to see if I was available. (I started substitute teaching in our district in January.) I asked Lillian if she would be okay with it...and she was beyond excited. So I guess I'm still cool! After two days of teaching in her class, we made some good memories. She helped me before the day started and helped organize the classroom afterwards. I'm happy to report that she said I did a good job! When I signed up to be a substitute teacher, I didn't think I'd actually be in her class. But I was happy to help her teacher out by covering her class while she spent time with family. To me, that is the reason....to be there for the students and help out teachers. They do so much for our kids. While we are waiting to Adopt, I thought, how I can help contribute to our community--this has been a good experience for me. We celebrated with a Sonic drink after the school day. I'm sure we will remember these 2 days for years to come and we definitely had some good laughs too. Hugs, Ashley + Todd

Spring Break 2021

Spring Break came and went bye so fast! It was a time we were looking forward to and it flew bye. We took a short drive to Arkansas to Devil's Den State Park for our mini spring break getaway. We stayed in a cabin and spent the time hiking in nature. This was a vacation spot that Todd would go to with his family every summer. He shared with us some of the family memories they made and places they visited within the state park. Todd's family no longer lives in Arkansas, but while we were there we were able to see Ashley's family. Her family still lives close by. They joined us for a Sunday afternoon hike and picnic. We got to collect rocks, skip rocks and wash the rocks in the creek. (Well the kids did that! lol) So fun watching the kids enjoy all of nature. We ended that night with cooking hot dogs on the grill and then enjoying s'mores--which is a family favorite. I'm sure we will be back to visit our favorite little cabin in the woods. Always fun making memories together with a change in scenery. Especially when you get to see family! Hugs Ashley + Todd

Cousin love

There is SO much love in this picture! Lillian LOVES her little cousins and they LOVE her right back. It's always fun when we get together with them. Our children will be surrounded by LOVE. Our family and friends have been waiting along side us during this adoption journey. They are just as excited to welcome a baby as we are! We have a big family with plenty of room to welcome another baby! In this picture, you'll find Todd, Lillian, cousins and Ashley's brother in law, Justin. Hugs, Ashley + Todd

A Look back at the February winter storm

Well...it was a few weeks ago now that we were in the middle of rolling power outages here in North Texas. It was so cold outside, but we had a fire going as much as we could. It was bearable because we were able to power our devices, warm up, and cook food when the power would come back on. And then as soon as the power went off, we read books, worked on a puzzle, or even watched downloaded videos to pass the time. We quickly realized that by night time, when the dark settled in, you just want to get ready for bed. We cuddled up on the couch to stay warm and under candlelight + flashlight, we watched the fire while we chatted as a family about all kinds of things but especially how thankful we are to have electricity. Now don't get my wrong, the first thing Lillian said afterwards was the she misses Wifi. So there are things kids are just used to having that when we were kids we didn't have. We just had to laugh when she told her grandparents that part of the lessons she had learned. lol. But we did get some great snow! It almost never happens in Texas, and I'll keep saying that I guess. It was bitter cold, but before the power outages happened we were able to take in sledding and playing in the snow. And Todd loved to shovel our driveway so that he and Lillian could build an epic slide in our front yard. Over the course of a few days, they worked on it together and it kept her entertained too. We took lots of videos and pictures of all of us enjoying that slide! And we had snow for 4 days but once it all started melting, that slide was the last to melt.

Our Why

We feel someone needs to hear this today, maybe it's you. We can't even imagine how you are feeling today, but maybe it will help to know that we are here. We already know that you are a strong woman who loves her child with all her heart and more. We know you are still making a hard decision on what to do next, but thank you for reading our profile. We always go back to our, “why.” Our hearts are fully invested in this adoption process. Years ago we knew we were called to Adopt our next child. Infertility and doctor appointments may have led us down this path initially. But both of us have been onboard with Adopting all along. It was a feeling so strong, that it was almost as if God was whispering in our ears every day until we found the right Adoption Agency with Gladney. It was important for us to find one that took care of the birth mothers and their babies. Our “why” is because we can’t have more children of our own. Sure, in a perfect world, we’d like our children to be close in age. But that isn’t always how life works out and honestly, it doesn’t even cause a concern for us. We are young and energetic and love being together. Our hearts are so devoted to growing our family through Adoption. Ashley comes from a large family in which her siblings are much younger, and she has great memories of her childhood with them. It was as if her parents were able to give undivided attention to each child at certain points in their life…and we feel the same way. We can also give that undivided attention when it’s so needed and also make memories together as a family. Our daughter has always talked about life with a sibling, so we know she will be THE best big sister. She will love her sibling with open arms. She recently told her aunt out of the blue, "Please tell my cousins I love them so much and can't wait to see them again." Oh and they love cousin Lily too! Our “why” is the reason we have hope that we will soon meet you, our future child’s birth mother. We truly hope we connect with you soon. Sincerely, Ashley + Todd

Substitute teacher, yes that's me!

I started substitute teaching in mid-January. My background is in International Marketing but before that, I had always contemplated teaching. So, fast forward and now I’m able to help out where I’m needed in our school district. It's great being able to help our teachers, especially this year. I love seeing children of all ages and all backgrounds, enjoying the school life. So far, I’ve been to several elementary schools. I've had lunch duty, recess duty and after school car line duty. Totally different than how I used to spend my work days! lol. I love the chance to teach when I can and encourage the kids at the same time. We live in a diverse school district, and I had a chance to add to a virtual classroom's online library. I worked on adding diversity and inclusion books so the children were exposed to all cultures and backgrounds. It's these little opportunities that help everyone in the long run, I'm just happy it was a project that I was able to participate in. I’m so proud of our school district for being able to have two options for our children- virtual or face-to-face. It’s amazing how they have been able to open schools and keep our children and teachers safe during this Pandemic. I haven’t had an assignment at Lillian’s school just yet, but she’s excited for that to happen. I’ve taken on several assignments …I’ve been a virtual teacher a few times now, first grade teacher and also an Assistant PE coach. That last one was great because it was so different and also very active. I kept telling the coach I was just amazed at his ability to do this 5 days a week! That school day, I clocked 6 miles which was over 12,000 steps! I always admired our teachers but being a substitute teacher has really opened my eyes even more. It’s been really good for me. I’ll be at a middle school later this week as a Choral teacher…wish me luck! And with this being a flexible job, I can still volunteer a few times a month as a driver for Meals on Wheels. That is also very important to me....but once we Adopt, I will be spending my time with him/her at home and spending my time with Lillian. With the Pandemic, both of these opportunities have needed help and I'm happy that I can help. I hope that this post makes you smile. We can all remember a few substitute teachers we had. All the best, Ashley (and Todd)

I am an Aquarius!

We celebrated Ashley’s Birthday this past weekend. Birthday's are important in our home. We had so much fun! Todd took a vacation day and while Lillian was at school, we had a day date. The weather was beautiful, so we went to a restaurant that has an amazing outdoor patio. The sun was shining and it was warm-ish for a February birthday. Todd and Lillian got a fun gift and it’s a puzzle with our picture on it. So we have to put it together to see the final picture. It was one of many gifts, but it was the best! We also watched a family movie together and ordered pizza in. It was a weekend celebration! Loved hearing from my family, my friends near and far over the weekend. On Sunday we cheered on our favorite team- the Chiefs and our favorite quarterback, Mahomes. It would have been great to see them WIN! Maybe next year right!?! I often think about what was my favorite birthday? It's so hard because they all just jumble together. But, after 2020, I would say that with everyone healthy in our house and the weather was nice to get outside...it was a great February birthday. I love spending time with my family! For fun, I just read the personality traits of an Aquarius...most seem fitting to me. Strengths-- Progressive, original, independent, humanitarian Aquarius likes--Fun with friends, helping others, fighting for causes, intellectual conversations Best, Ashley (and Todd)

There are smiles under those masks ;)

Our weekend highlight was cheering for Lillian on the sidelines of her volleyball game this weekend. It looked much different as we were masked up and everyone around us was too. All of the safety precautions were in place. This was her very first volleyball game and she made us so proud. She has been putting in some hard work to improve her skills and it shows. It was so much fun cheering for her and her teammates. We love being parents, watching your child enjoy a hobby or sport is pretty rewarding. We make education a priority in our house, but we also think you should have fun too. We work hard, play hard. So, if it's a hobby or sport or drawing or reading a book or an instrument or singing that brings them joy, we will support our child every step of the way. This is a promise we will make for all of our children...to help them find that joy. For example, Lillian played t-ball when she was younger and then she took dance lessons, was in the Girl Scouts for a bit and then she played soccer...I could keep going, but I hope you get the point. We have encouraged her every step of the way.  I hope you know how much love and time we have for another child. We are so excited and as we continue on this adoption journey together, our love for each other is stronger than ever.  Take care, Ashley + Todd

Snow day in Texas!

It snowed in Texas! This almost never ever happens here! It had been on the forecast for a few days, but last minute, it had been updated to be just a cold rainy day. BUT....when we looked out the window, we were so thrilled when it was snow flurries coming down! We got bundled up like it was a blizzard and took lots of pictures and videos to capture it all. There is something about snow that makes you turn into a kid again! Even our dog Nessie got in on the fun and it was great watching her witness snow for the first time. She kept trying to eat it as it fell to the ground. ha! It didn't stick to the ground, but we didn't care, because it was snowing! It had been a few years since we had traveled to Utah to go skiing over spring break. That was the last major snow we had seen. As we have realized, after living in Texas for almost 6 years now, it rarely snows here. Noticed I didn't say, "never" because apparently it can! Just believe it. :) And yes, we know you can hardly see the snow flurries in our pictures, but they are there. lol! Hopefully you got to see some snow this weekend or will some time soon. Hugs, Ashley + Todd

Happy New Year!

Happy 2021! Yeah! We hope you had the merriest holiday season and the happiest of New Year celebrations. This year looked much different...it was the three of us celebrating the holidays together. The first time since Lillian was born. We decided to be safe and not have family gatherings indoors this year. But for our family close by, we did visit them for a quick hello on their front porch or driveway and give our air hugs and drop off a few treats. This holiday season brought us time together playing board games, watching Classic Christmas movies, hanging out on our couch with the fire roaring in the fireplace and the twinkle of lights all around us. It was pure magic just a little different than we were used to. It was hard taking down our Christmas tree, it seemed like that time of year flew bye! Our hopes for the New Year may seem simple because they are. ;) To be healthy & happy. To continue to grow closer as a family and appreciate our time together. And we truly hope that this is our year to add another child to our family of 3. We will continue to pray, specifically, that this year we make a connection with a birth mother and bring our baby son or baby daughter home. Sending you all kinds of positive vibes to the start of your New Year. Hugs, Todd & Ashley 

Feeling Festive: Our hot chocolate bar

Every year we deck the halls around our home! You could even say every corner has a little holiday sparkle! We enjoy the magic that lights bring around the home during the holidays. One of Lillian's favorite family traditions is our hot chocolate bar. ;)  You'll find us enjoying a cup several times during the week with whipped cream on top. We even add some festive flair with crushed peppermints sprinkled on top! It's so yummy! With Christmas music on in the background or our favorite holiday movie, you'll find us sipping hot cocoa as we enjoy family time together. Sometimes it's the little things that can create special memories.    Merry Christmas from our family to yours, Todd and Ashley  

JOY....

In this month of December, we hope that you find some JOY in the little things in life. As we look around us, this December is different for a lot of people this year for a lot of different reasons. But one thing we realize on a daily basis, is that there is JOY all around us. Some days you have to search harder for it and some days it's right there in front of you. As I stopped to take a picture of this JOY sign that we hang on our tree, I noticed that one of Lillian's homemade ornaments was hanging right next to it. She made this in Kindergarten, and it says, Mom and Dad, Merry Christmas, Love Lillian.  Of course, the spelling is that of a Kindergartener who was just learning how to write and spell. And we love every bit of it.  We are thinking of you this holiday season....   Hugs,  Todd & Ashley

Family volunteer day

We had an opportunity on Saturday to deliver shelf stable meals to the Seniors for Meals on Wheels making sure they had extra food in their pantry.  We took this as an opportunity to spend time together and give back to our community. We dressed in festive accessories, we wore our masks while we delivered and listened to Christmas music in the car. It was the highlight of our weekend. Memories in the making....   All the best, Ashley & Todd

What is your favorite holiday movie?

In our house, it is Elf!  I realize this isn't at the top of everyone's Christmas movie watch list. But we discovered this movie again when our daughter Lillian was about 5 years old. All of a sudden, we saw the humor in the movie as she was laughing out loud so hard that at times we didn't know if she was going to make it through the entire movie. We were laughing hard watching her enjoy the movie that we had tears in our eyes. So, it has become a family tradition to watch this movie...and I see this as the years to come. Sometimes it takes seeing something through a child's eyes for you to realize we are all just kids at heart. I'm looking forward to watching lots of movies this December with our family. I hope you watch a movie this holiday season that makes you feel like a kid again or at the very least warms your heart.    Thinking of you today,  Ashley and Todd

Love makes a family

In our home and in our hearts, we truly believe that love makes a family. We love you for considering adoption. We love you for taking the time to get to know us a bit more. We have lots of love in our hearts for you.   Love Ashley & Todd

A little note for you...

We just wanted to take a few minutes to say, Thank You. Thank You for having so much love for your child. Thank you for taking the time to learn more about us as you make the most important decision for your child. First of all, you are an amazing, strong, and brave person to show up here and read through family profiles. We realize you may still be deciding what is best for your child. We can't imagine how difficult this is for you. But please know that as you make your decision we are thinking of you daily. We would love to have a conversation with you, but we realize that isn't possible, but hope that our family profile is the next best thing. Praying for peace and comfort for you. Hugs, Ashley + Todd

Family time....hiking, board games, traveling, tv shows

Our family enjoys being together. Lillian enjoys being right next to us. I think the number 1 activity that connects us is when we travel or get out and explore a hiking trail. It’s peaceful and the conversations are flowing. There are no distractions, it’s just us. The last few family vacations we went on, we joined up with another close family that also have kids the same age. Our favorite trip last summer was seeing Mount Rushmore and hiking the trails nearby. Being around friends and family also strengthens our bond. And Lately, we’ve been having good laughs watching older shows with her. We just started season 1 of Parks and Recreation. It’s been fun to unwind at night and just laugh out loud together. Did I mention dance offs?  So that is fun to watch, but also participate in. Our favorite game to play is Charades. Wow, that will make you laugh and realize your family is really good at imitations and acting. Hope this Wednesday is a good one for you too. We look forward to meeting you soon.   Best, Ashley and Todd  

A Little Bit About Ashley

Ashley has an infectious smile to always brighten your day and makes me laugh. Some of my favorite memories are just goofing off with Ashley, laughing so hard together that tears came to my eyes. She is without a doubt the most caring and loving person I know. Spend five minutes with her and you’ll instantly understand! From quizzing Lillian in preparation for a spelling test to volunteering at Meals on Wheels as a driver, she is always helping out others.  She always puts family first and is absolutely the glue that brings our family together. I remember watching Ashley interact with Lillian when she was first born. It was amazing to watch and witness.   Best, Todd  

A Little Bit About Todd

Todd has the best sense of humor! I always knew he was the one because he makes me laugh. He gets my jokes and I get his. It’s the best part of our relationship. Once you get to know him, he likes to talk…a lot. He’s often talking outside with our neighbors. He really is a nice guy. I’ve known him now for 24 years and he treats people with respect and enjoys good conversations. I’m lucky to have married the guy that everyone seems to like. I’ve watched him navigate high school, college, first job and now being the team lead with younger co-workers reporting to him. I’ve seen it and he makes people laugh. We attended his work holiday party and coworkers keep coming up to say ‘Hi’ and tell me about their ping pong game against him. He has a good reputation around his office for being a really good ping pong player. That’s a little fun fact for you. His laugh every time someone came over to talk was infectious. I saw it on his co-workers faces, they also enjoy being around him and working with him. He makes life more infinitely fun!   Best, Ashley

This is our home

Our home is on a quiet street tucked into our neighborhood. We live in a suburb outside of a big city in North Texas. We chose this area for their wonderful school districts. We wanted our children to grow up in a diverse school district. There are a lot of young families in our neighborhood who all attend the same elementary, middle and high school. As you can imagine, that creates a community that supports one another. We are surrounded by wonderful neighbors who have always been there for us over the years. You'll see young kids setting up a lemonade stand or playing together out front of their house. Some of the older kids are now babysitters or dog sitters. We have a few neighborhood pools we like to visit and socialize with other families and kids during the warmer months. We have our neighborhood park that is within walking distance with a playground, gazebo and an open field. That open field is our favorite place to play catch or throw the frisbee or football. Or just run into a friend or two while up there.  Our home has four bedrooms and three bathrooms. We have a large backyard with a basketball hoop outback and a covered porch to relax on. We have plenty of room to spread out. You'll find us hanging out together in our living room and watching our favorite family shows. The kitchen/dining room/living room is an open floor plan, so we are always in the same space together. We also have a playroom and media room. The playroom sees a lot of creativity and is ever evolving as our interests change. We watch a lot of movies together in the Media room, especially now. We have a home office that Todd has been using more during this pandemic in which he has been working from home. Ashley was previously an International Marketing Manager, but is now a stay at home mom. She's usually in the kitchen or working on various projects around the house right now. The latest project was painting our hallway. Oh and she also volunteers with Meals on Wheels. Ashley picks up Lillian from school and always looks forward to seeing her after school and asking how her day was over an afternoon snack.  All the best, Ashley and Todd    

#WorldAdoptionDay

It's World Adoption Day! Shining a light on the adoption journey. We took a picture of a smiley face on our daughter's hand. A symbol of our hopeful hearts. We're thinking of you today and praying we are the family that you choose to raise your child. Our home is full of love. Our family is excited to get to know you better.  Air Hugs, Todd and Ashley

Cousins are the best

We have a big family!  Our daughter Lillian is 10 years old now. Ever since she was 3 years old she has been drawing pictures and talking about having a sibling one day. Although we weren’t able to grow our family on our own, as soon as we told her we were starting the process of adoption she was onboard.  She talks about it a lot at dinner time or bedtime. She dreams about what we will do together as a family when the new baby arrives. She has younger cousins and loves to read to them and play with them when they visit us. Lillian has had lots of practice helping care for her 4 younger cousins. They are all under the age of 5.  Lillian has older cousins on Todd’s side of the family and she has younger cousins on Ashley’s side of the family. Ashley’s family lives closer so majority of the holidays will be spent with Lillian’s younger cousins. Like we did this last Christmas, we were able to visit and open Christmas presents together. We do like to travel to visit Todd's family when we can. This summer, all the kids were able to get together in our backyard with our blow up pool. They were loud and there were so many laughs while they were splashing in the pool and playing with the water balloons. If you can imagine kids laughing uncontrollably and dancing in a blow up pool, then you can imagine our summer afternoon. They all love her and she loves them.  Have a great day, we are thinking of you. Best, Todd and Ashley

An evening stroll in our neighborhood

We snapped a picture of Todd and Lillian on our evening stroll the other night. We walk and Lillian likes to roller blade. The weather was beautiful and the sunset was stunning. Also, there are two amazing people in this picture! So I'll just put this out there, not sure if you can tell from photos, but our family is tall. We are what the world calls, "above average" in height. ;) Our daughter is one of the taller students in her grade. But we've always shined a lot on the fact that she is more than her height....she is smart, funny, and beautiful on the inside and outside. We feel this is something to talk about from a very young age. It's okay to look different than your peers, God made us all unique and loves us all the same. Just be the best version of yourself and be proud of who you are. We are loving parents who will be there to encourage, support and provide opportunities for our children to help them shine on.   We hope you are having a good week. We are thinking of you, especially today.   All the best, Todd and Ashley 

Halloween 2020 style

Halloween looked a little different this year. We took extra safety precautions to ensure we didn't get mixed into a crowd. We also had our mask with us as we do now anywhere we go. We enjoyed a family dinner of pizza with another close family. Then we headed out to Trick or Treat. This year, our neighborhood didn't have traditional Trick or Treating....instead you went house to house and they would have a bucket of candy on the porch or driveway or a few houses even made candy shoots. Not kidding! It was a large pipe that was decked out in holiday lights that they would send the candy down the shoot and the kids would catch it in their bucket. It was so creative!    Snapped a picture of our neighborhood with the full moon in the backdrop. It created for a spooky scene. We had beautiful weather in the 60s at night and we walked a lot. It was good for the soul and seeing all the smiles and laughter of the kids was just what we needed in 2020. I'm so proud of how our neighborhood all worked together to make this a safe and fun Halloween for all the kids.   Wishing you a Happy Monday!  Ashley & Todd

Halloween pics from a few years ago

We have a great neighborhood that goes all out for Halloween. Here are a few favorite pictures of us from Halloween nights over the last few years. Lillian got SO much candy that we had to take a picture. We decorate our house with spider webs, and ghosts in the trees. Our whole street and neighborhood decks out their front yards with fun Halloween decorations. One of the pictures shows Lillian posing in front of a yard decoration she enjoyed.    Hope you have a good day!   Take care, Ashley and Todd

Our favorite family vacation: Europe

We all would agree that our favorite family vacation would be when we went to Europe a few summers ago. Ashley's brother is living in Helsinki, Finland so we took the trip to visit him.  It was great to tour the city with him and his fiance. I should point out that Lillian already calls her aunt! She's been a part of our family for some time now. When they get married in a few summers, we would love to make it. We hiked, shopped, toured museums, ate yummy food and enjoyed beautiful weather in Finland. You'll often hear us talk about the berries at the market in Helsinki. They were perfection in every bite! Not making that up. It was such an amazing time. We also took a few day trips to Sweden and also Estonia. So many memories! Our other favorite place was at the VASA museum in Stockholm, Sweden. Listening to Lillian recount the story of the ship is pretty priceless. She has also included this museum in some of her stories she's written at school. You are never too young to experience new things and places. We also made sure we enjoyed their cinnamon buns and nutella crepes. We ate a yummy dinner at a local restaurant.  You'll see a lot of pictures from our trip in the Photo Album section that were just added. Be sure to check it out!  Hope you are having a good day today.  Best, Ashley and Todd

Throwback to our beginning...

Throwback Thursday! All the way back to the beginning of Us. It's been a few Octobers since this photo was taken. ;) We're still Homecoming dates all these years later. We were setup by our friends to go together to Homecoming, which turned into high school sweethearts. This may be how we started, but our story is still being written….   We hope you have a good day today and you feel all the love around you.   All the best, Ashley and Todd 

Lillian and Coach Todd :)

When we were dating I just knew Todd would be an awesome dad one day. He was always loving, kind and caring and treated me so well . When we had our daughter Lillian, he was right by my side every day helping in anyway he could. He's a hands on dad. He was also by my side well before that when we were having infertility issues...always at doctor appointments, helping with medicine, all trying to ease the stress of it all by making me laugh. He is truly amazing. I hope one day you will meet him. I don't talk about the un-fun stuff a lot, but we've been through it together. We've had our fair share of tears. But I like to focus on the positive things in life and Todd does too. That's why we are such a great team together. But for now, I share this picture because it says so much. You'll probably find him playing catch with Lillian in our backyard or at our neighborhood park. The softball fields are right across from our neighborhood. Sometimes we are there just playing catch or practice batting. She's really loving softball right now, so we are supporting her efforts and having fun at the same time. Todd is the assistant coach for her softball team, which he loves to do. We look forward to supporting another child's interests too. Children have a way to open your eyes to new experiences. Enjoy your Wednesday....it's almost the weekend! :) Hugs, Ashley

We VOTED early!

We VOTED early and it felt really good. We have always been firm believers in our right to vote. We show up and try to make a difference. Being able to vote is powerful. We usually have our sidekick with us, but this year we felt like we shouldn't bring her to the voting center because of all of the Covid concerns. We are trying to be extra careful these days. But we have taken her every other time and she has really enjoyed the experience to see how it all works.  Our parents educated us on the importance of voting and feel it's one tradition to pass onto our children.  Hope you're having a good day.    Best, Todd and Ashley

Just a little bit about us...

When we first met, we were two teenagers trying to navigate high school. And then it was college and navigating a long distance relationship. And then it was our first jobs and then our careers and navigating parenthood. Becoming parents wasn't easy for us as we struggled with infertility issues. After many years of navigating doctor appointments, we were blessed to have our biological daughter. Fast forward from the beginning of it all (over twenty years) and we’re still best friends navigating life together. Our love is strong and our love for our daughter is too. We are here and ready to welcome another child into our family and to give them just as much love. Our family is patiently waiting and just as excited as we are. We look forward to the day we can turn our "Party of Three" into "Party of Four".   We're thinking of you today and we're holding onto hope.    All the best, Ashley and Todd  

Flashback Pictures!

Flashback Time! What better way to show you how we parent than with our own blast from the past pictures. We do Halloween BIG, we do Parks A LOT and we laugh ALL THE TIME. We thought we'd share a few pictures with you of when our daughter was young. We have a biological daughter who we love & adore. And we can't wait to have another child that we can adore and love just as much.  We love being parents.  Hope you realize how much we are thinking of you today, even if we haven't met yet. All the best, Ashley & Todd

Nessie is our favorite dog.

Nessie is our favorite dog! She's lovable and patient. She is Australian Shepherd/Border Collie. We adopted her almost 4 years ago now.  She seems like she has been a part of our family all along. Here's a picture we thought we'd share. She often likes to watch out our front window by sitting on our couch. We captured her in her favorite spot. We also have video clip of her watching us as we were outside walking by our house. Her tail is wagging! Lillian helps take care of Nessie and loves cuddling with her. We love Nessie!   All our love, Ashley and Todd

Happy Fall Y'all!

Ok, I'm team Pumpkin Spice ALL the way! Pumpkin Spice Latte and Pumpkin Pie. Yummy! Can you really have too much? Asking for a friend. ;) Although, Todd LOVES Pumpkin Pie, he isn't exactly onboard with the flavor in a drink.  It's okay, we can all have our differences, right?  For his Birthday which is in September, we always bake a Pumpkin Pie for him- it's his favorite. It kicks fall in our home. Now, let's count how many times I said, "pumpkin" in this Post.   Happy Fall! Enjoy your day. Ashley and Todd

Weekend Vibes

We took a short drive North of our home and spent the day in the great outdoors! We visited a state park that we had not been to before. It was a beautiful day. We were able to hike a few trails and bike ride too. We saw deer while we were riding our bikes. Todd taught Lillian how to skip rocks. Who knew Todd was so good at it? We really enjoyed spending the day together. 

A summer sunset to remember

Sometimes you need a little escape! It's good for the soul. Maybe it’s right around the corner- a change in scenery your heart needed. This amazing view was captured this past weekend. It was just a short drive from our house. It was an evening that will always be with me. Staring at this sunset (with no filters added to this picture) you couldn’t help but take it all in. It filled me with hope. Just look for the Beauty in today and you will find it.    All our best, -Ashley and Todd

A family's love

As I sit and stare in awe at this picture of Lillian and Nessie, it hits home (again) how much love we have in our home. We really do love to spend time together! We went to Braums to celebrate National Ice Cream day and came home to chat and reflect on our day together. We talk a lot in our home. We play a lot in our home. Lillian loves to be with us and is a sweet child. Our dog is THE sweetest dog and is SO affectionate and lovable. We know we are blessed beyond measure, yet it still weighs on us that we have been called to adopt. As an outsider, one would look in on our house and ask, you have so much, why are you choosing adoption? And we would answer the same way every time…we have MORE love to share with another child. You see, Lillian was our miracle baby and as much as we tried to expand our family through fertility treatments again, in the end, it led us to our adoption journey. Once the idea seeps into your heart, you know it’s meant to be. You hold onto hope, faith, love and prayer knowing that your child is out there and when it’s meant to happen, it WILL happen. Love truly does make a family. For now, as we wait patiently, I will hold onto our family’s love to get us through this adoption journey.    In our hearts, -Ashley and Todd

Celebrating Father's Day

This weekend we had fun celebrating Father's Day as a family. It was great celebrating Todd. He truly is an amazing dad to our daughter. He plays games with her, laughs with her, coaches her...I am truly grateful to share parenthood with this man. We have so much more love to give and we can't wait to have another child to love and nurture together.   I snapped a picture of the two of them playing frisbee in our neighborhood park. We had a picnic dinner at the shaded pavilion where I took this picture from. It was fun watching them- both athletic and Lillian has an arm! Let's just say Todd was chasing the frisbee a few times. It was great to have a change in scenery, with lots of sunshine and smiles and always lots of laughter. We hope you were able to get outside and enjoy the warm sun this weekend too.  ~Ashley and Todd

Celebrating our 17th Wedding Anniversary

It seems fitting that our first Post on here would highlight our 17th wedding Anniversary. We just celebrated it this week. Our love for each other carries us through this roller coaster of life. Our celebration was a little different this year, but I think that is safe to say about a lot of things. We spent the day as a family, which was fun. First we played tennis together at the courts near our house. Then we cooled off by hanging out in our inflatable pool in our backyard. Yes, we aired up the pool and some pool floats for Lillian. It made for a memorable weekend with lots of laughs. We enjoyed listening to some of our wedding songs that we danced to at our wedding reception. We ate yummy takeout from our local Italian restaurant and then had a picnic nearby at a park. We were blessed because it was on a weekend and we had the whole day together. During this Pandemic, I feel like we have had a chance to spend more quality time as a family.

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