My photo
Eagle Mountain, Utah, United States
My name is Lauren, and I live in the bubble. I am wife to Marshall, the biggest BYU fan in the world; and mother to Carly, our big girl, and Wes, our wild man, and Calvin, our new addition. I graduated BYU with a degree in Social Work, and I went forth to serve at LDS Family Services. I like scrapbooking and going out to eat at nice restaurants. I am fascinated by new cleaning products at the grocery store, so I have to shop in wide circles around the perimeter to avoid the temptation to buy. I love chocolate.

Saturday, February 28, 2009

Russ's opinion

Marshall asked Russell today what percentage of Carly's appearance he thought came from Marshall, and what percentage came from me.

Russell didn't even hesitate.

"I think she's 85% Gene Hackman."

A birth mother's story

In my job, I have the wonderful and sacred opportunity to be witness to some of the most sacred moments in people's lives. I don't often talk about these moments and stories because they aren't mine to share, or to write.

I follow one blog, the r house, which is a blog maintained by one of the adoptive mothers I have had a chance to meet. It is one of the premier adoption advocacy blogs out there today, in my opinion. Mrs. R. not only shares her own struggles and joys in her sons' adoption stories, but also uses her blog as a platform for others to share their own stories. I know that for one of my amazing birth mothers in particular, this blog was a pillar of strength and a resource for peace while preparing to place her own son last year.

Currently on the r house, Mrs. R. has a guest blogger, Andee, who is sharing her story. It is told in 2 parts, and I will link both.

This is a very honest and emotional account of one unique adoption story. But it rings with such eternal truth. In many places, it could be the same words from the mouths of each of my own birth mother clients. The love Andee has for her daughter, the tough decisions she had to make, and the heartbreaking sacrifice have all been true of every case I have handled.

This is the story that I wish I could share with everyone, but that I do not have the rights to. So please, visit the r house this week. And read Andee's story. It will give you insight into these wonderful, selfless women. And explain a little more the sacred moments I get to witness.


In other adoption news, LDSFS is redesigning its website The old website you can view as linked. The new site will eventually replace the current site at that URL. But since it is not yet published, you can view the new site at

The new site has a lot of really neat features, more current information and testimonials, and better adoptive couple profiles. Many of my couples are now published on this beta site, and soon hopefully all of our couples will have made the transition over. You can search these profiles if you would like. But the main thing to check out, IMO, is definitely the different resources and birth parent stories. And keep this website handy if you run into someone who is single and pregnant and looking for information about their options. This site covers much more than just adoption.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Powder Party

Instead of napping, Carly thought she'd have her own little party. With the baby powder. She then got tired and fell asleep in her snowy mess. Her eyes were red for hours, and she still smelled strongly of powder even after a bath.

We thought it was a white sheet at first, until we began to uncover the pink sheet underneath. It was shocking how much powder was in that crib.In addition to the powder, she also dumped out her little clear hair elastics.

That's what we get for rearranging her room and putting her changing table right next to the crib.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Sew Crafty!

While my mom was here visiting, we began a few projects aimed at boy-ifying my baby supply stock.

First up: Flannel blankets.
I have made a few of these in the past, and felt most comfortable with this project. I bought fabric for 3 blankets, and my mom introduced me to a new pattern. I have only finished one so far.

Next up: A quilt.
I wanted to make a quilt for our new little baby. I'm not a quilter though. But while escorting my mom to dozens of quilt shops while she was here, I began to get a few bits of inspiration. I finally found a fabric that I loved, and my mom and I decided to go for it. We got the whole quilt top made, and my mom has generously offered to take the top home to do the actual "quilting" and binding on her fancy machine. But here is the top.

Finally: crocheting.
My mom taught me how to crochet around the edges of blankets and burp rags. I finished a burp rag, and have just started on the matching blanket. My hands have become permanently curled into painful little balls. Apparently I need to learn how to relax while maneuvering the needle, fabric, and string. lol.

More to come!

"I yub you yeg"

This is what Carly said to me this morning as she gave me a hug around the knee. She has lately began telling us she loves us without prompting, which has been really fun. She even told Russ's cats she loved them.

But this confession of love confused me a little.

I asked her "what did you say, Carly?"
"I yub you yeg!" another big hug.
"I love you too honey," thinking she was just saying she loved me.
Indignant, Carly said "No, yub yeg," hitting my knee.
"Ooooh, you love my leg?"
Smiles. "Uh huh. I yub you yeg." Another big hug around my knee, then she walked away.

I think I feel complimented.

Friday, February 20, 2009

William Wallace?


Almost half of you think that's a good idea? Really??

Okay, fess up. Who voted for it? How much is Marshall paying you?

I figure that there are 3 possible things that could be happening here:
1) Men are voting in my poll. (which is fine, really. just surprising.)
2) Marshall has voted 10 times.
3) Some of you are unfamiliar with who William Wallace is.

Marshall promises he only voted once. He thinks that the voting is directly down gender lines, but I highly doubt I have that many male readers. So I think it is most likely the third option.

So here is a brief and non-factual history lesson:

William Wallace is every little boy's hero.
He is Braveheart.
Mel Gibson.
Marshall wishes he were William Wallace.

To me, naming a child William Wallace is like naming a child Spiderman. Okay, so Spiderman's not a historical figure. How about Albert Einstein. Or Abraham Lincoln.

So if you voted for William Wallace, please, let me know WHY?? Maybe I'm the only one who doesn't get it. Like I said, Marshall has convinced his whole family that this is the best idea ever. But in general I don't trust Marshall's name choices. He wants to name our second son Andrew Andrews and the third Mormon Andrews.

Crazy right? Right??

Tuesday, February 17, 2009


Nope, not for this LITTLE BOY!!!!

We had the big ultrasound today, and it's true. We are entering the whole new realm of snakes, snails, and puppydog tails. And smelly, stinky, dirty boys.

I have to admit, I am very nervous. It feels like I am going to be a first time mom all over again. I mean, a boy?? What am I going to do with a boy? In my mind, they are different in every way from girls. So the nerves are kicking in, but I am so excited. Soooo excited.

And I knew it. I really did.

When I was pregnant with Carly, I would have these dreams about a little girl with curly hair named Carly. And with this new pregnancy, it has been dreams of a little boy. So I have been calling him a "him," and have been thinking of him as a boy. It was one of those things that I just knew. There really wasn't much question in my mind, just a very peaceful assured feeling that this little guy is all boy.

So now, here is the new question:
What to name this guy?

Marshall's family has a tradition that the first born son has the middle name of Wallace. So that much has already been settled. We have narrowed down our picks of first names, and we have two finalists. Now, I like one, and not the other. Marshall likes both but is a very strong fan of the one I dislike. And he has somehow swayed our entire extended family to agree with him.

They are Wesley and William.

Can you guess which one I don't like? Which one to you like? Go vote now --->

Friday, February 13, 2009


In-N-Out coming to Draper!


Now I can actually be okay with my Utah residency.

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

New Poll

So next Tuesday, the 17th, is the big ultrasound. We will (hopefully) find out if this little one is a boy or girl.

So I decided to do a poll to get people's guesses. ------>

I don't want to give my prediction and sway any of your premonitions. So I'll leave that all for my post next Tuesday!

Friday, February 06, 2009

Nap time

So lately Carly hasn't been napping. She has her days where she'll just fight it. I still make her take those 2 hours and be quiet in her crib, in hopes that she'll fall asleep. Some days it works, some it doesn't. Usually she'll skip her naps 2 days in a row, and then nap really well 2 or 3 days in a row.

Well ever since she learned she could get out of her crib, she hasn't napped. And it's a little hard to enforce the "quiet time" that usually leads to the napping when it does happen. So for 3 or 4 days straight, our little one was running on empty as far as naps go.

Yesterday Marshall and Carly were hanging out in the living room after Carly had successfully skipped her nap yet again. It was about 5pm. Suddenly, it was very quiet. Marshall looked around and realized she had left the room and went to look for her. He found her curled up in the hallway outside her bedroom door sound asleep.

He put her in her crib, still in her jeans, figuring it was just a nap. I got home from work around 8pm, and she was still out. We went to bed at midnight, and she was still asleep. I woke up throughout the night to listen for breathing through the monitor, and she didn't make a peep. I left for work this morning at 9am, and she was still out.

That kid slept for 16 1/2 hours!

Moral of the story: don't make your kids nap, and you may just get the best night of sleep you've ever had in your life (or at least since they've been born).

Or more likely the moral of the story is: make your kids nap, or they'll develop really unhealthy sleeping patterns.

You pick.

Tuesday, February 03, 2009


Do you ever feel like you wander around the house cleaning, only to be followed immediately after by a little tornado?

I'm not talking about my toddler. It's my husband.

Don't get me wrong, Marshall likes things "clean" too. But clean, I have learned, is a subjective term. When Marshall cleans, he takes the mess to a higher plane. Literally. Anything and everything on the floor must come up! To where? Where ever is the next closest flat surface that is not the floor: the top of the bookcase, the kitchen table, the kitchen counter, and his favorite spot- on top of the entertainment center.

I clean by taking these items accumulated on top of various countertops in our home and put them inside things. Inside baskets, or drawers, closets or cabinets. Basically, where they belong. That is my idea of cleaning.

So today I tackled the top of the entertainment center. It is was a mess. I sorted the items into which area they really belonged in: the pantry, the sink, our bedroom, the bathroom, Carly's room, the trash can, the bookshelf. Dirty cups, boxes of cereal, socks, lotion, old mail, a stack of Carly's books, some Carly art supplies, various electronics, deodorant, shoe polish. You name it really. Then I started to put it away.

I started with the various electronics. Most went into the cabinets in the entertainment center, as opposed to on top. I put them away. Then the cereal and crackers and fruit snacks the Marshall likes to store near the TV (because 10 feet is just too far to walk to the pantry). Soon, I was making progress.

I returned to the entertainment center, and I swear things I have put away have reappeared. Am I hallucinating? I ask Marsh how they got back out, why they got back out. He looks at me with complete sincerity and says "that's where they belong. You're always trying to hide my stuff." YES! That's it! This is a game of hide and seek, and Marshall has just won.

I try to explain that these objects all have homes, and they can be brought out to use when needed, but should go back to where they belong after. I am talking to a toddler. But he persists. He says that it is simply too much work to get his wii-mote charger out the once a week he uses it, and it should always be accessible. And the food? If it's in the pantry, he'll forget we have it and won't eat it.

It must be fun to live as Marshall. Can you imagine what it must be like to be really pleasantly surprised every time you open the pantry? It must be like Christmas every day.

The best use for the potty

Is a step stool.

After Carly's bath, I left her naked on her potty for a minute. When I returned, I found that she had pushed her potty up to the counter, and was giving her ducky a bath in the sink. We still haven't had very much success with the real purpose of the potty, but her creativity is pretty cute.

Monday, February 02, 2009

Uh oh...

We're in for it...

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