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Letters to Payton: Month 12

Dear Payton,

A whole year! Can you believe it? We have been together for 12 whole months. 12 months filled with the happiest moments of my life. As I sit and write this, I reflect back on August 5th of just last year and how I felt. When your Dad and I got the call that you had been born, we ran around like crazy people trying to hurry and pack a suit case and feeling more joy than we ever thought possible. I remember literally jumping up and down screaming because I was so happy that you had made it and you were safe and healthy. I remember everything just being a blur because I could hardly think straight – I was THAT excited. Before we left the house to make the drive to come and meet you, our sweet baby boy, we fell to our knees to thank our Father in Heaven for the most incredible gift he had blessed us with --- You.I don’t remember much from that prayer, but I do remember getting the feeling that this day would change my life forever.

The drive to come and get you felt like eternity. I wanted nothing more than to hold you in my arms and let you know how much I loved you and how much you were meant for our family. When we finally made it to the hospital, I was shaking. I was so excited to see you, smell you and feel your soft skin on mine. When the nurse finally rolled you in, tears were streaming down both my cheeks as well as your Dad. We were overcome with a pure and unconditional love for you. We felt right off the bat that you were special. You had a purpose on this earth and you were meant to be with us. I held you in my arms and your Dad held me in his and we just cried tears of joy. You didn’t even seem to mind.

Payton, you have taught me so much in this past year. There have been some challenges in our family that sometimes would get me very frustrated and down, and then you would look at me with your huge, beautiful, blue eyes, and I would just melt. All my fears and anxiety would go away because you and your father were all that mattered.

You are a walking miracle. There were many days before you came that I didn’t know if I would ever be a mother. I prayed so hard for that gift, and you are a true testament that God hears and answers prayers and that He has a plan for each and every one of us.

You are such a busy little boy. You have an energy that exceeds any little human I have ever known. You love to clap. You love to wave at people. You love to walk with me holding my hand. You love it when your Dad walks in after working all day. You hurry to him as fast as you can so he can pick you up and hug you. You love to come watch me cook dinner and talk to me. So many things that you love to do that remind me just how special you are and how blessed I am to be your Mother.

Thank you Payton. Thank you for the BEST year of my life. There are not many things I am sure of --But I am 100% sure that I was meant for you and you were meant for me. You are a perfect match for our family. Today we not only celebrate your birth, but we celebrate one of the best days of our lives.

Happy Birthday Baby Boy! I cannot wait to see what happens next. We love you so much.




Letters to Payton: Month 11

Dear Payton,

I can hardly believe you are 11 months old. That just seems so old to me. You do not act like a baby much anymore; you pass more as a toddler now. You have learned so many new tricks this month and you are trying really hard to converse with us more and more. Sometimes in your own language, which is super cute.

This month has been a busy one for you. You are taking steps here and there, but you are a master crawler and still prefer it over walking. This is totally OK by me because you are hard enough to keep up with as it is. You have done some major teething this month and have about 4 teeth coming in, so there have been some hard days where you just want Mom to hold you and watch Baby Einstein. I love the cuddles though, as it is a rare occasion with you. You are usually just too busy too fit cuddling with Mom in your schedule.
You love to play. We play chase, we play with your blocks (mostly we build them and you knock them down) and you LOVE balls. You love to push your bouncy balls around the house and just laugh and laugh at it. Sometimes I wish I could read your mind cause you will find things so funny and I have no idea why. But of course, it always makes me laugh too.

The biggest discovery you have had this month is your love of music. If there is a song playing, you are dancing. You love to wave your chubby little arms and move your legs. It melts me every single time and I will stop whatever I am doing to watch you dance.
I have said it before, and I will say it again. You have made your Dad and I the happiest we have ever been Payton. Life would not be complete without you in our family. 11 months later, and I still get choked up thinking about how much of a miracle you are to our family. I will never ever take you for granted and I will cherish every minute I have with you. I am so excited to celebrate your birthday in a few weeks with close friends and family. You have been such a blessing to all you meet. We love you little man!




Letters to Payton: Month 10

Dear Payton,

Last night I had a Twilight Zone dream where you and I were stuck being the ages we are forever. When I woke up and reflected on the dream, I realized that it wouldn't be so bad. Of the stages you've been in, this one has been my absolute favorite. I'm pretty content with the way things are going right now. You are sleeping 12 hours every night, taking 2 two hour naps and eating like a champ. Plus, you are just so much fun.

You are a skilled crawler and spend most of your days moving around the house playing with everything in your path. You've figured out where all the interesting things are and just where you need to sit to get into certain things. You are so patient as you try to figure out how things work. I love peeking at you doing your thing when you don't realize I'm watching. You have this look where you furrow your brow when concentrating on something. It is completely adorable.

My life as a Mom has never been easier as you are so independent. You rarely want to be held anymore because you love to be down on our own (getting into things most of the time) but now that we have the house so baby proofed, you can come and go as your please. It is so strange to be able to pretty much do everything I need to do each day especially now that your Dad is off for the summer. It has only been just this week that he is home, but I can tell you love every minute of having him here. He leaves the room and sometimes you begin to whine because you love playing with him so much. I am glad you love him so much and hope you grow up to be just like him.

This past month, you spent a lot of time with your cousins Abbi and Ellie and you had such a ball with them. They loved chasing you around the house and helping me feed you. I am so glad you will be close to your cousins growing up (hopefully) as I never had cousins close by

I still can’t believe in two months you will be a year old. Time sure does fly when you’re having so much fun. These last ten months have blown by. Every time I write one of these letters to you it seems like I just did one last week. You are changing so fast and getting more and more fun by the day. It is so fun to watch you learn and figure out how the world around you works. One of my favorite things you do now is mimic us. We will make a sound and then you repeat it back to us. You think it’s pretty hilarious and so do we.

You have been blessed with a remarkable gift to make people happy. Your dad and I love you so much; when he gets home from work I love telling him all the funny things you did that day. You make being a mother a lot of fun and so much more rewarding than anything I've ever done.




Mother's Day 2012

Today was a glorious day. One that I have anticipated for years to come. I did not want any lavish gifts... in fact I asked Geoff to make me gift and it was so fun to watch him spend hours and hours making me the sweetest memory box to put all the special things that I will collect over the years of being a Mom. It has a photo glued on the inside of us --our first family picture taken right before we took Payton home from the hospital -- and tears came to my eyes as I saw this. My thoughts always turn to our angel birth-mom and for the self-less sacrifice she made so that my dreams could come true. I will always always love that woman for blessing me so.

Payton is a happy and so-very-very loved little boy. He is thriving and he is growing up in the gospel. He has a father that would do anything for him and they are already the best of friends. My dreams have come true. Trials will come and go, but my family is forever. That can not be taken away from me. I am so very blessed and I have cherished every single moment today.


Letters to Payton: Month 9

Dear Payton,

Nine whole months! I can hardly believe it my little man. This month has been a fun one for you. You are a master crawler and are now venturing into taking steps. Just a week after your 8 month mark, you pulled yourself up on the couch, turned around and took two steps toward me and have done it a handful other times since. You still prefer crawling because you are so fast, and I am OK with that. I am just not ready for you to become a toddler yet!
My new favorite thing you do is give me these big wet slobbery kisses. It is so cute. You giggle almost every time you do it, which just adds to the cuteness. You also adore being chased and every night before you go to bed, your Dad and I chase you around the living room and you giggle and giggle. It's the best way to end our days.
This last month you have had two teeth come in and your top four are all coming in as we speak. It has made it difficult for you to sleep sometimes, but I think you are a trooper for the most part. It is so funny that I have a hard time noticing when your teeth come in because you ALWAYS have your tongue sticking out. I guess it is your trademark and you look completely adorable, so I don't mind.
Something else we have ventured into this past month is separation anxiety. You do not like to go to anyone but your Mom and Dad. We are working on it and just today you spent part of the day with your Grandma and Grandpa Nelson and did pretty good. I love that you love us so much but I hope that soon enough you will trust others who love you too.
I know all parents love their babies and think they are the best, but I just can’t get enough of you. When I pick you up I just need to squeeze you and give you kisses and tell you that I love you because I just love you so much I can’t stand it. I love it when I’ve given you a bath and my hands still smell like your lotion and I can’t help but keep smelling them once you’re in bed. I love when you get so excited when I come in to get you out of your crib and you scurry over to the side to stand up and grab me. There are times when I wish I could just stop time so I won't ever forget all the little things you do each day, but you're growing up so fast and I am so excited to see what you do next. You really are such a special boy and there is nothing more important to me than spending my days with you.




Looking back

As mother's day is fast approaching I have so many mixed feelings about it. I am feeling anticipation for celebrating that I am finally a mother. 

Finally have that sweet baby that was meant for Geoff and I. Feeling gratitude that I am experiencing the greatest calling I will ever have. 

Pure joy, from sweet little Payton and the happiness he has added to our lives.

Yet, I have an emptiness in my heart for those that are still struggling with becoming a mother. My heart is breaking for those who have a desire yet do not have the means to have such a blessing yet.

For those who have yet to be married. Those who have yet to become pregnant. 

For those who may be waiting to adopt.

 Whatever the case, this holiday will always be bitter-sweet to me. I will always remember the pain & sorrow that you feel when you have such a righteous desire and do all in your power to reach and obtain that goal... and to feel so helpless and completely not in control.

Someone very close to me is going through exactly what Geoff and I experienced in becoming parents. It is so hard to watch her go through the motions of it all.

 It has brought back a lot of painful memories for me. 

Yet, in those moments speaking with this dear friend, I am so grateful I can show true empathy for her and to extend advise that nobody else could give unless they have been where I have been. 

Mostly, I am so completely grateful for the gospel.  It is cliche to say, but I really do not know where I would be without that guiding influence in my life.

This talk by Elder Uchtdorf is one that got me through so many moments of feeling like giving up and gave me Hope. I encourage all who are feeling a little lost to read this talk. It will lift you up. 

Looking back at the whirlwind of a year we have had, and trials that are coming up against us currently, I can see Heavenly Father's hand in all of this. The good and the bad. He gives us these trials to stretch us, mold us and refine us. It makes those blessings so much sweeter. 

There is not a day that goes by that I am not overcome by the turn of events that lead us to Payton. I know we needed to experience certain things to be prepared for such a special little boy. I can tell he has a valiant spirit and we needed to learn things before he was brought into our family.

Heavenly Father truly is the master of our lives. He will continue to direct us if we let Him. Sometimes we can not understand why these things happen to us and it may be years and years before we ever know why. 

This I do know, He loves us and He will not forsake us. 

So grateful to know that.

Whatever comes, He will not leave us comfortless. 
John 14:18


The Einstein Kid

This kid LOVES baby Einstein. He hears the little start up music and crawls as fast as he can to get to the TV. It is so funny! I have to admit, I kinda love it too cause it is about the ONLY thing that will make this boy sit still so I can cook dinner or fold laundry. He is now standing on his own, not for very long... but I have a feeling we are in for it soon! My baby is growing out of being a baby... sigh.


Happy Easter!

I have loved all the "first" holidays of having a baby in our family. Easter this year was super busy, but super fun. We went to my parents ward and then down to my brother's for dinner and an Easter egg hunt with the girls. Payton was a trooper being carted all over the city and had a blast with his cousins. He is so busy now... crawling and getting into anything he can get his hands on and getting more and more handsome by the minute... check out those giant blue eyes!


Letters to Payton: Month Eight

Dear Payton,

I know I say this every month, but I can't believe you're already eight months old. Seriously. You are getting so big it just blows my mind. The other day I realized that you have to kneel on my lap now when you lean your head on my shoulder to go to sleep when not that long ago your feet didn't even hit my lap. Every time I lay you down to sleep, I just have to hold you for a little while when your head rests on my shoulder. No matter how busy I am and how many things I know I need to cram into those precious two hours I have while you nap, I just can't put you down quite yet. I just love holding your warm little body close and smelling your head and treasuring the rare moments of quiet with you.

You are just so much fun. You have such a fiesty little personality and you are the most determined baby I have ever known. You now clap, give five, repeat sounds back to us and you love to use your voice and sing at the top of your lungs. You are crawling and so active now. We can't let you out of our sight, even for a second. Your favorite time of day is when your dad gets home and he lays on the ground and lets you climb all over him. You just sit and squeal because you think you are so big. You also have grown a love for cars. At about 5:30-6 in the evening, I take you outside and we sit on the front porch and watch all the cars on the road. Every time a car passes you jump up and down and squeal with excitement. We get lots of laughs from the neighbors because of it.

You are seriously a HUGE flirt. Just the other day, we were in line at a store and there was a gaggle of pre-teen girls several feet behind us in line who oohed and ahhed when they saw you. You immediately turned on the charm and smiled and did all your tricks for them. You were in heaven with such a receptive audience. You love attention and try to catch the eye of anyone who's around. One of the cutest things you do these days is when you are in your car seat and you start to fuss until I reach back and hold your hand and then you place my hand on your cheeks and play with my fingers. It just melts my heart. It is a good thing you can't ask for stuff yet because I would be putty in your hand.

I love you, Payton. I tell you that several times a day and hope that you never doubt it. You are such a sweet boy and I just can't get enough of you. You are starting to have a preference about who holds you, and as annoying as it sometimes is that you cry when I put you down or hand you off, in the back of my mind I sort of love that you so clearly love me. It makes it all worth it when I pick you up and feel your little arms around my neck giving me a little squeeze.




Letters to Payton: Month Seven

Dear Payton,

This last month has blown by so quickly that it seems like you haven't really changed much since I last did this.  Mostly because February is such a short month. However, you are just getting more and more fun every day and we say almost everyday how much we can't believe how big you are getting. You are getting so incredibly strong. Your Grandpa Nelson is convinced you will be an early walker but for my sake, I hope you're not!  You roll like crazy in your crib. We find you in the craziest positions ALL the time and it is apparent you are like your momma and love to snuggle up in a ball and sleep on your side. Gone are the days of me being able to walk away from you while you are on the floor and find you where I left you. You can get across the room in just a matter of seconds!

 You roll and scoot everywhere and you get so fixated on your toys and will stop at nothing until you get what you want. You even crawled for the first time a couple of weeks ago and have only done it a few other times but I have a feeling one of these days it is going to be your preferred method of transportation and then I am really going to be up a creek! You have already figured out how to open cabinets that are low enough for you to reach and also learned how to get into your baby wipes and scatter them all around the room. I thought I had a few more months before that kind of mischief started to occur... guess not! I am glad I work out so that I will be able to keep up with you. You are already such a wild, wild little boy!

We took an over-night trip to the beach a couple of weeks ago and you LOVED it. Our hotel was right on the beach and you loved the sounds of the ocean and the feel of the wind on your face. You had a big smile on your face every time we were on the beach. I can't wait to take you when its really warm and we can get in the water.

You are such a cute baby.  Seriously. I know I'm a little biased but we have it on good authority that you are super cute.  People stop all the time to talk to you and tell me know beautiful you are and how much they love your big blue eyes. It is really hard for me to get frustrated with you because your eyes just melt me when you look at me. I am going to have to learn how to see past them one of these days.

Your grandma & grandpa Brown came down this month for your baby blessing and you loved having them here. Your Dad was able to give you a beautiful blessing and it was confirmed again just how unique and special you are. The big news this month is that we were able to take you to the temple and make you ours forever. It was the most precious day of our lives. I dare say it was even better than me and your Dad's wedding day. Knowing that you are our little boy for eternity is priceless to me and I am overwhelmed at the blessing of being your Mother. I love watching you grow, seeing you smile and hearing your laugh everyday. Thank you for being such a sweet little boy. We love you so much Payton.



Blessing day

We have had an awesome week with the finalization of the adoption, sealing Payton to us in the temple and today Geoff gave Payton a name and a blessing. It was very special and some powerful things were said. Payton is one special little boy. We feel so blessed that both sets of grandparents were there to share this special day with us.


Forever Ours

As members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, we believe that families are forever. When we are married in the temple, it is not just until death do us part.We believe that through the proper priesthood authority,our families can be sealed for time and all eternity, not just for here on earth. The finalization of the adoption was not only anticipated to have it all done and over with, but it was to take our sweet little Payton to the temple and have him sealed to our family forever.

Words can not quite describe the joy we felt that day. When I woke up that morning, it almost felt like my wedding day all over again. The excitement we both felt was surreal. Payton woke up at about 7 that morning, I went and grabbed him and brought him in bed with us. We all just laid there together and I was overcome at what was going to happen in just a few short hours. It was as if he knew what was going to happen too. He had one of the happiest mornings I can ever remember him having. I like to think he knew that day was extra special too.

We were scheduled to be sealed at noon that day but we were asked to be there an hour before. As soon as we walked in the temple doors, we were greeted by about 8 temple workers. They were all waiting to meet little Payton and knew who we all were immediately. Payton greeted them with his adorable smile and seemed almost excited to be there. While we were changing, the sweet ladies at the temple cared for Payton for about an hour and let Geoff and I spend some time together alone. It brought back memories of my wedding day when we were able to do the same exact thing before we we were married. As I sat there I remember something said to us that day that really had a profound effect on me... We were told that we were not just getting married that day, but we literally were creating an eternal family. And here we were, almost five years later, sealing the most beautiful baby boy to us where that promise was being fulfilled.

When it was time to be sealed and they brought our sweet little Payton in, all dressed in white, I lost it. I had tears streaming down my face, as did Geoff, at this miracle baby who we waited for, for so long. He entered the room, all wide eyed and smiling and immediately searched the room to see where we were. As soon as he found us and our eyes met his, he smiled. It melted my heart. Throughout the sealing, it was confirmed to me that this is how it was all meant to turn out. This little boy was supposed to be ours forever. He has brought us so much joy and he is so very very special. The sealing was so incredibly beautiful and the most spiritual experience we have ever had. I may not get to experience childbirth, but I like to think this was just as special as that.

As we were leaving the temple, a little old lady pulled me aside and with tears streaming down her face, she told me she knew just how special Payton was. She went on and said that the few minutes she spent with Payton in the nursery, were the closest she had ever felt to God. I have always known that Payton is so very special.... but for some reason, I think because of how he got to us, it makes him even more incredible. He was definitely worth the wait. I feel so honored and privileged to be his Mother.

I love this little boy more than words can say. I still look at him and get emotional thinking of all the times I had wished for him and here he is before me as perfect as can be. I will always be indebted to a loving Heavenly Father for the blessing he has been in our lives. Taking him to the temple will truly be the best day of our lives.