Archived Posts from this Category

Raegan and Billie Jean

Posted by on 17 Apr 2010 | Tagged as: Adoption, my life.

I’ve mentioned to many of you that Raegan seems to just love Michael Jackson.

Today, we show you proof of her appreciation for the King of Pop:

Raegan is doing wonderful. She’s 3 1/2 months old and has been sleeping through the night for the last 7 weeks now–that’s been nice for us as parents. Raegan smiles a lot and likes to talk and play. She is very social and seems to like to interact with people more than play by herself.

Raegan has her 4-month checkup in a little over a week, and the doctor told us to start on cereal about a week before then, so this morning Raegan had her first cereal. We thought we’d try Coco Puffs, and she really did go coo-coo for CoCo Puffs. Of course, we are kidding–it was rice cereal. It went as expected, she spit most of it out and wanted her bottle. She did seem to like the cereal, she just didn’t know what to do with it.

Raegan at 5 Weeks

Posted by on 02 Feb 2010 | Tagged as: Adoption, my life.

I weighed Raegan yesterday after her bath and she is now 7 1/2 pounds! We see many changes as the days go by. She is much more alert. During her awake time she kicks and moves her arms all over the place. She loves listening to us talk and especially loves listening to music. This morning she was rocking out to Uncle Josh Doyle. She no longer stares past us, but will stare right at us. It’s precious!

Raegan was finally able to meet the rest of her aunts, uncles and cousins this weekend at a shower held in her honor. She pretty much slept through the entire party, but she enjoyed being passed around and held by everyone…she loves to be held. We have to be careful how much we hold her because she always falls asleep while being held.

We started using cloth diapers yesterday. Raegan now has enough fat on her little legs that the plastic pants finally fit. The diaper sure makes her little bottom look huge, though. It’s pretty cute. We decided to do cloth diapers because it saves so much money, but since we’ve been using disposable diapers the last five weeks, we’ve realized how much trash we now generate, so it’s also good to know we won’t be filling up those landfills with diapers for the next several years.

Here are some pictures from her shower. Aunt Amanda was nice enough to take some cute posed shots too.

Raegan in her cloth diaper

Adjusting to Life at Home

Posted by on 08 Jan 2010 | Tagged as: Adoption, my life.

So we arrived back home to the great Town of Waterloo on Wednesday night, 12 1/2 days after we left for Florida. It was a wonderful time as a family, although the 22 hour drive one-way is a little long. On the drive back, we bought a John Grisham audiobook, Playing for Pizza, and it was a good 7 hours that kept my mind off the monotony of driving. Great football story, so I enjoyed that, and Emily was intrigued by the storyline of the book.

On the drive back up, we stopped for the night in Nashville, Tenn., and Raegan got to meet Aunt Jenny, Uncle Josh and her cousins Lauren and Reuben. When we got to Indianapolis, Raegan was lucky enough to meet Aunt Nicole. Back in Waterloo on Wednesday night, Raegan got to meet all four of her grandparents, Aunt Megan, Uncle Jon, Uncle Adam and her cousin Olivia. Raegan likes her extended family very much.

Last night Raegan actually slept for six hours straight. We don’t expect this to be a common occurance just yet, but we certainly aren’t complaining about the good sleep last night.

Thank you everyone for all the wonderful greetings. Raegan loves you all very much, and she keeps telling Emily and I how excited she is to meet you all.

Raegan is a great girl. She is beautiful! I love my little girl.

Aunt Jenny & Uncle Josh

Cousins Lauren, Reuben and Raegan

Aunt Nicole feeding Raegan at Starbucks. Formula. She's feeding her formula, not coffee.

Grandma Hubartt

Grandpa Hubartt

Grandma Diehl

Grandpa Diehl

Aunt Megan and Uncle Jon

Uncle Adam

Parting Thoughts from Florida

Posted by on 04 Jan 2010 | Tagged as: Adoption

Saturday night we had a nice time with the birthparents. We had dinner at Ruby Tuesday’s and it was a very good time. The birthparents are really cool people. We were able to sit and talk with them and they were able to say their final goodbyes to Raegan. Their gift of life to us is one we will never forget. Raegan is such a blessing in our lives, and wouldn’t be possible without these birthparents. We are so thankful to them both!

Sunday we drove from South Florida up to North Florida. We are staying right off I-65 in Lake City, Florida, just south of the state line. Our hotel we are staying in is Comfort Suites, and it was built less than a year ago. It looks more like a 4-star hotel than it does a 2 1/2 star. When we opened up the room door, it smells like new carpet. Emily is VERY happy with this hotel and its cleanliness. It has a fridge and a microwave and is even bigger than the second hotel. Oh, and of course, it has running water, so it’s WAY better than the first crappy place we stayed! This is a great hotel.

Today (Monday) we went to see Avatar in the local movie theater. Reagan did great. Avatar is a good movie, and I suggest it. I’m thinking about taking a road trip to Noblesville for Avatar in IMAX 3D. I’m thinking it might be a good Man Group day-trip? Right when the movie was over we got a call from the adoption agency that we got our Interstate Compact approvals to take Raegan out of Florida and into Indiana–yeah!

We already paid for a hotel tonight, and so we decided to stay here tonight and then leave first thing in the morning. We are going to stop for the night in Nashville and stay with my sister Jenny and her family before making the final trip on Wednesday, and hope to arrive by Wednesday night. We are looking forward to being back home and being able to finally settle Raegan into a schedule.

Raegan is a precious little girl. Everywhere we go, people like to look at her. And TONS of people compliment Emily on how good she looks for having such a new baby. I agree–she is flipping hot!

We are excited for everyone to get to meet our little Raegan!

Video and More Pictures!

Posted by on 01 Jan 2010 | Tagged as: Adoption, my life.

Emily and I have been increasingly stir crazy just sitting in the hotel. Today we had lunch with Kym France, who is the first of our Indiana friends to meet Raegan. I’m sure our parents will be jealous of that!
After lunch with Kym, we drove to Sawgrass Mills Mall. We didn’t exactly know what to expect, but heard good things about the mall. Wow, was it busy! It is a very big mall. It actually is divided into four ‘Avenues’ it’s so large. It is an outlet mall, so lots of deals, but also lots of people. Lots of tourists there, too. My guess is that this mall is the area’s premier shopping mall. It’s size is almost comparable to the Mall of America, in my estimation.
Raegan is doing great. She’s a wonderful little girl, and we are such proud parents!

Raegan's first bath

Raegan looking at that mysterious baby in the mirror.

Reagan likes her little bunny from Grandma and Grandpa D.

Raegan and Miss Kym

Raegan travels in style riding in her Chicco carseat.

Good Night!

Posted by on 31 Dec 2009 | Tagged as: Adoption

Raegan did SO well last night! Nathan and I got a ton of sleep compared to the night before. Little miss Raegan only got up to eat and then went right back to sleep until her next feeding. We both woke up refreshed and ready for the day. We’re going to give her a “bath” today…just a nice scrub with the wash cloth. She tends to let her milk drool down the side of her neck while she eats and she’s starting to smell more like formula than sweet little baby. Here are some more pictures since we know that’s what you’re looking for!

Raegan giving us her one eyed stare

Raegan and daddy wanted to match today

Daddy's little girl

So sweet!

Next Steps

Posted by on 29 Dec 2009 | Tagged as: Adoption, my life.

So with an inter-state adoption like this one, we cannot take the baby across state lines until we have the approval of both the State of Florida and the State of Indiana. This process will take about a week, maybe a little longer. If we would happen to cross state lines, we would technically be committing federal child trafficking.

Emily and I checked into our new hotel this afternoon. It is SO MUCH BETTER than the old hotel. The room is twice as large as out old one, has a couch, fridge, stove, sink and a microwave. Oh, and it has running water!

Tonight I went shopping and picked up some food so we can eat here at the hotel instead of having to eat crappy bad-for-you fast food twice a day.

We took Raegan to her first post-hospital check-up at a local pediatrician office. She passed everything with flying colors. We have a very healthy little baby girl. She is still very tiny, but is eating a healthy amount every 3 hours like clockwork, so that’s great. Raegan does prefer to be held when she sleeps, and she tends to be fussy when we let her sleep in her pack-and-play bassinet.

Thanks everybody for your words of encouragement. We look forward to getting the approvals to come back to Indiana so you can all meet the most wonderful little girl ever! I am such a proud daddy!

The First (Unforgettable) Night as Parents

Posted by on 29 Dec 2009 | Tagged as: Adoption, my life.

Emily and I spent our first night with Raegan in a small hotel just 5 minutes from the hospital. It was an unforgettable experience. Not just the first night as parents, but the HORRID HOTEL! Let me tell you a little bit about our hotel experience.

Nathan and Raegan

Nathan holding Raegan for the first time, shortly after her birth.

We bought the hotel room online, and when we arrived, the hotel told us it wasn’t prepaid. So I argued with her that I was not going to pay again, and she relented and said she would give us the key and she would check with her manager in the morning. So I did, and as I thought, it was indeed prepaid. So that was Saturday night when we arrived.
Monday morning we got up, showered and were on the way to the hospital. We arrived back to the hotel with Raegan around 6:30 p.m.
We had no water pressure. I called the front desk, and she didn’t believe me, so she came and checked. Sure enough–would you believe it–we had no water pressure. She called her manager, and he said we just needed to turn the knobs under the sink. Ummm, no, the knobs under the sink don’t control the shower and toilet water pressure, too.
So I argued my way into getting a second room for the night, and we were able to stay in the first room, and use the restroom and shower in the second room. That was annoying.
This was the worst experience I ever had in a hotel.

But, at least I got to share the experience with my daughter! Made it all worth it!
And now, I’ll let Emily share a bit about the first night with Raegan:

Raegan!Well, what can I say that you don’t already know about a night with a newborn? She slept a lot. She ate and dirtied her diaper every three hours and I didn’t get much sleep. Raegan’s little cry isn’t too loud, but being in a hotel I was concerned about disturbing the neighbors, so I didn’t want to let her cry. She didn’t like to be alone in her bassinet, so every time we’d put her in there, she’d squeak a little and then start to cry. So, I held her most of the night. Luckily I had a Boppy pillow (thanks to Chris & Robyn!) with me so my arms didn’t get tired. I was able to doze off just a bit while holding her. After she eats, she likes to be awake at night for a little bit, so once her diaper was changed, I just held her and let her stare at me and look around to take in her surroundings. It was a precious time. She is a precious girl. Hopefully we’ll get a little more sleep tonight. I’m pretty tired and anxious to get into our new hotel once Raegan has her first doctor’s appointment this afternoon.

And Nathan again…
Our new hotel is supposed to be MUCH nicer. It has a kitchenette with range, microwave and fridge, so we’ll be able to finally get back to eating normal food instead of fast food crap. It had better have running water, too.

Raegan Elizabeth Diehl

Posted by on 28 Dec 2009 | Tagged as: Adoption

It is our distinct pleasure and honor to introduce you to our new daughter, Raegan Elizabeth.
Raegan Elizabeth
Raegan was born on Saturday, December 26 at 2:42 p.m. in Florida. We drove down, leaving early on Christmas morning.
Raegan was born weighing in a very petite 5 lbs. even, 16 inches long.
Emily was able to be in the operating room with the birthmother as she was delivered by C-section. Emily was able to snap some photos of Raegan getting cleaned up just moments after her birth.

We have spent much of the past two days at the hospital with Raegan, the birthmother and birthfather. It was really a great experience to get to know the birthparents. I think we got the best birthparents of all time!
Here are some more photos of her. When we have some more down time, we’ll post some more about the whole experience.

Raegan on the scale

Brief Update

Posted by on 13 Nov 2009 | Tagged as: Adoption

It is with sadness that we must say the birthmother has decided against placing the baby for adoption, after much pressure from her family to keep the baby. We had always known this was a possibility, so we were somewhat prepared, but it’s still tough to report.
So at this point, we are back to waiting for a birthmother to choose us as adoptive parents. We appreciate your prayers for us as we go through this process.

We’ll keep you posted.

Less Than Three Weeks

Posted by on 24 Oct 2009 | Tagged as: Adoption

Emily and I are getting more excited every day for the baby.
We have been busy preparing the nursery and have almost everything in place and in order. Emily had a surprise baby shower at work yesterday. She came home and showed me all the wonderful things her coworkers had given her and she was so incredibly happy. I really enjoyed seeing her so happy.

We’ve also been reading some books to help us prepare for the transition as adoptive parents. I’m about halfway through the book Black Baby, White Hands, which is a memoir of an African-American baby who was adopted by a white family in 1968 (the year Martin Luther King Jr. was assassinated). The author is very candid about how he viewed race as he was growing up and has given me a lot of insight into how my African-American son is going to view race as he grows up, too.

Emily and I had the opportunity to talk with the birth mother over the phone about a week ago. It was a really great conversation. The birth mother gave us some insight into why she is giving her baby up for adoption and also as to why she chose us as adoptive parents. We also talked about the snow up here in Indiana–she’s in Florida, so she’s never seen snow before. She was excited the baby would get to experience playing in the snow and making snowmen.
This phone conversation did take the place of us actually flying down and meeting the birth mother before the baby is born. The reality of meeting us in person before the birth was just too overwhelming for her, which is common in an adoption.

The due date is less than three weeks away at this point. Exciting!

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