Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Uplifted

 

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I have been reflecting on how sometimes I feel so small.  My intent is good, but often I have felt like my efforts alone don’t make enough of a difference.  I do my best, but I haven’t done anything earth shattering or world changing.  I enjoy reaching out to others, but my reach doesn’t seem to extend as far as I would like. 

Have you ever felt that way? 

It is easy to think that our influence is small.  But I have been so grateful for each contribution made on our behalf, no matter how simple.  The little things our dear friends and family members have done for us have literally meant the world.

I was recently re-reading Elder Ballard’s talk “The Atonement and the Worth of One Soul.”  He said something that has really resonated with me:

“Sadly, in today’s world, a person’s importance is often judged by the size of the audience before which he or she performs. That is how media and sports programs are rated, how corporate prominence is sometimes determined, and often how governmental rank is obtained. That may be why roles such as father, mother, and missionary seldom receive standing ovations. Fathers, mothers, and missionaries “play” before very small audiences. Yet, in the eyes of the Lord, there may be only one size of audience that is of lasting importance—and that is just one, each one, you and me, and each one of the children of God. The irony of the Atonement is that it is infinite and eternal, yet it is applied individually, one person at a time.”

I know I have fell into the habit of measuring my worth.  The number of blog followers.  The dress size.  The amount of money you make.  The number of children you have.  It is tempting to try and quantify your worth.  Everything in this world is measured by numbers.  But not the worth of souls.  The worth of souls is GREAT.  So great that no number or measurement could begin to capture the value. 

Every time someone reaches out to me I am reminded that simple acts of service are often the most meaningful and powerful.  I begin to realize anew that our influence is greater than we give ourselves credit for.

Thank you dearest friends for your support yesterday! 

 

Don’t forget to hop on over to our adoption blog and enter our giveaway. 

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Don’t Be Shy

Spencer and I have chosen to be very open about our desire to adopt.  When people ask if we have children, I’m usually quick to respond, “Not yet, but we are approved to adopt our first child!”  Spencer is equally eager to share how excited we are to find our baby through adoption.

It wasn’t easy at first to readily share our hope for children.  After all, for most couples, growing their family is a very private matter.  They don’t have to tell all of their friends and family about their desire to conceive.  Sorry to put it bluntly, but it really only takes two of them to make it happen.  Of course there are individuals who struggle with infertility who need the help of doctors and support of friends and family to bring their baby home.  However, as a general rule, making a baby is a personal endeavor. 

The thing is, we know that it will be difficult to find our baby alone.

Only 1% of babies that could be placed for adoption, actually are. The vast majority of unwed mothers choose to abort or parent the child.  There are actually more couples hoping to adopt then there are babies to be adopted.       
 
That is why we ask for help. 

Our chances of finding our baby are so much greater with the assistance of friends and family.  The more adoption blog buttons that are out there, the more likely our birthmom will find our blog.  The more people who follow our blog, the more traffic that flows to our blog.  The more people who like our page on Facebook, the more likely that someone who can help us will see our adoption information.  The more people who have our pass along cards, the more people there are to share them. 

Your help is so greatly appreciated because you can help us reach so many more people than we ever could alone.


Believe me, tooting my own horn is not my cup of tea.  I have never been one to enjoy being the center of attention.  It is a little embarrassing to ask people to help spread the word.  When we sent our first e-mail sharing with family members our desire to grow our family, I was almost in shock afterwards.  I have never felt so vulnerable.  It is so hard to ask for help.  It is so hard to share the deepest desires of our hearts.

I do know that sometimes we have to ask for support to receive it.  I know that Heavenly Father is waiting to bless our family.  I also know that He desires to help those who are trying to help themselves. 

If you are a couple hoping to adopt, help Him help you.  Share your desires with others.  Ask for help.  I know it’s hard, but I do know that you will be so grateful for the support. 

My sweet sister, Shari, and her husband, Mike, are “sponsoring” a media blitz for us today.  If you would like to participate, we would be so grateful.  I know that Heavenly Father uses us to bless the lives of each other.  We are ever grateful for the support of our dear friends. 
Below are the details of the event:

Dear Friends and Family,

As most all of you know, my sister Whitney and her husband Spencer have been officially approved to adopt! I think we would all agree that they are absolutely amazing people and will be absolutely amazing parents.

Mike and I had the idea to "sponsor" a media blitz for them. Would you all be willing to help us? The idea is to use all the personal/craft/food/media blogs, facebook profiles, or any other form of social media you may have to get their names and faces out there. We will be blitzing on Monday September 26.

I know that many of you have already added Whitney and Spencer's buttons to your blogs or shared about them on FB, and we want to take that one step further - so we are asking you to please share again on one specific day. This Monday, Mike and I will be posting on our facebooks throughout the day links to Spencer and Whitney's adoption blog, profile, and FB page. We will also be writing on our blog about Whitney and Spencer. We will then in turn ask the people who see those posts to share them with people they know through facebook or blogs. We want to create a chain reaction to lead people all over the country to their adoption profile.
There's no specific time of day or number of posts that we're asking for and you can all do it in your own way. You are welcome to simply copy and paste our blog post (I will be posting Monday morning), or share our FB links. We would just love it if everyone did what they felt would be helpful.

Here is the link to Spencer and Whitney's adoption profile:
https://itsaboutlove.org/ial/profiles/26506714/ourMessage.jsf

And here is the link to their adoption blog:
http://spencerandwhitneyadoption.blogspot.com/

Please feel free to forward this email to any other people you think might be interested. Thank you for supporting them and we are excited to all work together this Monday!

Love,
Mike and Shari Satko

P.S. I am doing a giveaway to thank all of you lovely friends who have helped us spread the word.  Hop on over to our adoption blog to find out how to enter. 

Friday, September 23, 2011

Breaking News

 

WE

ARE

APPROVED

 

 

 

(WE ARE APPROVED!)… to adopt of course.

Yes we are. Yes we are!

Hooray!

Feel free to visit our profile,

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Black and White Photos

I had the COOLEST photo opportunity this weekend.  You can hop over here to see more cute pictures like this one:

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Thursday, September 15, 2011

Getting Our Hopes Up

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My dear friend Katie sent me a link to this post.  And it has gotten me thinking. 

Our family is growing.  You can’t see it yet, but we are. 

So many times I have hoped for our baby, but not allowed myself to get too excited yet.  Adoption has quite a mysterious gestation period.  I haven’t wanted to get my hopes up too high when we very likely have a long wait ahead of us.  We could potentially be parents in a few months… or a few years.   

But what good is it to have your hopes down?

I don’t know how long we have to wait to find our baby. 

I do know that he or she is coming.  I have felt it. 

So I have let myself do a little planning.  We decided on a theme for the nursery, one that will work for a baby boy or baby girl.  And I made some vintage hot air balloon models to hang from the ceiling.  They make me so happy.  It was so much fun to make something for our baby. 

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Sometimes people don’t know how to react when we tell them we are adopting.  They know, as we do, that sometimes failed placements happen and sometimes adoption can be hard.  Some well-meaning individuals have felt the need to warn us of possible worst-case scenarios.  But you don’t tell someone who announces their pregnancy, “You, know, you might have a miscarriage.”  You are happy for them and hopeful that all will go well.

There might be some bumps in the road.  However, I believe that things will work out.  I would rather live with positivity than with fear or skepticism.  We’re choosing to take problems as they come, rather than fretting about what might be.  We are not na├»ve, just optimistic. 

It’s a much happier way of being. 

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

This Makes Four

This may not be the best picture of my latest quilt (my fourth one!  Boo-yeah!), but hopefully you get the general idea.  I made this for my sister, Chelsey, for her high school graduation/going to college gift.  I was literally packing it in my suitcase when I realized that I hadn’t even taken a picture of all of my hard work before it made its way to its new home.  *GASP* So I quickly snapped a few pictures before heading out the door. 
quilt
Chelsey is a music performance major, so I found this fabric to be very appropriate.  I took Spencer with me to pick it out.  He just LOVES helping me pick out fabric, let me tell you.  It’s his favorite thing EVER.  Nothing like strolling up and down aisles of craft supplies, rubbing elbows with a bunch of coupon clutching women, while your wife agonizes over which polka dot print is best.  He’s a good sport though, he really is.  And he did tell me that the fabrics I picked out were very “Chelseyish,” which is totally what I was going for.
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I was excited to realize that I’m getting a bit better with every quilt.  This was my best one yet. 
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I was especially pleased that it matched the theme of her room.  I spent a lot of time sneakily urging Chelsey to get a bedspread with pink or green in it so it would match.  The quilt was a surprise gift, so I didn’t want to give anything away as I offered my humble decorating advice and subtle hints like, “I really wish I would have decorated my dorm room in pink.  It’s my one college regret.”  I’m just kidding.  Pink is her favorite color so I knew that’s what she’d pick anyways.  I wouldn’t coerce my sister in to decorating her dorm room my way. 
Right Chelsey?
Right?   

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Book Launch Party and Movie Screening

So remember that AWESOME book I was talking about?  


Well, if you liked my book/movie recommendation, or even if you haven't gotten a chance to check it out yet, I have a super cool event to tell you about.  

To celebrate the book release of "My Girlfriend's Boyfriend," a launch party is being held at 5 pm on Saturday, September 10th at Jordan Commons, 9400 S. State Street, Sandy, Utah. The fete, which is open to the public, will feature a screening of the movie beginning at 6 pm to benefit Project Read, prizes provided by local companyand a featured plotline in the movie and novelXlear, the makers of Spry Gum, and a book signing with Barnes & Noble. 

Plus, Elodia Strain, the author of the book, is going to be there.  So is Daryn Tuffts, the writer and director of the movie.  

How cool is that?  I am jealous of all of you people who live in Utah who have the option of attending.  I wanna go so bad!  Alas the journey would take me many moons... or at least many hours.  Sigh...  

Some of you will just have to go for me and tell me all about it.  

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

My Angels

I am so overwhelmed that I hardly know where to begin. 

I think one of the most painful human emotions is loneliness.  Infertility can create some very lonely times.  The time when you are sitting in church listening to a lesson on parenthood.  The time when you are at lunch with your friends trying to smile while they swap pregnancy stories.  The time when you're at a baby shower wondering if your turn will ever come.  The time when you hide out in your home on Mother's Day trying to forget that you don't fit in.  The time when you fall in a heap on the bathroom floor because it didn't work...again.  It's lonely living in a world where many people simply can't understand your pain.  

Then, the reminders that I'm not alone come.  The hand-made card in the mail.  The sweet e-mail from a person I've never even met.  The cheerful phone call.  The thoughtful text.  The unexpected visit or plate of cookies.  The warm hug.  The peaceful feeling in my heart that my Savior knows my pain and has suffered it for me.  

This morning I logged on to my e-mail to find dozens upon dozens of messages, each one containing words of encouragement and hope.  Words simply cannot describe what this means to me.  

Kari, over at Ucreate wrote the sweetest post about Spencer and me.  I am still in awe that she took time out of her busy day to do something so kind for us.  

Thank you, thank you sweet friends.  Thank you for reminding me that I am never alone!  Thank you for caring!  Thank you for your support!  Words truly seem inadequate to describe how much this means to me.  You are amazing, and I am very humbled to be the recipient of your kindness.  You are my angels.   

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Chelsetto

Take a look at this picture:


This is my little sister, Chelsey.  Did you think for a second that it was a picture of me?  I am sort of creeped out how eerily she looks like me in that photo.  If I wouldn't have taken it, I might have wondered if it actually WAS a picture of me.  We look a lot alike.  In a lot of ways, we act alike too.  Even though we're eight years apart in age, she's one of my best friends.  


This girl just started her first semester of college at BYU.  I went with my parents to drop her off, and was kind of having a heart attack the whole time because my baby sister is in college!  That makes me OLD!   


I sound like a geezer saying this, but I'm going to do it anyways.  It seriously doesn't seem all that long ago when Chelsey was just a little girl.  

Even in my youth, I loved to dabble in photography.  Chelsey was often my unwilling subject.  I would bribe her to let me fix her hair and put make-up on her and let me take her picture.  I would set up my own little photography studio using a sheet as a backdrop and have Chesley pose for me for as long as her patience could stand it.  I should seriously track down some of those photos to share with you guys.  They were awesome.  

When I was looking at these senior pictures I took of her, I kind of got choked up remembering the little girl whose picture I had taken so many times.  

She's all grown up.  She's all grown up and so beautiful and off on her own big adventure.  How did that happen so fast?


I am so grateful for her example.  She is so wonderful, talented, kind, and genuine.  I know she's going to do amazing things with her life.  I can't wait to see what's in store for her.  I'm so proud of my little sister.