I truly don’t feel like there is a person on earth that gets more excited for summer than me.  I claim to be solar powered (really, it’s a thing) and after the harsh northern Ohio winter, I need the sun.  I need sun rays on my face and lazy days in the pool. This summer is special, though, because I graduated from Kent State University a few weeks ago and therefore have no homework or classes to worry about. The past few summers I’ve taken classes, so making goals outside of my schooling has been hard. Not this summer! I have three months of sun and happiness ahead of me. There will probably be some awesome rain storms and killer crackling thunder. Oh, and lightening bugs—I can’t forget them!

There are some goals I’ve had in the back of my head in regards to adoption that I am excited to work toward this summer. At first, my goals were rooted in the hope for a second child, but it isn’t going necessarily how I thought it would. These detours have caused me pause and I realized there are many things that I want to work on that have to do with my son, his birth parents, and his adoption. I’d love to share them with you.

1) I want to make a book depicting Harley’s adoption story.  I’ve seen many of my fellow adoptive mamas create fun and touching books for their children about their adoption stories.  This book will include information spanning from when we decided to adopt, to meeting Harley’s birth mother, and ending in his placement. I think this will be a beautiful way to keep his adoption story alive in his brain and heart, as well as in my heart. Adoption is hard, and it can get me down. However, when I think of the journey to Harley, I can’t help but smile and feel nothing but love for the process. 

2) Daily photos for chat books.  I won’t even try to hide my love for Chatbooks. This app has changed my life and allowed me to photo journal via Instagram.  I made a goal in January to take a photo a day of my son. It’s been so fun, and even though I forget sometimes, it is becoming more of a habit. I finished the first “Daily Boog” volume and I can’t wait to send it to Harley’s birth parents. The photos from this summer will no doubt create another spectacular album. 

3) Hang out with my adoptive mama friends. This might seem like a “duh” goal, but living in Ohio has been hard in this aspect. I have a few friends here who have adopted, and I love that when we hang out I can talk about adoption to someone who gets it. However, I left behind so many friends in Utah that I miss every day. They are my support team. Through hard work, I have been able to plan a trip to Utah this summer! I can’t wait to fulfill this goal and soak in the knowledge from other adoptive mamas. I also love that Harley has so many friends who are adopted. I know these kids don’t really care if their friends are adopted or not, but I hope that as Harley grows, he will continue these friendships. I know there will be a time when Harley is sad/frustrated/feels out of place because he is adopted (although I pray super hard that this won’t happen). I think these friendships will help him and me with these situations.   Never underestimate the power of friendship. 

4) Read adoption-centered books. I purchased a few books in recent months that center on adoption.  “Before You Were Mine” by Susan TeBos and Carissa Woodwyk, “The Adoption Triangle” by Arthur D. Sorosky, and “Adoption Nation: How the Adoption Revolution is Transforming Our Families—and American” by Adam Pertman.  I feel like I still have so much to learn about adoption, and considering reading is one of my favorite things to do, this is a great way to gain education and learn more about adoption in general. I am also planning on keeping a notebook handy, so I can jot down thoughts I have while reading. There are unique circumstances that surround raising an adopted child, and as a parent, I want to have as much knowledge on my side as possible. 

There you have it, some fun summer adoption goals. I am always ready to add more to my list, so share yours!