Sunday, December 23, 2012

Baby Photo Shoot

A couple years ago, we were lucky enough to find Amy Soper to be our wedding photographer. She did an absolutely amazing job! Now that Dominic's here, she quickly volunteered to come do his first photo shoot! One of our favorites is below, and many more are on Amy's blog.

Thanks again, Amy!

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Winter's Here!

One of the fun things about having a newborn is that people love to give you baby clothes. Seriously, I don't think we'll have to buy Dominic an outfit for at least 6 months. And with a November birthday, a number of those outfits are winter or Christmas related.

With that in mind, Dominic wanted to do some modelling!

"Yeah, Santa asked me to fill in up north this year."
"No, no, no, the lighting is all wrong!"
"This is much better."
"Who's this guy?"
"No, too close, too close!"
"If I plank some more, will this be over faster?"
"Absolutely not. Mittens? On a onesie? Really?"
"This is much more to my liking."
"Baby camo time! Can you find me?"
"Pete can't find me, that's for sure."
"Hmm, I think I can make this outfit better..."
"...with a popped collar! Totally going for the preppy look."
"Or do I just look like a baby vampire?"

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Happy 1-Month Birthday, Dominic!

Yesterday marked 1 month that Dominic has been around, and I couldn't let the day go by without a little recognition! We celebrated by (wait for it...) going to Safeway and Costco! Dominic had his first big outing to the stores, which he promptly slept through. I was a tad nervous about taking him somewhere that people might come up and start poking and prodding at him, but luckily having him in the Baby Björn carrier so close to my body seemed to keep people at bay.

Back at home, Dominic decided to recognize the day with a few photos:

Dominic contemplates his old age.
"Would you stop it with the paparazzi act?"
Okay, fine. I'll just sleep.
He's growing so fast! From a birth weight of 7 lbs 8 oz, he's now up to 9 lbs 10.5 oz. And he's already outgrowing some of his clothes! I can only imagine what month 2 will bring...

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Ready, Set, Married!

First comes love,
Then comes marriage,
Then comes baby in a baby carriage!

... oh, right. How about this one:

First comes love,
Then comes baby,
Then comes marriage in a state-sanctioned ceremony?

In general, Brian and I have tried to stay away from posting too much about political topics here, preferring instead to focus on adoption and how we're creating our family. But the events of this past weekend deserve at least a passing mention! Back in February, Brian wrote about how our governor signed a marriage equality bill into law, meaning that we might soon be able to get married. And this weekend, on December 9, 2012, we did just that!

We got married!
Taking a step back, I should say that marriage equality has been quite the journey in Washington state. After our legislature passed the law and the governor signed it in February, a signature drive ensured that the law would actually go up for a popular vote in the November election. The ensuing months were nerve-wracking, especially since no marriage equality measures in the US had ever passed in a vote before. But after an unprecedented amount of success on November 6, we finally had an answer: our home state was ready to recognize that our relationship is just as valid as any other!

Laws passed by referenda in Washington take effect 30 days after the election, so marriage equality became official on December 6. And so down we went to the King County Administrative Building to get our licenses, just about as soon as we could! They opened at 12:01am that morning, and stayed open until 6:30pm - the previous record of 212 licenses issued in a day was already shattered in the first three hours. All told, there were 489 couples issued a license that first day. Amazing!

We wanted to try to avoid the rush, especially since we had to take care of Dominic, so we waited until after he woke us up for a 3am feeding to go downtown. My mom stayed and watched him while we left, and around 3:45 we were couple number 243 in line:

They still gave us a number, even though
there was almost no line at 3:45am.
By this time of the morning, the midnight rush had all but dissipated, and there were only 5 or 6 couples ahead of us in line. We whisked right through it, and before we knew it had a marriage license!

Brian was tired, but waited patiently.

Mission Accomplished!
Despite the thinning out of the crowd, King County Executive Dow Constantine was still there after 4 hours, signing personalized commemorative marriage licenses for any couple who wanted one. And as a symbolic gesture, he was using the same pen that Governor Christine Gregoire used to sign the marriage equality bill into law. I'm still astounded at the level of support from our elected officials; this was just the first of many examples.

Marriage license signed by King County Executive Dow Constantine.
After getting the license, Washington has a mandatory 3-day waiting period for all couples. The first day for weddings, therefore, was December 9, 2012. City Hall had pulled together an all-volunteer wedding day, free for any couple who wanted to come and get married; and somehow, Brian and I managed to RSVP quickly enough to get a spot! We were one of 142 couples scheduled to marry on that first day in Seattle City Hall. Seattle Mayor Mike McGinn was on hand, greeting couples as they entered:

With Seattle Mayor Mike McGinn, just before our wedding
And how wonderful to have Dominic join us!

Two grooms and a baby!
All the judges were donating their time too.
Brian and I have an absolutely wonderful set of family and friends, and we were pleased to have a small group join us for the ceremony. My parents were able to be there, as well as a couple friends who were in our original wedding party two years ago. And of course Dominic was there, and his birth mom Carly came up from Tacoma to join in the festivities as well.

What a wonderful, joy-filled day. Getting married ourselves was exciting, of course, but seeing so many happy couples everywhere was one of the most heart-warming feelings ever. Every few minutes there'd be a fresh round of cheers from some new couple getting married, just adding to the joy.

As we left City Hall, we got to make an exit down the grand staircase to a crowd of cheering people - talk about surreal! Dominic made the trek with us, and it was captured by a few different folks:

Photo by Matt Stopera for BuzzFeed
Photo by Matt Stopera for BuzzFeed
I love watching all the happy couples come down the stairs!
We're at about the 1:35 mark.

So now we're an "official" family! Brian and I have considered ourselves a married couple since our wedding in July 2010, but it's still an absolutely momentous day when the state recognizes us as the same. Congrats to all the other happy couples as well!

Sunday, December 9, 2012

Dominic's Artistic Side

Dominic was really awake this morning around 7am.  After having most of his breakfast, we went downstairs to play with some toys.  Then I realized that he was really in an artistic mood when I was getting looks like these:

Ugh. Do you have your camera ready yet?
Ok, let's do this.  Here is my 'I'm too cool to care' pose.
Time for a moment of reflection and long-distance thinking.
I'm cute. You know. I know it. PS: Send a copy of this to Summer.

Following Dominic's masterful works of art and a showing of Blue Steel, I decided to take it to the next level to see if he could play the role of Houdini.  My current favorite toy for him (thanks to Brett and Kathleen!) is a fun little elephant with a green ring on one end and a yellow ring on the other which makes for some perfect magic trick handcuffs!
Oh no, I'm trapped!

Must... escape.

 Oh wait, he escaped that easily.  He's so bright and has a great future ahead of him. Also, this might just be proof that I shouldn't get up too early and be left alone with Dominic for too long without adult supervision  :)

Meanwhile, today Andy and I are getting legally married.  It'll be Dominic's biggest outing beyond the house and we'll also get to see Carly again!  We might not get a post up right away, but look for one in the near future.

Friday, December 7, 2012

3 Week Videos

We've been around a number of babies recently, and none of them have liked tummy time. So it's surprising to see Dominic so calm with it!

And meanwhile, Brian's discovered a new way to wake up the little one:

Fun times had by all!

Monday, December 3, 2012

Field trip! work

Dominic is officially 3 weeks old now!  Well before Dominic was born, I planned on checking out a laptop from work and working part time from home during December.  Today just made for a good day to get out of the house and take Dominic on his first real trip out into the world.  (His other 3 trips have all been appointment related, so they don't count!)

In a way, it was a lot of fun to take Dominic out for a couple hours.  We used our battleship(stroller) for the first time, and Dominic got to meet a lot of my coworkers.  It was heart warming to see how excited many of them were to see Dominic.  Several people also went in on a giftcard which was really nice.  I'm sure Andy and I will be making some store runs to get Dominic some fun things as he continues to grow.  Just earlier tonight, I noticed that one of my favorite newborn onesie outfits for him was getting a little tight.

On the work side of things, it was fun to see so many coworkers that I hadn't seen for the past 3 weeks.  However, it also meant that I was beginning the transition back into the work realm.  The past three weeks have been amazing, trying, draining, and extremely rewarding.  Dominic has grown so much in such a short span of time that I wish I could stay home from work even longer to see him grow and develop.  Luckily, I'll still be home until Jan 2nd, but that date suddenly looks to much closer than it did before today.  I'm really hoping to do as much as I can and make more trips out of the house with Dominic before I have to go back to the office in less than a month.