Friday, November 20, 2009


This year marks the 10th anniversary of National Adoption Day, a national day of celebration of adoptive families and an opportunity for courts to open their doors and finalize adoptions. Since 2000, more than 25,000 children have had their adoptions finalized on National Adoption Day. Here in Yuma County we are celebrating on November 20.

Today 20 November 2009 Sakura .... officially became

Peyton Sakura Shimizu
Honorable Maria Cruz signing our final decree of adoption.
Honorable Maria Cruz with us, everything is final.
Sakura's attorney (District Attorney) Jon Smith with us.
Daddy receiving our Order Granting Adoption copy.

Although Sakura has been our daughter since we found out we were parents to a baby girl back on February 9th, and then finally held our daughter when she was delivered to us by Taz, Okada San and Manami back on March 22nd, today is a very special and important day to us.
Grandma brought a special afghan for Sakura. This afghan had been started by my Grandma who passed away about 5 1/2 years ago and finished by my Mom's friend Karen, so a piece of Great Grandma was here with us to celebrate too which was very special.

Peyton Sakura looked adorable in her pretty red dress, and she was a perfect little angel during the ceremony, she sat pretty quiet throughout the proceedings, while we were being questioned, and then even clapped at the appropriate time, when they announced that the petition to adopt was granted....
Everyone was surprised, but I think Sakura knew everything was now "Official" ;o)

Today more than 20 families were part of the celebration at the court house, we were lucky and we were first on the calendar.
This was Judge Cruz' first adoption, we think it was a great way for her to start the day!

We were joined by my Mom and David, and several close friends, Carla, Alan and Gracie, and Katie, we know that many others would have come if they were able.
We went to our "special place" which is where we were when we received our phone call from Taz telling us that we had a baby girl, Mimi's, for brunch after the ceremony at the court house. Thank You ALL for joining in our celebration!

Today our celebration wouldn't have been possible if it weren't for many people.
First of all Airi, Sakura's BioMom, there isn't a day that passes that I don't think about her, wondering if she knows how much we love our daughter and how grateful and appreciative we are for her selfless act. Yukie, Sakura's BioGrandma, she also had to sign away rights to Sakura and I'm sure she played a huge roll in Airi's decision to give up Sakura - I hope they both know that there isn't a day that passes that I don't think about both of them. I want them to know how very special they both are, how much Sakura is loved, and what a special gift they gave us. I also want them to know how happy Sakura is, she might be tough to "make smile" but she's a happy little girl, she makes us cry, laugh, and smile every single day.
We are SO lucky and blessed to be her parents!

We also thank Taz, who without her giving so much of her time and energy to us and for us and all of the adoptive families, wouldn't be where we are today.

Taz will always be our guardian angel.

We also thank Okada San, like Taz, Okada San gives her life to these babies, taking impeccable care of them while in her care.

Lesley at Across The World Adoptions, without this program we would not have Sakura, Lesley gave us her undivided attention during our process, we don't know how we would have filled out the dossier without her guidance.

Eryn and Gregor Cech - the Japan "pilot" family and very special friends, who were persistent in their dreams of adopting a baby from Japan, if they hadn't pursued their dreams, we wouldn't be celebrating today! Thank you for making our dreams come true too!

Equally important, we would like to thank our family and friends, without your prayers, support and encouragement, we wouldn't be celebrating today with our beautiful daughter.

Thank You all very much!

Peyton Sakura we love you beyond measure, we are SO proud to be your parents today and every day. You are our angel, the gift we thought we would never have but always wanted ~ we never dreamed life could be so good....

As this poem by Maureen Hawkins reads:

Before you were conceived I wanted you~
Before you were born I loved you~
Before you were here an hour, I would die for you~
This is the miracle of life.


Misty Clark said...

What a beautiful post! You sure know how to bring tears to my eyes. At least these are tears of joy. What a wonderful day and Sakura sure looked pretty in that red dress. You all look so happy. Congratulations Shimizu Family!

Adoptive Mommy x 3 said...

Congrats Shimizu family!!! We love you guys and are happy beyond words that P.S. is "official". What a beautiful day and a beautiful family!

The Cechs
(G, E, e, n & m)

demetrisfamily said...

CONGRATS Jennifer, Dean and Sakura! What a beautiful family of three of you are and how wonderful for Sakura to officially become a Shimizu! Great post and beautiful pics of your gorgeous little cherry blossom in her pretty red dress and headband. Mommy and Daddy looked pretty great too!

Kai said...

CONGRATULATIONS Shimizus! Peyton Sakura looked beautiful as ever in her red dress. So cute that she clapped at the right time (I'm sure she knew what was happening too ;P) Hugs to you all.
The Matsumotos

Mel said...

Congratulations! We're so happy for you guys.

Cynthia, Daniel, and Cameron said...

What a beautiful family!!! Peyton Sakura looked absolutely adorable in her red dress and I loved how she knew when to clap too! :) Wonderful post and beautiful pictures! We're so happy for you! Congratulations Shimizu family!!!

David, Samantha and Kaori said...

Congratulations. I know what a great feeling it is and it looks like you had a wonderful day celebrating with friends and family! Now on to the Holidays!!!

Carrie said...

Jennifer, I love this post and can't stop crying. How special. What a wonderful day and celebration. The courts aren't as fast here in CT. We have submitted our paperwork and are waiting...

We are SO happy for you! Lots of love!

cpayne1997 said...

Congratulations Shimizu Family! Your post brought tears to my eyes, I could not be happier for you. Love to you all.

beem221 said...

CONGRATULATIONS!!! Those pictures are great and perfectly capture your special day. Thanks for sharing them with us. I love Sakura's red dress!