Want to know what the most nerve racking thing to ever do? and by nerve racking I mean doubtful, indecisive, unsure, excited, hopeful, and then one more big scoop of unsureness just to make it nail biting. It's not jumping out of a plane, or going skydiving, or even walking with a lion, (which I've done by the way, another story, another time) as one would expect. Oh no, it's the simple but totally not simple task of making an Adoption Profile Book.
This single, little book is the deciding factor for a birth mom. She views them. Reads them. Chooses from them. And then decides that your family is the possible best fit for her child all based on 20 pages of images and text. This book is the gateway to our son. N to the ERVE racking. I labored over this baby for weeks and weeks. Some pages would be completely done and then the nerves set in and I'd completely redo it.
FINALLY, I was done & it was over and all the indecisiveness paid off. To me, it's perfect. Oh you know, besides the world "sunggle" instead of "snuggle" if you know me, you know that OF COURSE I'd have one tiny word slip all the peoples eyes who proof read it. Story of my life. Even so, it's still true to us. HA!
My inspiration came from a family drawing sweet Emily did for us after C was born. I scanned in her drawings and used Photoshop to create the individual pages. I then loaded these pages into BLURB software (it's free and downloads right to your computer) and from there made and ordered the book. If you aren't as tech savvy, you can create the entire book inside BLURB software. It's so incredibly easy to navigate. I planned to use my photography lab to have these printed, but because we needed several copies, BLURB prices were more affordable, and not to mention still amazing quality!
I absolutely love how it turned out. It's so us. So many of the profile books I viewed at our agency as examples were just too boring, and they really didn't represent the families personalities. I'm so thankful for Emily's drawings, because they were exactly what I needed to make our book pop, and hopefully stand out to the birth mom.
If you are an adoptive family viewing this for tips and tricks, here are my few suggestions:
-Start on this sucker weeks in advance. Trust me. You'll need it.
-Photos, Photos, Photos!!! Choose photos that tell a story!
-More images than text... I kinda didn't follow this own suggestion, even though I really tried.
-Use a design that really reflects your family verses just cute vector images or scrap book looks.
-Keep the book 20 pages or less. you don't want to overwhelm.
-Keep it crisp & use layouts. Collages of images can work, but make sure they is a layout to it.
-Use simple sentences and words. Keep it at a basic reading level.
-Don't use cookie cutter text. You can't tell, but we really let our personalities shine through our text, -Josh joked around a lot, and I wrote like I was talking to her in person.
-Use relevant photos. Showing images of years passed could be confusing to the birth mother. Let them see what your life is like NOW.
If you have any further questions, feel free to email me! My info is on my contact page.
&& I'll leave you with our adoption profile video. We are allowed to substitute a third image for our web profile with a video. We jumped on it! It's a chance for the birth mom to get an even better feel for what our family is like. I suggest asking a friend or even hiring a professional to shoot your video for you. Our friend and professional, Evan Logan, did ours. He did and incredible job. Just remember... MAKE IT YOU!!!
oh, and one last thing, if you are short on funds, you can check out my adoption giveaway HERE. It helped us raise $2400! Need more info, email me! I'm here to help!! Us adoptive mommas gotta unite:)