About Us

We are Steve, Jamie, Sam, Ben, and Sasha - six folks who love the Lord, love adventure, and love each other.

We live in Orem Utah and in our spare time love to ski (telemark and cross-country for the parents, alpine for the boys), camp, hike, and enjoy the Utah outdoors. We're super-involved with the amazing CenterPoint Church, our family out here in Utah.

And if this blog isn't enough Morningstar History to satiate your appetite (and apparently hundreds of hours of free time), click here to read our newsletters from 2001-2007.

This is us - Steve and Jamie.  We were both raised in Westminster, Maryland and, nauseatingly, were high school sweethearts.  We were married just after Jamie's freshman year of college and have been married for a never-boring 17 years.  We moved to Utah in 2001 and since then Steve's kept busy working at the Sundance Resort and taking care of the kiddos full-time while Jamie (clearly the boring one) is a Software Product Manager at Qualtrics.

When not doing dishes or wrangling kids or working, we love attending live concerts together,  snapping photos (Jamie), blogging (duh, Jamie), working on our '87 Volkswagen Vanagon Westy (Steve), playing board games, cycling with Team Cycle 4 Cure, and doing pretty much anything as long as we can do it together.

Our two other passions are the lives of the world's 210 million orphans and encouraging young women to consider and pursue careers in technology. Jamie is a member of the founding committee of the Utah NCWIT Aspirations in Computing Award, which honors young women with an interest and aptitude for computing. She also helped found Qualtrics Women Leadership Development. Jamie organizes an annual work trip to the Hogar de Amor orphanage in Colima, Mexico. She is also is a proud member of the Board of Directors of Creating a Family, the nation's leading educational foundation for adoption and infertility.

Sam is a our precocious oldest child. Currently, Sam loves Kerbal Space Program and all things NASA.  He's been working hard on learning to program computers (go geeks!) and plans to study computer science eventually.

Sam's our independent kid and also the classically responsible (read: sometimes bossy) oldest sibling. He's a perfectly sweet and protective older brother as long as his sisters don't mess with his Legos.

Ben is one crazy kid and always keeps us hopping and entertained. Ben is active and loves unicycling, climbing just about anything, including the walls, and bouncing around the house. Literally. Oh, and he loves video games (you'll note the theme - I think this is what happens when you had a stay-at-home Dad). He also taught himself to cross his eyes on command.  We are so proud.

Ben likes listening to audiobooks, playing board games with his family and friends (if he invites you to play Munchkin, just walk away).

Sasha gives Ben a run for his money in the crazy kiddo department! Sasha has never met a challenge she couldn't overcome or an animate object that she couldn't boss. She loves all things fuzzy, first and foremost our dogs. In kindergarten, she  was determined to be a puppy when she grows up but has shifted interests to veterinary medicine.

Sasha was born in Karaganda, Kazkahstan and became Alexandra Grace Morningstar (Sasha is the short nickname for Alexandra) in February of 2009, just before her second birthday. If you're curious about our Kazakhstan adoption timeline, it's posted in exhaustive detail on the blog, including links to important dates and events in our pursuit of Sasha.

Sasha was born with a wide cleft palate, which we had repaired after she arrived in the U.S.  If you'd like to read our thoughts about cleft kiddos, check out our post,"Adopting a child with a cleft" and the related links.

WanYing is the youngest Morningstar kiddo. She is super-duper independent and super-duper sweet. She loves to cuddle and coo over her babies and always has to sleep with a doll or two. She's also a chatterbox and never misses a chance to talk on the phone, real or imagined.

WanYing was born in Jiangxi Province, China, and just got home in March of 2011, a month after she turned two. You're welcome to check out our China adoption timeline for more details on our experiences in China.

WanYing was born with Amniotic Banding Syndrome (ABS) affecting the fingers of both hands and the toes of her right foot. You can read in our blog about our experiences with ABS.

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