Friday, December 17, 2010

Waiting

We hit our first bump in the road. I have heard that there are many on the road to adoption and have tried to prepare myself for these setbacks. But, I have to admit that I have been really frustrated...mainly with myself. It seems like everything takes so much longer when your child is waiting on the other end!

For the last month or so I have been waiting on my drivers license. I realized the day after our fingerprinting appointment, while sorting through our dossier, that my background check had my old address on it because my DL had my old address. I immediately requested a new license and thought I would probably get it before our 171 arrived, or at least around the same time. I think our 171 arrived in record time only 7 DAYS after our fingerprinting appointment. I know families that waited months for this piece of paper. I was THRILLED to get it so quickly! So the only thing we waited on was my new license. We waited and waited and waited and waited and now it is here! I received it on Monday, took it to the police station on Tuesday and am praying I get a call today to pick up my completed background check!

We are getting so close to being on the wait list for our baby and I can hardly stand it. Seriously, how do I love someone so deeply that I have never seen or felt before, who more than likely is not even born yet! The Lord certainly is preparing our hearts for this child and in all of this teaching me how to wait on Him. I will be doing a lot of waiting and my prayer is that I do it prayerfully and faithfully.

"WAIT for the LORD; be strong and take heart and WAIT for the LORD."
Psalm 27:14

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

I-Pad Raffle

My brother, sister-in-law, and their 3 kids are gearing up for a mission trip to Rwanda in December. They are holding an I-Pad raffle to raise money for their trip. Raffle tickets are $10. Cool deal, huh! If it goes well for them, we may just have to try it. You can read more about it HERE.

Orphan Sunday update coming soon...

Thursday, November 4, 2010

October in Pictures

We had a very busy and very fun October! We kicked it off with a visit from Nana and Bopa!
Henry, Edie and the grandparents!



A trip to the Pumpkin Patch
(Edie enjoyed posing for the camera. Henry, not so much!)



Lots of pumpkin activities



Soccer Games


A Halloween party with friends from church complete with games, s'mores, hay ride, costumes and candy!



and TRICK-OR-TREATING!

Friday, October 8, 2010

WOYH

Check out what we're up to at Written On Your Heart.

Overwhelming Generosity

We knew when we started this process that we were going to need to raise a portion of the money needed to adopt. I have heard it said that 80% of all adopting families are "fundraising families" and I certainly believe it. The cost to adopt domestically and internationally are insanely high! So, we have made t-shirts, had a garage sale, worked Laura like crazy on our Written On Your Heart business and throughout all of this, I have been blown away by the generosity of our family, friends, acquaintances and even strangers!

Thank you Lord for providing for us! And thank YOU, to my old friends and my new friends that have come along side us in this journey to support us whether it be financially or emotionally. We appreciate and love you! We will always remember the role you are playing in this great adventure!


Monday, September 27, 2010

Guess what we got in the mail today?

....our HOMESTUDY!!!!! And, it will be sent to the USCIS first thing tomorrow morning. We are so thankful to have this part of our journey complete, finally! We are one step closer to you sweet baby.

Friday, September 3, 2010

Henry's Birthday Party...Superhero Style

Henry had a fun birthday party with just the boys and their daddies, complete with a water balloon and silly string fight! I am not sure who had more fun, the little boys or the big boys.

Henry showing his spidey skills

Henry and Daddy

Henry and Edie

Henry and Mommy




I wish I had some pictures of the water balloon and silly string fight. It was hilarious. I really do think the daddies may have had more fun than the kids!

Henry is loving being 5. He would say that he has waited FOREVER to turn 5! The four weeks between Collin's birthday and his seem like an eternity to a kid that can't stand that his cousin is older...even if it is only by 30 days.

Henry, you are such a fun kid! We love you so much and are so proud of the sweet boy you are growing into. We are blessed to be you Mommy and Daddy!

Sunday, August 22, 2010

little mountain, my foot!

My family along with my parents and 3 of my 4 siblings all went to Little Rock last weekend for my cousin's wedding. It was so great to all be there together again after so many years away. When my grandparents were living we would go frequently and my brothers and sisters and I have such great memories of our time there. In an effort in nostalgia, the boys decided to climb Pinnacle Mt., which we used to do every year with my grandparents. We remembered it being a big mountain, but were convinced that it must have seemed big because we were small. Boy, were we wrong. Not only is it big, but there is also a difficult side and an easy side you can climb. Anyone want to guess which side my brother lead all the guys (including our little boys) up? Opps! They ended up hiking straight up Pinnacle Mountain in the blistering heat, but they had a ball. And, Herny has not stopped talking about climbing a "real" mountain.
On Sunday, Henry's actual birthday, my Aunt Meredith had a birthday brunch for Henry, Taylor and Chandler. It was a fun celebration with the cousins! Thanks, Meredith for making it such a special day for the kids!


The kids were exhausted on the way home. I'd say that is a great indiction that they had a fun weekend!


More birthday celebrations to come...



Friday, August 13, 2010

WOYH Giveaway

Our very talented photographer friend, Cassie, is doing a Written On Your Heart giveaway on her photography blog. I am so excited to be partnering up with Cassie. She is such a great photographer with a heart for orphan care. Check out her photography company here to see what she is doing for adoptive families in the area and enter for a chance to win a $45 gift certificate from WOYH.



Thursday, August 5, 2010

Canvas Fundraiser

Our canvases are finally ready to be purchased! Each canvas is a gallery-wrapped 16x20 and costs $60 (plus shipping). If you are interested in buying one, you can email me at woyheart@yahoo.com. All of the proceeds will go to help bring our baby home from Ethiopia.
Here they are...

On a different note, we have all of our home study visits scheduled. Yeah! I like having it on the calendar and knowing that things are starting to move right along...for now anyway :)


Tuesday, July 20, 2010

4.8 Million Orphans in Ethiopia

I came across this video on another AWAA family's blog today and wanted to share it. There are 4.8 million orphans in Ethiopia and this video gives a glimpse into who these children are and where and how they live. I am in love with these beautiful smiles!

Thursday, July 1, 2010

health inspection and canvases

There is not much to report on the adoption front. We FINALLY got our health inspection scheduled- Hallelujah! Once that happens we will be able to send in our home study packet and get our visits set up. Slowly but surely, right?

Laura and I have created 4 adoption canvases that I am so excited about. I will post pictures of those on this blog as well as our WOYH blog once they are available for purchase. We had a hard time picking only four scriptures to use. The Bible is FULL of verses that talk about adoption, orphans, caring for the needy and being a Father to the fatherless. God's love for His children and His command to care for them is clear. He asks (or really commands) all of us to play a role in caring for orphans. How awesome to be part of His redemption story!

Here are a few of the verses that the Lord is using to convict and encourage me...

"Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world." James 1:27

If you say, "But we knew nothing about this," does not he who weighs the heart perceive it?
Does not he who guards your life know it? Will he not repay each person according to what he has done? Proverbs 24:12

"Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in the heavenly realms with every spiritual blessing in Christ. For he chose us in him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in his sight. In love he predestined us to be adopted as his sons through Jesus Christ, in accordance with his pleasure and will— to the praise of his glorious grace, which he has freely given us in the One he loves. In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God's grace that he lavished on us with all wisdom and understanding. And he made known to us the mystery of his will according to his good pleasure, which he purposed in Christ, to be put into effect when the times will have reached their fulfillment—to bring all things in heaven and on earth together under one head, even Christ." Ephesians 1:3-10


Thursday, June 10, 2010

"Paper Pregnant"

I feel pregnant and I LOVE it! I wake up thinking about our baby and go to sleep thinking about our baby. I have no physical reminder of my pregnancy, but I believe God is giving me reminders daily of the precious child that He will bless us with. You know that instinct to hold your belly when your pregnant? We do it before we even have a baby bump. I was constantly touching my belly and patting my babies. This time around I find myself reaching for my heart instead of my stomach. When I think of our baby, talk about him/her, or read anything pertaining to orphans or Ethiopia, I immediately reach for my heart. I do this not only because my heart literally breaks the more I learn about what these precious children have to endure, but also because I believe the Lord is growing this child in my heart. I am longing for the day when I can feel, touch and kiss on our child. But until then I will continue to pray for and pursue him/her with pen and paper, and take great delight in the moments that God gives me when I can "feel" our baby stirring in my heart!

I am going to leave you with a few statistics about the orphans in Ethiopia. These numbers are "heart grabbers" for me. I wish I could think of a great segue into this, but I can't. So, I will give you the hard facts and pray that the Lord blesses it.

In Ethiopia:
- there are 5 million orphans
- 1 out of 20 children born alive die in their first month of life
- 1 out of 10 die before reaching their first birthday
- 1 out of 6 die before their fifth birthday
- 1/3 of the population survives on less than 1 USD a day
- Ethiopia ranks 30th in the world in under-five mortality rate
- only 24% of households have access to safe drinking water

"I will not leave you as orphans; I will come for you." John 14:18

Friday, June 4, 2010

Bring on the paperwork!

We received our approval from AWAA today- woohoo! It all seems so real now. We even got our first stack of paperwork and I have loved organizing, signing and hole-punching all of it! I know, I'm weird. This part of the process is estimated to take 4-6 months. Once we have completed everything and it has been approved, we will be put on the wait list for our sweet baby. Please continue to pray for our family and all of the children waiting for their forever families.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

shout-out to my sis

My sister, Laura, and I started our own business, Written On Your Heart, back in January. A few weeks ago she suggested that all of our profits be used to help pay for our adoption. This is so generous, especially considering she does just about all of the work. We are overwhelmed and so grateful! We are working on creating an adoption/orphan specific canvas. If you have any ideas or scriptures please let us now. In the meantime, check out our blog, woyheart.blogspot.com, and see what we are doing.

Saturday, May 29, 2010

Here we go...


Jason and I have always talked about adoption, even before we were married. We knew we would grow our family this way, but were not sure what that would look like for us. Over the past year the Lord has put adoption and orphan care in front of us over and over again. These past several months Jason and I have prayed, talked and thought about adopting constantly and have received one confirmation after another that we are in line with God's will for us. We believe that God has prepared this time and place for our family to step out in faith and bring home our sweet baby from Ethiopia. We could not be more excited to begin this journey!

We (actually Henry) submitted our application to America World Adoption Agency on May 19. Now we are waiting. I hear we will be doing a lot of that!



We are in awe of the way the Lord is moving in all of this. He has blessed us with friends in the process of adopting, a church that has a heart for orphans and is stirring in big ways, and a family that not only supports us, but is coming along side us in every way! I am overwhelmed by how much our baby is already loved and how willing our family is to do whatever it takes to get him/her home. We are blessed!

So, we are going to hang on tight and enjoy the ride knowing that the Lord will bless us on this journey.