Gotta Get to Ghana...

My oldest two children would LOVE to go to Ghana with us on one of our trips.  Unfortunately, we just aren't sure that we will be able to pay for more plane tickets.  So, they have decided to raise the money themselves!  They are planning to do lemonade and cookie stands on the weekends, make items to sell, and to offer services for a donation.  I love their incentive and I would love to take them to Ghana!  Check out their blog, Gotta Get to Ghana, and stay tuned for some hand made items for sale!  So proud of these two!


Missing them

I never could have imagined missing someone I have never seen (in person) so very much.  I stare at my baby's faces multiple times throughout the day and long to have them in my arms.  In one aspect this is very similar to a pregnancy.  I know I am "expecting" and I am anxious to meet these new little ones but the big difference is I am the one caring for the child/ren when they are safe in my womb.  Right now, half way across the world, complete (to me) strangers are caring for my children.  MY children!  I should be the one feeding them, reading them stories, giving kisses when they fall, cuddling them when they are scared, tickling their bellies and hearing their sweet laughter.  I thought I knew how difficult this would be but you just never know until you are living it.  I pray that we are able to get our paper work in order, get all the fees paid in a timely manner, and get our babies home very soon! 

Please join me in praying. 


Not flesh of my flesh, nor bone of my bone...

...but still miraculously my own.  Never forget for a single minute, you grew not under my heart but in it!

I have seen this poem a hundred times and I am amazed at how it touches me now that we have been matched with our babies.  Instantly, the mother bear comes out.  I want to protect and care for these precious little ones that are so far away.

My babies are small tiny!  When I first converted their measurements I was sure they were off.  In my mind there was no way they could be that little.  Well, after some research it seems it is quite possible they are, in fact, that little.  Malnourishment and parasites are expected with these little ones.  This makes my heart break in two.  This also reminds me of how much I have to be thankful for. 

Tomorrow, all over this country, Americans will partake in a wonderful tradition. We will be surrounded by family and/or friends.  We will watch the Macy's parade and football on television.  We will eat until our pants are too tight.  We will sit on the couch, prop up our feet and fall into a turkey induced coma. 

I wonder what my little ones will be doing tomorrow in Africa.  Will they get enough to eat?  Are their clothes too tight because the orphanage doesn't have the right size for them?  Do their sweet little hearts feel joy or sadness?  Tomorrow my little girl turns 5.  Will they celebrate with cake, ice cream and gifts?

I am feeling extremely blessed today.  I have so much.  I take so much for granted.  As my heart begins to break for the "fatherless", my prayer is that your heart does too.  You don't have to adopt, there are so many ways you can help these little ones have just a little more! 

Happy Thanksgiving to all and Happy Birthday to my sweet little girl!  Praying the Lord allows us to spend both these days with our newest little ones next year.


Bad news, good news

It has been a crazy, emotional 7 days!!!  On Tuesday, November 15th we were matched with two precious girls in Ghana.  On Friday, November 18th we discovered some news that made us rethink adopting the girls.  As parents we have to make the best decision for our family no matter how hard that decision is...and this was tough one!.  After much discussion we decided that adopting these girls was not the best fit for our family.  Please continue to pray for these sweet souls to find their forever family!
You have probably heard the saying, "God giveth, God taketh away."  Well, in our case He giveth, taketh away, and giveth again!  The thing is, the Lord was definitely leading us down a specific path.  But me, in all my flesh, decided to jump ahead of Him.  In doing so I caused our family unnecessary heartache.  I would like to say I have learned my lesson but, once again, I am human and I will most definitely jump ahead of God again.  I serve a most gracious Heavenly Father who I imagine just shakes His head as he watches His child jump head first into the unknown.
So, without further ado...the good Lord has blessed us beyond measure.  In our misery over losing the girls He led us to another "sibling group". 
Today, November 22, we were matched with a precocious (I can tell from her pictures!) little 5 year old (on Thanksgiving) girl and a sweet, possibly shy, 3 year old little man.  I have another daughter and another son and THIS.IS.FOR.SURE!!!  They are ours and I dare the Ghanaian government to tell us otherwise!!  We are thrilled that this part of the journey is over and we begin a new journey...filled with lots of waiting and lots of paperwork!!! 
Thank you to all who have prayed, supported and encouraged us during this emotional roller coaster.  You mean the world to us and we will never forget the words you have said (or typed) and the deeds you have done.
So, take a look at the picture up top and check out those sweet eyes! 


Desperate for prayers

After much celebration last week, I am feeling a bit defeated starting this week.  We discovered some information that has caused us to reevaluate adopting the girls.  I will probably blog more about this later once we have more information.  Right now we just desperately need your prayers.  We have been on an emotional roller coaster and it is taking it's toll on all of us! 

Pray, pray, pray!


ON HOLD . . . Family Pending

These are the words next to the pictures of my girls on Dillon's site.  LOVE IT!!!  Although, I will say, I would prefer just to see I have a family like our former agency does it...but this will do. 

Thank you Lord for these two amazing gifts you have added to our family!!

Calling all adoptive mama's...

I have some books I would like to sell.  Most of them are Korea related but I also have a couple that are just adoption related.  All proceeds will go directly to our adoption fund.  Shipping is included in price.  I will ship media mail which can take 2 to 3 weeks coming from Hawaii.

Korea Books:
When You Were Born in Korea by Brian Boyd  $5.00  **SOLD**
K is for Korea by Hyechong Cheung and Prodeepta Das  $5.00  **SOLD**
Bee Bim Bop by Linda Sue Park  $5.00  **SOLD**
Korean For Beginners (comes with CD-ROM)  $12.00  **SOLD**
Korean Children's Favorite Stories by Kim So-un  $8.00  **SOLD**
SEOUL (Seoul selection guides) by Robert Koehler  $15.00

Adoption books:

Toddler Adoption: The Weaver's Craft by Mary Hopkins-Best  $5.00
My Family, My Journey (A baby book for adoptive families)  $10.00

These books are all in great condition.  Leave a comment if you are interested and I will let you know if the book is still available.  Payments will need to be made through paypal unless we come to another agreement.


What we know

I am absolutely overwhelmed and overjoyed at the outpouring of love, support, and all out celebration from friends that I have never even met in real life.  The adoption community is truly amazing!

Along with all the celebrating have come a ton of questions! I don't mind the questions at all but I do have a mound of paper work to get moving on so it will be easier if I can just answer these questions all at once.   We only switched to the Ghana program less than 2 weeks ago so this has happened very quickly and we have many questions as well.  So, for now here is what we know and can share:

Hannah is 9 years old (possibly older) and Rita is 7 years old.  They live in an orphanage in the Ashanti Region of Ghana, Africa.  They are breathtakingly beautiful!  They are sisters and they are healthy.
We will be making two trips to Ghana...the first one for court where they will be legally ours and the second time to bring them home. There is about a 2-3 month (or longer) period between these two trips.

Now, what we don't know or can't/won't share:

We cannont share their pictures on the internet until they are legally ours which will be after our first trip to Ghana.
We will not share their birth family history as this is their story to tell, not ours.
We don't have a time line at this point.  This is a pilot program with our agency so we will be learning right along with them.  Our best guess at this point is 10-12 months.  We are praying they will be home by Rita's 8th birthday in September.  Please pray for this with us!

Right now we have a lot of unknowns.  I promise to keep you updated when we get new information.  Your support and encouragement mean the world to us!  


Ok, so I had my blogs all typed out, ready to go on certain dates, at certain times.  The problem?  I CANNOT KEEP A SECRET!!!  I was going to reveal the country today and then the rest of the story tomorrow.  Nope, not gonna happen.  So, by now you have figured out we are adopting from Ghana....at least you should have figured this out.  If not, I am genuinely concerned for you.  LOL  Anyway, a quick glimpse before giving you the rest of the story:

Aren't these the most beautiful, soulful, amazing set of eyes you have ever seen?  You better say yes!  Those eyes....they belong to my daughters!!! Yep, that is right, I am now the proud mama of 6!  Unfortunately, Ghana does not allow the children to be posted on the internet so you are going to have to trust me when I say these girls are BREATHTAKINGLY BEAUTIFUL!
Hannah is 9 years old and her sister, Rita, is 7.  We are unsure of our timeline at this point but we are praying to have these girls home by Rita's birthday in September.  Will you pray with us?


Another piece...

By now, some of you have figured out where the Lord is leading us, but for those of you that haven't I will give you another piece of the puzzle.  So, stay tuned to see where we are Ghana gonna adopt from! :)

Comfort zone

Let me tell you a little about why we chose to adopt from Korea...

When we decided to adopt we began to research different countries.  We knew we wanted to adopt internationally for various reasons (that is a whole other post) but we weren't sure from where.  We had friends who recently brought their son home from Korea and they also had two daughters from Vietnam.  After looking into the Korea program we decided it was the one for us.  Korea is a thriving nation with medical advances that rival ours.  The children are placed in foster homes rather than living in orphanages.  We could chose the gender of our child.  We would have the child's visa before travel rather than risk the chance of getting there and having the visa denied (this happened to our friends in Vietnam).  In a nutshell, it was safe.  The only thing about it that was out of our comfort zone was the cost, but that is the case no matter where we adopt.  So, we started the paper work and waited.  As most of you know, we went to committee twice and we were turned down, twice.  We understood and were, by no means, bitter because of it.  We know our daughter is out there.  What we didn't know at the time is that we may be looking in the wrong place!

I am still amazed at how the Lord has changed our hearts since we began this whole process.  My husband and I were so sure we know exactly what we wanted.  Ah, but it isn't about what we want, it is about the plans HE has for us!  We plan, God laughs, right?

So, here is another clue as to where the Lord is leading us.  Any ideas?


Change is coming...

Here is a little story that sparked some big changes in our adoption journey:

The first Sunday of the month my daughter and I work in the church nursery.  My daughter looks forward to this every month and it is an absolute joy to watch her interact with the under 2 crowd.  She is such little mama.

On November 6th we had some new faces in the nursery.  I was sitting on the floor with my boy when the most adorable, dark skinned  little beauty walked in.  She was not happy about being left and for some reason, I was her source of comfort.  She came right to me and sat in my lap.  She would cry if anyone else tried to take her or if I walked away.  She was PRECIOUS!  During that hour I felt my heart changing.  I felt the Lord opening my eyes and my heart to something....different...new...exciting.  Who knew that such a sweet little package could arouse such big changes in my life?  GOD, that's who!

I am sure you are wondering exactly what these changes are.  I will give you one clue below.  More to follow soon.


National Adoption Month

Check out this wonderful video of children who have found their forever families...is God calling you to adopt???