Monday, May 31, 2010

Thinking of A and P

Over the weekend we did a lot of swimming. A and P often came to mind as I watched my other kids enjoy the water. The simple pleasure of just splashing around with people you know love you..... family.... is something A and P have not had in a very long time...... if ever. I am so glad that they will be home before summer is over so that they can experience the simple joy of splashing around the pool.... with family.

As I went through clothes for A today with the girls, we all wondered what size she would be. Would she be small for her age like all my children were when they first came home? How big is her foot? Should I bring her a bra or two? What is her favorite color? Does she like chocolate or will she be a gum chewer like all my other girls? We made her a tie blanket comforter a few months back and pulled it out today. It will be a blessing to have her home sleeping under it.

As for P--- it was much easier packing for him-- because after all, he is a boy and boys are so much easier to choose clothes for-- at least in my experience. Laughing out loud-- I am having a harder time picking out a few toys to bring. So, I packed a Frisbee, some penny toys like whistles, rubber balls, toy cars, etc.

A and P-- sweet dreams tonight!

P.S. Anyone want to guess what their names are?

P.S.S. The bidding for the Japanese tea set is at $60 as of now. You guys are the best! Remember, the bidding ends tomorrow at noon.

Sunday, May 30, 2010

Update on Bidding

Hi Everyone! Thanks so very much for all that you guys are doing! It is not too late to enter the giveaway for one of the beautiful prayer pillows! If you would like to bid on the tea set just leave a comment on that post with your bid. Blessings! Hope you all have a wonderful Memorial day!

Friday, May 28, 2010

The Lord is So Good!

I just go this email. Isn't Chris amazing? More so, isn't God amazing? If you notice I previously posted an auction for a Japanese tea set-- wondering what was going to happen. And now this. I am beyond humbled. And these prayer pillows are just gorgeous and I love the idea! Please read the following post taken from Chris's blog over at the Robins' Nest.
Giveaway for a Cause!
I am generally a stay behind the scenes, don't put myself out there kind of person, but something about a family, and a woman in particular has taken hold of my heart and I want to help out, if I can, in my own small way.

I started following Christine's blog smilesandtrials in 2008 when she was preparing to bring Dennis home. I was so taken by her spiritual strength and unfailing advocacy for her family and her children. Some people spend their time on this earth and depart, leaving it very much as they found it, but Christine, her husband and family devotedly serve God and touch and enrich and change many lives, not only through growing their family through adoption and giving a warm loving home to their children, but through demonstrating what a it means to live a life in God's service and love. Is Christine human? Yes she is. And she stumbles from time to time as we all do, but it is her ability to stand up and own up to her struggles that humbles her and enables her to grow in God's love. It is not enough to say that I have been inspired by her.

I followed the Reed family's journey to bring Alex home last summer and thought what a wonderful opportunity it was for Julia and Dennis to partcipate in the journey.

While bringing their two newest children home from Ukraine ( ), Rachel and Caleb will be joining Christine and John. I wanted to help raise money for Caleb and Rachel's travel expenses as well as the travel expenses for A & P, and immediately thought of the beautiful Prayer Pillows my friend Katherine makes.

The pillows make a wonderful gift for yourself or someone dear to you. A card in the pocket reads, "May your unfailing love rest upon us o' Lord as we put our hope in you." Psalms 33:22. You can also tuck a picture of your child in the pocket for a parent, grandparent, aunt or uncle, or a hand written prayer for a friend, sibling or teacher. The pillows sell for $22, but we are offering 8 for this raffle, two of which were donated by my friend Katherine.

Giveaway tickets will be $10 each. For that you will get one chance to win one of these beautiful prayer pillows. You can select which pillow you would like to be entered for. Simply place your name and e-mail address in a comment below with the number of pillow you would like to be entered for. Then deposit $10 in the ChipIn. If you are unable to use the Chip In let me know and I may be able work out an arrangement for you to send a check. Finally, enter as many times as you would like! The more entries the better your chance to win! Entries can be placed until, Thursday, June 3rd, 10:00 p.m. CST at which time no further entries will be accepted. I will pull names Friday, June 4th and announce the winners here and notify you by e-mail if you are a winner. I will then get your address and mail the Prayer Pillow to you. It's that simple!!

Pillow #1

Pillow #2

Pillow #3

Pillow #4

Pillow #5

Pillow #6

Pillow #7

Pillow #8

card in pocket of pillow

If you are interested in ordering Prayer Pillows on your own, here is Katherine's contact info.

Japanese Tea Set

So--- I am humbly going to try to do some last minute fundraising. Please don't ask why, but I am personally struggling to feel like this adoption is worthy of being fundraised for. Yet, it will be more expensive because there isn't a Reece's Rainbow grant to begin with and we are adopting two-- one with an adult plane fare home. I know, I know, this is the pride in me, and so I am stepping out in faith and seeing what happens. Thank you ahead of time for whatever you feel led to do, if anything at all.

A few years ago, I go this beautiful tea set from Japan. I always envisioned it being displayed beautifully in a curio cabinet or on a fireplace mantle, or better yet being used by a mother and her daughter or daughters having tea and fortune cookies. Isn't it pretty? Sadly, I never did get it out because I would need more than one set to ever be able to use it with our size family. Still, I think my dreams for this tea set could be fulfilled by another family..... so I am holding a silent auction for it.

Its detail is lovely, its color is gorgeous. It has never been used.

I will ship it to the highest bidder, bubble wrapped in its original box. Please factor in $5 for shipping costs when bidding.
All donations will go towards our new children's plane tickets home. Feel free to spread the word. Thank you.
Almost forgot to mention bidding ends on June 1st at noon.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Don't Let Fear Creep In Now

Tickets are definitely booked. Our SDA appointment is bright and early the 16th. As I thought about the commitment and the money leaving our bank account, I began to stress over finances. Within seconds, that moment of fear about how and where all the money for our adoption would be taken care of flooded over me, and I lost sight that God is our mighty provider.

This weekend, Rachel and Caleb are working to earn whatever last bit of money they can chip into their own plane tickets. I am thinking of doing a last minute silent auction on a few things. Rachel and Julia have a few knitted and crocheted things left that I can repost.

Praying that God continues to work out these last few details.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Tickets are Booked!

First thing this morning, I booked our tickets. I was literally working with four agents when one finally told me that Lufthansa was going to cancel both of my reservations if I didn't choose one soon.
So I ditched two of them and came clean with the other two. I asked them both to give me their best deal-- and come morning my choice was clear.

We have humanitarian fares on Lufthansa that have one free flight change if necessary. Less than $1600 a piece. Much better than the $1900 I was quoted for other flights that were not even humanitarian fares. The only thing is that we have two stops instead of one-- but oh well I saved us $1200.

And I think an extra stop is worth $1200. Don't you?

We leave bright and early on June 14th!

Tuesday, May 25, 2010


It's really happening. We are traveling to Ukraine to meet A and P. It happened all so quickly.

Deep breath. One minute I am on cloud nine and the next I am am stressing over this and that.

Remember Christine-- God is in control. You are not.

Deep breath. I think this trip is going to be longer than our others. We are leaving on the 14th and John and Caleb have return dates of July 2nd. And that's if all goes according to plan. So far it has. And it would be amazing if things continued to go just as planned-- but is there such a thing as the "perfect according to plan" adoption?

If there is, I haven't heard of them.

I have been going through and getting rid of so much stuff--- I can't believe what a pack rat I am. Nesting.

Every now and then I see A and P's beautiful faces I can't help but wonder if they have a clue.

Since they are older, so many thoughts race through my mind.

Will they like us?
Will they say yes?
Will they get along with our other children?
Will they like the things we brought?
Are they expecting more than we can give them?

In my heart of hearts, I trust that everything will be okay, but the thoughts run through my mind nonetheless. Oh, it will be amazing to go back.

Monday, May 24, 2010

About Three Weeks to Go

I think I found tickets that will work for us. They are the most reasonably priced (yet still ridiculous) with only one stop leaving just enough time to change flights. Woo-hoo, our facilitator should give us the heads up tomorrow about going ahead and purchasing them. I can't wait to cross that off my to-do list.

Tomorrow I am going to see about ordering new bills and doing some light packing.

I still can't believe that we are leaving in less than three weeks.

If we get the chance, we hope to meet up with a few families in Kiev. What a blessing that would be.

Thank you to all that have supported this adoption, I don't think I have thanked you enough.

Big hugs.

Tickets to Ukraine...

are so expensive. I checked out what the extra baggage fees would be for 120 pounds times two. I don't think Rachel and Caleb would mind too much. :)

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Booking Flights

Who would you recommend for booking flights to Ukraine besides Lonnie Rowland and Golden Rule Travel? Just wondering. Thanks!

Friday, May 21, 2010


God's timing could not be more perfect.
He answered our prayers.
We need to be in Ukraine on June 15.
Our appointment is on the 16th!

Prayers Have Been Answered!

We have our SDA appointment date!

We have to be in Ukraine on......

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Probably Next Month

I have started nesting around the house but you couldn't tell by my computer desk. But, I am going through clothes, cupboards, closets and getting rid of stuff that we just don't use. I can't believe that May is almost over-- it is realistic to assume that we will be in Ukraine in only one month.

Not a day goes by where I don't think of A and P--- it will be such a blessing to finally meet them.

Lord, please be with each and every orphan tonight and tuck them all sweetly into their beds.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

It Could Be Any Day

It is hard to believe that in about a month we will be traveling back to Ukraine--- God willing. I am excited about it all--- the packing, the ticket shopping, the plane ride, the people, the language, the staircases, the taxi rides, the SDA appointment, and even the train ride. Most of all I am excited about finally getting to meet A or N and P. Every time I glance at their picture, I smile. They are beautiful. They should fit in perfectly with our family. P is around William's age and A or N is a few years older. What is one more 12 year old?

It could be any day now when we hear of our travel date. Hopefully everything will continue to go as smoothly as it has so far. We can pray.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

SDA Appointment??

Since we are waiting, we might as well play the game-- Guess our SDA appointment date!

What day do you think it will be? Maybe it will be the same day as the Dove family.

Monday, May 10, 2010

Thinking of Ukraine

I woke up thinking of Ukraine today. I opened up our sliding glass door first thing this morning and enjoyed the fresh air. This reminded me of how I opened up the kitchen window every morning when we were in Ukraine last summer. The sun shining brightly throughout the kitchen as I made my morning coffee reminded me of-- you guessed it-- my mornings in Ukraine. Oh how I miss the place. It holds such a special place in my heart. The simplicity of this beautiful country is something I long for here, but can never quite achieve.

It will be so nice to get back there. I can't wait to share it with Caleb and Rachel and of course, John. I can't wait to meet A and P--- if only they knew we were coming. Still, I pray that God is preparing their hearts to say yes to our family--- they are at the age where their consent is needed.

Hopefully the SDA will look at our paperwork with favor and we will hear our travel date in the next week or two. The journey is really just beginning.

Friday, May 7, 2010

And Then There Was....


When I was at the store the other day I found a cute pair of shorts with a bright colored shirt. I thought it would be a perfect summer outfit. I also picked up a few more girly things that I think A might enjoy, including a new bathing suit. I hope it fits her.

Just to be fair, I found some cool boy outfits for P. I wonder if he is around the same size as William. I'm thinking he isn't quite as tall. I can't wait to see if I am right!

Yes, we have petitioned to adopt a sibling group---- hopefully we will have a new son and daughter (just a few years older) by the end of summer!

Thursday, May 6, 2010


I have had dreams of sitting at the SDA flipping through files of children wondering which one we should choose. Each face looking into my eyes begging for me to choose them. Looking over at John who is of no help whatsoever because he too can't decide how to choose our next child. Just when I think I have finally chosen the right child for our family-- I hear a little voice coming from one of the boys' pictures that we didn't choose, crying and asking, "Why didn't you choose me? Why? I am a good boy. I promise."

Sounds more like a nightmare to me.

And that is why I really had no desire to travel to Ukraine for a blind referral.

I know for many people this is just part of the process in finding their child, and that is fine, but for me, I had absolutely no desire of living out my bad dream. No desire at all.

And what would you know? Without even having to really ask, people began telling us about children. And as soon as we found a match to our homestudy specifications we pretty much committed and prepared to submit a petition to adopt.

However, God had different plans because we got ready to submit a petition two times prior to this last time only to find out it wasn't meant to be.

So who were we supposed to adopt? Who did God have chosen for our family? Was it a boy? Was it a girl?

Or was it both?

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

The Email

This morning I got an email.

A part of me expected it to say that there was a slight delay. It has been that way with every other adoption.

But no.

We were submitted!

Yea yea yea!

In a few weeks we should receive our travel date!

Monday, May 3, 2010

A Blessed Time Line

In just two days our dossier will be submitted for review and then a travel date should follow. How exciting! I hope all of our paperwork is okay--- but then that would be a world record for us--- and we all know that rarely happens for anyone adopting from Ukraine--- but I can hope. :)

Everything is coming together nicely--- even had someone offer to help out with the kids if we needed it. Oh and then sweet Sally who I had the privilege of meeting a month ago also offered to help out if she was back from China with her new son in time.

My biggest concern is this whole Interpol thing where the SDA checks our background at the international level. Pretty crazy huh?? No I am worried about passing the check--- but what I am worried about is the whole timing thing because this "check" takes 40 or so days-- and you can't get a court date until you have it. And I have seen over and over these families being invited to Ukraine for their appointment way before this time has passed holding them up in Ukraine longer than necessary.

But God knows our situation with our kids at home-- He knows how hard it will be for us to be away from our kids--- and I trust He the best time scheduler ever---- and will do what is best for our family. With that said, I am still hoping for a mid June appointment--- any sooner and we will miss Caleb's graduation and all the kids' last day of school.

Oh, and one last thing. Did I ever mention the term, "Petitioning for a child?" Hmmm, maybe I forgot to.