Thursday, April 29, 2010

In Less Than a Week

It is fast approaching. In less than one week, our dossier will be submitted! I am so excited.... and yet I keep most of it inside. It is a blessing that very few understand.. and so I relish it in private. I have enjoyed going out and buying a few new things that I think would be perfect. I have already planned a few of the special things I plan to take over to Ukraine when we travel. John and I are excited at the thought of our family growing again....

Praying for a travel date around June 15.

Monday, April 26, 2010

A Show Of Support-- Bid on a Handmade Frame

**** Congrats to Gala over at Story of Our Life with the winning bid of $30! With our promise to match 1/2 of what ever was raised that brings the money total towards the Landrum's adoption to $45! Thank you to all who bid!***

We have been blessed in our adoptions with people sacrificially giving of their prayers and financial support. Some very amazing people have given from their hearts for a variety of reasons, and their example has touched my heart more than anything else. Thank you again.

Thank you to everyone who has supported my daughters by requesting one of their handmade creations. The encouragement you have given them is priceless not to mention the faith you have engraved on their hearts that fellow believers support and lift up one another when there is a call. Sveta is now knitting--- how awesome is that. Thank you. Both Rachel and Caleb have made around $200 to go towads their plane tickets to Ukraine. Praise the Lord.

I mentioned in an earlier post, that I was making these mosaic picture frames. As much as I think I could justify auctioning them off for our own adoption, I feel God is gently nudging me to raise the money for another family. This family has been an inspiration to me. Their faithfulness and prayerful consideration in everything they do including the decision to head back to Ukraine to adopt two boys they were told about has been such a blessing to me. Hard to explain why this family is on my heart, but I trust that God has a plan.

This family adopted an older daughter a few years ago, and their passion for orphans continues to be evident in their lives. They have wanted to adopt again for sometime, but financially it has been hard for them to take that leap of faith and commit to doing it. I can so relate.

Praise God that they have finally taken that step!

So, I would really appreciate your help in raising a few dollars for their adoption. Wouldn't it be a blessing to know that you made it possible for those two adorable, little boys to come home to their forever family? More than the money, I think this family would be incredibly blessed just to know that so many people are rallying around them in a show of support!

I am auctioning off this mosaic picture frame to the highest bidder. The auction will end on April 26th at 8pm. Since this handmade frame is decorated with broken pieces of glass, I am going to take my husband's advice. I promise to enclose a few bandaids when I mail it off to whoever won it!

Thank you!

If you want to bid just leave a comment. Starting bid is $10 which covers the cost of materials and shipping. Remember, the frame is the icing on the cake! Helping there to be two less orphans in this world is the real blessing.

** For every dollar raised, John and I will donate fifty cents to the Landrum family.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

In Two Weeks....

we are being submitted. May 5th is a big day! That means our dossier is being submitted to the SDA and if they find all of our documents to be in order then we will get a travel date soon after! Wooo-hoo!

Monday, April 19, 2010

Mosaic Picture Frames

The girls are crocheting and knitting to help raise money for Rachel's plane ticket.... I am making mosaic picture frames.
More details to come.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

An Update

Looks like we will be submitting our dossier beginning of May! Praise the Lord!

Monday, April 12, 2010

Caleb is Working Hard

Caleb has been working really hard to earn money for his plane ticket too-- mostly yard work over at Grandma and Grandpa's, and Cousin Matt and Jenn's house. It is awesome to see how dedicated he is to earning some of the cost and all of his own spending money. He is more excited than ever about going--- our talks about Ukraine have brought us so close these past few weeks.

What a wonderful experience this will be for him!

We should have an update about our paperwork by the end of the week. Hopefully we will find out when we can submit our dossier. Wouldn't that be wonderful?

Friday, April 9, 2010

Red, White, and Blue

Aren't the boys adorable? Aren't the scarves a great idea? Jennifer, a Mom waiting to bring home two boys from Bulgaria asked if Rachel could make USA scarves for them. They are just the right size for a little kid and a perfect gift-- nice and cozy to wrap them up in as you take them from the orphanage.
Suggested donation $15. Donated money will goes towards her plane ticket.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

Russian Pictures At Their Best

I found this blog site a few years back. Every now and then I go and look at all the different pictures submitted by people living all over Eastern Europe. It is quite interesting not to mention entertaining too! When I came across this picture-- I freaked out at first. These are the kind of apartments we have stayed in while in Ukraine and Russia and undoubtedly we will be staying in another building like this in just a few short months. Before seeing this picture I often wondered what would happen if there was a fire or part of the building collapsed just from being so old.

Then I started reading the comments and realized that it must be PhotoShopped--- or is it?

Your thoughts???

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

It Made It!

Our dossier arrived safely in Kiev yesterday! Praise the Lord!!!!

Look who else's dossier is on its way to Kiev--

The Urban Family
The Enskat Family
The Fritz Family
The Shupp Family--- BTW, they are also adopting an older child-- 15 to be exact-- and they are trying to raise money with a puzzle fundraiser. Go donate $5 and join the many other pieces of the puzzle to bring help bring Freddie home.

--Until All Have Homes

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Apple IPOD Nano

Over the years I have met some pretty amazing people through blogging. Though we have never met in person, I think it is amazing how relationships form through blogging and emailing nonetheless. What is even more amazing is how they think I have blessed them when in reality it is them who have blessed me. Thank you Gala for doing this-- it is encouraging to say the least. Please be sure to visit her blog for the links.

Over the last few years I have followed several different blogs. Mostly, those blogs are from moms (and some dads) who blog about thing that are in common with myself and family. For awhile I followed several blogs who were in the process of adopting from Haiti (or had adopted). I still do actually.
One day a fellow blogger sent me a link to Smiles and Trials. It was one of those days when I was struggling with our disruption and this person sent me an email stating that "you know...there is hope. There is hope for your son. Read a little bit about this family". So, I did.
And 3+ years later. Here I am. Regular reader of the Reed Family.
My heart has been so filled with joy as I have followed this families journey. There has been healing. Even though our journey was so different and the hope that our son will have the family that he so desperately deserves has diminished. There has been healing. Healing in knowing that some children can have that healing that is so desperately needed after a disruption.

I've read posts from Christine helping other post-adoptive families who found themselves in the same boat that my family was in. I've cried tears of pain right along with those families....that pain some days is all to raw. I've cried tears of joy that those children have a 2nd chance on life.
With that being husband and I would like to donate a BRAND NEW.....
Beginning immediately you can donate to an adoption fundraiser for the lovely
Reed Family.
I would like to make it very clear that IN NO WAY/SHAPE or FORM did the Reed's contact us OR mention any type of fundraiser to us. We are doing this because our hearts have felt led to do so. We want to help them not only for their adoption costs BUT to help with the expenses involved in their son AND daughter being able to go with them on this journey to bring home their new sibling.

How can you enter to win this give-a-way....

(...if you want to donate BUT don't need an on....)

All donations must be made by 9am Central Standard Time APRIL 26, 2010 in order to be considered for the give-a-way.
1: Donate as little or as much as you are able. The following amounts will enter your name into the drawing.
$10 - 1 entry
$25 - 3 entries
$50 - 7 entries
2: Interested in helping the Reed Family but don't want the Nano?
That's great!! If you are the winner I will gladly donate the Nano to a NON PROFIT organization of YOUR CHOICE in your name. Please make note in the paypal transaction or with your donation that you would like this donated - if you are the winner we will send the item TO that organization that you choose OR you can donate it yourself.. As a personal note: My family and I just returned from Give Kids the World - while there we saw different children get gifts out of the Birthday Box - in there was an NEW Ipod Nano and Shuffle and a few other bigger ticket items. The little girl that got that new Shuffle from the Castle for her birthday was sooo excited!
3: Want to get more entries?
a: Donate AND blog about this give-a-way w/a link to either Smiles and Trials or Oh' Yes We Are . Then you will need to post a comment on one of my blogs with the link or blog link to your blog so that I can verify.
b: Donate AND Facebook or twitter about this give-a-way. I do not will need to post a link on my comments with the twitter link). Also comment on this post or any post on my blog that you did this so that myself or Christine can verify.
4: All donations are tax deductible. The Reed Family is working w/a non-profit agency (God's Waiting Children) who can/will provide a receipts to all donations.
In the MEMO LINE of your donation it is crucial that you put REED FAMILY. This will allow for God's Waiting Children to make sure that your donation gets to the correct family AND ensure that I get your info to include you in on the drawing.
Please be sure to provide an address for a receipt to be mailed to you AND should you be the winner for us to send the item to you.
5: It is important that when donating you do the following:
a: provide a mailing address and email address on the paypal transaction.
b: you can provide the link in the paypal transaction if you have blogged, twitter, or facebook'd
c: if you are the winner and want the item shipped to someone else - you will be responsible for letting me know in the paypal transaction
d: is VERY IMPORTANT that I have an EMAIL and SNAIL MAIL address!!!
AND possible LATER if the need arises!

The Need is Great...

Once in a while I come across another post on a blog that makes me think-- I've got to share this. Jodi, just back from Ukraine with her precious little boy wrote this:

I left Ukraine with sadness. One reason is because I love it there, and will miss my friends there, but the other reason is because of what I saw with the orphans, what I see with Artiom underneath all those layers of clothes...
He is going to be 6 in August. He weighs 23 lbs. He is nothing but skin and bones, he looks like he came out of a concentration camp.


We showed up unannounced one day at the orphanage. All the children were in the big wooden playpen. They were all tied to the slots of the playpen so they couldn't move. No wonder they didn't want us to come in the room.


Because they are not valued. They mean nothing to anyone. Their lives are meaningless. They could live or die and it wouldn't matter.


There are so many orphans and not enough families coming to save them.

Is it because it's overwhelming? Because there are so many? Because we are so busy with our own lives? Because it's too much money? Because someone else will do something about it? Because we're scared of what they will need?

I know. I understand these feelings.
But I also know what I saw.

These are real little children, they have feelings and are scared and hungry and lonely.

They are only a plane ride away.

We have a busy, sometimes crazy life. But we will still have a busy, crazy life whether we have Ari with us or not.
But he wouldn't have a life at all if we hadn't come for him.

Please search your hearts... you don't have to be the 'perfect family' to do this, you just have to want to make a difference, you just have to love them, if for no other reason than because they are children of God, and they deserve that much.

Monday, April 5, 2010

Scalloped Long White Scarf

Julia crocheted this scarf. This is the first time she crocheted this pattern-- a lacy scalloped one-- but it turned out beautiful. What is even more beautiful to me is how Julia continues to help Rachel to raise money for her plane ticket. Rachel is touched too.
Thank you to all who have claimed their new scarves! What a blessing you are to our whole family!
Suggested donation $15-- please leave a comment if you are interested. Thanks.

Sunday, April 4, 2010

The Hand Off!

Our dossier is no longer in our hands. What an amazing feeling to know that the paperwork chasing stage has finally come to pass and our facilitator in Ukraine should be getting our dossier on Tuesday. I can finally let out that deep breath I have been holding these past few months.

It still seems a little unreal to me that we flew through this stage so quickly but I am relieved nonetheless. Now we just wait.

Pretty soon we should find out when we can submit our dossier.

I'll let you know.

Happy Easter!

Friday, April 2, 2010

22 Shiny Apostilles!

We had a late night last night-- yet we all (11 kids and I) managed to get up by 7:00 in the morning and pile into the van for our road trip. After getting gas, we stopped for donuts. We barely beat the crowd-- but you should have seen their "WOW" faces as we ate our donuts and drank our milk. On top of him being cranky from lack of sleep, Dennis is going through a "whine till I get what I want" stage which made things a little embarrassing for me. Probably because I don't give into him when he is whining... and of course he doesn't like that I am not responding to his verbal cues the way he wants. Oh well. So... Dennis attempted to whine when it was Alex's turn for a drink each and everytime. And each and every of the three times, I reminded him that if he whined, his donut would be taken away and he would go sit in the car with me--- where he wouldn't have anything to whine about. Can't wait till he puts two and two together--- only six more months till he is four!

We got to Sacramento before noon and found parking right in front of the building with 20 minutes left on the meter. Caleb noticed the guy behind us had run out of time so he dropped in a quarter--- why not bless someone else like we were blessed? We quickly dropped off our documents-- then went to the cafeteria to eat lunch while they were being processed. Nearly, $500 later, we walked out MISSION ACCOMPLISHED!!!!

On the drive home, I stopped for gas but noticed how high it was-- so I got back on the freeway to get off at the next off-ramp--- except there wasn't one--- for another 16 miles--- and the low fuel light had just beeped on. Oh snap!!! I nervously drove those miles pondering whether or not I should turn around. It wasn't a very good feeling I had--- for those seemingly endless 15 minutes. I know, I know--- pretty irresponsible since I don't even have a cell phone-- but we made it and the kids were none the wiser! Praise the Lord! And God was graceful too---- this place could have charged even more but I actually ended up saving $.34 a gallon.

The best part about the trip was coming home to an awesome message from Laurel at God's Waiting Children. Someone heading back to Ukraine on Monday can stop by our house and pick up our dossier and hand deliver it for us! What a blessing! This will not only save us the cost of shipping our dossier, but it will save me the headache of tracking it with FedEx all week! Plus, it saves us one week!

After this fun and interesting day, it got me to thinking--- there must be numerous crazy and adventurous Apostilling Roadtrip Stories out there! Do share!

Thursday, April 1, 2010

A Curly Accessory

Rachel just knitted her first curly scarf! It is a beautiful mix of browns and pinks. It would be an adorable accessory to any outfit--- suggested donation $15. All donations go towards the cost of her plane ticket to Ukraine.

Rachel says thanks!

BTW--- All documents are in my hands and notarized! Tomorrow we are taking a roadtrip! Can you guess where we are going?