Monday, November 18, 2013

2 years later...

Almost two years ago, we made this announcement.

Two years.

24 months we've been on this crazy emotional roller coaster better known as international adoption.

I think back to two years ago, we were so different, so naive.  We were ready to open our home and our hearts to a little baby boy from Ethiopia who was between 0-12 months old.

Hold the phone! That's definitely not how things have worked out.

In two years we've traveled to Rwanda, to Ecuador.

We were totally rocked by  not only adoption but whole orphan care, which sometimes doesn't always equal adoption.  We went from thinking everyone should adopt (I know, I know) to beginning to fight for children to stay in their first families, because that's how God intended things, but sometimes that doesn't work out.

We saw our son's face for the first time..but SURPRISE he wasn't in Ethiopia, he was living in a tiny little country in West Africa.

So now, two years later, we wait to bring home our precious (now) 3 1/2 year old. And we continue to wait and pray for our sweet one in Ethiopia, who probably won't be 0-12 months anymore, from our original "plan."  We've learned that God has a totally different plan than ours (at least that's how it looks for us)

Sometimes people tell me they could never do what we're doing, and how we do it.  Well, I'll give you some pointers; some days outright suck.  Just being real.  Knowing your child's on the other side of the world is tough, it's freaking hard, but you know what? Some days are good, and we get updates, and we see pictures, and we see how he's growing!

Today I started thinking, if I knew now what I knew back when we started, would we still be here? I think yes. Definitely yes. Wouldn't change a thing, wouldn't take back the tears, wouldn't take back the anxiety of waiting on foreign countries, because that has totally changed us.


Tuesday, October 29, 2013

A little bit of honesty, and a little update!

These last six months have probably been some of the hardest of my life.

We started our adoption process almost 2 years ago.

2 years.

January 20th of this year we got information about a little boy who (we would have no idea at the time) God would orchestrate many many circumstances to show us he is our son.

He was about 2 1/2 when we first saw his face.  He's now 3 (we think) we're not 100% sure of his birthday, but we think he celebrated it this summer. :)

We hit so many walls with his paperwork. But we were not alone.  The families in this process with us also have hit many walls. We've cried tears together over others mistakes, and rejoiced over small progress.

A friend of mine suggested that I write a blessings journal, because let's face it. Sometimes it's really hard to find blessings when stuff seems to fall apart or you feel completely out of control.

So I've started to write my blessings.

I've got a lot of them.

But it's pretty hard.  It's hard to see and study a face for so long and know you're missing things. It's hard knowing that things are completely out of our hands, we literally have no control over what happens from here on out and the time frame in which that happens. We don't have a "due date"  we can't just call up Africa and speed things up, it just doesn't work that way.

But....

Right now we do have an update though! Our paperwork finally went on it's way to our little West African country last week! This is big news because we can't officially get any of little man's official paperwork (known as the 'Article 16') until our paperwork was received by his country.  So, now that it's on it's way and should be there soon, we are praying that we get his Article 16 soon.

Will you pray with us? Pray that we can receive it soon.

Also, pray for the families in front of us specifically, there are two of them.  They are nearing the end  and are awaiting big documents too!

We're paying big and praying bold. Please join us! 








Saturday, October 19, 2013

No News Fridays

So we've begun a little tradition in our house, and it's affectionately called "No News Fridays" or better described as "A spin on that sad sinking feeling you get in your gut when 5pm rolls around on a Friday night and you know you probably won't have any communication in regards to your adoption until Monday"...oh and it's worse it Monday is a holiday...

It's really not that bad. Or it is. It depends on how the week has gone up to that day really.

So, I LOVE Fridays, I really do.  There's just something about them,, sometimes I can't even sleep on Thursday night because I'm so excited Friday is almost here (it's weird I know).  But as of recently..I hate Fridays, well usually.  Because I know that usually by Friday around 4ish if you haven't heard anything big or exciting form our agency, it's going to be a loooonnng weekend of wondering. Two days of (usually, sometimes there's an exception) no emails or phone calls from our case worker (of whom I really love and am constantly badgering, so she really should get a few days free of my phone calls and emails)

But it's hard, it's hard knowing that another week has passed.

So, we have adopted 'No News Friday', where we'll put a spin on a usually hard day and do something fun to get our minds off of entering the weekend with no news.  Sometimes we plan something together, or sometimes if I'm entering the weekend on a sad note, Justin picks something fun.

I know we won't always have No News Fridays, and while I like the idea of them..I'm praying we don't have too many...

Here's to a fun twist of no news on Fridays!
Wanna join the fun?!


Tuesday, October 1, 2013

The time has come...to buy a book!

So yesterday I wrote and told you about an amzing donation we were given to our adoption, make sure you read the story here.  And I shared with you all that the time to purchase was coming...

And it's here!

It's time for you to get your own copy of The God Puzzle and support our adoption too!
All proceeds from this sale are going to our adoption costs thanks to our great friend (and author of this book, Val Ackermann!)

So here's the deal, we have a whole box (that's 21 books!) to sell! They're being sold on a first come first serve basis!

So now's your chance! You don't wanna miss it!

Click the link below to purchase!



And make sure you check out the God Puzzle on Facebook! 

Remember how yesterday I told you to think of it as black Friday..well..pretend we just opened the doors and you're running to buy a book! ;) 

Monday, September 30, 2013

Just telling mountains to move...

Oh hey there, it's me again. You guys, I wish you could have been inside my head this past week (maybe you don't wish you could have been inside my head, but I do) So many insane things happened. 

First I broke my toe, then I slammed my head in the car door (don't even ask..) 

But in between those events, some major mountains fell to the ground. We pretty much have been telling them to move, and well, they're moving. 

So we held our "little" cookie fundraiser, which we kinda thought might bring in a few hundred if we were lucky..but guys..people donated over $1400 to our little cookie fundraiser...

Mountain gone. 

But wait, there's more.

Justin got a call last week about a sweet couple at our church who wanted to have their neighborhood yard sale benefit our adoption...WHAT?! 

And you know, yard sales are awesome. We've had one for each of our adoptions and they're super successful, but they're a lot of work, but this one? These sweet people are just raining blessings on us and they're storing, pricing, setting up..I mean..like..they're awesome. It's this Saturday, if you're local-I can give you the deets. 

But wait..I'm not done. 

So yesterday I get this text from my friend Val. And Val, she's modest and wouldn't tell you this herself, but she wrote an amazing book this past year (years).  She's the Children's Ministry Director at our church, and desired a Bible study that any parent could do with their child, that is deep-not watered down like some children's bible studies, that teaches the Bible as a story and keeps children engaged.  

This book is the bomb.com.  (I've seen it, so I definitely know ;) ) 



Here's what those more educated than me are saying about her book :) 

"Valerie Ackermann provides a user friendly children’s workbook that will enable parents to teach the life-changing truths of the Bible in manner that appeals to children. Her book helps children understand God’s Word through their own life experiences. It provides an excellent tool for parents to walk with their children through the Scriptures and to meet and know God in a deeper way while on the journey."
-Dr. Leland Eliason, Executive Director and Provost Emeritus, Bethel Seminary of Bethel University

This is a very good approach to Christian education within the context of normal family life.  Simple organization, strong content, and addressing an area that has long been missed by traditional Christian education. Most churches tell parents it is their job to train their kids, but they don't provide tools to do so.  They guilt, but don't equip.  Valerie has equipped without guilt!  I highly recommend this as a simple, Biblical, accurate, and helpful aid for parents."                                                                                          
-Dr. Rae Larson, Ed.D, former Pastor of Education, Scottsdale Bible Church and former VP of Administration, Phoenix Seminary, Arizona


Ok Ok, so you're probably wondering why I'm telling you all this right? 

Well..another blessing came our way...

The author, Val, is giving us a case of her books..for our adoption..like 100% of the proceeds will benefit the remaining costs of what we're looking at for little man (which isn't all that much, we're over the big part) 

Tomorrow I'll post specific instructions on how you can order these books.

And you're going to want to get one for sure.

Not just because it helps us, but because it's an amazing tool for parents to teach their children about the Bible. 

So stay tuned..pretend like it's black Friday and you have to wait in a long line, only this line will be an "e" line (like electronic) 

You don't wanna miss out! 


For now, make sure you head over and "Like" The God Puzzle on Facebook, and check out the Website


And make sure you check back tomorrow for info on how to order! 

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Calling in the troops

Oh hey guys! You probably hope I'm stepping in with an update aren't ya? Well, I kinda am, all our documents are ready to go over to West Africa, once they get there, we can receive official paperwork on our little man and can go forward with the next step (which is, in case you're wondering will be filing our i800!)

Here's the deal, you heard (read?) me write about our agency switch, we lost about $4500 in that switch, but God has been faithful to supply our needs until now, and we don't doubt that He will continue, but here's the thing...

We need $3,114.76 like...a week from yesterday..YIKES! We have to have a check to our agency for $11,500 in the mail by Monday at the latest..so what are we going to do??

Eat cookies.

Well actually..we hope that YOU want to eat some cookies!

We're holding a cookie sale!


That's right ladies and gents! Are you craving a yummy cookie? Or a dozen perhaps? Well you're in luck! This weekend we will be baking up dozens and dozens of cookies! 

Here's the scoop:

Cookies will sell for $22 a dozen (that's a lot of money you say? you're right, but they're really good cookies!) 

You can order your cookies by clicking on this paypal link:


In the notes just put your name and how many orders you'd like, and we'll get bakin'!

This sale is for locals only (Fairfield, Vacaville, Suisun) 

BUT if you'd like some shipped to you and you're not local, let us know and we'll get a price for shipping :) 

Cookies will be delivered this Sunday, September 29th! After 5pm, so make sure in your notes you put where you'll be at that time so we can bring them to you! (note: if you attend Parkway Community we can deliver your cookies that morning) 

If you'd like a tax deductible donation, you can give straight to our agency:

Make the checks out to Faith International Adoptions, and writes "Nunes Family" in the memo

Their address is 
1105 Tacoma Ave. South
Tacoma, WA 98402


And if you're curioius as to exactly where that $11,500 is going..here's a little breakdown for ya:

Country Central Authority $2,000  ( note: I edited this because it showed the country name and we're not sharing that yet)
Lawyer Fees $2,000 
Court Processing Fees $500
Administrative Costs $500
Child’s Passport and Exit Documentation $500 
Orphanage Donation $4,000 
Agency Fee 2 $2,000


There you have it folks, we're nearing the end of payments (aside from travel) and this is our last payment, and it's a whopper, and so you know what? We need some help...






Sunday, September 15, 2013

When you think you're at your end....

Ok, so. Long story short (and I don't know if we ever shared this publicly) but back at the end of July, we had to change adoption agencies for our West African adoption.  Not to go into too many details, the change was necessary, fast, unforeseen, and difficult.

We love our new agency (Faith Adoptions) located in Washington. They have been absolutely amazing to work with so far. They have a heart for the country we're working with, a desire to see a program long term there, and bonus- they have a French speaking lawyer! This is a huge bonus as the language is French over there in little mans country and so having a lawyer who can effectively communicate with those in country is amazing.

I needed to write what's happened in the last 2 weeks because I don't want to forget it.


I'll try to do my best to explain this, but my hands are shaking as I'm writing out of pure excitement!

When we changed agencies, we got a new payment schedule.  We knew this was going to happen.

They way our new and old agencies collect the money is set up a little different.

They sent us our new payment schedule, as I looked at it I realized we owed a lot of money in the next...

2 weeks..

Like $11,500...

in 2 WEEKS!

What. the. heck.

We knew we would need that amount eventually, but we didn't know we'd need it all at once..we had some, but we definitely did not have $11,500..

Doubt crept in..thoughts like "what are we doing?!" "We can't afford this!" "How are we going to come up with that?!" "Money is going to be the only thing standing between us and him"

It was a rough week or so...

Then I remembered WHO'S money it is..not mine. His.

Then I remembered this verse...

"And my God will supply all your needs according to the riches of His glory in Christ Jesus" Philippians 4:19

God was just getting started...

We pulled our money together and started trying to figure out exactly how much we needed to cover the lofty $11,500 total...I'd forgotten about our Pure Charity fundraiser we did a while back (ps who forgets those kinds of things? My mind is everywhere lately!) I told my husband I can't ask for anymore money, I'm so drained of asking..I just can't do it anymore..we were going to have to do it on our own, and not tell anyone. I told a few friends about our new total, basically just to pray for my sanity because I was ready to break.



On Friday a friend of ours got an envelope to give us, the person wanted to remain anonymous, so they asked my friend to give us the envelope with strict instructions that it go towards little mans adoption..

Today at church she handed me the envelope and we opened it..

$1,000 cash my friends...(dear anonymous, you have NO idea how this blessed us and our little man)

I am still in shock...

2 weeks ago we needed $11,500...

Today we only need $2,349....

That's $9,151 in less than two weeks...

You guys, someone tell me that's NOT a God thing....


If God had a hastag I think it'd be #BOOM because that's how He does it...when we're at our end and literally have nothing left, BOOM He shows off.

Some of you might think that $2,349 is still kinda big, and I guess it is...kinda..but you know what? I just watched God provide $9,151 in like 10 days. Still crying. We're coming buddy!

#BOOM  


Thursday, September 12, 2013

When oceans rise...

This song has been on constant repeat in our house the last few weeks. It's kind of become a prayer.

Yesterday, a friend of mine posted it on Facebook and it brought up so many emotions.  It's been my theme song throughout the adoption of little man.

The story that God is writing in this adoption is quite different than what a "typical" adoption journey looks like.  We didn't go looking for little man at all. I honestly had to google his country when we heard about him.  It's very much obvious that God lead us to him.

I can honestly say we've learned more about faith in this specific adoption more than ever...I kinda don't wanna pray for more faith anymore..because you know what happens when you pray for that..you get placed in situations where you're forced to have faith ; )  Or patience..that too ; )

When we said yes to this adoption, we said yes to many unknowns. We're adopting from a country that doesn't really have an established program. The two families ahead of us are literally paving the road for adoptions in that country, and it's not without tears.

But He is faithful throughout.  Whenever I'm feeling doubt about what we're doing, and praying for news or movement, He shows up.  I prayed for news one night, and we got an email the next morning saying that almost all of our documents are ready to go and should be sent over within 2 weeks. That night we got to see a video of where our little guy lives, his orphanage. It was so precious because we got to see his friends, the children that he lives life with. It was like we got a glimpse more into his life.

It helped this mama's heart.

Waaaayyy back when we first sent our dossier over to Ethiopia, we prayed (and we knew) God was going to something big during our wait. I prayed for God to use the wait with our Ethiopian adoption for something big, I remember telling some of my close friends that I just had a feeling God was going to use it for something.

And He has.


I went to Rwanda

Image via WFP

Image via WFP


Justin went to Ecuador

Image via Carla Ackermann Photography 

Image via Carla Ackermann Photography 

And God's been using this time to deepen our marriage and our love for one another, which will in turn is preparing us to be parents to our little man and then to our little Ethiopian. 

Image viaWFP


You know, when you pray for God to do something big...something radical..don't be surprised when He does.  It might not look like what you think it should (it might not look like going over seas, or adopting a child) But being willing is the hardest part I think. It wasn't a piece of cake to say yes to a second adoption on a ministry salary, but we told God we would be willing. It wasn't easy to say yes to adopting from a country where a program is being build...but God has been so clear that this is where we need to be an this is our son.  

We're coming up to our 2 year anniversary when we filled out our first set of adoption papers..my how far we've come and gone in two years..it's been insane. 

Here's to what lies ahead


Image source unknown


Maybe next time I post you'll get an update :)  For now, just keep the prayers coming, things are moving...





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Friday, August 30, 2013

Noonday Blog Train..a giveaway! Update: Giveaway Closed...

Giveaway now closed..congratulations to Jennifer Humiston on winning the Mary Sunshine Apron! You'll be receiving an email for shipping information :) Thank you ALL who entered and shared this post, by sharing the post you're sharing about Mary Sunshine and all those who work alongside her. :) 

Hey there! Today is an exciting day! If you're visiting here for the Noonday Collection blog train, welcome! Before I start sharing a little bit of my story make sure you check out Krista and Alicia's blogs, they have some awesome Noonday goodie giveaways going on right now too.


I wanna tell you about Mary Sunshine.  Mary Sunshine is exactly what her name is, full of sunshine. I have never in my life met someone with so much joy. Pure joy.

The day I went to meet the Rwandan artisans was such a special day. I was so excited. I had been sharing about these women and their stories for almost a year at that time, and I was going to meet them..in real life. Like, I was going to hug them and meet some of their children, and see where they work, it felt surreal. I remember driving in that little euro van...looking for the gates I was told would mark where the shop was.  I saw them, Mary Sunshine standing outside the gates, ready to greet us, with a huge smile.

Mary's hugs were some of the more genuine hugs I've ever felt. She and the women welcomed us into their shop as if it was their home. They took so much pride in the work they created, the work they created for people like you, who shop our line :)

They even got all gussied up for our meeting! 
(which made me feel better because of course I worried about what I was going to wear to meet them too! Women are women know matter where they're from ;) ) 





They worked on sewing machines powered by foot..like the ones we use here in the US for decoration in our homes (yeah..reality check..humbleness check)


It was absolutely amazing to see things in progress, things like the Charlotte Bag, named after this beauty.



I remember feeling so inadequate as I stood there and they thanked me because of your purchases.  They were so thankful for work, work that literally is the difference between life and death for some.  The difference between keeping their children and being forced to give them up.  Some of the artisans walk for miles to get to the co-op y'all..miles..they walk miles for you.  Miles to create beautiful pieces. Pieces that hold a story.


Writing this brings tears to my eyes. My eyes burn missing that time I had with them.  Community, community with sisters across the globe, sisters I'd never met until that day.

They are why I sell Noonday.  They are why I hound some of you about hosting shows.

They are real.  Their stories are real.  Some of them have been through more than we ever will in our lifetime. 

History of genocide, war, rape, abuse.

They're real.

This sweet thang? Because of your purchases she's in preschool while her mama works! She's also looking quite studious if I do say so myself. 

They're beautiful daughters of the King.

They are Noonday Collection.



In honor of our Rwandan Artisans, I  am giving away our brand new Mary Sunshine Apron.

It is bright, bold and beautiful! Just like Mary Sunshine. 

I would love for one of you to win this, and wear it proudly as you think of Mary Sunshine.  As you bake cookies for your family, or prepare a holiday dinner, think of Mary and her JOY for life.  

Choose JOY my friends, just like Mary Sunshine.


Comment below for your chance to win! Winner will be announced Friday September 6th and make sure you tell me your favorite new fall item! (if you can choose just one!)

And tomorrow make sure you check out Natalie's blog for another giveaway! 


- all these beautiful pictures were taken by my great friends Rachel and Becky of WurzbachFisherPhotography, they're Noonday lovers and wrote a blog about our Rwandan trip too! Make sure you check it out here






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Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Noonday Fall Launch!

It's no secret that Noonday Collection is playing a huge part in our adoption. 

And today the fall line officially launches! These are just a few of my faves for this season! 




Here's the thing, I can shout from the rooftops how your purchases matter.







I can tell you over and over again that you can make a difference. 








Well let me just tell you, to these people you ARE. You guys, these peoples dreams are being fulfilled because of purchases with Noonday Collection. I have met some of them. I heard them say how much your purchases mean. 

photo cred goes to my girl Wynne

These are our Ugandan artisans, they want to say thank you.


So go check out my Noonday site! Tell me what some of your new favorites are! And if you're local (local-ish, I'll travel) talk to me about hosting a show, you won't regret it!


PS: I'm jumping on the Noonday blog train with some of my sister ambassadors. For the next month everyday, an ambassador will be sharing her heart and a little about her own journey.  On our day we'll also be giving away a fun Noonday goodie! So make sure you're following here so that you can get daily updates on what you could win! (to subscribe just enter your email in the "follow our story" box at the top)

Today by sweet friend Krista will be kicking off the blog train, so head on over to her blog and see what she has to share!



"When you satisfy the needs of the oppressed, your night will become like the noon day" Isaiah 58:10



Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Our Circle, one month in


Take a step of faith when God gives you a vision because you trust that the One who gave you the vision is going to make provision. And for the record, if the vision is from God, it will most definitely be beyond your means. 
-Mark Batterson, The Circle Maker


Last month I talked to you about our 24/7 prayer. The call we felt to pray every hour until our son is home.

It's been a month.

And you guys, its been unreal.

We set our phones to have alarms each hour...and yes, even through the night.

We've prayed like we've never prayed before.

Some crazy stuff has happened, some things I'm just not sure I wanna share yet because you might think I'm crazy (if you don't already..)

I used to think we prayed the average amount..is there really an average amount? But anyways, the book I wrote about when we shared out 24/7 prayer really has changed the way that we pray. It's hard to describe, so you should just go get the book and read it yourself.

I'd be lying if I said this last month was easy...it is HARD with an alarm going off every hour, but the  result of these prayers are most definitely worth it.  In the beginning I remember feeling exhausted...but a good exhaustion.

We are praying with confidence a very bold prayer for our boy and his adoption.

Literally the week we started some insane things happened with out agency, but it all worked out for the better, but I don't think it was coincidence when everything happened.

I know our prayers are being heard because they are being answered.

Until next time, guys.

Go home. Lock yourself in your room. Kneel down in the middle of the floor, and with a piece of chalk draw a circle around yourself. There, on your knees, pray fervently and brokenly that God would start a revival within that chalk circle.” 
-Mark Batterson, The Circle Maker

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

This is What a World Changer Looks Like...

A little over a year ago I was fortunate to join a team of women, women who work with a company called Noonday Collection.  You've heard me talk about Noonday before, you know my passion for it. Noonday's story rings with what my passions are. Noonday's heartbeat...

"At Noonday Collection, we believe every child belongs in a family .We advocate for the orphan by:
  • Providing jobs that create a pathway out of poverty for families. A stable income means a family is less likely to abandon their child.
  • Help families raise money for their own adoptions. We give 10% of trunk show sales directly to the adoptive family when they host a trunk show.
  • Aside from donating 10% towards qualified adoptive families, Noonday Collection also gives towards orphan care and prevention. 
  • The dream: Take YOU on a trip to visit artisans and visit orphans in their distress." -(taken from the Noonday website)
When you shop with Noonday, you are being a part of the solution, keeping children off the streets, literally providing families with jobs to keep them out of poverty, helping to end the cycle of oppression. Sending girls to college, keeping families together...keeping families together..stopping the orphan cycle..

I don't do anything when it comes to Noonday, I deliver the stories and YOU change the world by purchasing the pieces that go with the stories..

I want to show you what a world changer looks like..because I bet they look a lot like you! 


Here's Rachel, and her sister Becky, a sisterhood photography team, Rachel's (left) wearing the Angular earrings, supporting our Ugandan artisans. Becky (right) is wearing the Minted Necklace, and also the yellow beaded statement bracelet, both pieces spread the Uganda story 


Janice (left) and her daughter Ari are wearing two Noonday countries! The funky paper bead necklace and the minted necklace, both made in Uganda. Ari's also wearing the D'Orsay Bangle which supports artisans in India. 


Jennifer is wearing the Stamped Circle Bracelet in silver, made in India where slavery and oppression was once the only option for our artisans. 


Veronica is modeling the Beaded Statement Bracelet in blue made in Uganda, where the artisan team is growing because of these purchases! 


Elizabeth is wearing the Festival Necklace, made in Uganda by the group Noonday helped launch


Angie decked herself out in Noonday for the 4th of July, layering her Funky Paper Bead necklace and adding the bracelet too. While she celebrated her freedom she also knows that her purchases helped others keep theirs. 


Val is wearing the beaded statement in peach, a favorite by many. Each bead is rolled one by one by hand. Val is wearing their story. 


Lauren doubled up her Minted Necklace, made in Uganda.  Every time Lauren puts on her necklace she can know that she helping in keeping a families together and keeping children off the streets 

Aleah layered up in Noonday for a wedding, she's modeling the Kampala with Love necklace and the Zoe, both made in Uganda and both providing incomes for families without the opportunity before Noonday. 


Megan with her cute baby belly is modeling the Stamped Circle earrings handmade by  our artisan groups in India that help low-income artisans move towards economic self-sufficiency.


So next time you think you can't do anything...remember you can! 


(ps there are SO many more women who's pictures should be up here, but it was hard to stalk facebook and instagram ;) Don't worry, there will be more world changers 

"When you satisfy the needs of the oppressed, your night will shine like the noonday" Is. 58:10

Keep changing the world y'all! 


Thursday, July 25, 2013

What started with a simple email...

What started as a simple email (actually now that I think about it, I think it was a facebook message) from a friend has turned into an amazing God written story.

What started with a "would you be interested.." turned into a lawyer telling us on the phone yesterday "I anticipate travel in October sometime, as long as things keep moving"

What started long ago as a question posed by a family member has turned into a village standing with us as we begin to bring home our first child. And as we continue to prepare for our little Ethiopian to join us after little man comes home!

What started as two little boys in two difference countries who still don't know about each other,  will end as two little boys united as brothers. Sharing bunk beds (ok maybe) and talking late into the night, sharing secrets, catching bugs, making messes.

What started as a simple yes...has turned into SO much more.

We're on day 4 as the featured family on Give1Save1, we are amazed at the amount of people who have given and are sharing our story to bring our little man home.  He has no idea about you all yet, but will soon!

We still have a few days left, and mountains are being moved through all of you!

Thank you!
Thank you!
THANK YOU!

If you haven't seen our most recent total update video..




And that total has risen to $1,143 as of right now!

There's still time to get involved check out the link below for more information, we couldn't do this without you all!


Tuesday, July 23, 2013

GIve1Save1 Total, Day 1...

Wow

We're so humbled at the amount od people who are giving on behalf of our adoption, on behalf of our son.

To get him home,

We made a little video for you of our totals from yesterday, day 1..

Thank you
Thank you
THANK YOU!

Please keep sharing our story!

You can click on the image below to read more...


Thursday, July 18, 2013

24/7 Prayer

I'm going to be really honest here for a sec.  Adoption is hard.  I don't write that to discourage anyone from adoption, I write it to be completely honest.  You are constantly fighting uphill battles, fighting for your child long before they are home. It can be wearing, and exhausting.  But then, then you see a sweet picture of the little face you're fighting for; and it seems to be bearable. I think of the day when we start to tell little man of his journey to our family.  We'll laugh (then, not now) of the 3 weeks we spent on the phone with our bank fighting for a letter that was so simple, so so easy, but yet-they couldn't (read:wouldn't) write it. Don't even get me started on that...but yes, 3 weeks and some not so graceful phone calls and conversations later, they wrote it. One day, we'll laugh. One day..not yet.

I've been reading this book called The Circle Maker by Mark Patterson.  It has changed the way I pray. The author asks a question towards the beginning of the book; "When was the last time your knees ached because you prayed for so long?"

Never. Just being real here.

Here's the deal. We have a big prayer. We've been drawing circles around it. We're ready. We're adopting from a country where adoption isn't all that common, it happens, but not as much as other countries.

We went away a few weekends ago and spent some time talking about our 'circle prayer'. We as in Justin and I. We want to pray boldly on behalf of our adoption and the families that we're in the process with.

As I read these quotes in the book I became humbled..

"If you aren't willing to circle the city, the wall will never fall"

"If you aren't willing to follow the star, you might miss out of the greatest adventure of your life"

"If you're unwilling to risk your reputation, you'll never build the boat like Noah or get out of the boat like Peter" 

"You cannot build God's reputation without risking yours"

What if the magi hadn't followed the star? It must not have been easy, and they probably looked silly to onlookers, but they did it.

We've shared with a few people what we're doing, and you know? It does sound crazy, and even I think we're kinda crazy, but oh well.











Those alarms are set and ready to go. On 12:21am Sunday July 21st, this 24 hour prayer will begin. It won't stop until little man is home. Crazy right? I know, I know. Whateve, call us what you want but we're doing it, and we like to invite you to too. We have a few people who we already told, and we can't wait to watch God show up, because we know He will.

We're praying for favor, favor of all government officials involved in this adoption both US and African.

For our sons country, it needs Jesus

For those who we will be in contact with, that they would see the urgency and need that is before us

That our son will come home..soon..sooner than timelines estimate. Because God's not in time, He created it. He controls it, He can make it happen.

There's significance to the time we choose, one day, you'll know why.

"There are higher hights and deeper depths in prayer, and God wants to take you there. He wants to take you places you have never been before.  There are new dialects.  There are new dimensions.  But if you want God to do something new in your life, you can't just do the same old thing. It will involve more sacrifice, but if you are willing to go there, you'll realize that you didn't sacrafice anything at all.  It wil involve more risk, but you are willing to go there, you'll realize that you didn't risk anything at all. Make the sacrifice. Take the risk. Draw the circle. "
-The Circle Maker

ps thank's Wynne for sharing this picture the other day


"Blessed is she who has believed that the Lord would fulfill his promises to her!”
-Luke 1:45



Will you pray with us? 

Saturday, June 22, 2013

Adoption Fundraiser Giveaway!!!

Update! fundraiser closed, winner (chosen by random.org) is comment #9, Annika Arana
Thank you all for participating and bringing us one step closer to our son! 

Casey Leigh: small add space

Dear Lillie: Little Bo Peep Pillow 

From Olive Handmade: A $38.00 gift certificate 

From Echoes of Mercy: A $10 shop credit for a digital file of your choice

From Pomtree: A set of 5 poms of your choice 




HOW TO ENTER:
A donation of $5 equals one entry. For every $5 you donate, please comment below once. For example, if you donate $25, you can comment five separate times. After you have donated, you can tweet, facebook, or blog about the giveaway for another chance to win! Winner will be chosen randomly on July 2nd..Winner takes all! :)



Thank you for helping us bring our boy home!