Sunday, November 25, 2012

The Last Fundraiser Approaches...

We believe this will be our last fundraiser.  With the grants we've applied for and continuing donations coming in, we are prayerful and hopeful that the fundraising stage of this adoption is coming to a close.  Through many fundraisers and donations, over $14,000 has been raised! 

As most of you know, we are praying specifically for our child to join our family by the end of the year, so that's another reason we hope this to be the last fundraiser... we hope to soon be spending most of our time bonding with our bundle of joy!  

We have $5,000-7,000 remaining.  Can you please help us finish out this remaining goal? 

Can you come to the dinner, for the whole shebang?  
Can you tell your friends and family about this event?
Can you donate something for the auction?  
Can you shop from the auction?  
Can you make a donation? 
Can you help? 

Here are the helpful links: 

Purchase your ticket (by 11/27 at noon so we can give numbers to our caterer):

Shop the auction online (Now through Noon on 11/29)...  (43 items and counting!)

Make a donation

Share about this event.  

Thank you so much for how you have been part of this adoption process so far!  Please know that we appreciate each and every one of you... each donation of $10 or $1,000 has been special to us!


Saturday, November 24, 2012

Online Auction has Started

Hey Everyone!  The online auction for our BBQ & Bids Christmas Adoption Fundraiser has started!  The online portion will continue through noon on 11/29.  

Please help us spread the word!!

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

God's Trying to Teach Me Something...

I haven't done a great job at the daily posts about adoption, but that's okay.  Life continues, and it's a little tricky to blog daily without internet access at home.  

Anyway, without going into any details, there's a lot happening on the adoption front.  Lots of emails.  The kind that say "are you interested in this baby" and we respond "of course we're interested" and then we hear back "____ families are interested in this baby".  Then we wait.

It's a beautiful and maddening thing.  It's soooooo wonderful that there are other people who want to be families for these children.  It's a beautiful thing that these precious lives are soon going to have families who love them and dream for them.  Maddening because we want to be the family.  

I get really caught up in emails.  Matt and I both do... it's probably comical to observe us these days... constantly checking emails, texting each other, calling each other for updates (depending on which one has email access at the time).  

But I had a good reminder today.  Something I KNOW but needed a good smack in the face with, to be reminded of...  

God is not giving us a child through an email.
It has nothing to do with how many other families respond and our 'odds'. 
HE has chosen our child(ren), and these are just the means
of getting us to him/her/them...
God has already designed our family.
Not the agency.  Not the waiting list.  Not a system. 

I was re-reading my friend's blog earlier, and I ran across this: 
You see, it was never about probability or circumstances or anything else. It was about God's plan. These girls were ours, are ours. It didn't matter how things played out....they were ours either way. And what a blessing to know that. We didn't become our girls' parents by default; we also didn't become their parents because their birthmom chose us. We became their parents because God chose us. He chose our family; He chose us for each other. (And not because we deserved it, but because He is SOOO good to us:))

Timely, wouldn't you say? 

By the way, if you're coming to our BBQ & Bids Fundraiser, you'll get to meet the family above and hear their story. 


Tuesday, November 13, 2012

A Prayer

Yes, my soul, find rest in God;
    my hope comes from him.
Truly he is my rock and my salvation;
    he is my fortress, I will not be shaken.
My salvation and my honor depend on God;
    he is my mighty rock, my refuge.
Trust in him at all times, you people;
    pour out your hearts to him,
    for God is our refuge.

Lord, help me remember that YOU are my hope, where my soul finds rest.  As I woke up in a 'blah' mood, emotional and raw, I thank you for reminding me that YOU are my rock and my salvation, my refuge.  Lord, thanks for allowing me to pour out my heart to You. 

We've been officially 'waiting' 7 months today, Lord.  You know that.  You know what you have planned for us--the child, the birth mother and possible father that we will get to share our lives and Your love with.  I have NO control over any of this, so please help me to truly trust You and focus on all the wonderful things you've given us... the MANY things we have to be thankful for.  Help me not to wish away this time just waiting for what's next.  

Thank You, Lord, for knowing the beginning and the end... for being above time.  Thank You for not being affected by earthly timelines and expectations.  Help me to remember Your timing is perfect... 

*I don't normally write blog posts in prayer form, but I felt led to leave it this way AND actually hit "publish" on this one.   God knows the parts of this prayer that went unwritten as well, but I hope and pray there's a reason I'm sharing this.  Maybe it will be timely for others as well.   

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Fundraising Update

In the last week, special friends have given over $3,000 in donations through Lifesong.  As each email came through about donations, I cried.  It's truly overwhelming to experience love and support in such a tangible way.  We have known God will provide, and we trust Him to, yet it's still humbling and powerful to see Him do it! If you've ever considered adoption and been intimidated by the cost, don't be.  God provides. 

As of now, we only have about $7,000 left.  

As we move forward to our BBQ & Bids Fundraiser, we are hopeful it will be our last fundraiser.  
Can you help us spread the word?  Can you come?  Can you donate something for the auction? 

 It's going to be awesome!

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Waiting + a Giveaway!

This "waiting" thing is maddening.  Some days are easier than others, but days like today, when we are waiting on an email or a response to an email or an update... I mean, these days make me feel like I'm going crazy. 

I *force* myself to be productive at work, to "be anxious for nothing", to talk with God continuously about where we are.  It's hard.  It's also faith-building, but in the going-crazy sort of way. :)

I'm thankful for other things to occupy my time (like my job which is in a very busy season, like fundraising events, spending time with friends and family, and networking with other adoptive families).  I'm thankful for my husband who is a man of great faith.  I'm thankful for our agency...

...and I'm thankful for friends who pray for and with us.  

One friend (who I look forward to meeting in person soon!) is even doing a giveaway on her blog for join her in prayer for adoptive families currently waiting.  It's a really cool thing.  Please check it out.  
For a chance to win a $10 Starbucks Gift Card:
Go to this link and view the list of waiting families in SC with our agency. Choose a family (other than us), read their story, and spend some time praying for them. Pray for their future child, their birthparents, and their hearts as they wait. Leave her a comment to let her know who you prayed for.

To partner with her in this, I will give another opportunity for you to win something as you pray for another adoptive family:
  •  Follow the instructions above (adapted from her website).  Then leave a comment here (on our blog) with the family you took a few minutes to pray for.  We will give away 2 tickets to our upcoming BBQ & Bids Christmas Adoption Dinner.  
Her giveaway ends tomorrow.  Ours will go through Saturday at 5pm since I'm just now posting this.  

National Adoption Month, Day 7

Infant adoption is only part of the picture.  It's a part that gets a lot of attention, but foster-care adoption or state adoptions have been tugging at my heart as well.  It's not out of the question for us.  

What about you?  

This link is helpful when it comes to thinking through different fears people have about adopting from foster care.  

Today I found out about the SC Heart Gallery.  Pictures and descriptions of over 300 children in South Carolina who are currently waiting for their forever families. 

Would you take a few minutes and pray for these children?  Pray that they are safe in their current situation.  Pray for their forever families to find them soon.  In the meantime, pray for them to be loved!

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Election Day Special for Fundraising Dinner

We haven't sold any tickets yet.  :/ 
So, in honor of Election Day AND to get this show on the road, we're offering a special.

Today only:  Buy 3 tickets, get 1 free! 
That way, you can bring friends and have even more fun! 

Purchase tickets here (change the quantity before you hit "Checkout").

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Our Church and Orphans

Yesterday, Matt and I had the opportunity to share briefly about our adoption with our church.  Yesterday was orphan Sunday, so we were asked to share our story and spend time praying for orphans from stage.  (We were far down the line of people asked, but it was cool anyway!) 

I can't explain the JOY and passion that I felt while hearing Matt talking with the Lord about orphans, adoption, and the parts we play.  His heart has changed so much, and I'm beyond thankful!  It's further proof that GOD is doing this... not us.

We are so grateful to be part of this church.  There are 3 other families who have adopted in our church.  Of those 3 families, we've been in Community Group with two of them.  What a blessing!  And one other family (that we know of!) is starting the process.  It means so much that we have this support system... that our child(ren) won't be the only one(s) who don't look like Mommy & Daddy. :)

Even more awesome is that our church is doing a HUGE event in December to raise awareness and funds for local orphanages.  Check out the video below.

Sunday, November 4, 2012

National Adoption Month, Day 4

This says it all.  
Thanks to my friend Tanya for passing it along to me.
It can be purchased here.

And if you want more along these lines, read this book:


National Adoption Month, Day 3

I'm starting to realize that not everyone is obsessed with passionate about adoption like me.  To some people, it's something they "could never do", something they think is limited to pets, thought only rich people could do, or don't think about at all.    

I'm so thankful for all the different ways that adoption has become part of my life:
  • I'm thankful for the neighbors up the street who adopted a kid when I was in elementary school then immediately became pregnant so raised two kids almost like twins. 
  • I'm thankful for the F______ family who I met while I was in high school and had the opportunity to babysit for in those days. 
  • I'm thankful for the professor at Anderson who was single but had two adopted daughters (can't remember which country).  
  • I'm thankful for having full-out lectures about adoption during my time at Focus on the Family. 
  • I'm thankful for having friends who are adopted.
  • I'm thankful for friends who have adopted or are adopting. 
Whether my interactions have been very limited or up-close-and-personal, I'm thankful for each and every exposure I've had to adoption.  It has helped it become more normal to me.  Our new normal.

What about you?  What are your experiences with adoption?  Does it seem very foreign to you?  Something God is calling you to be part of?  Something you want to know more about? 


Saturday, November 3, 2012

Fundraising Dinner & Silent Auction

Thursday, November 29th 6:00pm

at Holiday Inn, 250 Johnnie Dodds Blvd, Mt. Pleasant, SC

$15 per ticket*

includes full BBQ Dinner 
catered by Sticky Fingers, 
live Music,
Adoption Stories,
and a Silent Auction

 Purchase your tickets here by 11/26. 

 * Free ticket if you donate an item for the Silent Auction.

Friday, November 2, 2012

National Adoption Month, Day 1

Have you heard that November is National Adoption Month? 
My Facebook feed is FULL of reminders, and for that, I'm thankful.  

I'm going to try to do something adoption-related on this blog each day of November.  Shouldn't be too hard since most of my life is consumed with adoption these days anyway. :)

To start, I'll share with you that our story was shared with a very special community--the Alumni of Focus on the Family's semester long leadership program.  I am a proud Spring 2003 graduate of the program, then known as "Focus on the Family Institute", and many special friends were made that semester.  MANY special friends from that season have been part of our fundraising so far, and we are eternally grateful for that.  

You can read our story here.  (Highlights below)

Tricia's Story

Adopting has been something I've wanted to do ever since I attended the Institute in 2003. After knowing several families with adoption in their stories, it also always seemed like such a practical way to live out the Gospel. When we got married in 2007, adoption was something that Matthew and I knew we would do 'someday' when the Lord led us.
After a year of marriage, we were living in Thailand teaching at a Christian school for Thai children, and the idea of adoption strongly gripped my heart, but Matthew wanted to grow our family the 'old-fashioned way' first. After two more years without a child the 'old-fashioned way', and many prayers and discussions, we finally decided to pursue adoption.
In September 2010, our adoption journey began. It took over a year and a half to get home-study approval due to some health-related issues and our messy finances. Now, two years later, we are home-study approved and waiting for the child that God has chosen for our family.

How have you seen God at work through your adoption journey?

The adoption community is like no other. With all the variations—international, domestic, foster-care, family and special needs adoptions—adopting creates a wonderful opportunity to learn about how God is at work being a "Father to the fatherless" (Psalm 68:5).
There are countless blogs, organizations, orphanages and families who have felt God's call to "look after orphans" (James 1:27). It has been eye-opening. We have been humbled by God's financial provision but also heartbroken and overwhelmed by all of the need that exists. We know ours is just one story of the millions God is writing. It's so much bigger than us.

Also, you can learn about two other Alumni who are passionate about adoption, Thea Ramirez and Katie Overstreet.

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Coming Up! Can You Help?

Save the Date!
Here's what we know so far:
  • Thursday, November 29th, starting at 6:00
  • Catered by Sticky Fingers
  • at Holiday Inn, Mt. Pleasant (250 Johnnie Dodds Blvd)
  • You'll get to hear others' Adoption Stories
  • We'll have Christmas Music (hopefully LIVE)
  • We'll have lots of items to auction off (with online pre-auction starting Black Friday) that will make perfect Christmas gifts for your friends and family
  • We are excited!!! 
  • We need help... can you help us make this happen?  

We need Auction Items!  Here are some ideas:

  • Gift Cards for Any Amount (Target, Best Buy, Restaurants)
  • iPad/iPod
  • Kindle
  • Hotel Room Stay
  • Etsy Shop or other online gift certificates
  • Gift Certificate 
  • Craft Items
  • Gift Baskets 
  • CDs
  • Anything that you would want to get or give for Christmas
Any businesses/persons who donate will receive ample recognition unless otherwise requested. 

Even if you're not local, you could make a special donation here and make a note that it's for us to buy an auction item (and what it's for if you have a preference).  We appreciate ANY help!