Sunday, April 29, 2012

Any Day

Thank you for the outpouring of love.  We were incredibly blessed with the 24 hour matching grant fundraiser.    Not only did we make our goal, but we were surprised with a little extra.  
With rising plane ticket costs day by day it is nice to know that God takes even the small things into consideration. 

We still have not gotten our confirmed travel date.  The tentative plans are still for mid-May.  But until we have confirmed dates we can't book our plane tickets-- so we wait as they go up a little each day.
Please pray with us that we hear something this week-- tomorrow would be great!

Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding.  In all your ways acknowledge Him and He will keep your paths straight. 
Proverbs 3:5-6

My life verse.

It is the one verse that I go back to time and time again.  As I think of it, I am comforted knowing that I don't have to have all the answers.  I just need to trust in Him.  Know Him.  Believe in Him.

What is your life verse?
Do you have one?

Wednesday, April 25, 2012


Hi everyone!  As you know we are so close to getting our confirmed travel dates.  We might even know sometime tomorrow!   You can say we are very excited!

As I was going through the finances of our adoption the other day, I couldn't believe how close we are to being fully funded.  John and I have saved $15,000 and we have generously been given and raised around $14,000.  But with current totals of what we have already spent, and what we need to still spend, we still have $2,000 left to come up with.

All I could think to do was pray.

Lord, I put this in your hands.  You are far more capable of doing this than I am.  I am not a fundraiser by nature.  It is You who has gotten us this far.  Lord, please open a door to provide the remaining ransom needed to bring our boys home.  Oh how you love these boys more than we do, so Lord I ask that you show yourself in a mighty way as we prepare to travel.  Amen.

And I prayed again and again and again.
And I waited.

And then guess what?
I got an email.  Out of the blue.
A matching grant.

An answer to prayer.

That's right friends!
We have been offered a matching grant up to $800 to help push us over the top so that we can be fully funded!  Oh how the Lord is so faithful.  Thank you Lord.

But there is a catch.  The matching grant is just that.  The donors will match dollar for dollar that is donated up to $800.  And it doesn't start till tomorrow 5pm PST/ 8pm EST.  The matching donors will match anything that is donated within the 24 hour period that this fundraiser is going to run.  All donations will be tax deductible.

How amazing is that?  I am still in awe of how creative our Lord is.  Talk about multiplying our love offerings.  This matching grant is just that.  Every dollar donated will be doubled.

Praise God.
And please pray with us that the hearts of others are stirred to join us in raising the rest of Doyle and Fischer's ransom with one last push that starts tomorrow!

Other Amazing Families

There are so many amazing stories out there!  I am blessed to be able to get a glimpse into these families lives via their blog.  Some are in the process of adopting and can sure use a word of encouragement or two.  If you can spare $5, you can be a part of yet another orphan coming home.  Imagine that!  Just a few dollars and your heart can soar knowing that you made a huge difference in the life of an orphan.
Others are already home with their children-- and their daily lives are a testimony to the power of Christ.

Here are the links.

Catherine's blog about Victoria and Francesca-- Love this family!

Valentin's family-- They are in Ukraine right now and have a very similar blog name. :)

Mandy's blog-- Is in the process of adopting and has amazing party ideas!  And just got a travel date!

What it Means to Love-- This young lady has a heart for Jesus and orphans.

Adopting Josie-- Oh my is she a cutie!

The Johnson Family-- They live near us!

Check back soon!  God has answered a prayer!  We are so close....

Monday, April 23, 2012

Puzzle Artists

Hi Everyone.  Thank you to all who bought puzzle pieces.  There are still quite a few that have not been claimed.  Please help us finish the boys' frame by buying a puzzle piece to decorate.  Those of you who have given towards the boys' adoption fund by purchasing a puzzle piece-- please email me your address and put puzzle piece in the subject line.  I will try to get them mailed out to you this week.

I look forward to getting them back and putting the frame together with their picture in it!

Thank you so much!


We have a tentative travel date!  Wooo-hooo!  And I found out our dossier was accepted without having to redo anything.  Praising the Lord for the good news this morning!

Sunday, April 22, 2012

God's Provision

How was your weekend?  Ours was pretty good.  As a family we went and saw a matinee of the movie Chimpanzee.  Since we are close to traveling and will be gone for a while, we wanted to do something special with the kids.

The movie was beautifully filmed.  The main character Oscar, is adorable!  Without giving too much away-- he is orphaned and then adopted by the least expected character.
Shown in super fast motion at times the movies seems to literally fly by!
What spoke to me in the movie was the continual provision that could only be orchestrated by God.
The chimps' needs were continually met with one fruit tree after the other having ripe fruit for them to eat.  After one tree's fruit was gone, then another fruit that grows in the water was ready.  And just as that provision was gone, the nut trees came into harvest.  Then the figs were ready.  And then another type of nut and so on.  Rather than be ready all at the same time, each food source came in succession after the other.
Sure times might be tough for the chimps having to hunt for their next food source, but they always had enough.

As I watched the movie, I couldn't help but think of God's provision in this adoption.
He has blessed us through all of you.
He has brought some really amazing people into our lives through this process and I am humbled by the show of support.
Thank you.
As we fast approach the time to travel and meet our two little boys, I have seen our fundraising efforts pick up God's Provision increase to make sure that the boys' ransom is raised.
Two more cookbooks have been sold.  Can you believe that an old friend from the 8th grade bought one? Totally unexpected and such a blessing to reconnect with her through Facebook.

Then there is the special ordered dinosaur bag that was sold.
And another decal was ordered.

And I can't forget the prayers and emails.
They are priceless and an encouragement always.

Thank you so much.
Each day we are a little bit closer.

Friday, April 20, 2012


Thank you so much!
2 cookbooks and 2 decals sold today!
How awesome is that?
And the fact that it is Friday helps a bunch!

I appreciate you very much.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

A Few Opportunities

Tonight my hope rests in the Lord. My hope is that Doyle and Fischer have been fed. . . changed. . . loved on. . . played with. . . hugged. . . taken care of. . . rocked. . . smiled at. . .read to. . . bathed. . . and tucked in.  But honestly, the chance of that being the case is close to none because they are still orphans.
Orphans simply do not have the pleasure of having their needs met when they live in an orphanage.  Basic needs, well maybe.  But not the emotional, intimate needs that nurture a child.  And oh how I yearn to be there for these two precious boys that God willing, I will get to call my sons.

Each day we are one day closer to seeing their faces.  Soon sweet boys. . . soon.

Recently I began researching Doyle's special needs.  I think he has Ectrodactyly.  Actually I think he has Ectrodactyly-Cleft Palate (ECP) syndrome-- but I'll have a doctor officially diagnose him once he is home.  Not that it matters, or we are any less committed-- I just want to be educated.  As I researched more, I found that Bree Walker and Russian chess champion Mikhail Tal have the same thing.  I learned that people with this condition have full use of their digits and adapt well to everyday activities.

From the pictures I have seen and the stories I have heard, Doyle doesn't seem to let it slow him down!
Thank you again for your prayers and generosity.  Your partnership in seeing the boys home has been a huge blessing in this adoption.

There are still a few opportunities to be a part of raising the rest of the boys' ransom.  I wanted to share them with you one last time.

I still have 8 more cookbooks available. 
They are a compilation of our favorite, most used recipes.  Some of the recipes need to be doubled or tripled to feed a family our size and some of the recipes feed an army!
Get one for $25. 

I preordered/prepaid for 80 decals.  I have just 35 decals left.  I am sold out of the James 1:27 but I have these three still available.  Each one is $20.




Next we still have big Spring earrings on sale for $12 a pair.  They are so cute!

Lastly, we have our puzzle frame fundraiser.  There are 18 pieces for each frame--  36 pieces in all.  There is one frame for each of the boys.  10 pieces have been spoken for so far.  I am very thankful to those who bought a piece to decorate but we still have 26 left.  These frames will be specially made with the decorated puzzle pieces with each of your names on it.  With a $10 donation, I will mail you a puzzle piece for you to decorate any way you like, sign, and mail back.  Or I can decorate for you.

Leave a comment or email me at
Blessings to you all!

And please continue to pray for Tamara.  It would be awesome to see a family commit to her.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Dennis and A Dream

It's getting close.  We should be hearing something from our facilitator in the next week. . . maybe sooner.  
Two nights ago I dreamt of meeting Fischer.  It was one of my classic dreams meaning-- it was weird!  I am in country, by myself. . .  I forgot my video camera.  I am sitting on a couch with the director and doctor.  Out walks a caretaker holding a big baby.  A very big baby the size of Dennis I might add.  I try to look on in anticipation of my little Fischer but she walks right up to me and plops the baby down on my lap.  I can barely stand the weight of him on my lap-- he is so big.  He reaches up to touch my face as I look into his eyes.  He has strawberry colored freckles covering his face.
I wonder how I am going to carry my very big boy home.
The end.

Great dream, huh?
At breakfast today Dennis asked grumpily, "So when are _________ and _________ coming home?  Please go get them today.  I want them to come home."
I could tell his little heart and brain are working overtime as he wraps the thought of him having two little brothers.  He has memorized their names, tells me which clothes will be theirs, where they will sleep, and that they can have his carseat.

He asks anxiously everyday-- disappointed to hear me say not for a few more weeks.
Oh precious Lord,  be with our babies today.  Be with all the babies and all the sweet children who need the love and support of a family.  Lord I ask that you open the floodgates of your grace and mercy so that  these children do not have to suffer.  Like a wilting flower, I ask that you lay on the hearts of each of us to reach out with a willing hand to water them with hope, love, nutrition, and stimulation.

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Changing Things Up!

Three different families have emailed me about Tamara.  I am so excited to see the hearts of others stirred for this precious child of God.  Having met her a few years back-- I never could forget her sweet face.  I so want to see her adopted that I am changing things up a bit.  

Originally the auction for the Ocean Scene Tote bag was supposed to end in a few minutes but I am going to extend the bidding till 8 pm PST tonight.  I would like for all the money from the highest bidder for this bag to go to Tamara's grant fund.  She needs it more than we do.  In addition to that money, I would like to match whatever is donated.

God's love for us has been overflowing and faithful that I would like to pass on that love to Tamara and her future family.  

Please consider bidding!  

Thursday, April 12, 2012

Ocean Scene Tote Bag

Making these bags have become my labor of love. I yearn for the day when our little boys will be home. As I made this ocean scene tote bag, I thought of them and how each stitch gets us little close to the day when we get to meet them.  Oh what a precious day that will be.

 With the eye finally sewed on, this tote bag is ready to be auctioned off.

 If you would like to bid please leave a comment.
The auction will end Sunday, April 15 at 3pm PST

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

She Needs You Now!

Back in November I blogged about precious Tamara.
Soon after reading my post a family stepped up to adopt her.
Praise the Lord!
Tamara had a family!
Soon she would be holding the hand of her Mama.
Soon she would be snuggled up in our own cozy bed.
Soon she would be cherished and loved the way every child deserves.
Fast forward to today.
Her future looks very dim.
Her hope is fading.

Tamara lost her family.
And there is more.
Now that she is four years old she is facing an imminent transfer to an institution.
No more baby house. 

Oh how my heart breaks.
Oh Lord, we call out to you.  Where are your hands?  Where are you feet?  Where is this sweet child's family?
What hurts even more is that I know this little girl.  And she is a sweetheart through and through.
She is at the same baby house that Alex and Dennis were at.
She is in the same situation our little boy was once in.
Just moments away from a life way worse than now.
Any orphanage is no place for a child to grow up, but an institution is way worse.
Remember the videos of the Bulgarian institution I shared before?
Well, Tamara is headed to a place much like in the video.
She will be neglected, under nourished, and will surely deteriorate.

I am crying out to you--- "Please, she needs a family!"
A Mama and a Papa that will commit to her.
A family that will come beside her and help her to blossom into the girl she was made to be!

From a therapy team that visisted with her in 2012: Tamara is an absolute doll! Our TEAM has gotten to meet and work with Tamara the past several years and have loved every minute with her. Tamara is able to walk independently and talks in complete sentences. She told our group (in Russian) that she was a princess! We couldn’t agree more! Tamara ‘s caregivers asked us to help her with a few of her sounds in Russian, which leads us to believe her language and communication skills are very good since they were concerned with the production of just a few sounds. Tamara was able to hold toys with her hands, and complete a wooden animal puzzle with our therapists. She loved sitting in the floor playing and was a very good imitator of just about anything! Tamara is quickly approaching the age that will mean her time in the orphanage is coming to an end and will be facing a transfer to an institution. We are praying that Tamara never makes that move to an institution and will be set in a family that loves her. Join us in praying for Tamara.

Tamara's grant is currently at $2700.  With every tax deductible donation her chances of being adopted increase.  If you are not in a position to adopt right now, perhaps you can consider a love offering to her grant fund to enable another family to step forward.

You can donate here.

Friday, April 6, 2012

Just when I was thinking that our fundraising efforts might be done, we were blessed by a fellow blogger and adoptive Mom Adeye who shared about our window sticker decals on her blog.  Ten people have inquired about buying a decal!  Praise the Lord!  It is amazing how God continues to open doors just when I am about to shut them.  Oh how faithful is He to bless us through all of you by helping us to bring the boys home.

Tonight I made my first frozen casserole for the kids to eat while we are in Ukraine- - A yummy batch of enchiladas.  I know it seems a bit early, but you never know when we'll get word of a travel date.
A girl can wish right?

Hope you all have a a wonderful Easter.  Jesus our Lord and Savior loves us so much!

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

In a Few Weeks

Thespian-- you are the winning bidder on the Dino tote bag.  Thank you so much!  Please email me at
Today I found out that we won't learn of a travel date until the end of April.  It will most likely be for 2 weeks out putting us in country around the second week of May.  That's if our paperwork is all in order.
Of course we may find out sooner, but doubtful since other families adopting from Ukraine are following a similar timeline.

I have began preparing the kids' lessons for when I'll be gone so they an finish up their school year.  I already talked to our teacher who will meet with them twice in May.
Since Rachel is going with us, she is taking her finals at the end of this month.
I'm nesting whenever I have free time-- an hour here and there.
I went through what clothes we have been given for Doyle and Fischer.  I have picked up a few outfits for them as well.   Thank you Vanessa, Corri and Christine for the clothes.  I began with absolutely nothing, and now I feel like I can get by for awhile until I know their exact size.
I know I sound like a broken record, but I just don't think I can say thank you enough.  You may not be in a position to adopt a child, but you are making it possible for two little boys to grow up knowing the love of a family.

God bless you.

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Big Spring Earrings!

Julia made these Spring earrings!
They are so cute!
This thread is stiff and thus difficult to work with and these earrings are three times as big as the other flower earrings so we are asking $12  a pair.   
But totally worth it and oh so versatile!
Please email me at or leave a comment if you would like to order a pair.
P.S.  They only come in white.

Monday, April 2, 2012

Just Sayin'

Today we found out both of the boys' names.
Actually we already knew Doyle's name, but Fischer's we found out this morning.
It may sound strange, but it made me feel instantly closer to him.
It's so nice to know something else about the little boys we hope to adopt.
It's pretty much all we know right now-- so it's a big deal.
Surprisingly though,
we are not sure if we will keep their names.
I know I know-- we have usually kept the kids' names or something very close or the English equivalent, but this time we may not.

When we first began adopting, we felt that we should keep our children's birth names since we were taking everything else away from them-- their language, their country, everything they were used too.
Then when we began adopting through a disruption-- we kept their names too even though they were not necessarily the names they were given at birth.
Then we Americanized Denis pronounced like Denise to Dennis and we call Alexei-- Alex because no one can pronounce it the Russian way.
And Paul was called Pasha and Anastasia was called Nastia.  We just Americanized their names.
So did we "technically" keep their names?
Did we do them any favors?
Paul just came in to kiss me goodnight.
I decided to ask him if he would have preferred that we keep his name Pasha.
He said he didn't really like that name.  Paul sounds so much better he thinks.

At this point, we are not going to make any decisions until we meet them.
We are pretty certain they don't go by their legal names anyways since little kids usually go by the child like endearing version anway.
Anya was Anyithcka.
Alexei was Losha.
Pavel was Pasha.

Who knows-- Fischer may look like a Timothy or a David, or an Anatoly, or a Bogdan.  And the name Fischer has grown on us.  I can't even imagine what Dennis and Alex are going to say when we introduce Doyle and Fischer by different names.
Oh I haven't had this much fun with names since i was pregnant with Jonny.
We'll just have to wait and see!
Guess what?
12 pieces of the puzzle frames have been sold!  (Only 24 left!)
It touches my heart and makes me smile when I think about how far we have come in such a short time.
Just three months ago we began this journey.
Three months ago it was hard to imagine how the Lord would work things out.
And yet He has.
And He continues to pave the way to our boys.
And I have to tell you-- each time I get an uplifting email or I see another donation towards the boys' ransom, or someone out of the blue asks to buy a sticker decal long after I first posted about them-- I am still in awe.  Each time. 
Thank you.
Thank you for your gift of encouragement.  Thank you for your outpouring of love.
Thank you for your friendship.  Your understanding.  Your passion for orphans and adoption.
Thank you for the love and support we feel with each beautiful gesture. 
Now. . . 
Time to be honest.  Time to share my feelings.
Time to think out loud.

Two little boys are joining our family very soon.
I am excited.  I feel incredibly blessed.  And yet I wonder how everything is going to come together.  How quickly will it take them to feel at home?  To trust me?  To adore Daddy?  To love all their siblings?
To rest peacefully in our arms?  To enjoy a bubble bath?  To allow their big brothers to pull them in the wagon?  To eat pizza?
So many things that we take for granted, yet I remember like yesterday what a big deal each of these milestones were for our little Dennis.
Doyle has a few physical challenges with his hands and feet and a repaired cleft palate.  He reminds John and I so much of Dennis.
Will he need as many surgeries?  Should I stick him in pre-school immediately or keep him at home for a year?  I'm thinking school can wait. He needs to be home-- to play, to stay close, to get to know us.
I need to be his Mommy.  I want to know if he likes peanut butter.  Is he right handed or left?  Does he like Little Bear or Bob the Builder?  Is he a cuddler?  Does he like music?
And then there is sweet little Fischer.  He has Down Syndrome.
I imagine what he will be like, but I really have no clue what to expect.
A little boy I feel hardly equipped to raise-- and yet I am super excited to have the privilege to give it my all! 
I might be familiar with raising kids, adoption, and special needs-- but I need to humble myself because I am not familiar with Doyle and Fischer.  They are unique-- one of kind.
And I already know I am going to fall short.
I already do everyday.
Oh thank goodness, I am not doing this alone.  
John and I are not doing this alone.  
We heavily rely on God to help us through our days.
He is full of grace.
I don't know about you, but I need that. 
It will be no different when Doyle and Fischer are home.

Just sayin.

Thanks-- for your love and support.
It is a huge blessing to our family.

Sunday, April 1, 2012


I have began nesting.  I hope to accomplish so much before the boys come home.  Sorting through clothes, stocking up on diapers, getting yard work under control, cleaning baseboards, getting rid of the small things likes marbles, and legos in the kids' toys that Doyle and Fischer can put in their mouth.  Never ending.

Thank you for the 8 puzzle pieces that have been sold.  Four for each of the boys.  It is hard to explain how meaningful your partnership is in helping us bring the boys home.  It encourages us that you see the worth of these two little boys just as much as we do.  You have blessed us tremendously-- in case you didn't know that.
And that goes back to the first day when we announced we were adopting Doyle and Fischer.
A big thanks for the love and support!

Since I don't have much to report, if you have any questions please feel free to ask.