June 19, 2012


My mind is pretty much mush lately due to the complexities of being in the process of an international adoption and a domestic adoption at the same time. Plus, being a mom to a 16 month old boy and 4 dogs who do not have an off switch and attempting to be the best wife possible. All the while starting Jen Hatmaker’s book 7, which is making me increasingly cranky because we’re on month 1 and I LOVE food!!! So, please bear with me through this sporadic post.

-First off, I mentioned in a previous post that directors from our agency were traveling to DRC to sign an agreement with the country officials. They were also taking a care package to our little girl. Well, yesterday I was informed they were able to hand carry our dossier to Congo!! For any adoption newbie’s, the dossier is our whole life in papers. The stack is pretty much a mile high and had to be notarized, legalized, signed, stamped, etc. It’s a big deal!! Now they will translate our dossier into French (Congo’s official language) and it will await our court date.

-Speaking of court date…I have a big prayer. And I mean BIG! I’m praying that we pass court in Congo before our baby boy is born via domestic adoption. I’m praying this for a few reasons. 1) If we don’t pass court before he’s born, we’ll have to update our international home study. This comes with a hefty price tag of $1,350. (Yikes!) And would probably delay Cora coming home. 2) If we pass court before he’s born, the likelihood of Cora being home by Christmas is pretty good!! I would love to be a complete family in 2012. 3) We’ll still be eligible for the adoption tax credit if she comes home this year. If not, we lose any chance of getting the credit to help offset some of our expenses we’ve already paid out because the credit expires December 31, 2012. Please let this be your prayer as well. Pray that we pass court in Congo before the birth of our son.

-I mentioned we have a chance of missing the tax credit window. Even if we don’t miss it, we still have a long way to go financially before we can bring these kiddos home. We need at least $15,000 more to complete both adoptions. I have applied for a few grants recently and am anxiously awaiting the decisions. Please pray that there will be grants awarded in our favor. Pray for funds to be provided in miraculous ways. We have worked so hard thus far and the Lord has been faithful. I pray for his continued support and provisions.

-We are officially a licensed SC foster home! Our worked called today to tell me she received our license and was mailing it to us.

Our house will be full with pitter patters of little feet soon, so for now I’m going sit back and enjoy the quietness of being a family of three. It’s the calm before the storm, but I’m sure it will be the best storm of our lives.

June 13, 2012

God Threw Us A Curve Ball

Let me start from the very beginning. We started this adoption with all hopes to adopt a little boy from Ethiopia, as you all know that changed when Ethiopia abruptly changed their age guidelines. You can read about that here.

After the boot from Ethiopia we switched to our agencies extremely new Congo program. We loved our agency and the thought of a pilot program did not scare us in the least, until we really got into it. Once we were a part of the program things seemed to be at a complete standstill. There had been no referrals in months and the number of families in the program continued to grow. We began to worry, not necessarily questioning our call to adoption, but just wondering if Congo would come through.

In February, we attended a local adoption fair with friends of ours who were adopting domestically. There were lots of agencies, lawyers, and adoption support groups at the fair. It was a wonderful event and opened our eyes and hearts for all types of adoption…international, domestic and foster care. We began to pray about which direction was right for our family. We were so heavily invested in Congo and our hearts truly were in Africa, but did God have another plan for our family?

At the end of February, we decided to pursue a domestic adoption as well. Our thinking was that we would open up the doors to being matched with a local birthmom and still stay on the waiting list for a referral from Congo. Whichever match happened first is the one we would pursue. We compiled our family portfolio and dropped it off to the domestic agency with high hopes of being picked quickly. We didn’t hear of a single interest in 2 ½ months. As you probably know, on May 4th we got the call about a 3 year old little girl in Congo whose referral we accepted and are now in the process of preparing for court in Congo. Our adoption finally had a direction, a positive one, one that we were perfectly content pursuing. The Lord had been faithful and indeed led us to Congo.

Shortly after we accepted our daughter’s referral, I emailed our local domestic agency to let them know of our referral status and to pull our portfolio from being shown. I told her we were going to go full force with Congo and if it was God’s will we may come back to domestic later, much later. Whoops, let me back up a minute. I forgot to tell you I spoke with a lawyer the morning of May 4th (our Congo referral day) about putting our domestic portfolio with her office in hopes of getting more showings with birth moms. That conversation quickly went to the back of my mind because just hours later we got the call about our daughter.

Anyhow, on May 21st we got a call from the domestic agency. She told us that she knew we had a referral from Congo, but would like to show us to a mom who had just had a baby yesterday! What in the world?! I was in shock because to me domestic was already closed, but after talking with Trey and our international worker we decided to be shown. The mom didn’t pick us and that was a-ok. Back to just going with Congo…or not. Two days later I got another call. This time it was from the lawyer I’d spoken with the day of our referral. She had a mom in the hospital preparing to give birth and she wanted to make an adoption plan. She asked if we could send her some pictures and info because she wanted us to be considered. Oh. My. Word. What in the world was happening?! We hadn’t heard a thing in months and now we had two potential situations in one week. It was at that moment I felt like God was slapping me in the face and saying “Hello!!! Keep all the doors that I called you to open!”. We were shown to that mom as well, but were not picked.

In the next few days Trey and I decided to go with what we thought the Lord was yelling to us and keep our domestic possibilities open. We had a window of time that a match could happen or it would interfere with our Congolese adoption and we didn’t want that to be interrupted so we waited to see what would happen, if anything.

Last Friday, June 8th, exactly one month after we officially accepted the referral of our Congolese daughter, we got a call from the domestic lawyer. WE HAD BEEN MATCHED. A local mom pregnant with a bi-racial baby boy had chosen us! We had so many emotions running through us; joy, excitement, shock, thankfulness, and a little bit of “oh my goodness, we’ll have 3 kids in the next 8 months!”

So, I am overjoyed to announce that our family of 3 is expecting a baby boy Fall 2012 and a little girl Spring 2013!! From a family of 3 to 5 in less than a year! Oh, how His ways are so much greater than mine!!

“My thoughts are nothing like your thoughts,” says the Lord. “And my ways are far beyond anything you could imagine. For just as the heavens are higher than the earth, so my ways are higher than your ways and my thoughts higher than your thoughts.” -Isaiah 55:8-9

Thanks for coming along this journey with us as we expand our family.  I'll keep you updated on the progress of both adoptions as things move forward.  All glory to Him forever and ever.

June 07, 2012

Month 1: Our 1st Care Package

Our first care package and officially one month of having our referral...how exciting! Theres no big news to share other than we're being patient while our Power of Attorney and Consent to Adopt are being legalized by the DRC embassy in Washington and our lawyer in Congo is working on getting paperwork filed with the municipality to start or court process. So we wait patiently knowing that God has every detail under His control.

However, we did get some exciting news when we were told the two international directors from Lifeline would be traveling to Congo in June and had agreed to make room for a few care packages in their luggage. (YAY!!) They gave us one stipulation, the "package" had to be in a gallon sized ziploc bag!! How in the world was I going to fit everything I wanted to give our little girl in a ziploc bag?! It was tough and the bag was about to bust!!
 We sent her:
-2 dresses
-Headbands, Bows & Barrets
-Hello Kitty Chapstick
-Bracelets & Necklaces
-Mini lotions
-A Thirty-One Bag to carry her goodies in
-A Picture Clutch with pictures of us
-Pink Glow Seahorse
(Kipton has a blue one and doesn’t sleep without it. I wanted to get her a small baby doll, but when I saw the pink seahorse all I could picture was her holding it at night while it lit up the dark orphanage and played sweet music that would lull her to sleep. Bless. My. Soul. There were some tears in Target.)


There are about 30 children at her orphanage.  Most of the items I sent will become communal and thats A-ok with me...hopefully the boys dont have aversions to bows and costume jewelry. ;) I also wrote a note to the orphanage director (in French!) thanking her for caring for our little girl until we can bring her home.

I'm hoping they'll be able to get some more pictures and possibly even a video while they're visiting. Keep Lifeline in your prayers as these directors travel to extend Lifeline's care of the fatherless. One month down only 7-9 more to go....hopefully less!!!

June 06, 2012

Blogger Perks

When I started this blog, it was mainly to keep our family and friends updated on our adoption. I never anticipated that I would be so greatly blessed through sharing our simple story of faith for the fatherless.

Through blogging, I have met so many wonderful women who are also on the same adoption road. I am able to find encouragement when I’m down, have a group ready to cheer when we’ve gotten to a certain mile marker, have prayer warriors just one email away and be able to talk all things adoption 24/7 without being a complete bore. Adoptive mama’s are of a completely different caliber.

Today I thought I’d share a little love to my fellow Lifeline families. There is not an agency out there that is so committed to defending the fatherless as Lifeline. I have had my doubts throughout this process, but I know 150% that we are working with one of the most reputable, Christ centered agencies out there. The Lord is moving mountains through the staff and families of Lifeline. I am honored to be a part of such a wonderful group where the child comes first.

Lindsy was one of my first Lifeline family discoveries. She received her referral of her son the same day we did. She also has an adorable etsy shop!

Lori is currently waiting on a referral for up to 2 kids aged 3-7. She is a faith-filled mama and always has a positive word to say!

Leslie started an awesome adoption ministry through her church in AL and is also a foster parent to a six month old baby boy!

Erin is super sweet and is no newbie to adoption. Her patience in waiting for the children God has for her family is endearing and empowering. Check out her adoption t-shitrts!

Whitney is a momma of 3 and will be adding on 2 HIV+ kiddos from Congo.

Amanda is adopting a sibling set of 3 from an orphanage in Goma. She started a non-profit called Mercy’s Mission to support the children in Goma who weren’t adopted.

Jenni and I met by chance when I bought her triple stroller(!) off craigslist. She is adopting through Lifeline’s China program. I could go on and on all day about what an amazing woman, wife and mother she is! I know that our meeting was orchestrated by the Big Man and I look forward to growing in friendship with her and her faith filled family.

Ladies - I am so blessed to be able to share along your journey's. Thanks for all the kind words and constant support through this crazy roller coaster called adoption. We can advance His kingdom one orphan at a time!!