Thursday, November 29, 2012


Look what came in the mail today!!  My passport had expired since my travels abroad during college (by the way, this makes me feel old) so I went ahead and did all the paperwork to get it renewed when we decided we were going to adopt. I knew it would take a while and I knew I had to have it, so I figured it was a good place to start.  (Matt has a current passport so he is already set.) I had almost forgotten about it so it made my heart very happy when it showed up in my mailbox today.  One baby step closer.

A Need

While we are enjoying working on paperwork (I really am enjoying it right now!  I'm crazy, I know) and doing things to move forward, we have a pretty large financial need right now.  

We need about $4,000 to pay the initial agency fees and home study fees.  

This is the breakdown:
$1800  Agency Fee
$1800  Home Study Fee
$400    Education Requirements, background checks

Through the puzzle fundraiser, $1,500 has come in!  We are humbled and grateful at that.

So, we need about $2,500 to pay these initial fees.  We will be doing other fundraisers (T-shirt, concert, etc) in the new year, but we would love to take care of these initial fees now to keep the process moving forward.

We know this is a lot, and its coming at a time when budgets are already stretched tight- but we are trusting that God will provide a way.  

Please consider being a part of our son's adoption journey with a gift of $10, $25, $50 or $100.  

You can make a donation by using the pay pal button on the right or by mailing a check.

We are loving seeing the sweet names come together on our puzzle.  Thank you for walking this road with us.

Monday, November 26, 2012


so thankful to The Giver of all things

Puzzle Update, Week 3

We are a few days late on our puzzle update this week.

36 new pieces sponsored this week

126 pieces sponsored = $1260

So thankful for each sweet name we get to write on it.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

New Paperwork

a new agency.... a new set of paperwork

We are grateful to be moving forward with our new agency.

What's next, you ask?
1.  Make $1800 payment (we have $1200 raised so far, so we are close!!)
2.  Paperwork, lots of paperwork
3.  Find a home study agency.
4.  Lots more paperwork.
5.  Do our home study.
6.  While our home study is being done, complete 4 major education requirements.
7.  Complete home study.

This is estimated to take 3 - 4 months.

The home study being complete marks the beginning of our international stage.  We will be compiling our dossier (pronounced doss-ee-ay), which is our collection of (very important) documents that will be submitted to the CCWA (The Chinese Center for Children's Welfare and Adoption).

So, for the next few months, we'll be working through all of our home study paperwork, interviews, and continuing our fundraising.  Thanks for walking with us, friends.  We'll continue to post updates here.

Friday, November 16, 2012

Puzzle Update, Week 2

 We are having fun working on this puzzle!  It has actually surprised us how much we like sitting down to work on it at night or on the weekends.  It's relaxing, but mind stretching at the same time.  And, in all honesty, it's a sweet blessing to work on it when it feels like it is the only thing we can do right now to move closer to bringing our boy home.  We hope to have an update on our new agency soon.

42 new pieces were sponsored this week.  Thank you so so much!

90 pieces total = $900 raised

We would love to get another 40 pieces sponsored in the next week.  For $10, can we put your name on a piece of our puzzle?  Every $10 helps.  We are so grateful.

Monday, November 12, 2012

Agency Switch

Last week, we realized that a major mis-communication had happened between us and our agency.  There is a mandatory meeting that all adoptive parents have to attend before they can move forward.  The next one of those isn't happening until April.  Therefore, we could not even start our home study process until after April.

To be honest, it felt like a punch in the stomach. I (Lisa) have been so sad at the thought of not moving forward until April.  I've cried, struggled and wrestled with it.  We've talked to a lot of people to try and sort this out.  In the end, we feel it is best to switch agencies.   Even though switching agencies feels like it puts us back at the beginning of a process we thought we were further along in, it allows us to continue moving forward and not wait until April.

We submitted our application today to a Lifeline Children's Services (  They received it and we will be having a phone conversation with them later this week to map out our plan.  This agency was highly recommended by a friend and I talked with them on the phone last week to ask questions about their process.  We are excited about this new direction because we know that God is sovereign.  This didn't surprise him and we are learning to lean into him, rest in him, and trust him.

Meanwhile, we had a special 4 year old birthday to celebrate in our house over the weekend....

It's tough to stay discouraged too long when you are surrounded by this much cuteness everyday.  Praise God from whom all blessings flow.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Puzzle Update, Week 1

A huge thank you to all who have donated!   With each puzzle piece you sponsor, you not only help us bring our boy home but you encourage our hearts.

We have 48 puzzle pieces sponsored and $480 raised.

$10 = your name on one piece

Would love to see YOUR name on our puzzle.  We have such sweet community in our lives and we are super excited about seeing all of those names together.

Saturday, November 3, 2012


You may wonder what we are doing now in our adoption process.  This is what we are doing.  This mountain of paperwork has to be filled out and we have to take 10 hours of online classes before our home study can be done.  This paperwork includes trips to the doctor for all 5 of us, certified copies of birth certificates, marriage certificate, tax forms, and looooots more.  It feels like they have to know every detail of our entire lives.

What I feel like doing is removing myself from regular life, hunkering down, and knocking this paperwork out of the park.  Matt has sweetly reminded me that it isn't possible for me to do that so I have to relax, do my best, live life, trust the Lord, and know that it will get done in His time.  So I am trying to balance my determination to get my little boy home ASAP (and get through all of these adoption steps in lightning speed) with the reality that God is sovereign over the timing.  Praying I can rest in Him.

Friday, November 2, 2012


Over the past several years, we've watched families adopt and we've taken notes on what they did to raise the seemingly impossible amount of money.  In each case, God provided exactly what they needed, but in different ways.  So we go into this part of our adoption journey with the heavy (and scary) reality that $35k is a lot of money, but with excitement to see how He provides.

We want to start our fundraising with one of our favorite fundraisers that we've seen done before.  It's one of our favorites because it is literally a picture of the community it takes to adopt.  

We bought this 1000 piece puzzle with a photo of classic, beautiful rural China.  It is called "Chinese Fisherman."
We are inviting you to sponsor a piece (or multiple pieces) of the puzzle for $10 each. With each piece of the puzzle you sponsor, we'll write your name on the back and put that piece of puzzle into place.  

Once all the pieces are sponsored and the puzzle is complete, we'll frame it in double sided glass and hang it on our wall. It will be a beautiful reminder of how each of you played such an important part in bringing our son home.

And one day, we hope he will treasure looking at those names knowing that so many people cared for him before they even knew him.

If you want to sponsor a puzzle piece, you may do so by clicking on the "donate" Paypal button located on the right side of our blog or you can send it to our home address [please email us if you need it].  You are welcome to sponsor more than one piece. 

We are so grateful for how you all have supported us already and we can't wait to see your names on our puzzle!

Thursday, November 1, 2012

Thank you

We are so thankful for your encouraging notes and words this week.  We know we can't do this alone, we will need you, and we are truly grateful to be feeling your support already.