Sunday, January 30, 2011

Would you like to try one?

This morning before church, Tim set up the tea set on the coffee table and enlisted Danielle. He then told me they were sample people at Sams and he was passing out "good" coffee.

All of the kids argue over who gets me to drive their cart as I'm the one who stops for the samples! :)

Friday, January 28, 2011

We've covered a visa!

WOOHOO! The Lanes now have one of their girls' visas paid for through your generosity! THANK YOU!

Now for a bigger goal...because Ivy and Rose are not related, the Lanes will have to pay a second filing fee at the Embassy for their I600 (we will have to do the same thing if we adopt a second child as Candace does not have any siblings). They have already paid this fee once when they filed their I600A, but that only covers one child and any siblings. So when they apply for the girls' immigration approval at the US Embassy in Kyiv, they will have to pay an additional $720.

Let's get that Chipin over $720 and pay for immigration!

(and people wonder why international adoption is so expensive...a HUGE chunk goes to our own government!!)

Freaky Friday

I am not in the least bit stressed about this adoption.

And that is completely freaking me out.

Shouldn't I be worried about something? Concerned that we don't know about a second child? Frantic over leaving my other four at home?

(In truth, I am a little worried about my poor mom-in-law who will be watching the kids while we're gone. I'm not at all worried about the kids--I'm just hoping she survives. However, she did raise 4 of her own, and one of them was Mark, so I think she'll do fine. ;))

I just can't seem to find anything to worry about with this adoption. I am (oddly) completely confident that God has all of this in His control. I say that's odd because I am a planner and a controller. So it's a little (okay, a LOT) odd that I feel like I don't even need to try to control things here.

Maybe it's because it's our third adoption? Maybe because I know I can't control any of this? (Anyone who's done an international adoption--maybe any adoption at all--just said a hearty AMEN to that last one.)

Regardless, I keep thinking I should be worried and I'm just not. I'm excited, but not anxious. I still have things on my to-do list, but everything is getting checked off slowly but surely and I know that what needs to be done will be done before we go.

God has moved in amazing ways for this many ways that I haven't even shared on the blog. There is a history to this particular adoption that just blows me away, and as I've continued to watch it unfold it is crystal clear that this is the plan God has for our family.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Almost covering a visa!

I love watching the Chipin for the Lanes grow! We have almost covered the cost of one of the girls' U.S. visas--$404. Join with me in getting a visa covered!

And yes, once we get a visa covered I'll set a bigger goal. :)

THANK YOU for helping these little girls!

Remember, every $5 donation gets you one chance for the $100 Amazon gift card...spread the word!

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Please help

This adoption has been so very different from our other two. For one thing, it has been incredibly fast. In fact, that's a massive understatement. I was looking over some dossier documents for other families and kept thinking we must have missed something, some document, some something in our dossier.

Then my breath catches and I realize no, we are submitted and have an appointment date.

In a week and a half.

I have been continually baffled by how this adoption has fallen into place. Documents that have materialized out of seeming thin air, flights that got cheaper before we booked, a place to stay in the city we're going to.

Finances are usually the biggest hurdle for families adopting, and like most families we don't have $20,000 sitting around. But you'll notice I haven't put up a donation button for Candace. We were able to completely finance our adoption by refinancing our house. While I don't consider it ideal to take on debt, when it means bringing your child home...ransoming is worth it.

But many families do not even have the option to refinance. Adoption grants and loans are almost non-existent now with the economy. There is one family in particular that has been laid on my heart. They have an appointment shortly after us, on Valentine's Day, for two beautiful little girls.

How I wish I could give them all the remaining funds they need. But I can't. So I am giving what little I can hoping that God will multiply it like the loaves and fishes, making it sufficient for their needs. I have set up a donation button at the top left of our blog (click on the Chipin button). For each $5 donation, your name will be entered to win a $100 Amazon gift certificate. This money is coming from online surveys that I do, and so is mine to freely give, taking nothing from our kids or from Candace's adoption money.

Please help the Lanes bring their beautiful little girls home, little girls who need a mama and a papa, someone to tuck them in at night, comfort them when they are sick, and love them for the rest of their lives. If they are not ransomed, their outcome, like so many orphans around the world, is beyond bleak--it is horrifying.

If you would have considered donating to us, I beg of you to donate to the Lanes. And if you are not able to donate, please pray that God would multiple the little into everything they need. All donations are through Reece's Rainbow and are tax-deductible.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Two weeks

In two weeks, we will be sleeping in Kyiv, waiting for 5pm Tuesday when we can pick up our referral papers and head to Candace's region.

She turned 5 two days ago.

That was her last birthday without her forever family.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Where have I been?

Apparently I don't go shopping enough, or I might have noticed at some point in time that they make fleece-lined tights!!!

How could I have missed out on those after living in Michigan for 5 years?? And why didn't any of you tell me?? LOL

Available at Target, not super cheap, but oh-so-worth it!

And yes, they will be going to Ukraine with me!

Monday, January 10, 2011

Blame Danielle

Last night as the girls and I prayed before bed, Danielle's prayer went something like this...

"Dear God Holy Lord, please bring the snow back and my snowman and not make him melt I like the snow and make him hard not melt. Thank you and amen and thank you God."

So when Mark told me this morning that we're supposed to get 3-6 inches of snow tonight...I promptly blamed my daughter. :)

Tuesday, January 04, 2011

Living large

I am a small person. That's really more genetics than a lot of effort on my part, which I am very thankful for.

My girls are also slender and they haven't spent much time around women that aren't fully clothed (which is a good thing), so they haven't really made a connection to how people look with and without clothes on based on their size.

However, it doesn't do much for the mama self-esteem when we all go to the bathroom and I hear...

"Mama, you have a big bottom!"

Of course, she sort of makes up for it with the next comment out of her mouth:

"When I get bigger, I'm going to have a big bottom just like Mama."

Monday, January 03, 2011


As I've become more involved with Reece's Rainbow over the past couple of years, one of the things I have not been very good about is advocating for the kids. Maybe that just hasn't been my role, but shouldn't it always be?

Regardless, I'm going to try to do a better job of speaking up for those who cannot speak for themselves. One of the things that often holds families back from adopting (other than money) is the belief that they cannot handle a specific diagnosis or medical condition. In reality, many medical conditions are relatively easily treatable, and even the ones that are more complicated are often more manageable that families think.

I'm hoping to begin a series of posts on some of the different diagnoses and medical conditions that kids on Reece's Rainbow have. We'll see how well I can pull this off since my blogging time has been less than adequate lately, but I won't accomplish anything if I don't at least try. :)

Sunday, January 02, 2011

I love ESL

"Mama, I know how to spell Santa Claus!"


Lots of giggling ensued from Mama, who was really trying hard to hold it together. He did get praised for spelling Santa right, as well as clothes!

Saturday, January 01, 2011

Happy new year

This is certainly going to be a year of change for us, not the least of which is growing our family from 6 to hopefully 8. It's hard to believe we are leaving in five weeks. There are even bigger changes coming which I will share as they get closer.

I've been a little silent on the blog lately. If you've followed my blog for any length of time, you'll know that I don't share anything personal on here. I do share things happening in our family, but rarely do I share my personal thoughts and feelings on things on here, because this is a public blog and I am very aware that there are people reading this who do not know me.

That said, starting around Thanksgiving some issues arose in my family (not our immediate household) that had a direct effect on me. It would have been impossible for me to post without some of my emotions spilling over, so I have waited until I felt I had a better handle on things. The situation has not changed, but I am aware that I cannot change it and all I can do is pray.

Truly, this will be a year of change, and I am so excited about the possibilities. Being truthful, I'm a little scared, too. :) Psalm 107 seems like a highly appropriate way to start out the year, particularly verse 35:

"He changes a wilderness into a pool of water And a dry land into springs of water..." Psalm 107:35

God has certainly changed our wilderness and dry land into running, overflowing, bountiful water!