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Saturday, February 21, 2015

Travel dates

YAY!!! YAY!!!!! YAY!!!!!

We were not expecting to get our consulate appointment date until the 23rd but it came this past Tuesday!!! So me and my trusty travel partner will be heading to China on Friday the 6th while Dadda holds down the fort and our two little ones until we return on Saturday the 20th! So excited!!!

We have been busy moving bedrooms around, getting mattresses, getting booster seats, getting this and that and TWO of this and that!!!! One month from today I will be landing on US soil with two more sons - once we hit that ground they are US citizens (yup, gonna cry like I did the first two times)! One month seems so far away but I have to remember that it under two weeks we will be leaving......LESS THAN TWO WEEKS? I have ALOT to do - gotta go!!!

(please pray for the adjustment of our family especially these two boys who have only experienced life in an orphanage and are about to leave everything they know behind)

Sunday, February 15, 2015

Love, love, love is in the air!!

Meet our sons is more like it!!!! Thanks to an incredible young man Robert  - not only an advocate for many orphaned children but really one of the most amazing young men I have ever - actually - not met. Robert posted the above pictures on February 14th, 2014 - yes, Valentine's Day last year when I first fell in love with these boys - and just one day before Valentine's Day this year we received our travel approvals for these two handsome boys (probably because Valentines Day this year was a Saturday and we wouldn't get anything on our adoption process on a Saturday)! Yes, yes, yes - God works in amazing ways and handed us - not one, but two valentine gifts two years in a row! (by the way, our first two boys had the significance of Labor day for Gotcha days)! LOVE, LOVE, LOVE is definitely in the air!!!

With all of the holidays next week - President's Day and the Chinese New Year - we will not be able to hear from the US consulate in China about our appointments until February 23rd for either a March 6th or March 13th departure date!!!! By the way after much praying, it was March 12th last year when we finally locked in these two boys with our agency! I will be meeting our sons for the first time on either March 9th or March 16th. And by the way, Anthony was telling everyone that his brothers were coming home on March 21st (we never indicated any dates with him) and he could be right if we get the first gotcha day and the middle choice of consulate appointments! (and he is beyond excited to be getting two more brothers and that he and Matthew will both be the middle brothers while he is both an older brother and a younger brother)!!!!!

Deep breathe!!!!! So while we wait to hear from the consulate, we are getting ready for our boys. This Momma is doing a lot of nesting! We are enjoying the semi- quietness of the house (as compared to having four boys over two) and we are just feeling so grateful for so many people who have prayed for us, prayed with us and helped support the financial end of the process (and don't forget those who listened to me go on and on about nothing whenever I was (am) full of excitement over these boys). We are eternally grateful! We are so glad that each and every one of you have joined us in this amazing journey. 

Now, I need to go do something that has to do with these boys coming home (aka - nesting) but I ask for prayer for the third boy who we prayed over, the third boy who was posted on the same Valentine's Day as our boys were, the boy we couldn't take home - please pray that his family found him or finds him very soon - thank you and God Bless you!

Saturday, February 7, 2015

The excitement, the anticipation, the just everything.....

Can't help but share the cuteness first!!!! Here are our boys just a few days ago:

With these pictures we also received a vague update that includes how Michael is outgoing and good at communicating with others. He also likes learning and playing. We are told that Matthew is very active and has a strong athletic ability. He likes sports and playing games.

We also wanted to share a little bit of the very sweet letters that our boys wrote us after we sent them a care package that included photo albums for each of them.

From Michael
Daddy and Mommy, and little two brothers. Hi, I really like that you sent me the toys. I really like it because I saw the camera, photo's, toys and books. "Matthew" and I have been friends for many years. Daddy and Mommy, how long have you been teachers? I hope you are waiting for me and "Matthew' in the USA. Do you say the pledge of allegiance to the flag every Monday? In China we raise the flag every Monday morning. 
(then he shares about another friend he has).

From Matthew:
Daddy, Mommy and 2 little brothers. Hello! I really like you sending me the toys and camera. "Michael" and I are best friends. If we become family and brothers can we be best friends? Ok? I really like you and mom. Me and "Michael" both like this family - mommy, daddy and two brothers. I love you guys. 
(then he shares about his friend other as well). 

So many very exciting things happening! We received our Article 5 last week and are really so close to getting our travel approval. From that point we request a consulate appointment and we generally travel about two weeks after travel approval!!!!!!!!! So far we are still looking at early March. Chinese New Year is February 19th and everything pretty much closes from about President's day (16th) through the end of February. We would need to have our travel approval and consulate appointment scheduled before everything closes. This is VERY POSSIBLE.

It was funny today when I was putting out a snack that includes pepperoni which the boys love. Anthony especially loves to be very dramatic about eating a hot piece of pepperoni. He likes to hang his tongue out of his mouth and put his hands around his neck. It's quite the performance - every time. I was laughing about how he is going to show that to his older brothers. I told him how his older brothers won't know a lot of English so how did he think he would tell them the pepperoni was hot - sure enough he did the act. We can not wait for all of these brothers to get together! And Gabriel repeats a lot of what Anthony says so we were laughing about how in the world was he going to repeat what three older brothers were saying!!! It is so close!!!! Sooooo close! Soon these boys who are already in our hearts will be in our arms! The excitement, the anticipation, the just everything is just so overwhelming, so unbelievable, so everything - the best of the best that life has to offer is in these four beautiful boys. We are so grateful to everyone who has stood by us in these decisions, to everyone who has so generously supported us, to everyone who has continuously prayed for us and although we all know that the opportunity to adopt starts out with pain and loss for the child and the families, we are grateful to God for asking us to be their Momma and Dadda.

Please pray for those who don't have someone to call Momma and Dadda......there are just too many out there - even one is too many and there are millions of too many's!

Sunday, January 25, 2015

YAY, we (YOU) hit the matching grant!!!

Thank you sooooo much for all of the very quick and generous donations. You turned $400 into $800!!!!!!! Thank you!!!

Please feel free to continue to share our story or make a donation as we can still use support - we are not quite there yet and China is right around the corner. 

We are beyond grateful for so many people stepping up during this crunch time to help us with this matching grant. Tears are filling our eyes and love fills our hearts!!!!

And our cool t-shirts are still available!

Thank you!!!!! My closing prayer is for YOU as I thank God for your part in our journey! Be well, be safe.

Matching grant, time is running out!!!!

PLEASE consider even donating a small amount to our Reece's Rainbow account --> ---> to the right of this post. Some very generous people have given us a $400 matching grant. If we raise that $400 BEFORE TODAY AT 8PM (EST) then it will double to $800. Currently we have $9933.59 and it needs to read $10, 120.19. This money has been allocated for our travel - for us to be able to go to China and bring our two boys home! We are $186.60 shy of reaching our mark and only a hand full of hours away! Please share our blog, please consider a donation, please be part of the big picture of helping to orphans come home to their Momma and Dadda (& two little brothers as they say in their letters which we will share soon)!!!

Don't wait - time is running out!
And yes, please say an extra prayer that we can raise the money to take advantage of this opportunity some very generous people have given us!
 Thank you!

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Care package to China

YAY!!! Our boys received our care package today - the above picture and the photo albums we made as well! We are so excited to hear that they are seeing pictures of us for the first time today! Pictures of their forever family!

We also received our NVC letters yesterday getting us yet another little bit closer to our boys! We are still estimating an early March China trip but of course we are not completely sure yet. Plus the Chinese New Year is February 19th so that can bring delays depending on what paperwork is completed by then. Then of course we have our house up for sale and that can provide some delays depending again where we are in the process and if it sold sell (we are looking for a house better suited for our growing family so please add that to your list of prayers). 

Not only did we hear that our boys received our package today but we unfortunately heard that we were denied by yet another grant agency. I guess our 3rd & 4th adoptions in 3 years doesn't qualify. Anyway, we need your help! We are re-launching our shirt fundraiser. If you didn't grab one yet, please consider doing so. We are also looking to reach a bigger audience and have made flyers to hang in your work place or your church or really ANYWHERE! Please respond to this post with your email and I can send you a flyer that you can hang up and people can just pull a tab to have the information. Please, please consider helping us out!

We have seen so many generous donations already and are so grateful ( & an overly generous one on the last day of 2014 to our Reece's Rainbow account - from a couple we don't even know! WOW! Praise God). We are still pretty far off from being even half funded and could use your help! Please think about helping us - about helping TWO MORE ORPHANS!
Thank you! And tonight my 6 year old son and I prayed for God to help the children in the orphanages who don't have families yet - for God to help those Momma's and Dadda's find their children - please pray with us!

Friday, December 26, 2014

Getting closer...

Merry CHRISTmas from our family to yours! 

“If our greatest need had been information, God would have sent an educator.
If our greatest need had been technology, God would have sent us a scientist.
If our greatest need had been money, God would have sent us an economist.
But since our greatest need was forgiveness, God sent us a Savior.”

So grateful to God for sending us Jesus! So grateful for God touching every piece of the journey to creating our family! We are just so filled with love for all of our boys -even Michael and Matthew whom we haven't even met yet. And what a blessing to hear not only our almost six year old pray for them but to now hear the precious voice of our three and half year old pray out loud to Jesus thanking him for his mother, father, brother and for Michael and Matthew in China - wow, wow, wow! 

While we missed the company of extended family, what a beautiful Christmas day we had with the four of us. What a great opportunity to just sit back and enjoy each other. What a blessed day!

I just finished placing a gift order to be sent to Michael and Matthew in China. We mailed out the photo albums we made for each of the boys. They will be sent to Angela with LadyBugsNLove in China who will add a toy and books for each of our boys. A camera with extra film and a thumb drive to collect any pictures they have of our boys. The camera and film with the thumb drive should be returned to us on our Gotcha Day. The good news is that our boys are in a good orphanage and the chances of them getting everything and us getting pictures back are very good! Unlike our previous experiences with orphanages! 

We are yet another big step closer as we received our Letter Seeking Confirmation almost 2 weeks ago. This matches us to our boys and approves the match. We are still looking at a mid March travel which I am pretty sure will be here in a blink of an eye! 2015 is just around the corner (unbelievable). 

Please consider making a donation to help us bring our boys home. It's great opportunity before the new year to make a tax deductible donation OR make one early in the year for next year. Please share our story. While we know that God has planned our family, these are our third and fourth adoptions since coming home in September of 2012 - just over two years ago- and we can use all the help we can get no matter the size! Thank you and please pray that God brings generous hearts to us as we get closer and closer! God Bless you and yours!! Thanks for checking in!