Wednesday, July 31, 2013

Road trip

We moved to Louisiana almost 7 years.  At leas twice a year Jacob would mention that he wanted to go back to Rayville, LA for a visit.  When his parents were in training to prepare for international missions, they lived in this small, quiet, charming little town for about a year and a half.  Jacob has so many memories jam-packed into his time there.  The past few weeks have been very up and down for us, so earlier last week we decided this past weekend was the perfect time for a little mini-roadtrip.  We left on Saturday and came home on Sunday night.  Here's a little recap....

We loaded up on easy snacks and lunches to have in the car...saved some major cash this way!

Loaded up and ready to go!

Jacob spent many hours of his 6th and 7th year of life playing in this water

This is the house they lived's actually in a small community called Holly 1 blinking yellow light, kind of small community.  

The road that leads to a bridge that was another favorite hang-out of Jacob and his friend, Rusty

While one of my favorite parts of the trip was seeing a little piece of where Jacob grew up, the girls
were ecstatic to get to stay in a hotel....

One thing about Rayville,'s 20 minutes from the Duck Commander!!
Sadly, no sightings of the bearded men that day ;(

Uncle Si has enjoyed many glasses of sweet
tea right seen on Duck Dynasty!

I took this picture for my's the Korean War Veterans Memorial Highway.
Thanks, Denden, for your service to this great country.

And this beautiful church is so full of love - many of them remembered Jacob, his sister, and parents, still pray for them, and were super excited to see him and his family.  They welcomed us all as if we were there to stay! If you're ever passing through Rayville, LA - I highly suggest visiting FBC Rayville :)

Friday, July 19, 2013

Providing, Moving On, & Advocating


He funds what He favors.
I really wish I'd come up with that phrase.  Our home study social worker told it to me first, she'd read it on another adoptive dad's blog.  Basically, if God wants you to do something, He's going to make a way, He's going to provide - all He asks is obedience from us and He'll do the rest!  He loves children.  He repeatedly tells us to take care of orphans in His Word.  So...if He wants a family to adopt a precious, orphaned child...why would He not provide a way for that to happen? I just wanted to show you how much He has provided for our adoption over the past 6 months:
 Donations: $4,270
Adoption T-Shirts: $1,750
Adoption Cookbooks: $2,005
Adoption Yard Sale: $1,485
Jamberry Nails: $1,550
Other (overtime opportunities, piano lessons, tax returns): $4,000+
Total: $15,060
This total combined with what we started with means WE ARE ALMOST THERE! It's been so incredibly amazing watching God do all of me, it hasn't been anything we've done or are doing - it's ALL HIM!!

We're now ready to start applying for adoption grants. Please join us in prayer as we start this portion of our journey.  There are a lot of families out there who will apply for these grants every month.  The men and women involved in these various ministries have a great task before them each time they meet to review, pray over, and decide who will be awarded one of their precious grants.  Please pray for them as they make their decisions - whether it is to award a grant to our family or another family.  We know that God will provide the remaining funds in the perfect amount of time in His perfect way!!
*Note: We still have a few t-shirts and cookbooks available. If you'd like one, comment below, Facebook me, or email me at!

Moving On...

Our home study was recently completed and finalized - on my birthday to be exact!! Now, we are compiling our dossier (a fancy word for "a stack of papers we send overseas") and waiting on our immigration approval (the US says it's okay for us to adopt a child from overseas).

Each country has different requirements for a families dossier and ours is not quite as intense as others.  It will include our home study, psyc evals, medical clearances, birth certificates, marriage certificates, employment letters, name change verification letter (for me), FBI and state criminal background checks, passport photos, and 10 color photos showing our little boy a glimpse into the family he'll be joining once we are matched with him (I'm really excited/nervous about this one - it makes it so real, but I want it to be perfect for his first glimpse of us!!) Each of these items have to be notarized, sent to our agency, apostilled (I have no idea??) and then forwarded to Colombia - where it will be translated.


And now for some exciting news!!  Our social worker, Beth, called last week to update me on our case. She had just gotten out of a staff meeting which included our in-country rep/attorney, Raul.  I've never met Raul, but he's one of my favorite people because of all the work he's done and will do on our family's behalf. Anyway - Raul had just reviewed our files and our child desired form (still working on that post, y''s just hard and it stinks).  He loves our file and the parameters we have set for the child we are able to adopt!! Now that we are home study approved, he's going to start actively advocating for our family in Colombia - meaning he's going to keep our family's name and file out there and really look for children that match our parameters!!

Beth was quick to assure me that this didn't mean our process would go any faster or be any quicker - nothing can really determine the time line of an adoption because, well, we're not Jesus.  But it's so exciting to know that they are finally able to actively work on our behalf to seek out, find, and connect us with our son!!!

Please pray for Raul and the many families that he serves in this capacity and especially for our little boy who may very well be waiting for us right now.

That's about all for now on the adoption front - thanks so much for continuing to check on us, support us, and - most importantly - pray for us!!!  We really can't tell you how much it means to us!

Have a Happy Weekend!