Sunday, October 28, 2012

Thank You!

Wow do you see the chip in? We are almost to 50% of our goal for the magnet fundraiser!!! Thank you to those of you who've donated, you've really blessed our family! I sent out the first batch of magnets last week so those of you who donated should be seeing the new picture of our Curlie Girlie very soon :)

Once again we've been so very blessed by many friends, family, and even some people that we don't even know! If you've donated through the Reece's Rainbow website directly (and not chip in) I can't see those donations until I request a list of names! I'd love to send each and every one of you a thank-you, but unfortunately Reece's Rainbow does not give out donor addresses. So if you've donated and you're reading this, please know how so very grateful we are for your gift to help bring our daughter home! We were happily surprised this week with some unexpected donations and the financial worries are slowly melting away. We probably have about a month until we travel (no known date yet-just an estimate)!!!!

We've been busy around here getting things ready for Curlie Girlie. I went through all of Mila's clothes and realized we have very few warm 6-12 months clothes since Mila was in that size during Summer! So I'm picking up some needed items here and there and on the hunt for a special gotcha day dress for our sweet girl. We've been talking to Zoya a lot about having another baby sister and she seems absolutely THRILLED. We'll see if that changes once her sister is home :)

I've been daydreaming about our third daughter a lot lately. I've imagined myself rocking her into the late hours of the night like we did with the other two during those early bonding days. I've wondered how her transition into her new life will go. I've wondered what her personality will be like.  I've envisioned myself just snuggling her and telling her she'll always have a mama and daddy from now on! I've pictured her with her two sisters splashing in the bathtub and playing together. I've been praying more that the Lord would really prepare her heart for us and that He would continue to prepare our hearts for her.

I'm also praying more this time that the Lord would use us as He sees fit....that he would lead us into encounters with others who need to hear about Him. I pray that we can be an example to so many of what love looks like. I pray that we can use our family's testimony to open hearts and doors beyond our wildest imagination while we are there. I'm trying not to just look at this trip as a "get in and get out" kind of trip. I'm really hoping that we can breathe in every single moment of our time there and be used in ways that we might not imagine at this point in time. Our hearts are so very hopeful for this opportunity to travel to Eastern Europe again and especially to bring home our Curlie Girlie :)

Thank you from the bottom of our hearts for sharing in this amazing time with us! We are so blessed!

Monday, October 22, 2012

Zoya and Zofia....

Yesterday we put up Zofia's crib in our bedroom to start getting ready for her arrival :) I think nesting mode has hit me, because I'm going crazy trying to organize and get things ready! Zofia will sleep in our room for a bit to help with the bonding process and also help the girls adjust to her without sharing a room....yet :)

Since we put the crib up, Zoya has known something is different. We've been explaining to her and showing her Zofia's pictures, but until the crib went up she didn't seem to grasp it. I would ask her "Who is your sister going to be?" and she would answer "Mila." LOL! She has been trying to say her new sister's name a lot more and this morning said "love you way more know ______" and said her name ;) We tell each other "I love you" and then Zoya says "way way more than you know." So it was cute to hear her say that randomly to her new sister that she hasn't even met yet! Every time we talk about her Zoya's whole face just lights up, I love seeing it! I can't wait to watch Zoya interact with her newest sister! I think Mila is going to LOVE having a sister right around her age....she tends to get bored when it's just her and I and Zoya is at school! She doesn't think practicing physical therapy skills is much fun....I don't know why ;) Here's hoping the three musketeers will be best of friends for life :)

Zoya has been wanting to go in the crib, which is cute. Yesterday both girls were in Zofia's crib and Zoya just thought it was so cool to be in a crib again....silly girl!
Here is my pretty girl before school today hanging out in Zofia's crib! 

Thank you so much to those of you who donated to our FSP in exchange for a magnet! I will be sending out the first batch within the next couple of days, so if you donated but didn't leave your address, please make sure you do! Thanks so much for your love and support of our family!! If you still want to donate for a calendar magnet, you can see THAT POST HERE and donate through the chipin in the right-hand side bar! We are $285 toward our $1,000 goal for this magnet fundraiser!

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Calendar Magnets!

As many of you know there are many costs involved in international adoption. Our estimated costs are approximately $25,000. With this being our third adoption, we are so very appreciative of any donations to our grant fund at Reece's Rainbow to help with this enormous cost! Your donation is tax deductible! 

If you'd like to make a donation of at least $20.00 we will be happy to send you a 2013 calendar magnet with a picture of Curlie Girlie! You can use the Chip-In in the right hand column or at the bottom of this post to make your $20 donation. Our goal is to give out 50 magnets and raise $1,000 to cover the "orphanage donation" portion of our facilitation fees! Please leave a comment with your address so I know where to mail your magnet! I will not publish your comment with your address information!

Here is a sneak preview of the calendar we will mail you for your donation! (Of course your magnet will not have her face blurred out hehe!)
(The calendar is approximately 5 1/2" by 4")

Thank you for your love and support! 


Thursday, October 11, 2012

SUBMITTED!!


Happy Dance! We were submitted today!!!! 
This means we *could* be travelling in 6-8 weeks to meet Curlie Girlie!!! 
Woah super fast!!!! So excited. 

Some of you were asking for some more details on how we were led to adopt again and about Curlie Girlie in particular and for now we've decided not to share many details publicly like we have in the past. No worries, though, we'll share more eventually! 

Monday, October 8, 2012

Excited!!!

Okay so there is really no update here if you were expecting one! BUT, we are just getting so excited when we think about bringing Zofia home!! It's becoming more and more real each day that we will soon have THREE CHILDREN! To some that sounds like a lot, while to others you are probably thinking "wow life was easy with only 3 children" (if you're a bigger family!). 

I find myself thinking about her often throughout the day, seeing her at our kitchen table with the girls, picturing her in her crib, in the car going on trips with us, in the bathtub with her sisters, playing in the playroom, swinging away on our indoor swing. I picture her sweet smile, but this time a smile that reflects love and family and a feeling of being valued. Today I pictured two babies eating dog food.....then I reminded myself to put "find new home for dog food station" on my to-do list because Mila is getting so quick at getting to that bowl and chowing down on some dog food before I can even stop her! Oh the trouble that will abound with two 1-2 year olds (and a big sister who will probably be the ring leader!) But, oh, what fun we will have! 

We heard that there is a possibility we could travel before Christmas! It would be amazing to have her home for Christmas, what a gift that would be! Our dossier is in country and being translated, but we're not sure when it will be submitted! It could be much sooner than we planned, in which case, we'd be thrilled! I added our Reece's Rainbow Button to the right-hand column on the blog. If you feel led to make a donation toward our adoption expenses (tax deductible) you may click on that button and it will take you to our FSP on Reece's Rainbow! 

Curlie Girlie we are getting closer! 

Friday, October 5, 2012

Standing for Something


“To avoid criticism say nothing, do nothing, be nothing.” 
― Aristotle

All of my best decisions in life have come with some criticism, including adopting.  With this being our third adoption the excitement from some family and friends has faded. I'm sure some have the "too much of a good thing might be a bad thing" mentality. But I can say those that know our hearts the best are just as excited this time around as they were for our first adoption, maybe even more excited because they know the journey that we are embarking on is a beautiful one with promises of faith and hope and JOY....for us AND for our daughter-to-be. 

I'm getting more familiar with the "YOU HAVE GOT TO BE OUT OF YOUR MIND" eye-popping looks we have gotten from some when we announced our intention to adopt a third child with special needs. I admit, it still makes me uncomfortable when I know people are staring at me thinking "Holy Crap, what in the world are they thinking here?" 

I've struggled my whole life always feeling like I had to seek approval from others. I've always been uncomfortable standing out, and clearly when you decide to go and adopt 3 kids with special needs from another country when you have no known fertility issues, people tend to shake their heads a bit. As I grow in my walk with the Lord, I truly feel more and more comfortable knowing I only have an audience of ONE to please. There are the people who are outright critics and say nasty things because they simply don't agree with what we're doing and really have NO idea what they're talking about, and then there are those who silently criticize by not sharing in our excitement and not fully understanding our hearts. Typically the second type tend to hurt me more. 

Tonight as I reflect on some of those who might be unjustly judging our decision or even criticizing what we are doing, I am learning to take comfort in that because it means that we are standing up for SOMETHING....we are NOT just going through the motions. 

"You've got to stand for something or you'll fall for anything
You've got to be your own man not a puppet on a string"
-Aaron Tippin

Thank you to those who have taken a moment to express your love and excitement for us! We are thankful for your support! 

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Dossier Mailed!

Shawn was able to get all 43 documents apostilled at our state capital this morning! He is such a trooper and drove the whole 5 hours there and back! He followed my checklists to a T and mailed our dossier to a family who is travelling soon! I can't begin to tell you the stress that takes away (and money saved) knowing a family will be hand carrying our dossier instead of it flying over with a mail service! One of our dossiers was temporarily lost and that isn't something I wish on anyone! Once that dossier is complete it really is like a paper baby!

I have this sense of urgency to get to our curly girlie! She appears to be doing fabulous, so it won't be a repeat of what we went through with Mila, but none the less, once you know in your heart that your baby is out there waiting for you, that sense of urgency is no different! Our timeline looks like travel could be in December or January, but that is just an estimate. Adoptions in Eastern Europe sort of follow their own timeline and each adoption is different.

Tonight I'm going to bed dreaming of 3 beautiful daughters!

Monday, October 1, 2012

Another Picture...


I made a new header to reflect our new journey! I love these two pictures because it reminds me a little of Mila who NEVER keeps her socks on. I imagine the picture on the right was taken first, followed by the picture on the left. Look at that mischievous grin! Yep, she'll fit right in with her sisters!

Many of you have asked if "Zofia" is older or younger than Mila. She is younger but not by much! So technically, Mila will be a big sister and middle child :) 

She has Down Syndrome and no heart condition that we know of. 

I find myself staring at her pictures throughout the day wondering all kinds of things about her! I can't wait to kiss those cheekies! Curly Girly your mama and daddy are coming soon!