Tuesday, August 28, 2007

tanzania video

http://youtube.com/profile?user=Jody4

Monday, August 27, 2007

on it's way to Africa...

Our dossier (stack of paperwork) is being Fed-X'd to Sierra Leone today.

I feel the need to vomit now.

Did I mention how scary this is?

Thursday, August 23, 2007

can i just say...

Can I just tell you something about my husband?
It is something. It is something for a man to step up and take on the responsibilty for his own children. It is something else for a man to step up and take on another man's children. It is something for a man to give sacrificially...to give up his own hobbies and pleasure for the financial burden of another child. It is something for a man to commit to nuturing physically and emotionally another child with whom he has no previous bond. It is something for a man to give up some of his dreams for the greater dream of family. It is something for a man to put his money and his heart on the line...risking losing it all. It is something for man to put bravely into action what his mouth readily professes. It is something for a man to work harder, give up more of himself so that a child can have a better life. Not the least of which will include the unwavering love of a father.

And he, this husband of mine, is something. And in a world that continually tells him to look out for himself, to pursue his own gain, build his own fortress, and pad his own account--here is a man deliberately swimming against the tide. And that is something.

Something honorable if you ask me...

fingerprinting.

Andy and I will be traveling to Des Moines tomorrow to get our fingerprints taken at the CIS.
There has been a small delay in us being given the 'go ahead' to share about our progess.
Hopefully next week. It's good though.

Thursday, August 16, 2007

watch.

copy and paste the below code;
watch. and bring kleenex.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nBhaGS3S99I&eurl=http%253A%252F%25

Monday, August 13, 2007

The Orphan.

Another adoptive mom posted this and it is a good summary---

'Occasionally I hear people wonder out loud if adoption is really the
most "efficient" way to help the orphan crisis. It may seem like a
lot of time and resources are poured into a relatively small number
of children, when in theory more could be helped by contributing to
some type of institutional setting that could numerically care for
more.

I believe Jesus was on to something though when He took just 12
disciples under His wing. I also believe He knew what He was doing
when He designed the family. Relationships, not institutions,
change people. And relationships are rarely efficient, they are
time-consuming and costly.

Psalm 68:6 says that God sets the lonely in families. There are a
lot of lonely "orphan" people in this world, and they are not
looking for a ministry or an institution, they are seeking a friend,
some type of family to belong to.

Another beautiful thing about the family is that people are
committed to you for the rest of your life. Here are some revealing
numbers as to what happens when a child ages out of an institution:

"143,000,000 Orphans in the world today spend an average of 10 years
in an orphanage or foster home

Approximately 250,000 children are adopted annually, but…

Every YEAR 14,050,000 children still grow up as orphans and AGE OUT
of the system

Every DAY 38,493 children AGE OUT

Every 2.2 SECONDS, another orphan child AGES OUT with no family to
belong to and no place to call home

In Ukraine and Russia 10% -15% of children who age out of an
orphanage commit suicide before age 18.

60% of the girls are lured into prostitution. 70% of the boys become
hardened criminals.5

Many of these children accept job offers that ultimately result in
their being sold as slaves. Millions of girls are sex slaves today,
simply because they were unfortunate enough to grow up as orphans."
(Jenny)

Sunday, August 12, 2007

the week-end.

It has been a crazy week-end. I feel like I want to throw-up every hour or so. It is not that much unlike when I was pregnant with the boys. Except this time, it is very obviously an emotional pregnancy causing the sick feeling, not a physical thing. I am tired from all the mental battles that we have been fighting costantly the last week or so.

My practical and 'no risk taking' personality is fighting my desire to live with a bit of abandon. It's kind of like my brother-in-law said a bit sarcastically (as he was playing me with a bit of an accent..not sure where that came from), "Hmmm...I have four small boys...Let's adopt a child from a war torn country. That makes sense..." And although he was being supportive ...it's true. This doesn't really make sense. I found myself this week-end a couple times trying to figure out how I could get out of this. This is too crazy. This is going to cost too much. And there are simply too many risks and too many unknowns. And practically speaking, it would make sense to just forget the whole thing.

But like each time, those moments don't last long before they are overtaken by the only thought crazier than an already big family, with limited income and resources taking on more special children--and that is the idea that there are children without families. Children waiting for someone to believe in them. And I guess that is what keeps me going...because that reality doesn't make sense to me.

A friend sent me this question in a precious email. "What have you already given up that you miss the most?" It made me stop, and maybe even shed a tear or two, and then it gave me strength. Because the answer is 'nothing.'

Thursday, August 9, 2007

USCIS

We have a fingerprinting appointment. Yeah.
Try and hold back your excitment. :-)

I am most happy about this because it means I actually filled the Immigration form correctly...after three tries.

good stuff.

I listened to a talk by Donald Miller yesterday about 'story'..and the power of story and how each of our lives are telling a story.
Anyway, lot of good stuff, but a couple things stood out to me.

'If God is writing your story, then there WILL be conflict and tension. When you run into a closed door, it doesn't mean 'stop.' It just means the story is about to get better."

"Sometimes its only worth fighting for after you're done fighting."

Wednesday, August 8, 2007

today.

"If you can't feed a hundred people, then feed just one." (Mother Teresa)

"The drums of Africa still beat in my heart. They will not let me rest while there is a single African boy or girl without a chance to prove his worth." (Mary McLed Bethune)


"Do not think that love, in order to be genuine, has to be extraordinary. What we need is to love without tired." (Mother Teresa)



Joanna and Taylor posted a link a couple days ago. And the above reminders gave me a bit of strength today.

These were taken from http://www.jeremycowart.com/client/221-africa and his art presentation (copy and paste). You can watch the whole thing there. Worth 5 minutes of your day.

Tuesday, August 7, 2007

hard day.

Today was hard. We got some news from our agency that was so very hard to swallow. We are not at liberty to discuss it right now, but it likely puts a delay at best in the process. Our hearts are heavy and our minds confused...
We will be waiting on further information for the next couple days or weeks. And we will be praying for discernment and wisdom and grace...
Having never done this before, I was a bit unprepared. But I have had good and sound council from others who are a bit more 'seasoned' in this whole process. I am resting in their wisdom and hoping my own heart and mind will follow. And trusting that this was no suprise to God and part of his plan all along....

dossier notarized. check.

Friday, August 3, 2007

progress.

Arrived home to two special packages from the government containing our passports. yeah!

Waiting to hear from USCIS with our fingerprinting appointment.

Will get two sets of original documents notarized for the dossier next week.

And we will wait. We have a little person on our mind and hearts constantly right now. We are waiting for some verification from our agency and then we will be able to accept and official referral and tell everyone about our newest family member.

Courts are closed in Sierra Leone right now--which is actually a blessing because I don't feel a huge amount of pressure. We have a couple weeks to get things ready to have on their desks on Sept. 15 when the courts open again.

I'm praying the timing of everything else in our lives comes together as well. There have been a number of peace-giving and reassuring occurances in this whole process. One being the personal connection my parents have with our agency representative--although we didn't discover that until recently.
But there are still a couple areas I would like to see resolved so I can fully embrace this process...God is certainly keeping us relying on Him on a day to day basis. I'm kind of afraid He likes that... :-)