Sunday, June 21, 2009

Some Thoughts As We Wait

As the weeks go on, and the paperwork process is over, I have had a lot more time to reflect on our upcoming adoption. When John and I set out to grow our family through adoption, our hearts were set on becoming home to a child that needed a family. We were not set on what country this child would come from, whether domestic or foreign, but instead on finding where the need was and responding. Our decision to adopt from Ethiopia was based on the need within the country for families to adopt orphans and the ability for us to move through the correct channels to make this happen (see earlier post on why Ethiopia). We did not look up the statistics on orphans in Ethiopia nor did we see a video or hear a talk that compelled us to choose Africa. We just knew we wanted to be a family for an orphan and looked for how we could make this happen.

While my heart has always ached for children that do not have loving and supportive homes, I have never been particularly moved by any specific group of orphans. As the months go on, I have found my heart begin to grow not only for the child that we will be bringing home from Ethiopia, but for all of the others that will remain in institutions, desperate for a family to love them the way they deserved to be loved. The book that I mentioned in the last post, "there is no me without you", has served to really educate me about Ethiopia and the circumstances around the influx of orphans in this country. Here are some of the questions that I have had that I felt were answered through reading this book:

Why does Ethiopia have so many orphans? Wouldn't it be better for them to stay and be raised by Ethiopian parents instead of white Americans?

Ethiopia has so many orphans because of the AIDS pandemic. According to this book, "Historically, close kinship ties in our [Ethiopia] country meant that there were very few orphans as orphaned children were raised by their extended families. The HIV/AIDS pandemic has destroyed so many of our families that the possibility no longer exist to absorb all our Ethiopian orphans."

Is adoption the answer? What about poverty and the AIDS crisis?

No, adoption is not the answer for all of the orphans in Africa. Keeping the parents alive to care for their children is the answer. But for those children that have lost their parents, or their parents are not able to care for them long term, adoption is a way to give hope to individual children. The world has begun to respond to the AIDS crisis in Africa and it is our hope that there will be less and less orphans in need of a home. Until then, we want to do what we can for at least one child.

Doesn't a mother with AIDS mean a child with HIV?

Without medication, one in every four children will test positive for HIV if their mother is a carrier. With medication, this percentage is only 2%.

I will again highly recommend this book to anyone that wants to read a novel that gives amazing insight into the life of orphans and the AIDS epidemic in Africa. I hope to continue to learn more about what we can do for the orphans around the globe as we believe that every child should know the love of a parent on a daily basis.

Monday, June 15, 2009

there is no me without you

I have just started reading this book and already can't put it down. It was highly recommended to me by several families that have or are in the process of adopting from Ethiopia and I am sooooo glad that I have finally picked it up to read. It is the true story of an Ethiopian woman that saw the need to love and care for the orphans around her and took it upon herself to help. It is written in story form but is full of Ethiopian history and information regarding the AIDS epidemic in Africa. I highly recommend that you read this book and would be happy to pass it along once I am finished with it (at this rate probably tomorrow). I will post some of the quotes and ideas from the book soon but need to get back to my reading before my daughter wakes up.....

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Garage Sale A Success

We woke up at 5:30 AM to put out all of the garage sale items and had our first customer at 6:15. Why anyone wants to get up that early to look at other peoples junk I have no idea. We had our yard covered and had a lot of people show up for the sale. Thanks to all of the donations of goods, we made.......


Special thanks for Lee and Stacey, Kristen and Justin and Will and Vicki for coming out to help us set up and tear down. Also to Ashley who did an amazing job babysitting Emma during the sale (even got her to go down for her nap by herself!)

Thanks to the support of family and friends, we have been given $7,968 toward our adoption with $8,032 left to go.

Friday, June 12, 2009

Approved by USCIS

About a month ago we went to Raleigh to be fingerprinted by USCIS as part of our approval process for adoption from Ethiopia. We got our letter in the mail today stating that we have been approved by United States Immigration to adopt a child from Ethiopia. This is great news as sometimes this process takes longer than expected and/or can have some glitches. Just one more step closer.....

Garage Sale is tomorrow! Please pray that the thunder storms let up tonight and tomorrow morning and that we have a great turn out. We have lots of stuff to sell, now just need lots of people to sell it to!

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Official June Referral Numbers

We got our email update today and are officially number.........................

on the boy list. This means that two baby boys were placed with loving families in the past three weeks and we are just that much closer to being introduced to our baby. I can now stop checking my email every 5 minutes, at least until next month....

Monday, June 8, 2009

Garage Sale Update and Waiting

Garage Sale:

Items for our garage sale this coming weekend have started filling up our front porch and basement. We have already had seven families drop off items and four more families tell us that they have items to give plus all of the stuff we have to sell from our own "collection". But of course, we have room for more if anyone has anything that they would like us to take off their hands. We will sell what we can and take the items to Urban Ministry and Goodwill if we can not get it sold unless you want the items back. As long as the weather holds out for us in the morning, it looks like it is going to be a great sale!


I have been reading a lot of adoption blogs over the last couple of months (blog spying as many call it) and most have said that one of the hardest parts of the adoption process is waiting. Being a planner and someone that likes to be in control, I have found this to be very true. We got on the list for a referral on May 15th and then were told we would get an update on how far we had moved up the list at the beginning of each month. Well June 1st came and went with me checking my email every 10 news, then June 2nd checking email every 15 news, June 3rd limiting myself to every news, June 4th back to every ten news and on and on. We still haven't heard anything about how many referrals have gone out in the last month so are just waiting for the monthly email from our case worker giving us our "numbers". Fortunatley, the process of adopting has gone very smoothly for us and much quicker than we expected. Even with this, I am obsessed with getting whatever information I can. I am hoping as the months go by, I can mellow out and just get the information as it comes. Probably not, but one can hope....

Monday, June 1, 2009

Garage Sale or Calling all Pack Rats

We are going to be having a garage sale on June 13th to raise money toward our remaining adoption fees. If you have any items that we can take off your hands, please let us know:

Phone: 360.220.5382
Or commenting on this blog

We will arrange a time to come and get it or you can just drop it by the house.


No new information on the where we are on the wait list. We should get a call sometime this week letting us know if we have moved up. We have heard this is a pretty quite time of waiting but will keep you posted as soon as we know anything more.

Thanks to the support of family and friends, we have been given $7,280 toward our adoption with $8,720 left to go. Almost halfway there!!