Tag Archives: Africa

The One You’ve Been Waiting For…

22 Aug

If you’ve been following our adoption journey, whether intimately through weekly phone calls and text message or from afar through this page, this is it. The post you’ve all been waiting for…

Our adoption is official!!!

Everything has gone through!!!

This is a reality!!!

Sparkles! Rainbows! Confetti! Music! Hugs! Laughter!

Celebrate!

At least that’s how I should feel, right?

Don’t get me wrong, I’m ecstatic. I’m elated. I’m so grateful to God for His faithfulness to ridiculous little me. I’m thankful and my heart is so full… But…

This journey isn’t over yet.

So what comes next? Death by paperwork.

In the coming weeks our contacts in the country will work with authorities to find us a child (eeek!!!!) but from there all of the paperwork needed to send our agency the official match proposal must be in place. Medical records, police reports, any and all documentation that the Canadian government would need for us to be able to accept a proposal. Sigh. Even here in Canada such paperwork could be slow moving. Just typing out these words is slowly killing my joy.

We are done with waiting!!!

But that’s the reality. More waiting.

So here’s what we need from you. Yes, please celebrate with us! We are so thrilled and want to share this excitement with you. Then please join with us in this prayer:

  1. That The Lord would lead our contact to the child that He has for us. We know that there is a perfect fit for our family and we know that she will be lead by His spirit to find this child. We also pray that The Lord would give her strength in these days as this is a delicate process. Please pray that she would meet angels in every government office that she walks into.
  2. That months would turn into weeks and weeks would turn into days for us. Obviously we have no choice but to wait for as long as this process will take….. but I’m so ready to be on a plane already!!!
  3. That we will be able to continue to raise the money needed to go back to Africa. We do not know at this point how long we would need to be there for or how many countries we may need to visit to obtain the necessary passports and visas to bring our baby home. There are a lot of unknowns still, but we would like to be as financially prepared as possible. (Anyone ready to host a Trunk Show?!?! Free jewels! Bring baby home!!)
  4. For emotional and mental strength. I am quickly becoming unbearable to be around because I so badly want to be with this baby. Poor J-Sauce. Please pray for him.

We are so thankful that you continue to support us throughout this process. Thank you for letting us vent and cry on your shoulders and share our joys and our longing. We love each and everyone of you and couldn’t do this without you.

We hope to be able to share much more good news with you in the coming weeks and months.

 

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New Opportunities

1 Apr

I live for days where I slip out of my world in dreams and the first thing I am aware of is the light outside my window. There is a new warmth. There are birds chirping and calling to one another, letting their presence be known. The trees bursting forth with new leaves and the air is full with the scent of cherry blossoms.

Spring!

“See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland.” Isaiah 43:19 NIV

I live for Spring.

I absolutely, 100% love our West Coast rain and mild Winters, but enough is enough after months of grey. I need sun on my skin and the reminder of new life.

The beginning of 2014 has been difficult for me and there has been little news regarding our adoption. What we have heard has been positive, but there is still no babe in my arms. So I will soldier on and do what I always do….

Find something new to throw all of my energy into!!

This time that we have to wait is for a reason and I know that I must take full advantage of it while I can. My first priority is my beautiful girls and giving them all of my attention while it is just the two of them. So we keep our days full and create our own magic.

Cousins

Craft Time

Painting

My next priority is to keep us in good financial standing as we continue through this adoption journey. I don’t know if you have heard, but international adoption is not cheap….. Ha ha. So I work.

I have many jobs, all of which I have been blessed with so that I can keep my kids as my first priority. I am so thankful for this time that I have with them and I know it will soon be over; they will off to school in the blink of an eye and I will eventually need to find a “real” job. But until then, I teach piano, I do part time bookkeeping, and I have recently taken on the job of cleaning our apartment building. While these jobs are fulfilling and allow me to be at home with the girls while adding to our monthly income, things still fall short with the bigger picture looming ahead of us.

J-Sauce and I have tried to be as conservative as possible with our financial decisions especially with regards to the adoption. We still enjoy a night out here and there and carry a small amount of consumer debt (we can all sit around and compare numbers at a later time πŸ˜‰ ). However, we do have all of the administrative costs related to our adoption covered. What we still lack are the funds to eventually return to Africa and bring our precious baby home.

So I have prayed and reflected and sought wise counsel (and whined and complained) and researched and have made another decision regarding my employment…….. I am going to start a home based business!!!

I have had experience with this in the past as a consultant with Mary Kay. I learned a lot about how to succeed in such an endeavor. But more importantly, I learned a lot about how to fail at such an endeavor. So I have made my recent decision with much consideration and support with the hope that I will be able to succeed and to continue to provide towards our next trip to Africa.

I am so excited and proud to announce that I have decided to join the growing number of women (and men!) connected with Stella & Dot accessories as a Personal Stylist.

I have chosen Stella & Dot for a few reasons. I have been acquainted with the company for sometime now through a super fabulous and loving friend. Β She has always been open about her love of building her business and supporting her family through Stella & Dot. I have attended a few Trunk Shows in the last few years and love the atmosphere of hanging out with a few friends while trying out some fun and beautiful jewelry. So relaxing and comfortable, unlike many other home based business parties I’ve attended.

Also, I love their products!! I haven’t taken much time over the last few years (save for a few evenings out or Sunday mornings) to put a lot of effort into feeling put together and pretty. Being a busy mom is wonderful and rewarding but I spend far too much time in my Lulu’s and sweatshirts. It amazes me how something as simple as a necklace or bracelet can motivate me to put in a few extra minutes of planning and allow me to tackle the day with a little more grace and confidence. This doesn’t mean that I don’t still love my sweats, I do, but I’m excited to be apart of something that will push me towards being a little more polished on a weekly basis.

My goal with this adventure is simple: connect with new people, help them feel beautiful and save towards our next adoption trip.

I know that there are those of you out there who have already been blessed by helping us out financially with our last trip, and for that we are eternally grateful. You are still more than welcome to press that little Donate button at the top of the page (every dollar helps!) but why not get something back in return?

With as much time as I have available to make this business work, I know that we may fall short of our goal of $7500. So please stay tuned for other opportunities and events to help us meet that goal!

In the mean time, I’m looking to fill up my calendar over the next few months with as many Trunk Shows as possible. If you live in the Greater Vancouver/Fraser Valley area and would like to host (and earn some free jewelry!!) all while supporting J-Sauce and I, drop me a line! I could not have made it this far in this journey without you and may need a little more support yet. Every day brings us that much closer to returning to Africa and our child.

Bracelets

The Wait

31 Oct

I feel like my life is on hold.

I feel like time is moving too fast and standing still, all at the same time.

I feel like I have never been busier in my life and yet it seems like I am doing nothing of value in that busyness.

We drive to preschool, to dance, to work, to the grocery store and home again. The feeling is always there. It never leaves my mind, my heart, my soul.

Beach Bums

I have thrown myself into projects connected to my friends and the beautiful country so far away and still so close to my heart. These things bring me great joy and we are excited for the opportunities ahead, but this does not silence the aching.

I exercise. I eat. I have a glass of wine. I play with my girls. I pray. I talk to others about my feelings. I go out and live my life.

Color Me Rad 2013

Nothing helps.

I continue to research, preparing myself for what might be.

A Little Light Reading

I set new goals and work towards them, but honestly, only halfheartedly a this point.

I did it.....

My heart longs to return to Africa. I long to meet this precious child. To hold her in my arms. To tell her how much I love her. To call her my own.

I could barely type that sentence because it is painful and terrifying to admit to these feelings and to have them live outside of my body.

When we set out on this adoption journey Cupcake was only 5 months old. We knew that we wanted more children and The Lord had spoken to us very clearly about adoption. We also knew that this process was not going to lead us to a child over night. We had heard stories of people waiting for years to see an adoption completed. We were aware of what might lay ahead of us.

But I lied to myself. “We will be different. Ours won’t take as long. We are special”. I may not have voiced those feelings, but I am an eternal optimist and desperately wanted to believe that God would work this miracle according to my schedule. I honestly believed at the beginning of this year that 2013 would be the year of the baby! I was sure that by now we would be home with our three girls, planning for a holiday season full of new joy and love. But this no longer seems possible. Of course God does not bend to the will of humanity and I know this, but the waiting…..

It is hard. It feels like it will never end.

But, the sun comes up everyday and sets every night. I get up and make it through each day. I find joy in the little things and rejoice in the miracles found in other people’s lives. And I wait.

I wait for a breakthrough. I wait for a phone call, an email, anything. I wait for a miracle.

At this point, I covet your prayers. Please pray with us for this miracle. I don’t know what else to do except to pray.

Many well meaning people ask us if there is any news and this question breaks my heart. I wish that there were news. I wish that we could shout it from the rooftops. I wish that we were boarding a plane tomorrow to meet our precious babe. But there is not and we are not. We continue to wait.

As much as this post was necessary for me to write to update you on our story and to vent my emotions, it is a bit of a downer, yes? I know that there is hope. I know that there is a promise for our family. I know that there is an end to the waiting. This will happen and The Lord knows when. Until then, I wait.

Life has a way....

Day Five

28 May

Forgive me for not posting last night. We had the wonderful fortune of spending the evening with some lovely friends and did not make it back to our lodging until late. I’m sorry, but I’m not sorry. We had a fantastic evening!

Because most of our intense adoption meetings are behind us, J-Sauce and I get to just be tourists and extra pairs of hands where ever we are needed. So Tuesday was Safari Day!! Yay animals in Africa. We went to The Lion and Cheetah Park…. where they have no Cheetahs.

Taking a look.

Taking a look.

Om nom nom, cow butt.

Om nom nom, cow butt.

Going for a little walk.

Going for a little walk.

Really big birds with attitude.....

Really big birds with attitude…..

Hello, I'm an Eland.

Hello, I’m an Eland.

Big kitties, big turtles.

Big kitties, big turtles.

Friends and Turtles, that's pretty cool.

Friends and Turtles, that’s pretty cool.

Ya know, just petting a lion, no big deal.

Ya know, just petting a lion, no big deal.

Nice kitty, kitty.....

Nice kitty, kitty…..

Someone is waaaay more brave than I.

Someone is waaaay more brave than I.

Just taking a little snooze.

Just taking a little snooze.

Literally only five feet away!!

Literally only five feet away!!

After our adventure in the wild, we went for coffee at the least African place possible, just to change things up πŸ˜‰

Its like we were meant to be here.

Its like we were meant to be here.

Then was dinner and a lot of laughs. It was so nice to have a day to relax and truly enjoy our surroundings and new friends. And tomorrow is another day with more adventure waiting for us! Thanks again for checking in πŸ™‚

Day Three

26 May

Today is Sunday! So we went to church. It was everything that I had always imagined that church in Africa would be.

Except for the Sunday school teacher. That was unexpected. Because it was me…..

Sharing one of my favourite Bible Stories; Noah's Ark. They told it better than I did.

Sharing one of my favourite Bible Stories; Noah’s Ark. They told it better than I did.

They were better listeners than any Sunday School class I have ever taught before!

They were better listeners than any Sunday School class I have ever taught before!

Beautiful, beautiful rainbows!

Beautiful, beautiful rainbows!

I wanted to share about Noah’s Ark for one specific reason, and for those of you who know me even a little bit should not be surprised by that reason. Rainbows. I love rainbows! Not only are they rare (at least in our part of the world) and magical and awe inspiring, they represent something so much bigger. They are a symbol of God’s promises in our lives. I tried to get the kids excited about God’s promises for their lives such as love, friendship, His faithfulness and so on, but not much seemed to spark their interest. Clearly I am no Terry B. or Katy L. While a part of that is definitely the language barrier, only the older kids speak any English, the other factor is the reality of the situation that these kids face everyday. They definitely understand the concepts of God’s word (their memory verse work is incredible!) but it is difficult for them to comprehend the actuality of peace and prosperity and many other of God’s promises to us. This is a sobering realization.

So I shared with them one of God’s promises in my life. I shared with them that God had promised me the opportunity to one day come and meet them and play with them and love on them. And that today, they were witnessing a promise fulfilled. This seemed to please them, or at least to be enough for them to grasp. I also shared with them the hope that rainbows represent. Hope, no matter your circumstance, is universal. There is always hope.

That is the sole reason as to why J-Sauce and I are here.

Everyone love candy! Everyone loves J-Sauce, the candy man.

Everyone loves candy! Everyone loves J-Sauce, the candy man.

The rest of the morning was the church service, singing, dancing, praising the Lord, sharing God’s word. Our hearts are full. Then came more chances to serve the people and the children of the church. Not all of the children here are orphans, but a good percentage of them are.

Playing Hot Potato

Playing Hot Potato

Getting ready for Lunch.

Getting ready for Lunch.

Dad passing out new jackets.

Dad passing out new jackets.

They posed me for this. They did all the work. But what a good workout!

They posed me for this. They did all the work. But what a good workout!

Maybe one of my favourite ways to serve: washing hands.

Maybe one of my favourite ways to serve: washing hands.

Serving up some sedza.

Serving up some sedza.

Lunch in the shade.

Lunch in the shade.

Just chillin'.

Just chillin’.

Comfy spot to sit.

Comfy spot to sit.

So excited about her new jacket from Canada.... which the kids think is entirely covered in sow, 100% of the time.

So excited about her new jacket from Canada…. which the kids think is entirely covered in snow, 100% of the time.

Girls here are the same as girls in Canada. Nothing makes you smile more than a pair of new jeans that fir perfectly!

Girls here are the same as girls in Canada. Nothing makes you smile more than a pair of new jeans that fit perfectly!

Sorting out new baby clothes.

Sorting out new baby clothes.

Never too young to start soccer.

Never too young to start soccer.

This evening we are resting up as we have more meetings with the government in the morning. Fingers crossed and prayers said, we hope that these meetings will move things forward and at least get the process started here before we head home on Saturday.

We are missing our beautiful Princess and Cupcake so much, but they gave us their permission to love and hug and kiss all the children who needed it before we came home to them. I truly hope that one day they understand the reason why we had to be apart for some time and what this time ultimately means for our family.

And hope is what its all about.