Thursday, December 15, 2011

10 Things I've Learned in the Past Week.

1.)  I can exist and function at a sub-par level on less than five hours of sleep a night.

2.) Bandit enjoys Christmas.
And what I mean by that is that he enjoys injesting all things Christmas.

From last count, we're at five ornaments eaten.

If offered, he also enjoys Christmas cookies, cakes, candy..... If not offered, he will sit two inches from you in hopes something will drop out of your mouth.

3.) I've learned that after eating said Christmas items, they normally come back up around 3am on our carpet.  In large chunks.

4.) I've learned that it is possible to get really excited when your baby does a Number #2.  Especially if he hasn't since the previous morning.

5.)  I've learned that those number #2's look really interesting.

6.)  I've learned we have a really special network of "grandmas" and "aunts" around us who have stepped in to help us out because our families live so far away.

7.) I've learned that my husband is a natural with babies. Especially the one who currently lives with us. :)

8.)  I've learned that it really is in everyone's best interest to finish the nursery BEFORE the baby comes into your home.  

As you can guess...that didn't happen in our house.  

Oh well. 

But it's almost done!

Thank you Pinterest for my nursery ideas! 

9.)  I've learned it is REALLY nice to have meals being brought to you every night.  If you know a family who just gets a foster placement or adopted child, PLEASE do this for them.  They'll need it! 

10.) I've learned that social media can have some really redeeming qualities.... like the many encouraging and sweet messages we've received about Baby "J" this week.  We are so, so, so grateful for your prayers and support.  Words can't express the love we've felt.  

Monday, December 12, 2011

One Year Later.

It's unbelievable to think we have been in the adoption process for a year now. 

It's also unbelievable to think that we don't have a referral yet. 

When we started this last December, the estimated time from start to finish was 8-12 months.  

We thought we'd been in Africa now, meeting our children. 

Instead, we still wait for a picture and for their name. 

We are close.  Three more spots to go. 

But we know from those ahead of us, the wait after referral is just as long. 

As much as a year before travel. 

It's hard to answer questions that are lovingly asked by our friends and family.  

We don't know when we'll get a referral. 

We don't know when we'll travel. 

We don't know why it's taking so long. 

I wish I did. 

But I don't. 

So I hold on to this promise that I was reminded of from reading the other day.  

"Faith is the confidence that what we hope for will actually happen; it gives us assurance about the things we cannot see."  Hebrews 11:1

I'm holding on to the call that Brian and I believe God gave us toward adopting from Africa.  Right now it's just plain faith that God will finish what He started in our lives with our DRC adoption. 

The reality of the wait is disheartening. 

So we hold on to Faith.  

Faith that He is working even when it seems like He isn't.  

Faith that He knows our children. 

Faith that His timing is best. 

We are so thankful for those who are walking through this journey with us, praying for us, encouraging us, and spurring us on.  Forgive us when our responses are short to your questions. I wish we had more to share. 

For now, we wait by Faith. 

Choosing to trust that His hand is on this.  

Saturday, December 10, 2011

3 Years.

3 years ago tonight, I said yes to Brian as he bent down on one knee, asking me to be his wife. 

It's an easy date to remember, we had gone to dinner and come back to his house to watch the Heisman Awards, or so I thought. 

Until we stepped out in his backyard...  he had decorated the ginormous tree in his backyard. 

After opening a few gifts, brought me around to the other side of the tree, knelt down on one knee, and said a bunch of sweet things I wish I remembered. 

Then he hit a switch, and this appeared on the fence behind him....

Pretty impressive, huh? 

I got myself a good one!  

Tuesday, December 6, 2011


After quite a while sitting at #4 on the wait list for the DRC, we have finally moved to....

It's encouraging to have moved, because that means that a "blog friend" of mine who was at the #1 spot received their referral of an infant last week! 

This week marked the presidential elections in Kinshasa, where things have gotten a little turbulent.  We are praying for peace as the winner is announced and for safety for the little ones in the orphanages around the city. 

In other news, our little man turns four weeks old today! 

Our week in review: 

  • Brian changed his very first diaper
  • Even after that experience, Brian is still willing to change more diapers. What a good man! 
  • We are existing on less sleep.  MUCH less sleep, while both still working full-time. 
  • The dogs have gotten used to this eight-pound eating machine that makes weird, high-pitched noises.  They love to give him big wet kisses.
  • Coffee is my best friend.  Dark chocolate is running a close second. 

Thursday, December 1, 2011


A few months ago, my husband and I decided to dip our toes into the world of foster care.

From September to November, we had been taking classes to be certified as foster parents. The original plan was only doing respite foster care, which is short-term care to help out other foster families.

Two weeks ago, our social worker called and asked if we would be willing to accept the placement of a two-week old baby into our home.


We knew a call like this would come....because God was changing something in our hearts about fostering.

He was making it clear that we were to be foster parents. Potentially for the long-term.


But let me make something clear.  Fostering is not what I ever wanted to do.

I didn't grow up dreaming to be a foster parent-- Longing for days when I would have children who had experienced trauma placed in my home.  Living with the unknown of how long they would be a part of our family.

Nope. Definitely didn't picture that for my future.

But a few years ago I made the decision that God's dreams for me were always bigger and better than my own.

So I laid my plans aside.

And we decided to do full-term foster care.  We plunged head-first into the pool of parenthood.

From childless to two-week old in a week's time.

Yup. Definitely not my plan.


We have the space. We have the time.  We have two dogs that love to give big wet kisses to small children.  And more importantly we have a lot of love to give.

Last Saturday, we welcomed a little baby boy into our home.  One week prior, when we accepted the placement, we had NO baby items in our house. NUH-THING.

Though we are in the adoption process, we are still a ways off from traveling. So we weren't prepared.

However, we have some pretty great people around us who stepped up to the plate and helped us get what we needed to welcome the little guy into our home.

  • Meals have been provided for the month of december.  
  • A friend came and put our baby furniture together.  
  • Diapers and wipes and baby items have been donated.  
  • Plenty of outfits have been given that make him the handsomest baby on the planet. (obviously). 

We are surrounded by the true definition of "community."

There is no timeline for how long we'll have the little guy.   Could be days, months, or years.

Since his tomorrow is not promised with us, we will focus on today.  We will love him, and kiss him, and give him the chance to learn what it feels like to be wanted.

We have been given such a gift for this time.  The ability to pour into a little human that otherwise would be in a very unstable environment.  What a privilege and an honor.

It's still not something I've ever wanted.....but I know it's right where we need to be......

****Because of privacy and safety issues, we can't share his name or pictures, but we'll try and share as much as we can about the journey!