"In his heart a man plans his course, but the Lord determines his steps." Proverbs 16:9

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

A Tiny Step...

CLOSER!! Over the weekend we received our biometrics appointment notification from USCIS (United States Citizenship and Immigration Services). Our appointment was scheduled for March 12, but luckily in Indiana, as long as they have you scheduled, you can show up at any time. A walk-in appointment is much more my style as patience is not my best virtue. My dear husband, knowing this about me, took time off of work this morning for us to head downtown Indianapolis to be fingerprinted. Fingerprinting is the last step before USCIS will issue our 171-H form... that prized final piece of paper we need to complete our dossier! The lovely lady who took our fingerprints this morning said it usually takes "a couple of weeks" to receive the 171-H form. That sounds a bit like government-speak to me! Here's hoping our form arrives SOON! :)

Friday, February 19, 2010

African Mama

Check out what my sweetie got me for Valentine's Day. (By the way, I married the most thoughtful man I know. He amazes me!) This shirt has the Amharic word for "mama," which I can't wait to be... an African Mama! :)

Monday, February 8, 2010

Wish I had thought of that!

I came across this quote in another adoption blog and couldn't have said it any better myself!

Why Adopt?
Because, really, these kids are no different from your own. Not at all. Because it’s just not okay with us to say no to a child who needs a home when we have one. Because it’s just not okay with us to say no to a child who needs a family when we have one. Because it’s just not okay with us to say no to a child who needs room to thrive when we have room and can make room. Because it’s just not okay with us to do nothing.

Adoptive Mom, Heidi
from the blog:

Friday, February 5, 2010

The Paper Pregnancy

We are currently in the paperwork phase, also known as the "paper pregnancy" phase of our adoption. The Ethiopian government requires each adoptive family to complete an extensive file of paperwork (called a dossier) which includes a home study, medical history, background checks, letters of reference, etc, etc, etc. Right now we are waiting on one final piece of paper (from the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services) in order to complete our dossier. We have been working on this paperwork since October 2009 and are eager for it to be completed!! Once our dossier is complete, our adoption agency will send it to Ethiopia for us and we will then officially be on the "Waiting List" to be matched with a child, which generally takes around 3-6 months. We are hopeful that our dossier can be completed this month and that we will know who our son is by this summer!
Thanks to all who are following along and joining our family in prayer!

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Our Decision to Adopt

I have known my whole life that God was calling me adopt a child internationally. I did not know when or where this calling would take me, but I had no doubts that it was His desire for my life. My dad (who is a pastor) and mom accepted a one year missionary position in Kenya while I was in high school. That year changed my life in so many ways, one of which was that it created in me a burning passion and heart for the orphans in Africa. When I met my husband several years later, I was amazed to learn that he too had always felt a calling to adopt a child. After we were married, we decided to have two biological children and then adopt our third child, thereby completing our family. (Even as I write this, I can just hear that old saying that if you want to make God laugh, just make plans!!) We were surprised to learn after having our two biological children that a third biological child was on the way! This was nowhere in the plans we had made for ourselves, but like everything else we'd been through, we knew to trust God fully with His will for us. When our youngest daughter was about 6 months old, we nervously began to revisit our adoption calling. We knew God was still calling us to adopt, but we were unsure of how we would manage four children. For almost a year, we prayed for His guidance in our decision. We shared our struggle with our closest family members and friends from our small group who all agreed to surround us in prayers through this decision-making process. In October of 2009, we felt so strongly that the timing was right and that we needed to trust Him fully as we agreed to follow His calling. We were completely convicted, and we sent in our application to adopt a child from Ethiopia, just north of where I lived all those years ago in Kenya.

The adoption agency we've chosen to work with, America World Adoption, is a fully-committed Christian organization. We are so excited to have found an agency who shares our belief that adoption is a gift from God and a beautiful picture of the way God loves us and "adopts" each one of us into His family.