Monday, October 22, 2012

iPad give away!

We have very generously been given a brand new (receipt in hand) 3rd generation 16 GB white iPad, and we are using this blessing to do a give away!

How it works:

You get entered once for every $20 donation. So, if you give $100, you are entered five times!!!

You can donate online through our Eternal Family Program with our agency, America World. Donate to our adoption costs hereChoose "Eternal Family Program" from the drop down menu and in the notes section, please make sure you write our names (otherwise the donations will not go to us and I won't know you entered). If you'd feel more comfortable mailing a check, please email me for our address.

You can also donate and be entered at our Silent Auction on November  10th 12:00-3:00 pm at 130 Jackson Street in Blacksburg.

Another way to be entered is you can "share" this announcement on Facebook or Twitter. Email if you have shared, and I will put your name in!

We will announce the winner on Black Friday- November, 23rd. I will mail or meet up with the winner to give the give away!!!

Sunday, October 21, 2012


We are just blown away. God is continuing to be so faithful. We have had several large donations recently towards our adoption, and it is ever reminding us of how huge God is and how this $38,000 is truly his bill.

A friend of ours is also adopting, and a fundraiser that worked very well for her was an ipad giveaway......a donated ipad. So, Evan threw the opportunity out there on facebook on Saturday morning. He mentioned that if you've been looking for a way to give, would you consider donating an ipad. Within 24 hours, the ipad is in hand.

I am humbled by people's generosity, by God's sovereign plan through all of this, and that He wants us to bring this child home even more than we do. I feel so blessed to be interacting with God through this experience. It reminds me that when we step out in faith and allow God to have the driver seat, the story is so much better than anything we can write.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Attatchment 101

I follow many fantastic blogs, and one is called The Wayman Family Nest. This family also adopted from Ethiopia, and this post discussing attachment and the ever important "cocooning."

Attachment 101

A couple of days ago I mentioned I'd be doing about how Hayes has been doing as far as attachment goes, so here we go...

Hayes was 6 1/2 months old when we brought him home. He had lived in 2 different orphanages during his young life. He was passed around among many caregivers. He had no real attachment to anyone. When we brought him back to the guest house where we were staying, the other families kept exclaiming what a "good" baby he was. I knew that this was not normal (and not that he wasn't a "good" baby, but it's not normal for a baby to NEVER cry. On the flip side, he didn't smile or make cooing noises much either.). He was just as content to be held by random strangers in Ethiopia (and they WILL just take your baby from you! haha!) as he was to be held by us. Hayes did not trust that any one specific person would be there to meet his needs. So from the time we arrived home, we began "cocooning."

For 2 weeks Hayes and I didn't leave the house. Most families actually cocoon much longer, but I was going stir crazy! The hubby and I were the only ones to hold, feed, rock, bathe, change, and comfort him. When he did cry, we immediately met his needs (usually with a bottle and cuddle time). After 2 weeks we ventured out a bit, usually just to Target so mommy could get out of the house. A couple of times (even after being home for a month) we went to a restaurant and it was just too much for him. After these instances we would stay at home for a few days. We didn't usually get out but once every 3-4 days. After 2 weeks we also let immediate family hold him. Honestly, I was planning on waiting longer, but I didn't feel that people really understood (and I felt like they were upset with us), so I bulked under the pressure. After we had been home for about a month, we went to church. Even there we didn't allow anyone to hold him (which is what we did when we went anywhere was there were more than just a few people present).

For us it was a beautiful time of bonding. It is such a crucial time to Hayes's healing process. We have seen a huge difference in our son. He now cries and lets us know when he has a need. He smiles and laughs and is an all-around happy, confident little guy. He loves to be cuddled and he loves touch-holding hands, putting his hands on our faces, etc. He will let other people hold him, but still looks for mommy and sometimes wants to come back to me. When he fusses when someone else is holding him, we still are the ones to comfort him. He knows that we are mommy and daddy. The difference in him is truly amazing.

And still after 4 months at home, we've been the only ones to feed, bathe, change, and rock him to sleep. We also have only left him in the nursery on 2 occasions and once with a family member (for 1 hour). This is about to DRASTICALLY change as I go back to work a week from today. To say that I'm nervous is an understatement, but more on that later as this post is getting lengthy! We'll continue to watch Hayes, as attachment is an ongoing process. I've already told the hubby that if we see him regress in the area of attachment, then I'm quitting! And I mean it! I'm not going to work the detriment of our bond with Hayes. We would love to have your prayers during this time of transition for our family.

Here are some things I wished we had done a little differently that maybe can help some of you in the process:
- Prepare friends and family for what cocooning will look like ahead of time.
- Cocoon as long as you feel is necessary.
- Stick to the rules that you established as far as the time frame for others to hold him.
- Wear younger children in a wrap/ergo. I didn't do this (I usually just held him on the couch or rocked him), but I think he would have benefitted from this.

For more info on cocooning and attachment, read here, here or here.

Sorry for the LONG post, but hopefully some of you who have just arrived home with your children or who will soon be home with your children will benefit from this in some way.

Here are some pictures of what attachment looked like early on in our house...

Snuggles with mommy.

Wednesday, October 10, 2012

DId you see? Have you heard?

Did you notice the fundraising thermometer? We broke $10,000! God has been so faithful in continuung to provide, and we are believing Him for the full amount. Before we can submit our Dossier, we need to raise another $3,000-4,000. Will you join us in praying for this?

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Hannah James jewelry

Hi friends!  This month a wonderful blogger and jewelry maker whom I never met is donating 45% of all her jewlery sales this month to our adoption. Her stuff is extremely cute and is great for some early Christmas shopping. Check her out!

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Prayer request...

Hey loyal reader friends! Can you do me a favor and lift up a prayer request for me?

Evan and I submitted our home study paperwork several weeks ago, and we just heard from our social worker today. She told us that she can only do weekends because of her full time job and she is getting surgery next Thursday. Will you pray that she receives our paper work this week and can meet with us this weekend?

The home study being complete is the biggest piece of being able to submit our Dossier. Thank you friends for walking along side of us through this process!

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Girl OR a boy!

Evan and I have made the decision to request either a girl or a boy age 0-24 months. We feel like God is leading us to be open. In addition, how sweet will that moment be when we receive our referral and it's a surprise as to what it will be! Join us in praying for our child:

God we ask for your blessing. We pray that you grown in our child. 
Please keep him or her safe and filled with love. 
Give us grace daily to be loving and spirit filled parents 
who will raise our child up knowing you. 

Tuesday, October 2, 2012

Sweet sacrifice

I love what I do. I teach enthusiastic 10 year-olds each day. I love that my day never looks the same as the last. Mostly, I adore that I can make an impact on a young person's life. Every once in a while, one of my former students stops by to pay me a visit. I'm always floored by how grown up they look!

At the beginning of the school day today, I had a sweet surprise. A younger sibling of a former student stopped by and handed me an envelope. Sydney heard that Evan and I are adopting from Ethiopia, and she and her sister decided to help. Riley, Sydney's younger sister, hands me an envelope and said, "We've been earning money for your adoption." They had a lemonade stand and saved all the funds for us. I hugged this sweet girl up and told her how much that meant to me. Later on, I opened the envelope and found this:

$28 in one dollar bills.  The generosity of the two young girls reminds me of the story of the widow's offering. 

Luke 21

New International Version (NIV)

The Widow’s Offering

21 As Jesus looked up, he saw the rich putting their gifts into the temple treasury. He also saw a poor widow put in two very small copper coins. “Truly I tell you,” he said, “this poor widow has put in more than all the others. All these people gave their gifts out of their wealth; but she out of her poverty put in all she had to live on.”

Thank you Sydney and Riley for your faith!

Monday, October 1, 2012

Poker Night!

Our first fundraiser, the Texas Hold'em Tournament, went wonderfully! We were blessed by the genersoity of those who showed up and those who bought in even through they weren't able to make it! Thank you to Jimmy John's and Kroger for donating food, and a big thanks to Bull & Bones for donating the 1st and 3rd prizes. Evan did an amazing job coming up with this fantastic fundraiser and with organizing it. Congrats to Dwayne for winning the Gloss Boss Streetailing raffle for a free car detail!

Our 3rd place winner is Joe with a $40 gift card to Bull & Bones
Our 2nd place winner is Matt with a free car detail from the Gloss Boss
Our 1st place winner is Tom with a $100 gift card to Bull & Bones

We raised $590!!! Congrats and thank you for all your support!!!