I'm a married mother of "3 1/2" ;) and the loves of my life are my faith and my family. I've grown in my faith over the last two years since my daughter's adoption, she is the reason why I started this blog in the first place, and I'm so looking forward to watching God move in my heart, and the hearts of others who follow along on our journey towards bringing home one of "the least of these". Special needs adoption is my mission field, whether I'm adopting a child myself, or helping other families get funded, or shouting for waiting children who need families to find them, and I hope you'll come along for the ride and watch what God can accomplish when we say yes to His command to care for the orphan, and go out into the world to be His hands and feet.

T-Shirt Fundraiser

T-Shirt Fundraiser

T-Shirt Fundraiser

T-Shirt Fundraiser

Hello :)

Hello :)

My Better Half

My Better Half

The Crew

The Crew

The New Guy

The New Guy

Before Adoption

Before Adoption

Two Years After Adoption

Two Years After Adoption

Friday, September 19, 2014

T-Shirt Time!!!

I'm amazed by how much people love this shirt design!! (I'm a big fan, too!) Fund the Nations is an awesome organization that helps fund adoptions, mission trips, and more through tshirts! If you would like to purchase one, or several, you can click the "buy now" on the left side of the blog. In the comments/notes section, please state which size you would like (S-XXL)and leave your name and mailing address. Thanks so much!!



Bonus: Another t-shirt!

I can't even explain my obsession with this shirt, I LOVE baseball shirts, but baseball shirts with a GREAT message?! It's just too much!!! $20 gets you one!


Thursday, September 18, 2014

The Big Reveal...


My sweet friend Colleen created this for "little man"! If you would like to know who he is, and see a brand new pic of him, feel free to purchase a box, and be part of the big reveal! 2 down, 28 to go...you can donate through the youcaring link on the right...let the adoption games begin!!!

<3

Monday, September 15, 2014

Auction

Since I've completely blown up Facebook with posts and links to this adoption auction I'm hosting, I figured I would post a little bit about it here. A little background infomation: adoption is costly. Rarely do people have the ability to fund an adoption from their bank account alone, and I've noticed (more so with special needs adoption) that it takes a lot to get potential adoptive parents to answer the call and say yes, and that's mostly because of the cost, and knowing the potential cost of medical care for a child with special needs once they're home. Many foreign countries require a pretty steep "deposit" to officially match you with a child, then there is the homestudy fee, USCIS fee, cost of ordering marriage/birth certificates, notary, certification of the notary, apostilles, etc...in short, it adds up fast, and most families need about $5,000 in order to get the ball rolling, not everyone has that, so that's where things like this auction come in. Every little bit helps relieve the financial mess that is adoption. Please browse the auction, if you see something you love, don't hesitate to bid, and please share the page with your friends and family!!! I can't wait to reveal which child is finally getting a family! 

Here's the link!

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Tips for Affording Adoption

So adoption is crazy expensive, and most adoptive parents have to do some sort of fundraising to put their kiddos ransom together...if you happen to have $25,000-$50,000 laying around your house, then kudos to you, this post will be for the rest of the riffraff like me. ;)

Fundraising sucks...lets just go ahead and get that out of the way. It sucks to feel like a beggar even though you're working harder than you EVER have in your LIFE to raise money. It sucks to feel like a sweatshop employee if you happen to know how to do a craft. In conclusion it sucks to fundraise...but I think we've already established that. So, what to do about it? The good news that saving money works EXACTLY the same way that raising money works, but without the side eye looks from strangers. :) If you're not spending money, you have extra money to put into your own adoption funds, judgement free! So, without further ado, here is a list-o-crazy ways to stretch your pennies and build up that adoption fund!

Enjoy!

Unplug everything except the refrigerator
Turn off ALL lights except when you need them
Use a clothes line, not the dryer
Do not eat out
Don not step foot into your favorite store (I'm looking at you, Target)
Do not use quick stop stores
Enjoy free activities like walking trails
Cancel the gym membership
Cancel cable
Cut off house phone and only use cell
Sell extra items around the house
Learn to use (and enjoy) what you already have
Go to the library, not the bookstore
Enjoy time at home with friends and family instead of going out
Take shorter showers
Use displacement setting in your toilet tank to use less water
Turn water off when brushing teeth
Hand wash dishes instead of using the dishwasher
Save metal: drink cans, veggie cans, scrap pieces that you would trash, take them to the scrap metal yard
Make your own household cleaners with white vinegar
Use rags instead of papertowels
Use cloth napkins instead of paper
Make your own laundry soap
Make gifts instead of buying them
Make your own greeting cards
Take a drink with you so you don't need to stop and buy one
Repair clothes instead of buying new
Shop thrift stores for childrens clothes
Learn to say NO..to yourself, and your kids
Go makeup free
Squeeze toothepaste to the last drop
Forget buying shave cream, use your hair conditioner
Color your own hair
Cut your husbands hair
Learn how to can food: if you don't have a garden, you would be surprised how many people are willing to GIVE you their gardens surplus
Buy whole milk and add a little water to stretch it
Cook from scratch
Cut meat down to just a few days a week
On meat days make casseroles so a pound will stretch
Join sites like swagbucks
Search youtube to learn how to make razor blades last FOREVER
Pay everything on time to avoid late fees
Turn your air up a few degrees
Turn your heat down a few degrees
Shop loss leaders
Make a written budget and STICK TO IT
Consolidate trips to save gas
Smash TP rolls so they roll slower (kids will use less)


Who has other ideas?! We would love to hear them!


Friday, September 5, 2014

Two Years Later

Ok, so I'm a blogging failure, that's not really debatable. I promise that I think about blogging, and I plan to do it, life just totally gets in the way. I'm going to do my best to catch everyone (is there anyone left?!) up on what life has been like with Kenzi.

On October 18, 2012...almost two years ago (!!!) we officially became the parents of our sweet Kenzi girl. On November 20th 2012 I traveled alone to Russia to pick her up and bring her home forever! Here are some pics from Kenzi's Gotcha Day, our time hanging out in Moscow, and finally heading home to the US, where Miss McKenzie became an official US citizen when the wheels hit the runway at JFK airport in New York City on November 27, 2012!











After what seemed like FOREVER, we finally landed in Nashville, TN where daddy and some family friends were waiting to welcome our girl home!






Then it was time to head home for a good nights sleep, because the next day, Kenzi was going to meet her brothers and grandparents for the first time!





Next we celebrated Thanksgiving (better late than never!) and Christmas!







On February 1st 2013, McKenzie underwent open  heart surgery and completely rocked it! She was out of the hospital in just 12 days!





To try to make a long story short, Kenzi blossomed into a vibrant, funny, smart, amazing child in 2013. In March she celebrated her birthday for the first time ever at a Cinderella themed party. In April she went to her first Easter Egg Hunt, on Father's Day she took her first steps unassisted. She spent the summer swimming in her grandparents pool, and celebrated Halloween for the first time ever that fall...then once again she was spoiled rotten at Christmas time! Here are some photos from her first full year as a cherished daughter and sister. <3





















And in 2014, McKenzie continued to grow and bloom into an amazing little girl! The highlights (so far) have been:

-Her first road trip (we went to New Orleans)
-Her first pony ride
-Turning 5!!
-Trip to the zoo
-Church Dedication
-Her first time going to VBS
-Attending Day Camp at church for the first time
-Starting Kindergarten!

Here are some pics of Kenzi's highlights!






































Now you're all caught up!Sorry for the length of this post, but hopefully going forward I can keep this semi updated! No promises, but I'll at least post on holidays and things. 

Thanks for reading!