Wednesday, October 20, 2010

2 weeks and counting!






Well have I been a slacker or what?! I'm going to try to keep this short but informative. Some of you may know that in the summer our Birth mother changed her mind about the adoption after seeing her first ultrasound. We were disappointed but completly understood what she felt seeing her child for the first time, as I too had those very same feelings seeing Isabella wiggling around in my belly. We didn't let this change our mind about adoption we had just planned to go back to our original plan of adopting internationally. However God had different plans for us as we knew from the beginning. at the end of August the birth mother contacted us again. She had been seeing a counselor and with the support of her family and friends had decided that as much as she loves her child she for that very reason needed to put him up for adoption so that he could flourish in a two parent home that could give him the things she knew she could not. Since then things have been a whirlwind. We have been moving at the speed of light to get everything done in half the time it normally takes. We had to meet with the lawyer and he has to push things through the courts. We had to have a home study done also. They told us it normally at the fastest takes 8 weeks. We had 4! We have had an amazing case worker and we just had our last appointment with her. We have to have our fingerprinting done Friday then the rest of our reference letters need to come in then she can finish writing the report. They have officially moved the due date up to Nov 4th so we really do only have 2 weeks left. We are so excited. The car seats in the car, the bassinets out, and Boy's baby clothes are in the closet. Oh yeah, you guys didn't know IT'S A BOY!!! We are naming him Avery James after my Grandpa Avery that just passed away and then of course after his Daddy! The Pictures you see added our of us with the birth mother. We had these done and I know they will be cherished forever by all of us. We are still very guarded, as we know the emotions of the day he is born will be great and she could change her mind. However either way we still believe God put us in this place at this time for a reason. If that be to parent this precious baby boy so be it, but if it was only to be a support an example of God's love to this birth mother so be it! God's will be done!

Sunday the 24th we are doing a fundraiser to help with the last $1,200 we are anticipating. We have been able to fund everything up until know but have exhausted our resources now and have to resort to a fundraiser. So if you are interested in helping us out we would really appreciate it. We are doing a Lunches to Go following our church service on Sunday. It will be $7 per meal and you get your choice of Pork tenderloin or Chicken Breast for your meat, and green beans or corn for your veggie. All meals will be served with Cheesy Hashbrowns, dinner roll and a dessert. They will be all ready to be picked up and taken home, to the park or wherever your heart desire to eat it. We'll even Deliver within a 15 mile radius. If you are interested in a meal please let me know by Fri the 22nd. You can call or text me at 616-902-0667, e-mail me summers_jt@yahoo.com, comment on here, or facebook me. Every little bit helps.

I hope you enjoy the pictures and I'm guessing I won't be posting again until after Avery has made his entrance into this world!

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

I forgot one important piece...

So I was writing for what seemed like forever last night to update everyone on the Adoption process. I forgot however one of the biggest obstacles. MONEY!!!! This is of course one of the main questions people ask too. So who anyone that knows us we are NOT rich people who have extra money laying around. God has blessed us with everything we need and all provides but this is a huge faith stretch for us. We are extremely lucky in the fact that the birth mother has health insurance so we do not have major medical bills that we have to cover. we do however have to cover all the legal fees, court costs, home study fees, and then any counseling fees, as some states require that the birth mother have counseling before the baby is born and after. All of that will add up to several thousand dollars. Yikes! I know I try not to think of it and remind myself God will provide. James and I talked about it though and we both decided we needed to do something extra that would earn money that would only be used for the adoption expenses. James is really handy and can fix or build just about anything. He made Isabella a twin size castle bed out of solid wood. He is going to make a few of these to sell, and is also looking for a part-time job delivering pizza or something. I have signed up a Jeweler through Premier Designs. So if any of you girls reading this are interested in helping me out by hosting a small get together of friends and earning a ton of free Jewelry, please let me know. I'm desperately seeking anyone willing to get me started. As we go along I'll try to post exact dollar amounts needed for each step so that anyone interested in adopting in the near future will have an idea of what they are to expect.
Last I want to just thank everyone reading this and supporting us. We have amazing friends and family and it's awesome to know that our child through adoption will be loved and welcome in the same way Isabella was!

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

November 8th is our due date!!!

Well this is a little late but it's official we will be adopting a baby this fall. I must say this year proved to be the best Memorial weekend ever. On Saturday morning we got a phone call from the birth mother. As you may know she was talking to another family also about the adoption of her baby. Waiting for her to call was driving me crazy. I completely understood that this was the biggest decision she has made and she needed time to do so but for me it was the longest 2 weeks ever. I was scared that she would choose the other family, and once again our dream of adoption would slip away. However that was not God's plan. I had missed the call from her but quickly called back. She asked if James was with me and had me put him on speaker phone. She told us that she had decided that we were the ones she wanted to raise her baby as our own. We were absolutely thrilled. We just kept saying thank you, as we didn't know what else to say. It seemed a bittersweet moment though. While we were overjoyed with her decision and she seems to feel and know that it is the right one, it was apparent that this was a very hard thing for her to finally verbalize and finalize the decision. I was surprised by the immediate amount of love and compassion I felt for this amazing young lady. My heart hurt for her, for what clearly must feel like a loss to her and I was overwhelmed with the great amount of trust she had put in us.

After hanging up the phone and just sitting there staring at each other almost as to let it settle in that "oh my gosh we are having another baby", we couldn't wait to tell the whole world. We were instantly on the phone with our parents and then out of the camper to tell all of our friends that were with us.

Since then we met with an attorney in Ionia who was very kind but in the end can not help us with adoption process. He is however at no charge doing some digging on exactly what kind of attorney or agency we will need to go through and then is going to try and find us someone closer to the birth mother to work with. He seemed to think we had plenty of time to get everything in order though so that's good. Now we are just waiting for a call back from him with info on where to go next.

The birth mother has an ultrasound appointment on June 17th so we might possibly know the sex of the baby. Now for the part of the blog that lets you in on the emotional ride that this is. First I have no idea what the normal standard for a relationship between a birth mother and adoptive parents is suppose to be but as we are doing an open adoption I would like to be close. I had hoped that she would feel comfortable in allowing me to go to the ultrasound appt with her however she already had 2 people going and thought that it would make her feel weird if I were there. I can understand that, I am a stranger to her after all, but it's still disappointing. I'm not mad or anything just a little bummed out. She did say though instead that maybe we could get lunch together and she could give me the cd of pictures from it then, which I think is a great idea. I'll have to say there has not been a day that has gone by that I haven't thought "what if she changes her mind?" I mean I know what it is like to feel a baby kick inside your belly for the first time, and to see it on the screen during an ultrasound, and my goodness the second I saw Isabella's face after delivery I knew I would move heaven and earth to protect her and love her. So what if after all the planning and months of excitement pass and she lays eyes on that baby, she decides to keep it. We would be devastated to say the least. However we feel that no matter what happens that this is God's plan for us. That right here right now we are suppose to be going through this process no matter what the outcome may be. Besides it's not like we can wait until the baby's here and the papers are signed, and her recant time is up to finally decide "let's plan for this baby." So everytime I think what if, I remind myself of all those things and say enjoy the excitement of now and worry about 'what if' when and IF it does happen.

Friday, May 21, 2010

Playing in Limbo again

Hello everyone. I'm writing to catch you up on the most recent events in our adoption journey. You know in the beginning it's all about finding out the facts and running numbers, and thinking rational. But the more involved you get you can do nothing about the fact that emotions take over and you fall in love with a child you have never seen and have no idea where it will be coming from. Whenever I talk about what's going on I always use words like possibility, or could happen, might be an option. Thinking that that will keep me from getting my hopes up but I've found it doesn't make a difference. I'm excited and anxious and just want to know and have a for sure answer on when our dream of having a child through adoption will come true.

The last time I wrote I told you about a a girl we had been made aware of that was planning to give her baby up for adoption. James and I met with this young lady last Saturday, and had a great meeting. She is a great young lady who wants to be able to offer her unborn child more than she is capable of offering at this time in her life. She was going to meet with one other family this week and then make a decision on which family would be the one to adopt her baby. She comes from a christian family and I believe the Lord is totally at work in the whole situation. We had a ton of things in common, right down to both of our little brothers being named William, both of them going to Lee University to get degrees in Pastoral studies. Weird huh. The one other thing that was funny was we got to talking about baby names and if she could be involved in the process. We told her that we intended to name our next child in some form after my Grandpa by using his last name Avery. She started to laugh and said she had picked that name as one of her favorites. If she chooses to allow James and I to be the adoptive parents we would do what is called an open adoption which means the baby would grow up knowing that she was the birth mother and that she loved the baby. Open adoption is not something we had ever given much thought to since you can't really do open adoption when you are doing international adoption. However if this happens it is from God and he will make it possible and work out for his glory.

Please be praying with us that God's will be done. I'd rather say pray that she let's us adopt the baby, but in the end we want what is best for both this amazing young lady and her unborn child. I will update all of you as soon as we hear that she has made a decision.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

It's been a long time

Did everyone think I'd already fallen off the blogging band wagon? I sorta did. As some of you may already know the adoption process came to a screeching halt when James lost his job very, very unexpectedly. So therefore it left not a whole lot to be said. We have not stop talking about it or trying to figure out a way to make it happen though. We are still putting away money every month to use when the time comes that we can adopt.

With all that being said I have a much more interesting reason for writing. Sunday I received a text message from a relative of mine saying that they knew of a young unmarried girl that had just found out she was pregnant and was wanting to put the baby up for adoption. Of course my family member thought of James and I even though our intentions have always been to adopt internationally. As soon as I told James about it he said we have to at least try. I feel that it seems to be more than coincidental that this came to our attention. There have been several factors surrounding it that make it seem more and more like a God thing.

As any of you who have read my past posts know James and I both feel very strongly that God will make it possible for us to parent the child that he has always planned for us to parent. I can't help but think that just maybe this is why the big huge adoption door was slammed shut right in our faces a month ago. (I'll just add it was shut right after we had finally decided what agency to work with and we were sending the application in within a matter of days) Just maybe God knew that right now there would be a baby in need of a loving family and that we would be that perfect family. I ask that any of you that read this that are praying people would pray that God's will would be done and that if this truly is the baby God would have us to raise that it would all fall into place, and if not that we would be willing to except that and wait until he has the one for us.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Well now back so soon?

Well after my last post I'm sure most of you figured I wouldn't be writing anytime soon. I thought the same thing however after praying about it and talking a lot about it James and I decided to continue forward. We had already register for a couple of upcoming meetings and we felt we should still go. We had from the beginning intended to collect info from several organizations before choosing an agency, so that is still our plan. We also feel that God put this on our heart and had told us after waiting for 3 years that this was the time to start our adoption journey. We believe wholeheartedly that God is in control and knows what will happen today and tomorrow before we do, and therefore despite mild recent set backs we have chosen to move forward in faith knowing God will provide.

We have now been to 1 live meeting and done 3 webinars. We did Building Blocks international, Children's Hope International, and Holt International. We still have American World International and Bethany seminars coming up next week. Once we have completed those James and I plan to go hide away from TV, Phones and any other distractions, pour over all of the info and spend time praying and seeking God as to what agency to use and which Country to adopt from.

In the mean time I have kept busy already trying to gather information for our dossier. If you have no idea what the heck that is, it is a massive mess of paper work and forms that you have to send to the country when requesting an adoption. They say it can take anywhere from 4-6 months to gather and prepare. However they say you can speed it up if you are very efficient and start early. So far I have gotten 3 certified copies of my marriage certificate, and have sent the letters requesting 3 copies of each of our birth certificates. Which we were both born in the south and I could hardly understand anyone I talked to due to the southern accent. I'm reading everything I can on the USCIS and trying to gather any info I might need to complete immigration forms. I now completly understand why it's called a paper chase and I've only begun.

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Adopiton plans on hold once again!!!

I just wanted to let you all know that James and I will be putting the adoption process on hold for hopefully a small amount of time. Due to recent changes with James' job we can no longer proceed forward. We hope to soon have some things resolved so that we can once again start to planning process. We have wanted to adopt since before we were married and we plan to do so for our next child no matter how long that may take. We are very disappointed that we have to put this on hold but we'd like to think it will make it that much sweeter when we can finally hold our child. Please be with us in Prayer that God will provide a change within our finances to make this process possible again.
Tiff