Family of Five!

Family of Five!

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Pictures finally!!

Shawn found his jet plane!! He had to take a picture of this! This was at the Amsterdam airport.

He found more Irish . This pub was in the city of Kiev when we were walking home from dinner.

This statue is called "Mother Land" in English. I am not going to even try to write it in Russian! It's a statue at the World War II memorial in Kiev.

This is the St. Andrew's church in Kiev right next to the SDA where we had our appointment today. You can normally go into it but they have construction going on right now so they have it closed. It was such a beautiful site!
Our dinners tonight. I had a chicken, peaches and cheese pizza. I was very hesitant on the peaches part but it was delicious! I would go back in a heart beat. The resturant was very nice and we only paid $25 for three nice dinners and drinks! What a great deal!!

Karen (Owner if the Hospitality Home we are staying at), Jenny (A friend of Karen's from England), Allison and Shawn
We have been so blessed to be staying at this home. We have learned so much and have felt like we are at home!

Our Home away from Home!

I have forgotten to mention where we are staying. We were able to connect with a lady named Karen Springs that has a ministry here in Kiev that allows adoptive parents to stay in her home during the beginning steps of the adoption process. She lives right in the heart of the city and has a beautiful appartment. She works for Orphan's Promise, a project of CBN and oversees the many projects they have going on in Ukraine and in other former Soviet countries. She was born and raised in the United States and came here to Ukraine 7 years ago. She has a heart for serving the Lord and you can see her passion and love for the older children in orphanages. She has a beautiful blog if you would like to read about her ministry and see the home we are staying in till tomorrow (we pray that she will be available to take us back in when we come back to finalize the adoption in the city!!).  Her blog address is:
We have been completly spoiled with wifi and a comfortable living experience. Thank You from the bottom of our hearts Karen!

Our Appointment Today

We had our appointment today at the SDA and it went well. The first 40 minutes was difficult because they show you all of the sick children available. My heart ached with every page turned and a different little girl that will never be adopted because of circumstances out of her control. I wish our life was different so that I could adopt one of them and give her the love she will never receive. It’s not fair to these children, they never asked to be sick or have a severe disability. It’s us as humans that fall into sin that allow this to happen.
After seeing the many files of children that we were not approved for, we came across a little girl named Iryna. She is 8 years old and cute as a button. Her file stated that she has a delay and possible epilepsy because of a seizure she had a year and a half ago. She has not had one since but they still monitor it. Our facilitator tried calling the orphanage but they were not available to talk at that moment. During that time, a different facilitator of a family adopting had called and stated that the child they accepted a referral for the day before, they no longer wanted to visit. So the director showed us her file and gave us the information about her. She was medically healthy but had lived with her grandmother her whole life and had no limits. She was not taught how to care for herself and had a social delay. As we were considering to visit her, the other facilitator called back and stated that they changed their mind again and wanted to visit the child. As conversation was going back and forth on who had the right to see this little girl, Iryna’s new orphanage director called and gave us her information. She stated that other than her seizure and slight delay, she was a very sweet little girl and loved to help others. Since Iryna had turned 8 in the middle of the year, she stayed at the younger orphanage and was just transferred a couple days ago. Her old orphanage director called our facilitator and told her that when she was being transferred, she cried asking not to leave because all she wanted was a mommy and daddy and to be a part of a family. I looked at Shawn and said “Here is our whisper from God”. I really feel that this is our child God has chosen for us. We will be taking a 12 hour train ride tomorrow evening to her region and will be visiting with her on Friday. We are so close!!

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Can't sleep!

As I lay here listening to Shawn snore, I can’t stop thinking about our little girl. I truly believe that God has her already chosen for us and has been preparing her heart for all the love she is going to receive.  We will be leaving in less than 4 hours to go look at all the files of children available for adoption and I am getting nervous. I wonder how can I just choose one? I know we have family back at home worried that I am going to return with 10 children and I don’t blame them. If it was up to me, I would bring home as many as I can fit on the plane! My heart aches for all the children without homes and loving parents to raise them. It especially breaks my heart knowing that they don’t know the about our loving God. I pray that God gives us the discernment needed to choose the one He has been protecting and preparing for us.  He is sovereign and in control (as He reminded us on Monday at the airport J) and He will guide us through this process.  I know you are all sleeping over in the States and by the time you check this, we will be back from the appointment, but please pray for us as we start this process.

We have arrived!!!

After a long and stressful journey, Shawn and I have made it to Kiev, Ukraine!! Because of hurricane Irene, many flights were cancelled and everyone was trying to fly out yesterday which over booked every flight by 20. Shawn was able to get the first flight out to Atlanta and I was stuck in Miami all day. Finally after a lot of prayer and tears, I was able to get on a flight to Detroit. Both of us were not expected to get on our connecting flights to Amsterdam as well but God is so good and we both got the last seats on each flight. It was tough traveling alone but God knew that if we were together, we would have never got on the flights. Also, both of us were able to get first class so we were completely spoiled. We are so over joyed to be here and start the process!! Tomorrow is our appointment with the SDA and I will update the blog after that. Thank you to everyone for continuing to keep us in your prayers.

Friday, August 26, 2011

Two Days away!!

I can't believe that we are only 3 nights and 2 days away from our trip to the Ukraine. I have been non-stop all week getting ready for everything and haven't stopped to let it all soak in that this is really happening. Her room is cleaned and ready and we finished her picture book to bring with us to show her what her life will be like here (little does she know the crazy life she is coming in to)! Shawn has been working so hard getting our house ready. We are putting up our shutters in case a storm comes while we are gone and just cleaning up all around. I had to go get antibiotics today to bring with us in case we are to get sick over there. We wired all the money over yesterday so that was exciting. God has been so faithful to us and continues to provide. With our trip to New Jersey for Shawn's dad's funeral and other unexpected expenses, it really set us back in our budget for the adoption. Well two weeks ago, friends of ours gave us a donation that covered the exact amount we spent in NJ. We were blown away. God is so AWESOME! We are very thankful to so many friends and family members who have supported us from day one. I can't even begin to name names or express how blessed we are. Our daughter has an amazing group to come home to and we are closer than ever to bring home our princess! I was packing DVDs to bring and it felt so great to finally open up all the princess movies I have been buying throughout the years! She will love them!

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Flights are confirmed!

Today made everything complete and final. Our plane tickets are officially booked! We will be flying and in an airport for over 31 hours!! Our first flight leaves at 6:30am on August 29th and we arrive in Kiev, Ukraine on the 30th at 1:10pm! So much fun. It will all be worth it when we get to hug our daughter for the first time. I have heard that this time of the year in Kiev is beautiful. They have fields of sunflowers in bloom and it starts to get cooler. The weather right now is already getting into the 50's. Yay...we get an extra month of winter this year :)

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Finally!! We have a date!

I am so excited to be writing this!! We finally have a date to travel to the Ukraine! We received our appointment date to meet with the SDA on August 31st which means we need to travel on the 28th to be there by the 30th!! In less than 3 weeks, we will be on our way to meeting our baby girl! (I know she won't be a baby but she will be our baby girl that we never had) I still don't feel like this is real. This does come at a bad time because my dad is having back surgery next week on the 18th and I was returning to work on the 16th but there is no bad timing when it comes to saving an orphan's life!! Her room is completed except for some minor touches and the boys are ready to be little brothers. We met with Becca Hill today and she gave us a lot of tips for packing and what to expect over in the Ukraine. A lot of stuff to get done and to purchase. Tomorrow we will be booking our flights and hopefully we don't have too many layovers. We are so thankful and blessed to have wonderful friends and family to help us through this both financially and spiritually. God has walked us through this all and I can't believe it's actually gonna happen. I will be updating a lot before we go to give details on our travels. For now, I am off to bed to get some rest for a long day tomorrow. Love you all!