Saturday, January 31, 2009

A sweet award

A new friend of mine presented me with this blog award today. This award actually means a lot to me, because of who it comes from and how we met. We met because of Patrick. You see, my brother is helping me with some fundraising. He knows a lot more people than me, because he is more social and he works outside of the home. Anyway, one of the people on his contact list passed on the information to his sister, Elisabeth Elisabeth has been actively fundraising for Reece's Rainbow for a while now, so this was already something near and dear to her heart. She was already familiar with Patrick's face and an instant bond was formed. She contacted me, and it sent chills to know, once again, what a small world we live in and how closely we are all connected. Elisabeth has been helping me get more ideas about fundraising together and has been very uplifting to me through her words. Though we have not met, although I hope to one day, she has already been a humongous blessing to our family. So, thank you Elisabeth for all you have done for RR and Patrick.

Lu also presented this award to me. Lu is a wonderful advocate of Reeces Rainbow as well. She pours her heart and soul into raising awareness for all the children at Reeces Rainbow. She has become a dear friend since I first became a part of the RR family. You can see her efforts by visiting her blog at

Please take the time to visit both of these ladies. They have hearts of gold, and they have both come to mean quite a bit to me. Thank you girls!

"These blogs are exceedingly charming. These kind bloggers aim to find friends and be friends. They are not interested in self-aggrandizement. Our hope is that when the ribbons of these prizes are cut, even more friendships will be propagated. Please give more attention to these writers. Deliver this award to eight bloggers who must choose eight more and include this cleverly- written text into the body of their award."

Friday, January 30, 2009


Bill really does exist! His birth certificate finally came in today! So, to recap....everything from out of state has come in, and we are still waiting for TN documents. Go figure?! Now that those are in, we can send in our 1600A form to USCIS for INS approval. (I think I got all the acronyms right.) *Deep breath*....I'll be sending out over an $800 check this next week for that...keep the donations coming!!! We will be using funds along the way to get all fees paid for our home study and documentation approval, etc. So, literally, along the way, every penny counts. And again, thank you for those who have already donated. It is because of you that I am able to send these forms this next week!!

Thursday, January 29, 2009


I got this in an e-mail from Jo Ann , I hope she doesn't mind me sharing. This story just really touched my heart.

In Brooklyn, New York, Chush is a school that caters to learning-disabled children. Some children remain in Chush for their entire school career, while others can be main-streamed into conventional schools. At a Chush fund-raising dinner, the father of a Chush child delivered a speech that would never be forgotten by all who attended.After extolling the school and its dedicated staff, he cried out, "Where is the perfection in my son Shaya? Everything God does is done with perfection. But my child cannot understand things as other children do. My child cannot remember facts and figures as other children do. Where is God's perfection?"The audience was shocked by the question, pained by the father's anguish and stilled by the piercing query. "I believe," the father answered, "that when God brings a child like this into the world, the perfection that He seeks is in the way people react to this child." He then told the following story about his son Shaya.One afternoon Shaya and his father walked past a park where some boys Shaya knew were playing baseball. Shaya asked, "Do you think they will let me play?" Shaya's father knew that his son was not at all athletic and that most boys would not want him on their team. But Shaya's father understood that if his son was chosen to play it would give him a comfortable sense of belonging.Shaya's father approached one of the boys in the field and asked if Shaya could play. The boy looked around for guidance from his team-mates. Getting none, he took matters into his own hands and said, "We are losing by six runs and the game is in the eighth inning. I guess he can be on our team and we'll try to put him up to bat in the ninth inning."Shaya's father was ecstatic as Shaya smiled broadly. Shaya was told to put on a glove and go out to play short center field. In the bottom of the eighth inning, Shaya's team scored a few runs but was still behind by three.In the bottom of the ninth inning, Shaya's team scored again and now with two outs and the bases loaded with the potential winning run on base, Shaya was scheduled to be up. Would the team actually let Shaya bat at this juncture and give away their chance to win the game?Surprisingly, Shaya was given the bat. Everyone knew that it was all but impossible because Shaya didn't even know how to hold the bat properly, let alone hit with it. However, as Shaya stepped up to the plate, the pitcher moved a few steps to lob the ball in softly so Shaya should at least be able to make contact. The first pitch came in and Shaya swung clumsily and missed. One of Shaya's team-mates came up to Shaya and together they held the bat and faced the pitcher waiting for the next pitch. The pitcher again took a few steps forward to toss the ball softly toward Shaya.As the pitch came in, Shaya and his team-mate swung the bat and together they hit a slow ground ball to the pitcher. The pitcher picked up the soft grounder and could easily have thrown the ball to the first baseman. Shaya would have been out and that would have ended the game. Instead, the pitcher took the ball and threw it on a high arc to right field, far beyond reach of the first baseman. Everyone started yelling, "Shaya, run to first. Run to first!" Never in his life had Shaya run to first. He scampered down the baseline wide eyed and startled. By the time he reached first base, the right fielder had the ball. He could have thrown the ball to the second baseman who would tag out Shaya, who was still running. But the right fielder understood what the pitcher's intentions were, so he threw the ball high and far over the third baseman's head.Everyone yelled, "Run to second, run to second." Shaya ran towards second base as the runners ahead of him deliriously circled the bases towards home. As Shaya reached second base, the opposing short stop ran to him, turned him in the direction of third base and shouted, "Run to third." As Shaya rounded third, the boys from both teams ran behind him screaming, "Shaya run home!" Shaya ran home, stepped on home plate and all 18 boys lifted him on their shoulders and made him the hero, as he had just hit a "grand slam" and won the game for his team.That day," said the father softly with tears now rolling down his face, "those 18 boys reached their level of God's perfection." --- Author Unknown --- Sent in by Sharon Ogden --- Kentucky

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Thank you

I want to thank a family friend who so generously donated some money for Patrick today. I will not say your name, don't worry. You know who you are, and I wanted to thank you!!

It's amazing to me how many people want to help with our adoption. People we have never met, and some we might never meet. Some we haven't seen or talked to in years. What a great way to bring people together. Our little boy is bringing so many people together and opening so many peoples eyes and hearts. Thank you sweet Patrick for the changes you are already making in my life, and I haven't even met you yet! I love you little guy!!

Monday, January 26, 2009

Another way to help!

A friend of my brother's has offered to donate 10% of her sales to Patrick's adoption! She has an online store that specializes in hand made totes, bags, clutches, accessories, etc. Not only will you be helping me, but she is also donating 25% to a friend of hers who is adopting form Vietnam. So, with your purchase, you will be helping 2 adopting families at once!! What a deal! So, go shopping and support 2 babies coming home! Thank you Rebecca for doing this!

God is good!

My family has pitched in to help spread the word about our adoption. Yesterday I got an anonymous donation for $300!! To that person, thank you for that. What a HUGE blessing that was. Today, another person, that I have never meet, donated another $80. To these 2 people, I am so thankful. You have blessed our family in a way that I cannot describe with my words. Receiving these donations has been emotional. I think for the first time, I realize that this is REALLY happening! We are really going to bring our boy home. We have a long way to go, but what a great way to start things off!!

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Waiting and fundraising

We are still waiting for the rest of the birth certificates to come in, as well as the marriage certificate. I really wish I had been better prepared and had these things before. We have 2 1/2 weeks before mine and Bill's physicals, and then hopefully all the other paperwork will be in and we can have our actual home study visit. We will get 2 of them. After the second visit, it will take her approx. 2 weeks to write her report, then we can submit it. So, in about a month and a half, we will be able to send our HS to the people who need to see it. We should be able to mail our 1600A form in the next week, so maybe that will help out some.

In the mean time, we are trying to organize a garage sale through our community and church, we are hoping to raise some money doing that. A friend of mine who has a home nearby offered me her yard as the location to hold it. I live in an area that people don't garage sale in, I don't know why, it seems like they would? So, if any of my local readers want to donate anything for sale, I will come and get it from you. If you aren't local, I would love for you to hold a garage sale for Patrick and donate the funds. You can get your church and community involved and help out in a BIG way!! Fell free to e-mail me if you are interested in holding a garage sale in his name, I will help with signs and advertising. Thanks to everyone!!

Thursday, January 22, 2009

The link works

FYI the link for Patrick's button now works! If you click on his button, it will now take you to our Sponsor page through Reeces Rainbow!!

One BC is in!

Yesterday the wonderful UPS man showed up at my door with my certified and apostilled birth certificate!! One down, six to go!!! We're taking baby steps, but at least we're moving forward!

I also created prayer cards on publisher. I put Patrick's picture on them along with the blog site and the Reeces Rainbow site. I will pass those out at every opportunity! People at church have been asking for a picture, so I thought this was the best way to do that. I'm thinking I might try and make bookmarks as well. Yes, i think I will. Off to play in publisher some more!!

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Blog Makeover!

I want to thank Poppies Blooming for my wonderful blog makeover. I LOVE it.

So those of you who haven't already, grab my button, and paste it on your blog, to help spread the word about Patrick (Vlad) and others over at Reece's Rainbow!

Grab Button!

Just to let you know, the Reece's Rainbow link is being added today so it will appear as a broken link until then...

Monday, January 19, 2009

Looking for ideas

I am not the creative, artsy type of person. I am a nurturer. Therefore, I am having great difficulty coming up with fundraising ideas. If anyone has any ideas, please let me know. I cannot "make" anything. I can't even wrap a pretty basket. So, for all you out there who are creative thinkers, give me some ideas on how to raise money for Patrick!!! Thank you all in advance for your help.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Maybe this will help move things along?

I heard back from my SW today, and found out I can mail in my INS form before the completion of my home study. I think this is a good thing. I know some states don't allow you to do that, but TN does! I think that means that 2 things will be going at once, instead of me having to wait for one to be complete and then start the other. I could be wrong. It might not make a difference at all, but at least it will be one more piece of paperwork off my desk!

Tuesday, January 13, 2009


We got the stack of paperwork to fill out for our home study. I have filled everything out that I can. I had already ordered copies of Bill's and mine birth certificates. They haven't gotten here yet. After getting the packet of papers, I learned I needed certified copies for all the kids too, as well as cert. marriage cert and my divorce decree. I didn't have any of this stuff, so I had to order all of it, and they are really slow to process these. I am also waiting on referral letters for Bill and I. We needed 3 non-family, and one family. I am still thinking on who to ask for my third non-family person that knows both of us equally well. I'm sure I will think of someone soon! I'm also waiting on our med appts., so we can get those filled out and signed. So, we are waiting on everyone else. We have no control right now, and that is so frustrating, cause I really want to get things moving. I wish there was something else I could do in the mean time, but without everything I am waiting on, there's not.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Paper Work, round 1

I received, in the mail today, my first set of paper work! It is all the paper work required for the Home Study. Now, I must get busy and get it done. This is really exciting! Although, now I have more appointments to make to get everything I need to fill out all the pages. But, it is worth it!!! Off to fill in blanks!!

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Next step...Check!

Thank goodness for Renee! She is at about the same stage of the adoption process as I am, so reading her blog this morning about having her physicals set up, reminded me that I didn't do that while I was at the doctor yesterday. So, I now have mine and Bill's set up. Mine will be Feb. 9th and Bill's is Feb. 12th. I don't think our social worker is reacquiring the children to have one, but if so, they have all had them recently, so that should be easy enough. I did remember to talk to my doctor yesterday about the special forms he will have to fill out, and thankfully he is familiar with those, so hopefully there will be no problem with that. I've heard horror stories already about forms being signed wrong and having to be sent back and redone. I really want to avoid that. If we can do it right the first time, we can get Patrick home faster!!

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

First set of papers are off!

Wow! Seems like we haven't stopped getting things together. There is a lot to do before we are even "approved" to bring Patrick home. Today we sent out our first pack of papers. Our home-study application. Ours is costing $1500. The agency we are using is able to take payments, starting at the completion of the study. So, we will make 3 payments of $500 starting in just a couple of weeks. She will do one meeting with us in office, and one visit to the house. We've started filling out our federal forms, which cost $830 to file. I have my doctor's appointment to get part 1 of 2 physicals tomorrow, and while I am there, I will make an appointment for my second one and the only one Bill will need. Today I have to order copies of birth certificates and marriage certificates (I was waiting to hear back from parents, to see if any of them had some we didn't know about....luckily mine did!!, and that saved us $80!!). The paper work hasn't even officially begun, and I already am starting to see why this can get stressful. I am constantly double checking my list, thinking I am forgetting something. I don't want o overlook anything, that would mess everything up, so I am being very careful to make LOTS of notes. I'll update as more happens! Keep praying that God keeps Patrick safe until we get there, that God provides us with all the resources we need to get him home, and that this process goes as smoothly as possible.

Monday, January 5, 2009

Happy Birthday!

Happy Birthday Patrick! I wish we could be with you today, but hopefully next year, you will be home and we can have a birthday party with your whole family! We love you and can't wait to see you.

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Patrick Thomas

Let me introduce you to Patrick. Patrick will be 5 tomorrow (January 5th), and currently lives in an orphanage in Eastern Europe. Patrick has Down Syndrome and he stole the hearts of everyone in our house the day we saw him on Reeces Rainbow We are currently in the very early stages of bringing Patrick home to be part of our family. Follow along on our journey, pray with us, support us (through kind words; prayer; and if you feel lead, money).

Thank you for letting us share our journey with you. We pray that this journey has a happy ending!!