Thursday, December 11, 2008

Mixed Bag of News

Well a mixed bag of news to report on the adoption front. First piece of news is we got new photographs and an updated health report yesterday. He is so cute. It's really amazing how you can look at someone you've never met and have so much love for him. He really is cute and we can't wait to get him home. As far as health goes they report he is doing great and he continues to be on the top of the growth charts. He actually doesn't even register on the Ethiopian growth charts he's so big. He's in the 90th percentile for length here in America. Basketball player maybe?

The not so good news is what continues to happen in the court system in Ethiopia. Without going into details on such a public forum a lot of families are facing the same situaion we are as far as completing the adoption. Two families from our agency went to court yesterday. One passed, one didn't. Both had the same situation we had and one was taken care of the other one wasn't. We are not even sure if the other one can be take care of and we fear that could be us. That being said we are confident that eventually it will all be taken care of but we fear another delay. All that to say we still have 36 days until we go to court so hopefully it will all work out. It's not like here in America where we can get these things worked out. Things work completely different over there. We just ask for prayers to make it happen. He will be home soon!


Tuesday, December 9, 2008

This post is way overdue so I apologize for not getting it up sooner.

Leah is much better. Praise the Lord that our prayers were answered. Thank you all very much for your prayers, thoughts, and letter. While we still aren't sure what exactly is causing the pneumonia she is much better now. They're going to run a few tests over the next few weeks so pray that they find nothing serious but that we do find out the cause of the problem. One potential problem is up on craiglist. 2 wonderful cats. We lover our cats very dearly and would love to keep them but if they are causing Leah trouble we need to get rid of them. If you would be interested in providing a good home for them please let us know. They do need to be kept inside and are on a diet of only dry food and water. They are very low maintenance and very kid friendly. If you are interested or know anyone else who would be we are desperately seeking a good home for them.

Nothing much new on the adoption front. Our agency is working hard on the new requirements and we'll see how they do. There are several court cases between now and ours, including at least one tomorrow so hopefully it will be smooth sailing for us. Waiting is so hard right now. There are times that I will go almost a day and it not cross my mind much and then there are days where he is all I think about and we can't wait to hold him. Only 38 days until our next court date.

Christmas is only 2 weeks away. Both of our families have cut back some on the gifts we are exchangin and to be totally honest it is big blessing. Christmas shopping was way simplified this year and we haven't been going 90 mph this year.

We have some ice/snow/sleet today. Nothing much at all but definitely can get you in the Christmas spirit.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Prayer Request

Please pray for our daughter Leah right now. Leah is very sick with double pneumonia. What a conincidence since a couple of weeks ago we dealt with this with Malachi! She is on antibiotics and goes back to the doctor on Wednesday and if she's not better then they will admit her to the hospital. Scary but we are confident that God will heal her body and take care of her. Please pray that she will heal soon and God will wrap himself around her!

Saturday, November 29, 2008

What Now?

Well I think we are about as over as you can be with not passing court. It was incredibly dissapointing not only because we want our little guy as soon as possible but largely due to the two extra months of early bonding time we are losing. There really is nothing we can do at this point except start waiting again, only 48 days!! It's also dissapointing because the families from our agency that DID pass court last week get to travel on December 10th. That day will be somewhat sad as we think it might have been us.

While we would give anything to get to our son as quick as possible we are trying to find whatever silver linings we can. Please don't think that we wouldn't trade any or all of these but if you gotta find the good you try. Airline tickets will be significantly cheaper in February when likely will travel if we pass court. In anticipation of possibly traveling we did all our Christmas shopping early and have the house totally decorated. That gives us the entire month of December to relax and truly reflect on what Christmas means. My work is starting an adoption benefit next year that we might not have been able to benefit from but not might get to due to the delay. I'll get to go to Winter Xtreme with our youth group. Who wouldn't want to be up to three in the morning yelling at kids to quit throwing m and m's down the stairwell?? December is Sarah's busiest time at work and January/February are the slowest. That works out well there. Traveling in February also works out best for my work schedule. You might sense it but we are reaching somewhat here but making the best of it.

As far as not passing court the reason we didn't is totally reasonable. Ethiopia adoption is growing in large numbers and anytime you have increased adoptions in a country you have an inreased risk of corruption. The government is taking extreme measures to insure that there is no corruption. The sad reality is a few bad agencies can really ruin it for the many great agencies. Holt is top of the line and we have never regretted our decision. When we adopt again, (yes we do feel that God is putting it on our heart to adopt again, when we don't know) we would use Holt again without a doubt.

Wednesday, November 26, 2008


We did NOT clear court today. A couple of things need to be taken care of and we go back to court on January 16th. Not at all what we wanted to hear but it’s the hand we’ve been dealt and we take it and move on. God is good and has a plan for Malachi even when we don’t know what it is or don’t understand it. We still have MUCH to be thankful for.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Tick, Tock, Tick Tock

Time is going by very slowly. Ethiopia is 9 hours ahead of us which makes is roughly 6 am in the morning over there. Sometime in the next 12 hours a judge in a court room in Ethiopia will review our case and say, yes, no, or needs further review. It's unlikely he will say no but it's quite possible that he will say needs further review. The Ministry of Womens Affairs (MOWA) in Ethiopia is the agency that puts together adoption cases and makes a reccomendation on whether to approve an adoption or not. New rules have been in place to make sure adoptions in Ethiopia are free from corruption but with the new rules comes new paperwork. Our agency has not had many cases go to court since the new rules were issued. We are praying all our paperwork is in line and ready to go. Please say a prayer tonight that we will pass court. More importantly continue to pray for Malachi's well being. We are very anxious parents waiting to hear word. Our agency is on the west coast so they will not open until 10 am our time. I plan on emailing at 10:30 to see if they have heard. Hopefully they will hear before the long holiday weekend! There will be an update one way or another tomorrow.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Pray, Pray, Pray!

Calling everyone to please pray that we clear court Wednesday. Holt will actually go to court for us sometime Wednesday, Ethiopia time, which is the middle of the night Tuesday. If you wake up in the middle of the night Tuesday please pray. We should find out sometime on Wednesday if we made it or not. It is very important to pass this first time around because if we don't we likely won't get another court date for several weeks. Not passing the first time is not uncommon but it can be frustrating. God is good and Malachi is in His hands and that gives us peace. We do want him home though badly! It's awesome to start looking at travel arrangements and realize it's could be within a month that we hold our little guy. Pray, Pray, and Pray!

Sunday, November 23, 2008

El Salvador

I've promised a post on my trip to El Salvador so here goes.

On Friday the 14th of November I set out with a group of 8 of my fellow church members to El Salvador on a mission trip. Going into it I was not real sure what we would be doing or what I would be doing specifically. This was my 7th mission trip but the 1st one in which I was not in a leadership position. It was a struggle at times to not give my "advice" on how things ought to be done but it was refereshing to just sit back and let God do His thing and not feel a "responsibility" to get everything to work. We did several things in El Salvador from passing out Bibles, holding church services, working at a local Baptist school, and doing VBS type activities with children. The thing that I think was the most important out of the whole week was encouragement of believers. The people in El Salvador are wonderful and while we got way more out of it than we gave them, it was a blessing to their people to have us there and I think we did really leave them encouraged.

The thing I took out of it most was to see how a people in other countries live. With the recent elections and such I've really looked at America as a country and what our value system is. While I truly feel blessed to live in America I do think sometimes our values are out of whack. The poverty in El Salvador was shocking but what was more shocking was how happy the people were. At first I would see the houses they live in and they possessions they have and I would think, wow these people must be unhappy to be living like this. Then you would see how truly happy they were and I quickly realized they are the ones who have it right. I think I truly realized what a rat race we live in America to get bigger, newer, and better but never truly become content. One example is they don't have hot water in El Salvador. Our translator was 23 and had never had a hot shower. We find that hard to imagine and if our hot water heaters go out we freak. These people don't know any better and are content. It made me think back to a poem I read while sitting at Jimmy Johns one day and have included it below.

The Story of the Mexican Fisherman
An American investment banker was at the pier of a small coastal Mexican village when a small boat with just one fisherman docked. Inside the small boat were several large yellowfin tuna. The American complimented the Mexican on the quality of his fish and asked how long it took to catch them.

The Mexican replied, "only a little while."

The American then asked why didn't he stay out longer and catch more fish?

The Mexican said he had enough to support his family's immediate needs.

The American then asked, "but what do you do with the rest of your time?"

The Mexican fisherman said, "I sleep late, fish a little, play with my children, take siestas with my wife, Maria, stroll into the village each evening where I sip wine, and play guitar with my amigos. I have a full and busy life."

The American scoffed, "I am a Harvard MBA and could help you. You should spend more time fishing and with the proceeds, buy a bigger boat. With the proceeds from the bigger boat, you could buy several boats, eventually you would have a fleet of fishing boats. Instead of selling your catch to a middleman you would sell directly to the processor, eventually opening your own cannery. You would control the product, processing, and distribution. You would need to leave this small coastal fishing village and move to Mexico City, then LA and eventually New York City, where you will run your expanding enterprise."

The Mexican fisherman asked, "But, how long will this all take?"

To which the American replied, "15 - 20 years."

"But what then?" Asked the Mexican.

The American laughed and said, "That's the best part. When the time is right you would announce an IPO and sell your company stock to the public and become very rich, you would make millions!"

"Millions - then what?"

The American said, "Then you would retire. Move to a small coastal fishing village where you would sleep late, fish a little, play with your kids, take siestas with your wife, stroll to the village in the evenings where you could sip wine and play your guitar with your amigos."

Friday, November 21, 2008

Malachi is Better!

We got an update this week that Malachi is better. He is recovered from his pneumonia and has no lingering side effects. This is a huge answered prayer request and we thank you all for your prayers. God is good and his people prayed and for that we are very thankful. I'll post an update on El Salvador this weekend sometime. Trip was awesome.


Thursday, November 13, 2008

Not to leave you hanging....

But I'm off to El Salvador tomorrow morning for a church mission trip. We head out Friday morning and will be back sometime Wednesday evening. Please keep us in your prayers.

As far as Malachi goes we have not go an update. We did confirm that he is not in the hospital and not in respitory distress. We have to truly trust God on this one. Communication is very limited where he's at. If he does get worse we will get an update but for now no news is good news. Thank you all for your prayer and continue praying. Also continue to pray that we clear court the first time on November 26th. Less than 2 weeks away!

I'll give everyone an update on our trip on Thursday. Until then, adios!


Monday, November 10, 2008

BIG Prayer Request

We got home tonight and had an updated child health information update. Turns out Malachi has pneumonia in both lungs. He also has pink eye which isn't a major issue but still pray that it gets cleared up.

We don't have any other information except for that so all we ask you to do is pray. God is good and has taken care of us so far so we will continue to trust in him to take care of Malachi. Also pray that we clear court the first go around and travel quickly.



Thursday, November 6, 2008

In the Spirit of Adoption....

We are putting our 2 wonderful cats up for adoption. Please let us know if you would be interested in taking these 2 wonderful "people" into your lives. The primary reason we are looking to place them in another home is Leah. She seems to be getting congestion and coughing on a regular basis and we've narrowed down our cats as culprits. They are approximately 5 1/2 years old and are litter mates. Their names are Titus and Ruthie. Titus weighs around 2olbs and Ruthie around 7lbs. They are great cats and are extremely kid friendly. They have only been on dry food and water. We would prefer to keep them together and give them to a home that they can be inside cats. Titus must be inside and Ruthie likes to go out occasionally but likes to sleep inside. If you are interested please post a comment or call me. We truly love our cats but feel that for Leah's sake we might be better off to place them somewhere else.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

24 Days Until Court

Sarah and I go to court in 24 days! Actually our adoption agency Holt will go on our behalf. Please pray that all goes well in court. Ethiopia is becoming a popular country to adopt from and as what happens anytime that American money makes it into a foreign country's adoption arena bad things can start to happen. The sad reality is that almost every country where adoption becomes popular, some sort of corruption happens and the government many times have to shut down adoptions and clean up the corruption. While this has NOT happened in Ethiopia yet in any widespread number it is a legitimate fear of their government. As a result they are insituting new requirements and looking at each case indepth. The result is that the courts are becoming backlogged and families aren't always making it through court the first time. Due to the backlog of court cases it takes several weeks to get a court date rescheduled. Worse case scenario would be for us not to pass court and then not get a new court date until after the new year. We are trusting that everything is in God's time but we do feel that we are to be with our son as soon as possible and are praying that God will grant us court clearance and all will go well. Please pray for us over the next 24 days.

I'm getting ready to start a new blog that will be our blog once the adoption is finished. I've tried to keep this blog strictly adoption related and for the most part have. That being said Tuesday is election day so I'd like to encourage everyone to get out and vote. If you know me at all you know where I stand. My prediction is Obama will win the popular vote by 5% and will win the electoral college by 50. The only way McCain can win, and there is still a real chance he could, is if the voter turnout is not what the Obama camp thinks. I do think a lot of the new voters won't wait a real long time to vote. If that happens and the new voters don't turn out things could get close. I personally will stand in line whatever it takes to vote. While I support true absentee voting like we have in Missouri, this early voting in other states is nuts. People will give years of their lives fighting for our country and right to vote but we can't give up a few hours at most every four years to vote?

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Family Pictures

Nothing related to our adoption. Nothing related to report. So to give you something I present pictures from our last photo session. Our friends the Roberts, who are also adopting from Ethiopia took our pictures last Saturday. Check out his website here. His photos are awesome!

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Overdue Update

Well since it has been almost a MONTH since our last update I figured everyone is anxiously waiting an update as to what is going on in our lives, yeah right!

We found out this week we have a court date for November 26th. That is not what we were hoping for. We obviously wanted much earlier but this is what we have been given and we will take it and realize it's all in God's timing. This court date makes travel very tricky in the words of our adoption agency. Normally our agency travels people one month after court date. If we followed the typical timing that would mean we would be traveling over Christmas. While that's not ideal we do want to get our son as soon as possible and will take the quickest travel date they give us. With it being holidays though our agencies not sure when our travel will be. Normally they don't mind to have people traveling over the holidays but the normal embassy appointment day is Thursday. Christmas and New Years are both on Thursdays so they are in the process now of checking what is open and when it will be open. It's quite likely we could wind up not traveling until January! That again is not what we want but maybe learning patience through all of this is a good thing! We now will just pray for a speedy court process and somehow have a miracle on travel and get to travel very soon. Either way it is all in God's time and we'll go with that. It's also our agencies timing since we have NO control over when we go. They tell us and we say ok!

We got an update on Malachi and got new pictures last week. In looking at the pictures we noticed he looked rather "large" for his age. When we got his measurements we figured out why. He is HUGE. Hopefully we'll have a future MSU Bear in our family. We've nicknamed him the Ethiopian Giant. He is in the 90th percentile for height and head size and the 50-75th percentile for weight. We are very thankful that he appears to be very healthy. Drought and famine is going on Ethiopia right now and two families we know through the blog world have lost their referrals to pneumonia.

We finished the nursery a couple of weeks ago. I've attached some pictures for your viewing enjoyment.

We are in the process of moving our blog in the next couple of months so I'm not going to do much to change the appearance. I will try to do more regular updates but the format and such will remain the same. I do NOT like it but since we're moving blogs we'll deal with it.

Tuesday, September 23, 2008


Sarah and I have both learned a lot about patience during this journey of adoption. It's amazing that we think we are being patient but families that are adopting through China are being told the wait times could be 4-5 years if not more. I don't know how anyone could wait that long! We haven't heard anything new the past week. The chatter on the message boards is that the courts will open back up sometime from October 1st-October 6th. We should hopefully get some idea of a court date then. That is estimated to be 1-3 months from when the courts open. We then travel 4-6 weeks after that. So we still have at least a couple of months if it was best case scenario. We finished up Leah's room over the weekend and our project for this weekend is to finish up Malachi's room. Once we get that done we can hopefully "rest" until we travel.

Please continue to pray for our child. He's over there and in great care but it still hard to not be able to reach out and give him a hug and let him know it's all going to be alright.

There is an awesome video here on yout tube of a Holt family that traveled over the summer. It's an incredible video that shows all the aspects of the adoption. It's ten minutes but worth the watch!

Talk to you later!


Friday, September 12, 2008

What Next??

Many of you have been asking what's the next step for us. Well there is a lot to do. As far as the actual adoption goes, not a lot. We got fomal adoption papers today so we have to get those signed and notarized over the weekend and then he will be ours as long as everything goes through the court process over there. We did hear good news on our immigration paperwork though. Many families have had a lot of trouble getting their paperwork straightened out and it's been a huge hassle to deal with the government. We heard this week that ours is over there and in great shape. Thank you God!

We do have a lot to do at our house to get ready. We've compiled a huge list of to dos. Our goal is to get everything done before October 1st. Our plan is to enjoy October 1st to travel as a family of 3. There were 14 referrals from our agency this month. That is the most they have ever had so that is exciting.

Well off to start work on the to do list....

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

We Have a Referral!!!!!!!

Well after a few days past four months waiting we received a referral yesterday for a baby boy. Malachi Horton was born on June 13, 2008. He is doing well and is on progress on all the birth charts. It appears he might actually be a pretty tall boy. We are so excited. We had a heads up last week that this probably would happen this week and that it was a 3 month old boy. Just imagine how hard it was for me to go all weekend and Monday with no news!! As part of Ethiopian adoption law we can't post any pictures until he is officially ours. Don't worry though he is absolutely precious looking! Estimated travel time is sometime in late November-late January. We are hoping to be home by Christmas. We will be carrying pictures with us so you can see them if you see us:)

Pray for us that we will wait patiently. Pray for Malachi's health-he is at the Holt Center which is top of the line so he is receiving the best care possible. Pray for the small things-airline tickets will not go through the room, paperwork issues, vaccinations we need. So many little things to get done but we have tons of motivation now to get it done!

We look forward to sharing the rest of our journey with you. Keeep reading!

Friday, September 5, 2008


I've mentioned I'm impatient on here before, haven't I? Well after not hearing anything last week after the rumor of referrals and nothing yet this week I tried really hard to come up with an excuse to call the agency to find out what was up. A friend did point out that if we are paying them good money I probably don't need an excuse to call and that they can probably see right through the excuse but I thought I'd try anyway.

I'm currently signed up to go on a mission trip to El Salvador in November with our church. With the possible referral I've been hesitant to totally commit and haven't purchased my ticket yet. Sounds like a good reason to call right? Well I called yesterday and never got a phone call back. After almost exactly 24 hours I called again . The director picked up and was gracious enough to let me patiently explain how I wasn't trying to hound them but I needed to know whether I could commit to the mission trip. She said well let me get out my list and see where you are at. She then said, well you guys are next up for a baby boy. That was exciting news to hear! From what she told me a lot of referrals went out this week and we are actually #2 on the list but the couple ahead of us has requested an infant girl. The next obvious question was when do you think we might get a referral. Without getting into too much detail or sharing stuff I'm not supposed to it sounds like we might get good news next week:) Keep us in your prayers. We know fully well that God has a wonderful child out there for us whether we receive the referral next week or next month. (God does know how impatient I am too!) All in all it made for a great Friday afternoon. I've got a huge project at work that is taking all my time and keeping me extremely busy so that helps pass the time. We're hoping to get Leah's room painted this week so we can start preparing the nursery soon!

Monday, September 1, 2008

4 Months Waiting

4 months of waiting is where we will be on Friday. Hopefully the original 3-6 months will be true and we'll only have 2 months of waiting left.
Yahoo groups are an amazing thing that I was totally unaware of before we started the adoption process. There is basically a group for almost any subject you can think of. I belong to 4 groups, Ethiopia Adopt, Ethopia Holt Adoption, Adoption Agency Research, and MO International Adoption. They are a wealth of knowledge and I'm not sure how any adoptive parents can go through the process and not join a yahoo group. Obviously since we are adopting through Holt that group has been the best for us.
With all the positives there can also be some negatives. Sometimes too much information is a bad thing. Last week the assistant Ethiopia director told someone in our group that there would be 6-7 referrals to come out between last Thursday and Friday. After talking to the director two weeks ago and a referral that came out early last week and based on what was told other couples we are currently tied at #6 with one other couple who completed their paperwork the same day we did. Knowing that and thinking there were 6-7 referrals coming out made us a little nervous last Thursday and Friday. There's a good chance we would NOT get a referral since most ahead of us have requested infants and for us to get one would meant that they would all be infants which is not likely but at worst case scenario we would be at the very top of the list. Thursday and Friday came and went with no referrals. Someone in the group mailed the assistant and she said there was a paperwork issue and hopefully in the near future they will have referrals. The question to be asked is would we have been better off not knowing that there were possible referrals? Part of me says we would be much better off but the bigger part of me and those of you who know me will agree that I want to know. Who knows maybe I'll go on a two week fast of yahoo groups??? Nah, probably not!
We enjoyed a restful two days at my parents house this weekend. We went absolutely know where and it was wonderful. We got back last evening and enjoyed a day around the house getting stuff done.
Hopefully soon when we post on here we'll be posting a referral. Until then, stay tuned!

Thursday, August 21, 2008

Status Update

Well impatient Adam finally broke down and called our agency for an update. It's been almost two months since there has been a referral and I wanted to see what was up.

As talked about earlier it's what they call "rainy" season in Ethiopia. I guess it rains so much and so many roads are not paved that they bascially shut down a lot of functions during rainy season. Also during this time period the government reviews adoption laws and also adoption agencies. There is always a potential for law changes during this time period so Holt has decided during this time period they are holding off on referrals until any changes are made official. The good news in this is our director told my that there are children in the center that they are waiting to refer and that as soon as they had a clarification on any rules they would make referrals. She told me today that there are 7 familes with dates ahead of us and one that submitted the same day we did. She said depending on the ages of the children waiting to be referred that there was a chance we would be in the first group of referrals when they start making them again. Hopefully that will be true!

Other than that not much going on. Getting Leah's room and the nursery ready are next on our to do list.


Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Checking In.....

Just thought I'd take a few minutes and check in with the blog and update the world with where we are at. As with the last few posts we don't really know much new. We are STILL #9. There has been a lack of movement the past month and a 1/2 and as patient as I've been I'll have to admit the past couple of weeks the wait has started to get to me. We are officially in our referral window which is 3-6 month. We have waited over three months so it could come anytime. It is what they call "rainy season" in Ethiopia right now. As developed as we are in the USA it's hard to imagine that rain would slow someone down but with the roads and other infrastructure less developed it basically shuts down the country of Ethiopia to the extent that they stop processing adoptions over that time period. So where does that put us? Our agency does plan on doing referrals during the rainy season but we will have to wait until the courts open back up to hear our courtcase. That is scheduled to be October 4th. There tends to be a lot of back up on court cases when the courts open back up. Thanks to the wonderful agency we are using we have pretty much been told that will not apply to us. Something else that is a trend in our agency the past few referrals is the quick turn around time between actual referral and then travel time. The last few have been at around six-seven weeks from referral to travel. That would be awesome for us! So how long of a wait for a referral do we have? Well the care center holds 20 children and all the families that have been matched should have traveled and picked up their children by the end of this month which should open up the possibility of up to 20 referrals coming sometime soon. This is VERY optimistic and not likely but best case scenario. Our agency did confirm to someone they plan on doing referrals this month. They have typically come in batches of 6-7 so we are fairly confident we won't get one the first batch but hopefully in the second batch. We are still hoping to be home by Christmas.

We did cross one thing off our list a couple of weekends ago. Thanks to Steve and Hollie we have a completed swingset for Leah in the backyard. I'll try and post a pic soon but it is so nice to have that done and we couldn't have done it without their help. Thanks guys!!!

Talk to you all later.


Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Chapman Family Interview

Most of you reading this probably know that back in May Christian singer Steven Curtis Chapman lost his daughter in a terrible accident. In the family's first interview since the accident you see a wonderful testimony that we have in Jesus Christ. Check it out here. Some of you will need tissues!!

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Where Oh Where Have We Been???

Been a while since our last post. We've been pretty busy between posts but nothing too exciting related to the adoption.

The first thing that happened was we lost my grandma, Velma Benton Schaper, known by most as Grandma Benny. At the age of 79 she had a heart attack and left this earth. I remember quite fondly in my younger years spending a week or two up there during the summer. In addition our family would head up to St. Louis 3-4 times a year to spend the weekend. I remember walking to the snow ball shack, her endless garage sales, the scary basement, and many other memories. All in all Grandma Benny had a good life. She did a lot and didn't have a long drawn out passing. We will miss her. We were in the process of planning a trip up there over Labor day weekend as it had been a long time since we had been up there or seen her. Lesson in that story is you never truly know when you'll have another day so do today what needs to be done!

We missed part 1 of parenting classes since we were in St. Louis for Grandma Benny's funeral. We did part 2 this last weekend. Sarah and I have read and researched the many issues that will face a transracial family in America. We didn't necessarily learn anything new in the classes but it affirmed our belief that racism still exists in America and we will now have to face it. Another thing we've thought about the past few months is we will forever be a mixed family now. There will be no turning back. We can truly say though that we are 100% confident this is a God led thing and those ALWAYS are the best. It's exciting to see what's in store for us.

A thought that is very difficult at times to deal with it our baby being out there right now. More than likely our child is already born. Many times we wonder is he/she cold, is he/she hungry, is he/she being loved, and many more that go through our head. We ask your prayers for our child as they are out there and hopefully in a few short months will be in our arms!

We are still #9. I'm starting to get impatient. I've been good so far but we're getting antsy. I broke down and emailed the agency and they confirmed we are #9 and said it was still a 3-6 month wait. We submitted May 5th so we are nearing our 3 months. Hopefully we'll be home by Christmas!

Thanks for all your prayers and checking up on us!


Monday, July 14, 2008

Slowing Down

Well those of you who have read the blog regularly have heard me whine the past few months about how busy Sarah and I have been. With as much as we are involved in I don't know that we'll every "slow" down but I do think we see the light at the end of the tunnel!
I had a great time on the youth float trip this weekend. It was truly a blast. I jumped in some 42 degree water that came from a spring. It was extremely cold. All in all though it turned out great. (I had secretly been dreading it for months!)
We have parenting classes the next two weekends. There are 2 other couples in the class we know so that should make it interesting and fun. Knowing our social worker I also think she will make it intresting.
Leah is better. Back to the doctor today for a check up and the pnemonia is all gone. We are grateful for that. She had blood drawn today for an allergy test so we'llf ind out soon if she's allergic to our cats or to anything else.
We had what I think was one of the most awesome Baptism services at church this weekend. While every baptism is special this one was just different. For one thing it was outside in the river which I think is the best and second you could definitely sense the spirit in the couple who were getting baptized. I got to work with him on the mission trip and it was a blessing to get to know him and his son better.
No movement on the waiting list but that is ok. We got Leah a new toy box tonight so we are getting ready to move her into her new room and get the nursery set up. Hopefully we'll have plenty of time.
We'll give an update after parenting classes to let you know if we are fit to be parents!

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Horton Update

We are now #9. Slowly moving up. Sarah's starting to work on the nursery and we're getting more and more excited.

Leah is down with a bout of pnemonia so keep her in your prayers. She's doing home breathing treatments this week and goes back next Monday to evaluate and see where she is. It's amazing because she acts totally normal and it very energetic and playful but you can hear the wheezing when she breathes. Hopefully we'll get it cleared up at home this week. She will have about 10 days in a row with her Grandmas watching her so she will be a mess when reality hits next week if she's better. She is now more spoiled than ever!

Big youth float trip this weekend. Due to numerous reasons we have wound up on a long float that will take all day Saturday. At first I was dreading it a little but the closer we get the more and more excited I get. Pray for us because we have a LOT of inexperienced floaters going!


Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Where Are We

Lots of people have been asking where we are at on the adoption front lately so I thought I'd give and update. As of yesterday we were #11 on the wait list. We were thinking we were somewhere there so that was no surprise. Our dossier has been submitted to Ethiopia so the US government is done with everything and it is now being translated. The courts close in Ethiopia coming up in the middle of July and are closed until early September. That doesn't mean we won't get a referral during that time period it just means it could be a little longer than average between referral and travel. Other than that nothing new from our agency.

We have parents in process class July 19th and 26th. It's basically two Saturdays of teaching us how to parent and deal with adoption issues. Obviously Sarah and I already have a kid so some of it will be review but we're anxious to learn about dealing with the adoption issues. We know 2 of the 3 other couples in the class so that will make it easier.

We had a garage sale last weekend to get rid of junk and apply some money towards our adoption. We raised a grand total of $268.10. Not bad considering Saturday was a total washout. It's not much in the grand scheme of things but it will help out with the costs. Thanks to everyone who helped and gave us stuff to sale. I still have an XM radio to sell on Ebay so hopefully we'll add to our total. Getting rid of the garage sale knocked out two of the big stress items for the summer. The last one is our youth float trip on July 12th. Once that's done it should slow down some as far as being in charge of stuff and having to plan.

We're working on names. We have a boys name picked out but are still working on a girls name. Maybe we'll announce sometime soon.

Several Holt familes just got back from Ethiopia and some are getting ready to travel. It's been exciting to see pictures and get reports back from over there. Sounds like things are going great over there. Hopefully they can get some of our SW Missouri rain and end their drought.

The company I work for currently doesn't offer adoption benefits. Since there are three people from work adopting currently we asked them to consider it. It's amazing what some companies give to their employees in way of adoption benefits. It's far from being finalized but from the early reports our company will be above average. Keep it in your prayers. Any help is a huge blessing and we know God will provide whatever we need.

Until next time!


Saturday, June 21, 2008

7 Weeks Waiting Down

We are officially at seven weeks of patiently waiting for our referral. It's amazing how fast the time has gone by. Most of you who know me know that I'm not a patient person so I would have thought it would have been really hard to wait. Part of it is how busy we have been. We have had something going on constantly and it looks like it's going to continue for the next couple of months so hopefully we'll have a referral before we know it. They are still saying only three months until a referral so we are over halfway done waiting. Chances are it will take longer anyway but we are ready for whatever. It does look more and more like it's a toss up on whether we'll get a girl or boy. As mentioned before it looked like it would be a boy but the waiting list is pretty balanced now so it could be either. We're ready to find out which so we can get ready.

Please pray for airline tickets to stabilize. It's amazing how quickly they are going up so we are praying they start to stabilize. Also pray for the government to continue to be good to us. They have processed everything very quickly and correctly so far but some Holt families are currently experiencing some issues with paperwork. Hopefully we can learn from them and be ready to go.

I'm headed off to Mackinaw Island tomorrow morning for three days of "work". I should be back Wednesday night. Hopefully my travels go well and I can get a lot of work in!



Sunday, June 15, 2008

Still Here

I made it my goal when I started this blog to never go longer than a week at most before adding a post. Well needless to say I am at two weeks without a post. I will make an excuse that I was out of town 3 days for work and then out a week for our church mission trip. Hopefully I can find forgiveness and you guys will still read my blog.

Electricity in the basement is fixed. It was a loose wire causing the breaker to go off. It was covered under our home warranty and we had to pay $50. A good chunk of money but if we wouldn't have had the warranty it would have cost a LOT more.

We received our Notice of Favorable Determination Concerning Application for Advance Processing of Orphan Petition. In simple terms that is the governments seal of approval on our ability to parent an orphan. We didn't have many doubts we would get it but it is comforting to get it and to get it fairly quickly. I fear I will jinx myself but the government has so far shown great speed and accuracy in getting us what we need in a timely manner.

We are rougly #12-13 on the wait list at Holt. They were giving a lot of referrals out about two weeks ago but have slown down a lot lately. Court times are also coming much quicker than they promise. Some within a month from referral. That means you could go pick up your child within two months of getting a referral. That will slow down in the next few months as the courts close for rainy season. I guess it rains so much in Ethiopia during the wet season that a lot of stuff shuts down. We're still hoping to be home by Christmas!

Our church mission trip was great again this year. We went to Waveland, MS to help with Hurricane Katrina. I was the leader of a group of 29 from our church. From the early planning stages until we got home Satan constantly attacked us from every direction but we made it back and feel like we accomplished what God wanted us to accomplish while we were down there. We spent 4 hours in a ROUGH part of Mississippi. We were a bunch of white hicks from the sticks and we were in the high drug trade area of Mississippi. God was good and we made it out of there. Our church shuttle bus broke down which led to the 4 hour stop which was after our 2 hour stop earlier in the day. All in all God taught me a lot about myself when I was down there and I'm glad I went.

Hopefully we'll start getting some big updates in the near future on the adoption and I'll keep everyone posted!


Saturday, May 31, 2008

Electrician I'm Not

I tried to play electrican this weekend but quickly realized that could be very deadly and very expensive if not done right. For some strange reason one breaker in our house has decided to quit working. Nothing unusal was going on and I went to flip a switch and nothing came on. After much reasearch on the internet and looking around I'm 99% sure I've got a bad breaker. (What happened before we had all the knowledge of the internet at our fingerprints.) Part of me really wanted to take the breaker box off and switch out breakers to see if that was it. As close as I came I decided to play it safe and call an electrican in. We'll see how it goes Monday. The one bad thing is I'll be out of town Monday so it will be up to Sarah and Leah to keep the electrical in line and have him get it done quickly and cheap! I'll get some sense of a moral victory if I at least properly diagnosed the problem. The part of me that gets stressed out about everything fears we've got a small short somewhere and the electrical will spend hours ($$$$) trying to diagnose the problem. I also fear our house could burn down but we'll pray it doesn't.

Small glitch in our I-600A filing. We got a notice this week saying they wanted the original signature on the home study. I quickly mailed it in. Part of me, a rather large part of me, wanted to highlight the instructions that say specifically that a photocopy will work unless specificially mentioned. I've read the instructions and I see nothing about an original signature on the home study. Since there is only one person in the office in KC that processes the forms I thought it might be in my best interest to not make her too upset yet.

Some families returned home from Ethiopia that adopted through Holt. These are the first families to travel for Holt and sounds like everything went off without a hitch. Hopefully it will go as well for us.

I'm predicing a referral on August 29th with leaving for travel on November 20th. This is purely a random guess with nothing to back it up. I'm competitive so if any one wants to start a pool and see who wins give your guess!

Monday, May 26, 2008

Relaxing Weekend

Hope everyone had a great Memorial day weekend and also hope everyone took a few minutes to remember all the troops that have fought in wars to protect our freedoms and the ones that are currently serving our country. We are so blessed to live in this wonderful country!

The family had a very relaxing weekend this weekend. We headed up to my parents house in Excelsior Springs after work on Friday and came back home this morning. We didn't have much of anything planned or anything we wanted to accomplish so it was nice to relax. The one thing we did get done was a crib purchased. For those of you that are thinking we are getting ahead of ourselves don't fear. We truly feel called to adopt a child from Ethiopia but if something were to happen where it fell through we truly feel that we will have another child sometime in our life. This way we are prepared. It is a two tone crib, which we had never seen before, so it will work with either gender. We also got a great deal on it so we were happy about that. I'm going to try and put a picture of it on here but I've not real skilled at that so forgive me if it doesn't work.

It was confirmed with Holt that they gave out six referrals last week so we are officially number 17. It was rumored to be seven but turned out to be only six. While we are #17 that doesn't necessarily give a real clear picture of where we are at. If five of the six were boys, which was the case last time then we are probably 4 or 5 for a boy. If it was balanced then we probably truly are #17. Holt also said everything they have planned for is around five referrals a month. We are probably four or five months from a referral but since this is a new program and we are a "pioneer" family this is all subject to change. This will be hard for some to believe but I have actually been very patient so far. It's probably helping that we are so far down the list and once we get to the top five or so it will be a different story. In looking at our schedule we have something almost every weekend from here until the middle of August. That should help with getting impatient. We are also working on our "list" and adding to it. Hopefully we'll get that completed before we travel.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008


Well today we were fingerprinted which is the last step before approval is issued from the United States Citizenship and Immigration Services. To show how much red tape there is in our government sometime Sarah and I had to take a seperate trip to Kansas City today to get fingerprinted by the Immigration office up there. It had to be done on a Wednesday between the hours of 8:00-3:15. So even though we are going up there to spend the weekend with my parents we still had to drive up there in a seperate trip. With $1.50 gas it's not as big of deal but driving home from church tonight I saw $3.69 gas at the QT in Ozark. Not cool. I think it's about time to take even more steps to curb our gas consumption, but that's another post for my new blog which is rolled out now. You can view my personal profile to find the link. Enjoy but don't get too offended:)

Back to adoption......we have no done everything we need to and are patiently waiting. It's not been too bad so far but it's only been 2 weeks. We were only able to confirm two referrals last week which means for sure we are 21 but there still could be the other five that were talked about. The assistant program director is currently in Ethiopia so we hope to get a lot of updates when she returns. Since this is a new program for Holt we are called "pioneer" families. Basically that means we are the test subjects and sometimes the timelines and that that they give us are totally flexible. We are really ok with that. We have every weekend from now until August booked with something. We shouldn't have a problem staying busy.

This will probably be the last adoption post until after Memorial day so you can take it easy and not check the blog for a while. We are close to 1,000 visits though. I should give something to the 1,000 visitor but I probably won't:) I will be blogging on my new blog so check it out!

Happy Holiday!


Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Caring for Orphans

This is a real life picture from an orphanage in China. It absolutely breaks our heart to think of all the children in the world without families to love them. Not everyone is called to adopt but we are all called to care for the orphans. If adoption is not for you think of other ways you can help. (If you need ideas ask). If you've thought about adoption but have questions or concerns gather information. Sarah and I had many of the same concerns about adoption that most people do but we knew that God had it for us to adopt and we know 100% that he has and will continue to remove all obstacles that get in our way.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Moving On Up

Word is out today that Holt has 7 referrals to hand out this week. We were #23 so this would put as at #16. While we are #16 overall we could in reality be much closer depending on the make up of the referrals. At one time they were extremely weighted towards girls which would put us up higher since we are open to either but it appears to have evened out so #16 is probably right around where we are. If they refer at this rate we should get a referral sometime in the July/August range and travel sometime in November/December. There are times when I think that would be wonderful for us to have some spare time but then there are also times where I get impatient and we want our kiddo home as soon as possible. Plus the international adoption front is so unstable right now they could just decide to close Ethiopia at any time and we would be left back at square one.

I was excited went I got home and saw we had a letter from the Department of Homeland Security United States Customs and Immigration Services. I was hoping it was our fingerprint appointment but all it was was a receipt for our application. I'm hoping that our letter comes seperate and that they weren't both supposed to come together. (I'm always thinking worse case scenario!) So far the government has been doing good and I hope to keep it that way. The customs offices are so picky and work at their own pace and they don't want to be bothered to the extreme that they don't give out phone numbers for local offices. I know it's hard to imagine our government being difficult to deal with:)

Not much else is going on. We are still tackling the to do list. It seems like the past couple of weeks and the upcoming month have been and are going to be extremely busy. Hopefully around the middle of June we can do a little resting and enjoy time as a family of three before we expand.

Thanks for reading. For some of you, and you'll know who you are, my computer arrived today! Political blog is in process and still set for May 19th release! Hold your breath and wait.

Thursday, May 8, 2008

Waiting Update

Week number one of patiently waiting is about over. We've done good so far. We filed our I600A today which is the last peice of paperwork we have to complete before we travel to Ethiopia. The I600A is the paperwork we file with the US Customs and Immigration Services which basically is approval for our family to adopt a child. We have been approved by our agency and social worker but our wonderful government wants to have a say in it. We should get scheduled for our fingerprinting appointment in the next couple of weeks and after that we should have a short wait no more than a month to get our approval. After that we are still waiting for a referral.

We did get some updated information this week on the program and a more definite timeline. There have been very few referrals from our agency the past month and it turns out a computer glitch is the reason. Who would have thought it?? Apparently a nasty virus took over their computer system and they are still several days away from having it fixed. It's amazing that something like that could slow them down but technological resources aren't plentiful in Ethiopia.

They did officially adjust traveling times once you have a referral. The referral is where the agency sends us a packet of information regarding a child that meets our request. We will review the referral and choose to accept or reject the referral. Once we accept a referral our agency will start the court process in Ethiopia to make our adoption official. The entire court process will take approximately three months from when we accept a referral. Travel is an estimated one month after clearing court. So we will have at least four months from the time of referral until we travel. A little longer than initially thought but our agency is new in this country and still working out the kinks.

A few more tidbits....

1) Electricity isn't real dependable over in Ethiopia. They have a day without electricity every four days. It appears that it is even more sporatic now and that is causing some delays for people in the court system.

2) Our agency got their care center up and running this week. This should hopefully speed up the referral process and allow them to place some children with their forever families soon!

3) The orphanages over there are in desperate need of supplies. One example given is they use cloth diapers over there but don't have plastic pants for them so they tie plastic bags around the diapers. Truly heart breaking.

4) While our agency is new to Ethiopia they have been complimented regarding their paperwork for the court system. That's no surprise based on Holt's past history.

Sarah and I are traveling to her parents house for Mothers day weekend. We are looking forward to a break and will hopefully have some fun and rest over the weekend. Hope everyone has a great weekend and I will post next week.

Some of you have been asking and I will unleash my political blog on May 19th. That is purely a random date but some of you who know me will know I work much better under a deadline!


Monday, May 5, 2008

It's Official......

Well as of today we are officially waiting. Our Dossier packet made it to the Holt main office and they have reviewed it and told us everything looks great. We are offficially #23 on the list. Something we found out today that was a little surprising is the list is split evenly between boys and girls. This is not how it was early on and it looks like some people may have switched. We had planned on a boy and were under the impression we would probably get a boy and get a referral pretty quick but it looks like it might take a little longer and we now have an equal chance of getting a boy or a girl. We are truly open to either and are just excited to be waiting.

I know some of you who know me won't believe me but I really am much more calm now that we are waiting. Sarah and I have no timeline that we have to be done by. If you would have asked us at the beginning of the process when an ideal time to bring home our baby would be we would have picked June 1st of 2009. That being said as we started moving forward in the process things started all falling together. We are confident that we are ready whenever it's time to get our child. We'd love our child to be home for Christmas and I think it's very realistic to think we will have a child home by then. We could get one much sooner or even after that.

Please keep the Holt Ethiopia program in your prayers. Ethiopia is a new program for them and they are working out the kinks and we are kind of the test products. We are 100% sure of our decision to use Holt and would do it all over again. That being said there is some uncertainty and some glitches along the way. We figure that if God called us here he must have a plan and we just need to be along for the ride. It's amazing how good the ride is when God is in control.

As we are now in the waiting game the posts won't necessarily be exciting but we plan on posting regularly on various aspects of adoption and things that are going on with us.

From here though it's all waiting! (Maybe God will teach me a little about patience during this process???)

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Home Study Complete!!!

Well we just received word that our home study is complete and has been reviewed by the home office and we are good to go. We are so excited. At this point we have done all we can do and it is all in God's hands for the timing. For those of you that know me please pray for patience. If I was to guesstimate where we are at I would guess a referral sometime around August/September and then travel in November/December. There have been a lot of people join the program in the past months so wait times are up a little. The director of the program just got back from a trip to Korea and Ethiopia so every one is hoping to get more details sometime in the near future as far as specific wait times. We are also open to either and I know the majority of people waiting have requested a girl so that could help our wait time. I really think it could be sooner than my guesstimate but I'm trying to not get my hopes up too much. I have a tendancy to get a little impatient but there is literally NOTHING we can do at this point to speed up or slow down the process. It's exciting to think there's a child out there that God has for us.

I'm hoping to send the packet off either tomorrow or Monday at the latest. Keep us in your prayers and we'll keep everyone updated on here as we go along!

Monday, April 28, 2008

Give the Government Credit

Many times we hear complaints about the government and many times I am the one complaining. I will have to give the government points for our first encounter with them so far this adoption. Sarah received her passport today. We applied at the post office in Nixa on April 19th and she received it today. That is 10 days total, 4 of which were weekend days. I had heard they were moving fast but was really surprised it was this quick. Hopefully mine will come tomorrow or shortly there after. The next big hurdle with the government will be getting our application through customs but I also hear that is moving very fast.

What's not moving fast is getting final approval on our home study. The home study is complete and signed off by the social worker but someone at Holt's main office in Oregon has to review it for any words or phrases that won't translate to Amharic which is the language in Ethiopia. I've heard they've been very busy getting referrals ready but can't they take a little time to review our study???? We literally have our Dossier ready and will send off immediately upon receiving the final home study.

A couple of people have asked about the title of the blog, 7,999 Miles, so I thought I'd explain. It's really very simple, from Nixa, Missouri to Addis Ababa, Ethiopia it is 7,999 miles. I thought it was cool and clever.

Not much else to report at this time. I keep thinking I'm going to have big news to post but not yet. Hopefully the blog won't get too boring. Already up to almost 450 visits to the site!

Friday, April 25, 2008

Home Study Complete and Other News

Well our home study is officially complete after our meeting this morning. We are still waiting a sign off from the main office but we expect that on Monday and then we should get the home study on Tuesday via Fed Ex and then we will either certify and send off on Tuesday or Wednesday. That's our plan now, all subject to change.

After that everything is truly in God's hands. They recently changed the law in Ethiopia on what defines orphan status. It used to be that a baby would have to be abandoned for three months before they could be declared an orphan. The new law says the baby only has to be abandoned for two months. I think this is a great change because it will get babies to their new families even sooner and help with any attachment issues. One Holt family received word of their referral on March 28th, have a court date of May 16th, and then will travel shortly after that to pick up their baby. The baby will be approximately 5 months when they come home. That is about as young as you can get in the adoption world and we are praying for as young as possible for us.

I've also heard recently that Ethiopia is not certifiying any new agencies as of now. Holt just received their certification in January so we are thankful for this. We truly feel that Holt is the best agency out there.

A lot has been in the news the past day about the status of adoptions in Vietnam. A friend and co-worker of mine and her husband had just started the process and were planning on sending in their dossier documents today with the first part of the installment due for the adoption. Word came out today that the US is stopping any adoptions that don't have referrals by September 1st. As a result they are looking at other countries to go to. What is being reported as going on in Vietnam is truly heart breaking. There is a lot of baby selling going on and a lot of babies being taken from their mothers and sold to adoption agencies. It's probably a good thing the US is putting a hold on things right now but it's also heart breaking to think about the kids that won't have homes as a result of a few unethical agencies.

I'm about to roll out my new blog. I have tons of ideas to post so look for that to come out soon. We hope to make some progress this weekend on our to do list before the adoption. Hopefully Leah will cooperate!

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Nothing Much New

The last two days haven't had too much happen towards the adoption. We got another document signed and notarized today so all we have left is picking up our letters from the police department with our new address and then waiting for the home study to be complete.

There may be a slight delay in getting our home study. Judy, our case worker, said she would have it complete on Friday but at the time didn't realize the Ethiopian director, who is also the director of Holts Korea program, was in Korea. She is seeing if her assistant will sign off. If you read this please pray that she can so we can get this sent off. I really think once it is sent off I will be a little more patient for a while. Well.....maybe. I'm slightly afraid we may have gotten ahead of ourselves and have wishful thinking but everything we hear is three months for a referral of a boy. That being said we have plenty to do between now and then. Some items left to complete before the adoption include...

1) Set up Leah's new room with big kid bed
2) Set up nursery
3) New Camcorder-I'm justifying this by telling myself everyone back home will want pictures why we are over there
4) Lap Top-This is a necessity, our desktop is about to break, horrible noise when we start it and then it flashes some lights and finally comes in
5) Put Together Leah's swing set

Hopefully we'll start putting some dents in some of this stuff.

On a side note I was talking to some people at church tonight and I've decided I think I will start another blog unrelated to the adoption. I have so many politcal rants and other stuff I like to go on that probably don't belong on an adoption blog. Look for that coming soon.......(I'm sure you are all holding your breath!)

Monday, April 21, 2008

Paper Pregnancy

Well we are ALMOST paper pregnant. For those of you outside the adoption world paper pregnancy basically means that we are completed with all of our paperwork and are officially waiting.

Tonight we went to dinner with our friends, the Sixkillers, at Bandannas BBQ in Springfield. Not a bad place. Hadn't ate there in almost a year and was pleasantly surprised by how good it was. Not very crowded but food was excellent. Melissa Sixkiller is our "traveling notary." If you've been through the adoption process you know there is a ton of paperwork most of which has to be notarized. We would definitely have a lot more work to do if she wasn't as flexible and available to notarize whenever and wherever.

This afternoon I got our bank letter. Some of you who know me may recall that I have a tendancy to get all worked up and worried about stuff, and then it never even happens. (Some of you will remember that I was positive we had termites in our old house before the buyer had the inspection.) Well I had read online that people were having a terrible time getting a letter from their bank stating they are a customer in good standing. Bank of America is known to be the worst. We bank at US Bank so I had no idea what to expect. My co workers today will tell you I was fired up before I headed to the bank. I had already planned it in my mind that when they didn't give me the letter that I was going to demand to talk to the president of the bank and demand they give me every cent we have in our accounts and I was going to do WHATEVER it took to get the letter. I walked in around 1:30 and walked out about 1:45 with a letter exactly as I needed. I had prayed before I walked in not to let this be the hold up because we have everything else done or lined up to be completed this week and I had read where this delayed people greatly. God is good and he took care of it.

Where does that leave us? Well besides waiting on the home study which we are supposed to get Friday we have everything done with the exception of 3 items which we have but have minor typos or the wrong address on. We will get those taken care of Wednesday and Thursday and should be good to go to fed ex out on Friday.

Then the wait.

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Adoption Obsession

Well I will admit I have officially become obsessed with the adoption and everything going into it. Everything in my life revolves around it. Somehow I think I can turn everything into a discussion or a day dream about adoption. I finally admitted it to Sarah tonight and she said I could have told you that a long time ago. Some of you who know me will know how my obsessions work. I become stuck on something and usually don't give it up until it's over. That being said I think I will have to on this deal or it may cause my hair to either turn gray or fall out. Tonight I finally decided that once we complete our paperwork we no longer have any choice in the matter. It will totally be in God's hands. I get frustrated with myself beause if I would have pushed it we could have been done a month ago but then I remind myself that we have our child out there waiting for us and the timing is all God's.

With all that said Sarah felt this huge burden to pray for the birth mother of our child today so we request prayers for both the birth mother and our child out there. It's quite likely our child is born or very close to it so please keep them in your prayers. It's constantly on my mind where our child is and how he/she is doing.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

The Beginning of the the Journey

This was supposed to be started a long time ago but I have a habit of putting stuff off but after today the realization hit that we better start this now or it might be over before we ever have a chance to start. For those of you who don't know this blog is started to capture our jouney to fulfill God's call on our life to adopt a child from Ethiopia. A little background on ourselves....My name is Adam Horton and I am a CPA employed at Associated Electric Cooperative in Springfield Missouri. I am married to a beautful wife Sarah Horton who is a cosmetologist at The Cutting Edge Hair Salon in Springfield Missouri. God has blessed us with an incredible daughter Leah Elizabeth Ann Horton (her initials are LEAH, this will only matter to those who are accountants who are commonly known by thier initials, think MAP, GVG, etc...) Late in December 2007 Sarah and I both felt a strong call by God to add to our family by way of adoption. We had absolutely no problems having Leah and have no reason to think we couldn't have more children biologically but looking at Leah and knowing the love we have for her I can't think of a child not getting that love. That is what ultimately called us to adoption. God put an incredible burden on our heart for orphans and we knew at that point what we had to do. Ethiopia was a hard call. From the beginning we both felt called to Ethiopia but almost tried to talk ourselves out of it. There are so many issues with Ethiopia only the beginning of them being the race factor. In the end God won out and we are 100% sure we are following his call.

We applied with Holt International Adoption Agency in January 2008 and have just completed our paperwork and hope to have a completed home study by the end of next week. After that point we will wait and wait and wait and wait. Actually the wait times are now 3-6 months for Ethiopia and the wait time for a boy is even shorter. We have requested either sex which ALMOST guarantees we will get a boy. It is wild to think that we could have a referral of a child in 3 months.

Our Homestudy visit was today. This morning we were thinking that we would have a home study completed by middle of May and sent off by June. Since this was our second visit our social worker pretty much as it finished and looks to give us a completed copy next Friday!!! Exciting and Scary!!! We are 99% complete with our Dossier paperwork and should be done when we receive our study on Friday. Then Friday afternoon it's off to our local secretary of state's office to get state certification and then off to Ethiopia. Please keep us in you prayers as we move forward with this journey. I will do my best to keep you guys up to date!