Wednesday, August 17, 2011

PUZZLE, yard sale extravaganza & application sent!!

We have seen on other adoption blogs and loved the idea of a puzzle fundraiser. If you'd like to help us with adoption expenses, you can purchase a piece of our puzzle for as little as a dollar per piece. We will write donors names on the back of the pieces to help us remember all of the support and love we had along the way, and eventually frame and hang this sweet giraffe puzzle in our baby's nursery. I've linked a donate button on our sidebars if you are interested.

check out our family blog to see our yard sale fundraiser:

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Plus 1 please

What started out as a grave diagnosis for LuLu over 2 years ago has led us down many paths filled with sorrow and turmoil as well as amazing, unique blessings.

To name only a few (of the good stuff)... our association with people we would have otherwise never known.
Our appreciation for health and the life of our children in a whole new light.
Our respect for people in the medical profession and all the loving hands at PCMC-- I have always thought doctors and nurses were great (my mom being one of them) but it is different when your child would not be alive without them.
Our gratitude to live in America where we have resources at our fingertips that others can only dream of.
We have been loved and surrounded by friends and family that have carried us through hard, hard times.
Our love for a new extended family that is our donors. And a DEEP love for our Ashley angel.

HOW??? would we grow our family in the future was burning in my mind and heart when we found out that what London had was a genetic disease passed down from both James and I. The seed was planted that evening in February 2010 I just didn't know what it would look like when it bloomed.

The chances of having another child with Alpha-1 is 1 in 4, a carrier for the disease 2 in 4. For a little while I toyed with the idea of "taking our chances" and accepting whatever God gave us. We would never take back our LuLu and the same would be said for a future child ill or not. Fast forward many months of seeing her suffer, thoughts and times of actually coming close to losing her, waiting for another child to die so that she might have a healthy liver and finally flourish... We will not be playing with those odds. I can't do it to myself, my family and especially not another baby.

We researched fertility treatments. Genetic testing. Adoption. Just being happy with our 2. Until our trip to Haiti in March we were still undecided though adoption seemed like the best decision to us. After Haiti it was all I could think about, in particular an orphaned child from there. It was a major disappointment for James and I to learn definitively that Haiti would not be an option for us because of age and marriage requirements. It felt like a deep loss as we love the children there who are so desperate for a home. We went back to trying to feel like maybe our family was complete with 2 as we didn't feel like genetic counseling was for us nor did domestic adoption feel like the right path for us.

We are still so sad that Haiti's red tape and broken system prevent adoptions from happening but are grateful for what we saw, learned and felt there and knew they weren't the only orphaned children needing a Mom and Dad...and a Jonah and a LuLu. So, thus the search continued and has led us to Ethiopia. It feels good again and right. It will be another road filled with uncertainty, ups and downs as well as great lessons that will be as rich as the ones we have experienced the last two years. God has led us in this direction and we are following a little blindly as the expense of adoption, especially internationally feels like a road block that will be impossible to get around. But, as I have heard a million times in my life- "Where there's a will, there's a way" and that shall be my mantra.

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