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To Springfield

We found out today that our home study is on its way to Springfield, IL for approval. Yay! 

We've been told that it takes approximately 4-8 weeks to receive approval, and then it can be sent to our agency in Virginia. At that point, we will be able to put it into our dossier and ship it off to Ethiopia!

We're thanking the Lord for answering our prayer that it would be sent this week, and we're asking that the approval process in Springfield be closer to 4 weeks than it is to 8! Even as I type that request, I'm reminded of God's control and power over all of this. He knows the exact child/children that He has for us, and no delay or glitch over here can thwart his purposes! It is good to live under the sovereignty of God!


Favorite Things

Since we don't have kids to take pictures of, we don't go on many exciting vacations, and adoption updates are going to be few and far between, I thought I'd include posts about my "favorite" things. These, I'm sure, will be completely random and will depend entirely on my mood, time of day, time of year, etc., etc.

Right now, my "favorite" things are two products from Benefit Cosmetics (but, basically, I love everything they make, so expect them to appear in many future posts!) Because I'm outside a lot right now with coaching track, my lips are really suffering... sun, wind, cold, and whatever else could cause dry, tight, chapped lips.

The cure:

dr. feelgood- a great buffing/exfoliating, moisturizing/smoothing set. Use it, you'll love it!

benetint lip balm SPF 15- just a hint of color, with great coverage, and a nice texture.

Really, all of their products are amazing. I won't buy make-up anywhere else anymore. Check out their website or try to stop at a boutique if there is one in your area! http://www.benefitcosmetics.com


Life Lately

We don't have much adoption news (we're still waiting to get our home study approved), but we have kept busy this spring! Here are some snapshots of what we've been up to...

I've been coaching track, which has been taking up an insane amount of time! I enjoy it and love working with the kids, but it means that most days I'm gone for at least 12-14 hours. Staying on top of cooking and cleaning has been a challenge... good thing Don doesn't mind having cereal for dinner!

Don loves fly fishing and has enjoyed getting out into various rivers this spring. He was just recently in Michigan fishing the Muskegon river. He caught this pretty little trout (Did I just say "pretty" to describe a fish? Don has been wearing off on me!). And, he caught a nice steelhead.

Aside from that, Don's been plugging away at a book on the atonement, and he's been leading our small group in a study from Luke. 

We don't know how much longer it will be just the two of us, so we're also trying to soak in some great date nights, bike rides, and spontaneous dessert/coffee trips. 


Christ in You

I read this recently and was greatly impacted by it. It was written by a man named A.B. Simpson, the founder of the Christian and Missionary Alliance.

Christ Himself 
It is the person of Jesus Christ we want. Plenty of people get the idea and do not get anything out of it. They get it into their head, and it into their conscience, and it into their will; but somehow they do not get Him into their life and spirit, because they have only that which is the outward expression and symbol of the spiritual reality.
Christ In You
Years ago I came to Him burdened with guilt and fear; I tried that simple secret, and it took away all my fear and sin. Years passed on, and I found sin overcoming me and my temptations too strong for me. I came to Him a second time, and He whispered to me, “Christ in you,” and I had victory, rest and blessing. And so I would say, if this precious little secret of “Christ in you,” will help you, you may have it. May you make better use of it than I! I feel I have only begun to learn how well it works. Take it and go on working it out, through time and eternity-Christ for all, grace for grace, from strength to strength, from glory to glory, from this time forth and even for evermore.
Once It Was 
Once it was the blessing, Now it is the Lord; Once it was the feeling, Now it is His Word. Once His gifts I wanted, Now the Giver own; Once I sought for healing, Now Himself alone. Once ’twas painful trying, Now ’tis perfect trust; Once a half salvation, Now the uttermost. Once ’twas ceaseless holding, Now He holds me fast; Once ’twas constant drifting, Now my anchor’s cast. Once ’twas busy planning, Now ’tis trustful prayer; Once ’twas anxious caring, Now He has the care. Once ’twas what I wanted, Now what Jesus says; Once ’twas constant asking, Now ’tis ceaseless praise. Once it was my working, His it hence shall be; Once I tried to use Him, Now He uses me. Once the power I wanted, Now the Mighty One; Once for self I labored, Now for Him alone. Once I hoped in Jesus, Now I know He’s mine; Once my lamps were dying, Now they brightly shine. Once for death I waited, Now His coming hail; And my hopes are anchored, Safe within the veil.


Why We're Adopting: Reason #3

  • God, in his goodness and mercy, has chosen to withhold biological children from us up to this point. This has been part of his good and perfect will for our lives. We believe that part of the reason for this was to turn our eyes towards the millions of orphans around the world that will grow up without families. If we had gotten pregnant right away, we may never have considered adopting these children. By God’s grace, we can honestly say that the joy and excitement we feel when thinking about adopting equals what we would feel if we were to get pregnant. This is not a “second-best” option for us.    


Why We're Adopting: Reason #2

  • If we receive a helpless child into our home in the name of Christ, we will, in some mysterious sense, be receiving Jesus himself into our home.

    • “And he took a child and put him in the midst of them, and taking him in his arms, he said to them, “Whoever receives one such child in my name receives me, and whoever receives me, receives not me but him who sent me.” (Mark 9:36).

    • “When the Son of Man comes in his glory, and all the angels with him, then he will sit on his glorious throne. Before him will be gathered all the nations, and he will separate people one from another as a shepherd separates the sheep from the goats. And he will place the sheep on his right, but the goats on the left. Then the King will say to those on his right, ‘Come, you who are blessed by my Father, inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world. For I was hungry and you gave me food, I was thirsty and you gave me drink, I was a stranger and you welcomed me, I was naked and you clothed me, I was sick and you visited me, I was in prison and you came to me.’ Then the righteous will answer him, saying, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry and feed you, or thirsty and give you drink? And when did we see you a stranger and welcome you, or naked and clothe you? And when did we see you sick or in prison and visit you?’ And the King will answer them, ‘Truly, I say to you, as you did it to one of the least of these my brothers, you did it to me.’ (Matthew 25:31-40).


Why Ethiopia

There are approximately 4.3 million orphans in Ethiopia. 

Why We're Adopting: Reason #1

  • God has adopted us—rebellious, hateful, selfish sinners—into his family, and he has made us his own children. He has made us his legal heirs; everything he owns is now ours. Saving, delivering, rescuing—these are at the center of God’s being. Adoption is a way for us to be a living picture of God and of the gospel. It’s a way to portray the adoptive love of God before the watching world, before the hosts of heaven, and before God himself—right in our own home. 
(These reasons were originally in the form of a letter that we shared with our families when we announced our decision to begin the adoption process). 

Our Process So Far

Since we're starting this blog a little into our adoption process, I thought I'd give an update on where we are right now and what we still have to do. 


  • Finished home study- still need to get the results from our fingerprinting; once these are obtained, the home study will go to the state level for approval
  • Ordered copies of marriage and birth certificates for dossier
  • Applied for/updated passports
  • Obtained employment letters
  • Made copies of insurance policies
  • Applied for foster care licensing (required in Illinois for adoption)
  • Got physicals
  • Requested letters of recommendation from family and friends
  • Completed 10 hours of adoption training
Still to Go:
  • Complete financial documents needed for dossier (dossier = the compiled paperwork needed to show our ability to adopt)
  • Complete cover letter/application letter for dossier
  • Put together family photo pages for dossier
  • Wait for approval of home study
  • Put all of these things together for dossier
  • Ship off to adoption agency in Virginia
  • Receive approval of dossier and send to Ethiopia
  • Have dossier translated
  • Wait for referral
  • Travel to get the child/children (we're hoping for twins!)
Wow- does that seem like a lot of work? It has been. Thankfully, Don was able to use his "project management" skills to help us plug away at it in an organized/non-overwhelming way!