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labor_of_heart

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happy birthday kiddo [Feb. 19th, 2007|07:35 pm]
labor_of_heart
well, it seems the fears have come true. the boy we were planning to adopt has been adopted by another family first. i'm pretty disappointed to say the least. but it's not going to hold us back from adopting another child. i know whomever God blesses us with, he'll be perfect.

to be honest, as sad as i am to lose him, i am even more happy for the family that did end up adopting him. he's seems to be a great kid and deserves the best. and the news came just in time for his 7th birthday.

time to refocus. to the one who's still out there waiting... we'll find you soon enough. ♥
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holy cow! [Feb. 5th, 2007|01:08 pm]
labor_of_heart
[mood| jubilant]

alright, so much has happened lately. first, i think we've finally worked out the financial issue. how great is that?? i only have a couple of phone calls to make and the marriage to wait for, and it should be good to go. it's not even going to hurt us financially one bit. SO THANKFUL. and also, in theory, we should be able to have all the money up front.

secondly, we've been working on finding an agency to do our home study. we've found something better... or should i say, someone. there is a fantastic lady who i found who does not work with an agency, but is certified to do international adoption home studies in our state (and even post placement). i could have about died when i found her. she's SO much cheaper than going through the agencies we've been debating. the best part is that it isn't going to take MONTHS to finish. she said if we get on it and work hard, and because she isn't part of an agency, that she could get it done in three weeks or less. that's like cutting several months off our wait time just getting that done in less than a month.

third, which is even more exciting in my opinion... i've been in touch with a particular agency. this is a new one that i haven't mentioned before. the lady in charge has always been SO quick to answer any and all questions i've had for her. it's to the point now where i believe we'll be using her instead of the other agency i had previously mentioned. the best news is that i've managed to get ahold of her "waiting list" children. i admit that reed and i have fallen in love completely with one particular child. he's about two years older than addison. in fact, he'll be having a birthday in march (how perfect considering that's our marriage month too)! we even know his name. she knows how "interested" we are in adopting him. she said that she'd be able to assign us a child just as soon as we get all of this home study stuff started. which means he very well could be ours if no one else adopts him before we get our paperwork started. she gave me his name and birth date and told me if we called her that she would be able to give me more personal information about him.

it's kind of awesome how he'll be the newest addition to our family and yet the oldest child. haha i've already asked addison if she wants a brother or sister. she said brother. so then i asked her if she wants an older brother or younger brother. she says she wants an older brother. awesome, again. they will actually be closer in age than she and hazel are... and she and hazel already love each other to death.

so now it is feeling like FOREVER for march to get here. a part of me doesn't even care that I'M having a birthday in 7 days. i'm just SO focused on this boy and getting everything started so we can bring him home. with the home study taking only 3 weeks to finish and not having to wait on a referral.... the only wait we really have is getting it all finalized overseas and then also getting him readopted in the united states. could it really be true that he could be here before the end of the year??? holy cow! we're just praying that this is the child God has picked to bless our family. guess we'll find out in about a month. :)
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getting it all together.... [Jan. 28th, 2007|11:47 pm]
labor_of_heart
[mood| energetic]

reed and i sat down once he got off shift this morning and started going over the fundraiser stuff. i'm so stoked to see his excitement with all of this. i think we finally made it through the cold feet era!!

the fundraiser stuff is pretty great. it was actually really hard to choose what to start with.. but i think we've decided on something. i just need to call and talk to my advisor (yeah they even hooked us up with a fundraising advisor to help us get to where we need to be). everything is smooth and i'll be calling the advisor tomorrow morning to set things up and get our first fundraiser started. i'm also scoping out some work at home jobs. thankfully each of them will involve my own little munchkins, so that'll be a blessing to keep them with me at all times while still bringing in some income to help out with all these adoption costs.

i have also made the recent announcement of the adoption happening to the rest of my cyberspace friends on my "regular" journal, secondhandhero. not sure who will be supportive or who will think we're crazy... but it'll be as interesting of a ride as the pregnancy was, i'm sure. hello to all of you who have made it over this way in support of us. if you have any questions, i'd be more than happy to chat about them through email.

reed.courtney@gmail.com


till next time....
love you all... xoxo
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on the right track.... [Jan. 27th, 2007|11:31 am]
labor_of_heart
[mood| energetic]

last night, reed and i sat down and had a heart to heart. it was lovely and i love those. i talked a lot about my recent bad moods lately and how i need more "core" time instead of being mommy 24/7. even if i just pay someone to paint my nails for me, that's 20 minutes that i have to myself uninterrupted. i don't think i've had a moment for myself in at least a year. we also mapped out a plan for us and our nearby future. i reexplained why i want to adopt so soon instead of putting it off. he got excited all over again. i think he really understands now. his main concern was just how it was all going to happen and he was worried that if we adopted, that we'd never get the house because that would be one more debt raising our monthly house payments. i agreed that we would get the house first, immediately after the wedding (march 21st) and then right after that, we'd start the home study. i don't know how we'll get to the end (especially financially) but we'll get there. we spent the rest of the evening happily talking about our life once we finally get to bring home our child.

i have a lot of product in my clothing/gift shop (www.cafepress.com/laborofheart). reed is checking with his job to figure out about the reembursement there. and if there isn't one, we got a kit in the mail the other day on how to go about pitching the idea to his boss (thanks dave thomas). then today i just got my fundraising kit in the mail and i'm super stoked.

www.justfundraising.com is the best ever. they have SO many programs to suit so many needs (and you can do as many as you want). they even give you your own consultant to help you along the way and make sure you get to where you need to be. that's SO lovely. i was looking through a lot of the brochures and they are some pretty easy sell items. they also offered a chart to let you know how many you have to sell to get to a certain profit. surprisingly, i could make the money we need off of one fundraiser alone. i just need to get a few people to help me sell i think and i'd be good. i could probably send some stuff to my mom and to my mother in law. i may even be able to get a few people from church who have jobs outside of the home to help out too. one lady from our bible study group is hosting a mary kay party tomorrow afternoon. although i can't really afford to keep up with mary kay right now, i'm going to go support her anyway for some good karma.

i guess it never hurts to ask people to help. otherwise, i wouldn't have help.
people don't just volunteer anymore. ya know?
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here goes nothing.... [Jan. 19th, 2007|01:50 am]
labor_of_heart
[mood| creative]

alas, i present to you the start of our fundraising. i've opened up a shop online for apparel, home interior, gifts, etc. there isn't a whole lot in my shop right now, but i'm working on it every day. consider it my work at home job from now on. due to the lack of good babysitters and daycare costs... this is the best i can do for raising money myself. it'll definitely be a great creative outlet for me as well as a great way to start raising funds for the adoption. of course, i don't make more than $5 profit for any of these things so we'll have to do the fundraisers too. but for now, please check out the store and let me know what you think. i promise more product will be in the store by the end of the weekend.

Support This Site


oh, and i've also included this link on my user info as well as a donate button if you'd rather just donate some funds. God bless all of you!
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fundraisers [Jan. 18th, 2007|11:04 am]
labor_of_heart
[mood| curious]

how many of you who read my journal are interested in helping out with fundraisers for the adoption? i'm serious about this not giving up stuff. i was thinking about this barrier with reed and trying to think of a way to get him past this. i think if i can start raising the money on my own, then he'll see that people really support us and that it's not such a huge headache afterall. right now, i'm just trying to figure out where to start.

i've found several differnt types of fundraisers that i'm working on getting set up. i just haven't quite officially picked them all out yet. it all depends on where and who i can get to help out. i'm going to go down to main street sometime soon as well and ask a few stores if they'd be willing to put up a few items for me. i know there is one crafty store down there which i might be able to rent a small table or booth to sell some of these things. i just have to make sure that the cost of putting stuff there every month won't exceed the profits of what i'm trying to sell in fundraisers. and if that works out, and even when we raise enough money for ourselves, i'm going to continue to fundraise for adoption and donate to the orphanages and adoption grants to help other families.

also what is a good fundraiser etiquette? if you ask someone once, is it ok to ask them again later? this is going to be a long term thing for us to raise what we need and quite frankly our resources are low. we live in a very small town and only one of us works - and that one person isn't too thrilled about asking people for their money. i'm sure i could send things to our parents to help out at their jobs too. but i'm just wondering if someone helps once, is it ok to ask them again later to help again? and how frequently should you ask for help?
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road block central [Jan. 18th, 2007|12:50 am]
labor_of_heart
[mood| disappointed]

here's an update on our current struggle. my fiance has daddy jitters and i can't find a way to get him past this.

back when we were talking about having child #2 (hazel), he gave me a long list of reasons why we shouldn't have one right then, despite how much he really wanted to have another baby. less than a month after that talk, i ended up pregnant anyway and we've dealt with the changes just fine. truth is no one is EVER ready. there's a quote on my user info from an unknown source that says, "If we wait for the moment when everything, absolutely everything is ready, we shall never begin." how true that is! the difference is, this time i don't have the bun in the oven to say "hey, we're having this child in 9 months weather you're ready or not". i don't have anything concrete to allow him to accept and prepare for the change. all i get is that big long list of things that we need to do first. it isn't that he's backing out... he's just seriously stalling and it's breaking my heart. some days i feel as if he's pacifying me and giving me excuses when he has actually changed his mind. deep down, i know he hasn't changed his mind but it's seriously breaking my heart. first it was that he wants to buy a house and then we can adopt. but then when we buy the house, he'll add on the laundry list of home repairs and then this and that till i've given up. i think he's just nervous. he wants things to be perfect for our #3 and truth is, it's NEVER perfect for anyone - which in itself is perfection.

knowing the conditions these children live in over there, there isn't one good excuse where the child will agree that it's better to have waited because you wanted a better house or new paint on the walls or a job promotion or yada yada yada. heck, i've even been researching every possible fundraiser so we can raise the money ourselves, but everything i tell him, he gets all weird about it and thinks of reasons why it wouldn't work. they are stupid reasons - but reasons nonetheless.

so finances aside, i'm really heartbroken. we've been on the same page forever, and now he's trying to back out. it's not that he's changing his mind and doesn't want to adopt anymore. he's just making excuse after excuse of why we shouldn't right now - just like he did with pregnancy. i think maybe he's just discouraged at the road blocks we've hit before even starting paperwork. Lord knows how many more we'll have along the way. i just hope he doesn't get like this every time there's a small problem. i believe with all of my heart that there is a child out there waiting for us RIGHT NOW. i don't want to make him/her wait for stupid insecurity. life is too precious to waste time.

one thing is for sure, i am not losing hope. if i knew of a way to get this started by myself, i would. if i just knew how to get past that barrier of his. my words just aren't working anymore. it's all making me so depressed at the thought of this not happening at all. seriously depressed.
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explanation [Jan. 15th, 2007|01:15 am]
labor_of_heart
[mood| hopeful]

ok i feel i should explain my last post. there's been some discussion that this adoption might not happen as soon as we expect. we're having some trouble on the finance side of things. i would like to once again state that international adoption is NOT cheap - and we do not own any trees that sprout money (though if you know of where i can find one, let me know asap). right now there are a lot of things up in the air because of this issue. i've been debating on if i should keep this journal going in the meantime or if i should just hold off till we get everything kicked off again.

here's the deal. we're looking at around $10,000-$20,000 for our liberian adoption. i know that's a whole lot cheaper that most other countries. we're also trying to figure out readoption costs. as far as i have read, the state of texas does not require you to readopt but it is strongly encouraged incase you or your child move to a state who does not recognize the adoption. so we're looking to find out how much that will cost as well. now then, keep in mind that this money is not "buying" a child. it's all going in to the legal fees and paperwork and airfare and yada yada yada. there's a lot of things involved in adopting abroad that all cost money. in addition to this, there are things we have to prepare around our house. we have to factor in the cost of a bed, clothing, food, etc. it's not that we haven't thought this through before. we're just not sure if how we chose to fund this is really what is best for our family.

now then, there are grants to apply for - but this will not cover the entire cost. nor is it guaranteed that we would receive any of these grants. we could wait and save up more of our own money - which could take another year or two. we could start some fundraising, but that could take a while to raise all of the money. we could take out a loan with the bank to cover costs and make monthly payments to the bank. but do we really want any kind of debt in order to do this? i really don't want to wait YEARS to make this happen. i already truly believe our child is out there waiting RIGHT NOW. when you begin to accept the idea of adoption into your heart, your heart sort of becomes pregnant with that child. to have to give up that dream once your heart is set on going through with it, is like losing a child during pregnancy. i get SO depressed at just the thought of this not happening right now. although i don't quite feel like i've lost this pregnancy, i feel like it's in serious danger. so there is a lot to discuss in our house and how we'll make this work.

the biggest difference i can think of between pregnancy and adoption (aside from the belly bump) is that adoption is not covered by our medical insurance like pregnancy would be. and that is where our financial troubles lay. it makes me throw up in my mouth a little to think that our child has to wait because of something like a money issue. but alas, that's the case. so my story goes - money doesn't buy love, but it's what it takes to bring them home.

i guess i just hit a huge discouraging moment knowing that we may not meet our child anytime soon, as hoped. it's a hard thing - this adoption stuff. i thought pregnancy hormones were bad, but adoption certainly has it's own category of emotional levels that rival pregnancy. mostly right now we're just trying to figure out the right path for us to come up with the finances. this doesn't mean we're giving up at all. it was just hard to talk about something so exciting when something so disappointing was going on. but i guess it's all part of the process and for those wanting to learn more, i can't leave this out.

so the journal will continue. i'm going to really try hard to not let the bad days get in the way of my writing. i think it's important for everyone to know the ups and downs. our hope continues.
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heartbroken [Jan. 10th, 2007|11:22 pm]
labor_of_heart
[mood| crushed]

for reasons i can't mention right now... it looks like things might be slow or dead on this journal for a while. it sucks that i just started this and have to go away from it for a while - but this is what life is dealing us right now. send your prayers our way. ♥


i'm deeply sorry. :(
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horray!! [Jan. 10th, 2007|01:33 pm]
labor_of_heart
[Current Music |M. Ward - "to go home"]

[mood| excited]
after a few phone call interviews yesterday, i think i have finalized the agency we want to work with. PLAN adoption agency. they're even researching a good home study agency for us to work with here in texas.

ugh. can march get here any sooner?


:::::dreaming of our future family::::::::::
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