Our Journey To Charlie & Levi...

After 17yrs of marriage and "8" amazing children, God has continued to keep the fire for adoption burning in our hearts. Crazy?... Maybe?!?! But....Doesn't God call all of us to do CRAZY things for him? Isn't that what it means to Live for Christ? To make a difference ONE orphan at a time. So after months of praying that this little guy would find a forever family, he FINALLY has!! OUR FAMILY!! Join us as we pray, cry, fill out mounds of paperwork & fundraise to bring our son home. We give God all the glory for choosing to adopt us & for giving us the opportunity to Choose Charlie...And because we could not get Zhora(Levi) off our minds and God obviously placed him in our hearts... We're bringing him home too!!

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Christmas Warrior...


Jayson
Boy, Born July 2009

Jayson is a sweet 15 month old boy in Latin America. He is healthy and growing well. He Needs a Mommy & Daddy and we are helping to raise money for his adoption. This is an EASY program, with easy travel and easy family requirements/restrictions. Photos and more medical/social history coming soon. Please inquire if you are interested!
http://reecesrainbow.com/eelittles.html


U.S. families only at this time
Single moms and married couples, ages 25-55
No family size restrictions
NO CRIMINAL HISTORY
NO MENTAL HEALTH CONCERNS
Both parents travel for one trip only for approx 14 days
Fast program, approx 9 months start to finish
Beautiful and comfortable place to visit
Child comes home on an IR-3 visa (meaning adoption must be finalized here in the US as well)
Total cost approx $25k




To DONATE click on the CHIP IN button on the side bar

And Help Jayson get his Christmas Wish!!!!


SNOT Fun ANYMORE...LOL:)

Update: So it has taken TWO days and 4 trips back and forth across the river to get the court decree, old birth certificates, and the permission needed to request NEW birth certificates for the boys. But it is done! First thing tomorrow morning we pick up the NEW birth certificates, go get their new tax ID number, and then take them to be scanned for their passports. Then hopefully monday we will have passports in our hand and can apply for visa's, and get the boys medicals done on tuesday... AND then fly H-O-M-E on Wednesday!!!! It's a tall order, but I'm told it can be done...Can I get an AMEN????

Most Important: PLEASE cover the boys with prayer over the next few days. They BOTH have full blown COLDS:( Green snot, congestion, etc, etc... We want healthy little boys to walk into the embassy medical exam on Tues!!!! Plus Mom is a little tired of getting smeared with Goo.Ha!

Progress IS Progress and I am HAPPY things are moving along, however SLOW they may be:)

"...whatever you do, do all to the glory of God"~1 Cor 10:31

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Have You MISSED these little faces?

Since the 10 day waiting period in this region is really a 12-14 day waiting period...I am HAPPY to announce that today is DAY 13 and tomorrow the COURT DECREE will be picked up!!!! Praise God!!! Hopefully we will be able to pick up both of their birth certificates tomorrow as well, and then the following two days we will do their medicals, passports & visa's. Their passport pictures are already done:) My visits with the boys have been getting better every day. Levi is beginning to show signs of bonding which I was suprised to see so soon. He laughs and get's great big eyes and then sticks his little cheek out for a kiss:) And Charlie is interacting more with me and calms down sooner everytime I see him. He really is just so overcome with excitement when he see's me, that he can hardly control himself. Slowly I am seeing the inappropriate affection (slapping, pinching & hair pulling) disappear. The progress is truly remarkable!! I can't wait to see how quickly they learn what it's like to be in a loving family where you are loved unconditionally. Where you are held, and hugged, and kissed everyday. We forget that so many of us have had this since birth & it is amazing how different a child is that has NEVER had any of those things:( They are transforming before my eyes!!!


Sharing Mommy "Kinda"

His middle name should have been GIGGLE!

Hopefully you will see more frequent posts now, followed by "Gotcha Day" Pictures!!!

But let all those who take refuge and put their trust in You rejoice; let them ever sing and shout for joy, because You make a covering over them and defend them; let those also who love Your name be joyful in You and be in high spirits. ~Psalm 5:11

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Connor's Button

Please add this BUTTON to your blog as our friends The Hogg's begin their journey to adopt Connor, and help BRING HIM HOME!!!!


Grab This!

Charlie & Levi's Life...

Saturday's visit with the boys was GREAT!!!! My dear friend Marianna Peipon was able to join me on my visit. What a blessing to have someone that can understand & speak the language to talk to the boys & the nannies:) We spent an hour playing outside with Charlie and then another inside playing with Levi (he had a runny nose so had to stay in). And both boys had a good time and enjoyed Mama and aunt Marianna. The best part of the morning was that Marianna was able to ask questions about both boys & the nannies were excited to be able to tell about each of them:)

Here are somethings I learned about both of them....

Charlie:
Is a very good eater. Likes soups, bread, and apple peeled and sliced.
Is a good sleeper. Sucks his fingers when he sleeps
Can dress himself, feed himself
Likes to do puzzles. (Hmm..havn't seen that one yet)
Is NOT interested in potty training (Bummer)

Levi:
Is a good eater. Likes soups, bread, cookies:)
Is a good sleeper but rolls around a lot(?) not sure what she meant
Wears pampers all the time

I also asked if the boys both understand that they are leaving and going HOME with me and the nannies said that they completely understand:)

Then they let me take pictures of their LIFE...

Levi's Bed

Levi's Closet

Levi's towel, cup & toothbrush

The bathroom including potty seats for each child

Charlie's Bed

16 Little Beds

The Playroom

Our boys have been blessed to be in an orphanage where they are taken care of well. Where the conditions are nice and clean and they are fed well and clean. Where they each have shoes & a warm coat to wear. Not all orphanages are like this:( We were amazed at how well taken care of the boys were. HOWEVER, they are still not held, not hugged, and still DO NOT have Mommy's & Daddy's:( So many sweet faces longing to be taken HOME to a loving family! Charlie & Levi will be the 7th & 8th child to be taken HOME from this orphanage in the past 3 months!!!! The Staff is overwhelmed at how many Loving parents are coming for these kids. Let's not stop. Consider bringing home an orphan to your home. Make a difference for that ONE child!!!

http://reecesrainbow.com/waitingchildgallery.html

Giving God ALL the glory for where He has me RIGHT Now!!!

He must become greater; I must become less. ~John 3:30

Thursday, September 23, 2010

The Blessing of WAITING...

Today is Day 8 of our waiting period. Every day a step closer to stepping onto that airplane, flying over the big pond, and walking two new sons, brothers, grandsons, nephews into their FIRST HOME!!! The WAITING can be brutal when you are missing home~hubby, children, family, friends, & bed. Ha! But then I walk through those orphanage gates and get the death grip hug from Charlie and the cuddle hug from Levi, I am reminded that these two little human beings that God created are worth the WAIT... The amazing part of the whole journey is the people God places in your path and the situations that you never would have had the blessing of being a part of it if you were not just WAITING. We have been blessed to meet more than 12 other families that are adopting as well. Families that are on the same page as you, families that "Get It" and yes other families that have 4, 7, 10, 14 other children! Families that share the same heart....God's heart:) I have been so fortunate to stay with sweet friends that we met on our first trip over. American missionaries that are here making such an impact for God. I am so blessed by there mission and there compassion. I have visited hospitals full of beautiful children!! Children that need a Mommy & Daddy. Children longing to know what it is like to be held and loved. I have had amazing moments with God and My heart has been blessed through praying for other families struggling through this crazy process called ADOPTION! My prayer for so many loving families is that you would step out in faith and remember that Adoption is part of God's plan, and that one of these sweet face's could be cuddled up in your home instead of sleeping in an orphanage or being sent away to an institution to live out their very short little life:(

Everyday I see these two little ones along with many others,and I long for them to have a HOME!!!

Are YOU my Mommy & Daddy????

"Antonio"

This little guy is so Stinkin cute!! He seems so cuddley and calm. He is 2yrs old and would make such an amazing son. I just wanna kiss him everytime I see him!

"Leesia"

This little sweetheart is always smiling!! She is 2yrs old. She says, "Mama" and raises her arms for me to pick her up. I picked her up once and was told by a nanny to put her down:( So Each time I pick up Charlie I bend down and tell her hello and tell her that one day her mama will come. She is such a DOLL!!!
In Hebrew WAIT means HOPEFUL Anticipation...
So many little orphans are WAITING...
"Rest in the Lord, and wait patiently for Him..." ~Psalm 37:7

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Breakthrough!!!

Todays visit was a little different:) While Levi spent the majority of the visit unpacking and repacking my bag & dragging it around in the dirt, this is what Charlie & I did...

Instead of sitting in my lap facing out, with me singing song after song doing the movements myself.......Charlie stood facing me and did every movement to his 4 favorite songs while I sang (Wheels on the Bus, Lord's Army, Happy & You know it & Pat-a-cake) and then clapped for himself and said Yay!!!!

Instead of looking past me or at the ground and being so rough.....We practiced making eye contact & he held my cheeks gently and looked me in the eyes for the first time!!! (there IS an amazing little boy in there:)

Instead of Throwing himself on the ground when I returned him to his groupa.... He said Paka (bye) and attempted to repeat Mama Zaftra(tomorrow)

And Finally.....

Instead of being grumpy that I was leaving... I blew him a kiss and he stuck his little cheek out for me to kiss it instead!!!! Ahhhh!!! Progress:)

And... Levi:) Still unpacking my bag..LOL

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Where's Dada??

Not sure what the boys think about Sid being gone, but Charlie seems a little grumpy. Levi is still just his curious, in his own little world self. Ha! They are doing GREAT! Although over the past couple of days I have noticed an interesting strawberry like texture all over Levi's tongue (that was not there before) & his tonsils are completely touching. I had noticed they were already quite large. Looks an awful lot like the strep I have seen in my house, but it is all over his tongue? It is difficult to ask them about it when there is a language barrier. If it gets any worse I may have our facilitator call and ask them if the orphanage doctor will check him. He didn't feel warm & acted like he felt well. Who knows? Just don't want a sick kid on the airplane. I am working on learning some more sign language. I am finding that it gets Charlie's attention and he will repeat them. It may be very valuable in overcoming the language barrier. Even though his speech is extremely delayed He always makes an attempt to repeat me. He will verbally repeat Please, again, more, Mama, Levi(which sounds more like Vivi) And he will sign more. Now Levi has No interest in signing. Mama is the only word I have heard him try to say other than his HI! that he says all the time:) It's probably not really Hi, but I like to think it is:) Levi is like carrying a sack of potatoes. He is very limp & his muscle tone is very poor (especially his trunk) He absolutely LOVES for you to spin around in circles which I do often. It's my new weight loss plan. Ha! They BOTH have SO much potential. I can't wait to get them home with the rest of the kids so they can see what a family is really like and feel how much love they will be showered with. I am sure it will be overwhelming. Meeting the Lewis' as they continue their journey & the Westbrook's as they begin their journey. So nice to have other adopting families to share our struggles & triumphs with:) Please continue to lift us up in prayer....Both our children and Sid at home and the boys and mama here in Ukraine. The days are very long, but I am resting in God and being still so that I might hear Him more. Blessings to everyone:)

"I Will not leave you as orphans; I will come to you" John 14:18

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Two Less Orphans in the World...

Here's a quick summary of the past 2 days...We started out our journey back to the boys in the Dallas airport, only to find out after over an hour delay that our plane had mechanical problems and our flight would be cancelled!!! And... there were NO other flights out that night!! TEARS:( This meant that the next flight would get us in at 1:15pm and we had court at 2:30pm. This was a serious problem. I will spar you the stressful details, but after much begging and pleading & tears we were on another airline sitting in 2 of the last 3 available seats!!!!! A HUGE thank you to Golden Rule for the info that there were in fact available seats:) So we arrived in EE at 10:30pm. Praise God for getting us here in plenty of time:) Wed. morning we were able to go to the U.S. Consulate for Sid to sign documents (and they were super nice) Plus it's SO nice when there are 75+ people and you are moved to the front because you are American! SWEET! Then we went to the notary to sign the documents which had one thing in English on them...Charlie Josiah Harper & Levi Preston Harper!!! We had a 2hr break and then we were off to court. Court went great! Every person in the court room was very nice and everything went so smooth. If you ask me what all I said, I can barely remember. Ha! Thank you God for just the right words:) We did ask for the 10 day wait to be waived and she was very apologetic saying that, "If she could she would waive it but that it is a law" :( We were sad, but not suprised. It is 10 calendar days, however the court decree can only be picked up on Wed & Fri. So, it will actually be 14 days before anything can be done. Then there will be another 4-5 days of medicals, picking up 2 new birth certificates, and several trips to get the boys passports in our hands. So It will be somewhere around the 1st week of October when we fly home. Boy, I can not wait! Missing my kids at home already!! Sid left for the airport at 3:00am and will arrive in Dallas thurs. at 2:30. So thankful for everyone that continues to help with out kiddos. We could not have done this without all of you and are forever grateful.

The best part of the whole day... We arrived at the orphange and found out really quickly that the boys (especially Charlie) knew exactly what was going on. Charlie kept pointing to the gate and saying something in his husky voice, and was ready to hit the road. We had wondered if they really understood & they do!!! Now that we have had court the nannies seem much more excited. They talk to the boys a lot (wish we knew what they were saying), and we hear Mama & Papa over & over from all of the staff. They are both healthy and doing good and we can't wait to tuck them into their own little beds:)

video

video

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

We've grown by 4 more feet!!!

Charlie Josiah Harper

Born August 18th, 2004

Adopted September 15th, 2010

Levi Preston Harper

Born January 2nd, 2007

Adopted September 15th, 2010

COURT!!!

We are leaving for COURT in 8 minutes!!!! Please be praying that all goes well. Will post details later:) Love to ALL....

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Lots To Do:)

Only 3 full days before we leave to head back across the ocean!!!! Yay! Getting things organized here for our children and packing things for the boys to come HOME with us:) Boy that feels good to say. This has truly been like a pregnancy & we are in the final weeks. Woot! Woot! We continue to see God working everywhere and we are amazed at how He works everything out to make Him more Famous!!! Praise God that He is leading the way!! Please stand beside us in prayer and continue to pray that the waiting period will be waived!!! We have faith and believe that God can make it Happen!

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Connor has a FAMILY!!! YAY!!

If you go back to my earlier posts you will see where I posted a sweet picture of Connor and asked & began praying specifically that he would find his "Forever Family" Well Guess What? He has!!!! and they live 5 minutes from us!!! Woohoo!!! Please pray for the Hogg Family as they begin their journey to bring Connor home....


Here is his sweet face so you can Pray for him



So NOW let's talk about Jayson:) This little guy is 13 months old. He is in Latin America & he needs a Mommy & Daddy... Please PRAY for Jayson to find his FAMILY soon. Maybe you are even the family that God has for this sweet little guy. I LOVE these little cheeks:)

You can find more info here:

Monday, September 6, 2010

Court Date!!!!!

Ladies & Gentlemen
We Have A COURT DATE
Sept. 15th @ 2:30
We are excited to finally be moving forward:) Yay! Our request from all of you faithful prayer warriors is to pray specifically that they WILL waive our waiting period. It has NEVER been done in this region & they have said to not even ask. BUT..... We WILL be asking & making our plea to the judge & requesting the waiting period be waived, because we serve a mighty God and we KNOW that he can make it happen!!! We will keep you posted on the events as these two little guys officially become part of a family...OUR family:)

Friday, September 3, 2010

Just Keep Waiting, Just Keep Waiting......

For those of you that have been totally anxious & checking my blog to see absolutely NOTHING New..... So sorry!! LOL We arrived safely last Sunday & hugged all of our kiddos and showered them with kisses!!! It felt SO good to be HOME:) This week has been filled with adjusting to a new school year, working, and getting things ready for Charlie & Levi to come HOME:) They have petitioned the court for our court date!!! Woohoo!!!! Our facilitators are working hard to get what they call the "Good" judge, so we will wait patiently for them to get our case seen by her. We should have our definite court date on MONDAY!!! Yay! Please continue to pray for all of our family especially our children here and the boys in EE. We can't wait to have everyone together:)

For those of you that have asked about sizes for the boys:

Charlie: Clothing- 4T, 5T (slims)
shoes- size 9 or 10

Levi: Clothing- 2T, 3T (slims)
shoes- size 8