Wednesday, October 31, 2012

2nd Trimester Baby Bump

We are nearing the end of our second trimester with Baby Girl.  So far, second trimester has been harder than first so here's to hoping third trimester is the easiest yet! 

As is to be expected, this pregnancy is flying by (much faster than Caleb's!) and it is hard to believe we are almost into the third trimester already. Baby is fairly active (although not as constant as Caleb was), I'm starting to crave sweets for the first time since becoming pregnant (they were making me sick previously) and I'm definitely starting to feel big. I'm fairly confident she is in a horrible position right now so am working to get her to move!!  I'm not too worried about it though, she still has time to get her act together!.  We have our 4th prenatal appointment next week and we will do the glucose testing and hopefully get a letter from the doctor clearing me to fly through beginning of January.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

We're Moving

We found out last week that we are moving...or rather, we are being moved.  Not by choice and the news came with much tears from this over-emotional-pregnant-with-a-girl mama.  The Landlord who owns our current apartment has decided to sell our apartment so we really have no choice in the matter.  We have lived in this apartment for almost two years (in a few weeks) and we have really liked it. There were a number of things that were really hard moving over here and a number of things that were not as we expected them to be but again and again the past two years we have said "at least we like our apartment!"  Despite things like our purple toilet and the mold and the goofy wallpaper, we have been thrilled to have a bathtub (many apartments here don't), to have an open layout that is conducive to all the people we host in our home and an over-active two year old (most apartments are not very open) , to have three bedrooms, to have a lot of porch space, a kitchen that is nicer than many Korean apartments with lots of cupboards, an oven (not all apartments have one) and a lot of sunshine throughout the day.  We've been spoiled. And our apartment has come to be home to us.

I know in the big scheme of things, a new apartment really isn't a big deal (hey- we have a place to live, right?) but this has felt hard and I am praying the Lord gives me the ability to fully trust Him in this and trust that He will provide and care for us. Will you pray for my heart to trust Him in this?  It is incredibly hard to have no/little say over where you live and where "home" will be.  Will you pray the Church is able to find us a comparable apartment? Will you pray that I can accept wherever we are moved with a good attitude and that we can settle in quickly? Will you pray for all the logistics and timing and for peace in moving (I get really overwhelmed by moving and all it entails). 

The move also comes at a hard time - we are supposed to leave to travel to the States in a little over a month to spend 5 weeks with family. We will return a little over a month from our due date.  It's hard to think about needing to move our whole apartment and get settled into a new one somewhere in that time frame.  The Church does not have a new place for us yet (they are looking) so the ideal (in our minds) I guess would be to find a place and move in the next few weeks - I would really rather not be moved while we are gone OR come home in January and need to move in the coldest month of the year, weeks before bringing a new baby home and needing to arrange everything, unpack and settle in.  And I really, really, don't want to move in February or March!

Your prayers would mean so much in this and are greatly needed!  We are all called to trust the Lord with an uncertain future but sometimes living overseas you realize just how uncertain (and uncontrollable) it is more than you  might Stateside!

Friday, October 12, 2012

God's Provision

I can not think of a time in my life I have felt more tired. All. The. Time. Tired.  Baby Number two is making her presence known that is for sure.  And thus the reason for my lack of blogs.

BUT I did want to write a quick note to share some exciting news:  Steve and I have been wanting to submit our application to adopt to the USCIS in order to get our approval and move forward with our dossier...An approximate $750 step in the adoption process.  We have our homestudy complete and in hand but didn't have the funds and were stalling to make our appointment at the embassy. Just last night we were talking (trying not to stress) over how we could raise this next fee and quick so we could move ahead in the process.

We woke up this morning to an email that 3 people donated this week - to the almost EXACT amount we needed ($725)!!!  The funds were ALREADY IN.  The Lord had provided without us needing to do anything.  We are rejoicing today for His perfect provision and timing.  Also, thanking Him for these 3 donors and for all those who have given already to get us this far.  You will also note that we have passed the $8,000 mark on the thermometer!!  That  means many of you have given in huge ways already.  Thank you really doesn't seem adequate - and isn't! - but we thank you for all the ways you are supporting us and behind us in this.  It really is humbling and exciting to watch the Lord at work through many of you.  Thank you.  We literally could not fund this adoption without you and your support.  Thanks for joining us on this journey!

Korean Family Caricature

Drawn by one of Steve's elementary students he teaches English to on Thursday nights....Complete with baby girl in my tummy and Steve's facial hair.  Made us laugh last night.  

Thursday, October 4, 2012

Happy Birthday, Micah!

Happy Birthday to my all time favorite brother and one of the Very Important Men in my life!  I love you more than you know, always will.  I miss you.  And I pray for you daily.  I hope you know how dearly we love you and are wishing you the happiest of birthdays this year - May it be the best year yet!

At the Zoo, Summer 2011 (Caleb 16 months)

Monday, October 1, 2012

Where are we at with our Adoption?

It is October! Can you believe it? I can't! But I am certainly enjoying the beautiful Korean weather.  October is probably the nicest month out of the whole year here - chilly nights, cool mornings and evenings, bright warm but not hot sunshine during the afternoon, blue skies, few clouds, colorful leaves....It is wonderful.

But time ticks on and we have a baby waiting in Ethiopia!  We have been (actively) in the adoption process 8 months already!! So, where are we at with things?  This week we are going to be re-fingerprinted (the first ones did not work) and then our hope is to head up to the U.S. Embassy this Friday or early next week to apply for our USCIS approval.  We need the U.S. Government to approve us to bring a child into the U.S. and into our family.  They will basically run a background check with our fingerprints, review our home study report and decide if we are "fit" to become parents.  One prayer request specifically with this is that our finances would not be an issue.  Once we hear back from USCIS and are approved, we can submit our dossier to Ethiopia for their review!!

But, WE NEED YOUR HELP!!!  With all your help, we have raised just over $7,000 towards our adoption.  This is HUGE and we are SO THANKFUL for this generosity!  We have truly felt overwhelmed by generosity that has poured in, by your support and often brought to tears at the way the Lord is at work!  However, we have already spent all of this on our homestudy ($2500) and our agency fee ($6,000).  As you can see, we actually now owe our agency some money.  In addition to this, we will need to pay $750 when we apply for approval with the USCIS this week or next.  Once our approval goes through, we will need to pay half of the country fee ($6,000) to submit our dossier and the other half ($6,000) upon accepting our referral.  YIKES! This means we have some prayers to pray, funds to raise and trusting the Lord to do!  This feels overwhelming but I know the Lord can and will do it!  We are praying for these finances to come in quickly so we can move ahead without delaying our process and bring this next baby home to our family.

Will you consider joining us on this journey?  Will you consider financially supporting us in this adoption?  If you have given already but feel the Lord has blessed you with excess, will you consider giving again? Would you also consider sharing our need on your own personal blog, on your facebook, with your friends or family who might be interested in supporting adoption?  For donating information, please click HERE or check out our "Donate" page above.  If you have any questions or concerns at all, please feel free to contact us.  And please, please, be in prayer on our (and our Ethiopian baby's) behalf!  I know the Lord will supply all our needs in this adoption and that if this is His plan for our family, He will accomplish!

Our Lil Sweet Pea!

A short little sneak peak at our little sweet pea....everything looked healthy at our appointment, she was measuring right on target for a February birthday, they counted 10 fingers, 10 toes, two eyes, one nose and one mouth with  no sign of cleft palate (they are BIG into checking that out in Korea), a strong beating heart, lots of "eating/swollowing" motions and a lot of other movement too.  We praise the Lord for this little life He is adding to our family; may that little heart one day know and love Him.

Please pray for a safe remainder of our pregnancy and a healthy baby and mom!