Sunday, December 22, 2013

This time last year...

One year ago today we boarded an airplane bond for Poland.  This airplane would take us on the final steps of the adoption of our son. I can not believe a year has gone by so fast and on Christmas Eve it will have been one year since we were reunited.

As we run about gathering the final things needed for Christmas we have to step back and remember that so many, many years ago God sent His Son to start a journey to "adopted" us.

But when the right time came, God sent his Son, born of a woman, subject to the law. God sent him to buy freedom for us who were slaves to the law, so that he could adopt us as his very own children. And because we are his children, God has sent the Spirit of his Son into our hearts, prompting us to call out, "Abba, Father."
Galatians 4: 4-6

Sunday, December 1, 2013


I hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving and enjoying the start of the Christmas Season!  I just wanted to remind you all that if are going to be ordering anything through Amazon for you Christmas shopping please click on the Amazon banner at the side of this blog before you order.  This little step will fund our adoption!

Thank You and Merry Christmas!

Sunday, October 27, 2013

End of Summer

We had end of Summer/Start of Fall camping trip, aka-Halloween Camping!!!  Little Man loved every minute of his first Halloween Camping.  We were also excited to get to really use our remodeled vintage camper.  We bought this camper right after Halloween Camping last year and have been remodeling it.  My hubby has done an amazing job with this camper since it ended up with more water damage than first thought.

Our weekend started on Friday evening at the camp ground with homemade Brunswick Stew and a campsite outdoor movie.  Saturday was even better with fresh donates made onsite, annual family costume dress up and camp ground costume contest(Yes, We WON! Our theme this year was Toy Story), homemade chilli for dinner, and one final outdoor movie to finish the season!  It was a great weekend with family and friends!

Tomorrow is a big day!  We mail off our I800A for adoption #2! I can not believe we are finally to this step.  The end of paperwork is in sight! 

We also want to at this important time in the adoption process is remember the cost of adoption.  Adoption does not come cheap.  Anyone who has been through it or close to someone who has done it knows the financial burden associated with International Adoption.  For us it has been hard because we are doing this back to back.  We have several fundraisers going.

  1. Puzzle Fundraiser-(see the YouCaring link to the right)A donation of $10 will buy 1 puzzle piece. Your name will be written on that piece so that we will always be able to remember the ones that helped "piece our family together"
  2. Shop on Amazon! This is too easy!  Whenever you want to buy something from Amazon come to our blog and click on one of the Amazon links.  Amazon in turns pays us for advertising!
  3. ThredUP-All you have to do is create an account, order a bag, fill it with cloths your children have out grown, mail it back, wait to get paid, then donate to us!  This is a great way to help a good cause and clean out closets at the same time!
“My friends, adoption is redemption. It’s costly, exhausting, expensive, and outrageous. Buying back lives costs so much. When God set out to redeem us, it killed Him.”-- Derek Loux

Friday, August 30, 2013


My little boy is growing up too fast!!! He started kindergarten this week and I was so excited for him until the moment he got in the car with his TaTa to drive off to school.  I was anxious all day at work to know how his day went and couldn't wait to get home.  He had good first week and is excited each day to go.  I have to brag on him because his teacher is amazed at how well his language skills are.  She can't believe he has only been speaking English for 8 months. 

In other news...We did finally move into our new house(YAY!!).  It is so so nice having more space, especially for toys!  We also had our last home study visit for Adoption #2.  This process is moving right along.  We so bad want our new little one home with us and the closer it gets to getting them home the more we feel it.  It is a little sad to walk past their room that is all ready for them and not see a smiling little face looking back at you.

We are winding down the summer with a few more weekend trips to the lake before the cold weather hits.  But we are looking forward to the Fall and our Annual Halloween Camping Trip

Tuesday, July 23, 2013

A Few Crazy Weeks

Our world has been kinda crazy for a few weeks.  We sold our house and bought a new one.  This should have gone fairly simply(well as simple as home buying goes) right?  Move out of old house, move into new house, TA-DA everyone lives happily ever after.  Yeah Right!  We moved out of our old house(I moved out the old house because dear hubby was out of did he manage that?), then moved in with my parents because we couldn't close on our new house for 3 weeks.  Well we are still at my parents!  Our new house needs some TLC and decided to just get it all done before me move.  So our short 3 week stay has now turned into a 5 week stay and counting.  BUT...the end is in sight!  We should be in our house in 2 weeks!!!!!!!

In other news we have been doing paper work for our home study and dossier for little siblings adoption.  I am amazed at how much simpler and less stressful it seems this time around. 

Little man has been enjoying his summer even in all this craziness!  He rode his first roller coaster and loved it, and has been swimming every chance he gets.   We starting to get ready for kindergarten(I am really not ready for my baby to go to "big school")

I can not believe summer is almost over and the cold weather will be coming. I want more summer!!!!!

Monday, June 3, 2013

Diving into Paperwork and Fundraising

We are diving back into the mounds of paperwork that is needed for international adoption.  This time around it all seem so much simpler and less overwhelming partly because we know what we are doing this time. 

In the previous post I lamented on how we would pay for this adoption.  We have already been so blessed by donations from so so so many generous people.  However we still are far from having this funds needed to complete this adoption.  We are having several fundraisers to help come up with these funds:

1. Puzzle Fundraiser-you can purchase a piece of our puzzle for $10 using the donate link to the right.  Your name will be put on the puzzle piece(s) and the completed puzzle with hang in our home as a reminder of the love people have shown us. If you are interested in this fundraiser just click on the Paypal donate link to the right of your screen and donate $10 for each puzzle piece and include the name you want of the puzzle piece.
2. Join our ThredUp Group-join the ThredUp Group to the left of the screen and donate like new children's clothes to our fundraiser.  You can order a shipping bag through the group, fill it with like-new children's clothes, send it back to ThredUp where it is processed and you are paid for the clothing, then log-in to your ThredUp Account and click on the contribute to groups button and specify the amount you want to donate to our fundraiser.
3. Order through Amazon-as you can see there are several links to Amazon on the blog now.  When you make a purchase when you have gone through one of these links we earn a money.

Again thank you to everyone who is supporting us in growing our family.

Thursday, May 30, 2013

Here We Go Again...

Are we crazy?

We have just completed our international adoption and have been home with our son for just a few months.  However, another child waits for us!!!  We have known that this child existed for over a year. Actually we have know about them from our first trip to Poland.  Our son has a younger sibling. They have just recently become available for adoption and we are going to bring them home.

We(well I) have always wanted 4 children.  Who knows if that will ever happen but I do know that right now we are going to be a family of 4.  This means lots of things are going to be happening. First, we have to get a bigger house.  Our little 2 bedroom home that we have literally put blood, sweat, and tears into remodeling will not fit a family of 4.  So we are moving!  Second, we are diving back into the paperwork of international adoption.  I feel so much better this time around having already done this before and knowing the process.  Third, we are trying to wrap our head around how we are going to pay for this again. We fundraised so much last time and so many people donated money.  How do you do it all again? There is so much more that is going to happen it all can't be put into writing.

So are we crazy?  Many people I am sure think we are, but this is were God is leading us. That means that this plan is perfect even if it seems crazy.

11 For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. 12 Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. 13 You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.
Jeremiah 29:11-13 NIV

Monday, May 20, 2013

6 Months Together

In just a few day we will have been reunited for 6 months and home for 3 months.  Wow time flies!  I can not believe how much our little man brightens our lives.  When we have had a bad day at work that simple hug when you come home makes it all go away. 

We truly can not imagine life without him.  We waited so long for him I still sometimes can't believe he is ours.  I have said before that it all has been worth it. 

Thursday, April 4, 2013


We had a great first Easter with our son!  Little man loved waking up to a basket full of goodies! However the night before we had a lengthy discussion about how it was ok that the Easter Bunny comes in the house to leave the basket. 

I have returned to work and Little Man is going to preschool.  He loves preschool which makes this momma very happy and going to work each day so much easier.  I still wish I could be home with him everyday and miss him all day while I am at work. 

Little Mans English improves so much each day it amazes us! He is a truly amazing little boy and we couldn't be more proud of him.  Each day I still can not believe that he is my son and that we are blessed to be his parents.

Adoption is truly a miracle as each child is.  The process is long and hard but worth it.  Things are not always a perfect fairytale but the good outweighs the bad 3,000 to 1.

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Snow In March

We have SNOW!! To tell the truth I have seen enough snow this year. We had snow almost everyday that we were in Poland.  Little Man has enjoyed getting to really be able to play in the snow this time. 

We had our first post-placement visit and it went very smoothly! After having all the other the social worker visits it is now a piece of cake.  She asked how Little Man was transitioning and adjusting as well as how we are doing. 

Little Man is doing very well meeting all these new people.  He has taken everything in stride thanks in part to his outgoing personality.  We just can't imagine life without him and it seems like he has always been part of our family.

Saturday, February 23, 2013

Welcom Home!!

We have been home 1 week and I cant hardly believe it!  I have done a terrible job keeping up with blogging during our second trip. But I will try catch everybody up.

We moved to Warsaw and stayed in an apartment that was great!  It is very central to everything and close to the bus stops.  We visited lots of museums (Warsaw Uprising, Copernicus Science Center, Polish Army, Museum of Technology, Palace of Science and Culture Viewing Terrace).  We also walked all over New and Old Town.  My hubby took thousands of pictures( I am not kidding).  Warsaw is a beautiful city and full of so much history. Magda took us to this wonderful doughnut shop and it is must while staying in Warsaw.  The doughnuts are warm, fresh and put Krispy Kreme to shame.  We went several times during our stay.  We also got to spend some time with another adoptive family!  It was so nice to get to talk with them and share experiences.  The last two weeks of our stay both grandmothers came to stay with us.  We took a three day trip to Krakow to see the salt mine and Auschwitz.  Auschwitz was an experience I think everyone should do.  It is so so so sad and horrible but I think it is important that the world not forget that this happened.   The salt mine is really a wonderful tour.  But be prepared to walk and go down lots of stairs!  Our son loved the salt mine!  He wanted to run to each new section of the mine and since he was the only child on the tour the tour guide gave him extra attention.  After our trip to Krakow my hubby went home a few days early to get our house back in order.  So the grandma's, little man, and myself explored Warsaw some more, ate at some great little local restaurants, and started packing to come home.  We also had to make two trips to the US Embassy to get the paperwork for little man to enter the United States. The first visit there was for the Embassy interview and to drop off paperwork and the second was to pick up the paperwork(the wonderful packet that you hear so much about that is the ticket to getting your child into the USA)(Remember to keep the packet completely intact just how it was given to you by the US Embassy).

That was our stay in Warsaw.  The trip home started out with a bang.  Our first flight was cancelled.  This was supposedly announced but since we don't speak Polish we didn't know until we noticed that there was no plane at the gate.  We then had to wait in line for 2 1/2 hours with our luggage and a very active 4 year old.  Little man handled the wait better than the 3 adults with him.  So once we got all the new tickets for our new flights we had to rush back through all of check-in and airport security.  But after that the rest of day went smoothly.  Little man slept for 5 of the 9 hour flight from Germany which made this momma very happy.  We went through customs without a hitch and welcomed the newest citizen of the USA.

This first week home has gone unexpectedly well.  We prepared for a little boy who was going to be jet-lagged, cranky, and just plain out of sorts from such a big change.  Little man has been jet-lagged but he still our happy little boy.  He has adjusted wonderfully!!  He is going to bed without crying or a fight(which never happened while we were in Poland).  We are still having trouble with him not wanting to eat a full meal at times but this has improved greatly since we first got him. 

Little man went for a check-up with our pediatrician this week too.  I wanted him to get a full check-up as soon as possible with my own pediatrician.  He also went to the dentist and eye doctor. He did very well with each visit and the concerns we have had have been looked at and are now being monitored.  Yes, it is a lot for a little one in one week but we wanted to make sure everything was fine since we did not really have any record of a dentist or eye check up and we had concerns in each of these areas we wanted looked at. I am very glad that we got it all over with and our minds are at ease. Little man does have a follow up appointment with the pediatrician in about a month but the other doctors will see him for regular check ups.

We are so, so, so, so, so, so, so glad to be home. We still can't believe that after all this time we are finally parents.  It was worth every blood draw, hormone injection, ultrasound, paper cut, stamp, social worker visit, form, fingerprint, phone call, plane ride, train ride, step, and dollar. 

Thursday, January 17, 2013


We are in Warsaw and officially of a family of 3!  The trip to Warsaw was stressful with 2 huge suitcases and 4 year old active little boy.  The train car we reserved to sit in had heating issues so we were moved to another and to search for a seat!  By the end of the train ride (4hours due to train being behind and then slow) we had to maneuver our luggage and child out the train.  I thought we packed pretty light but not light enough for the train.  Everyone stared at our suitcases and us(probably because we were talking in English and our child in Polish). Actually on the second part of that, anywhere we go people question why Conor speaks Polish and we don't.

Our apartment is very nice and close to pretty much everything.  I highly recommend this apartment(there is link under my travel tips section).  The owner is extremely nice and gone out of the way to accommodate us.  It is also a plus that a bakery is just below our apartment and it is wonderful!

The court hearing went very smoothly. The judge was very very nice.  I was pretty sure I might throw up from my nervousness.  The hearing is pretty straight forward they mainly ask questions about how bonding has gone, if feel we feel an attachment to our son, can we provide for him, etc?  But we were very prepared for the court hearing from Magda and the lawyer.

Thank you to everyone who has been with us through this journey.  Your prayers, hugs, and support has gotten us through this.

Friday, January 11, 2013

6 Days!

We have six days (counting today)left until our court date and our move to Warsaw!  We are really looking forward to going to Warsaw for several reasons.  It means that we are officially a family of 3! Our apartment has a washer, dryer, and bathtub(I have become a real pro at washing cloths in the sink). There is a Hard Rock Cafe(Sean is dying to have a steak).  There will hopefully be more stuff to do! Our moms are coming to stay with us!  

The second visit from the social worker went very well.  The visits are very similar to the home study visits.  This visit the social worker wanted to know more of what we had learned about our son(things he likes and dislikes).  She also wanted to know how we were handling things like temper tantrums and our sons sleeping problems.  My advise for these visits is to try to be calm and remember you surveyed the home study visits!

With it being winter here it is hard to find indoor things to do in the small town we are in.  Also walking everywhere in the cold doesn't help.  We have been able to find several activities.  There is an indoor water park that is really nice and inexpensive(about $3 for 2 hours).  We did learn that the water parks here won't let guys wear the normal American board short style swim trunks.  So we did have to buy bathing suites for the boys(speedo style shorts!) We are also hitting up the mall a ton.  It is a short walk there and it is warm.  We usually just walk around and look in a few stores and pick up some grocery items from the grocery located in the mall.  We walked to the local museum which was an interesting experience.  The museum had two main sections the first was a combination of the history of wine and the town history. The other was a section of medieval torture(WHAT!)  Needles to say we didn't check out the second section of that museum.  We also have gone to the Palm House.  It is really great place to explore.  There is restaurant and cafe located in it. You can also just go and explore it(which is what we did).  They have huge tanks of different fish(including one with Puranas) and turtles.  You can ride the elevator to the top and get a great view of the entire town!  I really wish we were here in the summer so we could explore the vineyard that surrounds it.

We really miss home and can not wait to be back on American soil.  We miss:
Our bed!
Grocery shopping at home
A washing machine and dryer
TV shows in English
Our car
Soft Bread
Rectangular pillows
Family and Friends
Mostly just the comforts of our house

We have also learned several things while here:
Poland version of Walmart is just as crazy as Walmart
McDonalds here has some very different menu items than home
It is almost impossible to find fingernail clippers
Also can't find belts for kids
Every women wears skinny jeans and ankle boots
Can only get milk by the liter(which means we get milk almost everyday)
Food is packaged smaller than at home
You can still get Pepsi Twist!
The bakery is awesome! We love going to the bakery and seeing what treats we can get.

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Tata and Mama

We are all together and have been for almost 1 week.  I haven't been able to post trying to keep up with a very active 4 year old.  We are enjoying Poland so far but miss home so very much!  I want to be able  to sleep in my own bed really bad.  Our apartment is nice (this is our second apartment, the first was nice but was too expensive so my hubby found something else) but the bed is killing my back.  Also I would love to have a bathtub but those are few and far between in Poland.

We have been blessed for nice weather so far that allows us to walk to the store and explore around town.  However with so many holidays all at once we have had to spend several days hanging out in our apartment.

We have had our first visit with the social worker here in Poland and it went very well.  We have one more meeting with her before our court date in a couple of weeks.

Our son has a great personality and is easy going.  But we have had a couple of pouting moments when he isn't allowed to do something or if a toy is taken away because he threw it(we are working on that habit).  He does get frustrated when he is trying to tell us something and we don't understand.  I actually think that when we are trying to get him to say something in English (like the names of animals) he thinks we are crazy because he gets very firm with us and tells us the name in Polish.  The language barrier is very frustrating for all of us.  Last night he decided that he would refuse to try and learn the English word for objects and would simply cross his arms and turn away from us.  Bed and bath time have been fairly easy.  He does wake up crying during the night but that is far better than we had expected.  I was fully prepared for full out breakdowns over bed and bath.  The worst night so far has been New Years Eve. Poland goes all out!  It started 3 hours before midnight with a few fireworks and then for 30 minutes after it was constant.  So our sound asleep little boy and myself were jolted from bed.  Poor boy was completely terrified!  Even after we opened the curtain to show him that it was fireworks he continued to cry.  Eventually with the distraction of some cartoons(they are very distracting since he doest get to watch them very often) and the fireworks stoping he was calm enough to go back to bed.

We are going to go exploring today and try a local pizza place the social worker recommended.  I hope that the great start to 2013 will continue and that waiting families get that special call for their referral!