Last week our family was also blessed to go on a vacation to Disneyland with my parents and brother and sisters. My sister, Lisa, gifted us with this trip shortly after Lily passed away to give us something to look forward to, and we really did! It was a wonderful time and the kids especially had a blast. Below is a picture of all of us kids on Splash Mountain, J*'s face is priceless! It was a great way to spend our Thanksgiving vacation!
Another very exciting thing happened while we were at Disneyland! Our caseworker called and scheduled our first homestudy interview for mid-December! This is another big step in the process and we are really excited to move forward! This appointment will be to go over our Taylor Johnson Temperament Analysis results. From what I've heard from other couples, the answers we gave and the results will help our caseworker have an idea of who we are as people, as parents, and as a couple, and give us lots of topics to discuss! I am really excited to continue the process of our adoption.
Our December fundraiser, if you remember, is the Photo Sessions on December 3rd. All of our sessions are booked and we are SO blessed by that! We are saving up now for the remainder of our Match Book fee, then will be saving for our final adoption placement fee, which will be due upon placement of our little one!
Our January fundraiser will be a HUGE YARD SALE! I say huge in a hopeful way, but I have already started receiving donations for the yard sale, and our garage is filling up quick! If you have anything to donate, let me know!
February will be a Raffle Event, more details to come, but it will be a lot of fun and a great chance to get some very cool prizes while helping us reach our fundraising goal.
Yesterday was Thanksgiving, and Josh and I are keenly aware of how much we have to be grateful for. We are blessed beyond comprehension, and our God continues to pour blessings on us each and every day in so many ways. I would like to take a few paragraphs and thank Him here for just a few things we are thankful for!
-Our marriage, which is a complete miracle in itself, showing first-hand God's healing power, grace, forgiveness, and immense LOVE for us both!
-Our babies, ALL OF THEM!!! Each one has blessed us tremendously! E*, who is our precious lover girl, constantly building us up and telling me how pretty I am and how I am the best mommy God has ever created! She is such a huge piece of my heart, and Josh and I can't get enough of her. J*, who is the sweetest, funniest, goofiest child on this earth. We are so thankful for the laughter he brings into this world, intentionally and unintentionally! My sweet Lily, who taught me and Josh how much love can exist in two short hours and two tiny feet, and who gave us something incredible to look forward to when we leave this earth. For my tiny lost little ones who I never knew or saw or held, but who changed me and my relationship with the Lord for the better, and who gave me an irreplaceable way to relate to people I've never met or barely know on an incredibly personal level.
-Our families! Josh and I have AMAZING families on both sides. They are supportive, loving, funny, godly, wonderful people who we love so much. I hit the in-law JACKPOT with Josh's family, and I couldn't be more grateful for the mom and dad and sister (and now brother-in-law) that I inherited when I married Josh. They are incredible, and I'm so glad they live so close! On top of that, my parents and brother and sister and soon-to-be sister-in-law are huge blessings to our little family, each of them loving us passed what is expected and always going above and beyond to support us and love on us. We are so glad each person lives so close to us and we get to see each other on a regular basis. Our extended families are huge and amazing as well, and Josh and I know how blessed we are to have been placed is such incredible families.
-Our home, which we do not take for granted and are so thankful to have! We love our house and hope to be there for a very, very long time! (Josh would like to die there...but only because that's how much he hates moving!)
-Our friends. I am not sure how I got the friends I did, but I am quite confident that I have the best, most amazing, and wonderful friends on this earth. I am so blessed to have so many people in my life that love us and can make me laugh so hard my stomach hurts. They have been there for me and Josh through some incredibly difficult times, and have not only stuck around but also been our support and source of comfort and speakers of Truth when we need to hear it the most. You know who you are, and we LOVE YOU!!!
-Our God. As E* would say, best for last! How do you express enough gratitude for our Lord? I don't think it is possible. But I know He knows my heart, and knows how utterly thankful I am to have a God who loves me personally, who cries with me and laughs with me and feels everything I feel. A God who does not change and will never leave my side. He is the giver of all the other things I'm thankful for!
I hope you all had a wonderful Thanksgiving as well! If you are praying for us, please cover our birth mom in prayer. As we get further and further in this adoption process, it is more and more likely that our baby is being carried right now by a very brave and amazing woman who desperately needs our prayers. Pray for her continued strength, for wisdom, for God to provide her needs and comfort her in a very difficult time. Pray that God will cross our paths in a way that will show how awesome He is! As always, pray for God to provide the funds necessary to complete this adoption, and that the process will continue to go as smoothly as it has so far. He has granted us a whole lot of patience so far, because Josh and I feel totally at peace with His timing, which isn't exactly normal for us! ;)
We will keep you posted, and once again, thank you all so much for following our journey and praying with us!
A Thanksgiving photo of our family...praying next year we'll be a family of five!