Friday, December 30, 2011

ARTEM'S FAMILY PART TWO!!

Before I conduct my lil' exclusive interview with Michelle

ARTEM'S FAMILY PART TWO!!

Before I conduct my lil' "exclusive" interview with Michelle Mosley, Artem's mama, let me just say- I dreamed about this day for so long. Literally dreamed about the day when I would be asking Artem's mama questions about how they decided to rescue their son, what life would be like for him when they brought him home, etc. So pretty much this interview is like a dream come true for me...forgive me if my words are sort of running together like one big run-on sentence, I do that when I'm wildly ecstatic!

Are you ready??? Here we go!!


EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW WITH MICHELLE MOSLEY:
I just love the sound of that.


1) How did you come to decide to adopt?

2) I hear there are a lot of families from Kearney adopting, can you tell me about this?

3)Tell us all about what life will be like for Artem...

 4) Do all of your friends see the strong resemblance between Artem and you and your husband?!?!

ARTEM'S FAMILY!!!

I'm waiting on an updated photo from Artem's mama, but please go HERE to read all about the Mosley family!! She's also promised me an exclusive interview (lol I just made up the exclusive part, but there WILL be an interview!) so keep checking back for it!


..doesn't he LOOK like his family??? so cool!!
HAPPY DAY!!!!!

Thursday, December 29, 2011

the pearl of great price

I told myself I wasn't going to ask readers to donate to anything for a loooong time- give everyone a break from fundraising for orphans for awhile, and just post photos and letters to Lily.


And then last night as I was watching the video on ABC news about Kareen and thinking about how so much has happened from last year to this...it just hit me how one little series of events led to her rescue. And how Brent and Kareen were facing the same future last year- and somehow their paths diverged...and now Kareen is living out a dream come true, while Brent is living out a nightmare. It just broke my heart.

So I wrote this post last night, and cried as I wrote it, and begged God for a way to help Brent.



And when I woke up and checked my email from my phone in bed...because I love to do that just so I can see if Michelle Z at Reece's Rainbow is sending any love my way, i.e. Artem has a family (one of the happiest days of my life!) or Robyn has a family (still waiting on that!) ...anyhoo, there was a lovely little email- make that TWO emails - from friends offering an incredible prize for a giveaway for Brent...




Does anyone remember me blogging about this fabulous online shop a few weeks ago?? It's called The Vintage Pearl, and I have to repent of lust every time I visit there. And in that post a few weeks ago I hinted rather obnoxiously to my husband that all I wanted for Christmas was this...


And guess what? Sweet guy was paying attention. Because the very first little package that fell out of my stocking on Christmas morning was a custom made mother of pearl necklace exactly like the one above, only engraved with ten initials...JC, JC, ME, TK, JS, CB, AJ, NS, JP, and LA... all of my children.




And yes, I cried.



After I got done screaming.



There's a reason I married that guy;)


SOOO, those wonderful little emails this morning were from two mamas wanting to help write a different story for Brent.  And guess what they offered??

 $100 Gift Certificate to The Vintage Pearl.


Who says Christmas is over???


And speaking of pearls....



Again, the kingdom of heaven is like unto a merchant man, seeking goodly pearls: Who, when he had found one pearl of great price, went and sold all that he had, and bought it.
Matthew 13:45-46

Jesus told that parable to describe what the kingdom of Heaven was like...something worth more than anything, something we should give everything we have for.

He spoke another time about what the kingdom of Heaven was like...

But Jesus said, allow little children and forbid them not, to come unto me: for of such is the kingdom of heaven. Matthew 19:14

Did you catch that? His kingdom belongs to little children. The innocent, the humble, the ones who trust simply. And if I were going to sell all I had and give it to that pearl of great price, just like the man in that scripture...


I would give my gain to purchase this pearl.

Because Brent is that pearl.

He is one little boy, waiting across the ocean for someone to rescue him, he is alone and most likely frightened, and without us he has no hope.

We're trading pearls for pearls today here on A Perfect Lily.


Donate $10 or more to Brent's grant fund on Reece's Rainbow and be entered to win a $100 Gift Certificate to the Vintage Pearl. Blog about the giveaway- and blog from your heart! - and receive another chance to win. Facebook the giveaway and receive another chance to win.

And just because I love her so much, AFTER you donate to Brent, go donate on Jane's blog to Bobby, and receive a fourth chance to win. (And all Jane is asking for Bobby is ONE DOLLAR.) There is a fantastic and amazing story Jane and I have to share in the months ahead...one we're not at liberty to share yet... but when we do, you will be doing backflips like we were tonight. Okay, maybe not backflips, but definitely cartwheels. Jane on one continent, and me on another. Simultaneously and screaming at the same time. Just another God-woven story to tell, but you'll have to wait to hear it for a month or two! ;)


Update!  another prize has been added in, IF you give $1 to Bobby on Jane's blog after giving to Brent first- go HERE to see the beautiful art work Jane is offering, valued at $250! Leave a comment on Jane's blog saying you donated to both Brent and Bobby to be entered to win.


UPDATE!!! A new prize has been donated....


Kindle Keyboard 3G, Free 3G + Wi-Fi

 valued at $139 on Amazon

How awesome is that?? (Thank you, Holly, for your heart for orphans!!)

Meanwhile....



Please spread the word that Brent needs a family!

Leave a separate comment for each thing you do: donate to Brent, blog, facebook and donate to Bobby ...a winner will be drawn on Friday, January 6th and announced on Saturday, January 7th.



And the King shall answer and say to them, Truly I say to you, Inasmuch as you have done it to one of the least of these my brothers, you have done it to me. Matthew 25:40

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

a different story

Dear Friends,

If you're a part of our Down syndrome blogging community, you've no doubt been following with joyful hearts the fabulous news coverage given to a little girl named Mia Kareen. Her parents, Kris and Kecia Cox, traveled last spring to Eastern Europe to adopt her.

Last December we featured two beautiful little girls in our Home For Christmas iPad Giveaway- Olga and Kareen. So many readers here gave faithfully and liberally to Kareen's grant fund on Reece's Rainbow, in the hopes of attracting a family for her.

And it worked.

Not two weeks after the giveaway ended, Kecia wrote to me saying she saw Kareen's face here and knew she found her daughter.

There are some stories in life that seem more like fairy tales, that seem just too good to be true- and this is one of them.



And there are some stories in life that are so horrendous, so unimaginable, that it's easier to just close our eyes to them and pretend they didn't happen.

This is Brent...


This is Brents' description on Reece's Rainbow:

Boy, Born June 21, 2005


Look how darling this little one is!   Brent is HEALTHY, with no noted heart conditions.    He is active and an Orphanage favorite.   He is considered lower functioning than  Spencer or Kareen, but will truly blossom like a flower in a loving family environment.   

Brent waited at his orphanage for a family to come and rescue him...waited and waited until he finally turned 6 years old. His description states he was an orphanage favorite- perhaps the reason he was able to wait longer than the typical age of four or five when children are transferred to a mental institution for life.

But the day came when - orphanage favorite or not - Brent's transfer papers were drawn, and they came and took him away from the only home he'd ever known...because now, listed under his photo are these words...


Brent has been transferred
Please give Brent a chance!


I started the Angel Tree project this year advocating for two little angels- Artem and Robyn. I added Ty in when my friend Julie decided to adopt him along with Peter. As many of you know, Ty become unavailable for adoption shortly after the Kehm's traveled to rescue their boys.

I asked Andrea Roberts for help choosing another child, and she gave me Brent. 

Last year, when our giveaway for Olga became so successful that it was apparent she would find a family soon, I asked Andrea for the name of a child who needed our help...and she gave me Kareen. An orphanage favorite herself, Kareen was facing transfer- and the orphanage directors had specifically asked for someone to help find her a family.

Two children, facing the same nightmare of a future. One was spared, and the other is living out that nightmare today.

And if you think those words are sensational, and you think that ugliness and pain do not truly exist in the world, go take a look at the institution featured in this video- filmed in the same area where little Brent lives - and ask yourself if that is any place for a little boy? Or read this post, written by the mother of a little boy who was surviving in one of those institutions- surviving, because there is no way you can call it living in any true sense of the word -and ask yourself the same thing I'm asking myself- what can I do to help?

I don't have any fancy giveaways today. No iPads or cameras or gift cards or prizes. I just want to put before you the face of an innocent little boy, every bit as deserving of a family as Kareen, and ask you to help.


Please spread the word- Brent needs a family. Please ask yourself if you could be that family. If you are able to, please donate to Brent's grant fund on Reece's Rainbow, so that when a family does come forward for him, they are that much closer to rescuing him.

Please help write a different story for Brent.

Sunday, December 25, 2011

EXCITING NEWS!!

I'm sure so many of you know about this amazing news, but just in case there are some who don't...this is from Kecia (Mia's Mama!)


 Last Feb. just after we had committed to adopt Mia we received a call from Andrea at Reece's Rainbow saying that she had been contacted by ABC world news and they wanted to do a story about Reece's Rainbow and wanted to follow a family in the process from start to finish. ABC decided to follow our journey to Mia.

They came with us to Ukraine which was quite an adventure for them, and we were glad to have a few more English friends for a few days. We had lots of fun stories that we couldn't share at the time because we couldn't say they were with us. they were there with us when we met Mia for the first time and stayed with us for a few days there. Then when we got home with Mia they came to our home for a few days to film Mia in her new family and do a follow up.

we had to keep this a secret for the last 10 months but now the story is supposed to air TOMORROW NIGHT MONDAY DEC 26 ON ABC WORLD NEWS TONIGHT WITH DIANE SAWYER. I believe it is on at 5:30 mst so set your dvr and spread the word!



If you're new here and you have no idea who Mia or Kecia are, you can go back and read this post- Mia (Kareen) is one of the first orphans we advocated for last December...and now she's home with her forever family!

video platformvideo managementvideo solutionsvideo player


I'm so excited to see what comes of this special Monday night- what a wonderful chance for people to hear about orphans on Reece's Rainbow!!!

Friday, December 23, 2011

is it worth it?

This is a difficult post to write...it's not a typical letter to Lily or an update on a milestone she just met. It's not a fundraiser or an appeal to give to orphans. It's just me blogging from my heart.

I've been praying and thinking about a lot of issues for a few weeks..if you're a regular reader here and you read my post called risks, it hinted at some of the things I've been wrestling through. And hopefully you got the point at the end: that although I've been struggling, I do believe the risks we take in life are worth it, even if the end result was not something we gambled for.

One of the risks I mentioned was orphan advocacy. If you've been reading Lily's blog since the beginning, you know that much of my writing shifted a year ago, from journaling my feelings and journey with Lily and her diagnosis of Down syndrome, to writing about orphans with Down syndrome in Eastern Europe and many other nations of the world. These orphans have no hope for a family or a future without the generous donations of people who read about them, and it's been my hope that by sharing their plight I can somehow help them find families...even if we can't adopt.

I've read about adoptions gone wrong on other blogs, but up until this month I'd never experienced it in the children I advocate for. And to be honest when I started reading about other adoptions that didn't have such a pretty ending as the ones I've blogged about, I began to get very nervous about asking people to give.

If your family is anything like our family, sometimes finances require a lot of faith. Some months in the Rice household we honestly have to just believe God to help us through, and this year's economy hasn't helped much. Don't get me wrong- God is always faithful to provide, and even when we think we're struggling, we are so much better off than most of the world.

But in light of that struggle, I know how hard it can be to make a decision to just give your hard earned money away. If you met me in real life you would probably laugh at the contrast you saw in my blog personality versus my real-life-personality. I'm the mom who never wants to ask anyone to babysit or do nursery at church. I hate asking people for favors, and I absolutely will never ever ask anyone to donate to something if I have to do it verbally. But my little bloggy is a different story- because writing has always been one of my greatest passions, and I don't have to look anyone in the eye when I plead from my heart- give to these children.

So here's where I've been struggling- I don't like asking people to give when I can't guarantee the outcome. If I ask readers to give and give to a particular child, and through no fault of Reece's Rainbow or the adopting family or anyone else involved, that child becomes unavailable for adoption - I am very concerned about the people who gave. I don't want anyone feeling that they gave in vain, or questioning what they gave to. Because as I said, we know what it means to sacrifice other things to give.


I talked a lot of these things through with an experienced blogger and adoptive mama last week. She made this statement and it really stuck with me- adoption is a moving target. There are bumps in the road, sometimes unexpected detours, and sometimes there is a complete new destination than the one originally planned. (and I know I just completely mixed my metaphors there;)) Just as with any parenting journey, there are no guarantees.

I've been pregnant 13 times...only 10 of those pregnancies ended with a healthy baby in my arms. Were those other three pregnancies worth the risk, even though I'll never see those babies til Heaven? Absolutely. If I would have decided 17 years ago that two back-to-back miscarriages hurt so much that I never wanted to try again for more children, I would have missed out on Tyler, Jonathan, Caleb, Abigail, Noah and Jackson. And if I weighed those risks again after losing a baby two years ago and decided there was too much potential hurt involved...I wouldn't have Lily.


So what I'm trying to say is...I can't guarantee a happy ending for every child I advocate for. I've heard of parents who raised all the money they needed for a child, sacrificed and planned and restructured their entire lives to adopt- and the child died before they got there. We live in an imperfect world inhabited by imperfect people. It's just reality that things happen beyond our control, and even when we pray and have total confidence that things are going to go the way we planned, life has a way of proving us wrong.


Adoption is a moving target- but so is life.


So this is the story behind the story...the reason I wrote that letter to Lily about risks.

I had incredibly high odds of having a baby with Down syndrome, given my age and her heart defect and other soft markers. One in three, I believe were my odds at our 20 week ultrasound. I looked those odds in the face and said she is worth it. Every tear cried, every midnight prayer offered up, every sudden plunge into the unknown on that roller coaster of a pregnancy, was worth having my beautiful baby girl placed in my arms and knowing she was mine.


Are the risks high in orphan advocacy? Is it worth asking people to see the need, see the child behind the picture, give even when it hurts, when we know that sometimes the end result is not what we had planned for?


Lily wasn't what I planned for. I asked God to give me a baby without Down syndrome- fervently prayed before all of my pregnancies for a baby with no chromosomal "problems". And God gave me Lily. I believe that with all my heart.


And I can't pretend that woven into that intricate pattern, this design called my life, there wasn't a golden and beautiful thread called orphan advocacy. Sometimes that unfinished and intricate design looks a little messy on this side of Heaven. Sometimes we wrestle with the Creator- because we wanted the design to look like this and not the way it's turning out.

And maybe my eternal-optimist-of-a-husband has rubbed off on me all these years, but I do believe at the end of the day it's all good.


Now all glory to God, who is able, through his mighty power at work within us, to accomplish exceedingly, abundantly more than we might ask or think. Ephesians 3:20

 Is it worth it?

 

Photobucket

Kareen, before adoption

Kareen today


 Peter's orphanage picture

Peter at the orphanage today...court date the day after Christmas, Gotcha date (prayerfully!) January 6th !


And thank you, Mandy Rhodes for answering that question today...is it worth it??


Samuel and Joseph last year



THEY are worth it.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

getting it right

Two videos to share today...

Both just demonstrating that true wisdom in life is getting the essentials right.



(thank you to Jonana and Ben for sharing this next one with me :))

Artem

I can't say yet who his family is, but if you want to help them

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

risks

Dearest Lily,

It's been a whole month since I've journaled to you, baby girl. While life has been filled with the busyness of Christmas preparations and therapy and a wedding and company and family and you, there's been little time for sitting down and pouring out my heart here. But honestly, I've had so many thoughts brewing in my mind that it feels like I have written them down somewhere. Thoughts about parenting and adoption and orphans and Down syndrome and life that just spill over into my prayers these days, like one continual thread, and it's all woven so tightly together that I don't even know where my thoughts end and my prayers begin sometimes..


I've had a challenging month emotionally, Lily. I've written about it before, but I don't do very well with change. Your older brother Josiah moved out this month...left our home and married his best friend in the same weekend, and I'd be lying if I said I handled it all like a seasoned mother. I felt the same pulling of my heartstrings in two different directions that I did when Jason left home and got married three years ago...joy and expectation at welcoming a new daughter into the family, and sorrow and a bit of fear about him leaving our family and starting his own. I wrestled with those feelings all weekend- sometimes I think there's something wrong with me, Lily. I wonder a lot if I just love my kids too much- or does every mama go through these intense feelings when a child leaves home? And I guess I thought it would be easier this time, having done it once already.


And yet I learned some lessons from my first experience with those changes three years ago. The most important was that I have to choose to put my mind on good things.  

Whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable--if anything is excellent or praiseworthy--   this is my mantra this month.

And seeing the love in your brother's eyes as he watched his beautiful bride walk down the aisle is one of the pure and noble and truly lovely things I've fixed my my mind on again and again. I am so blessed to be his mama, so very blessed.



And that mantra was etched on my heart the weekend of Josiah's wedding, as events unfolded concerning the adoption of a little boy who I poured my heart and prayers into. I found myself vacillating between grief over Ty and his family and joy and relief for Peter.


And isn't life just like that sometimes, Lily? We wrestle with the conflicts and turbulence that life hands us, knowing that although we can experience the grace and mercy of a loving God, we also know that we're not in Heaven yet. I think much of our grief and fear is a result of losing sight of that simple fact- things on this side of Heaven are not always the Father's perfect will. If they were, we'd be there already. But we do know that He works all things together for the good- good and bad - and even if it takes til eternity to see that happen, that is what we place our confidence in.




Things here won't make sense if I keep expecting it all to work out perfectly. Horrible tragedies occur every day- and none of it is the will of God. We live in an imperfect world, where atrocities and holocausts and children left to die in orphanages are not at all what God had planned, and if I attribute those acts to a gracious and loving God, I accuse him of something worse than child abuse. But if I put free will into the mix- the fact that God has given us each a will to choose between good and evil- and factor into that a loving Savior who can somehow redeem my failures and inadequacies if I give them to Him...and taking that a step further, if I put my trust in a God who sees all- good and evil- I can trust that at the end of this life He will make right come out right. Not everything gets resolved here.


Which brings me to another conflict of my soul- the risks.

Because life is a risk when you think about it, isn't it, Lily? Getting married, finding a career, starting a family, parenting- it's all a risk. There are no guarantees, and every one of our decisions, no matter how carefully calculated or prayed about, can result in an outcome we didn't plan for.



I remember the day my doctor slid a piece of paper across the table with calculated risks printed out carefully before me. Odds of a woman my age giving birth to a baby with Down syndrome were high, much higher than just a few years previously, when I was pregnant with your brother Jackson.

But I was willing to take that "risk", the risk that I would give birth to a baby who was different in many ways than my previous nine children...because I gambled on a God who knows all and who will not give His children a stone when they ask for bread. And I'm so glad I took that chance, Lily- that chance that you might be more to us than anyone could have told us, and in spite of the risks and challenges that extra chromosome presents, you're worth it all.


I've had my heart hurt more than a little this month when it comes to risk taking in orphan advocacy as well. I get my emotions and thoughts and prayers so wrapped up in the children we pray and give for, and sometimes things don't turn out the way we'd hoped or planned. Sometimes things happen that have me questioning everything, and wondering where that perfect and all-knowing Father is, the One I've placed my trust in to work it all out. Sometimes my heart is so heavy with grief that I just don't know how to sort it all out...and again it comes down to this:

Whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable--if anything is excellent or praiseworthy--think on these things.






and this:

And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them.



Is it all worked out here? Everything working together for the good?



We're not in Heaven yet, dearest Lily.

Honestly I don't have an answer for why some things happen the way they do. I don't understand how entire cultures can place babies like you in orphanages to die, why children who share your chromosome are sometimes neglected so greatly that their own bodies refuse to grow, lacking not only nutrition but love and care and hope. I don't understand why a mom can travel across the ocean to rescue her sons, and have one of those sons become unavailable to her because of someone else's unproven motives. I am struggling- yes struggling, Lily- with the why's of it all.



And isn't that true of all of life?

For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places.

And sometimes those high places are the hidden corners of our minds, the battleground for truth, where we find that eternal conflict raging, and we struggle to reconcile life and what we know of it with God, and who we believe Him to be.


But I've determined, sweet Lily, that I am not going to let this life define God.

Sometimes life is hard but God is good - and we falter when we mix those two things up.

And when it comes down to it, we all take risks in life. We took a risk when we married, we took a risk every time we conceived and bore a child, my children are taking a risk as they enter the adoption process, I am taking a risk when I put my heart on the line for the children I advocate for, but in the end it is all worth it.

Because there is a God in Heaven who sees all and knows all, and somehow, although in my finite mind I can't figure it all out, HE IS GOOD.


You will keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on you: because he trusts in you. Isaiah 26:3




Loving my Savior, and loving you,

Mama oxox

Monday, December 19, 2011

a message from Lily

Mama has been so busy shopping, baking and decorating for Christmas that she's neglected my blog a little bit..


She has lots of cute photos of me to post, but she's running out the door to pick up our Christmas cards...


Leave a comment if you missed me!!!


Love,

Lily

a message from Lily

Mama has been so busy shopping, baking and decorating for Christmas that she's neglected my blog a little bit..


She has lots of cute photos of me to post, but she's running out the door to pick up our Christmas cards...

Saturday, December 17, 2011

ARTEM HAS A FAMILY!!!!!!!!!!!!

It has been a long ten months waiting for this day....


... our sweet boy has now officially been moved to the My Family Found Me page. I almost started to think this day would never come. 

Thank you to each and every reader who prayed for and gave to Artem....

And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me. Matthew 25:40

HAPPY HAPPY HAPPY DAY!!!

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Pure Love Giveaway 2 winners!

This is admittedly one of my favoritest parts of hosting giveaways...announcing the winners.

It takes me several hours to write down the names of all who entered...you read that right- several hours - because not everyone leaves comments on the giveaway post ;) And I don't want anyone to miss out on a chance to win, so I scour every post for the past 2 and a half weeks to make sure I don't miss anyone...and some people combine entries in one comment instead of leaving separate comments for each entry. And sometimes, being the accounting genius that I am, I number every name and get to #369 and realize I skipped ten numbers back at 270...so I go back and re-number every name. Yes, I am a nerd. Because if random.org drew number 273, I would feel like I cheated the real #273 and gave the $500 Walmart card to Bob when it should have gone to Sally. So rest assured, if you donated or facebooked or blogged for the giveaway, you were entered to win!

But for reals, this is one of my favoritest parts. Because I love imagining the winners clicking on A Perfect Lily on their blogger dashboard or google reader and holding their breath as they scroll down the list of names and then letting out a gigantic SHRIEK as they see their name on that list, and then imagining them screaming to their husband "I WON!!!!!!! I WON THE EXCLUSIVE LILYBIRD HAIRCLIP ON THE PURE LOVE GIVEAWAY!!!!!!" (okay, there was no hairclip this time, but you get the picture.)

What, you don't scream like that when you win something? Shame. Come to my house and watch the show today. Because I won the Biblioplan History book on my friend Julia's blog, and when I woke up and checked my emails from my phone in bed, I woke poor Lilybird up with my shrieking. (And yes, if you're wondering, friends can win friend's giveaways. I called the rule people and they said that's okay. This isn't Reader's Digest Sweepstakes, people, it's a blog.) Anyway- yipppeeeeeeee!!!

If you haven't been watching, my two little angels on the Angel Tree, Robyn and Artem, now have an extra $2,549 and $5,550 in their grant funds on Reece's Rainbow. And little Brent, who is not on the Angel Tree, but was featured in our Pure Love Giveaway, now has $1,288 in his grant fund. The Kehm's have been visting daily with Peter...keep checking back here for updates, because if you donated to Ty or Peter, you helped that little boy find his forever family, and I don't want you to miss it. The smile on Peter's face as he's sitting on his Daddy's lap is worth more than gold to me. I cannot wait for the day that we see the same thing happen for Artem and Robyn and Brent.

I want to thank each and every reader for helping make these Christmas miracles happen. Some of you gave before the giveaway even started- those grant funds are a reflection of the hope and genuine love in people's hearts out there, and I am so honored to call you my friends. Thank you from the bottom of my heart for what you are doing for orphans. I hope you feel like I do, that the best reward is seeing a child in the arms of his family.

Soooo...without further ado... (I think I say that every giveaway;))...

The Winner's:
 (and I left a comment next to one winner's name to distinguish her from another Katie.)



The $500 gift card to either Walmart or Target or Amazon.com (winner's choice!) goes to...

Jo's Corner



Miracles Happen Every Day necklace by Ollie Faith Designs....

Colette





$50 Target gift card...

Luba B



Artwork by Meriah at With a Little Moxie...


Mandy Rhodes


$50 gift credit to Lily's Scentsy Store...


Heather Seal



$50 gift card to Amazon.com ...

LilsMama205



Hairbow by Flowerful Headbands (two winners)...

Lynette Berger

shakamboqer


$25 Starbucks Gift Card..


Kellan's Momma




Custom made jacket...




Amy





$25 iTunes gift card...


FourMileFarm




Heavenly plug-in and lavender bar from Scentsy... 


Bailey



$50 Walmart card...


Chris Hanlon




custom necklace from Mattie Grace Gifts: (two winners)...


Shanti Joy

Sara



$25 Bath and Body works gift card..


Stacey in Colorado



10 greeting cards from Switzerland...


Kim B


$25 gift card to Sears....


Glenn





Scentsy full-size warmer and bar (winner's choice)...

JHilman




$10 Amazon gift card..


Keely




$20 gift card to Target..

Katie ..shared this on Facebook. Let's spread the word.


$100 gift card to Home Depot...


Lisa *Daniel's Mom*



Congratulations, winners! Please contact me with your info so I can put you in touch with the gracious folks who donated all of the prizes.


If you didn't win here- please go check my blogging partner Julia's blog to see her list of winners...she saw some amazing things happen for 15 orphans, and I know many of you were part of that. I want to personally thank Julia for boosting our giveaway as well- God has truly blessed me with a friend in you, Julia.

Back tomorrow with pictures of Lily...I have a hunch there are a few people who have missed her!

 yippppeeeee!!!!

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

wedded bliss

If you've been wondering where we've been, go HERE to my daughter-in-love's blog...




HAPPY HAPPY WEEKEND!!

Saturday, December 10, 2011

rejoicing in the midst of tears

I've started and stopped this post five times now. My heart is rejoicing and grieving at the same time.

This is one of the most beautiful 12 seconds of video I have ever seen, and I've watched it about a hundred times now. This is Peter with his new daddy...

video


Due to circumstances beyond their control, Ty is no longer available for adoption. If you donated to the Kehm's FSP, their funds will remain with them for the completion of Peter's adoption. The length of their stay in his country is uncertain right now, as they have a court date and a ten day wait ahead of them. Any remaining funds will be given to a new addition to our Pure Love Giveaway...


Brent is six years old.

This beautiful little boy has already been transferred to the institution.


I am typing this through anguish of heart- but if something good can come out of this, by the grace of GOD, I am determined to not let the enemy win here.




I am imploring readers to rally for Brent- I am imploring you to give and pray and spread the word that Brent needs a family.  


He needs to be rescued from that Institution.


We have 3 days left of our Pure Love Giveaway...I'm extending the giveaway 2 more days to give additional time to raise funds for Brent.  The giveaway ends on December 14th, and we will announce winners on the 15th.

If you donate to Brent you may leave an additional comment saying you did so for an extra chance to win.

If you blog again about the giveaway or re-post on facebook about it, you can leave additional comments for each to be entered to win.


I'm asking you to please pray for the Kehm's as they complete this adoption of Peter.




It is nothing short of a miracle that Peter will be going home with the Kehm's...but he isn't home yet. Please pray for everything to go smoothly and without any interference. I'm not asking that lightly- 

I'm asking you to pray this boy home and don't stop praying until he gets home. 


Please don't forget to spread the word that Robyn and Brent need families..




Go here to enter our Pure Love Giveaway 2.




And I want to thank every person who bombarded Heaven yesterday. We will never stop praying for you, Ty.