Owned

I’m excited to share more pictures from our “Family Fun Fest” fundraiser and I will (although I didn’t take many) but honestly I flipped through the images today and as embarrassing as it is I just had to share this one:

Photobucket

The “Joust” was renamed “Marriage Counselor” early on during the day so David and I had to give it a shot before we closed the doors. I think David was just upset that I obliterated him on the obstacle course…. Just kidding. It was definitely an accident and I definitely returned the favor but this shot just begs to be shared. So, here ya go…. Laugh at me.. just don’t show our social worker! ; )

~*~*~*Cloud 9*~*~*~

Oh my goodness! If you saw me right now you would think I was trying out for the part of Joker in a Batman movie because the smile that is plastered on this mama’s face will not be soon wiped off! Since the 12th I have refreshed my email no less than 1.5 million times waiting for an update on our Maddox. This evening I finally received it AND we got a picture AND it’s of Maddox with his care package AND his foster mother!

OVER THE MOON! I have pleaded and prayed with the Lord for this update for weeks and just Yesterday morning during my quiet time was overcome with peace about the situation. I just knew it had been overlooked and was going to patiently wait until June’s update.  And then it arrived.

Is he not the most precious thing ever!?! We prayed over all those items in his care package and there he is holding them in his lap. Oh, the tears of joy that were wept in our house tonight.  And just as I’m typing I remember that we included a photo album. I wonder what he thought the very first time he saw our faces? If he only knew how in love we are with him already!I can barely contain my excitement!!!

Ok, so his update says that he is  “cute and fine”. He weighs 19.8 1bs! He is crawling, and get this WALKING furniture! Oh my goodness! Oh, and he has 3 teeth.

Now I’m off to stare at his sweet face for a while! YAY!

The Last Big Shebang!

 

 

Today, May 21st from 11-2 we will be holding a “Family Fun Fest” at our church. This will be our last big fundraiser to help us with our adoption costs. I mean there may be a few smaller ones here and there (just to make sure you get good and tired of hearing about it!) but this is the  “last big shebang”! I’m in tears just thinking about how abundantly we have already been blessed by this event and if I could guess God is going to show up big time (and it won’t be for the apocalypse)!
 
 We spent the evening with friends setting up all the inflatables in the church gym and can I just tell you it is BEYOND INCREDIBLE! We’ve got a bouncy house, an inflatable slide, a giant obstacle course, an inflatable jousting station, a trackless train, snow cones, popcorn, hotdogs, and baked goods! It’s just amazing! David’s high school football coach, Jeff Lee, VERY ~ and I mean VERY ~ genorously donated all the “fun stuff”  for this event! It’s hard to put into words how much that has meant to us! Without his help we could never have done this! Thanks, Coach Lee!!! : )

 We’d  also like to thank all of you who spent part of your day preparing yummy baked goods for our bake sale! I think we’ve got a little bit of everything ~ including CHOCOLATE COVERED BACON! Who doesn’t want to try that!?

Special thanks to Amanda McAlpin, owner of London Lane Studios, for designing our flyers and The Paper Station of Florence for donating all the balloons for the event!

 And last but not least, I don’t know the final number but my spreadsheet making husband (Yes, HE is the type A one) lined up some incredible volunteers who are spending part of their Saturday working a booth or inflatable, helping set up, break down, and much more. A special thank you to each of you! We couldn’t do this without you!

 I’ll be honest, I never knew how much work went into an event like this but without each and every person who has volunteered, donated, and helped us spread the word it could not have been pulled off! We’ve got some incredible friends that love our son so much already and we know in the end it will all be worth it! David and I thank each of you for your part in helping with this fundraiser and we pray you are blessed!

 

Now, let’s just pray people show up! If not, I’ll be the one with the chocolate cover bacon in my mouth flying down the inflatable slide!  I hope you’ll join us!

 

We wait for you

Yes, LORD, walking in the way of your laws, we wait for you;
your name and renown
are the desire of our hearts. ~
Isaiah 26:8

I don’t have the words to accurately portray what this verse means to my family.

In January of 2010, I attended a conference,or rather a movement, of college age men and women in Atlanta, Georgia called Passion. I was there merely as a “chaperone” but my heart was changed forever. It was during those 4 days in Atlanta that the Lord first spoke to me about growing our family through adoption.

And although, it was very clear to me that this was part of God’s plan He had yet to let my husband in on it.

And so I waited. An entire year passed and there were lots of tears shed and more prayers than could be counted begging God to show my husband that I wasn’t crazy, I wasn’t being illogical, that this was truly His plan.

In January of this year, David joined me on our college trip to Passion 2011. And again, the Lord worked in our hearts. It was over that long weekend that David told me that he too believed that God was leading us towards adoption.

Fast forward, just over 4 months and He has provided us a son. Had things happened any differently our Maddox would not be ours. And yet, I question His timing?

Today, as I struggle through this wait to bring my baby boy home (and lately there has been a LOT of struggle). I find myself trying to control this situation, or having a pity party because things aren’t going the way I had planned out. I have to stop and remind myself of the mighty work God has done in our lives over the past two years. I mean MIGHTY work! Its in those moments of Praise this verse comes to mind.

Yes, LORD, walking in the way of your laws, we wait for you;
your name and renown
are the desire of our hearts. ~
Isaiah 26:8

Did I mention that Isaiah 26:8 is the “life verse” of the Passion conferences? It is. To honor what those days in Atlanta meant to us and what this verse means to our family we have decided to add yet another name to our sons.

Maddox Isaiah Jeong Hwan, we wait for you and while we do, we wait on the Lord! He will see us through these long days and months and when we hold you in our arms for the very first time every ounce of pain this wait has brought will be washed away by our joy.

It’s been 1 month and 7 days (and 2 hours) 🙂 since I’ve received an update on Maddox. I’m ready for some news. I trust in the Lord’s timing and He is stretching me for sure but If you think of it will you please pray that we hear something, anything. ( I mean a new picture would be incredible or better yet pictures of him with his care package! But I’ll take one sentence.) It would mean the world to me if you would.

Thank you!

20110519-030536.jpg

Reagan updated our family portrait for us.

Happy 10 months, Maddox

Our Maddox turns 10 months old today. I was so hoping his well baby check for May would be in my inbox but after countless hours stalking my email and refreshing the page it looks like we won’t be getting it today. 😦

I saw this incredible music video this morning:

I’ll post the video later. The song is written and performed by an adult Korean adoptee. Very touching personal testimony.

Praying we get some good news soon and that our Maddox is being loved and adored until we can have him in our arms forever! 🙂

No Dishes Today!

“Here are the rules, mom. When we go outside you gotta push us on the swing, play in the sandbox, and watch us put on our concert! No washing dishes today!” ~

Conviction swept over me.

Does she have to put it this way for me to listen? I’ve been so wrapped up in every other responsibility that I’ve put the needs of my children on the back burner. What happened? It wasn’t intentional. There just aren’t enough hours in the day to get it all done. That’s what I keep telling myself but rather the problem is more about priorities and time management. How can I get back to the place that playing “Chutes and Ladders” and illustrating our own story books were my favorite parts of the day? I’ve lost focus!

Sometimes, God speaks through our children. This was one of those times. He is
teaching me, molding me. Tracey, it’s time to reevaluate your priorities. Things are out-of-order. What needs to come first? Laundry? Phone calls? The truth is I know
the answer but it took a conversation with my 5 year old to remind me what’s important.

I believe with all my heart that the Lord has called me to be at home with my
children at this point in my life. To pour into them and fill their cups with His love. Is
this what I’m doing? Am I bringing Him glory?

“Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord,
not for human masters, since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Christ you are serving.” ~ Colossians 3:23-24

It’s time for me to change some things. I’ve let myself work for “human
masters” and even “self masters” instead of focusing on what God has called me to
do. I need to focus my energy on working for the Lord.

Am I the only one? If you find yourself in a similar place it would be my honor
to pray for you!

EP’s, Bubbles, and Swingsets!

   I’ve tried to avoid the blog this weekend due to my super emotional state but it’s just so therapeutic!

~ Last week we got word that one of the 4 Korean  adoption agencies has run out of Emigration Permits (EP) for the year.  Emigration Permits are in simplest terms a one way passport out of the country. Basically, and by basically I mean in the simplest terms I know how to explain this issue, the Korean government is trying to reduce the amount of international adoptions. Each year they reduce the number of EP’s given to each Korean agency by 10%. There are so many layers to the issue that I won’t even try to tackle but the core of this for me is the heartache of the families who are going to be affected by this news. Many, many families who have already received a referral for their son or daughter will now be waiting until 2012 to bring their babies home. My heart just aches for each of them. It literally hurts!

 How does this effect Maddox? Well, at this point we aren’t quite sure.  We knew that this could be an issue but our agency has not notified us regarding this news yet. We aren’t sure that they will. We did hear that as of last week all 4 of the agencies were given an update as far as where they stood on their individual quotas. We are taking the no news is good news approach and praying our Maddox will be submitted for his EP in the next few months. However, any day now we could find out that he won’t be coming home this year. This is how I went into Mother’s day weekend. Worried. Anxious. Unsettled.

   Even still I had a relaxing day filled with lots of laughter and fun with my two precious babies here at home. I was really emotional that my 3rd baby was not here with me. This whole adoption process is just so new to me and much, much harder than I ever anticipated. In service yesterday, our pastor, David Wike, spoke about “Worry and God’s Provision”. Really? It was exactly what I needed to hear.  Will we find out Maddox can’t come home until 2012? Maybe. I’m not sure. But I do know that my God knows best and if I really have the faith I claim to have then I need to give it over to Him. If I really believe He is who He says He is ~ Why am I worrying? Doesn’t He always provide? Indeed, He does. And so we wait for news and until then we pray and continually remind ourselves of the goodness of our God.

Since God did not spare even his own Son but gave him up for us all, won’t God, who gave us Christ, also give us everything else? (Romans 8:32)

 On a much lighter note, Dawson seems to have had a lightbulb moment about Maddox coming home. He snuggled up to me today as I was flipping through some old pictures and suddenly sat up and said, “Maddox come home with us and play bubbles with me?!” I told him of course he would. To which he replied, “Maddox come home and swing with me?!” Again, I replied of course! “Maddox play in MY room with my Buzz Lightyear toys!?” I think that’s a great idea, bud! I bet Maddox would love that! And for the last few hours he has these moments where he looks at me with his big brown eyes and gets excited about something new Maddox is going to be able to do with him. Oh my, I hope they are the best of friends! : ) Just like these two!?!?!?!

 

Yard Sale Blessings

 I just wanted to extend a HUGE thank you to each of you who contributed to our yard sale. As things were trickling in over the past few weeks I don’t think I had any idea just how many items we collected! As the light broke on our driveway this morning (or rather when the people with flashlights started showing up) I was overcome with emotion just looking out at all the donations we received. Seriously, I wish I had taken pictures. All morning long people commented about just how much we had to sell! We are so thankful for each of you and pray your are blessed overly and abundantly!

 We were able to raise over $1,000 that will go directly to bringing our Maddox home!

THANK YOU!

 ~*~*~A very special thank you to Breanna & Tripp Lisenby for keeping all our shoppers hydrated with some yummy lemonade!~*~*~

And the iPad 2 winner is…

 

(Drum Roll please….)

 Elizabeth Reimer!

   YAY! I’m so excited to have a winner! I hope you enjoy your new iPad, Elizabeth! We’ll be in contact soon to make plans to ship it out to you!!

 To everyone of you that purchased a ticket we are beyond grateful! We love each of you and appreciate you all for playing a part in helping bring our Maddox home! 🙂

 We will update this post later with the grand total for our fundraiser. Thanks!