Lilypie - Waiting to Adopt

Saturday, October 15, 2011

I'm Still Here

Tomorrow marks 16 months waiting for a referral. I am one day closer to being a mom. Recent chats with my case worker say that it could be 3-6 more months. It pains me to write that, but it is what it is....

In the meantime, I have and intend to keep myself super busy. The school year is off to a fast start. My sister has moved back to town. I love having her and her family closer (two doors down to be exact). What a gift! I love having my immediate family so close. My brother and his family are a mere 20 minute drive away. So blessed!

Let's see....what else?

Well, as time ticks away, it seems that all of my paperwork is expiring. So, my social worker is coming for a visit on Wednesday (I am furiously cleaning while I type this). She will update my home study and I will apply for a new orphan petition with USCIS. After that takes place, I have learned that I need to complete a new dossier (dossier=fancy word for bunch of paperwork I get to collect and notarize). I have already completed one dossier but it is getting old and the process has changed so I will go back to paper chasing. It's okay I tell myself. I want to keep busy right?

So, when will all this happen? Not sure.....let's keep 2012 in our radar. My precious mom will travel with me. She has all her shots and is ready to go. That is such a comfort and I thank God for an adventurous mom!

I can't write anymore without thanking God for seeing me through this journey of hills and valleys. He has kept me steady and sure. Whenever I have had doubt or a sad day, He has encouraged me through words from someone or a thoughtful note in my mailbox. He assures me to "Be still" and reminds me that He's got this. "Trust me" He says.

Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God so that at the proper time he may exalt you, casting all your anxieties on him, because he cares for you. (1 Peter 5:6-7)

Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. (Philippians 4:6-7)

How will I keep busy?

If you have followed my journey, you know that there are funds that I need to keep gathering. My new paperwork with require additional funds as will my referral and traveling back and forth to Ethiopia twice. So, I am doing a few things to help......

1) I am having a giant garage sale on November 5. I have had two other successful ones. It's a lot of work but also a lot of fun.

2) Free trade coffee! If you are a coffee drinker, please stop by my coffee shop. A portion of the sales will go to my adoption. Yum! There are a variety of coffees to choose from.

3) I will be selling African necklaces again. They make great gifts and are fun to wear. Remember, they help the African women who make them and a portion goes to my adoption fund. Stay tuned for more details...

Please continue to pray for "BB". My daily prayer is that my child is safe and feels hope. Thanks so much for joining me on this lonnnnnggg journey. I couldn't do it without you and am humbled by your support.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

One Year Waiting

Tomorrow marks one year waiting for a referral for a precious child from Ethiopia. As I reflect on this year, I can see God preparing me to become a parent. I have learned so much from reading, researching, and "watching" others experience adoption. I thank God for this journey and really don't know how I would do it without Him. There have been many highs and lows for sure......

When I think about this year, I picture myself in a loooooooooooooooong, slooooooooooowwwwwwwww line waiting for my number to be called.

Every time I get close to the front, someone moves the line or hands out new numbers. For example, at the beginning of my wait, the Ethiopian government announced a new requirement. Adoptive parents would make two trips to Ethiopia (no sweat, I love Ethiopia) instead of one trip. Then, this spring, the Ethiopian government announced slow downs to ensure ethical adoptions (how can I argue with this?).

So, my waiting continued. As I waited in "line", I learned so much. I talked to others in "line", read, and researched. I was even been able to learn from others who were way ahead of me in "line" (so happy for this family).

Countless times my feet (my heart if I am honest) grew weary from standing in the adoption "line" for so long. (I do admit that a few times I threw a pity party for myself.) I must say that each time I felt a pang of weariness, something happened. God always sent someone or something to encourage me. It might have been a friend or family member checking in to see how things were going. Often, it was a word from someone else who adopted. Other days it was a humbling donation to my puzzle fundraiser. Many times times it was a unexplainable peace that could only come from the Prince of Peace.

Be still, and know that I am God.

Psalm 46:10

but those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.

Isaiah 40:31

This week, my agency sent out new estimated wait times. Read below to see the news......

•Current wait times for families requesting boys 19-36 months: 12-18 months

•Current wait times for families requesting girls 19-36 months: 14-20 months

As I stand here in "line" I have to chuckle. Just as I get to 12 months of waiting, the wait time has increased. As I receive this news, I feel frustration.....then peace....and then hope. I am certain that this peace and hope can only come from Christ who strengthens me.

I can do everything through him who gives me strength.

Philippians 4:13

So, in "line" I proudly stand. Proud to have made it this far. I haven't ever felt like I should get out of "line". Not once...(I have wanted to cut a few times though )

I take comfort in Scripture. Our Sunday School lesson this week was on the Israelites and the wilderness. I found comfort in the words of Moses to the people of Israel.

So be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid and do not panic before them. For the Lord your God will personally go ahead of you. He will neither fail you nor abandon you.

Deuteronomy 31:6 NLT

See, I know that God is with me in this adoption "line". He has gotten me this far. He will not abandon me. I find peace in knowing that He is ahead of me too. He knows my destination and He is leading me there. In "line" I proudly stand. At the end is my child.

Please keep "BB" in your prayers. I will take a few too. I can't wait to tell "BB" about all of you. Thanks for taking this journey with us and for checking in. If you need me, I am over here patiently in "line".


Sunday, April 3, 2011

9 1/2 Months!

Hello All!

I have officially been waiting 9 1/2 months for a referral. In March I spoke to my case manager and she seems to think I should hear something in the summer months. Of course, as we know, all of that could change at any moment....

I can honestly say that I do have moments of impatience. I do get frustrated because I feel that I am ready now. Sometimes I have a full-fledged pity party (it's not pretty).

THANKFULLY, these brief moments are followed by a peace that can only by found through God's grace and His faithful reminders that His timing is perfect. It's pretty simple. He has my heart so He has my trust. Tonight as I sit updating my blog, I have a peace about the wait.

Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus. 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18

I also want to give you an update about the Puzzle Project. I am so very touched at the amount of support that you have given to BB (Baby Bohannon) and myself. I am humbled. I am grateful. Words cannot adequately tell you the amount of encouragement I have received by each one of you who have sponsored a piece of our adoption journey. I have such generous friends (some are brand new) and I thank God for you!

I will post a picture soon! It's 1/5 of the way there! I can imagine myself telling BB one day the story of each piece and the generous person who supported our journey.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

"Children Of God" - Official Music Video

Today marks 9 months waiting for a referral! Praising God for this adventure and milestone. Hopefully will have news of a referral in a few months. Thanks to all for your support and prayers!

Here is a video that touched me this week. Enjoy!

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Puzzle Progress

The puzzle is growing! Thank you so much to all who have sponsored a piece or pieces. Please know that your sweet name is written behind each piece that you sponsored. I am also keeping a handy dandy spreadsheet that lists each person that sponsors and their relationship to me and BB. It is something that I will place in BB's Life book so BB will know who supported us during this journey.

Please continue to pray for this adoption. Word on the street is that some important decisions are being made this week in Ethiopia that could cause the adoption process to slow down. Please join me in prayer for the children that this will affect. Our God is big and He is in control.

Philippians 4:6-7 Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus

James 1:27 Pure and genuine religion in the sight of God the Father means caring for orphans and widows in their distress and refusing to let the world corrupt you.

Have a great week everyone and thank you so much for your support!!

Sunday, February 27, 2011

The Cost of Adoption

Thank you! Bless you! Praise God!

My adoption puzzle is growing! I have proudly and lovingly placed 53 names on the back of 53 puzzle pieces. See below. I can't wait to finish it and mount it in my home as a reminder of all who have helped me and BB.
Now, I am well aware that this is a 1,000 piece puzzle and I have a ways to go! Some of you may be wondering about the cost of international adoption. I am here to tell you that it is costly but well worth it. God has provided every penny that I have needed thus far. He has placed generosity in the hearts of friends and strangers. He loves adoption and I have no worries about His provision.

Right now, I am gathering funds for my referral acceptance. When that happens (hopefully soon), I will need to write a check for over $11,000. I am not yet half way there but have confidence that I will be. If talking about money makes you uncomfortable, then I apologize. It does me too. As a matter of fact, asking for financial help has been a very humbling experience for me.

So, the puzzle fundraiser continues! I would love to have sponsors for another 50 pieces this week. God is so good! He is teaching me so many things. I appreciate all of you who are reading my blog and who are praying for me! It means so much!!

Knee deep in puzzle pieces and so very grateful!

Friday, February 18, 2011

A Piece of the Puzzle

This week I officially reached 8 months of waiting for a referral! I am getting closer and feel very hopeful that something will happen soon. Many people ask me if I am bothered or frustrated by the wait. My first reaction is to say yes....I am ready to be a mom and ready to get this show on the road. However, I find myself answering in truth that there is plenty to do as I wait patiently for a referral.

Over the Christmas break, I spent some time finally clearing out the room for BB. It took a few days and actually looked like an episode from Hoarders at one point. I pushed through and now actually have a room that is almost ready. I am not decorating a room yet since I don't know the age or gender of BB. That fun will come after referral....

In the meantime, another thing that I need to face during my wait is fundraising. I basically need to gather a large chunk of money to submit when I get my referral. That does not include the money that I will need to travel twice to Ethiopia. Rest assured that I am doing all that I can to save for this adoption but I need help.....

I have a plan......(okay, I borrowed someone else's plan and ask permission to copy it.) I am asking people to be a part of my adoption journey by sponsoring pieces of my puzzle (see below). This is a 1,000 piece puzzle. It is aptly titled, "Waiting for the Bus" by Julia Cairns.

As a donation of $10.00 is given for each piece, I will write the sponsor's name on the back of the puzzle piece. When the puzzle is complete, I will mount the puzzle between two panes of glass and hang it in my home. My child and I will be able to admire the art and it will serve as a reminder of all who blessed us along our journey.

If you are interested in donating, please click on the donate button. One puzzle piece is $10.00.
Each week, I will give a progress update and picture of the puzzle. Thank you in advance for considering helping out with this endeavor. I thank God for you!!

If you would like to donate in another way, please email me at

Sunday, January 9, 2011

How long?

Everyday someone comes up to me and asks me about my adoption. I appreciate that so much. I know that God uses people to give me encouragement and it seems that someone asks at just the right time. I wanted to let everyone know about a small change that I have made to my adoption plans....

A month or so ago I made the decision to change my request. In the beginning of my journey, I asked for a baby under 12 months. That was what I was preparing for. In November, I asked to change my request to a child 24-36 mos. I feel very much at peace about this decision. Adopting and "older child" has its own challenges and I feel that my adoption agency has prepared me for this new path.

I spoke with my adoption agency this week, and it looks like the current wait time for a referral in this age range is 9-15 months. I have already been waiting almost 7 months. So, that means that I may hear about a referral in March or thereafter. EXCITEMENT! I may truly be a mommy this year!

Please know that I am at peace about God's timing and if I've learned anything it's that time lines can change and often do. In the mean time I have plenty to do to prepare for this new little one.

Please join me in praying:

*for my future child that I call BB (Baby Bohannon). I pray each day for BB's safety and health. I pray that he/she is able to experience love and hope wherever he/she may be at this moment.

*for financial provision for this adoption. May God continue to help me find ways to financially cover the costs of adoption. (HE has already helped in many ways)

*that I may continue to trust and grow through this process. That I make the days count and not just count the days.

*that other hearts are broken for the cause of the orphan

Thanks so much for stopping in and I appreciate your prayers!
Many Blessings to you!

Saturday, January 8, 2011

Journey to Adopt Part 3

The Acacia necklace fundraiser was a success! Thanks to all who participated. I appreciate you all and thank God for you. I ended up selling almost 130 necklaces. Wow! I will probably do it again as I near referral time.

In the meantime.......I realized that I started my blog with the story of how I came to adopt. I had three parts to my story and stopped at part two. So, I am going to go ahead and talk about part 3. (Remember this blog is to record my story for my child).

Here we go......

Part 3

I decided to go back to Ethiopia the next summer for a month with Mocha Club. I was excited because I was asked to work with the teachers that I had met the previous year. See part 2. I was at a loss as to what they needed but found out that they wanted to work on their English. Right before we left for our trip I found out that they had invited all of the teachers from Ambo not just the ones that I had met before. There could be as many as 50. It was a little daunting and I worked to get ready for the challenge....

Ethiopia the third time was wonderful. It was like going home. We visited ministries that we had visited before and a new one, Women at Risk in Nazaret. These women were transforming their lives by turning from prostitution and learning job skills. It's a wonderful ministry that I was able to see first hand. Go here to see how you can support them.

Once again, when we visited an orphanage, another little child drew me in. As we were visiting and loving on the kids, I noticed a child who seemed very overwhelmed. I was holding her when then orphanage director told me that she had arrived from Nazaret the day before. She was probably near a year old and I couldn't let go of her. I kept wondering about her story. What happened in her short life to bring her to this orphanage? I left the orphanage feeling helpless. I knew that all I could do was pray for her.....It's hard to say, but in some ways she haunted me. What could I do for her?

I ended up being reunited with my teacher friends from the year before. They were in the first training session that we had. I had a wonderful translator, Nati, who helped me. We held two day sessions where teachers came in and they practiced their English while I modeled some teaching strategies. They in turn taught me about their country. They were a delight and we had so much in common. The difference is the teaching conditions that they have are so different from ours.
The coolest part about the teaching seminars was that the teachers were paid by Mocha Club to come to training. This honored their time and their profession. It also just so happened that the teaching seminars were held at the same location and same day when we were doing our ministry with the street boys. So, during breaks and lunch, the teachers could watch the boys play like other kids. The hope was that they would see that the boys were the same as other kids. They laughed, played, and wanted to learn like other children. They just happened to be without homes. Mocha club would be sending some of the street boys to school that fall.
Some of the teachers that attended the seminars may be the teachers that they would have....

A month in Ethiopia was incredible. The team that I was with was again hand picked by God. It was amazing and life changing. I was reunited with Ethiopian friends from the previous trips and was truly blessed. For the first time, I got sick while over there but it didn't matter. I was where I wanted to be and was able to march forward.

As our month stay neared its end, it was hard to say goodbye to our translators and friends. As we were in line to get on the plane to come home, one of my teammates asked me if I would be back next summer. Without missing a beat, I said, "I think the next thing I will do is adopt."

I thought to myself, where did that come from? :) But at that moment, adoption felt like my next step. I had seen, visited, held, and loved on orphans. Yes, my next step was to adopt a child from the country that I love.

I was certain that was what I was supposed to do.

Pictures from Trip 3

Compassion kids-we taught them English

Love this foot
We had Christmas for the street boys
some of the street boys washing off after mud soccer

We gave clothes and shoes to the street boys on our last day in Ambo. They also received a photo of themselves.