Friday, October 30, 2015

Sweet Firsts

 
 
This morning I had fun dressing up my two little not-really but they might as well be twins. They were so excited. 
 
It was John's first time ever doing anything like this and he was just beside himself with joy. They had a harvest party at school. 
 
 
 
When you have a newborn baby you get to experience all their 'firsts.' First time smiling. First time rolling over. First time talking. First time walking. First birthday.  First day of pre-school.  Firsts and more firsts.
 
We missed all those firsts with these two.  We weren't there to celebrate and throw a party. We don't have pictures. We don't know how old either of them were when they first smiled or rolled over or talked or walked.
 
We can't get those firsts back. But we can enjoy and take pleasure in these other firsts.  All the firsts since both boys have come home are precious to us.  Simple pleasures that hold more meaning for us knowing where our little boys came from. 

 
Mario.
 
 
Luigi.
 
 
Sweet firsts for our little boys.
 
In two days it will be November. A time when we focus on Thanksgiving and then Christmas.  The holidays.  Family-stuff.  Festivities. Presents. Pageants.

For Micah and Isolde and Alex it is not a time for celebration.

Micah and Isolde age out in November. Alex ages out in December.
 
Alex and Micah met their match and I thank each of you for helping make that possible.

The reality...
 
THEY NEED FAMILIES.
 
THEY NEED FAMILIES.
 
They need families to give each of them a lifetime of sweet firsts they can celebrate. They need their first harvest party. They need their first Thanksgiving. They need their first Christmas.
 
Oh Please someone SEE these children! We can't let them miss all those firsts!!
 
Isolde    Alex   Micah
 
 
 

  
We have raised $1738.90 so far!! We have $3,261.10 left to raise!
 
 
MICAH http://reecesrainbow.org/91918/micah - AGING OUT IN NOVEMBER - He met his match!
 ALEX http://reecesrainbow.org/91928/alex - AGING OUT IN DECEMBER  - He met his match!
 
 
STEPHAN http://reecesrainbow.org/91925/stephan - 1,000.00 matching grant. Grant account needs to read 1054.00
 
Raised $370.00
 
AARON http://reecesrainbow.org/90768/aaron-2 - 1,000.00 matching grant. Grant account needs to read 1045.00
 
Raised $63.00
 
BEN http://reecesrainbow.org/90775/ben - 1,000.00 matching grant.  Grant account needs to read 4,363.36
  
Raised $157.50
 
ISAIAHU http://reecesrainbow.org/90772/isaiahu - 1,000.00 matching grant. Grant account needs to read 1018.00
 
Raised $150.00
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Thursday, October 29, 2015

Along Came Facebook...

 
 
When we first started this blog, blogging and advocating for the orphan was in vogue. Everyone blogged.  It was a sea of blogs and honestly, it was fun. Blog sharing was common. If I advocated for an orphan on my blog it was almost guaranteed that others would read my blog and share about that same orphan on their blogs. It wasn't a simple one-two click for them to share. They had to create a post to share.  It took time. It involved thought. It was an investment in that orphan's life.
 
To those blogging our hearts out for the orphan, It was a HUGE encouragement. Since I was a blog reader as well as a blog writer I was always encouraged whenever my posts were shared by other bloggers. 
 
I loved reading blogs. I loved reading the blogs of the advocates who were yelling alongside of me. So many times when I read a blog by a fellow blogger about an orphan, It compelled me to write - to share - to add my voice alongside theirs.
 
I loved reading the blogs of the families as they felt the Holy Spirit moving in their hearts for an orphan across the ocean. I loved following their stories. I loved when they crossed the ocean. I grieved when they grieved and rejoiced when they rejoiced. I loved following as the children came home. I prayed alongside them for their children. 
 
 I still read blogs. Call it old-fashioned but I still follow along with the families.  I still enjoy watching children growing into families. I don't read every day - I don't have that luxury, but I consider it an honor to come alongside other families as they respond to the promptings in their hearts. I take delight in watching the children we advocate for becoming part of families.  I love seeing the pictures of the children. I love watching them grow. I still grieve with families who are going through heartache and rejoice with those who are rejoicing.
 
I still read the blogs of the advocates.  The ones yelling alongside of me.  There are fewer. Not as many. The auditorium used to be filled with voices - every seat packed with advocates. Now the empty seats sadden me.
 
Blogging has changed.
 
Facebook hit the scene.
 
Twitter. Instagram. Tumblr. Etc.
 
It has become much easier and less time-consuming to take a post and click a few buttons to share that post across social media in a matter of seconds. It doesn't require new words. It doesn't take as much time. It is so much easier!
 
Posts can go viral fast. This is good. 
 
They can also die fast.
 
Really fast.
 
Carefully crafted words become lost in the cacophony of clicks and shares out there in cyber-space.
 
A good post on social media may get one day in the sun.  A really good post might get two days.  Most posts get a few hours at most. Some barely anything.
 
Since there aren't bloggers blogging about the same orphan - they get less exposure. Even though a post may get a lot of Facebook and Twitter clicks... in reality that orphan gets less exposure. It is just one post going out instead of many. One voice instead of an auditorium full.
 
It honestly is less exciting to blog nowadays. The empty auditorium is disheartening. Facebook is so much easier. Clicks and share are extremely appealing - especially when life never seems to stop and taking the time to blog takes .... time.
 
I miss those who used to blog beside me. I truly do. I miss their voices raised. I miss working together with so many of them. I miss seeing the faces of the orphans on my blog shared on theirs. I miss sharing their orphans on mine. I miss their passion.
 
Despite the change, I can't quit.
 
I have wanted to a million times.
 
But every single solitary time I try to quit I remember the first day we walked into Aaron's institute.  I remember the despair we felt for those boys. I remember the burning inside of us as we visited day after day, week after week.  I firmly believe that the Lord left us in that place for so long to burn their faces into the marrow of our bones.
 
Every single I time I think it is my time to ease out of this advocating thing those boys - those faces - they cry out to me. 
 
Visiting Kim's institute in May was a reminder again of why we haven't packed up this blog and moved on with our lives.
 
Plus, adopting John and seeing another version of institute life just added another whole layer of passion for us.  Those children are no less needy of families just because they are in a nice facility.  All I have to do is remember the look in Toby's eyes when I came back for John.  (About a Lost Boy) The despair in his eyes as once again he was watching hope walk out the door. 
 
 Thankfully, Toby's family was just submitted and in a matter of weeks that little guy is  going to be dancing for joy and you better believe I will be dancing and crying from Virginia!! But there are so many more like him. Little boys and little girls despairing. Lost and lonely.
 
I'm not quitting the blogging world. I may not be able to blog every day. I may not be able to blog like I used to blog. But I'm not going away. I recognize that very often my words will be lost in the crazy of social media.  I understand that they will often just be a tiny flicker amidst the rest of what can be seen on Facebook.
 
I don't care.
 
Toby's family found him through the words on this blog. 
 
Just that reality alone keeps me plugging away.
 
There are three children who age out in a matter of weeks.  They are desperate. I am desperate for them.
 
Micah. Alex. Isolde.
 
  
 
Every single donation matters to them. 
 
Every share matter even more.
 
And every prayer - that is priceless.
 
To those who gave and shared and prayed this week - you lifted my spirits. 
 
 You made blogging worth it.
 
We are trying to raise 5,000.00 for 6 boys.
 


We have raised $1697.40 so far!! We have $3,302.60 left to raise!

Check out Micah and Alex..... Please help met get their grants matched!! They are both so close!!

EVERY SINGLE DOLLAR WE RAISE WILL BE MATCHED!  SO PLEASE GIVE GENEROUSLY SO THESE BOYS MAY HAVE THE CHANCE TO LIVE!!


PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE SEE THESE PRECIOUS ONES! PLEASE!
 
MICAH http://reecesrainbow.org/91918/micah - 500.00 matching grant - AGING OUT IN NOVEMBER Grant account needs to read 5,932.00
 
 
Raised $486.00 ONLY $14.00 TO GO!!!
 
ALEX http://reecesrainbow.org/91928/alex - 500.00 matching grant - AGING OUT IN DECEMBER Grant account needs to read 1067.00
 
Raised $418.50 ONLY 81.50 TO GO!!
 
 
STEPHAN http://reecesrainbow.org/91925/stephan - 1,000.00 matching grant. Grant account needs to read 1054.00
 
Raised $369.00
 
AARON http://reecesrainbow.org/90768/aaron-2 - 1,000.00 matching grant. Grant account needs to read 1045.00
 
Raised $63.00
 
BEN http://reecesrainbow.org/90775/ben - 1,000.00 matching grant.  Grant account needs to read 4,363.36
  
Raised $157.50
 
ISAIAHU http://reecesrainbow.org/90772/isaiahu - 1,000.00 matching grant. Grant account needs to read 1018.00
 
Raised $149.40
 
 
 
Isolde
 
SHE NEEDS A FAMILY IN A MATTER OF WEEKS!!!!
 
 
 
 P.S. To all those former bloggers who had to stop blogging because trolls were slamming you. I get it. I totally understand why you had to leave. It has been the saddest part of the change. I've seen so many get hurt by nasty words from those whose only goal in life is to cause harm. I miss you but I understand!! 
 
 

Monday, October 26, 2015

Blind in a World of Gray

I confess.  He barely registered on my radar when I was there.  I know that Kim pointed him out to me, but he was so quiet and the other children were so loud that I just blew right over him.
 
 
I blew right past him.
 
He didn't even register on my radar.
 
Blind Stephan.
 
Blind in a world of gray.
 
 
He's blind and easy to miss and my heart aches that I only saw him for a fleeting moment. I am ashamed that I did not take the time to stop and find the little boy inside the solemn eyes.

 
He lives in a confusing world of moans and groans and screams and cries.  He lives in a world where it is extremely easy to pass right over him because he is quiet and works very hard at keeping himself hidden in the confusion that surrounds him. The overworked caretakers are way too busy to do more than the basic necessities for him.



He loves windows and light and spends most of his days under the window at the end of the hall.

He's overlooked. Ignored. Alone.


A solemn little boy until someone, anyone takes the time to engage him. 
 
 
 

Then that quiet little boy blossoms and laughs. He loves being picked up and spun around. He loves running fast with someone holding his hand.  He loves being tickled.  He loves to FEEL ALIVE.  He loves LOVE.  He loves gentle hands and warm embraces. He loves attention. He LOVES attention.

He is 13 but he is itty bitty. He is the size of a five year old. 



He doesn't know how to feed himself because no one has ever taken the time to teach him. He doesn't know how to dress himself because no one has ever taught him.  He doesn't know how to talk because no one has ever taken the time to listen to him.  He's been written off as unteachable and unreachable.  He is none of these.  He is a blind little boy living in a world of gray and the only way he will ever blossom is if a family comes and rescues him.
 



He is a precious little boy and has so much potential if someone would just give him the chance. Get him out of his world of gray and into a world of color and watch him bloom!
 
Because Stephan WILL bloom!
 
 
-----------------------------------------------------------
 
Sadly, he has only had $9.00 donated in his grant account for the matching grant.  Please help me get him seen. Please help me advocate for this overlooked little boy. Please help me raise his grant account and get the matching met for him!! Please let's not pass Stephan over too!!
 
Please!!
 
 
------------------------------------------------------------------
 
 
We have raised $932.40 so far!! We have $4,067.60 left to raise!

REMEMBER - EVERY SINGLE DOLLAR WE RAISE WILL BE MATCHED!  SO PLEASE GIVE GENEROUSLY SO THESE BOYS MAY HAVE THE CHANCE TO LIVE!!


PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE SEE THESE PRECIOUS ONES! PLEASE!
 
MICAH http://reecesrainbow.org/91918/micah - 500.00 matching grant - AGING OUT IN NOVEMBER Grant account needs to read 5,932.00
 
 
Raised $175.50
 
ALEX http://reecesrainbow.org/91928/alex - 500.00 matching grant - AGING OUT IN DECEMBER Grant account needs to read 1067.00
 
Raised $418.50
 
 
STEPHAN http://reecesrainbow.org/91925/stephan - 1,000.00 matching grant. Grant account needs to read 1054.00
 
Raised $9.00
 
AARON http://reecesrainbow.org/90768/aaron-2 - 1,000.00 matching grant. Grant account needs to read 1045.00
 
Raised $63.00
 
BEN http://reecesrainbow.org/90775/ben - 1,000.00 matching grant.  Grant account needs to read 4,363.36
  
Raised $117.00
 
ISAIAHU http://reecesrainbow.org/90772/isaiahu - 1,000.00 matching grant. Grant account needs to read 1018.00
 
Raised $149.40
 
 
 
Isolde
 
SHE NEEDS A FAMILY IN A MATTER OF WEEKS!!!!
 
 
 
 
 
 

 

THE BIGGEST HOMESCHOOL CURRICULUM OF THE YEAR!

Save up to 95% on Homeschool Curriculum at the 2018 Build Your Bundle Sale