Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Swimming in Ingredients

Oh My Goodness.... This MULLIGAN STEW Giveaway is going to be absolutely amazing!

So many people wonder how their little tiny offerings will ever amount to much...

But add it all together, and everyone gets fed!

THANK YOU FOR THE OUTPOURING OF ITEMS.... My inbox is overflowing and I am swimming in ingredients.

Considering that I am a lousy cook, I need you to bear with me as we work out all the details. 


Pray some more.

We are hoping to get our Mulligan Stew Giveaway off the ground in the next week or so. 

If you still want to throw in an onion or radish - feel free.

There are a bunch of needy orphans out there who will be forever grateful!!

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

Mulligan's Stew

Back in the early 1900's, displaced people would often take their little food offerings and throw it all together into a community pot.  With some water, a pot, a fire and a little bit of food from everyone, no one would go hungry. 

I'm a lousy cook and most of my meals are fit only for my family.  Despite this, I'm making a Mulligan Stew.  I don't know at this point what is going to be in the stew or who exactly is going to partake of it but it is going to be fun. 

If you want to join in the fun.... let me know....

I'm hoping that this stew will benefit a number of orphans.

E-mail me if you have donations for my stew.  I'm still looking for items - large and small.  I can't make promises about certain kids or families (please have mercy on me on that one because it is SO HARD).  I'm doing a lot of praying and a lot of considering.  Got me some great cooks who are helping stir the pot!! Got me a great God who has been stirring in my pot for the past number of weeks.  I'm relying heavily upon HIS LEADING. for those who have donations...

Monday, February 27, 2012

Got any Giveaways?

I've never done this before.... Asking for Giveaway items.

But I am going out on a limb.  

I am doing a Giveaway that should benefit a bunch of orphans.

Those the Lord has laid heavy on my heart over the last weeks.

Do you have something you can throw into the pot?

Big items, little items, gift cards etc. etc.

Will you help???

My e-mail is if you have something you want to donate.


Also - Will you PLEASE DO ME A FAVOR... Help get me out of the doghouse!!  

My dear friend Tammy, who adopted two kids with Arthrogryposis (Ben and Sophia) and who also adopted FIVE other kids..... is doing her own Giveaway for a little one on Reece's Rainbow.   She can't adopt Alicia but she wants to help her find a family.

Last fall someone gave me a beautiful girl's hand-made quilt that I could donate to a Giveaway of my choice. 

 I chose Tammy's Giveaway.  To help raise money for Alicia.

But I have FAILED to share the Giveaway on this blog and I feel horrid!!  A little girl across the ocean faces the institution in a few short months and Tammy is trying her hardest to raise funds for her and I neglected to tell you about it.

So far Tammy has raised $210.00 for Alicia.  Her goal for her Giveaway is at least $1,000.00.


Would you help get me out of the dog house!!

Either way, don't forget to let Tammy know you donated.  

P.S. The same person who made the beautiful girl's quilt in the picture above also made one for Aaron.  He sleeps with it on his bed every single night.  

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Rock Star

It blows me away sometimes.

How many people LOVE our son.

I mean the boy is a ROCK STAR.

He has a following that crosses the globe.

He has grown men who will drive all the way from Richmond (an hour away) on their motorcycles to bring him a SHRINERS HAT and a SHRINERS SHIRT.

Grown men who love him.

And Aaron just takes it in stride.

Five men on large and loud and beautiful motorcycles who come all the way to see him, bearing gifts, and he just smiles his trademark smile, offers his trademark "thank yous", and then proceeds to show them that HIS BIKE is better!!

Look what MY BIKE can do!!

And they were quite impressed indeed.

Then, as fast as they came... They left...

Five men on their motorcycles.  

Five men who love one little boy.

And one little boy who thinks those men are pretty cool for bringing him a hat and shirt.

They drove away on their motorcycles leaving behind one very happy little boy...

Saturday, February 25, 2012



                                   SAMUEL                         AND                       DUNCAN

Both of them just a year younger than my Ben.

Two Boys.

Samuel and Duncan.

Will you please read about these boys.... Will you please consider them?  THEY HAVE ONLY A FEW MONTHS LEFT BEFORE THEY TURN 16.

Like Laurel and like Bernadette - Their chances for adoption end when they turn 16.

Samuel will be 16 in May 2012 – so he needs a family, FAST!

Sam is an AMAZING young man! He is friendly, good-natured, has a good sense of humor, and loves soccer (futbol). He is very good at soccer, and has gone to a camp for great players in Poland a few summers ago. Sam very much wants a family in America- he approached a family adopting there and asked many questions about it, and has talked to the orphanage staff before about how much he wants a family- for parents to love him, encourage him, and support him.

Sam's disability is very minor- he has malformed fingers on both hands that appear to be due to banding of some sort. Otherwise, he is healthy. Because of this disability, he was sent to a special needs orphanage. He is very smart, has already started learning English in school at the orphanage and is well-liked by his friends. Sam's faith in God is very important to him and he would like a family who also worships God, who will encourage his gifts in soccer, and who will tell him "I love you" and listen to him as he talks.
Sam has goals for the future, and would like to play soccer and go to college, but he knows his life in his home country will not give him those chances. He is very intelligent, very respectful and has a great perspective about adoption, because he has a friend already adopted into the US. The family that met him in February 2012 will be happy to answer questions about him as well. Sam eagerly posed for the pictures, and begged the family and facilitator to please not forget him and to find him a family fast!

Duncan will be 16 in summer 2012 – so he needs a family, FAST!

From a family who met him in Feb 2012:

Duncan very much wants a family. He is smart and works hard. He gets along well with others. Duncan struggles with facing the future here in his native country. He knows that unless a miracle happens and he gets adopted (or a family commits and gets USCIS approval) in the next few months, he is going to be sent to a mental institution, even though mentally, he has no issues. Duncan appears to have CP, and he is small for his age (about the size of a 13 year old). Duncan's medical information is en route from the orphanage now, but the family who met him and who he approached to ask for a family and the facilitator want to go ahead and get his information and picture out there.

Duncan uses a walker to walk and is independent in mobility. Duncan is a compassionate teen and one who says he "fears even to hope for a family, because he doesn't think anyone would want him because he isn't handsome". In fact, when it was time to pose for this picture, Duncan worried that someone would see it and then not want him. Duncan needs a family to show him God looks on the heart to see beauty (even though he's a quite handsome boy regardless)- and so do Christian families. Duncan's heart is big, and he is well-loved in this orphanage. Many worry for him if he doesn't get adopted before he turns 16 and it is too late.


They BOTH want families but neither can dare to hope that anyone would want them!  I cry as I write that.  Duncan worries that he isn't good looking enough to be adopted!! 


Show this boy about LOVE. 

Samuel wants to hear a Mama and a Papa whisper Love into his heart!  He wants to be encouraged in HIS FAITH!


Please - if there is a place at your table for two very desperate boys WHO HAVE THEIR ENTIRE LIVES AHEAD OF THEM... Please consider crossing that ocean.  A family will need to have their paperwork in process now to qualify.  They have little time and no options.  If you want to learn more about them I will be happy to connect you to the FAMILY WHO MET THEM!! 


Please tell the world about these two boys who desperately want families. 



Friday, February 24, 2012

Fatherless Friday

We are internet-less at our house!!  But I refuse to let that stop me from doing a Fatherless Friday so I am here at the library!!  So forgive me if this post is all over the place... I'm typing fast..

She is now at $8.624.00. 

Don't stop people!!  Let's get her fully funded!! 

Yes I am dreaming big for my Sunshine Girl. 

Don't forget.... When you drop money into her account - go HERE to let Mandy know and you will be entered into the Sunshine Girl Giveaway!!

And Dear Sweet Laurel's Grant Account continues to rise too...

She is now at $5353.00.

Go Laurel Go!!

Keep giving people.  Please please please keep sharing her picture.  God is stirring in hearts. 

He is on the move!!

On Wednesday I shared about THREE MILITARY families who are working together to raise what they need to bring home FOUR BABES.

They are stationed in Germany so they can't do yard sales and lemonade stands.  They are dependent upon the CHURCH to step up!  These are men and women who are sacrificing for the freedoms we take for granted every day.   They are also sacrificing everything to bring four desperate orphans into their homes.

Many of you gave on Wednesday which meant that they DOUBLED  what they had previously had donated.  Come on people - LET'S QUADRUPLE TODAY.  THREE FAMILIES benefit from this Giveaway.  So far they have only raised $2,000.00.  For three families that is NOT going to go very far.  Seriously. 

This is Finn. He is one of the sweet babes they are bringing home.

Will you help them??

And here's another Giveaway that just plain makes me sad....

This family has raised $10.00 from their Giveaway to bring this sweet babe home.

This is Vinnie and I KNOW we can do better than $10.00 to get him home!!

Their Giveaway is worth $400.00 DOLLARS!! 

Will you go HERE and consider helping??


I don't know how many people remember me hollering for this sweet boy over a year ago...


After a lot of advocating for him, a family committed to get him and we all rejoiced and praised God.  But it was discovered right before they were leaving the country that he was not truly released for adoption.  It was a confusing mess for all involved and poor Alexander had to be released by that family.  They adopted another little guy who definitely needed a family to go get him.  When Alexander's paperwork was fixed - he was again listed on RR.  AND HE NOW HAS A FAMILY!!  I'm so thankful.  Though I haven't posted about him I've been whispering prayers often.  Please pray that no more paperwork snafu's happen so that Alexander can make it safely across the waters this time. 

Thursday, February 23, 2012

Triple Praise

Don't pass over my LAST POST from this morning because I am still leaking tears over that one but I HAVE TO BLOG AGAIN.... Goodness me the blessings are raining down from Heaven this morning!!!

Go Look... Go See...

Sweet Bernadette now has $5,400.00 in her grant account.  Yesterday she had around $900.00.

UNBELIEVEABLE... Baby Girl - I'm praying a family snatches you out of there before it is too late.... 

And Laurel - She now has over $5,000.00 available for her adoption.

Please Please.... Someone go get her!!  She is a COGNITIVELY NORMAL child who is destined for a life in a mental institute because she has arthrogryposis.  We cannot stand by and let that happen!! 


Thank You.

I'm Triple Praising God here in Virginia....



Sweet Alexis has a family who has committed to her.

Can someone get me a tissue because I am a blubbering mess right now!!

God has just answered the deepest prayer of her heart.

Praising the Lord here in Virginia!! 

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Linkin Post

My head is full of stuff and the cough that I have been battling for a few days is taking over....

I have not much energy to blog so I'm going to cheat...

THE PRAISE LINK... My dear friend Adeye has been wrestling with the same convictions I have been wrestling with... the need to yell loudly for the older child.  Last week she had several of my blog posts on her blog (at the same time I was sharing my sweet Millie stories).  We were hoping and praying that through both our blogs that hearts would be touched!  This morning Adeye's blog post brought tears to my eyes because she has before and after pictures of a whole host of kids.  What made me cry was that so many of the kids pictured were ones WE PRAYED HOME.  My Judd (Brady).  Carrington and Victoria. Julia and my precious Gabe (Gavin).  Katie and Sweet Belle.  Kori.  Hailee.  I just looked at the pictures and cried.  To see the Goodness of the Lord in those pictures just touched me deeply this morning.  THIS IS WHY WE PRAY.  THIS IS WHY WE SHOUT.  The look of Redemption.  The Transformation that Love Brings.  What Rescue Looks Like!!  Go see.  Go rejoice.  God is Good.

THE SHOUT OUT....  All of you who have donated and who are blogging and yelling for Laurel... THANK YOU..  She now has $4,647.00 available for her adoption.  SHE STILL NEEDS A FAMILY THOUGH.  Her time is ticking down.  Someone asked in a forum I am in what will happen if she isn't adopted.  The sad reality - WE WILL NEVER KNOW.  She will disappear.  Gone.  They won't let her go out on her own because she is wheelchair bound.  She is going to end up in a mental institute.  Please Please Please keep giving to Laurel's grant account.  Please help her find a family.

THE SUNSHINE GIRL - Will you PLEASE go to this link and take part in the Giveaway for sweet Bernadette.  Dear friends - This little one is 15 years old but is the size of an 8 year old and would be as happy as a clam with a dolly or two.  She is a baby at heart.  She is in a GOOD place right now.  She is well loved and is well adjusted.  Transitioning into a family would be easy for her because she isn't going to come with a ton of emotional baggage that a child in a true mental institute comes from.  But her time is running out.  She needs out NOW.  Sweet Bernadette.  Where is her Mommy???  

SHARE THE LOVE - Want to help THREE families who are adopting FOUR kids??  Go donate to THIS Giveaway and all THREE families will benefit.  They are GIVING away 33 prizes.  Right now they have had 31 people donate.  Get the odds??  Your chances of winning one of those prizes is HUGE.  All three of these families deserve our notice because they are all SERVING IN OUR MILITARY.  They are sacrificing for our country and they are sacrificing to bring four babes home.  We cannot turn a blind eye.  SO PLEASE GO HELP THEM.  

Those are my links.  

I want to say this - I never ask anyone to give unless I too give.  Considering how broke we are right now - that means that we have to dig deep.  But I can't beg unless I am willing to sacrifice too.  I know what today's economy is like.  I know how hard it is to put food on the table.  I know.  We are not in the best of times right now.  But I also know that we are RICH compared to these kids. They have nothing and will be given nothing unless we act and move.  The families who are willing to step out in faith - how can I just stand by and watch without doing something?  The kids.  No way can I not yell. 

I know I can't shout out for every single family.  I know I can't yell for every child.  I can't.  I am only one person and this is only one blog.  But I can do something.  I can shout for those whom God lays on my heart.  I can do that much.  I can do that much. 

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Cast Off

Yesterday Aaron and I made another trip to Philly....

Woo Hoo... Dr. Z took Aaron's cast off!!

Aaron is now in a brace.

After two months of weekly trips to Philly - We get to take a break for a while!

Yes I am relieved!!

I didn't take any pictures of our up and back trip.  I was too weary and have been battling a head cold all weekend.

But you do get these two....

Aaron and Elijah enjoying the ONLY snow we have had all winter....

I'd share a picture of Ben in the snow but he threatened a snowball to my head if I did...


Sunday, February 19, 2012

Sunday Cuteness

This Sunday Cuteness is brought to you....

free of charge...

by the King of Cute....

The One... The Only...


Saturday, February 18, 2012

An Angel Unaware


$1221.10 was donated for Jack

He now has $3816.10 in his account. 

$109.30 was donated for Laurel
She now has $4059.00 available for her adoption.

And Bernadette....

She has $354.30 in her grant account.

I'm committed to yelling as loudly for Bernadette as the other two because she is way way way too precious to spend the rest of her days in a mental institute. 

Please keep giving. 

Laurel and Bernadette are seriously almost out of time.

Yes they are disabled.  I realize this.  But they are CHILDREN who need homes. 

Relegating either of them to a lifetime sentence in a mental institute is just stomach turning. 

At Aaron's institute they called all the boys with Down Syndrome the SUNSHINE BOYS. 

Seeing Bernadette's picture and reading her description... My goodness she is most certainly a SUNSHINE GIRL.

In my humble and feeble opinion... Bernadette is a very precious treasure and the family who cliff jumps for her may just discover that God has blessed them in a way that goes far beyond the human vocabulary.

Hebrews 13:1-3
 Keep on loving one another as brothers and sisters. Do not forget to show hospitality to strangers, for by so doing some people have shown hospitality to angels without knowing it. Continue to remember those in prison as if you were together with them in prison, and those who are mistreated as if you yourselves were suffering.

....You will never know unless you cliff jump....

P.S.  - There is a Giveaway happening RIGHT NOW for Bernadatte at THIS BLOG.  If you donate to her jump over there and let Mandy know so you can be entered into her Giveaway!!  Come on people!!!

Let's get Bernadette's numbers up!!!

Friday, February 17, 2012

Just Children

 Last Thursday I was spinning.  My heart was heavy and burdened in several different directions and I didn't know which way to go.  So I wrote this...

I'm spinning.

I have much on my heart.

Too much on my mind.

I don't know which way to go.

I have unwritten blog posts in draft mode and even more in my head.

I am a jumbled mess.

Struggling with what to say and how to say it.  The need is so great.  In so many areas. 

Praying that clarity will come.

Praying for the words to convey.

Praying that God will take my jumbled heart and direct me in His Way and not mine.


He did.

I woke up on Friday night with a deep desire to write Millie's story.  I believe that wake-up call was from the Lord.  I climbed out of bed and the words began to spill out onto the page.  I didn't write it alone.  Rob came alongside me as I shared my heart with him.  We spent hours last weekend agonizing over every word.  I whispered prayers as we wrote because I knew that her story was God's answer to My Prayer.

My Spinning.

You see, God has been stirring in my heart that I need to be speaking out boldly for the older children in the institutes and orphanages.  He has been burdening my heart.  They are so easily written off.  I know this because I am as guilty as the next person.  I always check the age of a child when I see a new listing.  I am definitely drawn to the younger ones.  I shy away from thinking I could adopt an older child.  I am being honest.

But then I am confronted with Jack.

His deep desire to have a Mom and a Dad.

And Laurel.  Aging out in only a few months.

And I am ashamed of my reluctance.  I am ashamed that I am so quick to write them off.  To say it is too late.  To assume that they are too institutionalized or too disabled to make it in the outside world.

They want families.

They do not consider themselves too old to call someone Mom.  Or too disabled to need a Dad.


And in that reality - with that before me I know that I need to be bold for their sakes.  To do whatever I can to give them a voice.

If My Millie can survive for 30 years in a mental institute and come out and live a rich and full life...  If God can take an orphaned and abandoned little girl and REDEEM her life so that in the end she is a BLESSING to people.... Then He can take Jack and Laurel and all the other kids in those institutes and He can Redeem them too.  They are not hopeless, lost cases.


I don't know how to put it any more plainly.

They are just children.

Yes they are disabled in some way or another.  Yes they have spent much or all of their lives in an institution.  Yes some are terribly damaged.  Yes Yes Yes.

But they are children.

And they need families.

They need families who will care for them and watch over them.  They need Moms and Dads who will fight to get them the treatments they need.  They need the security of knowing that they are not alone in this world.  They need most of all to know the God who made them and loves them.  They need to hear and come to love and believe the stories of Jesus.  They need this above all else.

They don't need a big house or their own bedroom.  They don't need fine clothes or expensive toys.  They have NOTHING now so anything you give them is better than what they have ever ever had.  They don't need the perfect family.  They just need someone to cross the ocean for THEM.  They need parents.  They need to know that for the rest of their lives they will be firmly planted in a family.  Surrounded.  Protected.  Loved.

This week My Spencer appeared on the My Family Found Me Page on Reece's Rainbow.   HE HAS A FAMILY!  He is going to be rescued soon.  I PRAISE GOD for that news. My eyes leak tears at the thought.  I cannot wait to see Spencer safely in their arms.

But Jack still needs a family.

A family to make sure he gets the medicine he needs.  Right now he is being taken care but in just a few short years, Jack is going to be out on the streets.  He is one of the 'lucky' ones who will not be institutionalized.  Instead he will age out of the internat where he lives and he will be on his own.  At the very very young age of 15 or 16.  Without any skills.  Without any knowledge of the outside world.  Without any idea how to take care of himself.  Without any way to get the medicine that he needs.  Friendless.  Penniless.  At the age when kids here are at the end of their high school years, enjoying their friends, going to the prom, learning independence yet always under the watchful care of their parents - Jack will be out.on.the.streets.

I can't imagine.

This is the cry of his heart:

"What do I need to do for a Mom to come?  Do you know where she is?  Is she looking for me?"

He doesn't care about the perfect family.  He just wants to be loved.

And Laurel.

She has less than 5 months before her chances of a family are GONE.

I wish I had a ton of pictures to show you of Laurel but all I have is this one picture of a beautiful girl in a wheelchair.

She is in a good place now but not for long.  Not for long.  Laurel is destined to spend the in the mental institute because she is physically disabled.

Those who met her recently described her as very smart and very friendly.  She is disabled in body but not in mind.  Not in spirit.  She has Aaron's condition (arthrogryposis) and it is TREATABLE.  It is not life-threatening.  It does not get any worse than it is now.  It only gets better.  I would venture to say that Aaron's doctor in Philly would move heaven and earth to get Laurel walking.

Please.  I know that God has been moving in hearts for these two precious children.  Please.  Consider.  Pray.

And Give.  Laurel's adoption costs are going to be around $24,000.00.  Jack's around $35,000.00.  Every single dollar into their accounts helps ease the terror as families stand on the edge of the cliff and count the cost.  You may not be able to adopt these two treasures but you can take part in helping someone else do it.

UNDERSTAND THIS - LAUREL IS JUST ABOUT OUT OF TIME.  Her grant account needs to go up NOW.

Please give. Please pray. Please consider.

You can donate to JACK here and LAUREL here.  I would love to see both of their grant accounts rise significantly.  Money should NOT be the reason why either of these kids can't find homes!!

If not these two kids then consider the hundreds of other older kids who are LOST and ALONE and helpless without you.

Brent                                                                     Hanson






They are just children.  They don't care if they are older.  They don't care.  They just want Mamas and Papas to call their own.

They are Just Children.

P.S.  - I'm adding one more precious treasure onto this post.......

Her name is Bernadette

Be Still My Heart.

Like Laurel - She ages out in only a FEW MONTHS.

She has been BLESSED with an extra chromosome!!! 

This is what her description says about her...

She’s a lovely little girl in appearance. Despite being 15, she looks about 8 years old, and a petite 8 at that. She is a sweet little girl with plenty of energy. She likes what most 8 year olds would like- dolls, playing with toys, watching cartoons.

Like all the others - She is just a child in desperate need of a home.  If she doesn't find one then she will spend the entire rest of her days in a mental institution!!!