We are EXPECTING!!
It's official ... we have signed our agreements and mailed them off to our amazing agency, America World, to bring home what our other 3 children have decided is ... a BROTHER!
We are beyond excited! SO much so, that our little munchkins spilled the beans before we even had a chance to tell my parents.
This past Sunday, we sat down with the kids to have a "Family Meeting". Our kids have expressed a great interest for some time to adopt again but we felt like they are old enough to be a part of the process, in every way. Coming out of a week of TbarM, they had just spent the week really looking into and understanding what Jesus meant when he said "Go and make Disciples of all nations". Daddy started off by telling them that we had been praying and that we felt like the the Lord was telling us to adopt again. Jesus said "GO and make disciples of all nations" and that we felt like Jesus was bringing some of those nations to us - first China, and now, Ethiopia.
Before we could even ask for a response or Doug could finish, their was an uproar from the peanut gallery. Cheers! Screams!
Saying they were thrilled is an understatement.
So, the next part of the conversation led to us saying that we hadn't heard with confirmation if we were going to have a brother or a sister but that we did know that we were being called to an older child ... somewhere between 3 and 5.
BROTHER, BROTHER, they began to shout! Um, Lord, was that my confirmation?
We swore our 3 little munchkins to secret and told them we wanted to put in our application and hear back from our agency before we shared with the grandparents and the rest of the world. HAHA ... are you laughing?
So, that was Sunday. I am proud to say they held it in for 4 (well maybe 3.5) days. Luckily, AWAA was SUPER quick to respond to our application. We submitted it online on Monday and on WEDNESDAY, the phone rang. Area code 703 ... the infamous and much anticipated number that all adopting families with AWAA love to see on that caller ID. Knowing that it is usually and always a full 10 days to hear back, I was sure I had neglected to complete something on the app. That would be embarassing, seeing as how we've done this before ... AND we are their Texas Associates. But, to my surprise, on the other end was the adorable and very loved, Amy Pearson. Amy was our family coordinator to bring home Maliah. I can still remember the referral call and her sweet voice on the other end "Cristie, are you ready to go to China", as she prepared to tell me all about the most beautiful, outgoing, and precious then 8 month old baby girl. Amy was incredible during our 23 month journey!
This time, however, Amy is the intake coordinator and so again her voice was greeted with excitement when she said they were super excited to see our app. come through and ... CONGRATULATIONS, you have been accepted into the Ethiopia program. YAY!! Let the paper chase begin!!
That same day Granny and PiPa had taken Dakota and Canyon for the afternoon. Dropping Dakota off at Chef's Camp, they headed to the Astrodome to watch the Cowboys practice with Canyon. Somewhere between the Subway that we all ate at, and Chef's Camp, 3 minutes down the road, the secret was spilled. If only I could have been a fly on the wall! To hear it told through their eyes and Granny and PiPa's is quite comical. Needless to say, once home that evening, Dakota admitted they spilled the beans. Granny and PiPa had still not said a thing ... sworn to secrecy by their yes, Grandchildren, after they spilled the secret themselves. We had a big laugh followed by lots of hugs and well, room planning for what will be our FOURTH blessing!
We are super excited, super nervous and SO READY! Of course, in the coming weeks, I'll have a blog for adoption. Who goes through it these days without one? I'll fill you in on the process, timeframe and the journey as we walk it out with the Lord.
We'll be doing some fundraising, some praying, rejoicing and yes ... traveling! We'd love for you to "Join us" in those things!
With much anticipation ...
Friday, July 30, 2010
Posted by Cristie at 6:18 AM
Wednesday, July 28, 2010
Thursday, July 22, 2010
It's that time of year again. As I sit here and post this, Dakota and Canyon are living the crazy life of TbarM sports camp. We LOVE LOVE LOVE this camp and my kids count their days until it's time for the fun! As a parent, I'm super impressed with the counselors, the staff, the programs, the facilities. Everything they do is intentional ... one focus ... JESUS!
So we dropped off the kids this past Sunday. Today, it's Thursday and I'm missing them something awful! I've spied each of them in pictures and can tell they are having a blast. This is Dakota's first year doing overnight. She went knowing NO ONE! Canyon went with 3 buddies in his cabin alone. This is also old hat for him ... year number 2!
Thought I'd post a few drop off pictures. We pick them up on Saturday morning. I CANNOT WAIT TO HUG THEM!
Posted by Cristie at 12:33 PM
I'm so behind again in the world of blogging. How can I even imagine keeping up with 3 kids who are in constant motion, living a summer full of adventures, always coming up with amazing things to say and do. For a long time I convinced myself that I could but who was I kidding? I have thrown in the towel and claimed defeat ....
So, alas, these days, I post when I can and try to update with pictures when possible. Bare with me. I have three energizer bunny's as children!
I did want to update a few pictures of Canyon's birthday party with a few special friends. The big 1-0! It was a fun day. Lunch at Freddy's, we took in the Karate Kid movie, came back for swim time and of course pizza and cake. My neighbor Kimberly made THE BEST cake ever. I must have put on 5 pounds the next week as every night I found myself plopped on the couch and indulging in the most delicious of all desserts. HMMMM!
Great friends and Great Cake!
Pool Time - Boy style!
Who needs pool toys when you have fun Daddy! Caution: Do not show this to your kids, it may cause hours of endless throwing!
Even Dakota had a special friend for the day
Posted by Cristie at 11:41 AM
Wednesday, July 21, 2010
Tuesday, July 13, 2010
Our family is growing ... and I don't mean our immediate home or our little nest, but rather, our extended family! I'm going to be an Aunt again ... for the 9th time now. This time, we await a beautiful and amazing young man from Haiti! I haven't "Blogged" or posted on this yet, but the Lord has given me an urgency in my prayers for him. With that, I felt it was time to share .. and ask you to join us in "bringing him home". After all, I believe it is the Lord's hands and your prayers, that will make it happen!
Rood is 14. His story is tragic and heart breaking and yet, the Lord's mercy has poured out on this young man in amazing ways.
I cannot even begin to tell you how the Lord has ordained his life to be grafted into ours ... well, into the home of Doug's sister and brother in law.
To be brief, when the earthquake hit Haiti, I had a friend who is as passionate for orphan care as I am send me an e-mail that Hope for Orphans was looking for families who would be willing to bring in children into their homes under humanitarian parole from an orphanage called "Haiti Children's Rescue Mission". When I approached Doug with the idea, he immediately said of course we would! With that, however, I also asked Courtney if I could forward the e-mail to a few friends whom the Lord laid on my heart ... woman passionate about Orphans and also adoptive Moms. But the Lord had also laid on my heart my sister in law, whom honestly, had never really shown a huge desire to us to adopt but is an amazingly Godly woman with 5 children (then ... they now have added 2 foster children .. yes, the Lord has done some work!). I wasn't quite sure why I felt so inclined to send the info to Karen, but I did.
Several of those ladies filled out the application for the children but my SIL/BIL did not. They did say in passing, because my brother is the head of prosthetics at BAMC, that they'd be willing to bring in a child who was an amputee ... if needed. But no paperwork, no application was ever completed.
A few weeks went by and on a Wednesday a video was posted by Doug Philips with Vision Forum (who was doing work in HCRM and documenting what he was seeing) about a young man whom had lost his entire family in the earthquake and even more tragic, he was under the debris and the body of his deceased mother for 2 days. Because of the pressure of her on him, he had also lost his arm. Can you even imagine living through what this young boy had already endured? The loss of his mother, his father, his siblings, his own arm, and the only life he knew. Now an orphan, Doug Phillips brought Rood to HCRM and quickly, Rood became the face of many videos and HCRM updates to come. As I watched the video of Rood's , I cried my eyes out. I then posted it on my facebook as a testimony of the loss being experienced and then for God's reason ... felt inclined to send the video to Karen. I knew that John would be moved by his story (with his work with amputees) and thought that was what compelled me.
This is the video
A few days later, Karen called. A little baffled she said "Hope for Orphans just called and we just accepted the referral of a boy at HCRM who is an amputee". Immediately, knowing that Rood was the only amputee there I asked "Is it Rood, the boy from the video"? My heart had ached for that boy, I had cried alligator tears for his tragic loss - I was so hopeful!! Karen said "Yes"! My question is, she asked "Did you fill out an application for us and send it to Hope for Orphans"? Giggling (because why in the world would I do that ... that's a HUGE decision) I said, "No, why". She then went on to tell me that she had NO IDEA how Hope for Orphans got their information ... that somehow, the head of Hope for Orphans had their "application" on his desk with all their correct information ... including John's background in Prosthetics and that they wanted Karen and John to consider bringing him in on a "medical visa" (one of many processes that was tried). Karen said she had NO CLUE how they got that information as she had never filled any such thing out and the only thing she could think of was that Doug and I had for them. In awe, we both giggled and said "WOW, the Lord is at work". God prints all over!
Another part of that story is that the day I sent the video to Karen, she sat all 5 of her children down to watch it. She asked them "What would you be willing to sacrifice to help a child like this"? Little did she know ... the Lord was preparing their hearts because two days later HE'D be calling them about yes, THAT CHILD! I LOVE THAT!
So now we wait for precious Rood to make his way into our lives! It's been a long 5 months working to bring him home! My SIL and BIL skype with him often. They've sent packages and letters through other families traveling. Several families have traveled and met him, including my dearest friends Billy and Cindy who also await a beautiful little girl living at HCRM. They've all said that Rood is amazing. He's described as having a "ferocious faith" and that he is a hard worker. Apparently he speaks Spanish along with Creole and is so smart! He's quickly picking up English because we've also heard that he is studying his heart out to learn the language.
Each time Karen talks with him he asks "Mom, when are you coming to get me"? We've seen several children leave already on their I-20 visas and make their way to San Antonio (PRAISE THE LORD!) ... the way that they are working to get Rood home. Their is some paperwork issues with death certificates on his father and they await only a few things. Those details must be worked out though before he can be released on the I-20. Later, they will work on adopting him out of that Visa. He's an orphan in every sense of the word.
I have hesitated to say anything or post anything here as it's not really MY story to tell. But Rood is very much a part of our hearts here ... we think and pray for him daily and my kids are as excited as any to see him finally be in the midst of the Fergason crazy chaos and play days. My SIL/BIL have bought a 15 passenger van and have added on to their home. YES ... they are prepared and ready for whatever the Lord has in store!
Karen will be traveling with my friend Cindy in late July to meet him for the first time. She's anxious and through her tears she said she wasn't quite sure she really wanted to go. Not because she didn't want to be with Rood, but because she can't bear the thought of leaving him behind ... and seeing where he is! It is VITAL that she does though ... she knows it. What a perspective she will gain. But it isn't easy, I'm sure, leaving 7 children to go to Haiti ... and then leaving the one, to come back to the seven. But the Lord went after the lost sheep ... the other 99 were just as important ... but he didn't forget the one!
So, I've come here because the Lord has instructed me to pray his favor in them! I am praying boldly that all details will be worked out and that through some great miracle, Rood will be on that plane home with Karen and Cindy. It's no small feat for a Mom of 7 to travel .... but he's called her to ... I'm praying it's because he has something more than she could ask or imagine in mind! Will you pray with me???
Rood, we are praying for you. You are close to our hearts and though in the worlds eyes, you are still an orphan. In ours, you have been CLAIMED! We cannot WAIT for you to be HOME! We cannot wait to be a part of your HOPE and FUTURE!
"For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future" Jeremiah 29:11
Posted by Cristie at 2:05 PM
Thursday, July 8, 2010
Recently I went into the play room to do some cleaning up. I came upon the evidence of a small, dark haired child who had left their evidence of mischief! Anyone wonder which one of the kids I am speaking of? Looks like someone is missing some locks.
Posted by Cristie at 9:27 PM