What a Weekend!

  • This weekend has been one of the most special, happiest, anxiety-ridden, worrisome, joyful, emotional weekends ever.

    Our first piece of news is that Baby Boy has a name!  It was a name that wasn’t even on our radar when we tossed around boy names, but once we heard his birth story, it was a name that fit him perfectly and honors his mom.  His middle name is his birth name and the same name as his birth mother’s, and we are keeping the French pronunciation so that it can remain part of his heritage.  We had a friend who speaks fluent French that translated her death certificate for us, and called me shortly before chucrh to tell me her name (we hadn’t been able to make it out prior to his phone call) and the pronunciation of it.  I caught Joel right before church began to tell it to him, and we knew then and there what our son would be named and were able to pray for him by name during church that morning.  Here on the blog, we’ll still refer to him as Baby Boy.

    We have been so touched by the support and encouragement and prayers of our friends and family and church family over the weekend as they learned about Baby Boy and bits and pieces of his story.  It was wonderful to share the news of him with our congregation yesterday.  It felt good to talk about him and show off his pictures and know that more people are praying for him.  We had a member offer to look into frequent flyer donations for us, one member who offered to send donations in our suitcase for the orphanage and suggested that a grant we received from Thrivent for the ladies group be used to help out the orphanage by purchasing food and formula when we go over there to pick up Baby Boy.

    We also had the joy of receiving more pictures of Baby Boy and the orphanage where he lives.  This was a wonderful thing, but equally heart breaking.  I truly love our agency and so appreciate their updates and the incredible amount of photos and videos they have provided to us over the weekend.  They work SO hard to provide lots of good care for these orphaned children.  We saw videos of the kids singing and dancing, pictures the kids colored hanging from clothing lines, and kids sitting against a wall, eating and drinking.

    At the same time, it is always difficult to see the conditions that are definitely not up to par with American standards.  Laundry laying on the grass to dry, Baby Boy lying on a mattress with two other babies as he slept, and children running around barefoot.  There is this one beautiful girl who I see in many pictures and have seen in other adoption videos/pictures that were posted earlier this year.  She is older–perhaps ten or eleven–and I always wonder what her story is.  Is she aging out of the orphanage soon?  Will anyone ever adopt her since she is older?  The thought of adopting an older child had always scared me, but when I see pictures of her it is all I can do not to call our case worker and say, “Can we bring her home, too?”  I think if it wasn’t for the fact that we have yet to fully fund Baby Boy’s adoption, we would seriously be considering that phone call.  If anyone is interested in seeing her and learning more about her, I would happily send a picture and give you our agency’s contact info to inquire about her…

    There are so many beautiful, heart wrenching photos that I wish I could post on this blog, but feel it is best to protect the images from the public eye.  However, if you’re at all interested in seeing some of them, please let me know and I will select a few to e-mail you privately.  Baby Boy is very, very tiny.  A friend reminded me last night that since he is premature, I have to think of his adjusted age and not compare him to a typical 2 month old baby.  But it’s still hard.  I wish I could go over there and take care of him for a week or two–especially since it’s going to be late winter/early spring before he comes home.  We are hoping and praying that we will be able to celebrate Easter with him.  Please pray that our process is speedy.  We have been turning in forms and payments as soon as they come in to do everything in our power to move things alone, but we know that many hands are at play here.

    Because of Baby Boy’s small size, we are working to connect with a consultation service that will visit him and bring him formula along with a photo update to us.  It is a bit expensive to pay for all of this–we will have to pay them the cost of their visit, plus wire them the money for the formula, plus pay for the cost of wiring the money–but we know that it will be worth it since it is something we can do to help him from so far away.  He appears to be the youngest baby there now from the photographs we saw, but we were told that anything we send to the orphanage will become “common property”, so we anticipate that the other babies in the orphanage will also be drinking his formula.  So glad to help these other little ones out, too.

    I’ll put a plug here for some upcoming/pending fundraisers in case any one would like to help out with some of the finances involved over the next few months:

  • If you’re a coffee drinker, we have connected with Just Love Coffee, a super awesome fair trade company who donates $5 from every bag of coffee sold through our online store to our adoption fund.  They send us a monthly check with the proceeds from that month.  Visit our online store to start shopping.
  • We have an incredible night planned on Friday, September 21st at 7:30–a piano concert by concert pianist/composer/teacher Stefan Stern.  Please come to this concert at Pilgrim Congregational Church and invite others!  We will have tickets for amazing raffle prizes for sale, lots of information about the DRC and many pictures that we don’t post here of Baby Boy and the orphanage where he lives, and fair trade Just Love Coffee available for order.  If you’re a local artist and would like to partner with us to sell any merchandise and donate a certain percentage of proceeds to Baby Boy’s adoption fund, we would also love to provide you with the opportunity during this concert!
  • We have our ongoing puzzle piece fundraiser, and just actually ordered our puzzle with Baby Boy’s picture on it.
  • Check back here for more opportunities to support Baby Boy.  We have applied for many matching grants, submitted a video to Give1Save1, and are in the works with a local photographer to do mini sessions.

Thank you to everyone for your prayers and kind words over the weekend!  They mean more than we can ever hope to express!

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