November Adoptive Family:: The Douglas Family

We are Brian and Heather, and together, with our new daughter, Remi, we make up Team Douglas! We got married on a chilly day in September 2014, after about a year of dating and engagement. As part of the pre-marriage discussions, adoption was always talked about as a way that we wanted to grow our family. Heather had a desire to adopt since she was a teenager, and Brian has two sisters who were adopted, so he had gotten to experience the blessing of adoption in his own family.

The questions about kids came pretty much right after the honeymoon, and Heather always answered that she envisioned starting a family 3–5 years into marriage. Well, a couple years in, and we both felt ready! We decided to try for a biological kiddo first since we weren’t getting any younger, and planned to adopt our second or third kid. Well, as He often does, God had different plans, and after about six months of trying to get pregnant moved both our hearts to seek adoption as Plan A for creating our family.

So we signed on with Christian Adoption Consultants in January 2018, and started the long process of the home study and fundraising. After a few months, our home study was complete, and we were a waiting family.

Around 9:45pm on May 14, after presenting to just two different expectant mamas, we got the call that we had been chosen by a mother in Arizona who was due in October. We were surprised to have been matched so early in the process, and were also a bit shocked by how early in the pregnancy we were matched. We were prepared for a “stork drop” or some other speedy scenario, so to have five months before the baby was even due felt so strange!

Of course, it turned out to be a huge blessing because in July we had the opportunity to go to Arizona to meet the expectant mother, and after a few hours over coffee, knew that God was totally in our match. She was incredible, and we enjoyed writing letters and praying for her specifically over the next couple months.

We headed down to Arizona for a second time at the beginning of September, as mama predicted her labor would go early and fast, and she wanted us to be there for it. After a grueling week and a half of waiting in the Arizona heat, we got the call that mama was in labor, and we got to meet our beautiful daughter at 12:32pm on September 17.

Being there for labor and delivery was an amazing experience, and the weeks we spent in Arizona after the birth, though long, were a gift to get to know Remi’s birth family better. Since being back (just a month!), we’ve loved exchanging texts with Remi’s “tummy mommy” as well as sharing photos via Facebook and celebrating her birthday with her. We cannot wait to see how our relationship continues to unfold and how Remi will get to be loved on by her first family as she grows!

So we got our baby girl just four days after our fourth wedding anniversary… we’d say that’s as close to 3–5 years as you can get! 🙂 And our journey to parenthood was nine months… just instead of morning sickness and stretch marks and labor it was marked by paperwork and fundraising and labor of a different kind. We’re so grateful that this is how God saw fit to write our family’s story. We can’t imagine our family without Remi and her first family, and although adoption is fraught with brokenness and pain, it also holds so much redemption, hope, and sacrificial love.

Thanks for letting us share a bit of our story, and make sure to follow along on Instagram as we fundraise this month! We’re so grateful for the ways God has provided financially and otherwise on this journey, and we’re excited to see Him continue to do so!

Love,

The Douglas Fam

PS. if you would like to read more of our story, check out our blog!

October Adoptive Family :: The Sorenson Family

Hey! We are Aaron and Kristin Sorenson. We are the parents to two little kiddos through adoption, Jonas (2.5 years) and Lany ((Lane-y) 3 months)!

When I (Kristin) grew up, my neighbors had grown their family through adoption. Seeing their family’s openness to adoption was how the Lord first opened my eyes to adoption. When our neighbors adopted their second child, a little girl from China, I was so excited and loved to spend time with her. After this, I can’t remember a time not wanting to adopt when I grew up! I imagined my future with kiddos from different countries, from the US and around the world, and that was just my vision.

When my husband and I got married 6 years ago we weren’t sure how we wanted to grow our family initially. We discussed what we’d “like to do first” (which is funny now!): biological children, adopting domestically or fostering to adopt. At the time we didn’t qualify for any out of country adoptions as we had not been married a year yet! ☺  My husband never was opposed to adopting, initially however, he didn’t have the same heart as I did for it. So we pursued pregnancy in hopes of growing our family that way first. A year and a half later, I was diagnosed with PCOS, which is a fairly common disorder that can cause infertility and was the reason I had been unable to get pregnant naturally. I was not overcome with sorrow at this diagnosis, only because of the vision I had as a child and still had as an adult…. that I wanted to grow my family through adoption…. that’s where my heart was. I wanted to be there for a child that needed a home.

I (Aaron) agreed with this. Hearing the news that Kristin had PCOS was for sure not what we were hoping for but for us it confirmed that adoption was the route to pursue to grow our family. We didn’t really know where to start but thankfully knew another family that had adopted and we followed their path (quite literally as we used the same consultant and funny enough matched through the same agency as them!). We started the adoption process early 2015 and became active with an adoption consultant in October 2015. After that we experienced a number of failed matches. We felt discouraged and heartbroken, wondering if we would ever become parents. I remember when the first failed match occurred, I thought, “No way… I’ve heard of this happening but this can’t be our story.” We were left heartbroken again and again.

We read scripture to bring us courage and really clung to this verse: “I would have lost heart, unless I believed that I would see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living.”  Psalm 27:13. It’s the verse we have on a letterboard in our house, a reminder that we don’t need to lose heart, we will see God’s goodness.

On May 4th, 2016 I (Kristin) got a call that a boy had been born the day before, and that we were matched with him. He was our son! Tears of joy. I’m getting choked up just typing that. I’ll never forget the swell of my heart and rise of emotions. We couldn’t wait to fly to Florida to meet him!

This is our boy – Jonas. Our little joy bomb and Elmo lover. How did this little 5-pound baby become a 33-pound chunky 2-year-old? We can’t imagine our lives without him.  We would go through all the pain and loss a million times if it meant him in our family and us with him!

When Jonas was a year old we decided we’d like to try to adopt again. This time we decided to go directly through the agency that our consultant matched us with for Jonas’ adoption. We completed a new home study and a few months later we found out we’d be moving to Sweden for a few months for my husband’s job. We were SO excited for the opportunity, as we wanted to go, but also were a bit nervous knowing that we’d be putting our adoption on hold and knew we’d see many opportunities to adopt where we’d have to say “no”. When we were in Sweden we had someone give us a word they believed was from God: “There’s a package on the way.” I wanted to assume this meant a baby was on the way, but when our first adoption held some failed matches etc., I didn’t want to be too hopeful for this adoption to go so smoothly. When we returned to the United States from Sweden we kept thinking about that word and wondering if it would come to in fact be a baby…Was there a baby somewhere growing that would join our family? Yes, in fact there was! Mother’s Day weekend we got the call that we were matched with a little girl due in July, in believe it or not, Florida. Again!! ☺ We were ecstatic and overjoyed at this wonderful news and joyfully shared with our family about the hope of a little girl joining our family! Our daughter Lany was born July 12th, 2018 and she is such a little peanut. Her features are so delicate and petite and the noises and coos she’s starting to make are so soft and sweet. I feel like that is something already so distinct in her demeanor. We are so honored to be a part of her family and so very grateful God allowed us to grow our family through adoption again.

About 2 weeks before this little girl was due, I got an email from Kailey from Cheers to Plan A Adoption that we had been chosen to be the featured family in October and we would be the first featured family that already would have the child with us in our home! We are so thankful for this opportunity to be featured and have been so blessed by it already.   

Adoption is something so complex. Just as our children are so different, their stories are so different, their families are so different, their adoptions are so different….the list goes on! We won’t claim to be experts in adoption, on how to go about it or how to talk about it, but we will say that we feel so completely humbled and HONORED that their birth families and our Father God would allow us to be weaved into their stories. What an incredible, magnificent gift that definitely isn’t lost on us.  

We pray where you are in your journey that as God’s word says…. You wouldn’t lose heart, remembering that you WILL see God’s goodness. Praise Him for that.

Thank you so much for reading our story. Please be sure to hop over to Instagram and follow as we fundraise this month!

Love,

The Sorenson Family

September Adoptive Family :: The Houk Family

We are Kenn and Kari – the Houk family! Kenn and I were introduced in 2015 through a mutual friend and hit it off instantly. Nine months after the day we met, we exchanged wedding vows in front of the Lord, friends and family. The day was beautiful, … [Continue reading]

August Adoptive Family :: The Canny Family

We are the Canny Family. Mom (Holly), Dad (Michael), and twin 5 year-old girls (Chloe and Niamh). Our dossier has been in South Korea for 9 weeks now and we expect to be matched within the next couple of days to weeks. Currently the time frame is as … [Continue reading]

June Adoptive Fam :: Christopher & Kelsey

Hi, Yall! We are Christopher and Kelsey. Our journey to grow our family has been filled with many twists turns and a whole lot of faith. When we began dating almost 10 years ago, we talked about a big family that included adoption. Chris jokes that I … [Continue reading]

May Adoptive Family :: The Exsted Fam!

We are Mike and Cassandra. We live in the Midwest, along with our three biological children. This year, we are celebrating ten years of marriage! Five years ago, if you were flipping through the pages of my Bible, you would land on a page, where … [Continue reading]

April Adoptive Family :: Beth & Matt

Matt and I met 10 years ago when we sat down in a church pew during his first month of college. We were friends for a year and dated for 3 years before we were married in the same church where our love story began.  Two years after we were … [Continue reading]

celebrating adoption & 31 years of life

hello friends. Kailey here. I am 31 years old today & I am celebrating by sharing 31 families that are raising funds for their adoption. Please consider donating! Make sure to comment below which family you donated to. So much love for each … [Continue reading]

December Adoptive Family :: Kari & Austin

Over the years, one of our favorite questions to answer is, “How did you two meet”. Almost instantly, we have been known to bust out into laughter, both knowing the answer to this questions will earn more than a few awkward glances. Flashback to … [Continue reading]

2017 Small Shops Christmas Guide

It's time for our 3rd annual #ShopSmallChristmasGuide ... and everyone said, YAY!!! Please consider doing some {or ALL} of your shopping here from this list.  If you are looking for something specific email me & I'll do my best to help you locate … [Continue reading]