Kim and I just got back from another adoption training. The first one was with LifeLink in Chicago (our placing agency). This one was with our home study agency, Lutheran Social Services, in La Crosse.

So what’s it like to attend adoption training? I should start by saying it’s just really cool to be in a room with a bunch of other people who are like you. We all come into the room as strangers. But we all have something very special in common. And therefore we all have something to talk about, and can bond quickly. People come to adoption for different reasons. Some aren’t able to have biological children. Some like the idea of a bi-racial, multi-cultural families. But we all have one thing in common- we all have a place in our hearts and home to love a child who has a need. That’s special. And so fun to see other people who are willing to do that.

We had two days of lecture and discussion. We talked a lot about the “lingo” of adoption. It matters how you talk about it. For instance, it’s not helpful to talk about your “own” children or your “real” children. They are your own real children whether adopted or not.

We also talked about how our family becomes “conspicuous” after you adopt. Particularly in our case as we adopt internationally, the makeup of our family is changed forever. We begin to stand out. I couldn’t help but think of our time in Indonesia when we talked about becoming a conspicuous family. We stood out big time over there. We got used to it eventually. And I suppose we’re still used to it now. To this day I still feel that I don’t quite fit in with American culture. Even though I was born and raised here, there’s something about spending time overseas that changes how you look at things, and how you look. After we adopt from South Korea we will really stand out again. But I’m okay with that. I’m proud to stick out for a good thing.

Something that really hit home was the reminder that adoption is a life-long process, not an event. All too often we think of adoption as merely an event- something that we work towards, get a child, and then we’re done. BAM, we adopted! But really adoption only BEGINS when you bring the child home. That’s when it starts. And it continues for the rest of your life, the rest of their life, and into generations to come. The makeup of your family changes, for generations. That’s a sobering thought. They don’t stay little babies forever. Adopted children grow up to become adults. They make friends. Go to school. Graduate. Get married. Jobs. Etc. Adoption is the process of loving your child, through all the ups and downs, through all the transitions, no matter what happens. Am I prepared to do that? Am I prepared to be this child’s father through all these this, and not just when they’re a baby? This is a serious question to consider. I believe I am. But this training was a good reminder that they don’t stay little forever. And a reminder that we’re starting a process and not working towards an event.

So what’s next for us? We have three interviews with our adoption worker in the next couple months. Laura, our worker, wants to finish the home study portion by the end of this year. We have two interviews in our (new) home (Yay!), and one in her office in Madison. Then we expect to get a referral within a couple month after that- so maybe February or so. The referral will be exciting because we’ll have a picture on our child along with some basic information. We’ve been looking forward to that for a long time. To finally put a photo to a name. Much more to come. Exciting exciting times.

I feel like this month has been an absolute whirlwind, but want to write an update.

First…God’s Provision.

Wow. All I can say is Wow.  We have been so blown away by the Lord’s provision in this adoption.  Can I just say that we took a step of faith Feb. 1 and sent in our adoption application.  To be completely honest, we didn’t have the funds to adopt (like really really didn’t have the funds), but felt like God told us to trust Him to provide, so we did.


The next week Josh got offered an amazing job that he wasn’t even looking for, basically tripling our salary overnight.  In addition, that same month I got offered a part-time contract job as a designer for a really awesome company. Score. Did I mention we got to keep our business on the side (which has been doing awesome as of late- and we still get to work together)


We knew we wanted to involve others in this, and so we stepped out again with fundraisers.  Can you believe that people have given over $12,000 in FOUR MONTHS towards this adoption?!

And here’s a little recap…

Still going: Puzzle! (currently at 91%!!… that’s ~$9,000)

8/13/16: Online Art Auction (raised $1500!)

6/20/16 -Paparazzi Jewelry Fundraiser (raised $93)

5/3/16 – Portraits in the Park Fundraiser (raised $720)

So, in just six months, we’ve been able to save and raise 36,000!! That was exactly our goal for Sept.  the largest chunk of the adoption process.  We are confident that we can save or apply for grants for the rest of the funds.


In the midst of all this, we’ve been wanting to move.  For the last few years, and even when we lived overseas we just had a sense that we were supposed to be closer to Madison, in the Sun Prairie Area.  We long to be part of a community that is multi-cultural and even are interested in working with some groups and fellowships that reach out to people in the area.  It also happens to be where Josh’s work and our fellowship is.  I can go into all the reasons, but the point is… we have had a burden to move for some time.  But, we were waiting. We wanted to be careful with money and timing.

At our last meeting with our agent, she made it clear that we needed to either move in the next two months or wait about two years.  So, what do we do? We move!

Well, we start looking at houses, in our price range thinking we’d get a tiny house now and maybe move again later.  So, long story short- God gave us a house we wanted in the area we needed for the price we could afford (coming in at about $39k less than their original asking price).  Crazy, but it happened.  Just as an fyi, this will be our 9th move in 9 years… so not moving again for a while sounds great to us!  And so that means we are ready to move on with our HOME study!!


Next up… Homestudy!

So, as much as it’s been incredible to watch God provide, we are super excited to be finishing up our this fundraising phase and start our home study phase…

We recently sent in a LOAD of paperwork to get things rolling. We should have a couple more interviews and a training in Oct (pray that we can find a babysitter).

We hope to have our home study completed by early December.

After that we’ll just wait for a referral.

We are told this can be anywhere from 2-6 months, and then another year or so before we can pick up our child.

We’re also hoping to apply for some grants at the end of the year, which will help with travels.

There’s the update.