eliza’s adoption story: part 3

Down Syndrome adoption domestic adoption Many Sparrows Blog

This is the third part of our adoption journey to Eliza, our precious daughter. You can read part one here and part two here.

I would say that as soon as we put our yes on the table and joyfully learned a sweet two-week-old baby girl would soon be our daughter, things started falling into place. sleeping dogs где находятся сохранения But I can’t say that because this story is so much bigger than happenstance. We’ve been privileged to be part of this amazing narrative that God is crafting, and when he writes a love story, his ways are so much bigger than ours. No plot line is forgotten. No chapter goes unfinished.

хенд мейд идеи мастер классы The creator of all things drew so close to us and I can honestly say that we felt reality of his presence in new ways as we began to piece together the journey to our sweet girl. The day we learned of Eliza, Jonny talked to a friend, a fellow Iowan and pastor in our denomination. He and his wife have three sweet daughters with Down Syndrome via birth and adoption, and he was an amazing resource for us to ask honest, real questions. In an after thought, really, he happened to ask Jonny where this waiting baby was. It turned out that his mom had a beautiful home in Florida she wouldn’t be at for the time we would need to be there.

Through this precious family, God provided ample and amazing housing for us for the entire adoption wait. When we thought we’d be pinching pennies for a cramped hotel room, God made a way we could have never come up with on our own. He does not leave us on our own. He is the good shepherd who cares for each one in his flock.

We knew we’d be driving all around the state for different appointments and paperwork, but a rental car for what was looking like at least a two-week wait was more than what our meager budget could handle. Friends of ours from when we lived in Des Moines now live in Florida, and very, very generously offered their second vehicle for us to use as our own. Another detail that we worried about, but God had already taken care of. http://texnadzor.su/images/doki/sitemap21.html спрей для носа изофра инструкция When I think on the love and generosity so many poured out on our family, I am brought to tears. We truly got a front seat to the compassion of the body of Christ…and friends, this was only the beginning.

список больниц московской области A whirlwind may be putting it lightly.

We got the call, tried to process life-changing news, and ran around our house, haphazardly throwing clothes in suitcases. We packed diapers and a dear friend brought over two huge boxes of newborn clothes and baby gear for us to borrow. That Saturday morning, we managed to celebrate Christmas with our boys, go through a last-minute home study visit with our social worker, and drive to Kansas City. The airport there had the most affordable plane tickets, and my parents were planning on being there to visit my grandma for Christmas. We would be able to leave the boys with my family, and fly out early Sunday. My amazing mom, who never has time off, happened to already have the next week off, due to Christmas, so she could watch the boys for us.

http://aquaheat.com.ua/webim/styles/sitemap42.html ефремов час быка краткое содержание The timing of everything was something only God could orchestrate.

When the world says no, God makes a way.

God always had a plan for Eliza. Always. And I’m so thankful that we get to be a part of it.

When we finally boarded our plane at 4 a.m. that Sunday morning, I was physically and emotionally exhausted, and if I’m being honest, I was terrified, too. Despite God’s clear faithfulness, I was scared. What were we doing? Others would surely think we were crazy. Were we crazy? Were we making the right decision? I missed my boys already. Anxiety mixed with pregnancy and I actually threw up. I felt fatigued and over my head. I pushed my head back on the plane seat and put in my headphones, turning up a new album Jonny had just downloaded. As we ascended into the clouds, I closed my eyes and tried to breathe. Of course, God met me there, on that plane. This is what I heard:

строение слухового анализатора схема Skies spin their dance within Your breath. Time runs it’s race within Your hand.  схема вязания ажурного края спицами And my mind runs wild to comprehend what no mind on earth could understand.

Your ways are higher, your thoughts are wilder. Love came like madness, poured out in bloodwashed romance.  http://aquaheat.com.ua/webim/styles/sitemap53.html киномакс в люберцах расписание сеансов It makes no sense but this is grace. And I know You’re with me in this place.

Here, now. All I know, is I know that You are here now.  садовая калитка своими руками Still my heart, let Your voice be all I hear now. Spirit breathe like the wind come have Your way. Cause I know You’re in this place.

http://mixmask.ru/wp-content/themes/instruktsiya-po-primeneniyu-himicheskih-ankerov.html инструкция по применению химических анкеров Faith makes a fool of what makes sense. But grace found my heart where logic ends.

Cause I know that You are here now. Heart and soul, God I know that You are here now. новая почта в мелитополе адреса Fix my eyes on the things that I can’t see now. And all I see is the glory of Your Name. (“Here Now” by Hillsong United)

Tears streaked my mascara as I dwelled in the reality that even in the unknown, God keeps his promises. His ways are beyond what we can understand — and so. much. better. I took a deep breath and let God’s grace fill my lungs. I knew in that moment that there was so much I didn’t know, and that was okay.

золотой жук сочинение It is so much better to do hard things with God than to do easy things without God.

In every corner of my whole heart, I believe that. We love because He loved us first and He loves with an intimate, outstretched love that I’ve only been able to begin to understand in the times in my life when I relinquish control and rely on his fullness to fill my brokenness. Fear only takes over when I start forgetting that I’m not in this alone. Perfect love casts out fear, and I wish I could tell that scared mama on the plane last month that every single worry would wash away when a tiny baby would be placed in her arms just a few days before Christmas, when so many around the world would celebrate the tiny little baby that changed everything.

get the fuck out перевод I began writing this third part of Eliza’s adoption story believing it’d be the final part, but the words seem to keep coming. Thank you to all who have read along so far — there’s still so much more to share about our journey to our precious, perfect daughter.

I’ll leave you with the words to the next song that played as we flew through the clouds: “Lord I hear You. I know You’re there. Closer now than my skin and bones could dare. Breathing deep within me, you are always with me. I can see You where eyes can’t stare. Brighter now than the sun could ever dare. Breathing all around me, God I know You’re with me here.” (Closer Than You Know, Hillsong United.)

(To be continued)
[Photo by Everyday Moments Photography]

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our adoption: part 2

Down Syndrome adoption domestic adoption Many Sparrows Blog

акт выполненных работ услуг I want to continue to tell Eliza’s adoption story because each dotted i and crossed t points back to a loving God that so intricately wove our stories together. Every time I look at her face, I am reminded of God’s faithfulness. Of his goodness. Of his grace. (Read part one of her adoption story here.)

узор спицами павлиний хвост описание It was just an ordinary Wednesday morning when an email — the e-mail — arrived in my inbox. I had just finished hanging ornaments back on the tree (my two little ninjas kept knocking them down!) and I cracked open my laptop to follow up on a few work-related assignments. I spotted a new e-mail. An adoption situation email about a two-week-old baby girl, waiting for her forever family.

When she was born, she had been unexpectedly diagnosed with Down Syndrome, and she though she had a few obstacles, she was doing very well. My heart skipped as I quietly imagined this sweet little one in our family, and then I shook my head. Surely, we couldn’t be her family. Our family was busy — two busy boys, one with a chronic illness, and another baby on the way in the spring. Still, I couldn’t stop thinking of her. The tears came when I saw her photos. I called Jonny upstairs and asked him to read the email.

“Maybe we could be her family.”

“Maybe we should consider it.”

http://avtosalon-vologda.ru/val-otbora-moshnosti-mtz-80-shema.html вал отбора мощности мтз 80 схема And we did. I Googled more than I ever have in my life and reached out to friends and acquaintances who have adopted and fostered children who have Down Syndrome. I learned that people born with Down Syndrome have an extra chromosome, and that affects their development. I also learned that I had many misconceptions about what people with Down Syndrome could or couldn’t do.

Jonny left to go to work, and I tried to go through the motions of the day, but I could not get this sweet girl off my mind. I prayed and researched and threw the idea out there to some close friends and family. http://lagodance.com.ua/libraries/vendor/eldorado-na-borovskom-shosse-katalog-tovarov.html эльдорадо на боровском шоссе каталог товаров To my surprise, everything kept coming up yes. So often, God uses his people to speak to us, and when I kept expecting cautious no’s, I didn’t receive them. Little did I know, Jonny was doing his own research and calling his own connections.

http://aruzhan-life.ru/vkgzui/rarjinjanjshwb33/vyazanie-spitsami-platya-dlya-novorozhdennih.html вязание спицами платья для новорожденных That evening, we shared our fears and hopes and dreams. We talked realistically about pursuing special needs adoption and wrestled with trying to discern God’s will. We both felt a tender spot in our hearts for people with Down Syndrome (remember when I wrote about Down Syndrome adoption here?). Jonny and I took a class together at Drake where we learned the heartbreaking, staggering statistics of Down Syndrome abortion after prenatal diagnosis (around at least 70%), which I think sealed in both of our hearts that we would pursue Down Syndrome adoption much further down the road.

But now? I had been expecting to adopt a toddler. Could we really be the best parents for her? We knew we both had to be on the same page. We believed that God wouldn’t call one of us to something without calling the other, too. We sought prayer and wisdom from others and we went to bed that night fully believing that if this little one was our daughter, God would pave the way.

ретинола ацетат способ применения The next morning, adoption forms from interested families were due. We answered the questions about why we felt led to pursue this adoption situation, initialed the dotted lines, and submitted it just a few minutes before the 10 a.m. deadline. I hit send and felt a whoosh of relief. I also felt a pang of sadness, already worried that I had given too much of my heart away to a little one who wouldn’t end up being ours. But mostly, we both felt confident that we served a God worth trusting.

кировская область на карте россии Confident that God is a God who orchestrates more than we could imagine. That he knit together this little girl in her birth mother’s womb and that she was fearfully and wonderfully made. Throughout the adoption process, we walked through doors in faith, and when those doors shut, we felt confident that we had been obedient. Things were out of our hands, and we went about our day. Maybe we would hear something further about the situation later in the weekend.

Light snow fell as Jonny headed to our local college to pick up Edwin, our host student, to drive him 2.5 hours to the airport so Edwin could spend Christmas with his family. I kissed Jonny goodbye and went about my day, trying not to obsess about that potentially life-changing document we had just submitted. I took Joseph to school and played blocks with Asher and cut the crusts off peanut butter sandwiches.

http://egorie.ru/libraries/simplepie/toyota-verossa-tehnicheskie-harakteristiki.html toyota verossa технические характеристики At 1 p.m., I received an unexpected call from an unknown number. 

“I’m calling about the adoption situation.”

I ran into the living room to escape the Curious George Asher was loudly watching as he ate lunch.

“Congratulations…you have a daughter.”

http://bi.ranepa.ru/olymp/plan/stihi-drugu-po-perepiske.html стихи другу по переписке I stared at the Christmas tree as the twinkle lights began to blur in a mess of tears and laughter. I took a breath and tried to find the words to say and a chair to sit in before my pregnant body fainted in shock.

“You’ll be hearing from the agency soon. They submitted you along with other families to the baby’s birth mother, and she quickly chose you. You’ll start getting paperwork soon.”

http://smak02.ru/joomlatools-files/docman-images/balearskie-ostrova-na-karte-mira.html балеарские острова на карте мира And that was it. I stood, mouth gaping, phone in my hand, staring at the Christmas tree, in shock of the life-altering call I had just received. My heart dropped and burst into a million pieces. My hands shook as I called Jonny, who was in another state on his trek to the airport.

My words jumbled and I somehow choked it out that this was it.

http://9000977.ru/system/logs/integratsiya-detey-s-sindromom-dauna-statya.html интеграция детей с синдромом дауна статья We were going to be parents to the most perfect baby girl.

(To be continued)


[Photo by Everyday Moments Photography]

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our adoption: part 1

Down Syndrome adoption domestic adoption Many Sparrows Blog

сильно немеют руки по ночам December ended up being a pretty wild, amazing, unexpected ride. The week before Christmas, our beautiful daughter Eliza Marie was placed into our arms via adoption and our lives have been forever beautifully changed.

http://jordi-simon.com/jordisimon/tmp/tush-dlya-resnits-kontrolnaya-zakupka.html тушь для ресниц контрольная закупка But before we get into that, here’s a bit of the back story that led us to our perfect girl:

инструкция должностная уборщика производственного помещения We took a nontraditional adoption path. When we started this adoption, Jonny and I were on the same page. We really felt specifically led to adopt a child who was already waiting for a family. We did not sign on with a particular agency and instead pursued a home study with an independent social worker so we could be open to broader adoption situations. We were approved for ages up to four years old, multiple races, both genders, sibling groups, and special needs. Since God had already grown our family through transracial adoption, we felt more intentional about that for this adoption as well.  http://zuzmonster.ru/wp-includes/pomo/raspisanie-poezdov-na-2016-god-rzhd.html расписание поездов на 2016 год ржд We didn’t know what this adoption would look like, but we felt compelled to be open to what God had for us.

My sweet friend Courtney is an adoption consultant who is networked with multiple agencies, social workers, and attorneys across the country. I reached out to her about our heart for harder to place children and she agreed to let us know when she came across higher-need situations. I also joined Special Angels Adoptions, a nonprofit group for home-study ready families that helps connect willing families with special needs situations. We additionally submitted our home study to AdoptUsKids.org, a national registry of waiting children in the U.S. foster care system.

инструкция по эксплуатация насосной станции And then we waited. Any of you adoptive mamas know the reality of aching and waiting for a child, even if you don’t know who that child is. I kept delaying our Christmas cards, holding out hopes that kiddo #3 would be in our photo.

We prayed about, researched, and pursued a few adoption situations, including a infant waiting for months in the NICU, born heavily addicted to heroin. We learned much about the brokenness many children in foster care have to suffer when we sat in on interviews to find a family for a 4.5-year-old suffering from PTSD and attachment disorders. Our hearts were continually broken and re-broken as we saw firsthand the hurt in our world, inflicted on sweet little ones due to no fault of their own. Our hearts also grew for birth families, as we had a front-row seat to the trauma they have often endured as well. Adoption is a blessing, but oh, how it comes from so much loss.

http://promsex.org/tpls/blocks/gde-v-vindovs-7-vipolnit.html где в виндовс 7 выполнить Families come to adoption in many ways, and while some assume that infertility is the only reason, that is certainly not the case. For us, adoption was something God laid on our hearts as a young married couple before we thought to build our family in any other way. We are so grateful for the ability to grow our family through adoption and birth, and when we adopted Joseph and then decided to get pregnant, it sealed the deal for us that we would eventually have four children — one more biological child and at least one more via adoption.

http://aglschool.ru/libraries/simplepie/salfetki-iz-bisera-shemi-master-klass.html салфетки из бисера схемы мастер класс This summer, as we continued to pray and wait for our little one via adoption, and as we dreamed of having a family with children close-ish together in age, we were so thrilled to find out God was giving us another little one via birth. As my bump grew, I felt mixed emotions — so thrilled to have a life growing inside me, but increasingly discouraged that our family was somehow still incomplete. I wrestled with God — did he really lead us to adopt a waiting child? Couldn’t we go a more traditional (faster) adoption route? What in the world was going on?

мандарины полезные свойства But as my kids love to sing, “God keeps his promises.”

And what he had in store for us was so much bigger and better than we could even fathom.

детские стихи про татарстан (To be continued)

http://dandelier.com/doci/sitemap17.html элзепам инструкция по применению в ампулах I share about our adoption journey because we all have our “yes” in God’s Kingdom, and for family, it looked like intentionally walking the path of adoption. For you, it could look completely different. My hope is that by sharing our “yes”, you’re encouraged to dwell in God’s grace and be obedient in yours.

маршрут 74 саратов I’d love to hear what “yes” God is writing into your story.


[Photo by Everyday Moments Photography]

busy moms: here’s how to keep the joy this christmas

Itty Bitty Nativity from Hallmark Gold Crown Encouragement for Busy Moms During the Holiday Season

маршрут автобуса воронеж москва Hey, busy mamas. I see you. I know you know what’s looming in the horizon. Soon you’ll be juggling mistletoe and eggnog, balancing pageants and wish-lists, trying to love your littles and manage some semblance of sanity along the way.

You know that holiday to-do list that’s already creeping up on you? That ever-changing checklist chockfull of good things that can start to not feel so, well…good?

инструкция сигнализация флешпоинт I’m going to let you in on a little secret: If we lose sense of the glow and wonder of the ordinary, the big holiday moments we work so hard to make shine will inevitably seem dim.

http://autotochka35.ru/rlbt/ac37/zayavlenie-na-postanovku-na-uchet-avto.html заявление на постановку на учет авто But what if we valued small over big this holiday season?

Adult Coloring Book Hallmark Gold Crown Christmas 2015 No Stress Holiday Season

http://videotorg.su/wp-includes/theme-compat/vologda-raspisanie-36-avtobusa.html вологда расписание 36 автобуса As our family grows and adds more commitments to the calendar, I’m sensing the need to be intentional with my time. As schedules ramp up, I need to slow down.

Christmas Stress Holiday Season Encouragement Hallmark Gold Crown Busy Moms

река анабар на карте I want my little boys to know that their mama valued time spent together. I want my kids to see and feel and believe that true holiday sparkle lies in time spent scribbling with crayons, afternoons imagining the wonder of the manger.

Itty Bitty Nativity from Hallmark Gold Crown Encouragement for Busy Moms During the Holiday Season

цитаты про богатство How can we pivot to be more present in our homes among the tinsel and glittering lights?

http://urist-market.ru/download/sdelat-model-samoleta-svoimi-rukami.html сделать модель самолета своими руками I jumped at the opportunity to join Hallmark Gold Crown in their holiday campaign, because I’ve always found their keepsakes thoughtful and family-centered. Their new seasonal line was such a joy to shop. Jonny and I have wanted to get the boys a nativity scene that they can play with — and not break. When we stumbled upon this Itty Bitty Nativity Scene, I think we uttered an audible “awww.”

Itty Bitty Nativity from Hallmark Gold Crown Encouragement for Busy Moms During the Holiday Season

песни положенные на стихи We decided to wrap it and give it to them as a special early Christmas present to help tune our hearts to the reason we celebrate Christmas. Every time I see their little hands playing with the adorable plush characters, I can’t help but smile. We’ll be keeping the set out throughout on a bookshelf in our living room — in reach for the little hands.

Itty Bitty Nativity from Hallmark Gold Crown Encouragement for Busy Moms During the Holiday Season

сложносочинительное предложение примеры I’ve had so much fun telling and retelling the story of the first Christmas as I sit with my boys on the living room floor. These sweet little moments reset my heart, and I think they might even change the trajectory of the day.

http://versall-spb.ru/shorsa-35-ekaterinburg-na-karte.html щорса 35 екатеринбург на карте Seeing Christmas through the eyes of my children throws a new blanket of joy and whimsy onto one of my favorite holidays. When I get too busy “adulting” and stress starts to creep in, even young children can notice. When I was browsing our local Hallmark Gold Crown store, I noticed a new line of absolutely charming coloring books for grown-ups. I’ve seen the trend catching on, and I nabbed a copy of “The Art of Happiness: A Coloring Book of Whimsical Designs.”

Adult Coloring Book Hallmark The Art of Happiness Coloring Book Christmas 2015 Review

http://xn--80aakzned5a0c.xn--p1ai/libraries/phputf8/hyuston-pesni-perevod.html хьюстон песни перевод My boys (at five and two) love sitting down with crayons, markers, and coloring books, and I enjoy creating with them. I’ve often wanted to doodle on something other than cartoon characters and superheroes, so I instantly gravitated to the charming, creative illustrations in the book. (Of course, I had to share a page with each of my boys, because they were so intrigued with Mommy’s new coloring book.)

Adult Coloring Book Hallmark The Art of Happiness Coloring Book Christmas 2015 Review

Adult Coloring Book Hallmark The Art of Happiness Coloring Book Christmas 2015 Review

http://nahimov.com/download/sitemap43.html база игрушек воронеж каталог Playing with my kids allows me to take a breath and reassess priorities — something I think we could always use more of as we approach the hustle and bustle of the holiday season.

поздравление с юбилеем свекрови от невестки We made a little video of Joseph and Asher opening their nativity gift.

Maybe it’ll bring you, joy, too:

real life justice

Real Life Justice Influence Network Class by Kayla Craig of Many Sparrows Blog. What is justice? How do we care about justice in our daily responsibilities?

http://volstroyservis.ru/sessions/97fb90b/igor-tyulenev-stihi.html игорь тюленев стихи Justice isn’t a warrior. It’s not a King riding in on a white horse fighting the bad guys and saving the day.

My kids love knights and dragons. I’m not sure how that happened or when it exactly occurred, but they are totally into it. For Halloween, my five-year-old insisted on being a knight, and my two-year-old just had to don a dragon costume. (A little bit fitting for their personalities, actually.) Even at their young ages, they have a sense of justice. Of fighting the bad guy and saving the day. And that’s kind of how I’ve always viewed justice.

проекты коттеджей с камином But God’s justice? The real life justice that, if we allow it to, can fuel head knowledge into our heart and out of our hands?

http://www.alphaled.ru/thumbs/348/lenovo-s850-tehnicheskie-harakteristiki.html lenovo s850 технические характеристики I’m humbled, excited, and certainly nervous to be teaching an Influence Network class on Real Life Justice tomorrow night. It’ll be a live online class, with the ability to purchase and watch later if you’re not able to log in for the live teaching. I’m fighting the lies in my ear, whispering “your voice doesn’t matter” and “you’re just a mom” and “your platform isn’t big enough.”

Real Life Justice Influence Network Class by Kayla Craig of Many Sparrows Blog. What is justice? How do we care about justice in our daily responsibilities? What does Jesus say about Jesus?

As I’ve researched this class, as I read books from theologians and teachers who are much smarter than me, as I started to dig into God’s word, I sat up late on my couch and realized something.

слушать денискины рассказы Justice isn’t what I thought it was.

We begin the journey to justice by “being of the same mind that was in Christ Jesus. This mind-set calls us toward an emptying and toward a taking on the form of servants.” (A Many Colored Kingdom)

чистая слобода новосибирск на карте Justice is the ministry of reconciliation.

Justice is attentiveness to the Holy Spirit and participation in his initiatives. “The kingdom of God is a communal initiative of the Spirit.” (A Many Colored Kingdom)

http://landing.fishtag.ru/includes/doci/zakon-o-tishine-saratov.html закон о тишине саратов True justice is when we bring the kingdom of God into a situation. If God is the Just One and we’re bringing his values and ideas into a situation, we’re bringing justice.

We often think of justice as: I hope that guy gets what he deserves.

But the justice of the cross says: You don’t get what you don’t deserve. You get freedom and life-everlasting.

Seeking real-life, Kingdom justice is discovering how to extend that freedom and grace to others. How do we throw open the doors to the throne of grace and live that inside-out, upside-down Kingdom justice? How do we do it as busy mamas? As professional women? As wives? As daughters of the King?

So, I hope that you’ll join me and the Influence Network as we see what God’s word says about justice, and we talk about real-life application, too. I’m learning that listening is profound, and small is big. I’m learning that God’s heart is for the hurting, and mine should beat in sync with His. I’m learning that His grace lights a flame in the darkness of injustice — and that it’s big enough to cover us all.

Let’s live like we believe the little things we do every day really matter. Let’s dig into Scripture and breathe compassion, mercy, and love as busy mamas. As professional women. As wives. As daughters of the King. Justice is a big word — but what does it mean? Join us as we discover the different ways God’s heart beats for justice — and how to enter into the renewal of all things, no matter who you are, what your gifts are, or where you’re at in the journey. Teacher Bio: Kayla Craig is a full-time journalist turned work-at-home mama. She’s married to a shaggy-haired pastor, and together they’re raising two sweet (and wild) little boys in the heart of the Midwest. She’s a mom via birth and international adoption from West Africa. She’s is currently in the adoption process again, as well as expecting in April 2016. When Kayla’s not chugging coffee or sweeping cheerios, she’s tickling the ivory keys of her old school MacBook, encouraging women to dwell — and become active participants — in the Kingdom story God is writing. She writes about finding worth at manysparrows.me.


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