"Not flesh of my flesh, Nor bone of my bone, But still miraculously my own. Never forget for a single minute,
You didn't grow under my heart - but in it"

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Faith's Room

We have finished Faith's room. We are so excited. Just wanted to say thanks to a bunch of people that made it possible, Sarah and Dan, Vicki and Rob and kids, everyone who prayed, thanks so much. So we put her crib up and put her blankies in them. We painted and trimmed the one wall in the alphabet in braille. I cant wait to have her here. I love her so much and yet have never met her.

We are steadily doing the Dossier. Tomorrow we make the trip to where we got married to pick up 4 copies of our marriage license. Then I can finally check something off the dossier.

Prayer needs

Please pray that the money comes for the adoption. We are down to needing 16,000 plus travel.
Pray for Faith to be warm and comfortable and loved while waiting for us.
Pray for Paul, he has some interviews coming up and hoping he gets a job.

Praising God for giving friends visions and conformations we are going to bring Faith home.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

We decided on a name

Just like during our pregnancies a girl's name was always easy for us to agree upon. Well after we had our last beautiful baby I still had 2 names I wanted to use. One was Irena, but we didnt have a middle name. Irena was what I had wanted because I had learned about Irena Sendler that got 2500 jewish kids out of the warsaw ghetto during the holocaust. I thought it was a beautiful strong name.

When we found this baby we are trying to adopt, the agency had named her Faith. That is not her real name and we do not know her real name yet. So we have been calling her and praying for her as Faith. It stuck. She is a Faith to us. Well I thought why not Irena Faith? Then I started looking at Russian names as well as other names I like, like Nevaeh, Addison, Addy, but still felt very strongly about Irena. While looking at names I looked up meanings and didnt like the meanings to some of the other considerations, but found that Irena means peace. How pretty. Sarie's name means peace and Trinity's middle name is Fayth.

I wondered about how other parents name their adoptive kids. Did they keep the Russian names or not. Most of them were changed especially if the court named the child. Some kept the name but changed the spelling to Americanize it. I have since the beginning thought of her as Faith and then wanted Irena in front of it that I couldnt imagine calling her anything else. So we did the opposite as some of the parents. We gave her a name an gave her a Russian spelling.

So her name will be Irina Faith. I think it suites her. Though I have never met her. Paul and I are anxious to find out her real name. I also want to find out how she was named. If her mother named her then maybe we will put that in her name somewhere, if she was named by a dr or the state I dont want to keep that because they wouldnt have taken the time like a mother does to name their beautiful child.

So from now on when you pray for us you can pray for Irina Faith by name.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

A new development

We have been praying and it is with a heavy heart that we have decided to only adopt F at this point. We feel it wiser to do one child and bring her home and get her helped and developing then go back and adopt S later if she is still available. We had updates on F and pictures and with S we have heard nothing, its like she has vanished. Maybe it is God's way of saying we are just to adopt F.

I am still praying for a forever family for S and if anyone that reads this wants more info I can put you in contact with her caseworker.

This is not the end for us. We will adopt F and we will get her here and keep praying and if God wants S here too we will have her here as well. I think bringing them home separately will also allow more one on one with them. We just dont know anything that is going on with S, they refuse to talk to the agency or give any info on her.

We would also like to thank all the people who have given and made this adoption possible. God is so good all the time. I pray that all of you are blessed in the way you have blessed us. We should have enough by Monday to move forward with the next set of paperwork.

Prayer needs

Pray for S to find her forever family if it is not us.
Pray for S to be at peace and not terrified, not upset, to be warm at night. Pray that someone takes an interest in her in her country and comforts her and loves her.
Pray for F to continue to grow and develop and thrive. Pray that she is warm and resting and comforted when scared or not feeling well.
We still need 15,500.00 to pay the adoption without the money we need for travel.
Pray for airline tickets when the time comes.
Pray for the homestudy to be quickly approved and our income not to be an issue.
Pray for the money to come for the fbi clearances.

Answers to prayer
We had all the paperwork and the money for my passport.
We received 2000.00 that came in right before our deadline to send the papers and money in.
We were given a crib that we needed for the welcomed addition.
F is doing well with her hearing aids and looks good.
Paul got one of his clearances back and I hope to get mine soon.

Thank you all for the prayers and support. Please remember us in your prayers and more importantly remember all the widows, orphans and fatherless in this world this christmas season.

Merry Christmas.

Thursday, December 10, 2009

We need your help

I am going to ask you to please give. I know this is a horrible time of year to ask you to give. I understand that. I am asking that even if it is just 1.00 that you would please give.

We got our contract in the mail today. We have 14 days to sign it and get it back to them before the whole thing gets canceled. When we sign it we are to send 2600.00. I will be honest and tell you I have none of that money right now. We just paid for the deposit and for the passport and clearances. I did all the math today and the total needed without travel to bring our girls home will be 25, 800.00

Does this price overwhelm me? A little, but I know my God is bigger. If there are 25, 000 of you reading this you would only have to give one dollar. That doesnt seem so overwhelming. I have information on how to donate to the adoption so that it goes straight to the girls. The money would be theirs for whom ever adopted them, if it happened to not be us. Please please please donate to them. Dont think that 1.00 or 5.00 if too little. Every little bit matters. What ever you can give. Please pass this blog on to everyone you know. Come together this Christmas to help us give two children a home.

Here is the information

You can send a check or money order to

A Child’s Embrace
2012 Broadway
Vancouver, Washington 98663

This is important- Please in the subject line put the name Faith or Shelby and it will go straight to them. If you had any questions you can call Jeny Reynolds Program Coordinator Kids To Adopt Tel: 360.695.1704

If you wanted to give us the money for other fees on our end and know us personally I will guarantee that it goes to the adoption only. If you are really good at fundraising or know someone who is, that would be amazing. Please contact me by leaving a comment on the blog.

If you can not give and I completely understand that. Could you please just pray for us. Here is a list of specific prayer needs.

That all the paperwork goes through and gets approved.
All the money for the adoption comes.
The girls would be fed, body, mind and spirit.
That they would be warm enough and sleep well.
They would know that a family out there is trying to come get them to bring them home.
The homestudy is done quickly and the money is paid for that. That it is approved too.
My passport gets approved and arrives as early as possible.

Thank you all so much for all you have done and are doing. I pray God blesses every one of you reading this. I am going to end it with a quote I love...

“I keep my ideals, because in spite of everything I still believe that people are really good at heart.” ~ Anne Frank

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Thanks and Prayer

I just wanted to thank the beautiful angels we have in our lives. You know who you are and all you have done in this process. I know we are in the earliest of early stages but still so much outpouring of love and support has come our way.

I would like my prayer warriors to pray for these specific needs please....

That S would get better treatment until we can bring her home. Also for healing for her mind body and soul. And pray that she is warm enough, as a mother I always worry my kids arent warm enough and I can't be over there to tuck her in at night so please God let her be warm.

That F would continue to thrive and be loved until her mama and dada can bring her home to love on. Also that the hearing device would continue to work and open up a whole new world to her. Pray that she keeps warm as well.

That Paul and I would be able to get some kind of health insurance that is okay with the adoption agencies.

That Paul's blood pressure stays healthy.

That the funds would continue to come in for all the expenses we need to adopt these beautiful babies.

For the homestudy to be paid for and go through without any problems quickly.

One last thing, if you could pray for my anxiety and fears to all wash away and just be at perfect peace that this will all go smoothly and easily.

I just want to praise the name of Jesus right now. He is mighty to save. As one of my friends said tonight, if its God's will it's God's bill, lol. There is no place for the enemy here. In Jesus name.

Thank you Lord for all you have done and all you are yet to do. Amen.

Friday, December 4, 2009

Praise God

I just received an email about F. Thank you all for all the prayer and support. I am in tears writing this but they are good tears. This is what I received...

Updates for F:

12/5/09 F is out of the hospital. She has been fitted with a hearing device (I think hearing aids). She is now discovering new textures of toys, likes to stand in her crib and not afraid anymore and the big thing is she is discovering her world of sounds with hearing device. There is someone who has been hired by her sponsoring organization to go play with her and spend time with her to help with her growth and development. She is doing much better now that she can hear things!

This also just in :The non-profit spent 1300 us dollars on her hearing aids and 1000 us dollars on a nanny to come and play with her ..... how awesome is that. You don't know how lucky she is to have that, we rarely see that devotion to a child and it will be so important for her development.

Praise God from whom ALL blessing flow! Thank You Jesus!

Thursday, December 3, 2009

So I will start at the beginning......

One of the pastors at our church ask me to head up a team for an Alaska missions trip in 2010. After a couple weeks I was told that the Alaska trip was canceled. I was so bummed. I felt slighted, like they didnt think I was good enough to do it anymore, which totally was not the case. During this time I had begun to read the book Fields of the Fatherless, I highly recommend this book by the way. Some time went by and I started to feel like I needed to go to Russia. I talked to Paul about this feeling. I thought maybe Alaska was canceled because I was meant to go to Russia. I waited for the go trips list at church to come out so I could see if Russia was on it. Then I received an email about an adoption.

Periodically I get emails about kids waiting to be adopted, but the email I got one morning was different. It said that S was 3 years old deaf and blind and spends her days screaming. She lives in a constant state of terror. There was no other information given. Well about 5 or 6 hours later I still didnt feel right about what I had read. Paul and I talked and I ask him if I could just see what country she was from. He said yeah. So I sent and email but figured it was a long shot because if you are not paper ready they said they wouldnt give any information. The next day I got an email that simply said, " S is from Russia." I began to cry.

What did all of this mean? I prayed, Paul prayed, we prayed. I knew God was doing something to Paul because he told me to sign the release paper and get S's pictures and medical reports. While we waited for the papers to arrive I prayed. I didnt understand what all of this meant. There was no way we were ready to adopt. We didnt have thousands of dollars. Even if we did Paul had lost his job about a month before all of this so the paperwork would look horrible. I jokingly prayed God if S has red hair then I will know she is my child. We got the papers and the pictures and she had dark but red hair.

They warned me the pictures were heartbreaking. She was screaming in every picture. Her hair was sweaty from all the screaming. We looked over the medical report and took it to a dr friend. He adopted from Russia so more than being a dr he could help us understand. We prayed, ask others to pray. While praying with a wonderful friend specifically about the money an email came in and it said 5 minutes ago an anonymous donor just gave 5000.00 towards S's adoption. I thought, Lord what are you doing to me?

Paul and I continued to pray. I had many signs pointing towards this being the right thing to do, but Paul wasnt convinced. For him he needed to have the non nonrefundable deposit paid for by someone. So we waited.....and waited...then I got another email.

I had probably gotten 20 emails of kids to adopt other than S and deleted them all but then we got one for F. F was 9 months old deaf and blind. I ask where she was from and you guessed it, Russia. I thought for a minute that maybe S was getting us open to F. That thought quickly left my head and then another more scary thought entered, we need to adopt both.

BOTH! Were we crazy? All that money times two? I prayed again and decided that I could not choose. Are you kidding me. S was dying in this place in Russia a tiny little 19lbs and no one teaching her or loving her and F would be S in a few years. So we signed a release form and got her medical and pictures. I think there is a faint bit of red in her hair too.

Health wise she is much better than S. F has come so far, what a fighter. She survived being born at 27 weeks weighing 900 grams or 1.98 pounds. She is meant to do great things. So we pray....

I talked to Paul and said look these girls need an answer, I need an answer!! Did you hear from God??? He said yes, he knew what he had to do. I said is the answer no? Every fiber in my being feels something when I talk about these girls, could that all be my doing? He said God ask him to take a step of faith and come up with the 250.00 application fee ourselves and the rest would be provided. I could have smacked him! God had been telling me the same thing, but I kept saying no it has to be Paul's way.

We contacted the adoption agency and said we will try to adopt both. So as of right then I had maybe 50.00 in the bank. It will be the most difficult process they told us. It already looks bad because neither of us have regular 9-5 jobs. Our businesses are both licensed but when I get paid I just have people write out the check to me or they pay cash. I would have no idea how to prove income. The adoption agency said it is a 6-9 month process and will be overwhelming. They said the Russians wont understand why we want one of the kids let alone 2! The Russians said S wasnt worth it. My God knows she is.

So here we are. This weekend is my big Santa weekend and I am hoping to bring in enough after tithe to send the deposit out on Monday morning and get the homestudy paid for, hopefully even the passports. Knowing that we needed to do this and it is ordained by God has not made the decision any easier. I had doubts all day today. I got scared. I thought no I cant do this, Im not good enough to adopt the paperwork wont work, we dont have the money. Klove helped, seemed to have the exact right songs on at the exact right time.

So this is what I am asking for on this day.

Please pray

Pray for our marriage and family. This is a very difficult process and we dont need the enemy coming in messing stuff up. Also that our girls will be able to understand what and why we are doing this.

Pray that God would reveal Himself in a mighty way and that others would come to know Christ through our journey.

Pray that all the paperwork gets passed through and the money gets paid.

Pray for S, that God would touch her body and heal her from the top of her head to the bottom of her feet. That she would find peace. That she wouldnt scream all day anymore. Pray that she isnt terrified. That someone there will take an interest in her and love on her. Pray that she finds her forever family, if that is us then so be it.

Pray for F. Pray that God would hold her close and comfort her. That in her darkness she sees light. Pray for healing specifically on her ears and eyes and apparently she frequently gets the flu so no more sickness Lord. That she would continue to be a pleasant baby and not be fearful or hurt.

Also if you could pray that we find a working vehicle that can now seat 8.

Thank you so much.

Be Blessed

Paul and Ashlee

Our family

Let me tell you a little bit about my family. My name is Ashlee, I am 28 and a photographer. I am married to a wonderful man Paul. He is 30 years old and a computer programmer./ everything else. The man is great at everything is does. We have four children all girls. Our oldest is 8 then 5, 2 and 1. We are a homeschooling family. Most importantly we love and serve a mighty God.

We are starting this blog to document our journey to adoption. Our hopes, our fears, the process. We believe we are to take care of the widows the orphans and the fatherless. We are going to need a lot of support and encouragement through this process. Please pray for us.

Be Blessed.

"Don't forget to do good and to share what you have with those in need, for such sacrifices are very pleasing to God."

Hebrews 13:16 NLT