Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Triathlon Success and a trip to Texas

     Thank you all so much for supporting Alyssa's triathlon fundraiser. She did amazing and placed 1st in the overall female category. Not only did she best her personal record by over 12 minutes, she had the fastest female time since 2009!
     You all did amazing as well! We had a call this week that our $2500 grant was totally matched!! We thank God for those that supported a leg of the triathlon and supported our final adoption push as well. We are so blessed to have family and friends that get to share in the inheritance and joy of the little one we hope to soon bring home. The grant agency does not release the names of those who gave, so please accept our thank you here!!
     Two days after the triathlon we received a call from our social worker with a case in Texas. We really felt the Lord's leading on this opportunity to be matched. There was a baby boy born on Sunday and the mother was leaving the hospital that Monday and did not want the child. She did not want to tell anyone about the child and did not want to see it. We were the only family that was ready to go. The only risk at the time was that the mother not return to the hospital to sign her papers, in which case our lawyer would have to intervene so that the child did not get put into the foster care system.
     We left for Lubbock that evening and we received a call about 3 hours before arriving that the birth mother's sister now knew of the birth and wanted the baby. This was very difficult news for us and we really entered a time of contending through prayer for this baby. The mother was still leaning on us adopting the baby, but wanted to hear her sister out and have 24 hours to make a decision. We felt we were to stay in Lubbock until we heard the word.
    Thank you to those of you who were praying for us during that time. We really felt your prayers. Unfortunately for us, the next morning we were told the mother chose to have her sister adopt the baby. Even though she was told the baby would still have to go into foster care for 2-3 months while the sister became home study approved, that was the decision she made.
       We really prayed over this baby boy and our hearts were really grieved when we heard the news. It was difficult to see Kaitlyn go through the grief process. She was so excited to get a brother and then had to work through the anger and sadness of not seeing it come to pass at that time. We know that this baby boy belongs to the Lord though and there were many people praying over him during the first few days of his life. We will continue to pray for him and his mother until God releases us from that. That in itself is an honor and reason enough for us to have been involved in the way we were. We will never know if the mother made the right choice, but we do know that we serve a God who makes all things work together for the good of those who love Him and are called according to His purpose (Romans 8:28.)
     Despite the difficulty of experiencing a failed adoption, we must say that God's faithfulness and love has been so amazing. People have asked me (Alyssa) how I'm doing and I can honestly say I am doing well. We did have to go through a period of grief and loss, but God's love was amazing during that time. God was even faithful to help Kaitlyn with her feelings and emotions. So many times as parents, we want to protect our kids from anything that could hurt them, but I think it was good for all of us to go through this together. And God is faithful to protect our little ones and help them sort out life.
     One thing I am so grateful for during this process is God's voice. He has spoken so clearly through this process and that is a rock for me to stand on. I know that I know God called us to adoption. I even believe that God told us to drive to Texas to adopt this little boy, even knowing the possibility that we would not get him. When you know God has spoken, it's not your job to questions him, but to trust and do what He's asked you to do. He's the best Dad and only wants the best for His kids. So I can trust in that. And even if things don't turn out the way I think they should, God is always faithful to see me through. Always! I know God has a baby out there for us and I know His timing and plans are the best. I also know that I am just a tiny part of a huge picture. I may not understand all this until the other side of Heaven, but I don't have to understand it. I can rest in the fact that God loves me and has the best plan for me. And He will make it come to pass. All I need to do is, in obedience, trust Him. He is a good Father and He loves me. What more do I need?
     So we will continue on this journey of adoption. This was a very difficult step in the process, but we stand on the hope that God will see us through until we hold our baby in our arms.
    Thank you all so much for your support and prayers. Please keep pressing in with us for those children who need loving families.

Sunday, September 30, 2012

Alyssa's Triathlon Fundraiser in One Week

Only 6 days until I (Alyssa) run the Black Canyon Sprint Triathlon. We were given a $2,500 matching grant in August and decided to do the Triathlon as a fundraiser to match the grant. To support us, you can sponsor a leg of my race or the whole thing: $5 for the 5K run, $15 for the 15 mile bike, $25 for the .25 mile swim or $45 for the whole triathlon. If you are interested in supporting us in our adoption by sponsoring me in my triathlon, you can make a check out to GGMA with a note with our names on it. Send the check to GGMA:

Modesto, CA 95353

Last time we blogged, we had just talked to a birth mom for the first time. She was trying to decide between our family and another for her baby. We had a great interview with her, but a few days later the agency contacted us and told us she had decided to parent her baby. We have not heard anything since, but keep her in our prayers. We're glad she made that decision before the process went any further because once adoptive parents are matched with a birth mom a lot of money is invested. In the case of a failed adoption, the agencies we are working with keep the money, but don't charge anything for the next adoption. The hard thing about that for us is we are using three different agencies with the hope that we can show our profile to more moms that way. A failed adoption would lock us into only using that one adoption agency. 

Now we are back to showing our profile to birth moms. Sometimes the wait feels long, but in actuality, the average wait for families trying to adopt in the U.S. is 18 to 24 months. So our situation isn't uncommon. Of course, when we started this process, we hoped we would be one of those families who got matched with a baby in 3 months, but we trust God's timing. God has spoken so clearly to us throughout this whole process and we know we are doing what He asked. All He is asking us to do at this point is trust His timing. Most of the time, the most important part of the process is the waiting.

Thank you all for waiting with us and standing by us in prayer and support. We really appreciate you all! God bless!

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Our 1st Birth Mom Interview and a Triathlon Fundraiser

A lot has happened since our last blog. We’ve been meaning to update, but as always life continues to fly by and keep us busy. God has blessed us and shown us so much favor.
     To start, back in July, we were given a $3,000 grant from the Katelyn’s Fund Ministry in Sioux Falls, South Dakota. We applied for the grant in June and were given a phone interview in July. The four board members who interviewed us prayed over us at the end of our interview, and really spoke blessing and life into our adoption process. Then to receive the grant a week later was icing on the cake!
     Last time we blogged, we also talked about Steve training to run a marathon. Our plan was to apply for a matching grant and give people a chance to sponsor Steve for each mile he ran and then have it doubled by the matching grant. Well, we never received the matching grant. So Steve ran his marathon regardless on August 11th and finished just under 4 hours, placing third in his age group! We are so proud of Steve. It is quite a feat to finish a marathon, but to finish his first marathon in under 4 hours at high altitude is pretty awesome. If you can’t tell, I’m a proud wife.
     When we drove home that day and picked up our mail, there in the mail box was the matching grant we applied for! Even though it was late for Steve’s marathon, we see God’s favor and blessing in receiving the grant. So we have come up with another plan to have it matched! On October 6th, I, Alyssa, will compete in my third Triathlon. You can help us raise money for our adoption by sponsoring a leg of my triathlon or sponsoring all of it.  

          *You can sponsor $5 for the 5K run, $15 for the 15 mile bike, $25 for the quarter mile swim or $45 for the whole Triathlon. Every dollar that is donated will be matched up to $2,500. If you would like to sponsor me you can do that by writing a check to GGAM and include a note that it is for us. Their address is: PO BOX 4, Modesto, CA 95353. You can see the attached picture for more information.

     Along with applying for the grants we have received, we have also applied for two interest-free adoption loans. We hope that if we are approved for one of these loans we will have what we need financially to cover the cost of any birth mom or medical expenses and legals above the adoption placement cost. Please pray for God’s favor in this area. The more financially ready we are, the more adoption situations we can have our profile presented to, as the costs vary widely from situation to situation.
     As far as the adoption process goes, we had our first birth mom interview yesterday. A mother from Detroit has narrowed her decision down to two families and wanted to talk with each. We answered her questions and shared our hearts for 45 minutes with her. It was a neat opportunity and even if we are not chosen we appreciated the opportunity to talk with her. We know God will lead her in the right decision.
     We’ve had our profile shown to 15 birth moms. The other day God showed me so clearly how He has been involved in every detail of my life. He specifically brought to mind examples since Steve and I have been married. So many times He has spoken to us in ways that made us say, “This is definitely God!” because He made it so clear. And then God showed me the leaf on a plant and spoke to my heart. If God is so detailed and precise in creating a leaf, how much more is He concerned about my life and the intricate details involved in it. 
     His timing is always perfect and His plan is always best. I have known that in my head for a long time and even told myself that many times as we have been waiting for our baby. But for the first time I truly believe it in my heart and have total peace about when we will finally be united with our baby. God told us what to do. We obeyed. Now we trust Him, His plans and His timing. And with that comes indescribable peace. Thank you Jesus!

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Steve - The Adoption Marathoner

So it must be very obvious by now that I am NOT a blogger. Sorry for being so inconsistent in sharing what's going on. To be honest, not a lot has changed in our adoption journey. Occasionally we have shown our profile to an expecting mom, but we still haven't been chosen. 

Back in March, we renewed our home study for another year. We really took some time to pray again about our adoption and what path God wanted us to be on. We contemplated and prayed about adoption through foster care. There's an agency in Denver that our friends used to bring home their two boys, so we had a few conversations with them. After a few weeks of praying though, we felt like the Lord said to continue on the path we were on. We were able to find another agency in Colorado Springs, Triad Adoption Consultants, Inc. (TAC), to renew our home study, as the one we used to do our original home study was an international adoption agency and could not offer us any domestic situations. TAC is the only agency we could find in CO that would allow us to own our home study, meaning we could have them send it to the other agencies out of state that we are using so we could have our profile available to more birth moms. We have been really happy with TAC.

We have had our family profile shown to about 13 or 14 birth moms so far. I think that it's about this time that most families waiting for their child can start getting discouraged, wondering why they haven't been chosen. For us, that has not been the case. Honestly, we feel totally at peace, trusting God's timing and direction. We always go back to that first moment when God said to start this journey. His word was so clear to both of us. He spoke to us individually at different times, and we know that we are doing what He asked us to do. I am so grateful for that because it is so much easier to rest in the waiting. Plus, God has been using this time to do a lot in our hearts and in our childrens' hearts. I truly believe this waiting period has been God's grace to prepare us for what's ahead and draw us closer together as a family.

Also, during this time of waiting, we have applied for a few more grants. We received a matching grant last fall for $5,000. That raised our funds to about $11,000. We recently applied for two more matching grants. We have not heard yet if we have been chosen to receive monies or how much. Steve began training for a marathon back in late May with the hope that he could be sponsored for every mile he runs, whether it be a dollar, two dollars or five dollars, and then have that be matched through a matching grant. Steve is running the Mt. Sneffels Marathon in Ridgway, CO on August 11. Hopefully, we will know before then if we have received a matching grant. At this point, the least we will likely be spending for our adoption is about $23,000. Most situations are at least 25K to 30K. If you would like to know more about sponsoring Steve as he runs 26.2 miles, email us at

So that is what's going on. Thanks for all your prayers and support as we continue on this journey. I can't wait to hold our baby in my arms, but in the meantime, I am so grateful for the process.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Living for the Moment

Since we last updated our blog, many things have happened on our adoption journey, both in our hearts and in the process of our adoption. First of all, we want to thank all of you who contributed to the matching grant we received. We were able to match it completely and even go a few hundred dollars beyond the $5,000. Yay God! We are so grateful and feel blessed that so many of you have invested in our adoption financially and through your prayers.

We had our family profile, (which is a book about our family), shown to a birth mother for the first time back in September. Since then, we have had our family profile presented 8 times. All the birth mothers have said no. Sometimes it's a little disheartening and it's easy to go down the slippery slope of wondering what is wrong with our family. Why hasn't a birth mother chosen us yet? But then God reminds us that He has already chosen our baby and will bring us together in His timing. As good as it would feel to be chosen, we trust and know that God's plans and timing are always better than ours. When we finally get that "Yes," we know it'll be worth the wait.

God is so awesome in that He weaves so many details together in the process of our journey. We will never know until we get to Heaven all those details, but we have a few we want to share with you. When we began this journey almost a year ago, I(Alyssa) had a perfect picture in my mind of how this whole thing would go. At least, I thought it was perfect. We would be matched with a wonderful mother who had no drug or alcohol problems, the father would be willing to sign the adoption papers without issue. Also, we would keep it a closed adoption so once we got our baby, we could move forward and raise our child in a protected environment away from the reality of why they were placed for adoption. God has slowly been tearing down my vain imagination of how this adoption should go so I can see the reality of what is going on and what He ultimately has planned for us, our baby, and the birth mother and father.

First, He dealt with the drug/alcohol issue. I have been praying protection over our baby since the day we decided to adopt; physically, mentally and spiritually. I have prayed that no matter what decisions the birth mother makes, the Lord would be a shield around her and her womb and He would protect our baby even when she is not a good covering. So when we were presented with an opportunity to have our profile shown to a birth mother who drank alcohol the first three months of her pregnancy, my faith was really tested. I've seen firsthand the effects alcohol can have on a child in the womb and it is not pretty. Everything rational in me said no. I not sure I could handle a child who has fetal alcohol syndrome. Then God said, "What have you been praying for, Alyssa? Why are you doing this anyway? The whole point is to save a child." This birth mother drank the first three months of her pregnancy because she wanted to abort the baby. Then she felt God telling her not to. Still her family pressured her to have an abortion and she found herself in the abortion clinic parking lot one more time, but she remembered what God said, and God saved her child again. Her story lined up with exactly why we decided to adopt in the first place. The only thing holding me back from saying yes was wondering if God would come through. Had He protected the baby during the first trimester of drinking? I heard God say, "Absolutely! I love this baby more than you do and I heard your prayers. Now say yes!" So we did. She chose another family. But for that one week while we waited, we prayed for that child like he was our own and we invested into his life and his mothers life like nobody else except for the other two families she was being presented to. By saying yes, not only did God do amazing things in our hearts, but the birth mother was affirmed in her choice to save her son's life. She was blown away that three wonderful families wanted her son.

Now when we are asked if we want our profile shown to a birth mother who smokes or has done drugs or alcohol during some point in the pregnancy, we don't even hesitate to say yes. We know God is bigger than that. He has even opened our hearts to an open adoption. The more we've researched it, the more we see that it's healthy for an adopted child to have relationship with their birth parents, even early on. It helps fill in the blanks of such a huge question, and it really helps the birth parents make the right choice for their child knowing that he or she won't be out of their lives completely. Plus, kids are smart. They know who their "mom and dad" are compared to a birth parent.

The reality is, most of the situations we are going to be presented with are not going to be pretty. It's more than likely that the birth mother has gone through abuse, has no family support, has turned to drugs, etc. All of these circumstances that could put fear in our hearts and cause us to say no. But God has slowly helped us to realize that He still wants us to say yes and believe Him for great miracles in the midst of such pain.

So once again, we continue to wait. We know this is all part of the process. We may hear "no" twenty times before we get the "Yes!" When it comes, all the waiting will have been worth it all. In the meantime, God has been challenging me to live in the moment. It's so easy for me to get caught up in thinking about what I need to do next. Sometimes I feel like all I do all day is rush from one thing to the next. Before I know it, the day is over and I realize I didn't take time to enjoy it. My kids are at a wonderful, fun stage right now. I want to soak in as much as I can because I know I will blink and they'll be going to college or getting married. I have a wonderful husband and two lovely children. I'm excited for our next child to join the family and I pray eagerly for that. But a good friend reminded me today of just how blessed I am and to enjoy this season with just the four of us. That's exactly what I needed to be reminded of. God takes us through seasons in life and they only last so long. So enjoy the season you're in. Before you know it, you'll be on to the next one.

Thanks for all you prayers and support. We will continue to keep you posted.

Friday, September 16, 2011

Grant Awarded

We are happy to let you all know that we were awarded a matching grant from Hand in Hand Adopt. It's a non-profit organization that awards matching grants to qualifying couples who have not yet finalized their adoption. We were awarded a $2,500 matching grant for a total of $5,000 if we raise $2,500. We are so excited about this and praise God for His continued provision! We have sent out letters to many of you letting you know how you can be apart of helping us reach our goal. If you have not received a letter and would like to know more about how you can participate, you can email us at

Since we last updated our blog, we have been presented to one birth mother. She did not choose our family, so in the last week, we have requested to be presented to another birth mother. She is due in November. We understand that being presented to birth mothers and not being chosen is part of the process. We feel totally secure in the fact that the right mother will choose us because we know that God has already hand-picked the right child for us. It's just a matter of us getting our family profile out there so the birth mother can find us. Please continue to be in prayer about this for us. We will let you know when we are matched.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011


A lot of you have been wondering what's been going on since we last updated our blog. We have been accepted by all the agencies we applied to. Several of them need a few more documents, so we are in the process of completing that. There are already many situations with children available where we could have our parent-profile presented to the birth mother, but we don't have near the funds we need yet. Just to give you an idea of what this will cost, we need to raise at least $20,000 more for most situations where a child is available. So far we have raised about $6000. We've already put $4000 of that into our home study. For two agencies we have applied to, the very least we will pay for an adoption is $11,500 for agency fees, plus $5000 for the birth mother's living expenses, plus $2500 for legal fees. Not included in all of that is the traveling expenses. In most states, it takes about 8 days for documents to go through the courts just so the baby can cross state lines. So in the end, the average adoption will cost around $25,000. This is pretty standard everywhere that we've looked. It is not uncommon for the cost to be closer to $35,000 and sometimes as high as $50,000. It's seems like a lot, but we know God will provide all that we need.

You may ask why it costs so much. The only reason we can give you is that the agencies we've applied to take good care of their birth mothers before and after the adoption. This is really important to us and we feel that is part of the whole spirit of adoption. Some agencies are able to lower their costs or do a sliding scale fee based on income because their staff is all volunteer and they may only have a handful of adoptions a year. We have applied to one agency like that, but at this point they have no birth mothers. The agencies we have applied to that do cost more have about 20 adoption situations available at a time. Our goal in applying to more than one agency is to have our profile available to as many birth mothers as possible.

We have also started the process of applying for two adoption grants. One is a matching grant and the other awards anywhere from $3000 to $5000 to those who are approved. If the matching grant is accepted, we will let you know more about how you can give through that and have your donation matched dollar for dollar!

So, right now we feel like our job is to actively wait. By that, we mean to continue pursuing fundraising while praying for God's perfect timing in bringing us our child and for His protection over our baby and our birth mother. Please continue to pray with us in these areas. We also don't want to limit what God is doing by saying we can't adopt right now because we don't have the funds. If God makes it clear that we are to adopt a specific child, we will go ahead and start the process, fully believing that He will bring all the funds in.

Thank you for your continued prayer and support. We appreciate you all!!