Monday, January 31, 2011

Where God Guides, God Provides…

As we all know, adoption isn’t cheap!  It is very unfortunate, but it is just reality!  We have several fundraisers planned, like our yard sale in March that we are very excited about.  Well, one of my good friends, who is one of the most precious people I know, called me Friday with an unbelievably sweet offer to help.  She has a home business, Designs by Jaime, where she sews, monograms, and does appliques.  She is SUPER talented, and everything she does is SO cute!!  If you remember, she is the one that did the girls Halloween shirts back in October.  Anyway, back to her call…  She called me Friday and said she had been praying about a way she could help us with our adoption, and she felt that the Lord was leading her to donate 30% of all of her profits to our adoption AND she was going to give 100% of all of her profits from her adorable beach towels and pillow cases that I sale for her…they are SERIOUSLY the CUTEST things you have ever seen!  I just about fell out of my chair!  I sat back once again and just thanked the Lord for his provision.  I had been very overwhelmed last week with the whole adoption process, especially the financial aspect, and I kept hearing the Lord speak to me saying, “Meredith, just trust me…just trust me” over and over.  Well, wouldn’t you know, just a few days later, Jaime called.  I know He will provide!  Oh, and I almost forgot…my friend, Katie, had Jaime make me a shirt that I could take with me to the “Created for Care” retreat this coming weekend.  I love it so much, and Jaime said she could make it for any other adoption moms and ALL of the profits would go to us too!  I mean, can you tell this girl has a heart of GOLD! 


This is the adorable beach towel that Jaime made last summer for my friend, Mitzi, to give Myla for her birthday!  She has all different colors and fabrics, and I can guarantee you that anything she makes will be adorable!!!  The cost is $25.  The towel is very big, and your child will definitely be the envy of all the kids at the pool this summer!!!

robbie pillowcase

This is an “boy” example of the pillowcase!  SO cute!!  The blue fabric is Toy Story, which all little boys LOVE!

pillowcase 2

And this is the “girl” example.  Of course, she has tons of different fabrics she can use if you give her a color scheme you would like to follow!  The pillowcases are $20 a piece …no matter how long the name is.


And this is the adorable t-shirt that she made for me!  Don’t you just love it!  These will be available for $25.  Jaime also said she will be glad to make this same shirt for children…so let me know if you are interested!

Jaime can make pretty much anything, so if you have something else in mind that you need made, please let me know!

You can order off of my sidebar through Paypal, or you can always email me,, to place your order.  You will also have to email me so we can discuss the color scheme that you want!

The beach towels and pillowcases are perfect for birthday gifts!!  Thanks for your support!

Friday, January 28, 2011

Play Date…

This morning, we had some of our friends (Katie, Grace, Robbie, Charlie, Mitzi, Mia & Tyler) over to play and eat lunch!  Myla was in HOG heaven, and Selah had a ball too with all of their friends.  It was difficult trying to take pictures, of course, but I feel like I haven’t taken pictures in so long that I tried to take a few.GEDC1861

The “babies”….Selah, just up from her nap, Charlie and Tyler


Sweet Charlie…always smiling!


Robbie loved singing on the stage!


Myla, so happy to be with all of her friends.


Mia loved giving Selah her pacifier!


Grace and Robbie playing with the ball popper.  If you have children, you really should invest in a ball popper toy!  It is a GREAT entertainer, or at least it has been for my kids.


Selah was determined to play with the big girls.  I would bring her back in the den, then she would crawl back into Myla’s room to see what they were doing.


Grace, Myla and Katie


Charlie and Selah fought over this calculator for several minutes.  It was hysterical!  One would jerk it from the other, then the other one would wrangle it back…


Charlie persisted long enough and finally got it all to himself!


The big kids eating homemade pizza (thanks, Mitzi)!  Their table conversations are so funny!


I think it is safe to say that Selah REALLY enjoyed the pizza as well, even if I did have to strip her down to her diaper to eat it.  Good thing I did…she was a MESS!  Katie said, “Selah, I think you need a hose to get clean!”


Tyler enjoyed his lunch, too!


With 7 children under 4, chaos rules!!!

Following God’s Call to Ethiopia…

Today, Kelly’s Korner, is having  a link-up sharing adoptions stories!  There is nothing that I like to read about more right now, so I was so excited to see that she was going to have this day dedicated to adoption stories.  I have already enjoyed reading a few, so I wanted to share ours.  Rather than type it all out again, I am just going to link up my original post announcing our adoption.  And by the way, can I just interject that we serve a MIGHTY and AWESOME God!  He has answered many prayers this week, and I am so thankful that he is faithful.  I will share more details later….

So, click here to read our story…

Thanks for reading!

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Very Cute Adoption Necklaces…

A friend of mine that has adopted 3 little boys posted this website on Facebook last night, and I wanted to share it with other adopting mommies!  The necklaces are SO cute and reasonable, and all of the money goes towards this couple’s adoption.  I don’t know that couple selling these, but I am willing to help anybody that is adopting!!  Take a look…SUCH cute things!

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Music to our Ears…

Myla Scripture


Myla LOVES to go to AWANA Cubbies at church.  They memorize a verse each week.  Here she is with some of her recent verses.  So sweet! 

“I have no greater joy than to hear that my children are walking in the TRUTH.” 3 John 1:4

She’s Going to Hate Me For This One Day…

….but she shouldn’t have such a cute little booty!  Why are naked baby booties so cute!!!!!!!  (I hope this doesn’t offend anyone!)


Selah LOVES bath time!!  At night when I take her clothes and diaper off, she takes off towards the bathroom because she knows what’s coming!


Getting closer…


Stopping to take a break and smile for the camera.


Almost there…


SUCCESS!!  Finally at her destination!

Can I just also take a moment to thank my husband for being so willing to bathe the girls!  It is such a nice break for me some nights, and I appreciate him doing it SO much!

Saturday, January 22, 2011


One of my goals for this year is to get really good at couponing.  With the adoption going on, we certainly want to do what we can to be the best stewards of our money.  We have always tried to do that, really, but especially now that we need to save all of the money that we can!  I have couponed here and there, but I really want to be good at it!  My friend Susan has inspired me and helped me a lot!  One of the main ways you can really save using coupons is in the area of toiletries and household items.  What I do is each week when the Kroger ad comes out, the first thing that I look for is what they have 10 for $10.  Then, if it is something we use, I go to ebay or or and I buy coupons for that item.  If I can find a $.50 coupon, then I will get each item for free because Kroger doubles coupons up to $.60.  (Explanation…. If the item costs $1.00, you will give them your $.50 coupon and they will match that $.50 to equal $1.00 and the item is free!!!)  SO, here are my deals so far for this year…


A couple of weeks ago, Kroger had a Proctor & Gamble special going on.  If you bought 4 P&G items, $4.00 would automatically be taken off of your bill.  I noticed that after the P&G sale, that Dawn would be $1.50 per bottle.  That’s a pretty good price, but I thought, if I can find a $.50 coupon somewhere, I could get them for $.50 a piece!  So, I came home and ordered twenty $.50 coupons on ebay.  I think I paid around $3.00 for 20 coupons.  When my coupons came in, I went back to Kroger and loaded my basket with 20 bottles of Dawn dish soap.  When I checked out, I paid $10.00 for 20 bottles.  Not bad considering that the normal price for 1 bottle is over $3.00.  Susan and I halved this purchase, so we each got 10.  Score!! Now, we won’t have to buy dish soap for months.


Last week Kroger had SoftSoap on sale for $.88.  Susan found some $.35 coupons on ebay and ordered twenty of them for us.  Again, Kroger doubled the $.35 coupon to equal $.70, so we got each SoftSoap for $.18.  Really, why pay full price when you can get ten bottles for a total of $1.80??  You can’t beat that!  And, if you are counting, I know there are only 8 in my picture.  The other 2 are in our bathrooms!


This week Kroger has Colgate toothpaste 10 for $10, and it was the big size too…sometimes the ones on sale are the 4 ounce size, but this was the 6.4 ounce!  Again, we bought twenty $.50 coupons on ebay for $5.00.  So today I went to Kroger and selected twenty tubes of toothpaste.  Before I left, I thought I would check the clearance aisle, and I was so glad I did.  They had a 32 ounce bottle of honey for $1.99 (regular $5.59) because the flip top was broken off.  I buy honey each month to put in my homemade granola, so I knew we would use this.  They also had cans of mixed veggies for $.29, so I knew those would be great for Selah.  When I checked out my total before coupons was over $50.00, but after my Kroger card and coupons were scanned, my total was $3.69!  The lady bagging my items said, “You are going to have some really clean teeth!”  Ha!  Do I NEED twenty things of toothpaste right now?  No, but our church partners with a ministry called More Than a Meal that provides meals and essentials to the homeless and needy in our community, so I will happily donate some of it to them.  Why not “buy” 20??  They were FREE!  Well, actually the coupons cost $5.00, but twenty tubes of toothpaste for $5.00 isn’t bad considering that the price before any sale was $2.39 a tube! 

Okay, I have to tell you a funny story about today’s shopping trip.  After I checked out and went to my car, I thought that I paid more than I should have, so I looked at my receipt and noticed that the cashier only scanned 18 of my 20 coupons.  So, being the nerd that I am, I went back in to the customer service desk and told them the dilemma. I’m sure she was thinking, “Seriously, lady, you just got 20 tubes of toothpaste and other things and your bill was $5.83…give me a break!”  But, she went to the register and retrieved all of my coupons, and sure enough, when she counted them, all 20 were there.  So, she gave me $2.14 in cash since that was the worth of the  coupons that were not scanned.  I felt like such a crazy coupon lady, but that’s free money!

I will keep you updated on my deals, and I hope if you read my blog and you coupon, then you can give me your tips!!  My next buy is going to be Snuggle dryer sheets at WalMart.  There was a coupon in last weeks paper for $2 off of 2 boxes of Snuggle dryer sheets.  WalMart’s price per box is $1.87, so once I use my coupons, I will get them for $.87 per box!  Can’t wait!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Friday, January 21, 2011

Covered In Hope…

cloth diapers 1

My blog “friend”, Kristi, has started an AWESOME project called “Covered in Hope”!  She is collecting cloth diapers to send to Ethiopia to cover the little bums of babies in various orphanages.  Kristi just returned from Ethiopia and talked about all of the naked bottoms she saw on children because there are NO diapers available.  Can you imagine the filth that these precious babies are in because they simply don’t have diapers?  We would never let this happen to our babies!  Well, now that one of these little kiddos will BE one of my babies, I can’t stand the thought of MY baby not having a diaper.  Then, today, I read a blog about a family that just returned from Ethiopia to meet their little girl, and she said the workers at Hannah’s Hope (where our baby will be) were having to rinse out disposable diapers to reuse them!  Can you even imagine??????  If you feel led, PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE purchase some cloth diapers – any kind…the cheap Gerber ones at WalMart (yes, the same ones we monogram to use as burp cloths) or the nice ones you can get anywhere online – and send them to Kristi.  You can email her at  Many of you may remember the Lucy Lane video that I put on my blog when we announced that we were adopting….well, Kristi is Lucy Lane’s momma.  She has such a heart for the babies she left behind in Ethiopia!  She will soon be bringing home their newest addition, Wes, from Ethiopia.  This weekend, our family will be gathering up some cloth diapers to send, for sure!  If you would like to read more about “Covered in Hope” on Kristi’s blog, you can click HERE.


cloth diapers 2

I just wanted to leave you with a thought to ponder today… Michael is currently reading a book “Too Small to Ignore”, and last night he read something that just opened our eyes.  I’m paraphrasing, but basically he wrote that Americans spend more money each year on garbage bags than 90 of the 210 countries in the world spend for everything.  Wow!

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Doesn’t Every Baby Have Them…

…the classic “first time you feed yourself spaghetti” pictures??  Well, Tuesday, Selah fed herself spaghetti for the first time.  She loved it and made the biggest mess!!!  I had to get a few pictures, of course!  Oh, and yes, this is supper, and yes, she was still in her pajamas!  The only day we’ve gotten dressed this week was Wednesday to take Myla to MMO and go to church!  We’ve been LAZY!





And, just for fun…here is Myla feeding herself spaghetti for the first time!

MYLA 808

MYLA 814

In adoption news, our application was approved yesterday by our agency, AGCI!!  So exciting!  Now we’re ready for the next step!

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

I'm going to the "Created for Care" retreat!!! Are you?? Link up so we can "get to know each other" before we go!

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Application is in the Mail…


Last Thursday (Jan. 13th), the girls and I mailed our application to All God’s Children!!!  The man at the post office probably thought I was slap crazy for asking him to take our picture holding the envelope, but he was glad to do it!  I explained to him why we wanted a picture, and he thought it was great!  I told him that it probably wouldn’t be the last picture he took of us, and he said he would take as many as we needed.  He was so sweet!  I certainly want to document each step of this journey, and I think it will be neat to see how much our girls will grow and change along the road as well. 

On a side note, you can tell from the looks of this picture that Selah was feeling too hot. Myla was chowing down on her sucker from the bank, but I hated to ask the man to take another picture with the sucker out of her mouth and trying to get Selah to smile!  Selah has had a rough couple of days.  After we mailed this, we headed to Arkansas to see my dad, stepmom and sister. She had a pretty rough trip.  We are back home now, and I am taking her to the doctor in the morning.  I’m praying she doesn’t have RSV or something wrong with her lungs/chest.  She sounds AWFUL!!  I will update as soon as we know something.

Blog Giveaway….

kenya bead bracelet

I would love for all of you to visit one of my new “adoption blog friends” (FutureMama) blogs and enter her giveaway for a beautiful bracelet made by a 13 year old girl.  The story is so neat!!  I love the blog world when it comes to adoptions.  Blogs are so helpful in getting the word out for families that are adopting.  I love to follow all of the stories and seeing little ones being brought home to the families forever!

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

We’re Adopting….Now What?

We have been reading and talking about adoption for months now in our family, but I just wanted to give a basic rundown of the process for those of you that are less familiar.  I will give it in steps (as I understand it best!)  I am still learning the ropes, as well!

1.) Send in our Pre-Application to our agency, All God’s Children International.  We did this in October, and it was approved.  It was at this time that they recommended we wait to actually start the paperwork process until Selah is 10 months old so our new daughter would come into our home in “birth order”.

2.)  Fill out our Application and send to AGCI (All God’s Children).

3.) Wait for AGCI to receive our application.  After they receive it, we will have our orientation call.

4.)  We will then have our Dossier call.  A dossier (dos-ee-ey) is a fancy word for a bunch of paperwork.  Gathering all of this information, from what I can understand, can take a lot of time and be very stressful!  We will also have to get fingerprinted and have thorough background checks.

5.) While we are completing our dossier, we will also be undergoing our Home Study. 

6.) Once the Home Study and Dossier are complete, they will be sent to AGCI for approval.

7.)  Once all of our paperwork is approved, we will be put on the waitlist.  AGCI recently announced a decrease in wait time for referral from Ethiopia.  It is now between 9-12 months (between the time your paperwork is approved and referral).  Once we are #1 on the waitlist, we will get a referral, or matched with a baby.  We will get an exciting call from AGCI to let us know. From what I have seen on other blogs, this has been dubbed “The Call”!

8.) After we receive our referral, we will wait for a court date in Ethiopia.  Once we have one, we will travel to Ethiopia to meet our baby girl and have our court date.  At that time, she will “legally” be ours, but we will have to leave her in Ethiopia and come back several weeks later to bring her home for good.  The Ethiopian government has their reasons for this.  It was changed in 2010, and it could change back to 1 trip at some point.  Maybe, by the time we go, we will only have to go once.

9.)  Travel back to Ethiopia to bring our daughter home!!!!

I have probably left out some very important and necessary steps.  Adoption families, help me out!  I just wanted to give those who have no idea how it all works some idea of what is about to happen.  These are the basic steps.  Believe me, I will document each step!  We are mailing our application tomorrow, and I’m just going to go ahead and tell the people that work at the Post Office to get familiar with working my camera because they will be my photographers each time we mail something off!  HA!

Snow Day, Take Two…

As soon as Myla woke up Monday morning, she was ready to get back in the snow!!!  We held her off until about 8:30, then we bundled her up so she, Daddy, and Haley could go play!  I can’t imagine living where it is this cold all of the time…the amount of clothes we went through this week during the snow was insane!


First things first…making a snow angel!


Both girls making snow angels


This was the bottom of the snowman that Michael and the girls started, but they decided it was more fun to play on than continue building!


Haley loved eating the snow!!


I had to get Selah out and get a picture to document her second snow!


She kept her eye on what the big girls were doing!


Daddy and Myla


Myla offering me some snow to eat!  She loved eating it too!


The girls favorite thing to do was getting Mr. Michael to pull them around on a homemade sled that Susan whipped up!  They could have done it all day!


Myla’s turn on the sled!

myla sled

Can you tell she was having fun?

haley sled

Haley taking another turn.


Michael was finally WORN OUT from pulling them!


This is when she started breaking down…she was cold and wet and ready to go in!


Warming up by the fire


Susan and Mackensy came over while the big girls and Michael played outside.  Selah and Mackensy had fun playing together!


All the girls in from the cold and having fun just being girls!

Here is the sledding in action!!!