Wednesday, November 30, 2011

The Prayer of a Child

Posted by Angie at 7:14 AM 2 comments
Towards the end of the worship service, our church invites the congregation to kneel and pray at the alter.  It's one of my favorite moments of the morning, to watch all the different people come up to pray.  We have never been a part of a church, prior to this one, where so many feel comfortable doing this.  It's beautiful.  Some come alone, some as a couple, some as a family.  Some come every week, some come rarely.  Sometimes, a child and parent kneel together, in smiles or, occasionally, in tears.  So simple, but so sweet.  I'll too go sometimes (by myself, as Future Papa is playing bass in the band just feet away) and say a little prayer.

{source}
Jesus, help me through this day,
In my work an in my play,
Both to love and to obey.
Amen
Much love,
Future Mama

Philippians 4:4-7 Rejoice in the Lord always.  I will say it again: Rejoice!  Let your gentleness be evident to all.  The Lord is near.  Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

Monday, November 28, 2011

Adoptive Families Article

Posted by Angie at 7:03 AM 0 comments
Happy Thanksgiving!  Hope you all had a wonderful time with food, family, and a bit of football.  I'm thrilled that I can now listen to Christmas music in my car guilt free!  The break gave me a chance to catch up on some reading and writing (blog and otherwise).


One beautiful piece I stumbled across is this wonderful article on Adoptive Families.  It's about gift giving in an open adoption, from the birth mother's perspective.  Here's a snippet:

Eight years ago, as we began our brand-new, open-adoption relationship, Michael, Renée, and I agreed that we would honor one another on special occasions with gifts that were heartfelt, without being extravagant. On Mother’s Day of that year, when I was three months pregnant with Colin, Renée gave me a silver heart necklace identical to the one she wore herself. With tears in her eyes, she said she would have them both engraved with Colin’s name and birthdate after he was born. The gift meant that this child would always belong to both of us, and I was deeply moved.

I really recommend reading the rest of the article.  It has many great, loving ideas that would not only work for birth parents, but also as sentimental gifts for grandparents and other family members.  This past week, God allowed me to become more thankful for our journey, this wait, and the adoption process.  While we will honor whatever wishes our child's first mother has, we are praying that she will consider an open adoption with us so that we can grow and love our child together. 

Much love,
Future Mama 

Monday, November 21, 2011

So Thankful

Posted by Angie at 7:21 AM 4 comments

Growing up, our family had a Thanksgiving tradition where we went around the table and said something that we normally viewed as a burden, but that was in fact a blessing.  My favorite one to use was "I'm thankful for a dirty litter box, because it means we have a cat."  Shall we play?

I am thankful for a dirty kitchen, for it means we have enough to eat.

I am thankful for a higher electric bill, for it means we have heat.

I am thankful for our old and squeaky cars, they take us visit family and friends.

I am thankful for an energetic dog, for he keeps me healthy.

What are you thankful for?

Thank you for the support, the encouragement, and the love.  I am so blessed to be a part of this blogging community.  Have a safe and happy Thanksgiving week!  See you in a week!

Much love,
Future Mama

Friday, November 18, 2011

Adoption Quotes

Posted by Angie at 9:06 AM 1 comments
This website has a lot of wonderful quotes, many related to adoption.  Oh how I love them.  Here are a few of my favorites.

I know God won't give me anything I can't handle.
I just wish he didn't trust me so much
-Mother Teresa

I'm only one. But still, I am one.
I cannot do everything, but still, I can do something.
And because I cannot do everything,
I will not refuse to do the something that I can do.
-Edward Everett Hale

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
-Fleur Conkling Heylinger

Once there were two women who never knew each other
One you do not remember, the other you call Mother
Two different lives shaped to make you one
One became your guiding star, the other became your sun
The first one gave you life, and the second taught you to live it
The first gave you a need for love, the second was there to give it
One gave you a nationality, the other gave you a name
One gave you a talent, the other gave you aim
One gave you emotions, the other calmed your fears
One saw your first sweet smile, the other dried you tears
 
One made an adoption plan, that was all that she could do
The other prayed for a child, and God led her straight to you.

Now, which of these two women, Are you the product of?
Both, my darling, Both, Just two different types of love.
-Unknown

And if that doesn't inspire you, here is another bundle of quotes that I love.  Of course, they are pinned to my pinterest boards.  Because on tough days, we all just need to remember... 

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Much love,
Future Mama

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

My heart jumps

Posted by Angie at 7:21 AM 3 comments
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Every time I get a new e-mail in my expectingablessing g-mail account, my heart skips a beat.  Every. Time.  Is it His Hands?  Is it a referral?  No.  It's a pinterest notification, an e-mail from a reader, a comment notification.  And while I LOVE all of those things, my heart doesn't skip a beat for them. 

Why does this happen?  It's not logical.  I know that a referral won't be coming our way until our home study is complete, and that our home study won't be complete until His Hands tells us to complete one.  At least, my brain knows this.  My heart, apparently, doesn't.

And so, my heart still jumps.

Much love,
Future Mama

Monday, November 14, 2011

A November Cutie

Posted by Angie at 7:15 AM 2 comments
Another His Hands family united on Sunday!

{from His Hands Facebook page}

As sweet as that picture is, it does not do him justice, because honestly, he is one of the cutest little boys I have ever seen!

In other news, as some of you may have seen (or read on other blogs), changes are happening in Taiwanese adoption law.  A new amendment passed Friday which should prevent (potential) corruption and place a priority on matching Taiwanese children within Taiwanese families in adoption.  Praise God for these decisions!  The greatest uncertainty (and controversy) surrounds the implementation of this amendment.  Join me in praying that lawmakers, government officials, and orphanages will continue to make decisions that are in the best interest of the children.  Because, no matter what, no matter where, all children deserve a family who will love them. 

{source}
Much love,
Future Mama

Slowly but surely, we are movin' on up the list to a referral! 

July Babies:

August Baby:

October Baby:

Saturday, November 12, 2011

Auctions!

Posted by Angie at 12:30 PM 2 comments
I usually don't post on a Saturday, but I'm just too excited to wait until Monday.

First, my bloggy buddy Hannah James' Auction just opened up today!  I love auctions.  Really, I do.  And I especially love auctions this time of year...to buy CHRISTMAS PRESENTS!  Thus far I have bid on three items...so if you see Future Mama's name...just back away...and bid on something else ;-)  Because this headband would look so cute on my Secret Santa's head...

...and these coasters BELONG on my in-laws' coffee table...

...and the third item is so great I'm not even going to show you because I know I am going to be outbid!  So go on...take a peek...you know you want to see what else is up for grabs.

Second, Our Journey Home's auction just closed.  Sadness.  I meant to get the announcement up earlier, but the news got lost in my comments until this morning.  So, you want to donate to a wonderful family (seriously, they are one of the sweetest), meander your way over to their donate button in the right column of their blog.

And third, my Friends For Adoption partner-in-crime Brooke has a great fundraiser (not really an auction...not quite sure how to describe it...how about pure awesomeness) that runs from now until December 2nd.  And get this--it's their last fundraiser too.  Talk about faith!  I bought my ticket, have you?


And now I am off to go enjoy an afternoon of cooking, cleaning, and football watching with my two favorite boys, Dasher and Future Papa! 

Much love,
Future Mama

Friday, November 11, 2011

Movie Time!

Posted by Angie at 7:03 AM 1 comments
I get so many questions about His Hands, the orphanage we are adopting from.  Even if I don't get back to you right away, I promise it's not because I am ignoring you, because I love answering them!  But in the meantime, I figured it might be helpful to have a link to their videos that I can direct people to.  They have several, but this one is one of my favorites (and only 5 minutes long).  Unfortunately, I can't imbed it in a post, so you will have to follow the link above.  Enjoy!

{Holly and Trena, the dream team that runs His Hands, picture from here}
And if you would like to see other videos made by His Hands, click here.

Much love,
Future Mama

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Adoption involves tragedy

Posted by Angie at 7:01 AM 2 comments
There are moments I feel so impatient.  Moments arise when I feel frustrated.  Moments come when I wonder why things aren't happening quicker.  There are millions of orphans just waiting for a home, right?  Why don't we have a match?  Almost immediately, I remember...

Adoption involves tragedy.

A child is abandoned.  A mother decides that she will not care for the baby in her belly or in her arms.  This is a child she has loved.  She carried this child for nine months of pregnancy when an abortions are readily available (in Taiwan).  But for a reason, usually many reasons (her age, cultural pressures, economic pressures, and/or family pressure) she decides she will not keep her baby.

I want that child to be with their mother as long as possible.  I want this mother to be able to cuddle the baby, kiss the baby, and watch the baby breathe in and out.  I want her to be able to study the baby's face and see her own nose, ears, or eyes looking back up at her.  Ultimately, I do not want her to be in this position.  I pray for her parents to accept her and the child, or for an employee to hire her even though she is an unwed mother.  My heart breaks for her.  If she loves the baby, and if she wants to, I want her to be able to keep her child.

{source}
This is why we support His Hands...because adoptive parents don't come first.  The longer we wait on this list, the more we are convinced that His Hands is staying true to their mission.  It can be tough.  We are ready to be parents.  There are easier ways.  We see referrals on blogs, gotcha videos online, and friends getting pregnant while we wait.  Other roads would be easier for us.  But deep in our hearts, we know that is not what God is calling us to do.  He is calling us to support this ministry both financially and with prayer.  To wait.  To wait.  To wait.  And to watch His plan, not ours, unfold.

I pray for God to remind me that the wait is good.  The wait means that our baby is saved from tragedy another minute, another day, another week.  The wait means that the baby's mother is having a long, healthy, 9 month pregnancy.  As soon as the child is in at His Hands, waiting to be adopted, I absolutely want to move with the quickest speed.  No child should grow up without a family.  No child should grow up in an orphanage.  But until that moment when our baby is an orphan in the eyes of Taiwanese law, I want our child to be with and loved by his or her first mother as long as possible.  I don't want to take a moment away from her.

And so, I wait and pray that God will help me to be content in this journey. 

Much love,
Future Mama

Monday, November 7, 2011

How's it going? Five for Fall Challenge

Posted by Angie at 8:05 AM 1 comments
In September, I shared some of my goals for this fall in my personal Five for Fall Challenge (five little habits that I want to pick up before the baby comes home).  Some of you also shared some of your goals for the season!  Here's how I have been doing...

1. Climb into bed by 10:30 on weeknights.
Well...some nights are better than others.  Last week work kept me up past midnight just about every night, ugh.  I started strong on this one, but fizzled off...which had a negative impact on number 4 (below).

2. Pick out next day's outfit before bed. 
Been doing much better about this and therefore getting ready much quicker in the mornings.  And looking cuter, which gives me that extra oomph to get through a tough day!

3. Exercise 3 times a week.
No comment.  Beyond my nighttime dog walking, a complete fail.
   
4.  Wake up every morning by 7:30 on weekdays. 
If I did well on number one, I did well with this.  On the nights I did not and did not have to be at work bright and early...I may have hit the snooze a time or two.

5.  Healthy snacks.
Much better!  I only visited the vending machine once since I made this "resolution."  I have been packing extra snacks with my lunch and that has helped so much.

Clearly, Future Mama is not perfect.  How about you?  How's it been going?  It's only November!  I'm determined to drag my tush to the gym at least once or twice before the New Year.  This mama needs to be a healthier one!

{source}

Much love,
Future Mama

Friday, November 4, 2011

The Real Future Papa and Future Mama

Posted by Angie at 7:14 AM 1 comments
Yep...this is us...in reality...

{source}
Clearly I am running out of material this week.  This must mean we need a referral to liven things up!  ;-)  And that I am already thinking about how I will get to sleep in tomorrow morning.  Woo hoo!  Hope you all have restful weekends.

Much love,
Future Mama

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

Pinterest: A Wall of a Difference

Posted by Angie at 10:33 AM 9 comments
Projects: keeping Future Mama sane during the wait for motherhood.
Not quite nesting yet, but definitely trying to keep busy!

Just like a bad '80s haircut, our downstairs bathroom needed some help from the style department.  Some quality help yes, but also help of the inexpensive variety, since we are cheap saving our pennies for the adoption.

Helllooooo pinterest boards, my dear new friends.  Let's begin the 5 step program to recovery...recovery of style, that is.

Step 1: Gleefully accept some old frames my mother no longer wants.  Immediately forget the reason why she didn't want them in the first place. 

Step 2: Tape up paper to determine the perfect arrangement of said frames.


Step Three:  Print out Free Printables from Pinterest to put in frames.

Step Four:  Be a strong and independent women and hang pictures without husband's help.  Accidentally hang one uneven.  Remember why you usually have the husband wield the hammer.  Scratch your original hanging design and hang them a new way to hide the hole.

Step Five: Step back and admire your handiwork.  Then remember why your mother gave you the frames in the first place.  They...won't...hang...straight! 

In all seriousness though, I love the images, the colors, and the happiness they bring to our little bathroom.  Hopefully our future social worker will feel the same way if she ends up needing to use it on our home visit!

Much love,
Future Mama

P.S.  While we are on the topic of pinterest projects, here's a little update!  My birthday gift for Future Papa, also inspired by pinterest, works like a charm!  I can't tell you how much I smile when I see a new little message scrawled on the frame :-)  The affordable anniversary gift (aka the dates) are also going well, as you saw in our recent October update.  And, clearly, Pinterest is helping me to dream about Taiwan and the baby's room.  More on that soon ;-)

P.P.S.  I'm linking up over at Young House Love today for their Fall Pinterest Challenge! Check out lots of other people who participated in the Pinterest Challenge with Sherri, Katie, Ana, and Erin.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

October Swap

Posted by Angie at 7:02 AM 2 comments
Friends for Adoption is a "buddy system" that links adopting families together so that they can encourage each other through the twists and turns of the process.  Each month, you and your Friend send and receive encouragements (with a $15.00 limit) in the mail.  This post is about my gift to Brooke.  Even though my husband and I are saving up for our own adoption, we believe we should support others financially, with prayer, and with encouragement as we are able.  Find out more about Friends for Adoption, including how to sign up, here.  

Happy November!  Time for another Friends for Adoption post!

This month, I got to combine several things that I love.  If you have been reading this blog for any length of time, I think it is pretty clear that I love my Pinterest boards...I have found beautiful pictures of Taiwan, anniversary gift ideashome inspiration, and even free printables for you.  Now they have another purpose...gift shopping!

Brooke also has her own pinterest account, and under her adoption board I noticed that we have a friend in common, Kelly from the Minus 1 Project!  Kelly was one of my very first friends in the adoption world and I am so inspired by her.  She makes the cutest things...and now Brooke has one!

She is now the proud owner of her very own Minus 1 pink key fob.
I am not sure if this is the exact one Brooke received...I had Kelly mail it straight to her!
Super cute, yes?  If you want one, or something else just as awesome, you should check out Kelly's store!  This family is one that I was thrilled to support with my small purchase.  They really are wonderful.

What did Brooke get me?  Hop on over to her blog to find out!

Also, this post is a reminder to all of you involved in Friends for Adoption...it's now November!  Which means you have 2 weeks to get your encouraging gift/letter/package of smiles ($15 or less) in the mail to your Friend!

Much love,
Future Mama

Want to catch up on our past swaps?  Need some gift ideas?  Here's the July's swap, August swap, and September swap

Got an extra minute?  Show some love to some of the other fabulous women who are a part of Friends for Adoption!

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