Trevor and Jodi met in Scotland while Jodi was studying abroad in 1998 (Trevor was a native Brit!), and their adventure as a married couple began in 2000. The Lord blessed them with four daughters by birth before God first knocked on their hearts about adoption. They adopted their one and only boy (so far!), Niko, from Bulgaria in 2012. While they were meeting him, a little girl also stole Trevor’s heart. They went back and brought Delia home in 2013. (And in the meantime, God graciously also gave them two more daughters by birth!) At first, they thought they might be done adopting with their two Bulgarian blessings now home, but Jodi was never able to make herself stop looking at faces on Reece’s Rainbow, and we all know where that leads! A casual chat on a long road trip over the summer revealed that both Trevor and Jodi were feeling more open to adopting again than they expected. “Maybe someday” quickly turned into “let’s pray about Caden until Christmas!” (This was in September.) Less than a week later, Trevor sat down at the lunch table and announced, “I was thinking at church this morning…” We all held our breath and waited, until our oldest daughter Pippa (10) finished his sentence hopefully,”…that we should adopt Caden?!” And that was it! We called our social worker the next day to begin the process. We are all so very excited to bring this little boy with the sweetest face ever home as our son. Probably no one is quite as excited as Niko, our only boy among seven sisters, who will finally have someone to share bunk beds with.
Follow the family’s adoption journey on their blog at theyoungpages.com/jodis_blog
Jonathan and Angela are already parents to four little girls, and are so excited to add another sweet daughter. Adoption was something that was always in their hearts for one day, but was not in the “plan” in the immediate future. With four little girls ages eight and under, homeschooling, jobs, gymnastics, you name it, this family thought they were complete with the birth of their fourth daughter two years ago. BUT a little girl named “Flora” captured their hearts at first sight. Through much prayer, they have decided that she will be the perfect addition to their family. Flora will even be a “twin” with their 4 year old daughter Julie. The girls are incredibly excited to welcome this new sister! The girls all know that Flora will need lots of love, affection, time and therapy, as she has cerebral palsy. But they understand that every child deserves a family and they can’t wait to give Flora the family and the life that she deserves.
Jason and Erin first got to know each other in high school on a missions trip to Lithuania. Over the years they have been back several times and involved in English Bible camps and DVBS in a Children’s Home. Having seen the children and their needs first hand, adoption has been on their hearts for quite some time.Shortly after they were married they became pregnant with their 1st son. Erin had Hyperemesis Gravidarum, like Princess Kate, and they struggled with whether or not to try for another pregnancy. They did, and she again had the same medical issues with their 2nd son. After much prayer they decided to adopt a daughter from the country that means so much to their family.
The plan had been to start the process in 2016. God had other plans and made it clear that now was the time. They found the agency that works with L adoptions and applied. The new plan was to take this year to get through the paperwork and home study and save the needed finances. Again God’s plans were much better and different! They saw a picture of Kasmira and were in love! Their 4 year son is very excited about his new sister, he has been praying for her for months. The little 1 year old son has no idea what is happening but they are sure he will love another sibling to play with.
The Ballards are now moving as quickly as they can to get through all the required paperwork, home study, ect and bring their little girl home by the end of 2015.
9/2/15—DOSSIER EN ROUTE
Follow the Ballard family’s adoption journey on their blog at www.tobelongandbeloved.wordpress.com
JJ and Liz met when he was active duty in the military. They began dating soon after meeting and were married the same year. They attempted to have a child with medical assistance but were unable to conceive. Both of them knew that they wanted to be parents and loved interacting with kids. They began the process to foster children, who they might be able to adopt. In 2011 JJ was in a serious motorcycle accident. They were unsure of what the next day would hold. At this time they learned that life is short. Tomorrow really isn’t promised, so you need to make the most of out your life. Once out of the hospital and settled into their new home, they were blessed with their miracle baby, “D”. They have been trying to expand their family but have not succeeded. They are excited to begin this journey to expand their family through adoption.
This journey may be the hardest thing that God has ever told them to do. They have struggled with the thought of asking you to support them. They would be honored to know that you helped them bring their child home. Thank you so much for your support. No words could ever express our gratitude for your love for their family.
8/24/15—USCIS APPROVED, DOSSIER EN ROUTE
Follow the family’s adoption journey on their blog at www.facebook.com/Plustwofeet
Robert and Shelley’s journey with adoption started when they had 1 son, 2 daughters and a plan to add one little boy through adoption to complete their family. They completed that “plan” with the adoption of a little boy with Down syndrome from Ukraine in 2007. It was during that trip that the Lord opened their eyes to the plight of orphans with special needs. Armed with the knowledge of what happens to orphans with special needs in Eastern Europe as they age, and the conviction, “If not us, then who?”, they went to Serbia in 2008 and brought home a 2nd son with Down syndrome. Later that same year, Shelley was contacted by an attorney in Bulgaria who had found her blog and reached out with a request on behalf of an orphan in Bulgaria. Shelley advocated for that child and when, in 2009, the family felt the prompting of the Lord to go “one more time”, they made the decision to go to Bulgaria and adopted an older boy with Down syndrome that was already living in a mental institution. During the trip to meet their future son, a tiny little girl busted out of a group of children and latched herself to Shelley’s leg. Looking down into those big almond shaped eyes, Shelley promised that little girl that she’d find her a family. Ten months later, the Lord made it clear that they were to be that little girl’s family and once again, the family embarked on a “one more time” journey to bring home a daughter with Down syndrome. Vowing that they were “really done this time”, the family has spent their time over the past few years advocating for orphans and supporting other families through their adoption journeys. In early 2015, their children started talking about a baby sister. After much discussion and a lot of prayer, they made the decision to return to Bulgaria one more time to complete their family with a little girl with Down syndrome. This journey has been different because the family chose to start the home study and dossier paper work without having a child pre-identified. They have covered all the initial costs to complete their home study and dossier. They are approved to adopt a little girl with Down syndrome and hope to be matched with a little one very soon!
Updated: Robert and Shelley have been officially matched with a beautiful little girl!
8/17/15—DOSSIER COMPLETE, USCIS APPROVED
The Laveys are happy to announce their commitment to adopt Ryan, a 5 year old boy from Eastern Europe with Down syndrome. They hope you’ll consider partnering with them in their efforts to complete the lengthy and expensive process of adoption and bring Ryan home!
The Lord has blessed Andrew and Mary with 3 biological children and 1 adopted child: Abigail (17), Stephen (15), Lydia (12), and Jonah (4 1/2). Jonah came to our ho me when he was 1 mth old. Jonah has Down syndrome.
Their decision to adopt Ryan is not complete without telling the story of Jonah’s adoption. In 2009, the family cared for a foster baby who had Down syndrome. Their time with this precious baby lead them to start thinking about adopting a baby with Down syndrome. They realized Down syndrome was a condition they felt comfortable with and had some knowledge about. They were also made aware of the tremendous amount of resources such as early intervention therapies that are available to a child with Down syndrome. God worked in such amazing ways to bring Jonah to their family in the fall of 2010. They are extra blessed because of the beautiful relationship they continue to have with Jonah’s birth family.
Then in the fall of 2014, God started working on their hearts again – only this time instead of domestic adoption, God was pushing them towards international adoption. They “met” Ryan and fell in love and wanted him to be part of their family. Another driving force in their desire to adopt was when God revealed to them this difficult truth: The future for children like Ryan is that even if they are in good orphanages, this is not a substitute in any way for a way for a family. Also, eventually these children will age-out of the orphanage system. They next home for them will be a mental institution. The Laveys want to give Ryan a future with a family who loves him. They long for him to have a place to call home that is not an institution.
They are praying the same prayer for Ryan as they did for Jonah during his adoption process:
“Lord, you alone are [Ryan’s] portion and [his] cup; you make [his] lot secure. Let the boundary lines fall for [Ryan] in pleasant places; [and that he could] surely have a delightful inheritance.” Psalm 16:5-6
It is the Lavey’s desire that their home would be Ryan’s “pleasant place”.
Follow the family’s adoption journey through their blog “His Pleasant Place”
9/1/15—USCIS APPROVED; DOSSIER in COUNTRY
Follow the family’s adoption journey on their blog at hispleasantplace.blogspot.com
Joel and Stephanie Conner met at Calvary Chapel of Charleston, S.C., but fell in love while on a short term mission trip to a Mexican orphanage. They have been married for 10 years and have 2 children, both with special needs. Their first child was adopted from Mexico while they were teaching for 3 years in the same orphanage where they had first fallen in love. After the adoption was complete, they had to return to the USA because of their son’s medical needs. But orphan care and adoption was still their passion. They’ve experienced first hand the need for adoption, and also the JOY of adoption, especially regarding orphans with special needs. They have wanted to adopt another child with special needs for a long time and are excited that the door is finally opening! They are so thankful for God’s gift of little “Zhen” and can’t wait to bring him home to join Team Conner! They’ve decided to name him Gideon Gui Conner.
8/13/15—DOSSIER EN ROUTE (DTC)
Follow the Conner family’s adoption journey on their blog at http://www.conneradoption.nationsbridge.com/
Darrell and Louisa met in college and have been married for 26 years. They have 2 beautiful daughters and 7 amazing adopted children from foster care. Their journey towards adoption started in their hearts long before they ever took their first steps in the adoption process. They have been on an amazing journey that has blessed their socks off! We love each of our unique children and seeing how God is working in their lives. Recently, Louisa was in the Reece’s Rainbow aging out file praying for the children who are about to lose their chance at a family when she spotted Marty and his best friend Gary. She prayed for a few days and felt they were part of there family. She presented it to Darrell and he too took it to prayer. When presented to the kids it was a unanimous decision to pursue these 2 boys. They are excited to welcome Marty and Gary home and thank you for your prayers and support.
Follow the family’s adoption journey on their blog at hoperisingfarm.blogspot.com
The Evensen family is growing again! God loves adoption, and so do the Evensens. Three years ago they were blessed with two amazing Ukrainian boys, Gideon and Micah, to add to their family of five, and the following year they were blessed again with the adoption of their daughter from US foster care. Six kids might sound like a lot to some, but to this family, it still feels like there is somebody missing. And in a few months they are hoping to welcome their sweet girl home! She has been waiting far, far too long.
Follow the family’s adoption journey on their blog at addtothebeauty-e.blogspot.com
Glory is a two year old little girl with so much life to live. She suffers from chronic brain hemorrhage and cerebral atrophy. The Knapp family is working diligently to bring her home for much needed treatment, so that she can live a life full of love and family.
John and Takisha Knapp have been married for nearly 13 years. They have five children, two via adoption and three biological. This is their second adoption, they adopted two children with Down syndrome five years ago. The whole Knapp family is looking forward to adopting Glory from Africa. Just last year John became a saved man, and they have thrown themselves into various local and international ministries, working together as a family to reach out to those in need.
They thank you for your support and would covet your prayers for their journey, for Glory to make it home in time for the necessary medical intervention, and for her recovery.
8/1/15—DOSSIER en ROUTE
Follow the family’s adoption journey on their blog at dailybeginagains.com
Alison is a single Registered Nurse. She has always dreamed of having children, but has not been so blessed. Alison has worked with children and adults with special needs in the past, including Down syndrome, and has always enjoyed it. One night, she had a dream that she and her sister were looking at a website of children for adoption with Down syndrome. When she woke, she did a search on her computer, and found Reece’s Rainbow. After years of looking at the site, and much encouragement from family and friends, she decided to give it a try! There have been many roadblocks in the process, but she has finally fallen in love with the little girl she feels was meant to be her daughter!
7/25/15—HOPE TO TRAVEL IN SEPTEMBER
Follow the family’s adoption journey on their blog at achildforali.blogspot.com
Greetings! We are the Gautreaux family. We would love to introduce you to our newest family member, “Sulley”. In our 15 years of marriage we have been blessed abundantly! Recently God has brought us to our 6th child through the miracle of adoption. He is still waiting in China while we complete the adoption process. As our 3rd son, we will have an even count now, three boys and three girls! Our youngest daughter was also adopted from China 2 1/2 years ago. She and Sulley both have Spina Bifida, a medical condition that we have learned is easily managed here in the United States. We also know the road of adoption very well. We know the joys and challenges that come along the journey. Yet the reward of having our son in our arms will be worth the wait and all the struggles. Sulley was abandoned as a newborn and has been in the loving care of Little Flower Foster home in China. At 9 years old, Sulley has waited a long time for a forever family. Yet he has touched so many lives already. We are so very grateful that we get to be his forever family. We will have front seats in watching how he will touch this world! Will you please pray for our family and our precious son as we journey closer to each other?
7/29/15—DOSSIER LOGGED IN
Follow the family’s adoption journey on their blog at loveneverfails-gautreaux.blogspot.com
The Sanborns are happy to announce their commitment to adopt Kit, an orphan boy from China with Down Syndrome. They hope you’ll consider partnering with them in their efforts to complete the lengthy and expensive process of adoption and to bring Kit home! Sarah and Bryan have always had a heart for adoption. Sarah knew she would adopt a child since she was a little girl, it had always been her dream. Bryan on the other hand, didn’t fall in love with the idea of adoption until he met Sarah in 2003 – and everything changed. They fell in love with individuals with Down Syndrome many years ago when Bryan began coaching Special Olympics Swimming. Throughout the years they met many wonderful kids and adults with Down Syndrome and knew that someday they would adopt a child with that very same special need. Bryan and Sarah met and began dating in 2003. They were married in 2009 and welcomed their daughter Kate in 2013. Kate is an amazing, funny, smart, loving, and vivacious little girl and is very much looking forward to having a ‘partner in crime’. Kit is a beautiful, healthy little boy with Down Syndrome and no other known medical needs. He is very smart, sweet, and deserves a loving home. There’s no doubt he will thrive at home in Minnesota with a loving family and access to exceptional medical care (OT, PT, Speech Therapy). Bryan, Sarah, and Kate just can’t wait to bring Kit home! They are all very excited and look forward to experiencing this journey of a lifetime.
9/2/15—LSC RECVD, AWAITING USCIS APPROVAL
Follow the Sanborn family’s adoption journey on their blog at https://adventuresofkateandkit.wordpress.com/
If you asked Rich and Vicki if they ever thought they would be parents to 14 children, they would both have given a resounding NO! They will be married 38 years, this September. Rich said on the night he was introduced, “I am going to marry you” and Vicki laughed and walked away.
Their oldest 5 children were born in Korea, and the oldest has blessed them with 2 grandsons, who they help watch some afternoons. Vicki always “felt” she was going to have 6 children, and when she learned that China was open in 1992, she went to find out some information from a family who had just returned. The youngest 9 were all born in China. They will have soon have 8 sons and 6 girls! Most came through the special needs programs and the last 6 have come home older. Their new son will be almost 13 when he arrives home.
Stepping out in faith, Vicki prayed about Matson for a number of months, before even approaching Rich with the notion that she knew he was meant to be their son. He had surgery for 2 of his special needs, and will require open heart surgery, once home to further repair and help heal. That was something that spoke to them, since their last daughter, who arrived home 2 years ago at 12, needed heart surgery that they were unprepared for, since that was not one of the needs she was said to have.
The sign in their den reads, “Some call it chaos, we call it family.” They both think that sums up their often crazy, wouldn’t change it for the world, life.
Follow the family’s adoption journey on their blog at oddsforus.blogspot.com
Matthew and Kimbra met in 2008 while working at an inner city ministry. In 2013, they started to talk about adoption and decided that there was no time like the present and were able to adopt two wonderful girls. Matthew and Kimbra thought they had their hands and hearts full, but this past spring they started looking at photos and realized that someone was missing from their family. Matthew and Kimbra are excited to see who God has for their family.
Follow the family’s adoption journey on their blog at kimbrajohnson.wordpress.com
Craig and Michelle were high school sweethearts at the age of 15. During their senior year, Michelle’s family was transferred from North Carolina to Ohio. Because they lived so far away from each other, they ended up going their separate ways. After about 8 years and a few twists and turns along the way, they finally figured out a way to be together. They got married in 1992 and have been married for almost 23 years. Craig and Michelle have two biological daughters; Laura, 19 and Christine,15. They adopted their 6 year old daughter, Ava, from China in 2012 and they are waiting to adopt their first son, Andrew Lawrence, 4 years old from China in the Fall of 2015. Andrew needs a family who can give him the individual love and attention that he deserves. His nannies say he is already working hard to overcome the many delays and challenges that he has. Andrew will have three sisters to spoil him and help him. He has spent almost four years in an orphanage and this family can’t wait to bring him home to his “forever home” and teach him about God’s love and grace. HOW IT ALL STARTED: The Hyatt’s ADOPTION STORY Craig’s job moved them to Georgia (from NC) in 2004. Soon after they moved to Georgia, they started feeling like they wanted to add to their family through adoption. Several years passed and in December of 2011 their paths crossed with several families who had adopted from China. God made it very clear to them that that was the way they were supposed to add to their family. What started out as a journey to add to their family, has turned into so much more. It’s not about “them” any more…..it’s about the sweet babies who are abandoned, who don’t have a mommy or a daddy, or a silky (blanket), or even enough food to grow. It’s about the babies who are born with medical needs and their parents don’t see any way to take care of their children so they abandon them at the gates of the orphanage or leave them in the streets and pray that a family who can give them a better life will adopt them. It’s just not about “what they want” anymore. It’s about how they can follow the path that God has set before them. Before they adopted Ava they were not familiar with words like orphans, abandoned, fatherless, one child policy, special needs, and many other words pertaining to China’s Special Needs adoptions. But their eyes have been opened and now they feel accountable. God has instilled a passion in them to care for the orphans! After they got back home with Ava there was a deep desire to adopt again, but financially it just didn’t seem possible. They exhausted all their resources when they adopted Ava. But they kept hearing God’s voice, and He kept saying to trust Him and He would provide a way. So they are totally trusting Him to provide for their needs by fundraising and being creative in raising the money to bring their little Andrew home! The entire family is so excited to add a little boy to their family. They covet your prayers as they continue on their adoption journey. Thank you, and May God Bless you. Matthew 17:20 “Truly I tell you, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you.”
8/24/15—TRAVELING SEPTEMBER 13
Follow the family’s adoption journey on their blog at www.hyatt-house.blogspot.com
Mark and Mary have been married for 25 years and have 5 children, the last of which was adopted from China in 2013. They are in the process of preparing their dossier to bring sweet Linny home. Mark is a patient, stay-at-home dad, who provides care for the three remaining children at home. He has a history of Traumatic Brain Injury and leads an independent life including coaching baseball and basketball. His experience with therapeutic interventions will help him to be his daughter’s biggest cheerleader and support as she makes progress toward independence. Mary is a practicing Speech Language Pathologist who will assist their precious daughter to the highest level of communication independence. Mark and Mary look forward to bringing Linny home as soon as possible. Please help with your thoughts, prayers and support to bring sweet Linny home. She has waited way too long.
7/15/15—DOSSIER SUBMITTED (LID)
Follow the family’s adoption journey on their blog at markandmaryaske.blogspot.com
Bryan and Jenifer Parris had known for a long time that their family would grow through adoption. They also knew that it would be a child with Down syndrome. They assumed they would adopt through our local foster care system and that God would just deliver to us a baby with DS…probably leaving him or her on our doorstep in the middle of the night. Crazy thought, huh?
They got the paperwork to begin the process of foster care to adopt. They never even filled out one form and they found out they were pregnant! It made sense to get their new baby home and settled and then Bryan and Jenifer could pick up with their plans to adopt. Then Neely was born…and she just so happened to be born with DOWN SYNDROME!!
Was God really calling them to adopt or just trying to prepare their hearts to be Neely’s parents? They had to figure that part out. Then…..they saw MinLan’s (Laura on Reece’s Rainbow) picture….they knew she was part of their family. Moving forward, they have settled in as a family and were doing well. Never enough hours in the day to get everything done, but definitely enough love to go around.
Around Christmas time, their family chose sweet Timothy on RR to sponsor for the Angel Tree program. They put his picture on the refrigerator, asked for donations to help his account and even hosted a big giveaway right at the end to hit our $1000 goal. They did it!
Ruby Kate,their five year old daughter, walked around declaring that their family was going to adopt Timothy. Ethan their seven year old son, wanted to know why he did not have a brother at home and if Timothy needed a family, why couldn’t they become his family.
Then God began to work…Bryan and Jenifer began to see God going before them to make the impossible possible. He began to make a way where they had seen NONE. Bryan and Jenifer are trusting the Lord to continue to make a way. They are trusting that God will provide the funds needed to complete this adoption. One way may be through people like you. Please pray with faith that God would move mountains to bring their son home.
7/27/15—DOSSIER SUBMITTED (LID)
Follow the family’s adoption journey on their blog at www.thestoryof1000.blogspot.com
David and Lu have always wanted a big family. Before they knew it they had six kids. What they didn’t realize is that when their sixth child was born it would open their eyes up to a whole new world. Their sixth child was born with Down syndrome. Despite the initial shock of the diagnosis, they as well as the rest of the family realized the unique blessing of this daughter. As they got to know others in the Down syndrome community they bumped into several families that had adopted from overseas. This began their thinking about adopting themselves. Specifically adopting a young child with Down syndrome. After months of talking and looking through Reece’s rainbow they decided to stop talking about it and take action. They are now in the process of adopting a 3 year old girl from Eastern Europe who happens to have Down syndrome.
6/16/15—AWAITING TRAVEL DATES
Follow the family’s adoption journey on their blog at https://www.facebook.com/BabySophiaJoy
Kelly and Bill met at a 4th of July celebration 3 years ago. Mutual friends decided to play matchmaker and succeeded! Bill asked Kelly out for coffee the next day and they spent the night talking about everything! The coffee shop closed and they moved on to McDonald’s to finish off the night and the “rest is history!” Kelly was quite the package deal bringing 7 children into the relationship; she knew Bill was “the one” when he jumped right in and became an instant part of the family! They were married on May 04, 2013 and moved into their new house in June. In July Kelly asked him if he was ready to start an adoption. He didn’t say no (Lol) so she called and set up a homestudy for the beginning of August. Rowen joined their family from Serbia on January 30, 2014! Rowen has that extra special 47th chromosome and everyone fell instantly in love with him so they quickly decided that Eight Was Not Enough and they are heading to China to bring home Silvie as soon as possible! Any help with fundraising is greatly appreciated since they so recently completed Rowen’s adoption.
7/13/15—LOA RECVD, WAITING FOR TRAVEL DATES
Matthew and Christy Sellers are excited to bring Rayne into their family. She will be welcomed with loving arms by 3 big brothers and a sister. One brother, like her, was adopted and also has Down Syndrome. Matt and Christy have known since before they were married that God had called them to adopt and more specifically adopt a child with Down Syndrome. After the adoption of their first child, they knew this is the calling God had for their family and were excited to open their hearts and home to another child with Down Syndrome. Matt is a pastor and Christy is a stay at home mom. She also home schools the children. Adoption has changed their family for the better and they can’t wait to see God write the rest of Rayne’s story.
Follow the family’s adoption journey on their blog at www.longingforlillyandlevi.blogspot.com
Adrian and Ali have been married for 7 years and have 4 biological children. Their youngest child, Jack, was born with Down syndrome. Adrian and Ali have always had a heart for helping children and fostered for a short time in 2011. It was not until after Jack’s birth in 2013 that they began their journey of international adoption.
Ten months after Jack was born, Ali happened upon the Reece’s Rainbow website. She knew instantly that her family was supposed to adopt a person with Down syndrome. Ali and her husband know that their son Jack was given to them for a greater purpose than just brightening their family. He was given to them so they would feel equipped to care for other special needs children.
Mark, as he is known on RR, is a 7 year old boy from Latin American who has been diagnosed with Down syndrome. He has been in institutional and foster care since he was 12 days old. As Adrian and Ali were looking at the countless faces and biographies of children, Mark’s face was the face that would not leave their minds. He is the child meant for their family and they can hardly wait to bring him home!
The Soto children are excited to travel to Latin American as a whole family! Besides bringing home a new brother … they are also REALLY excited to fly in a plane and look out at the clouds!
Follow the family’s adoption journey on their blog at lovemercylivejustly.wordpress.com
Joe and Hannah are specifically hoping to adopt a child with special-needs. Their youngest child has several special-needs of his own, including prematurity (born at 26 weeks) and Down Syndrome. They have already learned so much through caring for their son, who is now 4 years old, and therefore feel as though they are equipped to take on the responsibility of caring for another special little blessing. Joe and Hannah also have a 7 year old daughter and a 5 year old son.
Both of them want to add to their family. They had talked about adoption before they even had biological children, so they knew it was always something they wanted to do. They had always dreamed of having a large family and when they realized Hannah would no longer be able to have more biological children (Hannah had to have an emergency hysterectomy at the age of 23), they knew that we were meant to adopt! They love kids and feel as though their family is not yet complete. Adoption is the perfect option for them! They have the space, the time, the desire, and most importantly, the love to give. Adoption has become a passion and a calling for their family.
Many people have asked Joe and Hannah “why are you choosing to adopt?” To them, the reason is simple – because their hearts are telling them to!
Joe and Hannah have open hearts and arms and look forward to adding an addition to their family.
7/9/15—STILL WAITING FOR TRAVEL DATES
Follow the family’s adoption journey on their blog at thentherewas6.blogspot.com
As a family, we have traveled through many unexpected roads. We began dating at the end of high school and married four years later. Two years into our marriage and after a challenging, high-risk pregnancy, our first child, Jacob, was born. Our concept of life and love was completely altered the moment we met him. Nothing would ever be the same.
When Jacob was just a few months old, Denise left her career and began the stay-at-home mom journey, and eventually the homeschooling journey, that now stretches over two decades. Five more high-risk pregnancies resulted in four more children and one miscarriage. We were a family of seven, and we felt complete; but God had new roads for us to travel that we could not yet imagine.
When our youngest son was 9, Denise felt God tell her that there was a child who needed us and she was waiting for us. We knew then, that we were to adopt. Eventually, we were led to China; and our daughter, Joy, came home in 2011, followed by our daughter, Hope, in 2012. Again we thought our family was complete. Yet God made it clear we were not.
Last spring, Denise saw a little boy on a China waiting child advocate site, and felt sure he was meant to be our son. We discussed it, but decided we were not yet in a financial position to start another adoption. A week later, another family submitted paperwork to adopt this child.
A few weeks later on the same advocacy site, Denise found a little girl she recognized as the very first adoption file we had ever viewed some four-plus years ago. We did not move forward at the time because her medical needs seemed more than we could handle. We had hoped she had gone on to be adopted by a braver family, but here she was still waiting. In fact, she was coming to the U.S. through a hosting program, and her original host family had just backed out. We decided that this was too coincidental. We needed to host her. She returned to China at the end of the 3-week hosting program and we have been working as fast as we can to get her back home permanently as our daughter.
Shortly after our dossier was logged in to China in late February, we learned that the little boy mentioned above had just suffered a disrupted adoption. The other family traveled to China, but after two days decided not to go through with his adoption. Because of that, he was not permitted to return to the wonderful non-profit organization’s foster program where he had lived for years. He would now be required to live at the orphanage. So here was the child Denise felt sure was our son, now with no family and living in the orphanage. We made the decision to step way out in faith and bring him home at the same time as we bring home our daughter. We just submitted our paperwork for him and received pre-approval from China. We were already so far along in the adoption road that we are just a few months from travel. We expect by summer we will be bringing our two new children home.
Our Christian home has evolved over the years. We began as a small family with typical worldly values. As we surrendered to him, God opened our eyes to His heart; and our passion for Him grew. We try to demonstrate to our children what it means to be Christ-like by the way we treat them and each other. We want them to see love most of all. We want our home to be an environment that invites healing to their hearts, a place where they don’t have to perform to win love and acceptance. We teach our children that their value is in the fact that God made them and not in the lies the world may have told them about their existence. We want them to experience compassion here and patience as they work through what is, at times, really hard stuff. Some of our children are now grown. Some of our children were adopted at older ages. Our family dynamics have changed over the years, but what remains consistent is that we long for our children to see God working in our lives and in our hearts, changing us, so that they witness transformation first hand and can trust that it is there for them, too.
7/15/15—USCIS APPROVED, AWAITING TRAVEL DATES
Andrea and Jesse met and fell in love on a co-ed soccer team in 2004, he was great & she was not, but they’ve been teammates ever since. Jesse works in Property Management & is the Worship Leader at their church. Andrea stays at home with their son, Jackson (adopted), and any foster children they may be loving on at the time. While serving the homeless in their city the DeBoer’s became increasingly aware that most of the people they met on the streets came from broken homes or were lacking family. The DeBoer’s both come from large families & love family life, they recognize their adoption by God is the single most significant part of their heritages, and they realized that extending their family through adoption and foster care was one way they could stand in the gap between brokenness & life on the streets. Andrea and a friend came across Reece’s Rainbow, saw one beautiful smile that stood out in particular, and was heartbroken over the plight of orphans and orphans with special needs. The DeBoer’s had no intention of adopting internationally but continued to learn more about the orphan crisis. In the time since, they became licensed foster parents & adopted Jackson. In 2013 Andrea saw a face on social media that looked familiar, went back to RR & sure enough it was that same little boy. She asked, Jesse said ‘Yes!’ and they began the adventure to bring Jaeger home to their family!
The journey is long & complicated, and the costs are high, but the DeBoers know that these boys are worth it! They would be grateful for your support, either financially or through prayer, as they go after their little men.
UPDATE: Jaeger has been adopted domestically, so the DeBoer’s will be bringing home Kjellsen and Robby!
8/20/15—WAITING FOR TRAVEL DATES
Before they even met each other, Kasi and Chip had their hearts set on adopting… someday. Seven years of marriage and three precious biological children later, that “someday” is now the present! Chip has visited China many times and Kasi has visited once before and both of them have fallen in love with the people and culture there, so it only made sense to pursue adopting a child from this country. Also, Kasi is a former special education teacher and Chip and Kasi both have years of experience mentoring and working with children and adolescents with all sorts of backgrounds and special circumstances, so it only made sense for them to pursue adopting a child with special needs. For years, Kasi and Chip have adored the children listed on Reece’s Rainbow and in the Fall of 2014 they found “Louis ( aka Louie).” Their whole family felt very strongly that they were being drawn to pursue adopting him. They are beyond excited to lavish love on Louie and include him as part of their family! Thank you for your prayers, thoughts, and support!
Follow the Bachelder family’s adoption journey on their blog at www.LongingForLouie.com
Chris and Amy are excited to bring home two beautiful siblings! The have ten kids, Britney 25, Pam 23, Sierra 16, Ainslee 13, Kara 10, Reagan 8, Lawson 6, Annabelle 5, Hadley 5, and Jackson 3. After being blessed through adoption last year, they knew that God was calling them to adopt again, and excitedly started the process! Amy’s favorite part of the adoption process is not just being blessed with children, but also growing their children’s hearts to be loving and compassionate and seeing God work in amazing ways! Chris is a farmer and Amy is a stay at home mom and runs a gymnastics program with her daughters. The kids are very excited to bring home their brother and sister, and Chris and Amy can’t wait to bring home their son and daughter! Please pray for Trisha and Tyler and for the Cowan’s through this adoption process!
8/12/15—APPOINTMENT IS SEPTEMBER 15
Follow the Cowan family’s adoption journey on their blog at http://youwillalwaysbemuchmoretome.blogspot.com
Jon and Carly have been married for 10 years. They have known each other since grade school and started dating in high school. They have 3 biological children, ages 9, 8, and 6 and they adopted their 8 year old son with Down syndrome in November of last year. They found their son through Reece’s Rainbow and they thought they were done, but God had other plans! Just 4 months after bringing their son home they saw the picture of Hannah Joy (Bree on RR), also with Down syndrome, and they knew God was calling them to go back and bring her home. Their first adoption took a year and a half, but this adoption will be much faster. Hannah Joy (Bree) will be aging out when she turns 14 on December 1st of this year, so Jon and Carly need to travel before that. That gives them less than 8 months to complete this process. Jon and Carly are once again stepping out in faith, trusting that God is going to provide the needed funds just like He did with their son. They ask for your prayers and they would be so very blessed if you would be a part of their journey to bring their daughter home.
8/26/15—LOA RECVD, AWAITING TRAVEL DATES
Follow the Duvall family’s adoption journey on their blog at bringinghomeasher.blogspot.com
Robinson and Marcy met at church, and became engaged after only 1 month of meeting. Robinson immigrated from Chile in 1997, started college and learned English. He now holds a bachelors in 3-D animation and works as a special effects technician, loves gymnastics, martial arts and being outdoors. Marcy was a nanny in Switzerland after high school, became a pharmacy technician then a massage therapist. She has been involved with music, singing and theater her whole life and loves the arts. Robinson and Marcy were married October 2006. A year after being married they were expecting their first child, a baby boy. Juan Armando was unexpectedly delivered via emergency C Section. It was unknown to them until the birth that little Armando had severe heart issues, and Down Syndrome. He lived only 3 short hours, but left an imprint on the entire family that changed everyone’s world. Days before his birth, both parents unexpectedly lost their jobs. Through a series of miracles, they grew and got on their feet again.
Marcy had several health issues after this dramatic unexpected trauma and her body was not able to sustain a pregnancy. She had numerous early miscarriages, and one 19 week miscarriage, then FINALLY was able to sustain a pregnancy to full term. It was a little baby girl, delivered at home with a midwife. A dream come true. Ariana looked exactly like Armando, but the parents were in denial that they could have 2 children born to them with Down Syndrome. It took the couple 2 months to finally consent to getting genetic testing done, where it was confirmed that YES Ariana did have down Syndrome, a miracle that only time was able to disclose.
This couple has been through some amazing strengthening trials, including a full recovery from testicular cancer in 2012. They have felt that if the Good Lord blessed them with two Children born into their family with Down Syndrome, that they were intended to raise two children with Down Syndrome… and then they found her.
When Marcy saw Scarlet (Who will be named Sofia Ava) it was like lightning. Through a series of miracles and personal revelation, the couple knew that adopting this little girl was always meant to be. Marcy and Robinson have been interested in adoption since the time they were engaged, but until only recently the puzzle pieces started falling into place. Location didn’t matter, only the child mattered. The couple would go to this little girl, with a heart defect and Down Syndrome, no matter where in the world she was, which means a journey to Eastern Europe.
Despite the fact that they have no idea how adoption would be possible financially, they RAN forward with faith, praying like it’s all up to God and working like it’s all up to them. Having full faith that somehow, someway the Lord will provide a way for this little girl to come home to the family she was always intended to have. Marcy and Robinson have full faith that this miracle will happen, it is happening. They have no idea where their feet will take them next, They have met many wonderful people that have helped along the way and are prayerfully searching for others to help this journey have a happy ending. They have seen too many miracles in their lives to believe otherwise.
7/15/15—STILL WAITING FOR TRAVEL DATES
Follow the family’s adoption journey on their blog at ShoutingForSofia.com
Here they grow again! The Williams bunch is expanding! John and Sarah have been married for almost 19 years and have 2 biological daughters and three adopted children. Their oldest girls have fully embraced their siblings and have been a great help with the younger children. Their oldest daughter, Imani, is in her sophomore year at the University of Michigan. She loves to visit and see her siblings! Isabel is a junior in high school and has a soft spot for children with Down syndrome. Landie, age 9, is their “mother hen” and was adopted from Haiti at the age of 3 ½. She was lucky to be in a wonderful orphanage there because she was extremely sick as a baby and would likely have not made it without their quick thinking and access to medical care! Isaiah is 3 and is a sweet, sensitive boy who was adopted domestically. He LOVES his brother Ashton age 1 ½! Ashton has Down syndrome and he was also adopted domestically at 3 ½ months. They are best buddies and love to play together.
Over Christmas, the Williams were able to host a little girl from China who they call Ya Ya. She is almost 9 years old and has Down syndrome. Ya Ya is a bright and determined young lady! They loved having her here and are missing her terribly! Everyone was very surprised at how well she adapted while she was here and how they were able to overcome the language barrier. She is very expressive and they used a lot of charades and Google translate, but they did very well! They made the decision to adopt Ya Ya because she is such a sweet, loveable girl and they were able to see what a wonderful fit she was for their family.
The Williams would be honored to have others come alongside and partner with them in their adoption. This will be their third adoption in 3 years and they know they can’t do this alone! Adoption is such a life changing gift for everyone involved! They can’t wait to see how much Ya Ya grows and learns when she has the opportunity to be loved by a family.
Follow the Williams family’s adoption journey on their blog at http://wiredhill.com/adopt/
William and Danya, along with their 7 children, are so excited to be bringing little Lizzy Love home. They knew they would adopt one day but they were not sure when or from where. That all changed when Danya’s sister brought home not only one but two little princesses from China. First home was Yixi, a sweet and tiny girl with Down syndrome. You can count on Yixi to bring a smile to anyones face at anytime. Their hearts melted as they fell in love with their new little niece. Just as they felt God calling them to adopt a Down syndrome child of their own, Danya’s sister adopted another girl from China with Down syndrome named Amy Joy. To say that Amy brings Joy to everyone she meets would be an understatement. Being around these girls would make your cheeks hurt from smiling so much. Soon after Amy Joy came home, the Neville Family found out that Amy’s best friend’s paperwork was ready for her to be adopted. They immediately secured Lizzy Love’s paperwork and began their adoption journey!
They truly thank you for your prayers and support. They are praying for their story to reach those in a position to give and help little Lizzy Love to come home to her forever family.
Follow the family’s adoption journey on their blog at thosemomentsinlife.com
Brian and Kimberly first expanded their family through international adoption in 2006. They adopted 4-year-old Molly from China not fully knowing how extensive or what would be involved with her facial meningocele. Because of Molly, they adopted another little girl, 2-year-old Brynn, in 2008. Brynn was born with a similar facial meningoencephalocele. Adopting their daughters, learning about their facial differences and going through their surgeries and care has really given them a heart for children with facial differences. When they considered adoption again, they hoped in their hearts that God would lead them to a child with facial differences, a child that He hand-picked just for them. God, in fact, lead them to TWO beautiful boys who happen to be “best friends” in the orphanage where they live. “Billy” is six years old and he has a bilateral Tessier facial cleft #7, which has been an obstacle to speech and his ability to eat easily. “Alan” is five years old and he was born with a nasal deformity that looks quite similar, they say, to that of their daughter, Molly, however, based on their experience, “Alan’s” condition looks to be much more severe. They realize that the road ahead involves significant medical treatment(s) and surgeries and they are willing to do whatever possible to help “Billy” and “Alan” live normal, healthy, happy lives … “together”. Brian and Kimberly are anxious and excited to have these “best friends” join their family and become brothers to each other and also to Molly, Brynn and their three adult children.
Follow the family’s adoption journey on their blog at crossingthejordantojonahandrees.blogspot.com
Ashton and Tony have been together for 6 years. They have 2 beautiful children and always knew adoption would be a part of their story. So when they made the decision to start the adoption process they thought it would take a long time and were open to several countries. They soon learned about “waiting children” and their life was changed. They had decided on a country and started the process to find their child and every time they visited Reece’s Rainbow, they were drawn to one particular little boy, listed online as “Blake”. The problem was this little boy, with beautiful curly brown hair and gorgeous brown eyes who captured their heart, was not in the country they thought they were adopting from. So for a while they kept looking. As time went by, they could not forget this little boy and continued praying that “his family” would find him and want him as badly as they did. After a few months, they knew they had to make the call to his agency to see if it was possible for them to qualify for his country and were elated to find out they qualified!
A few days after reviewing his file and prayerfully seeking direction, Ashton was contacted by a woman who was in Eastern Europe meeting her son. She shared her story of meeting this wonderful little boy with spina bifida, and how this little guy asked her if she knew where his mommy and daddy were. A few weeks later she went back to the orphanage and the nuns told him that the lady was going to America to find his mommy and daddy. This little boy put his hands together and prayed for his mama and daddy. This happened to be the same day Ashton and Tony asked to see his file. For them this was a sign that it was meant to be.
God has moved mountains and continues to show this family that this is the path they are supposed to be taking; this is the little boy that will change their world and brighten their days.
Every day that it takes them to get to his country is another day that he is losing hope that he will have a family. But he has a brother and sister and parents that love him so much! The McBride family hopes that they can continue to move through the process quickly and bring this amazing little boy home to so much love and happiness.
Thank you so much for taking the time to read their story, sharing their story and praying for them. Thank you so much for being a part of their journey and if you feel led; please make a tax deductible donation to help them bring their son, soon to be named Owen, home.
Please help them bring home their son where he will receive the therapies he needs and the love of a family he deserves.
7/17/15—DOSSIER IN COUNTRY
Follow the McBride family’s adoption journey on their blog at watchthemcbridefamilygrow.blogspot.com
Tina and Mark have 4 children at home; 2 biological children ages 18 and 14 and 2 from China ages 14 and 12. Their youngest, Kennedi, was their first adopted child and she was adopted when she was almost 6 yeas years old back in 2008. They thought their family was complete with their 2 biological children so they were shocked when God asked them to adopt a child in 2006. They knew nobody who had adopted but decided to follow the path they felt God was laying out before them. They are so glad they did because she changed their lives. In 2010, Tina started an adoption/orphan care ministry at their church and has since seen many families foster and adopt children both locally and internationally. In 2012, the Salvadors headed back to China to bring home their (at the time) 12 year old son. Again, they thought their family was complete but for some reason God placed on Tina’s heart Down syndrome and they fell in love with an adorable 5 year old in China who needed a home. Unfortunately, this girl would not turn out to be their daughter but she helped open their hearts to the idea of adopting again, and adopting a Down syndrome child. Although they were not planning on adopting again, they are now in the process to bring home a stunning 6 year old girl who has Down syndrome waiting in China.
8/27/15—TRAVEL APPROVAL RECEIVED
Follow the family’s adoption journey on their blog at theprincessandwe.blogspot.com
Ashley and Kain never planned to adopt. They would have 1-2 biological children in addition to Kain’s son, Kaiden … but you know what they say about plans! After a struggle with infertility and some disillusionment with domestic adoption, their home study agency passed along a photo of a little boy who needed a family. Though they didn’t meet the requirements for that child, they’d found a new purpose for their struggles. They wanted to give a home to a child who needed one. The Smiths brought ho me their daughter from Eastern Europe in March 2014, but it wasn’t too long before they realized they weren’t done and they were still missing a piece. So, despite not having the financial support available that was present in their first adoption, Kain and Ashley have stepped forward again to bring love and a family to a child who needs one. They hope you will follow along on their journey to bring home their beloved son.
Follow the family’s adoption journey on their blog at backtobulgaria.wordpress.com
Darrell and Angel met before either was in their twenties and married in August of 1995. Darrell is a Bio Medical Electronics Technician and Angel has a degree in Accounting. After a few years of marriage, they were blessed with their two biological children. Mason was born in 1999 and Madisyn in 2001. God placed it on their hearts to become foster parents around the time Mason was 9 and Madisyn was 7. In 2009, they attended the classes and received their foster parenting license with no intention of adopting. They just wanted to be a safe, healing home for hurting kids until they were reunited with their families. Little did they know that the decision to become involved in the lives of orphans was only the beginning phase of an amazing journey that God had planned for their family.
Darrell and Angel had two little boys placed with them in the summer of 2009. Austin and Alex are biological brothers and joined the Maas family forever when the adoption was final in 2012. In late 2013 they adopted their second placement, a sibling set of 5! After adding 7 kids to the family in a few short years, the couple said their family was completed….or so they thought.
God is amazing and knows that you can only handle so much at once. Never in a million years would the Maas’ have dreamed they would have 9 children, but they do! The nine children are: Mason (15), Joseph (14), Madisyn (13), Jacob (11), Austin (8), Alexander (7), Jaylie (6), Joshua (5) and Julia (5). God showed them that anything is possible with HIM! Angel saw “Caleb’s” picture on the Reece’s Rainbow sight a few years ago while looking at a picture of her now nephew. Scrolling down through the list, Caleb caught her eye because he looked so much like the son, Alex. “I can remember thinking that I would snatch him up if I had the money!” After running into Caleb’s picture a few other times over the last year, a few big signs that this adoption is God’s will, and a lot of prayer, they are stepping out in faith and calling Caleb their son. They are so excited to bring this little guy home!
Follow the Maas family adoption journey on their blog at www.maasfamilyof4.blogspot.com
Galin and Emily have dreamed about growing their family through adoption for as long as they have known each other! They have two little girls at home that can’t wait to meet their sister, Reilly! By God’s grace they hope to get this sweet girl home soon, before she is transferred to the next facility. The Knight family has recently experienced much heartbreak in the loss of their previous adoption and they proceed with this adoption of Reilly with abundant love, hope and prayer. Please join them in prayer and support as they work towards bringing their new daughter home!
Follow the family’s adoption journey on their blog at trusting3-5.blogspot.com
Britt and Jaime have a lot of little kids. Daisy (Libby on RR) came home from Ukraine in 2013. As they stood outside that door, holding their daughter for the first time in a little hallway, they felt something they didn’t know was real. Never before had they held a child who had no one. And in that instant, the little girl whose name they hadn’t even chosen…was theirs. She was a frail, tiny 18 month old infant, and has blossomed into a toddler with a sassy attitude and love of swinging. A year after she came home, little Seabee was born, joining her big siblings Cal (9), Jedi (7), Lumpy (5), Hoss (3), and Daisy (now 3). The Vanchuras continue to wait for Russia to reopen so they can bring home the son who began their adoption journey, Mac (Thadius on RR).
As you might imagine, with 6 kids, Britt and Jaime don’t get a lot of sleep some nights, the house is usually messy, and you don’t want to see their grocery bills. They drive a passenger van, homeschool, and teach second grade Faith Formation classes together…with two babies in tow. They recently moved to the country to raise the crew of six and some goats, maybe. Everything they do is busy and a little chaotic and costs just a bit more than they’d like. Everywhere they go they get don’tyouhaveyourhandsfull-ed. But that’s ok.
Because their hands may be busy, but they aren’t full. There’s still room for one more.
A little boy, lovingly nicknamed Nugget, has been in their prayers and on their minds. Three days before the first family who tried so hard to bring him home announced they couldn’t complete their adoption, Britt and Jaime had decided to start a new homestudy. They had just moved to a farm, and the timing wasn’t right at all, and the finances were going to require a leap of faith to make happen…but they could do it for Nugget. This little boy has been without a family for 6 birthdays. They hope he will be home forever on his seventh.
The Vanchuras named their farm Open Hands Acres, because the best things in their life together have been given and received with open hands. They thank you all for your support and encouragement as they bring their little boy home.
7/8/15—DOSSIER EN ROUTE (DTC)
Follow the family’s adoption journey on their blog at openhandsacres.blogspot.com
Greg and Emily Humphreys have been married since 2007. Since that time, they have welcomed four children into their home. In 2012, their third child, Graham, was born with severe heart defects and passed away at just 15 hours old. This experience, although difficult, has blessed their lives, strengthened their faith, and shaped the way they view children.
It was in the months leading up to Graham’s birth that they became aware of the millions of orphans worldwide that are waiting for families. Many of these children need medical care and support they cannot get in their birth countries. The Humphreys family has cheered and supported others in their adoption efforts, and they are excited to begin their own journey to adopt.
All prayers and support are greatly appreciated.
Follow the family’s adoption journey on their blog at gandehumphreysfamily.blogspot.com
Brian and Kathryn met as 6th graders and began dating their senior year of high school after many years of friendship. They tied the knot a few years later, and have been happily married for 14 years.
They have a shared desire for a larger family, and hoped to grow their family through birth and adoption. The couple was blessed with four biological children before they started looking into special needs, international adoption programs. Because Kathryn’s brother has Down syndrome, they felt this was a need they could handle.
In October 2012 they fell in love with a little girl in China who has Down syndrome. She faced some serious health issues while living in her orphanage, leaving the family racing the clock to bring her home. August 2013, Meghan was placed in her mother’s arms and forever welcomed into the family. Though her needs were great and at times overwhelming, this precious girl has absolutely thrived since adoption. She has an army of people who wholly love and treasure her, and see her for the blessing that she is.
Adoption changed the family forever, and Meghan’s older siblings frequently talk about how smart Meghan is, how wonderful she is, and how thankful they are that she is a part of the family.
Because of the impact of their adoption trip, and especially seeing firsthand innumerable children in orphanages, Kathryn began advocating for waiting-children, especially those with Down syndrome. It was on an advocating website in Fall of 2014 that she first saw Forest. The family requested his file, and began praying and talking about how to proceed.
On Christmas Day 2014, the family was granted pre-approval for this precious 4 year old boy. Forest has a different history and different needs than Meghan, but the family is completely committed to bringing him home. They can’t wait to show Forest what a family is. They can’t wait to show him what unconditional love means. They can’t wait for him to see how treasured he is, and they look forward to the day they are forever his.
8/7/15—APPOINTMENT IN OCTOBER
Follow the family’s adoption journey on their blog at notthecrazyone.com