/by Lucillehttp://reecesrainbow.org/wp-content/uploads/almosttherefamilypage.jpg3761016Lucillehttp://reecesrainbow.org/wp-content/uploads/10logo4x4-3.pngLucille2016-05-28 20:02:132016-06-18 13:18:11Almost There
The Bowman family is excited to be adopting for the 1st time. Angie and Tim met while in college and have been blessed with 4 biological children. Their oldest daughter Allison graduated with a biology degree, and she lives in the same city as Angie and Tim. Their second daughter Brittany is currently working on her doctorate degree in physical therapy. Joshua, their third child, is studying fire science, as he wants to pursue a career as a firefighter. Their youngest son Jacob is still in high school and is an avid runner. Angie and Tim have always been committed to children in a variety of ways. Angie is a Kindergarten teacher, but ran an in-home daycare while her children were young. Tim works in management for Simon Property Group but has always been a coach and referee of youth soccer, football, and basketball.
In January 2016, Angie and Brittany were reading a Facebook story, which led them to Reece’s Rainbow. The whole family felt such empathy and compassion for the many children in need of homes, but they were particularly drawn to one beautiful little girl. Mallory is two years old and has Down syndrome. For months, Mallory’s picture and story kept tugging at their hearts until they finally said, “YES,” in May. The entire family jumped on board as the family discussed, prayed, and planned for the addition of another child to become a part of their lives. There were so many signs from God that this was what He had clearly planned for them.
The Bowman family is ecstatic to welcome Mallory into their home, and the Bowman children are thrilled to have a little sister on whom to dote. The Bowman’s cannot wait to bring Mallory home and to hold and cuddle her. They are looking forward to providing her with experiences such as zoo trips, time spent at the Children’s Museum, dance lessons, and religious education. They are also excited to celebrate holidays, read books, and play soccer and other games with her. They are currently trying to raise the adoption funds and appreciate your prayers as well as any financial support to help them bring Mallory home as soon as possible. There are no words to express how much they already love her, and they pray for her every day as they anxiously await the arrival of their newest family member.
has been donated towards the cost of our adoption!
http://reecesrainbow.org/wp-content/uploads/Mallory-Photo-1-May-2016-May-2016.jpg800450Michellehttp://reecesrainbow.org/wp-content/uploads/10logo4x4-3.pngMichelle2016-11-18 09:54:102016-11-18 09:54:51MALLORY for the Bowman family -- IN
“Now to Him who is able to do immeasurably more than we can ask or imagine…..to Him be the glory forever and ever. Amen!” Ephesians 3:20-21
Ellen and Jon, along with their family, have been interested in opening their hearts and home to an orphan for many years. One of their daughters started an adoption “bucket” years ago and began collecting money, but the time to adopt never seemed right.
Last fall, Ellen read about the Bamboo Project, created for orphans with Down Syndrome who are considered unadoptable. Ellen and Jon’s hearts were quickly drawn to want to provide a home for one of these children that had the same special needs as their own 8 year old biological son!
Earlier this year, the Lindblom family began working on all the paperwork and applications involved in international adoption. They are very excited to be bringing a 4 year old girl into their family, hopefully by early 2017. The Lindblom family is holding to the promise in Ephesians 3:30-21 that “God is able to do immeasurably more than [they] can ask or imagine….” as they trust God in bringing their beautiful child home.
has been donated towards the cost of our adoption!
http://reecesrainbow.org/wp-content/uploads/10logo4x4-3.png00Michellehttp://reecesrainbow.org/wp-content/uploads/10logo4x4-3.pngMichelle2016-09-15 14:52:222016-11-23 09:04:18NAOMI for the Lindblom family -- CT
We are the Offers. We have been married for 25 years and have been blessed with five, soon to be six, beautiful children. Four of our children came to us through adoption, and our two newest family members just came home in January. Each of our children has been such a blessing to us in his or her own way. One of our children has autism and ADHD, and another has more physical disabilities. We have found that with each disability comes it’s own wonderful blessing.
Having just come home with our newest son and daughter, we weren’t expecting to go back so soon, but we both fell in love with “Lily,” who has Down Syndrome and Congenital Heart Disease. We knew without a doubt that she was the one that was meant for our family. So, after much prayer (and a few miracles!) we moved forward.
Bringing our next child home so quickly after having recently adopted two is a stretch financially for our family, but we are stepping out in faith, knowing that Lily is supposed to be a part of our family, and that the funds will come together. We are so grateful for your support!
Updated: The Offer family will also be bringing home “Rosalie”! Please help congratulate them and support their journey, bringing home Lily and Rosalie!
http://reecesrainbow.org/wp-content/uploads/Lily1-287x300.jpg300287Michellehttp://reecesrainbow.org/wp-content/uploads/10logo4x4-3.pngMichelle2016-06-08 14:06:322016-11-14 09:59:48LILY and ROSALIE for the Offer family -- WA
Since before they met, Josh and Susan knew adoption was in their future. After 10 years of marriage and a beautiful 4 year old daughter (Hazel), they wondered where God was going to lead their family. They felt God calling them to make several big changes in their lives that didn’t quite make sense, until they laid eyes on Zayne. A friend shared his info on Facebook and said, “I’m going to speak up for this young fella again. He is so cute and he really needs a family very soon. If you’ve ever considered international adoption for even one second, please look at this sweet pea and ask the Lord if he is yours.”
The thing was, the Fowlers hadn’t really considered international adoption, and also hadn’t considered a child with special needs. But one look at Zayne’s picture changed all that. They also quickly realized that his medical needs are similar to those that Josh had as a child (but more severe). They decided to take a day and pray about it, but after about 10 minutes realized that a day was too long to wait and they jumped headfirst into the adoption process.
Five months later their dossier was submitted and now they wait for approval and travel dates! Once Zayne is home, he’ll need a major surgery to connect his esophagus to his stomach, at which point he’ll learn to eat. Thankfully the Fowlers live close to an excellent children’s hospital.
The Fowlers are over the moon excited to welcome Zayne into their family, and have a wonderful support system in their community! They’re surrounded by other adoptive families and great medical teams close by—everyone is thrilled to bring Zayne home!
http://reecesrainbow.org/wp-content/uploads/zayne-2015-1.jpg791528Michellehttp://reecesrainbow.org/wp-content/uploads/10logo4x4-3.pngMichelle2016-07-30 14:39:162016-08-27 11:18:57ZAYNE for the Fowler family -- VA
Shawn and Jenni Zupfer have been married for 10 years and have an incredible 4 year old biological son. While they felt their family of three was complete, they knew they had more love to share and opened their hearts to international adoption. They completed their home study and were soon matched with a toddler.
When visiting their prospective child in country this past July, Jenni met a young boy named John who was at the same interim care center as their toddler. She knew instantly there was something remarkably special about this young boy after meeting him and hearing his story.
At a young age, John fell from a mango tree an injured a disc in his back, but was not able to have the medical care he needed. She learned he was a true orphan, having lost both his parents to the recent tragic Ebola outbreaks, which forced him to live on the streets in one of the country’s worst slums, and fend for himself for survival. Despite all that was working against him, he managed to keep himself in school; he is very bright. He is one of the most loving, kind, and tenderhearted young boys you will ever meet. He maintains a sweet disposition, a strong inner drive to achieve his dreams, and a desire to once again have a family to call his own. Shawn and Jenni were grateful to learn he was matched with a family so that he would have the opportunity to have a loving family, continue his education, and pursue his goals.
Recently, however, due to unforeseen circumstances and no fault of his own, the family pursuing his adoption was unable to proceed. John was left with few options as he will age out of adoption eligibility in early January 2017 and once again be on his own, and alone.
Upon learning John was in need of a family, without hesitation, Shawn and Jenni stepped forward to pursue his adoption. They quickly completed a whirlwind of paperwork and updated their home study to include a teenager. Now it is a race against time for everything to come together, including raising the remaining funds, for John to join their family.
has been donated towards the cost of our adoption!
http://reecesrainbow.org/wp-content/uploads/10logo4x4-3.png00Michellehttp://reecesrainbow.org/wp-content/uploads/10logo4x4-3.pngMichelle2016-11-11 09:39:482016-11-29 19:01:50JOHN for the Zupfer family -- WA
Adam and Carin first saw Dex’s picture in April of 2012. They had just decided to start the process of adopting a child with Down Syndrome from China and Dex’s file was the first they ever saw. Carin instantly fell in love with his chubby cheeks, crooked smile and droopy eye. Through events out of their control, they were not able to pursue the adoption of Dex and instead they adopted their daughter Pearl in May of 2013. Another daughter, Molly, joined the family through adoption in August of 2015. But Dex still waited to be chosen. In December of 2015, the family began praying for a family for Dex. Two months later, God revealed that Adam and Carin were to be his family. They are grateful and humbled that after 5 years of waiting, Dex, who they will name Samuel, will have a mom and dad, 4 sisters and 2 brothers! They also know that a way is being prepared ahead of them— emotionally, spiritually and financially. They have no fear, only love for this little boy. God has and will provide all and more than their family needs to bring him home.
11/16/16—USCIS APPROVED Follow the family’s adoption journey on their blog at diplofam.com
has been donated towards the cost of our adoption!
http://reecesrainbow.org/wp-content/uploads/Dex-1-200x300.jpg300200Michellehttp://reecesrainbow.org/wp-content/uploads/10logo4x4-3.pngMichelle2016-07-12 11:14:362016-11-16 13:50:42DEX for the Vogelzang family -- TX
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.
http://reecesrainbow.org/wp-content/uploads/butler-family-5.jpg400266Michellehttp://reecesrainbow.org/wp-content/uploads/10logo4x4-3.pngMichelle2014-09-15 13:30:162016-10-28 12:09:59XAVIER for the Butler family -- NY
http://reecesrainbow.org/wp-content/uploads/10logo4x4-3.png00Michellehttp://reecesrainbow.org/wp-content/uploads/10logo4x4-3.pngMichelle2016-02-17 15:54:062016-10-12 16:40:30MICKEY for the OBrien family -- OH
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.
11/16/16—STILL WAITING FOR TRAVEL DATES Follow the family’s adoption journey on their blog at thetangledmoose.com
has been donated towards the cost of our adoption!
http://reecesrainbow.org/wp-content/uploads/Glory3.jpg338234Michellehttp://reecesrainbow.org/wp-content/uploads/10logo4x4-3.pngMichelle2015-05-15 16:22:412016-11-16 12:20:55GLORY for the Knapp family -- KY
Jaime and Chris married over 10 years ago after meeting each other at church. They started their family immediately, always knowing adoption would be apart of it. Right after their first anniversary, Chris and Jaime started the process to become Foster Parents and over the last 9 years have fostered over 30 children and have adopted 5 through Foster Care. In 2013 they were blessed once again by the birth of their youngest son, whom they adopted as an embryo. (He had been frozen for 8 years!)
The Richardson’s were greatly blessed to be matched with a 4 year old treasure for an interstate adoption through foster care in 2015. This little boy was very medically fragile and though he had a life limiting diagnosis, no one expected his passing to be imminent. Within weeks of being matched, their son became very ill. After several months of him being in and out of the hospital and the Richardson family living on and off in a Ronald McDonald house 7 hours from home, their son (in their hearts, as the adoption wasn’t yet finalized) passed away and went home to be with Jesus. Six months, to the day, after the passing of their son, the Richardson’s found out about twin girls in a China diagnosed with Down Syndrome, who needed a family. They immediately felt that these were their daughters and submitted a request to be matched with the girls.
A few weeks later, the Richardson’s learned of a little boy, Elihu, who also was diagnosed with Down syndrome, living in the same room of the same orphanage as the girls. The Richardson’s quickly decided to pursue adopting Elihu as well. The family lovingly refers to their waiting children as “the Triad” and they cannot wait to get them all home!
This large family knows first hand how much the love and security of a family can change the life of a child and they feel triply blessed to be adopting their princesses and prince from China.
Thank you for your financial and prayer support in bringing this family together.
http://reecesrainbow.org/wp-content/uploads/Richardson.jpg718800Michellehttp://reecesrainbow.org/wp-content/uploads/10logo4x4-3.pngMichelle2016-04-11 15:02:292016-11-16 12:48:35KAITLYN, KATRINA and ELIHU for the Richardson family -- NY
We were not pursuing adoption… at all. We were so, very happy with the life we already have! And we only just adopted our littlest last year!
But God began to stir our unexpecting hearts when a friend found her on a China Advocacy Site. As she researched Poppy’s diagnosis, she recognized the connection to our son’s. Slowly God showed us how little faith we were displaying… and that God could do this… even if she was in China! We prayerfully decided to take a step… and then another… and God just kept letting us through the doors!
MPS disorders occur when there is a missing enzyme that breaks down cellular waste. That waste gathers in all the systems in their bodies, and as it accumulates, it starts to impede their function. As the child gets older, the symptoms only get worse.
Sly Syndrome has an enzyme replacement in trial right now that we are hopeful Poppy Mae will be able to benefit from soon. In China, she would have no such chance, as the medicine, even once it is approved, will be very expensive. This enzyme replacement will not cure her, but it should help to slow down the progression of the disease on her little body.
Because of our 5 year old’s involvement in the clinical trial, we have gotten to know some of the best of the best doctors who treat this disease. They have seen Poppy Mae’s file, are open and available, and are very excited to meet our little girl, too!
Because we are kind of doing all of this backwards, we are compiling our dossier at the same time that we are completing our home study. We are trusting that God will provide every penny for her adoption quickly so that we can bring her home SOON!!!From bilateral club feet, tendon release, heart surgery, and scoliosis surgery, casting, and bracing, our little flower has had it rough in her short 3 years. But these are the kinds of things we expect with MPS. MPS VII, or Sly Syndrome, is extremely rare, even among the MPS disorders. We’ve been part of that world for about 5 years, since we adopted our son who has a different form of MPS.
http://reecesrainbow.org/wp-content/uploads/poppymae.jpg492735Michellehttp://reecesrainbow.org/wp-content/uploads/10logo4x4-3.pngMichelle2016-05-20 09:48:482016-11-16 12:16:28POPPY MAE for the Roman family -- IN
Nathan and Amber have been together exactly half their lives. After all these years, their family is nearly complete (for real this time…). They have five children, ages 12, 9, 9, 9, and 5—the last two through Reece’s Rainbow. Their oldest is a precious daughter and budding paleontologist. Next are boy/girl twins adopted domestically who each plan to have their name in lights some day! Their inquisitive little guy came home from China in 2014, and their little sunshine girl home from Ukraine in 2012. The youngest daughter also has Down syndrome and is/was the only one without a roommate…
With multiple special needs amongst their five, their house is busy and loud and crazy and happy. They THOUGHT they were done…. And then they saw her. The timing seemed crazy, so when God whispered, they tried to argue with Him! He got louder. In an instant, it was clear that this was His call. Accepting and obeying sent a rush of peace and a gush of excitement for their newest daughter! They cannot wait to have this little girl in their arms and watch her blossom in family life, becoming everything she was created to be.
Follow the family’s adoption journey on their blog at growingwests.blogspot.com
has been donated towards the cost of our adoption!
http://reecesrainbow.org/wp-content/uploads/Anna3.jpg428298Michellehttp://reecesrainbow.org/wp-content/uploads/10logo4x4-3.pngMichelle2016-03-31 17:43:432016-10-21 09:57:01ANNA MAE for the West family -- TN
Steve and Ginger Karrick have eight children soon to be nine. Five of their children are adopted from China. In 2009, they stared the process to adopt and eighteen months later brought home their first little one from China, Kimmie. Kimmie had unknown special needs, she has autism. It was quite the adjustment for her and the entire family. But God used this precious little one to change their hearts forever. Over the next seven years they brought home Libbie (2011), Opal (2012), and Mariella and Samuel last year. Once home several months with the two newest little ones they saw “Juliana” on Reece’s Rainbow and on an advocacy page stating she was going to be deemed unadoptable if no one came forward to adopt her. Their hearts broke for this previous little one. They began to pray for her. They have adopted several children with similar special needs, extreme developmental delays, being non-verbal and autism. They also feel extremely blessed to see each of their children blossom once home. The light in their eyes come on and begin to understand what love is. After much praying they realized that “Juliana” is their daughter. She is four years old and from Asia, she is also blessed with an extra chromosome. They are stepping out on faith and are excited to resume the journey once again to bring their daughter “Juliana” home.
http://reecesrainbow.org/wp-content/uploads/Juliana.png199156Michellehttp://reecesrainbow.org/wp-content/uploads/10logo4x4-3.pngMichelle2016-05-31 14:30:052016-10-12 17:13:43JULIANA for the Karrick family -- GA
Ric and Melissa officially began their adoption process in 2016 but it had been growing in their hearts for many years prior to that. They currently have three girls: 7 ½ year old twins and a 5 ½ year old. “Beau” (or Bobo) was to be hosted by family friends over Christmas and Melissa’s mom hinted that they should adopt him – not even knowing they had begun talking about adoption. God continued to layer this idea with things they read, people they talked with, Adoption Sunday at church… Melissa had been feeling prompted by God to adopt Bobo but it wasn’t what she and Ric had initially talked about. One night they sat and prayed together about adoption and Melissa again mentioned Bobo. Ric’s excitement was immediate and they wrote an email to the host mom. Melissa told him, “The way I’ve been feeling God call me to this, if we send this email I believe Bobo will be our son. Ric reached over her and hit send. As soon as they said yes to God, He immediately put a deep love for this child in their hearts. Over several days of talking and praying with their girls, one of them asked if they were going to adopt Bobo. When they were told yes, their daughter began jumping up and down saying, “Yes! I want Bobo! I want Bobo!” The girls have already grown in their love for their “big brother” and talk about and pray for him daily. Although this is not what they thought their adoption would look like, (is it ever?) Ric and Melissa are ecstatic and loving the journey God is leading them through. They are praying that God goes before them and prepares Bobo’s heart (and theirs) for the transition. They couldn’t be more thrilled and are excited to tell how God has fitted the pieces of this puzzle together so perfectly. Ric and Melissa ask for prayers for wisdom and patience.
has been donated towards the cost of our adoption!
http://reecesrainbow.org/wp-content/uploads/Beau-225x300.jpg300225Michellehttp://reecesrainbow.org/wp-content/uploads/10logo4x4-3.pngMichelle2016-05-19 17:42:392016-11-30 12:21:22BEAU for the Speakman family -- OH
We’re the Anderson family. Two years ago, we brought home two older boys with fairly significant special needs from China. Before we even brought the boys home, we knew we had one more child to bring home. We didn’t know who that child was, but we had no doubt, before even starting, that there were three more Andersons waiting somewhere!
The time has now come to join our family together! We’re traveling back to one of our favorite places, the massive continent of Asia, to bring home our daughter, known as Shari here on RR and Piper on Love Without Boundaries. She’s rocking those designer genes, and we’re so excited to round out our group with the blessing of Down Syndrome. Our theme seems to be threes. When this adoption is finished we’ll have three girls and three boys. Three American born, three China born. Three adopted, three home grown. Three teenagers, and three children just beginning the stages of elementary school.
We believe in patience. We believe in taking very little seriously. We believe in fun, in humor, in board games, museums, family time, horrible puns, and dad jokes. Most of all, we believe in doing the things that God has asked us to do, with a faith that promises, not that it will ever be easy, but that it will be right. To follow our journey, please check out our blog, and walk with us while we do just as the hymn that inspired our blog name suggests. “It may not be on the mountain height, or over the stormy sea. It may not be on the battle’s front my Lord will have need of me. But if by a still small voice He calls, to paths that I do not know, I will answer dear Lord, with my hand in Thine, I’ll go where You want me to go.”
http://reecesrainbow.org/wp-content/uploads/shari-2016.jpg495395Michellehttp://reecesrainbow.org/wp-content/uploads/10logo4x4-3.pngMichelle2016-09-07 11:32:212016-11-16 12:17:31SHARI for the Anderson family -- NM
Hi! We’re the Pattersons. We’ve been married for 22 years (Wow, time flies!) and currently have five children. Our two oldest are in college, our next two are in high school and our youngest is in fourth grade. Two years ago we adopted our youngest, Joseph (Igor on Reece’s Rainbow) from Ukraine. The past two years have been challenging but SO rewarding.
For over a year we have wanted to adopt again. When we saw Vienna’s picture on Reece’s Rainbow we were so excited! We had been praying about who our next child would be and hoping that we could adopt a little girl with Arthropryposis. Joseph was born with Arthropgryposis and we have become quite familiar with the ins and outs of the medical procedures and therapies that are necessary. So, when we inquired about Vienna and were accepted to pursue her adoption we were thrilled! Despite the unknowns, we are ready to plow through the paperwork to bring our little girl home as soon as possible!!
We appreciate your prayers and support so much as we begin this journey.
http://reecesrainbow.org/wp-content/uploads/Vienna1.jpg872585Michellehttp://reecesrainbow.org/wp-content/uploads/10logo4x4-3.pngMichelle2015-05-07 09:32:202016-07-15 11:01:12VIENNA for the Patterson family -- TX
Candy and Frederick adopted their daughter, Grace, almost three years ago from China. When Grace, who was born with Cerebral palsy, arrived home she was a three-year-old who was used to sitting slumped in her stroller for the majority of the day. The past few years they both realized how blessed they are to live in America. Here, in America, a child who was “Forgotten” in her country is given the chance to succeed. Graces amazes her family every day by what her team of teachers and therapists report her progress. Most recently she started to use her left hand (the palsy side of her body) to take a peg out of a board, and through feeding therapy is now able to chew small bites of food (no more puree)!
Joy has Down syndrome and is a 6-year-old girl living in a foster home. Her story is similar to Grace’s in that she was abandoned shortly after being born. The Woertman’s wish to bring her home and into their home. Their first venture into international adoption requried they refinance their house. This time, though, they are acting on faith that friends, family members, and people they have never met would want to partner with them to bring Joy “home”. An African proverb states that “It takes a village to raise a child.” They are asking for you to join our village to help bring Joy to their household and allow her to be given a chance to realize her full potential in life.
10/6/16—DOSSIER EN ROUTE (DTC)
has been donated towards the cost of our adoption!
http://reecesrainbow.org/wp-content/uploads/Joy.jpg491379Michellehttp://reecesrainbow.org/wp-content/uploads/10logo4x4-3.pngMichelle2016-06-17 17:43:522016-10-26 20:41:31JOY for the Woertman family -- NC
Hugh & Rachael Lynn have been married for 16 years and have been blessed with four soon to be five children. Three children were born into their family and they were blessed by adopting their daughter with cerebral palsy a year and a half ago from China.
The desire to adopt again has been very strong for their family and God showed them another daughter with cerebral palsy that needed a family. The Lynn family have Pre Approval to proceed with adopting Audrey.
Audrey is a ten year old little girl with cerebral palsy. Audrey has grown up in an orphanage seeing others around her being adopted and has waited too long for a family to call her own. Hugh and Rachael feel God leading them to go and bring her home. The Lynn’s are stepping out in faith that God will provide for this adoption.
The Lynn’s have a Facebook page that follows their journey of adoption called Anticipating Ava + Audrey.
http://reecesrainbow.org/wp-content/uploads/Lynn.jpg960878Michellehttp://reecesrainbow.org/wp-content/uploads/10logo4x4-3.pngMichelle2016-03-21 15:18:132016-10-27 12:21:42AUDREY for the Lynn family -- IN
The Tegtmeiers are not new to special needs adoption, although you may remember this family by another name. Grace (Knuth) adopted their two children, Sam and Tony, as a single mom. Not long after the completion of Tony’s adoption, God brought a godly husband and father into picture. Chris (dad) farms Nebraska corn and soybeans and works part time in their church coordinating young adult ministry and preaching. Grace works at the church as well as coordinator of discipleship. Together, Chris and Grace desire to live a life of ministry everyday, wherever they go.
One of the couple’s favorite ministries together is caring for children. They love parenting their own special treasures from Bulgaria as well as pouring into the lives of young people in their community. More specifically, God seems to have called them to a ministry of caring for children who are broken and vulnerable.
Although Chris and Grace have only been married for one year, and didn’t expect to be adopting together quite yet, they knew it was time to take a leap of faith when they saw that there was yet another older child listed for adoption from the orphanage their children grew up in. Although this place has improved considerably in the last few years, the little girl they will call their daughter lived through many years of unthinkable abuse and neglect. They feel well equipped to care for her needs and show her the love of a forever family.
http://reecesrainbow.org/wp-content/uploads/Belinda.jpg717478Michellehttp://reecesrainbow.org/wp-content/uploads/10logo4x4-3.pngMichelle2016-10-31 12:14:372016-10-31 15:06:28BELINDA for the Tegtmeier family -- NE
I’d like to tell a little story if I could so please bear with me. A month or so before Xavier went into the hospital Andrew and I had come to the conclusion that we were going to go back to China. It had been 2 years since the boys came home and everyone was healthy and calm. We had our schedules down, we weren’t scheduled for any surgeries, the kids were rocking in school. We were a family of 8.
It was time. And so we started the paperwork for a special someone who has been in my heart since I started advocating 4 years ago. And then Xavier went into the hospital.
And the world stopped turning. It never crossed my mind in that first week and even into the second week that we wouldn’t be leaving the hospital with him. He had pneumonia. RSV. That was it. Lots of kids get it. We would just get through this, go home, obsess over the medical bills and quietly panic every winter when the other kids got sick. And then it started getting weird. They started pulling in specialists from every department to try and figure out what was going on. Heart, kidneys, genetics, autoimmunity, GI, and on and on. And even when his kidneys failed and they put him on the ECMO machine, I lived in denial. He was coming home and worst case scenario was that we would have to do dialysis short term. My husband allowed me to live there because it kept me sane. And best case was that we now had every department on board and we would finally be able to figure out why he wasn’t growing, why he wasn’t thriving… Something I had been working to get since he came home! And frankly denial is a good place to live in when your head is telling you one thing but your heart won’t listen. Life without my guy just wasn’t an option. We had always known he wouldn’t have a long life like the other kids, but two years?? TWO YEARS?? No. Not happening! And so we fought. And fought. And God let us fight. We had hope. It was a daily roller coaster. Sometime hourly. And just when we had climbed the mountain and could see the other side (the lungs were clearing and they were going to slow down dialysis), we found the spot on his cheek. And then they realized that the spot on his hand had grown 10x larger within a day. And we fell back down the mountain never to find our footing again. We prayed, we cried. I made deals with God. So many deals. Anything to not lose my son. Anything to take him home with me. Please just don’t take him. Give me another 2 years with him. Another 6 months. Anything but now.
And everything was quiet. He was still.
We came to a point where we knew we had done everything we could. We had a meeting with all the doctors and they said the same. And so we made the decision to end life support. It was the hardest thing I will ever do. Ever. Even once the decision was made in my mind, it was getting the words out. Because once it’s said…
I kept wondering how I got here. We just came in for pneumonia. A cold. And now we were having to say goodbye? How could that be? But as painful as it was, I was at peace. I don’t know how that could be, but I was. I knew we weren’t alone. We felt the prayers, I felt my Grandma close by, my best friend, Kim, my MIL. I go through so many emotions every day. I cry, I laugh, I hide. I keep expecting to see him when I enter the kitchen, when I go into his room in the morning to wake up Ethan. And I miss him so much. Sometimes my heart aches because I miss him so much.
In those moments I have to remind myself that our lives aren’t over and his has just begun. And that is my one comfort. I WILL see him again. I know I will. And I know he is whole now. He is running and jumping and laughing and singing. And as someone pointed out to me, he is pointing down at me from heaven and telling people “That’s my mommy and she loves me so much!”
It’s crazy to think that all roads lead back to adoption. We took a beautiful risk when we adopted him and we have been forever blessed because of it. In fact, so many people have been blessed because of Xavier. The messages and letters I have received from people saying that they are going into nursing, physical therapy, missionary work, advocating, special needs teaching and so on because of Xavier has been incredible! We’ve seen it in our own children. My Maeve is set on becoming a special needs teacher because of her love for him. To think that our son was on this earth for 5 short years and he accomplished more than some do in their entire lives. He has changed lives for the better and all because of his smile, his innocence, his love of life, his will to live. And so I will continue to advocate for orphans in his name. And we will continue to adopt as God sees fit. We will continue to bring children home, whether into our family or by helping others, because that is what life is all about. Moving forward. Bringing families to children. James 1:27 “To look after orphans and widows in their distress.”
And so with that being said, yes, we do have an announcement. We are continuing our paperwork and bringing home two children. Yes, two. We had started the paperwork for one but when Xavier passed away we felt like we could now give this second one the attention and medical that was needed. A child that I wouldn’t have dared to bring home in my past life. And so we are bringing home two. We need prayers. We need prayers for calm, for peace, for certainty. The children are excited for their new siblings and I think this will really help with the healing process. Because of Xavier’s special needs, no child is now a “special need”. They are a child. And so whatever the future brings, it brings hope. It brings family. They will both have family and we are so excited!
http://reecesrainbow.org/wp-content/uploads/10logo4x4-3.png00Michellehttp://reecesrainbow.org/wp-content/uploads/10logo4x4-3.pngMichelle2015-10-22 13:40:132016-11-16 12:47:39MAX +1 for the Jones family -- TX
We are so lucky to have found this boy! Dave & Kelly have been together for over a decade. In 2010, we wed in Hawaii and two years later in 2012 we welcomed a beautiful daughter. We love to travel and stay active. The three of us are more than thrilled to bring this little guy home for many reasons. We also have plenty of love and support and our very well prepared to help him. Our daughter has the same syndrome and we are familiar with all of the specialists he will need to see. We enjoy spending free time with our family and friends. We cannot wait to bring him home.
10/17/16—DOSSIER en ROUTE
has been donated towards the cost of our adoption!
http://reecesrainbow.org/wp-content/uploads/10logo4x4-3.png00Michellehttp://reecesrainbow.org/wp-content/uploads/10logo4x4-3.pngMichelle2016-08-16 12:13:312016-10-17 16:13:08RANDALL for the Siwula family -- WA
We are the Gehrung Family, Nancy, Brian, Collin (22), Shannon (20) and Ava (10). We have been wonderfully blessed by Ava since we brought her home 5 years ago. We are currently in the process of adopting another beautiful little girl from Asia.
Our story is a bit long in detail because so much has happened in these last 5 years. These details are so important to our story and all of these details have lead us to our newest daughter waiting for us, Aliza Rose. Here’s our story…
Brian and I met about 12 years ago. I was a divorced, single mom working full time as a kitchen designer, raising two kids, two dogs and a guinea pig. Collin was 10 and Shannon was 8. Brian was (and still is) a full time sales and service clerk at the Menomonee Falls Post Office. Once we met, we never looked back. We dated for 4 years and were married on November 8, 2008 with Collin and Shannon by our sides.
Brian, Collin, Shannon and I are all “little people”. We each have Achondroplasia Dwarfism, the most common type of genetic dwarfism, just like some of those on the TLC shows “Little People, Big World” and “The Little Couple”. I am the youngest of 3 children in my family, plus I am the only girl and the only one in my family with dwarfism. Brian is the youngest of 5 kids and he is also the only one in his family with dwarfism. We all belong to the group “Little People of America” (LPA) a social/support group for Little People.
A few years after we were married, Brian and I began to think about adding to our family, but since I have several chronic yet stable neurological issues related to my dwarfism, another pregnancy could be very difficult for me, so we began looking into adoption. But the idea of adoption tugged at our hearts for a few other reasons too. With our involvement in LPA, we had learned there were many dwarf children around the world in need of families and in our hearts, we knew we wanted to adopt a child with dwarfism. Plus, we had learned that in some countries around the world, children and adults with dwarfism are ostracized and treated as outcasts. This sad fact weighed heavy on our hearts. How could we not reach out to one of these dwarf children? Since all four of us grew up as little people in the US where we were accepted and given many opportunities, we simply felt called to bring one of these children home and to make them a part of our family, a family who truly understands the many physical, emotional and social struggles little people can encounter during their lives.
Then one day in June of 2010, we learned of a 5 year old little girl with Achondroplasia living in China, through LPA’s adoption group. After mountains of paperwork, many appointments and a whole lot of prayers, we met our daughter Ava Rose, our first little LOVE from China, in May of 2011.
Soon after bringing her home, Ava received a devastating medical diagnosis. Her doctor had ordered a CT scan of her brain, because we and he suspected Ava might have Hydrocephalus (water on the brain), which can be common in those who have Achondroplasia Dwarfism. Before we even arrived home from having the test completed, the doctor’s office called. As I answered the phone, my stomach began to ache. I had a gut feeling that they were not calling so soon with good news. I began to cry as I heard the nurse tell me… “Ava doesn’t have Hydrocephalus, instead, the CT revealed that she’d had a massive stroke either in utero or at birth. It affected 75% of the left side of her brain, it affected her speech, left her with right sided weakness and cerebral palsy, she will probably have life long cognitive and physical challenges and delays and there is a good chance that she could have seizures.” We were stunned… but we pulled it together and began to learn about these new diagnoses and set out to get her the best medical care and therapies we could find. Ava was at high risk for SUDEP, Sudden Unexplained Death due to Epilepsy and that was terrifying to us. Since no medication could control Ava’s seizures and since they were focused in one area of her brain, a 2 stage neurological surgery became our only option. The first surgery in November 2014 itself went smoothly, unfortunately, Ava’s recovery was anything but smooth. Amazingly though, eight days after surgery, Ava was strong enough to be released to go home. Unfortunately, two days later, we brought her to the ER and she was admitted for an infection. She finally began to seem like her old self in April of 2015, but in May, we began to see new and increasing seizure activity. In June, her neuro team confirmed the need to plan for another surgery to stop her seizures all while dealing with a blood clotting disorder. Thankfully, with a lot of teamwork, planning, testing and an amazing little test called a “MEG Scan”, Ava’s second surgery was set. This time, surgery and recovery went much smoother and was successful. Ava has only had a few seizures in the last year and a half. Making the decision for Ava to undergo these two complex brain surgeries were two of the hardest decisions we have had to make. But we are so happy we choose these surgeries. Today, approximately 18 months since her last surgery, Ava is growing and thriving both cognitively and physically. She still has and will probably always have many cognitive and physical challenges, but at least for now, she is seizure free.
In the summer of 2015, a happy, healthy Ava started asking for a little brother or sister. That August, we were blessed to be able to visit with several of Ava’s former caregivers. During that visit, we learned that a sweet, almost 2 year old little girl with Achondroplasia had just arrived at the same institute that Ava was in. After many thoughts and prayers, we knew she was meant to be ours and we began the process of bringing home our 2nd little love from China. We as a family of 5 have experienced a few bumps (that were out of our control and that temporarily side-tracked our momentum) along our adoption process, but we are now working as quickly as possible to bring her home and to fundraise too. Ava just can’t wait for her little sister to come home and neither can we. Thank you for reading our story and thank you for your support, positive thoughts and prayers!
http://reecesrainbow.org/wp-content/uploads/Gehrung.jpg628613Michellehttp://reecesrainbow.org/wp-content/uploads/10logo4x4-3.pngMichelle2016-06-26 19:28:502016-11-16 12:22:00ALIZA ROSE for the Gehrung family -- WI
Jade & Annie Reid are high school sweet hearts! The first night they met, Annie was so nervous she sat on an exercise bike to avoid sitting by Jade on the couch! After they started dating, Annie knew Jade would be her future husband, and now they have officially been a couple for nearly 20 years!
In March of 2004, Jade & Annie were married in their home town where it all began, and started a life together there. In December of 2005 they welcomed their first daughter into the world. She had wild hair, and a big personality to match! Aubrie Grace was born & welcomed into the world as the first grand child on both sides of the family!
Shortly after Aubrie’s birth Jade & Annie took on the unimaginable task of building a new home, completely on their own! Jade worked hard with Annie’s father Stuart and they built a house on a beautiful pasture in 18 months time!
In the same year, just shy of Aubrie’s first birthday, Jade & Annie announced they were expecting their second child, a boy named Everett Mason. He arrived just before the house was completed and life was truly perfection in complete chaos. His sister Aubrie adored him, and loved being a big sister. Shortly after his birth the Reid’s moved into their new home!
The Reid’s thought life was complete until in May of 2010, they had the biggest surprise that baby #3 was on the way! They fully intended their 3rd child to be a surprise at birth! And a surprise she was indeed! The Reid’s found out in October of 2010 that their daughter would be rocking designer genes (Down syndrome) and also had a balanced AV Canal that would require open heart surgery after her birth.
In February 2011, Ollie Faith entered the world, stole hearts, and transformed minds. Not a day has been the same since she entered the Reid’s lives and she has monumentally impacted every person in their family!
In typical Ollie fashion, she sailed through open heart surgery, and has been a busy, joyful little girl in everything she does!!!
After Ollie, the Reid’s again thought their family was complete, but God works in the best ways! Adoption came into their prayers! In July of 2016, their next daughter was found! As soon as Annie saw her face & a video of her, she knew exactly where they would go to bring their little girl home!
Jade & Annie are over the moon excited!! Big sister, Aubrie, cried when she found out about the adoption & said she’s been praying for a baby sister for so long! And big brother, Everett, said he is willing to sit by his sister Aubrie in the back seat to allow room in the car for baby sister! Ha! And Ollie, well we are sure she will be excited when she figures out what is happening, and that she has a baby sister in her room!!!!
We can’t wait to get our daughter home & are so excited about the journey to get there!!!!
http://reecesrainbow.org/wp-content/uploads/Susie-2.jpg947680Michellehttp://reecesrainbow.org/wp-content/uploads/10logo4x4-3.pngMichelle2016-08-05 17:44:422016-12-01 15:42:23SUSIE for the Reid family -- IL
Mark and Callie Van Wagenen have been married for 8 years and have been longing to start their family. They both come from large families and have yearned to have a family of their own. After struggling through infertility they decided to open their hearts to adoption.
They believe that God has a plan for them and have been seeking His guidance through their journey. After receiving strong promptings to start looking international to build their family, they found Ryan and knew that he would be their son.
They see miracles every day as they work to bring him home. Thank you for being a part of that miracle.
10/27/16—OFFICIAL MATCH RECVD, HOPE TO TRAVEL IN JANUARY
http://reecesrainbow.org/wp-content/uploads/Us.jpg800800Michellehttp://reecesrainbow.org/wp-content/uploads/10logo4x4-3.pngMichelle2016-04-15 10:21:292016-10-27 16:04:29RYAN for the Van Wagenen family -- UT
Ben and Brandi Cantrell have always known that they would adopt. After each of their biological children they talked about adopting. After their fourth biological child, they adopted domestically. When he was just a few months old, Brandi felt like they were supposed to adopt again. This time, a child with special needs. Ben wasn’t on board just yet to adopt a child who has down syndrome. Brandi saw a little girl on a waiting child page and felt like that she was suppose to find out about this little girl. Brandi showed Ben. Shortly after, the kids started playing basketball for the season. There were two kids playing and cheering. Ben had never been around a child who had down syndrome. Brandi saw him watching the two kids closely. Shortly after, Ben told Brandi, that he thought they were suppose to adopt the little girl that Brandi saw on the waiting child page, that has down syndrome. Ben and Brandi and their five children are so excited to bring home Sarah Jane, later this year. Any donations, are greatly appreciated!
http://reecesrainbow.org/wp-content/uploads/Sarah-Jane.jpg960639Michellehttp://reecesrainbow.org/wp-content/uploads/10logo4x4-3.pngMichelle2016-05-06 10:11:232016-11-07 14:00:21SARAH JANE for the Cantrell family -- AL
Mark & Virginia Miner met at church as teenagers, fell in love, and married when Mark graduated from college. God has given us three (soon to be four, then five) children: Ivan (4 yrs) loves music, drawing, stories, and is excited for another brother or two; Gibbs (2 yrs) loves to help out with dishes, yard work, and anything physically demanding or crazy; Ana (14 yrs) came home to us from Bulgaria in 2015, and her smile and giggle have been a delight to us all. We are looking forward to our new baby boy (April 2016), and excited to bring “Owen” home to join all the jolly brothers. We are thankful for our local church family and for all those people of God who are a blessing to orphans.
http://reecesrainbow.org/wp-content/uploads/Owen_2015-202x300.jpg300202Michellehttp://reecesrainbow.org/wp-content/uploads/10logo4x4-3.pngMichelle2016-03-10 15:21:242016-12-05 21:43:35OWEN for the Miner family -- AZ