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It was mid-February of 2022 and I received an email from an adoption agency contact that I had worked with several years ago. She remembered that I was Bulgarian and reached out because their agency had several older children needing families. Would I consider adoption?

I had not considered adoption. My husband and I have six wonderful children and four of them are already adults who are independent, married and successful. The last two are growing into amazing young men – we have a senior in high school and our little guy is in sixth grade. We are grandparents now … why would we adopt!

Out of curiosity I clicked on the link in the email and the first picture that popped up was the picture of I***. It was one of those moments that you are not expecting – a kaboom moment – when you know everything in your life just changed.  I was immediately drawn to her – she even looked like our daughters – and when I read her profile there was no other option for me except to ask my husband if he would consider adoption. We talked that evening and he reviewed her profile and picture. Within 24 hours we had contacted the two adoption agencies necessary to begin our adoption journey.

As quickly as we could we gathered all the information required and our paperwork was submitted and then we learned there was “more than one” family who had applied. How could that happen? Clearly – she was our child! For six anxious weeks we waited for news. During that time, we talked to our children and our extended family, completed our home study and our immigration paperwork – all with the faith and hope that we were the right family and that we would be chosen for her. Our home study was not child-specific, and our international adoption agency asked us to keep an open mind and discuss whether we would consider a different child if this child was no longer available. That was really tough. We looked at other profiles and waiting children and alternately wanted to adopt them all and none of them because our hearts were already drawn to I***. Then word finally arrived that we had been matched! What a blessing, and a joy that was – but it was also terrifying! This was now really, truly happening – we have a 14-year old daughter.

I have a new appreciation for all the work and effort adoptive parents go through to bring a child into their family. With the help of many people – two agencies – one for our home study and one for the international adoption – social workers, financial consultants, family and friends, and even co-workers and notaries – we are finalizing our dossier and waiting for news of when we can travel to meet our new daughter.

Since we were not anticipating the expense of either adoption or a seventh child – we are asking for the assistance of grants to bring her home. We are fully invested in this beautiful young lady and although it won’t be easy, it will be worth it! We know that with the love and support of our entire family she will continue to grow and develop. She will have the ability to fulfill all her goals and dreams, whatever they may be. In her video she admits that this will be hard for her – but it’s not turning her life upside-down, but that it is a new beginning. We are excited to be part of her story and her future. Thank you in advance for your consideration and support. It means a lot to all of us!

6/29/2022 — AWAITING FIRST TRIP

$0.00 has been donated towards the cost of our adoption!

Make the most of your gift, consider sending a check! Online donations to children with committed families incur a 3% PayPal transaction fee.

Ryan and Jamie Noll have been married for nearly 20 years! They grew up in the same neighborhood, and dated for three years before a year-long engagement; he proposed on the infamous covered bridge in Frankenmuth, Michigan. They home school their five daughters and one son – Jadyn (16), Evalynn (14), Raieyn (11), Loushyn (9), Gwendelyn (5), and Gaebrielle (3). Ryan is the field supervisor for a pump company, and Jamie coaches roller skating. The family all pitches in with their small hobby “farm” of chickens, ducks, turkeys, peacocks, rabbits, cats, dogs, and horses, as well as a couple guinea pigs and lizards, and some turtles and fish.

The pregnancy of their sixth child was used to radically change the family’s life. After the baby cried and took her first breath, proving the expectations of most wrong, the family continued to be challenged. During one of the baby’s many hospitalizations, Jamie learned that children like her new daughter were sometimes abandoned in the local hospital due to complex medical needs. She knew then that special needs adoption would be a part of her family’s future; Ryan was not so sure.

Months after that particular hospitalization, a seven-week critical care stay for Gaebrielle, when the special needs adoption seed was planted for the Noll family, an orphan was placed on Jamie’s heart through one of her online support groups for moms of children with arthrogryposis. Since Ryan still was not ready, he agreed to pray for the child with Jamie. She appeared to age out of eligibility, which caused Jamie to grieve heavily. The grieving was used to connect her with people in the Reece’s Rainbow community, where she discovered another family who was ready to adopt the child who had appeared to age out. Then, another child was placed on her heart. Ryan still was not ready so they prayed.

In December 2021, Ryan finally said they could take the next step toward a child in India. Jamie was delighted, again, at God’s provision, and started the process immediately. Because the Noll’s have a “large” family, their agency suggested they wait until another family with similar familial circumstances get to the next step before the Noll’s officially started. Four weeks later, they were given the go ahead. They wasted no time during those four weeks, having already begun the paperwork for their home study, which is nearing completion. They also submitted the first set of documents for their international agency, as well the first fee to accompany it. They are currently working toward CARA registration.

The entire Noll family has been involved in the adoption, as well as their loved ones and community — fundraisers, donations, notarizations, flexibility in appointments, and PRAYERS. They are looking forward to bringing home a new daughter who will make their only son the official middle child.

3/31/2022 — HOMESTUDY in PROCESS

$465.60 has been donated towards the cost of our adoption!

Make the most of your gift, consider sending a check! Online donations to children with committed families incur a 3% PayPal transaction fee.

Megan and Jacob Zars have been together for ten years and have two children, Otto (5yo) and Caspian (4yo). They are currently waiting to bring home a little girl from India, age 1, with Down syndrome. The Zars family has been in the process to adopt since 2019, originally pursuing a China adoption but switching to India in 2021. They have talked about adding a “baby sister” to the family for a long time and the ball officially got rolling after they experienced a miscarriage of their third son, in early 2019.

For years the Zars family knew that Down syndrome adoption was a possibility and as they looked into international vs. domestic adoption, the choice came more clear. Learning of the number of children with Down syndrome left in orphanages all over the world, they felt reassured that that was the right direction for their family. “We’ve seen her face and heard her giggle. We just can’t believe that she will be part of our family! Our boys think she is the cutest and we couldn’t agree more!” shared Megan.

The Zars family enjoys exploring nature, growing a backyard garden, doing art together, and so much more. They love to spend time with their extended family and take trips together. Family is very important to the Zars family and they are grateful to have their support as they pursue adoption!

This process has been a long one but they wouldn’t have it any other way as it has led them to their sweet daughter! Thank you for supporting our family along the way.

2/16/2022 — DOSSIER EN ROUTE

$14,371.55 has been donated towards the cost of our adoption!

Make the most of your gift, consider sending a check! Online donations to children with committed families incur a 3% PayPal transaction fee.

Charsie and Micheal have been married 8 years and together for over 11. They have dedicated their life to serving others. Micheal works child welfare for the State of Michigan and Charsie is a Family Nurse Practitioner currently working in Hospice. They have always been open to the idea of a family through adoption and have answered the calling to become mom and dad.

A couple years ago Charsie came across Reece’s Rainbow on Facebook and identified so many children she could pray for. One day, a child “spoke” to her heart, and she began praying this child would receive a family. Over time, she felt a pull to this child and decided to just causally mention this to Micheal. Of course, the response was “let’s pray about it” and go from there. Throughout this time, they both prayed and left it at that. After nine months, God spoke to them, knowing this was his plan, they took a step-in obedience and started the adoption process.

Charsie and Micheal are committed to welcoming a child into their family with love and understanding. We don’t know all the how’s and why’s but know God has been faithful. If he has called us to be parents, he will equip us for the work. Charsie and Micheal are aware of the many miracles that will occur to bring home their child and are thankful for your prayers and financial support.

5/16/2022 — USCIS APPROVED

$1,357.78 has been donated towards the cost of our adoption!

Make the most of your gift, consider sending a check! Online donations to children with committed families incur a 3% PayPal transaction fee.

The Ampe family is returning to Eastern Europe to adopt two more children. They will have a “Baker’s Dozen”! Joe and Tiffany currently have eleven children ages 2-20. Two of their children are amazing preschoolers that they adopted from Ukraine, who just happen to have Down Syndrome.

The Ampe family lives on a homestead in Michigan with plenty of animals and children. They learned of Reece’s Rainbow through the Down Syndrome community that their biological niece was a part of. While she is a treasured member of the extended family, they discovered that disabled children in other countries aren’t as fortunate. In 2018 Joe and Tiffany traveled to Ukraine expecting to adopt a sweet baby boy. Instead, they returned home with two (and gave birth to a biological baby the next day). This time, they are setting out to adopt two children. The entire family is ecstatic, hoping to be adding a five year old girl and eight year old boy. This time neither child has Down Syndrome, but instead have other significant health issues and disabilities, including hydrocephalus.

The Ampe family knows the miracles that are required to travel across the world to bring home a child. They have experienced the community that is necessary to support families financially, emotionally, and physically. There’s no way to do it alone and they are extremely grateful for those that walk beside them. Thank you for your generous prayers and financial support.

12/7/2021 — HOMESTUDY in PROCESS

$708.55 has been donated towards the cost of our adoption!

Make the most of your gift, consider sending a check! Online donations to children with committed families incur a 3% PayPal transaction fee.

Susan knew that one day she would build her family through adoption after watching a 20/20 episode on an orphanage in Romania back when was she was 11 years old. Susan grew up with a sister that is 13 years older than her and always longed to have a large family. Grant was raised in a larger family and knew that he wanted a large family of his own. Susan shared her passion for adoption when she first started dating Grant. When Grant and Susan got married they came into the relationship with two biological children each making them a blended family.

They have now been through the international adoption process twice. Their first adoption was their son Soo Min who was adopted from South Korea in 2008 when he was 3 ½ years old. Soo Min has a form of primordial dwarfism, failure to thrive, and PDA. He is doing amazingly well, thriving, and bringing our family so much joy. Grant and Susan started their last adoption in 2014 with hopes to bring home their daughter, Eden, from Ghana. They traveled there, had her in their care for two weeks and even passed court. What they did not know was that everything was falsified information and she was never legally adoptable. To say they were all heartbroken was an understatement. One month after losing Eden, Susan became pregnant with their son Hudson. It is amazing the way God works.

This decision to adopt again wasn’t taken lightly. The decision this time around had many things to consider and time needing to heal from the failed adoption in 2015. Knowing and understanding the permanence of adoption is why the last time was so painful: Eden is still somewhat part of the family, and the reason the Lee children always say there’s eight children in the family. The Lee family started to pray about adoption again and researched programs that have a long history of success. This is what led them to Asia this time. Susan would lay in bed for hours scrolling through Reese’s rainbow looking at children waiting to be adopted. When Susan saw Alisa, she knew she was her daughter. She went back and forth between many kids and something was calling the Lee family to Alisa. They have a current Home-Study, have submitted their I-800A, and are compiling their dossier paperwork.

9/28/2020 — AWAITING LOA

$1,056.60 has been donated towards the cost of our adoption!

Make the most of your gift, consider sending a check! Online donations to children with committed families incur a 3% PayPal transaction fee.

We are Galen & Yalonda Horst. We have been married 21 blessed years and God has touched our hearts and lives with 7 children; 4 biological children and 3 through the miracle of adoption. Our first 2 adoptions were from Guatemala and the last one was from China.

Adoption has touched our hearts and lives in a way that has changed us tremendously. We never dreamed, when we did our first 2 adoptions from Guatemala, that God would lead us to adopt a child from China who has Down Syndrome, but it has been another beautiful experience!

The transformation that Kyla has made in the past 2 years is nothing short of amazing! It was beautiful to see her personality unfold and come alive after coming to us as an unresponsive, shutdown, infant-like 2 year old. Now 2 years later she is hardly recognizable as the same child! She is so full of love, mischief, and humor!

So when another sweet little girl with Down Syndrome jumped off an advocacy page at us, we prayed fervently for an answer as to whether or not this was truly God calling us again. After much prayer, we felt God was telling us to step forward. So… we’re on our way to Asia again!

Our prayer for Kristi: “I pray that God would hold you in His arms until I can hold you in mine own!”

10/13/2021 — AWAITING TRAVEL APPROVAL SINCE 2020

$2,804.72 has been donated towards the cost of our adoption!

Make the most of your gift, consider sending a check! Online donations to children with committed families incur a 3% PayPal transaction fee.

Kathy will be adding another aging out child to her family! She returned home in May of 2018 with an almost 16-year-old with Down syndrome from Armenia. She is now working to bring home another daughter with DS from East Asia. This precious one has been on the hearts and minds of a lot of people who love her and have prayed for her. She was hosted in the US in the summer of 2016 by a family who hoped to adopt her but were unfortunately denied due to rules changing in the country. Kathy is grateful for the knowledge, experience, and love the family provided to her while she was here, and continue to provide.

Kathy’s first hands-on experience with international adoption was when her daughter and granddaughter, also with DS, returned home in December 2015 from Armenia. Her daughter is also in the process of adding another little one with DS to the family! While following her daughter’s first adoption and the years since, Kathy has helped as many families as she could, financially and prayerfully. She has also advocated for many children in need of families. Reading story after story about the life altering effects of adoption – for the child and parents – has been an inspiration to her.

After reading about the conditions children who have aged out face, and knowing those children would never know the love of a family, she knew she needed to do more. For the last few months Kathy has been contemplating and praying on what more she could do to help these children. So she is excited to announce that she is once again crossing the ocean to adopt again before this girl ages out and loses the chance to live happily ever after knowing the love and joy of having a family!

Any prayers and support, financially or emotionally, are greatly appreciated during her adoption process!

10/13/2021 — LOA RECEIVED in MAY 2020; AWAITING TRAVEL

 

$19,132.21 has been donated towards the cost of our adoption!

Make the most of your gift, consider sending a check! Online donations to children with committed families incur a 3% PayPal transaction fee.

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Follow the family’s adoption journey on their blog at  openhandsacres.blogspot.com

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Ukraine

Follow the family’s adoption journey on their blog at countitalljs.blogspot.com

2015

2015

Russia

 Follow the adoption journey of the  Plummer family on their blog at  www.TwoLivesOneJourney.blogspot.com