Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Praying to finish the race . . . strong and soon!

Hi Everyone!First we want to thank you all for your prayers and support in the past 6 months through this wonderful but crazy journey we have been on. God was faithful in providing just what we needed to do everything that needed to be done to get Kristina to the United States, but we still have to finish paying for her adoption expenses. We were blessed by a Christian friend who was willing to wait for his payments and the payments to his staff of which he covered in order to bring Kristina to safety. Now, since we have taken a month to settle in as a family, we need to focus on paying these expenses as quickly as possible. It is very hard to fund raise after bringing home your adopted child, but I am praying people will still understand that we need to continue with our efforts to raise funds. Also, if you would join us in prayer, that the Lord will continue to show us His plan for these expenses being covered, either by donations or work, we are ready to do whatever we can.
We thought our total was going to be $3500.00 left to raise, and hoped to have a yard sale and sell our hot tub to cover it. Today we found out that the form for the reimbursement grant we were told we qualified for through UPS, and took time to submit for an additional $3500.00 was only for supervisors, not employees. So, now we need to raise $7000.00 to complete this adoption. We believe our God is big and can move mountains and will continue to show us how to finish this strong and give Him all the glory. So we are again humbling ourselves and letting everyone know the need. Our hot tub is now being reduced to $3000, so if you know anyone who might want one, please send them our way. Please share all our information with anyone you wish.
So . . . to start with, we are collecting as many items as we can for a yard sale. I am not sure of the date yet, but I believe it will be early September. We made $2000 on our other yard sale, so now we will see what we can do for this one in Carmel. I have another idea that came to mind, but need to run it by my friend. If you have any Godly inspirations, please don't hesitate to let us know.
PS: Just a side note, Kristina is in need of immediate oral surgery for infections and tooth issues from years of neglect. She goes in on Thursday for her first one, removing 5 teeth. Please keep her in your prayers about this for the next month or so. It will be a long process and it can't wait. Thanks.

It has been one week . . .

Wednesday, May 26, 2010 at 4:56am (posted on facebook)
Wow, it has been a week, and sometimes it feels like we just arrived, and other times I can't wait to get out of here. We have had so many experiences that you can't fully put into words. We have been told we have no water for the next two days, and yet, the water still runs? Not sure what is up. Really want my home shower right now. Jon took photo's of the "squatty potties" and he has used them, I have not! Avoided in any way possible. ;0) We have eaten the same food for a week now. We are running out of things to give kids at the orphanage. We were invited to a school down the road from the orphanage, a dance school, for a performance last night at 5:00. We took some video and photo's. It was really special. We were taken up to the front row to sit, which made us feel funny, since all their parents were there to watch them. After it was over, I had a woman come up and ask me where I was from. She was very pleasant. I told her Maine, and she said she had visited Florida. Her English was pretty good. She was very welcoming, which we don't experience often, so it is nice. After this beautiful dance concert, we took Kristina and four friends back to hotel restaurant to have dinner together. That was an experience! We had fun and they finished their ice cream and headed back at 9:15. Right now Jon is at the open market with friends, trying to find a special cooking pot we want to take home with us. The pollen is terrible here and it is giving me a run for my money. Claritin D is not doing the trick, so I am staying in a little extra today. We have not had any luck changing our tickets to come home early, so looks like June 5. ;0( Will admit very upset and disappointed for a few hours, but will make the best of it. Just frustrated that airlines are so willing to take advantage of people, when they clearly have room in the same class seats we booked before, but want to say it is a higher class and therefore it will be $2000 more each ticket above what we already paid. Frustrating! We will use this time to do what we can to bless others and teach Kristina English. Please keep us in your prayers. Court day is Friday at 1:00. This can be intense questioning, so really want the Lord with us and working and answering through us. We pray for His will to be done, so if for any reason He didn't bring us here to bring Kristina home . . . we pray that is clear as well. I don't believe at this time or see other options for her life, but only God knows all this. Please keep praying her papers don't take months after we leave, but are processed in God's speed. ;0)

Love you all! Linda and Jon

DAY 3 . . . Dedicated to Liz!

Friday, May 21, 2010 at 5:01pm (posted on facebook)
Well, we could not have begun to guess what God had in store for us today. We got to the orphanage at 11:45, went into the "special room" and Kristina was not there. We talked a few minutes, and then in the door comes Kristina, with a woman. The moment I looked up, I instantly knew who it was, it was her biological mother. I couldn't believe it. Kristina could not wait to introduce us. There was not facilitator or translator present, so it was very difficult to communicate. We called our facilitator who was at court, and she came running over. This visit was not scheduled in any way and would not have happened if others had known. Jon and I had prayed for information and wished we could have some contact. Kristina and her mom talked and hugged and cried together. Kristina gave her some photos and we exchanged addresses. Her mom is ill, and is not able to care for Kristina. It gave her such peace to meet us and to see our family photos. She gave us her blessing and we felt Gods presence the entire time. Both Jon and I were at complete peace with this meeting and everyone around us was totally FREAKING OUT!!!! As most of you know, we have been being prepared for this over the years, so it was all OK, and a complete blessing to us and Kristina and her birth mother. PRAISE GOD! So, even though that can't begin to explain our day, we also got to spend time giving gifts to the orphans today. Beautiful children, beautiful spirits. Longing eyes, needing lots of hugs. We will be coming back, as we found out today that papers for her will not be quick enough for one trip. It is OK. We hope our church and friends will rally around these kids and help us bring back more clothing and items to bless them. They are in real need! Your small gifts are like a million dollars to them. A simple glow bracelet, was in huge demand and the excitement was overwhelming. Got to go to bed. We head to Kirovograd in the AM to purchase shoes for as many as we can.

God bless and thanks for all the prayers.
Love, Jon and Linda