Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Hague Compliance Training COMPLETE!!!

WHEW!!! I am thrilled to post that we have completed the TEN HOUR online course that is required by families adopting from Hague Compliant Countries. (For info on what the Hague Training is...click here!) While it was an incredibly long training and at times challenging to push through...it was FULL of very helpful and informative information.

Mark and I knew it would be difficult for us to actually make time in our schedule for 10 hours of online training.  So...we partnered with another family in the process of adopting from China.  Our very dear friends Frank & Tonya Bohlinger graciously invited our family to spend the weekend with them to do the training together!! Our kids were amazing as they played and did lots of swimming while us four parents diligently went through the training!! It was very helpful to have another family to do this with!! Frank and Tonya have a blog as well!! If you're interested in following their journey...you can check out their blog here! (Thanks Frank & Tonya!! We had a BLAST!!)

We still have a little more reading to complete and then we'll be able to go through with our third home study! We are looking forward to it!!

So...just wanted to keep you guys posted on how the fund raising is going.  First of all...let me just say...God NEVER ceases to amaze me!! He always proves Himself faithful and will go far above and beyond anything we could ever imagine!!

Since I've started doing the $50 Family Photos as a fund raiser...it has been a HUGE blessing of provision. (In the last three weeks God has provided around $600 just through taking family pictures!! Praise God!)  I have LOVED connecting with some precious families to do their family pictures and am FLOORED that I am scheduled to do family photos through the 3rd week of AUGUST!! YES...AUGUST!! WOW!! God is SO AMAZING!! I currently have around 25 families scheduled to do pics with!! I am having a blast.  A couple of families I've done have children they have adopted. Here are a couple of my favorite pix:

These precious kiddos are adopted from Guatemala! LOVE them!!! 

This adorable little fellow is from India!! He was a BLAST to capture!! FULL OF LIFE!

These are just a couple of samples of what I have had the privilege to do over these last few weeks!! God is providing for our adoption expenses in just a wonderful way! Thank you to all the families who have connected with us to do pictures! We feel honored and blessed to capture special moments for you!! Thank YOU for helping us raise funds to go and get our little fellow in China!! We can't WAIT to take our first pictures of him!!

Thats it for now! We'll keep you all posted as things change and as we get more news!! Thank you all for continued prayers as we move forward on this amazing journey!! Love and appreciate you all!!
Mark & Buffi

Saturday, May 5, 2012

A Quick Update!!

Well....I have some GREAT news to share about our Yard Sale fundraiser that we had to help raise funds for our adoption costs!! God is SO FAITHFUL and NEVER ceases to amaze me.  We had so many people donate time and "stuff" for us to sell in our yard sale...and we had SO MANY FRIENDS come by and support us at our yard sale!!! It was SUCH a blessing to us and if you're reading this...THANK YOU so much!!

We were able to raise $1000 - yep...you heard that right - ONE THOUSAND DOLLARS at our yard sale last weekend.  That is amazing!! We have never made that much at a yard sale before.  But God is SO FAITHFUL and owns it all!! He brought in the people and provision and we are so grateful!! We sold about $930 worth of stuff and Sophie and Sadie made about $77 selling drinks and bracelets!! WAY TO GO GIRLS!!! Here are a few pics from the day!!

(Here are the girls working hard!!)

(Silas decided to jump in the picture here!!)

(Our Adoption Fundraiser poster helped people that were shopping know what all the proceeds were going to go toward!! It was a great way to communicate!!)

(This is just a small sample at the end of the day of what things looked like.  We had SO MUCH STUFF!)
 (Thanks again to EVERYONE who helped us!! It would not have been as much of a success without all of our friends and family. Thank you so much!!)

WELL....Mark and I are going to have to take a Friday night and a full Saturday and possibly a Sunday to get our classes completed for the home study.  There is a TON of material that needs to be covered and our nights are so full there is no way that we can get it completed.  So we've decided we're going to pick a weekend to get all of our educational requirements completed.  Once we do...we can schedule our next home study! Hopefully we can get that going very soon!!

We are thrilled to know about the 8 new orphanages and children's homes that our adoption agency has connected with.  They said there are about 3000 children that will be available for adoption.  We just KNOW our son will be from one of these places.  We are thrilled about this.  If you would like to read about what our agency is doing in these areas...check out this link: Lifeline in China

Thats it for now!! Once we move forward some more...we will post the info!! We LOVE to share our journey with our family and friends!! If you have any questions...let us know!! Blessings!!
Mark & Buffi