Monday, March 24, 2014

thank you

My mother instilled in me that I should write a thank you note soon after receiving a gift.  We've just started this adoption journey and already so many of you have helped us.  Because of that, because I'm praying for more help in the future, and because I need to save our money for the adoption expenses, I'm not going to spend a small fortune on a cute thank you card and postage now.  Expect to see one in your mailbox once we bring our daughter home.

So for now, please accept our sincere appreciation.  Thank you to those of you who have promoted our garage sale to your church family, friends, and neighbors.  Thank you to those who have offered to help us manage this garage sale.  And a big thank you to the 11 individuals/families that have contributed to our garage sale thus far.

A few days ago, half of our garage looked like the picture below.  Today, boxes are stacked higher than my head.

I made a trip to Fountain Square and the southside today and loaded down my jeep again.  Thank you, friends!

Even though we've got a lot, please keep it coming!
And won't you please join us in prayer over this garage sale?  Specifically please ask that this garage sale not only meets our next payment requirement, but exceeds it so we'll have some to put towards the next fee.  (More on that later.)
Again, thank you, thank you, thank you!

Thursday, March 13, 2014

home study #2

We had our second home study today, meeting at the agency again.  I think most people probably stress the most about the actual home visit, but I was stressing out a bit about this one more, as today was our day for separate interviews.  And, thank goodness, our answers were the same.  Whew.  Today's questions were mostly about our childhoods and adult personalities:
  • Strengths/weaknesses in areas such as self-esteem, adaptability, responsibility, anger, etc.
  • Problems we experience/have experienced personally or as a couple, i.e. drugs, money management, education, work, family problems, etc.  (Oh, and we haven't struggled with drugs, period.  It's just one of the issues we do have to discuss.)
  • Interests, activities
  • Descriptions of our parents.  Don't worry, mom & dad.  I said all good things.  I also said I'm more like my dad than mom (you're welcome, mom).
  • How we were disciplined as children.  I talked about how my dad used to take my door off its hinges.  My parents figured out that this was an effective way of disciplining me.  I'm pretty sure my dad still thinks this is the funniest thing ever.
  • Favorite childhood memories

So pretty much our caseworker is really getting to know us.

Aside from that, here are a few pictures to sum up what else we've been doing:

More adoption paperwork -- financial statements, medical and insurance information, criminal clearance checks, education requirements, etc.
Taking part in the #40bagsin40days challenge.  First up was our upstairs closet.  I didn't think I'd have enough junk to fill up a trash bag or even come up with anything to put in our donate pile, but turns out I did.  If you'd like to donate your junk to our adoption garage sale efforts, please, please, please let me know!  We're so low on items (particularly large, big sellers and kids' stuff) that I'm not sure I can hold it next month after all.
My cousin, Mindy, came to help me sew for several hours one Saturday.  Can I talk about how awesome this is that a college student who I know has lots of studying to do took the time out of her schedule to help me sew?
And, you know, because I don't have anything else to do, I made Ellie a St. Patrick's Day bow.

Monday, March 10, 2014

about that garage sale...

When we moved, I thought we did a fairly good job of purging stuff we didn't know, we made several trips to Goodwill in our packed-full vehicles.  But when it took us two too many trips moving our stuff from our old house into our new house, I realized we did a pretty crummy job of cleaning out stuff after all.  So now I'm attacking our house one space at a time, urged on by two things:  #40bagsin40days challenge and by reading Jen Hatmaker's 7:  An Experimental Mutiny Against Excess.  (It's good. Go read it.) 

Now due to working full-time, trying to open up that etsy shop that I've been talking about for far too many months, trying to keep my house from getting too dirty, spending too much time on social media, etc., I'm not going to clean out our house for forty straight days.  But in one tiny little closet, I came up with a bag stuffed full of trash plus a small pile for our garage sale.  And tonight, working on my side of the closet alone, I came up with a trash bag full of old shoes -- four pairs of very loved shoes that I'm very sad to see go, not to mention too many pairs of flip flops to count -- plus a dozen shirts and skirts to add to the garage sale pile.  I don't know whether to feel disgusted with the amount of stuff we have or to feel good about lightening our load.

This brings me to you.

As you know, we're hosting a garage sale this spring to raise funds for our adoption.  (I know, it's probably not right that I'm asking you to clean out your stuff so I can sell it to other people who don't need it either, but whatever.)  I've penciled this in on our calendar for April 11th & 12th.  Many of you have said you've got items to donate and we'd love to take stuff off your hands sooner rather than later.  The sale is scheduled one month from tomorrow and if our spare bedroom doesn't start to fill up fast, I might have to postpone the sale.  So, why don't you join me in the #40bagsin40days challenge and see how much stuff you really don't need and put it to a good cause?