Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Dad Update

Just wanted to let everyone know that my dad will be having bypass surgery tomorrow at 8AM so if you think about it in the morning, say a prayer for him.

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

Six Weeks

It's been six weeks since our referral and still no word on our I600 being filed. I'd be lying if I said that the current circumstances in Vietnam didn't add to my anxiety. It seems like things are getting more and more scary. There are news articles stating that Vietnam has said they will be ending adoptions July 1 in response to our government's press release last Friday. As of right now this is not official and we are waiting to hear more from our adoption agency. My heart breaks for all of the families--and especially the orphaned children-- whose futures are currently in limbo. It is a hard place to be, but we have to believe that God is in control.

These trials will show that your faith is genuine. It is being tested as fire tests and purifies gold—though your faith is far more precious than mere gold. So when your faith remains strong through many trials, it will bring you much praise and glory and honor on the day when Jesus Christ is revealed to the whole world.
--1 Peter 1:7 (NLT)

Friday, April 25, 2008

Sad News

All day today I've had kind of a sick feeling in my stomach about our adoption. I thought it was because I was so hoping to get our I600 receipt this week. But I think God was preparing me for what I was going to find out tonight. Adoptions between Vietnam and the United States will not continue after September 1, 2008. Since (God willing) we will be home long before September 1, this should not effect our adoption of Molly. However, this makes me very sad for the children currently waiting for families and the families currently waiting for children. One quote from the US Embassy website has given me hope that this will be a temporary situation:

"The United States is strongly committed to processing legitimate intercountry adoptions from Vietnam if possible. Our primary concern is to ensure that the children and families involved in the adoption process are protected from exploitation. The Government of Vietnam shares this concern. Both countries acknowledge that more needs to be done to address deficiencies in the current system."

My prayer is that those deficiencies will be addressed and that adoptions will resume at some point.

There have been several times through this year long adoption process when I've thought "what are we doing and why are we putting ourselves through this?" and I have to say that thought crossed my mind again tonight. All of the uncertainties are so scary and I get so tempted to throw in the towel. But one year ago, God called us to adopt and we chose to take a step of faith. Never did I expect the rollarcoaster ride we've been on, but I've learned a lot and God is still teaching me a lot--mostly about putting my hope in HIM. And on the other side of the world in Vietnam, there is a little girl who is waiting on us. THAT is the reason.

To read more, go to:

Tuesday, April 22, 2008


First of all, we wanted to say thank you to everyone who has been thinking about and praying for my dad--he's really feeling much better. He got moved out of ICU last night and is now in his own room. He will be having double bypass surgery sometime next week. Right now the doctors want him to spend some time getting stronger. Saturday was really scary so we're all very thankful that he's doing so much better.

Also, today is Molly's 1/2 birthday! Our baby girl turned 6 months old today! I was hoping that I'd get our I600 receipt as a 1/2 birthday present for Molly, but no such luck today! Tomorrow will be 5 weeks since referral so we are smack in the middle of our 4-6 week estimated time frame for our I600 receipt--so hopefully very soon!

Saturday, April 19, 2008

Long Day

I debated about whether or not to even post about my day because I would so much rather blog about happy things, but this is a good way to let everyone know what's going on and ask for prayer.

My dad had a massive heart attack this morning. He started having chest pains, called 911, was taken to CMC-Union, and then flown to CMC in Charlotte. His heart actually stopped three times through all of this. He's currently in the ICU at Carolina Heart Institute at CMC. He will be having some kind of procedure on Monday (either stints or bypass surgery) so he's not out of the woods yet, but he's doing SO much better. When we left tonight he seemed to be getting back to his old self. Please pray for my dad and for my mom who is feeling pretty stressed right now.

My dad is actually on the same floor that Zeke was on every time he was at CMC. The children's hospital has actually moved so the rooms are empty, but it was so hard to walk through there--it brings back a lot of memories. My dad was talking about Zeke a lot tonight. It's hard to be there and not think about Zeke--we all still miss him so much.

Thanks again for your prayers for Dad! :-)

Thursday, April 17, 2008

Teaching About Adoption

I think I taught my favorite lesson EVER this week--I got to teach my kids about adoption. Even though I've been in the adoption process for this whole school year, I decided not to tell the kids about it until we were farther along. But once we got Molly's referral picture, I knew it wouldn't be long before they figured out something was up with all of the other teachers coming into my room to see her picture. So I decided to tell them about Molly and about adoption. I started off by explaining to them that there are children in the world that don't have Mommies and Daddies. Then I told them that one of the countries where there are children with no Mommies and Daddies is Vietnam and I showed them Vietnam on the globe. Then I showed them the book When You Were Born in Vietnam and we looked at the pictures of Vietnam and the pictures of children in the orphanages. Then I told them that Mr. Hines and I were very sad that there were children without Mommies and Daddies and we wanted to go and get one of these children and bring her to live with us so that she would have a home and a mom and a dad. I showed them Molly's picture and they were SO excited. I wasn't sure how much they would understand, but they were really interested and asked some really good questions. They were also really sweet about it--one of my little girls said "Mrs. Hines, when you tell me this it makes me feel like I want to cry." It's been amazing how they've been talking about and writing about adoption in their writing time. Everyday at least one child asks me when I'm going to go get Molly and of course I have to tell them we don't know yet. What an honor to get to plant this seed into the minds of these precious children. :-)

Saturday, April 12, 2008

Hospitality House

When Zeke was in the NICU, Brian and I stayed at a place near the hospital called the Hospitality House. The Hospitality House is a place where people who are caring for loved ones in the hospital can have a place to stay. It's free to stay there and they provide a room, meals, a place to do your laundry, etc. Zeke was in the NICU for a month and for awhile we drove back and forth (over an hour one way) everyday to be with him. It got draining and it was SO hard to be an hour away from him at night. Finding out about the Hospitality House was SUCH a blessing. It was so nice to have somewhere close-by to stay and a place to go if we just needed a break at any point away from the hospital. The Hospitality House runs off of donations and volunteers so our Life Group decided to collect some items to take to the house. Several of the other Life Groups at our church contributed as well so Tara and I drove down-town this week to drop the items off. In the last couple of years, they have built a new, BEAUTIFUL house. We got to take a little tour which was SO special to me. We happened to get there at dinner time and it was so awesome to see the people sitting around the table eating and talking--everyone with a different story but brought together through a common hard situation--just as we had done a couple of years ago. It was such a special experience and I'm so grateful for the hearts of the those behind the scenes at the Hospitality House. To find out more about the Hospitality House and how YOU can help, here's a link:

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Happy Birthday to Me!

Today is my 26th birthday. As Tara put it, I'm now in my "late twenties"--hmmm.....not sure what I think about that! 30 will be here before I know it! Well, my birthday today was SO fun! Mrs. Austin had all of the kids make me birthday cards which they were SO excited about. Then my mom brought in cupcakes and balloons--of course the kids loved that too--and what a surprise to get to see Mom in the middle of the day! Then my friend Jo let took our kids to lunch so that Mrs. Austin and I could have duty-free lunch--a HUGE treat (am I right, teachers?!) Then tonight we went out to dinner at Chili's. Thanks guys for making my birthday so fun--I'm truly blessed. :-)

Monday, April 7, 2008

Our Princess

A big thank you to the Baldwins who got some new pictures of Molly for us today! I just cannot tell you how special these pictures are to us.

Children are a gift from the Lord;
they are a reward from him.
--Psalm 127:3

Celebrating Babies!

This weekend we got to hang out with our good friends, Nicole and Michael. It has been so fun walking through life with Nicole and Michael--we were all friends in college, taught Sunday school together, were in each others weddings, and now we're having babies together. Nicole is due in July and just found out that it's a BOY! We're expecting to meet Cooper (named after the Cooper River) this summer and can't wait for he and Molly to be good friends. We had dinner this weekend and then even got to go out and do a little baby shopping! I think the deal of the night was the lamp shade I bought for Molly's room at K-mart for $2.00! What a deal! They couldn't find a price on any of them so they gave it to me for 2 bucks--can't beat that!
I really put a lot of effort towards Molly's room in October, but since then I've kind of dropped the ball. Part of that was just being busy, but a lot of it was guarding my heart since things have been so up in the air with Vietnam. But now there is the very real possibility of us bringing home that little princess in the next couple of months and we need to get moving again! This weekend Brian put together her dresser (yes, I asked him to show it off like Vanna which he did reluctantly)--and I even helped! I wanted Molly to know that her Mama played a role in putting it together. (I mostly handed Brian the tools, but he did let me hammer a little after I begged!) Her room is looking so super cute! Now all we need is a little girl in there!

Friday, April 4, 2008

Picture Perfect

I was SO excited to get a call at work today from my friend Dana saying that our agency had posted some new pictures of the children at Molly's orphanage and Molly was in the group of pictures! She has grown so much since December! Isn't she just beautiful?!? How about those lips?! know a mom has to brag a little. :-)

We can't wait until we have her in our arms!