Monday, May 22, 2017

So Much Fabulous News...

Hey Everyone,

I apologize for the late post, but so many amazing things happened last week and I couldn't wait any longer to share them with all of you!!

Two weeks ago, our agency informed us about some financial deadlines that were rapidly approaching & we were caught a little off guard. Michael & I knew that the funds would come due, but thought it would be a little later in the process. Thankfully, God has been preparing us for moments like this one. Instead of panicking, we contacted everyone we knew & asked them to pray over our financial situation. Less than 24 hours later, we received an email from our agency stating that we actually had 3-4 weeks to put the funds together instead of a few days! Hallelujah!!! On top of that, some of our family & friends have graciously blessed us & we've already raised over 10 percent of the funds that we need for our first payment! God is so good!!

On May 15th, Michael & I officially accepted the referral for Melvin (10), Marie (8) and Favor (5)!!! WE ARE PARENTS!!! I cannot tell you how excited we are! But that's not all. Less than 24 hours later, I received a message from Michael saying that he just received a job offer! WHAT!?!?! That's right my friends! He starts his new job on June 5th & it's everything we have been praying for! Only a few miles from our home, Michael will get a nice pay bump to help provide for our kiddos and benefits! God is so faithful my friends!! This has been a very long haul with the adoption & Michael's job hunt, but God is bringing it all together & we are so incredibly grateful!!

So what's next...

We need to save, raise or receive grants for the remaining $9,000 that we owe on the first 1/2 of our program fees. While working on that, Michael & I are also putting together our dossier which is a crazy amount of paperwork that our agency needs to submit to the Liberian government, so they can review it & approve us to bring our kiddos home! Once we have been approved, we will receive a court date & an invitation to travel to Liberia to meet our babies! At that point, the other 1/2 of our program fees will be due, but our hope is to receive grants to cover that portion. We will travel to Liberia & have been told to plan for up to 3 weeks in country. Once everything is official, then we can bring our kids home & begin our new lives together! Hallelujah!!! I know explaining it this way makes it sound so easy & quick, but the truth is that we still have months to go in the process! What's so encouraging though is that we have never been this far in the process before!

Here are some areas that we could use prayer for...

  1. God's protection over our children!
  2. For the remaining funds to come together quickly so we can submit our dossier & get in line (so to speak) for our court date. 
  3. That we will be able to pull all the pieces of our dossier together within the next few weeks.
  4. And that Michael will be able to get the time off to travel at his new job.

I think that's it for now my friends. Time for this girl to get to bed!

Thank you all so much for your unwavering support & prayers! They have meant the world to us! Please keep them coming as things continue to come together!

Blessings,
Carey & Michael





Tuesday, May 2, 2017

Almost PARENTS!!

Hi Friends,

We have some exciting news to share! First, our home study is done & we have been approved for 3 children! But that's not all! By the end of the week, Michael and I will officially be PARENTS!!!! Eek! I can't believe I am typing those words right now!! We have been waiting for this for so long and are beyond excited to finally know who are babies are! God is so good!

So, here is what happens next. This week we will receive more information about Melvin, Marie and Favor. After we've reviewed it, then we sign an agreement with our placement agency and we will be officially matched! =) I'll also start submitting grant applications to get the ball rolling on some potential funding options and begin working on our dossier which is a crazy amount of paperwork that will be submitted to the Liberian government and other various agencies.

Next week, we have a wonderful family friend that is hosting a LipSense fundraising party for us! If you are interested in making a purchase, you can find a catalog at https://issuu.com/confident.beauty.cassy/docs/us_beautybook and email your order to katesprettypouts@gmail.com with a note that it is for our fundraiser. If you would like to donate instead, you can do so at our Go Fund Me page or at https://adopttogether.org/families/?fundraiser=granicasadopt. 

Thank you all so much for your thoughts, prayers and support! Please keep the prayers coming, especially for our kids!

Blessings,
Carey & Michael

Saturday, March 18, 2017

Big News!!!

Hey Friends & Family,

Michael and I have some big news to share with you! On Friday, I received an email from a different adoption agency that works in Liberia and they have 3 precious little ones that they have been unable to place with their forever family. It sounds like they are very motivated to find a home for these kiddos. After a powerful message at church tonight, we have decided to pursue these children and are asking for God to either move some mountains in our way or shut the door if it is not meant to be. So onto the news that everyone wants to know. Melvin is 10 years old and a very handsome young man. Marie is 7 years old and looks like quite the little diva. Favor is 4 years old and she's beyond cute! We would love to welcome these kiddos into our family!!

But, we need God to move some mountains to make this happen! The first is that we can raise the last $700 we need to pay for our home study to be redone. There will probably be some additional funds needed to start the process with our placement agency, but I don't have those totals yet. Second, we need our home study to be approved for 3 children and we would need to figure out the room situation since we only have 2 bedrooms in our home. We do have a nice sized loft, so that may work as a child's bedroom or our bedroom.

Please, please lift us up in prayer. We are asking for God's wisdom as we move forward and that all the financial/logistical details will be worked out.

Thanks everyone!
Blessings,
Michael & Carey

Saturday, January 21, 2017

A Caffeinated Fundraiser!

Hey Friends,

Michael & I have exciting news to share! We are doing our first ever coffee fundraiser which is pretty crazy because neither one of us are coffee drinks, but we know a lot of you LOVE the stuff! So this one is for YOU! Anyone can order because the coffee is shipped directly to you! All proceeds will go towards redoing our home study, which we hope to start soon! Check out our page & let us know if you have any questions! Thanks friends!

http://www.justlovecoffee.com/Beneficiary/Profile/4970

Sunday, January 15, 2017

Happy New Year!

Hi Loves, 

We pray that you all had a FABULOUS Christmas & a great new year so far!! Many people have been asking for an update on the adoption, so here goes. 

Before Thanksgiving, we received word from our agency that the program in Sierra Leone was in trouble and the possibility of us completing our adoption was uncertain. The whole story is extremely complicated and very messy, but I'll explain the best I can. 

Adoption agencies located in the U.S. must register with the government of a particular country and have that registration approved in order to complete adoptions. From what we have heard, the process can be very long and drawn out depending on how quickly the government works, so a lot of adoption agencies have found a work around. They will partner with an organization in that country that is already established with the government and work under their registration, which is exactly what ECAS did. Unfortunately, the organization that they chose was corrupt and extremely unethical. I won't go into all of the gory details, but they lied about our agency and now the government has blacklisted ECAS. At first, our agency was hoping to partner with another organization here in the states that had their registration, but that has since fallen apart too. In fact, we have been hearing a lot of rumors that ECAS will be closing their doors in the next couple of months. 

So what now???

Good question! We are working with ECAS to hopefully get some of our program fees back although I am starting to doubt that they will follow through on their promise, but we aren't giving up hope just yet. I am planning to contact the financial director on Monday, so hopefully he will be able to give us a better idea of what we can expect. Beyond that, we contacted several agencies in Minnesota and found out that we will need to completely redo our home study since we are switching agencies as well as countries, which is unfortunate. Thankfully, we have found an organization that comes highly recommended and they have also blessed us by discounting their rates for adoptive parents that already have a completed home study. Lord willing, we will have the funds available in the next couple of months, so we can get the ball rolling again! 

So what country???

LIBERIA! This part is SO exciting friends! When God laid Africa on our hearts, Michael & I wanted to adopt from Liberia. We couldn't explain why since neither one of us have ever been there before, but it was just this feeling that we had. Unfortunately, Liberia was not open for adoptions at the time, but that didn't stop us. Michael checked with a group of missionaries that worked in Liberia and they believed that the country would be opening back up again, but felt that it would take a couple more years for that to happen. We started to think that maybe we got our signals crossed or we would adopt from Liberia later, so we pressed forward with Sierra Leone. As we continued on our journey, God brought 2 amazing ladies into our lives that both have ties to Liberia. We didn't think anything of it at the time, but God was slowly moving the pieces together! In 2015, Liberia re-opened their country for adoption, which is faster than anyone could have expected! Of course, we were already committed to Sierra Leone by then, but now God has closed that door. As hard as it is to face starting over again, Michael & I are overjoyed to see how God is answering our prayers! We started this journey wanting to adopt from Liberia & now it could actually happen! HALLELUJAH!!! Some people may question our decision to press forward with Sierra Leone when God laid Liberia on our hearts, but honestly we just want to serve God and decided to move forward on that path until God told us otherwise. Plus, God doesn't waste anything that we go through. He's using our journey to prepare our hearts for our kiddos & we're going to have an amazing story to tell them about how hard we fought to bring them home!

So there you have it! We'll keep you all posted on any upcoming fundraisers as we can!

Blessings, 
Michael & Carey