We are officially "ON DECK"

I was so excited to open my email today and receive our ON DECK email. For those of you who don't know the America World adoption lingo here is a paragraph from the email...

While there are many unknowns in the referral process, and this email gives no dates or guarantees, America World anticipates that your family could receive a referral within the next one to three months. Referrals arrive sporadically throughout the month. For this reason, families with the same DTE date frequently do not receive referrals at the same time. America World issues referrals as soon as a child’s paperwork is completed.

I already knew the approximate wait time but somehow getting this email makes it move from we will receive a referral in 5-7 months to we could receive a referral anytime in the next one to three months. We are moving forward in the process and our son is closer to being with us! Because of the age of referrals it also means that he is more than likely born, on this earth, and we are being carefully brought together in God's plan. My heart is overjoyed.

Hope everyone has a beautiful day!


Give Love --- I love you Beth Ann

I can't wait for you to hear about this incredible person that God brought into my life 4+ years ago. She is such an inspiration and you will be touched by her story. Beth Ann graduated from Lambuth College in May in pre-med and in 10 days is headed to Tororo (Uganda) to answer God's call and serve God. She has a great blog that tells more about her and her story and you just have to go visit....PLEASE. It is www.givelovejourney.blogspot.com Here is a quick excerpt:

Through an organization called Africa Inland Mission (AIM), I have an opportunity to serve God and His children in Uganda. My team and I will be helping care for 400 beautiful children in an orphanage in the town of Tororo. While I don't know the wonders in store for me in Africa, I am excited to begin this journey to give and to love.

Now for a story to show how amazing our God is.....
It was 4 years or so ago and I was working as was Russ both in different towns from where we lived and raising 3 children. To say the least we were burning the candle at both ends and I just needed some help. My mother is good friends with the guidance counselor at the local high school and called her to find out if there was someone she would recommend to help with her precious grandchildren. That is how we heard about what a beautiful person Beth Ann Carkuff was and she was so much more to us than a babysitter. Her heart is so big and loving, she is smart, beautiful and loves Jesus. This was her as a high school student and through college she has amazed me more and more. We hated to see her go to a college several hours away but were very happy for her.

Last Christmas (before I had talked to Russ about us adopting) I called Beth Ann to see if she was home on break and could keep the kiddos. She came over and we ended up figuring out that we were both being called to Africa! Her for mission work and us to adopt....how crazy 2 people from a small city in Tennessee, being brought together and being called to Africa. It just amazes me.

I am trying to be a little bit of help to Beth Ann and help her raise the money for her trip. There is a golf tournament this weekend at Blackberry Ridge golf course on 231 headed toward Shelbyville. It is an 8:00 shotgun start and there is room for several more teams....so if you like to play golf please come out and help send Beth Ann to Africa. Cost is $40/person or $150 for a team of 4. She also has great t-shirts on her blog site. Please pray for her, her safe travels, for the money to be provided and for her family.
Don't forget to check her blog out and keep up with her while she is in Tororo.

I'm So Excited.....

Actually not much has happened for us specifically BUT after 6+weeks of no baby boy referrals there were finally some referrals this week! I think I have mentioned before about the "unofficial waiting list" that is kept by some wonderful people. It is a list of everyone's information that has sent it to them so there could be families not on the blog and not on the unofficial list but it seems like to me that about 90% of the families from America World adopting from Ethiopia are included.

When I started "my list" we were number 10 of the known families requesting infant (0-2) boys. I check for referrals often (yes, daily) and after going for more than 6 weeks without seeing a referral I was getting a little down. Yesterday was a busy but wonderful day which I am going to post about next so I did not have time to check email until last night. When I saw the words referral and recognized the names I got SO excited. At first there were two referrals and then I went to send an email at 10:30 last night to one of the kids teachers and saw another boy referral----for a total of 3. Joy, love, hope, joy,love, hope kept running through my body - it was great. We have had a very difficult month dealing with losing Hallee and there was so much darkness in our grief - please know we are very happy for Hallee knowing she is with Jesus and happier than we could ever even imagine but we love and miss her so much and it is so difficult watching your daughter ache all day everyday that the darkness was present. This news is such a light to all of us.......a hope, a dream, a new Connelly boy!

Now I must admit in regards to information we have officially received nothing happened yesterday but on my list we made it to number 3!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! God's timing is perfect and I don't know exactly what it is for our family but I will sing praise to Him as we move a little closer family by family.


Filling the time..

Not much happening on the adoption front. Next time I tell my children to wait and be patient I am going to remember that it is really hard. I think it would be easier if I saw activity happening for other families but referrals, court dates and travel have been very slow since August. In an effort to keep myself busy:) I have been working on a project with my friend Tracy to promote Orphan Awareness. We put up a blogsite hoping to give people information and inspiration regarding what can be done for orphans. The site is www.2loveorphans.com so please go check it out. There are also some really cute products for sale ...some even that came from Africa! Our new t-shirts will be here on Wednesday and we will be sure to post a picture.

Have a great week