"Adventures, I used to call them. I used to think that they were things the wonderful folk of the stories went out and looked for, because they wanted them, because they were exciting and life was a bit dull...But that's not the way of it with the tales that really mattered, or the ones that stay in the mind. Folk seem to have just landed in them, usually...I expect they had a lot of chances, like us, of turning back, only they didn't. And if they had, we shouldn't know, because they'd have been forgotten."

-Samwise Gamgee, The Lord of the Rings

Saturday, September 29, 2012

And we are waiting for the girl. Again.

The sweet little one we were hoping to adopt is no longer available. Again. Her special need was Hepatitis C, and through unknown circumstances with the special needs list changing in her country that allows children under age 5 to be adopted, she was re-tested and she no longer has the Hep C antibodies. This means she is HEALTHY. This is AMAZING for her, she can live her life without worrying about medications or liver damage or anything else. But with this great news comes the bad... she is now not able to be adopted internationally until she is 5yrs old.

And that leaves us back at the drawing board. Again. If you've been reading here for a while, you will know that the first little one we set out to adopt this time around was adopted in country. It was easier to let her go, knowing how loved she is and that she has a family who cares greatly for her. This time its different. We don't know how to go on knowing that little 'A' will be waiting in an orphanage for 3 more years unless she is adopted domestically, which we hope and pray happens.

So where are we now? Well, we leave in a week. So we are traveling blind. God has thrown us well outside our comfort zone twice now, this time a lot farther than we know how to deal with. But we are trusting that He has the perfect plan for us. He knows what this is all about. He knows where we are supposed to be.

One thing is for sure, we know there is another child out there for us, and we are going to go find her. Please pray that our travels are smooth and that we find the sweet one meant to be ours.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012


There are only FIVE DAYS left in this giveaway! Michelle's FSP has raised a ton, and ours has gone up, too! If you want to donate directly, the box just to the right of this post is how you can do that. We appreciate every dollar.

We leave in under two weeks! Its sneaking up on us so fast!

So go! Donate to our FSP via the little box to the right, or go HERE and donate to be entered into the giveaway!

Monday, September 17, 2012

Still going!

We got our travel date, and we leave in just three weeks. There is a pretty awesome giveaway HERE that benefits my friends family, and also our family! You will get double entries if you donate to both! We sure could use the help, with replacing the hot water heater, two car repairs and repairing the AC in the last few weeks. And I know my friend is working triple time to get to her boys before the shutdown in their country.

Three weeks......

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Its a love story!

So as many of you know, last year all the awesome 'babyhouse 19' mama's banded together and send Christmas back to those left behind. One of us had the idea and all our craziness worked in our favor to get it all together in a month.

Well, now we are banding together again. My amazing friend MICHELLE has three sweet ones from Alina's old baby house (that we refer to as '19'), and while there met two little boys, who at the time had a family coming for them. Michelle and her husband witnessed these two boys on transfer day. The day they were pulled from their lives at the baby house and driven to an older child orphanage. It was heart wrenching, but they were able to rest a little easier knowing the boys had a family coming.

Then, the family backed out for unknown reasons. The boys were transferred to another facility that isn't so great, and last month another mom was there and witnessed their lives. She just happens to be another 19 mom, and with that, Michelle and her husband have stepped out in faith to bring these two sweet ones home.

Its truly a love story, and they are working fast to make it a happy ending. And here is where you come in! My friend JENNIFER cooked up quite the giveaway! Michelle and her husband are working double, triple time to get their paperwork done before the country closes its doors to new dossier's for the Winter. That means they need to get everything done, start to finish in two months. It CAN be done, it WILL be done, but you all know what really stands in the way......

So GO! Donate! Win some cool prizes and watch the love story unfold into a happy ending!
Click here-
A Real Life Love Story GIVEAWAY!!!

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Where does the time go?

I'm certain  I ask this question every year. As the kids gear up for school and people ask 'What grade are they going into?' and I answer... this year '5th grade, first grade and preschool' and my brain short circuits and I pause; are my kids REALLY that old? Where has the time gone? How has my chubby little baby grown to a 5th grader who is starting band and excells in every subject? How is it possible my sweet baby boy is in FIRST GRADE, making friends crazy fast and reading chapter books like no tomorrow? And my little girl! Such a puny little thing when she came home, so helpless and small, walking herself out to the bus and going to preschool four afternoons a week, talking non.stop. about her friends and her teachers and school and anything else that jumps into that fantastic brain of hers! And I anticipate how our little one will fit into this funky little family we have created. She will be the baby! We will have four afternoons a week alone, just the two of us. What a marvelous thing... so much time to spend together, just the two of us. We cannot get her home fast enough.

Here are a few first day of school pictures. I just can't believe how grown they are!

Tuesday, September 4, 2012

World Cerebral Palsy Day

Today is World Cerebral Palsy Day! Three years ago, I knew next to nothing about Cerebral Palsy. In my ignorant mind, CP was completely debilitating. Wheelchairs and non verbal and downright scary. I didn't know what really caused it, nor did I pay much attention to treatments and therapies and AFO's and the people themselves who were affected by CP.

Then, I seen this-

And I also seen this next to her picture-
"Cerebral Palsy, working on her walking!'
And I started overworking Google. I read blogs by parents of children with CP. I bookmarked pages and poured over statistics and information for hours. And then, I casually left the page with her picture and info on it up on my laptop, strategically placed on the counter where hubby would see it. He walked in that night, looked at her pic and said 'she's cute, whats her story?'

It was all downhill from there. We knew she was ours, and I still cant' look at this picture without smiling and remembering how I just KNEW. We were very hesitant about the Cerebral palsy, but it was our own ignorance. Clearly she could sit up and smile and who could say she wasn't seriously cute! So we jumped.

And we learned. We met our girl on October 1st, 2010. I will never forget how my heart sank when the nanny stood her up and she was so weak and bent over, she had no idea how to stand up on her own legs and had zero balance. But when I sat down next to her and she leaned over and smiled at me, I said 'hi', and she said 'hi' right back to me. The next 4 weeks were spent getting to know our girl in an environment that was not conductive to actually bonding and teaching. We had to 'turn her in' every day after our visits. This was clearly affecting her. We made progress, but it was slow.

Fast forward two (!!) years and lots of physical therapy, going to school, and most importantly, being loved unconditionally by a family, our girl is pure sunshine! Is Cerebral Palsy hard? Of course. There are days that I just want to scream! I want her to walk and run and roll in the grass and then be able to get back up after. She has come so far..... she can walk on her own! She can get up off the floor on her own in two different ways! She's talking non.stop. and learning so fast, things are really clicking for her. But there are days where I long for her to be like her peers physically.

I watch her today, wearing her backpack around because she starts preschool this afternoon (her second year in this program, we love it!) and talking non stop about her friends and school and the bus and painting and books and circle time and PT and the teachers (by name!) and I know she will be ok. She is loved. And that has made all the difference.

(click the image below to read other blogs celebrating World Cerebral Palsy Day today, and link up yourself if you are a blogger!)
 Stumbo Family Story