Sunday, December 24, 2017

Merry Christmas

Last year at this time we had an apartment full of children in Kyiv. We were waiting to get word that we had successfully booked tickets to travel home to America with our new family. The journey ahead was exciting, scary, and impossible to imagine. But it was right.

The past year has been unbelievable.

I have not publicly announced it on my blog but most of you know we are no longer in process to adopt the two little girls that we were in process for, Stacie and Reign. Those sweet girls are spending Christmas without a family. We really hoped for a different outcome for them.  The little girl Reign has just over a year for a family to find her or her hope is lost forever. She will no longer be available to be adopted once she is 16. She is not listed on any adoption sites and her orphanage has NEVER had an adoption before. Pray for a miracle. Contact Maya's hope if you think you could be her family or want to help sponsor care at her orphanage.

Stacie has been chosen as part of this years Christmas Campaign on Reece's Rainbow. The goal is for her adoption grant to reach $1000 by January 1st. Right now she is just over 25% of the way there. Can you add just one more gift to your Christmas list? And give her the gift of a better chance in a family? You can do so by purchasing an ornament for your tree with her cute little smile? It is only $35. Or you can donate any amount to her fund as a token of your Christmas spirit. Donate here to STACIE'S ADOPTION GRANT FUND. All proceeds are tax deductible through Reece's rainbow. At the very least please share Stacie so that her family can find her. 

I want to wish every child a Merry Christmas and every family hope, love, and comfort during this holiday season. Bless you all!

(In loving memory of Dryden. Merry Christmas to our Angel boy, every child deserves a family)

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Worth! Final goodbyes

Eulogy that I read as we put Dryden to rest.
Our sweet boy was loved beyond measure, I regret that we didn't find him sooner. I remember the day I first saw a video of him. I was on YouTube and I typed in Ukrainian orphans in the search bar. It was that day I clicked on a link that would change my life forever. Knowing the love i have for my own children It made it very difficult to imagine what could have happened to make a child deserve the conditions that I saw on my screen that day. I had no idea who he was, Where in Ukraine he was or if he was available for adoption. What I did know was that I was in the process to adopt a child from Ukraine and he gave me a drive that made me want to change the world, to never give up. It wasn't until 4 months later that I saw him listed for adoption on Reece's rainbow. I learned he had been available since birth and I instantly started advocating for his mama to see him, to find him and rescue that sweet boy from his misery. I begged, and pleaded and screamed for the world to see him like i did but no one was running. Over the next few months I begged more, cried, and tried my best to find him a family but it didn't take long for me to realize no one was coming. He had been waiting for almost 15 years, never held, barely fed. He was trapped in his crib, waiting the forever wait, and he only had one more birthday that could pass and then the next he would loose the chance forever.

When we submit to his country it was to adopt three children with special needs, but I couldn't rest. I started telling all my friends about a very special boy who I wanted to be a son. Many told us we were crazy to consider a child like him. The child I wanted had been bedridden his entire life. He couldn't talk, he couldn't sit up, he couldn't crawl, he couldn't walk and his country considered him so unworthy he was locked away in a crib to never be touched or loved, he was left to die alone. But we wanted him. Our love crossed oceans for a boy we had never met. And when no one else came, we did. We ran with arms wide open. When we got there the people of his country begged us not to adopt him, said he wasn't worthy, that he was deeply mentally handicapped and he couldn't be fixed. They told us to pick another child, a more deserving capable child. We said no. When we went to meet him they asked us if we wanted to change our mind. We said no. When we met him it was love at first sight. I reached out to stroke his cheek and he bit me so hard I didn't think he would let go, love hurts and in that very moment we decided it was us who would never let go. His body was covered in whip marks, cigarette burns, and his wrists were bruised and his arms covered in infected sores from bites. He was skin and bones, and although he was 14 he was the size of a 4 year old. The room smelt like rote and it felt like death and kids lay silent all around. They asked us if we still wanted him. We said yes. They said are you sure, we said yes, They told us that there was many more children not like him, worthy kids available and capable. We said he is the one. When we looked at him we saw our son, we saw a broken, damaged boy who had never felt what it was like to be loved. He deserved to be loved. He was hungry, starving really, and he had zero trust until the day we walked out those doors forever. It was the first time our son had ever been carried out those doors. What did he do when the cold air hit his cheeks? he laughed, and laughed, and laughed. It was three hours before his laugh turned into a cry. He knew he was free from hell on earth, somehow he knew. That day was one of the happiest in our entire life.

Over the next few months he started to learn to eat by spoon rather than only getting broth water in a bottle like they gave him in Ukraine. He learned to smile, it was such a beautiful smile. It didn't stop there. I remember the day I came home and Trevor was so excited to show me something. I couldn't wait.. That day for the first time I saw my son sit independently. The smile on Drydens face as my husband lifted his hands and let him go will be forever etched in my mind. Dryden was so proud. It wasn't long that seconds turned into minutes and he could tolerate longer times sitting up. A boy who had never sat up in his entire life, could sit, and it only took a month of care, I can imagine what could have been with a life time of care. It took many months for him to attach because he was so incredibly scared, he didn't know how to love or what it was. But I remember the day he became mine. The day he let go of fear and learned to trust. For the first time in his life he was free. Really free, and he knew it. It wasn't long that he was crawling, they said he never would, he proved them wrong. It took motivation and he had never had any freedom before but as his trust grew so did his freedom and so did he. We watched our child age 6 years in only 6 months and that alone blew our minds, but to see him grow in strength and love too, it left us speechless and our hearts full. Before we knew it, he could love, he loved all his siblings, And he gave that love to me. He watched every move I made and he even a few times called me mama, and even said papa a few times and he would constantly tell us hey. I remember the first time he let me hold him, and no i dont' mean pick him up, iImean really hold him, he rested his head on my shoulder and he unclenched his fists and put his hand on my cheek, in that moment i knew he was learning to be free, he was learning to love and he loved me, it filled my heart. From that moment his love only grew, his sadness turned into happiness, and his fear turned into trust. We watched a broken child start to mend. It was the best feeling. It was nothing short of amazing. He had a home, a family, and love. He was a brother, grandson, cousin and son. He was a boy who stole our heart. On May 16th our sweet boy spent his first birthday in a family, and it breaks our hearts to pieces it will be his last. Two days later broken wings learned to fly. He left the earth that had caused him so much pain, and he wasn't alone, he was loved. We loved him and so did so many others. His life with us was not filled with quantity but quality and we are honored, absolutely honored to be chosen to be his parents.
something I wrote the night we took him out of the orphanage forever.
As I lie here in the floor of the overnight train I'm filled with a joy that can only be described as magical. It is an odd kind of joy. I can hear my children breathing, grinding their teeth, and rocking back and forth. I'm not sure what hell's on earth they have been through but I know it stops here. They are not orphans anymore.
Covered in bruises and scars both physical and mental. They will take time to heal but they will start to heal. The smells alone in the older boys orphanage will be carved into my mind forever. you can smell the death in that place. you can see the darkness that haunts their every hour, minute, and second. Some are tucked away behind closed doors in dark rooms with no toys, sound or light. They are left to die alone. No love, no touch and not enough food to sustain a baby. Teenagers the size of toddlers and toddlers the size of babies will forever be etched in my mind. To know that each child that I chose was many that I left behind will haunt me until the day I die. Unwanted because their bodies have failed them and neglected because they are unwanted. This is not a place any child should be yet they are stuck in a system that doesn't care for them. My children managed to slip out the front door but most slip out the back door to an unmarked grave.
I have found diamonds in the rough. I will polish them and prove their value and worth. These kids amaze me.

This isn't how we wanted it to end, we wanted to spend forever with Dryden, we had so much more love to give, so much more life to show him, and many memories we wanted to share. I wanted to turn mountains into rainbows for him. Adoption is so beautifully difficult but for the first time in his life he felt safe enough to let go, and now he is truly free.
He is forever loved.


Sunday, June 4, 2017

One with the earth

Life is so precious and fragile, and we hold the upmost respect for all that inhabits earth. We will be burying our son on Tuesday morning in a natural preserve. It will be an all natural shroud burial using a quilt made by his great, great grandmother. The process does not waste the resources as in most contemporary burials and does not introduce toxins. The cemetery environment is habitat for wildlife and native flora and is on a 65+ acre preserve. Our sweet Dryden will be put to rest in a wooded forest adjacent from a gum tree. His stone will be a natural stone found from the preserve and We'll have his birth name in Cyrillic script and his given family name in English. His story will live on and his body will become one with the Earth with intrinsic conservational value. Dryden meant the world to us and we want to give him the gift of the world. He will be forever LOVED!


Please consider adoption. We are never promised tomorrow, and children deserve family. All children deserve to know what love is. We are honored to get to experience watching Dryden blossom and become the boy who escaped his life that was previously confined to 14 years in a crib. He grew in spirit and he grew in love. He made our family whole, and will continue to live on in our hearts and soul.

Wednesday, May 31, 2017

Broken wings learn to fly

Two weeks ago our sweet boy Dryden spent his first birthday in a family. It was very low key because his sweet little self was so damaged by Ukraine. He was scared of people who live outside of the home and he would self harm from something as little as eye contact from an unfamiliar face so low key was perfect for him.

We decorated his room, and basically just loved on him all day. All of the children love birthdays(what children don't?) and they were so excited that Dryden would have his first. My oldest bio spent almost all day by his side, Dryden holds a very special place in his heart. And Dryden has a special love for all of the children in the home. He would let them climb on him, snuggle him, feed him, touch him. He put trust in them. They didn't have to build the relationship and work so hard to show him he was finally safe. It was like he just knew they were his very special army. It was adults who had failed him and I will never understand why special needs children get the treatment they do in Ukraine from the adults who should be protecting them. He spent 14 years secluded and tied to his crib. Never held, never loved. I'm so thankful I could change all of that. He deserved it.

 It is so devastatingly sad that it took 15 years for someone to see his worth and celebrate his life. I will always be bitter about that. ALL children deserve LOVE without wait. ALL children deserve a family.

My husband fly fishes and that day he came home with the most beautiful hand tied fly. Papa was  excited. He told me ''look what I got Dryden for his Birthday''. I was confused. A fly! Really! my husband beamed. He said you can hang it from somewhere in his room for him to look at he might never use it but ''MAYBE he MIGHT''. This is the kind of hope we hold. We want to turn mountains into rainbows for our children and we hoped that just ''MAYBE'' one day he would have his rainbow. We believe in him. When we adopted him he couldn't sit up, crawl, speak, or really move very much independently but all of that changed. Amazing doesn't even begin to describe it.

                                                        Our sweet boy on the move

We are so honored to have gotten to share his Birthday with him. We are blessed to call him our son. He waited his entire life to feel something he should have got from the start. Something we give him everyday. LOVE. He became stronger with that love, he even started learning words, he began to crawl, and was eating by spoon. He was improving every day and he gained a smile that could light  up any one's world.

The next thing I will share is very difficult for us. It is hard to write  because I don't want it to be true. I have spent the last week trying to convince myself that there is no way this can be happening, but it is.  I don't want to have to share this very sad devastating  news but you all deserve to hear because you loved him too.

Our hearts are shattered to say that this was the ONLY birthday Dryden will share with his family because two days later on May 18th Dryden let go. Our broken boy grew the most beautiful wings and flew from this tainted earth that caused so much suffering.  It came unexpected and that only adds to the hurt.  We loved him so very much and feel very blessed to have the almost 6 months we had with him but it wasn't enough. From the moment we knew he existed we knew he was ours and we really wish we could have spent a lifetime with him. We have two biological children with a terminal disease but I have never lost a child. Loosing a child is by far the hardest loss anyone can go through. He was so perfect and amazing and I spent so much time filling my life with his. He was a special kind of special. He was so loved and so cherished and is very missed.

Mama, Papa, and all your brothers and sisters will always love you. You will always be our sweet amazing boy. NOTHING can replace the love you gave our hearts. We are forever grateful to hold you in our hearts. Fly high our sweet love.

Papa and Me
Oh papa you make me laugh

Happy hands


Sitting without support

Mama and my Brother

Independent little man

He loved his pillow

In his big boy chair


Beautiful Boy

Story time, always one of the gang

His favorite spot

Siblings at play

Sweet dreams buddy.

''Not all of us can do great things but we can do small things with great love''
-Mother Teresa

Wednesday, May 17, 2017

The fate of the forever wait

                                                     Do you like having to wait?

Sometimes as we wait time seems to creep by for what feels life forever. At least it does for me. I had to go to Tractor supply last week for goat food and I swear  it felt I was in line for an half hour. The person ahead of me was dealing with a email issue and the system wasn't accepting his new information. There was only one register open. At the point of me being in line for 10 minutes a man comes up behind me. He huffs and waits maybe a minute before he began to get restless. He then started pacing and looking at his watch. A worker started to open a register near and despite me being their for much much  longer he literally took off like lightning to the register telling her thank goodness I didn't have to wait in that line. I didn't move but watched the line fill faster than I could of got to it. There are lots of times in our life were we have no control over our waiting, and it seems like time stands still. Most moments the reality is we are inpatient, feel entitled, and we have better things to do than wait, and people can be plain out rude with their disregard of the world around them. I waited a total of 13 minutes, and I watched people get upset about waiting less. Now think about this for me

                                                           What if you had to wait?

                                                                      AND WAIT.
                                                     WITH NO CHANGE EVER!



This is the reality of so many children and many adults trapped in institutions all over the world. Most of these countries are very poor unable to even afford proper food but they could do better. Some children live their entire life never leaving a crib. Many die young and many are still in a crib 16+ years later. Many still using a bottle and in a diaper when they shouldn't be. No toys, no art on the wall. No one picks them up, many will never see what it is like to go outside. When I adopted my children they were double diapered and it weighed more than they did. I think they might have got changed once a day.  I saw the tragedy of children living in cribs first hand. I adopted 3 children from cribs ages 15,14 and 6 last December, and one of the children I am planning to adopt this year is also in a crib. She is THIRTEEN!. The walls are bare, no toys hanging about. Her special need is DOWN SYNDROME!! NO CHILD deserves to spend forever in a crib but a child with DS can lead a pretty normal life. It is so sad. This child was transferred to an institution at a very young age and at that point she received very little care and very little change. Spending most of her days in a crib, her spirit nor her body had what it needed to grow.

                                             THIS SHOULD NOT BE HAPPENING.
                                                                      But. It. Is.

Now lets go back to the man in line at tractor supply. He felt entitled to his time and freedom. Maybe a bit to entitled to the point he was rude by cutting in front of others waiting longer. This little girl I plan to adopt has been waiting for 13 years not 13 minutes. Imagine that. It is nothing short of torture. I don't like sitting in the same spot for an hour so I especially could not imagine a life time of it. I know I don't paint a really good picture so maybe this will.

4 children way to old for cribs. All much older than they look.
Not a single toy in any of the cribs. Bare walls.( Reign is on the left) 

13 years!! She still waits.
Nothing in her crib not a single toy.

Finally she has a blanket. She holds tight to it.

This is Reign the little teenage girl we plan to adopt.
Her life is her crib.


There has never Ever been an adoption from her orphanage. From this institution NO child has ever escaped the fate of the forever wait.

In a place far away from Reign I adopted  4 children last year.

In December of 2016  we changed the fate of a child who was also in a crib. He spent 14 years alone, often sedated and sometimes tied up. Also way to small for his age. These photos are from his life in Ukraine. 

In the same institution we adopted another child who barely escaped fate. We adopted him just weeks before he aged out of the process of adoption. Also often tied up and very starved and sedated. These photos are from his life in Ukraine.

We changed the fate of one more child who spent most of her time in a crib, and was due to be transferred to an institution where she would spend ALL time in a crib, we don't expect she would have lived a year in those conditions due to her already terminal disease. Here she is placed in a chair for a photo in front of her crib.

As you know we adopted 1 other child but he was not bedridden waiting in a crib. What we did learn though was his life was still spent with lots of time waiting in his bed. I'm not sure why but it is very common that rather than dealing with the kids day to day they place them in bed. 


There are many children who are waiting that should not be in their cribs and you can help. You can help me adopt, you can share kids who need to be adopted, or you can adopt.

Here are some other kids who wait.

The first little girl has a family coming for her. Thank goodness. I have met her and she is in a very bad place stuck in a crib. She is 16.

Here is another boy who is with the girl above. Also trapped in a crib he is 8. Except this photo is before transfer. He is like a skeleton now. He had such a light about him and is available for adoption. I was his Christmas warrior last year and he has a grant over $1000. Meet Quinn.

Another child who really needs a family is Logan. Logan is 4 and due to be sent to a very bad institution this summer. One that is known for isolation and caging children and men for days on end. This particular institution does not do well for kids who are in a crib. Most die within the first year. Look at Logan! He is nothing short of amazing. He is in what is called a baby house orphanage now.  There is a charity that helps care for him and gives him therapy(he will loose all of that). He is doing great but we expect him to not survive the upcoming transfer please share him. His adoption grant has over $4500.

Lets not Let the Wait. Their fate is to die in their cribs but we can change that.

Go to the links of the two children above to donate to their waiting grants.

Or you could help us adopt by donating


Thank you so much to all who help.



Monday, May 1, 2017

HomeStudy Update

Our home study is almost complete and that means it is time to start dishing out the dossier. The paperwork process is almost as stressful as worrying about funding but I can dish it out pretty fast.  But I can't really start my dossier until I know funds are coming because it expires fast. We are ready to bust it out but funds have now stopped us. We need $2,400 more to continue seamlessly. This will cover the USCIS(immigration approval) fees and oversight agency fees(Hague certification) and fingerprints. There are lots more little fees along the way that we will tackle on our on but we need help with this to move forward. I would prefer not to travel in the winter because my kids at home are delicate and I don't want to leave them during sick season, they need me here. So lets get this knocked out fast so that we can get to our girls sooner. We are having to add another room to add the girls and that will be another adoption cost that we are independently tackling so it would be super awesome to get help now with these two things.

I have a video of both girls, and I will share them with you all to celebrate this goal once it is met. They are not in the same orphanage but rather in different parts of the country therefor this will be two separate adoptions with two courts. This makes things a bit more expensive but they are so absolutely worth it.
We are selling these kid shirts to help us along. They are premium shirts and come in multiple colors. size xs-xl. I believe that all my children are absolutely worth it. Don't you? Here is the link to order

We also have stickers in honor of DS awareness and our Extraordinary future daughter.
The stickers are an easy way to help and spread love for those who are extraordinary. Both the shirts and stickers print every three days. Here is the link to order,

I have some exciting news for you all. The little boy Jayce that I have blogged about a few times has found his family. He is a teen boy who was otherwise going to age out soon. I am absolutely thrilled beyond measure because he is in a very bad place. Just look at his body wasting away. This is the sad truth about the orphan crises, no way this boy should be almost 16. He is the same place as one of my girls, and that scares me, they need out fast.

Some more fun news is that my husband and I got out of the house and went on a date for the first time since we left for Eastern Europe last year. It felt weird and empty without my 7 littles but it was very needed and we had an amazing time. I think we will have to NOT wait so long next time but it is really hard to get out of the house and find care for all 7. BUT WE DID IT!

Thank you all very much for following our journey. If you feel led to help us tackle the financial stress that is trying to stop us in our tracks(slow us down) we would really appreciate it. The kids need a family. To tackle the fees I mentioned above they will need to be donated to either our PayPal.Me/lovemakesusstronger or to our You Caring Page.

Or if you need a tax deductible link we have one of those too, to help us with our huge final chunk.. Click her to donate via Reece's Rainbow to grow our family grant.

I hope you all have a blessed loved filled day, thank you for helping save orphans.

Friday, April 21, 2017

Girls love Diamonds- husband brag.

My husband, the father to almost 9 littles is an amazing man, he not only said yes we can adopt but he opened his heart to 4 kids our FIRST adoption and as soon as we got them home he said yes to two MORE. He wouldn't dare say No because he knows what that would mean for the children and it would kill him to know that he can help and wouldn't, so he does. It is why I do it.

Firstly we get zero government help, we didn't even qualify for the tax credit for our adoption so we will see zero of the money back, while lots of families do benefit, not us. My adopted kids are not on disability(although disabled), they are not on any waivers, we DO NOT get food stamps(This was recently assumed) It goes all the way down to we even home school our children so the government isn't even paying for our children's education like most. This can seem intimidating to those who really want to adopt but feel like they can't do it without help, The truth is that these kids have never had medical care, never had any education and they are dying. You alone  DO have SO MUCH to give.

My husband works hard to provide for every child in our home. He makes sure they all have what they need.  I am so proud of him, I am honored to have him in my life enabling me to give these precious children Love. He is such a great Dad/Papa and he is Rocking this adoption stuff like lots of dads I know. He deserves so much for what he has sacrificed and continues to sacrifice so that others can have a good, loving life.

Also a small piece of info for all those negative naysayers and opinionaters trying to take the credit from the fathers. The adoption process eliminates all people who would bring kids into this country just to mooch off of our government. It is why we need USCIS approval to immigrate the children here, and it is the purpose of the home study in part. We have to PROVE without a shadow of a doubt that we can do this with the income we have, and although the income that we have is often low it is enough because we have our priorities set to put our children first above all things and our life shows that.

We get lots of comments about how the government must take care of our kids, short answer NOPE We do. It isn't hard, we chose kids over Netflix, kids over cable, kids over a nice fancy cars, kids over wasted space in a home,. Honestly we even grow some of our food and have live-stock to make up the gap in our pantry. We have all we need and more. There is one thing though,  like all girls, I love  LOVE Diamonds! YES that is right girls, and can you believe that my husband got me FOUR DIAMONDS for Christmas last year?? You heard right, I named them Victoria, Bogdan, Dryden, and Daniel and boy do they shine.

I just want to give my and all wonderful husbands a bit of credit where deserved and to let everyone know that families don't adopt to get help, we adopt to help. But we are only human and YES sometimes we can't do it alone. For example: it was a community that helped pay for the diamonds my husband gave me last Christmas. It was because of all of you that we can do this. It isn't because of the government but US and YOU, Thank you for helping us get our kids home and continuing to help us with the ransom to bring our daughters home, you too deserve so much credit, thank you and thank you to my sweet husband.

If you would like to help us on our journey we have a You Caring Link and we now have a Reece's rainbow sponsorship Grant as well. Wahooo.


If you would like to help a family with the ransom of a saving a child please check out these sections of Reece's rainbow, many families trying to raise the ransom.






Because of Reece's rainbow, amazing advocates, and willing families I am so excited to also keep a lookout at this amazing link! It is here letting us all know who made it home.