#WorldAdoptionDay @daytonmomsblog

It’s hard to believe how much has changed since this picture was taken. Max is now 5 and is in his second year of preschool. Eli wasn’t even a blip on our radar, yet we can’t imagine our family without him. Adoption has changed so many people and so many families and we are excited to once again celebrate it through World Adoption Day.

World Adoption Day is a world-wide celebration of adoption. It is designed to celebrate family and to raise awareness for adoption.

The concept is so simple and so beautiful. Grab a sharpie, draw a smiley face on your hand and then post it on World Adoption Day, Nov. 9.

My wife has written an article on Dayton Moms Blog sharing more about the day. Go check it out and be involved!

How has adoption changed you? We’d love to hear your stories.

Come be a part of World Adoption Day.

My Name is Kate and I’m an Addict @DaytonMomsBlog

photo credit: Iker Merodio | Photography Welcome, Martin (the Beginning) via photopin (license)

If you have been following any part of our adoption journey, you may know we have a good relationship with Max’s birth mom, Mommy Kate. We have the opportunity to celebrate birthdays, Christmas and other occasions together.

A little over a year and a half ago Cheryl wrote about our relationship with Mommy Kate in the blog post Her Name is Kate. You can see the original post on Dayton Moms Blog, where many have had the opportunity to read a little about her journey.

Today, Kate reveals a little more about her story in post called My Name is Kate and I’m an Addict. She recounts the days leading up to Max’s birth and some of what transpired afterwards.

Here’s a portion of her story:

My Addiction was at 110% and I was drowning in it.

The days after that court hearing, where my son took on the name of another family were so difficult. I continued the cycle of using and jail and hating who I had become. I ended up in jail one last time and then entered a rehab center (again). While trying to get myself healthy, the love of my life died of a drug overdose. I knew then and there that I needed to change or I would not make it. At his funeral services, I saw my son again. The adoptive parents came to pay their respects to their son’s birth father, and it touched me that they came and I got to take him around and introduce him to the family. I knew that I was going to be different, I wanted to stop drowning in my addiction.

Take a few minutes to read what Mommy Kate shares. Our lives are forever changed through her and Max.

Our Son @DaytonMomsBlog

Almost two weeks ago we celebrated Eli’s first birthday. We gave him his own cupcake so he could go to town and make a mess and spread icing all over his face.

His birthday wasn’t just a celebration of his birth, but also of adoption. Cheryl wrote about her thoughts about Eli’s birth mom as we prepared to have his first birthday.

In final paragraph, she writes this:

Tomorrow he turns 1, and as I tuck him in bed, and kiss him, I’m thinking of you. I’m thinking of how far you have come from a short year ago, and what the future holds. I’m remembering how God answered my prayer and made it evident to me that our stories should be woven together, with one minute to spare. Tomorrow I’ll tell him how much we love him and tell him how much you love him and look forward to when we can celebrate his birthday together.

Adoption has taught us so many things  and we often think of our “extended family” as we go through the milestones of parenting.  Check out the entire post on Dayton Moms Blog.

Parenting 2.0 @DaytonMomsBlog

Cheryl is back on the Dayton Moms Blog today and her post looks at parenting in this season of our lives.

Many of you have read about our adoption journey as we have added two little boys to our family over the past 5 years. This Sunday (April 22) we will celebrate our four-year old’s Gotcha Day and we finalized the adoption of our youngest on February 14 of this year.

Cheryl writes about some of the things she has learned through parenting and how her view of being a mom has evolved over the years.  Here’s one example of what has changed:

At 25 and 29, I was obsessed with if my child was turning over when they should, and cooing the right way.  If I had a friend whose child did things sooner or better than mine, I would fret all night and doubt myself as a mother.  I wasted so much energy and lost so much sleep fretting over things that simply don’t matter.  

Parenting 2.0 taught me that every child is different and unique, and comparing them to other children isn’t helpful to them or you.

Go check out the post and marvel at the wisdom of my wife!

#WORLDADOPTIONDAY is Nov 9

You are invited to join us in celebrating #WorldAdoptionDay this year. It is a day to globally celebrate families created through adoption and all those who are touched by adoption.

For the past 4 years, people around the world have put a smiley face on their hand and posted it on social media with #WorldAdoptionDay.

We’ve seen people participate from multiple countries, host events all around the world, and influencers like Ellen DeGeneres, Shaquille O’Neal, Ernie Johnson Jr, Shonda Rhimes, Connie Britton and more participate.

I’d like to personally invite you to join us this year! Draw a smiley face on your hand and post a selfie on your social media account with #WorldAdoptionDay.

It’s easy, kind of fun and a great way to support a growing movement of celebrate the beauty of adoption. So, grab your sharpie and plan to post your smiley hand for #WorldAdoptionDay.

Putting a Period Where God Puts a Comma

A couple of weeks ago I received a review copy of Mark Batterson’s new book, Whisper. I’ve had the opportunity to read several of his books including The Circle Maker. Any of his books that I have read have proved helpful.  While I still need to finish Whisper, there have been a number of things I’ve highlighted and earmarked.

The subtitle of the book is How to Hear the Voice of God and Batterson writes about different voices that God uses to speak to us.

In one particular chapter I read this phrase: We put a period where God puts a comma.  Batterson is writing about doors that God opens and closes as we seek to know what He wants us to do.  He remarks that we interpret a closed-door from God to be a “no” when perhaps what God is saying is “not yet.”

As I read this particular chapter, I thought about our adoption experience.  Like many, we’ve had a number of starts and stops on the way (I’ve shared some of our experience in previous posts.)  We actually waited close to two years between potential adoptions.  Our son Eli is four and a half months old as I write this and we weren’t sure God wanted us to adopt again.  We had a feeling that perhaps that door was marked “closed.”

As it turns out, God was just saying, “Not yet.”  Things fell into place at the right time and we have added another little boy to our family.

Back to the chapter from Whisper, I think we were interpreting a “no” instead of a “not yet.”  Perhaps Batterson’s insight a page later in the chapter described us fairly well:  “Simply put, we want what we want when we want it, and usually we want it now.”

While there is no formula for hearing the voice of God, this chapter was a good reminder that what we perceive as a closed-door could be more of a delay than shut forever.  Because while most of us are by nature impatient, it may be that God is waiting for a better time or better situation or even a better us.

As I was looking back at the posts regarding our son’s adoption, I ran across this quote:  What God originates He orchestrates.

I think we are always learning how to understand and hear the voice of God.  No one has it perfected.  In the process this chapter was a good reminder to me that listening at times means waiting.

Granted, sometimes God tells us, “No,” – just like we do with our children – but there is also the potential for God saying, “Not yet.” Because He sees more, knows more and in control, we need to keep our ear tuned to Him.

When He does open the door, it can be a beautiful thing.