We are so excited to share our Ethiopian adoption adventure, and our CRAZY lives with all of you! Our hope is that it will encourage you to step out in faith to do what God has called you to do! There are FIELDS of fatherless children waiting for someone to care for them, to love them, to tell them of JESUS' love for them...will YOU be the one??

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Exciting Update from Lifesong for Orphans!

Do you remember that Hope Ethiopia:100 challenge we gave you? The one where YOU all completely exceeded our goals

And that one phone call where an AMAZING donor committed to match ALL donations (up to $130,000) to Lifesong Ethiopia through the end of 2011?

Well, we found out about that donor on November 17th! That's 45 days to raise $130,000... which made this goal seem next to impossible... in OUR eyes! However, as you all know... GOD had different plans for THESE kids -

and these kids - 

Plans that we could never had imagined... plans to give them hope and a future! 

Thanks to an AMAZING TEAM of individuals and their fundraising efforts, coupled with the provision of our Lord, THE MATCH HAS BEEN MET! Did you hear me? All ONE HUNDRED THIRTY THOUSAND DOLLARS has been donated for the children at the Adami Tulu and Ziway, Ethiopia schools! 

We stand in complete awe of our MIGHTY Jehovah Jireh! 

Thank you fundraising team for your efforts, for the way you never stop advocating for these children, and for our faith in our Lord God Almighty to provide for ALL of their needs! 

Thank you donors who stepped up to the challenge and did not let the dollar amount get in the way... but trusted that EVERY one of your dollars mattered! 

Thank you to all of you who advocated for these children, pray for them, and have invested in their lives... it will surely be an invest with an eternal reward! 

Check the Adami Tulu site often to learn more about The Project, the fundraising priorities, and what's in store for 2012! 

Friday, December 23, 2011

Linny's Coming for a Visit!!!

Linny, over at http://aplacecalledsimplicity.blogspot.com/ has moved to a new town and is feeling a little homesick, so we are inviting her into OUR home through our blog! So, WELCOME Linny!! These are our precious treasures!

We have been praying NON-STOP for this family for so long and LOVE, LOVE, LOVE their hearts for the orphan..and well...their hearts in general!;), so go ahead..share YOUR family pics so Linny can get to know YOU! Or visit her blog and get to know HER amazing family! You will NOT be sorry, I promise! You can link up here: http://aplacecalledsimplicity.blogspot.com/.

Merry Christmas from The Richard Family!!!

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

The $10 Challenge

While most of the world was out searching the malls for the perfect Christmas gift for that hard to buy for person, a little girl and her 4 older siblings were surviving by filling their bellies with dirt. How does this happen...? Lord, please don't let us forget there is NOTHING we can purchase that is better than the GIFT we have already received in you.

So the challenge is on. Can you shar
e just $10 of what the Lord has blessed you with? I challenge you to GIVE TEN and then TELL TEN people about the need- and then challenge them to do the same. Oh and the best part? Your donation to Eagles Nest Orphanage(Amy and Todd Block are missionaries there)will be matched up to $10,000! How is that for an awesome Christmas gift!? Let's be the hands and feet of Jesus folks! So these children, and all who will come after them, will never feel hunger again!

Please donate to: http://www.eaglesnestint.org/index.php and SHARE.

Monday, December 12, 2011

Because Some Have Asked.......

Thanks to a couple of sweet bloggy friends, that ol' money ticker is going UP! Praise God from whom all blessings flow!:)

Over the weekend I had a couple of people ask how they could make donations directly, instead of purchasing through one of our fundraisers.

So, if you would like to do that, you can send in donations through the Chip-In button on the right(which goes directly to our paypal account), or, you can send donations(anonymously or otherwise) directly to our agency who will credit it to our adoption account with them.

The agency address is:

West Sands Adoptions
1240 East 100 South #1
St. George, UT 84790

And again, all the fundraisers are still going on, so you can check those out at http://www.ordinaryhero.org/Ordinary_Hero/Store/Store.html http://richardfamily.olivetreepromise.com/


Thursday, December 8, 2011

Thou Shalt NOT Worry.....:)

No referral this week..maybe next week. They are working on "many" childrens' paperwork as I write this!:)

So far all four of our fundraisers have been ummm, shall we say, ineffective...meaning nothing has been donated so far(although I don't receive word from Just Love Coffee until a check comes in the mail:)). We are bummed...not because of the money...we know God can provide in whatever way he sees fit...but it does SEEM we're kind of...alone...

Friends, we NEED you..not your money...YOU! We need to know your lifting us up in prayer, storming heaven for us! We need to know that when we bring our daughter home, you will STILL ask about us, pray for us, etc....NOT alone...

Just let us know you're out there;)!

Here's hoping next week brings us an early Christmas gift!:)

*EDIT: Thank you so much for your prayers! PLEASE do NOT feel as though I'm pressuring you to give! It's been simply wonderful to know my bloggy friends are PRAYING...!:)

Monday, December 5, 2011

Help Bring HOPE to Ethiopia!

Children at the Lifesong Ethiopia school  are fed 2 nutritious meals per day, provided with a quality education, and taught the message of Jesus Christ. This gives kids like Beza the hope they need in order to break free from gripping poverty.

We currently have a need to build a 12-room expansion to our existing school, in order to reach more children like Beza. We have been blessed, by the generosity of a donor, to be able to MATCH all donations to the Ziway and Adami Tulu Schools between now and December 31st... up to $130,000!!!

This week, the 5th through the 9th, we invite you to join Hope Ethiopia:100. We are looking for 100 people to give a one-time $100 donation

Joining this team will not only give hope to kids like Beza, but your dollars will be matched AND you'll be entered into a drawing for a FABULOUS gift basket (details below).

Help us achieve the next $10,000 by being a part of our Hope Ethiopia: 100 Team!

Together we can make a difference in the lives of these kids!  Together we can do more to bring joy and purpose to orphans!

And don't forget to keep checking the Lifesong blog for updates all week!

*Gift basket includes: $100 itunes or amazon gift card, Lifesong t-shirtLifesong cookbook,Journey On CD, handmade necklaces & note cards by orphans in Zambia, handmade ornament from a child in Ukraine, 5 bags of Gobena coffeeGobena coffee
Gobena t-shirt, andGobena tote bag. This basket is worth over $250!

*To commit via check, please send an email to info@lifesongfororphans.org. Make check payable to Lifesong for Orphans, indicate 'preference Hope Ethiopia: 100' in the memo.

Friday, December 2, 2011

Celebrating Home Fundraiser!!

NEW Fundraiser!! This sight as VERY INEXPENSIVE candles and goodies that are perfect for Christmas gift exchanges or for teacher's gifts!! They have yummy cookie mixes, pie mixes, and ornaments...SO MUCH to choose from!!!

We get up to 50% of sales and the sweet lady doing it for us is giving us her commission as well!! WOW!! Thanks Veronica!:)

SO, what are you waiting for?!?! GO SHOP!:) Thanks!


Thursday, December 1, 2011

NEW Fundraising Option!!

To say I've been excited(stressed)is an understatement! NUMBER 2!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! I've been doing weird things, like cleaning my house..just in case we get a referral today...MAKES.NO.SENSE!!!!

Here's the deal, we are about $3000 short once we get this referral, so we are giving you LOTS of opportunities to help if you so desire!

The latest: A CHALLENGE from Ordinary Hero!! We are signed up as new affiliates, meaning we get 40% of what YOU purchase from them to go toward our adoption!! Yippee! The challenge? They are also giving away a $500 grant to the top three sellers!! Let’s do some math…if we sell $1000 in product- we earn $400 (40%) plus if we are in the TOP 3 sellers, then we have earned an additional $500 in grant money. This will be some of the easiest money we have ever fundraised!


NOW is the time to order Ordinary Hero gear. Shop today through December 11th at midnight ... 40% of your purchase goes toward my adoption. Simply choose my name(Terry Richard) from the drop-down affiliate box at checkout. There is even a specials Tab where prices have been slashed! And remember top seller receives a $500 grant from OH! Can you please help me? They have GREAT items to choose from..Take a look and Thank you!!! :) Oh, and PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE feel free to share on YOUR BLOG as well!!!:)

Here's the link: You'll have to copy and paste it into your browser..


Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Number 2!!!!!!!

Holy COW! Just found out we are number 7 on the total "list", and NUMBER 2 on the infant girl list!!! Ummmm, forget the two months...it's coming quick here folks! AAAAHHHHHH! Excited, scared, freaking out....yep, I'm a BASKET CASE!!!!

We have about two weeks beyond our referral to come up with $2400 for the last installment of the program fee and about 6 weeks after that, another $1200 plus travel, and another $800 for travel shots for both of us....we just DID NOT expect a referral this quickly!!

Would you pray with us?!?! That God will provide in miraculous and wonderful ways, so HE gets all the glory?!?! And don't forget, YOU can help us out TREMENDOUSLY by purchasing from our stores at Olive Tree Promise and Just Love Coffee!

Thanks friends! Hoping for an early Christmas gift this year;)!

Friday, November 25, 2011

It's time to SHOP!

Every purchase benefits our adoption!

This Christmas you can shop from the comfy, coziness of your own HOME, AND shop with a purpose!! YAY!

We SHOULD be receiving our referral in the next TWO MONTHS...at least that's the timeframe that's being quoted right now....TWO MONTHS!! OH.MY! We still have to raise about $3000!!! We NEED you!! We NEED you to stand with us and help us bring her home! We have NEVER doubted God's provision, but it's daunting to look at how much we still need. We trust Him in all things, and this is no different, but we ask that you would prayerfully consider donating to our adoption.

It would have been great to have ALL the money up front, but that would not have required much faith now would it?!?!:) Sooooo, we are asking you to check out Olive Tree Promise(above) and Just Love Coffee(below), and be a part of our story to bring our daughter home!

They both have many products to choose from, including the SO, SO CUTE t-shirt, "Superman Was Adopted" at Olive Tree, which is only available until the 5th of Dec.!!! There's coffee, wall-prints, t-shirts, and so much more!

So, PLEASE check them out and consider shopping for your loved ones through our stores this Christmas!

You can also keep track of what the Lord has already provided, with the list of adoption fees, etc. that I've posted on the left sidebar. It's always good to look back and see that indeed His heart IS for the orphan and He will make it happen as His provision has shown!

And as ALWAYS, you can just make a monetary donation with the chip-in button on the right sidebar if you choose. THANK YOU!!!!!! We cherish your support and prayers as we walk this journey to ETHIOPIA!


Thursday, November 24, 2011

Happy Thanksgiving!!!

Today, I am thankful...

For my Savior who died for me.

For my husband who loves me UNCONDITIONALLY!

For my 6 beautiful, living, breathing TREASURES...they make me laugh EVERY day!

For adoption....that before time began HE made a way for me to be in His family!

For friends who see me in all my UGLY, and still love me.

For a home, food, clothing, and access to the BEST medical care.

For a church that preaches God's word without apology!

For orphan care organizations that are making it possible for us to adopt our Ethiopian princess, and serving those sweet kiddos left behind.... TIRELESSLY!

For those on the mission field who are preaching the word and fulfilling the Great Commission on foreign soil...TOTALLY surrendered to the gospel of Jesus Christ!

For the freedoms we have in our country, defended by those who are serving in our military.

And oh, so much more!

I am truly BLESSED today:)!

Friday, November 18, 2011

Blogging For Orphans!!

Make a Difference in ONE Life!

What is your holy discontent? What is your God-given passion on this earth? You know, that one thing that MOVES you to action, that brings you to tears, and causes you to lose sleep? We have a passion, a yearning to see justice for the fatherless!
"Learn to do right; seek justice. Defend the oppressed. Take up the cause of the fatherless; plead the case of the widow." - Isaiah 1:17

2011 Gifts of Purpose from Lifesong for Orphans on Vimeo.

It's that time of year again. Holiday music rings through your speaker systems. Decorations light up your street corners. Families gather together.It's the season of love, joy and family.  

As we celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ during this season of giving, we often forget to give to those who NEED it most! This year give differently. Give FAMILY to the 147 million orphans worldwide who dream of belonging. Give HOPE to children living on the streets whose only Christmas wish is survival.

What if, this year, your family gave a gift to those who need it most? A gift that won't fit under the tree? 

Would you consider making a difference in ONE LIFE...

  •  Help a child break free from gripping poverty.

  •  Give the love of Jesus through Christian mentors.

  •  Give a future to an orphan's caregiver.

This year join Lifesong for Orphans in giving a gift with purpose. A gift that will speak Jesus to a child. Introducing Lifesong's 2011 Gifts of Purpose Catalog

NOW, for even more exciting news....

In Ethiopia, children need an education to break free from gripping poverty. Public schools are lacking, so kids are left behind without the  HOPE of an education or future. Our current Lifesong school is not only giving by teaching these children about Jesus, but also feeding 350 hungry children 2 meals each day. We currently have a need to build a 12-room expansion to our existing school... please join us to make a difference in a child's life.

As of last night, we have a generous donor that has stepped up to MATCH all donations to the Ziway and Adami Tulu Schools in Ethiopia between now and December 31st... up to $130,000!!!!!! Can you tell I'm excited? What a GENEROUS way to make the most of your giving and bless the children and families in these communities! Let me tell you first hand, these schools NEED to be expanded... these children NEED an education... they NEED to be fed each day... they NEED to hear about Jesus! Lets give HOPE to these precious children in Ethiopia!

Would you join us in prayer as we seek to make the need known?

***You can use the link above to make a matched donation OR select any of the Hope Ethiopia options below. 

Gift of $30 cares for 2 children for 1 month.

Gift in Honor of

Gift of $525 cares for 35 children for 1 month.

Gift in Honor of

Gift of $1,500 furnishes one classroom.

Gift in Honor of

Also, don't forget that you can give a gift in honor of a loved one this holiday season!

Saturday, October 8, 2011

Here We Are, Send US!!!

I just really need to share what's been going on in my heart recently...

For some time now(MONTHS) I've been feeling that the Lord may be asking US to GO to the mission field(foreign)...specifically, to work with, and spread the gospel to orphans/underprivileged children full-time!! Yeah, yeah, I know...CRAZY, isn't it?!?!? But, I just can't shake it!! At times it is so strong that I have weird and crazy thoughts run through my mind...for example, this summer, when I was stocking up on school desks, supplies, etc...this voice in the back of my mind kept saying, "Keep it simple Renae, you can't take that with you to the mission field." I would have blown it off, if it hadn't happened MULTIPLE times about multiple things!!

I don't really know what to make of it all. All I know is that, the more and more I read scripture and think about our PURPOSE as Christians, the more unsettled I feel about our "American lives"... The more nothing makes sense EXCEPT going!! I want to have a fully surrendered heart to WHEREVER the Lord leads, as does my husband....so we are obviously praying diligently about what He may have for us, and it seems the confirmations we pray for are always coming through something I have read/heard/etc....and he hasn't heard that same confirmation, so we "wait expectantly" for what our next step might be...or not be:).

I want the Lord to lead us through my husband, as it should be, so I'm asking you to PRAY as well. That IF this is from HIM(and not my own pre-menopausal craziness;)), He will make it clear to BOTH of us, and that our children will somehow sense it as well. My hubby loves the Lord, and has a passion for discipleship and teaching God's word, so we want this to be a TEAM endeavor for sure!:)

It's exciting to say "YES, LORD!!"...but incredibly humbling and scary all at the same time.

Now...for a list of ALL the reasons why I should NOT be on the mission field..AHEM..

1. I'm easily angered
2. I have food "issues"
3. I LOVE hair dryers, make-up, and being CLEAN(not that you couldn't be clean on the mission field...just sayin')
4 I can be pretty "sassy" at times
5. I don't like snakes, bugs, or any HARMFUL animal
6. I'm prideful
7. I HATE flying overseas...or anywhere for that matter...
8. I yell at my kids sometimes..therefore certainly not worthy of working with children.
9. I hate change...no, I love change....apparently I'm wishy-washy as well.
10. I love television...and radio...(not that you can't have T.V. and radio on the mission field)
11. I can be VERY self-centered
12. I LOVE having a hospital ten minutes away!
13. I also have trust issues(see #12)
14. We still owe college debt...so, not always great with money..
15. I've sinned in ways you'll never know...

So there you have it....all the ways God CAN'T use me(or my family) on the mission field.

And did I mention how very THANKFUL I am for His GRACE that covers all that JUNK above;)!

Friday, October 7, 2011

An Ava Update

We just finished up our third post-placement visit for Ava! WOW, hard to believe she's been home that long.

So, I thought it was time for an update:).

Ava is speaking clearly and in full sentences now, but still struggles with some things/topics...she gets hot/cold mixed up, inside/outside, button/unbutton, and sometimes open/close and off/on. She communicates all the basics, and we can have simple conversations. She doesn't understand "when", "why", or "how" questions consistently....but "where" and "what" are pretty clear(those are more concrete). She also mixes up "meals".

We are doing preschool here at home with her, but today we took her for a pre-school screening at our local school district. I just feel that she is not catching up as quickly as she should for being home 15 months and is still about a year behind, and if I can get her some help with that, then I will. So, they agreed that there are language issues and fine motor issues that need "further evaluation", so once those are done, and if she "qualifies" for services, we will put her in their preschool four days a week, half days, and she will get some speech therapy etc. She IS learning to count and write some..she switches hands often and doesn't know how to "copy" something I draw(such as a shape...), well, unless it's a circle. Scissors are hard because her hands are SO stinkin' tiny...the opening on the child scissors is still too big for her!

I really WANTED to be able to help her catch up, I am a TEACHER after all....and maybe she would eventually....but again, I don't want to assume there's nothing going on cognitively, and that it's just "language acquisition", when it may not be. Plus, I think it puts further strain on our relationship at this point because I just don't know how to get her to understand certain concepts, and I get very frustrated. I'm a little worried that I won't be able to homeschool her at all....and I feel TERRIBLY guilty about that!!!!!:(

We also learned today that her vision in her "good" eye(that sounds bad?) is only 20/60, so she will definitely get glasses. The ophthalmologist never gave us a "number" and didn't make it sound too bad, so we kept putting that off.... She also has depth perception issues with the blindness as well. For example, we have a wooden deck that is painted all brown, and at every line in the wood, she hesitates and thinks it's a step...

I've also wondered if she may have color-blindness. She can get yellow, pink, orange, brown, and black(although sometimes she even forgets those the very next day....uggggh)...but red, blue, and green totally elude her!!! I need some sort of test for that....

Eating....she eats okay, but prefers salty and crunchy above all else, and would exchange her very LIFE for a drink!!! It's a point of manipulation at church as well, she asks the SS teachers for drinks constantly if we don't remind her not to. She has only gained 2 lbs in the past 15 months, and 1 inch in height. That worries me some.... What else...hmmmmm.. She cannot drink juice, eat gummy candy...or similar candies because they give her diarrhea. Anyone know what may be up with that?

As far as attaching, I THINK she's doing well.... We did have one incident a couple of weeks ago at church when her teacher mentioned going to Meijer after church and Ava wanted to come with her....she cried when we picked her up because she really thought she was going with her!!! This particular teacher holds her a lot too.... I have to keep reminding her that I'M her Mommy and she has to stay with US.... So, I don't know....it's like the more comfortable she becomes with us, the more "attachment issues" we see....weird...

We still have not seen any type of behavior issues with her. She is gentle and sweet, and a loving little girl. We are blessed!

I think that's it....you probably have learned more than you wanted to about her, huh?!;) And I'm pretty sure I used WAY too many " " in this post!!!;)

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Blogging For Orphans!

Here's what's going on over at Lifesong For Orphans!

Brush to Berries from Lifesong for Orphans on Vimeo.

"Simply giving this person money is treating the symptoms rather than the underlying disease and will enable him to continue with his lack of self-discipline... a better solution would be to develop a relationship that says, we are here to walk with you and to help you use your gifts and abilities to avoid being in this situation in the future'" (An excerpt from the book, When Helping Hurts)

Lifesong is serving the people of Zambia... the orphaned, the at-risk, and the poor... by utilizing the land that is, like the people, so full of potential. href="http://r20.rs6.net/tn.jsp?llr=bfvcjhcab&et=1107842092438&s=2748&e=001dXu91IU0GxXvFZlG43TM2DhH_zHYGw8Iw1DVV6o6eF4-Gm2qYSYaF7YuM4ISUaLQrQGxIIdRcE1eTsbwfnPFSiIGWqgCmAIE-48zPdgtOQ9Zkdr1WewdmczjEzg3Js_re3WdJw7KJ8XmexEqULnepg==" target="_blank">Lifesong farms-Zambia reaped its first strawberry harvest in June, and local grocers have been purchasing the berries. With additional acres to farm, we are hoping to process some of the berries and begin marketing Lifesong Farms Strawberry Jam.

By harvesting fruit, we are able to serve more orphans by providing the gift of a job at Lifesong's gardens and self worth to an orphan's caregiver. We are also able to provide future employment for our kids as they transition into adult living, develop a system to raise funds to help cover operational costs, and develop expertise that can be replicated in multiple countries where Lifesong serves. Most of all, we are seeking to glorify Jesus as we teach others how He walked 


1st PRIZE: Lifesong is giving away a 1-night hotel stay for the LIVE ORPHAN SUNDAY event in Kansas City!!! Let me just tell you, this event will be FABULOUS!!!

2nd PRIZE: Lifesong is giving away FREE Gobena Coffee for 1 year - 2 lbs per month shipped straight to your home.


HOW do you enter? Well, I'm glad you asked! There are several ways to enter. PLEASE LEAVE A SEPARATE COMMENT ON THIS LIFESONG POSTING FOR EACH ENTRY, including your email address so Lifesong is able to contact you!!!

1. Share how the Lord is working in and through your adoption/orphan care ministry (1 entry)

2. Re-post this Zambia blog posting on YOUR blog to share what the Lord has been doing at Lifesong Zambia (1 entry)

3. Tell about an Orphan Sunday event you had or attended in the past (1 entry)

4. Tell your plans for THIS YEAR's Orphan Sunday on Nov. 6th (1 entry)

5. Re-post this on your facebook wall (1 entry)

6. Re-post this on your twitter page (1 entry)

7. Post on YOUR blogs, facebook, or twitter and tell Lifesong that I sent you (1 entry)

8. Tell what you think about the 'Brush to Berries' video - what moved you, what stood out to you, what are you excited about? (1 entry)

9. Become a fan of Lifesong on facebook here (1 entry)

10. Send an email to info AT lifesongfororphans DOT org asking to receive our monthly updates (1 entry)

PLEASE leave a separate comment on Lifesong's post for EACH entry, including your email address so they are able to contact you!

***Giveaway starts immediately and ends at midnight on Monday, October 3rd.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011


Today our little thermometer on the right sidebar has made a HUGE leap:)!!! Yipppeee JESUS, we got a GRANT!

So thankful and humbled to be chosen! THANK YOU Show Hope! You totally ROCK!:)

But we still have a little ways to go.....

SOOOO....don't forget we have a coffee fundraiser going on. Just click on the link in the left sidebar to go to our page at Just Love Coffee!

Or... you can click on this link to go to our page at Olive Tree Promise: http://alexanderfamily.olivetreepromise.com/families/profile.aspx/24/richardfamily/

They have really cool stuff and are a wonderful organization that helps adoptive families raise the funds to bring home their little ones!:)

OR, if you want to make a cash donation, you can click on the ChipIn button on the right as well.

We ask you to pray, first and foremost....and if the Lord leads you to give then give! Thank you so much!

We're hoping to use our tax refund to pay for travel costs...and hopefully we'll have a baby by then;)!

Every little bit helps!

Sunday, August 28, 2011

The Need!

Sharing from our friends over at Building The Blocks today! What an amazing opportunity to share the love of Christ in a tangible way!:) Go for it!:)

One need...
I knew before even laying my eyes on them that the children who attend the Manna Feeding program here at Eagles Nest would steal my heart... and sure enough they have. :)

Monday through Friday they walk between one and two miles to come and eat a meal and learn a little bit more about the One who created them and the One who loves them more than they could possibly understand. Some travel carry for younger siblings along the way, some walk in groups and some come alone. They are often dirty, tired, and coughing... but almost always have a look of hope in their eyes.

Yesterday when Pedro led the devotion he asked the children how we could be praying for them and some of the children shared their concerns about sick parents and parents needing work. But what blew me away was the ones who shared praises of safety and praises of being given the meal they were about to be served. Such a small thing to so many of us and something I know I have almost always taken for granted.

As the children gobbled down their meal and their little bellies were filled there was one thing that I just couldn't take my eyes off of...

their shoes.

As I looked at child after child's feet my heart ached. Shoes are precious here and something not one of them takes for granted. 2 days ago I was (attempting) to talk to a couple little girls in Spanish while some of the other children were playing soccer. I couldn't help but to notice how one little girl kept reaching down and rubbing at her feet. As I gently took her shoes off I notice the sores on her toes and how they had been so crammed into the shoes that were too small for her feet and how swollen they were. So, I did the only thing I knew how to do, I offered her a pair of Kadens who happen to wear the size she needed. They were boys shoes but that didn't matter a bit to her. Her beautiful smile said it all as she walked away proudly in her new shoes.

Many of you have asked me to let you know if there are needs here. There are so many I don't even know where to begin. So many that often times it becomes overwhelming and I wonder how one pair of shoes could even begin to make a difference. But it is in those times that the Lord reminds me to take it one day at a time, one moment at time, one child at a time...

A pair of shoes here cost approximately $15 a pair. While shoes can be shipped (although shipping is expensive) sizes for the children are not always right. If anyone is interested in purchasing a pair of shoes for a child they can send the money through paypal to http://www.eaglesnestint.org/Donate-to-the-Eagles-Nest_f08529.html You will receive a confirmation number and then you can email me at blockamy@hotmail.com and let me know that you donated money for a child's shoes. We will then size that childs feet, take pictures of that child receiving their new shoes and send it to you. :)

The need here is so great... and I realize that not all of us can do everything but at the same time if I do not let the needs be known than people don't know how to help if the Lord has laid it on their heart. Perhaps you know someone who has a birthday coming and this would make a great gift to them instead of trying to come up with an idea to give to someone who already has enough. Perhaps it's a good project for a Sunday School class or even a family who is mission minded.

Jesus does not separate the physical needs from spiritual needs- He attends to both. As followers of Christ I believe it is a blessing to do the same. Thanks for being His hands and feet here on earth.

Be the Change!


OH, and if you want to support the Blocks as missionaries in Guatemala, please go click on that little "Backing the Blocks" button on the RIGHT sidebar...we can't all go, but we CAN all be SENDERS!:)

Friday, August 26, 2011

While The Kids Are Away......

Phew! Everyone is at Grandma's and I have a...few...moments......to.......YYAAAAWWWWNNN!

Yeah, it's been that kind of week;).

We started homeschool this week and we are all POOPED!

I've been planning for months for our new year, and let me just say...this week was HARD!

Maybe because I decided to change everyone's curriculum AND add Caleb and Ava doing K-4 this year....hmmmmm...

AND, I've redone my classroom which has me SUPER excited, cause it's so CUTE!:) I like having a "real classroom"...I'm just nerdy that way:) Never mind that the other side of it is the play area and is always a MESS! I'll spare you those pics;).


Here's what we're doing:

N-Connections Academy(online), 7th grade

L-Connections Academy...no..wait...after four days of crying that didn't work out, so....now we're doing Bob Jones English/Math/Bible, Road Trip USA, Connections Social Studies/Spelling, and Young Scientist's Club, 4th grade(and I've stopped crying;))

E-Horizons Math, Abeka Language, Penmanship(Mom-made), Abeka Spelling, Road Trip USA, Young Scientist's club/Abeka Exploring God's World, BJU Bible, 2nd grade

S-Horizons Math, Abeka Language/Writing/Spelling/Health, Road Trip USA, Young Scientist's Club, BJU Bible, 1st grade

C&A-Letter of Week Curriculum(http://confessionsofahomeschooler.com), plus lots of hands on goodies:)! My goals for Ava are learning colors, shapes, and pre-writing...she may need outside help to catch her up at some point though...I would say she is at least a year behind right now.

Tired yet? ME TOOOOO!

Here's some pics for ya! Oh, and "note to self"....NEVER spend 6 HOURS at the fair the day before homeschooling starts...N.E.V.E.R!

Sorry the pics are mixed up....I'm just too stinkin' tired to redo them:).

Thursday, August 18, 2011

It IS Our Problem! UPDATE!

From an on-fire Momma over at http://www.nogreaterjoymom.com/2011/08/because-it-is-our-problem.html. PLEASE PRAY AND HELP!! Hop on over and read about how you can help rescue this treasure!

This little girl's adoption is FULLY FUNDED..in 24 HOURS over $23,000 was raised to RESCUE this sweet girl!! Can you say Yippeeee Jesus?!?!?:)

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Fall Is In the Air!

Yes, friends, it's that time of year! Time to snuggle with your hubby and sip a delicious cup of COFFEE!

We're so excited to be signed up with Just Love Coffees and can't wait for you to visit(and hopefully purchase from) our store there!

But I'm getting ahead of myself...let me tell you how this wonderful fundraising program began at Just Love Coffee.

Rob Webb knows coffee. When Rob was two years old, his father started Webb's Coffee Service, which blossomed into a full-blown refreshment service supplying businesses in Nashville, TN and the surrounding areas, and is now run by Rob.

Rob Webb knows the adoption process. In the summer of 2008, Rob and his wife Emily were called to adopt from Ethiopia. After much prayer and discussion with their first two children they started their adoption journey in August 2008. During the flurry of paperwork and preparation, Rob & Emily read books not only on adoption in general, but specifically on Ethiopia. Learning that Ethiopia is the birthplace of coffee caught Rob's attention, and after reading about the living conditions and wages of the average coffee farmer, he was compelled to take action. What developed through his reading and his trip to Ethiopia to unite with his daughters was a realization that he could combine his expertise and longstanding desire to roast his own coffees with his desire to help others. Just Love Coffee Roasters was born! Roasting Fair Trade Specialty coffees, Just Love uses proceeds to help an Ethiopian orphanage and families adopting not just from Ethiopia, but from anywhere in the world.

So, there you have it! You'll not only help us bring our daughter home, but those sweet ones left behind in Ethiopia as well! It's a WIN-WIN situation!:)

So, START SHOPPING!:) Our URL is http://www.justlovecoffee.com/TheRichardFamily. This will take you right to our page there, and you can shop from there:).

And for those of you who AREN'T all that fond of coffee...they have other goodies for sale at Just Love as well..AND..we are also opening another "store" at another wonderful sight for adoptive families..so, stay tuned!

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Too Long.....

WOW! It's been way too long, and I've been a BAD, BAD blogger!

So, let's pick up with where I left off:). We had a wonderful party for Caleb and Ava's birthday..a cook-out actually..but the pics were terrible because the wind was blowing 25 miles per hour!!!! Oh well... Ava had fun, but it was more chaos than anything due to the wind...people having to chase their plates across the yard and all:\.

Gotcha Day was July 5th....honestly a little difficult to look back on with "fondness" because of the bonding issues we have, but we celebrated with peanut butter cookies! She hated them...:(. I need to lower my expectations about "special days" I think.

Then let's see...the 4th of July we went to the zoo and to see fireworks. She shook and was definitely a little freaked out by it all, but she didn't cry:).

Then the computer crashed for two weeks and I was without my "lifeline"...seriously sad when you communicate mostly through a computer!

I've also been working feverishly to get ready for homeschooling this year...LOTS of copying, printing, and laminating goin' on around here!;) I'm using the preschool curriculum from confessionsofahomeschooler.com for Ava and Caleb, and it is a LOT of work to get together, but looks fun, so I'm excited! Now if I can figure out a way to get Caleb to sit still for the hour it will take to get through it!;) GEESH!!

What else...oh yes! Our dossier made it to Ethiopia and we are NUMBER 22!! Our agency(West Sands) is saying 6 months till referral...SERIOUSLY??? See that little chip-in button on the left? Yeeeeaaahhh, that's gotta MOVE or we're in T.R.O.U.B.L.E!;)

We also completed our fingerprints for USCIS on August 1, so we're waiting to hear back about that as well.

Then my oldest daughter was in the hospital for a couple of days, with what we thought was meningitis!! GOOD TIMES!! NOT! She really didn't even feel bad after the first day, but they insisted she stay...SOOOOO, we missed our first Bulgarian adoptee reunion...totally bummed!

Then the computer POWER CORD went out...and so did the battery..siiiiigggghhh. Good thing the kids got a "free" computer to use with their online school this year...and that's where I am today.. I don't have access to our pics and stuff from the zoo, etc...but hopefully can get those up soon.

I would just ask for prayer as we continue to fill out grant applications and save money for the next set of fees at referral($9200). And for this next school year as I am homeschooling FIVE different grades(I must be totally LOONEY...or I WILL be at the end of this school year!!)

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Quick Adoption Update

Well after WAY TOO LONG getting it finished, our dossier is FINALLY off to our agency, and thanks to our handy-dandy adoption refund, our I600A is sent as well! WOO-HOO!!

Unfortunately, due to other circumstances, said refund has dwindled down drastically! Bummer. But have no fear, the Lord will provide through this, that, and whatever way He pleases...

So, now if there are no issues with our dossier it will be sent off for authentication, then on to Ethiopia. So, praying for a "thumbs-up" with the dossier and a quick fingerprint appt. for the I600A. Also, if any of you in Ohio(ahem..VALERIE RIEBEN)have been able to WALK IN for the appt., instead of waiting for the actual fingerprint appt. DATE, let me know!:)

Thanks to all those who donated for the puzzle fundraiser even though it totally bombed overall...you are truly a blessing! Maybe I'll keep that one going....we'll see.

What else??? Hmmmmm, oh I know! We'll be celebrating TWO little four-year olds' birthdays on Monday, so stay tuned for pics and hopefully video of Ava's first birthday with us...all she really understands is the "presents" part, but she's ready;)!

Coming up.....a post on Post Adoption Depression...IT'S REAL my friends, trust me!

Thursday, June 23, 2011