Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Yard Sale and Fundraising

Well I wanted to remind everyone about our adoption yard sale coming up next weekend. May 4-5 (that is a Friday and Saturday). It will start at 7 and end when it starts slacking off! We have gathered up a lot of things but still would love to have more! If you have ANYTHING that you would like to get rid of please consider donating it to our adoption yard sale! We will be having the yard sale in Kinston at the home of one of our church members, (who are so awesome for letting us have it there!). It is right off Hwy 52 near the Big Little (for all you local people!) I know that everyone who reads this cannot come to our yard sale because of distance or stuff going on, but would you consider giving towards our adoption in another way??

Great way to lead into my next bit of news. We will be starting fundraising through a non profit called Ordinary Hero. They are AWESOME! I got to meet the founder at the adoption retreat I attended in March who is also an adoptive mom to a child from Ethiopia. They not only help adoptive families fundraise but they help children get adopted and actually go overseas to minister to people. (more on that in a sec).
They have a store on their website where they sell very cool tshirts, coffee mugs, etc. But the coolest thing that they sell are donations for items taken to people IN Africa. The example she gave us was you can actually buy a donkey (by buying a donation). Part of the money will go to us and the donkey is given to lets say a woman who for a living carries firewood up a mountain everyday on her back. This donkey enables her to keep doing what she does just in a better way. YEAH AWESOME! So in that way you are not only helping us bring Kristian home but ministering to a family in Africa. When you go to their store and buy things, at checkout you will see a drop box for fundraising affiliates. There you will click on that and find my name (Tori Posey) and click on it so that the money from whatever you buy goes to me. 40% from each item purchased goes towards our adoption and the rest goes back to Ordinary Hero so that they can continue to make products that go towards helping adoptive families. PLEASE share with everyone about this because they make great gifts and great ways to minister in a tangible way to people in another country, and it helps us out too!
I am going to try to figure out how to create a button where you can click on that to go to their website but for now you can click on and go to the store and check it out!

Again, thank you for all of your prayers and support as we continue on in this adoption process. Pray for us as we send in our dossier in the next couple of weeks, as we continue to raise the funds to pay for the adoption, as we WAIT A LONG TIME FOR OUR SON TO BE HERE!, and as we await the arrival of our second son, Asher, who will be here in August. Lots going on for us this year but we know that God is with us through it all and that He is so good. We praise Him for allowing us to be parents to soon to be three boys!

Friday, April 20, 2012

Long time no hear!!! Lots to catch up on!!!

Wow, wow, wow! I have not blogged since November!!! I'm horrible at this! Too much has happened to blog everything, but most of you know a lot about it anyway. First of all God's plans are so much bigger than mine could ever be. We started the adoption process thinking that we wouldn't try to have another biological child until after the adoption. haha yeah right God says. On December 12, Gabe's birthday I found out that I was 5 weeks pregnant. So I screamed for Ben and then as you could probably guess I went and told my entire family: NOT!!! I immediately called my social worker of all people!!! Praise the Lord we went with the adoption agency that we did because they now have a program called concurrent family building, which means if you get pregnant during the process you can keep going and not have to quit! I am praising God for my surprise little boy, Asher, because our wait time just for a referral (picture and medical info) is 18-24 months at this point in time. I will have plenty to keep me busy while we wait for Kristian (our baby boy from Ethiopia).

As far as adoption paperwork we are down to like literally two or three pieces of paperwork. I'm not waiting on anyone except me! (argg, exactly what I didn't want to happen). This pregnancy has literally thrown me for a loop! I truly believe that we will be DTE (have our dossier sent to Ethiopia)in the next two or three weeks. Woo hoo!!!!!!!!! Once that happens we will officially be on the wait list.

I was able to go to an adoption retreat a few weeks ago where I got to meet hundreds of ladies who have the same passion that I do. The Lord taught me so much through that retreat. His timing is perfect is a big reminder that I received. And I'm learning through experience that it is. It is absolutely perfect. Our verse for the weekend was Ecclesiastes 3:11. "He has made everything beautiful in its time." I'm also thankful that I got to spend some time with my friend and former pastor's wife, Cole. I got just as much encouragement out of the drive there and back as I did at the actual conference. Thanks Cole!

Last thing I am going to post about today is that we are going to be having an Adoption yard sale/bake sale. I am most likely going to have it on a Friday and a Saturday. May 4 and 5. Location still is up in the air. If you would join me in praying for this yard sale I would be grateful. Because of so many of you and many others we already have the money to send off our dossier to Ethiopia. But once we do our adoption account will be pretty much depleted. We will have to pay an equally big amount once we accept a referral. If you would like to donate any items towards our yard sale please message me on facebook or email me at
I am also about to officially start another tshirt sale. I know a lot of you have expressed interest in ordering one (or however many!). And some of you have already paid me for another shirt. I have not forgotten you! Our plate has been pretty full lately! lol I will post another blog in the next few weeks officially starting tshirt sign up.
Thanks again for all of your prayers and encouragement! We love each and every one of you and we thank God for you and your support!
P.S.  Be on the lookout for an AWESOME fundraising opportunity that we have very soon. We will be going through an organization called Ordinary Hero. Really really great stuff!

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Orphan Sunday and waiting...

Orphan Sunday was a little different for our church today. Ben decided not to just do an "Orphan Sunday" but more like an "Orphan Month"! He started this by speaking on our spiritual adoption. This morning he spoke about God being our Father. Sadly I missed it. But I had Children's Church with two first graders and used that time to have a little Orphan Sunday of our very own. Just the three of us. It was awesome and challenging to talk with these two kids who are blessed with great families about the plight of the orphan and how even they as first graders can love orphans. These two kids now know how they can pray for the millions of orphans all around the world. This is a huge deal. Our kids today do not even know what it means to be without closets full of clothes, every type of food imaginable, baths every night, night night hugs and kisses from Mommy and Daddy, etc. Prayer is powerful. Let us not underestimate the power of a first grader's prayer. I am going to put a familiar verse on here to remind us all that God didn't suggest we care for the orphan and widow but COMMANDED us to care for the orphan and widow. "Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans an widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world." James 1:27 We are to be caring for the "lease of these".  I hope everyone was touched by however your church did Orphan Sunday, but let us not leave what we learned in our pew but "do" what we have been commanded to do.

We are still working on getting our homestudy finalized. We should be hearing something this week. I am very anxious (I know I'm not supposed to be!) to get this done. It will be a HUGE check on my list of to do's. I am getting more and more anxious to get our dossier done and sent to Ethiopia. This wonderful day will be called DTE. I thought I would go ahead and tell you that because you will be seeing that a lot in my blog. I am SO ready for that day. But I am also dreading that day. That day will officially begin the longest wait of our lives. I will go ahead and tell you right now how you can pray for us (especially me, the worrier). I am apart of a yahoo chat group for my agency for people in the Ethiopia program. It is wonderful and mostly encouraging and informational. Truly a place to make long life friends with people you may never ever meet! This chat group can also be discouraging as well. Let me explain. A lot of people on the chat group are already DTE or have already received a referral (meaning they know who their child is and are awaiting a court date). Because of changes in the adoption process in Ethiopia wait times have slowly increased and if things continue as they are then those wait times will only increase some more. I have read heartbreaking messages from Mamas longing to know who their child is after waiting over a year, knowing who their child is but waiting for a court date, waiting for embassy to clear their child so they can finally come home. It tears me apart and I don't even know them, but I know my day is coming and what is so scary is I don't know what our path will look like. That is life though. As my friend Cole ( who is also starting the process of adoption from Ethiopia) put it in a recent blog, we don't know what the end result is going to be but we can trust and know that God is with us through it all. That blog post encouraged me so. I know that God is going to refine us and mold us and I know when that happens that it can be tough and even painful. I have a lot of growing to do. I still ask that you pray because I have really been struggling with this and other things that I will leave unspoken. Just pray, please please pray for me. Continue to pray that God would truly be leading every step of this process and that we would follow. Continue to pray for us financially as well. God has provided thus far and I know He will continue to do so but again worrier here!!! Pray that the funds would be made available through whatever means God chooses. I know that not everyone is called to adopt but maybe God is calling you to care for orphans through helping us bring our baby home. I want to insert a fellow adoptive mother's blog post here. I posted it on my facebook page the other day but said I would put it on my blog also. If you want to know how you can help support us in this adoption before the baby gets home and after please read this. I PROMISE it is well worth your time. (I only wish I could blog like her!)
Thanks to everyone for your support!

Monday, October 10, 2011

Updates: It has been a while!!!

Well I would like to apologize for how long it has been since I have posted  blog! I was reading my last post and we had just started our homestudy!!! WOW!  We are almost done with our homestudy now! We couldn't have asked for a better social worker. Her name is Maegan and she is a blessing. (She is expecting her first child so ya'll can keep her in your prayers!) I'm so excited because she will be doing our post adoption stuff also so we are not done with her yet! She came to our house for the first visit, the second visit we met her in Montgomery where she did separate interviews on me and Ben, and the last visit was last week and we had it again in our home. They all went great!!! Maegan told us that our homestudy has gone faster than normal so that is such a blessing! We are now finishing up any paperwork that has to be done so that she can write up the homestudy and get our family coordinator at America World to review it and approve it. Once it is finalized we can apply for grants and we can apply for the oh so very important letter that we need to actually bring our child home. This is something that the USCIS processes. The letter will basically be the pass for our child to be let in the U.S. when we come home. Please pray that everything goes smoothly!

We have also finished our physicals. We had to do this for both the homestudy and our dossier. Shots, a lot of blood taken, and three separate co pays (boo) and they are done! yay! Now that the homestudy is well on its way to being done I am focusing on dossier paperwork so we can hopefully be DTE (our dossier will be sent to Ethiopia) by the beginning of the year! Pray that will be so! Another big hurdle is the fact that when we send in our dossier we also have to pay a whopping $8,000! Pray for us as we raise the money for that. May you also consider praying about helping us raise that money?

Something I really really wanted to share with you is the fact that first: God is so faithful when I am not!! Second: I have the most amazing parents, family, and friends. We had our first adoption yard sale this past weekend. A friend of our family offered to have it at her house which was an awesome place to have it by the way! I want to take the time to brag on my mother. Twila Wiggins is the most wonderful mommy any girl could ask for. ( You can argue with me but I'm right! ;) ) She has worked so incredibly hard to gather things for the yard sale and planning everything. I love you Mommy! Thanks to everyone who gave towards the sale! We had such a variety of stuff! Thank you to my sister who helped my mom sort and price all the stuff! I love you! Thank you to my Daddy, brother, husband for loading and unloading stuff, Thanks to the Thornburg family who let us have the yard sale at their house, Mrs. Beverly who gave stuff, helped plan, and had a lemonade stand with cookies! Thanks Mrs. Pam for making brownies! THANK YOU EVERYONE!!!!!! I am so excited about it because this past weekend we raised almost $900 just selling stuff and we made almost $1500 including donations. How amazing is God!!!!!!!! He is our provider! Why do I doubt??? He is so faithful! This yard sale alone is paying for our homestudy! Praise Him  Praise Him!

I want to remind everyone to continue to check out our just love coffee store. You can find it by looking at the website on the right of this blog.
Please continue to keep us in your prayers. We do feel them! There are days when I feel exhausted physically and mentally and miss my baby that I have never even met, but the Lord is faithful and he called us to this and will lead us through and he will be glorified through this as well! If you would like to donate please find information to do so at the right of the blog. We still have a ways to go but the Lord has provided thus far and I know he will continue to do so. Maybe through some of you?
God bless everyone of you!

"Lord, our Lord how majestic is your name in all the earth!" Psalm 8:9

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Where do I begin??!!

We have had a lot going on since our last blog! I would have posted several days ago but me and Gabe went to spend a few days with my family. Also while I was home my best friend since childhood's Dad passed away from brain cancer. I would ask that you pray for her and her family. I love you Heather!

While I was out of town I received several emails and Ben received several calls. Our application with Lifeline Adoption Agency (the agency in Alabama who will be doing our homestudy) approved our application and sent us all the paperwork to continue on in the process. I also received the email we have really been waiting on. The email from our family coordinator! Jennifer from AWAA officially welcomed us into the program with a MASSIVE Dossier checklist. Let's just say we are overwhelmed but excited to get this process started so we can get one step closer to meeting our baby boy!

Then last night Ben text me to tell me he talked to a Lifeline social worker about starting meetings! ahhh Then he text me back to say that Megan (our social worker) would be in our area on Tuesday (in one week). So we will have our first homestudy meeting next Tuesday at 9:00 in the morning! Again, I am excited but extremely overwhelmed. We have so much stuff to get together, to copy, to sign and send in, appointments to make, house to get ready, and especially money to save and raise! I am so thankful that as I was reading Isaiah the other day the Lord gave me this scripture. "So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand." Isaiah 41:10

This week will be extremely crazy as we get fingerprinting done for our background checks, fill out paperwork for homestudy, and the start of our dossier. Especially be praying for all the homestudy paperwork and fingerprinting. The fingerprinting, background checks, etc. has to get done ASAP because I was told that this can take up to 3 months! We need the homestudy to get done quickly because once the homestudy is complete we can apply for all available grants and no interest loans. This is huge!!!!!! Dossier submission = pay huge amounts of money at one time! Please pray that we would be able to get all of the things needed to complete this homestudy and to start our dossier.  So all of this is very exciting and very real!!!! Please Please Please! continue to pray for us. That is the most important thing that you can do for us!

Another way you can support us is by participating in our fundraisers. You have one week left to order one of our awesome tshirts!!!! (see the right hand side of the blog). It is an awesome way to share the Gospel and a way to raise awareness of orphan care!

We also have a store online (see the website to the right) called Just Love Coffee. Go on our website and check out all of the different coffees and other things you can buy to not only support our adoption but help support orphanages in Ethiopia!

Our next fundraiser is going to be a YARD SALE! We need your help! If you have anything you would like to donate towards our yard sale that would be wonderful! I have not set a date yet, but just ask that anything you are wanting to give away or if you are wanting to clean out, consider giving those things to raise funds to go towards our adoption! If you have any other ideas for fundraising let us know!!! Thank you in advance!

I also ask that you pray for friends of mine that are in Ethiopia right now trying to get custody of their son. The courts are supposed to close in a few days and they are waiting on one letter that is supposed to not get there for another week or so! They need a miracle if they are going to get that letter and gain custody. If this does not happen (Cimbrey) will have to decide to either stay in Ethiopia for another 3 months or come home to the states and leave her son and go back in a couple of months. Please be praying for wisdom for the Brannan family.

Sunday, July 24, 2011

"Thank you Jesus for your bobo's"

We try every night before Gabe goes to bed to read a section out of his Jesus Storybook Bible and we pray and put him to bed. The other night he flipped through his Bible after we read a story. He happened to come to the picture of Jesus hanging on the cross. The first thing he said was where is the man's shirt? We explained that some men took his shirt in the best way we knew how! He then proceeded to ask about the marks on Jesus' body. His bobo's. Again we explained why Jesus had bobo's and that he did it for us. When it was time for him to pray it went like this: "Jesus, thank you Daddy, Mommy, "little brudder", "Arica" (Africa), thank you Jesus for bobo's". I looked at Ben and we both had tears in our eyes. It hit me; My sweet babies will both have to make a decision when they get older. They will either choose or reject Jesus as their Lord and Savior, and it is mine and Ben's job to teach them not by just words but by the way we live our lives in front of them. I also started thinking, if it wasn't for Jesus' "bobo's" we would have no hope, there would be no adoption. I realize that this adoption is nothing without God's adoption of us as His children. It is still amazing to me that God has called us to this and that without His power we CANNOT do anything. Through His Power we can get through every obstacle that this adoption will have, through His Power we can save and raise the funds for this adoption, through His Power we can fly to Ethiopia and meet our son and love him and bring him home to be a part of our family just like we brought Gabe home to be apart of our family on December 14, 2008. Through the Holy Spirit and God's power that he supplies we will be able to bring our baby home.
"... whoever serves is to do so as one who is serving by the STRENGTH WHICH GOD SUPPLIES; so that in all things God may be glorified through Jesus Christ, to whom belongs the glory and dominion forever and ever. Amen." 1 Peter 4:11


The other day we sent in our signed agreements and $1,125 to America World! This means we have officially signed a contract saying that we understand everything that is about to happen in this adoption! As far as I'm concerned there is no turning back!!! That is scary and exciting! Most likely in a few days our family coordinator will call and introduce herself to us and explain the dossier process to us. The dossier is all the paperwork, medical papers, government fingerprinting, homestudy, etc. She will send us the packet and we will get started. Tomorrow I will contact Lifeline Adoption in Birmingham. They will be doing our homestudy. That is where a social worker will visit us and evaluate our home and family. This is a huge prayer request because this can be a little nerve wrecking and once our home study is complete we can start applying for grants and no interest loans. This week we also start our first training course on adoption. I am very excited about this!! Please be in prayer for us as we continue in this process.
* PRAYER PRAYER PRAYER. This is always the first and most important thing we need from everyone!
* our emotions as we know that this will be a frustrating process at times.
*The funds needed for the adoption. In the next few months we will have to pay for the homestudy, the USCIS (government fees), and when it is time to submit our dossier we will have to pay almost $8,000 at one time! As I have said before, we know God has called us to this and He will provide. Maybe He is calling you to care for the orphan by assisting us monetarily with our adoption? Pray for us as we save and fundraise.
*Our families and our church as we seek to make everyone aware of adoption and our role as Christians in taking care of the orphan.

I also wanted to remind you of our fundraisers going on. We will be continuing to sell T-shirts (picture, cost, and sizes to the right) until Monday, August 8. Two weeks from tomorrow. It is a very cool t-shirt that will bring up awareness of adoption!

We also have a link to our Just Love Coffee store. You can go online and order coffee or whatever you would like and part of the proceeds will go to our adoption and part will go to an orphanage in Ethiopia.
Please message me or Ben if you would like to order a tshirt or have questions about Just Love Coffee.

Pray for us also as we start planning a yard sale! (yikes!) If you would like to donate any items to sell at our yard sale please email me at or message me on facebook.

Thanks for all your support! We love you all!

Thursday, July 14, 2011

We are officially accepted into the Ethiopia Program!!!!!!

First of all I want to say that God is so good. I am learning every day through this process how unworthy I am. God doesn't need me to adopt this little boy but he is allowing me to be used for his glory. I am in awe of that fact.

I started my day cleaning my house (because my parents are coming this weekend!). I tried not thinking about Sara. Sara is the intake coordinator for AWAA. Sara is the wonderful person who tells you that you have been accepted! See, yesterday she emailed me back to tell me that she planned on giving all of our application info to her supervisor for final approval yesterday afternoon. So of course this morning I thought maybe she will call today. All day I checked my email. Nothing. As I was having my quiet time this afternoon I poured my heart out to God. I cried harder than I have in a long time. For my son who I don't know yet, for the unworthiness I felt, and to let him know how overwhelmed and scared I was! It was so liberating to know my God hears me and knows every thought before I even speak it! 

This afternoon right as Ben was walking through the door to get out of this stormy weather we are having, the phone rang. I didn't think much about it, but when I said hello a cheery voice came over the phone and I knew it was Sara! She asked me if it was a good time to talk and of course I said yes! She immediately said "Welcome to the Ethiopia program!" I couldn't contain myself and cried and told her how excited I was and all she could do was laugh and tell me how excited she was for us. It was wonderful to hear someone say ok now you can officially start the long process of paperwork that you know is going to eventually turn into waiting for a referral then waiting to go meet your child! Overwhelming, but wonderful! She talked to me a few minutes about the agreements we had to sign and the program fee we have to send in. Every time I talk to someone from AWAA I am reassurred of our decision of choosing them as our agency. They are awesome and know they will be so helpful through this process, not only with all the logistical stuff, but spiritually as well.

I hung up after talking with her and started looking at the email that she sent. I looked at all the money that would be due at the time of doing our dossier (all the paperwork and homestudy stuff!). I started fretting. You see Satan knows exactly where my weak spot is. Worrying. Today during my quiet time I begged God to help me trust him even when the amount of money seems so overwhelming and impossible to pay. I also prayed that I would be able to withstand the fiery arrows that I KNEW Satan would throw at me. Please pray for us through this!

So we are super excited that we are officially in this thing! This week we will be signing all the paperwork and sending in $1,125. That seems like a lot but when you look at the grand total ($30,000) it seems so small! Once they receive the paperwork we will wait a week and be assigned a family coordinator. She will email us the dossier packet. This is (from what I hear) one of the most difficult parts of the adoption. It is a ton of paperwork that we will have to make a million copies of plus a homestudy. This is where a social worker will come  into our home a few times and make sure we are good parents and that our home is ok to live in. It seems crazy because one would think that was obvious considering we have been pretty good parents (well, we think so!) for 2 1/2 years now! We covet your prayers through this trying process and also welcome any monetary assistance as well. As I have already mentioned this is a lot of money and know God will provide it. Maybe he will provide it through some of you (if he is calling you to do so.) I want to remind you of our two fundraisers going on.

Our T-shirt fundraiser is still going on! We are going to try to get a large order before we send it in so you still have time!!!! They are $25 and I have a picture to the right. You can facebook message me, or email me ( to order one! You can use paypal to pay or mail us a check. Our address is to the right as well.

Our other fundraiser is the one I just blogged about the other day. Just Love Coffee. Our store website is to the right of our blog. Just go to the website and order! They have all sorts of coffee and other things that you can order. Check it out!!!!

As always we appreciate everyone's prayers and donations! You are truly appreciated.

"Praise be to God, who has not rejected my prayer or withheld his love from me!" Psalm 66:20