Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Congratulations John and Jackie!

Here's the time line in Jackie's own words:

11.28.08 - Home study is completed
12.4.08 - Submit profile and application to one agency via email
12.5.08 - Get a call about a baby boy being born TODAY - do we want to submit our profile? Of course!
12.5.08 - later that day - Find out It's a Girl! Mom will choose family in the morning
12.6.08 - Waiting for a call to find out if we are chosen - between us and another family
12.6.08 4:30 p.m. - Get the call. We are chosen! Pack in 4 hours and get in the car to drive through the night to FL.
12.7.08 - Arrive in FL. Go to hospital and meet our birthmother and Nora. Nora comes home with us that night.

Monday, December 8, 2008

HOPE FOR ADOPTION Opens in Kansas City

Just a reminder that we have opened an office in Kansas City, KS. If you are considering adoption and are in need of a home study for the state of Kansas please contact me at tracie@hopeforadoption.com and visit our website at www.hope4adoption.com

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Max Lucado on "Adoption"

God's Mission: Adoption
by Max Lucado

When we come to Christ, God not only forgives us, he also adopts us. Through a dramatic series of events, we go from condemned orphans with no hope to adopted children with no fear. Here is how it happens. You come before the judgment seat of God full of rebellion and mistakes. Because of his justice he cannot dismiss your sin, but because of his love he cannot dismiss you. So, in an act which stunned the heavens, he punished himself on the cross for your sins. God's justice and love are equally honored. And you, God's creation, are forgiven. But the story doesn't end with God's forgiveness.

For you have not received a spirit of slavery leading to fear again, but you have received a spirit of adoption as sons by which we cry out "Abba! Father!" The Spirit himself bears witness with our Spirit that we are children of God (Rom. 8:15--16 NASB).

But when the fullness of time came, God sent forth His Son, born of a woman, born under the Law, in order that He might redeem those who were under the Law, that we might receive the adoption as sons (Gal. 4:4--5 NASB).

It would be enough if God just cleansed your name, but he does more. He gives you his name. It would be enough if God just set you free, but he does more. He takes you home. He takes you home to the Great House of God.

Adoptive parents understand this more than anyone. I certainly don't mean to offend any biological parents--I'm one myself. We biological parents know well the earnest longing to have a child. But in many cases our cribs were filled easily. We decided to have a child and a child came. In fact, sometimes the child came with no decision. I've heard of unplanned pregnancies, but I've never heard of an unplanned adoption.

That's why adoptive parents understand God's passion to adopt us. They know what it means to feel an empty space inside. They know what it means to hunt, to set out on a mission, and take responsibility for a child with a spotted past and a dubious future. If anybody understands God's ardor for his children, it's someone who has rescued an orphan from despair, for that is what God has done for us.

God has adopted you. God sought you, found you, signed the papers and took you home.
From The Great House of God
Copyright (W Publishing Group, 1997) Max Lucado

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Congratulations Elisabeth and Rusty

Congratulations on the birth of your beautiful daughter!
Born November 4, 2008

(Note: I got to hold this little one in church two Sundays ago, and the miracle of adoption was just so real in my heart. I wept thinking that this precious life has found an incredible family and that God has such an incredible plan for her life! I hope to post more pictures of this little girl soon!)

Congratulations Brent and Lizzie

Congratulations on the birth of your beautiful daughter.
Born Nov. 24th

Brent and Lizzie started with CAC on 6/30/08
finished their home study on 8/15/08
and were matched on 8/29/08!

For more information on services please visit www.christianadoptionconsultants.com
or email me at tracie@christianadoptionconsultants.com

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

HOPE FOR ADOPTION Opens in Kansas City

After much hard work Amy and Malcolm Young, the couple that I work for with Christian Adoption Consultants are official licensed with HOPE FOR ADOPTION, as a child placing agency here in Kansas City, KS. Please help us spread the good news!

If you are interested in talking to me about adoption please contact me to set up an appointment for a FREE initial consultation.

Also if you are in the Kansas City area and know of a great place for us to distribute Birth Mom literature, please let us know.

Please email me at tracie@christianadoptionconsultants.com

The next step now is to get the word out so that we can lovingly serve and care for Birth Mom's in need in our community and connect them with amazing Christian families. And Pray for us!

FREE Adoption Seminar in Atlanta

Atlanta Adoption Seminar! Our next FREE adoption seminar will be in Atlanta, GA on Dec 6 starting at 10 am. For more information please click HERE or to register call 888-833-1114

or email tracie@christianadoptionconsultants.com

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Adoption Announcements!

A friend shared a link to this great site where you can order ADOPTION ANNOUNCEMENTS!
Adoption Anouncement Cards

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Adoption Myth

Myth: Adoption in only for couples with no children or who struggle with infertility.

(Steve and Tiffany's children with their beautiful baby sister!)

Facts: While may couples who adopt do struggle with infertility and find adoption as a beautiful way to build a family, adoption in not limited to couples with no children. There are agencies who limit applications to childless couples, but the agencies that we are connected with do not hold that view. There are so many children in need of families and many of the couples I work with have biological children. We have worked with families with as many as 7 children who have had successfully adoptions using our services.

If you have a heart for adoption and already have children please don't let that hold you back. There are babies today who are in need of a loving, Christian family to welcome them in and love them forever!

Please contact me at tracie@christianadoptionconsultants.com for more information on our adoption services.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Congratulations Steve and Tiffany

Congratulations on the birth of your beautiful baby girl! What a journey this has been. We are all so happy for you.

Steve and Tiffany started with CAC in mid-April, were matched in mid-September, and their baby girl was born October 31st. For more information on our consulting services please contact me at tracie@christianadoptionconsultants.com

Friday, October 17, 2008

Our Birth Mom's Story

This story is very dear to me, because it was written by the birth mom of our daughter, Elia. I am honored that she would write it for me, and blessed to be able to share it with you. -Tracie

"Hello. My name is Heather and my husband and I chose adoption for our daughter. Many ask why I would choose that over abortion or keeping her to raise myself. Well, to be honest, I would have loved to raise her, but the situation I was in was not the type that was best for my child. There weren't any drugs or alcohol. We just weren't ready to raise a child. I have always felt that a child should be offered all there is in life. And at the time we weren't able to provide that for her.

My father was adopted, and in turn adopted me when he met my mother. So when I found out that I was pregnant, he mentioned adoption. And to me, abortion was not an option, because my child was conceived voluntarily. Not that she was planned, but was in no way not wanted. At first it was a definite no. In my younger days I felt that if a woman was mature enough get pregnant, then she was mature enough to take responsibility for that child and do her best to raise him or her. However, when it's you that is in the situation, things change. I wanted to make things work, but later did some thinking and much praying. I asked God to give me the the strength and knowledge to do what was best for my child. Even though she wasn't here yet, I had such love for my baby. After a few weeks of praying and lots of tears, I knew what was best, to give this child a family that would not only love her unconditionally, but could also give her everything we couldn't. I feel that a child needs more than just love to grow and be successful in life.

When it came time to pick a family for my daughter, I was a bit unsure. How was I going to know that they would be perfect for her? What if I picked the wrong family? My mom went with me to the adoption agency, and when they handed me the profile for the Loux family, it only took a minute to decide. I opened the pages, and I had never been more sure of something in my whole life. It was like God said, "This is the family I have chosen for your child." All my fears of making the wrong decision were gone. And the first time I talked to them on the phone, was like I was talking to a sister. We only had a few short weeks before my baby arrived, and as any parent I was nervous. The minute I saw Tracie and John, there was no doubt that God had given me this child so that I could bless their family. I now believe that EVERYTHING happens for a reason.

At first I didn't want an open adoption. I thought that I could get back to a normal life if there was no constant memory of the difficult decision I had made. But as soon as I saw Tracie and John with Elia, I just felt that there was more of a connection there. Tracie, being open to a relationship with us, actually made the transition easier because now I could see Elia’s progress. I could see the love in the other children's faces, and the unconditional adoration that the whole family had for my baby girl. I love having a relationship with Tracie and John. I'm not sure that I could have gone through with the whole thing without God's continued peace, my families' support and love, and my wonderful connection with the Loux Family.

My husband and I are now expecting our own child, a baby boy. Because of the experience with the adoption, we have been able to reconnect in our marriage, and stabilize our lives. The continued relationship I have with Tracie and John has given me hope that one day, many years from now, Elia will always know that her birth mom and dad love her very much. We didn't "give" her away. We simply found a wonderful, loving and compassionate family to take care of her, love her and give her every option she desires in life."

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Adoption Open House

I am having a small gathering of couples at my home on Monday, October 20th from 7:00-8:30PM. If there are any local couples that would like to join us to get more information on domestic adoption, please email me at tracie@christianadoptionconsultants.com

Because this gathering is in my home, I have limited seating, so please email me immediately if you are interested in attending.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

One Birth Mom's Story

"It was 26 years ago that I was faced with the most heart wrenching decision of my life. I had barely turned 16 and found myself pregnant. I was so blessed to have a supportive and loving family who sought godly counsel. Through that counsel we were directed to a wonderful Christian adoption agency. I am so very thankful to my pregnancy counselor, and to the loving staff who loved and prayed for me during this difficult time.

Through their guidance, I came to the conclusion that the best scenario for my baby was adoption. I had such a peace about my decision – the kind of peace that can only come from the Lord. Back then adoptions were usually closed. So I know very little about my child and nothing about her whereabouts to this day. However, I am confident that the Lord has kept His hand on her just as He has me all these years. His peace has sustained me all these years. And it is that perfect peace that calms my heart as I realize I may never meet her face to face. I can say, with all confidence, that I have not one regret about my decision. However, there is not a day that passes that I do not think about my daughter. Wondering what she looks like, where she is and what her life is like.

I pray she loves Jesus.

It is the forever families who are willing to invest in the lives of unknown children out of obedience to their Lord. They are then able to have an impact on eternity. Whenever I meet a family who has adopted, I make it a point to thank them for saying “yes” to God. For without them, adoption would not be possible.

I am forever grateful to the family who said yes to the Lord’s call to adopt my daughter. My hope and prayer is that many children would receive the gift of a forever family to love them and one day assist in leading them into a decision to follow Christ. After all, we have the best example of adoption and the story is written in His gospel. My God, by His infinite grace and mercy and by His love, grafted me into his family. I’m so glad He chose me."

…to know the love of Christ which passes knowledge; that you may be filled with all the fullness of God. Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us,

Ephesians 3:19,20


Thursday, October 2, 2008

Louisville Adoption Seminar

We are holding a FREE, informational adoption seminar in Louisville, KY on October 18th from 10:30 - noon. The seminar will be held at Northeast Christian Church. Topics will include:

* How to Adopt Quickly and Affordably
* Homestudy Process and Prices
* How to Choose the Right Agency
* Simplifying the Process and Paperwork
* Common Adoption Myths
* Typical Agency Fees and Cost Breakdowns
* How to Creatively Fund Your Adoption
* Frequently Asked Questions

If you or someone you know is considering adoption, I highly encourage you to attend or pass the word on to couples you know who may be interested. Space is limited, so please call 502-442-7806 to register.

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Post-Adoption Symptoms

I was just with an adoptive mom this morning helping her with her newborn girls. We were discussing the similarities between the emotional and physical toll of delivering a baby and having that new baby at home, and of adopting a baby and having that new baby at home. Our conclusion- it's not much different!

When I was carrying around our newly adopted daughter, I heard comments like this, "Must be nice to have a baby and not have to do all the hard work." Now, I'm not knocking the fact that carrying a baby for 9 months, along with labor and delivery is exhausting. I've done it three times! I am simply writing for all of you new adoptive moms or soon-to-be adoptive moms to let you know you're not crazy if you feel exhausted, overwhelmed, and emotional after bringing your baby home.

Adoption is labor. It is a labor of the heart. You wait, you carry a child in your heart, deep in your emotions, sometimes for months! It is an emotional roller coaster many times, and it is tough on the heart. It is physically challenging as well, the paperwork, hours of writing, and running here and there to gather all that is needed for your home study, applications and so forth takes its toll. We sometimes tell couples, "Your paperwork pregnant now!" The adoption process is a a labor of love- it is a deep, incredible experience that I wouldn't trade for anything!

There is many times an initial emotional reaction to a child you are about to adopt (speaking mostly to mom's at the moment) that I honestly believe causes a hormonal shift in your body. I can't document this scientifically, and I could do some research I guess, but that's not the point of what I am writing. I know from the experiences of both natural birth and adoptive birth that the impact was much the same on my emotions!

Finally, there is the practical issue of sleep-deprivation. This impacts an adoptive couple no differently that any other couple with a new born at home! Adoptive mom's often get remarks like this, "Wow, you look great, you're still in the same jeans!" I always thought, "Yeah, my jean size is still the same, but I'm not getting any solid sleep, my emotions have been on a roller coaster, and I'm worn out. The size of my jeans has nothing to do with how I am doing!"

So to all you soon-to-be adoptive families or new adoptive families out there, much grace and strength to you today! May your journey be blessed and full of joy. Know that it is a labor of love, one that will be richly rewarded.

I welcome comments from adoptive moms and dads that might help or encourage another adoptive couple!

Happy Family!

I already congratulated Scott and Caroline on the birth of their son, but these new pictures were too cute not to post!

Friday, September 26, 2008

Congratulations Scott and Caroline

Scott and Caroline started with CAC in . They finished their homestudy in mid-June and were matched mid-August. Their son was born September 25th!

If you would like more information about our services, please contact me at tracie@christianadoptionconsultants.com

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Because You Asked: What is a Profile?

A Family Profile is a creative way to tell a birth mother about your family, your thoughts on adoption, and your plans for the future. Over the years we’ve noticed that certain profiles stand out from the rest and are more appealing to birth moms than others. We get a lot of agency feedback on our profiles, and many times it is the profile presentation and design that attract the birth mom to our couples.

It is important that a profile be creatively and professionally done. The presentation of a profile to a birth mom is your first, and sometimes only, opportunity to introduce yourselves, and it is so important to put your best foot forward.

Creating the Family Profile is one of the services we offer, whether you are using our consulting services or not. We have learned over the years how to help couples communicate their thoughts to a birth mom in a warm and comforting way.

If you are interested in learning more about our services, please contact me at tracie@christianadoptionconsultants.com

Here are a few sample pages from one of the profiles that I have designed.

Monday, September 22, 2008

I Love It When I Get To Do This

It's especially nice when one of my couples brings a baby home to KC.
I LOVE IT when I get to snuggle one of the precious bundles I get to help bring to their forever family!
Congratulations once again, Steven and Kristi, she's a doll!

Because You Asked: What is a Home Study?

Each adoptive family is required to complete an adoption home study. This process is usually a 4-6 week period in which a licensed social worker is assigned to meet with the prospective family to determine their readiness to become adoptive parents. This can be an intimidating and stressful experience. You will need to find a licensed agency or licensed social worker in your area who does home studies. Our goal is to relieve some of the anxiety by connecting clients with a social worker or home study agency that meets their needs in regards to individual situations.

The home study usually consists of the following: A meeting with the husband and wife together, a meeting with the husband and the wife individually, and a visit to the prospective adoptive parent’s home.

Be prepared to discuss:
• Reason for infertility/reason for adoption
• Childhood experiences (how you were disciplined, relationship with siblings, etc)
• Current marriage, previous marriage(s) and reason for divorce (if applicable)
• How you discipline or plan to discipline your children
• How you solve conflict in your home
• Extended family's attitude towards adoption
• Trans-racial adoption (if you are open to other ethnic groups)

Typical Paperwork:
(most social workers/home study agencies require the following)

Marriage license and divorce decrees (if applicable)
Birth certificates
Copy of Drivers License
Recent pay stubs and Employment Verification
Proof of health insurance will be required (They will most likely want a copy of the card)
Physical examinations for all individuals over the age of 18 (You will need to obtain the form from the social worker before going to the doctor)
Tax forms for the previous year
Immunization records and letter of good health from pediatrician for children residing in the home
Immunization records for any family pets
3-4 reference letters from non-family members that you have known for at least one year (The letters need to state why they think that you will be a good candidate for adoption. They should also provide their phone numbers, and will most likely be contacted for a short telephone interview)
State criminal record check for anyone over the age of 18 living in the home (You can go to the police department and tell them that you need a criminal record check for the purpose of adoption)
Fingerprint cards (State and some times Federal fingerprint checks are required)
Fire Arm Statement (if you have fire arms they are properly stored and locked for safety)
Swimming Pool Statement (if you have a pool, proper safety precautions have been taken)
Reference letters from the prospective adoptive grandparents are usually needed (The letters need to state how they feel about having an adoptive grandchild, and how they plan to treat the child)
If you have a septic tank, they will require that you have it inspected

Paperwork is the most time consuming part of the home study process. By collecting your paperwork before your first visit, you will be able to speed up the process. This will be helpful if a placement is found for you in a short time frame.

If you have a concern about the home study process, please let us know. We will be happy to advise you and put your mind at ease prior to the home study process. The main thing to remember is to be completely honest during the entire home study process. It is better to have everything out in the open, rather than for them to discover that you have not been truthful.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Birth Mothers: Story 1

There are many misconceptions about birth mothers out there, and I wanted to share a few of my own experiences with birth mom's who are facing the decision to choose adoption for their children from time to time.

Here is one that I was just made aware of yesterday:

One of my couples was matched with a birth mom this weekend. Without sharing too much information, her circumstances did not allow her to raise this child. She considered an abortion, but could not go through with it.

She wanted to know if this family had a problem with fact that the baby would be African American, to which they shared their hearts with her on this issue and told her that they would love the child as their own regardless of the color of his/her skin. She wanted to know what they would tell the child about her. They reassured her that they would speak about her in a positive way and share with the child that she made a loving decision on their behalf in choosing to give LIFE.

She said that when she saw their profile, she knew that they were the ones. She said that she chose them because they looked like they had fun together, had the values she was looking for, and were a Christian family. She asked if they would give the child a Biblical name. They were able to share with her that all of their children had Biblical names and this child would be given one as well.

This birth mom is not due for several weeks, but I look forward to the day I can share pictures of this precious life and the wonderful family that said YES.

I hope this story does a few things for you:
1. I hope it breaks the myth that birth mom's don't care. They typically care and care very deeply about the choice they are making.
2. I hope this reminds us all to pray for LIFE. This woman was facing an abortion and "couldn't go through with it". I believe that this is one of many lives that was saved as the result of prayer! Maybe it was YOU that was praying that day she faced that decision and chose life.
3. I hope this story inspires you to put your YES on the line and consider adopting one of the many African American children who need godly, Christian homes.

For more information about adoption feel free to email me at tracie@christianadoptionconsultants.com

Friday, September 19, 2008

Congratulations Randy and Kelsey

My dear friends Randy and Kelsey just got their home study done, I finished their profile, and got them headed in the right direction with agency applications, and WHAAA LA, God had other plans!

In a swirl of activity and lots of unexpected events they have just welcomed two beautiful baby girls into their family! You can follow their BLOG for details! This is an extra special day for me, because I am an "auntie!"

If you want to understand the true spirit of adoption, don't look any further than the hearts of this couple! They heard there was a need, said yes, and got on a plane. They gave no consideration to the social/medical history of these little ones, didn't even ask their race, didn't worry that the bank account didn't match the anticipated costs, but just said YES! In fact, they didn't find out the race of their beautiful Asian/CC beauties until arrived at their destination.

There are babies TODAY that need homes! Babies today that need families to yes regardless of race, regardless of medical issues, and regardless of the sacrifice of finances.

If you have a yes in your heart please contact me to talk about how you can welcome a child in need of a loving family into your home!

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Congratulations Steven and Kristi

Steven and Kristi began their adoption journey in mid-February. They finished their home study on April 1st and were matched June 2nd! Their beautiful daughter was born on September 11th.
The happy news is I get to visit this new little family this weekend, and I'll have more photos to post I'm sure! Steven and Kristi are friends of ours and it has been an honor to work as their adoption consultant.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

Malcolm and Amy's Blog

Amy and Malcolm have a few new articles on the Christian Adoption Consultants blog. It's worth stopping over to read them! Great information!

Monday, August 25, 2008


American Express is giving away a 2.5 million dollar to different organizations who are doing charitable work, and who also get enough nominations to qualify to be chosen for this project. The top organization will receive 1.5 MIL and a additional 1 MIL will be divided between three other worthy organizations. We need 700 more votes to help qualify a very important organization called Reece's Rainbow. They are doing a tremendous job of helping orphaned Down Syndrome children through their adoption agency. This is the agency that where Derek and Renee are adopting Misha. If Reeces Rainbow were to win this gift, this would enable them to adopt out almost all of the waiting DS children with full grants!

You DO NOT have to own an American Express card to vote. Just sign in as a guest and remember to vote for Reece's Rainbow.
It will only take 1 to 2 minutes of your time and your vote could make it possible for an orphan to be placed in a forever family. Thanks so much for considering this wonderful opportunity to make a difference in the life of an orphan.

Please log on to THIS SITE to vote!
God bless you!

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Financing Adoptions

I was recently asked about creative adoption financing. I thought I'd put links to all of my past posts on fund raising or adoption financing here in one post for those of you who are new to my blog.
Hope this is helpful. Click on the title to go to the post.

God Finances Adoption

Adoption Fundraising 101

Our Fundraiser

Silent Auctions

One of the couples I'm working with is throwing a fund raiser September 13th. Check out their INVITATION at their blog, and while you're at it why don't you consider giving a donation to their adoption fund! There's a handy pay pal link on their blog.

Monday, July 28, 2008

Congratulations Jonathan and Jennifer

Congratulations on the birth of your beautiful son!
We are so happy for you.

(Jonathan and Jennifer started with CAC on February 16th, completed their home study near the end of March, were matched on July 15th and their son was born July 23rd! )

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Dean and Chrystal Update

My first adoptive couple, Dean and Chrystal have posted a great story on the adoption of their son Jeremiah on their blog.
I encourage you to read it! Click Here

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Congratulations Ron and Pam

Congratulations on the birth of your beautiful baby girl!
We are so happy for you.

(Ron and Pam started with CAC on June 2nd and their daughter was born on June 28th!)

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Celebrating an Adoption

This post goes out to you who love adoption, want to adopt someday but aren't ready, or just want to get behind others who are adopting. I've even had people come up to me and ask how they can help the couples I'm working with who want to adopt. I love that!

One of the obvious ways that you can help an adoptive couple is financially. Giving to adoption funds, helping them with fund raisers, etc.

In this post, however, I want to address the emotional support that adoptive couples long for from their family and friends. I've read enough blogs and heard enough stories to know that not all adoptive families receive the overwhelming support of their families and friends, and it really makes me sad.

Some people just don't understand. Some people think you're crazy. Some people have a hard time celebrating and connecting with a child they haven't met yet. Many times they want to know who the child is and when they will be arriving, and many times the answer is "We don't know. We're waiting." There are many reasons why, but I want to focus on how you can help support adoptive couples emotionally through the process.

1. Pray- adoptive couples need your prayers. They have embarked on a journey of faith and regardless of why they are adopting, the journey is emotional and hard at times. Partner with them in praying for their unborn child's safety and protection, pray for the birth mother that she is getting godly counsel and good care. If they are waiting on an international adoption, ask them what specific things you can pray for them in regards to the child they are waiting on.

2. Listen- ask how their adoption is going, spend time listening and being supportive.

3. Celebrate with them- A couple who has been matched is typically walking around with butterflies in their stomaches non-stop. They are faced with the fear of all the what if's surrounding an adoption. They want to celebrate and be excited and they are, but they are also afraid of potential disappointment.

1. Have a baby shower! Yes, have a baby shower. Please do this for your friends who are adopting- they are having a baby! Do what you would for any of your friend who are expecting a child. Our daughter arrived so quickly that our shower was a "Welcome Home Elia" party as well. Here's My Little Darlin' at Her Baby Shower

Here are two links to the great celebrations of two adoptive moms.

(I would like to note that I think that this should be done even for couples who are adopting an older child. Check with the family first and see what type of celebrating they think the child can handle. If the child is working through adjustment issues, it may be best to collect gifts and have a drop off shower!)

2. Take the adoptive mom out for lunch and help her register for baby things. It's fun! I had a friend do this for me. It had been 9 years since my last baby, and honestly I didn't even know where to start. We had fun, we laughed a lot!

3. Help get the nursery ready.

4. Volunteer to take care of their children, house, pets, etc, when they are out of town to pick up the baby. We were blessed to have family help us out and stay with our kids.

5. Have a welcome home party!

6. We invited all of our family and friends for a Blessing Service at our home.

7. Organize meals to be brought in once they are home with the baby. Bringing home a new baby is always an adjustment, and even new adoptive moms are tired moms!

8. Help out with younger children if there are little ones at home. I had a friend call and ask if she could take my older three to the zoo a few days after we were home with the baby. It as such a loving gesture and was really appreciated!

** These acts of love can be poured out on a family regardless of the age of the child they are bringing home! An adoptive family just wants to feel that you are rejoicing and celebrating the arrival of their newest family member!

My list is hardly comprehensive. I would love it if those of you who have adopted would share some great, creative ways that your family and friends celebrated your adoption.

Monday, June 23, 2008

Employee Adoption Benefits on the Rise

For a great article on the increase of employee adoption benefits go to CNN.com

If you're considering adoption, make sure you inquire to find out if your employer offers adoption benefits. I've seen benefits include reimbursement for expenses ranging from $2,000-10,000. In addition many companies are offering time off for adoption travel. I even have heard of one case where an employee asked his company to consider adding adoption benefits, explained to them the benefit of creating an adoption benefit package, and the employer added this to the company benefit plan!

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Congratulations Amy and Malcolm

Amy and Malcolm are the founders of Christian Adoption Consultants. They just celebrated the arrival of their son, Max. They have helped hundreds of couples in their adoption journey and are now adopting their second child!
Congratulations guys! I love you and I'm so excited for you!
McKenna, you're such a beautiful big sister!
To read their full adoption story visit their blog!

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Dave Thomas and Wendy's Celebrate Father's Day

Dads rock. And so does a Frosty over Father’s weekend (June 14-15). Why? Well, participating Wendy’s ® stores will be donating 50¢ of every Frosty product sold to the Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption. The funds are vital to helping us find permanent, loving families for children in foster care. So how about surprising your dad with a frosty and enjoy a good treat for a good cause?

Help us spread the word about the Rockin’ Father’s Day Frosty. Send this video to friends and family today!

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

We've Been Matched- Now What?

The adoption journey is full of preparation and waiting. Intitially there is the sometimes grueling process of the home study, with mounds of paperwork and lots of running here and there for physicals, background checks, reference letters, and so forth. Trusting the Lord for finances when it seems impossible. Then the agency application process... ugghhh! More paperwork!

Next, the Waiting Room.... waiting to be presented to a birth mom, waiting to see if she picks you, waiting for the next situation and the next... until you are MATCHED!

Many couples literally feel pregnant with expectation through this whole process with a huge array of emotions that follow. It's a journey of the heart and the heart feels deeply through this whole process. Longing for and loving a child you have never met, is an incredible experience.

THE MATCH! After the initial rush and excitement of having been chosen, once again you wait. It was very sobering during this waiting process to think that somewhere out there a woman had looked upon our family and decided that we were worthy somehow to raise this child she carried. I remember feeling so in love with this baby- and having a deep sense of longing in my heart for her. And I remember facing fear of all the what if's.

When faced with the "now what?" after the match, here is my advice.
1. Pray. Pray now more than you have up until this point. Pray for the birth mom and pray for the child in her womb. Speak the Word of God over their lives and believe that God's hand is upon them both.
2. Journal, if you like to write. I wrote almost daily to my daughter before I knew her, so that one day she would know how much I anticipated her arrival. I did this for each of my children, and I wanted our adoption to be no different.
3. Get ready! Allow yourself to prepare. For those of you that are waiting after being disappointed, I know this is harder. But if you are near your due date, I would prepare just as you would for any child.
4. Talk. Talk to others who have been in the waiting room before! Have a support system that really understand what you are experiencing.

When we waited for our daughter Elia, we spoke of her by name. Prayed for her by name. Prayed for her birth family daily. We bought baby clothes, painted her room, put her crib together, and all of the things that make anticipating a baby's arrival the celebration that it should be!

Were their days that fear hit me? Absolutely. Because I've carried children and adopted, I remember reminding myself that I had trusted the Lord with each of my children- and that I needed to do the same with this one. I miscarried one, gave birth to three, and carried one in my heart. I celebrated each and anticipated the arrival of each with all of my heart.

If you have been MATCHED and are in the Waiting Room, I'm praying for you today!

Monday, June 2, 2008

NEW: Minority Adoption Program

For couples adopting African American children Our Minority Adoption Program is a special program that offers adoption services to couples who wish to adopt African American children.This program has three main objectives

1) To educate people on the need to adopt African American children,
2) To actively recruit African American or Inter-racial couples to adopt, and
3) To greatly reduce the cost of adoption.

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Remembering the Chapman Family in Prayer

Steven Curtis and Mary Beth Chapman have been voices in the adoption world for years. Not only have they preached the message, they have lived it and made it possible for others to walk out their adoption journeys through their financial support.

We remember them today and pray for them as they grieve the loss of their daughter and begin to heal as a family.

Saturday, May 17, 2008

Tracie and John: DVD adoption videos

One of the services that we offer to our clients is the Profile service. One of my favorite things to do is prepare the photo book profiles for my clients. A profile is what is presented to a birth mom in order to help her get to know your family and choose which family she feels will offer her child the kind of home she is wanting for them.

In addition we offer DVD profile services which is just one more way for agencies to present your family to a particular birth mom. We were just reminiscing this morning about our adoption journey and took a look on more time at our DVD profile prepared by Christian Adoption Consultants.

Profile Services

One of the services that we offer to our clients is the Profile service. One of my favorite things to do is prepare the photo book profiles for my clients. A profile is what is presented to a birth mom in order to help her get to know your family and choose which family she feels will offer her child the kind of home she is wanting for them.

In addition we offer DVD profile services which is just one more way for agencies to present your family to a particular birth mom. We were just reminiscing this morning about our adoption journey and took a look on more time at our DVD profile prepared by Christian Adoption Consultants.

Friday, May 16, 2008

Congratulations Mike and Stephanie

What a beautiful baby girl! And what an incredible family has welcomed her into their hearts.

Monday, May 5, 2008

Bittersweet by Gay Lewis

This moving story told by Gay Lewis relays her family's journey through teen pregnancy and adoption. It is a true story of the grace of God and the miracle of restoration. I encourage anyone who has chosen adoption for their child, anyone who has adopted or is considering adoption, and anyone who has been adopted to read this family's story.

Gay and her husband stood by their daughter as she made the choice for adoption for her baby. 25 years later, their daughter Laurie is reunited with her child, Claire. It is a story of restoration that will open your heart to look at adoption from more than your own point of view.

As an adoptive mother, I encourage you to read this story. It has impacted my heart on so many levels and has stirred me to an even greater respect for the sacrifice made by birth families every day.

“Beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for a spirit of heaviness.” (Isaiah 61:3 KJV)

Bittersweet can be purchased on their website www.bittersweetthebook.com

Sunday, May 4, 2008

Open Adoption/ Closed Adoption

There are typically three general categories of adoption openness: Closed Adoption, Semi-Private, and Open Adoption. I'm sure that even as you read that list, you may already have a mindset about what type of adoption you'd be open to should you choose to adopt someday. I made a comment the other day that many of our ideas about the openness of adoption may have been formed by watching Lifetime movies. I'm only half joking.

So here goes my opinion on the issue.

On closed adoption. As nice as this may seem to you in theory, have you really thought about what this might mean to you and your adopted child. From the stand point of an adoptive parent or soon-to-be adoptive parent you may be thinking, "I bring my child home, close the door and he/she is ours, end of story." I'm only at the beginning of the story in my home (our daughter is only 1 yr old), and I know better. We will never keep our daughters adoption a secret from her, and there will be a day when her questions will come from a deep place in her heart and from a longing to understand the choices that were made about her life before she was born. I would never want to be in a place to tell her that I know nothing about her birth family. I don't ever want to hold my daughter at age 13 as she's going through puberty, questioning her identity and tell her that I know nothing. There are numerous other practical reasons that I feel that closed adoption is often not in the best interest of the child.

On semi-private adoption. This allows the option of knowing a bit about your child's birth family, even talking to them on the phone or meeting them prior to or after the child's birth. This can allow you to have some level of contact, even if monitored by an agency, so that the birth family can receive letters and pictures from you. In a semi-private adoption, you are given the ability to some day give your child the gift of having answers to some of their questions. You may be able to relay to your child the reason that the choice for adoption was made. You may know some helpful things about the birth mother and her family such as their interests and hobbies, medical conditions, and you may even have a photo of them, or letters from them to present to your child when the time is right. Not only are you able to give your child loving answers, you are also able to bless a birth mom and her family by giving them updates and photos that may help them to feel reassured of their decision.

On open adoption. There was a day when I would have, perhaps out of ignorance, steered away from any situation that was asking for an open adoption. Though I know this is not for every one, I would encourage you to not completely close yourself off to this option. I certainly would not push anyone in this direction, but would encourage you to be open to it on a situation by situation basis. Do some reading, talk to other families who have had experiences with open adoption, and make that decision for yourself.

I would welcome any comments that might be helpful to adoptive couples trying to make the decision about type of adoption they are willing to pursue. I will post any comments or questions that might be helpful to other couples who are pursuing adoption.

Thursday, May 1, 2008


One of my couples with their son!
God is so faithful.


One of my couples with their son!
God is so faithful.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Free Adoption Seminar in Georgia

Our next FREE adoption seminar will be in Canton, GA at the Historic Canton Theater on May 3, 2008 at 10:30 AM. If you would like more information please click here. If you would like to register call 1.800.807.0848. We look forward to seeing you there!

Sunday, April 6, 2008

His Heart for the Orphan Hold a Workshop in Louisiana

Here's some news about an adoption workshop that some great people in Louisiana are having this month. If you live anywhere near Baton Rouge, please plan to attend!!!!!!

April 26, 2008

What does God's Word say on adoption? Through "His Heart for Orphans" adoption workshops you will receive a Biblical perspective on adoption along with valuable information on the domestic and international adoption process. You will also meet some amazing children who were adopted into their forever family.

Our next adoption workshop will be:
Saturday, April 26 at the Annex Campus Suite A
8:00am - 12:00pm
Please register to attend this FREE workshop:REGISTER HERE

Thursday, March 27, 2008

A Few Additional Comments

There has been a lot of interest in my post on Adoption Costs and Available Situations lately, and I'd like to clarify a couple of things.

First, I am an adoption consultant. My job is to help couples who are adopting to walk through the adoption process offering my assistance every step of the way. I serve as their advocate helping them adopt as quickly and as affordably as possible. I work to help them line up an agency to complete their home study and answer questions as they go through the home study process, I help to educated them about grants and loans, I prepare a profile about their family that they can send to agencies, and I make them aware of adoption situations in agencies as we learn about them. I walk with couples from start to finish in their adoption journey.

Secondly, I do not set prices for these situations. I only report what is out there, and make couples aware of adoption situations that are available. There are a lot of changes I would like to see in the adoption world. I am no way advocating the high cost of adoption. I am daily looking for agencies that are low cost agencies so that the couples I am working with do not have to pay nearly as much as some agencies require.

Please look closely at the cost for adoption, many of those cost are good and legitimate. Counseling for the birthmom, caring for the birthmom, medical costs for the baby and the birthmom, etc. Legal fees are unavoidable of course. And most home study costs are really realistic based on the service they are providing.

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Adoption Costs

I've had a lot of people ask lately about why adoption is so expensive and why the prices vary so much. Here's some basic information on the costs of adoption.

Adoption costs vary on each individual situation, but in most cases there are general ranges that agencies adoption fees fall within. We believe that every child, regardless of ethnicity, is a gift from God.

Agencies have to lower fees on certain children because they are harder to place based on their ethnic background. Typically, couples that are adopting in the US are primarily Caucasian and they request Caucasian children. There are twice as many Caucasian couples trying to adopt as any other ethnicity. Therefore the demand is greater for Caucasian children. There is a great need for couples open to African American or Bi-Racial children. Again, we feel that every child is valuable and a precious gift from God.

Agency Fees- this is a big one and can vary so much depending on if the agency is large or small, profit or non-profit, along with other variable based on individual situations.

Typical agency fees include the following expenses:
• Application fee due upfront, prior to match
• Birth mother’s living expenses (rent, utilities, basic toiletries, maternity clothes, travel expenses, groceries, and basic linens)
• Social service fees (birth mother’s counseling, transporting the birth mother, etc.)
• Birth mother’s medical expenses (this is not required in cases where the birth mother is covered by Medicaid)
• The baby’s medical expenses (consult your health insurance company- many plans cover adopted children from birth) *make sure to acquire your temporary custody order from the agency
• Legal fees
• Administration and advertising fees
• Interstate compact fees
• Finalization fees (in most cases- check with your agency to find out if finalization is included in the agency fee.)
You will receive a written estimate of fees from your agency at time of contract and a complete fee discloser at finalization.

Additional fees to be considered include:
• Travel expenses
You should plan on an approximate stay, in the state, for 7-10 days for the Interstate Compact paperwork to be approved. This will allow you to cross state lines to travel home. The approximate stay may be longer if the child is born over a weekend.
• Home Study fees and post placement fees
Check with your home study agency for a schedule of fees due before and after placement. In most cases, you will need between 1-6 or more post placement visits which are not likely included in your initial home study.
• Finalization (if not included in agency fee)
Make sure to check with the agency, in regards to finalization and post placement visits. You will need to know if they will finalize your adoption, and how many post placement visits are required. If the agency does not finalize for you, you will need to finalize in your home state. Attorney fees for finalization can range from $750 - $3,000.

I encourage anyone who has a heart for adoption to not be put off by the costs, but to really seek the Lord for provision and to ask Him to make a way. His heart is for adoption! There are many grants, loans, tax credits, and fund raising opportunities out there to help off set the cost for you.

If your interested in reading more about how God provided for our adoption CLICK HERE.

Thursday, March 13, 2008

Additional New Situations with Our Agencies

Caucasian: Girl, Will be born in VA, State to govern adoption will be FL, Due date June, $35-37K, BM social/medical background reported to be clean

African-American: Sex Unknown, Will be born in MO, state to govern adoption will be MO, Due date is May, Agency fees will be around $7,500+$2K in assistance to mother+legal fees, BM social/medical background reported to be clean

Native American: Sex Unknown, Will give birth in WY, state to govern adoption will be WY, Due Date July, Agency fee around $12K+$3K in living+legal fees, BM social/medical background reported to be clean

Caucasian: Sex Unknown, will be born in FL, state to govern adoption will be FL, Due April 7, Agency fee $20K + $8K in assistance to mother + legal fees, BM social/medical background reported to be clean

Friday, March 7, 2008


Just one year ago our beautiful baby girl was born!
To hear our adoption story visit my HOME blog and click on the adoption link in the side bar under blog topics.

Sunday, February 24, 2008

Adoption Seminar Photos

John and Tracie Loux, Malcolm and Amy Young, Randy and Kelsey Bohlender

photos courtesy of Shelley Paulson

Monday, February 18, 2008

Silent Auctions

A silent auction can be a huge success and is always a lot of fun at a fund raiser! Have a starting bid and an ending time, and allow people to out bid each other throughout the evening.

This gift basked contained candles, CD's, and tickets to the Kansas City ballet!

Here's a fun basket with some teas, coffee, and hot chocolate!

Hit up your local coffee shops, hair salons, day salons, and other local businesses for donations of goods and services!

Seminar Reminder!

Our Free Adoption Seminar will be this Saturday the 23rd from 10am-12pm at New Hope United Methodist Church on Wornall Avenue in Kansas City. It's not too late to RSVP! Feel free to email me or respond to this post if you'd like to attend but haven't responded yet!

Also, please not that we have updated our website.
Christian Adoption Consultants

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Adoption Fundraising 101

In addition to grants and loans that are available for couples pursuing adoption, there are many creative ways to raise the large amount of money needed.

I always advice my couples this way:

1. Let people know you are planning to adopt. Send out a letter to family and friends, like a birth announcement! Let them know the expense that you are facing and ask them to support you if they can. Share with them your heart for adoption and allow them the joy of partnering with you. There are many people out there who cannot adopt but desire to walk out James 1:27 by giving.

2. Plan a fund raising event. Be creative.
- Choose a theme (Be unique: I just attended a Valentine themed dinner, Ours was a crazy 80's night theme, one of my couples is planning a Mexican Fiesta)
- Decide what you will serve (I've seen everything from dessert and coffee to a sit down catered dinner and everything in between.)
- Find a location (community centers, churches, restaraunts, etc)
-Get HELP! There are always friends out there who love doing this kind of thing. Get help so you don't burn yourself out. You can even see if you can get a party planner to give you a good deal and take the whole thing for you!
-Always make your fundraiser a ticketed event. My suggestion is that you give people options for their ticket prices. For our 80's night music themed fund raiser, we had different ticket prices like this: Vinyl- $25, Silver- $50, Platinum- $100, Gold $250. Friends of ours had a flower themed event and their tickets were Carnation, Daisy, Rose, and Orchid (I think).
-Other things you can add to your dinner:
-A silent auction (get local businesses to donate gift certificates, gift baskets, products or services, get local artists to donate photography and artwork)
-A live auction is fun too!

3. Raffels or Online Auctions. You can get people to donate good and services and have an online auction through ebay or even on your blog with a deadline. In the blogs people can leave their bids in the comment section and have a limited number of days until the auction closes.

Other ideas:
1. One of the couples that I am working with set up an account with www.onecause.com
OneCause is a nontraditional fundraising program that will help us earn the funds we need through everyday opportunities, such as shopping on-line, in stores and catalogs, purchasing gift certificates, by using the OneCause credit card, or through a variety of other easy programs.

2. If you like to write and especially if you have a lot of family and friends out of town, set up a blog to journal your process and allow people to stay connected and feel part of your journey. You can even set up a DONATE link on your side bar for people wanting to give to your adoption fund.

3. Non-profit Fundraising Sales: Gather a group of eager helpers, maybe even kids from your youth group at church and do a fund raiser similar to what some schools do to raise funds for band, senior trips, etc. Here's a link to check out.

4. Here's another option A Child's Desire.

(there are hundreds of other adoption fundraising ideas with just a quick google search!)

Feel free to post other ideas that have worked for you or others you know!!!

Again, Pray! Above all else I believe that God's heart is for adoption and He will provide!

Friday, February 8, 2008

Great Couples that I'm Working With

Mike and Stephanie

Rusty and Elisabeth

Kristi and Steven

Dean and Chrystal

Won't you join me and praying for these terrific couples as they walk out their adoption journey! I am honored to be working with such amazing families!

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

The Myth

It's hard to adopt in the United States.

WRONG: Today I got a call from Amy Young, the owner of Christian Adoption Consultants, for whom I work, asking if I have any families home study ready yet. I'm currently working with three couples who are in the early stages of their home studies. Today we are calling all of our clients to find homes for three babies born today or in the last few days that need homes. All of the babies are AA or bi-racial. The agency does not have families for them.

So, the bottom line, if you are interested in adoption, and especially if you are open to race, please contact us and let us help you!

Adoption Abbreviations 101

Great question about my last post, what do all those abbreviations mean?

Here it goes:
AA- African American
CC- Caucasion
Hisp- Hispanic
UN- Unknown

I think that about does it.

Thursday, January 17, 2008

A Labor of Love

I currently have several couples who are beginning their adoption journey. What I remind them all is that all the ground work that they are doing is part of their "labor." The paperwork seems endless some days, the pressure of finances can be daunting, and the ache in the heart to know the child that will someday be theirs is often times heavy to bear. Because I've walked this journey I know the reality of this "labor of love."

There were days when our journey seemed no different for me than the months I carried my biological children in my womb. And there were days when it seems like an even deeper "carrying." Though I didn't carry Elia in my womb, I carried my her in my heart, in my mind, and in my spirit. Love was for her was born in my heart, planted there by God.

So I encourage you today, if you are walking this journey, whether you are just starting or you have been walking it for what seems like forever, what you carry in your heart is precious.

As I was thinking of this today, I was reminded of a post I wrote months ago before Elia was born. Read it HERE if you're interested.

Monday, January 7, 2008


Make plans to join us at our next adoption seminar in Kansas City on February 23rd at 10am. The seminar will be held at New Hope United Methodist Church at 310 West 106th Street, KC, MO 64114 (at 106th and Wornall). Please call to register because seating is limited.
We look forward to seeing you there!

(click flyer for full view)