Friday, July 27, 2012

Home Study Meeting #2

We had another meeting with our adoption counselor last night....lots more forms and paper-work. We are checking things off the list! So exciting! We've got a few more things to do - background clearances from VA, fingerprinting, health assessments for everyone, notarizing a will, finishing up our reading list, and a few more odds n' ends. We are hoping to have our home-visit by the end of September and then we can submit our home study for approval. After approval, we will be placed on the registry for approved adopted families awaiting a child!!!! How exciting! It's amazing how quickly everything is coming together! Although that also means we will have to have our $7,000 per-placement fee much sooner than we anticipated. YIKES. But Joe and I have determined from the very beginning that we were not going to stress over the financial aspect - if it is meant to be, God will provide the funds! We are starting to save $$$ as we are all adds up!

Last night, one of the main topics was discipline. How Joe and I discipline and if/how it would change for an adopted child. In a nut shell, Joe and I strive to have a gentle parenting style. This includes allowing opportunities to teach and instruct. We firmly believe we cannot expect adult behavior from a child. They must be molded into adults . . . and that is where we, as parents, come in. We know we are not the greatest parents and that we mess up sometimes. But, we love our kids and we do our best to show love through our words and actions. Sure, there are occasional raised voices or even a pat on the bottom, but that is not our main parenting tactic. For our kids, we primarily use time-outs and loss of privileges. This seems to be very effective in most cases and often places a more appropriate discipline with their offense than a physical punishment. For example, if one of our children were to write on the wall, instead of slapping their hand or swatting them on the bottom, might it be more effective to show genuine disappointment while telling them why we do not write on the walls? Then, the child should be asked to clean the wall, which could take some time and effort on their part, but also has better chances of instilling in them the lesson that we are attempting to teach. Perhaps they even lose the crayons/markers for a day to emphasize the point. So far, this tactic has served us well....but time will tell! Phew, parenting is a big responsibility!

Anyway, just some ramblings from our conversation last night. Please feel free to share your thoughts on the topic!

We will continue to keep you updated with any news!

Announcement: We Are Adopting

Essie asks me almost everyday, "How long is it going to take for me to get my new sister?" (We are not specifying gender but it is pretty cute how Essie expects her new sibling to be a girl!!!) She has it all planned out! Even Zac is in on the excitement! He says he wants a brother AND a sister!

We have been filling out tons of paperwork! We are already half way through our home study. We were given an estimate wait of 18months (that would put us at around the end of next year). We are hopeful that we will be a family of 6 by Christmas next year! What a wonderful gift that would be!

For those of you who are curious, we are seeking out a child with special needs. We clearly have a heart for individuals with special needs seeing as we already have a child with Down Syndrome. I can't fathom the notion of anyone passing up on a Benji! What a blessing he has been. When we met with our adoption counselor for the first time, she confirmed our intentions by telling us that Special Needs adoptions are one of the biggest needs. For every healthy child, there are 36 couples waiting. Unfortunately, there are not as many families waiting for special needs children. We were told that Joe and I would be with only a handful of other adoptive parents on the registry willing to adopt Special Need Infants. We are excited to see how God blesses us!

We are absolutely, 100% positive that God will provide the funds. Adoption is not cheap. In fact, the total adoption coast through Bethany Christian Services is . . . drum roll please . . . ~ $30,000. While the cost is a bit daunting, we also believe without a doubt, that this is what we are meant to do. We have already paid the $500 application fee - so that leaves only $29,500 left to our goal!!!! We do ask that if you feel led to support our adoption, that you consider donating to our fund. (Joe will be setting up a Pay-Pal account) If you cannot donate financially, we ask that you pray for our future baby.

*Pray for the health of the mother and her pregnancy
*Pray that the funds will come in
*Pray that all of our paperwork goes through and that there are no major "hang-ups"

We also ask that you support our family by encouraging us! Adoption may not be for everyone, but we believe it is for us!

The Butler Bunch