Welcome to our blog! We've had lots of people asking us to keep them posted on all the adoption happenings, so I decided to make a blog. Enjoy!

Monday, December 26, 2011

Featured Family

Next week we’re going to be the Featured Family on Give1Save.com. During that week they’ll be asking people to donate $1 to help fund the adoption of our little girl. We’re so excited about this! Please, please, please... PLEASE if you could help us next week by blowing up your Facebook timelines, emails, etc. with the link when I post it. Just think, if 25,000 people each donated $1, we’d have the whole thing funded! Thanks in advance everyone!

Tuesday, November 1, 2011


Hey folks, today kicks off National Adoption Month, so it seemed fitting to kick off a few fundraisers too. I have 3 fundraisers starting today.

1. Scentsy. If you don't know what Scentsy is, you're missing out! It's a home show business that electric candles. They warm wax using a lightbulb and the scents are amazing! My friend Chrystle Woods sells Scentsy and has offered to donate her commission to our adoption fund! We will receive 25% of the sales in this "party". I'm keeping this fundraiser open until the end of the year. Makes for some great Christmas gifts, and you can donate to a good cause at the same time! To shop, just follow this link. Please share with your friends! If you don't want to shop online, let me know, I have some catalogs and order forms I can take your order with.

2. T-shirts! We're finally ordering tshirts! This is what the shirt will look like- we will have fitted and regular tshirts. The fitted shirts are $20 and are available in sizes XS-XL. The regular shirts are also $20 and available in children's XS-L and adults XS-XXXL. If you'd like to preorder you can leave a comment here, facebook me or email me (saragentry at gmail dot com). I'll take cash (if you're local), check or paypal (br616611 at yahoo dot com). Please let me know what cut and size shirt you want when you message me.
3. I got this idea from my friend who saw it as a fundraiser for another adoptive family. We'll be selling puzzle pieces for $5. If you buy a puzzle piece you'll be able to write a message on the back to our little girl and then when the puzzle is completed we'll put it together and frame it for her room. If you aren't local, you can still buy one and just let us write on it for you. This will be a nice keepsake for her to know that she had lots of people thinking about and praying for her before she even made it home!
If you're interested in buying a puzzle piece, let me know! If you're local, I can get with you to write your message. If you want us to write the message for you, we can do that as well.

Please continue to pray for our little girl, and for the adoption process as a whole. We're still working on home study paper work, but are getting closer to being able to start the home study. Continue to keep the Congo in your prayers too, elections are in a couple weeks and the violence and demonstrations are getting worse. Pray for safety for those involved and for a positive outcome for the election.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Next step- home study

The next step in the adoption process for us is the home study. If you're like me, you don't really know what that means. Going into it I sort of thought it was just a study of your home... you know, like the name implies. But it's more than just a case worker going around your house looking for reasons why you're an unfit parent. 1st it's a LOT of paperwork. A LOT. We have to get fingerprinted, background checks, criminal record checks... pretty much anything in your past gets checked up on.... we have to submit a request for all the 911 calls made from our home! Which, I still have to figure out because we don't have a home phone line. Cell phones? I don't know. That's one of the questions I'm asking my friend Noelle on Friday when we meet for coffee and I bring my giant file folder of paper work with me and pick her brain. She's adopting a baby boy from the Congo and is #1 on the waitlist!

So, back to the home study- it's lots of paperwork, lots of questions about your past, your upbringing, relationships with your parents/siblings, parenting ideals, etc. There are 12 pages of "stuff about me" I have to fill out, and Andrew has to fill out those same 12 pages about himself. After we get all the paperwork finished we'll have the meetings. I'll be interviewed, Andrew will be interviewed and then she'll interview us together. Going more in depth into the questions we already answered and I'm sure bringing up other questions.

We've asked for a girl, around 2 years old. That's the age we think will fit well in our family, that way we'll have a 4, 3, and 2 year old. Little stairsteps :)

We still have a long way to go, the home study process takes about 8-10 weeks, and I'm pretty sure that start time is after the first visit, which we still have to schedule. We can't schedule that till we get through this mountain of paperwork AND we replace the carpet. If we're friends on Facebook you read about a week ago we had plumbing issues that resulted in poo carpet in our master bedroom. Well, we ripped that out and bleached the foundation, but now our master bedroom has no carpet, which I'm sure does not bode well for a home study! We're working on the carpet thing, just have to get people out here to measure so we can get people out here to install!

On the money side of things- we have the money for the home study, YAY! That's a big hurdle and God has faithfully provided thus far. Right now we have exactly what we need to pay for the home study. After that we still have a long ways to go, but we do have a couple fundraisers coming up. My friend who sells Scentsy has offered to do a Scentsy fundraiser (more on that later) and I'm getting tshirts made soon (more on that later too!). Be on the look out for more blog updates.... hopefully we can knock this paperwork out and things will start to feel like they're moving faster!

p.s. God bless you if you can make sense of this whole post. My thoughts are all jumbled together and it's late!

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Blog Hop

I'm learning so much from other adoption blogs. Today one of the blogs I follow posted a "blog hop" for anyone with an adoption blog to link up, so there's a great big list of adoption blogs over there. If you're interested you should go check it out here!

Hopefully I'll have another update about our adoption soon. We've been so busy we haven't had time to work much on the fundraising stuff, which slows down the rest of the process. Stay tuned!

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Another update

It's been a little while since I've updated, so I thought I'd let everyone know what's going on. Right no we've submitted our application and have been approved. And we're waiting on a couple things now- mainly money.

Our first fundraiser went really well! We raised a total of $970. I'm still waiting on about $100 of that, but I'm really happy with that number. We will be starting our home study soon. The money we raised will pay for a little over 1/2 of that. As far as the rest of the adoption process goes, to move forward after the home study, we're waiting on $3,400. That is the adoption agency registration fee and agency fee. And to finish the home study we'll need about $500 more than what we've got left in our adoption bank account.

So right now the waiting starts. We're working on some tshirts, but we want to pass the home study first before we start selling those. The yard sale will probably be in the beginning on November, so if you have anything to donate to that, please let me know! Thanks!

Please continue to keep us and our future child in your prayers. Thank you!!

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Team green didn't last long...

Well, our original plan was to be "team green" and say "no preference" for the gender on our application. But as we talked more about it and discussed the pros and cons of each gender, we came to a decision, and....

We decided that a girl would really fit into our family the best. We already have everything we need for a girl (and then some), and we have some experience raising girls. In the beginning Andrew said he wanted a boy so he wouldn't be too out numbered, but he was actually the one to bring it up again and say we should adopt a girl. I don't think he would know what to with a boy! ;)

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Update and FAQ #2

Quick update on our fundraising kickoff- it's going great! I've received over 30 donations from 30 different people. It's really been overwhelming to see God move to provide donations. A couple people that I don't personally know have even contacted me to donate items. The auction begins tomorrow morning at 10am. To participate in the auction, follow this link- http://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.578658816508.2069988.57700497&l=60be722a86&type=1
To place a bid on an item, comment on that item with your bid and your email address. After 2 weeks the auction will close (with the exception of the 2 William Sonoma gift "baskets") and whoever has the highest bid wins! You'll be notified via email and will pay through paypal for your item. Please share that link with everyone you know! The more people we can get to participate, the better!

On to our 2nd edition of FAQ-

Q- Boy or Girl?
A- We don't know yet. Originally we thought we'd just go "team green" and say we didn't have a preference. But as I've been reading, it seems like it takes a little longer to get a girl, so if we say "no preference", that's pretty much the same as saying "male". We've thought and discussed it, there are pros and cons to both genders, so for now we're just leaving it in God's hands.

Q- Are you worried about raising a black child in a white home... in Rome?
A- Are we worried about it? Not really. Are we prepared for it? Also not really. We know there are probably more diverse cities to live in to be a biracial family, but when God called us to adopt, He didn't say it would be easy. I figure there are things we'll have to deal with all of our children. Other things might not be a subject as touchy as race, but we'll cross that path when we get there. I'm sure there will be some tough questions to answer. I'm working on getting to know some other moms who have adopted from the DR Congo, so maybe they'll have some advice as they go through some of these things themselves.

Q- What do Alexis and Kaitlyn think about all this?
A- Kaitlyn has no idea because she's only 2. We've asked Alexis if she wants a little brother or sister. She usually says "sister", but I think that's because she already has a little sister. We've also asked her what she thinks about sharing a room with Kaitlyn. Her 1st response was "I snuggle with her, she's my sweetheart". Each time we ask her she's excited about it. No clue if that enthusiasm will hold after the move is complete ;)

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

How can you help?

Whether you asked or not, I wanted to let everyone know how they can help!

Right now we are praying that they accept our application and that the home study will go smoothly. I won't lie, I'm really nervous about the home study. We don't have a perfect house, it's not always (ie never) up to the white glove test. It's a little nerve wracking to have someone come evaluate how you run your house, budget your money and conduct your lives. So pray for us as we begin this process.

#2- Our 1st fundraiser is going to be a Facebook auction! If you're interested in donating an item for people to bid on, PLEASE let me know. It can be anything (hair bows, homegoods, clothes, etc. Really- anything!), I would prefer that it be something that can be mailed, but it doesn't even have to be. The reason I'm looking for that sort of thing is so that people that don't live locally can still participate in the bidding and their "win" can be mailed to them! I'll be contacting some of you who I think might be interested in donating, but if you have an idea for something to donate, please hit me up! I check my facebook several times a day, my cell phone number (text/call) is on facebook, or you can leave a comment here. My email address is saragentry@gmail.com. Hey, and if you know someone that I don't know who might want to donate, let me know! The facebook album will go up as soon as I have a few items to bid on.

#3- Our next fundraiser will be a yard sale. We need 2 things for this. We need a location. Our house isn't on a main road and no one really knows where our neighborhood is. We get a little bit of traffic for yard sales, but not much. We'd love to borrow your yard if you live in a good yard sale spot :) The 2nd thing we need is your old stuff! We need donations of things to sell. We have some stuff we can sell, but the more the better. If you have anything you'd like to donate to the sale, let me know and I'll come pick it up. If it's small you're welcome to drop it off at Walgreens on a day that Andrew works (it just has to be small enough to fit in his little Maxima). The yard sale will be in October, so clean out those closets and garages... basements... wherever!

#4- You may have noticed there's a "Donate" button on our blog now. That is linked directly to our paypal account and EVERY penny that gets donated via our paypal will go directly to our adoption fund. If you or someone you know might be interested in donating to the cause, that's an easy way to do so.

#5- PRAY!!!!!

Decisions, decisions...

We finally made some! Almost immediately after announcing our plans to adopt on Facebook my friends have been messaging me with people they know who have gone through the process or are currently going through the process. One of these friends, Helen, sent me the name of a mom in Rome that is going through the process. So, I checked out her blog and the agency she's going through. Her blog (listed in the "helpful links" sidebar, was really helpful to me in listing all the expenses they've incurred as well as fundraising ideas.
As Andrew and I researched (ok, I researched and then told Andrew about my findings), we decided that Africa was where we felt God pushing us to. So I researched the options in Africa and came back to Noelle's blog about Congo. There were a few things that appealed to us about this country. One of the big things is that you only have to travel once. Most countries require you travel two times, which is obviously more expensive, and you meet your child and then have to leave them there at the orphanage for weeks/months!
So we've made our decision! We're applying to One World Adoption Services for a baby from Congo. Now that this decision has been made things can start happening! It's exciting for me to have something to do now, other than just research.

What's next?
We are working on the application today. I did the easy stuff last night (name, birthday, etc.), but I saved the harder stuff (why do you want to adopt, etc.) for today when it wasn't late and Andrew wasn't playing video games in the background. As soon as the application is sent in we can actually apply for the home study. The home study will consist of 3 visits. After that there is a truck load of paper work to get through and lots of fees to pay (not that it's the beginning of fees- the fees start with the application, and continue with the home study).
So right now we're moving forward with the application and the home study, and lots and lots of fundraising so when those things get accepted we have the money to move forward!

Sunday, August 7, 2011

FAQs part 1

Frequently Asked Questions... part 1 of who knows how many. Right now these are the questions I get the most-

Q. What made you decide to adopt?
A. I've been thinking about adoption for about a year. In September of 2010 I attended a Women of Faith conference and heard Mary Beth Chapman speak. She shared tidbits of her life. Later in the conference a representative from World Vision talked about all the children in the world that needed our help. That weekend I signed on with World Vision to help a little girl Alexis's age in Mexico. Through our monthly gift, her family gets aid from World Vision. That weekend a seed was planted. I was satisfied by "adopting" through World Vision. Later that year my dad gave me Mary Beth Chapman's book- Choosing to See. If you haven't read it, you should. It's a great book (and I don't read). In the book she talks about her life, her family's tragedy (she's married to Steven Curtis Chapman, the Christian singer- google it if you don't know what I'm talking about and want to), and the adoption of their 3 little girls from China. I cried a lot while reading that book. Not unusual for me, I'm a cryer. But their family's story really stuck with me. After reading that book (or maybe in the middle?) I talked to Andrew about the possibility of us adopting "some day". He agreed that he would be on board, but that's really as far as it got. Fast forward to last week. I had been thinking about adoption for a year. I would see videos or read little snippets and think "if we ever have more kids, that's how I want to do". Then last week, our church showed a video about a couple who was given a very generous gift so they would be able to adopt. The video made me tear up and I knew it was because this was something that God was telling me to do. After church Andrew and I talked. In the end we decided that yes, we should adopt. So I got to work researching, asking questions (facebook is a great sounding board!) and gathering up as much information as I could. It only took a year of God pulling, tugging, nudging on my heart to take the plunge. That's not that long... right?

Q. Where are you adopting from?
A. In my research I learned a few things. 1. Adoption ain't easy. 2. Domestic adoption is easier and cheaper 3. Domestic babies are fought over. Andrew and I talked about what kind of baby we would want. We decided we didn't care about the race- it could be purple, whatever. But we did decide that we want a baby- under the age of 2. We just think that will fit in best with our family dynamic and it's what we're best equipped to handle. We have experience with that age, our house has experience with that age, and our kids won't be too far apart in age. I didn't want for him/her to be adopted and 10 years older than his/her sisters who are *13 1/2 MONTHS* apart. One of the things I learned is that babies in the United States aren't easy to come by. When a mother gives up her baby for adoption she usually has dozens of families to chose from. Many of which struggle with infertility. We obviously don't struggle with that, and that's not why we're choosing to adopt. So we decided that even though there are more hoops to jump through, more red tape to go around, and more money to be spent, to go with international adoption. There are millions of orphans (give or take 150 million) that need a home. Millions of which are babies. These babies sit in an orphange, many without being held. There are many sad statistics I could throw at you, but instead I'll just say that's why we chose international. Lots of babies with no love... we have love... 1 less baby with no love.

Q. Isn't adoption expensive?
A. Yes, yes it is. No, we're not rich. We pay our bills, we give when we can, and we even go on vacation at least once a year, but we're definitely not rich. But this is something we feel God is calling us to do. James 1:27 says "to look after orphans and widows in their distress". So, that's what we're doing. We have decided on one of the more expensive types of adoption by deciding on international adoption, but again, it's because it's what we feel is right and what God is calling us to do. We plan on doing lots of fundraising to bring our baby home, and the updates for all that will be on this blog too, so be looking forward to that!

That's all I have for now, but I'm sure I'll have more installments. If you have any questions, please don't hesitate to ask. That's one of the things the blog is for :)


If you're here, chances are that you know one of us. But on the chance that you stumbled upon my blog through the various blogs I comment on, etc. I thought introductions would be a good idea.

First, I'll introduce myself, Sara. I'll be doing most of the writing. One of these days I might get my husband to update from his perspective, but since I'm at home during the day, I have the "time" to do this. Or at least, I'm making the time to do this to keep everyone informed on our adventure! I'm 26 and a stay at home mom to 2

fantastic little girls (more on them in a minute).
Andrew and I have been married almost 5 years (in December). I've been a stay at home mom for 3 years and I love it- most days. Being home all day with 2 toddlers is exhausting, but I definitely wouldn't switch jobs with anyone.

Next up is my husband, Andrew. He is 28 and works at a
drugstore in town as one of the managers. Lots of strange hours... lots of interesting customer stories. He works hard so I can stay home with our kids. I love him bunches. When he gets the chance he enjoys airsoft. It's

his only real hobby, and it's very strange to try to describe in words, but I'll try. A bunch of guys (in their teens, 20's and 30's) dress up in military outfits (some have served or are currently serving in the military) and shoot each other with airsoft guns (they look like the real thing, and they hurt, but not like bullets do). He says it's fun, so I'll take his word for it.

And then we have 2 little girls- Alexis and Kaitlyn. Alexis just turned 3 and Kaitlyn will be 2 in September.
They are best friends and worst enemies, just depends which moment of the day you're joining us. One minute they're giggling and playing in the next room, the next minutes there are tears and blood. Joking about the blood, kinda. As they get older, they're learning to play better together- including the "s" word (sharing).

Alexis is excited about the prospect of a little brother or sister. She's a little too young to understand it all, but we've asked her if she wants a little brother or sister and she gets excited about it. We've also asked her if she wants to share a room with Kaitlyn, which is something that would have to happen when bringing a new child home, and her response was "I snuggle with her, she's my sweetheart." I wonder if it's even worth having 2 beds in there?

Kaitlyn is really too young to have any idea about what we're planning, but hopefully by the time we bring our new child home she'll be excited about it!

We also have a zoo to account for- Oscar, Mayer and Teddy. Oscar and Mayer are 2 little mixed dachshunds. You wouldn't be able to guess it, but that's what the animal shelter told us, and that's where they get their names. Get it? Oscar Mayer wieners? Ha. And Teddy is our cat we (we being me, Sara) brought home after someone found a tiny kitten all by himself at my college. We had just adopted another kitten through facebook and I figured "what's 1 more?".

So, those are the introductions. Hi, nice to meet you. I hope you enjoy reading all about our adventures.