"But these things I plan won't happen right away. Slowly, steadily, surely, the time approaches when the vision will be fulfilled.
If it seems slow, be patient! For it will surely take place. It will not be late by a single day." Habakkuk 2:3

Monday, December 28, 2009

SWEET SISTERLY LOVE


SO, MY SWEET SISTER KELLY, WHOM MOST OF YOU KNOW IS ADOPTED (OUR FAMILY GOT HER RIGHT FROM AN OREGON HOSPITAL AT 2 DAYS OLD) AND WHO STARTED ME, THEN AS A 6 YEAR OLD CHILD, ON A JOURNEY AND DESIRE TO ADOPT THAT WILL CONCLUDE WITH BRINGING OUR BABY GIRL, WROTE ME A SPECIAL POEM FOR ABILGAIL FOR CHRISTMAS-I THOUGHT IT WAS SO NEAT AND I WANTED TO SHARE IT.





Adopting Africa


Lord keep us mindful as we wait,
Your time is perfect.
You are never late!

Our hearts are full of longing, loving,
as we wait for our Little One's coming.

Keep our babe in grace and care.
Give health, strength,
as You form her there.

For there she is in another's womb,
knit together by Your loving hand
to come home to us from another land.

A land of heat and pain,
savannahs and hunger,
of thirsting in vain.

So give us faith, Lord, as we wait
for that blessed day
when we know
that Africa is on her way.

Saturday, December 26, 2009

IF YOU MISSED ORPHAN SUNDAY-WATCH IT HERE!

COPY AND PASTE:

http://www.gospelmusicchannel.com/orphansunday

Amazing video from Georgia Football Head Coach

BYE BYE CHRISTMAS TREES FUNDRAISER


WELL, WE SOLD THE CHRISTMAS TREES AND NOW WE ARE GOING TO TAKE YOUR USED ONES OFF YOUR HANDS AS A FUNDRAISER FOR OUR ADOPTION!

DROP THEM BY OUR HOUSE ANYTIME-

IT IS ONLY $5 PER TREE.

CALL US IF WE ARE NOT THERE AND WE CAN TELL YOU WHERE TO LEAVE THE MONEY-
THANK YOU! OUR CHRISTMAS TREE SALES WERE A GREAT SUCCESS!

ADAM AND AMBER STUTZMAN

503-881-4633

Friday, December 25, 2009

TREE TALLY IS IN!!


We ARE SO EXCITED-WE ARE SO BLESSED! Merry Christmas from our family-
We totaled up our tree sales and can't even begin to show our gratitude and thankfulness to each one of you that gave to help bring our little girl home! When we started, I had set a goal of about $500-but we totally surpassed this!
Dada Da........We sold 170 trees and with all of the extra donations, made $2,300 after we pay for our part of the trees!!!!!!!!!!!!
We can hardly believe this and have now paid for all of our "referral expenses" for when we accept our baby girl's referral, as well as part of one airline ticket. We have about $7,000 more to go but this is a huge jump on our travel expenses. Thank you again so much for all of the support -we hope that you enjoyed your trees!

Thursday, December 24, 2009

THE THREE TREES~MERRY CHRISTMAS


As I walked outside tonight and saw that we only have 3 threes left to sell from our Christmas Trees for Abigail Sale, I was reminded of a story that our Bible Study Group recently read-it is called, "The Tale Of The Three Trees". I thought I would share it with you all now-it is worth the time to listen to it and reflect on the fact that God is in control of your life and He will put you where he wants you to go. Love to you all-Merry Christmas!

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

LOCAL NEWSPAPER DOES ARTICLE ON US!






Adoption fundraiser: Family sells trees to help bring baby home
December 2009 Posted in People
By Mary Owen

It’s very possible that Abigail Stutzman hasn’t seen many Christmas trees, if any, but her family has a backyard full of them at their Silverton home.

The Stutzmans are selling the trees for $15 each to raise funds to adopt their Ethiopian daughter, even though they’re not sure who she is yet or if she has even been born. The family applied in January of last year to adopt a baby girl through All God’s Children, a nonprofit Christian agency in Portland. In October, clearing most of the pre-adoption hurdles, the Stutzmans were placed on the waiting list for one between the ages of 1 day and 12 months.

“We had 25 families ahead of us,” Amber Stutzman said of the adoption list status a couple of weeks ago.

“We are expecting our baby referral to come sometime around this March or April. After that, we will travel to get her about two to four months later.”

Meanwhile, the Stutzmans are excitedly preparing for Abigail’s arrival, which began years ago when Amber and her husband, Adam, who works for the Oregon Department of Transportation, signed up to adopt a bi-racial baby from the United States while going through several years of infertility treatment earlier in their marriage.

“But after getting pregnant with twins, we had to pull our application,” said Amber, mom to five children: Jacob, 11, Cassidy and Zachary, 7, Noah, 6, and Logan, 4.

Amber’s desire to adopt began early in childhood when her own sister was adopted as a newborn. Amber, a Salem Academy graduate, shared her interest in taking in her own baby girl with Adam, a Silverton High School graduate, while the two were dating.

“We both agreed that even if we had children, we would like to open our home to a child that needed a family,” Amber said. “We looked into domestic adoption and then through much thought and prayer, were draw to one of the poorest countries with one of the highest needs for families –Ethiopia.”

Ethiopia is one of the four poorest countries in the world, according to a government Web site. The African nation has 85.2 million people, of which almost half live below the poverty level. Malnutrition, poor health conditions, disease including HIV/AIDS, lack of education, high mortality, and other factors contribute to the number of children who are either on the streets or in orphanages.

Married for 15 years, the Stutzmans attend Emmanuel Bible Church. Now that their dream is about to become a reality, the entire miracle of adoption has hit full force, Amber said.

“Most likely another woman somewhere across the world is pregnant right now with our daughter, and that just gives me the chills,” she said. “We continue to pray for the mom and the heart-aching decision that she is going to have to make. Giving up your child so that they will not grow up in poverty is one of the most selfless things that a person can do. We are so thankful to her!”

Amber, who works two days a week as a delivery nurse at Salem Hospital, knows the emotions young mothers have when giving birth and the difficulty that is attached to giving that child up for adoption.

“It is so hard to wrap my mind around it,” she said of a young mother’s sacrifice.

But it won’t be hard for her to wrap her arms around her new daughter, she said.

To cover the $25,000 cost of bringing little Abigail to Silverton, the entire Stutzman family has carried out projects throughout the year and has others in the works.

“We started off in the summer when our oldest son, Jacob, parked cars in our yard during the Homer Davenport festival, the Art Festival and the Father’s Day Strawberry Shortcake day,” Adam said. “During Homer days we also had people donate stuff that they didn’t want any more, and we had a huge yard sale. Our daughter, Cassidy also did a bake sale.”

In September, the Stutzmans conducted a pop can and water bottle drive, a project that is ongoing. People are welcome to drop of cans at 404 Charles Ave. or call for pick up.

“Zachary has been the one doing this, and he actually loves taking the coins back,” Adam said. “So far he has made about $300 for his little sister.”

The family started a Baby Bottle coin drive last month, whereby families, coworkers and friends fill the bottle with spare change.

“We hope to collect them around the first of the year,” Adam said.

And then there’s the tree sale – a chapter to write about in Abigail’s adoption journey book, Adam said. Brad and Mary Jo Young of Scotts Mills provided the trees at a highly discounted rate, and the Stutzmans are selling them at their home. They’ll also take families who want to cut their own to the Young’s farm, and recycle trees after Christmas for $5, Adam said.

“Our family and friends have continued to support us in our fundraising, child care and prayer,” he said, commending folks for their friendliness and caring. “People we don’t even know have been willing to help us out.“

In the planning stages are a community car wash, silent auction, dessert fundraiser and maybe a bowling night at the Silverton Silver Creek Bowling Alley.

“More details will come as we continue to plan these events in the future,” Adam said. “We know that God laid it on our hearts to adopt this baby, which we know also means that ultimately he will provide. We are just thankful beyond words for the generosity of everyone that has helped us to bring our baby home!”


How to help
Donations to the adoption fund may be made
in the Stutzman’s name (their name must be
designated on check) at any MaPS Credit Union.
For information call the Stutzmans at
503-873-6934
check their blog at:
adamandamberstutzman.blogspot.com

Sunday, December 13, 2009

SHOT TIME~OUCH!






















Well, one more thing crossed off our list-our travel shots-Jacob, Adam and I went and got our multiple shots for our trip to Ethiopia-glad that's over....check out my blood pressure right after the shots....Adam won and had to get 5! Jacob needed 2 and I had 3....look at our sad faces and feel pity! We are very sore today-but glad it's over. We actually were blessed because Adam's insurance actually covers travel immunizations-this is VERY rare because they cost several hundred dollars each. We all had to either get or make sure that these were up to date: meningacocal, yellow fever, typhoid, tetanus/pertussis, MMR, varicella, Hep B and Hep A, and PPD for tebuculosis.

Oh Christmas Tree Oh Christmas Tree























Wanted to share some pictures with you of our Christmas Tree adventure! We are still going strong-but what a huge amount of work it is! Adam is working so hard on this and I am so thankful to have such a great guy! And YES we still have trees-we go cut more every few days!



Thursday, December 10, 2009

Above and Beyond All that we could ask for!


Today I am just reflecting a bit and thinking about this last week and a half. As most of you know, we are selling Christmas trees as a fundraiser for our adoption. This fundraiser has gone so far above and beyond anything that we ever thought it would! I was thinking that maybe we would sell a few trees and that would be it-well, you all had other ideas! :-) We have only been doing this for not quite 2 weeks and already have sold over 140 trees. People that know us and people that don't have all come together to support us and this adoption adventure and we are SO grateful! Family, Friends and even TOTAL strangers are often giving us checks for $25, $25, or even $50 for ONE tree-it has been unreal! One anonymous lady saw our sign at the Pill Box Pharmacy here in Silverton and left $15 for us to give someone who didn't have a tree one for Christmas-that is the 2nd person to do that! We have had people from out of town stop and get trees, we have had people that saw our add about it on Craigslist drive from South Salem to get a tree and they don't even know us, but wanted to support our adoption. To think that people we don't even know would go out of their way to help us has just made me speechless. I am so inspired by the generosity of others and there are not words to say to thank everyone!
People from Silverton, Salem, church friends, family, people from our work and the PD have all come together to make this thing so much more than we ever thought-thank you again and again!
Last weekend, after Adam came back from cutting 10 trees, they were all gone within an hour! I had to take 5 peoples names and numbers and they hung around Silverton for an hour and a half until Adam got back here with more trees! Then that night, Adam had his friend, Spencer, help him, borrowed a truck and borrowed a larger trailer and cut 39-well, within 48hrs. we had 2 left!!
To say that Adam is exhausted is an understatement, but he is also excited as well-he is running back and forth-especially on the weekends and can only get about 10 trees in our small utility trailer-so he may try and borrow a truck and larger trailer again and do larger loads for this weekend.
We haven't heard of any new baby referrals this month and are hoping that we start hearing some soon-we can't believe we are in the 20's but now the teens are looking good! :-) Hopefully with the courts just opening up and now new travel groups getting their children the last few weeks, the referral's will start coming.
thanks you all once again for your support-it means the world to us-love to you all!
We are excited to see what these last 2 weeks before Christmas does-we will be selling trees up through the 23rd-so if any of you or someone you knows wants, one, stop by or let us know and we can deliver it. We have been told time and again that they love these trees and all the praise for them goes to our friend Brad Young of Scott's Mills who is selling them to us for $4 each. They are beautiful trees and are ALL Nobles. You can get any size for $15.
Some of you know, but we are blessed to be having a story on our family, our adoption and our tree sales come out in the paper that gets mailed to every house in Silverotn and it should come out this week-this was a true blessing from the Lord-and hopefully we will get the word out there more and sell more trees!

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

THE BEST BOOK I HAVE READ IN A LONG TIME!

This is by far the best and most meaningful book that I have read all year-It is amazing and SO true. It challenged me to no end! It is a must read for Christians!
http://www.theholeinourgospel.com/


Friday, December 4, 2009

OUR DECEMBER # IS IN!


WE ARE EXCITED TO ANNOUNCE THAT OUR DECEMBER NUMBER IS 27 AS YOU CAN SEE-WE MADE THEM OUT OF OUR CHRISTMAS TREE BRANCHES-WHICH IS ALSO A REMINDER TO COME BUY A CHRISTMAS TREE FROM US! :-) we ARE TREKKING ALONG AND CAN'T BELIEVE THAT WE ARE ALMOST 1/2 OF WHAT WE WERE WHEN WE STARTED! PLEASE PRAY THAT IT WILL GO QUICKLY FOR US AND THAT OUR BABY GIRL IS HEALTHY AND THAT HER MOM IS ABLE TO HAVE PEACE ABOUT THIS DECISION.
WE ARE TRULY HUMBLED AND SO VERY GRATEFUL TO EVERYONE THAT HAS E-MAILED, CALLED OR STOPPED BY. EVEN TOTAL STRANGERS HAVE HEARD ABOUT OUR TREES AND COME BY TO GET ONE AND WE HAVE EVEN HAD PEOPLE ASK US HOW THEY CAN DONATE MONEY TOWARD OUR ADOPTION-WE HAVE A LINK ON THIS PAGE AND IF YOU CLICK ON IT YOU CAN DONATE IF YOU HAVE A PAYPAL ACCOUNT. WE ARE TRYING TO STILL RAISE ABOUT $8,000 FOR OUR TRAVEL EXPENSES AND THIS SEEMS LIKE A LOT, BUT WE KNOW THAT GOD WILL PROVIDE FOR US AND THAT WE WILL GET THERE.
ON ANOTHER NOTE, WE HAVE BEEN ASKED FOR INFORMATION ABOUT OUR ADOPTION AND OUR CHRISTMAS TREE SALES SO THAT THE OUR TOWN NEWSPAPER CAN DO A STORY ON US-I THINK IT WILL COME OUT A WEEK FROM THIS WEDNESDAY-IT GETS MAILED TO THE WHOLE TOWN SO THIS WAS SIMPLY A BLESSING FROM GOD! WE ARE THRILLED AND THIS IS A GREAT OPPORTUNITY TO GET OUR STORY OUT THERE AND LET MORE PEOPLE KNOW THAT WE ARE SELLING TREES. THANKS FOR EVERYONE WHO IS SUPPORTING US THROUGH THE BABY BOTTLE COIN DRIVE AND THE CHRISTMAS TREE SALES AND IN MANY OTHER WAYS-WE WILL FOREVER BE GREATFUL TO YOU ALL AND SO WILL OUR BABY! WE LOVE EACH AND EVERYONE OF YOU!

Thursday, December 3, 2009

WE STILL HAVE CHRISTMAS TREES!





wE ARE DOING GREAT ON THE CHRISTMAS TREE SALES, BUT WE STILL HAVE MORE AND WILL CONTINUE TO SELL THEM THROUGH THE 23RD....SO TELL EVERYONE YOU KNOW THAT THEY CAN GET A BEAUTIFUL TREE FROM US-THEY ARE ALL NOBLES AND ANY SIZE IS ONLY $15!
503-873-6934

Tuesday, November 24, 2009





CHRISTMAS TREES FOR Our Baby Girl

We are doing a fundraiser
to help bring our adopted baby girl home from Ethiopia

we are selling Christmas trees for $15 any tree


Special thank-you to Brad & Mary Jo Young of Scotts Mills for the trees

these are noble trees from 5-7 feet ~ freshly cut

please consider purchasing a tree from us to help in our adoption

we will cut the trees weekly and deliver them to our house
So pick them up in Silverton

(Across from Silverton city park bathrooms~up against hillside)

E-MAIL US OR CALL FOR OUR ADDRESS OR DIRECITONS!

Monday through Fridays 4pm-10pm
Saturdays anytime 7am-10pm
Sundays (after church 1pm-10pm)

November 28 through December 23

Questions: Call 503-873-6934 or cell: 503-881-4633
E-mail: awitha@verizon.net

Special Considerations:
If you need a tree taller than 7’ or a tree smaller than 5’, just call ahead of time and we can get one.
If you prefer to cut one down yourself, we will arrange one or two Saturdays in Scotts Mills to do just that.
If you need it delivered, we can possibly work this out as well.
If we are not at our house, call and we can arrange a place for you to leave the money 


Thank you for helping with our adoption!!
Adamandamberstutzman.blogspot.com

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

BABY BOTTLE COIN DRIVE BEGINS~


so, new fundraiser starting for our adoption-we are doing a "Baby Bottle Coin Drive". Basically, we are giving out these baby bottles and asking people to just fill them with their spare change-so if you don't have one already and you would like one-we would be thrilled to be able to give you one! Let us know and we will get one to ya. We are asking that you just collect change until Jan 1st and then get them back to us-Thank you again and again for helping us raise the money to go pick up baby Abigail! A friend gave me the picture on the bottles-if you didn't notice it is an ultrasound picture with africa in it-I thought it was pretty creative!

Lately I have just been doing a lot of soul searching about orphans and how blessed we are here and how we just can't have any concept of what their lives are like in other countries-we take SO much for granted and yet, THEY are some of the happiest people you can know! There joy is not found in things and I think this is a main difference. I know deep down that somehow I need to get more involved-to save the lives of these children-even saving one life is worth it-one at a time.

I am in awe of the fact that somewhere out there someone is pregnant with OUR daughter-I know I have said this before, but it is just such an amazing thing! I think of her birth mom often and pray for her hoping that she is OK, getting enough food and clean water and enough support. Who knows what her situation is-sometimes I just lay in bed at night and am overwhelmed by emotion as to what she must be going through. While we are waiting excitedly, she is mourning the loss that she must face and the indescribable thought of giving up her own baby. It breaks my heart. I can't at all imagine giving up one of my children and yet I am so thankful that she will and that others do. My thoughts will be with her each day probably forever-she will always be a part of me. Adoption is truly a God-ordained, miraculous thing!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Such a Challenging Video

This was so challenging to me and it should be watched by all! Francis Chan the author of the amazing book Crazy Love that we are doing in our women's Bible study

Monday, November 16, 2009

What will YOU do?

This was on focus on the family this morning-it is Kay Warren, wife of author Rick Warren (Purpose driven life), and it so touched me! It really challenged me though more than anything-WHAT WILL THE CHURCH DO??? Please listen to this 25 minutes broadcast!
http://listen.family.org/daily/A000002304.cfm

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Cassidy's Count Down


Here is Cassidy with her chain link of how many people get a baby before we do-it is her countdown. There are 30 links and we will remove some after we get our December numbers and each following month. No real news here, other than still waiting to get our fingerprint appointment in Portland so that we can be able to get our favorable determination letter to bring an orphan into the country-this whole process is so much about waiting that we are really learning our patience! It is so nice to have all the other paperwork done and we are just concentrating getting some fundraisers going in the near future-

Monday, November 9, 2009

OUR DOSSIER IS ON ITS WAY TO ETHIOPIA



We got an e-mail today from Kiersten our caseworker saying that she had just mail off our Dossier to the Ethiopian Government. It has already been sealed, notarized and signed by Hilary Clinton who is our Secretary of State for the USA-see the picture. You can't tell from the pictures, but it was ONE THICK package-all tied together with a ribbon-SO MANY documents! It is amazing all the work that went into that!!
Now it will wait in Ethiopia our daughter's birth country, being approved, until we get our referral of our baby girl. We are so glad that it is complete and done and on its way-now we just pray it will arrive safely and not get lost-which has happened before. We are on our way!

Thursday, November 5, 2009

NOVEMBER NUMBERS ARE IN!



Well, our new number for November is.......
31 !!!!!!!!!!!!!
We are excited! That means we moved 11 spots in ONE month! Wow! We are hoping and praying that we have a referral of a baby girl by April! We will see. Here is a picture of the 31 that the kids did and if you can't tell that that is a 3 and a 1, then here is another one made from beads that will go in Abby's hair! This month, we are waiting to get our fingerprints, AGAIN, up in Portland at the CIS office. We should be doing that within the next 2 weeks after we get our appt. This allows us to get the form to bring an orphan into this country, a favorable determination letter is what it is called.
So glad our numbers jumped so much! We are excited-it is getting more real every month!

Monday, November 2, 2009

THE CANS ARE IN!!!

Well Zachary is pleased to announce that the can drive has earned him a GRAND TOTAL of $235! towards our adoption....He did good! Thank you to everyone who gave your cans and water bottles. We will continue to take them for those of you who just don't want to deal with taking them back! You can always leave them on our front porch, or bring them to work and Zach will continue to put them toward bringing Abby home! Thank you thank you!
We should get our November official number on the wait list sometime within the next week, but unofficially, due to all of the referrals this month, we are around number 34. It is moving! I anticipate that it will be around 6 months until we get a referral of a baby girl. Amazingly, the last several referrals have been babies that are 3, 4, 5, and 6 weeks old!!! Wow, could have never imagined that we would get a young baby!
We are trying to come up with some ideas for a fundraiser or two. We still need to cover the costs of part of our referral money and ALL of our travel expenses-total these are about $8,000! We know God will provide, but we are thinking of doing either a bowling fundraiser or a spaghetti dinner. We will let you know-

Friday, October 9, 2009

ALREADY MOVIN ALONG..........


Without even a week going by, our caseworker e-mailed and said that, after they organized the wait list, we are actually number 42!! Hey-Progress is Progress! Each and every day is one step closer to meeting our little Ethiopian Princess and we can hardly wait! Still waiting on some final popcans that are trickling in-then we will post the grand total of Zach's earnings. Until then-

Friday, October 2, 2009

WE ARE OFFICIALLY ADOPTION PREGNANT!!



WE ARE ON THE WAIT-LIST! CAN'T BELIEVE AFTER ALL THE PAPERWORK, HOMESTUDIES, MONEY, ETC, WE ARE FINALLY ON THE OFFICIAL LIST. WE ARE NUMBER 44. THIS MEANS THAT THERE WILL BE 43 BABY REFERRALS BEFORE WE GET A REFERRAL FOR OUR DAUGHTER. WE WILL GET AN UPDATE EACH MONTH AND POST IT ON HERE AS TO WHAT NUMBER WE ARE. SOMETIMES IT ONLY DROPS ONE AND SOMETIMES A LOT. THERE ARE MANY FACTORS TO THIS-LIKE SOME FAMILIES ARE ON BOTH THE SIBLING AND THE GIRL LIST-SO IF THEY GET SIBLINGS, THEY AUTOMATICALLY GET TAKEN OFF THE LIST.
WE FIXED OUR BLOG WEBSITE-SO GO TO IT AND AT THE TOP THERE IS A PLACE TO ENTER YOUR E-MAIL ADDRESS AND YOU WILL THEN HAVE TO CONFIRM IT BY AN E-MAIL THAT THEY SEND, BUT THEN YOU WILL GET AUTOMATIC UPDATES WHEN WE POST SOMETHING ON THE BLOG.
HERE IS OUR BLOG ADDRESS FOR THOSE OF YOU THAT I AM SENDING THIS TO VIA E-MAIL.
http://adamandamberstutzman.blogspot.com
/

THANKS FOR TAKING THIS JOURNEY WITH US! WE LOVE YOU ALL!

Monday, September 28, 2009

OUR DOSSIER IS OFF TO AGCI!




We are so excited to say that we now have our entire Dossier ready to go. Adam is droping it off tonight (along with a VERY large check) :)in Portland at our agency All God's Children (AGCI). They will add a copy of the noterized home study to it and maybe, just maybe, by this Friday, we will have a number on the wait list for a baby girl!

For those who don't know-as I didn't until we got into this process, here is what a Dossier is:
Dossier: When used in the context of adoption, this term refers to a set of appropriately authenticated and translated legal documents which are used in international adoption cases to process the adoption of a child in its own country by the adoptive parents, or for the adoptive parents to obtain the legal custody or guardianship of the child in the foreign court, so the child can be brought by the adoptive parents to the United States for adoption.

Zach will OFFICIALLY be ending his can drive at the end of this week-and we will then give a grand total for what he earned-if you still want to give him cans during this adoption process, please feel free-he loves it and we can put it toward our expenses! If you have cans for us still-call for me to pick them up, or drop them off on our porch-and thanks so much!

Attached is a picture of our Dossier ready to go-yes LOTS of paperwork!
Also, is a picture of Cassidy's dolls-she keeps them in her room together and says they are her and her new sister-very cute!

Monday, September 14, 2009

Don't forget the pop cans!


The end of september is nearing-only a couple weeks left-so remeber if you have any popcans or waterbottles for zach-just call us or e-mail and we will come get em! thank you all so much who had given us cans-he is loving doing this!Each thing we do helps us reach our goal to bring our baby home!

Friday, September 11, 2009

Special Gift AND HAPPY NEW YEAR


HAPPY NEW YEAR! Why you ask?! Well today is Ethiopian New Year-it is 2002 there today! We are 7 years ahead of their calendar and a couple months different too during the year. We got our first "baby gift" today it was from my mom Karen-and it is so cute-see picture. It was so neat to actually get something for the baby-it makes it so much more real! We reviewed our home study that our social worker wrote up-she was so quick in getting it back to us. We had to re-do a couple financial forms and are finishing these up as I went down to part-time at work, but this next week she should be getting them to ACGI to notarize and then we should be ready to be on the waiting list for a baby girl ages 0-12 months.
Our caseworker said that the wait list for baby girls is around 40 families, where as for baby boys is only around 15! Guess more people want daughters. After we are on the waiting list for our referral of our daughter there is about a 8-10 month waiting period to actually get a referral. This seems like forever and yet is is almost the same time-frame as a regular pregnancy. :) We are hoping to be able to travel by next summer BEFORE the Ethiopian Courts close for a couple months-sometime around aug.-Oct....during this time, nothing can be done and we will all just be sitting here waiting to go get her-pray we get our referral FAST!

Friday, September 4, 2009

Home Study Visits are OVER!!

We made it through our homestudies! They were not that bad-and our social worker said she should have it written up for us to review by the end of this next week, then 2 other people have to go over it and notarize it and it will be done.
Can't believe we are at this point. I attached a video that I love for your viewing pleasure. :) It is Steven Curtis Chapman's "When Love takes you In" He wrote it for his adopted daughters.
Adam and I have been awestruck by the fact that with almost certainty, someone, somewhere in Africa is pregnant right now with OUR daughter! We are awe struck by this fact and continue to pray for her and her family daily-he health, her safety and even her nutrition which is such a big concern over there. We can only imagine what this woman may be going through right now as she considers how to provide for her child and how to relinquish it to someone else to care for. This is heartbreaking-while we are excited and happy, she is scared and mourning. I can't believe that our daughter is almost for sure growing under her birth mom's heart-God is so good

Thursday, August 27, 2009

One down ...... One to go-

We had our first homestudy tonight-all went well and the kids actually were great-what a relief it is to have one done. Thank you to our dear friends Kris Thomas for helping me decorate my house and finally get it to look like people live here and to Adam's mom Tami for helping us with all the final details, hanging pictures, etc.-and my mom for helping with the kids the last few days and Tyra our babysitter for taking them swimming today-and Kristy for picking up the Pizza for us and having Jacob over to play today-We love you guys!
We had a crazy morning today with us riping out our carpet last night in Cassidy's room. I guess the puppy had wet on it several times, and when I cleaned it this week, it brought out all the odors. It was through the pad in a lot of places and into the wood. It was destroyed-It was more than horrible and smelling up the whole house, so, we took it out, bleached it, painted on Kiltz to seal it and called the people that put in the carpet ONLY 2 years ago, had them bring the cheapest carpet they could and install it all this morning, then we moved her stuff back in her room and no one knew the better! What we do sometimes! Oh, so if anyone wants to visit us, NOW would be the time-our house is so clean and picked up, it will never be so again. :)
So one more home study meeting on Wednesday and we should be done. Then she writes up her report which takes a couple weeks I think, then another lady reviews it, then we review it, and then it is noterized. Whew-then we apply for citizenship for our adopted child with the US and wait a couple more weeks-then we can get on the wait list for a referal of a baby girl. Wow, can't believe we are at this point.

Friday, August 21, 2009

We are going to have our HOMESTUDY!!!

SO, we got the e-mail yesterday morning that ALL of our documents were in for our homestudy paperwork and that they assigned us a social worker who would call us.Well she called us a couple hours later- We have our first homestudy visit (3-4 hours) a week from today! Thurs. the 27th-and then our second and last one the Wed. after that!
We can't believe it and have so much to do to get our house ready!Things are moving a long-after that, we will get on the waiting list to get a referal of a baby girl!

Monday, August 17, 2009

GARAGE SALE DONE, CAN DRIVE STARTING

Well, our 2 weekends of garage sales are over and we made a grand total of $1,200!!!! We are thrilled and thankful to everyone that came by and bought things and everyone that donated items-thank you again so much! This money will help to pay for bringing baby "A" home. (Found out this week we can't post her real name until we pass court in Ethiopia-it is a government rule, same reason we won't be able to post her picture anywhere on-line until we pass court).

So, next thing is we are starting "ZACHARY'S CAN/WATER BOTTLE DRIVE" for all of September.....any of you that I work with, you could just bring them to work and I can get them from the parking lot after work, anyone can leave them on our front porch, or we would be so willing to pick them up, SO SAVE THOSE CANS!!!! Zachary is so excited and we think this will really give him a chance to get involved and feel a part of it.

Many people have asked us, "Why Ethiopia" and so we figured we would just post our answer on here so that it can get answered to a lot of people at once. Here are some facts:

There are 4.6 Million orphans in Ethiopia

One in 10 children will die before their 1st birthday, in the USA, 7 out of 1,000 will die in a their first year!

Ethiopia only has 1 doctor per 24,000 children!

Ethiopia's average life expectancy women: 50 years, Men: 48 years In America an average person will live to be 78!

These are just a few, you can find more on the side of our blog page. We know there are so many kids in need of homes here in the US, but for the most part, they will go on living and at least have a foster home. We had in fact signed up to adopt a bi-racial infant from a company in Alabama when we were unable to get pregnant, but then we got pregnant with the twins, so we had to pull our application. So we do think that the US adoptions are very needed and can be very wonderful too, so don't get us wrong.

That being said, the Ethiopian kids will either starve on the streets, die of malnutrition or disease, there are not lots of foster families like there are here, and they don't just get medical care and food like we have access to here, even their drinking water is bad!

After thinking through this, we know that by choosing to adopt from Ethiopia, we are not just adopting, but actually saving her life, because of all of the poverty. Yes, there is lots of poverty in America, but it is on a different level with different circumstances. Also, after seeing what woman and young girls do to their bodies and their unborn here in America, we actually feel safer going with Ethiopia! This sounds funny, but it is true for us as we consider the risks verses the benefits.

Our US system can be very messed up with how they often keep kids in foster care for way too long while waiting for the mom to get back on track, and then the kids are dealing with so many issues by the time they are finally adopted. On top of this, they can then have to deal with the issues that they may have due to the behaviors of the mom during pregnancy. This isn't to say we don't believe in US adoptions, we do and we are so thankful that their are families that adopt from the US-these are wonderful families too, with many wonderful things to offer children. We just chose to go with Ethiopia after much thought and consideration.

The Ethiopian culture is very different than here in America. The Ethiopian people HIGHLY value children and they don't want to give them up, in fact, one of the things that you have to realize during your time in Ethiopia is that people will come and just take your baby from you just to see and talk to it and show them off to others...they say do not be alarmed by this-this is their culture, kids are one of the most important things there! Also, they are typically not doing the things that we do to our bodies, they are just in poverty. It kills me to think of a mother having to give up her child just so that the child will be fed!

Anyway, these are some of the things that drew us to the country. The poverty, the value for children, the generosity of the people and the wonderful cultrue they have. We hear they are some of the most generous people! They all help each other, and share what they do have-we could all learn a lot of lessons from them and their values. On top of this, we are just drawn to the beauty of the people-we think they are very beautiful and we are really begining to have a love for the country as we learn more and more about it.

Some have also asked if we are worried due to the AIDS crisis in africa (720,000 kids have been orphaned due to AIDS). Yes, of course we thought this through, but after much research and talking to other families that have adopted from our agency, we are at peace with this. The orphanage and US government tests the kids a total of 3 times before they can come into America. The US doesn't allow them to come if they are positive for HIV-unless this is a HIV adoption and then I don't know what the rules are. If a test is positive in a baby, it is nearly almost always a false positive because it has picked up the mother's anti-bodies, and the baby is really negative. So, if they are negative, they are almost always really negative. Our testing system is pretty accurate now. We are leaving this in God's hands and just have to trust in Him and in the system to give us a healty baby girl!

That being said-SAVE THOSE CANS!

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Garage Sale and more ideas....

So, a couple of things to say tonight-first THANK YOU to each and everyone of you that donated in one way or another to our garage sale last weekend! We made a whopping $825!! We are excited and the good news is, that even though I work this weekend, Adam is going to hold another sale due to Silverton having their Art Festival at the park across from our house, so lots more people! Thank you too to Mary G. for making the delicious pastries for Cassidy to sell-she had a blast! Jacob was able to give $100 out of his car parking business too! If anyone wants to drop off anything-just bring it by anytime, and if we are not here, leave it on the porch :) I work Friday, so if there is anyone from work, I can get it then.

Secondly, we came up with a new idea this week too. Zach our 7 year old LOVES to take cans in with his grandma to get spending money. We talked with him and he wants to hold a "SEPTEMBER CAN DRIVE" for ALL of September. So, if you can save your cans, and now plastic water bottles too, we will get them to him and he can take them all in at once on Oct. 1st and see how much he can get for the adoption. This will be his way of "helping". :) Bring them to our house, call and we can get them, or get them to me at work-thanks!

Thirdly, some people have asked about donating a cash amount. We set up a link on our blog on the bottom that is called "CHIP IN" and it has a button on there that you can click on to donate to our adoption securely through PayPal. We figure if everyone we knew gave like $10-25 it would all add up quickly! Don't feel obligated, but we have it there for those that would like to help.

DON'T FORGET TO "FOLLOW" OUR BLOG FOR AUTOMATIC UPDATES!

This week should be it-we should have all of our homestudy paperwork in by Tuesday-YA, then we will schedule the 3 homestudy visits. We will let you know....thanks again to everyone for your support and help! We love ya all-

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

We Keep Rolling Along

Well, we have made lots of progress in the last week or so. We only have 3 kids physicals left which will happen on Friday, then we have my last cardiology apt next week (don't ask)-just another hurdle in this adventure-and on the 17th we hope to mail off our last homestudy documents as all these apts. will be done. We then have to schedule our homestudy which will not take long. I am hoping that our first visit (we have to do about 4 visits -or 6 hours total) will be the last week of Aug. or 1st week in Sept. We have our big garage sale this weekend to fund the adoption-so if anyone still has stuff-give us a call. After our homestudy is complete-we will send a copy of it with the rest of our Dossier (more paperwork-which is already put together).

On another note-I have been told that as of the last week of Aug. I will get to go down to part-time (2-12hr shifts a week) day shift-this will be much better for our family and I am so glad to be able to do this! It will give us much more time and flexibility as a family.

After this weekend's garage sale, our biggest thing will be to somehow get this house in order, finish small projects and clean like crazy before our homestudy-but we will just get through this weekend first-amber

Thursday, July 23, 2009

Letter to Friends and Family

Dear Family and Friends-
Many of you may have heard our latest and most exciting news-but if not, let us share it with you now! We are in the process of adopting an infant girl from Ethiopia. We have requested a baby girl between the ages of 0-12 months old at the time of referral. About 3-4 months after we accept a referral for a girl, we will travel to Ethiopia, summer of 2010, and stay between 5-7 days picking her up. We are very excited and it has been a life long dream of ours to be able to adopt. We have talked about it since high school and can hardly believe that we are already well into the process. We are using a Christian agency out of Portland called All God’s Children International (AGCI). Here is their website-check them out!

http://www.allgodschildren.org/adoption/ethiopia/
The paperwork and documents that we have had to provide are beyond description! It is a long process, which in total takes about 10-16 months, but one that will prove to be well worth it when we hold our little girl in our arms!

We have taken a loan out to be able to do this, but still need to raise around $6,000 in order to complete the adoption. In order to do this, we are planning on having a huge garage sale with all proceeds going toward the adoption. It will be the weekend of Silverton’s Homer Davenport Days-August 7–9. We are asking that if you have anything lying around that you don’t want or need anymore, that you would please consider donating it to us so that we could use it in our garage sale-that would be awesome! We would so appreciate it and would love to take it off your hands. Since we live right down by the city park, you can leave it on our front porch anytime, or call and we can come by and get it!

We have also started a blog page so that everyone can keep up to date on how our adoption is proceeding. Here is the link-stop by and check it out to get updates:

http://adamandamberstutzman.blogspot.com/ We are not super great at blogging-the computer part of it-so bear with us as we try and add things.

There are a few other things we are going to do to raise money for the adoption-

1. We are also going to try and get a carwash together to raise funds, sometime this next spring before we go, so we will keep you updated on a day and location for that.

2. We have started a savings account at MAPS Credit Union for just the adoption. If you feel it in your hearts to contribute to our adoption-we would be so appreciative. Anyone can donate by sending a check to: MAPS Credit Union P.O. Box 12398 Salem, OR 97309 ACCT # 471-S1

3. During the festivals each year held at the Silverton City Park, Jacob always parks cars in our yard for extra spending money, so the weekends of Aug.7-9 and Aug.15-16, he will be doing this and wants to give ½ of his proceeds toward getting his little sister home. His heart is so sweet to do this! So if you need a parking spot-swing by and visit “Jacob’s Front Yard Parking”. :)

4. We will be having an “orphanage shower” for AGCI-Hannah’s Hope Orphanage sometime before we go. This is where our daughter will be staying until we pick her up. We can take totes of items over with us to donate to the orphanage when we go. We know that they always have a need for any type of formula, diapers, wipes and croc rubber shoes-(or like those) shoes, but we will send out more specific needs as we find out more-so if you ever want to pick up any of these things to donate, you can drop them off any time too.

5. We ask that more than anything you keep us in your thoughts and prayers as we go through this journey-we will let you know when we accept a referral for our child, and we know that the Lord will hand select her for our family-it is in His hands.

What blows us away is the fact that, chances are, a woman somewhere clear across the world is either pregnant or soon will be pregnant with our future daughter and that thought alone is more than our minds can grasp! It is a true miracle and we are in awe of the whole process.
Thanks to everyone for all your help and support during this time-we are very blessed and excited to be able to do this-we love you all tons!
Anything else we come up with, we will let you know by e-mail or on our blog. ------

MAKE SURE TO JOIN OUR BLOG AND "FOLLOW" IT!!! :)

Adam, Amber, Jacob, Cassidy, Zachary, Noah, Logan and our future daughter-Baby A :)

We are moving along-SLOWLY but Surely

So, we are now in the process of getting each family member physicals for the adoption-this all takes some time with 7 of us, but it is going well so far. The things we are working on accomplishing are these:

For our home study we need:

FBI Criminal Check

State Criminal Check

Local Criminal check

Child abuse Checks

Adam and I Physicals

All 5 kids Physicals

Have 10 of ACGI forms notarized

6 reference forms filled out from friends, neighbors, relatives, etc.

Adam and I each fill out a 50 page questionnaire about our entire life, growing up, family, occupations, and everything ever known by anyone!

Do a 10 hour on-line class about bi-racial adoption

Fill out a 150 page workbook that is part of the on-line class with tons of questions on bi-racial adoption

Do a total and complete financial worksheet about every bill we pay and our income

Get a guardian (God Parent) for our new daughter and get that notarized

Get Employee verifications that are notarized from our employer

Get all our social security cards, birth certificates, and drivers licenses, marriage licenses copied and order original ones too

Copy of last tax return

Vet letter for all our pets stating they are up to date on their shots

A family photo

Get proof of life insurances and auto insurances and proof of health insurance

-------------------------------------

We then do a 6 hour (about 3-4 visits total) home study with our social worker from AGCI

-------------------------------------

Then for our Dossier-which is a large packet of info. that will actually go to Ethiopian government. A Dossier when defined is: A collection of papers giving detailed information about a particular person or subject



We need for this for the Dossier:

Two power of attorney -giving the orphanage leader-(Almaz is her name)-power of being our representative in court and our daughters temporary guardian-forms need notarized-one we had to get STATE certified-and went down to the building by the capital to do this

an application letter to the Ethiopian government-notarized

2 passport photos

Plus a passport for each of us to travel

photographs of the family, ourselves, inside and outside our home pasted neatly on paper

Another financial statement

A copy of our home study from ACGI when it is done

Another employment verification letter notarized from our jobs

another birth certificate-original copy for Adam and I, a marriage one

A medical form, notarized from our doctors stating we don't have TB and are healthy to have a child

Criminal check for both

two letters of recommendation one friend one family

Two copies of all of the above, and a huge chunk of money! :)



WHEW-well, I am please to say that we only have a few more papers to organize-my physical, 3 of the kids physicals, waiting for our background checks from FBI in Virginia to get back, do our homestudy, get a couple more people to send their reference letters and we are nearly done-it has taken 2 months to get this far-but we are moving along. :)



We are hoping our homestudy can be by the end of August- (anyone want to help clean a house? ) :)



Then the next step is to wait for the governments-both USA and Ethiopia to do their jobs and get a referral of a little baby girl for us-a referral is when they send us photos and all the info on the girl and we have 10 days to get a international pediatrician to review it and we decide if we will accept her or not.

If we were to accept her and then for some reason change our mind or back out, Ethiopian government has a law that that child can NEVER be adopted out again!!! Wow-talk about the pressure to make sure of something!

Will continue later-till next time-

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Still learning

Just another night of trying to get our page up and running. All we have been doing is running around trying to understand how to put a blog page together. We did manage to add some "gadgets" to our site. Again, please check back often as we continue to learn the world of blogging and try to keep you updated on our adoption progress.

Sunday, May 31, 2009

Introduction to Blogging

Here we are. Finally setting this up even though we opened the account in January. Please be patient, more will be coming. Until then.......

Our Airport Homecoming for our 2nd Adoption~

Click to play this Smilebox slideshow
Create your own slideshow - Powered by Smilebox
A photo slideshow by Smilebox

Our Journey up to our Referral

Click to play this Smilebox slideshow
Create your own slideshow - Powered by Smilebox
Free digital slideshow created with Smilebox

Seble's Referral Video

Click to play this Smilebox slideshow
Create your own slideshow - Powered by Smilebox
Free slideshow personalized with Smilebox
"Although it may not always be obvious to us, there seems to be one distinct moment when God begins a new story in each of our lives. He writes words on our hearts that long to be spoken and strain to be lived out. Then with His own great hand, He begins to write the script. Experience by experience through seemingly ordinary days, He supernaturally orders our lives. Only when we look back and reflect on what appeared to have been the ordinary events of life does it become clear what a miracle the Lord has performed." Jan Beazely

LUCY LANE-AGCI-ADOPTION VIDEO! This inspired us to follow our dream!

WHY WOULDN'T I....WHY WOULDN'T YOU?

What Adoption is About! What a Testimony! Lundy's Adoption

We Love this family and this video is inspiring!

HANNAH'S HOPE ETHIOPIA

FATHER, BREAK OUR HEARTS FOR WHAT BREAKS YOURS~

ImageChef.com