Let's Take This Journey Together
Wednesday, December 28, 2011
Thursday, November 24, 2011
Monday, September 26, 2011
The laundry is done.
The kids are all clean...a bath on Saturday counts, right? RIGHT?:)
The bags are packed.
The toilets are clean (because my mom always said you can't leave the house without scrubbing the toilets:)...well, they were, and then Zeke had to pee, ha!
The refrigerator has been purged.
And the tasks to keep our lives on track here in America have been divied out to our sweet friends and family.
I can't believe it's here.
We fly out at 6:20pm and our checklist is finally dwindling to just a few last minute items.
This will be my last post from this blog until we return.
We'd love for you to continue to follow our journey to get Alethia on our password protected blog. Just email or message me with your email address if you would like the password.
We'll let you all know when we're returning home.
We'd love to see you at the airport so you can meet our beautiful new addition!!!!
Monday, September 5, 2011
One of the things we've been aware of that we have to do is password protect our blog.
Since Blogger does not have that option we have created a Wordpress blog so you can follow our journey. I won't be posting on there until our trip is underway and you will need the password to read the content once our trip has begun.
You can go ahead and get familiar with the new blog so you know where it is. I'll also leave a link on here when we make the trek overseas so you don't loose contact with us!
Leave a comment below with your email address or find us on Facebook or Twitter to request the password. You can share it with your friends and family. We'd love to have you come along!
Saturday, September 3, 2011
Wednesday, August 31, 2011
My mind is spinning.
My legs are tingly.
I have so much to do.
I can't focus to do anything.
God is so good. His timing is perfect. He has been so gracious to our family!
I pray that we will honor Him through this leg of the journey!!!
Monday, August 15, 2011
I know many of you are in the same boat as us. Just waiting to hear something. How are you passing the time?
Monday, July 11, 2011
Wednesday, June 22, 2011
Dear sweet mother of our Ugandan daughter,
I've been thinking about you a lot lately. I've been thinking about how it must have been when that lady from the orphanage came to visit you in your village. She came with paperwork in her hands. And I’ve been wondering how you must have felt when you saw her approach your home. Did you have any idea she was coming? Did you know what her mission was? Had you any clue that she was there to ask for your signature on a legal document releasing your daughter into the hands of complete strangers halfway across the world? How did you feel when you read through the document? What was going through your head? Were you confused? Did this come as a shock? Or were you expecting that it might happen one day? Were you angry? Sad? Relieved? Maybe all of the above?
I’ve been thinking about you a lot lately. We’ve been told that you have some health issues. How is your health lately? Is it manageable? Are you in pain? I pray that you aren’t. I’m assuming that you released your daughter to the orphanage because you felt that you could not adequately care for her. I respect that. I can’t imagine how that must have broken your heart. And now, I can’t imagine the new series of emotions that must have set in when you realized your daughter will soon become the daughter of an American family, and that you may never see her again.
So, I wanted to write to you to tell you a few things that will hopefully set your mind at ease. First of all, I want you to know that we will love your daughter unconditionally. By blood, she will still be your daughter. But in every other way, she will belong to us. We will treat her no differently than our birth children. She will be loved unconditionally. She will have me wrapped around her finger (She already does). I will treat her like the princess that she is. We vow to protect her, provide for her, cherish her, encourage her, honor her, celebrate her, laugh with her, cry with her, play with her, guide her, teach her and train her.
Second, she will be given every opportunity at her disposal to do and become the person that God has created her to be—to fulfill the desires that God has put within her heart. And her mother and I will be her biggest fans. And we will support her and love her and will permanently be in her cheering section.
Finally, and most importantly, your daughter … our daughter, will be brought up in a home where Jesus is the center and the focus. She will be taught the Word of God every day. She will be reminded over and over that she is a child of the King, and that God’s plan for her is bigger than she could ever dream. She will grow up in a home where the Gospel is lived out on a daily basis—where we serve one another—where we honor and respect each other—where we bear one another’s burdens—where we worship God together—where our lives and lips communicate to the world the infinite love of the Savior for spiritual orphans everywhere.
These things we promise you.
You need to know something else. Lately I’ve been praying for you. And I’ve been praying specifically that God would give me an opportunity to share the Gospel with you when we finally meet each other in the Ugandan courthouse. I don’t know where you stand with Jesus. I don’t know whether or not you’ve been born again. Or whether anyone has ever sat down and explained to you that Jesus loves you and He died on a cross to forgive you of your sin and make you as white as snow. But what I do know is this: I would love more than anything to be able to look my daughter in the eye one day and explain to her how her birth mother came to know Jesus, and that one day, whether on this earth or in heaven, she will see her again. That is the sincere cry of my heart as I write this. I want you to know Jesus and the eternal, everlasting, unfailing love of the Savior.
Dear lady, I don’t know you, but the connection that we share through your daughter and mine is unlike any other human connection that I’ve ever experienced. And so, through tears, I feel compelled to tell you that I love you. And I look forward to meeting you face to face very soon. Please take care.
Joshua D. Via
Tuesday, June 21, 2011
|By the way, I have NO IDEA who these people are, so don't ask;)|
The last I heard is that, as of yesterday the last of our documents are being finalized in Uganda with our Attorney. It should be submitted to court very soon!
Along these same lines, we are asking people to pray specifically for the judge that gets assigned to our case. We know of some processes going extremely fast after getting assigned to a judge, as well as other cases who have come to an abrupt halt at this exact same point. So this is our prayer, that the Lord will soften the heart of all the judges doing these adoption cases, but more specifically, the one whose hands our dossier gets assigned to. This could be a difference between a few weeks until we travel to a few months (or more). This is huge, and we don't take prayer lightly.
Our Little Girl:
My sister-in-law, Joy, is on a mission trip and actually got to spend a few days with our little girl. It has been so awesome to get day-to-day updates on her personality and character! We even got to talk to our little girl on the phone yesterday! Joy called yesterday morning and asked if I'd like her to put our baby on the phone. I told her not to worry about it...JUST KIDDING! I said, "Heck Yes!" as all my kids here at home crowded around the phone and we each took turns telling her we loved her and couldn't wait to see her and bring her home:) What a special moment that was for all of us!
Joy says that she is full of character, very prissy, healthy and LOVES attention.
Our estimated goal for this adoption is $33,000. We have already paid $13,600 into that. We've raised a few thousand more than that to start saving for our travel (and attorney fees) which will be coming up quicker than we can imagine, I'm sure.
TOTAL LEFT TO RAISE as of 6/21/11 - $11,100 : That may seem like a lot to you, but if you've been riding this journey with us from the beginning you may feel the same as us...that's nothin'! God has been showing off this entire process and we are anxious to see how He plays this out.
We've been denied 3 of the 6 Grants that we applied for and haven't heard back from the rest. So, we wait.
You can still download Josh's Resurrection Songs.
We are still collecting change.
Donate on PayPal.
Buy Coffee. Yup, if you buy coffee from our store set up with JustLove Coffee, we get $5 for every bag you purchase.
You can help us raise awareness by helping the Uganda Adoption Blogs site stay in the TOP 25 on Circle of Moms. You have until 8pm tonight to vote. You don't have to sign up for anything, you just have to click "voted". It's that Simple! Thanks for helping us out:)
We are very close. We are over half-way there in the process as well as financially. Thank you to everyone who is walking this journey with us! It feels weird to put it all out there for the world to see, but so many of you have been asking, and I know that I would want to know. I'm just nosy like that:)
Remember - You can keep up with our funding and timeline on the Adoption tab at the top of the page.
Saturday, June 18, 2011
I just received an update and 3 separate pictures.
It's so nice to have a team on the ground loving on my girl and telling me that she is well.
The waiting isn't so bad when you know that the Lord is taking care of them, ya know?!
Monday, June 13, 2011
I'm not quite sure what this means yet, as we just got the mail tonight and haven't been able to touch base with our agency, but I'm pretty sure that they are just making a file with all the information for our case to get it ready to assign to a judge?
Either way, we're another step closer to seeing our little girl, so I'll take it!:)
PS - If you have any other insight as to what this might mean for us, feel free to elaborate for us, ha!
Tuesday, June 7, 2011
Friday, June 3, 2011
Wednesday, June 1, 2011
They got their Immigration approval last Saturday.
Monday was torture, knowing that we weren't going to be getting mail because of the holiday. So by Tuesday you can imagine how antsy I was!
I started checking the mail at 10:30am, knowing that our mail doesn't even come until late afternoon, ha!
When it finally did come I tore through it, sure that our approval would be there.
This part of the waiting is hard. In the back of my head I always wonder if our paperwork has gotten lost in the shuffle. Having faith in the "system" of adoption is very unnerving.
Good thing we put our complete trust and faith in Christ and His perfect timing!
Wednesday, May 25, 2011
Download Josh's Resurrection Songs. Each song goes along with a week in my family devotional book that I wrote. Every penny we make from these downloads goes directly toward our adoption.
Speaking of pennies...
We have raised $231 so far with our "Change For Change" campaign. People are just saving their change for us! It's amazing how this change really adds up!
We have had 2 HUGE yard sales. We thought we were done yardsaling, but who knows, maybe another one is on the horizon?:)
You can also DONATE through PayPal. This is an easy way to donate.
It's not just about the money, though. We have 2 specific prayer requests right now. We had our biometrics appointment 1 month and 1 day ago. We are eagerly awaiting our Immigration approval which will complete our Dossier, which is already in Uganda. Pray that we get this essential paperwork SOON. Also, the courts in Uganda close mid-July to mid-August. That means that we probably won't make this cut-off before courts close...unless there were a miracle. A lot has to happen for us to be able to finalize this process before the court break. Would you pray with us?
So, there you go. We are about half-way to our total estimated goal for the adoption. We do not take your sacrifices lightly and are forever grateful for everything that our friends/family have helped with during this entire process.
Friday, May 20, 2011
They both needed Typhoid and Yellow Fever.
Let's just say that I got a workout "helping" the nurse give Zeke his shots:)
Areyna did GREAT!
It helped that I promised ice cream after the dreaded event.
Tuesday, May 10, 2011
But, when I went to check my email this afternoon, I had the most exciting news I could have gotten. Our Dossier is on it's way to Uganda! We are still waiting for our I-171H, but it should be here any time now. I didn't know that our dossier could be sent off without our immigration approval, so that is probably what made it so exciting for me! We are absolutely thrilled!
Another step closer:)
Thursday, May 5, 2011
It's here in Rolesville at our house. Email me if you are interested in stopping by, helping set-up, or just to donate some unwanted around your house (josh n tash @ hotmail . com).
Here is the write-up and links from the Facebook page we have created for the event:
You can help make this a reality.
We will be hosting a joint yard sale at Josh & Tasha's house in Rolesville, NC on May 7, 2011 from 7:30am-2pm
Not only are you welcome to come to this event, but your donations for the yard sale would be very much appreciated!
We are accepting ANYTHING that you may have just sitting around your house that you have been thinking about getting rid of or that is just taking up space.
Please email us and let us know if you have anything you would be willing to part with for us to sell at our yard sale.
Tasha joshntash @ hotmail .com
Kelly kellyvia @ yahoo .com
To DONATE directly to Smooth & Kelly's Adoption or simply to read about their journey visit: http://www.connecttocharit
To DONATE directly to Josh & Tasha's Adoption or simply to read about their journey visit: http://tashavia.blogspot.c
Monday, April 25, 2011
It just makes more sense to say appointments to get fingerprinted, but whatever:)
We have our biometrics appointment tomorrow morning. I'm sure we'll be super-chipper for this part of the process at 8am, ha!
From what I can gather, it takes about two weeks to get Immigration approval after being fingerprinted.
Just another step closer to bringing our little girl home!
Thursday, April 7, 2011
HERE is a link to my blog to see our sweet new addition!
Areyna told me, after watching these several times, that she is SO excited to go to Africa and get her little sister. We got another step closer to this reality today. We took the kids to their Passport appointments and should have all three of their passports in our hands within a month or two!
It's been a good day...
Wednesday, March 30, 2011
When we first received the news that we were now officially on course for our specific little girl I was ecstatic! Just knowing that we could now pursue her.
Then the questions started coming in. "What does it mean that you have a referral?" "Is she yours now?"
I wasn't really sure what it meant for us to have just signed a "Referral Acceptance" letter. All I knew is that we were one step closer to bringing our little girl home.
Our agency is one that we totally trust. We have given them full reign over our adoption process. Hey, that is why we are paying them the big bucks! I like to know the general idea of what is going on, but for me, if I try to keep up with all the little details that are going on behind the scenes I know that I will only become anxious if things are not happening the "traditional" way. Besides, I feel like the more I step in, the harder it makes it on our agency. That's just my opinion though.
Here is what I do know a referral is:
From the agencies end, it just means that we are far enough along in the process where they can present us with a child. As for the overseas Attorney, it means that once he receives his fees he will begin the legal documentation of the child on his end.
That is all I know. I am content with that. I know enough to answer some basic questions and I don't mind saying "I don't know" to other ones.
Josh and I are thrilled to be able to officially be pursuing our little girl, but we also know that things can always happen. We are choosing to keep our grip on her loose, knowing that the Lord has called us to adoption, not just called us to this particular little girl. Although we would be very sad if we couldn't, for some reason, bring this little girl home, we know that the Lord knows what is best for our family and that He will bring our hearts to love any child He places with us.
If you don't trust your agency enough to hand over the reins of your process, then maybe you should think about finding a new agency. I know an excellent one:)
Wednesday, March 23, 2011
Man, how I treasures these little updates. I can't wait to see this video...
"She is doing GREAT! She is such a spunky little booger. She laughs and smiles and makes faces for the camera all the time! We have enjoyed her so much this trip. Today I was doing assessments on the kids and she insisted on being held! So I strapped her to my back in true African fashion while I worked. She would boss all the kids around from her place on my back! It was hilarious! Then she fell asleep and it was just precious. I adore her...oh, and when I gave her your picture, Tasha, we said "Mama" and she looked at intently and said "Mama" ! We have her on video saying it. Can't wait to show you! Wish we could bring her to you now."
I can't tell you how many times I've read, and reread, this message. It gives me the biggest smile on my face and in my heart:)
Wednesday, March 16, 2011
Downloads are $.99 and they go directly to the $2300 we need to make. We've got 6 days to raise this money! Help us spread the word!
Tuesday, March 15, 2011
I can hardly think straight enough to write this!
I feel as though I am in the doctor's office peering at the screan waiting to be told if we are going to have a little boy or a little girl.
Today we found out that we are having a little girl!
Well, we were already pursuing this little girl, but we were holding her very loosely.
We don't have to do that anymore. She is OURS!
Now, I know that things can still happen in court and throughout the process, but I am choosing to believe that the Lord has chosen this little girl to be a part of our family!
We have officially accepted you into our family today, my sweet little girl!
We now have our referral!:)
***Now if you would kindly go and DOWNLOAD our Resurrection Songs and tell everyone else to DOWNLOAD it that would be awesome! We need about 3300 downloads in 7 days, ha! Don't forget a new one comes out tomorrow and it will NOT disappoint!***
Wednesday, March 9, 2011
Every week during the 7 weeks of Lent, we will release a new track. Each track is a Scripture memory song based on my 7-week devotional called "So Much Bigger Than The Bunny." Our prayer is that it will be a blessing to you and your children, as you hide God's Word in your heart together.
Today is Ash Wednesday, which means, this is the first week of the devotional. You still have time to get your copy. (There is a section at the end if you just want to make it a one-week Easter devotional as well.)
Anyway, here is the first song "In The Highest Place"
Take a listen. It's SO FUN!
Go to joshvia.bandcamp.com to download it for $.99. Not only will you have fun hiding God's Word in your heart with your kids, but when you buy these songs, you are helping our family adopt a little girl from an orphanage in Uganda, Africa.
My kids hadn't heard these yet and they immediately jumped out their lunch chairs, grabbed their guitars and began dancing and singing along! Even Cai keeps singing "lalalalala":)
Now go download it already!
Tuesday, March 8, 2011
Maybe then I can get out of the house instead of sitting in front of my computer hitting the refresh button on my email waiting for some kind of response from our home study agent!
I simply cannot understand how someone just ignores calls and emails for weeks on end. I am trying so hard to show love and patience, but I'm running out...
Lord, please give me patience. Help me to share your love, even to those who make it difficult to love.
Pray with us this week! Pray that the Lord will impress upon our social worker an urgency to get this done. We are praying boldly, with our kids this week, for our home study to be in our hands by the end of the week. We know the Lord is in control and that His timing is perfect, so we will rest in the decision He gives. Would you pray with us?
***After writing this I went to check my email one more time and there it was! Our Home Study Approval!!!:) God is SO good!***
Wednesday, February 23, 2011
- A baby bottle - you can pick one up at the $1 store or get one out of your attic like we did, ha! In all honesty, you could use any container you have to place the label on and save your change.
- A printer - to print the "tag" at the top of this post that we created of our little girl to tape on your bottle/container
- Collect change around your house. For Example: under the couch and cushions, on the floor board of the car and outside in the parking lot. Although, if you do this last one, make sure you lay down the ground rules first...ie it wouldn't be all that productive if you are grabbing change from under a moving vehicle, ya know?:)
Monday, February 21, 2011
And her eyes...
I can't stop looking at the picture.
Any day now we should have our home study approval. I keep telling myself that anyway:)
At least the picture helped remind me that, in fact, we are in this adoption process and there is, in fact, a little girl over there waiting to come home.
To our home!
Monday, February 14, 2011
Friday, February 4, 2011
So I'll just debrief you really quickly.
Nothing is going on...well, from our end anyway.
We are just waiting for our Home Study approval. Everything in adoption hinges on this completion. So, we are just waiting.
Next week my goal is to fill out all of our USCIS paperwork and to send off for passports for our kids.
It is kind of nice not to have to worry about anything else from our end for a while since it's been so crazy emotionally at our house lately.
So we will be grateful for this time of waiting.
Tuesday, January 25, 2011
She is super cute and cuddly.
That being said, she likes to have one-on-one attention at all times and is very demanding of that time.
Not only that, but she is an extremely picky eater with a ginormous sweet tooth!
Well, at least she'll fit right in, ha!
Tuesday, January 18, 2011
Thursday, January 13, 2011
Our director's trip is moving along. We even got some updated pictures of our little girl! Man, she is so beautiful. They say that she has been an absolute delight to be around. I can't wait to see her again...
So, continue to pray for these first adoptions from this orphanage as it is a learning process for all of us:)
Wednesday, January 12, 2011
We need prayer.
I am taking the night to fast and pray for our adoption as our agency meets with Godfrey.
Godfrey, the director of Arise Africa, the founder of our Orphanage.
Lori, the director at our agency who is there right now trying to gather information.
Pray for patience, guidance, direction, relationship, paperwork, the children, the adoptive families...
Would you please pray with us...
Monday, January 10, 2011
It's nice to have another step down after the holiday season with not much going on with our process.
Our Agency Director is in Uganda right now! She will be with our orphanage by mid-week and we are so anxious to get an update on our little girl and see how she is doing :)
Friday, January 7, 2011
Tuesday, January 4, 2011
"A very happy 2011 to you - the year your daughter comes home!!"
Our daughter, we DO have another daughter coming to us, is in Uganda now, but will be with us THIS YEAR! It's actually going to happen.
Right now I feel as though I just went in for my first ultrasound and have the realization that there really is another little life that is about to join our family! You know, that feeling like you've known all along that this is imminent, but it has finally become real to you.
All of a sudden, I feel like our family is incomplete. Like someone is missing. There is room here for you, little girl.
This year...is a big year...