Let's Take This Journey Together

In my attempt to find information for our adoption process from Uganda, I became quickly aware that there just isn't much out there. I wanted to create a way for all of us taking this journey together to be able to walk along-side each other. A place we can find other people taking this journey with us. A place to encourage each other during the journey. A place to keep up with the family after the adoption is finalized, because, let's face it, the adoption is only the beginning of this journey!

If you are in the process of adopting from Uganda and are blogging about your journey, please e-mail joshntash@hotmail.com so I can add you to the hopefully growing list of people who are bringing these orphans home!

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Dear Sweet Mother of Our Ugandan Daughter

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.


Sincerely,

Joshua D. Via

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Where We Are

By the way, I have NO IDEA who these people are, so don't ask;)
Wow, I believe that Adoption is by far the most emotionally up and down process I have ever been a part of.  I know, so worth it, but man...

Paperwork:
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!

Prayer:
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.

*sigh*

Financial:
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.

Current Fundraisers:
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:)



 Summary:
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

Oh The Waiting...

The waiting is so much easier when you know that your children are safe, loved and well-taken care of!

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

Case Number For Our Adoption

We just got a notice stating that our Adoption File had just been assigned a case number and was being forwarded to the courts in Kampala.

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

One Click Vote

I got an email this week stating that this adoption blog was nominated as one of the Top 25 Adoption Blogs at Circle Of Moms.  If we can stay in the top 25 by June 21 we will be published on their forum to over 6 million readers.  I'm not really sure what all this means, except that we can potentially gain more awareness for adoption in general, as well as our individual adoption!  You don't have to sign up or anything, just click this link(or picture) and click the "Vote" thumbs up button.  That's it!  You can vote once every 24 hours to keep adding votes!

Friday, June 3, 2011

Look What Came In The Mail Today!


Well, we finally got it!

Our I-171H, or Immigration Approval was sitting in our mailbox today!  We are beyond thrilled.  Today is a day of rejoicing for sure:)

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

The Mailbox

Josh and I know of a family who had their biometrics appointment the same day we did.

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.

Nope, nothing...

Maybe today?

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!