Monday, January 18, 2016

Happy New Year!

Hi everyone,

Noah turned 6 in December. It is hard to believe he has been home with us now a little over two years. He just finished the fall term of kindergarten at our local public school and he is doing well. There have been challenges, but generally he is very social and enjoys school. We are so grateful that he is able to be in a general ed classroom with his typical peers thanks to a great principal who supports inclusion, his supportive teacher and his aide Lindsay who is a rockstar! She has helped him learn to say many of the letters of the alphabet. We are amazed!

Here is a little video highlighting some of the fun we had with Noah and the whole family over the last few months.

Friday, June 26, 2015

Update on Noah's New Life

Hi everyone,

Noah has been home about a year and a half now and he is doing very well. He just finished his first year of preschool and will be entering kindergarten in the fall. We've included pictures and videos which give you a sense of his personality, highlighting his interactions with his siblings. While Andrew, our biological child Down syndrome, is our most shy and introverted child, Noah is our most extroverted.. by a mile! He is so social, always interacting with strangers anywhere he goes. Noah has become such a joy and integral part of our family. We are so thankful to have him.


Thursday, August 21, 2014

Noah has been home 9 months now. Watch how he's been doing.

Noah has been home nine months now and he's doing great. We thought this would be a great time to post an update since Noah just went to preschool for the first time this week. He ran off and played like he owned the place! One of the most common questions we get asked is how does Noah get along with our other son with Down Syndrome, Andrew. They have become real buddies. This video highlights some of their hilarious interactions as well as how Noah is getting along with the rest of his siblings. I think you can really see his extroverted personality coming through.  See if you can watch it without cracking up. What is your favorite part?

Friday, February 14, 2014

Happy Valentine's Day! Noah has been home almost 3 months. Here is an update on his great progress.

The pictures below show what we have been up to over the last couple months with our newest little treasure. Noah is learning his new surroundings, getting to know his siblings and enjoying the beautiful weather here.  He is progressing very well and we are all learning how to communicate with each other. One of the most striking things we noticed within just a couple weeks was how Noah's skin and hair changed. When we first brought Noah home, his skin was very leathery and rough and his hair was stringy and course. This was likely due to some basic nutritional deficiencies.  In almost no time, his skin softened up and his hair looks and feels different. Also, when we first got him home, Noah would swipe at Julie's face when she held him. We noticed this behavior in the orphanage as well when Noah was held by orphanage workers. This behavior has almost completely disappeared since we got him home. We thank God for his mercies and kindness to us and to Noah.

Thursday, December 5, 2013

An Orphan No More!

By God's grace, little Noah is an orphan no more! He is now home with his forever family and is doing amazingly well. In the coming weeks we will be posting updates here on our journey to the Ukraine including pictures and videos. For now, you can see a new post on the right about the new name that we gave our beautiful little boy.

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

This is our family's story and journey to adopt an abandoned little boy with Down syndrome from Eastern Europe

We have been married for 15 years and have 4 beautiful children ranging in age from 4-12 years old. Our third child, Andrew, was born with Down syndrome six years ago. When we learned that Andrew was going to be born with Down syndrome we did not initially understand what a gift he would be to us. We thought that a joyful future was lost because of his disability. But we were wrong and God has shown us through Andrew that His power is perfected in our weakness. Andrew has brought much joy to our family and those who know him well. After Andrew was born, our dear friends learned about the plight of children with Down syndrome around the world through an adoption ministry helping to find homes for abandoned children with disabilities called Reece's Rainbow. They soon decided to go on a mission to bring home their own bundle of joy from Eastern Europe.  

Over time, a desire grew in our family to be a father to the fatherless and rescue another little boy with Down syndrome who has been abandoned by his family and the world around him. We rejoice at the great privilege of redeeming a child who is afflicted and rejected because of his disability. "O Lord, you hear the desires of the afflicted you will strengthen their hearts, You will incline your ear, to do justice to the fatherless and the oppressed" (Psalm 10: 17-19). We have learned that we are not so different from individuals with severe disabilities; We all need mercy, forgiveness and rest for our weary souls that only God can provide. 

There are some who question the wisdom of burdening a family with a disabled child who has substantial needs. "What about your other children and the burden upon them" we are asked. This is a reasonable question. However, our children would reply "what burden?" along with the apostle John who said "for this is the love of God, that we keep His commandments, and his commandments are not burdensome" (1John 5:3). We have found that the words of Jesus are true: "It is more blessed to give then to receive" (Acts 20: 35).  We understand that this journey will not be easy and there will be many challenges and frustrations along the way. But we have also learned that it is in these hardships that God's grace will be sufficient for us as "His power is perfected in our weakness" (2 Cor 12:9). 

We look forward to bringing this little boy home where he can be raised in a family that will give him the love and care that every child deserves. We hope to teach him to surf like the rest of his siblings! But, we cannot do it alone. Please see the "How you can help page" on the right of your screen.

Here is a video set to music of our family's journey to adoption:

Music by Chis August, "Upside of Down"