Monday, December 20, 2010

Enjoying the moment...

Or rather trying to. It is so easy right now to focus on the "not yet" of our life. We are waiting for a showing, waiting for someone to "chose" our house out of a flooded housing market, and learning one of our first lessons on patience for this adoption journey. I have a sneaking feeling this is going to be a lesson that is on "repeat" in our lives.

But so we wait, and attempt to turn all of our fear, worry, and impatience on the Lord, trusting that HIS timing is perfect, and if we are waiting now He has a plan. (Maybe our little one is yet to be born?) And in the meantime we are making memories with our 2 that are home, making this a holiday season to remember, not for gifts(oh but everyone is getting more than their fair share of those too!), but for time spent together laughing and loving.

So today we made cookie and play dough, gluten, dairy, and dye free of course. And you would have though my little girl was in heaven. It should be noted that this was her very first experience with colored cookies. She was in love!

Poor guy was left out of the play- dough/ cookie fun. Good thing climbing on the chair keeps him entertained!

Monday, December 6, 2010

Perfect Night

Saturday evening we headed up to church (can I just say how much I love Saturday night church when small children are involved? So much easier that the morning rush on Sunday morning!), and afterwords ran into some old, dear friends and made some new ones. We sat and chatted about life while the kids ran around like crazy banshees in the lobby. They had so much fun, I kept being asked, "mommy, can I go to?"

We met a couple who is getting ready to head out to Tanzania with Young Life Africa, who connected us to an ETHIOPIAN ADOPTION GROUP I didn't know exsisted at our church! So exciting! We knew there was an adoption group, but this is specifically for keeping the Ethiopian culture alive. Such a blessing!

So following the chatting we went over to a local African refugees house, who we used to hang out with prior to having kids, but have not seen since. She was so excited to see us, and it was such a breath of fresh air (or rather incense...) to just hang out in her living room, and again watch the kids run around like crazy banshees. Lizzy took to them without a bump, and was all of the girls new best friend, crying when we had to leave, wanting to stay and play with her new friends. (This makes us so happy, in the past we have had fear issues with Lizzy and other races, but apparently these are cleared up!)

So the conclusion of all of this rambling is this, we are confident that we are right in the hand of God, heading in the direction he wants us. We are confident our place will sell(although rather impatient ...), confident we will find the house we are meant to be in, and confident in the choice to head back to Westerville, and that to be the community we will be rooted in. Please keep praying for us, we know prayer is the only way all of the seemingly crazy steps will actually happen!

With Love,
The Garretts

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Cookies for Adoption

Yum yum, delicious, buttery, glutouny sugar cookies. What is better?

How about yummy cookies, made by a local small cake business, hand delivered to your door, the weekend before Christmas? Oh and did I mention 100% of the purchase price goes directly to our adoption fund? Sign me up!

A friend from high school, and the baker extraordinaire of Mrs. Wileys Cakes, has offered up this amazing opportunity for us, and we are so very grateful. Such a fun and practical idea, and such an amazing blessing to us. Check her out if you are ever in need of a reasonably priced cake for a party or event. (And did I mention she will work with you on food restrictions, including making it Gluten, Casein, and Dye Free?) Amazing.

Back to cookies... and the details that you are all waiting on.

Cookies are 4 dollars per dozen, or 5 dollars per dozen if you prefer dye-free food dyes to be used in your icing. (Want just white icing "dye free"?, $4/doz., but be sure to mention "White dye free in your order!")

Want a "decorating kit" instead? Mrs. Wiley Cakes will happily bake and package cookies for you, and package up your icing so your kids can go to town decorating. All of the fun of cookies, with none of the rolling out/ baking mess! (Same pricing!)

Want Delivery rather than pick up at my house, just add 2 dollars to your entire order.

To order:
Simply click the "donate now" button on the top right hand side of the blog. Donate the total amount your cookie order will cost, and add in the notes to seller what you are ordering. For instance:
"Donate Now"-12.00
"Note to seller"- 1 dozen cookies, 1 dozen decorator kit, delivery

Sit back and wait for your delicious cookies to arrive!

Delivery Dates:
Our cookies will be lovingly delivered Saturday, December 18th, or will be available for pick up at a couple locations spread throughout Columbus.

Which brings me to just one more thing. We would love for you to Tweet, Facebook, Re-blog, and promote this. We also will have "work order forms" if anyone is interested. These can be hung up in offices and cookies will be delivered Friday the 17th of December, free of charge! For promoting this someway on the Internet, you get 2 dollars off your order! If you promote this at work you get a FREE DOZEN! Just our way of saying "Thanks for being so awesome!"

So in case you missed it, Cookies, $4/doz., $2/ 1x delivery fee, December 18th, 2010.

Merry Christmas, and Happy cookie eating!

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Catch Up

We have been consumed with getting our house "in order" to be officially listed. A crazy amount of work has gone into this place in the past couple weeks and it is looking amazing! Hopefully someone else thinks so too! (local, and looking for a starter home that is CHEAPER than renting(2 bed, 2 bath, 1241 sq. ft.? CONTACT ME!)

We will be live on the MLS on Friday and prayers for a quick sell would be greatly appreciated. We have to sell(and buy) before we can continue on our journey to adoption. There are some great properties for sale in the area we are looking at, with UNBELIEVABLE prices. A lot of square feet for not a lot of money, and perfect for large, growing families. (I should mention the prices are unbelievable for our area, which is Ohio... if you live in another part of the country these prices would hardly buy you a shack. Actually I think it is less than a shack would cost in Vancouver, BC.)

Since we have been busy on mundane house stuff, I have been neglecting a few of my other duties a little more than I like, namely photo editing, and filling custom orders from our shop. But good news, I will be caught up tomorrow and items will be shipped out Tuesday morning at the latest. If you are waiting on an item from me, THANK YOU for being so patient! We have been so blessed with orders from strangers and friends alike. Those of you who are waiting just may be finding a little extra goodie in your box to make up for the delay!

And what is a post without a picture? (Which sadly too many of mine are without, I hope to remedy that!) Here is one of my favorites of a recent shoot that I just edited only minutes ago. For more go here. There is still time to fit in a holiday session with "rush delivery". I will even upload some favorites same day to your printer of choice so you can have your Cards delivered before Christmas! As always 100% of your fees go directly toward our adoption fund.

Is that not the most beautiful picture ever? LOVE IT, Baby and Momma snuggling after some nursing time, so sweet.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

MBM(or tuesday...) {HE..}

(So not really kicked out as much as graduated... But I am one happy and proud momma to a perfectly on target little boy. Take that "may never roll over"!)

For part 1 of this story read here. We are linked up over at A Place called Simplicity, go and check out all of the awesome stories that make up "Memorial Box Monday" (or Tuesday in this case!).

Sunday, November 21, 2010


Oh how we love our zoo. Love. Love. LOVE. It is huge, and consistently ranked among the top zoo's in the nation. Every winter they have Wildlights where they put up millions(billions? anyone know the number?) of lights everywhere. This weekend was the first weekend of them, and we took advantage of the not too freezing weather and went to check them out!

I also love this lovely baby-wearing fleece vest called a Peekaroo. It fits over most carriers including the moby, Beco, Ergo, slings, and mei-tais. I scored one at a local natural kids store at 75% of this spring, which made this picture possible. Those things aren't cheap!

Friday, November 19, 2010

So I stumbled upon this fund raising raffle and I thought I would share. Are these dolls not ah-maz-ing? It is taking everything in my power not to click over to that Etsy shop(which part of the proceeds benefit Ethiopian Orphans) and snatch one up for Lizzy. (although if anyone in the blog world wants to get her one I would not complain... she has requested the red hair one, "Just like me!")

Anyways back to the point. This family is raffling off one of these custom dolls (made to your liking) for a simple 5 dollar donation. So skip your Starbucks, enter to win this for one of your kids, or a special little one in your life, and help bring home an orphan.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Too much stuff!

5 bags of trash.

4 bins "curb alerted" on Craigslist.

4 larger bins packed for storage.

Just today.

And I feel like I haven't made a dent.

(side note we are looking for "helpers" this weekend for some projects... any takers?)

Monday, November 15, 2010

MBM {Sweet Words}

Week 2, aren't we all proud? Memorial Box Monday actually isn't up, the original blog has had some family stuff going on, so I'm guessing it will be posted late. Oh well, I wasn't going to miss week two of my new venture!

This week has been a crazy one. Getting our house ready to sell just seems like a daunting task, one that I feel like is being "taken advantage of," if you get my drift. It would be sooooo much easier to hang up our hats on this whole thing, give up, and stay put for a while longer.

But that is not what we are called to do, we are not called to be comfortable, but rather step out in faith. Even if the current "stepping out" is emptying "junk" and painting.(Anyone local want some junk?) But I digress.

In the midst of this week, my little girl decided that she needed to do a "picture time" (aka photo shoot) of her "Ack and Echo". So she proceeded to find a blanket, lay it out, pose her babies, and start snapping away with her little Nikon. (We teach 'em young around here!)

And in the midst of all of the action she looked up at me and said, "Mommy, your my best friend". Oh precious girl, stay this age forever!

Setting up her shot.

"Cheese" Got it!

They got a little cranky, time for a paci break.

Kneeling down, getting on her babies level. All about perspective!

Taken with my camera, using the view finder, holding it all by herself. Is Christmas too early to get her her first DSLR? :)

Friday, November 12, 2010

Another Christmas Link up

These are EVERYWHERE, and I am so very thankful that they are! This brings great traffic to our blog which means more prayers and more support! Wohoo! So if you are one of my faithful readers, forgive me for some of the redundancy, part of the rules are a new post :)

If you are new WELCOME! We are so glad you stopped by, and even more honored if you choose to do some of your Christmas shopping with us! We are a young family of four, just starting out our journey to adopt from Ethiopia. We cannot tell you how excited we are about this. For more information about us feel free to read the foundational posts up in the top left.

And now to the good stuff, our fundraisers! We have the norm, coffee, ordinary hero shirts (mention garrett family adoption in the memo), and hand adorned shirts(we are sporting these in our family picture up top!). We also have some that are a little more out of the box!

We have teamed up with Delcotto Designs for a Christmas Card Fundraiser. For more information about this and links to the company, check out this post that describes it in more detail. The product is amazingly cute, custom, and has very affordable options!

We are selling Shaklee products, they are green, they are safe, and they always work! If you have never heard of Shaklee check out the button on the right that says "Support Malot's Hope". Here you will find nutritional supplements, skin care, and amazing cleaning products.

And our "crown jewel" is our Etsy shop! Here you will find our previously mentioned shirts. Reusable "green" items(such as reusable snack bags, tissues, "paper towels", and baby wipes.) We also have great gifts for kids. Personalized hooded towels, wooden car sets, blankets and super hero capes! A great post with some pictures of our more recent items is found here!

So thanks for checking us out, and if you haven't already be sure to check out the other people linked up at the Road Less Traveled, we all have the amazing opportunity to help bring these children home with our Christmas purchases!

Thursday, November 11, 2010


We are going deeper and deeper into the "doll phase" over here, Lizzy is in love. She is in her room "napping" right now and has her babies with her, I can hear her telling them a story :)

But the names she has picked are the best...
"Eckha"(shown) and "Ack"(almost sounds like a clicking noise, similar to what you would image from a tribal language).

Oh and they, of course, are from "Aprica". She said she "needed to be their mommy because they didn't have a mommy or daddy."

Gotta love how they are always learning from us, my prayer is that I will be a good example!

Happy Thursday!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Featured on We are Grafted In!

Kelly, over at We are Grafted In, left me a comment a while back about being added to their fundraising family site, and of course I was overjoyed. She then contacted me to see if we were interested in being one of their featured fundraising families, which was a complete no brainer, where do I sign up?
So head on over and check us out, and while you are there check out the other families as well. Just another place to help with your Christmas shopping :)
If this is your first time here, WELCOME, and we would love for you to be a part of our journey! Check out our "foundational posts" at the top left, as well our fundraisers on the right! More than anything we desire your prayers as we realize that it is only through God any of this can happen!
Ephesians 1:5 He predestined us for adoption to sonship, through Jesus Christ, in accordance to his pleasure and will-

Monday, November 8, 2010

Memorial Box Monday

I love the idea of a Memorial Box, a place where you can be thankful for what God is doing and has done in your life. So here goes nothing, my first entry to our memorial box, here's hoping I can keep it up, "day of the week" posts are not my strong suit! Be sure to check out the other "memorial box's" linked up over at A Place Called Simplicity

I will preface this to say that I NEVER thought I would be in this place, only by God's grace...

My memorial box entry is this, our sweet boy, the way he entered into our life and what happened to him while he was in the womb. The short of it, for those who are new is he began his short life in the NICU, after extensive birth trauma, and we subsequently found out he had a stroke in the womb resulting in significant brain damage. The long version is found here.

You see our life was on a much different course. Not a bad one, just different. We were sure we were to head overseas asap(for missions). It kinda was what we were holding onto, it was our end, and even an idol at times. What ended up happening though is we were in a constant state of transition, never truly settling down, as we would eventually be leaving this all behind.

Noah changed this all. He has doctors upon doctors, and appointments upon appointments, making life outside of a developed nation (or even away from a larger city) unrealistic. This really was the salt in the wound for a while. Our son may never sit up(what we were told roughly a year ago) AND we would never realize the dreams we have had since getting married. Honestly I NEVER thought I would get back to the point where I was excited about what God was doing in our life, that I was able to trust Him, and that I believed with my whole heart that he is good.

But I am there. This past week I have been marveling at how everything is working for the good of His Glory. We would never be considering adoption at this point would it not be for Noah and his birth. We wouldn't be moving if not for the adoption. We would not be going back to an amazing church had we not be moving. Our family and marriage is stronger. Our false pretenses with God have been ripped away. There is more, what seems like millions of small things are lining up, showing how there was indeed a plan all along. And we are forever grateful.

And just for those who are wondering, our sweet "special needs" boy is doing amazing. (The quotes are there because while he will always be special needs by diagnosis, I no longer view him as such.) He is hitting all of his milestones, and no longer has a delay. A memorial box entry all on it's own!

So there you have it, our first Memorial Box Monday, and a huge part to how we have gotten here!

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Orphan Sunday

The most jaw dropping statistic EVER. If 7% of those who call themselves Christian's would ADOPT just ONE, the current orphans would all be in homes **. Today is Orphan Sunday.

Let's Stop.



Get OFF out Bums.





Change the life of a CHILD. Make a difference for ONE.

Because after all, we too are ADOPTED.

I will not leave you as orphans. I will come to you. John 14:16

**I realize that adoption is not the complete answer, and adopting all of the current orphans is not feasible for various reasons. The statistic is more for the illustration, as it was for me when I first read it, that we as a collective group can really make a difference! For a more detailed explanation, see the wonderful comment by Haley.**

Friday, November 5, 2010

Be still my beating heart

I was reading and came across an adoption turned special needs blog. The most recent post was about surgery for spasticity, so I just assumed the little boy had CP(Cerebral Palsy). I'm not sure if he technically does or not, I never saw the diagnosis listed, but I didn't look either. Neither matters really.

When I started reading, and saw spasticity at all, a little whisper in the back of my head said, I wonder if he had a stroke...

So I clicked on the link that lead to his story of how they found out(linked above) and among other things the doctors think this poor little guy had MULTIPLE strokes in the womb. When he was taken home he was developmentally delayed, but that was thought to be from living in an institution.

I sat in shock, and anger, and gratitude, and a sense of unworth at reading this. I am so very blessed by what has happened with Noah. The best medical care. Every specialist under the sun. Therapies, conventional and alternative on a regular basis. And on the other side of it all, a little over a year later, is a MIRACLE. Babies who have strokes in the womb RARELY survive to start out with, but my little man is "graduating out" of some of his therapies, he's developmentally on track!

But this is because he was born in the United States. (Yes, we have prayed, and I don't question that the Lord has worked in him as well)He has access to medical care, simply because of where he was born. The thought of how far he would have to catch up after living in an orphanage for a significant part of his first year is mind boggling. And while I am obviously grateful he is doing so well, at the same time I am upset for babies who are not so fortunate.


I don't know, I can't even begin to describe the sadness I have for these kids who are deemed "special needs" in other countries, but not even the sadness, the anger.

My kiddos they have it so good, special food, special soaps, more supplements than any one person should take. Access to doctors and medicine. And around the world there are little boys and girls with similar situations, but because they didn't get the care they have much bigger mountains to climb.

Our family will fight, all kids deserve medical care, and all kids deserve a family. (Little known fact about me, when I was in high school I wanted to be a doctor, and spend a portion of the year working overseas with orphans. This was before I was a follower of Jesus, funny how seeds are planted!)

Musings on homes...

Your home study is a key part of adoption. A social worker comes(after you pay thousands of dollars) to your house numerous times, interviews the family, separately and together, inspects your home, and basically is the deciding factor on if you get to adopt, how many, and what ages. It's kinda a really big deal.

Some of you know that we have been looking to build a house to house our larger family. Currently we are in a 2 bedroom closet(whoops, I mean condo) with no basement or garage. It's a tight squeeze to say the least! The simple fact is, there is a good chance that we would not pass the home study for having more children in our home, and even if we passed for one, the door would most likely close for the option on adopting more than one. (We like keeping that option open!)

So we were going to build, which would put us moving in around 8 months or so from now, in plenty of time to be settled before the new addition(s) to the family.

Or so we thought.

We had our "prescreening" interview with the agency 2 days ago, and beside this minor glitch, it went great! But the glitch is this, YOU CAN'T MOVE DURING THE ADOPTION PROCESS. Ouch.

What is a family who feels like "now" is the time to adopt supposed to do?

We are changing our housing plans. This might seem kinda crazy/ stupid to some, but not to us. You see the house we were going to build was a means to an end, the end being the ability to adopt. We didn't feel particularly "called" to the area, or to the house. It wasn't a God thing, it was a way to walk forward in the God thing we are following. So instead of waiting, saving more, and renting our current place out, we are selling, saving the profit(we got an AMAZING deal on our current place), and buying an older, cheaper house.

We are really thrilled with this "new plan", and feel more peace about it overall. We are looking at the community surrounding our old church that we absolutely LOVE(Westerville and Vineyard Columbus if you are local). It is in a diverse area, with both African Americans, and Africans in large supply. We have recently found out that the church has a decent sized community of families who have adopted from Ethiopia! Visions of multi cultural play dates dance in my head.

So if you are praying for us, please please pray for our housing situation! We need to get ours ready, sell, find a great house(with hopefully 4 bedrooms so we can keep a dedicated guest room for visitors, a basement or "extra" space for a playroom and storage, kitchen with counter space, and hopefully a wood burning fireplace or two to cut down on heating costs), and get it for a GREAT price(under 150,000). We cannot move past our YWAM Application without being into our new house, so we are hoping to have all of this done by the beginning of 2011(January- February, March at the latest).

Prayers against opposition would be great too, already in our short journey we feel significantly more attacked, maybe even more so now, because we are not "committed" yet in the form of thousands of dollars. This would be the easiest time for us to "quit" and the enemy knows it!

God is already showing he is faithful as well. A few times after tough days, I have prayed that I need a little boost, a little hope that we aren't in this alone, and sure enough those next days are the days someone tells us that they are praying for us and excited for what we are doing, or they have formula for us, or orders come in from strangers for our Etsy shop. Just small little reminders, that may not seem huge to the people doing them, or to anyone looking in, but that are HUGE to me! (If you are praying for an adoptive family us or otherwise, TELL THEM, and often too! This is not a journey for the weak hearted, and it is LONLEY more than not. Most of the world(Christians included) think you are absolutley insane and asks quetions that they would NEVER ask if you were pregnant with your biological child. So if you support us or another family, tell them, it is MORE IMPORTANT than financial support!)

Side note, I'm getting ready to do some maternity shirts, 23 a piece. They will be on comfy Old Navy long sleeve maternity "perfect" tee's. If you are interested please leave me a comment/ email with the size/ color(white, black, coral, pink, light teal).

With Love,
The Garretts

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Ordinary Hero

If you have yet to hear of Ordinary Hero, you are missing out. Some seriously amazing work. I could go on and ramble, attempting to put into words their mission, but quite frankly their website does a perfect job of it.

"The Ordinary Hero Foundation is a nonprofit, child advocacy
organization. Our goal is to encourage and provide a way
for every person to make a difference in the life of a
, as well as bring worldwide public awareness to the orphan
in the world. We strive to be a connector between those
looking to make a difference and the child that needs your help by promoting and providing outreach opportunities, adoption
awareness and availability. We believe every child needs
a hero
, wants a hero, and is looking for a hero. We believe that hero just might be you."

So this month is adoption awareness month, and in honor of that Ordinary Hero is giving away all of their T shirt profits to adopting families, 10 dollars per shirt! If you head on over to their site, they have all of their shirts listed on the right hand side. Below are a few of my favorites. I have had my eye on a few of the designs, and now just gives me the perfect "excuse" to buy!

Men's/ Unisex shirt, coffee, black, and blue are the color choices

Women's fitted, white only

The most perfect little kids shirt ever! Reads "I'm going to change the world". Smallest size available is a 2(T). Can we all guess what my kiddos are getting under our Christmas tree. Now if we can only get Lizzy to say it as well...

So head on over to Ordinary Hero's Blog, even if you aren't interested in shirts. It is encouraging, challenging, and makes you think. And if you do order a shirt, be sure to mention "Curtis and Amy Garrett Adoption", so that the money is credited back to us!

Monday, November 1, 2010

New Shirts!

Our most recent shirts, and women's shirts are now listed in the shop! For now if you are interested in a men's shirt, just order under the womens tab, and let me know what you want! They are the same price. All kids sizes 15, all adult 20. 100% of purchase price goes to Malot's Hope{Adoption Fund}! Want one just like you see, just order the "name".

The "Andrew"

"The Jer"

I LOVE our new heart shirts!
This is the "Amy". Can be made on a long sleeve as well. This one(size small, fitted) is up for grabs in the shop!
These women's shirts are an athletic fit, and are very long. Perfect for layering!

The "Lydia"

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Christmas Shopping for a Cause, Part 2

***Welcome if you are new! Please check out our Ethiopian adoption story thus far with the links on the upper left, and on the right side is all of our current fundraisers including Christmas Cards, Shaklee Products, Just Love Coffee, and our Etsy Shop! Thanks For stopping by, and Happy Shopping!***

I LOVE these Christmas "Link Ups". Not only does it give us great exposure for our fundraisers, but we are buying a large portion of our gifts for others from OTHER adopting families. I love looking at(and drooling over!) what every one else is crafting up. Yes, a lot of the links are just coffee and shirts, and we have those too! But so many of them are so much more! There are links of people selling handcrafted jewelry, gloriously wonderful paintings(look for a post on this one specifically, it is what I'm "asking for"), amazingly creative ornaments, handcrafted toys and clothing, and everything else under the sun!

People who adopt are just like you, and just like you we all have different talents and creative outlets. So go on over to A Place Called Simplicity, and do a little Christmas Shopping. And of course there is Christmas Frenzie still going on at My Cup Overfloweth, that list grows by the day!

And without further delay, our most recent additions to our Malot's Hope Etsy Shop! We are the place to get reusable items for your home, and great gifts for your child! This is also where you will find our shirts which we are sporting in our family picture! 100% of the purchase price of items, unless otherwise specified goes directly to our adoption fund! I will gladly gift wrap and ship to the recipient, just ask. For more pictures of these and other items, head on over to our shop!

Personalized hooded towels, you choose the color and the name, and I will do the rest! These wash up great, and stand up to heavy use. The one my "model" is wearing is over a year old!

Sensory "Tag" Blankets. These oh-so-fun square "loveys" are perfect for the baby in your life. With squares of cotton, minky, and corduroy, and backed with terrycloth, there are plenty of textures to keep any baby interested! These have all sold out(in just 24 hours!). Look for more in a few weeks!

The blanket below has already sold and is going to a precious baby, THANK YOU for your support! Check out the Africa blanket pictured below it if you are in the market for blankets, they are one of my favorite items in the shop! We have a few different patterns available!

And last but not least, a set of 5 flax oil finished, handcrafted wood cars, nested in their own personalized initial bag. Perfect for the little boy(or car loving girl!) in your life. This was actually a birthday gift for my son, and it has been well tested by my 1 and 2 year old! Sets include one of each of the vehicles pictured.

So check out our shop, check out our links, check out the other families who are trying to bring home their newest members, because if we all do a little we can change the world. And really, Big Business doesn't need any more money anyways ;)

With Love,
The Garretts

Friday, October 29, 2010

They really like me!

I was working on the Esty shop tonight and I realized that I have people who "heart me"(what is really exciting is I have no clue who 2 of the people are, the third well, hi Alison!). Kinda the Facebook equivalent of "liking" or the blog equivalent of "following". All of the above make me happy, and help me to remember that there are people out there supporting and praying for us!

So if you haven't already "like", "heart", or "follow"us. It shows you support us, and in my times of crazy thoughts, it helps me to remember that we are not in this alone!

With Love,
The Garretts

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Liquid Gold

I have been struck this past week by this weird sense that somewhere, one of our children could be being born. In some rural community, or street corner, a mother could be giving birth (without medical care, and most likely unassisted...) to a beautiful little girl or boy. I pray that there is love and at least some resources. That there is some support of grandmas, sisters, mothers. That the mother is treasuring her precious, even while she is facing the awful reality that she is not either physically or financially able to care for them. But I know the grim reality of far too many girls. All to often there is no support, and more than often, fear is what strikes these young moms. How my heart breaks, ALL OF OUR HEARTS SHOULD BREAK!

So what happens when these mom's decide it isn't feasible, that they simply cannot care for their babies?

(It should be noted here that giving up children in ET is NOT at all like the system here. These moms have profound sorrow and grief over this process. They CANNOT care for their children. Some have no milk whatsoever because of their own malnutrition, therefore their babies would STARVE. Some are dying of AIDS or another disease. Some are watching their other children starve or not thrive because of a lack of resources to provide for them. They are not putting their children up for adoption for THEIR OWN CONVENIENCE. This is not so they can continue to live their preferred lifestyle. Get the picture?)

If they are one of the lucky few they end up at one of the Orphan and Widows Homes ran by Adoption Ministry. Here both orphans and widows are welcomed in with open arms(what happens in many country's to widows is a travesty in its own right, but that is another post, for another day). There are (paid)nannies to do the cooking, cleaning, and day to day grunt work of raising the children. And the widows have a second lease on life, where they are valued and have such a pivotal role in loving on the orphans who they share a home with!

But what about the baby? Remember the one whose mom had no milk and was dropped off at the door? What are they supposed to eat?

It seems so simple to us here, FORMULA. Run to the corner store, pick up a can, and call it a day, RIGHT?

Wrong, oh so wrong! You see there isn't what we would call a quality formula available in Ethiopia. So these babies were originally only receiving what was basically a fortified dry milk powder(what "formula" is there). You can only guess how that wasn't cutting it!

Enter, Into the Streets of Ethiopia , a non-profit which sprung out of what else, adopting their child from Ethiopia and seeing the need. They are helping with donating some, but it is not enough. There are a lot of babies (or older malnourished kiddos who need the boost), and they go through A LOT of formula.

Every family that goes over(for court dates for their own adoption, as well picking up their children) try to take as much formula as they can get their hands on, often times filling all of their allotted luggage, and carrying their items in carry on. One huge blessing for the availability of formula has been the requirement by the Ethiopian Government that families must travel twice, that generally equates to an extra 150 pounds of formula per family! You see shipping to Ethiopia is crazy expensive. Like 20 dollars or so per pound expensive. Shipping, as sad as it is, is NOT an option!

So how can you help?

I am trying to get a package together of formula to send a friend who will be going on her first trip within the next few months. ANY samples of ANY brand would be greatly appreciated! If you feel the desire to do more and want to purchase a can or two, would would gratefully accept that as well! I will also take any and all coupons or formula checks you have or can get your hands on. Eventually it will be us collecting formula for OUR trip over, but right now we are collecting for other families, to take, to possibly feed OUR baby!

If you have recently had a baby or are pregnant, or simply would like to get on the mailing lists for the formula companies(to receive checks, coupons and samples in the mail) below are the links. I just went through and registered with them all(for some reason we weren't put on mailing lists with Noah...) and it took less than 15 minutes. Easy peasy, and free formula for orphans.

Similac Strong Moms Club
(Similac mailing list, enter promo Code PARENTS to receive 6 free months of Parents Magizine)
Enfamil Family Beginnings (Enfamil mailing list)
Gerber Generation (Gerber/ Good Start mailing list, upper right hand corner)
Parent's Choice Free Sample (Walmart's brand, they will send you a day long supply, you can sign up for a sample of all 3 available types, Advantage, Premium, and gentle)
Members Mark Free Sample (Sam's club Brand, another free day long supply, you can sign up for both types)
Baby's Only Organic (a toll free number to call to request a free sample)
Bright Savings Plan (bright beginnings formula, not yet launched, link for future reference)

With OH SO MUCH Love!
The Garrett's

Monday, October 25, 2010

Is the Orphan My Neighbor?

Today is a busy, feel sick kinda day. I'm working on some orders for our shop so they can hopefully be delivered/ shipped in the next few days. But in the meantime, check out this article.

I love "who is my neighbor" situations. For some reason they speak to me and are around right when I need confirmation. For as popular of a text that it is, I feel like I rarely hear sermons/ read articles pointing to "outside the box" neighbors. Not saying they aren't there, I just don't see them.

Anyways, the point of all of this rambling was that the confirmation when I originally went to Africa, was a sermon entitled "Is Africa my dying neighbor". (Earlier that day I had prayed, "God if you really want me to go to Africa make it really clear, you know in that tone of disbelief....) So when I stumbled upon this article on another blog I follow, it was a little slice of peace.

I would copy and paste it here, if I could figure out how to do it on blogger(since I question how many of you actually go to the link...) but I don't know how, so go to it, and not just the other orphan passionate ones who read this!

Is the Orphan My Neighbor?

Saturday, October 23, 2010


So I did it, I jumped on the Radical bandwagon. And I am one happy camper that I did. I am about 3/4 the way though it( and I just got it 2 nights ago :)) and I'm in love. I love when someone calls it like it is and challenges us to step outside of the bubble and look beyond ourselves. Because newsflash :it is NOT about us! So go pick it up, go to the library and reserve it, get the ebook. Do whatever you do to get a hold of books. You won't be sorry.

So watch this clip, get the book, read it, be the change.

Friday, October 22, 2010

The Perfect Mom

So a friend of mine asked me what I though the "perfect mom" is, for a blog post she was doing. It got me thinking, and while this is not a conclusive list, this is what I came up with, and what I strive for.

The perfect mom...


Fiercely, Powerfully, and not just their own kids. The recognize ALL kids are equal in the eyes of God.

They Fight. Fight for their kids(and all of those other kids...) AND their marriage.

They PRAY.

They are open handed, trusting that God can do better for their kids than they can.


They pick battles, and don't think too highly of themselves.

Because after all...


But they fess up to it, GET BACK UP, and try again.






They recognize the value of where they have come from, as well as the value of where they are going.

They are BEAUTIFUL. (yes really, YOU!)

They are wise.

They can change the WORLD.

We can change the world. We are the perfect moms. We have each been placed in our lives for a time such as this.

So I guess the question is, what are we going to do with it?

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Favorite Product Friday {Vita D3}

Actually doing it and on Friday none the less, progress I tell you!

I feel like you have to be living under a rock to not have heard all of the recent press on Vitamin D. It is EVERYWHERE! It wards off colds, keeps up your mood, and can lower your cholesterol. Looking for some more information on what Vitamin D can do for you, check out this post, done by a friend recently on the subject.

So we understand we SHOULD take it, but HOW MUCH is the question right? Generally speaking 1000 IU's doesn't cut it, but all to often that is the recommended amount. Your needs also change depending on where you live, how much time you are outside, and the season.

There is a nifty little quiz here to tell you how much you need to take. This is not "therapeutic dosing". This is just the baseline amount you personally should be taking. Don't worry it is only like 5 questions long, and you don't have to register or enter any personal information!
Why D3 you ask? It is what we can absorb, most(but not all!) D supplements are D3, but if it doesn't say, there is a good chance it is not! As always, all proceeds from our Shaklee Shop, go directly to Malot's Hope {Adoption Fund}!
Happy Friday!

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Gotcha Days

In my free time(read the wee hours of the morning when I really should be sleeping) one of my FAVORITE things to do is watch "Gotcha Day" Videos. A gotcha day is adoption speak for the day you get to keep you new son or daughter. This video is all over the Internet, I have seen links to it on more blogs than I can count. I'm guessing it is because it is so well done, and so powerful. I have yet to watch it without crying. So if you have a few spare minutes, watch it. You won't regret it, and hopefully you will catch a bigger vision for what we are doing, and why we are doing it!

(Side note, thank you all for your prayers. While we were told having another biological child is not the greatest idea, nothing else major is going on!)

Tuesday, October 19, 2010


It is our little guy's birthday, and he rang it in with TAKING HIS FIRST STEP! (Scratching your head why this is SUCH A BIG DEAL!?! Read the full story here.) Not that I saw it or anything (daddy did!) because I didn't, and it was only one step not holding on, but still! Wohoo! Praise Jesus for our little man!

As for me I will spend a chunk of his birthday with a Hematologist, pinpointing down exactly why what happened, happened. So prayers would be greatly appreciated, a lot is up in the air, and we just want some answers and what it means for all of us. (Not to mention I need a clean bill of health for adoption!)

So Happy Birthday to my small one, light of my life, and thorn in his sisters side. We love you oh so much!

When you live in our house any type of bread like substance by your first year is an accomplishment in an of itself! MMMMMM pumpkin muffins :)

Monday, October 18, 2010

Maybe We should pray to Jesus...

Our daughter is a crack up. She knows it, she tries to be funny. She is getting so old, but is still a little off to understanding "big" concepts. She is a typical toddler on the verge of preschooldom, self centered to the "T".

We have been slowly introducing the idea of adoption to her. Explaining how there are little kids without Mommy's and daddy's who need Mommy's and daddy's to let them come live with them and love them. (Life is so simple in kid world!) We have asked her if she wanted to pray for them, we have told her that one day, once we get our new (or "newt" in Lizzy speak) house, we will have a new brother or sister who doesn't look like her. (Side note the "doesn't look like her is key in explaining all of this to her, lets just say her close interactions with "non white people" have not gone the greatest!) We have started explaining differences in people, and how we all are the same and just want Mommy's and daddy's who love us. Sometimes she seems interested, others not so much. We try not to push it, there is still time.

But tonight after tucking her in, and singing her goodnight song, she asked me the most perfect, precious question.

"Mommy, could we pray to Jesus for a newt brother or sister who doesn't have a mommy? They could share my big girl bed, I would love them."

I left her room with tears in my eyes, my sweet sweet 2 year old girl doesn't care whether she has a bed of her own, or if she would have less. She just wants to love them.

Because we all need a Mommy :)

Christmas Frenzy

We obviously are not the only people on this journey, and there is a wonderful rescorce over at My Cup Overfloweth called Christmas Frenzy. Here you can find links to all kinds of goodies, with all of the proceeds going towards SOMEBODY'S Adoption. We are linked up over there, and I have personally drooled over every last link! So go check it out, and start thinking christmas!

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Africa Shirts!

Welcome if you are coming from Christmas Frenzy! Please check out all of our fundraisers on the right hand side of the page, including coffee, Shaklee, and a Christmas Card Fundraiser! All proceeds will be going to our adoption fund. The below shirts are in our Etsy shop, as well as plenty of other goodies for the home and babe! Looking for something handmade in particular(a set of cloth blocks? a tool belt for your "little handyman"?) Convo me and we will set up a custom!

So our Africa shirt fundraiser is in full swing and can I tell you how sweet they are? I love them! We had our family photo shoot today, and were all sporting ours, in the black variety. They are so comfy, and look great! Look for adult additions to the shop in the next few days. Head on over to Malots Hope {Etsy Shop} to pick up one, or a whole set of shirts for your family. 100% of the purchase price(like everything else in our shop!) goes directly to our adoption fund! I know I am super humble right now, but they are definitely my favorite thing! Check out a sneak peak of our shoot, you must wait until Christmas to see the rest though!

With Love,
The Garrett's