GOD PROVIDED IT ALL!! ALL TO HIM WE OWE!!! PRAISE JESUS!! After a little over a year of fundraising to bring Ruthie Grace home, we have finally reached our goal of $35,000.00!! Hallelujah! A year ago when we started the process we were told before receiving our application and manual that the approximate costs would be around $25,000. That amount did not include the kids traveling with us, but should be about $28,000 with them to go with us. The year went by and the costs continue to rise, which was a very uneasy feeling because once we got to a certain level of raising money we just knew that we were almost there. In the middle of all cost changes China decided to make it mandatory to have post adoption visits from Lifeline for 5 years after we bring Ruthie home, which a little over a $1000. Then the travel costs went up, the costs for Carson and Hailey to go went up, the orphanage costs went up and a few other costs went up......UGH! Why is it so hard to get our daughter home from China?? I have continually asked myself that over and over again. I asked God, "Why does it cost so much and why does it take so long????" Well, he turned the tables on me and asked me, "Why does it matter??" I have lead you on this journey, you should obey me and not question me or my work....Trust in me!!! There are millions of orphans that will never have a home, never be loved and never hear about the Lord. They ask themselves every day if they will ever be loved or if they will age out of the orphanage before becoming adopted. So, the stress of raising $35,000 or the wait time is nothing compared to what the orphans of the world worry about.......Will I ever be loved?? Will someone take on the adoption journey for me? Will someone not worry about the costs and wait time for me? Will I have a forever family??? These are just a few of the questions that they ask. My worries are small compared to theirs......Ruthie will be home soon!!!
So, I really wanted to recap what this past year has brought through the fundraisers to get to the final penny. As you all know, we have done so many, that it really is hard to comprehend!! We have worked hard on attending craft fairs with our handmade items. We had a Christmas open house with our handmade holiday items!! I took photographs for baseball/softball. We had a golf tournament and had a blast!! We won a matching grant through Lifesong for $2500 that many contributed to, including Kathy McCulley that matched it for us in honor of her niece. At the same time, we had a Ordinary Hero contest to win a grant for $500. So many of you purchased lots of items to help us win the grant including commission. That total came to $1410.38 including a donkey named "Boyd" that Kathy McCulley purchased to help a lady that needs help carrying food for her family in Africa!! What a blessing!! We had a Pampered Chef party and all the commission was donated to the adoption fund, thank you Lauren Kimbrel!! We had two Thirty One parties with Candi Boissel!! Ruthie is set on bags!! :) We sold flips flops and made $1000!! Goodness at the flip flops and the adoption tshirts!! We just recently had a charity event at the Blue Bumble Bee! Thank you to everyone who came out, purchased and enjoyed the wonderful cake from Marilyn Montgomery!! Thanks to Bevin for helping me organize the charity event!! Thanks to Bevin and Adam Tomlin for the silent auction! It was a huge success!! The yard sales, that would be 3!! They were a huge success!! Thanks to Jason and Jennifer Slye for their generous donation! Thanks to Brittany Cobern for her generous donation!! Thanks to Craig and Crandi Miller for their generous donation!! Thanks to Grace Life Baptist Church for their generous donation!! Thanks to my sister, Missy, for sewing and sewing and sewing when I need just one more crayon roll!! Goodness, there are crayon rolls all over the world now!! Ruthie even has one that was mailed to her along with enough for her friends at the orphanage!! Thanks to my sister, Brandi, for organizing Ruthie's shower and always buying something at every party or show that we did! It was a huge success and she will dressed to impress for a long time!! She and Ryan also provided their home to have the yard sales and let us keep the items there until the next yard sale!! There are so many many more that I want to thank that I know I am missing........................ Just know that you are all loved and appreciated so very much!!!
Of course we could not have done it without the help and guidance from Ruthie's grandparents!! We could not have done the handmade items without Nana and Gda Boyd. They have worked so hard to cut out the crosses, frames, carrots, stockings and so on...We have sold hundreds and hundreds of different items and lost so much sleep. We attended so many craft fairs and reached so many people! We now have a booth that is at Encore Resales in Pelham that they furnish items. They have spent alot of time refinishing furniture and making more handmade holiday items that have taken off well and sold extremely well!!! Not only is someones house going to look lovely, but their granddaughter will be home soon. We could not have done all of this without them!!
We also could not have done it without Maw Maw and Paw Paw Bates. MawMaw made alot of handmade headbands and hairbows to sell at the events. They supported us through all of the craft fairs as well. After each fundraiser they would ask, "O.k. how much more??" They wanted to help us, but I would say that I needed to get another fundraiser in because I wanted to reach more people and see how much more I could raise. They wanted to do something to help bring Ruthie Grace home. So, as you all may know, my dad is also an electrician. He wired a house last month and told me to let him know after the Blue Bumble Bee charity event to let him know just how much was left to raise. He told me that I needed to spend the remainder of the time with my family and get rested up for the trip. So, that night I let he and my mom know exactly what was left to raise. He wired the house to help raise the remainder of our goal!! They are so proud and excited that so much came out of wiring a house. Not only was the home owner going to have power, but his granddaughter is now coming home!!
Their granddaugher will be forever grateful and love them so much!! We are also forever grateful for having such wonderful parents!! Their love and support through this all is very overwhelming and means so much to us!!
Carson and Hailey have had a huge part in this journey as well. Hailey has helped with craft fairs, painting and praying!! She has helped with picking out clothes and lots of fun stuff for Ruthie. She had a picture of Ruthie on her desk at school and prayed for her daily!! Carson has also helped with craft fairs and yard sales and also lots of prayers!! A few weeks ago he asked how he could help. We were discussing Ruthie and the amount of money left to raise to get her home. I explained to Carson that God has been so good to us this past year and has provided every penny of $30,000.00!!!! We have about $5,000 left to raise within the next few months, which will and can be done. He went down stairs grabbed his wallet and came back upstairs witha huge smile on his face. He said " Mom, I may not have much, but I do have $105 that I want to contribute to help bring Ruthie home." " I just want my sister home!!" As hard as it was to take his hard earned money from his grass cutting, I couldn't rob him of his blessing!! I am so proud of him and his love for his sister that he has never met and for our God that loves him so much!! God gets the glory for shining through my sweet kiddos!!! My heart is so full of joy!!! Love my kids!!!
Thanks to everyone that has had some part in this journey whether it be financially or through prayer!! Please continue to pray for us and these last few months of waiting. God knows what he is doing through all of this as we may not see it now, we will see it in a few months! God bless you all!! Ruthie will be home soon!!
Praise Jesus that we are in our waiting stage and RUTHIE WILL BE HOME SOON!!
Blessings & Love,