Monday, January 31, 2011

Love in Adoption

More words of wisdom from Dr. Ray that can be yours in the give away of Adoption: Choosing It, Living It, Loving It.

"Love is at the critical center of parenthood. Without it not much else good happens. Properly understood, love is more than critical; it is enough. The key though lies in what we understand love to be." With those words, Dr. Ray begins debunking the myth of love as just a warm fuzzy feeling. "It is that, but it is much more. It is also committment, perseverence, sacrifice and discipline."

"It is not momentary feelings, positive or negative, that are at the defining core of love. It is committment." Noting that while discipline may be love in action, it does not always feel like it, Dr. Ray gives some examples of love. "It is love to supervise closely whom your [children] associate with--for the next twelve years. It is love to scrutinize and monitor all the media seeking your [child's] attention, even if it is far more than most American parents." "[M]aking a youngster stand in the corner or go to bed early because of a tantrum" are also examples of love.

Dr. Ray points out, quite astutely, that if discipline were not motivated by love, it would be too "unpleasant" to "continue for nearly two decades." Discipline is "unpleasant"--that makes me laugh, and rings a little too true for comfort. But Dr. Ray helps you dig down into that reserve of love which is committment and sacrifice, and persevere in it, for the love of your child.

For only a $5 tax deductible donation to the House Family FSP (and an email or comment to me so I know you made that donation) you too can be entered in the give away, and get even more words of wisdom about parenting and adoption. Click here for more details.

Friday, January 28, 2011

Mary Kay Fundraiser for Martin

For most of my life I pretty much never wore makeup. I'm kind of a back to nature girl that way. However, I did notice once I hit my very late 30s--say 3010, 3011 or so--that I did not look exactly the same as I remembered myself looking. What to do?

Thanks to Mary Kay, I have gentle natural looking makeup that I can wear to work, church and other dress-up places. I use this stuff myself and enjoy the fact that it doesn't irritate my skin.

Even though when I get up in the morning I see that same girl of 20 years ago, when I actually put on my glasses, I appreciate that a more polished look is required for some of my more formal daily interactions.

Anyway if you use Mary Kay, or if you are in the market for some good makeup or skin care products, do I have a deal for you. My cousin Jeannie just started selling Mary Kay products and has agreed to hold a Mary Kay fundraiser for Martin. The fundraiser will run from Wednesday-Friday of next week, February 2-4.

So, if you wear makeup an want to help bring Martin home, mark your calendar for this win-win.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Adoption Wisdom and a Give Away

Dr. Ray Guarendi is a psychologist and father of 10, all by the miracle of adoption.

He was also kind enough to donate an autographed copy of his latest book Adoption: Choosing It, Living It, Loving It as a fundraiser for Martin's adoption.

"Ray Guarendi, psychologist, husband and father of ten adopted children, considers the most commonly asked adoption questions with insight, humor and a heart for the adoptive family. His aim? To dispel unsettling misperceptions about adoption, to encourage others to think about and act on adoption, and to guide adoptive parents to a more relaxed, rewarding family life for all involved."

Hmm wisdom on adoption from one who has BTDT and helping to bring a child home. Sounds like a win-win to me.

Here's what you need to do, just make a donation of $5 or more to the House Family's FSP by clicking on the the button at right or by mailing you check to:
Reece's Rainbow
PO Box 4024
Gaithersburg, MD 20885

If paying by check, be sure to write "Martin for the House Family" in the memo line.

For every $5 you donate your name will be entered into the giveaway, or for $20 your name will be entered 5 times. The winner will be chosen at random and I will pay for the postage to get it to you.

After you make your donation, send me an email at letting me know that you contributed, how much you contributed, and how I can contact you, if you are the winner. You are on your honor here, people, so don't email until after your contribution to Martin's FSP has been made. Also, I am planning some other giveaways, so please tell me in your email that you want to be entered into the Adoption: Choosing It, Living It, Loving It giveaway. Don't forget to send me the email, since that is what I will use to decide who is in.

Now, to whet your appetites, here is a little adoption wisdom from Dr. Ray.

"Not all may understand your decision to adopt. Sometimes those disagreeing most loudly are close relatives. Most often the adoptee will win them over in time, as they come to know and love her. Even if not, do not let the opinion of others overrule your decision to adopt. The full favor of all may be ideal; it is not critical to the well-being of your child. Your love and that of others will more than compensate for what's lacking elsewhere." Guarendi, R. Adoption: Choosing It, Living It, Loving It, p. 86 (2009).

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Faith and Works

I just learned today that Martin has been transfered to one of the not so good places. Okay, to a bad place. How can a little boy, barely 5, survive in a mental institution?

I know his mother cried when she heard the news. How could she not? Imagine one of your own kids at that age, placed in that situation. Imagine that you are half a world away and can do nothing to help him. Yeah, it makes me cry too.

I know that God is my all loving Father. I know that He loves Martin even more than I do, even more than Martin's Mommy and Daddy love him. That is hard to imagine, but I know it to be true, and I have come to trust that love for the people in my life, even when I do not understand what it sometimes permits.

I have faith that all will be well...ultimately. But I know that ultimately can be a long way off. Ultimately doesn't always come in this life. There can be a whole lot of sorrow between ultimately and now.

So, what would my loving Father want me to do now? Would He want me to give up, and say, "It is all in His hands." Well, it is all in His hands, but doesn't He want me to do something with the hands He has given me?

I think He does. If you conceive that He calls you to do something with the gifts He has given you, then please pray for Martin, pray for the House Family as they continue to work their way through all of the steps necessary to bring Martin home. Pray too about your hands, your feet, your voice, your gifts, and how you can use them to make Martin's time in this bad place as short as possible.

"Christ has no body but yours,
No hands, no feet on earth but yours,
Yours are the eyes with which he looks compassion on this world,
Yours are the feet with which he walks to do good,
Yours are the hands, with which he blesses all the world."

St. Theresa of Avila

Finding Martin!: Why Does Reality Hurt So Much?

Finding Martin!: Why Does Reality Hurt So Much?: "Well, Monday we asked the hard that we new the answer, but we were never officially told. You see, we read back in the begi..."

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Adoption Awareness

There are some wonderful new Adoption Awareness buttons on the Reece's Rainbow button blog. I added one to my sidebar, but will post a few more of them here because they are so beautiful and speak to me so well about adoption and the value of the life of every person. We have value because we are, not because of something we do.

The first one seems especially appropriate as we approach Valentine's day, and the second one, well, I just really liked it and wanted to share it.

If you have a blog, please consider putting one of these beautiful buttons on your sidebar to raise awareness of the need for families. Even if you don't have a blog, visit the RR button blog and take a look at the rest of the buttons. It is well worth the trip.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Happy Birthday, Martin!

Happy Birthday, Martin!

Today is the big day, five years old!

Remember you are invited to Martin's virtual birthday party, and don't forget to give the gift of family by contributing to help the House Family bring Martin home.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

You are invited to a birthday party!

You’re invited to a party!

Martin’s 5th Birthday

January 20, 2011


This Thursday is Martin's birthday. Martin turns 5 years old. I am holding a virtual birthday party for Martin and YOU are invited.

How many birthday parties have you been invited to in your lifetime? Isn't one of the first questions you ask yourself when you get an invitation, "What present shall I bring?"

Well, you know what the best present would be for this party? You know what Martin really needs? Martin needs his family to have the money they need to fully fund his adoption, so they can make those two trips to EE and bring him home.

What present would you bring to Martin's real-world birthday? Would it be a LEGO set at $24.99? Maybe you would bring a gift certificate to the local book store at $20.00, or would it be one of those StarWars light sabers, or maybe a new soccer ball?

Whatever it is, whatever you would spend to bring Martin a present for his real-world birthday party, I am asking you make a tax deductible donation in that amount to the House Family's FSP on RR. You can do that through the Martin button on the sidebar next to this post.

You are invited to Martin's party. It would be rude not to bring a present. ;-)

Happy Birthday, Martin!

Every year on our children's birthdays we make note of their first and lasts of the year. The last year at home, the first year of school; the last "baba", the first pizza; the last time in the high chair, the first time in the big boy chair; the last free summer, the first job.

Every year at every time of life we celebrate these firsts and lasts. But most of all we celebrate our children's births, their official entry into the world. How could the world have gotten by without them? How did we ever do so? Of course we need to celebrate.

Martin's birthday is this week. On January 20 Martin will turn 5 years old. Wow, a whole handful! (For the unitiated, this means you hold up all the fingers on your hand to show how old you are, a whole hand full of fingers.)

What a year of firsts and lasts for Martin. He does not know it yet, but this is the first year that a mommy and daddy will rejoice in the fact that he was born! Consider that astounding fact. For the first time in his life, Martin has parents doing everything they can to bring him our of an institution and into their home. What a first!

And a last, what a blessed last, the last birthday alone, living in an orphanage, without a family. This year, Martin will not even know it is his birthday.
But next year. Cake, hats, presents, Mommy and Daddy, brothers and sister, friends and family. With all those people singing happy birthday dear Martin, and urging him to blow out the candles, with parties at home and in school, Martin will not be able to escape knowing it is his birthday.

We may not be able to speed the coming of that happy day, but we can provide financial support to Martin's family so they can bring him home as quickly as possible, so he has a few more weeks or months to learn what it means to be a cherished son, a valued member of his family and community, a few more weeks to learn what a birthday is, before he turns 6.

This is Martin's last birthday without a family, will you be the first to contribute and help to bring him home?

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Buttons across the years.

Here are some of the buttons that have been used to raise awareness and funding for Martin's adoption, since he was first listed on Reece's Rainbow in 2009.

Any of these look familiar?

Well, they have all been removed from this blog.

Because they have all been replaced by a wonderful knew button that links directly to the RR family services page for the House family.

The funds are still tax deductible, and are still dedicated to Martin, but now the focus is on helping Martin's family bring him home.

How great is that? How great is this?

Introducing Martin's newest button.

Grab the button from the side of the blog and post it, tweet it, facebook it

Do whatever it is you do when you want to spread the word.

Martin is coming home to his family in 2011!

Let's all chip in to make this the last blog button that Martin ever needs.

Still $214.55 short of New Year's goal!

Ohh, so close. It looks like we need another $214.55 to reach our New Year's fundraising goal. Come on guys, let's make it happen.

On the plus side, RR has met its goal and raised $1,000 for all of the children on the Christmas Angel Tree. Yeah!