Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Broadcast from the Dark Side of the Moon

Waiting.  No word yet.  No phone call. No email. Waiting. Silence...

I am having a hard time waiting to get 'the word' and the silence that goes with it.  If any of you remember the Apollo missions there were those times when the astronauts had to orbit the moon and loose contact with earth when they were on the dark side of the moon.  Guys at mission control hear the last transmission and then...static. Static for what seems an eternity.  For me waiting for the call is like that but measured in days, weeks, perhaps months(?) not an hour.

It's frustrating too.  Our 'part' the paper work everything that we can do is done.  We have no choice but to wait.  I would almost prefer those battles with some nameless bureaucracy to move things along - you know slaying dragons that are in between me and my son.  Silence.

I'm having a hard time with it - this silence.  I wonder what Jacob is doing.  Does he know we're coming? Does he have his book?Has he got his passport? His Visa?  What the heck is going on over there????  But one thing I do know is that Jesus is here waiting with me - at least in the intellectual sense of "knowing".  But it's not any easier.  Maybe it's not supposed to be easier.  Maybe it's like waiting for a flower to bloom or waiting for Spring. Or maybe it's what the Apollo astronauts were waiting for...to emerge from the dark side of the Moon and hear the radio crackle to life..."This is Houston do you read?"


Tuesday, January 24, 2012

We can because He does...

So how does a family prepare to bring a son home?  An 11 year old son.  How do we prepare?  You know what the beauty of this process is?  You can't.  WE can't prepare ourselves - any more than we could have come this far, this close to bringing Jacob home by ourselves.
Naomi- Christmas 2011.  You See.

Preparation.  It's what 'smart' people do.  The Boy Scouts tout that they are "prepared".  It sounds like practice, planning, being ready - attempting to control your own destiny or outcome maybe.  I have learned a thing or two about adoption.  You can read a book, watch a video of a nice lady that talks with her hands go on and on about what to expect. You can go to training(s), talk with other adoptive parents that have walked a similar road (it's never the same for anyone) and try to prepare, try to 'get ready'.  But at the end of the day, how does one really get 'prepared' to impact, to love sacrificially, feel a passion for a child that God made.

This is what is truly a 'God thing' about adoption:  -for what really matters - you can't prepare.  You can't plan for it- you actually can't as a fallen human being do any of these things in and of yourself.  But over and over again through willing, would-be parents these very things (love, impact, passion) happen or rather God gives both the child and the family - love.  You can't 'train' or prepare to love someone.  

I think that one of the coolest things about adoption, the biggest blessing -is this: God gives us what we need when we need it in short: he completes the work.  He is love.  He's in the middle of it, He stirs the hearts, He moves us to Love freely, He completes the work.  So to those who say "I can't love a child that is not mine"  - you're right.  You can't.  But if you entrust all those questions you have to Him and trust Him to complete the work - well then, He will and you...can.  More than can - you will. His love is the motive... IT IS THE REASON we...can.

So all we can do to 'prepare' is the little stuff.  We sent a list of questions to the Philippines a couple of weeks ago and today we got a snapshot of Jacob - basic stuff. And you know what, I think I am I am loving this little boy already. Try to picture him with us - I think you'll start loving him too.

Questions to help us prepare for Jacob to join our family 

1. What size pant is Jacob ?

  • 7 Asian size (Marshall: I wonder what my Asian size is...) 

2. What size shoe is Jacob ?

  • 4 USA size 

3. What is Jacob ’s favorite food?

  • Fried chicken, fried fish, pork adobo, fried/ boiled eggs (Us too!) 

  • Vegetables – eggplant, squash, (Wortheys: Really!?) 

  • Fruits- apple, mangoes, grapes, pineapple, banana 

4. What does Jacob like to do when he is not in school?

  • Sweeping floor (Serious?), washing dishes (Ok you're pushing it), reading books, playing/ running around (I'm thinking these things were not in order) 

5. What is Jacob ’s favorite color?

  • red ( need to work the orange and blue)

6. Does Jacob know how to read English?

  • yes 

7. What is Jacob ’s favorite game?

  • Basketball (We have a court in our town - cool!) 

8. What is Jacob ’s favorite subject in school?

  • mathematics (Must take after his mom) 

9. Has Jacob been around animals such as dogs and cats?

  • Yes he love(s to) pet dogs and cats (Truly an international Kid trait)

Passing on the Love of the Father,


Friday, January 20, 2012

Best of both worlds

Fridays around here are fun!  A few years ago, thanks to our dear friend Margot, we got the idea of having a pizza and movie night.  Margot and her family began the tradition and now we are following right along.  Before pizza and movie night  Fridays were reserved for date night. So, basically, Fridays have always been special in the Worthey household.

Lately, Marshall and I have had the best of both worlds- a date AND time with the children.  We have been getting away around 4:00 on Friday afternoons, grabbing a drink together and then ordering pizza and bringing  a movie back home.  Sometimes, that does mean we are up rather late on Friday nights, but the joy it brings to our family is priceless.  The children now say, "I can't wait for pizza and movie night and what movie are we watching this evening?"

Traditions.  A word with a huge meaning.  The things that we do and the time we put into our families mean so much. All children need traditions - things their family does together . I believe that as our children grow, it is even more important to spend time together as a family.  Not always easy, but definitely worth it.  Praying that as our children grow up and become adults the traditions we shared as a family will be passed on.  Who knows, maybe we will come over to their  homes and have pizza and movie night with them.

Have a blessed weekend making traditions with your family.


Naomi acting silly as always

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Give an extra hug tonight

Today , when I turned on my computer and went to my Facebook page, I realized right away that something was seriously wrong.  One of our closest friends' son was missing.  Just like that - gone.  He hadn't come home from school yesterday.  After making a few phone calls, our friends found out that he had attended every class that day, but hadn't been on the bus leaving school.  Word got out and people responded! Many of you  joined in and spent the day praying for this young man.  Thankfully, after being gone all night and most of today, this family is together again.  This afternoon we got word that he was home. Safe.

Parenting is hard and very frustrating.  Sometimes your days are filled with nothing more than kid issues.  You spend all your days wiping noses and taking care of sick kids.  You wonder why it is 5:00 and you are still in your pajamas. You see people who are out having a wonderful lunch with their friends- adult conversations- and think that there must be more to this life. There is- it is called family. What we do now does make a difference.  The time you spend with your children matters.  And in the end it is all any of us have.

Today brought it all back into perspective to me.  Hearing the voice of my sweet friend who was missing her son made me want to hug mine even tighter.  And tonight friends, my friend will be hugging her son who is at home in his own room sleeping in his own bed.   What a blessing that is! We are singing praises to our Heavenly Father this evening.  Why don't you all go and give your children an extra hug tonight?  They are a blessing you know.

Having fun - and giving Marshall a hug too!

Children are a blessing!
Please continue to keep our family in your prayers as we continue to wait for "the call".  Pretty soon, there will be another face to add to this picture. And, don't forget to thank our Lord for bringing this young man back home to his family.


Tuesday, January 17, 2012


Government always amazes me.  You can hear one thing from one person in an office somewhere on the East Coast and then call two days later to the same office and hear something totally different.  That is exactly what happened to us last week.

We got the "word" that our paperwork had been sent via e-mail to the Embassy over in the Philippines.  By word, I mean that I found the number to the National Visa Office and called them directly.  I was told by a sweet lady that we had been "approved" and , just that morning, they had sent our paperwork over to the Embassy in the Philippines.   That same sweet lady told me that we would be getting a confirmation letter in the mail with our new case number. She said it would take about a week. Thankfully, she did go on and give me the new number before we got off the phone even though we hadn't received the "official" confirmation. Yes, success for the day!

We checked the mail every single day for the next week.  Since we have a post office box and have to get to the post office to get our mail, we often go a few days without checking the box.  Anyway, nothing ever showed up.  Finally, I called again last Friday to see if they could at least just send something via e-mail to us showing that our paperwork had been forwarded to the Philippines.  That is when I heard the words, "well, no letter has been sent out".  WHAT?  You are kidding me.  How can someone tell me that something had been sent out and then someone else in the same office  tell me otherwise?  To put the icing on the cake she also said that it would take 5-7 business days for us to get a letter - by e-mail mind you - to us.  I don't know what you think about that, but I totally think it is ridiculous why someone can't just hit the send button right then. This morning I turned on the computer to find that confirmation e-mail in my inbox.  By the way, it only took one day to send.

Adoptions are hard.  They are challenging and they try your patience more than just about anything.  You have good days, really good days and then bad days.  Just when you think you are moving forward, smack - something sets you back.  Most of the times, those set backs are due to things you have no control over; such as waiting for someone to send a letter to you.  Adoptions bring out the best - and possibly the worse- in you.  With so many hurdles to jump through, and phone calls to make you may wonder "why"?  Why go through it?  This is why....
Naomi's first birthday in America.
Sisters - forever

Had God not given us a deep desire for adoption, she could possibly still be waiting- in an orphanage, as just a number without any hope for a real family.  Praise God HE changed all of that.  HE made it possible for Naomi to live in freedom, in a family with the love of a mom and dad all her siblings too. Soon, we will have a picture of Jacob with his family  - a mom and dad and all his siblings . That is why we go through what we do.  Need I say more?


Wednesday, January 11, 2012

School Days

Everyday around the Worthey home is busy.  We are a home school family.  What that means is that EVERY day is a school day.  Some of our favorite learning opportunities come when we least expect them.  I remember the time when I spent way more time trying to find out how our cat, who had been missing for about month, ended up being brought back home by our dog. Yep, the cat was long gone but our dog brought him back for a "proper burial".  So, school that day consisted of getting the logistics ready to bury our beloved cat in our backyard.  Now, you might think that is not school.  Well, I must tell you that the children learned so much that day.  How to dig a hole deep enough to bury something, how to plan out a service and what to say when it was their turn to speak whatever was on their hearts.  Sometimes, the best lessons come from real life experiences.  It is never a dull moment around here.

Tigger was the COOLEST cat ever.
I personally believe that one of the greatest things we have been able to give Naomi is the gift of homeschooling.  You see, what she - and every child who arrives to their forever families- needs is the opportunity to spend time with their new family.  To bond, if you want to call it that.  Is it easy? No.  Do I get frustrated? You bet.  However, to watch Naomi learn and excel just touches my heart.  We don't have to send her away to be in the hands of someone else for eight hours and then expect her to "know us" when she gets home.  She is able to share life - all of it - with us. Everyday. A perfect gift for a very special child.

For those of you who are thinking about or in the process of adopting I would strongly encourage you to explore all of your options when it comes to the education of your child. Homeschooling is not for everyone and I know that there are some families who just cannot home school their children.  However, the gift of being able to have your children at home with you and experience life with you is so worth every dollar you would spend elsewhere. After all, who would ever think that your school day would consist of a funeral for a cat?
Doing school even when you aren't feeling so well

Hannah and Noah doing Math - on the couch
Thanking God for all of His blessings on our life.  


Saturday, January 7, 2012

What Now?

As you know from following our story, an exciting thing happened this last week.  We got our approval from our government for Jacob to immigrate to America.  The adoption process always amazes me.  There are so many things you have to get done, in just the right time.  I must say that this process with Jacob has gone a little more smoothly than with Naomi.  I think the fact that we "have been there and done that before" has helped us during the times of uncertainty.  However, you could do the adoption thing over and over and still have your heart tied in knots many times. We know for sure though, that once you have your little one home, everything you went through will be like a blur .  We have seen first hand how adoption changes you.  Once, you take the plunge, your life and your families lives will never be the same.

Naomi right after she came to America - what an expression!

Many of you have asked us, "now what, when will you be traveling and how can we continue to help you guys?"  I wanted to answer some of those questions that you might have in the back of your mind.  First off, we really have no idea when we will travel.  I was able to call the National Visa Center  yesterday and find out that they had sent our stuff over to the Embassy in the Philippines.  We have a case number now - that is huge!  It will be up to the Embassy to schedule the visa appointment for Jacob.  We are not sure how long it is taking for them to schedule those appointments but have been told that they sometimes "speed up" the appointments for adoption cases - especially if the child is an older child.  Please pray with us that the appointment comes quickly.

Once the Embassy has the appointment scheduled, Jacob and his social worker will get on an airplane and fly to Manila for his appointment.  The appointment consists of an interview and medical evaluation.  After all of that, the Embassy will issue his visa.  It is around that time when we get "the call" - the REAL call that we can travel anytime after 10 days.  So, they give us a 10 day window to get the tickets and have everything ready.  Not a lot of time at all. Please pray that we will have the needed funds for the plane tickets and that they are not super expensive when we begin looking during that 10 day period.  As you can see, we are just waiting - again.  Adoptions are like that. You just seem to wait and wait and wait.  Until you get the call.

What one of our friends had done for us while we were away
This last part of the journey is both exciting and super hard at the same time.  I remember with Naomi that I was at the end of my rope just about now and had told Marshall that if they didn't call within the week, we were done.  I had enough of the wait.  Guess what?  They called the very next day.  God is like that - showing up just when you think you can't go on anymore.  And, as you can see, we are super close to hearing the phone ring and our adoption agency saying...it is time.

Our family is still on the journey.  In fact, the journey doesn't end with the "call".  We will continue to need your prayers and support even after we bring our Jacob home.  Just this week, we were told about a disrupted adoption.  It happens all to often.  You have supported us thus far, will you continue being part of our journey when all the waiting is over?  We appreciate you all so much and continue to watch with wonder and amazement the work of our Lord.


Tuesday, January 3, 2012

New Beginnings

So many things have happened around here the last few days.  We rang in the New Year Worthey style - sledding at midnight.  I honestly believe it was the best sledding ever.  Because of the warm weather, the hill was completely frozen with ice. The snow had melted and had been replaced with a layer of ice.  Now, when you have brand new sleds and ice you tend to go extremely fast down a hill.  That is what happened.  We kept the car on so that we would have lights and then got on the sleds.  It was so much fun watching the kids go down the hill, into the forest and emerge  laughing like crazy.  It reminded me of the Christmas Vacation movie with Chevy Chase. That sledding scene always makes me laugh.  What a wonderful way to ring in 2012.  We are already planning for next year.  Maybe we will even have a tent set up so that we can get several good hours of sledding in. Stay tuned to see what happens in 2013.

 As you know, we have been waiting on our government to approve Jacob to come to the United States.  The fancy term for the paperwork is the I-800.  We got a notice on December 15th letting us know that they had received our paperwork in their office in Texas . Both Marshall and I were expecting it to take several months for them to look over everything and approve Jacob.  We were not prepared for the call that came today from our agency. Whenever you are in an adoption and the phone rings your heart stops.  Most of the time you wonder what they need or what the bad news is going to be.  Hate to say that, but it is the truth.  It is the same feeling you get when your child's school calls and you wait for them to tell you something.  So, my heart stopped for a second while I waited for our adoption consultant to tell me why she had called.

"Lorrie, have you checked the mail yet"?
"No, I haven't in a few days."
"You might want to...you guys got approved.  We got the notice sent to us."
"Seriously ?  You are joking...it has only been 12 days."
" According to this, you all were approved on the 29th of December".

You should have heard the kids when they found out...there were shouts of joy no one would ever believe. No joke - it happened.  And, it happened more quickly than anyone ever expected.  God is like that.  He shows up at just the right time.  It is His timing, not ours , not our government, not any country.  It is HIS.  And, my friend, HE will part the river and bring his children home.  We are living proof that if you just step out and get your feet submerged in the water, He will provide the way.

So, we continue to wait, and continue to pray for God to go before us. We know He loves us, He loves Jacob and He loves all of you too.  Thank you for continuing to support our family.  We are getting closer to the day when ALL will see the goodness of our Lord and how He brought another one of His children home.

view from Pikes Peak - wonder what Jacob will say?