Saturday, January 30, 2010

Patricia Comes Home!

I was at the airport on Thursday to greet all my girls! Cameras from KSTP, WCCO, and KARE 11 were there to share the moment.

And there has been some encouraging good news about Philippe. We received a call from a reporter at the Washington Post who said that 120 more orphans from Haiti had been granted clearance to leave the country. She didn't know if Philippe was among them, but we're waiting for that call.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Haiti Adoption a "Battle of Endurance"

There is an excellent article in the Desert News about Utah families adopting from Haiti, and it explains the problems adoptive parents face. What's interesting is how their experiences mirror ours.

All the legal gymnastics required by parents seeking to adopt. The lack of oversight in the adoption process and the corrupt judges who make parent take unnecessary trips to Haiti just to demonstrate that they care for the kids they're adopting. The dire conditions of those kids held hostage by the Haitian government after some were allowed to leave on humanitarian parole. The article covers pretty much everything we've had to deal with.

Read the full article here.

Dawn and the girls are flying home today at 6:19 on NW from Orlando if you are in MN and want to welcome Patricia.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Still in the News

We're glad the local news stations are continuing to focus on our ongoing story. There's this follow-up report from WCCO and this one from KSTP:

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Haiti Status Update

Email update from FHG:
    Orphans Blocked From Departing Haiti
    Undefined Haitian exit procedures halts departure of humanitarian paroled orphans

    (Port-au-Prince, Haiti) Seventy-nine of the 106 children from Maison des Enfants de Dieu (Children of the House of God) orphanage, who were granted humanitarian parole, arrived in Florida on Saturday, January 23rd. The Haitian Government has blocked the remaining 27 children, including the adopted son of the For His Glory (FHG) Adoption Outreach President, Kim Harmon, from departing Port-au-Prince. In a surprise announcement, Haitian Prime Minister Bellerive stated that all future cases of humanitarian parole would have to complete an exit process with his office. He has not yet defined this exit process so no action can be taken to bring the remaining children to their adoptive parents in the United States.

    The Maison des Enfants de Dieu orphanage staff announced that they soon would be accepting 30 children orphaned since the January 12th earthquake. Over the past week, the orphanage has received numerous requests to take newly orphaned children. In one instance alone, it was asked to accept 70 orphans. The orphanage and FHG remain firmly committed to the children and the people of Haiti. Pat Flowers, an FHG board member who has been in Haiti this past week consulting with the orphanage staff, agreed, "we must act responsibly in accepting new orphans to ensure that we will have sufficient supplies and facilities to care for these children." Pat explained that not only is each child, who is united with adoptive parents, helped, but much-needed space is opened up at the orphanage to help other children. He added, "The need in Port-au-Prince is great."

    Kim Harmon reiterated the need to quickly complete the departure process of the remaining 27 children, who have been granted humanitarian parole. She stated "These children have adoptive families waiting to care for them in the United States. The faster we resolve the departure issue, the quicker we will be able to reach out to those unfortunate children in Port-au-Prince who now have no one." FHG urges adoptive parents, supporters and all those concerned about the welfare of the orphans in Haiti to contact their Congressmen, Senators, Governors and the White House to urge the Secretary of State to quickly resolve this issue with Prime Minister Bellerive.
It should be noted that UNICEF is behind all of this, which, infuriating enough as it is, comes as no surprise. They are effectively holding these kids, and our son, hostage and in doing so are preventing new orphans from getting the care they need.

Please keep praying.

Monday, January 25, 2010

VIDEO: Reunited with Patricia!

This is the story aired on KSTP TV...

Please continue to pray that Philippe will join us soon!

Sunday, January 24, 2010

One Down, One to Go!

It turns out Patricia was on the first flight!

We're still waiting for Philippe's paperwork to be processed. We've been told he may not be here until Monday. I'm sure he's scared and confused. Please keep him in your prayers.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Fox News Posting Updates on Arriving Orphans

You can follow along here.

Our kids weren't on the plane that landed in Orlando today. We've been told they may not be here until Monday. Please keep them (and us) in your prayers.

Homecoming update

For those not aware of the details, Dawn and Olivia flew into Miami yesterday. Dawn's sister, Janie, met her there. We expected the kids to be flown to Miami sometime last night.

We were later informed that the kids would be broken into two groups, with one group of 82 flying in last night and one group of 25 flying in today. The only explanation offered was that not all the visas had been processed.

We then were told that the first group wouldn't make it to the U.S. until today, and that Philippe and Patricia would be in the second group. No word as to when they would fly in.

This is the latest update from FHG:
    (Port-au-Prince, Haiti) All paperwork has been completed for 82 children from the Maison des Enfants de Dieu (Children of the House of God) orphanage and they have clearance to travel to the United States. These 82 children are scheduled to depart Port-au-Prince airport on Saturday, January 23, 2010, at around 11:00 a.m. on an aircraft bound for Florida. Those children with Colorado adoptive parents in this first group, will continue on to Colorado, accompanied by a medical team from the Colorado Children's Hospital. Orphanage staff and representatives of the U.S. ministry, For His Glory Adoption Outreach (FHG) will continue to work with U.S. Embassy officials for humanitarian parole and travel clearance for the remaining eligible children. FHG hopes that these children will receive their clearance sometime on Saturday, January 23, 2010, with a departure date and time still to be determined.
Once their visas are processed the kids are supposed to fly into Orlando. We still don't know when that will be exactly, but Dawn is now on her way to Orlando to wait.

We hope to know more once the first group arrives.

Last Interview Before Leaving for Miami

This interview was conducted a few days ago, but only aired yesterday on WCCO TV.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Over $4,500 raised!

Tonight's benefit dinner to help our orphanage in Haiti raised over $4,500!

And since all the food was kindly donated by Famous Dave's, 100% of the proceeds will go to For His Glory Adoption Outreach. Thank you for your generosity. We love you all!

Thursday, January 21, 2010


hearing conflicting reports. CNN was on the bus to go to the embassy. CNN twitter says the traffic was bad and kids got really hot and started throwing up so they went back. others say they are there at the embassy. no travel plans yet.

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Haiti Adoption Update

Please pray for our children fervently today.
    Orphans Intend to Depart Haiti
    Orphans begin procedures to depart Haiti at U.S. Embassy (Port-au-Prince, Haiti)

    On January 20, 2010, 133 orphans from the Maison des Enfants de Dieu (Children of the House of God) orphanage will begin the difficult process outlined by the U.S. Department of State for humanitarian parole and onward transportation to the United States.

    In accordance with instructions received from the State Department, as relayed by the Joint Council on International Children's Services (JCICS) at 8 p.m. today, orphans along with orphanage staff members have been instructed to arrive at the U.S. Embassy as early as possible on Wednesday morning.

    JCICS warned that no food, water or facilities would be available for the children while processing at the U.S. Embassy Port-au-Prince.

    JCICS further relayed that orphanage requests to the U.S. Embassy for security and transportation for the children have been denied by the State Department. The U.S. ministry associated with this orphanage, For His Glory Adoption Outreach (FHG), was also asked to stop requesting security, transportation or even water at the orphanage location. Following discussions with staff and board members in Port-au-Prince, the difficult decision was made that all 133 children, including approximately 60 children under the age of 3, will begin early in the morning of January 20th to walk the over 2 kilometers to the U.S. Embassy Port-au-Prince. This decision was made due to the limited staff available and the increasingly dangerous security situation at the orphanage in Port-au-Prince. The staff will carry as much water, food and baby formula as possible with them for the orphans while processing at the U.S. Embassy. JCICS relayed that once processing is completed, the orphans will travel to the United States on "cargo jets to locations that are not often known until an hour or so before the flight leaves."

    Kim Harmon, President of FHG, acknowledged that "this arrangement is far from ideal for the safety and well-being of the children. We are calling to all who care about these precious children to pray earnestly for their safety tomorrow."

    FHG is a ministry to the people and children of Haiti. Our ministry is dedicated to fundraising and assisting the orphanage, Maison des Enfants de Dieu, in Port-au-Prince, Haiti.

Yet Another TV Interview

This time with KARE11 TV.

Sunday, January 17, 2010

Our Orphanage on National News

The creche where Philippe and Patricia are staying, Maison des Enfants de Dieu, was just featured on

Another TV Interview

KSTP TV came by again after we notified them of the dire situation at our orphanage. It aired at 10:00 pm last night.

You can see the first two interviews here.

Saturday, January 16, 2010

This Made Us Smile

Note the increase in traffic to our blog in the last few days...

Thanks for caring and sharing. We love you all!

A Desperate Plea from Our Orphanage in Haiti

We just received this harrowing update from our orphanage:

    We received word from Pierre this morning that the situation in the orphanage is becoming dire. We would like to ask EVERYONE that receives this to use this information to get on your knees before our Lord and ask Him to provide.

    We have one nanny that is deceased and the orphanage needs her body to be removed.
    The orphanage has no drinkable water.

    In addition they need:

    • formula for babies
    • medicines
    • IV fluids (one child is currently on an IV)
    • charcoal to cook
    • diesel
    • cash to buy supplies if they find them. They are running out of cash and there are no banks open to get cash, so it needs to be delivered by someone already on the ground or by helicopter.

    Others are beginning to rob them of what supplies they do have.

    There are helicopters flying over the orphanage and they have made a sign on the roof that says they are an orphanage and need help.

    The staff is also working to get together all the paperwork for each child that has an adoptive family in a way that it can be attached to their body if there is an opportunity to evacuate.

    For His Glory is doing everything we can on this end to contact people who may be able to help. Please pray. Currently, that is the best thing you can do to help. Kim is doing everything she can, and respectfully requests that adoptive families do not call her at this time. We realize this is a very difficult time, however she needs her phone and time available to do everything she can to make contacts to try to help the children and staff at the orphanage. We will give you any updates we have as soon as they are available.

    Trusting in Him,

    For His Glory
Please remember them, us, our kids, and other adoptive families in your prayers. If you'd like to donate, please visit FHG's web site here.

Friday, January 15, 2010

Our TV Interviews!

Two of the local news stations expressed interest in our adoption story. Dawn was interviewed first by KSTP TV. It aired at 5:00 pm today.

Both of us were later interviewed by WCCO TV. It aired at 10:00 pm.

Please pray with us that our kids may come home soon!

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Update on Haiti and Our Kids

Lee and I have had so many emails, phone calls and messages that you are all praying for our family and for Haiti and we appreciate that so much. We are just absolutely SICK about the devastation. It is always terrible to witness a catastrophe, but how different it is when you have traveled there, developed a love for a place and the people, and have CHILDREN there!

We have had confirmed information that the kids are ok (praise you, Lord!) -- there are some bumps and bruises but that is all. The kids slept outside last night as there were 28 aftershocks averaging 5.0, which are large earthquakes on their own. I don't know if they are still sleeping outside. We know there is some structural damage to the orphanage as a wall fell on one of the nannies. We don't know yet the extent of her injuries or the extent of the damage to the orphanage itself. Also, Papi Pierre, pictured with us here in February 2008, sustained an injury to his eye but we don't know how bad that is yet either. Kiki, an employee of the orphanage (he processes the paperwork) and Pierre's brother, has not been located. Please pray for his safety.

We have learned that a French couple in Haiti to bring home their child was killed at their hotel while they were having dinner. Their child was not with them yet and now is an orphan once again.

So many need prayer, I don't even know where to start. One thing I will add is that we are praying for a miracle that maybe somehow the governments can work together to expedite the kids who are matched with families OUT of Haiti. There are many more orphans now who will need the beds at the orphanages. Let these kids come home! From the president of the board of directors at our orphanage:

I know many of you would like some adoption news. All Haitian adoptions will be impacted by this disaster. I have received news that the Joint Council on International Children's Services (JCICS) and the U.S. State Department are discussing possible solutions. Please be in prayer about this.

I fear if we do not get some sort of aid from the government, it could be YEARS before they come home.

If you have not been in our shoes, perhaps you can't understand the deep love we have for these kids - that we had in our hearts even before we met them. They love us just as much, and we are so blessed. What a joy to hear "Mama" and "Papa" from their lips, with their cute little accents. What we love is how they call us different names at different times... if they are TELLING us they are doing something or trying to get our attention to show of f jumping in the pool or the like, it's "MOM!", "DAD!" and if they want something it's "Daddy?" and Mama and Papa for "regular" conversation :) We love them so much our hearts ache. And we already felt so much for this country before this happened that this is very hard to take this in. We can't believe how much our kids have survived in their young lives. The orphanage expects to have trouble getting meds for the kids with medical needs; they are concerned about drinking water and are concerned about the looming possibility of disease.

Typhoid could be an issue and they want to get meds for that in case. Also, many times, the biological parents come back to the orphanage for food so suppl ies could be thin. If you feel led to donate to our kids' orphanage or read more about it, click HERE. You will receive a tax donation receipt.

James 1:27 - Religion that is pure and undefiled before God, the Father, is this: to visit orphans and widows in their affliction, and to keep oneself unstained from the world.

Psalm 46:1 - God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. 2 - Therefore we will not fear though the earth gives way, though the mountains be moved into the heart of the sea, 3 - though its waters roar and foam, though the mountains tremble at its swelling.

Six Months Together

Six months ago today, we met our beautiful Olivia. Our friend, Beth, another China adoptive mom, said it best - "ultimate joy and sadness colliding". I was so looking forward to doing a really fun, celebratory post for the 13th, but these months later, I feel the same way - "ultimate joy and sadness colliding". We are so grateful, beyond words, to have this lovely child in our home and in our arms, but we are sick to our stomachs over the devastation in Haiti. We have word that our kids are ok, but there are concerns of looting and the need for fresh water among other things. Please pray for Patricia, Philippe, their orphanage and those in their homeland. We will post more about Haiti later, but for now I am going to turn my focus to little Olivia.

Olivia is a feisty, fun, smart little girl. She loves music and any toys that make music! She has grown so much! She had two teeth when we brought her home and now she has 12. She has gained 6 lbs. and grown nearly two inches!

Olivia in July, in China
Olivia this week, doing one of her favorite activities. In fact, she cries when we take the toothbrush away from her!

Another of Olivia's favorite things to do!
Our home is finally full of noise (besides the dogs barking!) and full of joy. We can't wait for her brother and sister to come home from Haiti. When she sees their pictures she says, "P! P!"
Thank you, Jesus for answering our prayers by bringing us a child and for bringing us THIS child. She was prayed for by name nearly three years before she was born. For more pictures of the day we met Miss O, click HERE.

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

A Look at the Devastation in Haiti

This is the presidential palace in Haiti before the quake...

And after...

For some updated pictures, click here. (WARNING: some of the images are disturbing.)

7.0 Earthquake in Haiti

You may have seen on the news that Haiti was just hit by a 7.0-magnitude earthquake. We're watching the news and awaiting updates.

Please keep Philippe and Patricia in your prayers.
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