Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Goodbye For Now, My World Changer

On Monday, November 9, I got a phone call that changed my life.

My precious daughter was no longer alive on earth, but fully alive in the arms of Jesus. She was experiencing love and laughter and joy for the first time.

These past 24 hours have been a messy blur of tears, but through the tears, so much light shines.

People from all over the world have taken the time to read my daughter's story and tell me of the impact her short life had on theirs. People have prayed for me and my family. People have cried big, ugly tears with me.

I spoke on facebook with a stranger for over an hour today about adoption and these precious children who deserve families. This conversation would have never happened without my daughter.

Thousands of people have seen these pictures of a tiny, broken girl now made whole. Thousands of people know more about the injustices of this world because of my tiny girl - my world changer.

Now that you have seen, you are responsible. Don't let the ripples of her short life stop. Be love.

Though my heart is broken that I will never hold my sweet girl in my arms in this life, I am eternally grateful for her. I believe she did her job; she heard the words, "well done, my good and faithful daughter." I am so proud to call her mine, even from afar.

I do not for one second regret saying yes. 

There are two families near and dear to my heart - the Hortons and the Collicotts. They are bringing home precious, tiny ones from the same place where my daughter died. If you feel called to action, I would urge you to consider donating to and praying for their adoptions with me.

Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.
James 1:27

I love you, baby girl.

Wren Marieva, Beloved Daughter

Monday, November 9, 2015

He must increase, but I must decrease. | Updates | Reece's Rainbow

My heart is so full. But it's not about me.

I am so thankful. But it's not about me.

My girl is so loved. But it's not even about her.

God is good, and He is using Heavenleigh's beautiful story to show His goodness.

He must increase, but I must decrease.
John 3:30

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Thank you all for being a part of my journey to "Heavenleigh." Here's what's happening now.

The Process:
This week, I will be sending lots of paperwork to Austin to be apostiled (fancy). When it comes back, my I will send my dossier to Eastern Europe for translation! My prayer is that this can happen before Thanksgiving.

I will also be fingerprinted (for the third time!) this week for USCIS. I included a letter from a doctor in Heavenleigh's country that explains how dire her situation is, in an effort to expedite this process. I'm praying it works and the good folks processing paperwork move quickly through mine. Again, I am praying this is completed before Thanksgiving so it can be sent on to Europe.

Once things are translated and approved, I will be invited on my first trip to Eastern Europe to meet Heavenleigh. The sooner this happens, the sooner my case can go to court and I can get that baby home!

Please continue to pray for this process to be speedy. It is hard for me to wait, but I know it is even harder for Heavenleigh, especially as the weather gets colder and germs spread.

My tshirt campaign ended last night and it was a success! You all blew my goal out of the water. Thank you. 

"Buy The World" Puzzle Fundraiser is still going strong! Here's a reminder of how that works!

As always, if you feel led to make a financial donation, there are several ways to do that. Tax deductible donations can be made through my Reece's Rainbow Family Sponsorship Page. I also have a GoFundMe account if you prefer.

At this point, I am estimating that I need to raise about $6,000 more to be fully funded. This could go up, depending on factors like airfare costs and hospital costs in country. 

Thank you all for your love, support, and prayers!


Saturday, October 31, 2015

Move Mountains! | Reece's Rainbow

He replied, "Because you have so little faith. Truly I tell you, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, 'Move from here to there,' and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you."  Matthew 17:20

With a leap of faith, I am working hard to bring my precious little one home. 

One mountain that we can move together is money. The process of adopting a child - from fees to airplane tickets - is expensive. Will you join in with me and help move this mountain?

I have these fun long sleeve tshirts and hoodies for sale right now! There are lots of styles and colors, so I bet there is something for you! They are only available until Sunday, November, 8 so get them while you can here!

Thank you all for your love and support!


Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Greater Things - Part 2 | Reece's Rainbow

Greater things have yet to come.

For several months, I prayed those words and waited expectantly. It didn't feel right to think that anything could be "greater" than my little girl who was not to be mine.

But still I prayed.

I looked into adopting from several other countries. I looked (again) into foster care. I stopped looking altogether.

Then one day, I noticed a tiny little girl who was newly listed on Reece's Rainbow, an advocacy website for orphans with special needs.

Her tiny face stared at me through my phone screen. My first though was, "Her mama needs to find her FAST." I said a little prayer for her, and continued on in my day.

Later, as people began asking about her and praying for her family to find her, I again thought, "Lord, send her family SOON."

I couldn't stop thinking about the tiny girl in the pink onesie. I couldn't stop thinking about the five years of neglect. Five years without a mama and goodnight kisses. Five years of silent pain.

And then, while still praying for her family to come soon, I emailed her agency. I heard back from a wonderful lady named Judy. Judy told me that just a couple of hours before my email, they had received new pictures and videos of this little girl. She sent them to me, along with her medical records, and I prayed some more.

Where is her family?

The next day, a large grant was given for this tiny girl to find her family.

I continued to pray. I know hundreds of others prayed too.

And then, I knew.

Greater things have yet to come.

This tiny girl in the pink onesie was waiting for me, and I for her.

God is good.

Soon, I will write more about my tiny little Heavenleigh (her Reece's Rainbow name) and the process of adopting her. I am further along than I was able to get with Uganda, and I feel confident that things will move smoothly. Please pray for Heavenleigh. She is literally fighting to stay alive as I work to get to her. She has made it for five years; I believe she can make it a few more months.


Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Greater Things Have Yet to Come | Reece's Rainbow

Dear friends,

A lot has happened since I last wrote. A lot. And some of these things are hard to put into words. Here goes.

My Little Girl in Uganda is not going to be mine.

*inhale, exhale*

For almost five months, I looked at picture after picture of her little face and pictured her as my daughter. I named her. I bought her clothes. I sent her a gift.

And then, due to decisions and circumstances out of my control, I found out it was not to be. 

I was completely heartbroken. I felt SO STRONGLY that I was being led to adopt HER. How could this happen? What had I done wrong?

As I cried and prayed and tried to understand, this song kept playing in my head:

You're the God of this city
You're the King of these people
You're the Lord of this nation
You are
You're the hope to the hopeless
You're the peace to the restless
You are
There is no one like our God
And greater things are still to be done in this city
Greater things have yet to come
And greater things are still to be done in this city
You're the King of these people
You're the Lord of this nation
You are
You're the hope to the hopeless
You're the peace to the restless
You are
There is no one like our God
And greater things are still to be done in this city
Greater things have yet to come
And greater things are still to be done in this city
And greater things are still to be done in this city
Greater things have yet to come
And greater things are still to be done here
There is no one like you God
Greater things have yet to come
And greater things are still to be done in this city
We believe
Greater things have yet to come
And greater things are still to be done in this city
And greater things are still to be done in this city
Greater things have yet to come
And greater things are still to be done here
Greater things, greater things
Greater things, greater things
You're the light in this darkness
There is no one like our God
Greater things have yet to come
You're the God of this city
You're the light in this darkness
There is no one like our God
Greater things have yet to come
Greater things have yet to come
There is no one like our God
We believe
Greater things have yet to come
We believe, we believe greater things

I don't know why I fell in love with this Little Girl, only to be told she cannot be mine. I don't know why people make the choices they do. But I do know that God is good, and He is not done with her life, and He is not done with mine.

Greater things have yet to come.

This is my prayer and fervent belief.

Thank you for your continued support. Part two of this story will be coming soon. As some plans come to a halt, others are just beginning.

(Since I learned about losing my referral for Little Girl, I have been told that another family is in the process of adopting her. While I am still sad for me, I am so glad that she will know the love of a family. Please continue to pray for her, her family, and for His will to be done.)

(One more important thing. If you financially supported Little Girl's adoption, don't worry. That money is sitting safely in my bank account. It has not been lost. It has a plan. Stay tuned for part two to learn more about that.)


Tuesday, June 16, 2015

Puzzle Fundraiser Update! | Reece's Rainbow

You guys are blowing me away with your kindness! Here is a list of the real estate that has sold so far!


South Korea

There is so much left! And LOTS of water!

Sponsor a state for $10. Sponsor a country for $20. Sponsor the water! $1=1 piece of ocean. Your name will go on the completed map puzzle for Little Girl's room.

(Donation buttons over there. -->)

If you would like to join in the journey, please do. I have a big bill due right now. I am working my booty off to get my Little Girl home. Thank you.


Wednesday, May 27, 2015

The Puzzle Fundraiser! | Reece's Rainbow

Here's how it works:

If you know me, you know that I love to travel. I love exploring new places and meeting new people. I dream of sharing this joy with my Little Girl some day. Here's a fun way to help get her home and ready to jet set with mama!

I have a 600 piece map of the world puzzle. Like so:

There are 196 countries in the world. 50 States in the US. 13 Territories in Canada. Lots and lots of water. And it's all for sale!

  • You can "buy" the country of your choice for $20
  • You can "buy" the US state or Canadian Territory of your choice for $10.
  • You can "buy" one border or ocean piece for $1 each.

When you buy a bit of our world, your name will go on the back of that piece (or one near it; some are tiny!). After the puzzle is complete, I will frame it between two pieces of glass and hang it in Little Girl's room. I can't wait to show her the world, and all the people who helped bring her home!

This is a fun way to honor your heritage, honeymoon spot, or the country your child is from! I've got dibs on Uganda. :)

Let's get this puzzle done and this Little Girl home!

Here's how to donate:
  • DONATE button over there -->
  • Donate to my FSP
  • Donation to my GoFundMe
  • Paypal (billed through your email address)
  • Cash or check

Hurry! It's first come, first serve! Get your favorite place now! Email or facebook me to reserve your piece! I will update you soon with our progress.

Thank you so much!!


Little Update

Hi everyone! I just want to take a minute to thank you for your generosity and kindness. I am overwhelmed by the love for my Little Girl.

On Friday, May 22, I had my home study visit. I was super nervous, but it really wasn't as bad as I imagined. I enjoyed talking through many adoption issues and questions, and I am challenged to dig deeper and learn more. The home study should be completed within the next few weeks, and I will be one huge step closer to Little Girl!

Saturday, April 25, 2015

Join in the Journey! | Reece's Rainbow

Friends, thank you so much, from the bottom of my heart, for the kind and supportive response you have shown me. I feel so blessed.

Many people have asked how they can join in on this journey to Uganda. Here are some ways!

Buy a tshirt!
Right now, I have two tshirt campaigns. For adults, I have "Love is worth the fight" and for the kiddos, I have "Love is rad." They come in lots of colors for lots of people. Check them out, buy one (or ten!), and show off your convictions.


For those who are not keen on tshirts (or you already got one! awesome!), I have set up a GoFundMe account. For everyone who donates $25 or more, I will put your name on a small wooden heart that will decorate Little Girl's room when she comes home. I can't wait to tell her the stories of your kindness and generosity!

The first 10 people who donate $150 or more will receive The Creative bracelet from 31 Bits, an amazing jewelry company where the products are made by and support Ugandan women. Their mission is "Using fashion and design to empower people to rise above poverty." Can't go wrong. Their jewelry is beautiful, just like their mission.

Check 31 Bits out here.

Again, your generosity is beyond a blessing. Thank you.


Sunday, April 12, 2015

Love Is Worth The Fight

As I begin this journey, I find myself soaking up as much information as I can about adoption. I read books, I find articles, I google like crazy. I spend a lot of time reading other people's stories. I love following other journeys through blogs and facebook groups; each story is full of unique miracles.

Through each of these stories, and even now in the first steps of my story, I find a common theme. Love is worth the fight. Every piece of paper. Every background check and fingerprint. Every restless night, every tear shed, every prayer. Love is worth the fight. Children and families are worth the fight.

My Little Girl is worth the fight.

Even when it feels too hard or too far away or too much. Even when I feel like I'm not enough.
This is what we are called to. This is worth it.

“A new command I give you: Love one another. As I have loved you, so you must love one another. By this everyone will know that you are my disciples, if you love one another.”
John 14:34-35



Wednesday, April 8, 2015

Big News!

Little Girl will be making her Stateside debut this fall!

I am so excited about this crazy adventure God has brought me to. I know that there will be many difficult steps along the way, but my prayer is that my faith, and the faith of many others, will be strengthened throughout.

If you would like to get involved, PLEASE do! Most importantly, please pray. Pray for my sweet Little Girl as she waits with uncertainty. Pray for her sweet little heart and her fragile body. Pray for the wonderful people caring for her. Pray for me as I navigate this path. Pray for my family and friends and the impact Little Girl will make on their lives. Pray for all the dedicated social workers and officials I will meet along the way; pray that they will do their best to help bring Little Girl home quickly.

If you would like to do more than pray, I will be posting soon about how you can do that! Stay tuned! Thank you in advance.