Not the Summer I Had Planned

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Eight weeks ago, I drove to Ohio with some very specific plans…

For 2 weeks, I was going to take care of my 18 year old brother and wrap up some adoption fundraising while my parents were taking care of adoption proceedings in Ukraine. We would get to pick my parents up from the airport, spend about a week hearing all about Sasha and Ukraine, and getting the house ready for Sasha’s arrival. Then, my dad and I were going to leave for the second adoption trip to Ukraine, check Sasha out of the orphanage for the last time, do some final appointments there, enjoy Kiev with Sasha for a few days, then fly home for a glorious reunion of the entire family in Ohio.  Then spend the last week or 2 in Ohio helping Sasha get acclimated before I had to leave to go back and start work again in Missouri.

That all changed when Sasha said “nyet” on June 13th.

Mom & Dad's Welcome Home All the plans came to a screeching halt. My parents came home and there were tears at the airport… but much more bittersweet than we imagined. It was as if we had a death in the family, or a miscarriage… but there seemed to be an extra sting to the loss because Sasha specifically chose other things over us.  But if we were to do it all over again, we would still choose him. I know whenever I return home, it will always feel like there is someone missing. Sasha, there will always be a spot for you in our home. ❤

I wanted to spend the summer with my family, especially in this hard season, but I still wanted to do something at the same time. There were orphans who came up needing a summer host family, but our family was not ready for that again.  Then there ended up being an adult chaperone who needed a place to stay for the summer and God just made it all come together from there!

Evita works in an orphanage in Latvia. Her orphanage is actually a small private orphanage that is run by an American Christian. They have such a great opportunity to touch the lives of orphans there! She is one of the caregivers there who got to travel with 6 of the Latvian host children from their homecountry to their host families in America. I say she ‘got’ to come, but it’s a big job when you’re 1 of a handful of adults escorting 90+ orphans across borders, customs, and multiple airports!

First Day in OH at an Indian's GameEvita stayed with us for 1 month and she was so great! We got to do so many things together… starting off with a fun trip to the lake with some great NHFC friends.  We went to an Indian’s game, the zoo with many fun host kids, Ukrainian Festival, hiking, a family reunion, Niagara Falls, dressed up like cows to get free food from Chic-fil-a, a drive-in movie, helped Brad take his senior pictures, shared a taste of exquisite American fare – a corn dog and battered & fried cheese on a stick, got a little crazy at a graduation party, learned how to make Latvian cold soup, watched an entire season of Boy Meets World, did lots of shopping, learned about Cheese-on-a-Stick at Geneva-on-the-Lake!geocaching, had fun at a waterpark, explored a good old fashioned midwest flea market with Paula, helped Kayla move into her new house, got many laughs from Brad’s silly sense of humor,  spent many many many hours together in the car, listen to lots of good songs, shared laughs about some hosting stories, we both helped many host families and orphans who were in the US for the summer, and got to share lots and learn lots about each other’s love for God & orphans!

It definitely was not the summer I had planned, but it ended up being one that I will never forget!

And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.
Romans 8:28 (ESV)

13 Days of Prayer

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Join our public event on FacebookI’d like to invite you to join in New Horizons For Children’s 13 Days of Prayer! 

Beginning on Sunday April 22nd until May 4th – summer hosting deadline – you are invited to join us in prayer for this summer’s orphan hosting program! We will focus on something different each day.

4/22 – Host Families-to-be
4/23 – Non-Scholarshiped Children
4/24 – Sibling Groups
4/25 – Host Only
4/26 – Current Host Families
4/27 – Scholarships
4/28 – Chaperones
4/29 – Newsletter
4/30 – Travel
5/1 – Hosted Children
5/2 – Scholarshiped Children
5/3 – Back-Up Families
5/4 – All Remaining Children

We are believing God for great things as we unite in prayer!

Learn to do right; seek justice.
Defend the oppressed.
Take up the cause of the fatherless…
Isaiah 1:17 (NIV)

The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective.
James 5:16b (NIV)

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