Monday, February 4, 2008
Joy Trifecta: A Praise in Three Parts
PART 1: “There shall be showers of blessing…”
Saturday I was blown away by a surprise baby shower that left me completely overwhelmed. At least 60 women came with a deluge of gifts…it was unbelievable! There were clothes and jackets, LL Bean dinosaur galoshes, art supplies, quilts, and LOTS of “my first words” books so we can actually communicate with Yong! There were dump trucks with Legos, snuggly blankets and stuffed animals, educational games & puzzles, Patriots gear (sigh…that painful sound you hear is the breaking of my heart, but I don’t want to go there).
“See if I will not throw open the floodgates of heaven and pour out so much blessing that you will not have room enough for it.” Malachi 3:10
Jason and I were completely astonished by the outpouring of love and people's excitement for us. It took me 3½ glorious hours to unwrap everything. Anyway, there was so much swag that we couldn’t bring it home (our house still being in remodel). Ha! We truly did not “have room enough for it.”
My sister Rachel made Veggie Tale cakes – we enjoyed Larry the Cucumber and his alter ego “I-am-that-hero” Larry Boy, along with Bob the Tomato and Percy zee French Pea. Some might say there’s something wrong with eating a sugary, confectionary delight that masquerades as a heart-healthy vegetable, but they would be wrong. They’ve never tasted my sister’s “from-scratch” cake.
BACKSTORY: In October, Jason and I scoured the Internet for every organization offering to help finance adoptions, to little avail. It was a grueling process, and most places we did find were up front about the fact they couldn't offer much, if any, help.
Many of the organizations no longer existed. Others were basically set up to help you fundraise (“Send us 200 names & addresses and we’ll help you write a campaign letter to raise funds…) Yeah, no thanks.
And then there was my personal favorite: “AdoptShare,” an agency that was touted as “Christians helping Christians share the burden of adoption costs.” Whoever listed that web site obviously didn’t do their homework, because it was really “adopts hare,” as in bunny rabbits. Seriously, come on…
When all was said and done, there were only three organizations we applied to. Thursday night we got a rejection letter from one, reminding us of how many people have requested aid, and that the “need far outweighed the funds available and we're sorry…”
Which brings me to us pulling in our driveway Saturday night, exhausted from the Baby Shower, but euphoric. We pulled in and got the mail and found a letter from Shaohannah’s Hope, Steven Curtis Chapman’s adoption aid organization. There was stunned silence after Jason read me the letter. They were, after all, offering us a grant!
BAKCSTORY: We’ve been hunting high and low for a “mate’s bed” for Yong (basically a bed with drawers underneath and a bookshelf headboard for storage). Since we have a small house, we need to economize on space.
We wanted to buy 'used' to save money, and about three weeks ago Jason found one on Craig’s List for $150. The guy said it was a little banged up, and there was a chocolate ice cream stain on the mattress, but not a huge deal. We e-mailed the guy and he said to stop by any day after 4p.m. Well, our schedules that week never worked out and when we checked back, he’d already sold it.
So we looked at various furniture stores online and in person. Anything new was going to run us between $300-$400. We just didn’t want to spend that much.
Friday night Jason found another ad for an almost-new mate’s bed for $175. No scratches, no wear... He called right away and told the woman (her name is Jill) that we were leaving for China to adopt a 4-year-old next month and needed to get him a bed. Jill said she’d already had another caller and in fairness had to let that woman have first option, and then she'd call us back if it didn't sell. Well, that woman went to see the bed on Sunday. Jill told her that if she didn’t like it, there was another couple interested, and told her about our adoption. The woman looked at Jill and said, “This bed would be perfect for a 4 year old boy. I was a foster parent, so I know what it’s like. I want you to let them have the bed if they want it.”