Wednesday, July 30, 2008

My heart, my dream





"May the love hidden deep inside your heart find the love waiting in your dreams. May the
laughter that you find in your tomorrow wipe away the pain you find in your yesterdays.”- unknown




I LOVE this quote! It need no explanation. My love hidden deep inside my heart will find the love of my daughter waiting in my dreams. I believe that with all my heart. Tomorrow is already bringing the laughter that is wiping away the tears in my yesterdays, although I am sure that there will be some of my tomorrows filled with more tears. But, without sorrow you would never know true joy. WHEN I find my daughter all the sorrows will fade and new happiness will finally find it's way to my heart.




Saturday, July 26, 2008

Beyond 725 days.....

I will go before you and make the rough places smooth... Isaiah 45:2

725 days of trust and hope, a heart full of wonderful friends, and faith that God will lead us to our daughter. I could sit here and dwell on everything that has not turned out for us, or feelings of despair, but I will choose to remain on the road and follow where God is leading us. I won't say that I have not had my "I don't understand why we are going through this" stage, but I know that everything is not for us to understand, only trust. My heart is still hurting for all my dear Vietnam family buddies that are along the same journey as we are, but I am so excited and encouraged to hear that many of you are moving on to find a positive outlet for your dream to become parents. We just all have to stick together and encourage each other to do what is right for each of us. We may not go down the same road together, but I will ALWAYS love each and every one of you. This journey has brought me joy to find the ones who will forever be dear to my heart and have blessed my life beyond measure. I have been truly amazed at the outpouring of encouragement and concern from people all over who finally introduced themselves to us. We are ready to pursue another adoption avenue and I am currently trying to obtain the preliminary information to get the process rolling. I am going to be using WORDPRESS to protect some of my posts, so you will need to leave me a comment with your blog, name and email if you want to be able to access these posts. Those of you to whom I email on a regular basis will receive the password from me. I will not discontinue this blog, but when it is necessary, I will link you to wordpress and the protected post. I am just going to be a little more private about the new process and want to know who is reading.

The past few days have been spent in reflection on where we started in this journey, how long we have waited to be turned down another road, and earnest petitions have been sent up to God to bring us to our daughter that we so desperately wait for. I know that God has our future already fashioned out, but it is so hard to sometimes let go and let Him be in control. I know He is going before us and smoothing out the path for us so that when He is ready, our steps will be swift and steady. Please, Lord, show us the way to our daughter. She is all I have been dreaming of for so long. We trust You wholeheartedly and know that You have the most precious sweet baby waiting for us. Thank you for our journey, and should be need to go a thousand more steps, we trust You and will follow. Amen

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Finding a new beginning

******Some of you are asking for me to email you but your address does not come through with your comment. Please include your email with your comment or you can email me zotdachs@comcast.net *****************************************************


This past week has been spent trying to digest all the information we have received in regard to our Vietnam adoption. Our agency has officially announced they will not be releasing any new referrals until an agreement is reached, that only major special needs cases will continue to be processed, but they are not even sure how many or when these will continue. They are hopeful that an agreement will eventually be reached, but there is no way possible to predict when. Our agency has not been able to obtain their Hague accreditation, and if that approval is not reached before the Vietnam program starts up again, they will not be able to complete our adoption and we would be transferred to another agency. So, with SO MANY uncertainties, Dwayne and I are focusing on some new options. We might possibly leave our paperwork active while pursuing another adoption as we will not be given any refund for pulling out anyway. I have very strong feelings on that subject, but in a nutshell, if we are having to look at another option, and the options that CHI has open for us to transfer to- Russia and Ethiopia- are not where God is calling us, then I think it really stinks that we have lost ALL the money that we have faithfully put forward. If we were chosing to close our adoption for personal reasons, I would understand forfeiting all the monies we have put in with them. But we are having to seek an alternative and we have lost nearly 8000.00 to this program. If we were younger and had the time to wait endlessly, then it would not be so bad. But we are 40 and 45 and even the prospect of waiting another two years is hard to swallow. But emotionally my heart has got to find a solution, an end to the heartache and a beginning of happiness. We are not going to make a final decision on what to do until after the Sept. deadline, as there has been NO official announcement from VIETNAM yet and there could be a small chance that dossiers would get grandfathered in, but it is not likely. The US also decided that an official referral means recieving a letter from the DIA office in Vietnam and this is usually what happens toward the end of the adoption process right before you are allowed to file the form to classify a specific orphan as your relative. That means our agency would have to file our papers with the child's papers and not give us the referral until that time and if we refused it, the child would have to wait another 3-5 months while another family's papers were filed and then they accepted him or her. It is all really crazy.

I know that the burning question on everyone's mind is what are our options? Well, I believe in my heart God has NOT destined us to be without a child. We are looking into Taiwan, Nepal, and domestic. I am really not sure where God is leading us. We have been seeking His face this week and He has been gracious to grant me peace with this transition. I have been grieving the child I have dreamed about from Vietnam. Although, through my tears, I have thanked Him for all the wonderful families He has blessed me with on this journey. For that, I have no regrets. I would love to call all of you by name, but I am afraid I would leave someone out and you know who you are. I know that alot of us are in the same position, trying to figure out what to do. My prayer is that all of you listen to your heart and do what is best for you. I don't feel like we are ending our relationships simply because we are going in different directions. I know I will need ALL of you for encouragement in whatever path God leads us. However, I am thinking about moving to a password protected blog in the near future as our new journey I may want to be more private about. There are still some very dear families that are waiting on travel approvals and i-600's that have children waiting for them in Vietnam. I am praying every day that this horrible wait will finally come to an end for you. To those of you near the very top of your waiting lists for referrals I pray that you will find the child you are waiting for and everything will go according to plan through the transisiton in this program.

It is so hard to understand why God leads us the way He does. We have been on this journey for 721 days and we are now have to go another direction. It is only up to us to not rely on our understanding of this situation, but to simply trust God with our whole hearts that He has a plan for us. Our children may be in the most unlikely of places, one that we have never given a single thought to. He has been making us strong for journey still yet ahead and He promises to never leave us. Where are we headed? I don't really know. Is Kaylee waiting for me? YES. I am determined to find her, I have just had to let go and let God take the lead.

Do you think I could stand on the street corner with a sign that says "Will Work for Baby"?
Just a thought.

This weekend will bring bittersweet moments as I am hosting my niece's baby shower at my mom's house. I made an incredibly cute cake and tons of fun stuff. I pray that God will let me enjoy her happiness as mine will surely come. She is like a daughter to me and she deserves her special day. I know in my heart I will silently be wishing upon my own happy day, but I have faith that will soon be.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

This was posted today .

This was posted today on the Department of State's website and also on the JCICS website:

Prospective adoptive parents and adoption service providers should be aware that the Vietnamese Department of International Adoptions (DIA) suspended the acceptance of new adoption dossiers on July 1, 2008. The DIA will continue to process cases received prior to July 1, 2008. The bilateral adoption agreement, required by Vietnamese law to authorize adoptions between the United States and Vietnam, expires on September 1, 2008. Prospective adoptive parents who have been matched with a child (received a formal referral) by September 1 will be allowed to process their adoption to conclusion. Dossiers that have not received a referral by September 1 will be closed and returned to the adoption service provider. According to the DIA, a referral occurs when DIA sends a letter to prospective adoptive parents informing them that both DIA and provincial authorities have agreed to the match of a specific child. Any case where this letter has been sent to the prospective adoptive parents (PAPs) before September 1 will be considered as having a referral and will be processed to completion. DIA has reported that there are more than 1,700 applications pending as of July 1, 2008. According to DIA estimates and prior adoption trends, it is likely that referrals will be completed before September 1 for approximately 50 percent of these applications. The U.S. Embassy in Hanoi, Vietnam, will process to conclusion all adoptions that meet the Government of Vietnam’s criteria and deadlines. The United States is strongly committed to processing legitimate intercountry adoptions from Vietnam. We have indicated to the Vietnamese our interest in negotiating a new agreement. An important goal for the United States is that any new agreement must establish enforceable safeguards and a transparent process which ensures that the children and families involved in the adoption process are protected from exploitation. The Government of Vietnam shares this concern. Both countries acknowledge that more needs to be done to address deficiencies in the current system. It is not possible, at this time, to predict when a new bilateral adoption agreement may be negotiated and signed.

So, what does this mean for us? Unlikely that we will get our referral. I just don't see our agency getting nine baby girl referrals in six weeks. My heart is breaking. I have been crying my eyes out since I read our agency's update that basically said the same thing. I don't know where to begin or end. This information is going to have to sink in and I have decided it is time to speak directly with our agency's Vietnam director. We have been one of those quiet families, rolling with the flow, but I think it is time to try to get some answers, to try to find out where she thinks our case stands. My heart is just grieving right now because I have prayed and imagined and dreamed this child being from Vietnam. God is drawing me to Him in my desperation. We only have one other avenue. After we see where we are by this time next month it will be time to make some decisions because this heart needs some closure. Hanging in the balance of uncertainty is taking a toll on me. I am exhausted and emotionally drained through all of this. I need to renew my strength and faith. Where is my daughter? What path is He leading us down> It is so hard to stay focused on God being in control. I know there are other families going through the same thing we are: the uncertainty, the questions with no answers. I am sorry there are no encouraging word today in this post. Everything we have worked for the past month just seems to have been for nothing. When I find my peace again for the 100th time, I will share it with you.
I need to spend some time with God instead of this blog and find out what direction we are to go.

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

In a quiet place

My heart is in a very quite place tonight. My mind has really been focused on Kaylee lately. We are approaching our two year mark in August on waiting for our referral. Things in the Vietnam adoption world has been very, very quiet. Although I am feeling peaceful, sometime my mind does wonder what we will do if we do not make the September deadline. I am trying to stay focused on the fact that the feedback from the letter send to Condelezza Rice was positive and that there is great hope for referrals to continue after September 1. But the really human side of me is fighting with a few doubts. Now don't get me wrong, I am not giving up on Kaylee. In fact, we already have an alternate plan ready to go if the program should shut down indefinitely. You would think that the closer it gets to the deadline, that there would be a little more communication on the part of USCIS and our agency. Oh, I love our agency, I just feel like there has not been as much communication between our local office and our case. I guess I feel like we just have not had the follow up that we should be getting. We do get weekly updates from the Vietnam director at the home office but I am not really feeling the personal contact that we initially experienced when we we at the start of the program. I have figured out though, that every family preceeding us (families 1-8) are all asking for infant girls. I am not sure of the age ranges, but more than likely there is going to have to be 8 infant girl referrals before we receive ours. This is why we may not make the deadline. I believe that it has been about 3 months or so since our agency has received a healthy infant female referral. I know, however, that God is control of all of this. Dwayne and I pray every single night without fail that He would bring her to us. But, if an interim agreement is not reached and dossiers are returned come Sept 1 and we are still without a referral, we are just going to have to ask God to guide us down the path He wants us to go.

I am really enjoying getting my AVON business started. Three of you have been to my store and placed and order with me! THANK YOU SO MUCH! Who knows, you might receive little goodies from me! I know I sent out some Grand Opening announcements to those of you whose email address I had. If you did not get it and you would like to be on my email list for Avon specials, etc. you can leave me a message or email me at mmcculleyavon@comcast.net or you can go to my online store ( the link is on the top of my sidebar) and register and you will be automatically added to my address book. I am really loving it and the products are just wonderful. This is just what I need to feel important again after leaving my job in 2006 because I thought my new job was going to be being a mommy.

You know it is amazing at the things God will reveal to you when you dedicate a day to Him to simply pray and ask for His loving hand to guide your steps. In the past few weeks amazing things have happened in our marriage. I prayed to God that through this adoption journey He would bring Dwayne and I closer than we have ever been: last week we went on our first vacation in 15 years and renewed our marriage. We have started praying together every night for Kaylee and for God's graces and other things that are going on in our family. I prayed to God that there would be a resolution in the agreement between Vietnam and the US: We have received reports that there was a good response from Congress to the letter submitted to the Department of State. I prayed to God that the families that have been waiting so long to travel would finally receive their approvals: two of the four families I have been praying for recieved approval last week to travel. He is listening. There are many other requests I have made of Him and when He chooses to act upon them He will. I am going to have another day of fasting and prayer one day next week. I will be sure to post the day for any of you who would be interested in participating. I do believe God loves to hear multiple prayers.

Our weekly update will not come out until Friday this week. I would love to say that I feel like we will move to spot number 8 or maybe even 7 but I am not going to get my hopes up on that. Check back tomorrow because I will let you know and if we do move on our spot, I am sure you will have no problem hearing me scream with excitement.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

712 Days- If I had a wish for every day, it would be the same one: to finally be graced with my daughter's face and know what it feels like to be a mother.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

Our ways are not God's ways

Proverbs 16:9"In his heart a man plans his course, but the Lord determines his steps."

Wow, how powerful and especially fitting to this adoption journey. As I look back on the start of this journey over 700 days ago, I thought it was going to be so easy: a simple approval, filing paperwork, getting matched with a child, flying across the ocean, and returning home for a new life with my daughter. We often plan our own course, and at any minute God will change it on a dime. You know how you sit down and say "In 5 years from now......". Well, 15 years ago I would have said "Five years from now we will have children..." and then it became "7 years", then it became without a doubt "10 years". Well, here we are 15 years of marriage and still not parents. Our ways are not God's ways and often we do not understand God's ways at all. There is so much that He does not allow us to understand, yet wants us to put our full trust in Him for the perfect outcome. Even more recent, I said at the start of this journey without a doubt that we would have already had Kaylee by now: New program recently opened up, vibrant and alive with many prospective adoptive parents, referrals right and left, homestudy done without any problems, papers filed in record time, confidence is the uptmost high place. And then: BOOM! All of a sudden, slow downs in the program and the number of referrals dropping drastically, turmoil among the countries, reports of illegal referrals, what???? How could MY God allow more heartache for a heart that just wants to be a momma? How could MY God let my heart feel hopeless in the only means of becoming a parent? How could MY God lead us so close to the end of our journey to close the door on the only hope we have had in fifteen years to become parents? Then, through my tears, I thank God for all He has done for me asking Him to provide the trust and the faith that I need to make it through this journey. I know He is magnificent, that He has every single tip-toe, every single giant step already planned out for this journey. I know that He has given me strength in entire weakness to hold on to His love and to trust Him to bring Kaylee to us. He is my steadfast Rock, my everlasting stronghold, He is my Savior.

I surfing the blogs tonight, my heart is heavy as I ran across two blogs that reported their referrals being retracted from them. I am at a loss for words. For these families my heart aches and is broken as I know what kind of intense waiting your do until the day you finally see your child's face and you eat it, dream it, and sleep it. I cannot fathom the depth of loss these families have felt over losing the precious child referred to them after waiting so long to receive her. The only words of comfort I can even muster for these families is that for such a short precious time this child was placed into your heart and will always be a part of your life and for some reason God allowed you to know this child. God will heal your heart and will allow room for the very precious child that is still waiting for you. I don't know what else to say.

My two very dear friends that are waiting on travel approvals and to file i-600s: In the same token, God is planning every step of the journey and I pray peace and a heart full of strength and hope. He is a caring and loving God and He know what is best for us and although we often feel cheated or forgotten about, He is as close as the mention of His name and He wants us to cry out to Him for mercy and graciousness. You are never, ever away from my thoughts and these precious boys will be home soon.

I had someone ask me today how could we wait so long? My answer: It is not easy. I see families coming together all over the blogs and wonder why in the world is it not our turn already. I pray for the eight Children's Hope families that are ahead of us on the list, only one family do I know personally by name, that God would send us an overflowing of referrals so that we can be united with our children and finally see the faces of these babies we have been waiting so long for. My only refuge is that He is in control of EVERYTHING and He absolutely makes no mistakes, whatsoever. Even though I have my plan, He is placing each step for our feet to trod on. I praise Him when all is as it should be, and I praise Him when the road is dark. But He is there every single minute waiting for me to call out His name and ask for His guidance. He is a loving God and He takes care of His children. I know that wherever Kaylee is, she is being loved and cared for by wonderful nannies and that God is watching over her until the day we are to meet.

Thank you, Lord, for loving us so unconditionally even when we doubt Your ways. You only ask us to be faithful. Please forgive us when we get frustated when we feel like things are not going the way we think they should. We love you, Lord, and we know that you are preparing us for the most amazing gift ever. Please continue to grant us strength and perserverence to wait for our daughter. You are our light, we put our trust in You. Thank you for loving us. Amen

Friday, July 11, 2008

Ding, Dong, Avon Calling!

That's right! I took the plunge into becoming an Avon representative! I am so excited and proud to be involved with such a well-known company. I was looking for something to do that would add a few bucks to the Kaylee budget! What is exciting is that anyone, anywhere in the United States can be my customer! That's right, YOU can be my customer. If you like Avon then check out my website and access all the products, etc. You can order directly on line, it is submitted to my account and ships directly to you for just a small fee of 3.00! And the first five customers to place an online order will get entered into a drawing for $30.00 worth of free Avon products from me! Just leave me a comment that you have ordered online (however, it will also show me the order on my account) and I will enter you into the drawing! The best thing is, YOU will get to pick your $30.00 worth of free products and then I will ship them to you after I order them! Also, if you would like to receive special email notices for free shipping and promotions, just log into the site and sign up, or leave me a comment with your first and last name and email. Or email me directly at mmcculleyavon@comcast.net So start shopping, ladies!
Here is the link: www.youravon.com/melaniemcculley

Home, Sweet Home

We are back, everyone! Refreshed, renewed, and TIRED! We did not sleep well because everytime you turned over in the bed it squeaked! I have an unpacked suitcase on the couch, shopping bags on the floor, stack of mail to go through, and a HUGE pile of laundry to do! Going on vacation is hard work when you come back! Oh, and my babies were so excited to see me when we picked them up, they left a little present on the lobby floor of the vet's office. Sorry, Dr. Lisa and Doc! Thank you for taking such good care of my babies, though! They look fat! I wonder just how many special treats they were given? HMMMMM?

Being away this week, away from the everyday worries and schedules, has really brought Dwayne and I to a new level in our marriage. We prayed together every night for Kaylee. She is going to be the absolute love of our lives. I am not even sure yet what kind of love it is going to be. I have never experienced a mother-child love and can't even imagine the depth of it. I know how much I love her already, but what am I going to feel when I actually see this little peanut's face? I am sure that will be a whole post, hopefully some day real soon.

On the Vietnam adoption front, thank you so much for the calls to your Senators and Congressmen. Both of my senators and my congresswoman signed the letter to Condelezza Rice. The letter recieved many signatures. You can read the letter and the signatures here. I hope it is enough to make an impact on the decision to allow adoptions to continue in Vietnam. There is a Children's Hope family in travel right now to pick up their son, Eli. Please keep them in your prayers. Allison said she was going to kiss all the baby girls for me in case one of them was Kaylee! hehehehehe! Our agency did not receive any new referrals this week, but expect some soon. Come on, baby girl referrals!

I know I have asked for prayers for these families before, but please lift up the Leonards and the Biehoffers in prayer. They are having to wait ridiculous amounts of time for their approval. The Biehoffers are waiting on their travel approval to get River and the Leonards are waiting to file their 1-600. These families have done their fair share of waiting. Please pray that they will get the approvals they are longing for! One thing I have been thinking about and especially when I think of these two families is, once we do finally reach the top of our mountains, we can look back at the valleys and see all the faith, hope, courage, tears, prayers, and strength that was laid down for our feet to walk on. God is good and He is so faithful to His children. He promises never to leave us in our most vulnerable times, He promises hope for the future, and He promises to grant the desires of our hearts if we put our delight in Him. Gina and Lauren, God is not going to let you down. Each day of waiting brings a stronger faith. He is true, He is in control. Hold on to His promises, be faithful, and soon your children will be home.

As soon as I find the USB cord, I will post about my favorite parts of our trip and all the fun we had. Oh, by the way, Miss Kaylee girl racked up on her some clothes, with her Daddy's blessings!!!

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

We are having a blast!

Hey, all! Just wanted to give you a quick shout to say that we are having a FAB-U-LOUS time!

We have eaten out ALL the time( yay, me! But I think that means two weeks of straight home cooking!), walked up a gazillion hills( I mean there ain't no flat land around here!), sweated a gallon of water, and laughed a million gazillion times! This has been the best medicine for us. Tomorrow is our last day and we are hitting the malls! Yep, I am making Dwayne shop! (this is SO not his thing!) But somehow when I say, "I want to go see what I can find for Kaylee" he kinda lights up! Hey, I am just breaking him in for all that great shopping we will be doing WITH Kaylee in Vietnam. Our hotel is great( we are on the very end of the hall in a suite and it is some kinda quiet! however, when I want some ice it is ALLLLLLL the way down at the complete other end! ) and Dwayne has really been wonderful. He is not a very patient person by nature and if you have ever been to Branson you know the main drag is only one lane both ways, and they only time we have really run into congestion is after all the night shows let out. He has been great! Almost wrecked the car making a u-turn, but otherwise great!



We are hitting th outlet mall, the Krispy Kream store, going to play putt putt, and go see one more show tomorrow night before heading home on Thurs. Thursday morning we are going to skip breakfast and head to Lambert's Cafe, home of the throwed rolls, in Ozark, Mo and then pull it on it and go pick up my babies! Yes, the hardest part has been boarding my babies, but this trial run will be good for the BIG trip hopefully soon. (No there is no new news on that yet. The update comes out on Thursday, so I will have to update you then) .



Well, tata! I will be posting way more details of our time together over the weekend with pictures. I wonder how much money I can spend tomorrow when I have to ask Dwayne for some
cash! hmmmmmm!



{Zoey Claire and her new playmate from the vet. Zoey to Allie" MY shadow is better than your shadow!}





{ My handsome boy enjoying some freedom from the leash in a fenced play yard at the vet's!}







{Oscar says"this is NOT my grass!" Zoey:" Hey, who does this chick thinks she is? I am the cute one!"}



We'll be home soon, babies! I promise!

Thursday, July 3, 2008

700 Days, 1000 tears, 1 million prayers, 1 heart



In 700 days, I bet I have shed over 1000 tears and prayed what has seemed to be 1 million prayer and still have 1 heart so in love with a faceless Vietnam baby. The one thing I have learned in 700 days is that I can control nothing, God can fix everything, and that shedding tears is okay. This has been by far a simple, carefree journey. However, in this journey, my life has been uplifted and made richer by all the friends I have met along the way. There have been plenty of days of desperation coupled with days of hope and faith. I have never had to depend on God solely for one particular thing. He is the only one that will bring this journey full circle. He takes me to such a deep and desperate place that I have to shed all my bravery and become very vulnerable in order to see the blessings He continues to pour out on me until the day of the ultimate blessing: The day I become a mommy. I always take refuge in knowing that when I am stripped down to nothing, God is usually up to something!

I really feel like this process is starting to turn around and good things will be happening soon. Another CHI family has recieved travel approval and will FINALLY be going to get sweet Eli man next week. This family has waited for what seems like forever. I am over the moon for them. Her blog is private on Journey to Me, but once again if you want to offer your congratulations do so here and I will make sure she gets them. I am not sure what orphanage Eli is in, but leave a comment if you are waiting to travel and what orphanage your child is in and she may be able to take some pictures for you. Her name is Allison. Yay! Allison, I am so excited for you guys! Go and hug your son! I know he wants you guys right now! Hurry up and pack those bags, You're leaving on a jet plane!!!!!

Please continue to be in prayer for my other friend Lauren as they are waiting endlessly on their travel approval for River. How much heartache is one momma supposed to take?

In a recent post, I asked for ideas on how to make this 700 days post interesting. A few of you asked how Dwayne and I met. Well, I love telling this story. I was 25 at the time and he was 30 years old. I was working nights at Walmart and for an advertising clearing house by day. I normally worked in the Health and Beauty department, but was trained to be a back up cashier. This particular Thursday night, I wasn't even supposed to work, and the girl from my dept called in and I had to go work for her. There was also a shortage of cashiers, so as usual I got called to the front to help check. Well, here came this 6 ft 3 in man through my line with 2 fifty pound bags of dogfood and a huge box of Tide detergent. When he wrote his check (yes, this was before debit cards!) I noticed his address. It was in a town not from from mine. I mentioned which town I lived in, as I was writing down his information and made very small talk. I finished the sale and he was on his way. He was with some friends that night. A few days later I was setting up the suntan lotion display when the assistant manager that was helping me looked at me and said " It's you he was talking about!" I said who? It turned out that she lived down the street from Dwayne and he had driven up to her house to ask about the cashier named Melanie. She told him that we did not have a cashier named Melanie. He told her that he was positive that was the name on my nametag. He had even driven over to my town to try to find me! Like how was he going to find me? I wasn't going to just offer my address out to some stranger. He could have been a serial killer, although, I don't think many serial killers buy 100 pounds of dogfood and a family size box of Tide! Then, I guess it just hit her that it was me he was talking about. She asked me if I remembered checking him out (like ringing up his sale, silly, not "checking him out!) I told her that I did remember. She asked me if I minded giving him my phone number. I said okay and the rest is history. I often ask Dwayne what he thinks would have happened if he had not come into the store that night or if I had not had to come in for someone else. I guess we will never know, but that is okay because I LOVE my hubby. He is the best! 15 years later, we are still going strong! I hope I did not bore you with this story, but that was the way it happened.

I can't tell all of you how much you have meant to me over the past 700 days. Most of you I have only known a short period of time, but every day you have been in my life, my life has been made that much richer. So many of you uplift and encourage me when the wait ahead of you I am sure seems endless. I thank you so much for that. This is a network that I cannot live without! My best buds, ( too many to name, but you know who you are because you email me quite often! ) I could not make it without you guys. We still have a long road ahead of us even if our referrals comes in a few months. So don't go anywhere because I am sure I will need you!

I am SOOOOO ready to go on vacation. This is the first one in 15 years and the first one Dwayne and I have gone on together. We are leaving on Monday morning and coming back on Friday. I can't wait! The reservations have been made, the bags are getting packed and I am sittin' on ready. I am sure I will be checking in as I am so addicted to blogging and my bloggy buddies. I am taking the laptop so the vet can email my pictures of my babies each day. This will be the first time they have stayed anywhere away from home. So everyone have a great holiday weekend and I am sure I will be posting from Branson, but if I don't, it is because we are having too much fun and I would be too exhausted to type. But I will promise a nice long post when we get home. The distraction is going to be great. Maybe we will come home to some good news. Our agency is reporting that they are expecting some new referrals soon, hopefully it will be 9 baby infant girls! hehehehehehehehe!