Sunday, November 28, 2010

Final post of National Adoption Month

National Adoption Awareness month may be almost over but it has been a month that has changed my life forever. My heart is so full I could not possibly get my thoughts out and actually make sense. God is answering so many of my family's prayers and He is piecing together a puzzle that leads to a lifetime of orphan care. In the months to come, as He hashes out the details for His plan for our family, I will be sharing but all I'm saying is... we are some excited folks right now.

This month our pastor has taken my answer for why we are adopting and simplified it to 6 simple words.

"ADOPTED people want to adopt PEOPLE"!

I'm a simple person, so that just works for me.... but if you'd like a bit more meat with that, enjoy this article by Dan Cruver. Then you MUST watch the video. Turn my music down and enjoy these informative resources.

'til there's no more!

Thursday, November 25, 2010

147 Million minus ONE! We are so thankful!

Today has been one of the greatest Thanksgivings for our family. We have so much to be thankful for that I'm overwhelmed as I reflect on my life this past year .... God is amazing and because of Him, my family is blessed today. Our day included spending sweet time with many of the blessings in our lives such as grandparents, parents, brothers, sisters and cousins. In particular, it was wonderful for my family to have a couple of new members this year. I will soon have a new sister-in-law and niece and we are crazy about them both. This is our first holiday season to have them in the family and we could not be happier. I hope she's still willing to marry my brother after spending the evening with my wild bunch of kids : )

It was a great day but our Thanksgiving celebration started a day early this year. My brother-in-law and sister-in-law decided only a few short weeks ago that the time was right for them to adopt. They had considered it in the past but like most hubbies, my bro-in-law was a bit skeptical. After lots of prayer, he knew it was God's plan for their family. They have 4 boys so obviously they were ready for some pink in their house. They felt led to South Korea's waiting baby girls. They were a bit discouraged when their agency told them it was rare to find infant girls with minor medical issues in South Korea. However, they felt strongly that this was where God was leading them. With in a few days of hearing this news guess what shows up on their agency's photo-listing?.... you guessed it.... a sweet baby girl, 6 months old from South Korea with minor medical issues. Long story short, Brandon and Sonia accepted her referral along with 2 other families and went before a committee to decide who this baby girl's new family would be. The day before Thanksgiving the agency made a decision.....

Introducing Daria's new family.........

Do you think she will be rotten or what?: ) I wish I could share her picture but it will be a few more weeks before we have permission to do that. She is beautiful and to say we are excited would be an understatement. On this Thanksgiving night, there is ONE LESS orphan in the world. She may not be in our arms but she is definitely in our hearts. The world may still define her as an orphan but she has a mommy and daddy half way around the world preparing to blaze a trail straight to her. Please join our family in praying her home.

Thank you Jesus for loving me so much. My cup runneth over! (actually, my wagon runneth over)

'til there's no more!

Monday, November 22, 2010

Are these kids beautiful or what?

Last week-end we got to spend some time with a family that has been a huge inspiration to us. They love big families, they love adoption and they love the LORD..... and WE love them. Here's the Bice and Weimer kids.Wow! Can you believe these 16 kids belong to two couples?

Wonder who those crazy parents are?

Yeah... that'd be us and our sweet friends, Heidi and Kirk. You would think our house would have resembled a zoo with all of our kids running around but I must say, the Weimer kids are some of the sweetest, most polite kids we've ever met. This couple is doing an amazing job of raising a large family. It was such a blessing to spend time with them.

They were in town to share their adoption story at our church. Their words were very encouraging to many of us on the journey of adoption. And, I think they encouraged a few more couples to take that leap of faith and care for fatherless children. God is doing amazing things in the hearts of HIS children.... and I pray that it means more orphaned children end up in homes with mommies and daddies to call their own.

Visit the Weimer's blog HERE.... make sure you watch their promo video.

As soon as the message from last Sunday when Kirk and Heidi spoke is added to our church's website, I'll share the link. Many of you have asked about the message shared on Orphan Sunday; It was amazing and you can listen to it HERE.

Thanks to so many of you who have ordered shirts from Ordinary Hero and supported our adoption. They have a couple of new items for sale and I wanted to share them with you.

You can order any of these

...or any of the other great shirts on their blog and it will help us bring our baby home. Please put "Shawn and Polly" in the section that says, "add note to seller" so we can get credit for your purchase. I'm about to order several for Christmas gifts.

One last thing..... would you like to get your name in the drawing for one of our adoption shirts? Even if you have already purchased one, you can choose any size you'd like and give it as a gift. All you need to do is go to the top of this blog and grab our "blog button" found on the sidebar and add it to your blog. Just send me an e-mail to (or leave a comment) and give me your name and blog address. I'll draw for a winner this week-end. Thanks so much for supporting our blog!

'till there's no more!

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Introducing.... a very special family!

I know I'm constantly testifying about God's provisions for our adoption. I hope you guys aren't too sick of it but I just can't help myself. This is the part that is totally blowing our minds right now. I'm not sure why it is so amazing to us since we know that God is more than capable of providing for our every need... but it still has us in tears as we watch daily as HE fulfills His promises to us.

Our family has spent a lot of this year reflecting on the early church and their love for Jesus and for others. We have prayed and strived to re-arrange our priorities so that we could "do life" more like they did. We were captivated by the truth that they sold their personal belongings and gave to whoever was in need. I think when a believer in the early church had a need, the body went to work to make it happen. Many of us are challenged by a lifestyle that looks like that because we have fallen victim to the desire of obtaining the American dream. However, over the past 5 months I have been inspired by many people who have been willing to step out in faith and give of their resources and time in order to help us bring our baby home. Let me introduce you to one of those families.

Our very dear friends, The Frye Family!!!!

This amazing family loves Jesus, they love others, and oh man, do they love our Esther! And, we love them and are forever grateful for the many ways they are helping us get closer to bringing her home. Jodie decided that instead of just buying our adoption shirt for themselves, they would make up their own order forms and sell them to others. Then, along with their precious boys, they came up with the idea of going door to door in their neighborhood asking people for "change for life". How amazing is that?! Jodie said, "children come to my door all the time asking for support for their fundraisers; Why wouldn't we go door to door asking for help to bring this baby home?" Well of course that makes sense but I was floored that another family would do this for our family. However, though we are blessed beyond measure, I know that this sweet family has received just as much blessing from becoming a part of Esther's story. That was very evident when we went to their house last week-end. We dropped off several shirts they had sold in exchange for the money they had raised for us. Included in the envelope were pictures they had drawn and "love notes" from their boys to Esther. WOW! Shawn and I drove home in tears. Our hearts were filled with gratefulness for what this family is doing for us. You see, this is not a "we've done our part" kind of deal for them... They are committed to our baby girl.... their motto is "we won't stop until she's home". They will forever be a part of her story.... her journey to redemption.

Here are the "orphan loving" Frye boys sporting their team colors.... their on Esther's team!

Eric, Jodie, G, A & P, we love you guys and can't thank you enough for loving our baby girl and being dedicated to bringing her home.

We know that our Father is the one providing for Esther's homecoming, but He is using families just like the Fryes to make it happen. They are just one of many who are being obedient to the command of caring for orphans by helping us provide this child with a home and a family. We give these families thanks, but we give God ALL the Glory! Not to us, but to YOUR name, Father, be all the Glory!

'till there's "no more"!

Thursday, November 11, 2010

New Shirts and New Prices!!!

Hallelujah!!!! We sold (almost) every adult t-shirt we had. So, how did we celebrate? You guessed it.... we ordered more shirts. The soft shirt was the best seller, so that's what we ordered. We have been out of small and mediums for several weeks. Many of you have e-mailed me inquiring about whether we would have more, and we do. I had a few requests for an XXL so I now have a few of those as well.
We have a new "discounted" price on the youth sizes.... they are only $15. These have been hard to sell so please consider them for Christmas gifts for the kids on your shopping list. They are absolutely adorable.... my kids wear them all the time. Here is a picture of our twins proudly showing off their "Esther shirts".

Do they look proud or what?

I can't thank you all enough for supporting us through shirt sales. When I picked up the first order I remember thinking, "oh my, we can never sell THIS many shirts". Shawn reminded me a few days ago that WE haven't sold ONE yet.... the LORD has sold them all for us. : ) After all, He did say He had this thing covered.
We have sold many of them to blogger friends. Ohio, you guys rock... I have lost count of how many shirts I've mailed to you. I've never been to Ohio... but I think I want to visit; Esther has some major supporters there. Our friends and family have bought tons, friends have sold them on facebook for us and then there was "Orphan Sunday" when our church family knocked our socks off with sales. We have a friend in the dental business who purchased one for every employee in his office... They are designating certain days to wear them as a team and also have one on display at their front desk. Then there is a very special family who is determined to help us get this baby home..... I will introduce you to them and share what they have been doing for us in my next post. Don't miss it!

Hope everyone is having a great week. It is flying by at our house!

'till there's "no more",

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Congrats! We have a winner..... and a few pics from today!

I would love to show you some cute-sie pic of one of my adorable kids drawing a winning name out of a bowl..... but it's been a long day and... well, they are in the bed and mama won't be far behind them tonight. So I did the drawing and congrats to MANDY! You are the winner of "Adopted for Life". We actually had this book on display today at our church, along with many others that our pastor is recommending for this month.

It was a wonderful Orphan Sunday at Christ City Church! Our pastor is very passionate about adoption so it was very cool to hear vertical adoption AND horizontal adoption shared from the pulpit. Our sermon series for the month of November is titled, "Adopt(ed)". I will be sharing highlights from each week and you can hear the sermons for yourself at the website HERE. I'll share a quote from this morning and then a few pics of our table.
"When people are adopted, they want to adopt people".
It is that very truth (my adoption in Christ) that God used to begin preparing my heart for his call on us to adopt. Hopefully, I can get that from my heart to this blog one day soon.

So I had my professional photographer take pics this morning.... only I forgot to tell her that I wanted pictures of all of the tables. We had six ministries set up with displays filled with information. You could visit our welcome center and learn more about helping aged out orphans acquire life skills, how to become a foster parent, get involved with a local ministry that has recently opened an orphanage in Uganda, discuss the process of adoption with a local adoption agency, sign up to become a mentor to local pregnant moms and assist in caring for their babies AND you could purchase our adoption fundraiser shirt. Every table had lots of traffic.... and we sold a ton of shirts! Thank you to our CCC family for being so gracious to our family this morning.

The first pic is obviously our shirt table and below is our table for "Expecting a Blessing".

I have to share this hilarious picture with you. I don't even know when this dress-out took place but Lexie just sent it to me in an e-mail.

The Tide might not be rolling in Bama..... but who cares, we are team Esther all the way!

I just hope my little man didn't put that shirt back in the box to sale when he was done with it. If you order a kid size shirt and it's severely stretched out... just send it back : )

Hope everyone had a great Orphan Sunday! We won't stop.... till there's "no more"

Friday, November 5, 2010

A Call or A Command?

Well that depends.....I do believe that adoption is a "calling". Orphan care, however, is absolutely a command from God to all believers. You can find those commands in scripture and they are pretty clear. Many of you who know our story, know that this is where Shawn and I struggled for several months before making a prayerful decision to adopt. We agreed that we were commanded to do "something" about the 147 million orphans in the world but we were not sure of what. Obviously, after much prayer and attending the Together for Adoption conference, it was clear, God was asking us to physically adopt a child in need of a home and family. What a blessing that He would consider us worthy of such a high calling. However, that doesn't excuse us from being involved in and promoting orphan care. Orphan advocacy is one of our greatest passions and we plan to spend the rest of our lives fighting for the needs of these precious children. We have huge dreams for where we hope this passion takes our family in the future and pray that God will allow these dreams to be reality for us some day soon.

As for now, well, we will continue pursuing our baby girl in Ethiopia and encouraging others to get involved on some level. I promised earlier in the week to share some happenings planned for our church as we join forces with others to promote orphan care during the month of November. At Christ City Church in Ensley, we will spend the next 4 Sundays recognizing the needs of orphans and offering solutions. We will have many special guest sharing their adoption testimonies, including Mac Powell of Third Day and his wife Aimee, and Kirk and Heidi Weimer. You can learn more about their amazing family HERE. (Make sure you watch their "promo" video.) The messages from the pulpit will focus on adoption. Not necessarily about physical adoption but about our adoption in Christ. Local ministries will display information on how to become involved in orphan care on a local, national or international level. Personally, our family will have our adoption t-shirts for sale to help with our fundraiser. We will also have information available about how to get involved with our ministry, Expecting a Blessing. To read more about the plans at CCC, you can check out the updated website HERE. If you are in Birmingham, you can also pick up a copy of this magazine and read about it inside.

I hope that all of you attend a church that will be recognizing the needs of the millions of orphans in our world, and God's command to us, the church, to care for them. If that's not taking place at your church, I encourage you to step out in faith and do your own thing to bring about awareness. It only takes one to get a spark started, and you inspire a couple others, and girlfriends, you have yourself a fire. I urge you..... get on fire for these children! If we don't, who will?

Look for a guest post from my hubby soon : ) He is one amazing man with a passionate heart that knows how to love some babies. But, better than that, he loves his Jesus! I can't wait for you to hear from him.

I leave you tonight with a video..... happy week-end to you all!
Turn off my music at the bottom of this blog : )

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Want a great looking shirt?

It's so neat how people who "get" adoption want to help other families bring home their babies. That is exactly what is going on over at Ordinary Hero. If you have followed my blog for long, you know that I totally heart this organization. So here's what they are up to for National Adoption Awareness month. If you purchase shirts from them and put "Shawn and Polly" on the "add special instructions to seller" memo line.... they will donate $10. per shirt to help us bring Esther home. How cool is that?! And, they have the most awesome shirts! I thought our adoption shirt rocked, until I ordered THIS:Then I ordered these for all of my kiddosThese are the softest shirts ever.... if you have seen my kids in the past week... then I'm sure you've seen this new shirt. They have worn them numerous times because they like them so much. And I love that because it equals less laundry for me. No, I have not washed them every day.... around here, you only wash "dirty" clothes (really dirty clothes).
You can check out all the shirt styles at Ordinary Hero's blog and I'm certain you'll find one you love. If you make a purchase, please leave our name and help us raise some funds! Thank you for your support friends!
God continues to blow us away with the ways that HE is providing for this adoption. He actually did something today that was so amazing it deserves it's own post... so look for that in a few days. At this point, if you see me please DO NOT say what so many people have said to me in the past few months...."I would adopt in a second, if I could afford it". I may just unload my heart on you with out thinking twice. We told God we couldn't afford it and He told us HE KNEW THAT! Like we thought He was clueless to our "jacked up" finances.... : ) He said, "You can't afford it, but I CAN".... and He is making believers out of us these days.
Speaking of Him making it happen... let me share a picture of what my hubby brought home from church tonight.

This gift was from this special little girl!

Yes, both of these girls are very special to us.... Kelsie (on the right) is the little sister that I never had a.k.a big sister to all our kids a.k.a mentor to our teen daughter.... and the list could go on and on. Savannah is Kelsie's younger sister. (Does that picture scream; "I'm proud of my big sister" or what?)
You see a few weeks ago Savannah's family had a yard sale and she set up a lemonade stand to raise money to help us get Esther home. I love a child with a heart for others and this little lady has one. Thank you Vannah for loving Esther.... I can't wait until you can hug her neck.

Last of all, don't forget to get your name in the drawing for THIS book! You can either leave your name and e-mail in the "comments" below OR you can e-mail me at:
I will be drawing for the winner this week-end!

Happy National Orphan Awareness Month!

Monday, November 1, 2010

Happy National Orphan Awareness Month!

I have been excited about the month of November for quite some time now. It is orphan awareness month and I say we get busy for the sake of the 147 million orphaned children in this world. I hope to do several post sharing resources that will change the hearts of many, and bring hope to the lives of the desperate.

Our church is going all out for the sake of the orphan for the entire month. If you are in Birmingham.... you should plan to join us at Christ City Church for the next 4 weeks. I will be sharing more details about the agenda later in the week.

To kick off the month, I want to do a book give away. When we first started praying about adoption, we read Russ Moore's, Adopted for Life. It made a huge impact on us, and now I would like to give away a copy to one of YOU! If you would like to join the drawing.... just leave your name and e-mail address in the comment section and I will add you to the list. I will plan to draw for the winner this coming week-end. Even if you already have the book, get your name in the drawing.... you could always give it to a friend or family member for Christmas : )

You can read about the book HERE!

Best wishes to all!