November is…

National Adoption Month.

In November of 2009, we officially began our adoption process. In November of 2011, we gained custody of Acacia, completing a major chapter in our adoption journey.

This November, I could try my best to persuade those of you who are still growing your families to consider taking the adoption route. And perhaps at some point I will… but today, I have a much more non-committal proposition.

If you followed our “Path to Acacia” closely, you might remember how we got stuck in a big mess which resulted in forwarding our case to the USCIS (aka, Immigration Services). In the end, they proved to be much more cooperative to work with than pretty much any other organization we dealt with during the ordeal. While they reviewed the provided evidence that Acacia was truly an orphan, we bit our nails and waited for hopeful approval. We did get it, along with most of the other families wrapped up in the same nightmare as us.

However, there was one family in our group who did not receive approval. As Patrick and I traveled to Ethiopia to be reunited with Acacia, our friend Amy traveled there to literally fight for her daughter, whom she had already legally adopted a few months prior. She had an extra trip (that’s 3 round trip flights to Ethiopia!) and another two months of heartache and stress to get her little one, Marra Frehiwet, home to her very anxious family. Marra made it home in January of this year, and boy, was everyone thrilled!

Amy meeting Marra for the first time.

Marra, nearly one year after becoming a member of the Olsson family.

So, the reason I’m writing about Marra and the Olsson’s is because they’re doing it again. They are adding to their family of 7 by adopting another daughter, a 6 year old, also from Ethiopia. Her name can’t be disclosed until the adoption is finalized by the Ethiopian court system, but she has been on a waiting list, and the Olsson’s have opened their hearts to her. After what we all went through last year – and ESPECIALLY after what the Olsson’s went through, you might think it crazy to embark on another unpredictable adoption. But once you see how great of an impact you can have on a child -on your child- it certainly does feel almost unavoidable to think about growing your family in such a special way.

Bottom line – they’ve got something like 5 days (probably 4 by now) to raise the $8000 dollars they need to move their adoption forward. So, you could decide to donate to a large charity this season, or you could donate to a cause for which you can clearly see an end result.

Just click on the link provided, then click donate! In the ‘purpose’ space be sure to type in “Amy and Sten Olsson adoption.” Your donation will be TAX DEDUCTIBLE!!! Their adoption agency,West Sands, will send you a receipt to be used for your tax return.

Link to Donate:

http://www.westsandsadoption.org/ws/donate/

Join their fundraiser via Facebook:

http://www.facebook.com/events/463806930337013/465613363489703/?notif_t=plan_mall_activity
Thank you for reading. More updates coming soon about our own clan… I guess I’ve been coveting my free time as of late!

Happy Autumn.

Killeen

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