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Wednesday, November 6, 2013

The news we weren't expecting to recieve

How do you move on from loving a child of a future hope? How do you continue on, to reignite a passion for something so deep inside of you? You rest in His glory and not your own. “….rejoicing in hope, persevering in tribulation, devoted to prayer” Rom. 12:12

This week we thought we were growing our family by one moreAs it played out, the birthmother chose to keep the baby instead of choosing an adoption plan. The struggle the birth mom had in choosing adoption or parenting the baby is incomprehensiblePray for the salvation of this mom and her children. We are confident through Christ, that our interactions with her expressed the deep love for our Savior and desire to share in that with her.

Just as we were getting geared up for a pushed back due date of November 13th, we got word that our birthmom 'S' had her water break and they were going to do a c section. Baby was born at 6:28 on November 3rd. We had just finished celebrating Cheyenne's birthday with all our family and raced around packing our bags, taking Karis to her cousins for a sleep over and Cheyenne & I headed to Wichita to wait to meet our hopeful baby girl. Birthmom wanted her space, which we respected. Monday we were privileged to meet the sweet baby girl and visit with S and her 10 year old daughter. She was perfect, beautiful & had our hearts immediately. After we visited, our social worker & lawyer shared that S was having second thoughts about choosing adoption. We decided to give her space so she didn't feel any pressure from us. So for the next 30 hours we gave her space. Monday afternoon we found the perfect spot to pray and rest in God's presence (pictured. yes it's really where we were!) and wait on His timing for everything.  We found peace knowing that no matter what happened at the end of the day, one family would be heartbroken. Either us, or S's. One mother would hurt. I knew we could handle heartbreak again, we've been through it before, we have an amazing support system around us. S doesn't have a relationship with the Lord, a faith at all, nor any family that we knew of at the time that would help her through it. Monday night ended without any resolve. We still didn't know what S would decide and all we could do was to pray for her. This was not a decision she should take lightly and we knew her heart could be in such turmoil. Tuesday early morning we went out, grabbed coffee and headed to the mall where we probably walked over 20 times, trying to keep ourselves busy and from over thinking things too much. By 9am, we'd heard that S had changed her mind back and forth 3 times in the past 12 hours and still hadn't made a final decision. At 3:30 we met our social worker over at the hospital to go talk with S. While we waited in the hallway, J went into speak with S. S told her that she'd decided to keep the baby, and was going to go back to Texas to stay with a friend while she figured things out. Our hearts broke. We tried not to fall in love with that precious baby girl, but we already had. She was not meant to be ours, God had a different plan for her, and us, than we expected. 

We drove home with broken heats, but already feeling the prayers of so many. We knew that no matter how stormy the waters of this situation felt, that God was till God and is still on His throne. 

We when to get Karis from Chy's brother's family and decompress with them and prayed for wisdom for when she would start asking questions about where baby sister was. Only a few minutes into our visit when her arms came around my waist and she asked "Mommy Daddy wheres my baby sister". As our hearts broke again I told her that God wanted us to wait a bit longer. And that's the truth, we just have to keep waiting, never giving up hope. 

At face value, we experienced a loss. Yet in the Father’s plans,we trust and consider it part of His purposeMany are the plans in the mind of a man, but it is the purpose of the LORD that will stand.” Prov . 19:21

The love, encouragement, and support from our friends and family are overwhelming. We are grateful in the deepest way, to be a part of such a community, where a dream can be shared. We are even more humbled in your desire to share in our sadness when that dream shatters. Thank you for wrapping your arms and hearts around us and journeying with us. There is MORE journeying to be done! We will continue in the adoption process as we wait for our adoption agency to match us with another birthmother.

From the beginning, the end goal was not to gain a child, but to bring glory to Him in the journey. “The chief end of man is to glorify God and enjoy him forever.” W. Catech.

“The LORD is my rock, my fortress and my deliverer; my God is my rock, in whom I take refuge, my shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.” Psalm 18:2

"
He heals the brokenhearted And binds up their wounds. He counts the number of the stars; He gives names to all of them. Great is our Lord and abundant in strength; his understanding is infinite. " Psalm 147:3-5

We WILL rejoice in hope, as Colossians 1:27 says “…Christ in you the hope of glory.”

We WILL persevere in tribulation, as Rom. 5:3-5 says “…suffering produces perseverance;  perseverance, character; and character, hope.”

We WILL be devoted to prayer, as I Thess. 5:17 says “pray without ceasing.”

In His service,
The Kroekers




Friday, November 1, 2013

Counting down

The last time I wrote about counting down we were looking at a November 5th arrival. Since then, and I apologize for not updating you all sooner, Birthmom went in for her weekly checkup and Buttercup was measuring small so they extended out our due date till the 16th of November and have scheduled our c-section for November 13th!  So we have 12 days till Buttercup (we'll share her real name when she's finally in our arms!) is here!!!

So having an extra 2 weeks to wait...what do we do?! You'd think my house would be spotless from how I typically stress clean, but no...we have a toddler who's favorite way of playing is to take every toy possible out so she can see them! At least the laundry is semi-caught up with!

We've been enjoying the extra time as a family of 3 before we become 4, doing things to make memories with our Buggaboo! She's so excited to become a big sister! We got her a big sister book that she's wanted read to her over and over.

Please continue to pray for Birthmom that she can find a place to live and have a job lined up. She's been worrying about it.  I know how much she wants this to be a fresh start for her, and having those two things in place will really help her feel that it is, and that choosing adoption is helping her find her fresh start.

Thursday, September 26, 2013

57,000 minutes

1 month, 1 week, 3 days. 5.71428571 weeks.  40 days. 960 hours. 57,000 minutes (approx.) Now matter how you break the time down, it's coming up soon! That's how long until Buttercup (baby #2) is due!
Yes I'm counting. Yes, I keep track. Yes I have a countdown app on my phone. Yes no matter what I do, I WILL be keeping track! I can't pretend not to.

We are excited. Holding things as loosely as possible, but there's no denying the excitement in our home! We talk about Buttercup a LOT!  She's in our prayers, our thoughts & plans! We are looking at our calendars and all plans are made keeping in mind she's going to be making her grand entrance in just over a month! We are making extended family plans for visits and holidays with a newborn in mind. It's exciting, and nerve wracking as we anticipate life with TWO little girls! Even Karis talks about her! Only once has she said she's not ready. Other than that, she already has her long list of how she's going to be "big sistah hewper" (big sister helper): give her a bottle, throw away diapers (she's getting practice with this already with the little girl I watch 4 days a week), rub her back, brush her hair (yes, Karis is CONVINCED that Buttercup is going to have LOTS of hair at birth), sing her lots of songs, and make sure everyone is quiet when baby sister is sleeping! It's seriously the most precious thing to hear her tell me in her best big sister voice all these sweet things. My heart is overflowing.

Baby clothes & blankets are being sorted, washed, & hung. Cloth diapers are being stripped & stuffed. Even though Buttercup is our second girl, our girls are/were born in different seasons, and even if it was similar times of the year...we now live in Kansas! Big weather difference! Bins of baby items are spread out and the nursery looks like a baby boutique exploded in it! It's so fun! I always knew we'd have girls, but I never realized I'd embrace pink, lace & frills as much as I'm loving it!!! :) Bows, frilly dresses & skirts...yup my girls have lots of those!!! :)

As we are filled with excitement and anticipation, someone else, very important in this process is making plans for after Buttercup is born. Birthmom. S is making plans for her and her daughter I. She's been looking for a job, a car, a new place to live closer to where she wants I to go to school, and a new place to begin their lives, have a fresh start as she says. So in the midst of our excitement we very much think of her and pray for her. As we are anticipating new life and family growth, she's anticipating loss. We will be carrying a baby home in our arms. Her arms will be empty when she leaves the hospital. My heart already aches for what she will be going through. Yes she's choosing an adoption plan (she's not "giving up" her baby) for her baby, but honestly, keeping the baby is the easier decision. Choosing another family to raise a child you love and want the best for is the most selfless, difficult, heartbreaking decision anyone could make in this situation. She is a woman of honor in my book. My girls are going to grow up hearing the name of their birthmoms spoken in love.  S does not share much about what she's going through emotionally as she prepares for placing Buttercup in our family, but she does allow for us to pray for her, and has asked for prayer in finding a job, house & car. So I honor that request and daily pray for her, and pray for her heart. Please join us in praying for her. S is a very strong woman, who's already faced lots in her life, and I know she's strong enough, but I also know she needs Jesus. And I know Jesus loves her. Please pray that in these next 40 days and beyond that we can be the hands and feet of Jesus, or "Jesus with skin on" as I heard said once.

James 1:27  Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.

Monday, September 16, 2013

Adoption Matching grant!!!!

This is a HUGE announcement!!!!!! We are in Awe of God's blessings towards us!

Lifesong for Orphans has generously awarded us at $2500 matching grant! Now that's not $2500 that they're sending our agency immediately, but for every dollar given towards our adoption through Lifesong, they will match it dollar for dollar until they have donated the full $2500. That means we have the potential to receive $5000 towards our adoption!! How amazing is that? We would be honored if you would prayerfully consider joining with us to maximize the full potential of this matching grant! Any amount helps!!! All you have up do is give through our Lifesong account! (Info below) Our goal end date is October 30th!!

 Here's a letter from the Vice President of Lifesong on our behalf:

September 16, 2013

Dear church, family, and friends of Cheyenne and Alison Kroeker, 

God desires orphans of all nations to be adopted into Christ-honoring families so they can hear the Word of God and ultimately be adopted into God’s eternal family through faith in Jesus Christ. While God calls us to fulfill James 1:27 and “visit the fatherless” not all are called to adopt. Some are called to pray, some to give financially, some to go on mission trips, and some to adopt.
Lifesong for Orphans is a non-profit Christian ministry dedicated to help meet the needs of orphan children around the world, and to obey God’s call to “visit the fatherless...in their affliction” (James 1:27). With over 147 million orphans worldwide, Lifesong seeks to mobilize the Body of Christ to love and care for orphans. Lifesong serves families, churches and orphans through adoption funding. Additionally, Lifesong brings joy and purpose to orphans globally in seven countries and domestically through foster care initiatives. Please visit our website (www.lifesongfororphans.org) for more information.
Cheyenne and Alison have sensed God’s call to care for the fatherless and have joyfully stepped out in faith and obedience to adopt a child from the USA. As you may already know, adoption can cost $25,000-$35,000, and this financial burden prevents many godly families from adopting. Lifesong believes God has called this family to adoption and has committed an Adoption Matching Grant of $2,500 to help bring this child home.
Funds donated to Lifesong for Orphans will be given to help cover adoption expenses. Lifesong is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization and your gift is tax deductible. 100% of all funds raised will go directly to cover adoption costs--nothing will be taken out for Lifesong for Orphans administrative costs.
Will you invest financially in the life of this child? It will be an investment with eternal return. God bless you for laying your treasures up in Heaven.
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For His Glory,
Andy Lehman Vice President 
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To Give by Check
Please make checks payable to Lifesong for Orphans.
In the memo please note your gift preference with
Family Account Number and Family Name.
(ie: Preference #4013 Kroeker) 

Please mail checks to:
Lifesong for Orphans PO Box 40
Gridley, IL 61744

Lifesong has been blessed with a partner that underwrites all US administrative and fund-raising costs (TMG Foundation and other partners). That means 100% of your donation will go directly to the need...helping orphans. 


To Give Online
1. Go to www.lifesongfororphans.org/give/donate
2. Select Give to an Adoptive Family
3. Complete online form and fill in Family Account Number & Family Name Fields(#4013 Kroeker)
*Please note that PayPal will charge an administrative fee (2.9% + $.30 USD per transaction). Your donation will be decreased by the amount of this fee.

Individual donations $250 or more and yearly donations totaling $250 or more will receive a tax- deductible receipt. Receipts for donations under $250 will gladly be sent upon request.
Lifesong is a 501(c)3 tax exempt organization.

If you have any questions about donations please contact us at info@lifesongfororphans.org.
“How blessed is he who considers the helpless...” Psalm 41:1











Good News!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

We're at the sage where when the phone rings I hold my breath and check caller ID.  I never know who might call, or what news they might share. :)

This morning the phone rang. Caller ID read "LifeSong for Orphans".  This is the organization we had applied for a grant through, and I knew we were going to be hearing soon if we were going to be awarded one. I was nervously excited when I answered. Becky was on the other end and she was wanting to know how things were going & how our birthmom was doing. Then...she said she'd received the decision back the board had made about our file...

And the news is..........

We have been awarded a $2500 matching grant!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Now $2500 might not sound like much, but that's where the matching part comes in! For those unfamiliar to matching grants, this means that every dollar up to $2500 donated towards our adoption through our Lifesong account. Which in the end means $5000 towards our adoption costs!!!!!!!!!! and $5000 is HUGE!!!!!!! Especially when we've only $6000 left to raise!!!

How great is our GOD for providing!!!!!!!! We're blown away by Lifesong's generosity. We know there are so many well deserving families who need help funding their adoptions & we're humbled that we were chosen for this matching grant!

I'm going to put together all the info in a following blog post! In the mean time...PRAISE THE LORD!!!!

We'd love if you'd rejoice in God's provision with us above all else!!


Blessings,
Alison, Cheyenne & Karis

Friday, September 13, 2013

Shopping for a cause!!!

Another Fundraiser!!!! And this one is FUN!!!!

Don't you just love the products that Pampered Chef puts out??!! Has there been a piece (or a few!) that you've been eyeing or wishing for but you just haven't ordered yet? Well here's your chance!!! You can buy it and 10-15% goes towards of setting our adoption costs!! How awesome is that!!!

Here's all the info you need:

This is an online Pampered Chef Fundraiser to raise funds for the Kroeker family to help off-set the costs of adoption. So why not start your Christmas shopping early while helping with such a beautiful occasion! The fundraiser will close September 29th so be sure to get your order in before the end of the month!
Here's the magic link guys!!! www.pamperedchef.biz/mreinbold
You'll click SHOP ONLINE, enter Alison Kroeker in the host name spot!
~Pay online with credit/debit cards
~ANYONE in the US can order! So SHARE this link and Alison's host name for others looking for kitchen tools!
~If you live close to Alison or see her occasionally, choose "ship to host" to get the awesome shipping rate for parties!
~If you can't afford to purchase items, you can still donate without spending any money! Contact me to set up your own catalog/cooking show--for each party booked, Pampered Chef adds an additional $3 to the donate money!! How awesome is that!!

Monday, September 9, 2013

Prayer Requests!

It's a nice cool evening here (finally!) here in Kansas. We enjoyed being outside today & finished up the chores here on our farm, making sure all the animals were fed and got attention. Karis has to make sure to spend enough time in each of our barns so the animals are happy! She's a farm girl through and through!

This afternoon we got a call from a sweet lady at Lifesong for Orphans (Lifesong offers adoption grants, loans and awesome support through adoption) about the grant application we mailed in 2 months ago! Becky was super friendly and wanted to know a bit more about us & our adoption. She also said that our application is up for review and we should find out if we get a grant in a few weeks! Please pray for favor on our file! Our God owns the cattle on a thousand hills (Psalm 50:10) and He knows exactly how He's going to provide for our adoption fees and who He's going to use! We aren't worried at all! Working hard fundraising & writing grants yes, but not worried!!!!

Saturday we are spending the day with our birthmom S & her daughter I again! We're looking forward to it. We will be taking them to the State Fair & enjoy exploring and eating! Please pray for positive & relaxed conversation, cooler weather (this is Kansas after all...anything can happen!), and just an overall good day together. As we approach Baby's due date there are conversations about how hospital time will go, what the plan will be, and what expectations are on both sides. Please pray that God direct all our conversations and that S can communicate her wishes, we can ours, and we can all be comfortable with what's decided. Only 8 weeks to go!!! (that's 57 days y'all!!!!!!!)



Thank you all for walking along side us on this incredible journey, all the ups and downs included!!



Fundraising Update!!!!

We have the total in and a huge THANK YOU to all our Southern California friends who ate at TK last month!!! You've helped us raise $128.31!!! THANK YOU to TK Burgers for hosting!! We are very blessed to have such awesome friends who come along side us as we desire to grow our family through adoption!!!

A huge thank you to each one of you who've generously given towards our adoption costs!!! We are beyond blessed!!!!

Humbly,
Cheyenne, Alison, Karis & Baby Kroeker

Wednesday, July 31, 2013

July Adoption Update!!!


Dear Friends and Family,
Our adventure continues in this adoption! Last week we spent a wonderful HOT and HUMID day with birthmom "S" and her daughter "I" at the Tanganyika Wildlife Park. If you haven’t been there, we highly recommend it! You all know that we LOVE animals! It’s a good thing we live on a farm isn’t it? They found the experience at times a little overwhelming (lorikeets swarmed them) but overall, so excited to spend time with us. I think their favorite part was feeding the ring-tailed lemurs. We had good conversation and our girls enjoyed talking and playing together! Karis even showed I how to feed the giraffe!


As each interaction with this precious family comes to pass, we are reminded that we are in such a unique experience that we simply do not have an ability to predict what’s next. Yet we know that HE knows. We are praying that our love for her, her daughter, our baby she carries, is not so overly expressed that they fail to see our love for our Savior is that much greater.

We pray for opportunities to minister to their heart, that they feel a caring connection beyond the end result of this experience. Matthew 5:14-16, Jesus identifies us as the Light of the World!
14 “You are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hidden. 15 Nor do they light a lamp

and put it under a basket, but on a lampstand, and it gives light to all who are in the house. 16 Let
your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven.
The connection of Christ adopting us, our inheritance to His Kingdom, seems such a ripe and appropriate avenue to reaching hearts that are lost. This is what we pray for in wisdom, that each time we are able to spend with S and I, the Holy Spirit counsels us towards boldness. Pray for our Light to Shine.

Thank you for your continued prayers, journeying with us, encouraging us, financially supporting us. We stand in awe of the generosity of His children.

The day after our visit with them, S had her first doctor appointment since moving here to Kansas. She was a bit nervous that they’d find the baby to be a boy since her early ultrasound was not 100% sure. Turns out...it’s a GIRL for sure!!!! S is healthy, and all is great with her! Baby girl is healthy, growing and already pretty active at 25 weeks! Please continue to pray for both S and baby’s health.

On a side note....
God’s magnificent timing allowed us to drop off S and I back in Wichita later on that day. As we were coming back home from this blessed day, we decided to stop in Hutchinson to buy a few things in Walmart. It wasn’t but 5 minutes into entering the building, did one of the worst hail storms came tearing through**. Had we NOT stopped into Walmart, we would have been continuing on home. We would not have made it.

God’s plans are so much greater than ours!
As we continue to journey on, we hold on to Proverbs 19:21. Commit this verse to memory!

Blessings
Cheyenne, Alison and Karis Kroeker
** Our car is now in the auto hospital getting treatment!

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Fundraising with Amazon.com!!!

We are still continuing to fundraise in FAITH that God will provide again for a baby HE has picked out for us!

If you haven't signed up for a FREE 30 day Prime trial with Amazon through our fundraising link, now you have the opportunity to and instead of just $2 we will receive $10 for each free trial!!! How's that for starting the new year right!? Costs you NOTHING and helps raise $10 towards our adoption!!!!!

To sign up for the free trial click: Prime HERE  for Prime Video click:  VIDEO HERE

Note: in order for us to get credit you have to use these links that have our code embedded in them!

What an easy way to help us out!!!! And if you only want the free trial then just remember to cancel before your 30 days is up! You don't even have to use the prime trial for the full time if you choose not to. Once you sign up, you may cancel right away or anytime within the 30 days and we still get the $10 promotion for you signing up!

If you already have a prime account, we'd love it if you could pass this on to anyone you know who might enjoy trying it out! Remember there's soooooo many movies, shows and lots of kids shows too, that you can stream for FREE when you have amazon prime!!


What does Amazon's Prime program do:
* Instantly watch over 40,000 movies and TV episodes with titles for everyone
* Borrow books from the Kindle Owners' Lending Library
* Get unlimited FREE two-day shipping with no minimum order size

Monday, July 8, 2013

Another roller coaster ride


Dear Friends and Family, 

Remember the roller coaster ride we (you too!) have been on? 

We are overjoyed to share with you that in a matter of less than a week, we have been matched with a new expectant mother that is due with a baby girl in early November! On Friday (our 10th wedding anniversary) we were able to speak to her on the phone and introduced ourselves to each other, asked a few questions about each other. We were able to share about who we are, our desire to adopt another child, and how we've already been praying for her. After our conversation, her social worker called us and shared how this birth mother is very excited about us and wants to commit to us adopting her child.  She is from Texas, and has come here to Kansas to live until after the baby is born, which will also give us a wonderful opportunity to get to know each other better and share God's love with her.

Our confidence in this, however, is more rooted in confidence in our Savior, rather than man. We will be gathering more and more information as the days go by. We need the strength of your prayers and supplications. How can we thank you enough for walking with us through our experiences of these last few weeks and months?

1 Thess. 5:16-18 says: 16 Rejoice always, 17 pray without ceasing, 18 give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. 

This is what we continue to do!

Thank you for sharing in this experience with us! Here are some prayer points to lift up:
Pray for the health of both the birth mom and baby girl
Pray for opportunities to share Christ with the birth mom
Pray for finances to be available
Pray for details of this process to have clarity at every step
Pray for us, as a family, to be well prepared to grow as a family

Our favorite book of the New Testament is James. Chapter 1:2-4 reminds us to reflect in the end goal of trials...complete, lacking nothing. 
Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness. And let steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.

Cheyenne, Alison and Karis Kroeker

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Rollercoaster Rides

Dear Friends and Family, 

 

We didn’t think we would be writing another update so quickly, but what should we expect when we are committed to His timing?

A short while ago, our social worker called to update us on the baby up for adoption, due July 24th. After having been shown our family profile book, the birth mother declined us. There are specific preferences she had in mind, and we do not fit them. Is this rejection?  Maybe… Is this hard to take in? Yes. Is this His sovereignty working in front of our eyes? A resounding YES!

Habakkuk 3:17-18 is a gentle reminder of rejoicing in the midst of unknown outcomes.
17 Though the fig tree should not blossom,
    nor fruit be on the vines,
the produce of the olive fail

    and the fields yield no food,
the flock be cut off from the fold

    and there be no herd in the stalls,
18 yet I will rejoice in the Lord;

    I will take joy in the God of my salvation.
 
Matthew Henry says, “Joy in the Lord is especially seasonable when we meet with losses and crosses in the world. Even when provisions are cut off, to make it appear that man lives not by bread alone, we may be supplied by the graces and comforts of God's Spirit.” 

As I write this, we just found out there may be another possibility of a baby due in November! We give this all to the Lord! We have a phone conference with this birthmother scheduled for tomorrow! Please cover us in prayer that this conversation would glorify God and our words would be from Him!

Your prayer covering is so precious to us!
 
Cheyenne, Alison and Karis 
 
As I write this, we just found out there may be another possibility of a baby due in November! We give this all to the Lord!

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Adoption update!


Friends and Family, 
A roller coaster has it's beginning, it's end and then ups and downs in between. 
We are wondering when our lives became this carnival ride, so similar. Yet in the same breath, we know! It's when we began to trust The Lord for our salvation and walk in faithfulness to His calling. 
Today, as we lay rest to our disappointments of a 2nd failed adoption opportunity, we received a call that there is another opportunity unfolding. The birth couple is in Wichita now until the baby is born. The prospective due date is July 24th. We are awaiting the call that we've officially been matched.
We are committed to this calling of adoption and the ups and the downs that come with it. We cherish your prayers, as we know that you all are committed to the same gracious, all knowing God we serve. As we begin to find out more, we will continue to share more of how you can pray.
Thank you so very much for your encouragement and care.
Psalm 143:8 gives us a glimpse of how we ought to respond to our every day circumstances, the ups and the downs....
"Let the morning bring me word of your unfailing love, for I have put my trust in you. Show me the way I should go, for to you I lift up my soul."
Please PRAY for us, for birth parents & for this baby!
Cheyenne, Alison, and Karis Kroeker

Sunday, May 19, 2013

PUZZLE FUNDRAISER



We have chosen a PUZZLE FUNDRAISER to fund a majority of the costs for our adoption. (Domestic Newborn Adoptions range from approximately $18,000 to $30,000) We have two methods you can use to make a donation through sponsoring a piece of our adoption puzzle!  Will you please help spread the word?

We are asking for a donation of $10.00 per puzzle piece (puzzle pictured above).  You can, of course, sponsor as many as you would like... (if you choose $10 = 1 piece, $20 = 2 pieces, $40 = 4 pieces, etc...). When every piece of this puzzle is sponsored wil will have raised $10,000!! Which is what our agency fees will be (not including birth mother costs).

We will then write your name on the back of the pieces you sponsor, and once our puzzle is completed, we will frame the puzzle in a double-sided frame.  We will be able to see the names of all the individuals who helped us bring our baby home! Each piece we put together will make this process come to life as we see the puzzle grow into the beautiful picture!

For both methods, in the comment or memo box, please put in the names for us to write on the puzzle piece(s)

To donate with a tax deductible receipt go to our Ordinary Heroes fundraising page: http://www.grouprev.com/kroekeradoption and click on the "Donate Now" button!! ***All donations through our fundraising page at Ordinary Heroes are charged a 2.9% processing fee***

To donate where 100% of your donation goes to our adoption costs, go to PayPal and send it via bank account transfer to Cheyenneandalison@yahoo.com ***All transactions through bank accounts are not charged a processing fee***


We are so excited to see with our God is doing and going to do throughout our adoption journey as we grow our family! 


Please feel free to share this with anyone and everyone you know!!!! Every little bit helps so much! Even if you can't sponsor a puzzle piece or donate towards our cause we'd cherish your PRAYERS most of all!!!!!!

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Announcement!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


Hello all!!!

The Kroekers are adopting again!!!

After much prayer and seeking the Lords will as to how we are to grow our family we are so excited to announce we have begun the domestic adoption process!!!

We are working with a small Christian agency in Wichita, KS called Adoption Connections Inc. And are very pleased with their desire to serve God in ministry beyond just facilitating adoptions! Their hearts for the birthparents is beautiful!  We are blessed to have found another agency that has hearts for those in need!

We would ask you to partner with us in prayer. Please pray for us in this process, with our homestudy paperwork, profile creating and the waiting process! Pray for us as we prepare our hearts to be parents again, for Karis as she will become a big sister, for our future birthmother and baby as we know it is not an easy process for these mothers to go through and both of their health. Prayer is such a powerful tool!


To all LOCAL friends!!!!!  This Saturday May 4th: Inman all city Garage Sale!! Stop by 601 south pine street where we have loads of items for sale! Glasses,mugs, dishes, dvd player, scanner, electronics, shelves, baskets. Also we will be making cotton candy!!  All proceeds of our items go towards our the cost of our domestic adoption!!!

Check our out fundraising page!!!!
http://www.grouprev.com/kroekeradoption

Monday, April 8, 2013

Finding Purpose...what is your mission statement?

How often do we as mothers, in the midst of tantrums, teething, diaper changes, and the daily grind blessing of being a mother do we forget that motherhood IS our purpose? I know I forget it daily. This truth is one that we all know, we all believe, but is so hard (I think) to live out.
 

Lately I've been struggling with finding or feeling what my purpose is in this stage of life. We've moved states, joined a new church, are slowly finding new friends, and trying to put down new roots when all my roots crave is salt water (ocean!!)!!! I knew what my purpose was before, but when we uproot ourselves, how do we find it again, or a new one? Since moving here, this is the first time I've never worked. I've been teaching in one capacity or another since I was 14, and now to no longer be working to bring in a paycheck there's definitely a different feel to my sense of purpose.

Now, it's not like I've suddenly realized my purpose as a mother, or had an epiphany, but more like I'm feeling capable of embracing my role. In the middle of a toddler tantrum when trying to make dinner or pick up the tornado zone mess, motherhood sure doesn't feel like a glamorous calling. it's not. It's HARD! I'm not going to lie, there have been a few moments that I truly didn't believe I could carry on. But thanks to my big sister and a couple good friends, they prayed me through those horrible tough few days. It's cheesy but I have to remind myself that on the other side of all the rain and stormy weather there is sunshine. :)

Within my role of motherhood, I need a mission statement. Why am I a mother? Why did I want the tremendous responsibility of raising this little human? What is my goal? What will my mission statement be? How can I resolve to be the best parent I can be?

I've been reading a couple good parenting books to help me navigate these waves, and having God as my source of wisdom and direction definitely helps! These day's once my Little Miss is down for her afternoon nap, you'll find me with my Bible, notebook & current parenting book. I'm taking notes and making lists.

A beautiful word picture was shared with me at Bible study this past week. It was speaking of the changing seasons and how trees must let go of their leaves before winter's snow comes otherwise the snow clings to the leaves and puts too much weight on the tree branches and the branches then break. How often do I hang on to expectations or past experiences or purposes, instead of letting go and embracing where I am right here and now? The more I thought about it, the more I realized I was trying to re-create something that was familiar, not the new that was right here in front of me.

So I resolve to be the intentional mom I've always said I want to be, but this time, I'm taking it one day, sometimes a moment at a time. I'm great with setting goals and looking at the big picture, but not so much with living in it day by day. I want to see results! But with two year olds....results take a looooong time! :) and lots of repetition! So now I plan my weeks out, with Karis friendly activities and if the weather is nice, adventures around where we live (often the fields and pastures near our house), and teaching her as much as I can about the world around us, our Creator, and the basics of obedience and respect! :)

I think that the biggest stunter of motherhood (if that's such a term!) is feeling alone. I've struggled with this since moving away from what was supposed to be our group of friends we all raised our kids together with. Seeing how others parent and discipline their children, comparing notes, and walking through motherhood together is an amazing gift!  While visiting CA a few weeks ago, in the matter of just one week, I learned so many more parenting skills and tools than in the months of trying to translate what I was reading in books into real life! But what about when we don't have that? Usually it leads to feeling alone, leads to insecurity, which leads to feeling inadequate and overwhelmed.  Who do you turn to when you're feeling like the "looser mom" in that moment when your child is throwing the tantrum of a lifetime in the middle of the frozen food aisle of the grocery store? The old adage of "It takes a village" doesn't mean that everyone else raises our kids for us or co-parents, but that we need others in our lives to help us along as we strive to be the best parents for our kids. I've decided (because I really don't have another option yet!), that my village doesn't have to be here physically, daily surrounding me. It can be friends & mothers who, no matter where we live, encourage each other, hold each other accountable, pray for each other, let the other cry on our virtual shoulder, speak wisdom to them, and live motherhood together!

When I was feeling alone and overwhelmed, this Blog post spoke to me. I realized I'm not alone! And I CAN do this!

So now....I'm in search of my new "village"!!!!! :) Care to join me?!

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Life is an adventure, and GOD IS FAITHFUL

I don't even know how to write this, so many thoughts & emotions are still running through my head, but I feel the need to share because this past week is a huge part of our story.

How do you get through the loss of something that wasn't quite yours to begin with? 

This question is running over and over through my thoughts. I honestly don't have the answer to that question. I've tried and tried, but all I've come up with is that it takes FAITH, and more FAITH to trust God and walk in belief that God is in control when the situation seems such a mess.

Proverbs 3:5-6 (NIV)

Trust in the Lord with all your heart
    and lean not on your own understanding;
in all your ways submit to him,
    and he will make your paths straight.

 Last week we experienced a failed adoption. 

Some of you know exactly what this means and the heartache that goes with it. Some of you might not, so I'll explain a bit. A failed adoption is when there is an attempt to adopt a child and it doesn't work out. In our case, from match to failure happened over a span of 36 hours.

A quick synopsis: Wednesday morning an adoption agency that we'd put feelers out to back in August contacted us that there was a baby boy due any day that needed an adoptive family. We were matched with the birth mother officially that afternoon. For 24 hours we rushed around pulling out baby gear, clothes & blankets, setting up cradle, borrowing baby boy clothes from my sister in laws, trying to pick just the right name & getting ready to bring "our" son home. We called family to share our news, and even got to FaceTime with my parents who were in Cambodia. Everyone was so supportive and willing to pray and help us in any way they could. We wanted them to know what was going on, even in spite of the risks, because we knew we'd need them if things fell apart. Our amazing church family rallied around us to help us prepare and try to figure out how to raise the money we'd need for adoption fees in less than the 2 months till finalization. (yes things happen much quicker here than in California!)  Then Thursday afternoon our agency contacted us that the birth mother was already working with another couple and wasn't being honest about the situation. We were crushed, broken hearted, devastated to say the least. BUT we were glad to know that we wouldn't be bringing a baby home that was meant for another couple, when you look at the big picture. We knew there could be risks, there always are with a domestic adoption. We were beyond blessed with an easy adoption for Karis. I've a dear friend who experienced a couple failed adoptions, as well as my older brother had a difficult adoption journey, and I've seen the pain they go through, and the fear of trying again. That unborn baby boy was not placed in our arms, but he still reached int our hearts so quickly. We still bonded, dreamed dreams and anticipated his birth as an amazing thing, trusting God to guide our steps.
All day Wednesday I strongly felt that no matter the outcome, we should move forward in this until God closes a door. So we did, hearts open, excited at the possibility of having a son :) and Karis having a baby brother! So now, how do we let go of a dream that wasn't officially ours?

Cheyenne said it best. He said we are called to live a life of obedience. As a couple we've been very proactive in making sure we are available to God for whatever He calls us to. Whether it's being willing to move overseas, open our home to whoever needs a place to live, following God's call to move our family to Kansas, pursuing both adoption & fostering (we're 7 weeks into our foster care classes!) so we can grow our family and to give children in need a safe & loving home, or anything God has for us, we believe firmly we are called to be available and to obey. If we obey, then there is no reason God won't carry us through the difficult times.  Yes there is sadness, yes there were (still are) tears being shed, but through the grieving process we refuse to take our eyes off our God.

It's hard to know if it's worth opening up our hearts, becoming attached to the possibility of having another baby, when the risk and heartache are so great. And after going through the past week, I know that it is. It is worth it. Especially when we are surrounded by our amazing family & church community who surrounded us with comfort Sunday at church. We are desiring to get involved with helping our church start an adoption ministry, and maybe we needed to experience this to be able the help another couple through a failed adoption at some point.

Romans 8:28 "And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose."

We've lost babies, lost grandparents, lost a parent, and now we've lost the possibility of adopting this baby boy. But we won't give up, we're continuing in the adoption process, wanting to remain available to God. We pick up the pieces and keep going. Life is an adventure, highs AND lows! 
This is my truth for today: GOD IS FAITHFUL!

Psalm 55:22 
"Cast your cares on the LORD and he will sustain you; he will never let the righteous fall."

Friday, February 1, 2013

The "worst" day of my life


**Disclaimer:  I've had many different blogging ideas on my mind over the past weeks, but nothing has stuck once I sit down to write. This particular thought though has stayed with me all week as I've been processing my own life's trials and how I can use them to glorify God. So I hope this isn't too patchwork-ish for you. :)

"Today is the worst day ever?"


How often do we ourselves think or say this? How many times do we think that things can't get any worse, that our day is the worst ever and no one could possibly understand?
 
Lately I've been hearing people say this, or maybe I've just been more aware of hearing it these past few weeks. I know it's all relative, that each person's "worst" day could very well be their worst day ever.  I'm not trying to sound cynical or judgemental. I've been there myself, many times. Each time I would think that my day couldn't possibly get worse, that this day/event is the worst ever. And each time, I get through that day...and it DOES get better, but that doesn't always help in the midst of the "worst" part. And I have to remind myself that no matter what life throws at us (by which I mean what God allows into our life path), no matter how awful it feels our day is, it still could be/get worse.

I've had my fair share of heartache, pain, and questioning how life could possibly get any worse. But...even in the midst of that...My God is FAITHFUL! He hasn't left me alone to maneuver the rough waters of life's trials alone.  When the doctors told my husband and I that our first unborn child had stopped growing and had actually died days before, yes we felt that it was our "worst day ever". When test results showed a year later that we were loosing yet another baby, yes we felt that was again one of our "worst days ever". When news came that my mother-in-law was dying, yes we felt that it was another one of our "worst days ever". And this week as we sat in yet another doctors office hearing news for the hundredth time (it felt like) that there's no medical reason why we aren't able to conceive another baby, and our best bet was to spend hundreds of dollars on a procedure that had absolutely no guarantee, it sure felt like one of my "worst days". And those are only examples of the major most recent days.  I know that many of you reading this have had some of your worst days ever as well, not necessarily for the same reasons, or in similar areas, but your days none the less. And no one can diminish what you've been through or are going through. Just like I wouldn't want anyone to do that to me. It could be job loss, family frustration, transition, moving, work stress, or relationships or lack of.

Something my sweet husband reminded me of just this week, as I thought my heart couldn't hold any more disappointment and heartache, that we didn't receive terminal news, or a diagnosis that was incurable. So many people just this month have sat in doctor offices and have. Parents have found out their child has cancer, or an incurable disease. Children are told their parents don't have much longer to live. So to those who have received news like that, I don't by any means compare my "worst" day to yours.

During different times in my life I've had people misuse the verse 1 Corinthians 10:13 (" No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it.") Well meaning friends would tell me that it means that God would never allow more in my life than I can handle. Or that God would never give me more than I can deal with. Hm....some how I feel that most of what life has thrown my way I couldn't handle on my own! :)
Here is a great explanation of this verse!  For me, I've learned that whatever trial comes into my life, God will always be there to help me through it and that I need to realize that it's in HIS strength that I can overcome.

The Bible says that we are called to "Bear one another’s burdens, and so fulfill the law of Christ." (Gal 6:2) This means, when someone we know is having their "worst day ever" we are called to encourage them. What this verse does NOT say is that we are to compare, someone else's worst day might be very different than ours. Does it really help our hurting friend when we share our own story that is worse that theirs to try to cheer them up? NO WAY! It just invalidates their feelings, doesn't encourage them one bit. I've made this mistake often, and even have scenarios in my head of responses I've held my tongue to avoid verbalizing. That is not a loving and caring response.

So what can we do to help our friend who is having their "worst day ever"?  LISTEN! :) And PRAY with them. Don't just tell them you'll be praying, but stop right then and there and pour out together their burden to the Lord.  Matthew 18:20 says "For where two or three are gathered in my name, there am I among them." Often the best thing a friend can do is to be that friend, a shoulder to cry on, and ear to listen, a sister in Christ to remind them of encouraging verses, reassurance that they are not alone, and most of all just being with them. I've been blessed with amazing friends who have led by example of how to be a godly friend. I am the friend to others today because they've taught me well!

The next time you hear a friend say they are having one of their "worst days ever", love her as you would want to be if you were in her shoes. Because often that is what can get them through their day!

Is there one answer to "fix" all our worst days ever???? Nope!! Not on this earth anyways!
So I say....MARANATHA! (translation: "come O Lord")