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Thursday, May 31, 2007

REFERAL

I woke up today.... nothing special. It seemed as if it were going to be like any other day. Go to work, workout over the lunch hour, do more work, come home, eat dinner, play with kids.

But that wasn't what happened.

As I was going over details of Saturday's concert, my phone rang. The area code was different from my own.... I knew exactly what it was.

We got.... THE CALL!

Yes! That's right! We got our referral today. 2 kids! One boy, one girl. Both approximately 18 months old.

I cannot begin to tell you what I'm feeling. I've been floating on cloud 9 all afternoon. My thoughts are racing. I can hardly focus enough just to sit here and type. All I want to do is get up and dance around.

And we have so much to do now. I guess we'll be leaving in 2 or 3 weeks to make our first trip. I'm absolutely floored.

We called our parents. They are, of course, elated. We told our kids. My son was so excited that he pooped his pants. (Of couse, he still does that 2 or 3 times a day) We told a few friends, but we've still got many more to talk to.

OK - let's calm down a bit..... breathe...... breathe........

whew. OK - Let's see, they're from the region of Kemerovo. (I guess I'll blog on that later when I know more about it) What I do know is that it's WAY out there. About a 4 hour flight further from Moscow. (Have I mentioned how much I love to fly?)

Tomorrow, we will receive the packet of info with everything: Pictures, video, medical records, etc. First thing we'll do is poor over everything, get some doctor's opinions and then plan our trip to Russia. So like I said, I think that'll be in 2 or 3 weeks.

I'm guessing that we'll post the pictures on the blog tomorrow.

As always: Stay tuned.



On a side note, we now have rain in the forecast on Saturday. But that's the least of my thoughts right now. I'll worry about that later.

Wednesday, May 30, 2007

Good job, good people

I had a cool thing happen today.

I came into work and there was a note that read. "Friday is FUNdraising casual Friday. Each employee may dress casual if they donate $10. All proceeds will be given to Voice of the Voiceless - A benefit concert for orphan ministries".

How cool is that? They didn't even tell me they were doing that.

I tell ya. I got alittle choked up. Of course this week has been emotional for us. (for reasons outside the scope of this blog)

Weather report still Sunny for Saturday.

Stay tuned.

Monday, May 28, 2007

quick one

1. The concert is this week. I have very few things left to do. Just little odds and ends. Shouldn't be tough. Weather report is still sunny. (No change)

2. We've been playing with Skype a lot. Mostly grandparents. Although, today my sister and her kids called with it set up. It was fun. We discovered that getting on to Skype and then playing Webkins is very entertaining. You can talk to each other while simultaneously playing games with each other. Additionally, my 8 year nephew can tell me how navigate through the site and teach me all sorts of other computer things on the fly.

BTW - Buy a Webkins for your kids. It's fun.

I can see clearly now the rain is gone

The weather forecast for concert day:

Saturday, Jun 2
High: 77 °F RealFeel®: 76 °F
Some sunshine

I'm trying to contact accuweather.com to see if I can get a "money back guarantee" on their weather report.

Right now it looks all good. I can't say I'm entirely surprised. This concert has clearly been the work of God. If I can be honest, I can think of very few things that I truly thought was God intervening in my life. I'm more of a believer that God set the world in motion at the beginning and that a lot (not all) of what happens is a result of how we as his creation act and react within "his created system". (If that makes sense). But this has been different. I've attempted to organize different events in my life and nothing has come together like this. Trust me when I say: I have not really worked that hard on this concert. To me, God is speaking out for the orphan. I believe that people's attitudes toward orphans and adoptions are being changed. It's awesome to be a part of it.

We contacted 5 bands to see if they would perform for free: All of them said yes.

We contacted 8 adoption organizations to be part of things: All of them said yes.

We needed close to $1,600 to pull off the event: All the money is already raised.

We need close to 20 volunteers. We've got 20 volunteers with 50 waiting for a callback.

We prayed for sunny weather: It looks like we got it.

We marketed the event with a shoestring budget: Why am I not concerned? I'm a believer.

Sunday, May 27, 2007

Concert Dream

THE CONCERT IS IN ONE WEEK!!!

Last night I had a dream about the concert. The first band didn't show up, so Katie and I decided to go on first. I spent most of my dream running around looking for my accoustic guitar which was nowhere to be found. I had my electric guitar, but the first song in our set is accoustic. Eventually, one of the other bands started playing - but the sound was terrible. I could barely hear anything at all, and I started yelling at the sound guy telling him, "Hey, this is supposed to be Rock-n-roll!!!" (In my dream, the sound guy was actually a friend of mine, but I won't disclose who it was.)

It was also weird (as are most dreams) because the concert was indoors instead of outdoors. (Maybe it was raining.... hmmm. On a side note: I'm not sure if I've ever had a dream with rain... or snow for that matter.... Or any percipitation.... Is this normal?)

Anyway, the ONE good part of the whole thing was that there were a TON of people there. Of course, they all witnessed one of the worst concerts in history... but ... maybe a lot of money was raised for the kids.... Who knows. Now that I think about it, I think we forgot to collect money.

Surprisingly, I wasn't really too stressed out when I woke up. I was mostly just laughing. I am truthfully very optimistic and ready for this concert.

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

Awesome.... simply awesome

I'm not sure if I've mentioned before, but this concert is going to run close to about $1,600 to pull off. Katie and I were planning on covering whatever is needed to pay for the event, but we still asked various groups to donate money BEFORE the concert so that EACH AND EVERY DOLLAR raised would go straight to the charitable organizations that we are supporting.

Tonight we received a check that put us over that dollar amount. The concert is officially funded! Everything else from here will go toward the children. How awesome is that? May I reiterate how incredible this concert process has been? Every single thing that we asked for has just fallen into our lap! Clearly, this is God's work... not mine.

Tuesday, May 22, 2007

Concert Numbers

I got an update that our concert website has had over 700 unique visitors in the last month.

Needless to say I'm very excited and optimistic as to what may happen at this concert.

More to come.

Monday, May 21, 2007

More on the concert

Sorry it's been a while. It seems that the more days I skip, the easier it is to skip more. (Why is that?)

We're still waiting for the referral. No new news. We think we'll call our agency this week just for something to do. We figure calling every 3 to 4 weeks won't hurt anyone.

As far as the concert: We've got 2 weeks to count down. The big news last week was a friend who contacted me about advertising in his magazine that he prints monthly. Come to find out, he circulates to over 25,000 households in Omaha! I was blown away when he offered this FOR FREE! What's more is that he did a profession layout of the ad himself.

If I get a copy, I'll post it on the site.

Monday, May 14, 2007

More on Skype

Just today I read that WalMart is announcing that they are going to sell Skype phones and related equipment. I thought this was very timely considering yesterday's post. Sinse I've only been "skyping" for 1 day, I'll add what little knowledge I have on the subject.

I have been made aware that to maximize the experience you need a skype phone. I'm not entirely convince that you NEED one, but I suppose that the good people at Skype have to make their money in some way or another. My experience yesterday is that what you TRULY need is a (1) A webcam. (which we have built into our laptop) (2) A microphone (which we have built into our laptop) and (3) Speakers (which any moron with a computer would have - myself included.... not that I'm implying I'm a moron.... nor denying....)

The one problem that we experienced was that as the other party says something, their sound comes through our built in speakers and right back into the built in microphone. Therefore, they get echoing and feed back. The solution is to plug in our headphones so that we can still hear them, but the microphone doesn't pick up THEIR voice.

As I think through the process, I'm sure that's what the "skype phone" is all about. Headphones and a mic. Which is pretty much what we have. Our's is a little more make-shift, but oh well. Either way, I'm psyched to have this set up for our trip to Russia. The big problem will be finding a WI-FI hotspot. Without WI-FI, all of this Skype stuff is pointless.

Sunday, May 13, 2007

Skype

As we try to prepare for a big trip to Russia, I've found some interesting things. The most recent find has been "skype". Now I know that this is not an entirely new thing, but it's new to me! Skype is a fairly popular communication service that allows people to talk to each other (like a phone) but it's actually nothing more than an internet connection. The result is a FREE way to communicate when two people are FAR FAR away. Say, for example...... RUSSIA!

The other cool thing about skype is that you can connect your webcam (if you have one) to the conversation and be able to SEE the person you are talking to as well. Once again, you can imagine our excitment as it relates to our specific situation. The result of this fine technology is that our family will be able to see, hear and talk to our newly adopted children while still in Russia. (and did I mention it's FREE)

Additionally, we'll be able to talk to Hallie and Jake during a time where we will miss them terriblly. (for free!)

Free! Yea!

Tuesday, May 8, 2007

Nothing to report

Well, we're still waiting.... waiting for the referral.

Don't get me wrong. This is actually a good thing. Considering the mess with the accredidations as well as the paperwork, we're thrilled that we're in this phase. The problem is that it makes it difficult to blog anything of interest.

Shortly, after I started this blog I realized that writing a daily column would be one of the toughest jobs out there. It's HARD to think of stuff to write about every single day. It seems like lately it's been harder for me to think about stuff to write on. I'm not sure if it's my creative juices drying up or if it's because the weather is finally nice again and I'd rather be outside on the trampoline with the kids than on the computer.

Either way, you've probablly all noticed that I haven't maintained a daily schedule like I have in the past. It's probablly a good idea to set the record straight: I may not blog everyday going forward like I have in the past. At least during this "waiting" part of the adoption. But don't get me wrong! Everything is going great. Katie and I are still giddy with the adoption. (and sometimes nervous) The concert is totally coming together. (You'll all get a full report after the concert - we'll have photographers and video.

So that's it! Have a great day!

Wednesday, May 2, 2007

Concert still moving

We did the first wave of sending out the You Tube Video today. (For the concert) We had over 100 hits already today! This is good I think. We still have a lot more groups to send the video to. We'll see!

Tuesday, May 1, 2007

Can I confess?

I received the official word from our agency that everything is a go and we could receive a referal literally "any day". So that means it could be tomorrow....

I have to confess, my immediate emotion was that of panic. It reminds me of when Katie and I got married. We had a 14 month engagement, and the whole time I was thinking "hurry up! hurry up!" And then about a month before the wedding occured, I started to think "hold the phone! I'm not ready yet". This is exactly what I'm feeling now. I want them, I want them, I want them, Woah!!! wait. I'm not ready yet!

I remember thinking the same with the birth of our first two kids as well. The good news is that the story always ends up happy.