Monday, October 21, 2013

The Merge!

Happy Monday! This is the last post for the Europe blog! We are MERGING to one big happy blog! Go take a look at GiveOneSaveOne.  

We'll be having giveaways all week, so be sure to visit daily.   
Also, will you subscribe while you're there? We don't want you to miss a thing! We're all going to one Facebook page, too, so be sure to "like" us!
We're super excited about the new blog and hope you love it, too!

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Welcome Home Henry!

The Saubers family welcomed home their son Henry from Lithuania in July! You gave $162 to help the Saubers family adopt Henry. Thank you for helping bring Henry home!

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Edna is Home!

Remember the Boswells, the very first family we asked you to support, way back in February? (There Featured Family post is here: Good news! They have brought their daughter Edna home! 

Edna with her Momma and Daddy!
Isn't she just sweetness itself? Head on over to their blog to see more pictures on their daughter!

Thank you for your support of $1 or more to the Boswells! Because of you, a child is home with her parents!

Monday, September 2, 2013

Exciting News for Give1Save1

Hey all! I have some exciting news to tell you! We have some big things happening at Give1Save1! Give1Save1 is merging! Way back the beginning, Give1Save1 started out as one big blog. As Give1Save1 grew, it branched out and became Give1AfricaGive1AsiaGive1DomesticGive1Caribbean, and Give1Europe. That is a lot of blogs to run by a lot of volunteers! And a lot of families! The exciting news is we are going back to one big blog!

Here is why this is fantastic: 
  • More Financial Support for Families - All the readers from all the blogs will be united, which will hopefully increase the amount of support we are able to give each week to our featured families!
  • Better Pre-Adoption Research for Families - It will help families who are just in the beginning of their adoption journey to research adoption. They can go to one blog and read about all different countries, get connected with lots of families, and hopefully, get lots of questions answered!
  • Better Quality Service for Our Readers & Simplified Work Load for Our Volunteers - Having 1 blog will be less work for our team of volunteers. We had a lot of volunteers burn out after a year or so of working with Give1Save1. We hope that by joining forces, we can lighten all of our volunteers work load, while offering a better service to the adoption community!
What you need to know: 
  • Although Give1Save1 is making some changes, we are keeping the same purpose. At our heart, we are the same Give1Save1! We will continue to support adoptive families and help them raise funds to bring their child home! By uniting to one blog, we hope to do it even better!
  • We are also combining our Facebook pages. We will be using what is currently the Africa page as our official page since it has the most likes. I suggest you go ahead and like it so you can keep up to date!
  • Give1 Save1 had a gazillion emails! Now we have 1! Our new email is giveonesaveone (at) gmail (dot) com

Q & A:

When will these changes take place and the new blog be started?

No changes for a few more weeks! I wanted to tell you ahead of time. The plans to merge have been in the works for over a month now! We are keeping all the blogs going until we are ready to roll out the new blog! Our volunteer designer is working hard to get the new blog ready! I don't have a specific date, but we hope the new blog will be ready in 2-3 weeks.

How will families be chosen to be featured?

We will choose featured families the way we always have. Families must be truly adopting to qualify to be featured (we verify this with their agency.) That being said a lot of families qualify, and not all families may be chosen. Since the beginning, we have always given priority to families who are traveling soonest. We will continue to do that. We will also try to rotate through different parts of the world. Every month, we will try to feature a family adopting from Africa, Asia, Europe, Domestic, and Caribbean.

Have more questions? Feel free to comment with them and I will try my best to answer them!

Sunday, August 18, 2013

Update on Families

No new family this week. Instead just an update on some of the families we have featured. Some families still need to raise funds, so go to their blog and give $1 if you feel lead!

Ashby Family

In April we raised $20 for the Ashby family to adopt Drake. You can still give here. They have now received their referral and are waiting for travel dates! Follow their blog here for updates:

Jacobs Family

We raised $1,256 for the Jacobs to adopt a waiting little boy, Hamilton. They have now completed their homestudy and almost have their dossier ready to send the country in Europe where Hamilton lives! You can keep up with their story here:

Saubers Family

You gave $162 to help the Saubers family adopt Henry from Lithuania. They are still fundraising to bring their son home. You can still donate here. Follow their story here:

Jenson Family

In May, we raised $754 for the Jenson family! They have now received their official referral for Sofi Rose and expect to travel for trip 1 in September. Keep up with the Jensons here:

Monday, August 12, 2013

New Week: Welcome the Smeiles Family!

Happy Monday! Hope you had a great weekend! Welcome our featured family of the week - the Smeiles family! Karli and Jeff are adopting a waiting child. He is an older toddler from Europe! You can follow their adoption journey at their blog. Watch their video to learn more about this wonderful family and their son! Your going to love them!

"He'll be our first son - and we are very happy to be his second family!"  - Karli Smeiles

How You Can Help

1. PRAY for the Smeiles' adoption.

2. SHARE their video via Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram,  etc. Please help us spread the word! 

3. GIVE $1 (or more if you feel led.) Just click below to donate online!

Click here to check out the world map that will take you to the other Give1Save1 pages: US, Africa, the Caribbean, and Asia.

Adopting from Europe and want to be a family of the week? Send me an email at giveonesaveone (at) and I'll send you an email explaining how to apply!

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

dear friends of waiting adoptive moms: some things to know (also, we’re sorry)

by Wymsel
First posted on her blog, Wonderment, Etc. on August 2, 2013. 
View original post here:
1. Your friend is not crazy. (She is adopting.)
There is, I will admit, a fine line between those two but still it’s good to remember. The international adoption of a child requires enough paperwork to kill a small forest. And more governmental red tape than you can believe. Imagine your longest, most frustrating trip to the DMV. Now quadruple that, add in twelve more governmental agencies in two countries, and remember it’s not a driver’s license you’re waiting for but the final piece of paper that says this family you’re creating can finally, finally be together. Yeah. Not crazy. But close.
2. She loves a child she’s never met.
It’s possible. So possible. It’s irrational and crazy but it’s reality. Does she love them like she will once she gets to know them? No. But she loves them. She wakes up loving them and goes to sleep loving them. She drives to the grocery story and aches to have them safe and snug in the car seat waiting for them. She pushes her cart around the store and hears a child cry and her heart pounds wondering if her child is crying? Alone? Hungry? She might even have to leave an entire grocery cart full of food in the yogurt aisle to go home and cry because it just is too hard. Way too hard.
3. It’s difficult having your heart on the other side of the world.
To people on the outside they don’t look like our kids, on paper they might not be our kids yet. But in our hearts we love these children like they are and yet we’re not together. We’re moms without children. It’s an ache that doesn't go away. It starts before we see their faces and only ends when they’re in our arms. So we walk about with half our heart missing. It’s hard to breathe, to think, to speak. Something always feels missing. Because they are.
4. She is addicted to her email.
It’s okay. This is a temporary condition and most make a full recovery. It can be diagnosed by refusal to allow separation from her smart phone, or glassy-eyed concentration as she clicks “refresh” over and over and over on her computer. Other signs may include: waking up in the middle of the night to check because it’s X time over there, and muttering aloud “must get home, must check for update, must get home” while out in public.
5. Her child has been through trauma.
If she’s like a lot of moms she won’t be advertising that fact everywhere because she respects her child’s privacy. But children don’t come to the place of needing a second family because they were placed in a cabbage patch by unicorns and leprechauns. Adoption comes from loss. Loss she will see in her child’s eyes and in their heart. Loss that as a mama can make your soul curl up in a ball for an ugly cry. So don’t tell her the kids are lucky. You wouldn't tell a person who lost an arm that they’re lucky to have a prosthetic one would you? I mean yeah, they are lucky to have that replacement. But you know what would be luckier? Not losing that arm in the first place. So please be understanding. Also, maybe instead of asking for her child’s story outright ask “are you sharing about his history before you?” That gives her a chance to either answer you or bow out graciously.
6. Adoption isn't pregnancy.
It just isn't. Well, it is in that at the end of it the hope is to have a new son or daughter in your arms. But I've yet to meet a pregnant woman who wonders how old her child will be upon entry into the family. Adoption is different. There is no due date for us. Let that sink in. No due date. And even given preemies and late arrivals with the baby by stork method you have a narrow months-long window of time in which the baby will arrive. That brings us to point number seven.
7. She probably doesn't know when the child is coming home.
And she has probably been asked this approximately twelve times that day. Because you, her awesome friends, care about her! (And also you secretly worry she’s going a little nuts, see point #1.) And I get it. It’s hard with adoption because you don’t know what to ask. I feel that way with pregnant ladies, like what am I supposed to say? “Your ankles really don’t look that bad do they?” Recently I learned the always safe phrase “you look great – how is baby doing?”, the adoption equivalent is “I know you must miss your kiddos, how is the adoption going?” Or, if you don’t have time to have her break down and cry all over you try the even safer “can I see your latest update pictures?” and then ooh and aww over their cute faces. Even if the pictures are horrible say something positive. I mean I don’t tell people that their sonogram pictures sometimes look like aliens made of bread dough. (Except yours Amy B. Yours is the cutest thing I've ever seen.)
8. She isn't sure they’re coming home.
This is the part of the adoption process that makes you want to crawl under your bed and not come out until it’s safe again. This is the part that tears you soul in two. This is the part that you wake up in the morning remembering and going to bed at night fearing. Because there are no guarantees. And that’s hard. No, not hard. It’s gut-wrenching. It’s not just the fear that your child might die before having a family, it’s that this child you love with every ounce of your being might grow up in an orphanage, on the streets, or worse.
9. Your friend is kind of stupid.
I know. That’s harsh. But it’s true. You try operating on a daily basis with only half your heart and half your brain, because that’s what it’s like. ‘Cause they other half of you is wrapped up in a tiny person who is half a world and what feels like a lifetime away. Also, because of the time zone difference it means that half of you is awake pretty much all the time.
10. She doesn't need to hear your HAS (horrible adoption stories.)
Yes, I know, everyone knows of someone’s uncle’s neighbor who adopted a child and then the child burned down the school with the power of her mind after her classmates dumped a bucket of pigs blood on her. (Oh wait, that’s the story line of “Carrie” isn't it?) But sharing these stories are the equivalent of telling someone hopping in a plane for their first sky-diving session “I watched this video on YouTube where a guy skydived. He died. And his body was all smashed and stuff.” Maybe it’s true but it’s also not overly helpful. Unless you’re the kind of person who also goes up to pregnant woman and says “I read a book about this lady who got pregnant one time, she gave birth to a kid who became a serial killer and sewed a suit of clothes out of his victims skin. (Shoot, that’s the story line of “Hannibal” isn't it? Well, I tried.)
Do “Adoptive Kids” sometimes grow up and do horrible thing? Yep. You know who else grows up and does horrible things? “Vaginal kids.” So really, the warning should be more along these lines: “You’re going to be a parent huh? Good luck with that.”
11. She has probably done her research
Don’t assume she’s going into this because of a driving urge to be mistaken for Angelina Jolie. Unless she is also demanding everyone call her husband “Brad” it probably comes from some deeper place. Or you know, her husband’s name really IS Brad. Chances are she’s read books on adoptive parenting, has agonized for hours over which adoption agency to choose from. Made a decision. Then agonized some more. She’s thought about the ethical questions. And if you don’t think she has then maybe ask. “How did you pick your agency?” “What led you to X country?”
12. She looks brave on the outside, she’s brave on the inside too. But she’s also a mess
Which, I think is what mothering and loving is all about. Being a mess. Throwing your love out there and not knowing if you’re ever going to get it back. It’s scary. It’s vulnerable. It feels like you can’t breathe and when you can it hurts to do it. And you don’t want to complain about that because you picked it. So you pick up the pieces of your heart and you keep going. You keep going because at the end of the day what you go through as an adoptive mother is nothing compared to what children go through when they live their life without family. And that’s what this journey is all about.
dear friends of waiting adoptive moms
edited to add this note: When I hit publish this morning it didn't occur to me that this post would spread so far beyond the small group of friends and family who read my blog. Beyond the group of women who've become my friends during this adoption journey and who helped me think of topics to add to this post. I’m honored that each one of you have come here and read my thoughts, and honored that you saw fit to share this post with your friends. For those of you who haven’t read posts before I’d like to offer links to a few that I believe will present a more complete picture of my thoughts on the adoption process.