Welcome Home Ava!

“I have a baby sister. Her name is Ava. She lives in an orphanage in China.”

Three of the greatest sentences of my life. This quote above, uttered countless times by our two very young biological children while we were in the process of adopting from China, was sweet music to my ears. Nothing prepared them better for the sudden addition of a 2-year-old to our family than just simply talking about it. Every day. All the time. Continue reading “Welcome Home Ava!”

Top Things To Know About Adopting a Child With ARM

Two adoptive moms share what it’s like to adopt children with a common, though not commonly discussed special need — anorectal malformation, or ARM. Because this is a sensitive need, all names in this article have been changed to protect the children’s privacy.

“William just turned 5 and he is amazing! He is so intelligent, inquisitive and goofy. He keeps us laughing all day because he has such a wonderful sense of humor. He has an amazing imagination and is constantly playing make believe or making up songs. He would be outside all day, every day, if he had a choice. He loves nature, bugs, animals, science, swimming, hiking, camping and getting really dirty.”—Tavia, William’s mom

“Tess is such a blessing. She brings us such joy. She is 6, almost 7 years old, but sometimes we say she is 6 going on 18 because she is so mature for her age. She’s very opinionated and will let you know exactly what she thinks! She doesn’t like going to school because she hates waking up early, but she always has a big smile on her face by the time I pick her up. She is such a beautiful, loquacious little girl.” — Sarah, Tess’s mom Continue reading “Top Things To Know About Adopting a Child With ARM”

Happy Birthday Max John Harrison!!

Today, Max turned 14 — the age at which children become ineligible for international adoption from China. Max would have aged out today, losing his chance at a loving, permanent family of his own. Instead, Max is with his family in China, completing his adoption! Below is an email message his mom recently sent our staff, and graciously agreed to share on our blog. Happy Birthday, Max!

Meet Max John Harrison!!! He is so smart!!! He’s a walking history book!! He’s curious, happy, kind, gentle, energetic, did I say smart?

Today we talked about currency, exchange rates, salaries, how many years ago the Chinese were oppressed by the Japanese, World War II, bought some collector’s Chinese bills, some collector’s stamps and coins… talked about buying some history and science textbooks… and so much more!!! Continue reading “Happy Birthday Max John Harrison!!”

Our Story, His Writing – AubreyMae Adoption Story

AubreyMae has grown in our hearts for many, many years.

Anticipating becoming parents, we were aware how much we would be learning… What we didn’t expect was how much we would learn about ourselves and the beauty adoption holds. Sure, the paperwork and fundraising were time-consuming and waiting to hold her tested our patience tremendously. But we constantly reminded ourselves that as parents, you do everything possible for your child. We also constantly reminded ourselves about what she was going through.

We had to stay strong for our little one. We knew how brave and scared and lost and hopeful she would be when we would meet her for the first time. We held on to that and fought every day, prayed every day for our daughter. We met amazing people with true compassion for others and felt God’s grace through His work, using those around us. All our hearts were healed through adoption. Our little one’s heart has been through so much, and yet she lights up the room with her giggles and joy.

We are truly grateful for the staff at Holt. With the timeline and tedious paperwork, we had tremendous support that allowed us to focus on our daughter … Without them, we feel strongly the days would have felt longer, the travel would have been scarier, and our family would never be complete.

Not only are we parents to our beautiful daughter, but we are forever changed due to the beautiful journey adoption holds.

Every day, she chooses to trust and love us more and more. She is brave, she is chosen, and she is SO, SOOOO LOVED!

Jessica Burmeister | Adoptive Mom

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That Felt Like a Mother’s Love

After traveling to meet their former foster mothers in Korea, adoptee siblings Emma and Isaiah Perron finally understand what their parents always told them — “You were greatly loved in Korea.” This post written by Lisa Perron — Emma and Isaiah’s mom — originally appeared on catholicfam.org

Emma meets her foster mom for the first time since she left Korea to join her family.

The first night our Korean-born son arrived home, he cried for his foster mother. Less than thirty-six hours before, he had woken up in the only home he had ever known, been brought to the Holt International Adoption Services offices, handed to a stranger, and traveled around the world to be placed in our arms. He had never seen us before and had no idea what was happening. After a very stressful first introduction to our dear son, we arrived home late from the airport. Soon the family was all sleeping peacefully in their beds — all except Isaiah and me.  Continue reading “That Felt Like a Mother’s Love”

A VERY Big Thank You

When 4-year-old Journi’s health started to deteriorate, donors made it possible for her to move from her orphanage to Holt’s medical foster home in China. Now that Journi is home — and thriving — her mom has a very special message for our Peace House supporters.

“We knew her heart was a mess, but ultimately, it didn’t matter to us. We just knew this little one needed a home, love and a family. We had all of that and more.”

My husband, Brian, and I had been in our third adoption process for several months when we received a spotlight email with several precious little faces — all in desperate need of a family.

One little girl grabbed our hearts immediately. Continue reading “A VERY Big Thank You”

The Road that Led to My Son – Haiti Adoption Story

Haiti Adoption Story

When we lived in our old house, there was a road I took daily that I would jokingly say should have been named after me. I said this because of the frequency of my vehicle on this particular road. I used it to take my kids to school, there and back in the morning. Then again, there and back midmorning for the preschool pickup and there and back again at the afternoon pickup for my oldest. Six times a day, my dirty black suburban could be seen on this winding road!! It was exhausting and I started to hate that road with a passion. The road itself was beautiful with its trees and its curves, but it was annoyingly predictable. Continue reading “The Road that Led to My Son – Haiti Adoption Story”