So, our house is a mess- just in case you were wondering. You probably weren’t wondering, but since I’m literally surrounded by the mess, I can’t help but think everyone else is thinking about it as much as I am.
Why so messy? Well, we’re packing away! We leave on Friday for our big ‘ol Wide Awake road trip and we have to ship off some boxes to Ukraine before we hit the road. It will take about 6-8 weeks for the boxes to arrive in Zhitomir, and we won’t be back from our road trip till October, so we figured we better send those babies on there way. I think it will be really reassuring for our kids if some of there stuff is there to greet them when we arrive in our new home.
How do you decide what to pack?
Ummmm….well, that decision has been months in the making. We decided to only bring our books, toys (the good ones), and clothes. Books are an obvious choice since we homeschool and it’s not like we’ll have easy access to a library like we have in the past! We have 6 boxes of books we’re sending off tomorrow. Whew! You wouldn’t believe how many books we let go to get it down to only 6. Wowzers.
We decided to pack along toys because I know it will bring some comfort to the kiddos. We pared it down to the good toys that really get played with- (trains, legos, playmobiles, Polly Pockets…you know the sort).
Clothing isn’t really optional, so clothes made the cut too.
As it stands right now, and some of this is me estimating because we still need some books, toys, and clothes between now and November, this is what is coming along to Ukraine:
Shipped Boxes: 8 boxes of books, homeschool supplies, and other random (yet important) stuff like that
Suitcases/Checked Baggage: 3 for clothes, 4 for toys/kid stuff, 1 guitar, 1 for Christmas decorations/ornaments, and 2 or 3 for shoes, special blankets, and books we’re using till November
We get 12 checked pieces of luggage that can each weigh up to 50 pounds when we fly in November, so that gives us lots of wiggle room in our packing. Don’t ask me how we plan to get 11 suitcases, 1 guitar, 4 carry-ons, 5 backpacks and 4 children from the airport in Kiev to our house in Zhitomir. I haven’t thought that far ahead yet and the thought of it makes me kind of fidgety and sweaty. I’m deliberately ignoring that detail at this moment in time. (Kiev Vineyard- Please plan to bring a small army to the airport to assist with our what-is-sure-to-be-eye-catching ensemble of children and luggage. Thanks in advance!)
Where are you going on your road-trip?
The Mother of all Roadtrips begins Friday and will encompass 5 states. We’ll start out heading to Yakima, WA where we’ll share with some medical professionals at Vineyard Christian Fellowship of Yakima. Then down and over to Hermiston, OR where we’ll spend time with Oasis Vineyard. Jed will be doing a workshop for their worship team and we’ll share Wide Awake on Sunday morning. After Hermiston we’ll head over to Boise, ID and spend several days checking out some awesome justice and mercy ministries of Vineyard, called Isaiah 61 Ministries. We’ll get to participate in the Vineyard College of Missions a bit as well. Sweeet. Then, it’s up to Montana to spend some quality time with Jed’s fam. We’ll be in Great Falls and Billings. Yippee!!! While we’re in Billings Jed will fly to Colorado Springs, CO to attend a Missional Leaders Summit for Vineyard Missions. The kids and I will chill with the fam while he’s gone. After Montana it’s down to Seattle, WA to share Wide Awake withShoreline Vineyard.
If you’ll be near any of those places between now and October 6th, let us know and we can share our schedule with you. We’d love to meet any of you along the way!
Seth came to you through fostering. Do you think you may adopt on the journey you are now?
I’d be lying if I said the thought hasn’t crossed my mind! Back in 2010 this journey began with the intent to adopt a little one from Ukraine. We are definitely open to whatever the Father has for our family. We won’t be intending to adopt anytime soon, but really feel like we are to focus heavily on the dream of medical homes and the vision God has given us for Wide Awake. But, if God puts the right kiddo in our lap at the right time…how could we say no? We are open to whatever He asks of us.
Can any of the children in the baby houses be sponsored? Many people can’t adopt but would love to do other things if they can.
Thank you for asking! Part of the dream of the medical homes is that the children in the homes would be available for sponsorship. That’s obviously a ways off, but stay tuned for that down the road! Some of the boys at Romaniv (where we’ll be volunteering with Mission to Ukraine) are available for sponsorship here. Cool, right? I love those faces too much.
Generic prayer is good, but how can we pray specifically for you?
THANK YOU FOR ASKING! We could really use specific prayer for our hearts. We are definitely in a grieving process right now and sometimes it’s down right ugly. My Addy just cried herself to sleep tonight because she is so sad to move and miss her baby cousin’s first steps and first birthday. The two older kids are struggling right now. They can’t really anticipate the joy we know is set before us. All they can see right now is what we are leaving behind. I honestly feel quite a bit of that right now as well. The reality of all the people we are leaving behind can be overwhelming, and the grief can be suffocating. BUT we know He is good. Our kids have yet to really grasp His goodness for themselves. So, prayer for their tender hearts would be greatly appreciated. We want them to be able to grieve, but also to find comfort in Jesus. Tough stuff.
How are finances shaping up and have you learned a basic understanding of the language?
Finances are shaping up really well! The generosity of our supporters has been humbling, encouraging, faith-building, and jumping-up-and-down inducing.
All our generous supporters have given $18,100 toward our one-time moving cost goal of $20,000.
At this time we have monthly giving commitments totaling $2,635.
Our cost of living goal is $3,000 per month and our total program goal is $10,000 per month.
The extra $7,000 will go toward funding the first Therapeutic Center.
If you are still deciding the perfect time to start giving, it’s now!
As far as language learning goes…well, slowly but surely we’re making progress! We can officially ask for directions, order food, find out if people want anything to eat…and basic things like that. Oy. We’ve got years to go when it comes to the Russian language. But, we’re trying our best! We have a Ukrainian friend who is searching for a tutor for us in Zhitomir as we speak.
That’s it for now! We’ll keep you posted along the way. Thank you SO MUCH for your love and support. Here we goooooooo!
Go here to donate to Wide Awake. Thanks!