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adoption puzzle

Adoption

Growing Our Family Piece by Piece: Day Three Update

September 26, 2016

Thanks for checking back in our our Puzzle Fundraiser for bringing home Baby Tex #2!

Yesterday was a slower day in the land of puzzles but we more or less expected it – gorgeous weather, the Sabbath day, and football. Sundays are a slower day online so no biggie.

But we are back in the week and we have SIX DAYS left in which we are trying to fundraise a lot. A whole lot.

Some people ask me why adoption is so very expensive and I don’t really have a solid answer.

Y’all see the fee breakdown like we do on our adoption hub page. We don’t get much more detailed information of how those expenses itemize out dollar by dollar. There is a whole bunch more legal work than meets the eye in addition to providing solid counseling for birth families both before and after adoption placements. There are intense background and psychological evaluations. Sometimes there are even expenses built in to assist the birth family with some basic necessities while they go through the adoption process. These are all good things that ought to be covered. We have to trust our agency to be fair and honest with their fees and we’re with a good one.

There are times I wish it was less costly but I wouldn’t want it to be any less thorough, since then all parties involved would more vulnerable…so not certain it could be any more affordable. All we do know is that we feel supported and encouraged by all of you in this and we’re so grateful. Without your generosity, we wouldn’t be able to pursue adoption at this time.

Thank you for giving to a pro-life cause that isn’t always thought of as one. What I mean by that is most people hear “pro-life” and think about crisis pregnancy clinics and praying outside of a Planned Parenthood. Those are pro-life but it’s far broader – caring for immigrant families, death penalty laws, access to healthcare, taking care of the poor and homeless, end of life issues, foster/adoptive families, caring for birth families, ethical reproductive technology, war time practices, and on and on it goes.

Joining our puzzle fundraiser is a concrete way to be part of saying YES to new life – By helping us be in a position to welcome any life God brings our way while also supporting birth family’s decision they feel is best for them and this precious little one.

Let’s see the progress did we make on Day Three?

  • 139 pieces sold

  • $3,470 raised!!!!

  • 9.25% of our goal of $37,500

Here’s a virtual picture of the puzzle’s progress:

puzzle-day-03

 

If you would like to donate, please do so below. If you know of anyone who has a heart for adoption, please share our story and invite them to consider joining the journey.




Donate w/ Squarecash

THANK YOU!

Adoption

Growing Our Family Piece by Piece: Day Two Update

September 25, 2016

Welcome back to our Puzzle Fundraiser for bringing home Baby Tex #2!! 🙂

We continue to be humbled by the giving hearts and souls around us and we are so grateful for each of you.

I confess there have been and will be moments where I wish we just could pay cash for this adoption and any future adoptions. To grow our family ourselves like most people do.

But that isn’t our reality and I am learning to be okay with that. Someday, probably when we are much older, and we finally have the cash flow to handle adoption expenses, we will likely be past the age of raising littles and it will be our chance to bless a young couple like us by just cutting them a big ole check to adopt. I anticipate that day greatly.

But today we need your help.

For those of you who’ve come alongside us, we thank you from the bottom of our hearts. Some of you might desire to help financially but can’t – and that’s alright! You can pray for us and expecting Momma and her baby. Or imagine you were in our shoes…who are the first 3 people you would call to help out? Perhaps you can connect them with our journey.

OK, back to the puzzle. What kind of progress did we make on Day Two?

  • 121 pieces sold

  • $3,020 raised!!!!

  • 8% of our goal of $37,500

Here’s a virtual picture of the puzzle’s progress:

puzzle-day-02

If you would like to donate, please do so below. If you know of anyone who has a heart for adoption, please share our story and invite them to consider joining the journey.




 

Donate w/ Squarecash

THANK YOU!

Adoption

Growing Our Family Piece by Piece: Day 1 Update

September 24, 2016

Oh my gosh you guys.

Yesterday was a day of all the feels.

Humbled. Scared. Hopeful. Vulnerable. Excited. Honored. Emotional. Thankful. Overwhelmed. Blessed.

It was also a busy day, so I apologize for not being able to respond to all your well wishes online as fast as I wanted.

Seeing your enthusiasm and excited for our growing family was truly a gift. I can’t believe we get to welcome another baby into our family and it’s an honor to have your support and blessings as we announced that wonderful news.

Then seeing financial contributions for the puzzle come in and the messages that accompanied them…just beautiful and moving. Thank you for your kindness and generosity.

What kind of progress did we make on Day One?

  • 80 pieces sold

  • $2,000 raised!!!!

  • 5.3% of our goal of $37,500

Here’s a virtual picture of the puzzle’s progress:

puzzle-day-01

Thank you all for kicking off the fundraiser with us. I think most people are just as shocked as we are about this LOL! 🙂

If you would like to donate, please do so below. If you know of anyone who has a heart for adoption, please share our story and invite them to consider joining the journey.




 

THANK YOU!

Adoption

Just When I Thought Things Couldn’t Get Crazier…

September 23, 2016

Remember how we recently updated you on The Summer of 2016 and celebrated that I was still halfway sane?

If you hadn’t caught those, Part 1 and Part 2 are here for your reading pleasure.

In the end of my last post, I explained that I just KNEW the changes weren’t over. I’m a freakishly intuitive person. Whenever Jesus is about to do something big, he gives me this vague pit-in-my-stomach thingamajig as a warning.

I’ve had that feeling since May and it still hadn’t gone away…hence me knowing change was still a comin’ round the mountain.

And let me tell you. This one was a mic drop.

Before I drop the atomic bomb news on y’all, let me back this train up for a hot minute.

In May I had an insanely clear dream that we were supposed to pursue adoption again. We put some photos here and on Facebook, not really knowing how things would shape up. We got several leads in those first few days. An OVERWHELMING MAJORITY of them were links to an adoption blogger who had posted about a baby due in August 2016. At that time, we had NO idea we’d be moving cross country this summer but we did know that the August baby wasn’t our baby. (In hindsight, it would have been impossible for Jonathan to have made a career move had we pursued that sitch.)

I started following that blogger’s RSS feed because of YOUR referrals.

This brings us to this past Thursday night.

All Jonathan and I had planned was to do was Netflix and chill. And as a 31 year old woman, I mean we planned to literally watch Friends on Netflix while drinking wine.

I had to check one more thing on my computer and that’s when I saw the blog had an update. There was an Momma looking for an adoptive family for her baby and the agency wanted traditional married couples to submit their profiles.

We don’t have a profile. We don’t even have a home study done. We just moved states and live with my parents while we wait to move into our home.

Why would I even THINK this would be possible?

As these doubts ran through me, the same exact feelings that came over me when I found out about Josie hit me. This wasn’t just any situation. We had to get a profile done and FAST!

We stayed up until 4 am working on the profile (while Fixer Upper played in the background) and sent it to the agency. They said expectant mom would be looking soon and they’d be in touch.

The weekend felt like an eternity. I tried to keep busy and not think about it but that was basically impossible.

I had mostly happy and hopeful thoughts but a few times I started to panic about the fundraising.

When Josie joined our family, we raised around $18,000 of the total $25,000 to cover the adoption expenses. We vowed to start saving for the next adoption as soon as possible and we have. This situation is going to cost over $37,500 in agency and legal fees…which is slightly more than we’d saved (kidding, it’s A LOT MORE)…so fundraising is again vital. And of course we just moved to a new state and need to start our home study from scratch – meaning we can’t apply for grants (since they require a completed study). 

Lies crept in. 

“People don’t want to donate to your adoption fund again.”

“You’re annoying.”

“Maybe you shouldn’t adopt if you can’t afford it.”

That’s when I got a message on Facebook from a old friend I hadn’t spoken to in several years. She said she got a bonus at work and was praying about where to send extra tithe money…and Jesus pressed us on her heart for our next adoption – whenever that would be.

snip-of-fb-convo

WHAT???????!!!!!!!!!!!!!???????????!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I’M DYING.

I’M DEAD.

Talk about God just cutting those fundraising lies down with a lightening bolt.

My jaw was nearly on that floor in pure awe. It was then that I remembered who God is – a loving Father who provides for his children. (And sometimes shows off a bit while doing it!) OF COURSE God had someone who wasn’t aware of the situation come in and dispel those lies to set the record straight about fundraising. He’s so in control that even before I asked for his help or realized I’d gotten tangled in lies, he moved into the situation in an undeniable way. 

Inviting others into the story through fundraising was so very special last time around and I don’t want to rob us or others of that grace. It was too beautiful.

Fundraising again it is. God left no room for argument. 

OK, back to the profile.

We submitted it over the weekend and Monday night I was again on the computer getting auto insurance quotes. (If you don’t shop around every year, they will gauge your eyeballs out people!)

So there I am minding my own business when I see an email come in from the adoption agency.

I opened it and didn’t even read it straight away – I just panned for either positive or negative language. That’s when I saw the words, “She has selected your profile as the prospective forever family for her baby!”

OHHHHHHHH MYYYYYYYYYY GOSHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! (In Janice from Friends voice)

I dropped the computer and sprinted to the kitchen to tell Jonathan, JoJo, and my mom. Jonathan thought I was joking at first and had to go read the email. WHY WOULD I JOKE ABOUT THIS? Women who’ve battled 5 years of infertility NEVER joke about babies.

For real though….

Wednesday night we had a phone call to talk with Birth Mama and it went really well. Of course we were nervous but she was so sweet. What struck me most was her selflessness and thoughtfulness. We look forward to getting to know her better these next couple of months.

Curious as to when Baby Tex #2 is coming on the scene?

josie-sign-change

Christmas will be a blur this year (since I don’t even remember the Thanksgiving the week after Josie was born) but that’s just fine by me! And yup, the next several weeks will be controlled chaos but they will be glorious. 🙂

This is where YOU’RE HELP comes in.

Like I mentioned earlier – this situation is going to be over $37,500 in agency, legal fees, background checks, travel, etc.

What we have saved doesn’t hold a candle to that and realistically what we’ve got saved will cover our home study and a few other things.

We’ve decided to do another Puzzle Fundraiser because we absolutely LOVE Josie’s puzzle hanging in her room. We love the reminder it is of how she came into our family and we enjoy being able to look at the back of it and see how many generous people cared and donated.

You can help by:

  1. Donating towards our puzzle fundraiser. Pieces are $25 and there are 1,500 pieces in the puzzle. You can buy one or more and you’re name will be written on the back of your piece(s).
  2. SHARE this with your family, friends, and neighbors who you think would care and want to be involved.
  3. Pray that God will provide for not only our needs but for all of Birth Mama’s and baby’s needs. Adoption is not an easy choice and we want to pray for her and her growing little one.
  4. Join Our Novena. We’re running this fundraiser as a novena to St. Therese (today through her feast day – Oct 1) and we’ve got a prayer to say each of the nine days. Check it out on our Adoption Page.
  5. SHARE our posts and pages about this adoption. I’ve listed it again because it’s so important to get the word out. There are a lot of people out there with generous hearts and your sharing our posts give them a chance to get involved!

Thank you all for your support and encouragement in advance. You guys are the best. 🙂

Marriage, Mission, Money

Top 10 Blog Posts of 2015

December 31, 2015

It’s been an awesome year around True Good and Beautiful.

2015 brought exciting and new opportunities our way, such as guest posting for Dave Ramsey (!!!!) and Mama Needs Coffee among a few others. We also branched into some new content since we were parent newbies (still are, who am I kidding!?) at the start of the year. All in all I am happy to say we continued to blog after Josie’s arrival and I know 2016 will be an even more exciting year around these parts…more to come so stay tuned 😉

Without further ado, here are your favorite blog posts from the past year:

10. The Adoption Puzzle is Here

I cannot tell you how many times we’ve received emails from couples wanting to make an adoption puzzle like ours to help offset adoption costs. Jonathan is in the process of setting up an Etsy shop for this very reason so our puzzle can be ordered in a much easier way! We never thought it would bless so many people! 🙂

9. 3 Ways to Cut Your Grocery Bill in 2015

Groceries continue to be the one category in our budget that we bump up against monthly. Following these three tips helps our family stay on track and not bust the budget.

8. How Motherhood Changed My Infertility

Praise you Jesus that I got to write a blog post like this…I thought I would never get to while we were battling infertility for years on end.

7. New Here? Allow Us to Introduce Ourselves

Our Dave Ramsey blog post brought nearly 25,000 people to the True Good and Beautiful blog in only a few short days! It was exciting and such an honor.

6. Teixeira Debt-Free Scream!

And oldie but a goodie! Here you can follow our debt-free journey on The Dave Ramsey Show and hear about how broke we were when we got married! Hahaha. Even on a low income we were able to obliterate debt…sometimes I look back and am shocked since I don’t think we could do that now.

5. My Favorite Catholic Infertility Blogs

I am always glad to see this one in the top blog posts for the year. We write about a LOT of topics here on the blog but really infertility is probably the closest to my heart. I am thankful to provide a resource for couples to find quality infertility bloggers to help them in their journey. It’s how I stayed afloat in our battle and I’ll do anything to throw a lifesaver overboard to others in the same fight.

4. The Husband’s Guide to Breastfeeding

God. Bless. Jonathan. Seriously this past year I had some serious breastfeeding anxieties and he stepped up the plate in a big way. He truly had the heart of a servant and supported me every step of the way. I don’t think Josie and I would still be nursing at nearly 14 months if it wasn’t for him.

3. How and Why I Induced Lactation

Another one I have gotten LOTS of inquiries about from fellow adoptive Mommas. I am so glad that my breastfeeding journey has inspired others and given them confidence to try!

2. God Spoke to Me and I Didn’t Believe Him

Hands down my favorite blog post from this past year. We have a father who keeps his promises and I only wished I trusted him far more.

1. I Was About to Leave The Church and Then THIS Happened

Jonathan’s conversion story from his time in college. He was apathetic in his faith and God put a new fire in his heart through some quality friendships.

Happy New Year True Good and Beautiful family!

Tex112

Much Love from Jonathan, Amanda, Josephine, and Wrigley 🙂

Mission

Your Favorite Posts Of 2014

December 29, 2014

I can hardly believe it but 2015 is just around the corner.

It’s been a huge year for us at True Good and Beautiful and our blog traffic reflects that reality.

This little blog has seen 88,812 views this year, which is quite the jump from previous years. Thank you for joining us in our corner of the interwebs and for sharing life with us. It’s been a privilege and an honor.

Without further ado, let’s peek at what YOUR favorite posts were in 2014:

An Open Letter To A Mother Who Chose Abortion

The Adoption Puzzle Is Here

Houston, We Have a Baby!

My First Stitch Fix!

My Favorite Catholic Infertility Blogs

Why This Woman Said No To Abortion

The Best Secret We’ve Ever Had

Why NFP Awareness Week Gets Under My Skin

How To Come With Us and Meet #BabyTex

Help Us Find a Birth Mother!