Thursday, August 15, 2013

Back at it...or somethin' like that

Ahhh, summer. Everyone loves it with all it's glorious weather and memories in the making. It's blissful ... unless you're a freelance graphic designer married to a teacher/administrator with young children AND a husband who are home for an extended period of time. I love summer, yet, I also subconsciously dread it because I know I'll be trying to juggle everything – and let's just be brutally honest, summer is a challenge for me.

BUT, we're almost at the end of it. The hubs is back to work. The kids go back to school in about two weeks. Then all will be right with the world, right? Uh, probably not. However, I'm giddy thinking about being able to get {uninterrupted} work done during normal business hours. Hallelujah.

Well, there have been many things over these summer months that have gotten my creative juices flowing ... haven't necessarily had the time to do anything with my ideas beyond jotting LOTS of things down on my trusty Post-it notes. This all changed, though, when a conversation with my little man about his favorite Newsboys song left me explaining to him what the word "surely" meant. We had a kid-sized conversation and then he said, "But mom, are there any other songs that use that word?". I busted out singing a song from my childhood..."Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me, all the days, all the days of my life...". As I sang, it was like one of those "aha" moments where, as I sang this little tune, my wacky-designer brain quickly assembled the typography for a new print.

And here we are – two days later. I've managed to sneak in a few minutes here and there to work on getting what I was seeing in my brain on to the computer ... in between loads of laundry, running kids to therapy appointments, making meals, fielding client phone calls & emails, keeping everyone alive {a.k.a playing referee between the kids}, etc. I've finally gotten the print design on screen how I saw it in my head as I sang those lyrics, a passage from Psalm 23. I'm SUPER excited to share it with you, so here it is!!!

It's all listed in the Etsy shop, so if you like it - share it with your friends!! Tweet it, Pin it, Share it on Facebook & Instagram ... go nuts.

Stay tuned for more prints {hopefully} soon. My brain is exploding with ideas. For real.


Thursday, August 1, 2013

His Plans

Hi friends! Well, the last time I wrote, we'd frantically assembled a last-minute fundraising effort which you all went above and beyond to fulfill. We prayed that God's plan would be revealed as the funds were raised, and that He would do powerful things through the Schneider family with these funds that were raised to help bring home baby #3. Our prayers were answered, but the answer to one of those prayers left us all completely baffled.

Funds were donated just as we prayed they would be {THANK YOU TO ALL WHO DONATED!}. And Heidi and Andy drove to Florida, arriving safely and making it in time to be at the hospital while the baby was born, just as we prayed they would be. They met him. They held him. They even named him. Hudson. He was a perfectly beautiful little boy. But this beautiful little boy wasn't meant to be theirs, even though we'd prayed and prayed. God's answer to our prayers was one no one expected – the birth mom changed her mind and decided to parent this sweet little one. What a whirlwind of emotions were stirred when this decision was revealed. Frustration. Anger. Uncertainty. Disbelief. Heartbroken, Heidi and Andy left the hospital and began their trek home...without Hudson. Now, very few of us have ever experienced anything quite like this, but I can only imagine that the drive home was one filled with raw emotion as they processed everything that had just transpired. None of it made sense. BUT, what did make sense was that we serve a God who can do mind-blowing things through times of hurt and brokenness. He has a plan, a perfect plan.

As I spoke with Heidi a few days after this all took place, I hung up the phone thinking, "God, you may have us all waiting in suspense to see what your plan is in all of this, but I know for a fact that you're going to use this experience to help each person touched by the Schneider's story to grow in some way." And as Heidi and I have discussed in the weeks after these events, she is also confident that through everything that's happened, she knows God is strengthening her and Andy, and she's hopeful that some day she can use their experiences to help and coach other adoptive families navigate this crazy journey of adoption. Frankly, given all that they've gone through, I'm PUMPED to see what God's going to do - because I'm confident He's got BIG THINGS planned for them!

So, what about the funds that were donated, you ask? Well, rest assured, Heidi and Andy are not on a beach somewhere tropical enjoying a nice vacation on your donated dime.  The money donated will still be used for the adoption of baby #3, whenever God is finished preparing the little one meant to join their family. And a portion of the donated funds will also help cover many of the costs that unfortunately will not be reimbursed through this failed adoption (i.e. gas money, flight costs to meet the birth mom, meals while they were gone, etc.). We're anxiously waiting to see what the next step is in God's plan to add to the Schneider family – and we'll be sure to update you as soon as there's any news to report.

In the meantime, please continue to keep the Schneiders in your prayers as they take this all in and try to prepare mentally and emotionally for the new little one who will hopefully {very} soon join their family. Thank you, thank you, thank you once again to all who donated – you have no idea what every penny has meant to this family! Now we're left to wait ... on His Plan.