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Tuesday, November 29, 2011

JFK update

Joe checked out the prices to fly to JFK from Rochester. Looks like he'll be flying down there for $59.00. That is super sweet. You can't DRIVE for that price.

Please pray that he'll find a so sweet a price for his and Anastasija's flight from JFK to Rochester.


Sunday, November 27, 2011

God has a Good Plan

So, God has met all our needs so far in this adventure. The one need left from the original prayer list is about getting to JFK to pick her up in just two weeks.

The one thing I have learned well in the last month or so is that God has a good plan. So, I know that He has a good plan for picking Anastasija up from an airport that is almost 400 miles away.

I am praying that He will show me the plan, and give me the strength to do it. And I have complete confidence that He will do both. And that is will be good.

The constant, amazing, supernatural, obvious way God has arranged this whole process gives me confidence. I have confidence that this is exactly what God would have us to do. It gives me confidence that God has a plan for Anastasija. It gives me confidence that she is the exact fatherless child that He has had in mind from the beginning of time to be with our family this Christmas. It gives me confidence that God cares for His children. It gives me confidence in the power of prayer. It gives me confidence in obeying God even when it seems impossible. It gives me confidence that He will continue to come through in all things- whether financial, physical, emotional, or spiritual- my God will supply all my need according to His marvelous riches in Christ Jesus.

I have learned more about God in the last month than I can possibly express- simply because I obeyed Him. I highly recommend it to all who seek Him.
Obey Him.
Find Him to be more than you ever could have imagined.


Thursday, November 17, 2011

Heading to Reading (It rhymes)

Yep! So tomorrow I'm off to Reading, PA to attend the host parent training.
There were a few bumps in the road, but GOD HAS A GOOD PLAN is still a true statement.
The way it ends up, the training has to be held about an hour away from Reading, but it will be earlier in the day. I will be done by 3 pm on Saturday instead of 5 pm, so I will be home Saturday night! Sweet! And the place it will be held is just a little closer than Reading, so my drive home will only be 5 hours. Sweet!
God has a good plan!

We had our home study last night. It seems that it went very well. I don't expect any problems on that front.

My next post will be a list of things that we need for Anastasija while she is here. There is a list of things from New Horizons that she is allowed to take back to the orphanage with her, so we'll start with those things. Stay tuned.

Thanks for all your prayers and donations so far. God has proved Himself faithful to provide again and again. I am really learning to trust and believe that God has a good plan!


Monday, November 14, 2011

Mia Bella Candles!

Christmas Candles 
Hey friends! I am selling Mia Bella candles as a fundraiser for Anastasija! The candles are listed below with a description. The cost is just $20.00 per 16 oz. jar, and 25% of that goes directly to cover Anastasija's plane fare, medical insurance, etc.
Mia Bella candles are clean burning, triple scented, naturally scented candles made with a natural wax blend.
They are a healthy alternative that doesn't produce irritating black soot in your home.  These gourmet candles are made up of a blend of natural wax ingredients, comprised of vegetables and other natural renewable resources. These candles are highly scented with fragrance that's amazingly realistic.
Please email me, or call me, or message me on facebook to order your candle!

16oz. Jars
  • Angel Wings-A unique aroma of cherry vanilla and one of our most popular fragrances  
  • Apple Cinnamon-Ripe apples sprinkled with cinnamon gives this candle its charm - perfect for any time of the year! 
  • Chili Vanilli-Blended in perfect harmony, the unique, refreshing scent of Sweet Orange and Chili Pepper mixed with Vanilla produces an amazing fragrance sure to please! 
  • Christmas Pine-The wonderful Christmas tree aroma of the holiday season is now available any time you want! Incredibly realistic scent will have your friends thinking that fake tree is real!  
  • Creme Brulee-A rich sweet butterscotch fragrance just like the decadent dessert without all of the calories!  
  • French Vanilla-A creamy confection with a strong vanilla scent and popular year-round fragrance.
  • Harvest Time-Experience this comforting fragrance combination of warm apples and spices reminiscent of a crisp autumn day
  • Holiday Memories-Snuggle up by the fireplace with a soft blanket as the smell of ginger and cinnamon with a touch of vanilla bring back the memories of yore 
  • Hot Apple Pie-Watch out! This smells so much like hot baked apple pie that your family will think you are always baking!
  • Mulberry Spice-A strong scent of spice and dark red mulberry fruit and a favorite of many for it's strong, yet pleasant smell. Perfect for the holidays or any time of the year. 
  • Pumpkin Cheesecake-A rich creamy blend of cheesecake and pumpkin combine for this amazing aroma. 
  • Pumpkin Spice-Hot pumpkin pie, fresh from the oven! 
  • Snow Place Like Home-A comforting blend of warm spices combined with the sweet tart essence of cranberries makes this one a winner for those cozy fall and winter days.  
  • Spiced Cranberry-A wonderful fruity and spicy scent that fills the room with a pleasing aroma - a perfect candle for any season!  
  • Sweet Orange & .Chili Pepper-A zingy, zesty, orange-eeee smell that you will never forget! It rose to the top as one of our most popular fragrances immediately! Get one today and see for yourself.
Thanks for your help in giving Anastasija the gift of family this Christmas!

Friday, November 11, 2011

In the oven.....COOKIES!


2 1/2 cups smooth (creamy) peanut butter
1 1/2 cups firmly packed light brown sugar
1 tsp. baking soda
2 large eggs
2 tsp. vanilla extract
sugar for rolling (*see tips below)
Hershey’s Chocolate Kisses, unwrapped

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line cookie sheets with parchment or nonstick baking liners. Make room in either freezer (preferred) or refrigerator for cookie sheets (*see step 4).

2. In a large bowl, use a hand mixer at medium speed to beat peanut butter, brown sugar and baking soda until well blended (about 1 minute). Add eggs and vanilla and mix on low speed until just blended.

3. Scoop out about 1 1/2 Tablespoon scoops and roll into 1 1/2-inch balls. Roll into sugar and place about 2 inches apart on cookie sheet.

4. Bake until cookies are puffed and crackled but still a little bit moist looking, 11 to 13 minutes. As soon as you remove the cookie sheet from the oven, press a chocolate kiss into the center of each cookie. Immediately place cookie sheet into the freezer (or refrigerator) to set the kisses (they’ll begin to melt a bit as soon as you place them on the cookie). Remove from chill as soon as kisses are set.

Yield: 3- 4 dozen

Source: Adapted from a peanut butter cookie recipe by Abby Dodge

*For rolling sugar… I think it looks best if you use chunky sparkling sugar, but you can certainly use regular sugar too. If you’re making these as holiday cookies, roll them in red and green sugars for a more festive look!
*These cookies may be stored at room temperature in a covered container for up to a week. They may also be frozen and defrosted when you’re ready to eat them. They should be just fine in the freezer for a few weeks, as long as they’re stored in a sealed container.
*The texture of these is a little softer than the classic Kiss cookie recipe. These are great for a platter, but they wouldn’t package and mail very well.

10 Ways to Care for Orphans 6-10

6. VISIT them where they are
  • Go on a mission trip to an orphanage as an individual or family. Visit or for information.
  • Take dinner to a foster group-home on a regular basis.
7. GIVE sacrificially to them
  • Support reputable orphan care organizations on a regular basis.
  • Contribute generously to an adoptive family to help offset their costs. Visit or
8. ENCOURAGE them to press on
  • Sponsor a child, support them financially, and encourage them through your letters. Visit to learn more.
  • Become a mentor or tutor to a teenager in a foster group-home.  
9. ADOPT them into your family
  • Give a child a home through international, domestic, or foster care adoption.
  • Adopt a young adult who has aged out of the system.
10. MOBILIZE your church for them
  • Be a catalyst in your church for starting a sustained orphans ministry. Visit for resources and to learn more about attending a Your Church and the Orphan™ workshop.

Tuesday, November 08, 2011

His Word Strengthens Me

Hebrews 10:
35 Therefore do not cast away your confidence, which has great reward.
36 For you have need of endurance, so that after you have done the will of God, you may receive the promise:
37 “ For yet a little while,
And He who is coming will come and will not tarry.
38 Now the just shall live by faith;
But if anyone draws back,
My soul has no pleasure in him.”
39 But we are not of those who draw back to perdition, but of those who believe to the saving of the soul.

Monday, November 07, 2011

10 Ways You Can Care for an Orphan or Waiting Child- Day 5

5. PROTECT them from harm.
9 The Lord protects the foreigners among us.
He cares for the orphans and widows,
but he frustrates the plans of the wicked.
~Psalm 146

Orphans and foster kids are IN DANGER.
Orphans girls are in danger of human trafficking (85% of orphan girls will be sold through human trafficking once they age out from the orphanage).
Orphan boys are in danger of all kinds of violence (75% of orphan boys will turn to drugs, crime, or be sold through human trafficking once they age out from the orphanage).
Foster kids are being abused. Right now.
They need to be protected.
Do you care? Really. Consider it. What is the truthful answer to that question?
  • Become a foster parent or emergancy foster parent.
  • Raise money to build a children's home to help provide shelter to kids on the street. Visit for details.

Sunday, November 06, 2011

10 Ways to Care for Orphans and Waiting Children- Day 4

4. SUPPORT those who support them
24 And let us consider one another in order to stir up love and good works, 25 not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together, as is the manner of some, but exhorting one another, and so much the more as you see the Day approaching.
~Hebrews 10

  • Mow, babysit, or organize meals for a week for foster parents. Pray with them and tell them you appreciate what they do.
  • Encourage a family adopting an older child by hosting a shower for them.

Saturday, November 05, 2011

10 Ways You Can Care for Orphans- Day 3

3. PROVIDE for their needs.
15 If a brother or sister is naked and destitute of daily food, 16 and one of you says to them, “Depart in peace, be warmed and filled,” but you do not give them the things which are needed for the body, what does it profit?
~James 2

I am only going to use one bullet point, because I want you to seriously consider it:
  • Find a reputable organization that cares for orphans. Give them money on a regular basis.

Update on today's party:
 Brilyn's Give This Christmas Away Party went amazingly well- an answer to prayer. Every chair had a child in it. Every single chair.
Brilyn invited friends to her party, and asked them to bring:
1. Something to put in an Operation Christmas Child shoebox for a girl age 5-9 and a boy age 2-4.
2. A Bible story picture book.
3. A donation of $1.00 to buy Bibles through Gospel for Asia.
We now have two full baskets of toys, lots of Bible stories, and enough money to buy, oh, 3,000 Bible tracts in the recipients' native language. Praise God!

Friday, November 04, 2011

Kneeling Prayer

I think there is something to be said for kneeling prayer.
I was taking a nap today, and the phone rang twice in a row, and then I wasn't really napping anymore.
And, I felt a nudge to get up off the couch, and kneel there to pray. So, I did.
I prayed about a lot of things, one of which was Anastasija. And that I could use some reassurance that we are taking the right road.
Well, I just checked my email, and there in my inbox is a notice that we received another donation, and that we have been accepted as a host family!

Thank you GOD!


10 Ways You Can Care for Orphans and Waiting Children- Day 2

2. SPEAK up for them

8 Open your mouth for the speechless,

In the cause of all who are appointed to die.

9 Open your mouth, judge righteously,

And plead the cause of the poor and needy.
~Proverbs 31
  • Tell people about the reality of orphans and waiting children in the US and around the world.
  • Be ready to tell them how to help. Know some organizations to refer them to.
  • Blog about orphans, post about it on facebook, talk about it work and at church.
  • Start a small group or prayer group that focuses on promoting the cause of the fatherless.
  • Remind your church family that we are commanded to care for orphans.

Thursday, November 03, 2011

10 Things You Can Do to Care for Orphans and Waiting Children: Day 1

1. PRAY for them

7 “Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. 8 For everyone who asks receives, and he who seeks finds, and to him who knocks it will be opened.
~Matthew 7

  • Tape a waiting child's picture to your dashboard and pray for the child every time you're in the car. Visit or
  • Organize an evening prayer vigil at your church and pray for children in foster care or an orphanage overseas.
  • Pray for the orphans, like Anastasija, who will be spending Christmas in the US with families like yours, and mine. Check them out here:
Please share other ideas you have for ways to pray for the fatherless.


Wednesday, November 02, 2011

Tuesday, November 01, 2011

To Russia, with Love

Our family's welcome letter to Anastasija:

Dear Anastasija,

Hello sweet girl! We are excited that you are coming to our house to help us celebrate Christmas. In our family we have 5 people: Joe (the father); Jocelyn (the mother); Brilyn (a 6 year old girl); Cade (a 4 year old boy); and Jessup (a 2 year old boy). We live in the country, not a city. We have some farm animals: a cow named Clara Belle, a horse named Hannah, a white cat and a calico cat, and lots of chickens. It will be fun to have you meet the animals.

We like to go for walks in the woods to hear the sounds of birds and see God's creation. We think it will be lovely to have you go on walks with us. If there is snow, we like to sled downhill, and build snowmen.

Some of my neighbors put lots of Christmas lights on their houses. We like to take a drive and go look at the lights and drink hot chocolate.

We go to church on Christmas Eve and everyone there gets to hold a candle and sing Christmas songs. It is very beautiful.

We are looking forward to meeting you. The children think it will be nice to have a 10 year old to play with. Brilyn is happy you are girl because all she has is brothers to play with so far. Jocelyn hopes you like cookies because she makes lots at Christmas time.

May God keep you in His arms till you are safely here.

Joe, Jocelyn, Brilyn, Cade, and Jessup Rebisz

Please pray that this letter will bring joy and peace to her heart, and begin to prepare her to join our family for Christmas.


About Me

About Me
I love Jesus, my hubby, my 6 kiddos, my farm, good books and good food.