Monday, June 30, 2008

summer fun

just moving into our new home... summer fun.. (ps.. i am suppose to tell you that bob would "never" allow those weeds in the yard!) LOL

I am so happy to report after those photos our things did make it.. most unharmed..
They ended up packing us in ONE day! I was stunned. And the big truck came the next day and moved us out.. it went so fast my head was swimming.. our house sold in 40 days. The Lord took care of all the little details.
The next set of photos are of the kids playing in a empty house and then just a couple summer photos..

Packing up and moving out..

Dreaming of Drew...

I thought that title would be appropriate since that is how it all started.. in the Fall of 2006 I continued to have a dream of a little boy.. he was so tiny and so sweet. I could clearly see his face. I assumed I was dreaming of this little Chinese boy b/c we were waiting for Daniel at the time. However, the boy in the dream was not Daniel. Sometimes I would panic (who me?)b/c I would ask the Lord, did we make a mistake and is Daniel the wrong child and you are trying to tell me something... but in my heart I would have peace about Daniel and the dreams would go away. Then the dreams would come back.
So that is all I can really say right now about that. Sorry. :O)

Bob and I really had no intention to adopt any more children. Well lets rephrase that.. I am always open.. and say "what ever the Lord wants - meaning YES YES YES" and Bob is the practical one saying ummm honey... :O)
okay... now that we are all honest and what not :O) In August of 2007 it was put on my heart that I was a mother to a little boy (again, more than that but can't say more right now). Bob was not convinced. I asked him to pray about it. And I did not ask him, bug him or say one word about it for two months ( I know that some of you who personally know me - are falling out of your seats but truly God closed my mouth!). God asked me to be silent and he would convince Bob that Drew was his. So I need to back track some.. In previous conversations about that dream I had been having, I asked Bob "if were to have another son," (insert bob - "but we aren't"), "yes, but if we were what we name him?" So we came up with in 2006, Andrew Hayden (insert Chinese name) Shelton. And we would call him Drew. Hayden is my maiden name. Andrew is a family name.
Okay back on track right..
So to recap for those that get lost easy... like me..
Fall 2006 - have dreams of boy.. we name the boy in dream.
August 2007- God places in Jills heart to adopt..
October 2007 - God puts in Bobs heart to adopt..
So in October 2007 after praying for two months Bob comes to me and asks me to start adoption papers. Next day I have it narrowed down to three agencies. I start ordering all the items needed for dossier.
To make a long story very short, by Jan 2008, we are completely done with our dossier and by complete I mean - homestudy, I-171 approved and in hand (immigration) and our papers are ready to submit to China. One little problem ... God tells me (not audible) to NOT submit and to hold my papers. WHAT!!!????!!!!!!!!
I spoke with a friend of mine Kathy, who confirmed what God was saying and it was then I decided to hold off sending our dossier to anyone.
This is record time for us in completing our dossier and getting back our immigration papers so we are ready to do this yet know we have to listen to God. We gave CHI 1000 dollars so we could be ready! This proves to out of GOd's will and later you will see how we learned that lesson! SO GOd says to wait on submitting our dossier to the agency and we need to hold on to it. I want to submit it to China and get it Logged in! A month LID could mean 6 months time frame these days.. am I forgetting who runs the universe? At times I have to sit and focus my eyes back on Christ. So again HE tells me to wait.. umm this is a recurring theme for several months.. 6 to exact... not to give away the ending.. so waiting and waiting... and again I asked now? can I submit now?
So I wait.. I look at the list and I wait.. two children were offered for adoption to us along the way, and we had to say not this time. They were so perfect yet not for our family. Yet I would have loved to scoop them up. And had I been in disobedience would have. I wanted to with ever ounce of my soul. I wanted to be their momma. I wanted them to call somewhere home. I wanted them to have a family. Just as I do ever orphan in the world. But sadly I had to say no its not him.. That was the weirdest feeling. It touched the very depths of my soul and I cried for days as I turned to the Lord and asked what was going on.. nothing was for sure. these babies needed homes, why was I waiting on a the face of a child I saw in a dream? Have I completely LOST MY MIND?
Thankfully those children found families very quickly and my heart rejoiced for them but I still thought I lost my mind. Thankfully Bob said, this is what God said to do - until He shuts the door - we wait. okay, now I have brought my husband into my craziness. He has lost his mind too! However, this journey has taught us more about trust - in each other and more importantly in the Lord.
I have for the most part.. learned how to be obedient.. so evidently I don't have trust down... yet... so since I am lacking in trusting the Lord.. he had to bring me through a year, almost two years of it with this adoption :O)
I love growing in the Lord. I will be thankful when I can grow at times without the lessons..:O)
So.. fast forward until June... we changed agencies. We left CHI - not b/c anything they did, but b/c the Lord said, go to Great Wall Adoption Agency. I must admit I was a little weary b/c they weren't christian based. I just didn't want to deal with some of the worldly stuff that you don't deal with in a christian based agency. BUT the Lord was CLEARLY directing us. So we lost 1000 dollars (which really hurt us) and we followed. We signed on with Great Wall and told them about our craziness (the entire story- even the parts left out here). We sent them in the big check and all our dossier ect. It was done. We were fully committed. IF our "dream" child did not come on their list, we knew that God had closed that door. If he did, then we knew it was ALL God and no one else. Aren't we suppose to be the salt of the earth? well this has been the beginning of us proclaiming God's goodness and glory ,let me tell you!

ONE WEEK LATER OUR CHILD HIT THE SHARED LIST AND WE WERE MATCHED! It does go a little deeper than that. Two other agencies had "locked him" and other families had reviewed his file.. God is a faithful God! Did he cover their eyes to him? I am in awe! When the last agency unlocked him, our agency locked him (at 2:04 AM he became a Shelton!!) I want to thank everyone who was an answer to prayer and moved when God urged you to! You are a blessing to us!
When our agency sent us an email, at 2:04am, WHAT A BLESSING THEY ARE!! I mean come on, who does that? !!!! and the email said, It is done, he is yours.
I didn't see the writing as my agency writing me.. I felt as if God himself was saying it. and that the angels were singing the most beautiful hymn ever.
That very day (June 17th- Tues) we went climbing on a mountain (in Roanoke, VA) and it was so beautiful. I told Bob, I feel so happy and peaceful. I feel in perfect peace b/c I know that God will give us the child that is meant for our family, who ever he turns out to be. I rest in the assurance that God is in charge - not an agency- not China, not CCAA but God and God alone.
And then ofcourse I love joking with Bob ( and our friend Alice) b/c coming down the mountain their was a Christian biker and her jacket said "For the Son" :O) and then a VERY pregnant lady about to burst (like I felt) had a toddler in head to toe ladybugs! I asked bob if he considered that a sighting.. LOL. He told me I was going to be struck down and moved far way! hehehehhe

Okay, on Wed- June 18, at 2:04 (don't forget the 04) we found out.. then that whole morning we faxed our items needed to TX to our agency. Yes I had them written months ago just in case.. I just had to plug in the Special Need and Chinese Name, DOB, ect.. I know I am a dork. We sent in our LOI (letter of intent) and Nurturing letter that same day. I was running on 4 cups of coffee and 4 hours of sleep by 9 am.. it was a good day!
One week later (June 27th)CCAA requested a doctors letter from me about my hysterectomy (agh) and b/c of GOD our doctor had it to our agency within two hours and it was on its way to China that same day it was requested. Our dossier was sent June 27th to China so it was being hand-delivered Monday (yesterday China time - which is sweeeeeett since it was also Daniel's b-day!)
And the agency expects PA in about a week.. hopefully and prayerfully.

So keep us in your prayers...

OHHHHHHHHHHh I guess I forgot the most important part huh.. the boy in my dream back in the Fall of 2006 is the boy we were matched with :O)
And oh.. part of his name matches the name we gave him before we new him... I want to give you pieces of information so I will save the rest of the story for later..

Love to all... JIll
had to type fast.. kids are hungry..

PS.. if you are interested.. our agency is wonderful. I highly recommend it. THey have gone above and beyond our expectations and I am so grateful. Thank you God for directing our paths and joining us with Great Wall Adoption Agency. I LOVE this agency.

Pray request:
new social worker for update to be fast and smooth
new I171 to be fast and smooth from move
kids to adjust to move (so far so good)
God to receive ALL the glory for our newest son, Drew
family unity as we adjust to new place, state,
goods friends for kids
good church for us all

June 29th - Birthday Boy

First I will say how sorry I am that I fell off the earth for a bit.. traveled on vacation seeing friends and family and then moved and are now unpacking boxes.. Bob just started his first day of work- today.

Yesterday was Daniel's 4th birthday, yet second with us. It was sweet. We went to church and then a place called T-Rex for lunch. I cried as the crew sang happy birthday to him. His face was full of joy and excitement. He is so special and sweet. I am so thankful for this time with him. God has done mighty things to heal his heart both physically and emotionally. He is adjusting well and this move has been the best for our family. When Daniel looked at us, when we told him we had to move, and his little lip quivered and asked us 'me too - do I get to come' - my heart will never be the same. No child at three or any age should ever have to ask his family if they get to move too. They should know without a doubt they all go. A team. Thank you God for answering prayer and showing us glimpses of his heart and allowing us a little a a time so we can better pray for our child and give him grace when needed and enough love for us all until you heal him. thank you for Daniel.

Happy Birthday Daniel, we love you and you will always go with us - you are a Shelton.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008


I am not even sure where to begin... except praising God. We are in awe of the God we serve. There have been so many people praying for us over the last year :O) and especially over the last 48 hours.
I am going to pray over how exactly how to explain our story so that God receives ALL the glory but I know I can say today we sent in our LOI for a child that God indeed intended for our family. He was a little needle in a haystack and God move mountains and touched peoples hearts. He is a mighty God and I am honored to serve Him.
WOOHOO We have a SON!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Proverbs 25:25 We received the "email" call at 2:04 am Eastern time zone that we were matched with our little man! WOOHOO