Almost 5 years ago, a gorgeous baby was born in China. [Photo removed for security.]
For unknown reasons, his biological parents could not care for him. He was eventually delivered to an orphanage. Although he was cared for, he did not have a family to love him like their own. At about the time this photo was taken, his life could have taken a very different path, with years of institutionalization ahead of him.
Yet, around the world, people were already rallying:
- In Oregon, USA, Grace and Hope for Children was working to provide him a foster family.
- A sister agency, Hope4China, located in Scotland, looked for an individual sponsor willing to cover the cost of a foster family.
- The sponsor, a Scottish woman, paid to keep him with a Chinese foster family for what she later would call, "all for the price of a daily newspaper." (She prayed for him and prayed that he would have a loving foster family and a loving adoptive family.)
The 20-day-old infant went to live with a foster family, who loved him like their own. He grew from a beautiful baby to a charming toddler to a thriving 3-year-old. That loving 3-year-old joined our family 18 months ago.
He is a happy, loving, well-adjusted child. We know that the first three years of life are absolutely crucial in a child's development, especially where attachment and relationships are concerned. The loving care he received in foster care has allowed him to go on to form bonds with us. We do not take this for granted.
I won't go on and on...or my computer might short-circuit in a puddle of tears.
Since my son arrived home, we have learned about all the earth angels who cared for him. We didn't know about them when we picked him up, but one internet connection led to another and another and another...til we've fit the pieces of the puzzle together. Angel hands around the world have carried him...physically, spiritually, emotionally, financially. (Someday we will also thank his Heavenly angels! In person, that is.)
For the last year, we have attempted to pay it forward by sponsoring another child from our son's orphanage. The list of children needing foster families continues to grow. Knowing what a huge difference that early, loving experience can make, we want to do more.
SO...that's my long-winded way of saying this...beginning in 2010, all the Amazon commissions we make here will be sent to Grace and Hope. As you probably know, when you click through this site to Amazon they give us a minimal commission at no additional cost to the buyer. That money will now go to Grace and Hope.
End of 2010: we almost covered the yearly sponsorship of one child through website commissions.
During 2011, "Selah," the little girl that we'd been sponsoring was adopted. We began sponsoring a little boy, "Ronan."
End of 2011: Amazon website commissions covered the yearly foster care sponsorship for Ronan along with a small additional donation.
End of 2012: Again, Amazon website commissions covered the yearly foster care sponsorship for Ronan along with a small additional donation.
End of 2013: who knows what is possible??? :)
I appreciate the interest you've shown in this site. It's fun for me. A hobby. And I'd like that time to go toward a worthy cause. My own selfish reasons, really. I'd like to know that somewhere, someday, another kiddo will have an expression like this. [Unfortunately, I had to remove a cute photo of my son after I found a random entry from my blog posted on a trashy site. Bloggers beware.]