Warning: Creating default object from empty value in /home/midwestmagnolia/midwestmagnolia.com/wp-content/themes/canvas/functions/admin-hooks.php on line 160

an announcement, a t-shirt & more of the adoption story

So here we go…some news my family has been bursting at the seams to share with you…

When we thought we weren’t going to get Little Bit, when we were “babysitting” and it was still all looking temporary… we got a phone call.

Someone who knew us and knew our story knew someone else who was looking for someone to adopt a baby.  (For those of you who remember how our oldest boy entered our lives, you may feel like this sounds a bit familiar, and you would be so right.) This friend of the family thought of us and gave me a call.  There was a lot that was said but I am going to respect the privacy of the family and won’t tell their story.

So I immediately ran into the other room and talked to Bart.  How could we say no?  We knew we wanted to grow our family and we knew that it would be through adoption.  We thought Little Bit would be that but we didn’t know any more because Little Bit’s birth mom changed her mind.

How do you say no?

Support adoption for the Lewis family

We didn’t.  We said yes.  Bart said to me, “you do realize that if Little Bit’s birth mom changes her mind that means we will have 2 babies?!?!?!”  Yes I did.  We met with this family, Little Bit in my arms and all, and we all knew right away that this was how it would be.

We’ve been able to walk through this pregnancy with birth mom the ENTIRE way!  Y’all… Bart and I were both there when the doctor determined the sex of the baby.  That’s a moment I thought we would never get!  And we did!  The family has included us in every decision and every step there is to take.  I feel like I have been able to experience pregnancy in a way.  As close to it as I could anyway.

And before you ask… IT’S A BOY!  Another boy for this family.  God is too funny.

Now…2 adoptions = 2 adoption fee’s.

We were blessed beyond belief by someone who helped us with funds for Little Bit.  We know that God always provides when he has a plan!  We are counting on God to provide for adoption of our sweet “May Baby” (he is due in May and coming up with 3 boy names is hard y’all).

Bart and I thought of a tee shirt fundraiser. Pretty fitting for us since he has to do t-shirt’s all the time for the student ministry and I like to create inspirational prints.

These shirts were inspired greatly by our journey through infertility and adoption!  We can do hard things…with God!  Most recently though, I have been greatly inspired watching our May Baby’s birth mom.  She is a strong strong girl and she can do hard things!  God is using her right now in a mighty way and I believe he will continue to use her through out her life.

Support adoption for the Lewis family~ buy this tee and all the proceeds help bring baby Lewis home. teespring.com-lewisfamilyadoption


We designed this for both men and women.  I have a more “girly” design that I still may put on a shirt once this campaign is over. We are using a company called tee spring that allows you to sell these shirts through them so that you do not have to pay for the shirts up front!  It’s a brilliant idea for families and people who need to raise support.

This campaign will last for 14 days. So on the 15th day they will no longer be available.  All of the proceeds from each shirt sold will go to helping my family pay for the adoption of our sweet May Baby.

Support adoption for the Lewis family~ buy this tee and all the proceeds help bring baby Lewis home. teespring.com-lewisfamilyadoption


Whether you buy a tee or not, we would absolutely love and appreciate your prayers and support. Please share this post, share the link  teespring.com/lewisfamilyadoption, on facebook and twitter.  Pin these images and put the link in the description.  Your support means the world!

My prayer is that somehow after our adoptions are complete I can use these shirts to help another family pay for their adoption. Adoption is expensive!  And that cannot stand in the way of people bringing babies and children home into their families forever.

Comments { 1 }

adoption is hard but adoption is beautiful – part 3

This day will be a day that I will always remember.

Our adoption with Little B and our adoption with Little Bit were so different.  I expected to feel the way I did when we adopted Little B because it’s what I knew.  However… God again used this to break my heart for what breaks his.

The homeless, the helpless, the least of these.  God has taught me so much through my children and I am so grateful.  I am grateful for their story’s.

For our story as a family…

Adoption is hard but adoption is beautiful by Melissa Lewis


As Bart and I were driving with both kids to the agency office we talked.  We talked about how we would go into this meeting.  We talked about how he was worried about me.  We talked about how I was fine. We talked about all the things I had to tell her about him like how he liked to be held and how he had to be bounced when he cried. We knew that we were just “babysitting” and she was going to ask for him back. Today would be that day.

We talked about how we were done “babysitting” because it was just too hard.  No more back and forth.  We had to move forward to grow our family.

We arrived.  We waited.  And we waited some more.

We were frustrated.  In retrospect I know now that we were anxious and sad but to get through and survive this situation we couldn’t acknowledge those feeling.  So frustration was just easier.

Finally she arrived.  She was late because she had no resources to get there other then the city bus and she missed the first bus so she had to wait for the next one.  WOW!  Didn’t I feel like a jerk.  For some reason I kept focusing on her feet.  It was October and it had just gotten cold outside.  I kept thinking about how her feet must have been cold in her flip flops especially having to wait outside forever for the bus.

I began to see her as just a girl.  A teenager really who didn’t have anything, anything except what she could carry in 1 bag and the bottom of her 1 year old’s stroller.  I began to see her as Jesus saw her and not as an irresponsible mom who I felt was using us for the “hard” time of having a newborn at home.

We shared stories and she shared stories.  She told us about the night she brought Little Bit “home” from the hospital.  That’s a story I hope to not be able to remember one day.

She asked me to take Little Bit from her because he was still so little and she didn’t know how to hold him and she was too nervous.

She smiled wide and told us how blown away she was to see Bart holding him and rocking him.  To see him talking “baby talk” to him and kissing him.  She didn’t know that dad’s did that!

My husband then said something that changed everything.

“How can WE help YOU not be nervous?”

In the second that question was out of his mouth I knew that God wasn’t going to have us leave there without this baby.  In that second my heart was His.  In that second Bart and I looked at each other and we knew we had to help her and help Little Bit, we had to be there for her and for him, we had to do what was hard to do what was right.

Then she asked us if we could take him back home with us.  Just to let her think about things for a while.  She told us that she still had the same feeling that she was supposed to have us adopt him but she just was scared to just do it.

She held him after all.  He was created from her body.  She loved him!  How could she not.

But she couldn’t care for him.  She knew we could.  She knew we loved him.  She knew.  We knew.

That day, God reminded me and showed me even more how this is all so much bigger then me.  Little Bit’s story isn’t just about me wanting a baby.  But it was about God showing me all the more how we are created to care for each other.

We are created to LOVE EXTRAVAGANTLY!

People will question you.  Wise and caring people will tell you that you don’t have to do this.  But when God put’s a burden on your heart there is absolutely no denying it.  You can try to ignore it all you want but it doesn’t go away. And ignoring it makes you miserable.

But listening to it, and then following what God wants you to do, will bring you the most amazing gift you never even knew existed!

THAT DAY started out with us driving to the agency to take back the baby we were babysitting.  That day my mom was packing away ALL the baby stuff and storing it away so we wouldn’t have to see it when we got home.  That day started off with us having a plan of our own.

THAT DAY ended with us texting my mom… “guess who we are bring home with us…”

The adoption of my son was so much bigger then me. Adoption is hard but adoption is beautiful by Melissa Lewis on Just Melissa.

THAT DAY ended with us leaving the agency as a family of four knowing that God was still working.  Knowing that this wouldn’t be easy but it would be right.  Knowing that Little Bit was had a birth mom that loved and cared about him so much that she gave him to us to love and care for him in a way that she couldn’t.

God taught me A LOT that day.

Comments { 1 }

do i deserve to be blessed?

Do you believe you deserved to be blessed?  I mean, maybe not deserve – that words seems so strong, but maybe do you feel like when God does bless you it’s okay to accept that blessing graciously?

I realized this morning that I struggle with this.  A few very very close people to me have noticed this and told me I have a problem with this.  I trust their wisdom so I heard them but didn’t really get it.

Until this morning.

I was up exhausted from having yet another sleepless night with Little Bit.  At 4:45 he finally fell asleep for the third time and I had my hand on my door knob to walk into my bedroom and crawl back on my freshly scented lavender pillow and warm covers.  I thought to myself, “I can squeeze in another 2 hours of sleep till I have to wake up Little B and get him ready for school and begin the day.”

But I couldn’t.  Something Someone else strongly pulled me away and I knew where I should go instead.  Though my brain and body were so so tired, my heart longed to hear what God had to say.  And I’m so grateful.  I don’t listen to my heart every morning.  Unfortunately my exhaustion wins the battle and I sleep and hit snooze longer then I should.  Guilt was the name of my game when I was in this stage with Little B but now I know that it’s a season and God doesn’t want me to feel guilty.  He understands what lack of sleep can do to a Mama y’all.  I believe that.  So I no longer feel guilty that I don’t wake up every morning before the rest of my family does to have my time a lone with God and The Word at my special spot in the house. But I do miss it.  It’s precious time and I long for it.

Ok, back to my question.  I’m serious and I would love your thoughts on this…

As I was reading, I was brought back to a verse in Luke.

Blessed is she who believed, for there will be a fulfillment of those things which were told her from the Lord.

~Luke 1:45

You are blessed, because you believed that the Lord would do what he said (New Living)

When I say I was brought back I mean God has used this verse several times to remind me of His promise for me.  The first time He used this verse was ONE OF  the hardest days.  I was probably at one of my lowest points in my faith thinking that God was never going to give us a baby – a family.  And then Jaime and I were reading our Daily Lite together before work and she read this verse to me.  That same exact day on my way home from work I got the phone call about adopting a baby.

Then again, while waiting for Little Bit this last year, God brought me back here to Luke 1.  And I was reminded of God’s faithfulness.  I was reminded that I could trust Him and believe in His promise.

And this morning…here I sit.  And in front of me is this word about Mary and how God “will bless her because she believed that God would do what He said.”

Y’all I know God has blessed me.  I have the most gorgeous, amazing, tender-hearted 5 year old boy in the world and now I have a 6 month old little boy who makes my heart explode every time I look at him.  On top of that I have an amazing and godly husband.  Wow!

But when I look at this verse it’s so hard for me.  I know that I believe God will do what he say’s.  I KNOW it because He has done it time and again.  But if I were to say to you that God has blessed me because I believed what he said I would feel like I was being… haughty , for lack of a better word here.

But it’s not haughty.  It’s truth.  Why do I struggle with this?  Do you struggle with this?

I don’t think we are meant to.

I think (and this is what my sweet friend and mentor said to me once) that I have a problem accepting God’s blessings.  Like I feel guilty sometimes when I know he is blessing me.

Growing up, my Dad wasn’t in the picture and when he was it wasn’t healthy or good.  My mom was a single mom who worked 2 jobs.  My grandmother helped her raise us every other weekend and during the summers when my Dad was supposed to have us.  My point is that my sister and I weren’t raised receiving gifts.  It just wasn’t apart of our lives.

Now I’m not talking birthdays and Christmas here.  These are holidays where giving and getting gifts is what you do.

I’m talking about gifts for no reason other then someone wants to lavish there love on you in the form of something special and tangible that you can see and touch and feel.  A gift that is a reminder of that person’s love for you for no reason other then you are you and they love you because of that.

Am I making sense?  I hope so.  Because I feel like a light bulb went off for me this morning.

I think that sometimes I push God’s blessings away.  Meaning also that sometimes I push God’s expression of love for me away because I feel like I’m unworthy.

I’m just Melissa.  People don’t give ME gifts just because.  People do that for other people.  So God shouldn’t bless me just because, right? Surely he wouldn’t give us a second BABY.  Surely he wouldn’t PROVIDE a way for us to adopt twice, maybe 3 times someday.  Surely he wouldn’t….

And when he does I should keep it to myself because maybe other people will think I’m boasting or being prideful.  When really I should tell the whole world so they will know that THIS IS WHO GOD IS!

God LAVISHES his love on us.  He does this sometimes through unexpected and undeserved blessings.

This is our father.  This is my Dad!  He gives me gifts sometimes for no reason other then I am his little girl and he wants to see me smile.  Not because he has to.  But because IT IS WHO HE IS.

So I’m thinking that this is something big.  Something I need to talk to him more about.  I’m thinking it would make Him happy if I gladly accepted his gifts – just like I would feel when giving my children gifts for no reason other then I love them and want to see them smile and happy and feel loved like crazy.

Comments { 2 }