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Showing posts from April, 2013

Adoption Fundraisers Report April 2013

Over the past several months fundraisers have been my part time job.  Asking for money is not something that we like to do, or want to do, but when two of your children born of your heart are waiting for you across the ocean, we will do whatever it takes in order to reach them!  Thank you for understanding that we aren't trying to overwhelm you with pleas for money, but we are trying to thank you for your donations by giving you the benefits of enjoying the products and services offered by the fundraisers.  A win-win we'll call it.  Great deals, goods, and services for you and finances for us to get one step closer to bringing our children home to their forever family.  Most importantly, a wonderful opportunity for you to join along side of us in helping us to reach these children and bring them home!  And we deeply thank you!!!

Here are the blessings that we have received thus far by way of fundraisers and givings.  We also hope that this report can be helpful to other adop…

Easter Photo Shoot Fundraiser

(listing a post here to use in another post about our fundraisers reports-sorry for the 'old' news)

My 9 year old daughter came up with this fundraiser idea for our family adoption funds.  My daughter, Quinn, has two precious little rabbits that she cares for.  One is a big white fella and the other is a tan dwarf rabbit named Cinnamon.  Quinn had the idea to do a photo shoot over Easter time and to use Cinnamon in the photos. It just happened to be that two friends of mine are very talented and professional on-site photographers.  I asked them if they would be willing to do a shoot for us for a fundraiser and they both generously donated their time and talents to this day!

We advertised on our face book and by word of mouth to have a total of 15 people for an all day shoot on a Saturday.  The kids and I cleared our dinning room out and made a set-up for the photos.  That is our best location for natural lighting coming in from the French doors. One photographer friend took th…

Home Study Progress!

This week I put a lot of pressure on myself as I was feeling a tug of the spirit that it was time to move on, and well, things weren't moving on.  We have completed our home study requirements since Feb. 9th and have been waiting on the agency to complete the write-up.  Waiting, waiting..... and meanwhile we've been busy collecting other papers and documents for the next step.

I made a few contacts this week to check on our progress and basically to share my mama's heart that weeks are turning into months and from my perspective, this is all the more time that our children can't be home with us.  Praying daily and hoping that the papers would get through to us this week, well it's Friday morning, April 26th, and YIPEE!  Our home study was in my e-mail inbox ready for us to review before the final draft is notarized and mailed to us!!  Ahhh, I was literally clapping at the computer screen and then held back the tears of joy.  Praise to God that there was some sort…

Mama's Nest

Inspired by the scripture in Matthew 10:21 that says, "You are more valuable to Him then many sparrows."  And after putting together odds and ends of creative ideas from friends and on-line crafters, my daughters and I have come up with a team effort fundraiser!  Mama's Nest Necklaces.

NEW 3/2014: Visit our Etsy Shop to see  many more options and styles!

These necklaces are handmade by the Vogtman girls.  Each nest is unique with minor differences than what you may see from these sample photos.  Yours will be lovely!

These nests are approximately 3/4" wide and contain 3 eggs, but you can specify if you'd like more (up to 5 with no additional charge) or less based on how many 'little ones' you care for in your Mama's nest.  The chain is a 16" adjustable length chain with a clasp closure.  The silver metals are sliver plated, and the bronze are antiqued bronze.  The beads are African Turquoise, America…

Be still!

Our seven year old boy is just young years of boy energy and adventure all wrapped up in one strong body including a strong spirit!  The energy that he burns each day should be bottled and marketed as a stimulant.  Calories melting away like that would get rid of those last few pounds we'd all like to lose.  Roosky is an inspiration to the family to keep going and keep up the pace!

Our biggest adventure with with this well-hearted, spunky, ball of energy boy is to teach him to self-control and moderation. When is enough enough?  "Don't over-do-it" is a commonly repeated phrase in our house.

No matter what the sun dial reads, this boy goes 100%.  Bedtime is 99% of the time a struggle to get him to settle down.  After the bedtime family routine of singing songs and praying together, Roosky goes to his room with a timer set for 'quiet time' before he hits the covers.  Hoping that this gives him a chance to wind-down, that timer will ring and he&#…

We picked names!

Over the last month we have been having family discussions and debates over the names of the children.  Names are very special to us as our biological children all carry names that tell a story and have a unique meaning to who they are. We wanted to choose names that were true to Ethiopia, true to the children's heritage, but names that had an "American" sound to them too (basically so we could pronounce it).  It will be a process enough for the children to be different by race and origin let alone different with a name that would constantly get the response of "What? How do you say that again?"  I understand there are different opinions on this, but this is our choice to re-name the children and open their new chapter of life with us. We will treasure their birth names and have intentions of using their birth name as their middle name.  
There is a family in our local area who are from Ethiopia.  It has been a blessing to get to know them and they have taught…

Little Readers

These two funny kids grabbed some of my old books and decided to 'read' to each other!  They had the best stories!  The littlest one started and said, "Once upon a time far far away..." then the older one took over and said ...."there were two friends who lived far far away..and there were many games...far far away."  Then our daughter said, "and Jesus will be with them...."

I know the children over hear many conversations about the adoption and the process that we are in.  We are guarded with our words knowing that little ears are near and little minds are active to take even minor information and turn it into something major just because it is unfamiliar to them.  In times like these when the kids are playing or story telling about adoption are times when I know they are understanding and internalizing what they hear talk of.  It comforts my heart to know that their little hearts are being moved and stretched to understand what adoption means …

Service...It's Not What but Why?

A first blog post by Todd!!
Service…It’s not What but Why?  Through our journey of adoption, God has really been working on my heart, too.  (Hello all, this is the husband of the outfit speaking)  God has been showing me that it’s not “what” you do to serve Him, but “why” you serve Him that makes the difference. 
Do you ever wonder what purpose you have here on earth?  Do you ever wish you knew God’s will for your life, or do you ever wonder why “the church” is important?  If you are a Christian trying to follow God’s plan, you’ve probably asked yourself these questions.  I have.  Sometimes as believers in Christ we make our lives way too difficult.  We look for the next meeting to attend, the next music ministry to sign up for, the next children’s choir for our children, the next “big thing” to do for God, but we too often forget to look for that next person who needs Christ!  As Christians it is very easy to think we are pleasing God through our actions (and if we’re brutally honest…

God Button

I think most of us know the "Easy" button from Staples.  "That was easy" it says when you give it a tap. My  kids think that is the funniest thing and they love to test them all while we wait in line at Staples, just in case one might say something different!  Well, what if we had a "God button" ? You know, give all your cares to Him, just let Him carry our burdens that He so willingly would take from us.

In my weird kinda deep thinking mind that sporadically finds it's way out in my fried brain, I thought about that easy button.  It was actually while standing in line in Staples with 4 kids picking up the over-sized lolly pops and asking me to read the flavors while listening to the all the easy buttons that they just tested.  And a not-so-kid-friendly old guy glaring at my crew (and probably thinking "must be home-schooled" and "that lady is crazy") just to find out that the person in front of me has an item without a tag....I …

Mailbox Blessing

Today there was a surprise in the mailbox.  A surprise in many ways.  We received a check from a church that I'm not sure the connection of how they know us or about our adoption.  It was so amazing that this church reached out to financially support the adoption that it really encouraged us and reminded us of God's provisions, God's blessings, and God's work through His people.  It's the body of Christ! It's what we have been desiring and praying that God's work would be done by the joining of believers to support a cause like helping God's little children, the orphans, find a home and a family.  Thank you to this church that you reached beyond the walls of your building to serve those who aren't "members" or "in the union list" or "passed the meeting of approvals" or "an xyz (fill in the denomination)" people, but that you did see a purpose and a cause, a mission for helping the orphans and you moved on it.…

Benefit on the Lawn for Adoption from Ethiopia!

UPDATE:  The event was an amazing hit all praise to God!! Read more here.

We are excited to announce this fundraiser for the adoption! And very grateful for two friends who had a heart for this cause and moved on it by creating this event! Jason and Don! Here it is:

Benefit on the Lawn for Orphan Adoption from Ethiopia
Todd and Erin Vogtman's eyes have been opened to the orphan crisis and the extreme states of poverty in Africa and abroad.  This local couple can no longer resist the tug on their hearts to open up their home and give hope to the hopeless and love to the orphaned children in need of a forever family.

Please join us to support this family in their pursuit to adopt two siblings from Ethiopia.
Bring your favorite lawn chair and enjoy an evening of food, live music, fun, and inspiration!  All Welcome!
Date: Saturday, May 4th 2013 Place: 715 Memorial Avenue, Cumberland, MD Time: 6-8 p.m.
Food provided by Queen City Chick-fil-A!  Free Admission! Gift basket drawings! Door Prize…

Save the Goldfish!

I went to the eye doctor yesterday and couldn't help but to think of what an absolute luxury that was.  Do you know how much those pieces of equipment costs and it cost me all of $15 for the service?  I couldn't help but to think of those who don't have insurance, who don't have the funds to even go to doctor when they desperately need one, for those around the world who will die because they cannot in all their dreams pay a $2 prescription med costs for a malaria pill that would save their life!

The doctor to patient ration in Ethiopia is 1:42,000. 1 Doctor to 42,000 people. 

94% of births do not have a skilled attendant present.

Life expectancy is age 57 with nearly 1/2 the population under the age of 14. 

40% of children under 5 are moderately to severely underweight.  

Eye appointments? A luxury.  Insurance? A blessing.  Helping others who have not?  A gift of life because to ignore the help really does mean death to another person.  Sponsor a child or give a one time…

Crafty Up-Cycle

I was inspired by the many creative Etsy people who make items for their adoptions that I thought I'd try a couple of their projects for myself!  Well, here you have it! Africa up-cycled bottle caps turned into magnets.  I used a Mod-Podge product designed specifically for giving that glass look over a bezel or concave item.  The first attempts failed because the paper got too much of a wet look, buckled, and curled up.  Next round I found the solution to be to first seal the paper layer down with regular decoupage, let that dry, then apply the Mod-Podge product.  They turned out well and it was very easy, but there are some air bubbles that I couldn't avoid.  The necklace bezels turned out too, but again, there is an air bubble near the west coast that I didn't see coming.  If I'd do this again, I would try a different product for the glass look. All in all it was inexpensive and fun to do!  

Where's Waldo?

Where in the world are we anyway?

If you have been stopping in lately, or visiting us on our facebook page, you will know where in the world we are in our adoption process.  Still, sometimes we feel like we are standing still smack in the middle of no-where with empathy for "Where's Waldo." Waldo was a children's book character who was hidden in overcrowded illustrations as the reader was challenged to find Waldo. We know how you feel brother Waldo.  Waldo knows his place in this world, but do we?

We wanted to give a clear update on our adoption process, possible timetable, and finances as we currently stand.

The Process:
1. We have completed our home study and are waiting for the final report to be here in our hands.  Our case worker is working as we speak (hopefully) and most likely is only days away from sending us the draft.  This will be reviewed by us, and then our placement agency before notarized copies will make it all official.
2.  After our official home…