I have been volunteering for the wonderful organization, Red Thread Sessions, for about 5 months now. During my journey with Red Thread Sessions, I have met some of the most amazing, loving, sincere and faithful people. Brad and Monica are no exception. They have four, soon to be five biological children, and 4 adopted children. The twins, Reuben and Arlo, are the two adorable little boys they just brought home from Ethiopia in June.
I met them on a Sunday afternoon in August to so their photo shoot at a city park, once Holland, Michigan’s founders home. I really had no idea what to expect before the shoot, especially with that many children. But to my amazement and pleasure, the children were the most well behaved children I have ever met! Brad and Monica have done such a great job with their home and their children.
I asked Monica to write a sort of “Journal” entry for me to share in their Red Thread blog, so here it is…
“In cleaning out some old stuff the other day, I found a paper I wrote in my senior year of college. It talked about how my fiancé (now my husband of nearly 16 years) and I did not want to have children and it detailed our reasons. I took it to show my husband, laughing all the way, because we are expecting our 9th child this November. We have four children adopted from Ethiopia and four (soon to be five) biological. Solomon and Naomi came home from Ethiopia three and a half years ago and Reuben and Arlo just came home in June.
Oddly enough, our adoption journey started as a Disney vacation savings account. We had only three children at the time and were excitedly planning our first-ever trip to Disney. Before that could happen, though, God let us know he had other plans. He made his calling for us to adopt very clear, and it also became clear that our vacation savings account name would be changed to “adoption savings”. We just as excitedly began working towards our adoption, but the total cost would be much, much more and we had no idea where the money would come from. That first adoption was very much about stepping out in faith to what God had called us to. We still can’t account for how all the money came in, but miraculously, we had every penny we needed just when we needed it.
Our second adoption was just a continuation of that faith journey. People always tell us what a blessing we are to the kids we adopted, but we are truly the blessed ones. To be able to call these four amazing kids our children is a joy and privilege. We have also been blessed in the many ways that adoption has helped us grow our parenting, our faith, and our love.”
One more of the twins having fun with daddy’s shoes!