Wow. It is an understatement to say that we have been humbled over the last month or so since we announced our plans to adopt internationally. The comments, emails, phone calls, facebook messages, etc. have been overwhelming. Thank you so much for the support. It has truly been a life-changing time for us, and we haven't even adopted our child/children yet! From the bottom of our hearts, we cannot say thank you enough.
We have gotten a lot of questions recently about fundraising efforts and how our friends and family can support us financially. First of all, thank you for asking about this. We do have a plan (that we know will be fluid and ever-changing!) and would love to share that with you.
First, we have developed a strict budget that will allow us to set aside a significant amount of money on a monthly basis for our adoption. For us, this means spending less money on "wants" and taking more care to assess a need versus a want. We've decided to cut out a lot of the things that we have become accustomed to doing, like weekend getaways, girls' nights, paintball weekends, etc. We have also taken a summer vacation nearly every year we've been married and this year we're thinking Indianapolis sounds like a sweet destination :). Scott's parents have generously offered to take our entire family on a cruise in March, but aside from that, we plan to stay put at home this year. We have re-evaluated what we spend our money on and will continue doing that in a more intentional way than we have in the past.
Scott is currently in the process of studying to get his insurance license to work part time with Mary's brother, Larry, in his office. This will be an opportunity for Scott to put some extra money into our adoption account as any income from that endeavor will go straight there.
We also have a couple of fundraising events currently in the works, and a couple in the future where our friends and family can get involved.
We are currently planning a trivia night/silent auction on March 7th (see previous post!). We are collecting silent auction items and selling tickets to the event. We hope to not only raise money for our adoption through this event, but have a great time as well! Larry Jr. and Larry Sr. are hosting the event... it'll be fun no matter what :). Let us know if you're interested in joining us for this fun evening!
We have purchased 150 bracelets from the company MudLOVE. This an Indiana-based company that sells the bracelets pictured below. MudLOVE is set up to help people with fundraising - we purchase the bracelets at a bulk price and sell them for $10 - this allows us to make a profit for our adoption account through the bracelet sales. The benefit to this fundraiser is two fold - they help us raise money for our adoption, and MudLOVE also provides a week of clean drinking water to someone in Africa for every product purchased. How great is that? Since we just launched our trivia night/silent auction on facebook, we haven't posted a lot about the bracelets, but if you're interested, just let us know! These are the words that are available - they come in a variety of colors (more than are shown in the picture)! The words are on a piece of clay and the bands are adjustable elastic.
We also have plans to have a garage sale or two this summer with items we have around our house and items that family/friends are looking to get rid of. This fall, a dance-a-thon is in the works, too. T-shirt sales have been another idea we are considering. As the process moves forward, we are going to constantly evaluate where we are financially and how to best move forward.
Lastly, we have had several inquiries on whether or not we have set up a fundraising account people are able to use to donate directly to our adoption. We have been working to find the best option for this and became aware of AdoptTogether - an online fundraising platform that allows donations to be tax-deductible. We were recently approved for this account! If you are interested, please check out our link below:
Again, we want to thank you all for your support. We have been overwhelmed by the thoughtful messages we have received and are truly brought to our knees by the encouragement we have felt.
Scott and Mary
ps: of course we will post again soon, but things are moving forward in our adoption process and we're in full swing!!