Four Plus More

http://www.fourplusmore.com

A family of four expanded our hearts and our family when we brought home two older siblings from Ethiopia. Living debt-free and working full-time to advocate for millions of orphans left behind.

Julie is a winner of Top 25 Adoption Blogs by Parents

Why did you decide to adopt?

As Christians my husband and I had been studying what the Bible has to say about caring for orphans and widows. Obviously adoption is just one way that people can do that and is not necessarily right for everyone. As we continued to pray about what our role might be, God really moved our hearts toward adoption. Honestly it was a bit of a surprise as we had thought our family was "done". But God just opened our hearts and suddenly our family felt incomplete and we knew that we wanted to adopt. We had good friends who started the adoption process a few months before us and so we were able to watch the process and ask lots of questions. We hadn't decided where we were going to adopt from until God led us to our two kids who were on a waiting child's list. That's when we started the process to adopt them from Ethiopia.

What was the biggest challenge or hurdle you faced in the adoption process?

Being patient is always hard, especially as we "knew" our kids the whole time we going through the process. But I would say the biggest hurdle was paying for the adoption. Our family lives debt-free and so we knew that we did not want to go into debt to pay for the adoption. Our original plan to pay for the adoption was thrown out the window when my husband left his job 3 months into the process and our income was cut by 2/3rds. But we got creative and buckled down and were able to pay for our adoption 100%. This spring I published a book called "Adopt Without Debt: Creative Ways to Cover the Cost of Adoption" to help other people facing this same struggle. (www.adoptwithoutdebt.com) Finances are a huge hurdle for so many people and they shouldn't be.

When and how did you (or will you) tell your child they were adopted?

Obviously since they were adopted at age 6 and 8 they know they're adopted. We love talking about their birth family and their time in Ethiopia and plan to take them back when they are a little bit older.