Adoption Update

I sent out an adoption update recently via e-mail, but thought I should update it, add a couple things and post it on here. Even if you received it, note the new things below (like updated numbers and a new fundraising opportunity for us).

The courts in Ethiopia have opened back up! For those of you that don’t know, we received our adoption referral for a little boy on July 15th, just before the courts closed on August 6th. We have been anxiously waiting and have cherished the pictures and videos that others have sent our way of our little son Phineas. We are so excited and cannot wait to see his face in person! There is a great possibility that our wait may be over soon. Now that the courts are open we may receive a court date any day and be flying to meet Phin in person for the first time.

The past few months many of you have written to ask me where we stand in our fundraising, so I wanted to send an update. As we near the end of this process, we realized we were about $8,000 short of our total expenses. A couple of months ago Kelly thought we had raised all that we needed, primarily through the generous gifts of others. We had it all worked out on an excel spreadsheet, but then I noticed that something was missing, The Second Trip. A policy that was changed midway thru our adoption process now requires an entire second trip to Ethiopia. The first trip is when we officially adopt him in court. The second trip is when we return to have our appointment with the US Embassy and bring our son home. So, basically, we were short what it will cost for us to travel the second time. THE GOOD NEW NEWS is that friends and family have sent $2000 to us in the past two weeks, and many more have told us the intend to order t-shirts from us, which will shrink the gap further.

Some have asked how they can give or what fundraisers we have, so here are 4 quick options:
1) Direct Donations: You can always donate directly to us using PayPal on Kelly’s blog or by sending a check to 407 Martinsburg Rd., Mt. Vernon, Ohio, 43050. Don’t worry. When we get random checks from people we usually figure out it is for the adoption and not for more toilet paper.
2) T-Shirts: SHOW HOPE (Steven Curtis Chapman's organization that gave us a 3k grant!), sent out an email with t-shirt fundraiser info. If we sell their shirt for around $25 a piece, we can clear a $15 profit per shirt (not including shipping them to people). We are able to pre-order, which is a big bonus (that way we don't get stuck with a bunch of shirts and wasted money). We just launched this idea on Facebook tonight and have already had a huge response. Here's the link to their website if you want to take a look at the shirt. We would most likely sell the black ones since they are the cheapest and we would make the most money off of them. Christmas is just around the corner, so don’t be afraid to buy one for each of your family!
3) Just Love Coffee: Don't forget you can get your caffeine fix and support our adoption at the same time.. and the coffee is Fair Trade Certified. Visit
Many of you have already enjoyed these beans and we thank you!
4) NEW - Coincidence Maybe CDs: Some friends of ours who make up the music group Coincidence Maybe have given us several copies of two of their CDs (one of the group and one solo album of Denver Shindle). They are allowing us to sell these and use all of the profits towards our adoption. If you would like to order a set of these two CDs for $15+shipping e-mail me at
5) Garage Sale: My parents and their small group recently held a garage sell and raised over $500 in one day. This was a huge surprise and blessing to us! We have heard of other churches doing this, even during bad weather and just hosting it in their fellowship hall or gym. If you have the energy to host something like this for our adoption in your area, please do! Let us know if there is anything we can do to make it happen. We can send pictures of our family sitting around the dinner table with an empty chair… just kidding. Seriously, don’t ask for the picture.

Thank you for all of your prayers, support and financial blessings. We have been overwhelmed and amazed by the support or our family and friends through this entire journey. We can’t wait to welcome Phin home and we can’t wait for you to meet him!

Blessings to you and yours!
The Smith Clan

P.S. We are also all moved into our new home, which is VERY close to work! Stop by if you are in town... and we know you. :-)
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