~Welcome to the story of our journey to save another Eastern European princess with down syndrome and an older child! In 2010, we traveled half way around the world to adopt a twenty month old (now three years old) precious girl with down syndrome, Gabby. Now, less than two years later, we are on a mission to adopt another precious little girl that is in the same orphanage Gabby was in, Ava. Not only Ava, but yes....one more "Elaine". That means we are trying to adopt two more children!!!! If you are unaware of the situation in most, if not all Eastern European countries, please continue to read. In these countries children with down syndrome and special needs are most often placed in orphanages and if not adopted by the age of four or five (depending on circumstance), they are transferred to institutions where the likely-hood of them ever seeing outside of the institution walls remain slim to none. Many will live very short lives due to lack of appropriate care. Please don't allow this to happen to our sweet Ava! "Elaine" was fortunate enough to escape a very bad institution but nonetheless is in an institution and is an older child whose chances of coming home if we can't adopt her are not good. Having adopted and fully funding ourselves the previous adoption such a short time ago, we will need all of the help we can get to reunite these two angels and bring their big sister home. We utilized all extra resources with our first adoption and so fundraising is essential with this adoption. Whether it be from your prayers, helping to fundraise, buying from fundraisers, donations, etc...your help is much appreciated and is very much needed in order to make this dream a reality. Thank you so much for following our journey~


 ***UPDATE: From here until the end of our adoption (which hopefully wont be too much longer) we will be giving all updates on our adoption on a private facebook group. Alot of families are choosing to do this now because of privacy issues for the children as well as the adoption process. If you are interested in joining this group, please email me at jsgamiddleton@gmail.com  However, I will have to ask a couple of questions if I don't know you :) I hope you understand.

We are requesting a $10 donation from anyone wanting to join the group thus being able to follow our journey in country and seeing the children.  This will be a very special time for us, the children, and anyone that has followed our journey thus far.  We are requesting the donation for a few reasons. (1.) We are not fully funded and we are in desperate need of funding. (2.) Most anyone can afford the very reasonable $10 donation request as $10 can be spent so fast and easily on basically nothing these days :)  (3.) Many people have followed us (both in real life friends and new friends made online that are adopting, have adopted, want to adopt, or advocate for adoption). Most of our monetary donations and support has come from total strangers! If everyone that has followed our story would have donated just $10, we'd be funded by now but I don't think people take the time to think about just how little they can give and it make a difference. So please, join us in finishing up this journey. Who wouldn't want to see the happy ending after coming this far? :)

Thank you all so much for your support and I hope you will continue to support us through this last piece....

September 14, 2012 ~MATCHING GRANT~

 Update: Matching grant met!

With a very short time left to travel and with still needing more than $5,000 a small group of women put some of their funds together and has given us a matching grant opportunity. If we can get $610 in donations by Sunday night at 11:50 p.m. these ladies will match the $610, allowing us to take $1,220 from our total. 

We need this desperately for our girls!!!! PLEASE CONSIDER HELPING by donating to our FSP that reads "Middleton Yulia Grant" on the home page of our blog, right side. 

Anyone donating between now and Sunday night will receive double the amount of entries into our giveaway!!!!!

Thanks so much for your help!!!!

 September 9, 2012 ~Kisses in the Wind~

I hold you in my heart and touch you in my dreams.
You are here each day with me, at least that's how it seems.

I know you wonder where we are... what's taking us so long.
But remember child, I love you so and God will keep you strong.

Now go outside and feel the breeze and let it touch your skin...
Because tonight, just as always, I blow you kisses in the wind.

May God hold you in His hand until I can be with you.
I promise you, my darling, I'm doing all that I can do.

Very soon, you'll have a family for real, not just pretend.
But for tonight, just as always, I blow you kisses in the wind.

May God wrap you in His arms and hold you very tight.
And let the angels bring the kisses that I send to you each night.

September 2, 2012 ~Praying for a miracle~

Yes, it seems like a miracle at this point! As of now, a $6,000 miracle! WE ARE TRAVELING IN APPROXIMATELY 6 weeks. MAYBE LESS!!! That means that this is our last full month to fundraise for our girls!  Really, we need to be funded at least a week before we leave so that we have time to make the transfer from our fsp/grant and have the bank to order our new bills (required by the country we are traveling to). 

It is beyond unreal that if we can just get over this financial hurdle that in just a few weeks we will be on our way to meet our girls! I get giddy just thinking about it! As a matter of fact, its ALL I THINK ABOUT! However, its hard to be as excited as I can be or want to be because I keep seeing 6,000 dollar signs standing in between us and them! Sad I know....but that is the reality of most adoptions! It actually costs MONEY, thousands of dollars in fact, to rescue a child! Strange to think about but what doesn't cost money these days? All I can really think of that doesn't cost is praying and praying is what we are doing! We are praying for a miracle! 

PLEASE, if you can donate ANY amount, do so! I will say it until we are funded...every penny counts. Nothing is too small! 

Will you be a part of the miracle we are praying for?

August 23, 2012 ~A momma's love~

Sometimes I think it can be so easy to get caught up in the day to day activities and be so busy that a person can forget the simple things in life. I'm not just talking about the BIG IMPORTANT things but just the "little" things that really aren't so little. I think sometimes we (moms) can forget just how important our job is and how privileged we are to get to be moms. I know we know it but how often do we think of it? Well, I was reminded today!

A fellow adoptive momma/advocate introduced me to another fellow adoptive momma who.....get this.....MET OUR SWEET "ELAINE"!  Here is one of the things she said about her, "She is sweet and so ready to have a momma. She is also visibly happy that (our child) has a family but I can tell she is sad for herself." 

What did this do for me? ALOT actually! The first thing it did was cause me to cry tears of joy and get overly excited. The second thing it did was reassured me she was okay in the physical sense. The last thing and the thing that is sticking with me the most, is it reminded me of the fact that "Elaine" has been waiting far too many YEARS for a momma, a family, and for LOVE! Can you imagine her just sitting there watching this other momma come and play with her child and knowing someone came for this child but not for her? Is she thinking, "Why can't they take me too"? Is she wondering if she is unworthy of a family or if something is wrong with her? Does she cry thinking about it or does she hold back the tears and stay strong because its her only choice? Those are just a few of the things that came to mind today when I heard this news! 

I was then reminded of our daughter we adopted in 2010, Gabby. When we first brought Gabby home, we noticed that if she would wake up in the middle of the night or after a nap, she made no noise! No sounds at all, no crying! It was obvious that she had learned there was no point in it! Someone was not always available to coming running to her with so many other children to care for in the orphanage. NOW, she makes noises when she wakes up. If it is during the day, she will make some sort of noise to let us know she is up and if it is during the night, she cries. Its my favorite cry of all....if that makes sense! Its the cry that lets me know she knows she has a momma! If only "Elaine" knew this! If only Ava knew this!

Why can't it be as simple as someone telling them "YOU HAVE A MOMMA and she is going to be coming for you so soon"? Well, because the government and the orphanage doesn't allow this and I can actually understand it. Nobody wants to make a promise like that and not be able to ensure it! Neither do I! That's why I am BEGGING YOU, PLEASE help us get funded. We still need $5,000+ (the higher end of it) to be able say we are fully funded! We will be leaving in a matter of weeks and we need a lot of money FAST!  I don't want "Elaine" or Ava for that matter to have to wait a minute longer than they have to or to go another minute longer than they have to believing that they don't have a momma.

Again, I am begging....PLEASE enter into our giveaway and donate whatever you can to help us! Every penny counts now more than ever! If you are someone that has been following our journey because you feel led to our story and you can provide us with a matching grant or any opportunity for further funding....we would be eternally greatful! Now is the time for it! This has officially become URGENT being that we have such a short amount of time before travel! Please, please, please share the news of our giveaway and do whatever you can to help. I know there are a lot of families needing help with their adoptions, I just ask that you pray about it and think about it...and if you feel led, please help our family. I can assure you, we plan on forever helping others to save these children when we get home as we are doing what we can right now as well to help others.

Now, I will leave you with this. I spent some time this evening really focusing on watching Gabby as she played and interacted with my husband and myself. While I have noticed it before...it was obviously standing out to me more tonight that we are her world! I can see it in her eyes, her smile, and in her all around actions! Most importantly, I can feel it from her heart to mine that she is HAPPY AND LOVED...that she KNOWS she has a momma and a family...and she KNOWS she is the most important person to us and we would do anything for her! After all...that's what a momma's love means!

We appreciate you all so much for all you have done and we hope you will continue to stick this out with us. Your help is needed now more than ever....

Love to you and yours....

August 14, 2012 ~NERVES~

First off, let me just say that I am so incredibly excited right now!!!! We have made tremendous progress and we are well on our way (in the process) to saving our girls!!!! Those of you who know me, know where we are in the process and if you don't know and you would like to know, you can add me on face book and find out :) I am not putting it on here right now because, well, its just not smart (adoptive mamas understand). 

While I am over the moon about our progress in the adoption process, my nerves are really getting to me in regards to the financial aspect of this! We are leaving SOON!!!!!!!! We still have $6,000 to my best guess to by fully funded (flight costs can vary)! We need funded and we need it fast!!!!

I am to the point of begging for a matching grant opportunity or funding of any kind! Yes, I don't mind a bit to beg for orphans! Its one of the few things I would do it for!  These girls are worth it!

Ava has been waiting and will soon age out of the baby house and "Elaine" has been waiting and watching other children have families to come for them but nobody for her. She has already been transferred!!!!! I cannot wait to see the look on her face when she knows a family has come FOR HER and I can't even begin to explain how badly I want to wrap my arms around our sweet Ava! 

The day I have all of my girls (all three of them) together, home, and safe....I WILL BE COMPLETE!


You all have brought us this far! I have seen families fully funded in hours, weeks, etc. It is not impossible for us to pull this off. If our family, personal friends, online friends, and advocates pull together....we can save these two lives!!!!!

Not to mention...have you seen our baby shower/giveaway! Do you need more of a reason to donate now????

Check it out :)

Thanks y'all......

August 5, 2012 ~AUCTION~

Please, please, please remember our auction starting today at 1:00 p.m. and ending Sunday August 12th !!! It is being hosted by Megan Stout (adopting Justin). You can view our auction and bid on some awesome items that are sure to be a hit by going to


Thank you all so so much!!!

July 20, 2012 ~Adoption Brain~

This is what I have to tell myself every single day, "Keep Going!" "Don't stop, figure out what needs done next, do it, and move on.  We're almost there, we're going to get funded. People understand that this is life or death and they will see to it those kids are coming home where they belong. "

5 minutes later....

"There is no way we are going to be funded in less than approximately 12 weeks! Absolutely no way! Do people truly understand that without their help these girls will die or at best live a life of no quality, no family, and no love?"

5 minutes later.....

"You've got this. Those girls are coming home! Better get ready!"

What you read above is a little bit of what I like to call "adoption brain." Of course, add a little crankiness, crying, overly emotional, memory loss, sleepless nights, etc....

Let me tell ya, if I get my arms around those girls...I'm pretty sure I will never let go! I can't wait to just get there and see those eyes staring back into mine and to have them see us coming to see them everyday..not giving up. To have them know that we are there for them and someone LOVES THEM! PRICELESS!  I can't wait to get them home and let them experience real family life! Life outside of those 4 walls, life outside of laying in a crib or sitting in a room all day, life outside of crying with no one to comfort you, life outside of having to share the attention with 80+ other kids....life outside of THE UNKNOWN! 

Until then..I keep going, I do whatever I have to do to get the girls home, I cry with worry when I see the funds sitting still, and I cry with joy and hope when I see the funds increase a little more, I plan, I day dream, I hope...I WAIT.


July 15, 2012: ~How do you do it?~

I get that question quite often actually! How do you keep waiting and maintain your sanity at the same time? How do you maintain a business, be a wife and mother, take care of a house, fundraise everyday, craft for fundraising, keep up with adoption paperwork and appointments, and still keep your sanity?  None of those are easy to do. As a matter of a fact, adoption is one of the hardest things I've ever done in my life.  Especially this one. With Gabby's adoption we gave our savings and took out an equity loan to help finish funding her adoption. We had always been responsible. We finished high school, went to college, got jobs, got married, started a small business helping those who suffer with domestic violence or substance abuse issues, saved money, and wanted to adopt! Going to college and having jobs doesn't mean you have thousands and thousands of dollars to give away though. While we had saved a lot of money, we hadn't saved that much, so being that we had always paid extra on our mortgage, we took out an equity loan...problem solved! :) We brought Gabby home! 

Keep in mind, that was less than two years ago! We can't do take out another loan again so soon. While we continue to save for the adoption and pay all up front costs, we have to fundraise for the larger costs! This makes it a lot more stressful! While we are over half way funded, we still have more than $8,000 to fundraise! However, I have a few reasons to stay positive and to keep pushing forward, which leads back to the main question.....

"How do you do it"    This is how.....

A wonderfully supportive husband who loves his daughter 
and can see the urgency in saving our other two girls from a life with no future! 
*Also other
family whose emotional support has been essential in going through with this! 

Friends!!!! Amazing people who for the most part started out as strangers 
and became some of my best friends. These people pray for us, help us spread the word 
of our adoption, fundraise, donate, etc.  

Last but certainly not least, GOD!!! While I have no picture of him! He has been
with us the entire way! He remains with us and he will not let us down!

Now if your question has changed from "How do you do it" to "WHY do you do it?"



  1. This brought tears to my eyes!! We will get you there and get those girls home!!

  2. I've been meaning to email you to see how you're doing! So glad to read your daily posts and find that you're doing great with these fundraisers. I know you still need people to help though; I will try, try, try! I know I've been quiet lately, please don't take it like I'm not interested. This summer has been so costly, but I really want to see you united with your girls. That is the post I'm waiting for!!

    1. Thanks Becky. I emailed you about a week ago!

  3. Maybe you should post the matchin grant in your home page and ask Leila to spread the word?