Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Thoughts and Prayers

Kennedy just makes herself comfortable wherever she likes!

Lots of stuff going on.
I am so excited! We have been working on a new website for Hug Away and it is up and running. It still needs some tweaking so go take a looky at
I have a meeting in Dallas on Monday and my husband made plans to take me and the girls for the whole weekend! Good times with family and good friends! I can't wait.
This week I have really been trying hard not to focus on the "adoption"; issue, thing, dilema I am not sure what I would call it, anyway I know it is only Wednesday but yesterday (2 days into my not focusing) the little girl that reminded me of Cameron came to my heart. I emailed the lady at the agency and asked about her and she said she was still available. That just broke my heart. She is so precious. I am praying that when God finds her family they will "know." That is what happened with our Cameron. There is a lot to her story that I won't share because it is her story and she deserves her privacy but it is a miracle that after a long journey God chose us to be her family and we knew she was or daughter and for that I will forever be humbled and grateful.
Sometimes I will see parents dumping their childs very private story out there for the whole world to see without thinking that maybe one day when they have a voice they may not appreciate it very much. A child's story can be told without sharing every little detail.
I know a lot of families that are in the adoption process right now, so if you would when you are praying please not only pray for the children who are waiting for a family but also for the families who are waiting for their children. I know they would appreciate it. Also pray for the boys who wait. There is a saying that adoption agencies and orphanages have, Families wait for girls and boys wait for families. Sad but true.

We witness a miracle every time a child enters into life.
But those who make their journey home across time & miles,
growing within the hearts of those who wait to love them,
are carried on the wings of destiny and placed among us
by God's very own hands.
--- Kristi Larson

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Seeking Gods Will

I have been praying and praying about the adoption situation. I feel like God is truly putting this on my heart. The problem is that my husband who is not closed to the idea is on the fence and to be honest he is leaning more on the "I don't think so" side. This would not be a problem if I didn't feel the way I do. I have had so many little "God whispers" lately. I feel the tug is towards China and special needs. You know when we started the adoption process in 2006 I just knew we were suppose to adopt from China. But God had a different plan and we started the process for Vietnam to bring home our Kennedy. I often wonder if He changed the course then because He had a little one in China waiting for us now? A couple of weeks ago I was in a consignment shop looking for a pair of jeans for Kennedy, its to close to summer to buy new ones, anyway I am looking through the clothes and I can't believe what I came across. In the middle of all these jeans and shirts on little hangars,there in front of me was a beautiful brand new still had the tags on it size 3 little girls traditional "cheongsan" Chinese dress ! What in the world? Where did that come from? I couldn't believe it. A few days later I came across a little girl on a website that reminded me so much of our Cameron. She was in China. I went ahead and contacted the agency. The lady told me someone was already looking at the file and she would put me on the list. She did say she had just received the file of another little girl that a family was also looking at and would I like to be on the list. I said sure, never ever expecting to see either one.
The next day I am checking my email and there it is the file of the second little girl. I told Mike about her and asked if he would mind if I took her file and showed it to our pediatrician. He said it was ok, but not to get my hopes up. She had more special needs than we would be able to handle so I emailed the lady and told her. Two days later the file of the first little girl that reminded me of Cameron was waiting for me when I checked me email! I honestly didn't think we would ever see her file. Again she had significant special needs and we said no. About the special needs, it was not easy to say no but after much prayer that was the final answer.
So I just thought to myself "Elaine let it go." And I did. But a few days later that pull at my heart came back. Then I had a dream last night. At the end of the dream I handed someone something and I could not see her face but I could see a head of black hair as they handed me a "little one" and then I woke up. There have been several other "whispers" but one thing for sure this is not going away. I have come up with so many reasons to push it out of my heart. My age, absolutely no money to pay for another adoption, need a new auto. This is the short list. But then I remember I serve a mighty God and if He wants us to bring another baby Bayer home He and He alone will open the doors not only to my husbands heart, but to all we need to make this happen. And though "I" have my doubts deep down I would adopt again in a heart beat! But honestly if that wasn't the plan, I would do anything God asked me to do.
Life is short and not about us or what we need but what can we do to make a difference in someone elses life. Funny as I type that I think of people who have told me and my husband how blessed our daughters are because we adopted them and we will both look them in the eye and say "oh you don't understand, we are the blessed ones!" When we step out and serve God as He ask it brings joy, purpose, happiness, love and blessings into our lives. I think of Jesus as he walked as a man on earth. He was here to serve, not to see how much money He could make, or stuff He could buy, or how comfortable He could be. So if God the one I gave my heart too, the one who changed my life in ways I could have never dreamed of, the one who gave His Son to die on the cross for my sins so I could have eternal life ask me to do anything I would do it.
I believe God is getting ready to move in my life in a mighty way. I believe it is adoption but it may be something else, it may have something to do with Hug Away or going to Ethiopia all I know is I am ready.

Did I not tell you and promise you that if you would believe and rely one Me, you would see the Glory of God? John 11:40

Friday, April 24, 2009

Fantastic Fridays!

Kennedy and her new haircut. She is such a cutie pie!

I have a lot of blogger friends who have "special" days on their blogs. I have decided to start "Fantastic Fridays!" It is coming to the end of the week and I thought it would a nice time to reflect back on the week and share praises that God has blessed us with. Sometimes we are so focused on the things not going well in our lives that we forget to look for even the smallest blessings.
This week God has blessed be in lots of ways. I was blessed to watch a friend and her family take a huge leap of faith! Several fellow bloggers have children in the hospital and they are healing from surgeries. I had a great week at work! My family is healthy. I feel God has been whispering to me all week about certain things and it has given me such peace.
God gave me another day!
Take a look back at your week and even if it wasn't the best week I bet if you look you will be able to find at least one blessing!

Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing. 1 Thessalonians 5:11

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

You know, that you know, that you know!

God has been moving so much in my life the last few days to be honest it is almost overwhelming. These are the times that if someone ask you "how do you know its God?"you can say "I know,that I know, that I know!" I was born to share my heart so that others would "know" they were not the only ones, not alone, and that we serve a mighty God! So where do I begin?
Lets start with the "will we adopt again?" As I knew I would I began to obsess about it and trying to figure out how we could, if we could and should we if we could! Finally I was humbled to go to God and give Him control. Since then total peace.
Then there is Hug Away. We are not receiving any donations and so the obsession begins! Why? Why wasn't Hug Away being all that I knew it could be. Why were people not donating money? Why this and why that? Again, that still small whisper speaks to my heart and says "Let me know when you are ready to let me step in." Ouch. See, when Hug Away was born I just knew we would be helping so many families. Last year our first year we helped four families and I was happy and so grateful, but I wanted us to help more! If a family needed a grant I wanted to be able to write a check right then. The fact is I should have been taking baby steps all along. But in usual Elaine fashion I went for it all at once. Instead of babying the ministry and helping it along the way I threw it out there and expected mighty miracles from it. So back to God and back to the basics. All along this thought kept coming to my mind "simple is more and baby steps."
So most of you know I love Joyce Meyers. Well, while in this little fog I have not been watching her or really doing my quiet time. But as the fog was lifted I decided to watch her again and have my quiet time. She was speaking on "Winning the Race and Never Giving Up and Taking Action" It was so appropriate and just what I needed. She was explaining the fact that when God lays a dream on someones heart they usually start off running. The fact is we need to learn how to sit, stand, walk and then run. Of course these are metaphors but you get the point, there is a process. Not all callings are going to be big. It could be as simple as blogging and making a difference in one persons life with what you wrote. It could also be as simple and wonderful as our adoption ministry at my church. Through providing awareness and answering questions several families have been called to adopt. Or it could be the fact that you are grateful that a ministry God planted in your heart was able to help four wonderful families bring a child home to their forever family. It can be that simple and that wonderful.
So as I was going over the last few days and basking in His glory God lead me to a very simple verse Hebrews 11:1 " Now faith is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see." I do not see God but I know He exist and that He loves me and has put a desire in my heart to make a difference. I just need to slow down and enjoy the journey.
One of my favorite verses in the bible is Revelation 3:7-8 What he opens no one can shut and what he shuts no one can open. I know your deeds. See, I have placed before you an open door that no one can shut. I know you have little strength, yet you have kept my word and have not denied my name.
I think I am going to give God back the control of my door!

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Happy Gotcha Day Cameron!

Actually Cameron's Gotcha Day is tomorrow April 20th. I believe all adoption stories are special. I know each of our daughters have a pretty wonderful story about how God brought us together to be a family. 9 years ago today my husband Mike who had flown to Korea all by himself was getting ready to get on a plane and bring home our 14 month old daughter Cameron Jade. Cameron was a miracle in a lot of ways. In May 2006 I was asked to write a story about Cameron for Rainbow Kids online Adoption magazines 10th anniversary issue. Here is just a small part of her wonderful story. (I wish I could scan the first picture I ever saw of Cameron in her little crochet hat!)

When God Calls
Sometimes, God's voice can be heard through a little child..
May 01,2006 / Elaine Bayer

“Mommy I really want a little sister!” This was becoming a weekly request from our then four-year-old daughter, Jordan. (Actually, her request was 10 little sisters!) In my heart, our family was complete. My husband and I were blessed with three wonderful biological sons and our beautiful princess, Jordan, who we adopted from Korea in 1995, the year I turned 40. Yes, life could not get any better than this—or so I thought.

It was July 1999 and Jordan and I were driving home after attending her first day at Dillon International Korean Heritage Camp when the conversation that would change our lives began:

“Mommy, did I tell you I wanted a little sister?”

“Yes, Jordan .”

“Can I have one? How about you and I pray and ask God what He wants us to do? OK, Mommy?”

“Now Jordan , we have to accept His answer, whatever it may be because God knows what is best for our family, OK?”

“I understand, Mommy. Can we pray now?


We continued our drive. A short time later, Jordan pipes up, “Mommy, He answered me.”

“Who, Jordan?”


“Oh really, what did He say?”

“He told me it was OK with Him if we adopt a little sister, but now it was up to you and Daddy.”

I believed every word she had just spoken to me.

I was 44 years old (too old, I thought, for the Korea program). We had no money to adopt and had not planned to adopt again, but once again, we were following our faith and our hearts. After all, God had told Jordan it was OK with Him.

We considered the domestic adoption of a bi-racial child, and I started looking at pictures of waiting children on the internet. One day in November 1999 my sister and I were looking on the internet and came across the Rainbow Kids website. We were drawn to a picture of a little girl with a sad face and a crochet hat. I read her history, noted that you could not be over 45 to adopt her, and knew she was in Korea . She also had more special needs than I felt we could handle. Meanwhile, I could not get started on the domestic adoption application: My heart was in Korea .

On December 10, 1999 , I took the morning off from work and Jordan and I stopped by Dillon International to drop off Christmas cards and pick up a copy of our old home study. Dillon's Korea Program Director, Duk Kyung Um, and Heritage Education and Travel Programs Director, Beverlee Einsig, greeted me. When we told them the reason for our visit, they looked at each other and asked if we would be interested in a boy with minor special needs from Korea ? I said I would talk to my husband. A couple of hours later, I received a phone call from Duk Kyung saying that she had an eight-month-old girl with some special needs. Would we be interested in seeing her video? A girl! I grabbed Jordan 's hand and we were gone again. A few minutes later, Jordan and I watched the video of a beautiful little girl who looked very familiar to me. Jordan and I said, “We want her!” They advised me to talk to my husband first (even though I knew he would say the same thing!). As we were walking out of the door, Jordan said, “See Mommy, I told you God said it was OK!”

I wondered why that precious little child looked so familiar to me. Did I dream about her? We accepted our new daughter's referral feeling so blessed and honored that God had chosen us to be her family. A few days later, I sent my sister a picture of our newest daughter, Cameron. She called me, screaming with excitement, “Elaine it is the little girl on the Rainbow Kids website! The little one with the hat!”

I immediately knew which child she was talking about. Since it had only been a couple of days since we had accepted her referral, I took a chance that she would still be on the website. There she was! The pretty little girl with the sad face and crochet hat. The one I initially thought would be impossible for our family to adopt was now our precious daughter. The picture on Rainbow Kids was our referral picture.

I know without a doubt that God's fingers were in this process the whole time from the time He spoke to Jordan until the seed was planted in my heart when I saw her picture on the Rainbow Kids website. Today that little girl, who began life with some significant special needs, is our Cameron. She is healthy, beautiful, funny, and a very smart seven-year-old.

I often think of the blessings we would have missed if we had not listened to God calling on us. Through the prayer of a child, a seed planted by a picture, and God putting us in the right place at the right time, we are forever blessed.

About the Author: For the past four years, Elaine has worked in Dillon International's Heritage Education and Travel Programs Department helping other families celebrate the birth heritage of their internationally adopted children. She and her husband are presently in the process of adopting their third daughter, Kennedy Grace, from Vietnam

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

When I grow up...

I was born old and grew young. My family situation was not a good one so being the oldest of five girls I stepped into the mother role early. There really wasn't a childhood to speak of. No birthday parties, no friends over, fear. With all that said I still loved and respected my parents. That is why I find it very frustrating when I see kids and even adults who do not appreciate and respect their parents. May I make a suggestion? Love them and let them know it. When they are gone you will regret it if you don't. My mom and dad died when I was in my early 30's four years apart. As bad as our life was growing up I wish they were here so they could see that we survived, and our lives are good. That from each of them we received a gift/talent, that we are still close and we are strong women. I would tell them that I know their childhood sucked and that they were hurting and had no one to turn to like parents and kids do now. I would tell them not to feel bad all was forgiven a long time ago. So if you are blessed to have your parents around let them know you love them!
Now back to when I grow up. As the years go by I find myself growing younger.I don't fell my age and I sure don't act it! The more I trust God the more I want to enjoy every single minute of it. I don't want to miss one single opportunity He lays before me and through it all I want to glorify Him.
So when I grow up I want to be everything God wants me to be!

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Love One Another

I hope everyone had a wonderful Easter! Ours was awesome. We were able to speak to all of our sons today. Dustin webcamed in and we took the lap top to the dinner table and he "joined" us for lunch! It was pretty cool. Like I said before I love technology! It was rainy and cloudy but remembering what Easter is all about brings a light into our lives like no other. When we arrived at church today Kennedy saw our pastor whom she adores and went running to him. He picked her up and he asked her if she knew why we celebrate Easter. She said because Jesus died on the cross for us. I am not sure what he asked her next, but the next thing I hear was "And He rose again!" He just looked at me and I was smiling. It is important that even though we give our kids Easter baskets that they know why we celebrate Easter. It is not about bunnies and egg hunts, it is because Jesus died for our sins we are promised eternal life with Him when we believe and invite Him into our hearts.
I have mentioned that I believe God has been speaking to my heart about adoption. During this time many things have been on my heart. I truly believe God is preparing us for "something" significant and it will have something to do with adoption in some way. My passion is sharing with others about adoption and hopefully through Hug Away help them with some of the financial barriers that comes along with the journey. Unfortunately, Hug Away is suffering. There is no money and none coming in. To be honest There are days I feel like Hug Aways days are numbered, but I hang onto the fact that God planted this dream in my heart and He has great plans for the foundation. So what does this have to do with us possibly adopting again? Everything. I think how in the world could we possibly do this again? Then I remember we serve an awesome God and if it is His desire it will happen as long as we have faith and trust in Him.
We have had people ask us why? Why did you adopt? Why international? Why if you don't have the money? Why pay all that money? How do you know the child will not have issues? Are you sure you can love them as your own? Here are some answers.
1.Adoption is about love. Love is the greatest commandment. God ask us to do "love one another." God adopted all who believe into His family. We are all His children. God places a desire in your heart to reach out to a child who needs a family, who needs to know someone loves them.
2. I believe where you adopt is something God lays on your heart. It is a tug that you can not deny.
3. No money. Faith.
4. All that money. Actually quite a bit of the money will go to the orphanages in the country to take care of the needs of the children who will not be adopted.
5. Issues. How do you know your birth children will not have issues? You don't. But you love them with all you have and are there for them when they need you.
6. Loving them. I have been blessed to give birth to 3 sons and adopt 3 daughters. I can honestly say that I love my children the same. It didn't matter if they were placed in my arms in the hospital or the airport, each time I thought my heart would bust because of my love for them. It's not about blood it is about heart.
Adopting our daughters revealed to me my purpose. Adoption. I often look at my daughters and think of each of their stories. They each have one you know. Their lives began at conception in another woman's womb. They were born in another country. They are Korean/American and Vietnamese/American. They are our daughters.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

The Story

I had a lousy day. It started off pretty good, but then it took a nose dive! Anyway, I was laying on my bed having one of those conversations with God in my head, when Kennedy walked in and said "mommy will you make up a story too tell me?" I was mentally exhausted and just didn't have it in me. I looked at that precious face and began telling her this story.
A long time ago there was a young girl who wanted to be a lawyer or photographer when she grew up. She wanted that more than anything else in the world. But that did not happen. She got married and had a son.One day her husband left her and their son all alone. She had to raise her little boy alone for 10 years and it was very hard. They kind of grew up together. Then one day she met a very nice man, fell in love and they got married. He loved her and her young son. They had a son together and then another son. The lady was so happy! She loved being a mommy to her three sons. She couldn't imagine anything better. Then the lady heard about Jesus and asked Him to live in her heart and she became a Christian. Her husband had been asking her for a very long time to think about adopting a little girl. She didn't really want too. She was so happy with her three sons. But not long after she asked Jesus to come into her heart, He spoke to her and told her it was time to adopt. They adopted a little girl from S. Korea. Oh my! The lady could not believe that she could be so happy, but she was. It was then she realized that God had a different plan for her life all along. She was never suppose to be a lawyer or a photographer, she was to be a mommy. She loved being a mommy more than anything else in the world. Her family was complete! She loved being a mommy to three sons and a daughter. But one day her little girl said she wanted a baby sister. They prayed and God answered their prayers and they adopted another little girl from S. Korea. Finally their family was complete! She loved being a mommy to three sons and two daughters! Several years went by and one day the mommy heard God speak to her heart about adopting again. She thought God had the wrong mommy! She said God " I love being a mommy more than anything n the world, but I am older and I just don't think I can do it." But God kept speaking to her heart and she told her husband. He said no! But God kept on and so did the mommy. One day the daddy said ok. Mommy was so happy! She was so sure they were suppose to adopt from China. She had waited so long for her husband to say yes but when she received the paperwork for China she could not fill it out. It was like something was holding her back. She didn't understand. Then one day she heard that you could adopt from Vietnam. She asked her friend who did the adoptions for Vietnam if there were any little girls that needed a family. Her friend smiled and said "I know the perfect little girl for your family. I have visited her, she loves books and she is so sweet." She showed the mommy a picture of the little girl and the mommy smiled and said "that is our daughter." The daddy was so happy and so were her sisters and brothers. After many months the mommy and grandma went to Vietnam to bring the little girl home.. When mommy saw "Oanh" they looked at each other and smiled. Then you reached up to me and I picked you up and you kissed me. I just held you and kissed on you and thanked God once again for making me a mommy, the best job in the world!
As I told this story to Kennedy she never took her eyes off of me. Then as I got to the end I saw tears in her eyes and she hugged me. As I sat her down and took her to bed she said "mommy, thank you for telling me a make up story." I looked at her and said "baby girl, that is a very true story." She looked at me and smiled. She knew that, she just wanted to hear me say it.
So as I believe God may be speaking to my heart about adoption again and I think to myself "are you kidding me?!" I will remember this journey He chose for me and the blessings that He gave me along the way. The End. Or is it? Hmm.....

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Hug Away needs your help

Mike with some children in S.Korea

Ok Blogger family and friends I am asking you to do something for Hug Away. We have applications for grants and not enough money to help these families. Here is the deal,Hug Away has relied on fundraisers like car washes, change drives and donations from awesome people who believe in us. God has been good and last year we helped 4 families with grants. During this time God has shown and taught me so much.
One of the things God has laid on my heart is to reach out and help orphans who will not be adopted. Hug Away is expanding its ministry and we will begin helping an orphanage in Ethiopia and my friend Bethany O'Connors wonderful Baby Safe program in Africa through our "Hope for Orphans" ministry. We also hope to find a way to help the orphans in Vietnam. God has placed these desires on my heart and I know without a doubt if we are faithful and give Him the glory these ministries will make a difference in the lives of families who have been called to adopt and the children who will not be adopted.
We need donations. It is that simple and yet that hard.I am not going to put a guilt trip on you about how much your coffee or pop cost everyday. Giving should come from the heart and not out of guilt. I know times are scary and tough right now, but this does not stop our God! Friends, I can tell you from experience that we serve an awesome God and as long as we keep the faith and don't let the world around us hinder our walk it will be OK.
If you can give anything it would be appreciated. Here are some ways you can make a donation.
Go to our website and donate on line. You can give a one time donation or have a flat fee taken from you checking account or credit card each month. You can also send a check or money order to:
The Hug Away Foundation, P.O. Box 1241 Broken Arrow, OK 74013.
We can't do this without your help. Not all families called to adopt have the money for the adoption itself. I know because we have been there. As a matter of fact most don't. Really, who has that kind of money laying around? Adoption is a step of faith and we want to help those familes called to adopt bring the child God has waitng for them home. Every child should know that there is someone in this big world who cares. We want to go into the world and show them Gods love, and give them hope, give them a hug. We want to tell them about Jesus.
I hope you will prayerfully consider to be part of this journey. Not only will you make a difference in the lives of families called to adopt, you will make a difference in the lives of children who have never known anything but neglect and despair. You will also be blessed. There is nothing like the feeling of "I made a difference."
I would ask everyone to pray for Hug Away, how you can help and for those whose lives we will touch. If you could spread the word and let others know about Hug Away and maybe pass this blog on to friends, family, co-workers, your employer, your church, that would be so awesome and we would be so grateful. If you ever need someone to come speak to your group or church about adoption or how you can make the difference in the life of an orphan, we would love to come share! Education is power and the more people know the more willing they are to help.
We are updating our website so keep checking it out. It is going to be fantastic. It will have lots of information not only on Hug Away but about adoption, links to agencies, books and well, just lots of cool stuff. Any questions you can email me at
Thank you ahead of time! We will make a difference!
God Bless each and everone of you!
The Hug Away Foundaiton