Wednesday, August 31, 2011


well, i must confess that i do not know how to pronounce injera yet. the phenomenon astounds me. so this is a major bit of culture that i need to learn in order to smooth the transition from ethiopia to TEXAS. yikes. and my kids are sensitive to not only macaroni, but the BRAND of macaroni when we eat out. so i can only hope that my attempt at injera relays the message that i'm trying here. so, for those new to this word, i'll explain what i can and you guys fill in the rest. injera is a flatbread that is used in meals often. you can put all kinds of stuff on it, but it's their main staple carb, like our sandwich bread. like at least once a day. so that's maybe a big deal to try and master. it's a little bit like a sour pancake and  a vessel for delivering yummy stuff. i've found a million recipes and such that provide different ways of creating this food, but this is the one i'll be using to guide me in my attempt.  and you can be sure that when i get all my ingredients together that i'll be making it here so you guys can get a good laugh at my cooking.

fun stuff: announcements

one of my favorite parts of procreating is the birth announcements. i'm not gonna lie. i love them. it's such a fun little task. picking the mood, theme, and colors. taking the pictures that you use to introduce your new person to everyone... i just adore it. i love that adoption announcements are catching on. same deal, different wording, but it gives you a special way to help everyone put a name to a face and join in the celebration. here's some great ones that i have found. click on them for the links.

Blessed to Welcome Adoption Announcement

Adoption Photo Birth Announcements New World - Front : Tea Rose

Sunday, August 28, 2011

new week, new family.

hey dollar mob! how was your weekend? ready for a new week? me too. let me introduce you to the waymans. this is jen and christopher. i think it's special that they are so open to adoption, even before attempting biological children. we're all coming from all kinds of different places, everyone choosing adoption and Africa for different reasons. i love hearing everyone's different stories. they felt led to start their family through adoption and were obedient without question. gotta love that! go one over and read a little note from mom and donate to their adoption. your one dollar makes a world of difference to this family. every dollar is like a hug and a sigh of relief. that's what it feels like. you'll want to be a part of that.

Friday, August 26, 2011

update on Abby

Hey guys,

I just wanted to update you on what's up with Miss Abby and to thank you for all your prayers and emails and comments and casseroles. The patient is doing fine. We went to Shriner's Children's Hospital yesterday and it was amazing. The facility is very cool. They have everything there to make sure that the children are cared for in every way. She loved all the toys, but wasn't wild about anyone in scrubs or a lab coat. The had to take her to a scary room and scrub her burn which is one of the worse things I've had to endure. I'm sure she'd agree. But it was necessary and we probably won't have to do that again. She's going to have minimal scarring, no graft needed as long as we can prevent infection. We have to keep this really nasty goop on her head for the next month. It's a little funky, I'm not gonna lie. But we also get to dapple in hair accessories. I'll be hitting etsy for all giant floral headbands. That's the rage, right? And we'll be sporting the classic pixie cut next week. She'll have to stay out of the sun for a long time, but if we're super careful for the first year you shouldn't be able to see it much when she gets bigger. She's having nightmares and not eating much, but they say that's to be expected. She's a little angry and ragey. She's going to be ok, though, and I'll keep you posted on her recovery which should be quick and simple hopefully. Well, thanks so much for all our sweet thoughts. We really appreciate it. And I'll be back in full force on Monday. And great job with the Kingsbury's, by the way! They earned over $500 to put towards paying off their adoption loans and are so grateful. You guys rock!

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

a little interruption.

you guys, i am so sorry, but i have to take a teeny break for a couple of days. my sweet little abby just got out of the hospital. this afternoon i was baking cookies and had a candle burning. totally relishing in the cheesiest variety of mommy smugness. i was even wearing an apron. and then i hear abby screaming. she's climbed up on the kitchen counter to get to the cookies that were cooling and her long hair caught fire. by the time i turned around i saw my toddler's head on fire. i can't tell you what that does to a mom. we went to the hospital and she's got first and second degree burns on her face and ear. but it wasn't a big big deal. they released us and we're going to shriner's tomorrow to see a specialist. she's feeling ok. hopped up on morphine and sporting a mean mullet. so that's what i'll be doing this week. please pray for us. i know burns are supposed to be the worst pain ever.

anyhoo, i'm supposed to be drawing attention to the kingsbury family, and now i've got to take a few days off. so cover for my inadequate blogging and make sure they get their dollar this week so i don't feel so guilty, ok?! i'll keep you posted on what's going on as it develops. thanks for your patience. i'll be back in a few days once i get girly sorted out.


Some faves from a shoot I did this weekend with some friends of mine. I got to photograph this little guy when he first got home from Ethiopia two years ago. That was so cool! Anyhoo, I just loved how these came out.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

ImagineNations Art Globes

Have you seen these?! Are these insane or what?! I love them. I'm seriously thinking of how to do an Ethiopia globe. Any ideas? These ImagineNations art globes are by Wendy Gold. They are perfect in every way. What's your dream globe?

Sunday, August 21, 2011

It's a new week, Dollar Mob!

I love fresh starts. Don't you? You get to start your week off feeling all helpful and stuff. Allow me to introduce you to Toni and tell you a little about why I chose to support her adoption fundraiser after the adoption.  Siblings are usually difficult to move and it takes a special heart for being open to adopting multiples. But when such a family comes along, the kiddies are usually pretty much ready to go. No need to wait for years for a referral.  SO... the fundraising bit that most people get a few years to do didn't really happen like that for the Kingsbury family. Their adoption went faster than most and they didn't raise enough to cover TWO little dears. So they willingly took out thousands upon thousands of dollars in loans because that's what you do when your kids are ready to come home. But fundraising on the flip side doesn't work out to well, so the Kingsbury's are now carrying lots of adoption debt to Lifesong for Orphans (who I am now blogging for, more about that later!). And they already have two other children. That's 4 kids, ladies! I can give a dollar to alleviate that burden just a tad. Can you? Can you help a mama out? You know what to do. Hit that donate tab up there on the right hand side of the page. And, if you like, pop on over to and read a letter from Mom.

Friday, August 19, 2011

Small things...

Don't you just love that. True true. Sometimes even the smallest gestures mean so much. I'm sure our family of the week can testify to that. I hope you have had a good week and have a great weekend.  If you are coming to donate to Brooke and Brandon Whitis but missed the boat, fear not. Just skip on over to their blog and donate down at the bottom.  If you like this artwork (I certainly do) you can find it here. See you Monday! Get your dollars ready!

Thursday, August 18, 2011

African Sunrise by Lay Bay Lay

We all know and love Lay Baby Lay, right? Miss Joni has once again contributed her amazing talents to help bring awareness and support to African adoption. She has worked her magic in honor of the Whitis boys and their proud parents. If you haven't donated yet, you totally should! What are you waiting for?! Just click that little 'donate here' button at the top of the page on the right hand side. Go on!

And here are the links if you feel like doing a little shopping: 1.Woven Abaca Pendant , 2. A Bicycle Built for Love Print , 3. Lion Print , 4. Gemsbok Sculpture , 5. Vintage French African Mask , 6. Frameless Mirror , 7.Dwell Century Crib, Natural 8. Giraffe Bib , 9. Retro Bead Pillows, 10. Tiffany Blue Dresser, 11. Orange Tufted Bench, 12. Mimosa Rug, 13. Lion, 14. Sengalese Baskets

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Welcome to the Most Bizarre Graphic on a Blog...

Hey guys,

Sorry for the random photo, but you gotta put something on and this totally makes sense in my head. I'm going to give you our little adoption update and then connect the dots. This weekend we got the packet of info to start collecting the papers for our home study and dossier packet. Ironically 'dossier' is pronounced doss-ee-yay which is so not yay! I found it to be a ton of scary details like current copies of stuff that you have to get from weird places and notarized in weird ways. So I went in the mental fetal position for a few days. Today I've emerged and started killing it. I'm just going to go nuts on this thing. And so here's the connection to the sticky notes. I need some adorable sticky notes and you know I like to daydream about the things I'm totally not buying these days from Anthropologie. Sticky notes that say "fax this" and "notarize this" and "harass someone for this".

And then something happened with "the girls" today. I had already come to terms with the fact that these would not be our girls. But we decided to send them a secret care package anyway. Didn't want to get their hopes up or anything, but something to sort of make their day. So I sent the care package this morning and mentally said my goodbyes to those girls. But by the time I got home I had new pictures of them in my inbox and a glimmer of hope that maybe, just maybe, these girls could still be our girls. Funny how things work like that. So I'm excited about the possibility, but hesitant to get excited. So I'm distracting myself by imaginary shopping online. For sticky notes of all things. Say a prayer for our girls.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Do Yourself a Favor...

I think I'm going with a simple Bible verse today.

And do not forget to do good and to share with others, for with such sacrifices God is pleased. 

Hebrews 13:16

We've all heard that it is better to give than receive, right? Today, consider what giving generously does to yourself and your spirit. You know that warm fuzzy feeling? That feels nice, right? Don't get me wrong, the Whitis family will certainly benefit as well. That's the intricate and simple idea. That by blessing others we bless ourselves by pleasing God. When we love and care for what He loves and cares for (each other) we actually benefit as well. That sounds like a win-win to me! So do yourself a favor today and be part of something extraordinary.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Ready, Dollar Mob?!

Let's say hello to Brooke and Brandon Whitis. They are the family that we will be overwhelming with Paypal notifications today.

and here's a letter for you from Mom:

hey there,

i’m brooke, mom to one sweet baby in heaven, one baby in my belly (due in just about five weeks) and one baby that is in Africa.  we are eagerly awaiting his referral, so we will know him more, but we pray for him and know the Lord has already made him ours, despite us not knowing his face or name yet!  i am married to the sweet love of my life, my best friend brandon.  he loves the Lord with his whole heart and wants our kids to do the same.  one of our children had the ultimate honor to go straight to be with his savior. ...much to our dismay, but how can we be sad for him knowing that he is in heaven with our Lord?  

since brandon and i met in high school, we always talked about overseas mission work and adoption.  when we dated, we often talked about adopting a boy from africa and possibly a girl from korea or china, or maybe africa.  we began our adoption process in haiti before we tried to get pregnant several years ago.  the Lord had other plans, changing things up with the earthquake in haiti, which caused our program to shut down.  we then got pregnant with our sweet first child, briar allen.  At 11 weeks, we found out he had a fatal birth defect that would not allow him to live outside my womb.  my husband was deployed in afghanistan when this happened, we and really prayed about what would come next.  we felt like this baby deserved his time in this world, so we carried him as long as my body would allow.  during that pregnancy, the Lord re-awakened our desire for adoption.  our great friends were adopting from ethiopia and we wanted to know more!  we also found out that our sweet briar was going to provide us with a surprise life insurance....$10,000 to be exact.  we found this out after we decided to carry him to term (or as close to as we could..).  what a sweet, sweet miracle that his life could help to offer life to his BROTHER! :)  it makes me tear up just to think of the legacy briar left in our family. 

last september, briar was born into the arms of Jesus.  in December, we began our adoption.  We finished our homestudy in February and we submitted all our dossier paperwork to our agency in March, 2011.  we can't wait to get a referral for an infant 0-12 months.  we would love to adopt an older child later, as our family continues to expand.  in January, we found out we were pregnant again, and we were ecstatic!  we are pregnant with a baby boy, lost a baby boy and are adopting a baby boy.  It seems boys are the right fit for our family at the moment.

i am a photographer, former teacher... :) excited to be home with the boys while capturing others in their stage of life.  excited to share in this journey of adoption with others.  excited to share how God does powerful work when we choose to step in and participate in the care of orphans.  some of you don't feel called to adopt.  but maybe this is your way to care for orphans. by donating your dollar today :)

Ready, Dollar Mob?! Let's do this! Look over to your right. You see that Donate button? Go!!!

Friday, August 12, 2011

be the good.

well, guys, it's been a good run with you these last two weeks! thanks for every dollar, every time you used that voice of yours to get the word out, and every prayer and comment. if you missed the boat on the cupitt family donation

and still want to pitch in, fear not. just zip on over to my poor neglected blog, artisticDomestic, and you'll find a button there always. that's just the thing with us adoptive mommies. we all have paypal buttons just chillin' there.

feel free to hit that sucker anytime. starting monday, though, the whitis family will be on the receiving end of THE DOLLAR BLAST!!! i'm ridiculously ecstatic about seeing this little blog accomplish big things and be a huge blessing. i'll see you next week. you can't get rid of me that easy! i'm still your trusty blogger host. adios, and have a good weekend!

Thursday, August 11, 2011

I might be too stressy for yoga.

It seems that the name of the game in adoption is WAIT.  I wait. And wait and wait. For our family coordinator to contact us and tell us if there is ANY way possible for 'our girls' to be moved to our agency's list. Not likely, which is hard to hear because I've become attached to these girls. I AM excited because I get to send them a care package! They can feel something tangible. Something that proves that someone thought of them. That feels good, but it doesn't feel like enough.  On top of adoption drama, my oldest starts kindergarden in less than 2 weeks. I'm feeling like my spontaneous lifestyle is about to be disrupted. That I'm about to have to be alot calmer and more organized than I am. And I've had a headache for a week now. So I figured it's time I figure out how to relax.... hence the funky yoga pic. But here's the ironic thing about yoga for me. I'm too stressy to accomplish anything. My muscles are so tense that I can't do the poses, which just sort of ticks me off. My 2 year old, on the other hand, is a natural.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

In the spirit of giving...

Hi all! I just love the art and quote that Vol.25 created for us. It's so perfect for today's post.

East Africa has been all over the news and internet lately due to their horrific drought and famine. It's worse than ever. Remember back in the 80's when we really learned about Ethiopia because of their severe humanitarian crisis? It's far worse than that. If you've seen images lately that have been unsettling, that means that you're human. It's hard to watch. But there is something we can do. There are lots of things we can do, actually. We can pray. But praying alone doesn't grant the tangible relief that is so desperately needed. 1 John 3:18 tells us that we need to love not just in words but in action and in truth. The action part is every bit as critical as the love bit. This blog is a platform to raise money for adopting families, but many of our children are there, not here yet. So today, I'm not asking you to give me a dollar. I'm asking you to care for the orphans themselves in a very direct way. Adoption will provide a hope and love and life and future, but right now, this very minute, life sustaining food and water is needed more. Please, find an organization that you trust and send a few dollars there. Truly, do not feel silly sending just a few if that's what you can afford. Really, we've seen that it can all add up. Here's a few that I trust. Go spread some love.


World Vision

Oxfam (for you Brits)

look what came in the mail today!

yes, indeed, that's a michelle armas original! it's beautiful! and it's for sale. she has ever so kindly painted it and donated it to our family's adoption fund!  it's 24x24 inches, signed on the back. you can hang it any way you like. it's for sale for $500. email me at b.cupitt(at)yahoo(dot)com if you're interested. i'll shoot you a paypal link and get it to ya. i could SO see this in a little girl nursery!

Monday, August 8, 2011

fantasies and realities.

hey all, happy monday. hope you had a good weekend. today i'm daydreaming bigtime. you want to know what i'm daydreaming about? shopping. i think this budget thing is starting to get to me. ok, that's part of it, but the other part is that i have this bizarre urge to spoil the new girls. more so than i ever wanted to spoil my biological children. i've always been cursed with really good (and expensive) taste and i guess my kids have always had nice things. but i have this feeling like when the girls get here i want to give them everything in abundance, everything they've never had. is that bad? it feels a little bad and a little justified. i don't know, that's just where i am. as for today, we'll just daydream and since it's a fake room made out of fake money i'll decorate it in all anthropologie, of course. look, i even made a pinboard.
and now for the reality part. i'm going to tell you where we are in our little process since you guys are going to see it unfold here as we go. the girls in my head do in fact have names and faces. i can't show you or tell you who they are (unless you are seriously interested in adopting them, then email me and we'll talk), but i'll tell you how i found them and how they shaped my heart. i saw a picture of them on a blog. their faces were blocked out but there story was told. they are thought to be 7 and 11 but could be as old as 9 and 13. they've been in the orphanage for a very long time and they cry and cry when someone comes to pick up their kids. they've never been picked. and they're old enough to know what they're missing and they know their likely fate. at 14 they age out of the system and the older sister will have to leave. 70% of those girls are forced into prostitution to survive. when i saw them i just wanted to scoop them up and get them out of there. but there are realities and obstacles. they are not likely to be on our agency's waiting child list. we can't seem to talk ourselves into switching to their agency. i don't know what will happen to them. if the oldest may be 13, well then her time is running out. i don't know who i have to talk to to think she may be 11 and give her a few more years. so we were touched by these girls and if it's God's will he knows how to make it happen. but it's likely not these girls. this week we'll be able to view the waiting child list with our agency and nothing would make me happier than seeing them. if not, i'm sure there are a million little girls just like them that need to get out quick too. so that's what we're doing this week. if you're the praying type, please say a little prayer for those girls. all of them. and that we might be led to the one that will live here. in anthropologie style, no doubt. well maybe IKEA. :)

Friday, August 5, 2011

just one.

hey everybody, i just wanted to pop in and tell you how it's all going. this week we've managed to raise almost $500! that's a big bite out of our expenses. thank you! i've had alot of people be shocked about how much international adoption costs, but rest assured every penny is accounted for. i'm pretty sure nobody is getting wildly rich. here's a breakdown of our agency's costs. it's pretty reasonable. if you're thinking of adopting and finances are holding you up, please email me.

right now there are well over 147 MILLION known orphans in the world. how do you reach them all?! 1 at a time. if adoption is something you've always thought about, please think hard about the timing. if there is a little voice urging you to pursue that, please please look into it. the wait time for a newborn in ethiopia is hovering at several years now. but older children (and when i say older i mean 2 years old or older) are desperate for mommies too. once they turn 5 they are unlikely to be adopted at all. and in this mommy's opinion 5 is when it starts getting good!



Thursday, August 4, 2011

meet the family you're supporting this week.

hey there, beth here. today is the start of a little regular occurance where you'll get to meet the family that you're helping out this week. it just so happens that i am also your bloggy host, so we'll actually be getting to know each other quite well beyond this week. well, this is us.

brandon is my husband. he's the calm one. extremely supportive. we had always vaguely talked about being 'open' to adoption, but never really committing to it. when i told him it was time it took him all of 24 hours to say ok. when i told him i wanted 2 he said ok. he's not even scared of preteen girls. he's so chill.

will is 6. check the dimple, crazy hair, and sprinkling of freckles! he loves hot wheels and water play of all kinds. he's the most passionate kid i've ever met. he feels emotions strongly. abby's your typical pink mermaid loving princess girl. she's not a snuggler. in fact she's recently discovered the joys of a good hug, but won't ask for one herself. she gets on her knees and acts like a cat and meows to be pet. kids are weird.

me, well, i'm beth. let's see... i'm a photographer. well, i was. i don't do alot of shooting for money these days. i used to be a killer boudoir photographer and had a huge and awesome client base. but then boudoir turned out to be not that family friendly as my son started getting too old for me to edit around. so i just started shooting fun stuff at the beach, but that doesn't really sell. but it does make me really happy, so i guess maybe photography is officially a hobby now. i love anything with sugar in it. i love blogs and blogging. i have a trail of dead blogs in my wake. i tend to be discouraged easily and one nasty comment had me abandon this one. it was even featured on ohdeedoh! but this blog right here is going to be different. this was supposed to be my fundraiser, but it's taken on a slightly different shape and now i'm so excited to be able to help other families as well. i can't wait for the word to get out about this thing. i'm committed to this blog no matter what happens. i've already endured plenty of rejection and hardship with this one, but i really felt like this is a project that God led me to do with my unique and bizarre skillset. oh, yeah, and i hope it doesn't bother you too much, but i talk about God alot. i love that guy! i know it's not cool to be a christian, but blogs are so personal, i might as well just fess up in the beginning. don't worry. i'm not too preachy or anything. but adoption is super close to God's heart, so it's hard to talk about charity and adoption without giving a shout-out!

Pure and genuine religion in the sight of God the Father means caring for the orphan and widow in their time of distress. James 1:27

so that's us in a nutshell. i do hope you'll give us a dollar. that would be fantastic. but i really hope you'll give the next family a dollar. and the next one. man, wouldn't it be a blessing to be part of such a cool movement. i really can't wait to start bringing some of these kids home and getting to meet them!

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

african kokeshi girls from artist stephanie fizer coleman

guys, i have so much to tell you and show you. i guess i should save some for other days. i'm just so excited about the buzz and generosity that you are offering. it's amazing to be a part of. enough mushy stuff. so, as you can see, this blog is quite new, but i have big plans for it. behind the scenes stuff that you'll see coming together in the coming days and weeks. one of my visions for this blog was to partner adopting families with a supportive artist or blogger (sometimes both) to make a big internet group hug. we all follow the mommy blogs, the craft blogs, the design blogs. well, it's time for worlds to collide! i LOVE it! well we cheated a little and got two supporting artists. two heroes of mine, actually. you've already seen the beautiful work that jessica rose of volume 25 did for the blog. she set the tone for the look of the campaign and of course it's flawless. you've been pinning and posting away (thanks) and today i am pleased to show you what the fabulous stephanie fizer coleman created in honor of the two girls we hope to bring home. i love love love her kokeshi darling series. i know, so does everyone else. well, she made us two african kokeshi darlings. i love it. so, ladies, you know what to do. pin it, facebook, blog it. spread the word far and wide. if you haven't hit that donate button, come on! and thank you so much, from the bottom of my heart, to my amazing supporting artists, jess and stephanie, for your beautiful work. if you are an artist and want to be paired with a family, email me at b.cupitt(at)yahoo(dot)com.

now about the two girls... there's so much to tell you. i want to tell you more about why we're deciding to go that route. i think maybe you'd go nuts reading all that in one day. so today let's keep it light and lovely. tomorrow i'll mess with your heart. you'll get to meet us a little more. see what we're about and how you can help us or the two girls whose names and faces are burned into my mind. another post. see you tomorrow.

Tuesday, August 2, 2011

wow, thanks, you guys.

so, last night i added that donate tab. all the hard work of the last couple of weeks comes down to this! yikes! i want to thank every single person that has anything to do with this campaign. it's been so neat getting to meet so many people and to have our family, and our future daughter's embraced by so many people. the donations have started coming in! seriously, thank you so much! our family's donate tab will be here for two weeks just because no one knows it exists yet, but on august 15th it will be the next family's turn. i'm still working on the details, but i'll introduce you as soon as i can. in the meantime, keep sharing you voice and your dollars. your facebook shout-outs are priceless. it's your own personal voice that makes this so successful, so if adoption is touching your heart, spread the word.

Monday, August 1, 2011

THIS child.

I Prayed for this Child Bible Verse Art Printthis week we took a big step towards our new family members. we were approved to join the Ethiopia program with America World. today we write a big whopper check, our first installment to the agency, and wait to be assigned a family coordinator. and that nice coordinator is going to give us access to the waiting child list. for those that don't know what that is, it's a photolisting of the children that are virtually unadoptable. they're all ready to go, but they might be too old for most people's liking. or they might have a special need. they might have a sibling. they are hard to place. but we really feel like OUR children are on that list. and i can't wait to see it. we have felt strongly led to two older girls. i say older, but i mean older than 5. 5 is the magic number. it's too old for most people. lucky for me, i love older kids. 14 is the age that they are when they have to leave the orphanage and fend for themselves. 70% of girls turn to prostitution. i can't bear it. and i have to save 1 from that fate. but i think i can manage 2. i just have a picture painted in my head and i know God is going to make this happen. maybe you can save 1. think about it. i don't think they'll be like american teenage girls, holding their breath until they get a cell phone. but even if they are, we'll see it through. i can't wait to lay eyes on them! once you see their faces and know their names they become real. a real child that's been waiting a long lonely time. i can't get to them fast enough!

today's artwork was provided by jodi of enduring arts. i love this one. you like it? you can buy one here.