Sunday, December 19, 2010

Wick & Petal Candles

I now have Wick & Petal Candles for sale! These candles are 14oz and burn for 50-60 hours. We have been burning the Christmas Splendor at my mom's house and we both are amazed at how well these burn! Seriously! The wicks are self trimming and the natural palm wax is burning down very nicely! These sell for $15 each. I have already sold some, so here is what I have now:
1 - Monkey Farts (banana and citrus)
1 - Pumpkin Cream Cake
1 - Christmas Splendor
3 - Hot Baked Apple Pie

I also have melts from Wick & Petal. The melts are in 2-packs and sell for $1.50. The scents available are:
1-Iced Cinnamon Rolls
2-Peaches & Ginger
2-Winter Fantasy (vanilla, sandalwood, and cherries)
1-Christmas Splendor (cinnamon, pine, apple and berries)
2-Hot Baked Apple Pie
2-Hot Fudge Brownies
2-Australian Bamboo Grass (fresh, spa-like scent)
2-Blueberry Muffin
2-Vanilla Silk
2-Pumpkin Pie Spice

Wednesday, December 1, 2010


Go here to buy some cute handmade jewelry! Enter "Prather Adoption" at checkout :-)

Friday, November 26, 2010

Things that I Can Make

I've been trying to compile a list of things that I can make to sell to raise money for our adoption expenses. This is the list that I've come up with so far:

  • Baby Rag Quilt
  • Scrunchies/Hair Bands
  • Stroller Bungee Clip
  • Diapers
  • Cloth Changing Pad
  • Wet Diaper Bag
  • Dish Cloths
  • Dish/Veggie Scrubber
My problem is that I have no idea how to sell the stuff! And to be honest, some of these things cost enough money that it's easier to make them as they are ordered. Maybe I'll just be spending too much time trying to do this? Is it worth it? All of these items can be found on etsy, so I'm not sure that I'm unique enough for people to buy from me vs. everyone else that's out there!

We need about $1000 in furniture type items. Other than that, we're really don't need much else as long as we continue our plan of adopting through foster care. I've thought about teaching piano again, but I would really not be able to keep up with that once our children are home with us. I'd hate to start something that I knew I wouldn't be able to keep up.

What are your thoughts?

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Fundraiser #2

These amazing soaps are made by a friend of mine! They are completely natural and most are made with goats milk. Just place your order at and enter the code "Prather Adoption" when you're checking out and she'll do the rest! Be sure to check out her gift giving ideas for some great Christmas gifts!


Our first fundraiser has started! From now until December 5th order candles at and enter the code "2010" at checkout. I'll also be taking orders directly for the scents listed below. If you want to be sure that your order will be here by Christmas I recommend ordering online since I'll be gone the weeks immediately prior to Christmas. Thank you for considering supporting us!

Mia Bella Gourmet Products

We want to thank you for supporting the Prather Family and Their Adoption Journey!

Mia Bella Candles are proud to be made in the USA

Natural Gourmet Scented Candles - $20 each

Our 16 oz jar candles are clean burning with no black mess.

The scents are infused throughout entire candle and will not fade.

Choose from our top selling scents and enjoy in your home or to give as a gift.

Mia Bella Scent Description

  1. Apple Cinnamon – ripe apples sprinkled with cinnamon
  2. Baby Powder – “new baby” smell so pure and innocent.
  3. Christmas Pine – the wonderful Christmas tree aroma of the holiday season
  4. Cr̬me Brulee Рa rich sweet butterscotch fragrance
  5. Cucumber Melon – fresh and cool smelling like a breath of fresh air
  6. Eucalyptus – refreshing, invigorating but also calming and comforting
  7. French Vanilla – a creamy confection with a strong vanilla scent
  8. Fresh Linen – clean clothes fresh from the dryer describes this scent
  9. Heart of the Ocean – fresh clean smell like an ocean breeze
  10. Home For Christmas – hints of cinnamon and cloves to spice up your holiday season
  11. Hot Apple Pie – so much like the real thing your family will think you’re baking
  12. Lavender – aromatic, relaxing fragrance of crisp English lavender
  13. Mulberry Spice – strong scent of spice and dark red mulberry fruit
  14. Pumpkin Cheesecake – rich creamy blend of cheesecake and pumpkin
  15. Rain – just like after a rainstorm
  16. Sweet Orange & Chili Pepper – our most popular fragrance – a zingy, zesty orange-eee smell you will never forget. Perfect for any season
  17. Victorian Rose – light perfume smell of roses

Monday, November 8, 2010


We finished our homestudy!!! Now we just have to wait for them to finish the paperwork so we can be licensed. We found out that to be licensed as foster care we could only have 1 additional child. Since we went into this thinking a sibling group we were rather disappointed, so we decided to keep with our original plan and go with matched adoption. This means it may take longer to find our children, but once they come in the door we'll know that the are ours.

We are beginning to consider doing a little bit of fundraising for some of our expenses. One kind of fundraiser that I'm considering is asking business to donate items to us, then selling the items on my blog. My blog doesn't get much traffic so I would need my friends to help advertise on FB for me!

So for now I've emailed 3 friends that make things to sell and asked if they are interested in the idea. Does anyone know of some other people that may be interested?

Sunday, September 12, 2010


We had our first meeting for our homestudy on Thursday. I think it went well, but you never know what other people think about you. The first meeting was an interview with both of us, then the next thing will be separate interviews. They will also talk to the kids.

We had them do a walk-through to give us some things to fix before we do the health inspection. Some of the things are things that should have been done anyway (lid on the dog food container) but some of the stuff if just silly (contact solution has to be locked up). In any case, we fixed some of the things this weekend and tomorrow we will try and get the health and fire inspections scheduled.

Now....who wants to help me clean????

Sunday, September 5, 2010


Not a whole lot to update, but I thought I would post something so you all know that I'm still here!

The paperwork part of the application is nearly done! It's close enough that the agency has decided to go ahead and assign us to a case manager and start our homestudy process. While I know that many people have their homestudy done in one day, our case manager told us that the first meeting will only consist of the interviews that Ryan and I will do together and we will do our separate ones on a different day. She also mentioned something about interviewing the kids, so I'm not really sure what to expect with that.

I have been watching like a hawk checking the public data base frequently. On one hand I am encouraged for the children because there used to be 3 pages that showed up in my search range but now there is only one. On that one page none of the sibling groups match what we are looking for (everyone younger than Tyler). I have to keep reminding myself that most adoption matches are not done through this website but through our case manager. Most children never make it to the website.

So that's about it! Homestudy soon, then fire and health inspections! Anyone want to come help me clean?

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Legal Risk

I realized that I used the term "Legal Risk" in my last post but didn't give a definition. So here it is to the best of my understanding.

When a child is removed from a home the state of Texas gives the parents and extended family 18 months to clean up their act and do what is needed to get their children back. Some cities move faster than 18 months. Some probably move slower. But here the judge has to make the decision in 18 months. During that time the children are in foster care. Many people in foster care are hoping to adopt the children in their homes but you really have no idea what the chances of that will be. People that go this route are considered Foster-to-Adopt.

The other end of that spectrum is matched adoption. These are children whose parents have had their parental rights terminated. When Texas terminates parental rights it terminates on the whole family. This means that after termination Aunt Mary from Missouri can't come back and claim a niece or nephew. So these children are living in a foster home who don't intend to adopt them. A family will find out about these children and start taking the steps to adopting them. After they are placed in your home they stay there for about 6 months until you go to court and they are 100% yours. (read: the state quits coming into your house every month!)

The middle ground is called "Legal Risk". Technically there is no license for legal risk. It's just in the mind of your caseworker. An example of legal risk would be an abandoned infant. If a parent abandons their infant then they have 3 months to come back and claim them. During that time the baby is in a home that is licensed for foster care. If the mother does not reclaim her child then parental rights are terminated on and the child can be adopted. In the time that our city has had the "Baby Moses" law in effect only one child has been reclaimed. Another example would be if our caseworker knew of some children who had been in foster care for 12 months and the parents were not trying to get their children back. It looks pretty good that there will be termination in 6 months but they can't guarantee that. Another good example would be if a mother had had more than one termination in the past with previous children and now she has another baby in foster care. The chances are pretty good that she won't get this baby back either.

So there you have it. Clear as mud, right?

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Next Step

We finished the PRIDE class and have submitted all of the paperwork. The next thing we will be waiting for is the referral forms to come back, the background checks from Colorado and Maryland to come back, and the appointments next week to get the TB tests done. In the meantime we might fill our time with some chicken pox. You never know...

After all of the above things have cleared then we'll have the homestudy, fire & health inspections, and the FBI fingerprinting and then we'll be licensed! As of right now we have decided to go ahead and do the dual licensing for foster care and adoption. While we plan on doing a matched adoption we found out that there are times that a legal risk may make sense. We have to be licensed for foster care in order to do a legal risk adoption.

Try as I might, I can't seem to stay off of the TARE website! I was a little sad today when I discovered that a sibling group that I had been planning to ask about is no longer listed. They were there last week, but they are gone now. I am sad for me, but I am happy that this means that they have a forever family :-)

In other news we found out that we can't post pictures of the kids until they are 100% legally ours. I was completely disappointed about that since I would have wanted to put pictures up here as soon as I found out who the kids are! But if you know me personally then I can email the pictures to you. I just can't post them here or on FB. Politics....

Wednesday, June 30, 2010


Congratulations to my friends! I have two friends that are both with their children right now in their birth countries. The Tossells have adopted a little boy from Russia and will be bringing him home in about a week and a half!

The Cambrons have adopted a brother and sister in Ethiopia. Their dad is with them right now and will be bringing them home soon, although I'm not sure exactly when.

Saturday, June 26, 2010


As with most things in my life I tend to do a lot of research. Adoption is no different. I have spent countless hours talking with people whose lives have been touched by adoption. I've read books, online articles, blogs, etc. The most recent book I have purchased is Brothers and Sisters in Adoption. Ryan and I will read it together starting next week. I've glanced at it a bit and it does look really good.

What are your favorite books about adoption? What was the most helpful?

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Another Adoption Song

This one is more about a birth mom who gave up her son at birth. I dare you not to cry. (OK, I dare the mothers out there not to cry)

Here's the story behind the song.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

All I Really Want

Ever have those moments where you realize that not everyone knows about your favorite song? Recently I learned that not everyone has heard of this song. Enjoy!

Tuesday, June 15, 2010


Some of you may know that I am an avid scrapbooker. It's a little crazy sometimes...but I try to catch important moments on camera and then put those into books. Part of it is just for the fun of being able to look back through pictures, but I also like to think that I am keeping a journal of God's faithfulness to us in good times and bad times. All of my children have a 0-12 month album in which I have written a Bible verse on each page in hopes that those will encourage, challenge, and strengthen them in days to come. After that they have a birthday album where I have pictures of their birthdays, along with stats from that year. Other than that I do family albums where I keep track of all of the other pictures.

Right now I am trying to figure out the best way to record our adoption journey. I can do some pictures, but should I just do one adoption album? I could play with some digital scrapbooks so I could assemble the book once and have one printed for each child. I'm just looking for ideas. Would a "first year with us" album be appropriate? I know that the kids will have some type of scrapbook that the foster families keep for them. Maybe I'll figure out how to integrate those into scrapbooks.

Thank you all for your feedback from my last post :-)

Monday, June 14, 2010


Until we announced our decision I didn't realize how much I was hoping for a good reaction from our friends and family. Now, you may be thinking that this is pretty obvious, but I guess I didn't realize how the negative or lack-of feedback would effect me. I tend to not let others bother me so I guess I assumed that it didn't matter what others thought.

I was wrong.

When I mentioned this to a friend that is hoping to adopt in the next few years she said that announcing an adoption is like announcing a pregnancy! We want people to be happy for us! We want them to share in our excitement! People that are anticipating adoption are emotionally pregnant!

For the ones that gave us negative feedback, I'm aware of what their concerns are and why they aren't happy for us. All I can pray is that time will help them embrace this and that our actions and words will relieve their concerns.

Maybe I'm being over-sensitive with the non-feedback. It's just that there were certain places that I got NOTHING. Silence. It certainly surprised me. I guess I would rather negative than nothing. I don't mind answering questions. If you have a question or concern, please ask!

Friday, June 11, 2010

The Adventure Begins

I should probably add the word "Officially" into my title. Like I mentioned before, we have been considering adoption even before we were married. For us, it's something that we have always planned on doing. It was just never the right time. So for the past 8 years or so I have been researching, reading and asking questions. Anytime I come across a family that has adopted I asked questions. In the last year or so I have started joining adoption blogs and message boards so I could gain some insight. I talked to people that adopted infants from private adoptions, people who did international adoptions, and people that have adopted from foster care.

Private infant adoption sounds wonderful because the transition period is easy! The baby eats, sleeps and poops! Each child will still need to come to grips with their adoption at some point and in their own way. The downside for this one for us is that most birth mothers would not choose a family of four that has no infertility problems. Also, because we would be dealing with private agencies the cost can be rather high.

International adoption has always appealed to me. When I was in high school I wanted to adopt a little girl from Romania. By the time I was married and started looking into it more Romania had closed their adoption program. From what I have found, most countries will not allow us to adopt from their overfilled orphanages because we already have four children. Their are a few countries in Africa that would allow us to do adopt. We may still consider this at some point in the future.

We have chosen to adopt from foster care. Please don't confuse this with foster-adopt. We will be matched with our children before they come into our home and so the time period from when they enter our home until we go to court will be less than a year. These are children who are wards of the state and are waiting to be adopted. Many people choose to foster-adopt, but we have decided that it will be important for us to know from the beginning that those children really are ours :-) Also, by going about it this way it will enable us to homeschool all of our children instead of sending some off to public or private school. I think that this will be one thing that will greatly help our bonding as a family.

Once we decided on foster care started looking for agencies. We narrowed it down to two and met with both of them. We decided to go with the second agency that we met with. We filled out the application and our training will start in late July. I set up a baby-sitting/piano lesson swap so our kids will have friends to play with while we spend the total of 24 hours in training. After that we have the dreaded home study! While I am nervous about it I also realized that I've never met someone that failed a home study. So what's to worry about?

Anyway, I just thought I'd give you a peek into how our journey began. Now that you're up-to-date I'll be filling you in as we go along!


I figured that it was high time that I put this blog to use again. Due to many life changes (i.e. hubby exiting the military) I thought about just starting a new blog. But...I couldn't find any open domain names that I liked! It is my personal opinion that if you started a blog back in 2007 and only posted once that blogspot should remove your blog from their system. But that's just me...

So, the URL is incorrect but I changed the title to make it all better :-)

Before I get into my new blog name, I thought I should update you with the last appointment that Tyler had before we moved. He had a 5 hour appointment with a Pediatric Neuro-Psychologist. After all of the testing, evaluating, and filling out of many forms they have determined that Tyler has a speech and language delay. Basically, it's what we already knew. The frustration was that the appointment didn't tell us anything new. The good thing is that the appointment didn't tell us anything new. What I mean is that there isn't some extra random piece of the puzzle that we need to account for. So, we will continue to homeschool and work with Tyler to help him develop to the best of HIS abilities.

Now, on to our announcement! To make it easier, I'll just paste the email that I sent to a few people:

We have always wanted to adopt. Prior till now it was not the right time or place. We believe that we are now at the time and place to go forward with adoption. We are currently working with an agency in our state to adopt a sibling group from the foster care system.

While we haven't been matched with our children yet, we have stated that we want the oldest of the sibling group to be younger than Tyler. We hope to go for a matched adoption, but we may end up with a legal-risk adoption, which simply means that the parental rights haven't been terminated yet. We will complete our paperwork and training at the beginning of August so we should be approved by the end of October. From that point it is just a matter of time until our case worker finds the right kids for us.

We welcome any questions that you may have for us.....I'm sure you have many :-) Please know that we have been in prayer about this and have been looking/researching for many years. This is not a decision that we have taken lightly or that is being led by emotions. We know that this is not an easy road or something that can be done halfheartedly. Our commitment to our children will be the same across the board, though we know that this will require a lot more work from us, especially in the beginning.

We pray that you will see these children as part of our family as much as Tyler, Andrew, Melia and Eliana are. We ask for your love, prayer and support.