Saturday, December 24, 2011

The Christmas Spirit

I admit it took me awhile to get into the Christmas spirit this year, but the last two days have finally found me in the sweet spot of the joy and excitement of the season. On Thursday, Evelea and Therese made their acting debut in their school musical. The both were amazing and the evening ended with a little snow in the air that was truly magical!
On Friday, all the kids poured out the elementary school with shouts of joy, glittered ornaments tucked into backpacks, and white elephant gifts on display. In all the exuberant hustle and bustle, there is Carter, shuffling along, muttering, "one more day". "What little buddy?", I questioned, "Sweetie, today is it! The last day of school before Christmas break!". You should have seen the boy's face light up! How he missed that it was it was the last day, I can't fathom, but it sure made me smile! And last night Casey and I wrapped the presents. Here is a picture of my favorite one. It is the kid's present for Jesus.
I cannot wait to see what they select! Wishing you a very Merry Christmas! May God fill your heart with joy and peace as you ponder the greatest gift of all- Immanuel, God with Us.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

Let Heaven and Nature Sing!

I wanted to share a few media items that will be sure to bless your socks off! A MUST download, right?! Wow. Here are some precious Burkinabe children singing. They live in the same orphanage Therese did. If you'd like to sponsor one of these sweeties, let me know and I'll happily get you information! There, now my heart feels ready for Christmas.

Saturday, December 17, 2011

One YEAR Home!

From Africa to Aurora: A Hearts Content from Brian Powers on Vimeo.

I cannot believe it has been one year since Therese united with our whole family on American soil! One year ago today she met her father, and sister and brother for the first time. Wow. Thank you, Jesus!

Friday, December 16, 2011

Safe Families Update

Ever have a day that changes every ten minutes? You think your day is heading one way, then it abruptly heads in another direction, oops, something changes again and again.

That was yesterday. Okay, that has been everyday for the past two weeks!

Yesterday, I brought our Safe Families baby to the hospital for his pre-op appointment for his surgery on Monday. They decided to admit him for observation of his cough to see if he is strong enough for surgery.

This marks the official end of our time with our little guy. When he leaves the hospital, post-surgery or otherwise, he will go home with his mom.

We ran out of nursing hours and our home health medical supplier will no longer deliver supplies to us because the baby was not "residing in his home state".

His mom is very gracious and welcomed us to visit in the hospital anytime and even invited us to her high school graduation. I know our families will stay connected and that gives me a lot of peace.

Last night I took the kids out to dinner to begin processing our experience with Safe Families and, in particular, this baby. I asked them to rate the total experience 1-10. 1 being miserable, the entire time, and 10 was fabulous, every minute.

The kids gave replies like 1000, 1,000,000, and infinity. They said they only way they are okay with Baby J leaving, is knowing someone else will be coming.


It's going to take me a little more processing time and about two weeks of sleeping through the night again before I'm ready to do this again, but we will do this again!

Can't wait to meet whoever God has in store for our family next!

Friday, December 9, 2011

This Mother's Heart

This Christmas season I am thinking a lot about babies, and mothers, and mothers of special babies. I'm thinking about Mary, and the things she pondered in her heart.

Our Safe Families baby, is having a heart cath today, to check his measurements for the open heart procedure he will have on December 19th. He is a little weaker now than he was before. He has had two viruses and requires oxygen continually since he came down with the first virus. After he recovers from his surgery on the 19th, he will go home with his mother.

Time with our children is precious. Their physical and spiritual hearts are fragile and their futures are unknown.

But our children's hearts can be bought, won, and eternally secure.

Am I reaching my children's hearts?

Yes, I give the medicine. 3 of out of the 5 children in my home right now require daily heart medications. I wouldn't go a day without giving the labetalol or the aspirin, but do I speak truth and love and grace into their hearts each day? Do I see them growing in kindness, patience and gentleness? Is my discipline firm and grace-filled? Do they know how they are treasured by the Most High and by me?

"But Mary treasured up all these things and pondered them in her heart." Luke 2:19

This Christmas season, I, too, am pondering and treasuring.

"And the child grew and became strong; he was filled with wisdom, and the grace of God was upon him. " Luke 2:40

Lord, grow my children to be strong, wise, and grace-filled. Help me to minster right to their hearts. Help me to treasure what you treasure. Be with me as I ponder the wonder of it all.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011


A Franciscan Benediction

May God bless us with discomfort at easy answers, half-truths, and superficial relationships, so that we may live deep within our hearts.

May God bless us with anger at injustice, oppression, and exploitation of people, so that we may work for justice, freedom and peace.

May God bless us with tears to shed for those who suffer from pain, rejection, starvation and war, so that we may reach out our hands to comfort them and turn their pain into joy.

And may God bless us with enough foolishness to believe that we can make a difference in this world, so that we can do what others claim cannot be done.

I love this prayer and hope it resonates with you as well.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Happy Birthday, Therese!

This fact astounds me, one year ago I hadn't yet met my daughter.

Two and a half years ago, I got an email from a friend, Rona, who had information about a little girl in need of an urgent adoption. The description said something about a girl about nine years old with a heart defect that could not be fixed in her country. That is about all we knew.

That same day, I emailed the information to Casey, so "he could pray for her". Hee hee. I think he knew by that I meant pray about adopting her. But he didn't receive the email before he left work.

That same day, Casey was listening to John Piper talk about how God is pleased when we take risks with our faith. Casey walked through the door, almost visibly shaken, saying he felt we needed to take a risk with our faith now, and he was ready to adopt again.

I wasted no time showing Casey the email. He said "that's her, yes, let's adopt her".

But she is nine years old, is that too old? How serious is this heart defect? What country is she from again? Are we qualified to adopt from there? How much will it cost? How will Evelea feel about being replaced as the oldest? What if she dies before we can adopt her, or after we adopt her?

We decided to keep pursuing until God shut the door. He didn't.

About 18 months later, we brought home our daughter. She had lifesaving heart surgery three months later.

Today, Therese is the song in our home. Her laugh is the loudest. Her dance moves are unrivaled. Her smile the most infectious. She is hard working and modest. She is bold with her faith.

She is healed, cherished, rescued, adored and ours.

Happy 11th Birthday, Therese!

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

More than I Can Handle

These last few weeks have been hard- emotionally and physically. It's the season we're in. It's the season we've asked for.

At times I've questioned if what we are doing is worth it, if perhaps it is too draining, too taxing on my children. Does Jesus really want us to be doing this? To be this tired? Doesn't he want us to be happy and well rested?

My flesh cries out yes! Jesus would want me to balanced and whole. He wants me to be happy.

But something else, someONE else is crying out inside me, too.

Isn't it when you fill empty, but you reach out anyway, isn't that the moment when the sacrifice begins? And isn't God pleased when we give sacrificially, not just skimming off the top of our overflow?

And what about suffering? Oh my. Aren't we called to suffer along side Jesus? I'm afraid I don't even know what that looks like! I'm not sure I've truly experienced it, let alone counted it as joy!

Phillipians 1:29
"For it has been granted to you on behalf of Christ not only to believe in him, but also suffer for him."

And then my mind turns to our missionary friends and I am appalled at what I define as my personal suffering for Christ!

No matter how tough my day has been, I have a comfortable bed to sleep in, medical care available 24 hours a day and within a short drive, a Starbucks to drive-through, a church with endless resources and countless other conveniences at my disposal.

I recently read a book that is truly one of the best books I have ever read. As soon as I finished it, I began to read it to my kids. It is called, Kisses from Katie by Katie Davis. Watch this video and you will get a glimpse into why I love this young woman's heart so much.

This is an excerpt from Katie's book. I want my heart to look like Katie's. Actually, I want my heart to look like Jesus's heart, the Erika version.

"I have learned to accept it, even ask for it, this "more than I can handle". Because in these times,God shows Himself victorious. He reminds me that all of this life requires more of Him and less of me. God does give us more than we can handle. Not maliciously, but intentionally, in love, that His glory may be displayed, that we may have no doubt of who is in control, that people may see His grace and faithfulness shining through out lives.

And as I surrender these situations to Him, watch him take over and do the impossible, I am filled with joy and peace- so much more than I can handle."

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

A Perfect Cause

I am so excited to post about this great opportunity! How would you like to help three incredibly great causes at once?

These bracelets cost $3.

$1 goes to benefit girls rescued in Nepal from human trafficking. These girls also make the bracelets.

$1 goes to Ruth's orphanage, Les Ailes de Refuge. This is Therese's former orphanage in Yako, Burkina Faso. You can follow Ruth's blog here.

$1 goes to an orphanage in Ouagadougou, Burkina Faso. This is the former home to Little Matheny, a sweet three year old boy, who is blind, and recently joined his forever family. Read about his amazing story here.
Can you think of a better cause? If you would like to place an order, send an email to Cami at

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

A Bad Christmas Letter

I'm afraid today's post might read a little bit like a bad Christmas letter, you know the one about Aunt Lou's bunion surgery and Uncle's Leo's valve replacement?

But alas, what is the Solgos family without a huge packet that comes from Blue Cross bi-monthly?

All silliness aside, our sweet Safe Families baby, is in the hospital. He has a virus. For a healthy child, a virus is a drag, but something easily fought and won. For Baby J, he needs to be in the hospital. He is on oxygen and needs regular suctioning. I know the hospital is where he needs to be to recover physically, and I am trusting that God will provide for his emotional needs as well.

Carter had his cardiology appointment yesterday. You can imagine the logistical nightmare of getting Carter to his appointment on the north side of Chicago while Baby J's hospital is on the way east side. No stress there! Carter and Daddy had a long day with echos, EKGs and x-rays of his pacemaker, but a good report ensued. Praise God! This mama could not have handled any complications yesterday!

Tomorrow, Carter has his EEG to check for seizure activity. This means he stays up late tonight, and I wake him early tomorrow, so that he can fall asleep during his test. He is brilliant at this and I admire his ability to fall asleep in the clinic reclining chair (can they not spring for a bed?).

In the spirit of this sounding like a bad Christmas letter, I cannot resist the final piece of Solgos medical news. Next Friday, I get to have a tube put in my ear. Yup, even though I have four kids, none who have required tubes, I need to get a tube in my ear at age 36.

The End.

Sunday, October 30, 2011


As we approach the one year mark of our trip to Burkina Faso to adopt Therese, I can't help but reflect on the many ways she has changed and grown our family for the better. The ways she has been physically healed and flourished in every way. But that is another post.

You see, my heart is still there. That place where the children go bed with no mother or father to tuck them in at night. There, where their is no one to listen to their deepest fears and biggest dreams. Where the future is bleak for these little ones with no one to protect them, love them, encourage them.

David is one of these precious Burkinable children. He is nine years old. Doctors are not sure how much vision David has, but currently he is being denied education because of his vision difference. David has no family to advocate a better future for him. A future he deserves. If you know anyone who might like to adopt David, please contact me and I'd be happy to get more information for you.

Baby Trumps Blog

I haven't had much time to blog lately, but with a four-month old in the house, baby trumps blog any day!

If you don't want to feel really sorry for me, don't look at this picture:

No, not the orange counter tops, Silly.

Did you see the missing "On" button on my coffee maker? Um, yeah. Broken as could be! This means I have to set the "Delay Brew" option each time I want to make some coffee. I know people have bigger problems than this, but this mama needs her coffee these days more than ever!

With the demise of my "on" button, I couldn't help but notice that the handle has been broken on my toaster for years now, and the knob fell off the crock pot, too. Last winter we received notice that our furnace was on it's final leg as well. I guess we are experiencing the winter of our appliances in this 13th year of our marriage.

Yes, this season our bodies are tired and our appliances are wearing out; but our hearts, our minds and our souls are being renewed day by day. A few months ago, a friend sent me this verse. I suppose he thought it applied to our family, and while I hesitate to put myself in this category, I won't deny that His word is true because we have so much evidence in our lives:

"and if you spend yourselves in behalf of the hungry and satisfy the needs of the oppressed, then your light will rise in the darkness, and your night will become like the noonday. The Lord will guide you always; he will satisfy your needs in a sun-scorched land and will strengthen your frame. You will be like a well-watered garden, like spring whose waters never fail." Isaiah 58:10-11

Yes, we are tired. It is the good kind of tired. The kind of tired that feels good because you are spending yourself on behalf of others and for the Lord.

And our needs are being met. Abundantly so. People from church have given us delicious meals, provided us with baby clothes and diapers. Many are praying.

A few weeks ago someone (we still don't know who), gave us a furnace. I'm not even kidding. They heard we needed one and they set it up for us to have one installed. I'm still not over the shock.

Can you imagine my face as I get a phone call like this:

Furnace Man: "Uh, ma'am, this is So and So from ________Heating and Cooling. Do you need a furnace?

Me (silently): Wow, this guy is good! and what timing! I do need a furnace...

Me (aloud): "Um, yes, actually, we do."

Furnace Man: "Okay, because I have an order to install a furnace for you."

Me: "Um..., what?"

Furnace Man: "I know it is strange, but somebody wants me to come out for an estimate and wants me to give the bill to them."

Me: "You are not kidding me, right?"

Furnace Man: "I am not totally sure its not a joke either, but I don't think it is".

Me: "Okay, come on out!".

So don't be afraid to say "yes" to God. God is still good. He still provides. He owns the cattle on a thousand hills. He supplies what you need at the perfect time.

We are living proof.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

A Perfect Gift

What if you could save one of these little girls and revolutionize her life? What if you could lead her from poverty and malnutrition and give her a life of love and nurture?

That sad little girl on the far left is our Sitota, before we adopted her.

Her name means "a gift from God". And that is exactly what she is, a perfect gift.

This is Sitota today.
age 7

Recently, I received a disturbing email. It is about the conditions in some of the Ethiopian orphanages. You see, adoptions have slowed way down in Ethiopia over the past year. This means a decrease in funds for the orphanages at a time when the price of food has skyrocketed.

Just five years ago, Sitota was in one of those orphanages. I cannot imagine her being hungry, cold and alone. It is unthinkable to me. It is unthinkable to let that happen to other children. If you would like to make a donation to provide immediate relief to Sitota's former orphanage, you can do so by clicking here.

"Anyone who is kind to the poor lends to the Lord, God will reward him for what he has done." Proverbs 19:17

Together for Adoption

If you have a heart for orphan care, internationally, or right here in our city, please consider attending this incredible conference.

It is extremely budget friendly, $15 and that includes the book, Adopted for Life, by Russell Moore, and lunch!

The Together for Adoption web page says this about the conference:

"On Saturday, November 12th, at Park Community Church, Together for Adoption Chicago is offering a one-day event on regional adoption, fostercare, and global orphan care. Our hope is that you’ll leave with a unique sense of God’s adopting love for you and a heart and desire to love and care for the orphan."

How great does that sound? Hope to see you there!

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Hard Day's Night

Today was the first day we had nursing care in our home for Baby J.

It was great to have the freedom to go pick up the kids from school and get them to their activities without having to take Baby J out in the cold, and invest some one on one time with the big kids. I did miss our snuggle time, though!

I wasn't sure how I'd feel about having a third party in our home today. Kinda hard to imagine going about our regular day whilst having a third party with front row seats to our daily life.

It's kind of like when you bring a friend to church for the first time, and you start to see your church more objectively and more critically. Would she be appalled by the stacks of paper on the buffet? Would she think it was gross that we toss diapers in the kitchen garbage? Wow, I never realized how loudly my kids laugh, is that cute or obnoxious? Would she document the lack of nutrition in the kid's after school snack?

Alas, pride has a way of slinking away when you really need help. Turns out our nurse is great. Totally laid back, easy to talk to, or not talk to. Just like when you find that great hair stylist who knows you well enough to chat you up a little, and then let's you relax into the experience.

Grateful. Tired. Filled up. Good Night.

Until tomorrow.

Monday, October 17, 2011

Don't Adopt

Outstanding post by Russell Moore:

If you are an adoptive parent or are thinking about adoption, Moore's book, Adopted for Life is a must read!

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Whoa, Baby!

I am writing this post while just recovering from the state of shock I've been in since little baby J came home on Monday. Our little man has a lot of needs. A lot.

Hopefully next week we will begin some at home nursing care which will ease our load. This sweet baby is on continuous feeds, a truckload of meds, needs wound care, glucose checks, nebulizer treatments and pulse-ox spot checks. Oh, and we need to weigh him naked everyday and the exact same time (that is SO easy).

Needless to say that this little baby has rocked our world.

Did I mention we can't allow him to cry for more than ten minutes or we need to call the doctor?

Besides a crazy lot of work, this baby has brought the JOY!

While reading a bedtime book last night, one of the questions was "what is your favorite thing to do?". Therese answered that her favorite thing is taking care of sick babies.

Carter is relishing his big brother role. He has now started to eat the crust of his sandwich because he "is big now and a real big brother". Carter knows this baby isn't staying, but he will always be his big brother anyhow!

Sitota's heart breaks for this baby. It makes her sad to see his feeding tube and his medicine. Bless her tender heart! But that compassion fuels her to help and she loves pushing his IV pole for me.

At bed time last night, Evelea said, "Mommy, can you believe baby J has only been with us one day?". I looked at her with disbelief as it feels like that one day had been a week!

Casey has been the rock these past 48 hours. He kicked his organizational skills into high gear pre-measuring all the meds into labeled containers for each 24 hour period and pre-measuring formula (this is not a regular formula mix). He loves this baby and wants to give him the best we have.

And my family and friends! I've had two neighborhood nurse friends come to help me change the dressing on his wound and trouble shoot the feeding pump. We've had meals, groceries, rides to AWANA and school, and an extra set of hands to hold the baby while I shower. All desperately needed.

This is the body of Christ in action. All of for one little life. All glory to God forever and ever.

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Safe Families Update

Well, it looks like our new baby will be joining us on Friday!!!!

We are very excited and I am thrilled that he can begin to enjoy a "normal" life. I am also a little intimidated by all the care this little one needs. But that is what God is for, right?

I learned infant CPR today and how to replace his g-tube should it pull out (please, no!). I also learned some wound care for his incision (its having a little trouble healing). I met a few of the doctors and nurse practioners involved in his care. I am expecting a rather large delivery of medical supplies to our home tomorrow.

I suppose this would be one of those nights where I think, "what have I done?". But I am reminding myself that if God called me to do this, He will also equip me.

Philippians 4:13

"I can do everything through Christ who strengthens me."

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Better Late than Never!

Happy 7th Birthday, Carter!

I think Evelea said it best in the birthday card she made for Carter:

"Happy Birthday! Seven years of life and love. You're as strong as a superhero, as brave as a Jedi Knight, and yet as cuddly and sweet as a tiger baby. I love every single part of you."

Monday, September 26, 2011

Heart Ache

Well, our little Safe Families baby is still in the hospital and sadly, developed a set-back today. During what should have been an easy procedure of inserting a picc-line (a fancy iv) for his anti-biotics, his heart rate plummeted and they had to do CPR. He is now stable, but back on the respirator. Sigh.

My heart is all over the place these days. I try to visit him whenever I can, yet I need to be there for my kids, too. What a strange balance. He is not mine, yet I feel responsible for him and I love him. I can't stand the thought of him being alone in the hospital room. When Carter was in the hospital, we were so blessed because we never had to leave him. Ever. Casey or I was there 24 hours a day.

To be honest I feel a little sad all the time. I do take solace knowing that I am doing what I can for this little pumpkin, but it doesn't feel like enough. I know I need to place him in my Father's hands and trust God to have his way here.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Stop Child Trafficking

One of the highlights of our weekend was that Casey ran his first 5K.

This is pretty blog-worthy stuff considering how un-athletic our family was up until recently. The addition of two African princesses with some serious athleticism upped our family's jock quota significantly. Now, Casey is going all sporty on me with this new running gig.

Casey raised around $400 for a great cause- a group called, Stop Child Trafficking Now. UNICEF reports that child trafficking is the fastest growing crime industry in the world and that there are over 2 million child slaves in the world today. Casey ran in honor of his sister, Christy (aka Tooey, aka 2E), who turned 30- years old on the day of the race, and is an advocate of freedom for victims of trafficking.

Happy Birthday, Christy!

Monday, September 19, 2011

Operation World

A few weeks ago, inspired by David Platt's exhortation in Radical, we decided to pray for every nation this year.

So far, this discipline has served to spice up our meal time conversation, bring awareness of world issues to our children, heighten our geography skills and bless the entire world. Not too bad, huh?

We use the book, Operation World, which gives facts about each nation as well identifies specific prayers needs. After we finish praying, we put a tiny star sticker on the country.

Tonight, we ate an Ethiopian meal for dinner- doro wat. This, of course, inspired us to pray for Ethiopia- the great land where Sitota was born.

Here is Sitota enjoying every last drop of her beloved doro wat...

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Embracing the Bitter and the Sweet

I had to go back and check the date on my last blog post. One week ago. Really? Only one week?

I know one week is a long time to let the blog go, but I feel like it has been ages since I wrote last. I think its because my soul has aged about a year or two or five in the past week.

Our Safe Families baby boy had his surgery today (Norwood Procedure). It was done by the same doctor who did Carter's and Therese's surgery. He is doing well so far.

This baby is now etched into my heart forever. I know God planned long ago that I would mother this boy for whatever period of time we will have him. I know this boy will return to his mother, exactly as it should be.

But where does this leave my heart, exactly?

I can't love him less in an effort to protect my heart, that is for certain. I am part of a web board for parents who have adopted from Ethiopia. Several of these mothers are also foster mothers. They gave me the precious advice to go ahead and fall in love. They admonished me that I would not look back on this experience and wish I had loved less, so go ahead and love to the fullest capacity.

But how does one love like this knowing what is coming? It feels like the opposite of adoption! Instead of waiting for a time and loving for a lifetime, I only get to love for a short time.

This kind of love is bound to leave a scar.

"He said ' I have loved you'. We cannot love too much"
Amy Carmichael

Thursday, September 8, 2011

The Heartbeat Goes On

I had an AMAZING and ANOINTED day today.

Today, Casey and I were able to meet our safe family baby and his mom and grandma. I cannot stress enough how God-ordained our meeting was. You see this is a special baby. This is a heart baby. We met at the hospital where this sweet little guy has been living for all of his life minus 1.5 days. He has a serious heart defect. He has already had one surgery and will have another next week. And at least two more after that.

The baby's mom is a good mom. A young mom with a lot on her plate. She is doing a good job with this baby, but she needs help. Enter us. We are going to try to support these young parents as they face the biggest trial of their lives. We are going to love on this baby together as God allows.

The plan for now is that he will have surgery on Thursday and will need at minimum 10 days to recover. We will take him home with us when he is ready. We will get to visit him and his family during his hospitalization.

Can you imagine what a gift God is giving us to allow us to walk side by side with this precious mom and her child? We really know so much of what she is going through, only we had support. And now we can offer some to her.

I Corinthians 1: 3-4

Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles, so that we can comfort those in any trouble with the comfort we ourselves receive from God.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

Meeting Therese

I am so excited to share this video with you. It captures me, my daughter and my MIL meeting Therese for the first time. I love how she literally walks out of darkness and into the light.

Tuesday, August 30, 2011


This is Pierre.

When you read his story, you will see how urgent it is that he finds a home.

Born: 27 May, 2003

Pierre is not in school. He is deaf. The orphanage where he has been placed does not have the means to send him to a special school for the deaf. (There has not been any actual testing done on Pierre's hearing but the orphanage workers feel that he does have some hearing.)

Pierre gets along well with all of the children in the orphanage and with the care-givers. His best friend is called Apollinaire and they are the same age. They spend lots of time together. They communicate with simple hand signs. Like all of the children in the home, Pierre is looked after by care-taker and has received some pre-school level training. He can say a few words in French and he can count.

Pierre is in good health. He has not been hospitalized for any illness since coming the to orphanage.

His story is that a woman left Pierre with some children at the side of the road, saying that she was going to go and repair her bike. This woman left and did not come back for him. After waiting a long time, Pierre was taken to the police and was placed the next day at a local orphanage (26 May, 2008).

In the three years that Pierre has been in the orphanage no one has called or come by to inquire about him.

Conclusion of the home study is that his status is that of an abandoned child and that adoption is the only route for him to have a family.

Monday, August 29, 2011

Now, with Real Pictures! I think!

At times like these, I wish I were more technology savvy! I apologize!

I went back and updated the former posts so you can hopefully see the pictures now. I could see the pictures all along, so I didn't realize the problem immediately.

Please, feel free to share these pictures and stories with your friends. Even if they are not interested in adoption, maybe they will commit to pray for these precious children until they find a home? I'll keep you updated here if any of these children get adopted. What happy news that will be!

If you would like to help an orphan or vulnerable child, please consider sponsoring a child. A few months ago I posted about a few students in Burkina Faso who were in desperate need of sponsorship. One of the children did get sponsored, but the other child is still waiting. You can read more about sponsorship here. It is the girl in the red and white shirt that is still waiting.


Born: 2002

Naomi was found in the bush a couple of days after her birth. No trace of her parents or family were found. She was admitted to an orphanage has grown up there. At the time of this writing, she is 9 years old.

Naomi is in good health. According to the care-takers at the orphanage, she never complains and she gets along with all of the children in the orphanage and also with the children at school.

Naomi is in the 3rd grade this year (2011-2012).

Naomi has been declared an abandoned child and desperately needs a family.

If you know someone who might be interested in adopting this sweet girl, please share this blog post with them.

Sunday, August 28, 2011


As you can see, Marie has albinism.

This condition makes her an outcast in her society, not to mention how difficult it is for her to remain out of the sun in her climate. She was born in 2002 and was placed in the orphanage in 2003. This line from her home study breaks my heart:

Since she was placed in the orphanage (June 19, 2003) no one from either family has visited Marie or asked about her well-being.

Please pray that Marie will find a family who will love and cherish her.


This is John.
He is a child waiting for adoption in Burkina Faso.

After the crowd from an evangelism campaign dispersed, a local pastor found John, a small boy of about 4 years old. The pastor took the boy home with him thinking that he had been separated from his parents and that his parents would return looking for him. A few days later, the pastor took John to Social Action asking for help. On April 27, 2007 John came to live at the orphanage.

Upon arriving at the orphanage it was discovered that John was epileptic and he had several seizures. For some time after each seizure, John was not able to talk or to respond to the care-takers. John is now taking medicine for the seizures and it is rare that he has one.

At the beginning of his time at the orphanage, John did not talk. It was thought that maybe he was deaf. But, as the seizures stopped and as he adjusted to his new surroundings John started talking. He speaks Mooré, the local dialect and he understands and speaks a little in French.

The orphanage workers say that John is shy around adults but that he loves to play with the other children. He is kind to the other children. When there is a disagreement or a fight, John withdraws and comes out again when he has calmed down. When another boy is pushing him around, John will fight back and try to defend himself, even sometimes when the older boy is bigger than he is.

John has not been sent to school for 2 reasons. At first it was because it was thought that he was deaf. The second reason, according to the director, is because the orphanage does not have the funds to send the children to school.

The orphanage care-takers feel that John is completely normal physically and mentally and said that he is very rarely even sick with malaria or a cold.

Please pray that John will find a loving home.

Friday, August 26, 2011


Over the next few days, I'm going to be posting about several children from Burkina Faso who are available for adoption. These are some older children in desperate need of a family.

If you have any questions about adopting an older child or what an adoption from Burkina Faso entails, please don't hesitate to ask me. I'd love to help you.

This is Wendy.

Wendy was found as a newborn, abandoned in the bush in 2001. She was taken to an orphanage where she has grown up.

Initially, the orphanage made an investigation to find Wendy's parents and extended family but no one was found to claim the child.

In October, 2010 another extensive search was made in the area and again no family was found.

Wendy is desperately in need of an adoptive family. At the time of this writing, August, 2011, she is 10 years old. She was in the third grade this past school year (2010-2011). In February, 2011, Wendy had an accident and broke her left leg. The director of the orphanage, sent her to a large city nearby where she could get good medical care and she lived there with one of the director's family members. Because of her broken leg, Wendy was not able to finish the school year and will need to re-do the third grade this year (2011-2012).

Thursday, August 25, 2011

40 Day Fast

This is from a friend of mine. I am humbled by his devotion.

Dear Brothers and Sisters in Christ,

My name is Jesse Resch. I have been married to my loving wife Melissa for sixteen years and we have three beautiful kids. We've been believers for eleven years and have witnessed God's mercy, grace and love poured out on our lives many times over. As I've grown deeper in my relationship with Jesus, I have felt Him prompting me to focus less on myself and more on others.

Over the last three months God has been challenging me to step out and help those around me. When I learned that over 30,000 kids in the last ninety days have died due to starvation in East Africa, I knew I could not turn a blind eye to the suffering of others simply because they are so far away. Since they are near to God, they should be near to me! If it were my kids dying of starvation, I'd want someone to help.

Hunger - a strong or compelling desire.
Hungry - having a strong desire or need for food.
Starve - to die or be in process of perishing from lack of food or nourishment, severe hunger.

As you read this, tens of thousands of our brothers and sisters in the Horn of Africa have already succumb to starvation in what is being called the world’s worst famine in over twenty years. The reports coming out of Somalia, Ethiopia, and Kenya are dire. Exhausted, rail-thin, mothers are entering refugee camps in Kenya carrying children dead from starvation. Many children are being left behind because their mothers are too weak to carry them any further. The devastating drought compounded by war, neglect, and inflated food prices pose a challenge that cannot be solved by human efforts alone.

Through God’s grace and mercy, I will participate in the suffering of our brothers and sisters by going without food for forty days. I realize I cannot do this in my own strength, to be honest, if I could I would be doing an injustice to my God and His people. That is why I am coming to you.

The goal during this forty day fast is two-fold:
1. To raise awareness to the extreme situation in Eastern Africa and have God’s people begin to pray for this region and for God to bring relief and resources to the suffering.
2. To raise funds. I will be partnering with Samaritan’s Purse ( to bring needed resources to hurting and hungry people.

“Is not this the kind of fasting I have chosen: to loose the chains of injustice and untie the cords of the yoke, to set the oppressed free and break every yoke? Is it not to share your food with the hungry and to provide the poor wanderer with shelter – when you see the naked, to clothe him, and not to turn away from your own flesh and blood?...And if you spend yourselves in behalf of the hungry and satisfy the needs of the oppressed, then your light will rise in the darkness, and your night will become like the noonday.” Isaiah 58:6,7,10

I will be fasting from September 1 through October 10, and I invite you to participate in any of the following ways:
  • Pray. You can choose a day during the week leading up to my fast and/or a day during the fast to pray for me as well as for Africa.
  • Fast. You can choose a day to fast along with me, joining in the suffering of the saints.
  • Give. You can choose to give, whatever amount you can. According to Samaritan’s Purse, just $7 can furnish a week’s worth of dinners, and for $35, SP can deliver enough food to sustain a family for about a month. Any amount would be a blessing.
Melissa and I have asked our friend, Beth Corcoran, to handle all of the logistics of "Hunger for the Hungry" so that I may focus on the fast. Beth will be happy to answer any questions or comments you might have (

If you choose to pray or fast, please let her know which date, so she can set up a calendar.

If you choose to give, please let her know the amount for record-keeping, write the check directly to Samaritan’s Purse, write “Hunger for the Hungry” in the memo line, and mail it to SP, P.O. Box 3000, Boone, NC 28607-3000. All gifts will be tax deductible.

I believe that with the help of God ordinary men and women can do extraordinarythings. Will you join me?

“The King will reply, ‘I tell you the truth, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me.” Matthew 25:40

In Him,
Jesse Resch

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

A Child Waits

This next post is hard for me to write because it feels like I am offering up a piece of my heart. But if I keep this piece to myself, it could only be called selfish.

When I was in Burkina Faso adopting Therese, I met a boy.

This boy captured my heart with his sweet nature and his searching eyes and his life story. He was Therese's best friend. He cried when we left the orphanage. I thought it was because he would miss Therese so much. But he was actually crying because he wants a family so badly.

I wept as we pulled away and promised God I would do what I could to find him a family. I wish we could be his family and it is hard for me to understand why God seems to be shutting the door for us to adopt him.

If you think you might know a family who could love and cherish this boy, please contact me and I can give you all the information I have.

"But You see the trouble and the distress, and You will do something. The poor can count on You and so can orphans." Psalm 10:14

All Aboard!

The Solgos family is about to embark on a new adventure. Yes, the Sol Train is charting a new course these days, but the destination remains the same.

Pure Religion. James 1:27.

As of Monday, August 22nd, we are an official Safe Family. I couldn't be more excited about this new adventure. Safe Families is a Christian organization that places kids in homes temporarily while the biological parent tends to a major crisis in her life (i.e., homelessness, rehab, domestic violence). This is not foster care. The parent places their child voluntarily and temporarily. The host family volunteers their time and home.

The goal is that the child returns to his family. The hope is that the host family may mentor the bio parent to guide them through their crisis. This is very exciting to me. What an incredible way to meet practical needs and share the love of Christ!

A friend from church had this as her facebook status yesterday and it spoke to me deeply as we begin this new adventure:

God rarely asks me to do something I’m self-equipped for or

comfortable with. He just asks me to obey.

Thanks, Chrissy!

Of course we'd love to adopt internationally again or even domestically someday, but in the confines of our current house, that may not be possible. There is a square footage requirement for DCFS that says we are running a little small. Apparently special needs children now count as two children- ugh. This is really sad for me. You can fit as many biological kids into a house as you see fit, but apparently adopted kids need more space? Can you sense my frustration?

Once upon a time I was nervous about the fact that we would have three girls sharing a room. But a few trips to the third world erased that fear. My girls would be just fine in their cozy, purple bedroom. Not to mention when one girl is gone on a sleep-over, the others are crying because their room is too lonely.

So, as we get ready to make room for another sweet child in this family, I'll leave you Toby Mac fans with a little chorus, "when love is in the house, the house is packed"!

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

'Twas the Night Before

'Twas the night before 5th, 2nd and 1st grade...


8:15pm and the kids are in bed.


Tomorrow's clothes are laid out, backpacks at the ready, camera on the table, and I know what contents of the lunchboxes will be.


Can you tell that this mama is just fine with the kids starting school tomorrow? Sure, I've been plenty reflective over the last few days, reminiscing over the physical and emotional growth of my children this summer. I cannot believe I will have all four kids in school all day this year! Sure, I've suffered mom guilt over realizing we didn't spend enough time practicing reading over the summer, and I only busted out the math fact flashcards a pathetically few times.

But, we did spend LOTS of quality time together. We made some serious memories together this summer! I'll take that over academic success any day.

I know I'll be choking back the tears as I wave those goodbyes from the playground tomorrow, but this mama is ready for a little time off. A second cup of coffee, a walk around the lake, a magazine (gasp!)- and then I'll be scooting off to the school to scoop up my kids and hear about everything I missed about their day.

Because while I am READY for a break, those kids are the best part of my day. I just need a little morning to my self so I can fully appreciate them again :)

Happy Back to School!

I'll leave you with one of my favorite memories of this summer, Sitota eating her birthday cake while hula-hooping, cause that's how she rolls.

Friday, August 5, 2011

What God Joins Together

Yesterday we had the pleasure of having our friend, Elizabeth, over for a visit. Well, it was a visit for me, but mostly work for her! She kindly offered to braid the girl's hair and she turned them into stunning beauties.

I am so grateful to know Elizabeth. She is a great role model for my girls. She grew up in Burkina Faso and has now lived in Chicago for 20 years. She recently graduated with her Master's in Nursing and will soon be a Nurse Practioner. On a return trip to Burkina, she met Therese when Therese was living in the orphanage and was captivated by this outgoing, fun-loving girl with a heart defect. Elizabeth also grew up with a heart defect, so she can relate to Therese on many levels.

We are so blessed to know Elizabeth. I love how God puts just the right people into our lives!

Another fun thing is that Elizabeth still remembers quite a bit of Moore, Therese's native language. A few weeks ago Therese told us that she has a Moore name; Telato. Burkinable girls are often given a name that indicates what day of the week they were born. Therese could not remember which day Telato was- and now we know! Drumroll, please... Tuesday! I love having this insight into her early years.

My beautiful Tuesday!


Even Evelea gets in on the hair braiding!

It's Not Okay AND It's Personal

I read this statistic from the UN in the paper this morning and I can't get over it:

Drought and famine in Somalia have killed more than 29,000 children under the age of 5 in the last 90 days in southern Somalia alone.

This famine is real, friends.

This report is from Food for the Hungry:

I have been sharing with my kids a little bit about what is going on in East Africa. They haven't seen one picture and they don't know the statistics or just how bad this famine is, but their first reactions are to give. Sitota especially keeps finding dollars hidden in her various coin purses and hidden places and giving them to me to donate. I think she has given every bit of money she has. I am humbled by her generosity. Evelea and Therese can't wait for our next Feed My Starving Children packing session on Monday.

To my kids, this famine is real. 3/4 of my kids have been to Africa, or have lived there. It is not just happening far away. They can imagine it, they can relate to it. They wonder if our sponsored child in Ethiopia is okay. When Therese saw a picture of a little boy who was suffering the effects of starvation, she said, "oh, that looks like Luc when he first came to Mama Ruth" (her orphanage director).

As grown-ups, we can be jaded about the world's problems, shrugging them off as the fault of poor government systems and corruption. While there is truth to that, it does not excuse us from not helping. Maybe you cannot personally relate to this current crisis or have become numb to the many tragedies befalling our world this past year. I urge you to not become complacent.

Find a way to make it personal.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

It's Not Okay

So we are home from the conference now. It went pretty much like I thought it would. I learned a lot and met a lot of fantastic people.

After the first night of the conference, I had a very intense and disturbing dream. Apparently my heart had been very deeply effected by the gathering of all these sweet children who did not ask to be born with this gene mutation, but choose to live life to fullest anyway. It was so lovely to see these children in this safe, protective environment of the conference filled with loving families and caring doctors; yet my dream was a reminder of the cruel way the world chews up it's most vulnerable citizens.

It seems my heart is breaking every which way I turn these days.

My sister-in-law and her family came for a visit this past week. We were able to spend some precious time together and got to visit some of the trendy, fun spots in our area. While standing in The Chocolate Kitchen, I was amazed at my ability to at once appreciate the artistic quality of these beautiful chocolate creations and be sickened by the reality that while I can take the time to marvel at these intricate delicacies, there are mothers in Somalia getting their arm width measured to see if they qualify for nutritional rations.

I know this can seem depressing. However, I am not suggesting we all sit around and feel guilty about all that we have while others starve. I am suggesting that we share what we have been given with others. We can do something about the suffering of others. Sometimes we think that if we get too near the suffering of others, we will be too depressed and feel guilty all the time. This is not true! In fact, when we spend ourselves on the behalf of others, we will feel better than we ever have!

Listen to these words from Isaiah 58:10

"and if you spend yourselves on behalf of the hungry and satisfy the needs of the oppressed, then your light will rise in the darkness and become like the noonday."

There are so many ways we can help the hungry and the oppressed. Here are a few:

I am going to leave you with a few photos. Not to induce guilt, but to motivate you to pray, and then give.