The phone call we have been waiting for…

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I love technology.  A few weeks ago we got 4 pictures, a video and a file on Mia Kate.  That is all we had for a girl that we had praying for and longing to meet for over 3 years. It was enough for us to yes, enough for her to grab our hearts and make her part of our family, but it was all we had.  Over the next few weeks we have received a few additional photos but last night we got to talk with her via video call.  Both sides of the conversation were a little nervous but you could feel the excitement in the air.  My kids got to meet their sister and she got to hear our voices.  She seemed a little hesitant, but ended the call by blowing us a kiss.  I will forever have that phone call as a kodak memory in my mind.  It won’t be long now till we see her face to face.

Best Christmas Pic

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Best Christmas pic of the day for our family. We got this sweet pic this morning from our daughters orphanage in China. Hard to believe after 3 years we will bring Mia home in a few short weeks.

The end of the season

Getting a little sentimental or at least mental. And a little scenty also. Just finished the last tree order of the season. Still have a lot of other local orders to go including my handmade gifts. (my brothers and sisters has a tradition of handmade gifts for Christmas) I am thankful to the many orders we received this year. Each gift gets us closer to bringing home Mia Kate.

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The look…

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You know the Chirstmas look … the “I just can’t wait much longer” look. This time of year I see the look in my kids eyes as they stare at their stockings or at the hundreds of toy catalogues that stuff our mailbox.

But I have to confide – I have the same look, but its not about presents though it’s about this sweet girl that I will soon be able to look eye to eye with and tell her she is forever part of our family and our hearts . My sweet Mia Kate will be here soon. Sure we still have another 3-4 weeks before we head to pick her up, but in that same short time I am excited at the anticipation that our lives will forever be different – a good different. I have been making letters and tables and crafts for 3 years, each one bringing us closer to covering the hurdles of adoption and very soon that day will be here.

Looking back over our 3 year journey I have learned so much about woodworking, running a small business, getting ready for adoption and how to be a better dad. Looking forward I know it will not be easy but I am thankful for the hundreds of people who have entered our life and will be there with us in the good and the bad. But I have faith the good will be great. Even now as I read this outloud to myself I am overwhelmed at the joy that will soon be in our home…forever

Steps to travel



If you follow our adoption journey you know that we accepted a file a few weeks ago. So what’s next? It will take a little more than 2 months to go through all the steps before we can travel to Mia Kate’s home town of Yiyang. AAC (Our agency) has said these are the main steps we need to go through.


I-800 Application- 2-4 weeks.

Chinese Visa Application

National Visa Center (NVC)

US Consulate Process (Article 5)- 2 weeks

Travel Approval and Consulate Appointment- up to 4 weeks

Travel to China!

Why Pallet Letters?

3 years ago Melissa and I decided we should adopt from Asia.  As I started to panic over the stress of raising money to adopt internationally (it can be up to $40,000 from some countries we looked at) I found myself walking and praying.  As I prayed I felt God telling me He would provide, and it would come through making pallet tables similar to the ones I had made for my family that Christmas.

A idea was born.



I started with tables but one afternoon Melissa mentioned she wanted a few letters for our kitchen wall.  Several piles of sawdust later I made a set of EAT letters.  I then texted my new creation to my sister at Thistlewood Farms, she posted it on her blog and the letted took off.

A business was born

Since that time we have been privileged to have made items for Whole Foods, Harp Design Co, several businesses and hundreds of homes.  God is awesome and we are thankful for all that he has done.

We look forward to the journey ahead with Mia Kate, but today we reflect on all the good that came from that pray walk many years ago.

Why China?


When we started our adoption journey over 3 years ago we were looking to Japan to find our daughter, but God had bigger plans.  Melissa had been a missionary in Japan fro 2 years after college and had always said when (not if) we adopt it will be from Asia.  When the time came we looked to the people she had poured her heart to through ministry.  After two years of waiting for a child through a agency that focused on Japan, we realized it might be another 2 years before we were able to adopt.  The same week we were starting to pray about what steps we should take, a friend at our church returned from China with their daughter and we knew China was were we were supposed to start looking for our daughter.  Unfortunately, we had to reprocess many of our documents but the process moved at a much faster pace.  After changing our focus to China I was able to film some orphanages in Guangzhou located in Southern China and the visit would again confirm that we can make a difference in the world – one child at a time. What’s interesting is I think Mia Kate is going to change our world more.  It is hard to believe that we will be leaving soon, but when we got Mia’s file we knew that she was our daughter.



Thankful as I think through all that God has down this past year. From our partnership with Harp to our adoption match the year has been filled with highs, but there have also been lows.  The one constant has been my family.  Through the good and bad they are there.  The love they share with me shows in all that I do.  Thankyou

Meet Mia

MiaKate01  The day we longed for has come.  We said yes to a file and are now officially matched.  Mia Kate will be her English name and we are hoping to travel just after Christmas.  We will try to update you with information as we go but here are a few pictures of our new beautiful daughter.  Adoption Rocks!


Meet Trevorson

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Meet Trevorson – he’s bringing international flavor from Zambia to our Sonofwhale team. I first met Treavor filiming some documentary missionary work at a Lifesong School in Zambia. He is now over here living with a sweet family that is one of our biggest supporters. When the orders started pouring in and we could not break up the pallets fast enough I brought Trevor in for reinforcements. He has proved his worth in reclaimed wood and has truly become an artist in his own right. He has quickly become vital to our little shop, and I am thankful God put him in our life. The best part is being able to share the art of woodworking with the next generation.

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