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Muffin Flavors for May 8th!

Hey Everybody!

Thanks to all of you who came out in the wild Wyoming weather to get muffins last week!!  We sold nearly 100 muffins and raised…

$155.04!!

Now, for those of you who have followed and supported our Muffin Mondays in May for the last 4 years you will notice that these are smaller numbers for us.  As always though God has a great plan!! With the extra muffins we had, we were able to provide the VOA Homeless Shelter with enough muffins to serve breakfast to the 20+ residents!!! Much of the food that the shelter needs to feed their residents is donated and it was truly a blessing to us to give in such a small way but it was so greatly appreciated by them.  See God is our provider, everyone’s provider!!!!  God provides in ways that we cannot always see or even understand; His great love for us deeper, wider, larger, and greater than we can  ever imagine!!

I wish I could say I had great pictures to show you from our first Muffin Monday this year but the changing weather kept us on our toes and our fingers stiff from the cold so no pictures this time!  Now let’s get to the yummy part of this post…flavors for this week!!! But first…

Extra! Extra! Read All About It!!!!

Tomorrow is our oldest sons birthday and he wants to celebrate and share with all of you.  To do that, he is giving away a free muffin of choice to anyone who is also having a birthday tomorrow!!! So if you or someone you know and love is having a birthday tomorrow make sure they come get a muffin and maybe even a birthday song!

Apple Pie

Pancake and Sausage with Maple Syrup

Coffee Cake

Nutella Swirl

Vanilla with Cinnamon Crumb Topping

Salted Caramel

7-9 AM Calvary Baptist Church Parking Lot

1660 Big Horn Ave.

 

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Muffin Mondays in May are Back!!!

Boy it has been so long since I have made post but this is a fun one to make~

Our 4th annual adoption fundraiser, Muffin Mondays in May, begins tomorrow!!!!

Starting tomorrow, May 1st from 7am – 9am, we will be out in the Calvary Baptist Church parking lot selling warm, freshly baked muffins for donations.  It’s a delicious start to your day and we quickly serve you the muffins of your choice so you can enjoy them on the way to school or work.  You can even buy a box to take to your child’s classroom or take to work.  For those of you who are new to our sight here’s the scoop as to why I, along with our 3 sons, get up at 3 am to bake muffins.

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We are adopting one or two children from Haiti.  It will cost $47,000 to over $60,000 to do this and that is cash we just don’t have.  So we do fundraisers along with saving money and applying for grants.  While it is daunting in many more aspects than just the finances, God has called us and we are trusting HIM and obeying HIM.  Later this week I will be posting about our last year (Since it’s been that long sine I have posted! ;-)), the status of our Haiti adoption, along with an update on our son that we adopted from within the US 19 months ago.  Also later this month, I will be explaining in more detail why it costs so much to adopt and where the money goes.  Until then here is the yumminess we will be serving to our community tomorrow morning!!

Muffin Flavors for May 1st, 2017!!!

Pancake & Sausage with Maple Syrup

Vanilla with Cinnamon Crumb Topping

Nutella Swirl

Blueberry

Coffee Cake

Chocolate Vanilla Swirl with Chocolate Chips

7 am – 9 am at Calvary Baptist Church

1660 Big Horn Ave

 

Rain or Shine, we’ll see you in the morning’!!

 

 

 

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Wonderful News!

Aaron’s Adoption Update

We have spent the last couple of months really enjoying each other.  See pictures below 😉 !  Watching Aaron grow, attach to each of us, and get healthy as been so precious.  So far Aaron is not showing any developmental issues and his nervous system is continuing to heal.  He is making a lot of sounds and noises, drooling a lot, smiling HUGE smiles, and giggling.  We are all crazy about him!!!

Your prayers have been essential to Aaron’s situation!

Since our last update, we filed Termination of Parental Rights against Aaron’s father.  He had 30 days to appeal and he did not.  There is a lot more detail to the events that have occurred over the last two months but they do not need to be gone through on the internet.  Since he did not appeal the Termination of his Rights, the court will Terminate his Rights as Aaron’s father.  With great joy we are happy, no ECSTATIC!!, to announce that the courts have given us a court date on Dec. 4th for us to go before the judge to have our adoption of Aaron finalized!  This means that Aaron will legally be forever with our family!!!  

God has…

  • Preserved Aaron’s life in the womb when there was no chance for life.
  • Guided & strengthened Aaron’s mom to make an extremely difficult, selfless, and loving decision for her son.
  • Cleaned and healed Aaron’s body from the drugs he was exposed to in the womb.
  • Increased our faith and trust in His plan, timing, and our ability to surrender ourselves and our children to Him.
  • Brought two families together forever that were complete strangers just a few months ago.
  • Has rescued & redeemed Aaron’s life from darkness and addiction to light and freedom.
  • Been our great provider; having provided all the money needed, all the endurance, and the healing of many illnesses.
  • Set Aaron’s mother in a long-term rehab when there was no where for her to go to seek sobriety.
  • Protected Aaron from his father’s lifestyle and inability to care for & protect Aaron.  There is no greater protection than the King of Kings and Lord of Lords!!!
  • Shown His great, great, great magnificent love that He has for us all!
  • …And so much more with more to come!

If the Lord brings us to your mind on Friday, shout praises to Him on Aaron’s behalf.  Please continue to pray for Aaron’s birth parents who need His transforming power to set them free and bring them to complete freedom which is only found in Jesus Christ.

Thank you for your prayers, encouragement, support, donations, volunteering, and so much more…your investment has made an eternal difference!

Please enjoy these photos and then read the update on our Haiti adoption that follows.

Haiti Adoption Update

We received word 2 weeks ago that our Dossier has been sent to Haiti!!!!  I would love to tell you that this means we are moving through quicker than a snails pace but that is not so.  Haiti doesn’t do “quick”.  Our Dossier will now sit and wait in Haiti for about a year until our family can be presented to be matched with a child or children.  It is fantastic news that all our part is complete and has been accepted and has moved on to the next step!!!!  It is even greater that God will bring us together with the rest of our family at the perfect time for us all!

In Him,

The Rankins

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Carnival & Adoption Update

Only 1 week until the Carnival Fundraiser & Reception

(EEEEEKKKK!!!!)

Things are quickly coming together to really make this a super fun family night!  Many businesses have been very generous and supportive.  We could not be doing this without their donations!!

Thank You to the following businesses!!!!

Walgreens provided ALL the paper goods we need!!!

The Powder Horn donated Golf Passes for the Silent Auction!!!

State Farm Agent Ann Gardner & other area businesses provided the Cotton Candy Machine & Supplies!!!

Let ‘Er Buck Car Wash donated Car Wash Passes for the Silent Auction!!!

The YMCA donated to the Silent Auction!!!

The Good Health Emporium donated to the Silent Auction!!!

Hair GripZ donated hair care products & accessories to the Silent Auction!!!

Melanie Araas Design & Photography donated to the Silent Auction!!!

Sheridan Wesleyan Church is providing carnival games!!!

…and more!!

So many friends have donated HUGE additional items to the Silent Auction, we will slowly reveal these and other items through the coming week leading up to the Carnival.  Stay tuned so you can be as excited as we are and so you can start picking out the item(s) you want to be sure to win the bid for!!

Other businesses are still considering how they can help and we’ll be sure to let you know about them as things are confirmed.  Family and friends keep coming forward to volunteer & donate.  God has been unveiling His plans for this night each day and I am so thankful that this is not on my shoulders or about how I can pull this together at the last minute.  I think God changed things along the way just so this would be a last minute event.  He knows that if given too much time, I will plan and plan and plan and plan and…you get the picture.  Eventually I make things so challenging that they overtake my life.  My wonderful husband is so good to keep me focused on only what is needed and keeping things simple.  Not only does this help me but it protects me; his protection keeps me from running amuck, stressing out, getting exhausted, being overwhelmed, and getting my priorities out of whack.  God designed him to be my protector and helpmeet… mine… just perfect for me.  Thank you Heavenly Father for your great love and design!!

Don’t forget that this is a night that you don’t have to plan or prepare dinner!!  We are serving Pulled Pork Sundaes, YUM! There is no set cost for dinner, it is by donation.  For dessert there is Cotton Candy & Popcorn for $1 a bag.

For entertainment there are lots of Carnival Games and possibly some other fun items but we’ll just have to let you know about those in a couple of days! 😉  The games and any other activities are free and just for fun!!

Adoption Update

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Aaron’s mom has thankfully been able to get into a long-term rehab.  She is doing well and getting focused on a new path in life.  Please continue to pray for her salvation, she will need the power of God’s might to overcome her addictions and lifestyle.  Her family is doing well and knows that God is comforting them after the loss of Aaron’s grandfather.  We are thankful for the relationship we have with all of Aaron’s maternal family and so glad that they will always be a part of Aaron’s life and our lives.  Our family hasn’t grown by one but by many! This is a family that only God could bring together.

Aaron’s father continues to work in secret and in the darkness against this adoption, please pray for him to know truth and accept Christ as his savior!  In the last few days some deception has been revealed and was hard to hear.  I am not able to share the details here but please know that Aaron and our family need your daily, heartfelt prayers for protection, endurance, and wisdom.  We are really good and God is working all of this together for good because we love Him and are doing what He has called us to according to His purpose (Romans 8:28).  All the paperwork needed to finalize our adoption has been filed in court and now we are just waiting for the required waiting period before a judge can sign off on it.  Because of the deception that we learned of, we will have to run a notice in the newspaper.  This doesn’t change our adoption finalization it just adds to and lengthens the process.  It’s not over ’til it’s over though and this is why your prayers are so needed and precious to us!

Seeing how hard Satan fights to keep people in darkness and in bondage to sin makes me reflect on the Great Commission.  Do we..do I, share the Gospel, the Good News, with as much determination, intensity, and all out fight to save those who are lost?

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God has done great and huge things for us all, even this little one.  This little one the Lord is in all out battle to redeem and change his lineage from this point forward!  To set him free from his parents bondage.  To protect him from the path that he was brought into and to set him on a new path, our Heavenly Father’s path of righteousness.  Just as God brought Moses out of Egypt and then took him back to set God’s people free, maybe Aaron is being brought out from that world to be prepared by God to go back and bring light, hope, and eternal life through the Gospel into such a painful, destructive place.  Only God knows and we are excited to see His bigger plan for all of us in all of this!

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It’s not over yet…

Hey Everyone!

As we settle into life at home again, all the other details of life start to come back into focus.  Just the other day I realized that we had a nice yard outside that is rather enjoyable (not that the boys can enjoy it yet, but they will soon!). We have all greatly appreciated our own beds!!!!!  It has been great to just get in our car and go; no more moving car seats in and out of taxi’s and shuttles.

There was the realization that we had two very overdue books from the library, oops! Also, that bill that was overlooked and not paid, eek!  All things considered, there is very little that was missed while we were away for 19 days with our priorities and focus right where it should be…with Aaron in the hospital helping him to recover.  Our focus needs to stay on things that last for eternity … people and the word of God.  The books and the bills will get worked out and will fade away, thus they are not at the top of the priority list…but did need to be taken care of. Thankfully everyone was very understanding and forgiving.

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We were finally able to give Aaron a real bath and not just a sponge bath.  It was so much fun and he loved it!!!  Aaron likes to stretch out and move his arms and legs and open his hands to extend his fingers; this is wonderful to watch because his first week of life his muscles were so tight and contracted due to the drugs he was exposed to that his arms never left his neck, his hands were in tight fists, his legs were pulled up over his belly, and his feet were tightly flexed.  We are so thankful to our Heavenly Father for how much love He has poured out on Aaron and how He gently brought Aaron through withdrawals.  When it is time to sleep, Aaron needs to be very tightly swaddled so that his hands can’t move.  This is because his nervous system was so overwhelmed from the drugs that he can’t relax without the comforting pressure of being swaddled.  If he is not swaddled he doesn’t settle into sleep and wakes up constantly.  Aaron loves to be talked to and sang to.  My favorite things so far are how he just loves to be in his Daddy’s arms & sleep on Daddy’s chest each evening, and when he is sleeping he will sometimes crack his eyes open and when he sees Ryan or I he closes his eyes and has a big grin!  Oh how dearly we love him!!!!!!

The boys are still coughing, tired, and short of breath.  They did sleep better last night than they had since getting sick!  I can actually say they are getting better!! WHOOHOOO!!!!  Aaron and Ryan are still free of illness and I am all better!  Praise the Lord for healing and keeping us out of the hospital!! Our Father in Heaven is hearing your prayers, thank you for praying for us!!!

Adoption Status Update

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On the day she was discharged, Aaron’s mother signed her consent papers.  This means that she gave her consent to give Aaron to us and terminate her parental rights.  She is still confident in her decision; it was comforting to hear her say to her father that it was all going to be o.k. because she picked a good family.  What she has done for Aaron is very difficult, selfless, loving, and took great courage.  Please continue to pray for her salvation!  Intercede for her that she will find the transforming power of Christ so that she can be free from the darkness of her lifestyle and from her addictions!!  Currently our attorney and her para-legal are diligently searching for a long-term rehab for Aaron’s mother to increase her length of sobriety and hopefully to overcome her addictions.

Since we have brought Aaron home and his mother signed the required legal paperwork, you may be thinking that our adoption is finished.  It is not.  There is still a chance that Aaron wouldn’t get to stay with us… 

Aaron’s birth father is fighting against his birth mother’s decision of adoption and wants to keep Aaron.  Unfortunately, he is not capable of parenting at this time.  He does not have a job, a place to live, or a car and his source of income is selling illegal substances.   We would be glad to see that Aaron’s father could be a Daddy to him and would want Aaron with him if that was the case.  Since it is not, the safest and best option for Aaron is to be with us.  I tell you this, not to speak against Aaron’s father, rather to inform you of the reality of our adoption.  We are broken sinners just like Aaron’s parents; it is by the grace of God, the cleansing blood of Christ, and the transforming power of the Holy Spirit that we are better suited to be Aaron’s parents at this time.  Our hope is that both of Aaron’s parents will be moved by his arrival to make changes in their lives so that they can be an active part of his life in the future.

IMG_3758Ephesians 6:12 For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the powers, against the world forces of this darkness, against the spiritual forces of wickedness in the heavenly places.

Our battle is not against Aaron’s birth parents but for them.  Our battle is against Satan who wants to hold these people in darkness and addiction while trapping Aaron there too.

Please join us in praying for Aaron everyday, that God would protect him and set him safely in our family forever.  Also that Aaron’s birth mother and father would turn their hearts to God in repentance and receive His gift of salvation, allowing Him to set them free and transform them completely!

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P.S. Before I finished writing this post, we received sad news.  Aaron’s maternal grandfather had a sudden heart attack and passed away.  One week they said goodbye to Aaron and the next week they said goodbye to their husband, father, and grandfather.  Please pray for God to comfort them, bring them His peace, and strengthen them.  Pray for additional protection and strength for Aaron’s birth mother, that the death of her father would not be a weakness or excuse to sink deeper into her addictions.  Also pray for Aaron’s half-brother that the Lord would bring a strong Christian man into his life to fill the role of father for him.

 

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Home!!!!!

We’re Home!!! We’re Home!!!!  We’re Home!!!!!!!!!!!

We spent the day after Disney doing laundry, resting, packing, and playing by the pool.

IMG_3690 IMG_3702 IMG_3709I even tried Gator Tail! It was good, no distinct flavor and not weird!!

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Early Monday, we took a cab to the airport and began our journey home. At 19 days old, Aaron has been to Disney World, ridden in cabs, gone on Amusement rides, been hospitalized, recovered from his mom’s substance abuse, was in 3 states in 1 day, and traveled over the U.S. in a plane.  For a little guy, he has had a big life so far!

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During our layover in Denver, I called our pediatrician to get an appointment for the boys that same afternoon.  Riley had developed a full body, bright red, splotchy rash on Sunday.  It wasn’t itchy, Benadryl didn’t help, and even his lips, eyes, and ears were swollen.  Luke coughed almost the entire flight from Florida to Denver.  I have developed a while new level of compassion for families that are traveling.  We were the family that everyone dreads seeing get on the plane…a newborn, a child with a hacking cough, and a child covered & swollen with a bright red rash! What a sight we were!! I’m sure people wondered why we were sharing our germs but we needed to get home.

IMG_3724Once we landed in Gillette, we were super surprised to see our dear friends had drove from Sheridan to see us!! 

Next we went to GG’s house! We really hadn’t eaten all day and she had a perfect lunch ready for us! Here are Aaron’s first moments with his GG!!

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Since we needed to get to our doctor appointment, we couldn’t stay long.  Our next stop…the pediatrician’s office.  After thorough exams and doing blood work on Riley we don’t now much but here is what we do know:

Riley: His rash is likely an allergic reaction to his antibiotic.  He still has a cough and a fever.

Luke: His pneumonia is worse, his oxygen levels are down, and he still has a fever.  In the doctors words, “He has a toe in the door at the hospital.”

So, the boys are on inhalers and we’re pushing fluids and rest.  Now we pray and wait and see.  I am feeling much better, Ryan & Aaron are healthy so far!!

After going to the lab, we finally were home!!!!!!!!!  We were greeted by lovely signs welcoming us home in our drive-way, doorway, and on our fridge.  The love, support, and prayers from all of you have brought us such comfort and joy!!  Aaron slept well his first night at home and was bright eyed this morning!

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We are very grateful for your ongoing prayers!!!  When we’re healthy, we look forward to seeing you all!

 

“Rankin Family, you just adopted a baby boy! Now what are you going to do?” “We’re going to Disney World!”

Hey everyone, sorry for not doing updates the last few days. Our internet connection was so poor that I couldn’t do any posts.

Thursday evening after Aaron was discharged we met with his birth mother and her family. It was a special time and great for Aaron to get pictures with more of his family. Now we know them more and will be able to keep Aaron connected to all the branches of his family. We have great pictures of us all that will be special for Aaron. In order to protect their privacy, I won’t be sharing them here.

On Friday we said our goodbyes to the staff at the Ronald McDonald House.

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This incredible place was our home away from home for 15 days. When we got the call that Aaron had been born, we flew out the next day. We had plane tickets to Orlando but had no idea where we would stay once we landed. We had done our research prior to traveling and knew that there was no hotel within 5 miles of the hotel. Our only hope was Ronald McDonald House, which is next door to the hospital, hopefully they would have room. During our 3 hour layover in Houston was when I called RMH to explain our situation. 5 minutes before boarding the plane I got the call that our application was approved and they had a room for us that night!!!! Thank you Jesus, for taking care of us!!

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That evening we arrived to a warm, bright smile that showed us our lovely room, the game room, the craft room, the playroom, the laundry, and the kitchen! It was a very wonderful place and provided a great respite away from the hospital, especially for Riley and Luke.

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Amazing volunteers, groups, and businesses donated lunch and dinner each day!! I can’t describe the relief it was to have a home within walking distance to the hospitals so we could easily get to Aaron throughout each day. I didn’t have to figure out what food we were going to eat, where I would get it, and when I would cook it!! All this for free, they suggest a donation of $20 a night but won’t ask for and don’t expect it. We are blessed that family members have donated our amount for staying at RMH. This is a charity we will always support! If there is one near you, please find a way to support them; donate items on their wish list, bring a meal, pay for a meal, or donate financially.

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The RMH’s are not owned by McDonald’s, they are the chosen charity of McDonald’s. McDonald’s donations make up 20% of the donations needed & received. All the rest comes from donations, fundraising, and grants.

They were so great to us that there aren’t words to fully describe it! Then they gave us all passes to Disney World!?!? They felt that since we had come so far and were so close, that we couldn’t miss Disney World.

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Crazy though it seems, considering we were sick and recovering from pneumonia and had a newborn who had just finished detoxing from drugs. The boys really wanted to go and we wanted them to have to this treat after going to the hospital everyday for 2 weeks. Our plan was to just go at our own pace and leave when everyone was ready. It worked; Aaron did great, Riley and Luke got to see and ride just what they wanted, and memories were made.

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Travel Tip!!!
If you have a choice, don’t go to Florida in the summer and during hurricane season. 😉 Thankfully we didn’t experience hurricanes but our day at Disney ended with what felt like a tropical storm!!

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Thank you Ronald McDonald House of Orlando for making our stay so peaceful and comfortable!!

Thank you Heavenly Father for your provision!! For what seemed impossible was possible with God!!!!