The Thomas Crew

The Thomas Crew

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

One Year Ago...

I remember getting up at 3am, 4am and 5am to check my email. You see when your in the process of an international adoption your email became your best friend. That morning I was waiting for a very important email. It came at 6:30am. With the subject header of Congrats from Nina our case worker and soon to be Gavin's kidney donor. On November 26, 2012 we became Gavin parents. He was no longer an orphan he was a Thomas and my fourth child(so I thought). God has amazing humor and later that evening as I came down the stairs in our home to the strong smell of bacon I realized something was different. When your adopting you often feel like your pregnant. It's called a paper pregnancy and a lot of the same emotions run through you:) But the double lines on the test that night showed me just how pregnant I really was. Not only did we became Gavin's parents that day, we also learned that little Nathan was on his way too. How big is our God well most of you would never expect with all our children that getting pregnant is a problem. For years we have struggled with infertility and many losses. When Bradley had his 3nd birthday I felt like it was hopeless. My heart ached for a large family but with each infertility treatment and each miscarriage came more loss and grief. After we had Kaitlyn I made a promise to God that it was up to him. I felt like I needed to let go and allow him to determine our family size. Now look at us! A beautiful family of seven and I have no idea what he has planned for us next.

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

Gavin's Fight

People ask me all the time how this dear little boy survived for so long in an orphanage. You see Gavin was very sick when he first came home. I contemplated many times taking him to the hospital while we were in Bulgaria. All I kept praying was that we would make it home! Our first Red flag came as we were about to pull away from the orphanage. The director came out and said "Go straight to the store and buy water bottles"??? We just assumed he must like water. Yep, he sure did. He drank about 16oz every 30 minutes. Big Problem!  When we arrived at our first location which was for his medical exam I took him into the bathroom and found that he had 3 diapers on, Yes 3 that were soaking wet. This was also the first time I had even seen the catheter device he had out of his abdomen. I remember the moment pretty vividly. There I sat in a small bathroom stale with my new Son and I had no idea what I was doing. Yes I am a Nurse but I still had never dealt with this kind of catheter, water and diaper situation before let alone in a small bathroom stall with no place to lie him down. We dealt with the diaper, catheter, water situation for a few months once he got home. It was actually pretty horrible. When Gavin was diagnosis with Nephrogenic Diabetes Insipidus a rare disorder of the kidney it all made sense. This makes Gavin's renal failure twice as complicated. So how did Gavin survive for 6 years in an orphanage? All I can say is God had a strong grasp on his dear Son. He knew we were coming.

Tonight as I was preparing his mediation, feeding pump, injection and catheter I am reminded that God is still fully in control. All we have to do is Trust!!

Psalm 18:2 “The LORD is my rock, and my fortress, and my deliverer; my God, my strength, in whom I will trust; my buckler, and the horn of my salvation, and my high tower.”

Friday, November 15, 2013


The Make A Wish foundation is an organization that grants wishes to children with life-threatening illness. Gavin was referred a few months ago for a wish. His nephrologist and the Make A Wish team determined that he qualified and would be granted any wish he could dream of :) Our family spent time thinking and praying for Gavin's perfect wish. If Gavin could tell us his absolute wish what would it be? We wanted to plan Something to inspire him to continue to fight his kidney disease. Something to push him past the months to come of surgeries, hospital stays, pain and uncertainty. If there is one place he could go where would it be? DISNEYWORLD! Of course what child does not love Mickey Mouse. Gavin asks me often when we get in the car if we are going to Disneyland. He signs with his hands above his head to make Mickeys ears. He is also a very big fan of Buzz Light-year. So that is where we are headed. The Make A Wish team is in the process of planning it all right now. It will be 7 days away from doctor and procedures for Gavin. The entire trip is paid for by the foundation. An amazing blessing to our family and just what Gavin needs before transplant.
Make-A-Wish team came out to meet Gavin!

Update on Shoes and Nina

We are over 350 Pairs of Shoes!!! So many people have stepped up to help it's been amazing. It's so touching to have so many people wanting to help. We have received a lot of support from our Military community. It is like Christmas here, when I come home or wake up to find our box full of shoes! We still have a long way to go to hit our 5000 goal so please keep cleaning out those closets! Deadline is Dec 15th!!

Nina has also been fundraising for kidney cost Go Fund Nina. She will be taking off a lot of work to help our family. I don't know how to show my appreciation to her. I have dreams of watching her and Gavin go back to surgery together, WOW what an amazing gift. It is a very emotional time thinking and planning for the months to come for our families. She has started a blog from her point of view that I look forward to reading everyday. Its nice to see things from another perspective :) Her love for orphans is amazing and her heart is so beautiful. I cannot wait to meet her! Nina's Blog

Thursday, November 7, 2013

Nina's Story!!

Nina has started to share her story and answer the big question of "Why". She will be updating her blog daily to get caught up to where we are now. This week is a very stressful time for all of us, as we wait for the final test results. Please continue to pray for Nina, Gavin and our families as we wait.

Sunday, November 3, 2013

School Day

Gavin is such a happy thankful little boy. You would never know all he has been through when you meet him. He is always smiling, laughing and usually running! He started school this past week. The school bus comes Very early every morning but he is getting used to it :) he comes home every day with a new sign that I then search the Internet for or ask online. It's really amazing how much communication he has learned in 10 months. Everyone that meets Gavin always comments on his excitement for new things and to please others. It's been amazing the new friends God has brought into our lives and continues to because of Gavin. Today I am thankful most for new friends. Strangers that are touched by our story and reach out to help.

Saturday, November 2, 2013

Transplant costs

We are fundraising to help with the upcoming cost of Gavins transplant. Gavin's one bad kidney will need to be removed 4-6 weeks prior to transplant. During that period he is going to need dialysis 3 times a week. The only dialysis center for him is 50 min away. We are praying we can raise the funds to provide for this difficult time. Gas and daycare for our other 4 children is going to be Big! We are also uncertain if we will receive a grant for the donors travel cost. The kidney donor does not live in California and will need to travel here twice. Once to meet the doctors and run a few test and the second time for surgery. This is why we are reaching out once again for help. I know God will continue to provide and get us through this difficult time to come. If you feel led to help here is our link: Please continue to Pray for our Prince!

Friday, November 1, 2013

Kicks for a Kidney

It is time to start fundraising again! Fundraising is a very humbling experience. It is an emotional roller-coaster but it needs to be done to provide. God led us down this path and I know he will continue to provide all the way through it! You see Gavin's story is just beginning!!  We kicked of Kicks for a Kidney today!! and I had our first pair of shoes within the first 30min. Our goal is 5000 shoes!! BIG GOAL but it can be done! What's even more amazing is these shoes will not only help us they will help many many families that need shoes!  If you have any shoes with no holes and intact soles we would love them!! I have also set up a page on GoFundMe here :