Adoption Update – Submitted to IBESR

November 25th. That’s the day we got submitted!

Palmer Adoption

When you adopt a child from Haiti, your dossier has to go through a series of steps before you’re matched with a little one. First, it has to be authenticated here in the US. Then it has to be legalized in Haiti. Then it gets submitted into IBESR’s system. (IBESR is Haiti’s department of family and children’s services.)

We didn’t expect to hear that we had been submitted until early next year, but it seems like things are really moving along down there right now, and it’s all so very amazing to me!

It’s been one year since we first applied to adopt, and if things keep truckin’ along, it sounds like we *may* be traveling to Haiti to meet our Sweet P within the next 6 months. That will *hopefully* be the first of a few trips back and forth next year. From what I understand, we’ll have to appear at a couple of different court dates in Haiti to finish out our process in 2014 (2015?), but we’ll be able to bond with our little guy/gal while we’re there each time, too. :-)

We spend a lot of time staring at this collage on Three Angel’s Facebook page these days:

Angel House Kids at Three Angels Children's Relief in Haiti

Those little faces give me so much to think about. It’s still so unreal to me that one of them will be my babe! :-D

I’ve always felt like if I was going to have a child, it would be through adoption. I can even remember daydreaming about it several times when I was a little girl.

But now there are actual  faces…and emails from friends who have cradled them all in person. There are actual voices captured on video…and very soon, I’ll know which one we’ll be hearing all around this house.

That’s so, so wild to me, y’all. :-)

I had a dream it was one of the little boys in that collage last night. I was sitting with him on the floor in the orphanage. His back was curled to my front, and his tiny legs were stretched out on top of mine. I was running my fingertips across the tops of his baby-smooth feet. It was Haiti-hot & humid, and I figured out that he liked it when I blew on his skin in an attempt to cool him down. I can still see it so clearly: he would watch his feet as I blew towards them over his shoulder, and as soon as my breath reached them, he would squeal with glee! He’d turn to me, and I would gasp and make a surprised face, and then he would point at his feet so that I’d do it again. It was very vivid, and I’m feeling very thankful for that Image today. :-)

The next step is to be unofficially matched with Sweet P. Once that happens, we’ll fly to Haiti and spend 14 days loving on him/her. Assuming that goes well, the next step is to be officially matched, and assuming that goes well, we’ll schedule the first of those court dates I mentioned above and fly back to Haiti for another visit.

When I sit and really think about what’s really happening (even when it sometimes feels like nothing is happening), I find myself in complete awe. It’s such a HUGE opportunity/responsibility/blessing, ya know? I was a little overwhelmed by all the options in the beginning, but right now, it feels like all we really had to do was really step into it. Things are coming together just like folks said they would, and I feel lucky to be living this out alongside them.

Last Christmas I was thankful for the beginning of this mysterious-meets-marvelous adventure. This Christmas, I’m thankful for the opportunity to continually extend one fearful-meets-faithful foot in front of the other, and to finally know (really know) this thing was Set from the start. Like it was inscribed into my life, and that there’s a whole part of my heart I haven’t met yet.


PS- For more pics between posts, join me over on Twitter, Facebook and/or Instagram!

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  1. tina schiefer says

    Such cute little babes….and what a nice dream…both the awake one and the one while sleeping…

  2. says

    Oh Layla!! I have been keeping up since the very beginning (have been reading your blog for years now!!)- and I am beyond excited and elated that everything is going so well. I cannot wait until you have that special little someone at home. God bless you both for opening up your hearts and home to a child.

  3. Gina says

    So excited for you!! It brings tears to my eyes just to look into their little faces. Wish it was a quicker easier process. :( Loved your dream. How precious to remember it. :)

  4. libbywilko says

    What wonderful news, wishing you guys all the best , hope you find out soon who will be your Sweet P. hugs.

  5. Hannah says

    Oh my goodness, I’m not the crying type but I just started bawling. I’ve been reading your blog for years and I didn’t realize you were adopting from Haiti. We have been sponsoring Paula at Three Angels House for about a year now and I am just so in love with her. We wouldn’t be able to adopt her ourselves, though I would just love to bring her home with me, but I’ve been praying for a wonderful couple to adopt her. How amazing would that be if it turned out to be you guys?! Really, though, all those beautiful kids are on my heart all the time and I will cry my eyes out with joy when you find out who you’re matched with. Continuing to pray for you in this journey you’re on!

  6. says

    Last spring my son’s girlfriend went on a missions trip to Haiti. She worked at an orphanage in Mole St. Nicolas. She said the little children there were so precious. I firmly believe that God will bring you the little Sweet P He has for you. And as the mother of two children I can tell you, you can’t imagine how much love you have in your heart until you hold that special little baby that God brought into this world just for you and Kevin. Gives me goose bumps just thinking about it. Praying for God to go before you and prepare all things! Blessings my friend!

  7. Sherri Farrell says

    Layla, I feel as though you are a friend since I’ve been reading your blog for years. I’m over the moon elated for you and Kevin. Your journey has been amazing and inspiring. I can’t wait to see which one of these precious children will be your Sweet P!!! Praying for God’s guidance in the process! I can’t wait!!!! Much love to you!!!

  8. Emily Lobenstein says

    Ever since I got back from Haiti with the Centerpoint group, I’ll forever remember the sweet faces of the children there. Haiti will always have a special place in my heart. Congratulations to both of you. Praying for the little girl or boy who will soon have a forever home! Praying for y’all as you continue on this wonderful God-led journey!
    God Bless You!

  9. says

    I have been following your story for so long and I am just so excited for you!!! How amazing that you get to stare into those faces and know that one of them will be your child so soon. God is doing amazing things for you all. Prayers for the rest of the journey!

  10. Joy says

    They’re all so precious, can’t go wrong! Merry Christmas and hope you’re all together in Alabama for the next one.

  11. says

    A whole part of your heart you haven’t met yet – what a sweet way to see all the pieces come together. Praying for you all as the process continues. Anxious to see just which one God’s heart matches with yours.

  12. says

    I have a lump in my thought reading this! Yay!! I am so happy and excited for you guys! You will be in my prayers for sure! As an adoptive mother myself I can say you really hit the nail on the head when you talk about adoption being a mysterious marvelous journey. God will pick your little one and He doesn’t make mistakes. Eeek, so excited for you!

  13. says

    Layla your story have me tears but they we tears of joy to know that you are finally making this dream a reality. I looked at the photos of these babies and found myself thinking how could I help just one? I’d want several of them to fill my life with joy and laughter. Good luck on your dream. Keep us posted and God bless.

  14. Donna Doble-Brown says

    OMG! the dream is soooo exciting . . . . you are manifesting this journey . . . . and as I sit here my “baby” who is an accounting grad school student is on his computer! Layla, you have no idea how your heart is about to expand . . . . it’s better than everyone says, harder and the ABSOLUTE best thing you and Kev will ever do . . . . thanks for taking me along . . . . I’m sending blessings and prayers . . . . :)

  15. Beverly Kennedy says

    Best of luck with the adoption process. I hope everything proceeds as quickly as possible and you will soon have your little child. Just think you will be celebrating your first Christmas together next year!!!

  16. Sharon B. says

    I’m so happy for you two! Here’s hoping the time will pass quickly until you know which child you will be adopting and get to meet and finally bring him or her home. I’m eagerly waiting to hear which one will become your little darling.

  17. says

    Amazing. NO-thing moves fast in Haiti. Nothing! That’s so wonderful that your paperwork has! :-)

    I can’t wait to see you in Haiti loving on your little one (bringin’ me back to ma cherie)… and may the process/wait be worth it in the end. Blessings!

  18. says

    So excited and happy for you and Kevin. I wanted to share this with you:
    Rachel is an amazing writer and shares wonderful, thought provoking messages and lessons in her posts. This particular post shares some of her friends’ adoption. I find the change in Jac so uplifting. You will appreciate this part of the post, however, I strongly encourage you to follow her. She brings to light so many teachings and lessons that we can all learn from–parent or not.

  19. Dawn says


    Thank you for sharing your incredible journey with us. You guys and your Sweet P are in my prayers.

  20. Jan says

    How exciting! I have loved your blog (from every angle) for a couple of years and I am thrilled for you to get to this point! You will all be in my prayers in the months to come!

  21. Terri says

    I was brought to your blog because of your talent but have found I have been eagerly waiting for news of your adoption even more. You have been so blessed in life already and will continue to be blessed even more. Thank you for sharing your life with us. Your joy in everything brings happiness to so many, in a world where sometimes it is hard to remember the positive, it is appreciated even more!

  22. jackson12 says

    Brings back memories only we went through Romania, over 17 years ago. Got our son out just before adoptions closed there. He was 5. It has been an adventure! Today he had his first glass blowing class. Seems like just yesterday he was a little boy, didn’t know English, etc. I just remember thinking: how would I feel? New country, new family, new home? But it all worked out. Could we all be so resilient? Kids -they are amazing!

  23. says

    I wish you all the best during the process of adoption :) Clearly, you guys are such good people… I think your kid, that right now is waiting to be matched with you, is already a lucky one, cause he/she is gonna get a really great couple as parents and sure will be very happy with you! :)))

  24. says

    I don’t often comment but do follow your blog. I’m loving your adoption adventure & can see the hand of God moving things right along for you! Those lIittle faces are so cute! Hmmm…I wonder if it will be Pink or Blue?
    Blessings to you both! And Merry Christmas!

  25. Lisa W. says

    WOW…well doesn’t this bring teers of JOY to my eyes. So happy excited nervous happy nervous excited with JOY for you both:) Wishing you all the best to come!!!!!!

    Hoping you may hear alittle Merry Christmas early:) Just sayin’

    Lisa W.

  26. says

    I can’t even tell you how happy I am for you guys that things are moving along, as well as happy for the little person who will be part of your family. I hope the rest of the process goes quickly and smoothly!!!

  27. says

    I am so excited for you. I can’t wait to see your Sweet P. Our doctor has a clinic in Haiti and travel back and forth all year long. I think she is there right now. Good luck and ((((HUGS)))).

  28. Pat Willems says

    We adopted our children, 43 and 40 years ago. What blessings they are to us. I was born to be a mom no matter how that was to happen! We now have six grandchildren ages 3 to 21, the blessings just keep coming.

  29. JennyBC says

    I have so much regard for the journey you are on. Sweet friends are in China now, adopting two girls ~ both with disabilities. I. Can’t. Even. The pictures make me weep when I think about those sweet girls and how their entire family heritage is changing all because of love. Those precious girls were destined to live in that orphanage for the rest of their lives if not for the willingness of two people to adopt. So, as you wait, I hope you are filled with every blessing, every ounce of wisdom, every bit of understanding that you two too, are preparing to change a family line! Incredible! Celebrating with you. Hoping for a very quick match! i could eat those little faces up!

  30. Kim says

    … and He already knows which child will be coming to your home, and when. Praise God! What an awesome adventure you are on!

  31. Helena Dias says

    I am so rooting for you. Can’t wait to meet your sweet baby.
    Your faith is amazing and inspiring. It gives me courage to again mention adoption to my husband.

  32. Dee Dee says

    Speaking from experience, adoption, in general, is nothing to be entered into lightly, as adopted children come with a set of unique challenges that will manifest themselves in later years. Foreign adoptions come with even more challenges. Having said that, all children are a blessing from the Lord and deserve the greatest home life they can possibly have.

    Wishing you all the best as you proceed into this life changing experience.

  33. says

    Wow, ALL of those faces are so precious, I’d want to take them all home! I’m so excited for you guys. This is just an incredible testimony of how faithful God is and how His timing is always perfect!

  34. Jenny V. says

    They are all so precious. Are they all in the process of being “matched” with parents? It breaks my heart to think that some won’t be “going home” soon! Congratulations!

  35. Jane Thomas Crawford says

    Wow. It seems like your time for adoption is almost here. I cannot imagine the feelings you are experiencing. Your dream is just the sweetest thing. A friend of mine in Tallahassee has been sharing her her children’s adoption journey on Facebook. They just returned home from Haiti with a precious boy named Stevenson. Do you think it could be the same child from you list of pictures. It has been such a heartwarming experience for me to see Stevenson’s acclimation with his new family.

  36. Barb says

    Oh Layla, you brought tears to my eyes today. “There’s a whole part of my heart I haven’t met yet” is so true. You and Kevin won’t believe how much love you have for your child, and that it is so much different than the love you have for each other. You will be great parents and I can’t wait for you to experience motherhood!

  37. Maureen Nussbeck says

    Have you heard of Be Like Brit? They have a facebook page. BRITTANY GENGEL PERISHED IN THE HAITI EARTHQUAKE. I have been following her family’s journey since then to build an orphanage in Haiti in her memory. It has now been built and they have quite a few children there. Thought you might be interested.

  38. Linda says

    bless you and your hubby. I had many years ago been in the process of adopting a baby girl from Brazil. just as it was coming to a closure, the adoption agency fell apart. I was devastated. I picked the wrong agency. However, I will pray you get your precious little one soon and have many happy years ahead. I will follow it eagerly. and live vicariously through you!! Best of luck and prayers!

  39. Ter'e says

    Oh Crimany!
    My eyes got teary as soon as i read the word “ADOPTION”. I knew, from your faces, what was coming next. I started crying before I could even read these last posts.
    Oh my gosh………these precious children. What gorgeous faces. Such hope ahead for your little sweet P. I am beyond thrilled and touched. Perfect timing. A Christmas to remember, for sure, just knowing what lies ahead for you and your family.
    God bless your hearts.
    So thrilled and thankful…… would think I was going to be the nana!!!!!!
    With love,

    P.S. Tonight I am making your Family Spaghetti again. It sure will have special meaning!!!!!! One day you will be sharing this wonderful meal with your little Mr. Sweet P!!!!!

  40. tara says

    Oh, Layla!!! I’m just SO happy for y’all!! And that sweet, sweet baby!! This whole thing just oozes love! Such a testament! xoxo

  41. Sandra says

    My husband and I were one of the first to adopt from Russia in 1994. Our daughter is now a stunningly beautiful, incredibly talented (musician) college sophomore!! It so stressful when you are going through the process but when all is said and done and they are your child you know it was Divine intervention all along. What are the chances of our lives coming together were it not? I wish I had enjoyed the actual adoption trip more and taken more pictures (of EVERYTHING and I mean EVERYTHING) but I’m sure Kevin has that covered. When she graduated from High School she did a video for her senior project about being adopted and what a wonderful life her parents gave her. WOW. If I can ever get a copy of it on disk I will send it to you. Hugs to you for being brave.

  42. Maryjane from MB says

    As a step mom, I can relate to this post. You are bang on; there IS a whole part of your heart that you haven’t met yet. How wise of you to know that! I didn’t have the fore-thought of that but that’s exactly the journey I found myself on.
    I hope you enjoy it immensely. It is so precious. And being a woman who hasn’t given birth to the child you love, you get to create a different bond but its just as, if not more, powerful because you won’t have some of the automatic aspects that a natural birth mom has. I’m not sure if I’m describing it correctly but I hope you enjoy it. It is indeed a gift from above.
    Your blog was incredibly personal and touching. You are so brave. Thank you for sharing. Yours is a very beautiful heart. Kevin and your future little one are so lucky.
    Perhaps its a bit early but I highly recommend reading books by Barbara Colorosso (Kids are Worth It / Parenting Wit and Wisdom / there are others for difficult times too) to prepare for your upcoming parenthood. They make it you think and get good discussion going between you and Kevin on subjects you may not have thought of yet. As well, I found them WONDERFUL resources when in the mid of “parenting life”. I am so proud of the amazing kid I helped to shape – and all the ways he taught/shaped me.
    I look forward to sharing your joy through more of this process. What a wonderful Christmas gift. I wish you more of the beautiful Christmas presents from above this season.
    Peace and blessings!
    from Manitoba, Canada

  43. says

    The heart work that God does in us when we adopt is unmatched. Our international adoption turned us inside out in all the best ways.

    We can’t imagine our lives without Lydia. She makes our family complete.

    I’m praying for you guys as you await meeting your sweet P.

  44. says

    Your blog is amazing. My husband and I have just begun our adoption journey and it fascinates me to read about those of others. Hope you’re hanging in there and that you get to meet your little one soon!

  45. Maria says

    I am so inspired by your talent, but also touched by your adoption process; we adopted a little girl, now 5, from the Philippines. People would say, “Oh, she is so lucky,” but the truth is, we are the ones who are lucky. She is our heart! Usually, I don’t comment on blogs, but I wanted to send you good energy and blessings as you finalize the most difficult steps in the process. I am forever changed and humbled by the sweet child in my life, and I am so excited for your own journey.

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