The fatherless and the widows who live in your towns may come and eat and be satisfied, and so that the LORD your God may bless you in all the work of your hands. Dueteronomy 14:29

~ Silas and Naomi are HOME from Uganda ~

02 January 2011

lock down

it’s about that time … to go under the radar… uh, incognito (craig’s word)! we’ve added a protective cover to our blog as you now know, so please respect our efforts to protect our family, our children, and the ugandan system as we travel the final stages of our adoption over the next few months, by not sharing our blog with others or reposting any pictures to your own blogs or emails. we’ll give you the thumbs up when it’s ok to shout to the world…don’t worry – it will be loud!

we’ve made some major changes, taken a severe turn on our adoption path over the last few weeks. with a heavy heart but great hopefulness we prayerfully made the decision to leave our agency and the lawyer they contract with. we cannot say enough about the ministry-minded approach they have towards adoption and valued their spiritual and emotional support beyond anything, however our expected travel time continued to increase each month and our children are still waiting. it was time to take a huge leap of faith in an effort to unite our family under one roof. one of the major drawbacks to this decision meant we greatly risk loosing our grants, financial gifts to support our adoption from 3 separate foundations. this is huge and we don’t discount that in the least, but we are confident the Lord will provide, as He always has, and always will. Jehovah Jireh. so…forward march.

our new lawyer, “v”, is incredible. she has been faithful to follow through on every promise and worked through the holidays for our family. in just 3 short weeks, she has reviewed our case, spoken with all involved on the ugandan side, drafted countless papers and other documents, and miraculously shortened our expected wait from 3-4 months to just a few weeks!!! yup, you read right! WEEKS, baby!!! PRAISE THE LORD! she told us to expect to travel for a court date in just two weeks, so right now, until official word from her, we are planning to take off on the craziest 23 hour plane ride of our lives on JANUARY 15th!!!!!

since we have decided to share this information, we want to preface it with a statement you may hear often in the coming weeks: TIA – This Is Africa. that being said, anything could happen, anything could change at any moment, and delays are expected at all times. however we KNOW our God is in control, and He is faithful to prove His plans and purposes as best, so we march forward in the peace that comes from the grace and knowledge that He holds all things in the palm of His hand. let the packing begin!

So if I don’t answer the phone…please call again.

if I don’t email back…please give me another day.

if you stop by and the house looks anything like it does right now…well, it will probably look like this for the next 10-12 years, but we are so excited and ready for the chaos to begin!


now that we are officially on lock down, we would like to proudly introduce our 4 beautiful children…

5 years old, a karate master, amazing big brother, funniest little person we’ve ever met

Nicholas (Niko)
3 years old, loves to wrestle, has a wonderful sense of humor, and very ticklish

turns 2 this week (jan. 5), a pretty pink princess, adores her baby sister, can’t get enough of washing dishes (seriously, i don’t force her, she really loves it!)

Abi Rose
10 months old (on jan. 3), giggles just to make others laugh, has experienced more of God’s healing grace than some do in a lifetime

coming soon…a family picture of the 6 vanderstoeps!

please pray for us:

~ packing, choosing what to take and what to leave

~ choosing gifts/donations for the orphanages we will visit, wisdom to meet their needs

~ alexa, the amazing young lady traveling with us! peace for her family as they entrust her to us for this experience

~ the wonderful family who are going to stay in our home and care for our animals while we are gone

~ smooth proceedings in court as our lawyer tries to secure our date for the 19th

~ God’s provision for our final financial needs before we leave

~ we have a list of families whose hearts and homes are open to one or more ugandan children. please pray we could be used as instruments to connect these families with their waiting children while we are in country.

thank you all so much for sticking with us these long 4 years! it would have been a much harder road without your love, support, and prayers. may you be blessed for the care you have given to orphans through loving our family. HERE WE GO!


  1. So excited to follow your journey to Uganda, Jennifer! You're in our prayers. BTW, ALL your kids are gorgeous!

  2. Through tears of thankfulness and joy, we celebrate WITH you! We pray for your family EVERY night faithfully and will continue to do so!! It has been such a gift to sit "ring side" and watch your family be knit together by the King Himself!!

  3. You will be in our prayers. God is indeed GOOD!!! Tracie Hilliker

  4. Yay!!! What amazing news to start off the New Year with! Praying for travel mercies and smooth final steps to bring your precious kids home!! (p.s. we made meatloaf from your cookbook tonight and thought of you all!)

  5. Hooray! We are so excited to follow your journey! Your family is beautiful and we will be praying for you! Can't wait to hear all about it as we eagerly anticipate our own journey soon!

  6. Where are you staying? I need deatils! Praising God with you! fb me so we can hook up in country!

  7. So so so excited for you guys!! Can't wait to see your sweet babies in your arms!!

  8. What an amazing post sweet friend. It is ABOUT time!! Praise the Lord for discernment and awe at you and C's faithfulness. Can't wait to see where this takes you...praying for you daily..often times more. We are walking (running!) this road with you and are thrilled at the possibility of your family being united in JAN. YAY!!