Archive | August, 2010

Matching Grant Total News!

30 Aug

Thanks to all who gave to our matching grant challenge! We received word on Friday that we will receive $10,645 towards our adoption expenses!  This means that our friends and family (and some folks we may never meet) gave $5645 in gifts.  Hand in Hand matched $5000 of that amount (that was the maximum they were going to match).  We are so grateful for the generosity of you gave and thankful to God for removing part of the obstacles still standing between us and our daughter.

Please do NOT send any gifts to Hand in Hand for our matching grant challenge.  The deadline has passed now.  You can still make tax-deductible donations through our paypal link on the right (Thanks to Lifesong for Orphans!) or by making purchases of coffee or the other items we have listed on our side bar.  IF you give through Lifesong please please make sure that you designate the gift for us by writing “Brandt #1460 Adoption” in the blank section you see when you click on our paypal link.  You can also mail checks(with the same info. in the memo section of the check) to :

Lifesong for Orphans

Att:Brandt #1460 Adoption

PO Box 40

Gridley, IL 61744

When will we meet our daughter?  We still don’t have a clue!  We know that it could be as soon as this week or it could be as late as 2011.  It is absolutely crazy to think about that big a variance in the timing!  We know that the adoption will probably be a transracial one because that is one of the greatest needs in U.S. adoption.  We really do not know which state she will be born in or if she is already born.  We do know we probably will be traveling by airplane to bring her home.

We are assembling one of our suitcases with some baby items and other items that we might need if we had to quickly travel to meet our daughter.  It feels a little weird to do that…kind of like pregnant women do as they near their due date except I don’t have a cute belly bulge and there’s no doctor to predict when our baby is “due!”

Due to Alan’s commitments with his job, we do know that there is a large portion of October that we will not be able to complete an adoption.  This means that our daughter is either already born or is probably going to be born in September, November, or December if it is God’s will for us to bring her home this year.

What we need:  lots of prayers for us to have the wisdom and discernment to recognize our future daughter when we receive word of the possibility of adopting her…Again, this could be before she is born or after she is born.  We are still saving and fundraising and waiting on word of other grants for which we applied.  We lack anywhere from $3,000-$27,880 still.  The big range in our estimates is due to there being no way to predict right now how much travel will cost and agency fees vary (we are registered with more than 1 agency and are open to the possibility of something arising with an agency we may not yet be registered with). Please join us in praying that God will provide exactly what we need to complete our adoption and that it will be to His glory.

Thanks for stopping by,

Heather & Alan

Matching Grant Challenge Over…

25 Aug

Please do NOT send any gifts to Hand in Hand for our matching grant challenge.  The deadline has passed now.  You can still make donations through our paypal link or by making purchases of coffee or the other items we have listed on our side bar.

Thanks to all who have given to our matching grant challenge!  We hope we have good news to report on Friday when we receive word of our final totals from Hand in Hand.

Heather & Alan

Sleepy Wrap Winner!

24 Aug

I just used to draw the winner of our giveaway….and…wish I could insert a recording of one of Colin’s many many drumming sessions here….the winner of the Sleepy Baby Wrap is….Johanna Price!  Johanna said, “I’d love to have this wrap for when our baby comes home!”  You can visit Johanna’s blog at These Prices, where you’ll learn that she and her husband are in the process of adopting their first child.  Congrats, Johanna, and many blessings as you wait for your little one! 

Thanks for all who entered and helped to spread the word about our giveaway and blog!


Tomorrow is Only a Day Away…

23 Aug

Still thinking about giving a gift to our “virtual baby shower?”  There are only about 24 hours left to mail your check or money order to our matching grant challenge (Gifts must be postmarked by Tuesday, August 24th at the latest…If Hand in Hand cannot give us any gift if it is postmarked August 25th or any other day this week or the remaining days of this month!  Please give a little and make a big difference in the life of our future daughter and of our family!  Your gift will be matched and will go a long way in helping us to bring home our daughter this year! (As of last Friday we were only $2,290 away from meeting our challenge!)

Checks should be made payable to Hand in Hand & mailed to

Hand in Hand

Brandt Family

18524 Juniper St

Gardner, KS 66030-9147

Please don’t write the check to us!  It must be written to Hand in Hand (you can stick a post-it note on it if it makes you feel better), and be sure to use snail-mail. Paypal donations are not counted toward the grant challenge.  ALL GIFTS MADE TO HAND IN HAND IN OUR NAME MUST BE POSTMARKED BY AUGUST 24TH AT THE LATEST!  IF THEY ARRIVE AFTER 8/24, WE WILL NOT RECEIVE THE GIFT…

Thanks to all our friends, family and even strangers who’ve made gifts so far!

Heather & Alan

(photo of our butterfly garden in July 2010)

 cone flowers

Our Virtual Baby Shower!

18 Aug


During the wait for Colin to come home from Russia, we never had a baby shower.  Colin was 20 months old when he came home and we never got around to figuring out how to have a reception or party after he came home.  We were busy with helping him to attach to us and transitioning to being parents of a very active toddler who had limited means of communicating his needs with us (sign language helped to bridge the gap before he learned to speak more English words).

This week and weekend, we are having a virtual baby shower, hosted by one of my friends from college.  This really is our first ever baby shower as a family and we are so excited!  Please consider making a gift that will help us to bring home our little one!  If we receive $3000 in gifts from friends, family and strangers, Hand in Hand will give us the full $10,000 they awarded us as a grant (plus any additional money that is given, postmarked by August 24, 2010, in the name of our family).  Check out our baby shower invitation for more info. below.   Gifts of any amount will make a big difference in the life of our future daughter and of our family.   We are so appreciative of your prayers and help as we hope to bring home our daughter this year! 


You’re Invited to a Virtual Baby Shower for

Alan and Heather Bain Brandt

Hosted by friend Jenny Gowen Lemker


Due for adoption… AT ANY MOMENT!!!

Instead of hitting Babies R’ Us for a traditional shower gift, let’s shower baby girl Brandt with what she needs most:

A Loving Home in the arms of her forever family.

Here’s how:

Alan and Heather recently qualified for a prestigious matching grant from Hand in Hand Christian Adoption Inc.

Your tax-deductible donation to Hand in Hand (postmarked by August 24) will not only be applied toward the Brandt adoption, it will be matched dollar for dollar until the $5,000 challenge has been met! If gifts exceed $5000, the Brandts will still receive the gifts as long as the envelopes are labeled “Brandt Family and postmarked by August 24 at the latest.

Your $30 gift puts the Brandts $60 closer to the $30-40,000 worth of adoption/legal expenses in the way of meeting their little girl! The faster Heather and Alan build their adoption fund, the faster their “itty bitty” can join her forever family. Let’s help bring their little one home this year!

Checks should be made payable to Hand in Hand, and snail-mailed as follows:

Hand in Hand

Brandt Family

18524 Juniper St

Gardner, KS 66030-9147

Please don’t put the Brandts’ name anywhere on the check itself (you can stick a post-it note on it if it makes you feel better), and be sure to use snail-mail. Paypal donations are not counted toward the grant challenge.

Sleepy Wrap Baby Carrier Giveaway

17 Aug


We are hosting a baby carrier giveaway this week! The winner of our giveaway will receive a Sleepy Wrap baby carrier (Classic style in any color available on web site, $39.95 value. Giveaway for U.S. residents only). This is the baby carrier we are planning on using for our little girl  when we bring her home. There are many reasons why Sleepy Wraps are great carriers for babies. Some of our favorite reasons are:   it gives great support for little heads and necks  whether they are awake or fall asleep, it distributes the baby’s weight evenly which helps to prevent back strain for moms and dads, and it is machine washable, durable, and secure.  (Check out Sleepy Wrap to see more benefits of using the carrier.
Do you know a mom-to-be who would love to have this baby carrier? Or maybe you would love to try it out with your little one?

Here’s How to Enter the Giveaway from August 16-August 22

(be sure to include an email address for us to contact you if you win! Winner announced August 23rd! Winner will be randomly selected from entries on both this blog and our other blog, Life with Colin…. You can enter on both blogs for double the chances of winning!)

1. Post about this giveaway on Facebook, Twitter, or blog and then leave a comment for each place you post about the giveaway! Include your Facebook or twitter name or blog address in your comment.

2. Grab our button, put it on your blog! Leave a comment telling me your blog address.

3. Consider giving a gift…We are trying to meet our adoption grant challenge before August 24. Any donation of any size will be matched by Hand in Hand Christian Adoption if they receive it postmarked by August 24 (with Brandt Family on the envelope).Check or money order made out to Hand in Hand. (You will also get a tax-deductible receipt.) THIS IS UNRELATED TO GIVEWAY & DOES NOT ENTER YOU IN THE GIVEWAY.
Mail any financial gift of any size to:

Hand in Hand

Brandt Family

18524 Juniper St.

Gardner, KS 66030

Give a Little and Help A Lot!

14 Aug

Hand in Hand is continuing to accept gifts for the matching grant challenge they gave us.  They will double gifts dollar for dollar if they are given in our name (check or money order written out to Hand in Hand) by August 24th.  This is an awesome opportunity they have given us which will help us so much in bringing home our daughter–wherever in the U.S. she may be.   Thanks to the generosity of some of our friends, Hand in Hand has received $1685 in donations to our matching grant as of August 13, which means they will double that amount dollar for dollar to make it $3,370!  You still have time to make a difference by giving a gift of any amount to our matching grant challenge!  We still lack $3,025 before we meet the matching grant challenge from Hand in Hand…and only 11 days are left in our challenge!(and if we raise more than $3,025, that will be given to our adoption fund as long as it’s in by 8/24) Maybe you’ve read our blog throughout our Russian adoption process or caught up with our story within the last couple of years since we brought home Colin….If just 100 of our blog readers would give $30 each to our matching grant challenge, we’d have raised a total of $10,000 (since Hand in Hand will double donations dollar for dollar)!  That means we could be matched with our little girl and give her a forever home sooner rather than later…$30 is less than some of us spend on coffee or take-out food in a work week….Please consider making a tax-deductible gift to our matching grant challenge so that we can raise the full amount Hand in Hand has awarded us and so we can make Colin a big brother this year!

Here’s a photo of our little buckeroo in his new cowboy hat from Uncle Clint & Aunt Calli:Colin in barn profile july 2010

To give mail your check or money order written out to Hand in Hand to the following address(before August 24):

Hand in Hand,

Brandt Family

18524 Juniper St

Gardner, KS 66030-9147

Thanks for stopping by & for your prayers & encouragement,

Heather & Alan

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