Tuesday, June 27, 2017


Our visas came!

It is getting real!

Baby boy - we are coming ๐Ÿ’—

grateful, Sandy

Monday, June 26, 2017

One Month?

If we have a July 31 Gotcha Day then we would be flying out ONE MONTH from today!!

When I think about this my stomach immediately ties in a knot. 

I am excited about meeting Henry Mingyu...
Scared about how hard the adjustment with be for him...
I am sad to leave Erik and 7 of our sweet children at home (only Alex is traveling with me)...



Friday, June 23, 2017


Yesterday we launched a t-shirt fundraiser.

Our dear friend Casey worked with a friend to design the t-shirts!

She set up the Bonfire account!

She is working hard to promote the fundraiser!

We are so INCREDIBLY BLESSED by her friendship ๐Ÿ’—

THANK YOU Casey!!! 
We can never repay you for ALL you have done for our family....we will try to pay it forward!

grateful for your support, Sandy

Thursday, June 22, 2017

Our Story

My dear friend Casey posted this on facebook today ๐Ÿ’—

"We've learned with each new child that love multiplies it doesn't divide"
Over the past year I've had the opportunity of getting to know Sandy as a dear friend! She and her husband Erik are the parents of 8 beautiful children, 4 of which happen to be adopted. When we met I thought there was a good chance I wouldn't get the opportunity to walk alongside their family in yet another adoption journey. So when she told me that they were adopting again I was thrilled, to say the least. When she told me that the little boy they were welcoming into their family had limb differences, I LOST IT!!
God really spoke to my heart through Sandy and Erik's newest journey and as a result I had the incredible privilege to help steward their story to share with all of you!
Their journey into the world of adoption began with two domestic adoptions, followed by the incredible heartbreak of two unsuccessful adoptions. God used that heartbreak in a profound way and opened their hearts to China and special needs adoption. The Kreps are now well on their way to becoming a family of eleven.
This family is doing big things for the kingdom and being the hands and feet of Jesus here on earth! Join us in the privilege of stepping into the Kreps adoption story, and fiercely cheering them on as they welcome Henry MingYu home.
• • • •
Not everyone can open their home to a child as an adoptive family, but we can play a huge role by way of financial and prayer support.
• • • •


As seen on Facebook today:

Friends...our paperwork hasn't hit a snag (yet!). We have article 5 pick up on July 3 and then we wait for travel approval!!! July 24 is now a possibility, July 31 more likely, and if we don't have Henry Mingyu on August 7 I will weep! 

Sooo exciting!!!! 

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

Our Village

A sweet friend felt called to come along side of our family when we shared with her that we were adopting Henry Mingyu.

Her son was born last year with limb differences. God used sweet Owen to open our hearts to Henry Mingyu ๐Ÿ’—

Our friend contacted a photographer who graciously donated his services. We have some AMAZING family and individual pictures!!!

We were featured on his blog this week:

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

A Care Package Filled with Love!

We sent Henry Mingyu a care package!

It is our YOU HAVE A FAMILY who loves you package ๐Ÿ’—

It contained:

A book I made on Shutterfly - and then I cut and pasted Chinese words to each page

A Lightning McQueen car - every boy needs one right?!

A snugly panda bear - that I might have worn around the house in my shirt for a couple hours to give it a mama smell ๐Ÿ˜€

A bag of lolly pops - labeled to share with his friends

A flash drive that hopefully the orphanage or foster home will fill with pictures they have taken of Henry

And a letter to the orphanage explaining that we are Henry Mingyu's family ๐Ÿ’—

We pray that his care givers are preparing his heart for a family - such a big, scary time it will be for Henry Mingyu ๐Ÿ˜ข

The post office said the package should arrive in China in two weeks.

It is first heading to the orphanage. We don't know if they will forward it to the foster group home. Henry Mingyu will most likely return to the orphanage for a week or two before we meet him. He may be given the package then. There is a chance he never sees it. So many unknowns - but we are praying and trusting God with the details that we have no control over.

Blessings, Sandy

Monday, June 19, 2017

More Update Questions/Answers

More of our Henry Mingyu update!

It is so fun to learn about our new son. 

There was another paragraph in the update that didn't exactly match the rest. It started out "He is extroverted and intelligent". Well - THIS paragraph mentions being "introverted".  Hmmm - sometimes it can be a translation thing....but then our Henry's orphanage buddy got his update too and it had THE EXACT SAME PARAGRAPH. So well - I am not even bothering to share that one :)

We do take the updates with a "grain of salt" - but either way - the pictures and video are just adorable!! 

1. What makes him upset? What is the best way to comfort him?

2. What is this most challenging behavior? How is it normally dealt with?

3. How does his medical need influence his daily life?

Ming Yu has been healthy recently. He does not currently take any medication. He grows up at Heng Ai Home (the Home of Constant Love) since May 11, 2015. His developments are pretty good. Just like other same age children. We feel like he is smarter than same age children. He is introverted but he is a slow-type person. But he knows everything. He would be attached to you if you treat him well. He is a little timid with strangers. But he would be your friend if you like him. He would like to say hello to others if you encourage him to. He is very smart and sensible. There is nothing particular that you need to prepare for him. 

We went to Target today and got Henry Mingyu a backpack!

I am looking forward to filling it with little treats to give him when we meet him ๐Ÿ’—

Blessings, Sandy

Sunday, June 18, 2017

Update Questions

We got to ask 5 questions when our agency requested our final update.

I asked friends and other adoptive moms for their question suggestions. Our agency also gave us a list of commonly asked questions.

Orphanages are not required to give updates - but we were crossing our fingers that one would come.

1. What makes him upset? What is the best way to comfort him?

2. What is this most challenging behavior? How is it normally dealt with?

3. How does his medical need influence his daily life?

4. What does he understand about adoption? Does he know he is being adopted?

5. What is a special memory or story of Ming Yu that you can share? (We would love to remind him of his time in your care)

Here are the answers to questions #4 and #5:

       His understanding is that the parents are busy right now, and they will come and pick him up whenever they are available. Sometimes he would chat with the nannies, and he would tell them that the parents are coming to taking him home with pride and happiness. He is looking forward to it.

There are a lot of special stories. He is very obedient and thoughtful. He also helps the nanny to take care of the younger sisters and brothers. He has strong sense of justice. He wants to protect every one of them. He is a loving and smart little child. He likes to lean on you and talk to you too. He enjoys this kind of feeling. He is a very active, smart, and playful kid. We all like him very much!
Reading about Henry Mingyu, watching his video, seeing his sweet face in pictures makes me more anxious than ever to travel to China and meet our boy ๐Ÿ’—

Friday, June 16, 2017


We FINALLY received our "final update" pictures, video, and answers to our five questions!

He is looking so old!

I love seeing that he gets out of the foster group home!

A smile!

Looking stylish in his blue button up!

His mug shot!

Don't mess with Henry - ha!

The video is adorable!

Henry Mingyu is dressing himself for the day - and is so independent!

He then runs down the hall to put his dirty clothes away.

He is listed as 40 inches tall and 39 pounds.

He is a big boy - compared to our tiny Darren and Bryan!

(Bryan is only 45" and 38 lbs at 6 years old!)

Looking forward to meeting our son!



and I only had to refresh my email a dozen times today!

Article 5 drop off should occur Monday June 19 in China!

Pick up should occur July 3!

and then we will wait for TRAVEL APPROVAL!

We are coming Henry Mingyu ๐Ÿ’—

Excited, Sandy

Thursday, June 15, 2017



We are so grateful to our friends and family who helped us reach our matching grant!!!

$2500 from YOU


$2500 matching grant from Chosen and Dearly Loved through Lifesong



for our orphanage donation fee

and JUST in time as it is due this month!
(I KNOW!!! We are getting close!)

grateful, Sandy

Wednesday, June 14, 2017


I only had to refresh my email 25 times - and then at 1:43pm our GUZ # showed up in my inbox from the National Visa Center!

We used this # to fill out our DS260 form
(I only had to call our agency once to clarify their directions - so many boxes to check and information to fill into the form) 

Now to wait for the email attachment version of the GUZ#....

then this is dropped off along with our other documents to the American Embassy in GZ China
(also known as Article 5 drop off).

Every little step feels GREAT!

One more step towards Henry Mingyu!! ๐Ÿ’—

Feeling excited and grateful,

Monday, June 12, 2017

i800 approval!

I made Henry Mingyu his first pediatrician appointment today!

It is scheduled for September 5 - sure hope he is home by then ๐Ÿ’— 

The boys and I visited the Chinese grocery store today.

I had to buy this product - JUST for the bag!

Darren couldn't figure out why I would buy it if I didn't even know what it TASTES like! Ha!

AND.....we got our i800 approval!!


Average approval is 14 days....we came in at EIGHT days!

Still on track for summer travel - and baby it is going to be HOT!

grateful, Sandy

Sunday, June 11, 2017

Henry's "brother"

Early in the process of adopting Henry Mingyu we realized that most of his pictures included another little boy. We wondered who the other little boy was and if he was being adopted too.

Thankfully he does have a family!

And the other family was much smarter than me - asking our mutual adoption agency to pass along their email address to us (since privacy policies prevented the agency from just sharing our information). 

We are excited to keep these "orphanage brothers" in touch!!

What a WONDERFUL GIFT God has given our families - we have been able to support each other during the stress-filled adoption process. Someone to celebrate our ups and downs - someone who "gets it"!! ๐Ÿ’—

Stephen's mom made this AWESOME picture showing our steps to Henry Mingyu 

We are on step 9 right now!

Hoping to move onto step 10 this week!!

grateful, Sandy

Thursday, June 8, 2017

So Close!

Oh we are soooo close!

15 more pieces! (and our orphanage donation fee will be covered!)

$10 per piece x 15 pieces x 2 (our matching grant!)


(and one COMPLETED puzzle ๐Ÿ’—๐Ÿ’—๐Ÿ’—)

THANK YOU for helping us bring Henry Mingyu home!

*Direct your donation to adoption
*Complete online form - be sure to fill in family name "Kreps" and family number "6835"
*Donations are TAX DEDUCTIBLE and managed by Lifesong for Orphans
(Donations of $50 or more will receive a receipt from Lifesong)

grateful, Sandy

Tuesday, June 6, 2017

2 Stickers!

45 minutes (normally a 30 minute trip - but there was AM traffic)


(I was #32 - WHY did it take so long?!!)


30 minute drive home


2 fancy gold stickers on this (first notarized) and now certified document!

This is the Power of Attorney that I have to take to China with me since Erik isn't traveling.

I now send it to a courier in Chicago who (for $60) will walk it into the Chinese Consulate. For $25 the consulate will authenticate the document.

We are applying for our travel visas too!

This is getting real ๐Ÿ’—

IF we hit all the averages....we MAY have a GOTCHA DAY of August 7!!!

grateful, Sandy

Saturday, June 3, 2017

A Dresser!

On Wednesday I posted on facebook that we were in need of a dresser for Henry Mingyu.

TODAY - just THREE days later we had a dresser DELIVERED to our home by a friend of a friend....for FREE! ๐Ÿ’—

I LOVE how God so visibly shows up during an adoption journey ๐Ÿ’—
(During an adoption you feel so vulnerable, that everything is out of your control, and sometimes so under attack - just the perfect time for God to remind us how AMAZING He is!)

I LOVE how when we say "Yes" - those around us support us ๐Ÿ’—

Isn't it just perfect for our boy?

grateful, Sandy

Friday, June 2, 2017

100 Good Wishes Quilt

It is a Chinese tradition to make a child a 100 Good Wishes Quilt.

I am not a quilter or really much of a sewer, but I love the idea behind the quilt. I also love that it is a Chinese tradition. I made one for Darren and for Bryan....so as a good mama I will make one for Henry too ๐Ÿ’—

Bryan's quilt 

Darren's quilt

scrapbook full of wishes

If you would like to participate: we need 100 friends and family to send us a 8 inch by 8 inch piece of fabric and a good wish, prayer, bible verse, or poem. 

There is no cost to you - just the postage to get it here.

Leave a comment here or PM me on facebook for our address

grateful, Sandy

Thursday, June 1, 2017


It is starting to get real! We added another fish to the van ๐Ÿ’—

grateful, Sandy