A Beginner’s Guide to Special Needs Adoption: Post One

May 3, 2016 by nohandsbutours A Beginner's Guide to Special Needs Adoption, Faith, I'm Ready to Adopt, pre-adoption, referral, should we adopt?, waiting for referral 1 Comments


Becoming a parent, no matter how it happens, is never easy. But for those just looking into the possibility of adoption it can seem positively overwhelming. It is our hope to change all that. This 7-post series will go step-by-step through the process to adopt through the special needs program for those of you who …Read More

15 Ways to Prepare During the Wait

May 2, 2016 by nohandsbutours first weeks home, International Adoption Clinic, Jennifer B., Newly Home, referral, waiting for referral, waiting to travel 3 Comments


Those who have adopted, as well as those currently knee deep in the adoption process, know all about a little thing called waiting. Only it really is not a little thing; it is a big, difficult thing. The good news is that although the wait is hard, it gives families the opportunity to prepare for …Read More

International Adoption Clinics: Services and Locations

April 29, 2016 by nohandsbutours first weeks home, first year home, International Adoption Clinic, Jennifer B., Newly Home, referral, waiting for referral, waiting to travel 4 Comments


I can still remember getting ‘the call’ during our first adoption process. Our agency coordinator was on the phone and they had a file for us to review. I remember the many different emotions I felt as we opened the file and photos and began to read. Within an hour of opening the file I …Read More

Mine In China: Your Comprehensive Guide to Adopting from China

March 31, 2016 by nohandsbutours books, China trip, pre-adoption, prepping for China, referral, waiting for referral, waiting to travel 3 Comments


Talking today with Kelly, who authored our 10-part series I’m Ready to Adopt: Choosing an Agency as she shares about her new book Mine in China: Your comprehensive guide to adopting from China, which is available now for pre-order and will be released April 4th. Q: Tell us a little about your family. A: My …Read More

Creating a Book to Help Children through Transitions

March 30, 2016 by nohandsbutours adopting again, Attachment, attachment activities, China trip, February 2016 Feature - Siblings, pre-adoption, prepping for China, waiting to travel 3 Comments


Children love books. The exciting pictures! The imaginative stories! The interactive tabs and hidden illustrations! The textures of a touch and feel! Typically, books allow a child to peek into an alternate reality filled with adventure but books can also be used as a tool to help guide a child through their own adventure. My …Read More

Learning Curve

March 12, 2016 by nohandsbutours adopting as first time parents, Blood Conditions, Family Stories, hemophilia, March 2016 Feature - Blood Conditions, referral, waiting to travel 6 Comments


After a twenty-minute speech about what our daily routine would entail, followed by a list of possible complications, the Hematologist looked at me pointedly… “You know, it will be a steep learning curve for you all, but you will settle into a routine, and more quickly than you think. You’ll see. He’s just a boy.” …Read More

All for One, One for All

March 9, 2016 by nohandsbutours Amy, pre-adoption, should we adopt?, sibling perspective, waiting for referral 1 Comments

I remember several times over about 5 years talking to Jesus about adoption. I remember telling Him that I would if I could, but… my husband wasn’t on board. it was too expensive. it wasn’t the right time. the kids are too old. the kids are too young. our house doesn’t have any more room …Read More

Preparing Siblings for Adoption: Five Simple Guidelines

February 9, 2016 by nohandsbutours adopting again, February 2016 Feature - Siblings, guest post, referral, siblings, waiting to travel 4 Comments


If you are reading this, I am guessing you are close to saying YES to adoption or have already done so. There is a great chance you are somewhere in the middle of the paperwork race or nearing the finish line. You have countless hours under your belt thinking about how you will love, parent …Read More

Heart Month: Little Hearts Medical

February 1, 2016 by nohandsbutours February 2016 Feature - Heart, Heart System, Little Hearts Medical, other ways to care for the orphan, referral, waiting for referral 0 Comments


It’s February 1. Happy American Heart Month! To start off heart month here at NHBO, I asked Andrea Olson to share. Andrea has shared here before, as mom to four children with complex (some with very complex) heart needs. But today Andrea is sharing as the Executive Director of Little Hearts Medical. One of her …Read More

A Plan to Survive the First Weeks Home

December 29, 2015 by nohandsbutours Attachment, China trip, cocooning, first weeks home, Mandy, Newly Home, prepping for China, Theraplay, toddler adoption, waiting to travel 11 Comments


Adoption is hard. The first few weeks home can be brutal or not. For us, it is hard, but I am not super mom. I am so tired. The kind of tired that makes your bones ache and makes you laugh when things aren’t really that funny. We adopted our second child, a son, 21 …Read More

The Extra Stocking on Your Mantel: {Longing at Christmas}

December 17, 2015 by nohandsbutours Andrea Y., Christmas, waiting to travel 0 Comments


We had just begun decorating the tree tonight when he ran in the room saying, “Mama! Mama! Where are my ornaments? Is that one mine momma?” Although his hand-made ornaments are fewer because he’s been with us… home… a shorter time than the rest, my heart couldn’t help but recognize the peace it felt as …Read More

Right On Time

December 11, 2015 by nohandsbutours Amy, referral, waiting for referral 6 Comments


I was messaging with a friend who is in the paperwork portion of their adoption. I love being a resource for people who have questions or need encouragement because those people for me were lifelines during a time in our life where we sometimes needed one. Sometimes I just needed someone who had gone before …Read More

The What, Why and How of International Adoption Clinics

November 4, 2015 by nohandsbutours China trip, first weeks home, International Adoption Clinic, October 2015 Feature - It Takes a Village, referral 0 Comments


International Adoption Clinics (IACs) were initially founded by a group of adoptive parents who were also physicians. We saw a huge gap in the health care given to our own internationally adopted children. Before IACs opened their doors we were trying to see international adoptees by squeezing them into the 15 minute or less appointment …Read More

Golden Time

March 11, 2015 by nohandsbutours Amy, referral 1 Comments


I was texting with a friend yesterday who is a few months away from one year anniversary of her LID (log in date). She still has no referral. Their story is very different than ours because we sent the dossier on a Monday and 10 days later had our referral call. We weren’t logged in. Our entire …Read More

Eyes Wide Open

February 9, 2015 by nohandsbutours Amy A., cl/cp, referral 0 Comments


For as long as I can remember, I have enjoyed setting goals, creating organized plans, and executing those plans until my goal is achieved. I carry out most tasks as efficiently as possible and tend to think my ways are the best ways. If we have 3 errands to run, I find the most organized …Read More

the practice of saying no

January 31, 2015 by nohandsbutours Kelly, referral 2 Comments


I clung to the steering wheel as if it was a floatation device and I was drowning. It seemed fitting. I felt like I was drowning. There I sat in the parking lot of the grocery store. Mothers with babies on their hips casually walking past my parked car to go pick up milk and …Read More

When The FEAR Sets In

August 27, 2011 by nohandsbutours pre-adoption, referral, Wife of the Prez 0 Comments

I have so many ideas for post topics in my head. I have even started many times only to hit DELETE–DELETE–DELETE. I just can’t get the jumbled thoughts on paper or the blog-o-sphere. I think it is due to pregnant/paperchasing brain. Or maybe I just don’t want to put it out there. Yet. So. We …Read More

I prefer "Emotionally Challenged"

October 21, 2010 by nohandsbutours a father's perspective, adoption realities, Adrian, pre-adoption, referral 0 Comments

Wife: So, what are you looking forward to most when we get our new baby? Me: Uh… I donno. Wife: Okay, um, what colour do you think we should paint in their room? Me: Uh… I donno. Wife: Okay… what do you think about the new chainsaw? Me: OH! The new Huskvarana 21″ with dual …Read More

next shared list

June 17, 2010 by nohandsbutours referral, shared list 0 Comments

Next shared list will be released June 22, 2010. Which also means that the files that were newly released on May’s list (who have not been locked by an LID family), will now be released for non-LID families to consider… Exciting news for all waiting families! Please do share if you have received your referral …Read More

how do you know?

June 3, 2010 by nohandsbutours referral, Stefanie 15 Comments

What will my child look like? Will I recognize my child when I ‘see’ them for the first time? These are questions that I think all adoptive parents ask at one time or another, especially in the special needs program. If you’re anything like I was, you manage to find sweet little faces, faces that …Read More


April 7, 2010 by nohandsbutours Eileen, referral 11 Comments

When I was pregnant with our third child, our second daughter, I made a mistake not uncommon to mothers who encourage free thinking in their children, free thinking in principle at least. I asked the kids what they’d like to name their sister. At ages 8 and 5, they were short in stature, short in …Read More

Choosing Your Child: SN Adoption, My Thoughts and Experiences

January 23, 2010 by nohandsbutours redmaryjanes, referral 6 Comments

This post originally ran on my blog last August. The response to it was so strong that I felt I should post it here as well. I am writing this post because I have been contacted by several Moms who were in this place in their journey. The place where you are looking at the …Read More

How do we choose?

October 29, 2009 by nohandsbutours Andrea, referral 3 Comments

One of my biggest concerns in adoption was choosing our child. I worried that allowing us to be involved in picking a child would bring my fears and anxieties into the mix and somehow mess things up. When we adopted our oldest daughter through the non-special needs (NSN) program in 2005, China did the matching. …Read More

You Belong

October 5, 2009 by nohandsbutours Eileen, referral 8 Comments

Several years ago I visited an elderly great uncle in California. Uncle Frank was one of my Grandpa Kelley’s 4 brothers. I’m sure I’d met Uncle Frank when I was a young girl, but it had been many, many years. When he opened the door to the adult woman who’d come to visit, he stood …Read More

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