A testimony by Kate from San Diego Deals and Steals
Our family is middle class, but we felt called to adopt. When we adopted our son from Russia we fundraised, but planned poorly and came home with $10,000+ in debt. We promised ourselves that we would adopt again, but that we would not do so with credit.
When we started our second adoption process we had a solid and realistic budget. We were completely debt-free (other than our mortgage) and had an emergency fund worth one month of living expenses.
Since we had two healthy children, we requested to adopt a child with disabilities as they are less likely to be adopted. Our adoption process cost nearly $30,000. (Note: Depending upon the circumstances, it can cost less and there are also grants available, such as through ShowHope.)
How We Saved
Our adoption journey was just over a year from start to finish. We saved for it in a variety of ways.
::We got creative and found ways to make extra money. My husband took on a few more hours. I made crafts, babysat, and started my blog.
::We cut our expenses in every way we could. We took advantage of free entertainment and bartered for all kinds of things to cut our already tight budget down. Every extra penny we saved was deposited into the adoption fund.
::We put our tax refund check as well as the small raise my husband got immediately into the bank.
::We stopped buying stuff. We paid for Christmas with Swagbucks and we rarely bought clothing or toys.
::We learned to be content. We didn’t pay for cable or video games. My husband drove his trusty ’99 Camry with over 260,000 miles. I learned to use my crock pot even more, instead of going out to eat.
::We were blessed with donations from friends, family, and strangers. People gave willingly as they understood this was not only a way to grow our family, but also an important ministry for our family to a needy child. We saw God provide as we were faithful in answering the call to adopt.
It Was A Tremendous Blessing to Adopt Without Debt
Our adoption story is long, but the short version is that in late May we were made aware of a girl who was to be born “any minute” that nobody in the immediate network was willing to adopt because of some significant (but correctable) special needs that had been determined by an ultrasound. In June, our daughter was born. With our savings from the previous year and the donations we had been gifted, we brought our daughter home with no debt.
We thought we had a $100 surplus, but we got one last lawyer invoice – for $110! — so we dipped into our emergency fund for $10! It was a tremendous blessing to bring her home without any debt associated with her adoption.
Kate lives in San Diego CA with her husband Harry, and kids, Josie (homemade), Silas (handpicked from Russia), and Charlotte (handpicked domestically). She is passionate about adoption and having fun in San Diego frugally. You can see more at San Diego Deals and Steals where she blogs about both.