"If we ever are afraid of the future, eternity, or God’s judgment, we can remind ourselves of God’s love. We know that he loves us perfectly (Romans 8:38, 39). We can resolve our fears first by focusing on his immeasurable love for us, and then by allowing him to love others through us. His love will quiet your fears and give you confidence." - Study Bible Commentary on 1 John 4:18

Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Praise God!

Want to hear about God's plan and his miracles to make it happen? ... read this!

I Love You Big (Afedrishalehou): Praise God!

We completed our puzzle fundraiser... God had so much more planned than we knew.

Praise God!

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Last call for Puzzle Pieces!

Hi everyone!
Mandy here again!

We need your help... we have somewhere between 3 weeks to 2 months to raise the last of our travel fees.
We are praying that we will be bringing our son home within the next month or 2. We began this fundraiser to pay for our travel fees, including flights and lodging and final adoption fees while in Ethiopia.

We have had some very generous donations, putting us well over half way there.

In fact, we only have 161 puzzle pieces left ... out of 500.

We are so blessed!

Please prayerfully consider a donation at help complete our family by completing this puzzle.

If you wish to donate to the Brandt Puzzle Fundraiser, 
Please send checks and and names/info you want on the puzzle piece to:
Joel and Amanda Brandt
312 N 14th St.
Wausau, WI 54403

Thank you!
Joel and Mandy

Please follow our adoption story

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Puzzle Update!

So ...
I know it has been awhile since we began this puzzle fundraiser. It has been a busy few months (we will get to that in a little bit).

But first I want to tell you all thank you for your prayers and donations throughout our journey to bring home our son.

On 10/20/12 I made a plea for donations to get us to 20% of our goal before we left for court on 10/27... we made it to 19% (95 pieces - $950). This helped tremendously on our 1st trip.

Now, on 11/13/12, we are at 44% of our goal (218 pieces - $2180)


It is so much fun to see everyone's names filling up the puzzle ... your have all blessed us greatly by your support and love.

God is Good!

We will be traveling in the next 3-5 months to bring Silas home.
That means we have 3 months to get the rest of our pieces sponsored
... that is 282 more pieces.

So, if you didn't get a chance to help already, please see the Puzzle Piece post for details.


Last week we got to meet our son. He is an awesome little boy with a great smile and catching laugh. He is such a boy ... he walks about 10 steps, falls down, and gets right back up to walk again. It doesn't matter if he bumps his head or if it takes him five tries to get across the room (complete opposite of Kiera, who would not try to walk alone until she could do it perfectly. I don't remember her even falling at all once she started walking).

We were able to spend 2 days with Silas and then went on a tour to his birthplace, Harar Ethiopia. You can read more about our trip here.

Thank you again and God Bless!
Joel and Mandy

Friday, October 12, 2012

{ Piece of the Puzzle }

For those of you that have not followed along on our personal blog, I wanted to share our happy news. The Brandt's have been given a court date for our son, Silas, for October 30th.


This means in 15 days we will be getting onto a plane and going to meet our son. Then we go before the Ethiopian judge to declare that we do want to adopt him and promise to care for him as he is our own.

Of course :)
Praise God!!!

Then we come back home without him while all the immigration paperwork and passports, etc are collected. We will wait for a call to say we can come back (estimated 4-5 months from now).

That being said, we need to have another push to raise funds for these 2 trips so we can bring Silas home without any delay on our part. For this "travel fundraiser" we heard of a very creative way to both raise money and make something for Silas that he can look at in the future and remind him of all the people to helped bring him home.

Please see our { Piece of the Puzzle } tab to find out how you can help.

Thank you!
Joel and Mandy

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

The Concert Rocked

A big thank you to Walk by Faith for rockin' it for the Lord. 
This was truly an amazing night of praise, fun and prayer. 

Thank you to everyone who prayed for us and for those who came to support us.

 This concert was a new experience, but ended up being a good one. I hope we can do it again sometime (what do you think "Walk by Faith"ers?)

We had just around 100 people...

...and we made $539 in free will donations...

...plus there were many people who showed interest in the shirts. 
(both styles worn by the band are for sale, along with many others ... so keep shopping)

I hope to have some video soon, but for now here are some pictures. 

Fun times...
...great music... 

(Tonya on piano, Blaine on drums, Joel and Bailey on guitar, Mandy on bass,
and vocals by Sam, Chris, Sarah and Sandie, along with Joel, Bailey and Tonya)

...lots of Dancing...

...even some crying...

...and glow sticks.

Thank you Walk by Faith!

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Concert Tomorrow

Please pray for us tomorrow...

Our benefit concert is tomorrow night.
I am nervous.
I am excited.
I get to play bass in the band ... sing a song that was our theme for our first adoption (that until a few weeks ago I could not even hear without crying) ... and I have get to speak in front of people.

Yes it is exciting and nerve racking, but it is something I am passionate about and I want others to be passionate too.

Please pray that ...
1. People come :)
2. The band rocks it (like we know we can)
3. God gives us the words to speak
4. Lives are impacted (those in the crowd and the children they will touch through adoption or support of those who are adopting or prayers for the orphans)

Now I better go get some sleep!



Thursday, September 6, 2012

Concert in T - 10 days

Please mark your calendars for the FREE adoption awareness concert on next Sunday night the 16th of Sepetmeber. 

The band has been practicing and it is looking to be a fun time
...with a few "surprises" up their sleeves. 

So come on over to Trinity Lutheran Church on Stewart Avenue at 6:30pm 

See you There!