Monthly Archives: July 2010

What Is It Exactly?

THe Both Hands Project….it’s getting a lot of “press” on our facebook and we have been posting about it on our blog…but I guess we didn’t exactly say what it was all about.

It all started a few years ago when JT OLSON, founder of Both Hands sent out support letters for a golf outing to support a great cause.  (no idea what that cause was) he received his letter back from a friend who wrote on it, ‘maybe if you were working on a widow’s home I would support you…great cause but not my money”

A few years later JT’s friends were adopting 4 children from Moldova!  In an effort to raise funds, JT remembered the letter from his friend and Both Hands was formed.  Together, the very first BH project raised $55,000 of the $60,000 needed!!!!

So…we have built a team of wonderful volunteers:  Vikki Spaid, Billie Letso, Steve and Erinn Uher, Katie Shick, Mary Askew, John Feulmer, Mike and Armena, Christian, Jim Grey, Mary and Ann Dziagwa, Dan and Tammy Dziagwa (of course!) Jesse Laney, Sharon Denson and Bobby, and MAYBE some extras to show up on the day of the project.  MOST of the above listed people mailed out 25-100 letters (well one couple mailed out 100!!) resulting in the 565 (I can’t remember) or so letters that were mailed out.  The letters asked friends and family to sponsor them while they were working on Brenda’s house.  Ultimately putting Brenda and Mayah and the other kids (names to come later!) together 😉  Because of the generous donations of the people sponsoring, our adoptions will happen!!

who exactly is Brenda?  Brenda attends the church down the street from us in town.  I (tammy) met her mother in June at a yardsale/fundraiser we were holding at Dan’s parents’ house.  We got to talking about fundraisers and her mom shared with me a fundraiser they were doing to help Brenda.  Why?  Because Brenda’s husband, Bob, had just passed away a few weeks prior.  He had Leukemia.  Bob and Brenda have 3 children; 2 boys and 1 girl.  15 years-7 years.  Much too young to grow up without their father.  We have been BLESSED to be able to bless each person in their family.  We are painting the kids’ rooms whatever color THEY choose!  Brenda will get a mini-make over of her home.  It won’t take away any of the emptiness and saddness any one of them feel without their dad/husband in the home…but we are praying so hard it makes them feel a bit of comfort.  To look at fresh paint, or see their new porch roof and realize they have experienced a pain far too early in their own lives that many people reading this post will not have experienced…and know…somehow…God will always love them

How much do we need to raise?  $18,000  seems quite large.  However…the God that MADE the mountains can certainly MOVE them.  I think it’s exciting to see this happen!!  Every single time we have needed any money to make this adoption keep moving along…GOD HAS PROVIDED.  We do not refer to him as “Jehovah Jireh”  for nothing.

What can YOU do?  Well if you aren’t working with us, and you haven’t mailed our support letters…PLEASE post a link to this blog and post about the project AND please share the video we will be posting (slideshow) of the before, during and after pics of the project.  Pray.  Pray God moves in the hearts of everyone reading this post/sees the video/receives a letter.

How do YOU Donate?    GREAT QUESTION! 😉  go to  please be sure to put “Dziagwa#1335” in the purpose when you donate via paypal/credit card.

If you choose to mail in a donation:  Please mail it to: 

Both Hands Foundation, P.O.Box 2713 Brentwood, TN 37024 

same rule applies:  on the memo portion of your check, please put “dziagwa #1335”.  Lifesong will graciously send us every penny we raise to help bring the kids home!!

no amount is too small!!!  We will be gracious for every $1, $5 to $5,000+ donation we receive!!  We have sent PLENTY  of $5 donations to people adopting and watched them reach their goals!!!


It’s Coming….

The Both Hands Project that is!!

All total, as far as we know..we have mailed out 545 or so letters.

Last week, Dan and I were dreading this project.  SOOOO much to do!!

This week, we are excited!  I’m starting the slideshow so Saturday night we can just insert pictures and burn DVD’s to get the project out there so people will see what God did through us and our awesome team and want to donate to Lifesong to help us bring everyone home.

I’m saying “everyone” loosely.  We are praying for God’s provision to add 2 more children (separate country) to the Dziagwa family.  All we have to do is raise Mayah’s funds AND an additional $3500 to commit..and that’s it!!  We’re DONE.  We wait to meet and welcome sweet Mayah and move on to another dossier building 😉  we are excited and confident God will provide.  So please, all you who are reading, share this blog when the project is over so people can see how God is blessing so many people!!

We met again with Brenda last night.  I’m so excited at the new projects that were devised;)

We are painting her sons’ room kawasaki green!  They are motocross fans 😉  adding blinds to all 4 windows upstairs and curtains to the boys’ room as well 😉

In her sweet daughter’s room…we are painting her room pink 😉  I would LOVE to get the wooden letters and spray paint her name in purple and put them on her wall 😉

In addition to the new paintjob…she will be receiving a new ceiling as well.  We placed the order last night, and JT is ordering our cart as we speak;)  (thank you HALLIBURTON!!)

In the staircase we are adding white wainscotting and freshening up the paint in the hallway with a sky blue at Brenda’s request.

Her front porch roof will no longer be unsafe…a new one will be rebuilt entirely!  Again..thank you HALLIBURTON!

We will be giving her garage a fresh coat of paint on the outside as well…and hopefully adding shelving to the garage to help the boys feel more organized with their “man business” of motorbikes, etc.

Katie Shick from our church will be joining us all day photographing the before, during and afters of the daily events.  We are so excited to share the results on Saturday night (if we aren’t too tired afterwards!!)

In addition, we will likely send a press release to the local newspapers about the finished project.

Our children will be under the wonderful care of Maggie Mack from our church, they are looking forward to it.  And a special thanks to Maggie’s parents Bev and Kevin who took over the cost of paying Maggie for us!!  Always nice to have any sort of financial burden lifted. 

Please join us in praying this week for everyone to show up the day of the project, for everyone to get the job done and glorify God in the process sharing His love!!  And for God to move in the hearts of the recipients of the letters to donate to our cause and reaching our goal!!  Our goal only a God as wonderful as ours can attain.


First, let’s start off with her adorable picture!!

Second, I want to share another round of happiness….Sveta’s grant is growing!!  Admittedly, Dan and I haven’t sent much in the past month…our “giving” portion has been going elsewhere.  Though next pay we’ll get back to Sveta as well.

The first time we skipped, we had good reason.  We were torn where we stood with donating to her grant as we had interest in her ourselves.  We felt the Lord ever so strongly nudging us towards her in every aspect of our lives.  Or so it seemed.  We were prepared to pursue her at the same time as Mayah…knowing the costs and time in country…ugh.  We worked and worked at devising a plan that would suit everyone including the children.  Finally, Andrea from RR suggested if we weren’t willing to do back-to-back then we should consider a blind referral from Mayah’s region.  Obviously, if you have been keeping up with us, you are aware we choose another in Mayah’s region.  (more to come on that later)

We continue to pray for this beautiful sweetheart and I hurt every time I see her picture in our house, knowing we are not going to get her and have her be a part of our family.  I just KNOW God has a plan for this little girl.  His Word says so, and he’s never wrong and he doesn’t lie  (just ask our 4 year old…he often tells us God doesn’t lie)  he will make a great pastor some day 😉

So there you have it. 

And now…for any locals…there are Pediatric Infectious Disease docs (PID’s) in the Pittsburgh Area.  Quite a few of them to be exact!  There are also ways to help with the cost of the HIV medications from the pharmaceutical companies that make them.  Many people, if their HIV+ child is on meds (and some aren’t!) seek out financial help and find it!!  So even if your insurance covers much of the cost, you can still get this help as well!   All you need to do is a little research 😉

Here is the link to Sveta’s page with RR

her grant is now up to $244 !!!  Praise God someone else wants this cutie to have a home!!  AND just take a look at Sasha above her:

he would make a GREAT little brother for her!!!  (His grant has nothing in it…so if you could…send something his way  PLEASE!)

And Danil here would make a great big brother!!

he has $10 in his grant…so you could help that grant grow and help out another familiy considering any one of these adorable children!  They are all in the same orphanage so costs are VERY SMALL to add another child (or two!!)

And not to forget little Lena also from the same orphanage 

she could be Sveta’s little sister!!  There are many many children from the same orphanage as Sveta that do NOT have HIV as well.  But you’ll just have to hop on over to for yourself and see which ones match up with her orphanage!!

Please please do not let a silly status of HIV prevent you from having the best children!!!  or from these children having the best families!!  There are many many people out there currently adopting children with HIV and who have already done it that would be more than happy to share their experiences with you.  Life, schooling, friends, family, church, etc.  Please contact me at if you need help finding someone for questions!  AND also….please as the “stupid” questions.  Don’t be ashamed to ask anything!!  If it raises awareness AND helps one of these precious children find forever families ever single question is WORTH IT!! 

I’m praying for you 😉

The Spirit is willing…but that flesh….!


I want to lose my mind.  I want to stop and cry for a LOOOONG time.  I want to raise my hands and ask, “Why does it have to be so hard?!”  And what I want most, is to have our girls HOME.  Here.  With their family.  Enjoying the life God created for them.  Home.  With their Mama.  Wrapping my arms around them and soaking them up, just like I get to do with their brothers as often as I please. 

Instead, I will call USCIS to see how long we will be waiting.  I will call Lowes to see if we will still get their grant and when we can actually make a purchase.  I will substantiate an actual plan for NEXT SATURDAY (oy vey).  Supplies must be ordered…Halliburton’s check was deposited yesterday with Both Hands and JT is ordering everything we need for us. 

Instead, I will look at Mayah’s new picture and long for her…finding solace being wrapped in the arms of the One that made ME.

HE is my strength.

He is my provider.

I will remain in HIM.

He WILL keep my path straight.

So….let’s move on to some happiness….she looks almost the same…but beautiful to say the least.  Her eyes whisper “I’m waiting for you…I know there is a better life.”

If you are following along with us…please pray for me.  Pray I regain my strength through the LORD.  God even gave me a word on that this morning…when my house was still…..silent.  Don’t get me wrong…the whirlwind which is the Dziagwa household on a regular basis is the ONLY way I want this house.  I have to find the quiet…very early in the morning.


I wanted to update about our 5k, what is going on, prayer requests, and so much more…..then I felt a prompting to actually look somewhere and I found an updated pic of our girl!!!

truth be told, I want to show her off…but I think I will wait;)  I guess I’m just not ready 😉

First…above  is a pic from our 5k.  Big success for the first time ever doing one!  We plan to do another next year to raise money for another adoption family with RR.

I managed to not have safety pins to pin everyone’s numbers to their shirts..they didn’t mind.  I also forgot 1’s in case people showed up who didn’t pre-register…they didn’t mind either donating the extra $2 for Mayah and Nadiah;)

It was an absolutely beautiful morning for a run.  The fastest was Andrew at 21:33 (I think) he won a $10 gift certificate to PA BBQ.  Thanks PA BBQ!!!

Everyone got Wheaties Fuel!!  We got 150 boxes of that stuff mailed to us as a promotional item.  It’s been great to have around too.  I tossed many boxes around to people and Debbie Strawn and I pretended to be NFL players for a brief stint with the boxes 😉  She’s always a good sport.

We had 25 registered runners 6 people didn’t show and 6 showed up the day of the run.  Not too shabby!!!  I was so greatful for the beautiful weather and my well behaved children;)

Our Both Hands project is  a week from saturday.  I want it to be over!!

We are doing well with people giving names/addresses for dan and I to send our letters to…I’m not sure of the grand total, but it’s not even close to where I wanted it to be.  We even lined up a babysitter so we dont’ have to worry about the boys that day…thank God for that!!

WOW.  so much to add up here and post…where is the time for it all?  My head is swimming since Mayah has been found…AND Nadiah to boot!!

I’m all over the place with this post….so what I thought would be a nice relaxing time on the porch while Gage napped and the older boys played…ended up being crazy awesome with finding her pic…but now I can’t concentrated….another day..another posting…

Joint Fundraiser!!

God is good. 

(my children respond):  all the time!!

Yes HE is!!

Lori Harris and her family

are adopting sweet “Valerie” (I’m sure she has a pic on her blog)  from Eastern Europe (just a different Country than us)

The Harris’ have 3 boys right near the ages of our boys!  Lori and I are playing Mom Swap and exchanging baby sitting while each other is in country with our future daughters. 

Lori’s husband, Evan is currently serving in the U.S. Army in Afghanistan.  He has been gone for a few months and will continue to serve there until March of 2011.

Evan is able to get his leave for the first visit to Meet Valerie with his wife.  He will also have time before he leaves for EE to visit with his sons…(one who has grown INCHES since his Daddy left!!)

Lori and Evan are prepping to leave before Dan and I.  The boys and I are going to fly to Laurie’s state and hang with the Harris boys while Laurie and Evan meet Valerie;)

LORD WILLING Dan and I will travel immediately after the Harris’ return and our boys will continue staying in the Harris household until Dan returns to pick them up and take them home after court.

LORI, in all her wonderful talents has opened an ETSY shop where she has offered tos hare the profits with our family.

PLEASE visit:

and purchase some beautiful items Lori made and is willing to share with us 😉

this will help both families cover travel.

we thank you so very much for your support!!

The Dziagwa and Harris families!!


I THINK about blogging, but sometimes I just don’t get around to it…obviously.

God is good.  All the time. 

We are still getting letters out for our Both Hands project.  I will be purchasing more stamps and mailing out more letters today.  I was really shooting for amost 2,000 letters…we are at about 543. 

God reminds me it’s not the quanity of the letters, it’s the quality if the people opening the letter;)

God knows the exact dollar amount to bring our girls home (yes I said girlS!) and He will provide.  Jehovah Jireh.  Our Provider.  He has done NOTHING short of showing us how he provides in every single way.  I’m never surprised, but He does always blow my mind!!

Something to praise about:  Someone from our church paid my way for the Joyce Meyer Ladies weekend in August.  How awesome is that?  We will be gone all day thursday-saturday evening.  I’m very excited!!  I also just realized the amazing timing in all of that as the kids and I will be leaving shortly after that to head to Arizona to help out another adopting family.  My friend Lori and her husband Evan are heading out to Eastern Europe to meet their little girl.  Needless to say, my children are excited about getting on an airplane again.  This will be Gage’s first flight!  I managed to find one direct flight so hopefully that’s the one we get since it will be just me and the boys.  God showed us all an amazing plan with his timing last night.  We’re all looking forward to how it will all play out. 

Dossier Update:  We are 2 documents away from a complete dossier!  I’m hoping our new updated HS will be in the mail tomorrow so I can send it off to USCIS for re-approval (of 2) and send another copy to the SOS for apostille with the rest of the dossier.  Plan to overnight everything to and back from USCIS.    Hoping to have our dossier in EE by the very beginning of august 😉

Now…Yes 2 girls!!!  It’s officially official.  We haven’t really announced it much.  We’re happy as a family and that’s all that matters.    Dan and I are doing a blind referral at Mayah’s orphanage.  It was something I had wanted to do from the start and Dan wasn’t comfortable.  God is working so crazily awesome in both of us, when this suggestion came from Andrea at RR I really thought Dan would be a bit apprehensive, but he was go-with-the-flow!  God had already been working in his heart to prepare him for this, we just weren’t aware.

I’m not sure there is other news as of yet….we’ll stop at this for now.  we have errands to run;)  at least my husband fixed the air conditioner in our van yesterday so it will be very comfy for the boys and I today;)