Thoughts on the Meaning of Life… Todd Helmkamp

Archive for the ‘Announcements’ Category


Posted by Vogeler on August 30, 2011

Today has been a whirlwind day.  We got to see pictures for the first time of the beautiful child who might become ours.  We got the news that she has been “assigned” to us, pending our financial readiness and her health screening.  We got the news that our loan has been approved, so we are in the final stages of preparation!  As soon as all of our paperwork is turned in, the process to bring her home starts.

I’m kind of in shock that everything is moving so quickly!  I can’t wait until we get to bring our little blessing home!


Posted in Adoption, Announcements | Tagged: , , , | 3 Comments »

Forward Progress!

Posted by Vogeler on August 19, 2011

Well, we got all of our documents and the contract notarized yesterday, so we’re about ready to send that in to our agency.  A very gracious family loaned us the money for our application fee (almost $6,000!) interest-free, so that’s a great blessing.  We’re getting ready to submit our loan and grant applications, so we should be in good shape financially.

Apparently, not many people want girls (why, I don’t know), especially toddlers, so we’re at the top of the list and could get our referral at any time after our docs are turned in.  From our referral date, it would be around 5-9 months until we go to bring her home!  I can’t believe how quickly things can go.  It’s kind of frightening, but we’re really learning how to trust and lean on God during all of this.

Yesterday was a bit difficult with the boys, they were pretty crazy and jumping on each other, fighting, etc., and I actually caught myself thinking, “We’re introducing another child into this mix?!?”  But hopefully she’ll be on the quiet side.  🙂

And I start grad school on Monday.  Perhaps my timing is  bit off.  🙂

Posted in Adoption, Announcements, Things I'm Doing | 2 Comments »

Good News!

Posted by Vogeler on August 15, 2011

We just got word that our application to our international agency has been approved!  Now comes grant writing and loan applications!  😀

Posted in Adoption, Announcements | 4 Comments »

We’re Adopting!

Posted by Vogeler on August 9, 2011

In case you haven’t heard the news, we’re in the first stages of adopting a little girl, most likely from the Democratic Republic of the Congo. We decided to adopt because we knew we wanted more children, and since we already have two wonderful boys we wanted to be sure we got a little girl. But the main reason we chose adoption is because there are literally millions of children around the world who live in horrific conditions. And although we can’t rescue them all, we can at least offer a loving, safe home to one child.

In the coming weeks, we’ll be sharing the details of our journey, and also opportunities for you to help if you desire. We will also share ideas on how you can help orphans all over the world.

We hope you’ll join us on this exciting new chapter in our lives. God Bless, and thanks!


Todd & Bethany

Posted in Adoption, Announcements, Things I'm Doing | Tagged: , | 2 Comments »

“Happy Anniversary Baby, Got You On My Miiiind…”

Posted by Vogeler on November 19, 2008

The title of this post are lyrics from a great song, entitled, “Happy Anniversary” (surprise!) by the Little River Band.  Man, I love those oldies.  (The song is from 1977, the year before I was born, so it counts as an oldie.  So there).

But that’s not the focus of this post.  No, the focus of this post is that my blog is officially two years old!! (OK, two years and two days.  I forgot.  Sue me.  It’s not like I forgot my wedding anniversary, for pete’s sake.  Who is pete and why do we care about him?)

In honor of my two year anniversary, I will not be giving away free stuff.  If I made money from this blog, I would.  But I don’t, so I’m not.

Instead, I present to you…..   *drumroll*

Todd’s Favorite Posts from the Last Two Years!!!

*pause for cheers and applause*

(note:  these are my favorite posts, not necessarily the best or most profound.  You’ve been warned)

10.  It’s Official!!!!! /It’s A Boy!! (tie)

9.  Bye -Bye Myspace

8.  Passing Through

7.  Today’s Pictures

6.  My New Blog!! (shameless plug)

5.  Ten Years Later

4.  The Importance of A Christian Education

3.  Things I Learned From Reading Louis L’Amour Novels

2.  An Excellent Look at Early Church Relations and Discipline (link updated and fixed)

1.  Be Careful What You Read (I should be on Mythbusters!)

Are there any you would add?

Posted in Announcements, Fun Stuff, Questions for Debate, Ramblings, Things I'm Doing, Uncategorized | Tagged: | Leave a Comment »

Sell Your Books For Cash!

Posted by Vogeler on November 15, 2008

I just stumbled upon a new service that I will be using, called Cash4Books.  Basically, you create an account, enter the ISBN number from the books you want to sell (the number above the bar code on the back of the book), print the pre-paid shipping label, ship the books, and Voila!  Cash!

I haven’t actually done this yet, but one of my favorite bloggers, Money Saving Mom, gives it the thumbs up.  If you decide you want to try this out, do me a favor and use my referal link, because I get extra cash for referrals.  Click here to try it out.  It’s a great way to snag some extra cash, and it’s a form of recycling!

Posted in Announcements, Things I'm Doing | Tagged: , | 3 Comments »

My New Blog!!

Posted by Vogeler on March 27, 2008

Dear Readers:

I would like to invite you to check out my new blog, The Greener Christian!  From the “About Me” page:

“I started this blog as a way to chronicle my journey into a more sustainable lifestyle, because I believe that as a Christian, I have a responsibility to be a good steward of the Creation that God has entrusted to us. I will be sharing stories, tips, recipes, photos, news items, and calls to action.”

I’m very excited about this new adventure!  I will still maintain this blog for personal news, family announcements, random stuff, and theological discussions that don’t pertain to the green lifestyle, but I hope that you’ll join me in my new endeavor!

Thanks for being a loyal reader, and God bless!

Posted in Announcements | 2 Comments »

Please Pray

Posted by Vogeler on March 12, 2008

Hey all,

I just got a phone call.  My Grandpa Smith passed away this morning.  Please pray for the family.



Posted in Announcements | 2 Comments »

Warnings About Social Networking Sites

Posted by Vogeler on February 20, 2008

Hey gang,

Many of you use social networking sites like Facebook, Myspace, etc.  Well, I have long maintained (as one who works in the Information Technology field) that, although useful, these sites can be very dangerous.

The danger lies not only in “predators” who seek to lure children and teenagers to their homes for kidnapping or other nefarious schemes, but there are also dangers from hackers.

“Hackers?  How can hackers do anything on these sites?”, I can almost hear some of you saying.

Well, read this article from WebSense Security Labs.  Seems that hackers are posing as third-party application developers for these sites and hiding malicious payloads in these apps.  You click on the link for the app, and voilà: your computer is infected!  This particular baddy is a “keylogger” which records your keystrokes and sends the information back to the “home” computer (the pc the hacker is using).  So, if you enter your bank account info, guess what?  The hacker now has your bank account info.

So, social networking sites are NOT innocent, and great caution needs to be exercised while using them.  Of course, the sites do have their own security team and tools, but you can’t depend on someone else to keep you safe on the web.  Don’t open messages from  people you don’t know (including “friend requests”), try to avoid installing third-party applications, and basically use common sense!  That goes for the rest of the Web, too!

Posted in Announcements | Leave a Comment »


Posted by Vogeler on February 18, 2008


Its been a sad couple of days.  When Brennan arrived, we gave Max (our dog) one chance to stay.  He blew it.  Not that he was trying to hurt Brennan, but he wanted to play and we just can’t take the chance that something will happen.  So he has to go.

A friend of ours took Max  for a few days to try it out.  Unfortunately its not working out, so we are still looking for a home for Max.  I am just heartbroken to give up my dog, but of course my son comes first.

If anyone knows someone who might want a great dog, please let me know!

Posted in Announcements, Ramblings | 3 Comments »