A Good Credit Score is 700 or Above. See yours in just 2 easy steps! (http://pr.atwola.com/promoclk/100126575x1222377107x1201454434/aol?redir=http://www.freecreditreport.com/pm/default.aspx?sc=668072&hmpgID=115&bcd=JulystepsfooterNO115)
We are so over joyed to have a resolution to this entire adoption ban. Our court date is set for July 28th. We do not have to be there because we have an appointed power of attorney that will go to the court date in Ethiopia for us. Once we pass we need to wait for our travel dates. I can not wait to bring our little baby boy home forever.
Today we also received another treat. We received a video of Aiden. He is so very cute. He looks so happy and calm. I just wanted to jump into the video and give him big kisses and hugs. I just need to try to stay busy for a couple more weeks. Whats a couple more weeks after all the time we have waited so far.
Actually we are doing okay right now. I just saw this image and it made me laugh to think that's truly how we feel some days. I know that in the end we will be stronger people because of this ban or at least I like to think so.
Oh Dear Lord next time you want to give me strength how about you just send me to the gym instead? Just a thought.
Here is what's going on thus far or rumors that we have heard from other agencies:
Rumor #1: Courts are not planning on closing as they do every year for the rainy season.
Rumor #2: The investigation has been completed
Rumor #3: The ban has been lifted and we just need to wait for a new court date.
Rumor #4: July 2nd there should be a decision on how to proceed with the court cases that are in limbo
Rumor #5: After July 2nd we should have a new court date.
Rumor #6: We won't receive a new court date but instead the judge will just sign our papers and we will have passed court.
I say these are all rumors because this is a summary of what I have gathered from some other agencies through out US, Europe & Australia. Our agency has not confirmed any of this yet.
I'm not sure when I will hear from our agency. I was hoping to get some kind of update from them today but no such luck. I am now thinking maybe next Friday. That has been the motto lately. Live hour to hour, day to day, week to week.
Some other things we have been doing lately:
The kids went to VBS this week and loved every bit of it. They asked if they could do it all summer long. I wish they could but it was only for 1 week.
Along with some very hot days we have been blessed with no water! The city have been working on replacing all of the water mains in down our street for the past month or so. Not only are we blessed with having to park a mile away we have no water either. Not ever quite sure when it will go out or when it will come back on. The sent us an apology letter with a case of water and told us to use the water only if we didn't have water to use and to use it as a reserve source. Are these people for real? Oh well, what are you going to do, right?
A summary of an update from a US agency:
An announcement is expected tomorrow, and we think the outcome is going to be positive. All the papers provided by the orphanages were found to be in order.
What in the H E double hockey sticks does this mean?
I am going to start a reality game show called: The Adoption Journey
Lets see how many people can go through adoption without loosing their minds, their wallets or their self control?
We received our referral on March 5th
We accepted the referral on March 6th
We received notification that our dossier was stolen on April 9th
We received notification of the ban on all abandonment cases on May 7th
We received our court date on May 13th
Our court date was set for June 4th ~ was not seen due to the abandonment ban
June 17th and still waiting to pass court or waiting to get an answer on a timeline.
I understand that there are a lot of people in the adoption world that have had long waits but nothing prepares you for the long waits that you were not anticipating.
Today our little one turns 4 months old. Here are the 4 things I love about him.
#1. His GREAT BIG BROWN EYES.
#2. His long, long eyelashes.
#3. His big smile.
#4. His perfect little lips.
This baby is absolutely gorgeous. Even though it is very tough right now, I also love the amount of patience he has already taught us. I believe that as parents we learn just about as much from our children as they learn from us if not more. This baby is a true gift of God and I would be foolish not to trust in God and God's timing.
Have a Great weekend!!
So basically our case was not heard and they do not know when they will even see our case. The court closure is still set for August through September so we're running out of time. We're feeling a bit frustrated and completely helpless. We are praying for a miracle and hope we can still have our case be heard prior to the closure and that we are able to travel this summer still.
I can't help but think that if our dossier hadn't been lost (THANKS UPS) our court date wouldn't have been delayed and would have missed this whole abandonment delay and we would be holding him sooner. I just want to hibernate and wake up when I receive the all from Christy saying we passed court and we can go and bring our little guy home to our family.
At first I was worried that the baby's room wouldn't be ready in time or I would worry that I wouldn't have everything in order for him to come home. Now I can say I don't really care if I have everything perfect as long as I can bring this beautiful baby boy home to our loveing family ASAP. We need him as much as he made need us. I am tired of dreaming about holding him and kissing his little chunky cheeks I am more than ready to do it for real.
For those of you that do not know how this works, we have someone appointed as our power of attorney and she will go to court for us in Ethiopia. If we were to pass we would then receive travel dates and start packing for our trip to bring our baby boy home. The hang up here is that there is a delay in some adoption cases due to an abandonment investigation that is going on. If the investigation is not completed by Thursday the court will not see our case. We will then need to wait for the investigation to be completed and then our case will be seen. As far as I know right now if our case is not seen on Thursday we won't be notified of a new date we'll just need to sit and wait for a call saying we passed court. The court will close in August and reopen in October for the rain season in Ethiopia. If we don't go to court before August we will need to wait until October. Our case worker had told us that in November there was a delay similar to this one and it took about 2 months to get through everything and get caught up. We have a great deal of Faith and believe that all things happen for a reason but I'm not too sure how much more of this roller coaster ride I can stomach. There is nothing I can do but pray that the Ethiopian courts can move swiftly and finish the investigation so our little one can come home this summer yet.
Last night as Matt and I were getting ready to settle down for the evening when Aubrey 8yrs old approached us with a gift. I knew she was working on something because she had asked that we not come into her bedroom. She handed a self made envelope to us and inside was a poem that she wrote for us for baby Aiden.
Here it is...
I'm Safe In Your Arms
I wish I was safe in your arms
Your warm loving sweet caring arms.
I'm waiting to see you and waiting to be held.
I'm so far away and want to be with you so you can protect me.
It is taking too long. I need you to come get me and hold me
Safe in your arms.
Then today we received an update on Aiden. We were given 3 new photos and one of them he is smiling. This was the first we had ever seen him smile. I was so curious to what his smile would look like, and wow let me tell you how beautiful he is. He has the brightest smile and the longest eye lashes. This is what we were told:
Congratulations on your court date!!! You have a sweet baby boy!!! I got to spend some time with him. He was wide awake and would just smile at me when I would talk to him. He has the longest eye lashes I have ever seen! I was in love and he melted my heart!!! He seemed to be such a sweet natured little guy. I just wanted to squeeze him. I did love on him and told him his family is coming soon! You take care and have a wonderful Sunday! Check out that big smile on the 1st picture:)!
These updates are so very special. It gives you a boost to push through especially during rough times. Although we have a court date of June 4th we are still unsure if we'll pass due to the delay right now. We keep praying that everything will be resolved in the next week or so. Our court date is 11 days away! Keep praying people! We need all the prayers we can get to get this delay resolved and pass court so we can go bring this beautiful boy home!!
Happy Memorial Day!
Recession-proof vacation ideas. Find free things to do in the U.S. (http://travel.aol.com/travel-ideas/domestic/national-tourism-week?ncid=emlcntustrav00000002)
Anyway here are some pictures of us playing:
This is what happens when you let your 9 year old daughter pack for herself.
Until you find the arcade, then somehow you forget about the pain.
Did someone say ski ball? I love this game!
Getting a bit WILD!
For all the women’s children we may never know.
Hannah's Hope along with a poem.
Luckily this room in our basement isn't used much and is a great place for all of these donations. The futon that these items are on is laying down just to give you an idea. People kept asking how we were going to take all of it over to Ethiopia and we kept saying we would find a way to do it. We have about a forth already on it's way over. I am truly amazed on what can be accomplished when each person gives a little and the outcome is so great. I had wished I had taken more pictures but honestly I was way too busy haveing fun and talking to everyone. It was like it all went by way too fast. Later that evening we took the packages home and each took a turn opening them to see what kind of donations we got. It was like Christmas all over again and the kids had a blast going through it all and commenting on how much of an impact it would have on the orphans. We then organized it into sections per item. I find myself going down to the room just to look at all the wonderful stuff and think about sending it to other adopting families so they can take it with them.
Have a wonderful weekend everyone!
Happy Birthday Baby Boy!
It has been a long time coming. I haven't posted for a while because honestly we were going through some turbulence with this wonderful adoption.
As we were awaiting a court date last week we were given some upsetting news that our adoption was placed on hold due to some issues with the Ethiopian government and abandonment cases and we were told that we may not get a court date until this next fall. The government has placed a hold on some adoptions while they do some investigating. I won't go into a lot of details but this is some scary stuff and we need prayers. As a surprise to us we received a call yesterday from our case worker telling us that we now have a court date of June 4th. We are not sure if this day can be kept or if the government officials in Ethiopia will figure everything out prior to that date. For now we are excited and hopeful. If we pass on June 4th we could be traveling 2 -4 weeks after that. I am in hopes for our baby boy to be in our arms on my Birthday June 15th or even for Father's Day.
In the midst of all of this we received an update from someone that has recently come back with their little one. I am so happy to be given some news that "A" is so cute and looks great along with some photos of him chilling in the sun. I just want him home with his family now so we can hold him and love him.
Your children are not your children.They are the sons and daughters of Life's longing for itself. They come through you but not from you, And though they are with you, yet they belong not to you.
You may give them your love but not your thoughts. For they have their own thoughts. You may house their bodies but not their souls, For their souls dwell in the house of tomorrow, which you cannot visit, not even in your dreams. You may strive to be like them, but seek not to make them like you.For life goes not backward nor tarries with yesterday.You are the bows from which your children as living arrows are sent forth.The archer sees the mark upon the path of the infinite, and He bends you with His might that His arrows may go swift and far.Let your bending in the archer's hand be for gladness;For even as he loves the arrow that flies, so He loves also the bow that is stable.
On another note today was the first day that I have let the kids walk to school by themselves. Well kind of by themselves. We live about 8 blocks from school so they have a bit of a ways to walk. So I drove up to the block behind them then shot across and met them a few blocks in just to be sure they had made it safely. Johnathan just turned 10 and Aubrey is 8 so don't think I am being too over protecting. I know I was riding my bike all over town by myself at that age. I also grew up in a smaller town then we live in now. I think it was good for them to gain some independence plus they have been begging me to let them so I think they're ready. We'll see about the rest of the week.
Or maybe what noises or words will first come out of this tiny perfect mouth. I haven't gotten any pictures of a true smile so I wonder what that "3 month old perma- smile" will look like with these lips. I wonder if his big brother and sister will make him laugh as much as they make me laugh. I pray the courts review our paper work in a speedy manner and give us our court date we have been waiting so long for. Tracking our 2nd dossier it is now leaving Germany and on it's way to Addis Ababa and should arrive in a few more days. So you now you know what I'm looking at while I wait.
Lately I can not think straight at all. I will go back and check something I had done earlier in the day at work and think to myself, "What the heck was I thinking" Then I remember I was thinking of our little one so far away and the journey of bringing him home.
Yes, I do think I have lost it for sure!!
Still awaiting a court date. It would be nice to have one soon but I truthfully don't think it will happen until next week hopefully! There was a slight mishap with our first dossier and the shipping of it so we have gotten it all straightened out now and waiting patiently for our court date. Please pray our court date comes soon.
Even if our court date was not for another month or so I would be okay just to "HAVE A DATE"
Oh well, God has a plan we just need to wait.
So this past Sunday at church a family (members of our church) from Cameroon came with their 2 month old baby for the first time. I was wondering why she hadn't come to church with their newest yet and was worried that something may be wrong. No, nothing was wrong. During church our Pastor announced that in Cameroon it is tradition to not take your baby out in public (except for medical needs) or let anyone else meet your baby until your church family has met the baby first. Wow, do these people have their priorities straight or what? Afterwards we were all invited to their home for lunch and a gathering to celebrate their baby first meeting. They showed us videos of there home land and told us about their culture. The kids loved it and learned so much from the whole experience.
"A" has plumped out and gotten darker than his original referral pictures. He is so handsome! I think he really likes to be held because I would watch him just melt into the special mothers whenever they would feed him and then he would fall asleep in the process of his burping right there on their shoulders, as content as could be, his little mouth twitching into smiles every once in a while. It was so cute.
If he loves to be held then he's coming to the right home because I don't think we'll ever set him down. We are one cuddling family and it sounds like he'll fit right in. He is getting so big and he is absolutely adorable. He has the cutest little button nose with perfect little lips and huge almond eyes. I so just want to hold him, kiss him all over and snuggle him. I can't show pictures on here until we bring him home so you'll need to take my word for it that this little boy is a cutie!!
Please pray that our court date comes soon and goes smoothly.
#1: You love to make people laugh. Maybe it's because you were born on April Fools Day.
#2: You have the greatest smile.
#3: You have the greatest curly hair.
#4: You love your sister and would do anything for her even though she drives you crazy once in a while..
#5: You love music & love playing any kind of instrument you can get your hands on.
#6: You love playing sports.
#7: You are kind to everyone.
#8: You are a great friend to your classmates.
#9: You are thoughtful. In the photo above you are writing a lullaby for your new baby brother.
#10: You just ROCK!!!
Ever year since the night before Johnathan turned 1 Matt and I started a tradition to fill our children's bedroom with balloons so that when they awoke the next day on their Birthday they would be surrounded by Birthday balloons. Since the kids have gotten older we allow the child who doesn't have the Birthday the next day to stay up late and help us. After Johnathan went to sleep last night we stayed awake blowing up balloons to fill his bedroom. Below are some photos of Aubrey helping us. She got sooo tired and had about enough. We threw balloons over our loft to her and she put them into his bedroom quietly so he wouldn't wake up. Check out our craziness.
We then packaged it all up and put his name on the label and sent it off to our agency so they can send it over to him while he waits for his mommy & daddy to pick him up.
My 8 year old daughter Aubrey has been taking this bear below with her everywhere and named him baby A. This bear has our baby boy's clothes on and goes everywhere with her. She said she is doing it so we get used to having a baby in the house again. I'm sorry but we often leave this baby home by himself and sometimes he gets left in the car over night. This baby doesn't get up in the middle of the night and doesn't go through very many diapers.
So the adoption of baby A was the talk of the weekend. The last day my sister asked me
"So, how much does this adoption cost all together anyway?" I thought a bit and responded honestly with the dollar amount. After all she is my sister and I don't have a problem telling people things like that. As I was driving home I was thinking about my response to her question. It bothered me that I told her the dollar amount because what I should have told her was:
The dollar amount is not relevant. What is are the true total costs......
1. You have to have ultimate strength in your marriage and be willing to have it tested.
2. You have to come up with the courage to tell others of this plan God has for you to adopt an orphan and have many people tell you a zillion reasons why you shouldn't do it and make you feel like you are going crazy.
3. You will have people worried for your choice of adopting interracial and internationally. They will ask you a million questions again and even though you have the answers they will still make you think that there will be no way you can do this.
4. You will be in constant question if your bio children's understanding of what is going on and if they are truly okay with it all even though they are acting like they are and loving every bit of it.
5. You will stay up very late filling out mountains of paper work.
6. You will have to hand over your every detail and I mean EVERY DETAIL of your life thus far and be judged on it.
7. You will need to wait and be patient, wait and be patient and wait some more.
8. You will receive a referral call and you will be so excited and filled with joy then you will be told why your referred child is an orphan and you will feel a huge drop in emotion and feel sick to your stomach.
9. You will see the baby's photos and you will oohh and aahh over them only to know that the medical records still need to be reviewed and there could be a chance you would need to turn the referral down.
10. You will wait more for a court date only to know that it still could all fall through and the court date may not go as you had wished.
11. You will need to travel half way around the world leaving your other children with someone else to care for them and worry the whole time if they are okay.
12. You will be very tired and may also get very sick.
13. You will meet your child and they may not want anything to do with you and they may also be sick.
14. You will need to get their visa to leave the country and the paper work may not be correct and you may need to stay longer than you had thought.
15. You will return with this precious baby only to tell family members and friends that you are cocooning for attachment reasons and once again they will think you are crazy.
16. You will struggle with if you should parent your adoptive child differently than your bio child.
Total Cost Being: Putting your ultimate faith in God and trusting in him.
Because without his guidance there would be no way you would be able to do it.
The amount Faith my husband and I have gained through the adoption process thus far defiantly out weighs any dollar amount listed.
Nope, me neither.
This past weekend I decided to write a new post of what has happened post "THE CALL" and I decided to save the post until I could finish it up and check it over before posting it. I wrote and wrote then I hit save. I went to go post it and it vanished. So if any of you have my last blog post could you kindly give it back.
Okay I really haven't lost it at least not yet. Here I will try to recap what I wrote before it rudely vanished.
Thursday, March 5th at 1:50 pm my phone rang while I was at work. The phone said AGCI. I had thought it was just a monthly update and thought Christy (our case worker) would tell us that we were officially #1 but instead she said " I have a referral of a baby boy for you, would you like to hear more?" I said "yes of course I would" and then I remember mumbling a bunch of other things that most likely didn't make any sense and I remember Christy laughing at me. She then asked me if we should call Matt as he was at work. I had her call his company cell phone to throw him off a bit and make it even more surprising. He was shocked and very happy.
Christy told us all about this beautiful 3 week old baby boy. As we were on the phone she was converting his weight over to lbs and we were shocked that he was 9lbs 4oz and 22 inches long at birth. This is huge for an Ethiopian baby but this also meant that he is pretty healthy over all.
So I had to work a bit more to get some things done before I could leave work early which was very hard for me to do. Matt had to take the other 2 kiddos to their dentist appointment and I told him I would meet him at home as soon as he was finished at the dentist. We had promised each other that we would not open the e-mail of photos until we all were together and we could open them up and see him together for the first time. The kids were so excited. We opened them up and were all in amazement on how adorable this baby boy truly was. He is a true gift from God and beautiful. We then spent the rest of the night calling family and telling them over the speaker phone of our newest family member. After all the excitement we dropped off a photo disk at Walgreens to get developed and went out for Thai food at one of our favorite local restaurants.
Before I left on Thursday and before I viewed the photos or records I sent all of his records to the International Pediatrician's office and all came back in the clear so we officially accepted the referral on Friday March 6th.
We wanted to make sure we worked as fast as we could so we have a chance of getting a court date prior to the courts closing in August. It may seem like a long ways away but the court dates are filling up fast and I wanted to do all I could on my part to get that date.
So we are now in the waiting process again, waiting for our court date.
I just wanted the call to come through before I would find out that I was #1.
I can say that I am more than HAPPY to be #1. After all how many times can you say that you are #1 for something SO GREAT! Finding out that we were #1 brought tears to my eyes and complete awe.
WE ARE VERY HAPPY TO BE #1.
Great Job J!!