Thursday, October 29, 2009


This part of the journey is very difficult. I thought waiting the two years prior was hard, boy was I wrong. Knowing that your children are under the care of someone else and at the moment you are a number waiting for an appointment with an Ethiopian judge is not comforting.

I know that the House of Hope, (transition home) is a very loving place and that our children are being loved on and cared for, it's just not the same as having them in your own care.

To keep my mind off of many thoughts, I have been getting things ready on the US front.

First we ordered bunk beds.

Next we tackled the mess that was of the spare bedroom.

Then the beds were delivered and we assembled them.
(How many people does it take to assemble bunk beds? 6! yep it took 6 of us.)

Nick installed a new light which required him to into the attic to run wires,
While I painted.

Then we painted the tribal and animal border. Thanks Laura-Lee!!!

This week we hope to nail the baseboards back up and put the room in order.

In the meantime I have bought the bedding, an art kit, a few toys and am beginning to pick up some clothes for the kids. I love shopping normally, but to finally be able to buy things for the boys is so much better.
We have registered at Target. That was a lot of fun. There are so many things that we need for them. Usually by the time someone is seven they have seven years of things that they have accumulated. Not the case for our kids.

So much to do. Unfortunately we have a lot of time to get it done.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Ups and Downs, Ins and Outs

Over the last 25 months I have read so much about adoptions, adoption parenting, attachment, Ethiopia, manuals, procedures, etc. Yet I keep getting blind sided by different steps or paperwork that comes up in the process to bring our kiddos home.

Last Wednesday I was finally able to take our addendum, change to our initial age request on our home study, to the USCIS office in LA. My mom went with me and we had a nice day together. We sat in the office with the parolees, because apparently adoptions and parolees belong in the same small office of immigration, and watched as people came and went. I finally was called up to this small little window where I had to stand on my knees. I handed over our paperwork again.

She said it was all up to par and told me to wait while they typed up the appropriate paperwork. We were given the paperwork, an appointment to be re-fingerprinted and were sent on our way.

The following Friday, Nick and I were re-fingerprinted and a huge relief was taken off my chest. The weekend was a busy one but it was nice to know that there wasn't any adoption paperwork that hasn't been done.

That is that we knew of... Monday after work we received a call from immigration stating that we needed to have a home study update in addition to the addendum. So I ask our case worker what that entails and she said basically regathering all of our info. Background, medical, career, recommendations, all of it. That was it. This was were I finally felt overwhelmed.
Tears fell. So I called our social worker and they directed me to the quickest way to do everything. So tomorrow we are going to get fingerprinted with the state of CA and get our vaccinations.

I will take this one step at a time. But today, my mom, my sister and I are going to the Day Spa. We are going to relax. My brother in law flew to Afghanistan this morning. So stress is high on the radar in our family this week. But if we take it one day at a time, we are going to make it. There is a light at the end of the tunnel and it is shining on two little boys who are our sons.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Missed Posts

I was unable to post during the acceptance of our referral. We had some technical difficulties. But I managed to journal. So I am going to add my journal entry.

September 12th, 2009
We are going to be parents. FINALLY. Our boys, our boys, I can't believe it, are 7 and 4 years old. We have been praying on this decision for a few weeks. I was so certain, then I panicked. Would I be able to parent a 7 and 4 year old? Would I be ok if I never had an infant? Is our little condo big enough for four people? Was their past more than we could handle? Would they attach to us? They will always remember their biological parents, so will that lessen our role somehow? But tonight we prayed. Silent, on our knees, it was us and God.

God has called us to love. I have never been so sure of any decision. All of my fears, questions, are gone. During our prayer tonight God spoke to us. At the same moment we both knew it. I had the image of all the warrior women of the Bible. Nothing God has ever called us to was guaranteed to be easy. Shoot, why would I think parenting would be easy. God is amazing. I know we were spoken to directly by God.

We have are a family of four. We sent off the email to our case worker and called my parents.
My poor dad was on his way out to work, it was 9:30 at night, but I told him to wait. They were waiting in their driveway, We had their picture on my phone and showed them for the first time their grandsons.

TEARS everywhere. Of course there are lots of questions but so many happy smiles were in that driveway. We talked for a few hours and finally made it home. In a few months, this home will be filled with children's laughter and giggles, the absolute best sound in the world.

I am so in love!!!! I know every mother thinks that their children are the most beautiful children in the world, but mine really are.

Humbled by God's Love

This weekend I was unable to attend Church. My best friend is getting married in three weeks and we had a girls weekend in San Diego. I received a text message from Nick that brought me to tears. It read... families from church handed me an envelope of cash to help bring the boys home.

A very dear family hosted a block yard sale and gave all of the proceeds to us to help bring the kids home. I was so taken back. I know God's love daily. But God's love through his people is equally amazing. I can not tell you how surprised, humbled and thankful I was for this gift.

Thank you

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Long Time No Post...

Well the past months have been so wonderful. God is Great....

In September, we accepted the referral of the two most beautiful boys you have ever seen. Here is the story of our adoption.

In 2005, Nick and I decide to start thinking about a family. I had been hospitalized for a week which required me to stop taking birth control, at this point in our marriage the idea of planning for a family seemed to be crazy but if it happened without really trying it was ok. So in 2006 we actively began trying to start a family. I did not realize that trying was another word for making your intimate life a second job. After the first month I was bummed but hopeful. Time passed and after a few months I began to "Research" different approaches. There were teas, diets, positions, times, pee sticks... you name it we tried it. Well needless to say months turned into a year and that was when we sought after medical opinions.

Well after many embarrassing tests, we were thrown into the unknown category for infertility. I was quickly learning that not every goal is attainable through determination. Our doctor told us our options and we went home to begin our decision making. The entire year was filled with prayer, tears, anger, dependency on God and our family. We watched as friends got pregnant with their children and then had their children.

We were given the choice to continue the goal of creating life from Nick and my own DNA or look into adoption. After much prayer we chose adoption. The choice to adopt was easy for us, there are millions of children without parents, and we were parents without children. After researching agencies, countries, policies and of course the financial impact, we chose Ethiopia. I feel like Ethiopia chose us, but that is a whole different story. So we applied to Children's Hope International, Ethiopia Program.

And... We were originally declined. Because I was only 24 and we had to be 25. I had 3 more weeks before they could officially accept us. So on Sept 8th 2007, we were accepted into the Ethiopia program. And the paper chase began. Who knew there were so many agencies that had to do with us. Banks, police, immigration, work places, references, the list goes on and on. After redoing many of the paper work because it took to long to complete the process we were officially placed on the list on October 7th.

The wait begins... We were originally told 6-10 months for siblings. That wait became much longer by December. In May we chose to request singles or siblings. The wait was starting to mess with my mind. Nick was solid. Definitely the Spiritual leader of the family. He was strong through the whole wait. Constant prayer, some fasting and lots of love.

In July, our boys were placed on the waiting list and the moment I saw them I was smitten. I have never had a moment where I felt like God spoke directly to me, but at that moment I knew these were going to be our boys. I told Nick and he asked me to pray for them for a week and if I felt strongly we would pursue with them. My prayer was simple. "Lord protect and calm these boys. If they are meant to be our sons, let it be clear; if not let a loving family take them quickly. Make them brave keep them safe."

Answered prayer. They were off the waiting list the next day. I felt confused. Why did I feel so strongly for them? How could I make this feeling up? I prayed for them and their new family every night. I still checked the list to see what was happening. August 20th, they returned on the list. At this moment there was no doubt in me at all. This was our answer to so many prayers. We requested their information and finally was able to speak to our case worker on Sept 1st. We prayed and prayed for peace in our decision.

On Sept. 12th we officially replied YES!!!!!!!!! We were now waiting for an interview with our social worker to make sure we would be qualified to parent a 4 and 7 year old. On September 16th our social worker told us we were approved it was going to happen. I cannot even explain the overwhelming joy I experienced during that call. Nick was at a training in San Luis Obispo. We spent the next 2 hours staring at the kids picture while on the phone with each other.

September 25th we finally were able to sign the referral form from our agency. So it was 11 months 2 weeks and 6 days since we were placed on the waiting list. We can now say we are parents. I can't say that word enough. I love it. It one of the best words in the world.

I am a Mom and Nick is a Dad. We have two sons. God has blessed us with an immediate family. And now the real waiting starts. I did not realize how hard it is to wait, knowing your children are not here. Some one else is taking care of them. We are not there to calm fears, kiss booboos, blow kisses, wipe tears, hear them laugh. My only sanity rests in that God has saved these boys for us. And right now they are learning about compassion from people who dedicate their lives to the orphans of their beautiful country.