On Monday my family came over and we carved pumpkins. The girls had a blast playing with the guts. Reese had fun eating them! :) Gross! Tim and I finished ours, but Lindsay's is still down stairs on the table half done. (She chose to do a hard one.) Here are pictures of the girls masterpieces... And a funny video of Reese... !
Last night we went to the Fall Festival at our church. All the kiddos got to dress up. So I present to you our little orphan Annie's.... Is that cute or what? At first Gracie wouldn't wear the wig, but then everyone kept saying how cute she was. She didn't take it off until the end of the night. You know my girl likes the attention. Avery on the other hand threw hers off immediately! The girls had a great time jumping in all the bouncies, playing games, and of course getting candy! Here are a few pictures of our friends... The gangs all here! Little Reese the ladybug. Didn't Brandi do a great job? She made that costume! Anna's big sis was Dorthy from the Wizard of Oz. Isn't she a cute Lollipop Kid?
We had a fun night. After all the sugar though, bedtime was a little hairy.
Last night we went on a triple date with Lindsay, Tim, Scott, and Kory to Queen of Sheba. Kory thought we should go there to celebrate! We had a fun night out. Meanwhile, mom and dad took Gracie, Avery and Reese to dinner and to the Fall Festival at mom's school. (what are they going to do when Dawit comes home and Lin has her baby?) Each class at mom's school decorates a pumpkin and they auction them off to raise money. You are probably thinking painting...no way....these pumpkins are elaborately decorated into all sorts of characters and bring in lots of money. I wish I had some pictures to show you how much they get into this. So, Gracie got it in her head that she wanted one. I am not sure how it went down, maybe they thought it would be funny to let her bid a few times, so they showed her how to raise her hand and bid. Dad said she wouldn't stop bidding on the princess ballerina pumpkin! (she was bidding against a little boy dad said) $51 dollars later, she got her pumpkin. It was called "Swine Lake" :) She LOVES it and was soooo excited to show us when she got home. I told her that she needs to write a really sweet thank you letter for that one. It was cute to see her so excited. Thanks mom and dad for letting us go on date night, they girls had a blast!
WHOOOOO HOOOOO!! Susan called this afternoon and we have a court date in Ethiopia on November 18!! We are beyond excited. For those of you that are new to this ET adoption, our power of attorney in ET will go to court for us and the courts will review our paperwork. It is important that all our paperwork is in order and that mom makes the two hour trip. We are ready to get our boy! When we pass court, we usually get an embassy date 6-8 weeks later. In between, we will have to get his visa and he will get a TB test that needs to be negative. A lot still has to come together, but we are that much closer to bringing him home. If all goes well, we are looking at traveling right around Christmas, probably a week or so after.
This is definitely answered prayer!! Thanks to everyone who has said a prayer for us....Keep praying him home!
Today Susan posted some pictures and there were two new photos of Dawit in this bunch. He is growing like a weed! He really looks healthy...still tiny though. It looks as though he got a hair cut, as in shaved. :) We also got two video clips. He is holding his head up great and looks good. I almost cried when Avery watched the video of the baby. When the clip was over Avery waved and said, "Bye Dawit. Bye." I can't wait for the little guy to be home and I know the girls can't either. It was so good to get pictures and video. It is hard having a child on the other side of the world and not know how he is doing. I am still looking forward to the video Susan described where Dawit is laughing. Susan did say that Dawit's paperwork was submitted with the first batch Hope sent once the courts reopened last week and that she hopes to hear something soon. Me too!
Tonight we had our African social with families at church. Since we have so many adoptive families, we decided to do continent socials every quarter. It was lots of fun! Definitely a packed house!
I hate to say it, but I have had the worst attitude this week. Several things have contributed to my grouchiness. I haven't gotten the pictures or video Susan took in ET yet. And I keep hearing left and right about people with recent referrals getting court dates and I have been waiting four months for a stinkin court date!! The rational part of me is saying, "We expected it to take about a year....be patient!" But it is hard! I know the Lord is in this journey with us for the long haul. He has taken care of Dawit and gone before us in so many situations during this adoption. His fingerprints are all over it. And I praise Him for it! I need to just let go of my plans...Dawit will come home at the perfect time.
And do you want to know the funny thing? Amidst all my grouchiness, a friend from church sent me a really sweet card on Saturday. She said,"God must really be teaching you patience through all this!" :) (that is the funny part.) And she gave me a verse that says...We wait with hope for the Lord, He is our help and our shield. "God will not steer you wrong and you can lean and trust in Him", she said. I do...I just needed a reminder.
Psalm 77:10-12 Then I thought,"To this I will appeal: the years of the right hand of the Most High." I will remember the deeds of the Lord; yes, I will remember your miracles of long ago. I will meditate on all your works and consider all your mighty deeds.
Habakkuk 2:3 If it seems slow, be patient! For it will surely take place. It will not be late by a single day.
Romans 8:25 But if we hope for what we do not yet have, we wait for it patiently.
Psalm 37:7 Be still before the Lord and wait patently for Him.
Glad I got that off my chest. Praying for a better attitude this week!
So, we have had a pretty full schedule this week. Let me catch you up on everything.... We put up our fall/ Halloween decorations. Do you like our little scarecrow family? Gracie is the one in the yellow hat, Avery is the other tall one, and Dawit is the little guy! :) We also helped our grandmother find a new puppy. Cinnamon was very old and had to be put to sleep a few weeks ago. So Friday I picked her up and we looked at lots of pictures of older dogs and of course pups! We ended up driving to Frankfort and picking out a 9 week old female puppy. She is too cute! Grandma is in love! I finally got the girls Halloween costumes figured out, and they get to be Annie just like they wanted. I found two red dresses at Once Upon a Child. (I only spent $12!!) Avery's doesn't need any work done to it. Gracie's will need a little work. A friend is going to rip off some lace and sew on some ribbon for us. I will show you those pictures when I get the dress back. I can't wait to see how excited Gracie gets! On Sunday, we celebrated our cousin Riley's birthday. Gracie was sick so I took Avery. She loved it! They had the party at Kazoing! It is a place full of bouncies. All the kids had fun...except Reese...she hated the slide that mean old Auntie B made her go down! Uncle Alan needed an excuse to go down the slide! Happy Birthday Riley! Then, we finally got everything hung in Dawits room. Now all we need is him! Avery told me today, "Mommy, I want my Dawit." I told her, me too. Update on that: no news really. I still haven't gotten the pictures or video Susan took a few weeks ago. She has been very sick and in bed. Courts are back to work so hopefully we will hear about a court date soon.
I met the Johnson family in blogworld. I started following their story before Lucy Lane came home in June and it has been fun to see this sweet family. I LOVE their "Gotcha Day" video. Every time I watch it, I cry. I think about what our day will be like when we first see Dawit. What will my first words to him be? Will he cry and be scared? Will we be able to make him laugh? Will I cry? (duh, yes!) I imagine James holding him. Giving him his first bottle. Our fist night together. I just think about the wave of emotions. I long for that day.
Here is the video...I showed it to my mom and she said she has watched it many times and sent it to friends. She is our adoption advocate now too! (I keep telling her an older child would be perfect for them!)
sorry it cuts off on the side, don't know whats up with that.
I talked to Susan this morning about her trip to Ethiopia. She said that Dawit was precious. When they arrived at the orphanage, he was sleeping but when he woke up he cried. (good sign) She said that he didn't take the special bottles she brought, but sucked down the bottles that Dr. Gould took over in June. Whatever works! (now I just need to purchase those...glad we found this out or I would have taken the wrong ones...bad) She said that his nanny was very loving and protective of Dawit. She said that he was cracking up laughing and they got some video of that. I can't wait to see it. I am sure I'll cry. He is up to 9.9 pounds! Can you believe that!? One month ago he weighed 7.7! WOW! We need to make sure to take lots of formula, he must eat a ton to gain that much weight in a month! She said that he was able to hold his head up and seemed to be gaining strength. Susan said that Dawit's paperwork was on Eyob's desk. They had taken Dawit's passport photo and she almost didn't recognize him because he had filled out so much. (wow, he has his passport photo..that makes it feel close.) In regard to the paperwork and court, she said that the courts were set to open up this week. YEAH! She said that our paperwork had made it through all the appropriate offices/agencies and has been approved by MOWA for court. So, we are still in the same boat...waiting for a court date. I didn't realize there were so many steps between submitting our paperwork to MOWA and actually being approved and waiting in line for court. Susan did say that she is hopeful that a few families will travel by the end of the year. We are praying that we will fall into that time frame. (and other families we know that are waiting...it would be a huge blessing to travel with friends!) We are so thankful for Dawit's continued weight gain and that he is gaining strength as well. Please keep Dawit in your prayers, God hears them! Pray especially for two families that have run into a snag in their paperwork. (they need certain signatures they can't get right now and this is holding them up)
I will leave you with a laugh. I know this is my daughter and you think everything your kid does is cute, but I laugh every time I watch this.
12/2008 Made the descision to adopt
1/09/2009 Sent in Arise application
2/05 1st Home study visit
2/12 Downtown for fingerprinting and turned in
our I600a forms
2/26 Final home study meeting
4/01 Turned in dossier to Arise
4/21 Dossier arrived in Ethiopia
5/2 USCIS approval
5/15-16 When Hope Has a Name, Adoption Workshop
5/27 Accepted referral for Dawit 7/7 Dawit's weight: approx.6 lbs
7/23 Race and Adoption Class at Highview
7/31 Dawit's weight: 6.6 lbs
8/3 Travel Meeting with Arise
8/25 Dawit was transferred from Narareth to Addis
8/27 Dawit's weight: 7.7 lbs
9/29 Dawit's weight:9.9 lbs
10/21 Received court date of Nov. 18
11/18 PASSED COURT!! 11/19 Got tentative travel plans to leave on Dec. 26
11/20 Booked Flights
12/8 Travel Plans changed :( no MOWA letter
12/9 Travel Meeting with Lesley
12/15 Booked new flights: leave Jan. 10
1/10 Left for ET
1/12 Arrived in ET..Dawit Day!
1/20 Home forever!