This is our last Christmas as a family of four. We all are so excited to bring baby bro home. He even had two presents under the tree waiting for him. This Christmas I had a time to reflect on how God is moving in my life and He is really showing out. God continues to be faithful even when I am undeserving. I am grateful and thankful for the birth of Jesus and I enjoy having my cup of coffee and getting to know Him every morning. Merry Christmas to all and to all a good night.
The time has FINALLY come. We will be going to Ethiopia in three weeks. What a wonderful Christmas gift. We are so excited. When we received the news, I was at work and I just wanted to shout. But I kept my cool until I got in the car after work and I just lost it. I am so happy no one had a video tape. We took the girls out to dinner and told them. They were like..."we have to get the room together....can we tell our friends?" We have a lot to do before we travel but in the meantime, we will enjoy the Christmas season.
We had a lot to be thankful for. We spent Thanksgiving morning cooking as a family. R made homemade sweet potato pie with Granddaddy's recipe, S made strawberry cake, J smoked a turkey and made macaroni and cheese, and I made the "green stuff" otherwise known as collard greens and the dressing. I have to toot my own horn but my dressing was the bomb digity. We had dinner with friends and family and we are very thankful to have them. Hopefully, this will be the last Thanksgiving without Baby Bro.
This weekend I had my first Ethiopian dinner. I was a little surprised that I actually liked it. It didn't take me long to get used to eating with my fingers. I shared a table with some friends that adopted a boy and a girl from Ethiopia and they are so adorable. I learned from them how to pinch your green stuff with the injera. Those of you with family from the south can relate this with pinching your greens and cornbread. It is the same concept. Then there was this very hot sauce that I don't know who can eat that. I like jerk chicken but this was like fire. We even had lasagna Ethiopian style. I met a lot of families who have adopted from Ethiopia or who are in the process. It was great listening to parents share their experiences and I learned a lot. I even made a few jokes with my friend about some people needing my help with the hair. You should have seen some of the styles. Next time I'm going to set up a booth with some grease yeah I said grease and comb some of those beebee shots. (That was a jokey joke) It was just good to network with people who share the same passion for adoption. And I look forward to going to the next outing with my boy so he can show how boys should wear their hair. Here is a little advice....if the hair is not curly, don't try to grow a fro and please remember to always keep it moisturized. This has been a public announcement.
We passed court on Monday. Wynston is finally ours. We don't know when we travel yet. We are waiting to hear from our agency which may be in a couple of weeks. Please pray we go before Christmas. I will post pictures as soon as I can.
Another delay. Court was postponed until Nov. 9. It feels like a rollercoaster ride. Up and down. But I refuse to get discouraged. I was a little hurt at first but my bible study sisters got me together. Thanks for all of your prayers and kind words. It means a lot to me and my family. When we said this was going to be a journey...boy I had no idea......
Yesterday we went to the children's museum and saw the King Tut exhibit. Sidenote- Egypt had an Ethiopian ruler. While standing in line for the carousel, we received a call from our social worker saying that court date is scheduled for Wednesday. My happy-go-lucky attitude changed instantly. Have you ever looked forward to something and be that close to have someone tell you it is postponed? I know you're thinking it is only two days but right now, two days seems like forever. It is like being pregnant passed your due date with your hands and feet swollen and the doctor saying.... hey by the way your due date is two weeks from now. Well, I must remember to enjoy the process and if that means waiting two more days, so be it.
We went to homecoming over the weekend. It was nice seeing friends and talking about our college days. Isn't it funny how we grow up. I was in bed the first night by midnight. My body can't take hanging out all night and then getting up early for the tailgate. This year it was cold but we made the best of it. We had a heater and a tent. Great food and of course beverages. The kids had a good time. They enjoy homecoming just as much as we do. We have made it a family affair so that our kids can be exposed to college early. They don't have to go to KSU or HBCU although it would be nice. We just want them to be around the social workers, business persons, teachers, doctors, etc. They MUST go to college. I have one child who wants to be a brain doctor and one who I know would be a great lawyer. There is no pressure, we just want them to know that they can be whatever they want to be. This year, Miss KSU was not of African decent. That is historical. We have come a long way.
We received the social report yesterday. Wynston is growing so much. He looked happy and he has reached his developmental milestones. This makes me feel a little bit better. I wish I could share the pictures. He even have a little friend. He had a haircut and was smiling a lot although he had on a winter vest with some sandals. We will work on the fashion when he gets here. Court date is scheduled for next Monday. Hopefully there won't be any delays.
The court opened today and I found out that our court date is postponed for two weeks. My first reaction was panic. I want my baby here for Thanksgiving. Well, that was my timing. I realize we can make all these plans but at the end of the day....it is in God's timing. So I trust God and know that He will continue to watch over Wynston. Today I saw on the Today Show, Matt Lauer interviewed this lady who adopted a child and she had five biological children. She had this child for 18 months and decided to return the child because she said the child didn't bond with her family...it wasn't a good fit. Well, do you return your biological child if your child doesn't bond in what you think is the appropriate amount of time... of course not. You stick with that child through thick and thin. I know that it is not going to be all roses when Wynston comes home and I am prepared for those trying moments. One would think after five children, the woman should have known that. I won't judge this woman because I am not that position. But, I would like for everyone to know that just because you hear one unfortunate story doesn't mean all end that way. You have to remember why you chose to adopt. I hope that this doesn't change anyone's mind that is considering adopting because we have to remember...."I will not leave you as orphans." If you are reading this, you are truly blessed therefore, be a blessing to someone. OK- my sermon has ended. Thanks for being a support.
Wynston has been transferred to the Children's Home Society Orphanage in Addis Abba. He will be there until we get him. He has lost one pound since being there. He was already little and this just makes me wish I had magical powers to speed up the process so I can get him here. This little guy must be so confused. He probably was attached to the nannies in Hosanna and then now he is in a new environment with new nannies and children. Please keep praying for him through all of this change. You know how change can be challenging for us, just imagine a two year old.
I just wanted to let everyone know that just because I am not physically pregnant with him, doesn't give people a right to say rude or inappropriate things. Would you come up to me if you could see that I was pregnant and say those insensitive things? Just a few comments that people have said....Is he healthy? A lady asked me that at church last night and I kind of got emotional because I am worried about his weight loss. I don't even know the lady. Other stupid questions- Are the kids you have now adopted? (In front of them), Can you have children? Where is his parents? Why not adopt domestically? (Have they adopted!! or what are they doing about orphans) Don't get me wrong, if people ask me questions because they have a heart for orphans or may be thinking about adopting or who really care for me and my family, I am more than willing to share. But for the NOSIES..... STOP BEING A SIMPLETON OR PLAIN IGNORANT!!!! Okay....I feel better:) I don't have to get the vasaline and tell J to hold my earrings so I can knock somebody out. (Ya'll know I have to keep it real)
We were sent Wynston's schedule in the orphanage. Now my thoughts are filled with his daily activities. When I wake at 6am, I know that he is waking up and being cleaned and dressed for breakfast. My heart just breaks just thinking of him sitting there waiting for staff to get his turn. We sent him a photo album of us so that he can see his new family. We hope that this will help him know that we are waiting for him to come home. I don't know how much he can process with him being so young. We have a picture of him with the rest of the family photos in the family room. He just looks like he belongs with us. I apologize that I can't share his photo until everything is final but I can tell you.....he is SO CUTE!!!! I can't wait to introduce the little man to ya'll. In the meantime, please continue to pray that God wraps His arms around Wynston and whisper in his ear that he is loved. And please pray that court goes smoothly without delay and that we can bring him home before Christmas. That would be a wonderful gift.
Well the summer vacation is coming to an end. School starts next week for the girls and I start at a new school. It is an exciting time for us. S starting 3rd grade and R starting 7th grade and I get to work with K-6. We spent a lot of time with family and friends. We went to Great America, spent time in Chicago and Michigan and most of all ....time on the water. It was a relaxing summer. Since summer doesn't officially ends until after Labor Day, we are going to spend as much time in the water until the pool closes and the lake water gets too cold:)
Today we got our shots to go to Ethiopia. We are all ready to go to the Motherland. My arm is sore but it is well worth it. I thought waiting without the picture of the baby was torture. Now, it is a different torture. Can you tell I am just a liiiittle anxious. I keep thinking about... does he share a bed with another little boy, what is he doing , all kind of crazy thoughts. To top off all of the crazy thoughts, we had to get fingerprinted again!!! I am so ready for this paper pregnancy to end. It is like when you are in your last trimester and you are so uncomfortable you could scream. But when I look at his little face in the picture, I say to myself, he is almost home.
We have finally calmed down (a little). Well at least I can think straight again. I keep thinking about the movie "Coming to America" with Eddie Murphy. I know I'm silly but those of you who know me know that I am silly. Seriously- I've been thinking about how life as a family of 4 is getting ready to change to a family of 5. How a family with 3 women and one man is now a family with 3 women and 2 men and Prince our lovely dog. (We still out number) Now we can't walk around in our underwear anymore. My girls love to do that. How there will be two people to blame about leaving the toilet seat up. I am sure that will make J happy. But this is a well welcomed change for our family.
We went looking for boy clothes and there just aren't many places with cute boy clothes. It felt funny looking in the boy section. I am used to looking at bows, ribbons, pretty dresses, PINK things. I don't think PINK will go for a boy. He has to be a man before he can sport anything that is PINK and wear it with confidence. J keeps telling us to calm down but it doesn't hurt to window shop. (Smile)
What a wonderful day. We finally got that CALL!!!! The girls and I were at the grocery store and I saw that our social worker called and I said to myself she is probably calling about getting our new fingerprints so I will call her when I get home. But when I got in the car, something told me to call her. When I did........I just couldn't believe my ears. She mentioned updating our fingerprints and immigration stuff and then she said....we have a referral. I just screamed. The girls were in the back looking at me like what is going on. She went on telling me about him and that she would email me the specifics. When I hung up, I called J and told him to stay home until I got there because we had a referral. We went home and the whole family gathered around the computer and opened the email. We just ooed and ahhhed. S said, "that's my little brother." I cried like a baby. R said what's wrong and I just told her that I was just so happy. I just held on to my girls and cried and continued to thank God. I cried when both of the girls were born and I just didn't know how I would react when that call came. It took me by surprise. It is so funny because lately I've been having these vivid dreams about a little boy. Well enough for now. This has been one emotional filled day. Please keep us in your prayers and pray for our little boy. I am still in shock and it is just too hard to write all of my emotions and thoughts right now. Let me just let this moment sink in. God is good.
We had a soggy 4th of July however, we made the best of it. We went to our friends and had a good time and then to the fireworks. It was a little chilly but we had a good view. We couldn't have a 4th of July without fireworks so we had to suck it up. I can't wait to bring our son with us next year. Hopefully (: This waiting will drive you crazy but I keep telling myself "in His time".
We collected 250 pairs of socks for Sock It Up. We are so proud to see that so many people still have a giving heart. We thank you very much for participating in our first Sock It Up. For those of you who missed this opportunity, we will be doing it again real soon.
We donated the socks last week to HIP (Homeless Inititiave Program) who provides services to homeless families from shelter/housing, job training, clothing,...you name it-HIP provides it. They go to the streets and help people who are either too proud or don't know where to get help. They were so appreciative to get the socks. It was like watching your child on Christmas open up their presents. The staff just kept saying, "thank you, thank you, thank you." It felt good to have my family give the socks to them and explain how Sock It Up came about. Afterwards, my children talked about how good they felt and how proud they are that they are giving back to people who are less fortunate. If I can offer any advice to anyone, you must do this with your kids. I can't explain the feeling I had when my children talked about their feelings. It is one of those life lessons that I think will stick with them when they become adults. There are so many children only knows receive, receive, receive, and my children were like that. I was like that as a child. I am not saying that this has changed them to not like to receive, but I am sure that it has changed the way they look at how blessed they really are. After we gave the socks, our family served dinner at a church who serves meals to the marginalized. The girls really enjoyed serving and asked if they can do it again. It is amazing how good it feels to give.
Well here's the update on the adoption-still patiently waiting. The courts will be closing soon in Ethiopia for a hiatus however our agency said this shouldn't hold up getting our referral. Just keep us and our son in your prayers.
If you would like to be a part of Sock It Up, please email me and I will send you a flier on where to send your donated new socks by May 31. Thanks for your consideration. Thanks to Patrick for creating the "Sock it Up" Logo. Much Love!
Happy Mothers' Day to all the wonderful mothers. We went to Chicago to celebrate Mothers' Day. It was a beautiful day..a little chillybut pretty. We visited the Science and Industry Museum and ate at Dixie Kitchen. All in all, I had a very nice Mother's Day. With all of that said, I hope all of you mothers were treated nice like I was.
Well I want to introduce our family community service project. Sock It Up. We are having a sock drive for the homeless. We are collecting new socks for homeless men, women and children. We are following President Obama and doing our part on giving back to the community. No matter what life throws us, everyone receives blessings and has much to give thanks. Our family got this idea when one day we were eating dinner,(we eat dinner every night together and share about our day, our thoughts and just keep connected) and I told them about this homeless convention I attended and I shared with them about all of the people I met and how they were without the simplest things. Things we take for granted. So we thought about how we can give back. This is when Sock It UP was granted wings.
We just returned from Arizona on spring break. It was a well needed vacation. While on break, I was watching the news and all they talked about was Madonna. Everyone had an opinion. My thing is ...why are they hatin'. James 1:27 says "Pure and lasting religion in the sight of God our Father means that we must care for orphans and widows in their troubles and refuse to let the world corrupt us." Enough said. On GMA on 4/2/09, they covered the Madonna Madness and they also interviewed an African American family who adopted 3 sisters from Ethiopia. The couple addressed the why adopt internationally question and it was answered very well. Please take a look at the interview at www.youtube.com/watch?v=k61tggxm7nq . If this doesn't work put in Dave and Monica.
I also want to wish everyone a Happy Easter Sunday.
Nothing significant happened this week except...drum roll please.... we got the SIENNA MINI VAN!!!!! My husband is not that excited because it is not all that attractive but the inside is ready for our little man. The girls and I are really happy and excited. It is a 2001 but it is new to us.
Yesterday I found out a beautiful person passed away. She is Haregewoin Tefera, the foster mother in the book "There Is No Me Without you." If you read this book, you will see why I called her a beautiful person. Really...I don't think any adjectives are strong enough to describe her. She has done so much for Ethiopia's children without government assistance. Just from donations and from whatever she has. Her generosity makes me challenge myself on how much do I give back to mankind. I encourage you to visit the website at http://www.thereisnomewithoutyou.com/.
So many people ask why Ethiopia. Why not Ethiopia. J and I researched and found the greatest need and God led us to Ethiopia. There is a great number of children who are orphans because of HIV/AIDS, malaria, famine, and poverty. The illiteracy rate is 80%. Just thinking about those facts just gives me chills. When I go to sleep at night or when I check in on my girls, I just thank God for my blessings. I am not saying that children in foster homes in the US are not in need, but there aren't any foster homes, schools for every child, good medical care, etc. That is just my opinion. It doesn't matter, every child needs a loving family no matter domestically or internationally. God just directed us to Ethiopia and even though the wait is long and torturous, (smile) I know God has chosen him for us.
Hi Everybody- We are officially waiting for our son/brother from Ethiopia as of Oct. 14, 2008. Oh what a journey. I thought the paper work was torture but believe me....it is the waiting. When I was pregnant with both of my girls, I had a due date so I knew when to expect a bundle of joy even though I complain then too. With adopting .... God really teaches you patience. In Romans8:25 it says," But if we look forward to something we don't have yet, we must wait patiently and confidently." This scripture has really given me peace. I will try to keep this blog updated so that it will document our feelings and thoughts during our journey to bring baby boy home. Welcome Aboard....
I am a wife and a mother of three beautiful children and two dogs, all with unique personalities. I love being a mother. In the beginning, I suffered from Postpartum Depression. My hope is that my blog will encourage mothers or women who suffer from depression. You are not alone. There is HOPE. I want to share my journey and I invite you to walk with me. We will rise and shine.