Sunday, March 28, 2010

Happy 2nd Birthday Juno!!!

Today is our Sweet Juno's 2nd Birthday! Yesterday we had a little Doggie Birthday Party for her!

Juno getting a little taste of her birthday cake. It wasn't fancy, but I think she approved!

All the other dogs joined in the party!

The 2 little dogs were a little timid with the big dogs

Every dog got their share and there was nothing left!

I think this birthday girl had a good time!

Happy Birthday Juno :)

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Baby Proof

We are still busy getting ready over here. Not knowing how old our little guy is going to be, we're just going off the assumption that he could be mobile. There are still so many unknowns and we clearly have no idea how many more weekends we will have before we take off to Africa so we're making every weekend count.

This weekend we're focusing on baby proofing! The more baby proofing we can do the less times we're going to have to get up and move him around and the more exploring he can do of his surroundings. We are moving around lots of things we don't want destroyed during this time of "exploring". All the movies that used to be housed under the TV are now safely in boxes in the closet to be replaced with baby toys! The stereo that used to be under the TV has been moved into the microwave stand. All the books and scrapbook albums need to find a new home!

Time to remove the tablecloth on our dining room table. Time to move cords and add outlet covers - we have a baby coming :) Time to move out chemicals from under the kitchen sink to a more safe location (yes, somehow our social worker didn't look under there and we got away with that one).

It is weird to think that in just a few months we're going to have a mobile little one getting into cupboards. Most people don't have to worry about all that stuff from the get-go. They can kind of move as the baby grows, but not us. We're expecting to go in full throttle and we want to be prepared :)

This week was quiet with referrals. It is tough to have a quiet week but I expected it. I am staying positive though, knowing that we really only have just a few more weeks of this waiting game. The weeks seem to be flying by and we are so close to getting the call that there can't be too many more weeks out in front of us!

I had the big talk with my boss this week. We discussed my plans for coming back to work. I told him what I would be willing to do. I want 6 months off before returning to week and then I want to return for 12-15 hours per week, split over 2 days. If this won't work, then I won't be returning. He talked with our HR department and they will not allow me to take that much time off. At 12 weeks I will have to voluntarily resign and then it will be at their discretion if I can return. If they have a need, then they will let me come back. Mainly he said they would probably try to bring me back to work on some special projects and such for that amount of time. We will see. He said to not even think about it for the time being because so much is going to change for us in the next 6 months. He wants to touch base with me after we've been home for 10 weeks and we'll go from there. I trust God will provide and guide us through this so I am really not worried about.

Juno's birthday is tomorrow. We will be having a party for her today - I will post pictures tomorrow!

What else? Oh, we had some good things happen this week! Early this week we received a grant through Steven Curtis Chapman's adoption organization Show Hope. This grant is a true blessing for us and we are so thankful that we got one! We definitely want to work hard to pay it forward and help support Show Hope in the future! Also we got word that Peter passed another CPA exam. This is the same one he had passed before, but it fell off after 18 months since he was unable to pass the rest of them in that amount of time. I am happy for him and proud of him for persevering through the tough times! It may not seem like too big of a deal since he had already passed it - but trust me it is! It is a confidence booster and I am proud of him :) He is all set to take another exam in mid-April and we're hopeful he'll pass that one too!!!

Saturday, March 20, 2010


Yesterday was my 24th Birthday. I am not a huge fan of big birthday celebrations but I have to admit yesterday was a very good day! Everyone tried really hard to make me feel special and they did :)

I can't help but think about where we were one year ago. Things were horrible last year on my birthday. Peter lost his job the day before my birthday last year and I was just sick on my birthday and so afraid and upset for him. It just did not make sense. There were so many bad things going on in that first few months of last year and I was so beaten down. My birthday certainly did not feel like something to celebrate a year ago. Everything felt like a failure.

This year things are SO different. Peter is really happy with where he's spent the last 10 months working! Him getting laid off was truly a blessing! He would NOT want to be working at the place he was working at a year ago. I think almost all of his friends have quit working there now if that is any indication of the work environment. His new job takes such good care of him - he is spoiled!!!

We are also just weeks away from becoming parents and that is truly what makes me so happy! I definitely feel like we're in the last month of this "pregnancy" and I am so ready to see my baby boys face!!! Soon, very soon! We are both so excited! We are both guessing that mid-April will bring that amazing call, but we will wait and see. We've been wrong before :)

So all in all, things are great! We are in a bit of a hurry to get everything ready for this baby! It is hard when you don't know how old your baby is going to be!

I just KNOW this 24th year is going to be amazing!!!

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Digesting the changes

I'm still working on digesting the most recent news out of Ethiopia. Today we found out that we will have to go to Ethiopia - twice, and soon. We are now being required to go over there and meet our little one and sign a form stating we want to continue with the adoption. Then we'll have to go back again after we pass court for the Embassy appointment. Fortunately at that time we will come home for good with our little one.

What were we thinking? We knew the risks with International adoption and we still signed on? Why did we sign up for this roller coaster ride? Why would someone who doesn't enjoy flying sign up for this? Is it worth the cost and this emotional struggle?

My answer? Yes! Through all of these unknowns - the answer is yes. Is it worth all this frustration? Yes. I know without a doubt that the day I finally get my child put in my arms forever it will all be worth it. Everything will be worth it. We are right where God wants us to be. Knowing you are in the center of God's will makes everything worth it!

We need money. We need a lot more money to complete this process. God knows this need. While we are stressed about it, we will not let it hold us back. We know God will provide every dollar we need. Money is no object for our Master! So we proceed, we pray, and we trust that somehow the money will be there.

We need more time off. Neither one of us has the vacation time to take two trips to Ethiopia. But we know it will be okay. Even if I have to take time as no-pay it will be okay. Even if Peter has to take a cut to his Paternity leave, it's okay. We'll deal with it because this is for our child. Our child is way more important then our jobs will ever be!

I don't like to fly. Seriously, flying across the country is more than enough for me. It hurts my back. I get bored and sick feeling, and claustrophobic. But this is what God wants me to do. He wants me to get on a plane and fly (TWICE!) to meet my little one. I would cross the oceans (TWICE!) to be with him. I will do whatever is asked of me to bring my son home. We will not stop!!! I will endure hours of back pain, jet lag, boredom, nausea, (TWICE!) to bring him home.

I will continue on this emotional journey. Right now, even thinking about meeting my son makes me so excited. Getting him in my arms months before I otherwise would just makes me smile. But at the same time I can smile through tears because he has to stay behind. Peter and I had discussed this before and I told him, if we ever had to travel for court I am not coming home without him. I will stay as long as I have to after he is legally mine. But this situation is different. He will not legally be ours when we come home. We have no choice but to come home without him. This is going to break our hearts and we both know it. I just cannot imagine having to leave him behind. But I will do it! I will leave, and I will cry. I will stare at our pictures for months and I will return (on a jet plane) to bring him home for good!

This is so hard to deal with. I trust God. We did not sign up for something easy. We knew this would be a difficult path and we trusted that God would help us through anything and everything. So we wait and anticipate the rest of this journey. We are ready for the good and the bad days that lay before us.

Monday, March 8, 2010

A weekend with the Kids!

This weekend we spent a lot of time with the niece's and new little nephew. I especially enjoy getting time with them because I don't get as much time as I used to and they are growing up so fast!

My mom and I had planned a girl's day with my niece's but once Peter heard we were going bowling he decided to crash girl's day (after getting permission from my niece's who love uncle Peter time!)

Jillian was ready to go!

Jezzie already has great technique! A little bowler in the making!

Being Silly

This was the safest way for Jillian to bowl :)

Otherwise, there was a lot of this.......

After a great day on Saturday with the girl's I got a chance to babysit
this sweet little guy on Sunday!

Johnny is getting so big and he is so darn cute :) He is seriously the best baby. He hardly ever cries and when he does it is just for a second and it is the cutest little crying face ever :)
I love my niece's and nephew so much and it was so much fun to get to spend a weekend enjoying time with them! I really need to do that more often!

Saturday, March 6, 2010

Adoption Stuff!

This has been a pretty uneventful week. We worked and that was about it for us.

Juno got her allergy test results back and she was allergic to 25 of the 40 allergens they tested her for! The vet was surprised but I honestly was not that surprised. She's a hairless dog! Would we expect any less from her?!?! So from here we wait for the shots to be made. I say "shots" because she will have 2 vials of meds now because she was allergic to so many things. After that, we will go in for the appointment and they will give us all the details on her allergy's (she's mostly allergic to weeds and grasses) and he will show us how to give her the shots. We will give her shots every couple weeks and then gradually cut down to shots once a month.

The only other news I have is for our adoption process. We usually get our new official numbers the first week of the month. Apparently our agency has been very busy so no number call this week. Our agency has official numbers that calculate how many people are waiting in the program. So when a family gets a referral they send them all the information on the child and then the family has some things they have to do. They have to get lots of documents notarized, meet with an International pediatrician, have several phone calls with our agency - one with the transition coordinator who will help us come up with a transition plan for when the baby comes home. We have to complete this transition plan before we can send in all the referral paperwork. So the referral process can take up to 10 business days to complete. So even after a family gets a referral there name is not taken off the list until all the referral paperwork has been turned in. So I thought our official number this month would be #9 because I know 2 people who completed all their paperwork in February.

Our agency also sends out bi-weekly updates on Friday's. This calculates how many referrals they have sent out in the past 2 weeks. This number is for referrals that have been sent out but have NOT actually been accepted and sent back. It is confusing, but the exciting thing with this number is that our agency says they gave out referrals for 3 infant boys this week! So I thought that would put us at #6 for a boy.

Now stick with me :)

I do know that one family in front of us is waiting for a toddler 12-24 months so we can take them out of our count since we are waiting for a baby 0-12 months. So that would put us at #5. Well, today I got a comment on our adoption blog and that person said they are right in front of us in line (at this point I no longer knew anyone in front of us with the same parameters) and she said they got their new official numbers this week and they are officially #7, so that would make us officially #8 and drop us unofficially to #4!

Did I lose you in all that? :)

Basically it means nothing and is just a guess. We COULD be #4 but we're still waiting and have no idea how much longer we'll be waiting. It does tell me that I need to be sure and keep my phone on me at all times and if things continue to move - we could be meeting our little boy soon!

And honestly I feel bittersweet about that. I am so excited to see my baby. I am so excited to stare at his picture for the next several months and have a name and a birthday! At the same time, I'm extremely sad for him. If we really are #4 there is no doubt that bad things are happening in his life. He has or will be relinquished from his birth family very, very soon. He could be at a government orphanage right now. He could also realistically be at our agency's transition home right now. I feel so bad for him and his birth family. What a weird mix of emotions. He is definitely in my thoughts and prayers.

Well that about covers it. Hopefully we'll have our agency phone call this week and we will have some more info :)