Saturday, January 31, 2009

12, time, Slumdog Millionaire and facebook

Twelve weeks down.

We are waiting for the notarized copy of our addendum.  Can I rant?  It is one paragraph.  It has taken a month to write, review, tweak a few words, and rewrite.  A month.  I know, I is not that simple.  The past month has passed quickly but we are still paper chasing.  We expect to get the notarized copy to send to CIS this week.  Hopefully Gladney will also get their copy this week.  I am not sure when in the process that the infant requirement will get lifted.  I assume that once Gladney gets it and approves it, it is lifted.  Time takes on a different quality in the adoption process.  It is broken down into different stages of waiting.  Once you graduate from one the next is only harder.  Once you have seen the eyes and sweet face, I can only imagine that it gets harder.  We got a call from Gladney the average wait time has increased.  When we started it was 3-5m. Now it is 6 1/2 months.  I am busy with school, three active kids, and life, in general, so the time seems to pass effortlessly.  When I get a few quiet moments I think about little M and my heart hurts.  Are you being loved, Little M?  Are you grieving for your family?  Do you know that someone thinks that you are so special and so wonderful and have so much to offer? 

I saw Slum Dog Millionaire last night.  Powerful movie.  My heart was so tight afterwards.  Even with a seemingly happy ending, I wanted to cry.  It hit too close to home (having a sister who was an orphan from this area or was it because we are adopting).   

Facebook.  I signed up this week with Zach's help.  I really don't spend much time on it.  What I do love about it...I have connected with my best friend in 4th grade (Athens, Greece) and several from college.  What a nice gift.  

Gao, our Chinese exchange student, is wonderful.  He leaves this Friday.  He has kept us focused on the minutes of the moment.  Tomorrow will be his first Super Bowl.  Today he went tubing.  This past week he went to MIT.  Next week, Harvard.  

I loved this quote.  It made me smile.  Patience is something you admire in the driver behind you and scorn in the one ahead.  -Mac Mcleary

Monday, January 26, 2009


Week 11 complete.  This may have been our busiest week.  
*My Dad's 70th birthday celebration was wonderful.  He is great physically and mentally.  Seeing my sisters and brother was nice, also.  We got home, Saturday night.  
*Early Sunday morning Eliza was dropped off at her school to go to the inauguration.  She had an amazing time.  I received a text from her saying, "Stood where MLK gave his speech.  Most moving few seconds of my life."  
*That same day we picked up Gao, our chinese exchange student.  He is a lovely young man, and so quiet.  I don't think I know any boys his age that are so quiet.  We have taken him bowling, sledding, and to the movies.  Andrew had a get together at our house of way too many boys and another exchange student.  Poor Gao, was a little overwhelmed by the noise.  
*A&P II started this week.  I am excited to get the cobwebs off the mind, again.  I have looked into nursing programs.  I feel good about my options.  the next year will be fairly uncertain, though, with little M coming home and settling in.  We will see how that goes before I commit to anything.  The good news is that my sciences don't expire for 10 years. 
*Jason took me for my 41st bday to a Toby Keith concert and a night at a spa.  We did not know what to expect from the concert, but it was great.  The spa treatment was great.  My favorite thing was time alone with him.
*Working out, again.  Okay, I hate to work out.  I hate sweating.  I love yoga, but I am not sure that that I enough.  Especially if I am going to be carrying around 30lbs.  I have hit the weights... another step closer to Little M.

Movement on the addendum is slow.  Think molasses in January.  I am expecting the notarized copies this week.  Once I get those, I can turn around and send it to CIS.  Who knows how long that will take?!  I am starting to feel really excited.  Something that I have not allowed myself to think about.  I have read so many books.  Some I like, some I don't.  Some, its hard to know if I will like them after Little M comes home.

I heard a great quote this week.  Worry about your appearance only if you have nothing better to offer the world.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Happy Birthday J

Yesterday, was your birthday and you spent it on a bus going to watch the inauguration.  You have become part of our family.  Your mom is one of my great friends.  Her mom is an inspiration in her own right. J and Eliza share so many qualities that I sometimes feel like they are twins separated at birth.  J is quiet and nurturing.  She loves animals and orphans.  She has a strong sense of right/wrong and responsibility.  I love those moments when her laughter bubbles over that quiet demeanor.  She fits into our family so easily.  This is a child that I will know the rest of my life.  I am going to her wedding and baptisms even if I have to crash them :)

Friday, January 16, 2009

Ten, Exchange Student, Traveling to DC, Traveling to NY, Traveling to Dominican

Do you like the picture, Zach?  This is one of Zach's favorite soccer players.  

Week 10 done.  As I posted on a friend's blog, I am getting a little more proficient in tell time in God's time.  We had a scheduled conference call with our social worker on Monday at 8:30 am to go over the addendum.  Monday passed and we could not make contact with the SW.  when the frustration started bleeding into my day, I caught myself and thought.  The timing on this is perfect.  I may not understand it, but it is perfect.  We talked on Tuesday.  I received the rough draft on the addendum on Wednesday.  She will/has forwarded it on to Jessica.  It is moving and when I start thinking about the timing of it all, I am determined not to get frustrated.  Little M may not be ready or someone in our family may not be ready.

We received an email last week thanking us for volunteering to take a Chinese foreign exchange student in for 3 weeks.  We thought it was a joke because we had no idea what they were talking about.  Jason sent an email to the teacher (with whom we are friends)... Apparently, Andrew volunteered us and then forgot to tell us.  I am scrambling now.  We pick up our student on Sunday.

We go to NY tomorrow to celebrate my Dad's 70th birthday.  Very excited about seeing family.
Eliza leaves Sunday to go to DC with her class to participate in the inauguration.  Please pray for her safety.  It is the first time that she will be away for a few nights.  

Andrew received permission from the academic dean at his school to go to the Dominican Republic.  He will be going for a week with a group of doctors, peace corp, and engineers without borders.  He will help with doctors visits by providing support.  He will be the only student.  I will be on my knees that whole week.  (By the way, the academic dean said that we may have to reevaluate taking Andrew to Ethiopia if it falls in the same academic year.....  I don't think so.  I may have to reevaluate the school, if that is the case.  As Jason says.... don't let school interfere with a good education.  I am not worried.  Again, God's timing is perfect.)

Zach is having dreams about traveling to Ethiopia.  I asked him if he was okay with a new sister (just in case).  He said... I am good with little girls, too.  This after getting time with Ruth and Aster.  The other thing that he said that I just want to keep in the scrapbook.  He said...if he does not make it as a professional soccer player, he wants to be a good teacher.  He would do yoga with his students on days that they could not get out for recess, and show them how to do a trial in his class, too.  This from a child who hated school last year.  What a difference a teacher can make!

Friday, January 9, 2009

Nine and a little more paper chasing

So we have finished week 9.  We found out yesterday that we will have to do an addendum to our home study and then file that addendum with CIS. We will also have o get Gladney approval, again.  My impression is that it should not be long processes.  The Gladney approval should not be a big deal, either.  I was so discouraged when I received the news.  I was hoping that it would be simple.  It seemed overwhelming.  I must have been tired of the prospect of more paperwork.  Thankfully, I am married to a wonderful man that must have picked up on my exhaustion... because he volunteered to pick up the baton in the paper chase relay.

*Note to self (and anyone else who cares) when you do the home study have your "preference"  be as broad as it can be.  You will get the opportunity to be more specific, later.  I wish that I had known this at an earlier date.

**So I wrote that a day after getting the email spelling out what we will need to do.  Today, I feel even less overwhelmed.   It is doable.  No the idea of having to get anything from CIS is still  daunting (the timing is scarey-will it take two weeks or two months?).  

A little realness.  When I was pregnant with Eliza, I remember wondering how would I love any child as much as Andrew.  As a child my parents explained that love was similar to the light of a candle.  You don't have a limited quantity to give, it is infinite.  You can light an infinite number of candles from one flame.  It does not diminish the light given off by that one candle, it grows the light around you.  They had five children and I was trying to figure out who they loved most, sure that it was me:)  Skip forward to now.  As we get closer to getting Little M's referral, I have that same nudging feeling (not overwhelming, but on the periphery)...  What if I feel nothing when I see Little M?  I mentioned it to Jason.  I did not think that I could love that man more, but I do after his response.  "But it will be our Little M."  I remember how we thought our children were the most perfect babies.  Every time we went to pick up one of the foster babies, we thought they were just as perfect, just as beautiful, just as much of a gift.  How little faith I have sometimes!  While I may not respond to a photo immediately, Little M has already become part of my dreams.  If you want something great to read about Love... coffeemom said it so beautifully, go read.  

Monday, January 5, 2009


Week Eight ended last week.  The New Year.  Two weeks of vacation ended today.  We had a week filled with snow, movies, books, games, and family time.  The only thing that would have made the week better was if Little M was here.  

Jessica from Gladney is helping us to figure out what we need to do to "lift" the infant requirement.  Maybe, nothing because we are already approved for a sibling group up to 4.  We are definitely lifting it, though, paperwork or not.  The irony is that we could still end up with an infant.  Just when I think that I know what our family will look like, I get a reminder that I am not in charge.  God has a wonderful sense of humor.  As we pass the time, the excitement is definitely building.