Wednesday, July 21, 2010

It's now been two years

Since I first saw this face...



I had this picture taped to my bed in ICU. I couldn't fall asleep, because I couldn't believe that this was the baby that I had been waiting 9 months to meet. I was amazed at how much she looked like her Daddy. I was entranced by how beautiful she was. I couldn't believe that it was 12 hours after she was born, and I still had not held her.

The full magnitude of her birth day did not hit me for a few days. I was stuck in this euphoric "I have a BABY, and she is BEAUTIFUL" stage. I remember looking at Trent after learning of what happened when I went back into surgery, and saying "well, it looks like we are going to adopt"! I said it with such joy. I did not realize the grief that was going to go into the adoption. The joy. The tears. The frustration. The amazing friends I was going to meet. The beautiful baby boy that would follow in a few short years.

When I look back at this picture, I remember the joy that enveloped me. Even though I was in ICU, hooked up to tons of machines, and getting pumped full of blood, I was SO happy. Now I look at this picture, and I see the hope of a new Mom and I see the spirit of our family. We may not have had everything go the way we planned, but we came out of a time of struggle with a smile on our faces and a bright future ahead of us.



Now I say this as if I think about this every day. I definitely do not always remember this joy. I get caught up in the frustrations of everyday life, and the delays that I can't control. I get mad at the "it's not fair"-s and the "why not me"-s. But whenever I see my baby girl's smile...



I remember these three things:

Faith...



Hope...



Love...



And then I breath again, and life is not as bad as I thought it was. Because it COULD be worse, I could have not been here to see this beautiful little girl grow up. So I sit down, grab my girl and we play dolls. Or smell flowers. Or swing. Or read books. Or watch the ants (we especially like to find "Ant Sinny").

Thank you to the divine Miss E., for being such a blessing to our family. For being the lively, fun loving girl that you are. For bringing hope into our family during a dark hour, and making us see that life is so much better together as a family. We "wub ya", and we are SO proud of the beautiful little girl you are.

HAPPY 2ND BIRTHDAY EMME JANE!!

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Do you see this mouth?



How cute is this little mouth? I bet you are REALLY excited to see the rest of him! Well, someday you will be able to because...

WE LEAVE FOR ETHIOPIA IN 8 DAYS!!

Can you believe I just wrote that?!? Because I did, and I still don't believe that I wrote that!!

We will be traveling on the 24th & arriving on the 25th in Addis. We are not sure of our schedule, but we do know that Baby E has been moved to Addis now! This means we get an extra day with him!!! And I get to see that little smile, and I get to tickle his little tummy! And then we get to do the funnest thing ever... Go in front of a judge and answer whatever questions they have for our family! Doesn't that sound exciting (I'm trying to put a fun spin on it)!!

We still aren't in the clear though, we don't have our MOWA (Ministry of Women's Affairs) letter & we will need that letter before we pass court. HOPEFULLY (my favorite word) we will get this letter before August 7th, because on August 7th the courts close for three months. That means if they do not receive the MOWA letter by August 7th, we may have to wait for court closure before we pass court. "What does that mean" you ask? Well, it means that we wouldn't pass court until after the courts reopen. It would mean that we would not get an Embassy date until 6-8 weeks after that court date. It would mean that we could potentially be bringing him home in January... "Seriously" you ask?!? Yes, because our adoption would not be "our" adoption without some type of stipulation on it!! So, I am not going to be completely calmed down until we pass court.

The best case scenario is that we would be coming home with court clearance and then we can plan our second trip to Ethiopia. Oh, and we could finally POST PICTURES of our little man! We received our Social Report for him, so we have 15 new pictures of the CUTEST little guy in the world! He has curly brown hair, and two little teeth, and a BIT cheeky smile, and a twinkle in his eye that says "Mama, I'm gonna get into LOTS of trouble". And I can't WAIT to see what trouble he is going to give us!

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Three Years ago today...

I woke up extremely early, in my parent's bed...

I had a lovely breakfast with my sister's (we even got the waiter to show us the electric slide)...

My brother crashed our breakfast...

I went to pick up my dress (and I never had to deal with those people again)...

I had my hair done up perty...

I got to the church (where my grandparent's had been married 60+ years before) late for pictures...

I hurried up and got ready...

I took pictures...

Trent arrived at the church...

They kept him outside...

They put me in a little white room (and no it wasn't padded)...

The hour approaches when I'm supposed to walk down the aisle...

The hour passes when I was supposed to walk down the aisle...

The priest shows up an hour late...

The singer shows up an hour late...

The priest is surprised that I'm so calm after his tardiness...

I tell him that it's okay, the only people waiting for us outside is family, and they won't care...

The singer comes in & says he has his two songs ready for the ceremony, and I say "I asked for three songs"...

The singer forgot to learn "All you Need is Love" on his guitar for the recessional...

I told him not to worry, just surprise me...

Trent seats everyone at the church...

I get pulled into the hallway...

They inch me closer to the back of the church...

The singer starts singing "First Day of My Life"...

I walk down the aisle...

I don't make eye contact with Trent, because I knew that an ugly cry was right around the corner...

My Mom and Dad kiss my cheek...

My Mom doesn't let me go at first...

FINALLY, my hand goes into Trent's...

The wedding goes on without a hitch...

We kiss as husband and wife for the first time...

Our singer starts in on "I Only Wanna Be With You" by the Bay City Rollers...

I decide that I LOVE that song...

We leave the church...

We head to the winery...

We have a wonderful time with our immediate family...

We see a black cat...

It's Friday the 13th...

We decided that it's the luckiest day of our lives!



Monday, July 12, 2010

Jumping Rope

Is it an Olympic event yet? Because I think we have a gold medalist here...

video

Sunday, July 11, 2010

This weekend

We had a wonderful, relaxing weekend. Since we "tentatively" travel on the 24th, we decided last Tuesday to have a party this weekend for Miss E. I know, I know... "what a planner" is what you are thinking! I always joked in college that I wanted an emphasis in Public Relations because the initials were the first two letters of my favorite word... "procrastination". What can I say, it's my thing, and I think I am too old to change my "thing" now!

Anywho, we had a great weekend catching up with old friends & meeting new ones. Emme had a blast with the kids. I do feel bad because, when her fiance Rhys comes over, the two of them pair up and it creates many "third wheel" moments for the other kids. But I guess it's just part of the courtship process!

Once the party was done (actually it was more like once it started), I just sat back and enjoyed the day. Emme loved the presents, the cake, and Trent loved the new sprinkler. You see earlier in the day I sent Trent to Wal-Mart to pick up some last minute items that morning. We didn't have a present for Emme yet (we have a big one, but we are waiting until her birthday to give it to her), so I told him to pick up this beach ball sprinkler for her. This way the kids would have something to play with on such a hot summer day. I am running around, trying to get everything ready, when I get a call from Trent. "Uhh, Katie? I was going to get the sprinkler you told me to get, but there was this other one for the same price, and it shoots BALLS into the AIR!!" So I told my son... I mean my husband, that I don't really care what sprinkler he got, just grab whichever he thinks he... I mean she... will have fun with.

So the kids (Trent of course included) were having fun with the sprinkler, people were stopping in to chat, and Miss E was in seventh heaven. I decided the last minute party was a success! Once everyone left Rhys and Emme settled in for a movie.





Let's just say they were entranced! Once Rhys left, Emme enjoyed her new toys for a bit longer and went to bed.

The next morning we decided to FINALLY head over to the Brookings Summer Arts Festival. Every year Brookings has the BIG Arts in the Park event, and it is one block from our house. Since we couldn't partake in the activities on Saturday, we decided to head over on Sunday and enjoy the sights (and the food of course).

It was a nice stroll through the park, we saw some friends while wandering around, and Emme sat SOOO still when she got her face painted! We enjoyed our corn dogs & lemonade, and headed home.






The rest of the day we just stayed at home, Emme played with her new toys, Trent worked on our shed, and I read my book club book. It was our first relaxing day in so long, and who knows when we will get another one! Now I just have to get the birthday party pictures from my mom, and then post as soon as we have them!

Hot Dog!

Most parent's know the "Hot Dog" song, it's a classic performed by the Mickey Mouse Clubhouse at the end of every show...

It's Emme's favorite song to sing and dance to, and it's her go-to song when she wants to hum a little tune while playing. Please see below for our daughter's "beautiful" singing voice... (Let's just say, as of right now, we don't have the next Beyonce coming out of our house anytime soon)...

video

Sunday, July 4, 2010

Tentatively...

We are off to Ethiopia... tentatively speaking of course! We have a "tentative" court date in Ethiopia on July 29th. So what does that mean? Well, it means we are "tentatively" packing for our first trip!

With this new two trip process, there are two court dates. One for the birth family, and one for the adoptive family. So once the birth family passes their court hearing in Ethiopia, our agency will notify us that the Ethiopian courts have confirmed our court date on the 29th. Once we have word from them we will book our flights, and start packing like crazy!!

We will be leaving the US on July 24th (not a special day, just my 30th birthday, what better present), arrive in Addis on the 25th. Not sure of what our schedule will look like, but we will be meeting our little guy and preparing for our court hearing.

I'm not trying not to get too excited right now, because we have had SO many delays it wouldn't surprise me that this gets delayed too. So I just sit with my fingers, arms, legs, toes, and eyes crossed until they tell me that we are ready to roll (errr, I mean fly). Then I will probably start hyperventilating because that means I will be meeting little man soon! Hang on Mr. Man, Mom is coming soon (oh and Dad too, but Mom is way cooler, trust me)!!

We will keep you all posted as we hear more!!