Sunday, March 29, 2009

Post-court Day 4

Today my dear Uncle Bubby went to be with the Lord. He lost his fight with cancer tonight surrounded by our entire family. The glorious part is that only a few weeks ago he was saved and baptized alongside his father (my grandfather). He did hang on long enough to know that my boys were ours but he will never meet them on this side. He loved my children with every part of his being and I know Yesak and Yohannis would have been no different. I am just grateful that he is no longer in pain and is dancing in heaven with all of our loved ones.

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Post-court Day 3

Not much adoption related activities happening today, so I thought some pictures of our referral day back in September would be fun!
This first pic is of Annie's approval of the boys!! I believe it was love at first sight for her too!
Maybe I should have dressed them first, but the smiles say it all...

Madelyn plays photographer! Yes this is the first picture taken of me in glasses since 6th grade!!

Today several of us scrappers did run to the CK convention. We were dissapointed overall. Most of the supplies being sold were older style. We were expecting to find the newest of new supplies that we had not seen before...but it did save us quite the $$$!! This is one pack from Cosmo Cricket that I had hoped to pick up today for the boys! I bought several Cosmo sets already and this new one is precious! Oh well...not like I NEED it right now!!

The last bit of "pre-boys arrival" that was taken care of today was choosing paint colors for our living room and kitchen. We moved in to the house about 5 years ago and everything was flat paint which does not look so great after 5 years and three children! We wanted to have it painted and re-carpeted before the boys come home. It should be complete by the end of this week......yeah!

Post-court Day 2

Today was not a fun adoption uncle is declining and the doctors called the family in. They think he will pass this weekend. I spent the entire day at the hospital. I told him he had two more great-nephews and that we would still consider Evan and Ivan for their names ( we aren't...).

It was a bummer to have such a sad day, when I wanted to dance on the tables! While at the same time it was nice to spend the time with him. The only adoption related thing that I accomplished was putting all of the pictures we have so far from other traveling families into a larger photo album as shown here.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Post-court Day 1

I failed miserably at blogging each day of December, but I am going to attempt to do better at this. My goal is to blog daily between now and travel. I know this time will pass quickly and it will end up a blur in months to come. I may follow Jana in printing this count down to my boys by printing the posts in blurb.

After I spoke with Susan I called Paul and told him and a few close friends. Next I grabbed the video camera and yelled for the kids to come sit on the couch. On the way down the stairs Madelyn says oh did we get our brothers!?? There went my big surprise!!! So then I ask the kids to send a message for their brothers on the video camera...which runs out of tape at that precise moment!! The kids were all yelling.."We Love You", "I want to hug you", " I am so glad we passed after court, court, court, court, court and more court....."(Carson of course!)....I just let them talk even though their was no tape!!! was too sweet!

This morning was so exciting and such a huge relief, that we debated calling a no-school day, but I just couldn't do it!! We went down and did the basics. Carson wrote in his journal about passing court and he drew precious little pictures of him and his brothers. Madelyn drew all 5 kids and her journal entry was "Yesak and Yohannis love me".

We then cleaned up and headed to Gattiland to celebrate our adoption as well as Pauls dads b-day and his nephews b-day. Then a headed out to a homeschool meeting...which was great because I was able to see so many friends wishing me congratulations on the adoption! I pulled out my pictures any chance I got to show my little guys off too! I am exhausted and I do believe I will sleep better tonight than last night!

"Do you believe in miracles?"

Those were the words I heard this morning from my agency......
And OF COURSE I do!!!!

After a very long labor (heck my water broke back in December!) we are finally the proud parents of Yesak and Yohannis!! I am still unsure of any specifics of how we passed court, if birth mom was able to get there or not and what happens next with TB tests. Just let us bask in the glory of relief and most of GODS hand in bringing these boys home.

Meanwhile I still pray for the boys birth mom, that she is free of pain and that she is comforted in knowing that the boys have a family that already loves them as much as she does!!

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Extra prayer for court

We have run into another little snag along this journey of adoption.
In Ethiopia the living birthparents must appear in court for a kind of final relinquishment. Our boys father is deceased but their mother was supposed to appear in court. We received very sad news yesterday from our agency that mom is very ill. She is unable to sit up or walk.
Our court date is in less than 24 hours and we need her to appear in court. I know she would want this last bit of peace knowing her boys have a family and are going to be provided for.

I was so sad when I got the news because we had hoped we could meet her in Ethiopia after passing embassy. We wanted to ask her questions, take pictures....anyway I am so sad that she is so sick.

Please pray for her, she needs strength to make it to court. Please pray for the courts, judges and anyone else who needs to find favor in our case.

Friday, March 20, 2009

More info on the CDC /TB testing....

Here is what I have found on the new TB test regulations from CDC, not as bad as many of us once feared.

New Procedures for Identifying and Treating Active Tuberculosis
The Embassy would like to clarify the following points about the Center for Disease Control’s (CDC) new requirements for TB testing and treatment for IV applicants, including orphans.
• The Embassy’s panel physicians will begin implementing CDC’s new Technical Instructions on March 23, 2009.

• CDC is phasing in these new requirements worldwide in order to better identify and treat immigrant visa applicants with active TB. CDC has conducted studies in other foreign countries and discovered that the previous method of identifying active TB failed to catch a large percentage of active TB cases. As a result, immigrants with active TB entered the U.S.

• It is CDCs responsibility to protect Americans from infectious diseases. These new requirements will greatly improve the Embassy’s ability to identify visa applicants with active TB, and to ensure they receive the most effective treatment for their condition before they are granted visas.

• For children under 2 years of age: there will be no change in the testing procedure. As before, if a child shows signs of TB, the panel physician will take a sputum sample. With children this age, this often is done through a procedure called gastric aspiration, which generally requires a hospital stay of 2 to 3 nights. In Fiscal Year 2008, fewer than 5 children among the Embassy’s adoption visa cases underwent gastric aspiration. None were confirmed to have active TB.

• For children between 2-14 years of age: all children will require a Tuberculin Skin Test (TST). If the TST indicates the child has been exposed to TB, then the child will have a chest x-ray to check for abnormalities.

• The Embassy’s panel pediatricians believe that many children will show exposure for TB after the TST, but a very small number will show abnormal chest x-rays. If the child has a normal chest x-ray, no further testing is required.

• For the vast majority of children, implementation of these new requirements will cause no delay in the processing of their cases.

• For those few children who have abnormal chest x-rays, a sputum sample will be taken. CDC’s new regimen requires that the sample be cultured to check for active TB. Results of this culture take up to 8 weeks to confirm that the child does not have active TB.

• For children confirmed to NOT have active TB, their cases will be processed to completion with no further delays.

• For the very small number of children whose TB culture confirms they have active TB, the requirement is that they submit to six months of Directly Observed Therapy (DOT) at the clinic of the International Organization for Migration (IOM) in Addis Ababa. Consular staff estimates fewer than 10 orphans per year will require this treatment.

• The Consular Section encourages agencies to consult with their own pediatricians and test children whom they think might have active TB in order facilitate early treatment.

• Adoptive parents should consult with their agencies if they have concerns.

• The bottom line: for the overwhelming majority of children, these new requirements will cause no delays in the processing of their cases


Wednesday, March 18, 2009

I had to share this pic....this is how Madelyn came down to go out and play. Is she not too cute as a skateboard chick?!?!?
These are her brothers clothes...not Carson's but Yesaks!!!! She got into his closet and took the tags off and was totally going to play outside in them!?!?? Do you think she knows she is cute?? ***New Posts Below***
The girls attended an art class at a local government center. Here are the pinch pots they painted.


This week has been all about the the teeth....loosing the teeth and now straightening the teeth!
My son entered the orthodontist like this..... ......and came out like this!

Yes, he is only 8 years old...everyone is surprised that is already in braces! He had a few issues that needed to be fixed for adult teeth trying to come in. He is also a mouth breather which has caused his mouth to form a bit narrower than normal. Catching some of these issues now should prevent bigger problems in the future.
He has done well today overall. He has had a bit of pain so we had a light school day. He had fun trying to eat pizza for dinner. A boy at church was mean to him...but overall he is taking it like a champ!

One way to earn some GOLD on St. Pats Day!!!

Okay no idea why it flipped this picture on me??? I have tried everything so bear with me! So remember Madelyn loast her top tooth at 2 years old while trying to do acrobatic flips on her canopy bed! So this was her first true loose tooth as a big girl! This tooth has been ever so wiggly for a ever so long. In my house a loose tooth drives me CRAZY...I just want to yank it!! I have yanked all of Carson without his consent...but I knew Madelyn would be the child to yank her own! It was getting to the point of ridiculous-ness....Paul said it was so loose that if she sneexed it was going to put someones eye out! I was afraid she would swallow it in her sleep so we convinced her to pull it so she could beat big brother as first one to pull their own tooth! So here is the first wiggley, jiggley tooth....
Here she is going for it!


And so my dear precious baby girl found gold under her pillow this morning and some mysterious gold glitter sprinkled in my the tooth fairy!

a little GREEN in the face...

While we do have quite a bit of Irish in us...we actually just have fun celebrating St.Patricks Day every year! Not sure why there is something fun about all the green! We started our day with our FIAR story of the week, St.Patricks Day in the Morning. We enjoyed some fun printables from and .
Notice I STILL cannot get the lighting thing the bright light I get squinting or shadows???? HELP!

We met our church homeschool group at a park for a GREEN party! We munched on GREEN apples, GREEN applesauce, GREEN cupcakes, GREEN grapes, GREEN broccoli, GREEN dip, GREEN peanut butter on GREEN celery, GREEN cucumbers, GREEN cookies and sipped GREEN lemonade!! We also had some fun GREEN games! Above Carson chugs his GREEN lemonade in a relay!

Madelyn poses with the cute cupcakes we brought! Isn't he cute???

Carson and Mickey had a blast together. Carson ADORES Mickey and Mickey seems to think Carson is pretty cool too! BTW Carson is ready for an older brother too!! So as soon as we get off this roller coaster ride we may jump on again!!!

Annie wins the hot potato game and then tries her luck at tossing the gold in the pot!

Here are my crazy kids playing in the mole holes at Uncle Bubbys! We had a trip to the dentist after the party and then headed to spend time with Uncle Bubby. The kids love him so much and we are trying to spend as much time as we possibly can with him.

The latest update....

Okay know you are a terrible blogger when you just steal someone elses words...but my dear friend Jana explained this oh so well.....I figured why even try....(don't ya love my "sentences"????) Her words are below!

We received news yesterday that the CDC (yes, the United States side of this whole process) has implemented new policy effective March 23 that says that “immigrants from Ethiopia” (aka Yesak & Yohannis) must have a negative TB test AFTER passing court and before travel plans can be made. In a nutshell, what this means is just a delay to travel plans while we wait for TB tests to come back. Your prayer can be that neither of the boys have TB or have been exposed to TB because if they do come back with positive test results, they will keep them for “6 months of Directly Observed Therapy at the IOM Clinic in Addis Ababa before they can have a visa approved”. (Honestly, that might just put me over the edge!) There are many families that are at the same place that we are right now in this whole process. Please just pray for all these kids and their families...and pray that with this new policy, that they implement it in a speedy fashion and it provides as little delay as possible for children waiting to come home.

Also in the update yesterday…(Well, let me preface this with what typically happens…) When we go to Ethiopia to pick up the boys, we will have an Embassy Appointment in order to get the paperwork needed to be able to bring them back into the United States with us (I think that’s what this appointment is for). This appointment used to been done once a week on Wednesday, making it easy to schedule travel to pick up kids. They have now decided to only have these appointments available twice a month, which will most likely result in more delays from court approval time to travel time. Please pray for patience for us and the other families that will be waiting even longer to bring home their children.