Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Run! Father Run!

I'm a bit behind but obviously the unexpected call that we received our referral last week threw everything out of orbit!

For Father's Day Pete and Nick ran in a 5k event. Nick has run in several kids runs but this was his first 5k. We had done a few practice runs and he was very excited to run this event with his dad on Father's Day.

As Noah and I waited at the finish line, I was reminded about much I love this sport. It's hard to believe that running hasn't always been a part of our lives. Pete decided to run his first marathon in memory of Jack on the first anniversary of when we lost him and then a few years later I started running. Now to have our children be able to participate and get excited about running in events is so fun. I used to laugh that people would pay money to run in an event. I was confused on how there could be whole magazines about running. I mean really, put right foot in front of left, repeat, how hard is that? But now here we are, a family of runners, who would have guessed!

Friday, June 25, 2010

The Call!

We are finding out that adoption is similar to just about everything else having to do with creating and raising your family, there are often things that take you by suprise! As mentioned in my last post, we were #4 on the list. I was telling people we could get the call that day, in a week or in two months but really I was thinking at least a month or two. Since we were so close Pete and I talked about how we wanted to receive the call. We agreed that if I was at work that we would have a conference call to receive the news and then I would come home so we could see the picture together for the first time.
I was at work on Thursday and I saw Pete come on instant messenger and a second later my phone rings. I don't recognize the number and for a second I wondered if it could be "the call" but then dismissed the idea because it would be highly unlikely that they would have receive four more referrals after receiving five earlier in the week. Well, it was our adoption consultant and I practically yelled "Why are you calling me!?" She said she had Pete on the other line and I just lost it and started to cry. I kicked off my shoes (not sure why but couldn't handle my shoes at that moment) and was pacing around my office in total shock while she told us about our daughter. She is 15 1/2 months old and the reason we were offered the referral is because we recently increased our age from under 12 months to under 18 months.

After we got off the phone with our adoption consultant Pete called me right away and I told him I was about to head out the door. Well, he had a doctors appt in half an hour (as part of our immigraton paperwork renewal) and so I would have to wait until he got home. I told him I couldn't wait so I turned my computer back on and we waited for the email to come through and opened it at the same time. We only received two pictures but some other families are traveling soon so we can request for them to take more pictures for us.
Pete went off to his doctors appointment and was nervous when they took his blood pressure because he was so excited. When he got home we went to pick up the boys and we went out to dinner to celebrate and to tell them. When we told them that the agency had called and they had found our baby sister Noah got excited and said "Where!?" and was looking around the restaurant! Still a difficult concept for a three year old I guess. All night he kept saying "We have to go get our baby sister!" Believe me, we feel the same way. But, it's most likely that we will get a court date after the courts reopen in October. So, for now we are thrilled to have received our referral and we look forward to receiving more pictures. And while she can't be home with us we know she is at the transition home for our agency where from all accounts of previous travelers, the staff are wonderful and love the child dearly.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010


Warning: Long post with no pictures

I love to read other adoption blogs. I love reading posts about the excitement of the referral calls and trips to Ethiopia but also appreciate when people share the challenges of attachment, feelings of post adoption depression or just challenges with adoption in general. Those posts help to keep us grounded that adoption is not just all sunshine and rainbows but in reality is a difficult journey but hopefully one that is very rewarding and fulfilling as well. I appreciate it when other adoptive parents can share their joys and challenges and "keep it real".

So, while I will do my best to keep it real, I must warn that I am actually overall a fairly positive person. I can usually "talk" myself into seeing the positive side of things.

So, where the heck is she going with this you may ask. Referrals. For the last month there haven't been any referrals and we have been stuck at #7. As much as we eagerly await the call to introduce us to our daughter, at least through a description and pictures, I can talk myself into being patient for a few reasons. First off, a few of our close friends are going through some big difficult life events. Seeing their struggles as we try to support them reminds us that waiting a few more days, weeks or even months is not such a bad thing in light of what they are experiencing. Another reason is that I always feel a little guilty "wishing" for referrals. In an ideal world the children would not be in orphanages waiting to be adopted but rather they would be raised by their parents who were healthy and able to care for them. For our wish to come true it means another family has to experience heartache and that's certainly not something I wish for. And lastly, whether or not we are patient it will happen when it happens and there's nothing we can do to change that.

So, all the jibber jabber above describes my head. My heart often has thoughts of its own but my head can usually convince my heart to settle down and be patient. Then yesterday there were three infant girl referrals making us #4 on the list! And yes, my heart took off racing with anticipation.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Introducing - Nick the First Grader!

Last week Nick finished up his first year of grade school and is now officially a first grader! The top picture is him on his first day of school last August and the bottom picture is him with his wonderful kindergarten teacher. I feel that we really got the best teacher of the group of kindergarten teachers so I can only hope we are so lucky next year.

Nick will continue at the extended day care on the school campus throughout the summer in their camp program. The new crop of kindergarteners have arrived at the summer program so he officially feels like a first grader now.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010


Yesterday I worked on getting all of the paperwork done to renew our immigration form that is expiring next month. This included having my blood drawn (again!), having fingerprints taken at the immigration office in Oakland, having fingerprints taken for LiveScan at the local UPS office and having both boys medical forms filled out by their pediatrician.

Including yesterday we have now been fingerprinted four times! But, we just do what we're told with the hope that it brings us one step closer to meeting our daughter. We've been stuck at #7 on the waiting list for almost a month now so at least it feels like we are doing something.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Library Time

This last weekend I went out to Denver to spend five days with my wonderful friend Kristen. Actually, the word friend doesn't adequately describe Kristen as she is more family than friend. In fact, the first date Pete and I ever went on was with Kristen and some guy she was dating way back then and Pete and I both love her like family. So it was wonderful to be with my dear friend and to get to spend time with her little girl who is 19 months old. While I was gone Pete and the boys enjoyed fun dad and son time which included launching... and then losing a brand new rocket.

As great as it was to see and spend time with my friend it is always great to come home. On Tuesday I was able to spend time with Nick since I was a volunteer for his class field trip to the zoo, which was a zoo in and of itself taking six kindergarten classes on three school buses! Then Nick and I picked Noah up from preschool and went to the library so that Noah could get his own library card. Nick got one once he was able to write his name so we did the same for Noah. He was very excited to have his own card and picked out a book on butterfly's as his first official book as a card carrying library member.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Forms and More Forms.. but no coffee

Pete and I are in the process of renewing our immigration form which requires an updated homestudy. Part of updating our homestudy is that we have to redo a lot of our paperwork including updated medical evaluations for both of us and the kids. Today I was scheduled to have my physical at 10:30 and because I had to have lab work I wasn't allowed to eat or drink anything prior to my appointment. Now I am the type of person who has a bowl of oatmeal and a cup of coffee first thing every morning. Nick even asks, "Mom, have you finished your coffee?" before he asks me to play or do anything else. Yeah, all the signs of an addict but I'm ok with this but it makes days like today particularly hard.

So I arrive for my doctors appointment at 10:30 and of course I forgot the form that is the purpose of the whole appointment. Hey, I hadn't had my coffee yet so what do you expect? Anyhow, I was able to access my email from their office and print another form. Around 11 they still hadn't called me in so I pleaded with them to please draw my blood which they did. I had a grandola bar unwrapped and in my hand so as soon as they were done, I was eating. I completed the rest of appointment and headed to Starbucks. I was just sitting down enjoying my oatmeal and coffee when the doctors office called. They hadn't drawn enough blood and what they had drawn had congealed. Are you kidding me!? Since I only need blood work they are referring me to a lab where next week I will proceed with attempt number 2 to have the tests run to show that I am still healthy and fit.

The good news is (and yes, I am ALWAYS looking for the bright side of things) is that they drink coffee in Ethiopia. In fact, they love coffee so much that they have a coffee making ceremony. Now that's my kinda place :)