Wednesday, April 28, 2010

1 more day

Of course I'm starting to feel sick, sore throat and cough. what the heck, I've been healthy all this time and right before we leave. No way will I let this happen!!!I will stay healthy i will i will i will

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

"Look at that guy"

                "I Love you Oaks"
"Oakies is my best friend" -Tuesday morning, Adi Kenya 2 yrs
"Adi is not my best friend, wheres pepper?" -   Tuesday morning, Oakland Cross 3 yrs

It seems like I'm blogging about these dogs a whole lot lately.I'm thinking I need a new subject for blogging.
I know, how about this little cutie living in Ethiopia and about to have his world rocked once he meets his new sister and "the boys" in 5 days.
We attempt round 3 on friday, 2 days away.
"Oh mommy he is sooo cute. the little baby brother bay. look how cute. And look at that guy" (referring to the duck) - Adi Kenya, 2yrs, upon seeing this picture

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

I miss my dogs

I unpacked today.
It was hard, but necessary. I bought groceries too, enough for a week and a half.  But the kicker is going to be going to clinical tomorrow morning and seeing my classmates whom bid me farewell last week.

I also miss our dogs. Our two big dumb sweet mutts. They went to gramma's house on thursday and she didn't want to bring them back in case we did leave. Well, she probably  really DID want to bring them back,but you know what I mean. They can be a bit much at times, especially when you come home to see a 500 pg cook book eaten and strewed across the living room floor, or see that they have eaten an entire box of pancake mix and then drank a bucket of water to wash it down. What happens when you add water to dried mix, yup, it expands. Then you have to feed them hydrogen peroxide to make them throw it up and what finally does come up looks like you could add a little syrup and have a yummy breakfast( Mind you, these dogs are not puppys they are 3 and 4. Yet they continue to act that way and by doing so have worn their welcome out at every possible home in asheville except grammas) Anyways, I actually miss them. They are coming home tomorrow and I may have different feelings then.

We have tickets out of asheville a week from friday. At least this way we don't have the long long drive before and after a long long trip.

I really felt a peace in my heart last night after getting home and knowing there was a new plan, and talking with some other families who will be traveling with us.  It turns out a lot of us are on some of the same flights together. They are all also getting little boys, so it will be a fun group.  But I am sad now, sad that we aren't with Belay.  We should have been. What would that have felt like? what will it feel like?

On a positive, I am enjoying more time with just Adi. We played hard all day long today. It was rainy and cold, so we didn't go anywhere or see anyone, and it was nice.  She is growing up so fast. At dinner tonight she informed us she was too big for her booster seat and she will now sit on her knees on the chair and brother bay can have the booster. She also packed a bag full of clothes, slung it around her shoulder and marched to the door saying "I'm ready, lets go get brother bay". I guess now she just thinks every time we go to get him it turns into a fun adventure where she usually ends up with a new toy because she's been such a trooper, or watches dvds in the car on the way home.  Man is she in for a surprise when it really does happen.

So for now, we are unpacked, and settled back home trying not to think about traveling at all (yeah right!)

Ash Ash go away, don't come back another day. (oh please don't mess up our next trip)

here we were camped out at the airport attempt #2

And some shots  from our fun weekend to and fro atlanta (we managed to go the aquarium at least)
And saw this coming home one of the times (not sure which one)thought it was something I should take a picture of it. Yes it says 'Adi'

And a little baby shower that Andy's co workers threw for us. Andy is being forced by all those women he works with  to "show off " his gifts  like your supposed to at showers.
(I'm showing him how its done)                                                  Supposedly the best oil, "apply head to toe"

Sunday, April 18, 2010

update 2

we are still in North Carolina. After driving back home from Atlanta on friday, we have spent the day on the phone with many different airlines.  My sweet father in law spent 6 hrs on the phone with delta. What it ended up coming down to is us frantically trying to get  Andy on a solo flight asap. Because we couldn't afford 9-10,000 dollars in new plan tickets for all three of us(the only way to do it would have been to try and book on a different airline, and of course, with a natural disaster all prices are jacked way up) But we thought about doing it for one. We found one flight. It would have taken him on Monday night to Huston, then to Tel Aviv, then after 9 hrs in tel aviv, he'd make it to Addis at 5:30 am on wed and pick Belay up and head immediately to the embassy. Then he would have to turn around friday and do the same flight back solo, exhausted, and with a new baby.
We almost booked it. We were on the phone with the airline and trying at that very minute to decide if it was worth it or not, and we just couldn't do it.

The thought of not going was too painful for me, plus the thought of being home alone with Adi and no help for when I needed to go to school was just not a good thought.
So, we are taking our chances that we leave tomorrow. Some airlines are opening and the have run 10 test flights all showing no problems today.

The problem is we have to leave before we know if the flight is canceled.  The is no way around it, if we don't show up and are flight is not canceled, then we have wasted all the money on 3 tickets, and if we drive there and it is canceled, we have to drive back home to get back to work and school and on with our lives for 2 weeks until we hopefully can try again.

So, at this point, we just really really don't want to drive the 3.5 hr to Atlanta airport to then turn around and drive home the same day.

Oh how badly I want to board that plan tomorrow. The last two mornings waking up to no updates on flights taking off have been like reliving the disappointment all over again. And I fear it will be tomorrow again.

Thinking about how we would be holding him now is what hurts the most.

Trying to let go of some of this hurt, but it is really hard right now.

Friday, April 16, 2010

first update

I guess this is as good a time as ever to update.  We are in atlanta, waiting to hear news on whether or not our flight will be canceled tonight. We drove here last night with the intention of being rested and let Adi play all day before we boarded the flight(as oppsed to driving 3.5 hr then getting right on the 24 hrs of flying).
Once we got into our room and connected to the internet we started seeing all the delays and canceltions due to the volcano that irrupted in Iceland 2 days ago.  The volcano's ash blew all over nothern europe, causing thousands of cancelations. 
So we wait. again. At least for now we are still in the hotel, which for some reason Adi thinks is amazing. Maybe becasue, as she pointed out, there is and "office"(the desk), a couch, a table, and a bed all in one room. Or maybe because she got to sleep in bed with mom and dad, or because she got to watch cartoons in the morning. Anyways, she is still happy.
As of now our flight is still not cancelled, but I have the feeling they will wait till the last minute to cancel, which will involve us sitting, with all our luggage at the check in part of the airport, waiting.
If it is canceled, we hope to get on a flight asap, which may be monday night.  We just need to get there by tues evening, to make it to embassy on wed. There are 6 (I think)other families traveling, and so far only 2 others are in our boat. But one lucky family is in Germany, enjoying a mini vacation on airline vouchers, while they wait(Melanie, we are jealous of you guys:) All we have is the beauty of Atlanta. At least if we make it to Amsterdam, we can see some sites there for a while.
So stay tuned and see how it all folds out....

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

exhausted mind exhausted body

It's Wednesday night. All the bags are finally packed. The "boys" (our 2 dogs) are even packed and ready for a week with gramma and long runs on the golf course.  My friends are all set on house sitting and taking care of the cat and plants, and my mom even offered to come clean our house while we are gone so we can come home to a clean calm home. As I lay here tonight, exhaustion takes over.  My mind and body haven't stopped since a little less than 2 weeks ago when we heard news about our travel dates.  Tonight, I finished my week of class and clinical and have all my online assignments lined up to work on during the trip.  (I know, sounds like a blast right?) Preperation has been more draining than I thought. Not only is the logistical part of packing up a family of 3 for a trip across the world to return as a family of 4 quite an undertaking, but the emotions behind what this all means has hit me hard. I yearn to sleep after these long days but as soon as my head hits the pillow the mind games begin.  What will he be like, how will he react to seeing us, what will Adi do, what will it feel like to hold him, how hard will this be on Adi, does he have any idea how his life is going to change?
Although one can never be fully prepared for what we are embarking on, I do feel content and ready. I have worried about everything possible, I am expecting the worst and hoping for the best. I want Belay home, but I want to take in this trip too. 
Tonight is our last night at home with Adi as an only child. It is her last night of not sharing a room, and our last night of peaceful sleep in our bed for a while too Im sure:)
The boys (see above) always know when we are leaving, the bags get pulled out of the closet and they start to panic.  Adi, I think, has that same feeling. She knows something is up but can't possibly know to what extent.
I do hope to blog in Ethiopia, however have heard that it may be difficult with the internet connection. But do stayed tuned to follow our trip.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Africa then and Africa now

Its been confirmed. we are traveling on friday april 16th for an Embassy date on April 21! This is the last final hurdle in bringing our son home.  He will get his visa and we can leave on sat to come home with him.  Now, he won't be an American citizen until we re-adopt him here in the US. (which, thank goodness for Andy's best friend, the family law attorney, who is doing this all for us) We went ahead and bought our plane tickets and planned for this trip without this confirmation so having it means a lot to us.  With some of the new laws forcing the Ethiopian government to inspect certain cases more in depth than usual, do to unfortunate cases of child trafficking type issues, our embassy date confirmations took longer than usual. Since we are with a morally sound agency (thank god for that one too) the orphanage that Belay has been with is not in question, so while we were not 100% sure, we knew chances were good to get the go ahead.

I have to say this one little email we got with this news really and truly has put this all into place. Now, it really is happening.  So much like the reality of your first child being born. All the unknowns, uncertainties, what ifs that go along with first born, but not so much with second born. Well first adoptions must be the same, so many what ifs to think about that wouldn't be there if he was the second born.

Tonight Andy and I got to go on a date. We seem to go out once a season (spring, fall, summer, winter) and it couldn't have come on a better night. We received the confirmation hours earlier so we were still gitty and ready to celebrate.  And, instead of talking about the adoption process or school or work we talked about how exciting it would be to return to Africa.  We talked about all our wild adventures as youth traveling through Africa, Europe and Asia.  And confirmed with each other that you needed to be either naive or extremely educated in certain areas to successfully do what we had done, and we were, without a doubt, naive.   This trip will be different that any of those for so many reasons. This trip isn't about Africa, or what we will see and experience, this trip is about family. It is about growing our family the way we see it needs to be. Its about seeing the room our boy has been living in and bringing home to hos new room. And we are already talking about when we will return on our terms.

Sunday, April 4, 2010

Last days as a family of 3

Spring is here and I can't bear looking at snowing pictures anymore, so here is a refreshing new family photo for the title page

New Burn, NC. Grampa's Funeral. Adi with Mem and Apa
Easter. With the sudden news of traveling in 2 weeks, we decided to stay home and spend the day as a family of 3. Is was hard to say no to wonderful invites from our families, but we realized this day was the last "free" day with nothing to do as a family of 3 and with 2 busy weeks ahead of us we choose to lay in the sun at the lake and let Adi play all day. The weather was beautiful but it feels a little strange to have no leaves on the trees yet. Here we are enjoying our time with Adi before her and our lives change drastically. We even choose to forgo the nap!

Friday, April 2, 2010

2 weeks

Plane tickets were bought this morning. Andy, Adi and I will be flying off to pick up our son and brother in exactly 2 week. Wow, this was unexpected. There is still a very small chance we have to wait until may, but we wont know until next week and we couldn't buy tickets 1 week before departure. If we must, we will change tickets, but I don't think we will have to.
The last few weeks have been a roller coaster of emotion and tons of stress.I have been interning as my final nursing clinical at a pediatric cancer center, which I loved, but it took a lot out of me. On Wed night we realized that we actually may be traveling much sooner.  Of course, since I am married to Andy, we had nothing planned and the days leading up to this were filled with "Oh, don't worry, it'll all work out" or " we'll deal with that when the time comes"...well the time came and we aren't ready.
I have spent the last few days researching flights, guest houses, packing lists of previous families, vaccines, hours on phone with pediatricians and health dept, all the while trying to finesh up with my sick kids.  I have to go back to school for one more month to finish up and take a few tests. There were a few days where I thought, no way can I do this and travel. But people, many whom barely know me, have all pulled through and it is working out. I'm taking a few tests early, attempting to study on the plane and any down time when kiddos may be sleeping.  My mom and mother in law will be here to help us when we get back, so I can just go to class and study and not worry about too much else (not that that will be easy, once a mom always a mom, even if grammas are in the house).I spent hours at target buying over the counter meds to bring with, everything I could think of from allergy to gas to sleeping aids. Adi got the special back pack she has been begging for for months (its a dora one that you can pull, with the handle and wheels) that she can fill full of toys for the plane. We bought bottles.( when we got home Adi opened them up and wanted to bring them into her sandbox and when I told her that was not a great idea, it ended ugly)
Luckly this week is spring break for both Andy and I so we can do work/study and pack all week.
I can't really believe this is all happening, but I couldn't be happier.( I can say that now that Ive stopped hyperventilating and worrying all night long)