Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Pitiful Party

Okay, I was going to refrain from going here...I was going to "keep my chin up" be positive and not dwell on this wait. But I can't. It is where I am right now, it is what is heaviest on my is clouding my days (that and MN's amazing disappearing spring.) I really should be positive, I have so many blessings in my life...and yet, this waiting for the unknown is rocking my world. I emailed our agency specialist the other day to get her take on the wait. We are just 6 weeks away from the court cut off date and the referrals in April were few and far between. She really couldn't say one way or the other if she thought we would get through or not. I feel so guilty being so cranky about this wait. Huge tragedy has to enter the life of my daughter and her family in order for her to come into my life. I feel so conflicted. I want her home, I need her home, and yet I don't want to wish for her to go through such tragedy. Such is the tenuous dance of adoption.

If I keep the faith, I know she is waiting for me, and we will be together. But that dang date just looms on the calendar. When we started this process, April was the absolute top of the waiting range. Now it looks like June will be a true blessing, but September or October more likely.

My heart and my head hurt. I need to move beyond this, and let what will be, be...but it is so much easier said than done.

Monday, April 28, 2008


New slick!

B turns 5 today...yesterday was party day..soo much fun!

Hair taken by B...he did pretty good!

Saturday, April 26, 2008

That's what friends are for...

A dear friend stopped into the shop today to bring me a little something. Nestled in a pink stripped bag was a smooth stone with this verse engraved on it...

"Faith is being sure of what you hope for, and certain of what you do not see." Hebrews 11:1

I soo needed this little dose of faith. To say I have been a little down and edgy would be a colossal understatement, just ask my family! The ambiguity of this wait is really taking it's toll, and that combined with the fact that I feel huge guilt about being crabby about waiting, is just plain making me a little nuts. So a little dose of faith helped my perspective so very much.

Not much else to share yet today. Woke up to snow...said a very bad word...and now I am hanging in a pretty quiet store. You get the feeling that everyone is a bit down right now.

I am going to focus on faith in what I know will come, but that I cannot yet see....

Friday, April 25, 2008

7 months, 2 weeks, 6 days....

or so says the ticker on the top of the page. I am in a funk today...a funkity, funk -funk -funk...I think it is in large part due to the weather and a lack of sleep. It is raining here...again, and it is cold, and the "s" word made it's way into the forecast again. What the *#^^ is all I have to say about that! Rain of this magnitude scares away the shoppers and at the end of our slowest month, I need some sales. Only 2 sales so far today...that kind of traffic doesn't exactly cover the bills...and with it nearing later afternoon, it isn't looking good.

I am getting tired of people asking when the baby is coming. I so want to be able to two months...or 4 or 6, but instead every time I have to explain how we are really close, but we could be really far. People's eyes tend to glaze over fairly quickly when it isn't a short answer! There haven't been any more referrals this this rate ,we are heading toward a fall baby. It really needs to pick up or I really need a pick me up. Sun and a weekend off would be great...unfortuately neither are in the cards. It is a fully scheduled weekend with that s word in the forecast. YUCK!

Okay, before this gets anymore pathetic, I am going to sign off for today. Debbie Downer is going to find some caffine and some chocolate.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

An Ode to Coffee

I am sitting here this morning, in my very quiet little boutique. The rain is falling by the bucket-full and I am sipping a Starbucks Pike's Place brew. I love coffee. I truly, honestly, deeply love coffee! I have coffee memories that go a long way back. The scent of hot coffee mingled with burned toast can transport me immediately to my grandmothers kitchen table. I can smell the coffee, brewing in the old fashioned kettle on her stove, and see her pouring it into her favorite brown cup...that smell comes with the sense of grandma's arms wrapped around me. There is the smell of church coffee...yes I really think it has it's own scent...that takes me to the church basement in the heart of Denver, where I spent my youngest years. There the coffee meant fellowship, comfort, and a certain kind of joy that comes from knowing you are loved from the inside out. Then there is that nasty coffee breath smell that puts me right back into 9th grade algebra with scary Mr. Kermit...must say, that smell makes me shudder!

I didn't start drinking coffee until I was in college and interning as a nursing student in the ER. Thelma taught me to love the taste of coffee. In the middle of the night, when all was quiet, and my body was sleepy, Thelma would go and brew a fresh pot of hazelnut coffee...and we would sit and sip and wait for the next ambulance call. Those nights were always extreme...complete silence and hot coffee, or complete chaos and cold cups of coffee forgotten on the desk. I learned to love coffee in those wee hours.

Now coffee is a staple in my world. I love the Saturday morning cup, sipped while reading the paper, and mapping out a family day. I love the cup at mom's house, when everyone else is still in bed, but we get up and sip and chat over that first quiet cup...and the coffee with dessert at my mother in laws...the perfect end to a fun, busy crazy day. There are the several cups shared with a dear friend, gossiping, and enjoying the sun on the porch, and the cup I have by a quiet moment of solitude and peace.

I am so excited to travel to the birthplace of take part in a coffee ceremony, and to take my love of coffee to a whole new level...

SO my wish for you today is to take a little time for your cup- a home, at church, in your staff lounge, with a friend, or riding in the car...I am raising my mug to you!

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

When the going gets tough...

the tough get a hair cut! Yep, couldn't stand it any longer. I was holding out on getting my hair cut, thinking, when I travel to Africa it will be so handy to toss it in a pony tail...but alas, I can't hold out for Africa...I need style. I took the plunge and got a bunch chopped off. I will post a pic soon I promise. It is cute and flirty and I hope to the goddess of hair that I can style it myself in the morning! My other insanely goofy reason, for getting a cut, is good things always happen to me when I get my hair now I am ready, let the good times roll!

It was gorgeous here today. Sunny and 70. B turns 5 next Monday and we are having a Luau party for him on Sunday. Unfortunately the forecast for Sunday is 47 and rain. UGH! So I am now planning a living room luau! Should be interesting. If only I could bottle today and bring it back on Sunday! I love it when it is nice enough out for the kids to be outside. They sleep so much better after they have played hard!

Well, not much else to say today (aren't you proud of me...a whole post with no whine related to that call I am waiting for!)

Pictures soon, I promise!

Sunday, April 20, 2008

Step by Step

It was a good weekend. We stayed at mom and dads friday night so we could just hop over to the agency on Sat am. Unfor. Z got tummy flu on Fri night and puked all over nana's white bathroom carpet.(jello jigglers and red popsicle...oooh yuck!) Good thing his nana loves him so! Full of mommy guily, E and I headed over to St.Paul and the agency Sat am. Unlike when we were last there for our weekend long intro to adoption, I wasn't a nervous wreck, but rather excited to learn.

The morning was a presentation by two agency staff that shared various cultural aspects of ET and what we might experience in our travels and in our transitions once home. It was great info and the pictures were fabulous. We had a traditional Ethiopian meal for lunch. I am going to struggle with the food. I don't think of myself as a picky eater, but I am going to have to work to learn to love ET food! I like the injera (of course I haven't ever met a bread I didn't like!) and the veggie dish was good...but the meat left me a little leary. I will keep working on it! We met some very nice families and it was great to talk about the "wait" with other waiters! We even ran into a friend from college! The afternoon speaker was amazing. He is Ethiopian, but has lived in the US for 35 years. He is married to a white woman and they have adotpted 3 Ethiopian children. I could have listened to him for days. He talked about racism, and the issues our kids will face and the challenges we as parents must be ready to take on. It was great food for thought.

At the end of the day, I was getting cagey. I think I had overheard one too many conversations about parents waiting, and that dang court closure just loomed. I cornered the program specialist to see if she had any insights. She is hoping there will be several waves of referrals before the court closure on the 15th...and hopes September waiters will get through, but she said to remain prepared for the chance that it might not happen until fall. I so just can't go I am holding out for a May referral.

On other notes, the sun finally came out today and it was gorgeous. I was able to re-claim the front porch...can't wait to relax out there with a nice glass of wine! Also unearthed the patio furniture and began to clean up the backyard. Hoping the weather continues to be nice, so I can keep this momentum!

I am off...great TV is finally back on...more tomorrow!

Friday, April 18, 2008

Mama's got a new set of wheels

Well, actually, daddy does, but mama has a nice ride, with a heated seat! Found a car last night that will fit all the kids, all the gear, a dog or two, pull the boat, push the plow, and keep us in style! We welcomed a Chevy Trailblazer EXT into the family last night and ALL the testosterone in the house is happy! Phew...I am happy to be done with that search.

On the adoption front, we continue to move up the list. YEAH! We are closing in on the top 10 on the unofficial list. Hope springs eternal! She's getting close.

I was thinking about this journey yesterday and thinking how lucky we are to travel this road. There were 4 strangers, whom I met along this road, who have become true friends and lifelines along the way. So here is a huge shout out to Tesi, Cindy, Melanie, and Gina. I am honored to have these strong women walking this road with me. I hope someday we can all meet in person and love up each other's kiddos! (Melanie and Gina...lets us meet in Addis in July :) ! )

So with that happy Polly Anna thought, I am off. Tomorrow is the Ethiopia Culture Event at our agency...I'll post about it on Sunday!

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

2 months and Counting

Okay, so two months from now...they quit giving out referrals. YIEKS! This is stressing me out...maybe just a wee little bit. We are continuing to move up the list...however, there continue to be large power outages in ET which I am sure is delaying the processing of the kids files. This weekend our agency is hosting an Ethiopian Day...full of speakers, food, crafts, language etc. We will be there all day Saturday. It should be a wonderful day. I am really excited to learn more about all things Ethiopian. The director of the orphanage will be there...I have decided that he will be brining my referral with personally present it to us! A girl can dream right??!!

As for the ended up being a no the search continues.

It is warm and sunny here today...makes the attitude much more polly-anna...Yeah!

Prayers today for the people of Ethiopia, who are facing drought, power outages, and food shortages. Prayers for our baby girl, who will hopefully come to us soon...and prayers for my patience and sanity in this long wait.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

New Car?!?

So when you expand your family of 5 by get six and six "don't fit" in a Jimmy! So we are starting the adventure to a new car. We have a saying, E and I..."looking is free" however, this usually leads us to a very large outlay of cash...our house, an adoption, a car. So we have been looking freely. Car dealerships are crazy places. You are either met by the aging, been selling cars my whole life, slicker than snot salesperson who doesn't acknowledge women, or the young whippersnapper who needs to make this sale to save his job and will pretty much show you every thing on the lot, and talks mostly to the kids. Then there is the 2o something who knows just enough to be dangerous, and if you aren't careful, you'll be asphyxiated by his cologne and his rico-suave moves. In our house, I am the one who takes on the bankers, the dealers, and "dudes" I like me a warped since of fabulous accomplishment. SO naturally, the old geezer is out...ignore me and watch this sale walk away. The kid striving to keep his job is sweet and I would love to throw him a bone, but a gas guzzling suburban just isn't in the cars. So that leaves me with Rico Suave...he actually let us take a vehicle over night! Maybe thinking that, once they have it, they will love it. We do really like is a GMC Envoy XL...big enough, without being ginormous! It will pull the boat, push the plow, and fit all the kiddos, and probably the dogs as well. It is used (the only way a family of 6 can afford to go!!) It has a few little issues that need to be addressed. If those can be fixed and I can wheel and deal, our looking's free attitude will once again cost a fortune!

Funniest story of the car hunt, was taking this beast for a trip to the DQ last night. If you're gonna fit in our family, you must be able to execute the DQ run with style and class. So we go to DQ and eldest son, who had just put away four plates of noodles at dinner, gets a small blizzard and proceeds to eat it all. Then it's back into the car for a little more drive around. Eldest son quickly voices "I don't feel good, I ate too home FAST" Okay, so much for a little relaxing - test out the car- drive. Dad floors it. It's got some good get up and go! Mom, sitting next to eldest..."Please honey, don't puke in the car, it's not ours yet...Hang on honey...almost there..." We made it, puke free thank God!

So maybe by the weekend, we will have a new member of the family...granted it isn't quite the new addition I am longing for...but it is nice to obsess about something else for a few days!

Z-man says today is our day for the referral. He has it all worked out. We'll see what happens...yesterday someone just 4 days ahead of us got our time can't be too far off.

Here's hoping!

Sunday, April 13, 2008

Sunshine...On My Shoulders

Ah...woke up this am and there was this amazing blazing light shining in the sky. Could it be....the sun??? It is actually warming up. YEAH spring might just arrive. It is amazing what a little sun can do for one's mood. Don't get me wrong. I as still feeling a little blue about the slow rate of referrals, but today I am choosing to be positive. I will have a referral before the courts close. I will have my daughter before school starts in the fall. She will come.

I have turned my children in to list watching, forum reading addicts. Every time they see me on the computer, they ask...any new referrals?? Have we moved up the list? Z is certain we will get a referral on the 15th. Sounds good to me. Bring it on. I am more than ready. They all desperately want to get the referral before school is out so they can share her picture with their classes. They are so excited about having a sister. Many times in the day they will tell me..."when Ellia is home we'll..." I am thrilled they are so excited.

So not really much to say today except yeah for the sun...come on referrals...time to go to the grocery store!

Friday, April 11, 2008

Rain, Rain Go Away

I wish I could take all the rain we have been getting the last few days and send it to Ethiopia. They need it....I don't. If only it was that easy. The big rush of referrals we were hoping for this week didn't materialize. There were 2 referrals, but one for someone with a later submission date than us, and one waiting for a boy. So neither of these move us up the list. I am trying so hard to be positive. Today it just isn't in me. I had a secret hope that today would be our day. I have thought that all week. Today was going to be the day that surpassed all expectations. I guess my gut was a little off. I can't really explain how I went from twitterpated anticipation earlier in the week to complete duldroms by today. I think it has to do with the uncertainty. The fact that no one can tell me for certain that I will know my daughter before the cut off date of June 15, and the fact that amidst the ambiguity, we are being encouraged to prepare for the worst case scenario. I cannot imagine what I will do if I have to wait until Christmas to hold this child of my heart. I know she is waiting. I need her. She needs me. It is kind of like being pregnant and going to your monthly appointment each month and being told that it looks like your due date is off by a month or two or three and it could be off by as much as 6 months. You are still pregnant, but that due date is now several additional trimesters down the road. Ugh. I also know that I am completely depressed by our lack of spring. It's April already...where's the sun??? I will take tomorrow off...going to try and stay off the computer all day check back in on Sunday...and cross your fingers that Debbie Downer is out of the room so Polly Anna can post a more positive view!

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Reality Check!

Okay, so woke up this morning, still REALLY bummed out about the whole status of referrals and the fact that I may have to sit and wait much longer than I had anticipated. Just to fuel my misery, I logged on to the forum right after I poured my coffee...checking to see who speculated what in the wee hours of the morning. The first post was titled "Future travelers, bring your flashlights" and had a link to this article The article states that due to the current drought, there is not enough water in the reservoirs to produce the hydro-power ET depends on. We had discussed last night on the forum that part of the reason referrals are slow could be because of the power outages and the fact that they can't send referrals via internet when there is no power. But talk about a reality check. I thought about how distraught we get when the power is out for just a few hours...imagine 3 months of no power. I can sit here, in my huge house, with my gas guzzling cars, all the lights on, coffee pot on, appliances running, wasting time on my computer, with a DSL internet connection and complain that I may have to wait until fall to get my daughter....when on the flip side, in her country, they are in a drought, have no power, and a grim situation may be heading in an even worse direction. Yep, huge old reality check. I can wait...and we can all pray for rain in ET, for the health and safety of sunshine and her family, and prayers for those in ET working to bring families together.

On a happy note...Tesi,
is on her way home with her sweet Tariku. Prayers for their safe journey. Can't wait to talk to her once she is home and settled!!

I am off...going to try and keep my reality check at the forefront today!

Wednesday, April 9, 2008


The adoption community....mostly the community of waiters...thrive on speculation. This mornings speculation is that people with September dates won't make it through court, or not get their referrals before the court cut off of June 15th. I am choosing not to believe this latest speculation. But it does put a hint of fear in my heart. I will go nuts if I have to wait until October. Yep, certifiably crazy. But I know my daughter is waiting. So I am going with that. I choose to be positive...I choose to have hope....I choose to believe.

Edit to Add....
Okay, so Polly Anna has left the building. Got word back from our specialist. She says to plan on a June referral...but keep in mind our worse case scenario which is no referral until fall after courts re-open. She stressed that they really have no way of knowing for sure when a family will get a referral and to prepare for the worst. SO that mind is trying to prepare for a possibly LONG summer. I still really feel she is in care and waiting for a little hope is going to remain.

Tuesday, April 8, 2008


Carly Simon's tune...Anticipation is running through my head. I am rather "twitterpated" jumping every time the phone rings...obsessively checking the forum too many times a day...this could conceivably go on for weeks. Yieks! In reality, we very well may not be in this next batch of referrals, it could easily be several more weeks...several more batches. But I just feel like we are on the brink of greatness. That our time is soo close.

It might be time to start making lists....hummm how about a list of lists to make:
1. List of those to call and email at the time of referral
2 List and numbers of those we are asking to review her file
3. List of who I might invite to a possible baby shower
4. List of what to sell at the "make room for another child" garage sale
5. List of all things pink we must procure (after said garage sale)
6. List of things to do before we travel
7. List of gifts to buy while in ET
8. List of baby items we still need
9. List of things to organize before adding our #4
10. List of things to do once baby is home

So a list of lists...that should keep me busy for at least 3 minutes.


Monday, April 7, 2008


Started my set of travel shots today. Well...not necessarily the travel shots, but did get a tetenus booster and started the Hep A series. Now to decide what else to get. Seems there is great division on what shots you really need and what you can get by without. I think some of it depends on when we travel etc.

After yesterday's totally climactic day, today is seeming pretty ho-hum. I do still have this incredible peace, knowing we are really close. It is a great feeling to have. Did a little pink shopping today. We can send sunshine a gallon sized bag care package once we know who she is. I want to include a blanket we have slept with so I grabbed one of my fav's from the store last week. We will also send her a photo album with up-close shots of all of us. I got the album today and warned the kids I would be stalking them with the camera in the next few days. I am also hoping to send a long some sort of recording of our voices/ singing, so I need to find a good portable tape player or some such. It is fun to do some of these little things that make everything seem so much closer.

No referrals on the forum today, but I am hoping soon. It always makes my heart sing when I see Referral in the subject line.

I think that is all for today...stay tuned...more to come

Sunday, April 6, 2008

She's waiting for me

I have gone back and forth with myself as to whether I wanted to post about this or not. I think this will become (no...already is) an amazing moment in this adoption journey. So since I seem to be sitting here, typing this in, I guess I am going to share...

I haven't been able to imagine my baby. I can imagine her here at home, but I haven't been able to place her in Ethiopia. I have seen enough pictures of the care center and so many beautiful babies that my lack of vision cannot be blamed on a lack of reference points, or ideas to draw from. So anyway, I was sitting in church this morning. I was trying really hard to focus on the story being dramatized about Emmaus and Jesus walking unknown among his followers. The passage described the moment when they knew he was Jesus and then he was gone. So I was trying to focus on this message, the amazement they must have experienced...the burning in their hearts that they felt. But all I could focus on was my daughter. I could see her. Talk about amazement and a burning in your heart. I could see her laying in her bed in the care center, she is dressed in a too big dress with floppy socks. She is cooing and kicking her legs. I had such clarity and such an amazing sense of peace. Peace that she is in care now, peace that she is safe and peace in the knowledge that we will soon know each other. I know she is waiting for me.

Upon returning from church, I putzed around for a bit, picking up, reading the paper..typical Sunday stuff. I quick logged onto the computer to see if there was any e-mail and to see what Tesi had posted to her blog overnight (she is in ET right now, picking up her son). There was an EMAIL, from Tesi. We haven't e-mailed much in the last few weeks...she is in ET with her son and there is limited internet access. Yet there was a note, posted during the night. It read..."I saw your daughter. (I don't know for sure,) but when I saw her, I got this weird feeling like she was yours....and she is exceptional." (can hardly type through the tears and goose bumps right now....) It is just too amazing to me that the same morning I find such peace, Tesi knows she has seen my daughter. God is so good. And I know this is it...she is waiting for me....and we will know each other soon.

Saturday, April 5, 2008

It was a Great Dream

Had a great dream the other night. I dreamed we got THE call. It was Ben and he was calling to say that he had the babies (yes plural). He was bringing them right over and we should get ready. It was early in the am and we were trying to get everyone ready for school. He came and brought us our daughter from Ethiopia and another from China! Eric and I each took one and started to frantically try to get them ready. Then we realized we had to go to the MD to get our shots, even though we didn't travel. So we are at the MD and getting shots and realize the babies are startving so I run to walgreens to find diapers and formula. Then realized I hadn't opened the shop and the kids never went to school. But oh those babies were gorgeous. It was a great dream and I woke up with a huge smile.

So just between me and you (all 1500 that are supposedly reading this....) I think this is going to be our week. I think we will find out who our daughter is by Friday. Nothing to base this on at all....just my gut again.

I'll keep you posted and blog a little more drivel tomorrow!

Thursday, April 3, 2008

Pollyanna It Up...

This was the advice from my adoption pal Cindy. It was a good laugh. Now the question is how to "Pollyanna" it up effectively. There was good news by one poster on the CHSFS web forum today. She had heard from her SW that several babies were coming into the care center in the next few days, so to expect some referrals in the next week or two. The Pollyanna in me is sure my daughter is in this group. Crabby pants on the other hand says...oh are too far down the list to have a daughter in this group. Pollyanna retorts (ever so sweetly) with chin up...hope for the best, your daughter is coming, crabby pants sarcastically states...look at the statistics 8 months isn't for a few more weeks...

Here's hoping my SW isn't reading along....I really do start to sound certifiable! So I am going to focus on Pollyanna...I am sure this involves wine and chocolate. I do get a little reprieve this weekend. It is girls weekend with my aunt and cousins at mom's house....a serious dose of estrogen should help (not to mention wine and chocolate!) I am also committing to posting to the blog nearly everyday until that referral comes. Might be a lot of drivel, but it might keep me busy and you faithful blog readers can help me "Pollyanna it up!"

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

Emtional Trainwreck

Okay, so yesterday was sunshine and smiles, optimism and polly-anna thoughts. Today, not so much. Today, I am at a loss, tears brimming just below the surface. I was trying to figure out what is so hard at this moment. As I dropped B off preschool, the talk among the mommies was all about another mom who's delivery is imminent. As her belly has blossomed, everyone has oohed and ahhed over the coming arrival. Granted it is hard to miss a basketball of a belly, and the day to day-ness of her pregnancy is right out there for the world to see. But I want someone to ask me how I am acknowledge that I am expecting too, my baby is no less important or wonderful or just can't SEE that she is on her way. I have carried three babies, and delivered three babies, and although this "pregnancy" is certainly not having the same physical effects, the emotions are right there...maybe even more so as I grow this child in my heart. I want to celebrate all that is to come...I want to blabber on and on about how I am feeling, what is happening, how excited I am, how scared I am, how joyous I am....I just want people to remember that although I don't have a basketball belly, I am just as immersed in waiting, and growing, and longing for this child to arrive. It's time.

Tuesday, April 1, 2008

Will this be my month??

April blazed in with glorious sunshine today. I love it! The snow of yesterday will soon be a distant memory...thank God! I am buzzing with the hope and possibility of a referral this month. (hmmm...or it could be the double espresso from Starbucks this am!) Chances are good it won't be until the end of the month, or maybe even next month, but I am ready. The cell phone is never more than an arm's length away..and I jump every time it rings.

I am sending special hugs out to Tesi this am...she leaves in the morning to get her son. She has been one of the wonderful treasures I have found along this journey! Prayers for her and her family as they travel this last piece of the journey to handsome little Tariku!

Finally today... I want to know....WHO"S READING THIS BLOG??? I put a hit counter on a week ago just for fun and was astounded to see so many hits. SO if your reading, leave me a little comment! I would love to know who is along for the ride!

Happy sunshine and here's to a forecast of showers of April Referrals!