Saturday, January 22, 2011


Nearly three weeks home now and so much has changed. I am celebrating good health after getting the report back on the boys. All blood work looks fantastic and except for giardia in Joseph the GI tract looks good also. Treating both boys just to be sure this does not linger. Jacob also got the all clear on his ears. There have been lots of firsts in this short time. First snow, first krispy creme donut, and this week I celebrated with Joseph as he began going potty by himself! Yes, it is the small things that make me happy.

They are both getting very comfortable in their new surroundings and enjoying lots of play time with nephews Michael and Colten and niece Kensley. Oh, and I found out this week that a new baby is on the way to join them! Wow, I get to be a new Mama and Gram all in the same year!!

Joseph loves to wrestle, which is right up Colten and Kensley's alley.

Michael taught him some new Wii games this evening.
This is going to end badly some day. The healthy fear is gone:)

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Memories of our embassy trip

December 28, 2010. After getting word for travel clearance on Monday morning, Kathy and I headed out of Nashville to Chicago. From there we boarded Turkish airlines, had a layover in Istanbul and then literally (well slightly) crash landed into Ethiopia. A big thanks to our dear friend Tina who agreed to get us to the airport last minute!
We arrived early morning in Ethiopia where we were greeted by the wonderful owners of Grace Guest House. A few hours to unpack and we headed to Miskaye. Joseph just happened to be standing on the steps as we entered and with a smile of recognition grasped onto my neck.
                    Jacob reacted with tears which quickly passed as we rushed off to the embassy.
                        Soon enough I had the boy's visas in hand and the prized paperwork for travel!
The next morning we returned to Miskaye where we had an unexpected visit from the boy's birth mother. I was able to get some prized pictures and information on their lives (some of which will be difficult to share at some distant time). We then went to the Lion zoo and the Ethiopian museum.
New Year's Day we returned to Miskaye for a final farewell. We had hoped the birth mother and grandmother would show up for a visit but unfortunately they were unable to make it before we left.

A trip to the park (where we found out just how fast Joseph could run!) was followed by lunch at a wonderful Italian restaurant.

Finally it was time to head to the airport and travel home courtesy of Ethiopian airlines. There are so many pictures I would like to share, but here are a few of my favorites.
Joseph was so excited to pull his suitcase along and seemed to know exactly what was happening.

Jacob played happily while we waited to board.

                                                              The airplane sighting!

                                                        All three children fast asleep:)

                                                                        TV time!
                                                               Cat nap in the bassinet!

                                                The final leg home. Dulles to Nashville.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

I can't believe it has been two weeks already...

Well, many have been asking how things are going in my world now that these two little ones are home. BUSY!!! 24/7 as a single mom can get tiresome but we are all making huge strides. The boys seem to have totally accepted me as their mom and are bonding nicely. I love that they now recognize their sisters and are okay to play with them for a while to let mama have a few minutes to clean, shop, or run errands. I am pretty sure that Jacob still has an ear infection...calling the doctor back tomorrow...and Joseph gave me a scare with symptoms of an asthma attack. Good thing I am a pro at dealing with that, though he may have disagreed as I insisted on breathing treatments for a few days. We have been out a lot, to the doctor, Walmart, Target, church, and several restaurants. I am happy to report that they are both fans of Mexican food, which makes me very happy. 

Though he doesn't look it, Jacob and Joseph both loved the snow for the short time I allowed them to be out in it. Even though they were both sick I couldn't let them miss this big Nashville snow fall. Joseph loved throwing snow balls and Jacob...well, he just ate the snow and wandered around.

Thursday, January 6, 2011

We are home!

Absolutely incredible week and a half is all I can say. The trip went of without a hitch as we arrived in Ethiopia on time, got to the guest house and showered and changed, and then headed to pick the boys up. Coincidentally Joseph was standing on the porch when we arrived. He flashed that big smile and grabbed me around the neck with a death grip. Jacob reacted with a brief cry but was very accepting after that. The embassy appointment was very low key and low stress and I had travel papers in my hands within hours. We made the most of our brief time in Ethiopia, visiting the orphanage daily, went to the lion park, playground, museum, and lunch at a fabulous Italian restaurant. The boys birth Mom visited on our second day and I was able to get some treasured pictures and history for them at a later time in life. After not arriving in Ethiopia until Thursday morning we were back on a plane Saturday night. The boys did good on the flight with only one crying spell each.
Back in Nashville we were greeted by family and friends at the airport. We went from there for a Mexican dinner and then onto the house. Kathy, Amy, Steven,Colten, and Kensley came back to the house and played with the boys until they were ready to pass out.
Other than a little difficulty with sleeping at night and wanting to be held 95% of the time, the boys have adjusted well. I hear Mama from both of them all day long which just makes me smile. They have been so fun to watch as they explore their surroundings and discover things they have never seen. Jacob has come a long way from crying when getting in the tub to crying when getting out! We have had the first visit to the pediatrician (who said they were the healthiest orphans he had ever seen). They will have blood work in a couple of weeks and begin immunizations soon after. Other than Jacob having an ear infection all seems well at this point.
Well that is all the time right now as I hear someone is up after an hour nap...going to make for a long rest of the day : )