Sunday, July 27, 2008

Seven months later

Here is the picture I took when I was in Ethiopia in December. She was two months old.

When we started this process, things went so fast and smooth. We got our dossier done in a month and got a referral a week later. We thought we might even have her home by March which would have been 5 months from start to finish. Crazy.

As I'm sure you all know, our luck kind of ran out after that and the last few months have been very hard, not because it is taking long in the grand scheme of life, but because everyone else seemed to be passing court, traveling, bringing their kids home... And each week, we thought "this will be the week our luck will change". We were affectionately (and with a hint of pity I'm sure) known as old-timers.

Of course, now that I am traveling in less than three weeks, none of that seems important anymore. What is important is that we are going to bring our girl home soon and she seems very healthy and happy. And...

We just got some pictures from a traveling parent. Can you believe it? She's on the potty. She's only nine months old!

If our luck has returned, maybe they will have her fully potty trained by the time we arrive. LOL. However, from the sequence of events, it looks like they pretty much sat her on the potty as if it were a bumboo seat and left her there for a while. No idea if she went but, heh, it's a start.

I guess one of those potty seats should now be added to our shopping list.

Boy, we are in for a world of surprise; we had planned for a somewhat inert little baby and instead we're getting a mobile, smiling, laughing bundle of energy.

Not that I'm complaining.

Friday, July 25, 2008

Off to the races

We are now in full travel planning mode with a sense of urgency. And good thing as availability is really poor I assume due to the high number of cases that they are trying to process before the courts close in August/September. It sounds like it is mayhem over in Ethiopia with all agencies trying to get their cases heard and approved before August 5th or thereabouts. I imagine a total free for all with all the agency reps standing on the courthouse stairs holding files and raising their hands hoping to be chosen. I'm sure it is nothing like this but who knows. The process is somewhat of a mystery.

The good news is that we have our flights and as of an hour ago, our hotel. We are leaving in 3 weeks and will be back on August 23rd. We managed to get seats on Emirates Air which is supposed to be a pretty kick ass airline. For those that want to torture yourselves, check out their first class suites. No, we are not lucky enough to be traveling that way. I wish! Plain ole economy for us which is actually supposed to be quite nice on Emirates. And we get to fly on the new ginormous Airbus A380 that everyone has been talking about.

My mother in law is coming with me which is great as she is a neo-natal nurse and just the person to have to help with a somewhat terrified new parent. And if Fiori is sick at all (most of the kids seem to have some minor malady), she can weigh in. My mom will be in Thailand and may also fly in for the momentous occasion.

And best of all, the four musketeers will be traveling together. That is to say, there are four of us who have had the same court date and been going through the same ups and downs over the last month or so. Lisa is traveling on the same itinerary, Chris is trying to and Theresa is off a day or so. But we will all be there at the same time to fulfill our pact to share pizza and beers.

Oh, and in other news, something like five others passed today at our agency. This has been a good week and I hope the good news continues to come for the others waiting to clear court.

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Our bedroom is now the happiest place on earth

And not for the reason you think so get your mind out of the gutter.

Around 1:45 in the morning, we got a call to let us know that we passed court today in Ethiopia. Fiori is officially our daughter!

Thanks to you all for the support, emails, thoughts and prayers during our long process. And thanks to Grace for sleeping with the phone by her bed and calling us as soon as she heard.

Friday, July 18, 2008

Happiest place on earth? Not so much.

We didn't make it through court again. I got a pretty early email message that made it sound like I was the only case that didn't make it through court today (of 6 cases). I of course start FREAKING OUT. What's wrong with my case? Am I ever going to get her? I'm starting to feel like throwing up. The saving grace was that if I was the only one, a couple other "old timers" made it including Lisa who has gone through much more than I.

So I call her ready to congratulate her. She hears the chipper sound of my voice and figures I must have made it. Turns out neither of us have. So now we think we are the only two who didn't make it and both of us are freaking out together since our cases seem to have some sort of link and both of us have been having so much trouble. Grace emails back and says nope, the only cases that passed today were the ones that were scheduled for Wednesday and had been pushed back to today. Ours are now pushed into next week sometime (Monday please).

Apparently a bunch of agencies are getting cases delayed due to an agency named Gladney. All of Gladney's cases were put on hold a while ago because they do a lot of work with an orphanage that was under investigation. So a number of folks have been in limbo for a while. This week they finally started hearing Gladney cases again. Great for them. Bad for us since their cases are pushing our cases out.

So we have a couple of new names for Gladney - Sadney, Badney, Madney. Take your pick, I'm not very happy with Gladney right now. Not their fault and their families have been waiting too but c'mon, we got our referral in December and we finally get our (2nd) day in court only to be delayed again.

On a brighter note, I did have a great day today with my friend Jeannette and her kids at Universal Studios. Totally kept my mind off my woes.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Let's hope the Magic Kingdom brings some magic

I decided to get outta dodge for a few days in order to take my mind off things as we wait for the results of our Friday court date. So I'm going to Disneyworld.

I'm meeting my good friend from Atlanta and her daughters and we are doing the amusement park thing for a couple of days. Should be fun as I love amusement parks. And it's going to be HOT so there may be some pool time involved.

I'm coming back on Saturday morning so I'll either be crazy happy and really, really depressed when I hit the tarmac. For my husband's sake (and my sanity's sake), I really hope it is the former.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008


This was a post from Rhonda to our Yahoo adoption group:
"I encourage you to stay strong and optimistic. Adoption is not for the faint of heart and I know you all are courageous women! Do not borrow trouble. Get excited about your court date, celebrate your baby showers, enjoy preparing for your child who will soon be here.

If you fail court, well that is for another day and worrying today will not lessen the pain on that day. Do not let Fear rob you of your joy and optimism for today. Be fearless and bold!

Please do not make me break out into "We are Women, Hear us Roar."
My husband would approve of that message since that is what he tells me all the time, although not quite as eloquently and certainly not with a mention of women roaring.

Wednesday, July 2, 2008


We didn't pass. All of us that had cases today have a new court date (I think) on July 18th.

It sounds like MOWA asked for something more. I don't know whether we all needed the same thing or not. Apparently, each MOWA officer is different in what they may ask for so it is not like our dossier where as long as you have a list of docs, you are good to go. Some MOWA officers want more stuff or different stuff than others. I guess that is why a lot of people don't pass the first time and do the second time. Hopefully, once they provide the additional documents needed, MOWA will submit the recommendation so we are good to go at the next court date.

Our agency rep just emailed and said she talked to another agency and they had 11 cases continued for the same reason so good to know it is not just us.

Let's just hope it all gets solved before the next court date