Friday, April 17, 2009

Great date!

Mark and I had a date today! After my dr. appt, we met at the police department to have our fingerprints done! And yes, Mark did take me out for lunch afterward! Kind of like having on OB appt, I reckon!

A huge thank you to Kindra and her kids for coming to take care of our kids this morning. At first we had planned on just bringing them, but with them still being potentially contagious with chicken pox, they would have had to stay in the van all morning with Mark while I had my dr. appt. and fingerprinting...not to mention that Mark is positively swamped with work right now and didn't really have all morning!

Please pray that our fingerprints are accepted on the first go-round! The officer doing mine said that if they're very picky about it, mine will probably have to be re-done, as I've got some deep creases across my thumbprints. I guess that's what happens when you change diapers and scrub bathrooms and clean kitchens and wipe noses for a living...all that handwashing after your jobs dries your hands out! I asked if I could just go wash my hands in warm water and re-do them right then, but he said that I would have to use moisturizer consistently for a week for it to make a difference. A very nice guy, but very funny to be getting hand-care tips from a big guy in uniform with a gun belted to his side.

A few more days

Well, our goal had been to have our Home study packet ready to mail Monday. However, it can't be sent off at least till Wednesday now.

Mark had his physical exam yesterday, and I had mine today...they both went well, we both appear healthy :), and everyone was quite excited for us. But, the "routine blood work" that is required can't all be done in-house here, so it will have to go to a lab in Anch. and then come back to our dr. here...Tuesday is the earliest we'll get that back for the dr. to sign off on it. Plus, a TB test has to be read in 48-72 hrs, so with Mark having an appt. on Thursday, he wouldn't have been able to get the results looked at over the weekend. So he will stop in on Monday to have his done, I will have to go back in to get my TB read, and when Mark goes in Wed. to get his TB read, they *should* have all of our forms signed, notarized, and ready to go!

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Truckin' Along...

I know it seems quiet on the adoption front, but you can never tell how many forms are being filled out and signed behind the blog! We are almost done with our Home Study paperwork!

I'm excited that this week we'll get a lot accomplished. We will have our fingerprints done on Friday (the only day of the week the Police Dept. in town does them, which I find quite funny), and we both have our physical exams this week...which will be something to check off for both the homestudy and the dossier! (The dossier is the entire information packet that gets sent to the Minister of Women's Affairs in Ethiopia. I won't give you an exhaustive list, cuz' it's, well, exhausting...but it includes things like certified copies of our birth and marriage certificates, notarized doctor's exam summaries, financial statements, police reports, proof of medical and life insurance, the home study report, etc, etc).

Our goal, if you can pray for us in this, is to have everything for our home study ready to mail off to our social worker by Monday. Then, we can have the actual home visits arranged, and that will be a big chunk (literally and financially) handled!

With our homestudy paperwork that we hope to mail in, we need to include a check for $800. You know the amazing thing? We already have almost all of that from an informal continuation of the rummage sale! Our basement still looks like a used furniture store, and it keeps growing as people hear about the adoption and are cleaning out! Just yesterday, a gal who works with Mark donated her couch and loveseat, which are in really good condition, since they are getting new furniture. A stereo sold here, two armchairs sold there, church members who had bought from the rummage sale on time credit :),'s has continued to add up over the past few weeks.

So, we're excited and moving along here...keep on prayin'! Blessings!

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

A dad's perspective

The large majority of "adoption blogs" that we follow are written by moms. Perhaps it's a woman's verbal propensity (not that I have one, lol), but there are very few blogs in this genre written by men. So I think in some cases, it makes it harder for adoptive dads to find a voice for what they experience throughout this process. I'm sure that (aside from the very obvious physical aspects of carrying a child), both a biological pregnancy and a paper pregnancy are processed and experienced very differently for dads than for moms.

And while I can't say that the lack of dad-written experiences out there has made it difficult for Mark, I can say that he hasn't had the same quantity of experiences to which to relate.

So, it was neat for us to visit at the home of a fellow pastor and his wife a few weekends ago, as he and his wife adopted from India fourteen years ago. Even then, from the stories they shared, the paperwork process was long and sometimes frustrating. But in wrapping up a story about his request for a new social worker for their home study process, this pastor leaned in and quietly and sincerely added something to the effect of "all the headache and frustration from the process will just disappear the moment you hold that baby in your arms. You won't even remember it."

I doubt that he knew how profound a statment that was for us, coming from him. But it was an encouragement from God, in timing we can't even understand. And so we write them down. (Dt. 4:9)

PS: Thank you, Robin and Karen!

Thursday, April 9, 2009

View from the hallway

For the first time ever, I have 8 x 10 portraits of the kids hanging in the hallway. I guess we've always had so many candid photos around that I never felt the need. But, we had a family photo session in November, and there were great portraits of all three of them (after the photographer retouched the only good one of Anna to take out the boys)!
Well, I didn't want to buy three matching frames now and then not be able to find the same style for a portrait of Karis someday. To solve that dilemma, I just bought four frames! So I printed out the map with the pink-colored Ethiopia on it, added a border with Karis' name, and voila! A portrait for all four of our children! (Though I dare say I can hardly wait to have a real picture of her)!

Thursday, April 2, 2009

The Karis Tree

This is too sweet...check out my sister Tricia's blog post about her new "Karis Tree."
Yes, Karis is the name we've already chosen for our baby girl. In another post sometime soon I'll explain how we chose the name.