My blog has moved!

You should be automatically redirected in 2 seconds. If not, visit
and update your bookmarks.

Friday, October 31, 2008

All Dressed Up

A 50's themed Ballerina:

Queen of the Nile, Cleopatra:


Red Letters Campaign- Refreshed

Hello bloggy friends. Praise God I have awoken today renewed. It's as though my tears watered a fresh crop of hope and faith in my heart. Thank you Jesus! All I can say is it's a true blessing from Him.

I received much comfort from my loving husband who was so tender with me yesterday despite his own immense sadness. He encouraged me with so much gentleness and truth. What a man!

You know that YG family I posted about two posts ago? They rallied around us like you cannot imagine. We had notes coming out our ears. On Facebook, on Twitter, right here on my blog. Next, came our church family. Many of whom sent notes, left comments, sent emails and ecards. How can a girl feel sorry for herself when she's got so many beloved friends encouraging her like that. I shared all the notes with Dustin and he agreed that everyone's prayers and encouragement was a healing balm applied straight from God's own hands to our hearts. Thank you to everyone who was a part of that! We love you!

Dustin and I prayed for ALL the children in Ethiopia last night with the same fervor we prayed for our own son. We prayed for all the families with AWAA no matter where they stand in the process. Because of that alone I feel like fruit has been born out of having to wait longer. Praise God. I can do trials as long as God gives me those little crumbs to follow (and He always does) on His trail of blessing, those tidbits that keep me moving along in Him.

It's been my experience that God builds in my life like a mason. It seems He layers prayers, truths and experiences in my life. Building upon foundations He may have set many months, sometimes years in advance. What can I compare it to? Well, ever been in a big city? One, say, like Chicago? Have you tried to take in the Sears Tower from the ground level standing at the front entrance? If you have you probably can still feel the pain in your neck. It's nearly impossible to view the whole picture from the foot of the massive tower. You need a little distance between yourself and it to really take in the grandeur. As you walk further away from the building more of it comes into view making it easier to grasp the whole picture.

That's how it seems to go in my relationship with Jesus. For many years I've been standing next to the Lord while he lovingly slapped mortar on the bricks of my life and stacked them. Sometimes I been able to see the purpose for which those particular bricks were laid. Other times I've not understood the reasons at all. For years now I've been witnessing construction of some sort. Many times over the years I've also found that the enemy has tempted me to look at the brick wall in front of me and think that it was simply that, a brick wall.

I am thankful to say that the Lord has awakened me this morning with a fresh perspective. He's bid me to take a few steps back. To revisit some of the prayers I've prayed in my heart and some of the ways He's answered them. He's called me to examine more intensely His handiwork layer after layer. What has begun to come into view is a project SO GRAND I could never have imagined it's consequence. We're talking a large scale, Wonder of the World, kind of project.

I am unashamed to say that I've prayed some pretty grand scale prayers these recent few years of my life, and that I am convinced God is not afraid to answer them. In fact, I believe He's gone about answering them from the moment I prayed them. He's been working faithfully on days when I could recognize His efforts, on days I forgot to consider His efforts, on days I didn't like what His efforts were producing in my life, and even on days I rejected His work outright. I am sorry to say that in the space between the prayer and the fulfillment of the answer I have been easily led into disbelief and mistrust at times. I am guilty of trading faith and trust for immediate gratification, something my flesh could cling to and grab on tightly to right away instead of waiting for the fulfillment of my hopes and clinging to Christ alone.

Today I am so humbled and thankful for the attitude adjustment which came riding on the back of a disappointment that blind sided me ( I fully expected to pass court, folks, despite every natural inclination which told me that it was not a helpful thing to convince myself of) As I've said, God has used the turn of events to invite me to take some steps back. I've been able to see the work in progress. I can see how wonderful an Architect He is. I may still not be able to fully comprehend what the finished product will look like but I can at least catch a glimpse of how much of God's glory is in the thing. I can see that it's clearly not about me anymore. The thing is WAAAAY over my head at this point.

I have been given this morning the opportunity to walk back up to the bricks in front of me and look more closely at their purpose. I can recall the glimpse God gave me from a distance and realize that this brick named WAITING which has taken up so much of my view supports another brick to come. One I haven't dreamed of or imagined at this point. Many bricks will follow. Imeasurably more. That's a promise and I am glad for it.

God be glorified!

2 Peter 3:9- The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. He is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.

Isaiah 62:6 & 7 (emphasis mine)- O Jerusalem, I have posted watchmen on your walls; they will pray day andnight, continually. Take no rest, all you who pray to the Lord. Give the Lord no rest until he completes his work, until he makes Jerusalem the pride of the earth.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Red Letters Campaign- Tears

Just got a phone call. We didn't pass court. We will be issued new court dates and a new Tentative travel date. We knew this was a possibility.

Must call travel agent. Lots of tears. I am crying but not crushed.

Will update stupid ticker later.

Red Letters Campaign- Whispers on the Wind

I am a teary mess again today as I have been following the blogs of our friends in Ethiopia. God has done amazing things this trip. Many miracles have occurred. Seeing these parents finally united with their children brings forth a well spring of tears and praises. It's as though all their emotions have traveled on the wind over the distance making their way back to the network of "family" all across the US. That "family" is our Yahoo Group. Filled with people in every stage of the process all rooting on the same team. All in this together. Through the YG I have hoped along side the folks, prayed along side them, agonized during that wait along side them, and now via the wonders of the internet I am rejoicing along side them. I am eager to see their long awaited posts from HOME. Back home with their children. Beginning the rest of the journey as a family. For truly, much is made about the wait but REAL life begins when the families arrive home.

A few lines here and there hint at the idea that some of our friends have seen Jonas. Susan even mentioned that kiddos have been moved to the AWAA's transition home. I have to assume that included Jonas. Say a prayer for our son and the other kids. Such transitions can be overwhelming for them. This move could be potentially as traumatic for Jonas as the day he came into care for he has been at Kids Care Orphanage for half his life now. Pray for peace to rule the children's hearts during this difficult transitional time. They will hardly be settled at the TH before all their crazy American parents come rushing in scooping them up while trembling with tears, full of excited energy.

....With that said I've put up a new ticker. I am praying I won't have to change it and that we will pass court..... you know the drill.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Fw: Test

This is a test. I am trying to figure out how to post via email for when we travel to Ethiopia. I am attaching a photo to see if it works.
25 more days 'till Dustin and I leave for Ethiopia to get our Jonas boy. Provided we actually pass courts that is!
*** Okay so it worked but how do I keep the adds from my email from showing up as well?? Anyone know?******
FREE Animations for your email - by IncrediMail! Click Here!

Saturday, October 25, 2008


For many months, on my list of things to do was watch Ben Stein's documentary Expelled: No Intelligence Allowed but like happens from time to time I forgot about it and got busy living life. Tonight Dustin and I finally sat down and watched it. I HIGHLY recommend it. He made many intriguing arguments in the film. Fascinating. Really. But, please, don't take my word for it.

So that's one check mark off my to-do list that was a long time coming.

Friends Abroad.

Hi everyone! I've got a busy day planned for today but before the craziness hits I wanted to hop on and post. I am going to a party given for adoptive families hosted by an Ethiopian woman who attends Surafel's church. I am looking forward to it.

Five families from our agency are traveling to Ethiopia this week. Here's a list with links to their blogs if you want to follow along on their adventures.

Susan of the Schmidts wins an award for bringing MOST luggage. She and her hubby are brave to travel internationally with all those donations in tow. It means a lot more effort on their part. What loving hearts they have! God bless 'em

Amy of the Lusses wrote me an email a while back telling me she felt connected to me. I had to giggle because I felt the same about her. I appreciate this lady so much. She is going to take some photos of our Jonas for us. We are SO thankful! Her video of their son Azana made me cry. You can see it on her blog.

The Van Wettens and the Redferns are a part of the famous YG I am forever talking about. We are praying for them. There is one other family which doesn't have a blog who is travelling with this group.

I will be stalking these blogs eager to see our dear friends with their kids. SO exciting!!!

Friday, October 24, 2008

Red Letters Campaign - Air Travel by Numbers

  • Airfare to Addis Ababa, Ethiopia Nov 23rd through Dec 6th - $1867.85 times 2.
  • Room rate Sheraton Reston Hotel Washington D.C. for one night- $209.00
  • Total number of Connecting flights- 5
  • Total hours estimated "plane time" (not including time between connections)- 42 HOURS! I am so afraid for Dustin!
  • Lap fare for Jonas' return home- $315.00
  • Number of flights available to Addis on Wed 26th (the day we had originally planned to leave)- ZERO
  • Number of days until we hear whether or not we've passed court and can actually travel on the dates we have purchased tickets for- best guess is two weeks ????
  • Fees associated with not passing courts thus requiring the purchase of new tickets- $150 plus any increase in ticket prices
  • Unknowns related to the rest of our travel plans- 1,000,000
  • The opportunity to experience the joy of welcoming our beloved Jonas home- Worth every ounce of blood, sweat, tears and coin!

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Introduction to World Orphans

Jenna left me a comment introducing herself and the organization she works for World Orphans.

Dustin and I spent time at the World Orphans site and really liked their vision for reaching orphans. Please go visit and take a look around. Don't forget to stop by Jenna's blog. It's really lovely.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Red Letters Campaign- Getting Excited

Dustin and I are leaning toward the longer stay in Ethiopia. We know there will be some challenges with being gone for 14 days. Not the least of which is leaving our girls at home for such a long period of time. We will miss them. The other thing which occurs to me is that we will have a lot to process after meeting all the orphans at Hope for the Hopeless and right after the one life changing experience we will head into another, the emotional experience of meeting our son for the first time and caring for him in our new role as his parents. WOW! That's two major life events packed into one trip. PLEASE PRAY FOR US. We will need supernatural strength to carry us through.

We are getting really excited about the idea of having the extra time to spend with the children in Hope for the Hopeless's care. We are excited that the extra time will afford us the opportunity to see both the intake center and the orphange and possibly even visit some of the foster homes in person. We are going to plan out Bible lessons to teach and songs to sing with the kids, games to play and hopefully I can squeeze in some craft type things for them too. I am SO THANKFUL to the Lord for the experience He blessed us with by teaching us to serve the children of Palm Valley Church in the preschool ministry. I know now why He led us to serve together in that capacity. I feel as if we've been prepared for such a time as this. My heart leaps for joy to try to imagine all God has in store for us as we venture across the globe just for the chance to love beyond ourselves in Christ's name.

There is a lot going on in our hearts and our heads as we prepare for this trip. I've already asked if you would please join with us in prayer. Here is a list of specific things we are praying about.

  • For Jonas (as always) while he waits for us to come for him. For his health spiritually, emotionally and physically
  • For the girls while we are away
  • For us to be able to focus on serving during the portion of the trip dedicated to Hope and not be consumed with longing for Jonas
  • That we would be filled with the Spirit of Boldness and that we would reach out in love to all God's people, that we would have servant's hearts and be filled with humility
  • That we would be given grace and strength in light of facing loss and suffering
  • That God would grant us favor among strangers and bless us with the ability to relate across cultural lines and language barriers
  • That God would be glorified and that He might open our eyes to see His glory.

PS- we have a hunch that our court date is the first week on November. If that's the case, and IF we pass successfully you can expect to see Jonas' precious face plastered all over this blog :)

Thursday, October 16, 2008

I've been tagged

Sweet Kristen one of the best Photographers I know tagged me. So here it goes guys. Seven things.

1) I have a tendency to make sighing noises when something is weighing heavily on my mind. I am completely unaware of it but it's a dead giveaway for hubby that something is up with me.

2) It's physically impossible for me to talk without making facial expressions. Crazy ones. Hence the tendency for me to have wildly crazy photos taken of me. Never the same face twice :)

3) I cannot eat salads from restaurants. I get extremely ill nearly instantaneously.

4) I have really stiff cartilage in my ears that makes it pretty painful for them to bend. Dustin thinks it's the weirdest thing ever.

5) I use my toes to pick up small items off the floor instead of bending over. Convenient, I think. Dustin says freaky. hahahaha

6) I am a rule follower by nature.

7) I am unable to read just a chapter of a book. I try my best to complete it in one sitting if at all possible.

I'm tagging:
My two new travel buddies:

and good friends:
Brooke F

Finally, with the highest esteem I want introduce you all to Sassy Granny. She rocked the women's retreat last summer and gave me so much to chew on after her exhortation at the women's retreat. I enjoy her blog so very much. I promise you'll enjoy it too!!

NKOTB Part Two

2 in the mornin'

I still heart Donnie
So much fun!!

The girls
Me and B!
getting down :))

The boys from beantown
After the show.

As Promised : NKOTB Awesomeness Part One

Okay, this is quite possibly the most fun post I've ever done. I have to thank my dear friend Brooke S for the awesome idea of celebrating her 30th b-day in style. She was the event coordinator for the NKOTB concert. I had a blast. Felt like I was twelve again. Golden! Here it is guys. In Pictures.

Event Coordinator Brooke S. purchased iron transfers to make the look complete. Thanks Brooke!
I have two very special Brookes in my life. Here is Brooke F. I credit her for introducing me to my amazing hubby. I owe her BIG time :)))
Gelena is a fun lady to be around. Here she is creating magic in the form of a fan tee shirt.
Yours truly :)
Tina our resident photog. Thanks for the pics Tina!! You're one special peep!!

This was all in prep for the big night. Don't hate becaue everywhere we went ladies were jealous of our awesome tees!

Red Letters campaign- Travel Anxiety Increases

Okay friends. We need your prayers. This travel stuff is getting messy. The Thanksgiving holiday is making planning much more difficult. Our travel group TTD has changed to the Saturday the 29th of Nov. We planned to try to get a flight out on the Wednesday before (the 26th) but domestic flights to DC are booking up fast and the flight to Addis is Completely booked. So, this means we will have to leave much earlier than anticipated. Earlier by a whole week. I can only assume that the Lord has heard our prayers to minister in any way He chooses in ET and thus He's allowed events to happen this way. Dustin and I are asking for your prayers for wisdom and guidance as we make decisions about travel. A longer trip means more childcare for the kids to be managed, more money for in country expenses and more time away from work for Dustin. All things that need to be seriously considered. We really need to know what the Lord's desire is regarding our travel.

To add fuel to the fire flights are booking fast and we could choose to book tix but if we don't pass court we'd then have to pay a change fee and go to the back of the line for seats on other flights all over again putting us in the same position only with less money in our pockets. I don't want to book tix out of fear. I want to have confidence and faith but I'd be a liar if I didn't say the heat has been turned up on the situation.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Red Letters Campaign- Tentative Dates

Well, we got our tentative dates for travel today. Nov. 30 - Dec 6. Dustin and I will be leaving earlier than that so I am not sure what our actual dates of travel will be, but this is the jumping off point. We are really excited to meet all the families in our travel group. Just over 6 weeks till travel if everything goes well in court. PLEASE PRAY to that end. Our son will have been in institutional care for over half his life by then. That reality makes me cry!!!!

Travel still feels far away but I know with the holidays approaching it will fly by. Dustin and I might be traveling during Thanksgiving. That will be interesting! Airfare is more expensive around the holidays which leaves us feeling less than thrilled about costs and crowds. I checked today and a return flight home in Business Class would cost $5343.37 for me and Dustin and the baby riding on our laps (they do charge for babies BTW) that's a little too steep for us. So looks like it'll be coach all the way for us.

I still haven't gotten around to posting on the New Kids concert. I will do that soon. It was a blast :)

Saturday, October 11, 2008

Kids Pros/Cons List

-Expensive grocery bills
-College tuition

-Never a dull moment
-House full of love and joy
-Your own complete rock band

Field Trip

My mom is a member of the Phoenix Desert Botanical Garden and so she took our family yesterday for a field trip. Even Dustin took off from work early to join us. Because of her membership we all got in FREE. Isn't that great!?

The kids had so much fun and thoroughly enjoyed the time spent there. The garden has made major improvements recently. I was impressed with how beautiful it now is. The kids received little booklets and were asked to be Desert Detectives while they spied out the different types of plants. They were able to learn a lot through observation.

One popular attraction of the PDBG is the Butterfly exhibit. It was my first time seeing this exhibit. The butterflies are stunning creatures and seeing so many together was such a treat.

I forgot my camera but thankfully my mom didn't. She sent me just a couple of pictures.

Mariposa Monarca
The girls held their arms up and stood still in the hopes a butterfly would land on them. I had to giggle a little bit. Of course they have gone and ruined life for themselves proving to me that they can, in fact, be extremely quiet and still when they are motivated. No more excuses for them.
The girls with their Desert Detective papers. Don't you just love hubby's choice to store his water bottle in such a picture perfect spot?
Grandma Mimi and the grand kids. They adore her so much!

Thursday, October 9, 2008

Red Letters campaign- Formula and Diaper Drive

We had an agency conference call today. There is a need for diapers and formula. We were told that at the orphanage where our son is at (not our agency's Transition Home, it's full) is at risk of running out and resorting to cow's milk. You know that made my mommy heart tremble! SOOOOO I will be sure to send some formula with the next travel group and stock up on some for when we go so that no children will be without. If you live locally you know what I am going to ask next don't you?!

Please, if you can purchase a can of formula or some diapers we would be thrilled to take them with us when we go. You can email me at and I would be happy to pick them up. Thanks!!

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

Red Letters Campaign- Financial Concerns

Who doesn't have financial concerns these days!!?

Ours have arisen following an email for our Program Director informing us of increases to our adoption fees to the tune if $1385.00 to be exact. Two things: first of all God has provided every step of the way for this adoption and I don't believe He's going to stop now and second I am telling ya I am not enthused about the increase. Especially at the time of year when, with the holidays approaching, more money is flowing out.

To keep perspective I remind myself that costs are going up in Ethiopia and at home and our agency is struggling to continue the level of care for the children it is responsible for. There are other factors too. I don't feel like going into them right now.I hear other agencies are struggling as well. I heard a report of one agency just closing it's doors. Leaving families without anything. All their money gone. I'd much rather AWAA let us know this way and take steps to continue the process for it's families than leave us high and dry!!

I know there are valid reasons for the increase. Do I like it? NO. Will I pay? You becha. I am anxious to see how the Lord will provide the funds we need for travel, especially during these turbulent financial times for the US.

Every night Dustin and I talk about how to weather proof our business against the stormy season ahead. We wonder how we can increase productivity and cut expenses while maintaining our current workforce. We wonder how our industry will be impacted. Already, we are seeing sings of slowing this week.

We placed ourselves in a position of utter reliance upon him for our survival a LONG time ago. Since that time the LORD has never disappointed and has been not only faithful to us but given more abundantly than we couldn't have imagined. It's a miracle we are at this point. By moving the hearts of friends and family around us the Lord provided much of the money needed for the adoption. I have no doubt that the Lord will provide the rest of the money needed. We may need to get creative once more. Tighten our belts in new ways. That's a minuscule sacrifice compared the joy of welcoming home our son!! So on one hand I can say we are concerned but on the other I can say we are confident and hopeful.

We still have enough in the Eternal Family Fund to cover our accommodations while in Ethiopia and possibly some food and driver costs even with the fee increase. We will however need to come up with more for the airfare. We had been plugging away at that though this month I began shopping for Christmas gifts to get a head start on the holiday in light of travel and all. Now I feel like I should have waited. The little I've spent so far is all the more that could have gone to tickets. Poor hubby's hopes of having first class seats for the ride home when Jonas will be riding on our laps may have just gone up in smoke. I was hoping the return flight First Class tickets would be our Christmas gift to each other. Again, Oh well. It may be that I encourage some heavy drinking during the flight in hopes that my hyperactive hubby will pass out :) hahahaha I am far more worried about his behaviour than I am about the baby's. HAHA He's gotten stir crazy on a 5 hour flight before. I can't imagine how he'll do 18 hrs on a plane!

We consider ourselves to be the fortunate ones in this situation. Others with AWAA who are further behind us in the process have had their fees increase well over $7000.00. Can you imagine the panic they feel? No, I'll take $1385 over $7000 any day.

Court Results for Friends

Four AWAA families passed court today and three did not. Those families with referrals for siblings had the requirements switched up on them and unfortunately weren't told about it until their cases were before the judge. It's heartbreaking for these families because the courts are full and the earliest they could get a court date was for Nov. 8th. Now they will have to watch the travel group they were supposed to be a part of leave without them. TOUGH stuff people. My heart is soooo heavy for them!!

I am saving the best for last though. Now that their families officially have custody of these children you can visit Benaiah's family blog and Azana's family blog and see their precious faces!! I am so thrilled for their mommies!!! I have said this many times before but honestly I've never come across an unattractive Ethiopian and the boys are just more proof..... Two handsome boys.

You better believe I am gonna stalk these blog in the weeks to come. I can't wait to follow along with their adventures in travel. I am waiting for that special day when I can see these families holding the children they love so much. What a great day that will be!

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Res Letters Campaign- Itinerary? Who needs one?

I do!!! Please and thank you.

You'd think I would be uber-organized for travel having waited through the court closure and all but NOPE, I basically spent my time staring at a picture of our boy Jonas and drooling. So....... not much organizing was happening over here. That and I have still been doing that self preservation thing-y which has to do with kinda detaching a bit from the reality of travel in order to survive the prolonged wait and possibility of dealing with disappointing delays once the courts reopened. Seems that tonight, though, I've decided to throw all that to the wind by planning for things to progress according to our hopes and prayers.

The reality of facing the eventuality of travel brings with it the amassing of luggage items loaned to various family members and the dusting off of the behemoth grand daddy suitcase of them all which is rarely used in this family. (I remind you that I claimed to be a light packer and am no liar as the layer of dust on the big suitcase confirms it!) Unzipped are the luggage lids and propped up against the walls of Jonas' bedroom. They will most likely stay that way for a good month plus. (I told you I like to plan ahead. Waaaaay ahead. Don't laugh!!! If it were up to Dustin he'd throw two items in a suitcase the night before the flight. We need each other. This way we balance out and equal one well-enough adjusted person.) One of the big suitcases will hold donations and is about halfway packed. I hope to pack light enough to carry donations in half of the other large suitcase as well.

The packing part, while daunting isn't what has me freaking out. It's the travel planning part. I am a ducks in a row kinda girl. The less waves the better. I like planning, and schedules. I like having a clue about where I am going and when. Yes, I'll say it I LIKE CONTROL!!

Yea, I'm SO not in control on this one. Basically as things stand we'll have 4 or less weeks to plan our trip. While I've always known this would be the case the reality has only recently dawned on me. Suddenly I find myself thinking I'd like to have more time than that to plan. The fact that we will be going early only increases my stress level because our agency is very adamant that we meet up with the rest of the Travel Group (TG) on a specified day/time TBD. They like their TG's, AWAA does. That's fine. We do too. We can't wait to meet our extended AWAA family. But, planning a mini trip inside of a trip makes me twitch. The planner in me wants to line out all the details for the portion of the trip we will be "going it alone" but I must wait! I can't make a move until we get our Tentative Travel Dates (TTD) and even then what if I book things and then the TTD falls through. Oh wow. I feel a death spiral coming on. Any notion of myself being a vicarious world traveler has forever died a painful death. But, I digress. Anyhoo, there's LOTS to be done and I am just itching to do it. SO MUCH closure to be had...... if only.

Monday, October 6, 2008

In The Kitchen

Well guys, I'm going to attempt to do some Ethiopian cooking. There is a local Ethiopian Market here in Phoenix but I figured I wouldn't get very far there considering the language barrier. I didn't envision the shopping trip being super successful with me asking for spices and herbs I've never seen before and them possibly not knowing the English name. So, I figure I will learn what they look like and be able to spot them when I go to market to restock next go-round. That way if something gets lost in translation I can at least look at the spices and see if the appear correct.
I ordered a few hard(er) to find spices at the Spice House. I felt comfortable ordering from them because I have heard wonderful things about their quality and I don't want to have to run around to several stores when I can easily (read that lazily) order good quality spices online. The Spice House's recipe for Berbere look a little too exotic and excessive compared to other authentic berbere recipies I've seen and seeing as they are in the business of selling exotic spices I opted to forgo purchasing their spice mix. I know I can at least get this right at market.

Dustin and I are planning a pre-travel party with friends and family and I am going to order much of the Ethiopian portion of the menu from a local woman who makes take-out. Nan's Beef Alecha is highly recommened by a friend and I can't wait to give it a try. I also plan to order injera and a few other traditional dishes from her. A few others I will attempt myself out af a cookbook a dear freind got me as a Christmas gift last year. The easier ones that is! About 3 ingredients or less. I figure it's a good idea to let the pro's do the cooking for the sake of our party guests. I do plan to give injera a whirl on my own in the future but I don't want to cook it under pressure and I want our guests first encounter with Ethiopian food to be authentic (and pleasant, I might add. hahaha)

Saturday, October 4, 2008

I spoke too soon

The shots are rearing their ugly head once more. After a full day of activity Dustin and I are feeling crumby again.I feel feverish and achy D says ditto for him too. I don't believe this will be our favorite part of the pretravel prep.Blech!

Misc. and A Question For You.

Hubby got me a new phone. I had been making due with a rather annoying one and hubby surprised me with a Blackberry Pearl. I am just getting used to it but I can tell already it's a dangerous thing for me. Access to email and Internet where ever I go? How will I ever pull myself away?? (Just kidding. I like living an actual LIFE!)

The first phone I was given was defective. My sister-in-law and I spent a good hour plus on the phone with tech support. During that time she taught me to knit!!! (We were on hold A LOT) I am so excited. I have always wanted to learn and I just needed someone to show me for I could never understand the patterns. Now she's letting me finish a baby blanket she began and keep it for Jonas. Isn't she sweet. I feel like new doors have opened to me! I can't wait to learn new (what would they be called??) stitches (?) and make new projects.

The phone service provider gave me a phone to replace the deffective one and it's up and running smoothly. My friend Brooke showed me the ropes while we were over at her place last night celebrating her hubby's completion of his MBA. We had a great time, as always, with our friends.

Today my arms are better. The left arm is still a wee bit sore but nothing unbearable. It continues to be a bit swollen. Dustin and I continued to grow more achy into the evening and both of us had a small fever. This morning I woke up feeling just fine and Dustin tells me he feels fine as well. All in all, the immunizations weren't so terrible.

We are having lovely weather here in Phoenix. It's cooler today. In the 80's. I can't tell you how thankful I am for the respite from the heat. Fall can't come any sooner for me.

Finally, I am looking for fun fall arts and crafts activities for the children. It seems my creativity has run dry. Anyone have any suggestions?? If so please share them here or post about them on your blog and leave a comment directing me to it. THANKS so much!

Friday, October 3, 2008

Red Letters Campaign- Pokes

Our kids call shots pokes. Today Dustin and I received our travel pokes. Dustin had 8 and I had 6. Besides the hit our wallet took it was relatively painless. My left arm is acting up though. It's getting quite swollen and a bit tender. I think that was the polio booster but I can't be sure. Anyhow, I am glad to have them over. We head back in a month for 2 more and then again in 6 mos for the final shot. Our protection should last 10-15 years after that.

BTW- Jonas is 7 months old today.

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Red Letters Campaign- a CD, TTG's and a PTL!

Lean in. I've got some unofficial news hot of the presses of the Yahoo Group to whisper in your ear. It appears all of the families who have received referrals now have court dates scheduled. That includes us! We have a CD (court date) people!!!! Now, it's our agency's policy not to share the CD with families to prevent disappointment if families don't pass the first time. Their policy, instead, is to inform families after they have successfully gained custody of the kids. This is wonderful news as I had prepared myself for delays, so I am pleased.

It does seem that AWAA is issuing tentative travel dates during the wait time. So, it's probably safe to assume that if a tentative travel date changes folks didn't pass court. There are two groups with tentative travel dates so far. As things stand for the first tentative travel group (TTG) there are 7 families set to travel Oct 25th if there are no complications. (We are praying for those families that it would be so!!) Next, the second TTG group has 4 families checking in so far for tentative travel on Nov 1st. I am curious to see how many more check in for the second TTG. It would appear that since Dustin and I are 9th on the list of families waiting for travel dates we'll be going in the third TTG. Those of us on the YG wonder if that TTG (#3) would receive a date for mid Nov sometime. If this is the case it would certainly be an answer to our prayers. PTL, God is faithful!

Yesterday's daily Bible reading gave me more than a chuckle. I had been planning on getting in touch with my inner persistent widow regarding travel to get Jonas before Christmas and this reaffirmed that decision for me.

Isaiah 62:6&7 (emphasis mine)
O Jerusalem, I have posted watchmen on your walls; they will pray day and
night, continually. Take no rest, all you who pray to the Lord. Give the
Lord no rest until he completes his work
, until he makes Jerusalem the pride of the earth.

I ask for your prayers for our friends the Gumms as well. They have had some huge delays lately. It's my hope that the Lord will really grant both our families major favor and that we would be able to travel to ET during the same time to visit and bring donations to Hope for the Hopeless together (Dustin and I will go ahead of our agency's travel group so we can devote some time to Hope for the Hopeless's kids.) It's a long shot, but nothing is impossible for God and I believe God hears our prayers!

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Red Letters Campaign- Update from Ethiopia

We received a few lines today from Rachel our TH director in Ethiopia to update us on Jonas. She visited him last week on the 25th. She included two photos of him. Jonas looks so much bigger already. His eye lashes are so long!! We are missing him so much.

I can't wait to share these photos with you all.

I heard that the courts are now open. That's really great news. Some folks w/ our agency have a court date scheduled for the 8th. I don't know if the courts will hear their cases early but I am encouraged that things will be in order by 8th and am confident that they should clear court that day. Their travel won't be long after that.

We are still praying for a court date before the end of Oct.