3 months waiting...

Another month has gone by and no phone call. That's ok because I am really not expecting it anytime real soon. It takes awhile. But, it still could be any day!

I was looking at the Penny Jar Project funds and got excited about the jars coming in. Just in the past four months we have raised over $ 1700.oo with pennies! That is pretty cool! We only need about $17,000.00 more (not including travel costs). We have raised over $5000 so far. We are applying for grants and working on some fundraising events for next year. We want to say thank you to everyone who has donated a "jar" or two or lots more. We appreciate you all more than you could ever know. We know God will provide every penny that is needed for our kids to come home. THANKS EVERYONE!

Also, I realized that it has been one year since we started our adoption process. We applied for our adoption through Gladney in December. We decided to adopt in November of last year. I can't believe how fast time goes by. We will have our babies in our arms before we know it. We can't wait! I think about them every single day; how old will they be, girls or boys, what will they look like, are they ready for us to come get them, am I ready for four kids, how will they adapt to our family, and so many other thoughts. Every single thing I do during the day I think about doing it with four kids. I can't wait!

Oh, and by the way we are #6 on the waiting list for sibblings. We were #10 last month. There were 8 referrals just last month with Gladney. The list is moving fast. It could be any day!

Well, that is all for today. I have four kids over my house right now (good practice) and need to get off the computer. :)

(look at the 3 month picture good because the kids made it and it tells a little story)


Lessons about Ethiopia and the culture...

I am sitting at home sick right now all by myself. The kids are at a friends house and Scott is, you guessed it, working. Note: it's 7:40pm. Sick, by myself, what do I do? So, I got out our Hague Training videos we are to watch before we travel to get our kids. We also have to take a quiz online when we are done. I watched two videos so far and they are each two hours long.
The first video was about attachment and bonding. It was interesting and informative because we will be going through that soon, I hope. I do pray that our kids will bond with our family quickly and without much trouble. But, I would be silly to think there would not be some struggle in the process. On the video they make you take an "adult attachment" quiz. I praise the Lord for my mom who loves me the way she does and therefore I don't have a problem with attachment. And I think my kids have a very healthy love in our home already.

So, the six things they said to watch out for are: 1)fails to make eye contact, 2) may be stiff when you hold them, 3) very friendly to strangers, 4)doesn't ask for help or comfort, 5) has an increased tolerance for pain (because there is not anyone to run to when they get hurt), and 6) may be unkind to animals (because they don't have pets, they only have watch dogs that are mean).
Now I will explain some of the culture differences that explain the above a little more.
1) Faith and Family are key to them. They are very traditional in everything they do. The family is very close-knit and extended family and/or even other families live together in one space.
2) Respect and Humility - they are taught to be very respectful to the elders and really anyone. They would never interrupt a conversation between two adults. (imagine that) With the elderly they bow and shake hands and with friends (either gender) they give four kisses per check. They will not give you eye contact because it is considered disrespectful to look into someones eyes.
3) The gender roles are different. The man is the dominant bread winner and would never be caught doing any house hold chores. (So, if I get a boy I have some teaching to do :)
4) They don't date, ever. Most marriages are arranged. I am for that!
5) Religion - they are very religious and may attend church daily. They fast often. They are either Christian or Muslim.
6) Race and Color - they do not see themselves as inferior in any way. They wouldn't understand any racial issues we have here in America.
7) They are used to a structured life-style. They want guidelines.
8) Hair and Skin care - they need a moisturizing shampoo but only about once a week. Braids are best for the girls when they are little. They will need education on brushing teeth and proper hygiene.
9) Safety - they are not used to the things we have in our home like ovens, irons, etc. that could harm them. So we need to teach all of that right away. And they don't know a stranger, so we need to teach "stranger rules" right away. And they don't know boundaries. They would wonder off and come back when they are ready. That could cause some stress on us.
10) And the last for now...Food - that is a big change for them. They have very spicy food and a totally different texture. They also use their hands to eat. We have already experienced the food when we went to the Ethiopian restaurant in OK City this summer. It's "different", but I did eat it. It is an acquired taste for sure. Looks yummy, huh!!!
Well, there is so much more to learn. We are learning as we sit and wait on our phone call from Gladney. Wait, wait, and wait some more. We have a lot of waiting to do since we are only 2 months into the waiting process.


Orphan Sunday - November is Adoption Awareness Month

Orphan Sunday from Christian Alliance for Orphans on Vimeo.

2 Months Waiting

Well, it has been 2 1/2 months now waiting. I have been so busy with school and work and church that I have not had time to update. We have not heard any word on our adoption, but that is expected right now. But, God is doing so many great things all around us with adoption. We have some friends who are leaving this week to go get their 3 children from Africa. And some other friends getting their baby boy, Silas, very soon. I love that others all around us have a heart for adoption also. There are so many orphans that are waiting for their forever families. Our kids are out there waiting too. They have no idea how much we already love them and can't wait for them to come home. We are number 9 on the "unofficial" waiting list. Someone has put together a list of everyone adopting from Gladney with what age child(ren) they are waiting for right now and where they are in the process, etc. And out of all who are waiting for a sibling group like us, we are the ninth on the list. We still have no idea how long that will take to move up the list. But, God knows the exact date that we will hold our children in our arms!