Sunday, December 28, 2008

Slide Show

I finally put together a slide show of my Journey to Sabah. I'll do another one (sometime) of pictures of Ethiopia and of our day trip outside of Addis.

Saturday, December 27, 2008

I know, I'm a terrible blogger

I so didn't want to be one of THOSE bloggers who disappear after they bring their children home. I know what it is like to constantly click on someone's blog and see that they haven't updated (and most importantly, posted PICTURES) in weeks and think "come on people, update your blog". Sooooo frustrating. And now, here I am, one of THOSE. I will try to do better.

Of course, the big thing around here is, like just about everyone else, we celebrated Christmas. It was a bit different this year. Not only because I had Sabah, but because we got snowed in and couldn't make the 2 hour drive down to Eugene to spend Christmas with my parents and other family members. So, on Christmas Eve Sabah and I walked to the grocery store and bought food for Christmas dinner. Tina and her boys (her husband had to work), took the max train over to my house and we had a very small, very special Christmas. Because Ron (Tina's husband) had to work on Christmas day, they told the boys that Friday was Christmas and that Santa would bring presents on Thursday night, so all day Thursday they thought it was Christmas Eve. Ethan (he's three), thought it was hilarious that the people on the train all thought it was Christmas....he thought they were pretty misinformed. So cute.

Sabah, being 7 months old, wasn't that thrilled with the big day. She opened presents, but of course she was more interested in the wrapping paper rather than with what was wrapped. She sure looked cute in her Christmas dress though.

Since the snow finally melted, today we were able to go down to Eugene and spend the day there celebrating. The boys loved it because they got three days in a row of opening presents.

Anyway, blah blah blah.....I know the real reason you are all here is to see, here you go:Such a big girl....she can now sit up on her own (sorry about the blurr)

She LOVES her bath time

Sabah in her Snow Suit (don't let the grin fool you....she wasn't happy in this outfit)

Sabah and Santa Clause (they even match)

Sabah, Christmas morning waiting for her cousins to come over
Ethan, Sabah and Eli (cousin love)Lookin all cute in her new dressTrying to eat the wrapping paperFinally interested in a present.....of course, only because we got rid of the wrapping paper

Thursday, December 18, 2008

Life with Baby

Well, it's been 11 days since we've been home, and we're finally settling in with a routine and feeling like there is some normalcy to life. It was a very hectic crazy week trying to get use to this time zone, and trying to get well.

Sabah is finally on a decent sleep schedule. She goes to bed around 5:30 at night and I don't hear a peep from her until about 5:30 in the morning. I'm trying to get her to a 7pm to 6am schedule, but I'm in no hurry. We just try to add 10 minutes to each night.

I no longer need to give her a bottle in the middle of the night. I do however, usually have to change a poopy diaper around midnight. There were times there in the beginning that I wanted to just let her sleep through without changing her, I was soooo tired....but don't worry, I NEVER did that. I'm also very happy to report that the blowouts have stopped and we are both thrilled about that.

Sabah is a very happy baby. She is so serious though, and tends to be a bit stingy with her smiles. She'll smile, but then she will get all serious again. And so far, I have yet to hear this girl giggle. She's gotten close a few times, but no actual giggles yet. How my heart will smile when I hear her giggle for the first time.

Her first pediatric appointment was last Thursday and the pediatrician was very pleased at how healthy she was. She is 50th percentile for height and weight (which means by Ethiopian standards she was closer to 95%.....she was the chubbiest baby at the orphanage....followed close behind by Rebecca F's baby girl) :)

Her extra finger is not going to be a serious removal as there is no bone connecting it to her hand. Her pediatrician didn't feel comfortable tying it off (and just have it fall off) because of her age (she's only done it on newborns), so she referred us to a pediatric surgeon, who she ways will probably just tie it off. I'm just glad it isn't going to require surgery.

We've been homebound since Sunday (with only a couple VERY SHORT outings) because of the snow, and we are both getting cabin fever. Sabah loves to be out and about and I can't wait for this freaky weather to leave us so we can go on some adventures.

Well, that's about it for an update on me and Sabah. I'll update more about the Ethiopia trip tonight (or tomorrow night).Such a happy girl (and slobbery)

Eli Lovin on Sabah

She rolls around like CRAZY.....she's going to be crawling soon.

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Snow Day

Sabah and I spent the day snuggled up in our jammies watching the snow fall. It doesn't snow that often here in Portland, and if it does, it rarely sticks, but today we got an arctic blast and it's been snowing since about 6am.

I took Sabah out in the snow for about 2 minutes, so that she could experience her first Oregon "snow storm". I can tell you this....the girl was NOT impressed. Check out the pics....

Is she glaring at me?

We are in for a week of below freezing temperatures (that's our HIGH temperature). That is pretty unheard of here in the great Pacific Northwest. We are going to be freezing our little booties off! Good thing I'm pretty stocked up on food. I may have to walk to the store to get some milk. Oh, and some diapers. This girl is still having blowouts like crazy. I go through 4 outfits a day at least, and over 10 diapers. UGH, how much longer?????

Friday, December 12, 2008

Alright Alright. I'm Posting. I'm posting

OK, ok, I can take the hint. You guys want to hear about the trip and see pics. Well, here is a short post to tide you over.

First off.....Sabah and I have both been a bit sick, so it has made our transition home a bit rough. We are muddling through it, and I think we are both on the upswing.

So, where to start.....

We arrived in Addis Saturday night after a very long flight. We got through the crazy Visa line (it is soooo unorganized and crazy, but I would do it all over again rather than pay $70 to get a Visa in advance in the U.S.), changed some money at the airport (wow, after exchanging $500, I had a wad so thick it wouldn't all fit in my wallet, and made it through immigration with realative ease. THEN the fun began. All our bags came out (they were actually waiting for us) and we collected them and headed to customs. They made us unload all the bags and put them through the scanner. the funny thing was, we didn't see anyone actually looking at the monitor to see what was being scanned!!! Oh only wasted about 20 minutes. We then enter the waiting area, where there are throngs of people with signs waving around at us. We looked up and down the line and didn't see anything that matched my name our adoption agency. Hmmmmm, I was starting to have a bad feeling. I went through the line again, and still, nothing for me. After about 20 minutes of just "waiting" I realize that our lawyer was not there to pick us up. I had his phone number, but I had no idea how to use the pay phones. I asked the guy at the Sheraton counter if he could teach me how to use the phones so I could call our driver. The sweet man took his cell phone out of his pocket and dialed for me.

After telling our lawyer where we were, we proceeded to wait for about 20 more minutes for him. He finally shows up and we are on our way to the guesthouse. It's almost 10pm by now and we really just would like to go to bed. BUT, the guesthouse has dinner ready for, dazed and tired, we sat through dinner, trying to make conversation with the lawyer. We finally excused ourselves and headed to bed. The next morning I was going to meet my daughter and I wanted to be well rested.

We got up the next morning and had a lovely breakfast and met some of the other families....some with Adoption Avenues and some with Dove. I also got to meet my board buddy Leah, who I had been conversing with for about 4 months (ever since we got our referrals). It was so nice to finally meet her in person.

After breakfast, our lawyer stopped by to have us fill out paperwork. This took quite a while. A lot longer than we expected. You can only visit the babies at Toukoul from 9-12 and then 3-6, and it was already 11:00. We rushed to the orphanage, and the car was filled with excitement and apprehension. We'd all been waiting so long for this moment, and we couldn't believe we were so close.

We turned the corner, and there they were.....the blue gates that have been housing my daughter for the last 5 months. I couldn't believe I was there and soon she would be in my arms.

We all piled out of the van, and waited for the nannies to bring out the babies. The first to arrive was little Weredesh. The nannies handed her to Lisa and we were all crying. Then came little Sabah and Aslynn (Leah's daughter). In a split second I was holding her and it was amazing. The nannies had put her hair in three little puffs, and she was just adorable. She was perfect. Everything about her was perfect.

We all went into the meeting room to bond with our babies. Sabah just sat and stared and stared at me, my sister and my mom. She was so quiet, so intense, so serious, and only cracked a few smiles. But oh how precious she was.

Before we even knew it, our time was up (we had only about a half an hour) and the nannies whisked in and took our babies back. We were all a little numb by the whole experience and the care ride back to the guesthouse was very quiet. The moment we had waited for had come and was now over. We didn't really know what to think.

Back at the guesthouse we had lunch and rested and then headed back to the orphanage at 3pm to spend the afternoon with the babies. It was so much fun. Sabah is such a good baby and rarely fusses. I held her while we walked around Toukoul and played with the older kids. The kids are all so beautiful and precious and both Tina and I had fun playing with them. A couple of the girls tried to teach me a hand game/rhyme, but no matter how hard I tried, I kept messing up. The girls (about 7 years old) would just giggle and giggle, and then push me out of the way so that they could show me again with each other. I would then try it again, and of course mess up, which of course would lead to fits of giggling again. Oh, how each of those children touched my heart. You can not go there and not want to take them all home.

At 6pm, the nannies once again swept in and stole my baby. I gave her a kiss goodbye and told her I would see her in the morning.

to be continued.....

Here are some of my favorite photos of me and Sabah:

At the guesthouse laying out in the sun (kisses for mommy)

Leah and I and our two girls
Meeting Sabah for the first time
More sun at the guesthouse (she had the chickenpox, that is what those marks on her face are)

Monday, December 8, 2008


WOW!!!! There is simply no other word that encompasses the last week of my life. Ethiopia......WOW. My daughter.....WOW WOW WOW. The plane ride.....WOW!!!!!

We made it home last night (Sunday) about 8:30 and though I loved Ethiopia I am soooo glad to be home to start our life together. I have to keep this short because I've been up for over 40 hours (ahhhh, a mother's job.....nothing like jumping right in) and really can't think too clearly. Plus, Sabah just went down for a nap (she's still on ET time) and so I'm going to take advantage and try and catch a few minutes of sleep while I can. I just wanted everyone to know we are home and to oexpect a FULL update soon.

I took literally 50 pictures of the entire trip, so I don't have many to share right now. My mom and sister had camera duty, so when I get the pics from them, I will share more. Here are two of my precious precious little girl who I LOVE more than anything in this world.

More to come (when the brain starts working again).

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Signing off till December 8th

Well friends, this is my last post as a single mama. I'm heading off to Ethiopia tomorrow and will more than likely not be posting while I am gone. It has been a wild a crazy journey up to this point and it is still very surreal to me that tomorrow I fly away as a single woman and come back as a single mama. There is still a piece of me that is not 100% sure that this is really going to happen. Part of my heart is not 100% open to believing that a baby is actually going to be coming home with me this time. My brain KNOWS Sabah will be coming home, but the brain and the heart don't always communicate. I think once I get her in my arms, my heart will finally say "yes, this one is coming home and I can let her completely in". Don't get me wrong.....I LOVE my you wouldn't believe....but when your heart gets broken once, it is so slow to love again like it did's all about protection. But, in a little over 48 hours I will have my little sproutling in my arms and I KNOW my heart will be full again.

I want to thank every single person who has followed my blog and has prayed for me or sent good thoughts my way. The friends that are made while going through this adoption journey has been such a surprised blessing.

I also want to thank my family who has been soooooo supportive through this and is ready to welcome Sabah with open arms. And especially to my mom and sister who are making this journey with me. And dad.....I know you would come if you were physically able.....thanks for letting mom go without you!

So, see you all on December 8th! I'm outta here!!!!

Friday, November 21, 2008

Updated Agency Picture

My agency sent me another picture of Sabah today. I was really surprised. I didn't think I would be getting any more updates before I left. I am always thrilled to get ANY pictures of her. This is the last time I will see a picture of her in the orphanage baby carrier. And in only 9 days I will be holding this precious little thing in my arms. It is all so surreal.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

I knew my blogger buddies would come through

Here is my first try at making a montage:

Thank you Kerri!!!!!!! It was super simple......I don't know why I couldn't figure it out.

For those of you in the know.....please help!

OK, I admit "technical" skills are subpar. I mean, it was a huge step for me to figure out how to set up this blog. But, now I need some help with it. For those of you that post one true media pictures IN your post.....HOW ON EARTH do you do it? I have already made my montauge, and it's saved on my share page (on one true media), but I can't figure out how to actually post it here. I see the clip above to add video, but it is asking to browse my computer for the clip. The montauge is not saved on my computer for me to access it this way. How do I save the clip from one true media to my computer?

Any advise on this would be greatly appreciated.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Donations Galore!

Wow, I just spent the last hour organizing the donations that we're taking to Ethiopia. I succeeded in getting it from looking like this:

To looking like this:We are taking five bins with us, and I can't believe I got everything to fit. In fact I still have a little room left in each one, so I may add some more items. This is what I have stuffed into these bins:
34 pairs of girl shoes
16 pairs of boy shoes
7 pairs of infant shoes
4 soccer balls
10 baseballs
12 boy sweaters
2 boy long sleeve shirts
2 boy sweatshirts
5 boy tank tops
8 girl shirts
4 girl jackets
2 pair girls pants
14 packs girl underwear
10 boy jackets
5 boy fleece jackets
3 packs of jacks
8 decks of cards
17 3pack of hackey sacks
3 umbrellas
4 packs colored markers
4 packs colored pencils
20 spiral notebooks
3 packs construction paper
15 packs of pens
4 packs of highlighters
7 packs of pencils
6 math kits
3 school supply kits
15 pairs scissors
6 packs of flashcards
21 preschool/kindergarten workbooks

PHEW....that's a lot of stuff. We're going to donate some to Sabah's orphanage, but what we would really like to do is to find a small school that gets very little assistance and donate to it. That's our goal anyway.

OK, I'm glad I got this done. It's one less thing for me to stress about. On to the next......

Saturday, November 15, 2008

A Fantastic Day

What a beautiful day it was here in Portland. Sunny blue skies, and about 60 degrees. IN NOVEMBER!!!! It was gorgeous. I spent the day with my sister and my nephews (of course). We went to lunch and then went to see Madagascar 2. The movie is set in Africa, and at one point when the characters were talking about Africa, my three year old nephew loudly says to his mom "HEY, dat where you and auntie going". It was so cute.

After the movie I took the boys to the park to play and we had a great time. I love to see how my boys change from day to day. They are both so incredibly sweet, funny, and smart (some times smart asses....they get that from me).

Just when I thought the day couldn't get any better, I got home and waiting for me on my e-mail was EIGHT PICTURES OF SABAH. One of our families from Adoption Avenues just got back yesterday with their two babies (congratulations Andrea and Ryan) and they were able to take some pictures of my beautiful girl. I absolutely can't believe how much she has grown. And how CHUNKY she has gotten. She is so beautiful and I can't wait to go and get her. Only 1 week and 5 days!!!!!!

Here are a few of the pictures (thank you so much S. family for taking these and then e-mailing them so quickly to me).
OK, I know I'm biased, but seriously, is she not just stunningly beautiful? I'm coming for you baby.....soon.....very very soon!

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Change of Plans

Well, we aren't traveling to Addis Ababa on December 12th like we had planned (and purchased tickets for). Nope, we are traveling NOVEMBER 28TH!!!!!! That is only two weeks and 3 days away! It was a very pleasant change of plans, but it now has me on anxiety overdrive. My last post stated that I am ready....but in reality, I'm NOT READY. I may be packed, but I have so much to do around the house. And I can't relax enough to sit down and write out a list to start to get organized. I thought I had 5 weeks, but now I have just over two. Again, it's a GREAT change of plans, but it just puts everyting in overdrive.

So, the day after Thanksgiving, the three of us take off. It's pretty much the same exact schedule as before, only on the way back from Frankfurt we travel through Chicago instead of D.C. We will arrive back in Portland on Sunday, December 7th at 8pm. Plenty of time to get settled in and then get ready for Christmas. I CAN'T WAIT.

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Surprise Baby Shower

My sister surprised me this afternoon with a baby shower. It was soooooooo totally unexpected (usually I'm pretty good at figuring these things out). In fact, as I pulled up to her house, I saw my friend Renee' walking past my sister's house and I SERIOUSLY thought that she was "just in the neighborhood" and was coincidentally walking by. THEN, I saw that she had a pink gift bag in her hand.....that's when I STARTED to figure things out. Then, I look down the street, and there are two ladies in dresses and head scarves, and I thought to myself "that looks like Kamso". These "ladies" had turned their back to me, apparently tyring to "hide" so I wouldn't see them.....haha, nice try Kamso. It was then that I figured out that there was a party goin on and I was the guest of honor. I felt bad, because I told my sister I would be over at 11:30, but I arrived at 11:00, so they all didn't get to shout out "surprise" as I walked through the door. It didn't matter though, I was so surprised and so touched.

Kamso made the food, and we had an ethiopian feast. It was soooooo yummy with tons of my favorite dishes (I LOVE LOVE LOVE the cabbage/potato/carrot dish and the beets). We played some great games and almost everyone went home with a gift. My sister did a fantastic job. We had a great time laughing over all the times she, or my nephew let the cat out of the bag over the last few weeks. Even my friend Rebecca had a part in it, and we laughed over me finally understanding why she needed Kamso's e-mail (she told me one of her friends wanted to cater and ethiopian party.....I assumed she (her friend) wanted to do that for REBECCA's baby shower as she is adopting two little babes from ET too).

Here are a few pics of the fabulous food we had:

I've never had a surprise party before. It was so sweet and I really had a good time. I got some great stuff too!!!!!!!! ;) Thank you all for coming and being a part of my life and now Sabah's life.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

I'm Ready

I had to get my last Hep A shot today. While I was there, I had the nurse give me a flu shot as well. Might as well take care of EVERYTHING before I go.

Last week, before I actually passed court, I took a gamble and bought our airline tickets at a FANTASTIC rate. Thank you Brady at Golden Rule Travel. You RULE!!! He saved us over $400 per ticket. The only problem was, it was a special and we had to buy them before I actually passed court. If I had failed court, I would have had to pay a hefty fee to change the tickets. But, God is good and I passed court the first time through.

We (my mom, sister and I) are flying Lufthansa. We fly direct from PDX to Frankfurt Germany, where we have ONE HOUR to get off the plane, and run to the next. I sure hope our luggage makes the quick layover. We then fly from Frankfurt to Addis with a quick stop in Sudan. Total travel time is something like 19 hours.

Unfortunately, because we come back soooooo close to Christmas, our travel time on the way back is considerably longer. We leave Addis on Saturday night, December 20th. We fly to Frankfurt with a quick stop in Sudan. We then have a SEVEN HOUR layover. UGH! Then we fly from Frankfurt to Washington D.C. where we have a two hour layover, and then fly D.C. to Portland, were we will arrive Sunday night (Dec 21st) and 9pm. The total trip is something like 30 hours.

I didn't want to fly through Germany, since Ethiopian citizens need to get a transit visa to walk through the airport. So, now I have to spend a day while in Addis at the German Embassy trying to get Sabah her transit visa. I've heard it's a pretty easy process, but it was something I wanted to try to avoid.

So, I'm ready to go. Tickets have been purchased, shots have been given, bags are pretty much packed (I'm a total packing nerd....I will pack and repack about 100 times from now until we leave), and donations have been collected. We are taking 5 18-gallon totes filled with donations to the orphanage. We have one filled with shoes, one with school supplies, one with playground toys, one with sweaters/jackets, and one with underwear. Actually, we still need to fill the underwear tote, so if anyone would like to donate some NEW children's underwear, it would be greatly appreciated.

Now, what to do for the next 5 weeks (and one day) until we leave? Daydream I guess!

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Introducing Sabah Isabella

I'm very excited to announce that last night, a judge, 8,000 miles away, approved my petition to adopt Sabah. As of November 4, 2008, she is legally my daughter. I'm filled with so many emotions right now. It has been a long hard struggle to motherhood, and today, that struggle has ended. Today, motherhood begins. Now that she is mine, I'm able to post her picture. So, here are all that I have:

These two are the most recent pictures. She is almost 5 months old

Here she is almost 4 months old

Again, almost 4 months old (my favorite)

These were the first pictures I saw of my little Sprout. She is about two months old here.

Now, I just wait 5 weeks and 3 days until I can go and get her. Let the countdown begin.

Monday, November 3, 2008

Congratulations J and J

Two families from my adoption agency have passed courts recently. Congratulations to Jeanne and family on passing Friday. They now have two beautiful little babies...boy and girl twins. The previous Friday, Joy and family passed court and now have two handsome little men (infant and toddler). Congratulations to both families.

My court date is tomorrow!!!! TOMORROW!!!!! While I sleep tonight, a judge, 8,000 miles away, will review my paperwork, and Sabah's paperwork, and hopefully sign off on the adoption. UNBELIEVABLE!!!! Please pray that all will go well.

The trend seems to be that we don't hear if we pass until the day after court, so I probably won't know anything until Wednesday. I will post as soon as I find out. With these two families passing, I have HUGE FAITH that I will pass as well.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Me+Bordom=Too Much Shopping

So, I've said it a few time, and I'll say it again. I am a Shopaholic when it comes to buying stuff for Sabah. Now, for myself, I can easily control my spending. But when it comes to my daughter, it's Spend Spend Spend.
Tina and the boys met me this morning for some Sabah shopping. Ethan only made it half way before he had a melt down and I drove him straight home and dumped him with Dad.
Our first stop was the fabric store. This actually was NOT for Sabah....well not really. I am participating in a quilt swap with 10 other women from the Ethiopia Chat boards. We each choose two African fabrics and send each person an 8x8 square of each one. In the end you end up with 22 squares (for those of you doing the math, I count my OWN squares too) along with a good wish for the child. You then make a quilt from all the different fabrics. I think it is going to turn out great. Here are the two fabrics I chose...It's a terrible picture, but I'm too lazy to go take another one. The top is an African Scene, and the 2nd fabric is multi colored stripes.After the fabric store, we headed over to Babies'RUs (this is guaranteed to be a big mistake each and every time). Here I purchased Sabah a Feeding Chair (I decided not to get a highchair as it takes up too much room), and a small umbrella stroller for the car. It's orange. I LOVE it.
Then it was off to a second hand baby store where I proceeded to buy her clothes that she absolutely doesn't need. I tell you, I HAVE A PROBLEM.
Then to Target, where I bought her some fuzzy pajamas (ok, these I can justify...she does need them).
Check out her Christmas dress I bought her last time I was bored:
Boy, I sure hope I pass court the first time around and she actually is home for Christmas to wear this.

After a day of shopping, I came home and redid her toy box. I had put the name "MALIA" on the box months ago, so I had to change the name.
So, Saturday was all about Sabah. I guess I probably should get use to that. :)

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Beautiful Morning

My alarm went off this morning and I actually cried. I did NOT want to get up. But, I pulled myself out of bed, jumped in the shower, and proceeded to get myself ready for work. Each task this morning was difficult and I so wanted to crawl back into bed.

I made it out the door (just 5 minutes later than usual) and drove into work. I booted up the computer, said my good mornings to those that are actually here at 7am, grabbed some water, and then logged onto my e-mail. As I was doing this, I thought to myself, "wouldn't it be nice if there were some pictures of Sabah waiting for me". I quickly put that thought out of my mind because I didn't think I would have received them overnight.

In one second, my morning went from BLAH to AHHHHHHH. Yep, there were two pictures of Sabah waiting for me. Wow, she is getting so big. She looks really really healthy, has lots of hair, beautiful eyes and lips, and is just absolutely perfect. Less than two months to go!!!! And only one week and 5 days till my court date.....not that I'm counting or anything. :)

On another note........I'll be saying tons of prayers tonight for a family from my agency who has court tomorrow (which will be held while we are sleeping since Ethiopia is ahead of us). Good luck D. family.....I hope you pass and those two beautiful boys are yours at last.

Friday, October 17, 2008

I've Been Tagged

Well, I knew my time would come. I’ve been tagged (thanks Tiffany), and the rules state that I must reveal 7 random things about myself, and then tag 7 others, so here goes:

7 Random things about Tania B.

1. About 12 years ago, I packed up all my belongings and moved, by MYSELF, to Hawaii. It was something that I always wanted to do, so I did it. It didn’t last very long, as I missed my sister horribly (and had a hard time finding a decent job). The adventure cost a fortune but I never once regretted moving, because NOW I KNOW. If I hadn’t have done it, I would always wonder about it.
2. I’m kind of a picky eater. I’m one of THOSE people who doesn’t like their food to touch. I’m not overly anal about it…..I mean, if it does touch, then so be it. I will still eat it. BUT, if you ever eat with me, you will notice that I am always pushing the different foods away from each other. My sister always teases me about it and says she is going to buy me those baby plates….the ones with the food dividers, only in adult size. To that I say ‘make them blue to match my other dishes”.
3. My sister and I had a very hard time pronouncing our “r’s” in elementary school. Apparently it was such a problem that we had to go to speech therapy once a week. At first we were mortified, but we LOVED our speech therapist, and by the time she released us we were very sad.
4. Even though we had a hard time pronouncing our “r’s” we were still very intelligent, and were asked to take a test to join the TAG (talented and gifted) program. We didn’t really want to be in TAG, so we failed the test on purpose. I don’t know for sure, but if I recall, we missed the exact same questions. Not just the same number of questions, but the exact SAME questions. Sometimes I think we have the same brain.
5. I was born breech (feet first), and was born 7 minutes after my sister. I like to tell the story of our birth like this: Apparently I got mad at her for coming over to my side of the womb (I made a chalk line down the middle…she wasn’t allowed to cross it...she did), so I started kicking her out. Well, she said to me “I ain’t goin out there by myself”, so she grabbed my leg and pulled me out along with her. That’s why I was feet first. HAHA.
6. I LOVE to travel. I’ve been to Thailand, Tahiti, The Philippines (twice), Mexico (several times), Hawaii (more times than I can count), and several states right here in the good ‘ol USA. All my trips are sun, sand and sea destinations. Ethiopia will be my first trip that isn’t tropical. I hope to continue to travel, just with a baby strapped to my back.
7. I bite my nails. It is a terrible habit, and I don’t like it, but it’s something I haven’t been able to stop. I don’t get down to the nubbins or anything, I just trim them with my teeth instead of clippers. I’m on a path to self improvement, so maybe I’ll put this on my list of things to work on. Maybe. :)

OK, here are the people I tag (usually others will link to their blog address, but I don't know how to do that, so I'll just give the names).

1. Rebecca F. (when you are feeling better of course)
2. Rebecca B. (rejotoblog)
3. Leah L.
4. Mona D.
5. Amber B.
6. Joy D.
7. Jeanne O.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

My Little Peanut is Growing

It's so funny....when you are waiting to go pick up your child, you get so excited over the littlest things. I was pleasantly surprised this morning by an e-mail from my agency director giving me an updated medical on little Sabah. She has actually put on about a pound and a half since the last update. She now weighs 13.6 pound, is 24.4 inches long (up almost two inches) and is doing very well. This is what the doctor's note said:
"Besides the previous history, Saba is drinking 180 ml formula milk every 3 hours. She rolls back to front, reaches for objects, laughs loud, excites and breathes heavily and orients to voice. She is fit for adoption."

Oh, how happy I am to hear this, and yet so sad that I am not witnessing her "firsts". I can't believe she is rolling over on her own and I'm not there to witness it.

Stay healthy little one, but don't grow up too fast without me. I'm coming sweetpea, I'm coming.

2nd Best

The best thing about waiting for a referral is when you finally get "the call" (or in my case...."the e-mail"). Nothing can compare to that feeling. The 2ND BEST thing is watching your friends recieve THEIR referrals. I am so happy for my friends, the F family. They received their referrals for the most precious baby boy and baby girl. As I talked to my friend, I couldn't help but feel the same way I felt when I got Sabah's referral. I am truly truly happy and excited for them. Just as excited as when I saw Sabah for the first time. The friends we adoptive parents make while going through this journey is one of the best perks of adoption (2nd only to bringing home your babies). CONGRATULATIONS F. Family. I can't wait for our children to play together.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Sabah should be home by Christmas

I am so excited. I FINALLY have a court date. Tuesday, November 4th, Sabah should legally become my daughter. It is not uncommon for people to NOT pass court the first time, so I pray that all my paperwork and all Sabah's paperwork is in order and we will fly through the court process.

My tentative travel dates are December 12th through Dec 20th (home on Dec 21st). So, she will be home for Christmas!!!!!!!! My mom and my sister will be traveling with me, and we are all three super excited. It will be a whirlwind of a trip.


Sunday, October 5, 2008

FINALLY....I'm back on-line

Wow, I so thought I would be back on-line posting and e-mailing on Thursday, just one day after my surgery. How wrong I was. But, I'm finally feeling pretty decent and ready to get back into my blogging and stalking other people's blogs.

The surgery went well. The only "complication" was a little trauma to the bladder from the the catheter. That made the first couple of days of recovery a bit more difficult than I anticipated. Also, the Vicoden I found out makes me very ill, so I ditched that yesterday and am now on Ibuprofen and Tylenol. The two together help control my pain to an acceptable level. And now that I'm off the narcotics, I can think straight. Wow, it was all I could do to READ e-mails. There was no way I could concentrate long enough to actually reply to anything.

Thank you everyone who e-mailed me, left comments, offered help, phoned me, prayed for me and thought good thoughts. I really appreciate all the care and concern from you all.

One good thing that came out of this surgery, besides getting rid of that pesky tenant, is that my recovery room nurse was Ethiopian. I was actually supposed to spend the night in the hospital, but because the surgery went so well, they decided to have me recover in the day surgery area, and release me that night. So, in reality, this nurse was not supposed to be my nurse. Anyway, she comes in and introduces herself and starts taking my vitals. I thought she LOOKED Ethiopian, and after a few minutes I got up enough nerves to ask her. She looked at me funny and hesitantly said Yes, why do you ask?. I then told her I was adopting from Ethiopia, and well, a new friendship blossomed. By the time my doctor release me (at 10:30 that night), I had her e-mail and phone number and she told me to keep in touch and to call if I had any questions or if there was anything she could help me with. Thanks E, for taking such good care of me....even if I was puking all over. :)

Well, my brother-in-law made me some Filipino chicken soup, so I'm going to go have some of that and then take a nap. My sister and nephews came by earlier and took me to the book store (I'm going to read "the secret life of bees" before the movie comes out. It's supposed to be a really good book). Then we went to the grocery store to get more pain reliever and grapes (which aren't a pain reliever, but man are they yummy). That two hours pretty much wore me out, so some soup and a nap sounds really really good right now.

Oh, and on the adoption front.....Courts opened last week, so we are waiting on our court date. Some people have already been assigned dates as late as October 29th!!!! Yikes, it looks like we might not get a court date until November. Ugh....the wait is so hard.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

72-Hour Eviction Notice

Well, after battling a non-cooperative tenant for the last three years, I finally served her with a 72-Hour eviction notice. She's been my tenant for 35 years. The first 11 years, I never knew she was even there. Then for the next 21 years, I was only reminded of her presence monthly. Nothing major. Just a little pain, or a few little cramps to let me know she was there and doing her job. Then, three years ago, she started to become quite pesky. She was a rude tenant, making quite a ruckess whenever she darn well felt like it. She certainly wasn't successful at her most important job duty, and when she wasn't happy, she made it known. Now, don't think I haven't tried to make her happy. Twice I had a contractor go in there to get some remodeling done, and twice, she ignored the remodel and in fact, started to redo what the contractor had done. So, on Wednesday, October 1st, my very fabulous contractor will go in one final time (hopefully) and pretty much kick her out for me. Now, some people have asked me if I'm ready for such drastic measures? I mean, I won't be able to rent that space out to ANYONE EVER AGAIN.....and defintely no 9 month sublets. But alas, she wasn't doing her job, and beyond that, she was causing all sorts of medical problems for me, so yes, I'm more than ready for such drastic measures. I mourned the loss of my 9 month sublets long ago and I'm ok with never having the little renters in there. I have a beautiful daughter waiting for me in Ethiopia, and that is all I need.

So, I will be out of work for 2-3 weeks (like I said, I have a fabulous contractor, who can do these types of evictions without tearing out the siding), while recovering from the demise of said tenant. I'm all prepared with food, movies, books, puzzles, etc to keep me occupied. However, the one project I will be looking forward to the most is creating my christmas presents. They will be handmade by me this year, and here is an example of some of the things I will be making.

For the women on my list:

Some beautiful Heart earings

For the men:

A Super Cool Blow Gun

Let's not forget the are some fabulous Tampon Sky Rockets.....

For the infirm....
Some super cozy slippers

and for the musically inclined.....
A fabulous pan flute.

Hey, gotta use up this surplus of "products" somehow.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Rough Night?

I don't know what my cat does at night, but apparently he had a rough one yesterday. I found him this morning praying to the porcelain God. I'd better check my liquor cabinet and make sure he's not been skimin off the top (just kidding....I don't even have a liquor cabinet). What he is actually doing here is bracing himself with one hand (paw) and using his other paw to reach in, get it wet, and lick it. Yep, my cat prefers to drink his water this way rather than from his water dish. The goofball.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Oh Happy Day

I just got an updated photo of Sabah. I had just e-mailed Radu on Friday asking about updated photos that he had ordered two weeks ago. He said no photos yet because the people who take them are out of town??? So, today, I wasn't stalking my in box like I had the last two weeks. I went to a doctor's appointment and came back to the most precious picture of my baby. She has changed quite a bit since the referral photos. She has quite a bit more hair, and I even see some curls in there. Too too cute. The best thing of all though is that she looks very healthy. So my anxiety about her being sick has diminished quite a bit. Wow, every time I see her picture I want to just eat her up. The orphanage sent two pictures but they are exactly alike, so Radu is asking them to send me another one. Hopefully I will have another new picture to stare at soon.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

In Memory of Lorene

Today was the Race for the Cure, and this was the first year that I participated in it. I signed up my sister, brother-in-law, and two nephews to walk with me. I walked in memory of Lorene N. who passed away in January of this year. Lorene is the wife of one of my managers at work, and I have known her for over seven years. She was diagnosed with breast cancer about 5 years ago and was treated at that time with a mastectomy, chemotherapy and radiation. She did well for quite a while after that, but in the summer of 2007, she found out that the cancer had spread to multiple places in her body, including liver, bones, spine, and brain. She fought the cancer through Christmas, but sadly it took her life in January, 2008. I remember Lorene fondly.....she was always so friendly, always had a smile on her face, and was usually the life of the party. She is dearly missed. She is survived by her husband Ray, son Peter, and daughter Madison. Today was for you Lorene. We miss you!