Thursday, June 10, 2010

The journey continues!

Now that we are home.... I will be closing out this blog......I plan to make it into a book for Olivia (see here: Blog Books).

If you would like to follow her journey as part of our family can check in on our family blog from time to time.

Thank you for all of you who have prayed, cried, commented, encouraged and just been there....

God is good and now our lives Him.

Blessings to all!

Sisters: Mary and Olivia

Working: Nick and Olivia building wire shelves

Cheering: Life in the country!

(I still need to get a pictures of Taddy and Olivia!)

Sunday, June 6, 2010

In Pictures...

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Oh what a glorious Morning...

We got home late lastnight...and stayed up late. .... Friends and family were at the airport to greet us..which was so special! Olivia ran to hug Mary and Anthony...Nanny and Papa...and friends with signs and balloons welcoming her home. (Thank you Donna, Heather and Joe)... and a big banner at our house..that we did not see until this morning.

I woke up at 6 am this morning, just pinching myself. :) all my kids home under one roof! I made a little breakfast....and we all sat down, with peaceful worship music on. It was a glorious morning. We went to church, even though I thought we would not, but we were all awake.

Olivia loves to read the words on the big screen in English, and I could hear her singing "Even so, come Lord Jesus Come." She told me, "Mom, me Orthodox." :)

She went to children's church with her brothers...and I sat next to her. then we went home...Olivia and I were both so tired...we took a 5 hour nap!!!!

But we are home...and our life starts....and I am so thriled. I just want to help any family on their let me know...if you have questions and I will tell you the little I know.

I will post some of our photos...I went back and added a couple to the post before...and will add another post later tonight, of just check back.

Thank you to everyone who prayed this one through for us...from beginning to end..... after my photo post...I plan to just keep up the other blog. I am going to print this one out, for Olivia to keep...but will not be updating it, I think...since she is NOW part of We are Family!!!

Blessings to girl is HOME!

Friday, June 4, 2010

Our Last Day in Ethiopia

All is done, visa and passport in hand, and we leave for the airport in 3 hours. Nick is feeling better (had a fever yesterday) and I cannot praise our driver Melke enough...he is truly a Godsend. Today we went to a hair just can't imagine it....a tin building...where women come out lovely. As another mother and I sat whiler our daughters had their hair done, a herd of water buffalo or some type of long horn cattle were herded right by the window along the dirt, rock road. Truly a complex and diverse country,
So My girl has an opinion of her own, DEFINATELY. ON clothes, food, hairstyles...oh MY! I wanted her to get braids, hoping it would last awhile. she said she wanted loose curls they use a curling iron on...I said ok...after an hour in curlers under a dryer, she sat in the chair and they straightened her hair (temporarily) with a flat iron!!! After one strand, I said, wait, is that what she wants....and she said yes!

So, even though I did not like it...I agreed. She looks lovely....but very much older than her age! EEEEEK! But as she looked in the mirror with smiles, showed our driver, showed her brother back at the is worth it. Not a style I will like her to have all the time, but for now...her first salon visit...she is happy and feels pretty.

She is wearing a bright "California" shirt....and is ready to get on the plane! Her first plane ride.

I am so blessed with God's care for us and blessings. It has been an interesting mind shift for me this week, to shift from who I thought I wanted to daughter (a young little girl of 8 or 9), to seeing who this is that God has given me care of....a beautiful girl/lady...with a life and way all her own...He has entrusted me with the second half of her "childhood" and I am now aware, my job is not to make her my daughter, but to see the blossoming girl she is and nuture her on her path to adulthood. What an honor.

She loves playing with another little girl, about Mary's I am sure she and Mary will be fast buddies.

I am not looking forward to the next 24 plus hours...23 of them on a plane and 10 of them sitting in airports...but we will be home soon enough.

Thank you all who have prayed ...during this trip and for the 2 years previous. We are on the home stretch!

Next post will be from the good ol USA....after a bit of sleep!
At the airport..our last goodbye to dear Telefich. (sp?) they were good companions! Telefich and Dagem and family, Ben and Sue, were off to Montana.
First stop on US soil. Washington DC airport.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

We Made it!!

Today is Nick's birthday, 12 years old! and We completed our embassy appointment and all the paperwork is DONE!!! YEA! We are ready to come home.

Yesterday we went to a restuarant outside, rather than at the hotel, called Blue Top. It was very nice with flowers and Olivia loved a chocolate Sunday for dinner, her choice. Afterwards, we had to wait a bit for our driver, so we played in the courtyard,..silly games, and i saw Olivia laugh at her funny brother for the first time. Since then she has laughed alot.

She thinks it is funny when Momma tries to speak Amharic. She can read in English very well...speak a little. We bought some Amharic children's books which she loves to read.

We are all sleep deprived, but happy. God has blessed us richly. Unless you have been here, in Ethiopia, or somewhere like it . you do not realize the blessings we take for granted every day. the way of just have shoes and a meal....amazing.

Gonna keep this one short and not profound...but we are doing good! tomorrow is a hair appointment for Olivia then homeward bound with our 22 hour flight.

Thank you everyone for prayers.....we so appreciate it!

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Endurance is the name of the game

.....or is it perseverance. :) So we are united. When we got to the orphanag yesterday morning, a lovely young lady, Hiywat, was waiting for us in the office. All smiles and hugs..... :) After hugging Nicky and I she asked where Mary and Anthony were! :)

She took us on a tour of the orphange. each and every room as she said good bye to all the caregivers. And we took lots of photos of kids, passed out lolly pops. One little boy took Nicks video camera...a baby, and tried to tape! Nick really enjoyed all the children.

The school age kids sang to Hiywat and I think I was the one crying. :) We then left the orphanage, stopped at a store and went back to the hotel..

Olivia Hiywat enjoyed going through her backbpack of goodies, and all her clothes. She immediately changed...and I picked the right sizes! YEA!

So both Nick and I were exhausted, feeling sick, me a headache, but we were now united. We colored, drew pictures, Nick played card tricks...a good first day.

And now, Wednesday morning, we all feel better. Olivia has the most beautiful hair...I tried to help her with it...but she knows far more than I. We are like two strangers in a room calling each other family. But we are family and we will grow into it.

About every two minutes, I hear this lovely accent say "mom"...:) Her teachers at the orphanage gave her an English/Amharic dictionary, and she understand and reads more English than she can speak.

So we are all happy together...and looking forward to making the trip home on Friday.

Abba is wonderful to us. Olivia is a wonderful daughter.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Go with the flow....

I know in my life I have had some hard 24 hour periods...but...I think none too much harder than the last two days.... 22 hours on a plane...cramped plane..... well. I am on a no whining that is all I will say. on then two in 1/2 hours in the airport lines getting our visa and going through customs....BUT we are here!

We met a sweet couple on the plane in the seats across from us, Susie and Ben from Montana. They are adopting a little girl and boy from Hope too!! And she had even read my blog and had her husband ask me if that was me! lol. I am a celebrity in Ethiopia. Well not really... but fun to have another family to do this all with. We kept together through the long lines at the Indiana Jones ride lines on Spring Break at Disneyland...but NO fun ride at the end. :) We are at the same hotel, too, with five Hope families, but have not met them all yet.

Oh a hot shower last night felt like heaven in droplet form. This morning I woke at 3 am...and lay awake.....thinking. praying. This is the day ....June 1, the day we have waiting to long for.

I am so blessed that Nick is here with me ..truly...such a companion and helper...thank you Abba, that you arranged this.

Praying for my loves back home...Mary Beth...Taddy...Nanny and Papa...and Bella and Kitty too!

God is good! I could hear roosters crowing this morning, and the early light showed haze and smoke on the skyline of Addis Ababa.... I will write more when I can.....

and pictures, perhaps. I hope.

Thank you all for your prayers....and please DON'T STOP NOW!!! 2 hours until my girl!