February 28, 2012

Say WHAT?

In my experience, adopting has somehow put a HUGE sticker on my forehead that says “go ahead…tell me what you think” Now, I know this is not the case for everyone. I don’t know if it’s my area or my persona or what.

But..I have had some crazy questions/comments. Some downright stupid/ignorant ones. that usually leave me looking like this:

wishing I had some type of good answer to give. instead I mumble something and walk away and get a great response about an hour later. (but I am keeping them all in my head to use one day when I can remember them)

Curious I don’t mind (though I do wish you’d ask me when I am not with my children) Stupid ones I tend to get irritated at.

A darling friend posted on facebook today that a stranger asked her

"Where did you get him and how much does something like that cost?"

While she was WITH her son. a precious beautiful boy who has suffered great loss.

Seriously. What in the world. That’s not curious. That’s just plain stupid.

Now…I haven’t been asked something like that…(thank God) but I have been subjected to this:

I have been asked by strangers “so…his momma’s dead?” Yes, in front of both my boys. The baby may not understand yet, but the older one sure does.

I’ve been asked “so his mother just went off and left him, didn’t she (and then enter tsk tsk)” and yes, again..in FRONT of my sons.

My eldest Ethiopian has been told countless times “You’re so lucky.” Really?  Think about his life for a moment…if all that happened to you..before the age of 6. Would you really consider yourself lucky?

I’ve been told several times that it’s great I have one ‘so young’ so they won’t have much baggage or issues and I can raise them right…..while my ‘older one’ is right across the room playing. (and just so you know…babies can also have issues/baggage…there is no guarantee just because they are young. The trauma that they have at an early age during their formative years can leave big wounds as well) 

And you know, quite frankly. I had a lot of baggage/issues when Greg married me. I am very thankful that he wasn’t looking for a perfect blank slate.

I’ve also been asked the age old question of “Why not in the U.S.?” time and again…

And..I’m not even going into the race stuff. That’s a whole other issue for another day.

So…a public service announcement.

Please keep those thoughts to yourself.

Especially when my boys are there.

As my friend said “they can hear!!”

If you are truly curious about our lives and adoption and how we got here and how it works…..feel free to chat with me.

Those who know me well, know that it’s one of my favorite things to talk about.

But let’s do it when my boys aren’t present.

Please?

Adoptive friends…I’d love for you to share some of those crazy things you have been told….and your thoughts.  Use anonymous if you need to!  :)

February 27, 2012

Very Special Child Needs Very Special Family

This little one has been on my heart. A LOT lately.

Too the point of tears and asking Greg if we were the ones called. (we are not)

However, I do feel we are the ones to advocate and pray for this little one that the special family they need will be found.

 


IAN was recently contacted by one of our Ethiopian orphanages with a unique opportunity to help a very special child. The child is not able to be adopted in-country based on severe special needs and physical deformity.

The child’s issues may be correctable with surgery that is still being determined at this time with no final answer. The child may have long term medical needs. As this is a special case, there will be an extensive evaluation process for interested families. We will be looking for a home that will be able to provide for all the child’s needs.

If you are interested in knowing more about this special child, please contact Casey at:

casey@internationaladoptionnet.org or at the office at (303) 691-0808.

Please understand this is a very unique situation and IAN is attempting to assist this child in finding a home, however, please do not call concerning this child unless you are seriously considering a very unique child.

Thank you very much and let’s hope we can help this child to a “Forever Family!”


February 24, 2012

Flashback Friday

Myrtle Beach.

Way back.

Kids were little things.

Greg had beard.

With no grey.

I weighed 20 pounds less. Okay. more like 25.

Working on it.

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February 23, 2012

“AU” now has a home! & See T walk!

Answered prayers that the 5yr old little boy we were advocating for now has a home! We are so thankful for the family that stepped up to call him son. It was perfect timing in their lives!

Be sure to subscribe or follow the other blog www.hopingyouhomeian.blogspot.com to help us advocate for children that need a home.

And…..T-man is walking better and better. It is still NOT his chosen method of transportation—he much prefers to crawl. But that’s okay.

February 22, 2012

Pictures and GPG!

There are a couple of things I am pretty excited about and looking forward to.

One being this:

Global Prayer Gathering Header

with my adoption/internet bff  Nikki.  You know how some people you just click with?  She’s one of those people who truly encouraged me during our wait, loss of referral, and other days in our journey. I am pretty pumped to be seeing her face to face…and to spend a weekend together, joining a 1000 other people, and going before our Father pleading for those in slavery and oppression.

It sold out already this year!

You can still add your name to the wait list though.  This is the earliest that I have ever seen it sold out which is pretty neat. I hope that speaks to an awareness rising in America.  They also have live sessions online. I will be sure to post the link when those are up.

Any other friends going to be there?

I am also excited about my big kids and Greg going here in Sept. (thanks for picture Carolyn!)

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and working in the school, orphanage, and community with the Blocks and the Uchereks.

Stay tuned to a fundraiser we will be doing in March selling some fabulous items with Delicate Fortress Creations!  

Here is what I love about them!

We believe women shouldn’t be forced to relinquish or sell their children in order to allow for their survival.

We believe in culturally appropriate opportunity, investment and advocacy.

We bet you do too.

Women around the world need you to become educated on issues of social injustice, need you to make decisions that will empower their livelihoods and that of their children and communities.

So we bring you shopping with purpose. Each item you find in our store provides dignity, livelihood and fair wages to female artisans all over the world. We’re fighting for women and their children. Come fight with us.

There are beautiful earrings, baby items, household, bracelets, and on and on.  All good prices with a great purpose! Smile

Stay tuned for that! It will only be 1 week long!

And, Bekah had a photoshoot with T yesterday and took some pictures I love.  Quite honestly, sometimes I still find it hard to believe he is here and he is our son. (except at 3 am. I am pretty sure he is then. ha!)

As you can tell, he love his belly…and the remote.

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February 21, 2012

5 yr old boy needs a family and home.

A beautiful 5 yr old boy with a wide smile and bright eyes needs a family of his own and someone to call him son. Can that possibly be you? Or someone you know?
Please share this post to help us find his family!
Name: “AU”

Age: 5 years old

Gender: Male

Country of Origin: Ethiopia (Gambella region)

Waiting Since: December 23, 2011

Summary: This smiley boy loves to play soccer with the other children and cannot wait to find his forever family!

Heart tugged? Want to find out more about UA?

IAN's Waiting Children Info Email
waitingkids@internationaladoptionnet.org

IAN's Phone Number
303-691-0808

Thank you for helping us to advocate for “AU”!


About the Gambella Region of Ethiopia:

The Gambella region is located in the southwestern part of Ethiopia of the boarder of Susan. The Gambella Peoples National Regional State has been In the midst of a villagization program action plan for the last few years. With the large amount of natural resources available in the area, the Ethiopian government hopes to expand and improve farming practices and uplift socioeconomic status . There are large areas of nutrient rich land they hope to assist families in relocating to as well as assisting them with food and medical services. Although farming in the Gambella region is a large part of the community and family structure it does not come without risk as many parts of the area along the riverside are prone to flood hazards.

The Gambella region comes from a history of violence and upset leading to financial struggles that many of its residents face. Prolonged effects of war, slow farming seasons, and low income has lead to malnutrition in the area. There is not regular access to potable water, sufficient firewood, transportation to or from the markets, sustainable incomes outside of farming, or access to education and medical care. While the region has experienced war, destitute poverty, and floods it remains a strong community. Nutrient rich soil, seemingly endless farming options, and natural irrigation make this a beautiful and fruitful area for the region’s farmers.

Baro River at Sunset

Lake Wenchi

Location: Southwestern part of Ethiopia
Capital: Gambella
President: ato Umed Ubong
Area: 25,274 square kilometers
Topography: 300-2000 meters above sea level
Climate: warm, cool
Population: 222,000
Working language: Amharic
Distance from Addis Ababa to Gambella: 777 kilometers
Notable Features: Fisheries, Baro river, The Alwero Dam, Cotton, Palm Oil, Natural Gas, Wild Mango, Coffee, Ancient societies

Source: Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ethiopia, Gambella National Regional State

Gambella National Park

Pokede

Misir Wot

From EthiopianSpices.com
Misir Wot (Yellow Lintel Stew)
Ingredients (serving for 10)

4 cups of split red lintel
2 large onions fine chopped
1 cup of vegetable oil (I use wayyy less)
2 teaspoons minced or
powder garlic
2 Teaspoon Turmeric
2 Teaspoon salt (as needed)
8-10 cups of water

Preparation Method: In large pot, simmer onion, garlic, and turmeric with vegetable oil for 10 minutes. Add lintel and water continue to simmer for about 20-30 minutes at low heat, stirring occasionally until lintel fully cooked. Serve hot with Injera (Ethiopian flat bread made of teff).

February 17, 2012

Flashback Friday Outer Banks 2007

The Outer Banks (Avon/Hatteras area)  is one of the our usual beach stops…We haven’t been there for a couple of years though.

In fact, we realized that Ab has never been there. We need to correct that soon!

This picture we used in our home study/dossier for Abenezer.

Kiddos look so little there!

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My dad and I. I really like this picture. :)

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This year we are going to a completely new spot in Florida to visit some friends (and the beach!) in Panama City.

Can’t wait for that!

February 15, 2012

(in)courage RL conference! in our area! (or your area!!)

From the (in)courage conference website:

The rumors are true. We're bringing an (in)courage conference to life! Well, better to think of it as an un-conference, since we're hoping it will be all kinds of unexpected - no waiting lists, no need for plane tickets, no limited number of spots - everyone is (in) and no one's out with (in)RL {in real life}!

Yup, we're bringing the beach house to you with the goal of connecting women beyond the blog post! How? Well, with a day of (in)courage meetups - think mini beach house parties - all around the country and globe and a webcast for everyone to tune into. A local meetup on a global scale; friends will gather to watch live webcasts of (in)courage contributors and community, connect with one another, and discover new friendships they didn't know were right around the corner!

There will be something for everyone - walking, talking, laughing, hugging blog content - right in the comfort of your living room. The webcast kicks off on Friday, April 27 and (in)RL beach house parties follow on Saturday, April 28 with more live (in)courage content to tune into together. Just imagine thousands of (in)courage women all over the world getting together in homes, coffee shops, restaurants, or churches - you name it- to connect in real life!

There will be a free T-shirt for everyone who registers, fabulous giveaways, a beach house in a box available for hosts, and the fun of meeting women from our local communities who all read (in)courage - it'll be the online beach house (in)real life! We get giddy excited just imagining it!

How to sign up? It's easy - first, register here and then sign up here to host or attend an (in)RL beach house party.

We love the online world, but there's only so far a comment box can go to connect us. We're looking forward to stepping through blog posts and into each other's real lives - on April 27-28 and beyond. Hopefully, this is just the beginning of connecting (in)courage in real life.

 

"For where two or three gather together as my followers, I am there among them." Matthew 18:20.

February 13, 2012

Adoptive Baby Book and a Kissing Teshale

I was recommended this adoptive baby book the other day for T.  I glanced through it online and it looks great. There was also several recommendations from people about it on fb..and it’s only around $11 bucks!

Update: I just got this in and I love it! Highly recommend it!

My Family, My Journey: A Baby Book for Adoptive Families

Now..for Ab..we just used a scrapbook and created our own journey (which I am very neglectful on right now! need to work on that pronto!)

And to leave you with some cute pictures….Teshale has learned to kiss…or rather suck your face while you wait to see if he is going to sink his teeth into you…but that’s just all semantics. :)

Blowing a kiss

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Rebekah’s disclaimer: Sorry I look like a butt here..and I smelled like turkey sandwiches…  (she just got home from working—the disclaimer was the only way she’d let me put the pics up)

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February 9, 2012

Skip coffee today—help bring U home!

See this family? Aren’t they beautiful?

I have had the privilege knowing Julie since before we brought Ab home.  We have a very special connection through our Ethiopian children…and I am so blessed to announce that they are adopting again!

Julie and her husband said  “Yes!” to a six year old boy that I advocated for a couple of weeks ago.  They blessed me in their obedience and faith filled leap.

They are now in the process of raising the funds to bring him home.  Can you spare $8?  $8 is the cost of 2 lattes, or a lunch out.

Can you skip one today and help this little man come home and bless this family?

God doesn’t call all of us to adopt..but he does call all of us to care for the orphan. Is this your way to do that today?

Go here to read their story and donate through paypal

http://www.acharityproject.com/c/BringingUHome

February 7, 2012

Belly laughs

He was cracking us up this morning…He would pinch or tickle his belly and then just laugh and laugh.

He really makes it hard for us to school. We all just want to play with him :)

 

February 6, 2012

Adoption Webinar: Snack, Play, Love Dr. Karyn Purvis

received in an email today from Joint Council

Introducing our new webinar:


Snack, Play, Love

The Connection Between Nutrition and Your Child's Behavior

Live Webinar

Thursday

March 22, 2012

7:00PM Central

Q&A: 8:00PM

Join Dr. Karyn Purvis as she discusses the most recent research on the impact nutrition can have on behavior.  She will examine the effects certain foods may have and how small changes in diet can make a big impact on how your child feels and therefore behaves. Learn more and register

  • Practical tools anyone can use right now
  • Make small changes for big results
  • Current scientific research
  • A certificate for 1 credit hour is available after successful completion of a post test

Thursday, March 22, 2012

7:00PM  - 8:00PM Central Time

Q & A: 8:00PM - 8:30PM Central Time

REGISTER

Submit your questions for Dr. Purvis HERE, or by tweeting them to @adoptiontweet using #snackplaylove


Sponsored by:

Questions? Email us at info@jointcouncil.org

Gifts from Ethiopia :)

You guys know that we were blessed to become friends with Fekadu and Eyeul in Ethiopia.  They helped us tremendously and are forever grateful to them. 

With the help of a fab adoption friend (thank you again Becca!) they sent some stuff back to us from Ethiopia….

Ab was very excited to receive a box of stuff from Ethiopia!

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I have been wanting a traditional dress to wear to the local Ethiopian gatherings. :)

So happy to have this!  Ab also received a new traditional outfit. (good thing because his was way too small now!)

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Thanks guys! We are grateful that God brought our lives together! You have blessed us!

February 4, 2012

Human Trafficking at the Super Bowl

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Shocking to you??

Then go read this:

http://www.inquisitr.com/189811/human-trafficking-at-the-super-bowl/

take note of this “The National Center for Missing and Exploited Children estimates 10,000 prostitutes were brought to Miami for the Super bowl in 2010.”

Now..remember that from justice.gov and other sources that the average age of a girl entering prostitution is 12-14. 12 to 14!! Think about the girls you know that are that age….Ponder that for a moment and imagine them in that place.

now..read this:

http://www.charismanews.com/us/32737-super-bowl-brings-sex-traffickers-to-indianapolis


Rough, huh? Disgusted? Yea, me too.

And my question…Why in the world is trafficking at the Super Bowl not front page news?

On the daily news shows? I have watched several different stations and have seen NOTHING. Though I do now know that the 3’s Company stars had a tearful reunion, and can now fix an abundance of Super Bowl food and I have heard once again the candidates tear each apart.

But yet…this goes by unnoticed. Why?

Would it make a difference if there was a HUGE public outcry?

Now..before I get you too depressed and frustrated…

An awesome thing is that 3 girls were rescued on Thursday! RESCUED. And..there have been people and organizations that have stepped up to fight this…

Check out F.R.E.E. http://freeinternational.org/

and read this:

http://www.christianpost.com/news/super-bowl-volunteers-prepare-to-stop-pimps-sex-traffickers-68295/

take note of this:

“Indiana cab drivers have also been trained in how to spot prostitutes, pimps or johns in their cars. Catholic nuns are also pitching in by calling hotels in the area to ask management if they know how to identify trafficking if it takes place in their establishments.”

I am so thankful for those that stand up. Now..I ask you..

What is your part in this?

Do you know about your city? What’s going on there?

What is making it easy for unscrupulous men and women to prey on the vulnerable?

I would love to know your thoughts.…

or resources that you know about….Please share…

And as you watch that game tomorrow (or when you hear it advertised) PRAY for those being trafficked..that they will be rescued and on their way to healing and freedom.

February 3, 2012

Watch Out World!

Someone is finally taking some steps! Below is video of his first really good steps…and don’t you love the pretending to fall over to get us to laugh? That his new thing too. He cracks us up daily. We are blessed.

and excuse my voice….don’t you hate to hear yourself talk? especially baby talk! :)

Here’s a video of him walking, pretending to fall, and some more walking action.

And me saying “oh my goodness” a zillion times!

Flashback Friday Disney World 2005

I was rummaging through the hope chest today and found an 8x10 if this picture fro 2005. We were all blessed to go to Disney World as a family (Greg’s family) and had a blast. (though Bekah is not looking like she was having a blast here!) We were getting ready to go to a luau and it was the end of the day..If I remember correctly we were quite tired (and hot!) at this point.

This memory brings fond recollection as well as tinge of sadness. There will be no more all together family trips as this one. Enjoy your loved ones. Hug them today. I am so thankful for the good memories we do have.

disney world family

February 2, 2012

Soup for a Yucky Day

Three of us have been fighting colds and sore throats for the past couple of days.

T’s nickname has become Snots and we have tissue boxes placed strategically throughout the house.

I’ve discovered a mom needs a lot more arms to wipe an active baby’s nose (well, not really discovered because he is #5 but I have remembered—you forget some of those things!) I need 2 arms to hold his head, 2 arms to hold his arms, and 1 arm to actually do the wiping! It’s like alligator wrestling over here!

I made some potato soup last night..and it was perfect for those of us that felt yucky.  Rachel learned how to make in her cooking class at co-op a couple of years ago.

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Here’s the recipe for you!

1 large onion diced                       4 cans of chicken broth (I usually make my own)

4 stalks of celery, sliced              2 tsp paprika

8-10 potatoes, cubed                  6-8 ounces of sour cream

3/4 stick of butter                       salt and pepper to taste

  1. In a large pot, sauté onions, celery, and potatoes in butter.
  2. Add broth and bring to a boil.
  3. Cook until potatoes are soft.
  4. Remove from heat, stir in sour cream, paprika, salt and pepper.
  5. Top with cheddar cheese if desired.

And for your viewing pleasure, T getting ready to have a meltdown due to that crazy pot and lid in his hands. For some reason that lid wouldn’t stay on when he moved it. :) It drove him nuts!!

February 1, 2012

Hoping You Home

 

I have been working on a couple of things recently that I have been super excited about!

One of these is a chance to work with our agency, IAN,  and other adoptive parents to advocate for waiting children and providing support and help to parents along the way through a blog, Hoping You Home.

Now before you email me and give me your opinion……Let me share that I know that not everyone is called to older child/waiting children adoption. I know that it is hard and has a lot of issues that come along with it.  I know the heartbreaking stories out there…but I also know the stories filled of redemption and love. 

Just as I would not discourage marriage because of a high divorce rate and terrible stories, I cannot discourage older child adoption because of some of the heartbreaking stories out there.

What I do want to do that is make sure that parents go into it prepared with eyes wide open and that you are supported throughout the journey. 

I never want to paint a fairy tale picture and I promise you I am not looking through rose colored glasses…but I do want to share the beauty and need of the children that are still waiting for a family and home of their own.

We will advocate for children still waiting and share testimonies, older child adoption helps, and a Wish I Had Known series on this blog to help you!

Please go take a look at  www.hopingyouhomeian.blogspot.com and follow along!

I also invite you to send me your stories or Wish I Had Known answers to help others in their walk.

Email them to me at gcknight@verizon.net

And…to end with some cute baby bath pictures. Little man loves the water! Can you tell?

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