Wednesday, February 27, 2013

two days

 we leave for ethiopia in TWO DAYS!!!!
we are meeting evie in FIVE DAYS!!!!
she will, God-willing, be legally ours in SIX DAYS!!!!
get ready for pictures of her sweet face after that!!!!

as you can tell, i've been doing a lot of packing this week. i am working tomorrow and so today is pretty much my last day to get all of the major packing done. i am nervous and excited and anxious and just ready to go. one whole suitcase is full of donations for evie's orphanage. we'll use this suitcase to fill with souvenirs on the way back.

i've been very emotional this week. satan has tried every trick in the book to scare me away. i know he doesn't want this adoption to happen. he has planted doubts and fears in my mind all week long. spiritual warfare is so real when you are following God. it has been a hard week but did i expect any less? why wouldn't the devil fight to keep an orphan all alone and without hope? i have had to rebuke him constantly all week long and press into the peace of God. it has been a battle.

i probably won't be updating the blog again until we get back from our trip. if we have decent internet access i will try to at least post a picture of her if we pass court. we would love prayers. prayer requests: safe travel, good health, restful sleep, PEACE, evie's heart, great visits with her, our hearts as we leave her and judah's heart as he is away from us this week.

we can't wait to meet our girl....HERE WE GO!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Sunday, February 17, 2013

breathe, this is really happening

we are leaving for ethiopia in less than two weeks. i can't even believe i just typed that sentence. that is a sentence i have literally been waiting YEARS to type.

i have seen so many families, on blogs and facebook, take their trips to ethiopia and bring their children home. i went from thinking early on "that'll be us soon" to "that's never going to happen to us" to "oh my goodness, this is happening to us!". the fact that it is finally almost "our turn" is just too much for my heart and brain to handle right now. it is so so surreal and wonderful.

we will meet and touch and hold and hug and kiss our daughter two weeks from tomorrow. that hasn't fully sunk in yet. i know it's about to happen but i am still instinctively protecting my heart. on march 5th when she is legally declared ours and us hers, i feel like all the walls will come tumbling down.

i feel emotionally raw and vulnerable right now. i want to remain that way on our trip because i want God to use this trip to change me. i want Him to open my eyes to things i've never "seen", i want Him to use me and i want to feel divinely ruined when we get home. all of the things i "know" about poverty are going to come crashing down on me in ethiopia like never before. the word "orphan" is going to have hundreds of faces and names to go with it. it's not just a faraway concept anymore but a reality. i want to face it head on with my heart wide open and then come home and do something about it. whatever He wants me to do. whatever will bring Him the most glory.

the next two weeks are going to fly by. we are making arrangements, packing, 2 days of adoption training, work, kids school and all my other normal activities. 

i would covet your prayers. i would be lying if i said i wasn't afraid. i am facing a lot of fears. this is what we have wanted for so long yet some doubts are starting to creep in. what if we get sick over there, what if i feel afraid on the plane, what if i don't sleep well, what if judah has a hard time or gets sick/hurt while we're gone, what if she cries the whole time i hold her and doesn't like me? ugh. after all this and i STILL don't trust God? i don't want to let the devil steal my joy. i want nothing but joy from here on. this journey is coming to the end. we are about to meet our daughter and then a few weeks later...BRING HER HOME. amazing.

thank you so much for your prayers and encouragement. it means the world to me. we could not have made it this far on our journey without the support of our family of believers. for the next couple of months my mantra will be "whom shall i fear? i know Who goes before me, i know Who stands behind. the God of angel armies is always by my side. the One who reigns forever, He is a friend of mine. the God of angel armies is always by my side. nothing formed against me shall stand. You hold the whole world in your hands. i'm holding on to Your promises. You are faithful, You are faithful."

Friday, February 15, 2013

love letters and COURT DATE

we don't make a huge deal about valentines day around here. a small treat for the boys, a small treat between jason and i. like he brought home a huge reese's peanut butter heart & a vanilla coke for me. he knows me well! but we do make a big deal about love, and that's why i wanted to take a few minutes to write love letters to those i love the most.

elijah, i love you. you made me a mother and i couldn't be more proud of you. you have such a big heart, you care about others and take good care of your little brother. you feel deeply and in turn, have compassion on others. you are serious yet silly and you think about things a long time before you'll jump in. you and i are so much alike in so many ways. you are laid back and happy and wonderful. thank you for being such an amazing son - i love you!

judah, i love you. you couldn't be more different than your brother but i love you for it! you are loud and wild and crazy and love to have fun! you say the funniest things and are always making me laugh! you are sensitive and easily offended but quick to forgive. i love the energy and laughter you've brought to the house. you adore your big brother and are a very loyal friend. you are a perfectionist through and through. i am so proud of you and who are you - i love you.

evangeline meaza, i love you. we don't know you or your personality yet but we already know that we love you to pieces. you are beautiful and sweet and so wanted. you have already brought so much joy and completeness to our family without having done anything. we cannot wait to bring you home, hug you, kiss you and play with you. we are coming for you so so soon. i am so proud to have you as my daughter - i love you.

jason, i love you. you are my rock. you hold me together when i'm falling apart (which seems to be the case a lot these past few years :-). things haven't always been easy, we have been through some tough times together but you always stick by me. i am proud to have you as my husband. thank you for making me laugh, for standing by me, for defending me and for loving me always. i'm so glad we're in this together - i love you.

oh yeah, and we got a little thing called a POSITIVE OPINION and a COURT DATE today. no big deal, we're just leaving in two weeks and meeting our daughter on MARCH 4th with a court date of MARCH 5th!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! we are thrilled and excited and anxious and excited!!!!! praising God for this amazing belated valentines gift today!!!!!

Tuesday, February 12, 2013

i am thankful

 I am struggling as we wait on a court date. I decided I need to write out what I'm thankful for so I can stop dwelling on the negative.

1. WE HAVE A REFERRAL. My goodness, I know there are people STILL waiting for one that have now passed how long we waited. I can't even imagine.
2. She's beautiful, amazing and perfect. More than we ever hoped for or imagined.
3. Judah is constantly talking to me, wanting to play with me, wanting to help me. At times, it drives me batty, but I'm thankful that he loves me. I want to enjoy him as much as I can before Evie comes home and he starts kindergarten.
4. Jason is a rock. Internally, he is probably as nutty as I am but he sure does a great job of keeping it together for me.
5. Elijah is turning into a young man right before my eyes. I am so proud of the sensitive, compassionate, caring boy that he is.
6. My mother-in-law and I got to attend an adoption Mothers-to-Be tea on Saturday. It was nice to be honored and I enjoyed being with her.
7. We took my in-laws to an Ethiopian restaurant on Saturday night. The food was amazing. Just being around Ethiopians and the food made me feel closer to our baby girl.
8. God is good. It is hard to say that right now but I know it's true. He is stretching and growing me every single day on this journey. I pray I come out on the other side looking more like Him.
9. With the delay, it seems my mom will be back from Romania in time to be here when we bring Evie home. I am thankful for that.
10. New babies. There is something about a new baby that just represents hope and a fresh start. I was so happy to celebrate with my sweet friend Ashley on the birth of her baby boy Spencer last week.

Thursday, February 07, 2013

9 months old

Happy 9 month birthday baby girl!!!

It's been a rough week. We thought we would have already traveled to meet you and make us officially yours, but that hasn't happened yet. We found out courts are closed until Feb 25th meaning it will be after that before we get to snuggle you for the first time. We were sad when we found this out. We are trusting in God's plan and timing and look forward to that day with great anticipation. We love you so much!!!

"From of old no one has heard or perceived by the ear, no eye has seen a God besides you, who acts for those who wait for him." Isaiah 64:4

Sunday, February 03, 2013

nature center

After finding out we were going to have to wait through yet another weekend with no news of our court date, we decided we needed to get outside and do something fun to help the time pass. Luckily for us, the weather was beautiful and we chose the Nature Center. I have lived here my whole life and never ever been to the nature center. It is cheap and I'd heard a lot of fun so we gave it a shot. The boys LOVED it...Elijah kept saying we were on an adventure. There are miles and miles of trails so we'll have to go another day to do some more. It was a hit!

For family that read this, I just chopped off Elijah's hair. He looks like a different kid!

Judah thought this snake was cool.

Prairie Dog Town

I love these next two

Judah, after ONE ANT crawled on his hand and supposedly bit him. SIGH.

Can anyone say, Farmer Joe and Lloyd Christmas?

Elijah took this one - little photographer in the making

Gorgeous, fun, relaxing weekend! Today we had our small group over for chili after church and now we're watching the Super Bowl. I so hope I can update the blog this week with our travel court date!!! We should know soon, soon, soon!