Thursday, November 17, 2011

Another Milestone

Last night, I had the privilege of attending the Teacher Induction Ceremony at Ashland University for the 2nd time as a Mom (Kaelee was previously inducted as an early childhood education major). Tonight, it was Kearsten's turn. Basically, after meeting several requirements, students become official education majors in the College of Education.

Kearsten's major is Intervention Specialist, Moderate/Intensive.

We are very proud of her. Daddy was sad to be out of state & unable to attend.

These girls all share the same major & were inducted last night, too.

For fun, we had to get a pic in front of the beautiful Christmas decorations that are already up. My sassy, bossy daughter said we had to pose our arms. Not a word, Dad. I know she gets it fair & square.

Congratulations, KiKi! We can't wait to see where this leads, but know for sure you will make a difference! We love you!!

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Yay for Good News!

Just got the news today that our dossier was logged in in China on 11-14-2011!!

For family & friends unsure of the process, this is a big step. All of our important papers are where they need to be, & we have officially begun the wait for the next big milesone: LOA. Basically, this step will say all is good with our paperwork & we confirm that it is still our intention to officially make Miss Kemeri Abigail our daughter.

I would appreciate prayers for these next steps. The average right now for LOA is 60 days. The next steps after that are fairly consistent in terms of averages. We are praying to come in under the averages so that we can bring Kemeri home before she turns 2. I know God's timing is perfect, but it would be a wonderful thing to celebrate her birthday WITH her!

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Me, Adoption, & My Testimony {Part 4b-Kemeri}

I'm sorry this ended up being so long that it needed to be divided, but as this is a journal of sorts for me, I don't like to leave things out. God is in the details, & it helps me tremendously when I can go back to see His hand...looking back tends to give me the courage to go forward.

Such is the case now. I'd love to tell you that this journey has been full of warm fuzzies. It hasn't. This journey has challenged us in many new ways. However, as I look back at each testimony to each of our children, I can see how God has been preparing faith, in surrender, in our family/marriage, in trust, & in OBEDIENCE. In each journey, He took away our preconceived notions of what WE thought we could handle (be it needs or circumstances surrounding situations), & replaced them with our children. And that's what this journey finally came down to. Why would we not trust the Lord in what He's putting on our hearts? He has been faithful; He has blessed this family beyond words. This life is not always easy (ha, just read my Reality Post), but it has brought me to a place of knowing what true joy is.

"Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author & perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, & sat down at the right hand of the throne of God. Consider him who endured such opposition from sinful men, so that you will not grow weary & lose heart." ~Hebrews 12:2-3

Yes, I have had doubtful, fear-filled moments where I grow weary & lose heart. "Lord, life is so crazy right now with Joe in the midst of his doctoral work." "Lord, we are essentially artificially twinning these babies." "Lord, how will I manage traveling to China & leaving Kendi behind...she's still a baby?" "Lord, the money?" "Lord, what if my arms aren't big enough?" "Lord, "things" are so good in our family...what if she doesn't like us?" "Lord, what if....?" One day in my worries & questions, a question came right back at me. "Dardi, what if you weren't going to bring her home?" That feeling of grief that I had when we initially let her file go washed over me all over again. So, when those negative thoughts threaten me, I go back. I go back to what I KNOW (see previous testimonies), I go back to that horrible feeling of loss, & I go back to the TRUTH. God does not choose the equipped; He equips the chosen. This is an entry from my written journal in June:

"When I begin to feel stress, I try to focus on remembering everywhere I've already been in my life b/c when I look, You were always there. So many lessons learned, but so easily forgotten. And how easily I become afraid & doubt the steps I so confidently just took. And then I remember yet again--My life is not my own, & when it feels most uncomfortable are perfect opportunities to seek You."

And God? He has not only brought us to this place, but He goes above & beyond anything we could possibly dream up when revealing Himself in the details. I have a very sweet story of provision, but I'm going to save that for a separate blog post. I want to focus here on a beautifully amazing example of how He gave us a sweet affirmation of this journey to Kemeri right when we needed it.

Our little girl's name given to her by the orphanage folks is Yu Jia. Yu means understanding and awareness; Jia means beautiful woman. According to her paperwork, "giving her this name means the hope for her to be a pretty and sensible woman". In case you didn't know, we had quite a time with what her name might be. First, we needed to find a "K" name we connected with. But even more important was the middle name...God had laid "Joy" on my heart through scripture, but we have a niece with that middle name, so I was struggling. Two-by-four to the backside My "ah-ha" moment: There are names that mean "Joy", & right there it was...Abigail: The source of a father's joy. This was perfect on so many levels. Source of her earthly father's joy, source of THE Father's joy, & even sweeter is that Gail is my mom's middle name! So, on August 1st, we announced that our little girl would be Kemeri Abigail.

Have you ever had a "God moment" that just brought you to your knees? I had one of those on September 29th. I know the exact date b/c I was reading the blog of another adoptive mama who had been wrestling with names, & they had finally chosen Abigail for their newest daughter. She wrote, "Yes, 1 Samuel 23 where it talks about Abigail- she was a beautiful and sensible woman". I could hardly breathe. I even had to pull out Kemeri's referral paperwork to double check, & there it was..."Giving her this name (referring to her Chinese name) means the hope for her to be a pretty & sensible woman." It still leaves me speechless. I did not know these things about Abigail in the bible. But God knew. God knew her name, no matter the language. And He chose in a moment of my weakness to give me that gift of knowing to settle my heart into a state of awe, thankfulness, & anticipation for this daughter He has known all along.

Monday, November 14, 2011

Me, Adoption, & My Testimony {Part 4-Kemeri's Story}

When Kendi came home, we felt so content (blissfully exhausted, but content!). Joe even went so far as to say the word "complete", & I was okay with that. Then sometime after the first of the year, that weird, powerful nudging began again, which made absolutely no sense to me. I was still quite sleep deprived (Miss Kendi likes her middle of the night meetings over a warm bottle) & just trying to keep everyone in clean drawers.

Well, I guess since I was dismissing the nudges, God pulled out some bigger guns. I have enjoyed reading blogs over the last few years b/c I find much encouragement, & it helps me feel connected with others that are traveling similar roads. I especially enjoyed them as Kendi was tiny b/c I wasn't getting out in the winter too much & there's not much I care to watch on t.v. Anyway, suddenly it seemed everywhere I turned, every thing I read, kept putting China SN adoptions in front of my face. Only once did we even glance in the way of adopting from China many years ago after attending a Steven Curtis Chapman concert, but after seeing the requirements & financial aspect, we never glanced that way again b/c we didn't qualify. However, that was years ago when the non-special needs adoptions were at their height, & also when we had never seriously prayed about adoption or felt that "nudge".

Honestly, I was quite perplexed. I came up with every reason under the sun (including the fact that my husband said we were D.O.N.E.) & would go to bed resolved not to give it another thought. And then I would wake up in the morning consumed all over again. Before I knew it, I was a member of a yahoo group that advocates for waiting children, & I would scour that site daily learning about the process, following links that would take me to sites so I could research special needs, & looking at picture after picture of children who wait. And each day my heart was being broken more for these children. Beautiful, innocent, waiting children.

Finally one afternoon, I TEXTED (yes, for real) my husband & said, "What do you think about adopting from China?". People, I got nothin' but silence for 3 HOURS. I just couldn't take it anymore, so I casually (ha) called him to see how his day was going, if he got my text....If I'm being *really* honest, I was kind of looking for the "no" from him so I could just put this whole business to rest once & for all. Yes, he had gotten my text, so I said, "Well, I guess the 3 hours of silence is a 'no' then." He said, "It's not an anything...I've been praying about it." Oh. Have I ever mentioned that I really love this husband of mine?

We decided it was best to continue praying, & he also had a lot of questions. He was under the impression that there was a very long wait b/c he had only heard of the NSN route. He had not heard of the SN program. We also started talking about what special needs we felt we could handle (it was a nice thought, you know, to DECIDE what WE could handle...wouldn't you think by now I would know better? More on this in a bit). After some time, we also felt like we were supposed to "find" our child & not wait for a match. I should have put two and two together when we felt so convicted of this that God had something in mind outside of OUR parameters.

We began looking at some files of children, mostly around Kaya's age, thinking that age may be easier best since Kendi is still a baby. But with every situation, the door seemed to quickly close. There was one little girl we kept going back to...part of her diagnosis (missing digits) was something we felt very comfortable with. However, she had a second diagnosis we had never heard of before. It was a very long, scary looking word which we later learned means spina bifida. She's also only 7 months older than Kendi. Then one day while checking the posts on the advocacy group, one in particular jumped right off the page; it was with regard to this little girl. A woman was advocating specifically for her b/c she had seen her file & had it reviewed. Even though this little girl was not to be theirs, she felt prompted to advocate for her.

I'd love to tell you that we got her file & just jumped right in without another thought. We did get her file, even put it on hold while we had it reviewed by our pediatrician who was having it reviewed by a specialist, & then we got scared & decided not to move forward. I still remember the day we made that decision. I was sitting at the kitchen table while Joe was doing something in the kitchen, & as I typed the email to let the agency know our decision, I cried a horrible, grieving cry. Mind you, we had reviewed other files, but I had not fallen apart like this before.

Over the next several weeks, we reviewed a couple more files & I kept watching for the little one we walked away from to find her way back to the waiting child photolisting (her picture had been taken down when we had locked her file). When it never reappeared, I assumed that someone else had been waiting to see her file & had committed to bringing her home, but I thought of her every day. Then it seemed to become a complete preoccupation...she was on my mind all the time. On the Friday of Memorial weekend, I couldn't help myself. I emailed the coordinator at the agency to see if "Jill's" family had found her. Within an hour she emailed back to tell me that, no, she was still waiting. Upon reading those words, I got the worst case of butterflies ever. What was going on?

After we had released the file, we had discovered an international adoption specialist that reviews files by email. I told Joe what I had done (ok, I texted him again...I'm a goober, but he was at work & I wasn't sure what he would make of any emotional ramblings that I would try to put together to explain), & he agreed that we should send her file to be reviewed so we could at least have a better understanding of this little girl's potential needs. Being that it was a holiday weekend, I thought it might be the next Tuesday before we would hear anything. Umm, no, the doctor called us at 10:00 that night! By the end of the phone call end of the weekend, our hearts knew. We sent off a different email to our agency than before...this one said we have found our daughter & would like to move forward with her adoption.

The phone call from the specialist did not make her needs go away. She is still missing her fingers, & she still has spina bifida. However, we felt we had a better understanding. But even more important, we know that we know that we know that God has woven this child into our hearts. She was no longer a file of a child with a diagnosis...she became our daughter.

To be continued...

Friday, November 11, 2011


**I still have a Part 4 that I am working on, but I have been up to my eyeballs in stuff, & I do believe I am now going to use my dear blog friends to decompress from said stuff!**

Every once in awhile when someone finds out the size of our family, we get the ever-so-cute, "Are you going to have your own reality TV show?"

I am fairly certain that my reality is not TV worthy.

However, it is reality. And today has been one of THOSE days.

First of all, our garage has been full of stuff we need to sell. Yes, I realize it is almost the middle of November. That's why I realized it is really now or never. So in a brilliant move on my part, I scheduled an ad to run in the paper, beginning today, for the sale tomorrow. I figured a deadline would be a good thing. Would have been a great plan except that I forgot that this weekend I am flying solo. Joe left this morning. Dude.

I tried to get some things done today, but not an easy task with a one-year old, mobile child that should have a hurricane named after her. Then, I had Kade's yearly physical on the books. But I can do this. When it was just about time to leave to pick Kade up from school, I came downstairs to find Kaya half undressed, watching TV. Ugh. We were only 5 minutes late to the doctor.

Deep breath. We can do this. Except that while trying to get the kitchen cleaned up so I can cook dinner, the drain in the sink backs up. This never happens. There is now a plunger in my sink.

On to dinner. Breakfast for dinner is a treat, so on the menu was a breakfast casserole & homemade blueberry muffins. I was feeling pretty happy with myself for not getting the cheap muffin mix.

Somehow, I managed to burn those suckers but good. Should have just gotten the cheapy muffin mix.

And this? I am pretty confident no one would find the view of my laundry room entertaining. Well, the random Santa hat in the mix might bring a snicker. Oh, & this is nothing. I'm guessing there's another 3 loads on the floor in the kids' bathroom, & there's 5 loads waiting to be folded in my bedroom. No pictures of that. I do have some personal pride.

And for the finale, we have the garage sale. I've been out there since putting Kendi to bed, freezing my bumpkin off, only to find that the pricing stickers will not stick b/c it's too cold. Of course, it is the middle of November. That must be why there aren't many other garage sale ads competing with mine. Note to self: All those folks that had garage sales in the summer were onto something.

So, what do you think? TV worthy? I didn't think so. I'm just hoping for a better episode tomorrow. And lots of people who like being able to see their breath while they are looking for a bargain. And something hot containing caffeine. The end.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Me, Adoption, & My Testimony {Part 3}

**Warning** This post has the potential to become a bit of a love story.

An interesting thing happened in the midst of our wait for K'Tyo. I got that very antsy feeling in my heart about another child. Say what? I began wondering if we were supposed to be bringing home 2 children from Ethiopia. Finally, I contacted our awesome coordinator & began doing some processing about my feelings. At that point, there was still a possibility to receive another referral, but as time went on, it became apparent that getting another referral was not going to happen. However, THAT feeling was still there. After some further discussion with our coordinator, we opted to be put on the waiting lists (at the time, the agency we were with allowed for this). We did not share this information with anyone because we just really wanted to focus on K'Tyo's homecoming & not take away from that.

I fell hard for Ethiopia. I loved the people. I love my son from there. I was very excited to be going back, & we were steadily moving toward the top of the lists. And then Joe dropped a bomb. This man of mine has never been one to flex his "head of the household" muscles, but he informed me that deep down, he was feeling that our child was here & he really felt like we should remove ourselves from the wait lists. Remember my "here, there, everywhere" comment in my last post? My heart was "there", but Joe was saying "here". Huh? I must admit I was more than a little ticked that God was talking to Joe about these matters! ;)

In Part 1, I mentioned that learning more about my marriage has been part of the testimony. The journey to Kendi was a HUGE time of growth in our marriage. After some prayer, I realized I had a choice to make. I could pitch a fit & get my way (I can pitch a pretty good fit), or I could take a step back & let my husband take the lead. The truth suddenly hit me hard...why would I not trust my husband? His heart is just as invested in following the Lord in this passion for children as my own. And not only that, he is always doing things to make me happy, so why would he come up with some idea of changing direction if he didn't feel strongly that that's what God was calling us to? So, I removed our names from the wait lists & we began working with a private agency in our state.

We have had some people ask us in the past about feeling "the same" about our adopted & biological children. At the risk of sounding mushy or like I am romanticizing this, I can honestly say that even though these children were not conceived by us physically, they were conceived nonetheless. At this point in our journey to Kendi, we still had not told anyone, & we really felt like this was something very special between us...yep, I guess you could say Kendi had become our "love child"! So, we continued to keep it between us.

There were still moments I struggled with not going back to Ethiopia. I struggled with waiting for someone to "choose" our big family with "mature" parents. But God.

In church one Sunday, this verse was part of the sermon:

"The widow who is really in need and left all alone puts her hope in God and continues night and day to pray and to ask God for help." ~1 Timothy 5:5

Lightbulb...I had just read something that referenced today's single mother as the modern-day widow. I began praying in earnest, wondering if this was the type of situation God had been breaking Joe's heart for. In less than a week, the answer was yes. Have you ever noticed, though, that God tends to go above & beyond as He answers prayers? This time was no exception. Not only did He bring our hearts as one for this birth mother & her child that was also our child, but He used this birth mother to convict me of another truth. I had been convinced that no birth mother would choose our family due to it's size (I mean, that's what all the adoption experts say...birth mothers typically want smaller families) & the fact that we are older more mature, so I figured we were waiting for an emergency situation where the birth mother would leave the choice of families to the agency. We were open to a variety of needs, so sooner or later we would be next in line. But God.

This birth mother CHOSE us out of several profiles. I do not say this boastfully. As a matter of fact, I am still quite humbled. Through this birth mother, God reminded me that our family is just the way HE intended for it to be. I love this big, beautiful family the Lord has blessed me with, & there is to be NO shame in that! But that's not the end of this birth mother blessing us... we had the opportunity to meet, & she proceeded to tell us, "I did not know what I was going to do. I was praying to God every night." Just like the verse He gave me. Beyond humbling.

Yes, indeed, this journey to Kendi was very much a love story, but not just Dardi & Joe's love story. It's God's love story. God loves His children so much that He never leaves them where they are. Status quo can be good, but He used an adoption journey to say, "You're marriage can be even your capacity to love more children can grow, so can your capacity to love & trust each other." God is just cool like that.

Kendi Hope

Monday, November 7, 2011

Me, Adoption, & My Testimony {Part 2}

As mentioned in Part 1, I was learning to trust God with my everything. That includes *my* plans. As Kaya's adoption day drew nearer, we had that undeniable desire to adopt another child. However, WE wanted the road to our next child to be easier. Don't laugh...I know that "easy" & "adoption" do not go together, but this mama was emotionally spent from the roller coaster we'd just endured for 2+ years, so I was hoping for something a little less taxing.

Now that we had gone back to babyhood, we were thoroughly enjoying it. So, we got in touch with an agency about adopting an infant transracially. I filled out the paperwork. But then it sat. Finally, Joe asked me what was up b/c this chick does not leave paperwork just sit. I remember something didn't feel right. I was carrying out my plan, but was it God's plan? We knew that we were to adopt again, but were we headed in the right direction?

I believe one of the first things I began learning with this adoption was how to listen. It's so easy to get going full steam ahead & forget who is supposed to be steering. Finally, I did that dreaded surrender And prayed.a.lot. God has definitely taken His time answering prayers along the way, but in this instance, I think He was waiting for me to ask, & didn't hesitate to answer (I sort of see Him going, "Finally...."). Within a few days, we were staring at a picture of K'Tyo on our computer screen. I remember Joe saying, "Can we actually get to him?" Some of our experiences had shown us that just because a child was on a photolisting didn't mean that you were going to be able to pursue them as your child. And, really? This was an international adoption situation. We didn't think we would EVER do anything internationally (do you see a pattern forming?). I mean, where do you begin with the paperwork? And the finances. Then there's travel. And the finances. There's little background information on this child. And the finances.

But God.

Was this "easy"? I don't know if that's the right word, but it was as if we were just being "swept" thing led to another & then to another. We just kept getting affirmations that we were doing what we were supposed to, & everything kept falling into place, including the finances. There were definitely some emotional moments, but anything involving the heart is emotional. From beginning (we had NOTHING done for an international adoption) to K'Tyo coming home was slightly less than 7 months...crazy!

I learned much about the heart of God during this adoption. First, I became very aware of life outside my "comfort zone". God does not have the same dividing lines for this earth that we create. Ever heard, "We need to take care of 'our own'"? No. God calls us to love one another. Period. He doesn't say love those that look like you & live in your country. He says love one, there, everywhere.

I also became very aware that God really does have the best for me, even when there were times it didn't seem like it. As we were waiting for a court date, there was a group of families that were all due together. Post after post starting coming in from these families on our yahoo group about receiving a court date, but I had heard nothing. When I saw a call coming in from our coordinator, I thought certainly it was about us having a court date, too. Instead, she was calling very apologetic b/c for some reason, our paperwork had been left behind. I was sad, but at least knew our paperwork was ok & should be in the next round of court dates. When I got the call about our court date, I was scheduled for my birthday. I thought that was just the best present ever! And then we didn't pass court. I'm not gonna lie...I was crushed. I felt like I had the rug pulled out from under me. It was my birthday, for goodness sake! It wasn't until a few weeks later when we would have been traveling that I realized God gave me the best present ever by NOT letting us pass court on my birthday. We would have been stuck in Europe in the midst of the ash cloud chaos. I know it was not an easy situation for anyone involved, but for us, it would have been devastating. Financially, we could not have handled being stuck out of country, but even more important, Joe would have been beside himself with worry b/c he stayed behind while Kameryn & I went. God was in the details, & I became very aware that my perspective is not His.

As I mentioned with Kaya, I learned much about finding strength & courage in the Lord. This journey brought to life, "With God, all things are possible." We learned about stepping outside the box of conformity to follow God's will for our family. We learned about stepping out of the boat to follow Him, even if that meant traveling over 8000 miles across the ocean to bring home a son. We have come to the realization that God desires for us to live our lives following's an adventure, & all we have to do is say "yes". Is it easy? No. Scary? Sometimes. Glamorous? No. Worth the blood, sweat, & tears? You better believe it!

"Do not conform any longer to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God's will is--His good, pleasing and perfect will." ~Romans 12:2

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Me, Adoption, & My Testimony: {Part 1}

Edited 6/25/2013--If you are here via the linky from Adeye's blog post on domestic adoption, hello!  We have adopted domestically twice (the other testimony can be read in Part 3).  We have also adopted from Ethiopia & China (special needs).  Those stories are also located under my testimonies.  Thanks for visiting! :o)  You can also read a post here that is a continuation of some of the emotion from the experience of this journey.

**So, in honor of November being Adoption/Orphan Awareness Month, I was going to do "a" (singular) post about my testimony, but quickly realized THAT would be looooong, so I'm breaking it down into four parts. You're welcome.**

Adopting a child could very well be a testimony in and of itself. But for me, each of our adoption journeys has been the catalyst for God teaching me more. More about His heart. More about trusting Him. More about my faith. More about my marriage. More about love. More about me.
And more that it's not about life is not my own.

Looking back, I think God began a work in my heart for adoption a very long time ago...I just didn't know it. ;o) For as long as I can remember, I have wanted to be a mother. For some reason I can remember a time in the 2nd grade thinking that having a baby would just be the best thing ever. I thought that if I prayed & hoped hard enough, I would wake up to find one in my bed in the morning. Needless to say, I was disappointed. A bit embarrassing, I know. Moving on...

Somewhere along the way, I began to feel like this desire in my heart for motherhood was not something to be proud of. I felt "less than", if you will. I mean, all these women are out there doing glamorous things & I was "just a mom". Through a series of some devastating events, in early 2005, I found my way into a women's study that was pretty intense. I went in looking to "fix" some other things in my brain. I left transformed in a totally different way than I had anticipated (of course!). I left embracing the fact that God has put this passion for motherhood in my heart. Adoption was still not on my radar, but I think God used that time as preparation. My last journal entry from that study was on 8-6-2005 (remember has significance). It read, "I don't know where all this is leading, but I will surrender & trust in You."

Fast forward to 2006. Joe & I attended a ceremony where there were many youth involved that were part of the foster care system. My heart was absolutely broken. We began exploring the possibility of adopting an older child that was already in permanent custody. We were told by the agency that we decided to work with that young children & babies are rarely available, to which we replied, "That's not what we're looking for, & we are NOT interested in fostering." Someday, I will learn to NOT draw lines in the sand. Anyway, we did have to get licensed as part of the process. Two matches ended up falling through (not by our choice), & we were so sad & confused. At one point, we began looking at private adoption, but just weren't sure about starting over with a baby (ha!). During moments of mental turmoil, I find comfort in journaling, which ends up being my prayers on paper. In February, 2007, I wrote, "Lord, I do not know what the situation will be, but I ask that Joe & I would be secure in the knowledge that You do know & will equip us."

In August, 2007, we got a call that turned our world upside down. Our agency called on behalf of a county an hour away looking for a stay-home mom to foster a preemie. Yes, I said I would *never* do foster care, but I prayed that God would either open the door or close it tight. It seemed improbable that they would end up using us considering everyone seems to want babies & we were so far away, but the only reason I could find to say no should they call was only about "me". The next call came & said, "You're it", & so the walk of faith began. And that date I told you to remember...EXACTLY 2 years to the day that Kaya was born. And that prayer I just mentioned from February trusting the Lord with the situation & that He would equip us for it? That was when Kaya was conceived. I truly believe journaling is such a good thing because we can go back & see how the Spirit is guiding our prayers, & how God is preparing our hearts.

For me, Kaya's adoption journey was a faith walk like I've never experienced. I learned what it means to be completely dependent on God for each step. There was no one on this earth that could tell me how this would all turn out. My trust was in His plan, whatever that looked like. And every ounce of strength to walk that road for over 2 years came straight from Him. In those 2 years, He also increased in me a love & tolerance for broken people that I never knew, & I believe this journey gave me what I like to call the courage to step out of the boat when God asks. It taught me that faith is not neat & tidy; it is rarely comfortable...there are times it was actually knee-buckling, let-me-off-of-this-ride kind of faith. But I learned that I could come before God looking & feeling like a hot mess, & He was patient with me. It was ok. He's my Father, & He loves me wherever I am. I learned I can bring Him everything...I mean every hope, every hurt, every bit of angry I can muster...& He's ok with that. It doesn't mean my faith was any less. It meant I was learning to trust Him with my everything....

Kaya Ashley Faith

8/2007 ~ Came Into Our Home & Hearts

11/4/2009 ~ Adoption Day!

Friday, November 4, 2011

We are....

D ** T ** C

Yes, indeed!! Today, our dossier is on its way to China!

And, quite frankly, I can't decide whether to laugh, cry, or collapse on the floor. Or maybe I should just skip all of those & have a little get-together with a box of hair color.

Whatever. It's all worth it to get one step closer to lil Miss Kemeri Abigail.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

No "Futbol" for Our Ethiopian Dude {Yet}

Nope. We gave him the choice between "futbol" & "football", & the American version won out. Might have a little something to do with the fact that he thinks his brother is just plain awesome
& likes to do whatever he's doing.

Whatever the reason, K'Tyo played football, but to his dismay, it was "only" flag. I get the feeling this may be another way he's like his brother in that he will be counting the days until he gets to play tackle.

Of course, Mom waited until the last game of the season to remember the camera, & it was flippin' cold! Ah, well, the hat & long socks add a fashionable statement. :o) He'll love me for it someday.

I must say, he really started "getting it" as the season went on.

The funny thing about this picture is it looks like he's getting ready to launch a bomb. Actually, he just SCORED a touchdown (Woo-Hoo!!) & was throwing the ball to the official. But he looks awesome doing it!

And, yes, he still smiles. A lot.

Plays some good defense, that son of mine.

I guess he doesn't smile all the time, though...looks pretty tough, don't you think?

Check him out....Quarterback for this play, just like Kade (his words)!

Nice hand-off, dude!

On the way home, we asked him if he was glad he played football & if he had fun. His response: "I liked it when we won, but I didn't like if we 'loosed'". Hmmm...He is undoubtedly Kade's brother.