Friday, August 8, 2014

First times for everything!

There is so much to do! Nearly everything is a first. Wednesday, we went to Target to look for C's favorite drink (no luck). Then to the park where big brother pushed the littles in the swings. We stopped afterwards at the gas station for some icees. Then we played in the baby pool and sprinklers! So many first things.

Thursday we took a trip to Spring Valley Beach water park. We all really enjoyed the time spent together on a VERY hot day. There was something for everyone. No lines or waiting, either. A great place to go when you are trying to find something for some good family time. Afterwards, we went to Cracker Barrel. What a fun day!

Today the boys 'meet the teacher' at school. I cannot believe that I will be taking my boys to school on Monday! What a blessing. I am forever grateful to be home.





THIS is why I couldn't wait to get my girlie HOME!!!
 


Monday, August 4, 2014

How can I put this into words?

I am very sorry for the lack of post in the past few days. I have been trying to figure out how to put my feelings into words. I have realized that sometimes, words do not have the power to express some thoughts. Certain things only God can truly understand. Only God has the power to write such beautiful thoughts and ideas...

A week or so ago, I dreamed an idea. I told my boys that I was hoping to be home in time to go to mass with them on Sunday, the 3rd of August. The thought made me filled with joy. Filled with hope. It had been six Sundays since we had been to mass together. Six Sundays of mass in Spanish - grateful to know that they were hearing the same readings, but feeling somewhat lost in another language. Last Sunday I was so grateful - I was able to pull up the readings for mass on my phone and read along in English. I was also able to understand some of what the priest was saying in his homily. I always prayed to be able to understand enough to learn the lessons that were coming across. God heard my prayer.

In fact, God heard every prayer. He knew just what I wanted. He knew just what I needed. He heard the prayers of Paul, the prayers of my children, the prayers of our family and friends. He moved mountains, when they seemed so tall and overwhelming. He calmed fears, so dark and sorrowful. He sent me messages of love through the people who prayed. He sent angels in the form of strangers, helping when we couldn't understand the language.

Constantly consoling. Constantly reassuring. Constantly loving.

Then it happened. Just like that. We were going home. HOME!

Friday started like every day. Just any ordinary day, but with potential. God was ready.

I had heard from the embassy that the visa system was up and running, but that they weren't sure if we would get the visa that day or perhaps Monday, the 4th. That sounded great to me. We can muster patience to get us until Monday!

We arrived at the US embassy and took our spot to wait. Name is called. Presented our documents. News is, the system is working. Tears. Many tears. We wait for our appointment. Name is called.

We walked up to the window. God walks right in. The person working in the window says, "Hey! What part of Birmingham are you from? I'm from Mnt. Brook!" WHAT?!?!?!? Our interviewer, is from less than a MILE from our home. It's at times like that when you feel like you want to fall of the ground. Or fly. Or cry. Or maybe laugh. Anyway, it's something that you can't believe - yet you believe because of God. Only God. And He loves you. He loves you so much that you can't believe it or put it into words. And it's like you know it. Then. Right there in front of the US embassy, with the flag flying high above you. The flag that never quite meant the same to you as it does now. Because you have learned that it's a blessing. Freedom. Beauty. Life.

And a little girl gets to live there. A little girl gets to go home to a new life. In less than an hour from arriving to the embassy, we have her visa.

Packing in the room (like I have never packed before) was thrilling! Who cares if it's a mess. We are GOING HOME. Paul goes downstairs to call Delta. By the time he gets back to the room, I am finished. But God is not.

Paul sits and hints of news. Good news. We have our flight. We have our tickets. Three seats left on the flight, and we have them. Change fees waved. God moved within the man on the phone, who makes three seats appear. Together. In first class. For the price of one seat in first class. Who can make this stuff up?!?!? Only God. A big, giant, loving HUG FROM GOD!

In just a few hours, the three of us were headed to the airport. And just like the details from earlier in the day, things just fell into place. We got our tickets, we got through security (without paying our taxes!), boarded our flight and in just a few hours we were HOME!

What a dream. It's such a beautiful story to share. Only God could have written it. It was perfect. I'm so happy to be able to share this story. His story. The story of a God that loves a little girl so much that He had to make it special. Up to the very last detail.

Yesterday, the 3rd of August, we went to mass as a family of five for the very first time. It was perfect.



Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Today's Update

Does today's require an apostrophe? Hum.

This morning I picked up her passport. Yippee for passport success!!

The visa appointment is scheduled - Friday at 1:30. PLEASE pray that we actually receive her visa Friday afternoon. Chances are that we won't... the visa system is so wacky right now. If we do not get it on Friday, I suppose the next chance will be Monday (unless they are working through the weekends to catch up - which they might).

We go for our IDs (so we can leave Colombia without a pretty steep fine) tomorrow morning. We have her TB test check at 1:30, along with two extra vaccines. Thursday we will go to the ICBF for some conformity letter. Not really sure what it is, and I don't really care. They will also have a form for us to fill out reviewing our process... Do they really want to know?

HA!

I'm trying to learn how to enjoy the last few days of 'peace' before heading home SOON. It's hard - I yearn for my schedule of laundry, dishes, grocery runs, etc...

Watching my little girl jump to her daddy in the pool after FIGHTING for her for 2 1/2 years is emotional. I'm glad for this time we have had with her. It's very special. I hope I can enjoy these last few days and soak in some great memories without stressing out about what day it will be that we can leave.

Soon... very soon...

Sunday, July 27, 2014

What's Next?

Tomorrow the beginning of a race begins.

We will go for Rose's TB test, her passport as well as our cedullas (Colombian ID). I'm very excited. It's a day we will be our doing interesting things and hopefully get everything done on the list. Maybe more.

I have been looking forward to this week for a very long time.

I'm not sure if we will have anything planned for Tuesday - I guess it depends on what we get done tomorrow.

Wednesday we go for the TB test check and I think we also go for her embassy doctor appointment. At least, I hope we do. Once we have the embassy doctor appointment, we can make the embassy visa appointment. I think they do appointments 24 hours in advance - and that's why I really want to have her physical on Wednesday - that makes the potential for going home next weekend MUCH greater. If we can't get the visa appointment Thursday or Friday, we are definitely stuck until next week. That's not terrible, but, well...

Update: We might actually have her embassy physical tomorrow - which means we will hopefully be able to schedule her visa appointment for Thursday... EXCELLENT!

Saturday, July 26, 2014

We are thrilled to announce...

That we are now a family of FIVE!!!

 
Dana "Rose"
born
March 30, 2008
officially a member of our family
July 25, 2014
 

We are so happy! This little one was well worth the fight! She is happy, fun-loving, eager to learn and so pleased to have a Mami and a Papi! We thank each and every one of you that was praying for us and supporting us during the past 2 1/2 years. We can't wait to get her home and begin our lives as a family of FIVE. A family that we have prayed for, worked for and are so grateful to have!

Every child is a gift from God. Please consider answering the call to adopt, if you have ever considered. If you cannot adopt, please research ways that you can help adoptive families and give a child the gift of a family that loves them.

In the past five week of being with us, she has blossomed into such a big girl! She's grown - her feet seem to be a full size larger. Her skin has cleared up and she's almost completely eczema free! Her behavior is SO much better - she no longer spits or hits. She has gained so many tools for good communication - she is signing, talking more and learning so much English... In fact, I rarely have to say things in Spanish and English anymore. It's really amazing what love can do for a child.

Thanks again and please keep up the prayers for our journey. The US visa system is currently running very slow right now, but we have heard that adoptions are getting top priority right now. We are hoping that by later next week, when it's time to start planning out trip home, that it will no longer be an issue.

God Bless You!

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Back in Bogota

It's great to be back in Bogota - and to know that the next flight will be taking us HOME!

Girlie did GREAT yesterday on the flight. She didn't need to attach herself to Paul and she fell asleep and slept for most of the flight.

We have to get our cedulla, or ID, tomorrow. I thought we would need one and it turns out we do. In order to get out of Colombia with paying a major fine, we will get our ID. It's great to be checking things off the list.

Monday we will take Rose for her TB test and I believe we will also do the embassy doctor appointment. These two things are required to enter to US and get her visa. Wednesday we will take her to have the TB test read.

It's thrilling to be moving in the right direction.

And perhaps... in the next few days, I will have some VERY good information for you. We are waiting now for a very important call that could come any day now.

Pray that the court keeps us going in the right direction!

THANK YOU!

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Do I See A Light??

I am going to try and be very brave and think happy thoughts today.

As of yesterday we have some inspiring news regarding our court process. I am VERY hopeful that we might actually reach the light at the end of this tunnel.

I know that we have no idea about anything until it actually happens. However, sometimes it is much healthier to think happy thoughts about things and hope that it comes true.

Let's just say that there is a chance... I might be home with my boys just in time for school to start. I would be so THRILLED to be able to send my baby to his first day of Kindergarten. I know to some that might sound weird... But, I need to be able to kiss his face and tell him how much I love him on that day. He's my baby...

So let's all think great big positive happy thoughts that God can and will make this happen. He knows a mother's heart! He can change the hearts of others! We have HUNDREDS of people viewing this blog and our FB page. He is hearing our prayers! He can straighten this very crooked path! For two and a half years he has held us and darling, sweet "Rose".

Please Pray! Have Faith!