Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Breaking News!

We got a call from Natalie, our Gladney caseworker, this morning! WE HAVE A COURT DATE PEOPLE!  Nearly 14 weeks of waiting to hear the words "I have your court date!" Matt and I exchanged hi-5's after Natalie told  us April 23rd would be our court date in Ethiopia.

We also found out that my blogger buddy, Heidi ALSO got the SAME court date! We've been wishing and hoping for MONTHS that we'd be traveling together to get our kiddos, and we were so excited to share this happy news today! We're one step closer to those sweet little people in Ethiopia!
We are absolutely are hoping and praying that things go smoothly on the initial court date. We are also preparing ourselves for the reality/possiblity that there are often delays. Sometimes related to the case, sometimes completely unrelated to us our our case. Delays don't always occur, but they are not uncommon.  We expect to get a call sometime on April 23rd with results of our court appointment.

We are praying for:
-Favorable opinion from MOWA on April 22nd.
-Safe and smooth travel for the staff member from the original orphanage in Gondar who is also bringing a needed family member to our court appt along with all needed documentation
- A quick and easy FINAL decision from the judge ON April 23rd!
-Travel as soon as possible following our finalization in court! We are hoping for mid-May.

Tuesday, March 30, 2010


Today was a very low key day at the Kesler house. It's a very rainy spring break here in the PNW...Yard Work was on the menu for the week, but it just didn't happen today.

I did get some laundry done, my hubby worked on our budget spreadsheet, and I got my grocery shopping done.

They boys played really well together today, and for hours this afternoon, they played "Adoption". It was too cute. They gathered up all kinds of animals, and baby dolls of all colors. Hayden was the "daddy" and Jack was the "mommy". Jack found my date night purse (the fanciest thing I own...a Coach purse that my friend gave me) for his diaper bag :) They propped up their babies all over the living room and took care of them for a few was really funny.

Hopefully tomorrow, we'll be able to get back to our yard's really REALLY soggy right now. :)

Monday, March 29, 2010

i am in love...

with these precious fingers. can't get enough! thanks so much, gail!

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Good News!

My previous post was This is shaping up to be a good week. Scratch good. It was great!

Monday-Christy got her referral! SO happy for her, it was almost as good for me as getting our referral!
Tuesday (like I posted) - our needed document was received by Gladney staff in Addis Ababa, ET. Mom asked us to lunch to celebrate the good news! Hayden celebrated by puking all over the floor of Taco Time, so that was fun:(
Wednesday-Hayden was still a sickie, but I enjoyed another day of snuggles and laying low with my boys.
Thursday-more good news! Our file was submitted to the courts in ET! That means we'll only be traveling ONCE to ET. I'm relieved that we will only have one round of travel expenses, and will be able to bring the little lady home the first time we meet her :) And, my boy was finally feeling better.
Friday-Mom and I hit up Kohl's and Starbucks. Scored some good deals on some comfy travel clothes :) Thanks Mom, for sharing your extra 30% off with me! I LOVE my friday morning routine...Send the boys off with Nana for some fun time at the local library and fun with Nana, while my mom and I make our friday morning rounds to Starbucks and Kohl's in search of great deals. I also got to see my sweet friend Jen, who moved to Michigan this fall (boo-miss her so much!) BUT the happy news is they are coming back the Couve in a few months! Yay!
Saturday-The President and CEO of Kesler Enterprises (my hubbster) declared Spring Break yard renovation week! Yard work is very near the bottom of my life priorities. BUT, he's been wanting to give our kids a nice space to play ever since we moved in here, almost 3 years ago! As a family, we shoveled a truck load of dirt into our truck, and Matt and the fellas worked outside, while I ran errands. I forgot that I LOATHE that part of home improvement projects. The 10,000 trips to the store for this or that that you forgot you needed. BUT I DO prefer shopping to shoveling, so I'll take it! :) We take tomorrow off from yard work, and hang with the fam and do the church thing...then Monday, we're back into yard work.

NEXT step, you ask? We are waiting for that magic date in Ethiopian Court. We expect to hear in the next few weeks what our court date is, which will likely be a few weeks out from that point. (so-3-6 weeks out from now, likely)...then, a few more weeks, hopefully before we travel. We are doing okay with this now, although we still can't believe it's now been a full 3 months since seeing our little gals face for the first time, and there's till no finish line in front of us. We know we're in the homestretch though...

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

It's shaping up to be a good week

Yesterday I started my day with my wonderful friend, Christy, calling me to tell me that after 10 months on the waiting list with her agency, SHE GOT A REFERRAL!!

Christy and I met via blogland, and get the priveledge of living near enough each other, that we actually get to spend time together occasionally. We went on our waitlists within 2 weeks of eachother, and both of us fully expected that she'd get her referral first, since she was waiting for a toddler boy, which typically come much quicker than infant girl referrals. So, when we got ours, we were both shocked that she had not gotten hers yet.

Christy and I have leaned on eachother alot during these past months for encouragment and support. It's gotten to the point where we've talked on the phone, or texted, or emailed, several times a week, if not daily :) It's been such a blessing to have a Godly woman to walk this journey with. When I'm down, she encourages me, and vice-versa. I am SO SO happy that they finally have seen little baby "B"'s sweet little face!

Also, go HERE to congratulate the Bottomly's on their wonderful news of a referral!!

In other good news (not as fantastic as a referral), we got word today that "the missing document" has been recieved by Gladney's in country staff! HOORAY!! Our little file should be arriving for submission in the Ethiopian courts sometime this week. What does that mean? It means within the next few weeks, we should finally hear what our courtdate is, AND that since our file will be submitted by April 9th, we should only be traveling ONCE. I'm very thankful for that...although it would have been fantastic to see little Miss Lucy's face sooner, I'm thankful to save the load of cash, and that the first time we travel, we'll be bringing her HOME.

I'm hoping that all of my other friends waiting for important news too (like file submissions, court dates, and of course REFERRALS!) will hear too this week. Let the GOOD NEWS START FLOODING IN!

Friday, March 19, 2010

I'm thinking...

About our daughter's story and how to document it for her.
About traveling to Gondar, Ethiopia (after the past few days of thinking, I think we've decided it's
REALLY important to do so.) (newsflash...sorry, Mom if you're reading it here first, it's too late to call!)(that's alot of parenthesis)
Enjoying this book from the Library (thanks, Lori Rooney!)

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

"If you can't say somethin' nice..."

"Don't say nothin' at all"- Thumper (from Bambi)

I feel like I should stop blogging until this blows over, so I don't scare away any newbies to adoption :)'s real. It's the journey. It's life.

Right now, I feel like I'm working to manage my disappointment. Period. It's how I'm getting through. I'm trying to be real, taking it to the Lord, and letting Him carry it. But, honestly, sometimes I even have a hard time with that. Encouragement from friends who get it has meant SO much. Thanks for your kind words.

We did get a sliver of good news today...the "missing document" from our file is en route to Addis from Gondar...via express shipping. I wonder what that is in Ethiopia? I'm guessing it's not FedEx Overnight.

The news that was hard to hear, and honestly, very disappointing, was that once Gladney receives it and submits our file to the Federal Court, it will likely be 3 weeks before a court date is assigned to us. Currently the actual court dates are occuring 2-3 weeks out from that point. will likely be another 5-6 weeks before the court date happens...and then 2-6 weeks after that for travel (assuming we pass the first time). That likely puts us into May for travel. It has nothing to do with Gladney...they are waiting just like us. I truly believe they work hard for us, and are very proactive on our behalf. But it is what it is. MORE WAITING. My friend, Heidi, is in the exact same boat. (only, she preceeded this current wait, with a long near 13 month wait on the wait list for a referral!)

It really felt like someone punched me in the gut...for the second week in a row. Knocked the wind out of me, punched in the gut feeling. U.G.H

Please pray for both Heidi and I, and our wonderful husbands, that doors would be opened, papers expedited, and ASAP courtdates to open up before the eyes of our Gladney staff as they work on our behalf to unite us with our children.

It's not all rainbows and sunshine in adoption land

I had a big long pity party post typed up, but I never posted it. Yesterday was a hard day....I am so super happy for all the families getting good news of court dates and travel dates, REALLY, I am. Please don't be offended if you are one of them :) I am usually a glass half full, positive kind of gal. So, sadness and disappointment catch me off guard sometimes. Like this past week. It was a roller coaster last week, thinking we are super close to a court date, then a new Ethiopian policy sending us twice to Ethiopia leading to us looking into our court date more (we hit 12 weeks waiting on Friday), finding out we have not yet been submitted to the court, meaning we'd for sure have to travel twice. Then, that was all postponed, and finding out our file is still waiting for one more document before submission to court. Blah, Blah, Blah. We still wait, that's it in a nutshell. We weren't as close to finding out our court date as we thought we should be after 3 months, BUT...we were reassured that our agency believes we'll make the cutoff of April 9th for only having to travel once.

Several families have gotten great news this week. While I'm thrilled for them ALL, I'd be lying if I said I wasn't hugely disappointed to not be one of them. Being the positive thinker I usually am, I really didn't prepare for this kind of disappointment. The kind that hits me in the gut, makes me want to cry and vomit and go to bed and pull covers over my head and hide. I never imagined we'd cross the threshold of 3 months of waiting after our referral, just to hear WHAT the court date is. I had it in my head that we'd be travelling with all the others who got referrals around the time we did. Adoption lesson #542- don't have expectations of timelines :).

Today, is a new day. I'm focusing on the blessings I healthy kids, a warm toasty home with plenty of food to eat and a job for my husband that meets our needs. Lots of friends and family who LOVE us. Today, I'm telling the pit in my gut to go away, and seeking the Lord to fill the hole with hope and peace.

I'am starting to feel like I need to get prepared to travel. I also know me, and I could have it all done in a few days, and then have nothing to keep me occupied while we WAIT. So, I've been thinking of some other projects that could be done around here to keep me busy. Here's my list:

Paint the Laundry Room
Paint my desk
Sew this cute top
Clean the kids closet out and get rid of too small items
Get some bins for Humanitarian Aid items
Get some bins for hand me downs for Lucy (thanks Marie and Michelle!)
start a box for travel items for Matt and I
Make my cousins baby gift

Those are a few to start...should keep me busy, right?

If you are still in the pre-waiting phase of adoption waiting, or waitlist waiting, or paperwork waiting, I promise, it's not all grey and rainy days in adoption. There are many joys along the way, and We have seen God's faithfulness and provision over and over. We expect to see it again here. It's really easy to be discouraged and disappointed and feel like it's never ever going to end. But...we know it will. We know He is faithful.

Sunday, March 14, 2010

The Twist Part 2

e just got home from a great weekend away at the coast with good friends. It was soooo nice to relax and NOT think about adoption all weekend!

We did receive some good news on Friday, and I wanted to thank you all for praying and supporting us.

On Friday another email update came from our agency, telling us that the Ethiopian Federal Court had decided to postpone the new policy going into effect until April 9th. As long as we get our court date by then, we will only have to travel ONCE.

Later that afternoon, our caseworker called to give me an update on our case (She is AMAZING, and has this ability to be on top of quesitons I have, just before I ask them). Since we are creeping up on the 3 month mark, she wanted to find out what is taking so long with our case (the current months average was 2-3 month wait for a court date last month--we are now on the LONG side of average). She spoke with the Ethiopia Program Director in Ethiopia who said they are waiting on one document from the original orphanage our girl came from to complete her file. He expects that to take about a week and a half to receive, and feels confident we should make that April 9th cutoff date. It was a little disappointing to hear that it could be another week or two to receive our court date, but also really nice to know where we stand. As long as our court date is on the books before April 9th, we'll be good with one trip to Ethiopia (the court date does not have to BE before April 9th, just scheduled before then).

Would you please join us in praying for these specifics?

that the final documentation needed can be completed sooner than anticipated,
that we can be surprised with news of a court date before the time expected
that we could pass court on the very first attempt
We could be booked into the very first travel dates following our court date
pray for peace and patience while we wait for these important milestones

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

adoption twist. oh my.

We were informed today of an interesting twist in our adoption .

Effective today, the Ethiopian Government is requiring that adoptive parents be present for the court date (or at least the initial court date). This means we will have to travel twice to Ethiopia to finalize our adoption. The first time (probably in a few weeks) we will go for 5 days. Then we'll come home (without Lucy) and then once things are all finalized, we'll return for our embassy appointment for a 7 day trip and at that point we'll bring her home (3-6 weeks after the final court date).

Please pray for us! It was a shocking piece of news. Obviously, this adds quite a difference financially. Last time we checked airline tickets are around $1300 per ticket. That could go up if we have to buy tickets on short the expense of hotel, driver, food, visas, etc (we expect costs to be somewhere in the neighborhood of $4-5000 per trip). We were not prepared for that twice, needless to say. We are excited that we'll get to meet our girl sooner, but not at all excited about meeting her, spending a week with her and then coming home without her.

We are confident in God's provision. He has provided with everything we've needed thus far.

Here's our list of prayer requests:

A quick court date. (we've been waiting almost 11 weeks already!)
Inexpensive airfare when the time comes to travel
That we'd pass court at the first attempt (in can often not happen on the first try)
That God would prepare our hearts to meet, love, and bond with our girl, and then say good bye temporarily.
That everything will fall into place for Matt to be gone from work twice in a short amount of time
That God will provide our needed finances, one way or another.

Thanks Friends! Eryn and Matt

Monday, March 8, 2010

Baby Makes the Belly Go Round

I have been blessed with the privelege of shooting some fun photos this month! Here's a peek at one of my latest, my sweet cousin and her baby boy's first birthday. Her little neice (my other cousin's little one) came along to play too, it was so fun! Mandy is going to be a busy mama in a few weeks with another one coming soon! Here are some of my faves: (you can view more of my photos at my website

Thursday, March 4, 2010

A Good blog post about talking to your kids about racism

There's this blog I love. Rage Against the Minivan.

Kristen has 4 kids- two biological daughters and two adopted sons. One was foster adopt, and one recently home from Haiti (amazing story in and of itself!).

Anyhoo, Kristen just wrote a great blog post about dealing with kids/ parents on subjects of race. She is talking from a personal experience, but also gives some really good tips on how to talk to kids about race in a normal, healthy every day experience. How NOT talking about it, does not equal "all skin colors are equal". I'm guilty of not talking about skin colors. Some think pointing out the differences to our kids is not politically correct. We learned that whatever we were doing wasn't working, when Hayden recently said to us "How are we going to paint Lucy's skin to look like ours when she gets here?" UM. WE AREN'T. We have talked about her skin being a different color than ours, we thought we'd given them time to get used to the idea. It never crossed our minds that they would think she needed to match us.

Anyhow, any and all parents of white kids, asian kids, native american kids, black kids, could benefit from reading THIS.

Monday, March 1, 2010

"I don't want my kids to be happy"- Edited

 While doing my daily blog stalking reading, I came across my pal Gayla's post. She copied it and pasted it from another blog. I. AM. IN. LOVE. with this post. Let's just say, "my sentiments, exactly!"
While we have had nothing but support from our loved ones, aside from that point in this snippet of another mama's blog, I agree with all of it. ALL OF IT.

At this point I'm not sure who to give credit to, but anonymous blog mama...beautifully said.

TITLE:  I don't want my children to be happy. (This came from It's Almost Naptime's blog)
Dear Shepherd, Sissy, Maggie and Ikey,

Recently we were told by people whom we love and respect why they oppose our plans to adopt. One of the reasons given was that we would not be able to pay for your college education.

It's true.

You all have college funds - college funds which recently took a terrible hit - but "they" say that by the time you're 18, college will cost anywhere between $200,000 to half a million dollars each. You might as well know now, we won't be covering that. I'm telling you now, babies.

The people said that the day would come when you would look at us with resentment because you had to apply for school loans while many of your friends got a free ride from their parents.

Maybe you will. Maybe you'll resent us. I really hope not. But maybe I should tell y'all now why your dad and I have decided to do what we are doing.

I know you're going to think I am going off topic (I do that a lot) but several years I saw a story on a TV show about how the latest trend was for parents to give their daughters boob jobs for high school graduation (I don't know what they gave their sons.) When interviewing one of the moms, she said, "I just want my daughter to be happy." And as I tossed a throw pillow at the television, this really huge thought occurred to me: 
I don't want my children to be happy.

My goal as your mom is not your happiness, sugars. In fact, I spend at least half my day making you unhappy. If I had a nickle for every tear that falls in this home on a daily basis, we wouldn't need to worry about college tuition at all.

Happiness is fleeting, sweet babies. That means it doesn't last. It's a quick feeling that comes from a funny movie or a heart shaped lollipop or a really good birthday present. It's great. I love to be happy. But happiness is a reaction that is based on our surroundings. And our surroundings are so very rarely under our control. Even when - especially when - we think they are. So no, I absolutely don't want you to spend your life chasing something that has so little to do with your own abilities. You'll just be constantly frustrated.

There are two things I desire for you, precious loves. There are two things that I spend most of my time as a mother trying cultivate in you. Happiness ain't one of them. (This means, sorry, no boob jobs for you.)

The first is, 
I want you to be content. Being content is so much different from being happy. Being content is not based on your surroundings. Being content comes from within. Contentment is a spirit of gratitude. It's the choice you make to either be thankful for the things you do have, or to whine about the things you don't have.

As you know, because I've told you lots of times, Paul talked about being content. Paul said that he had "learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want." And Paul was in some rotten situations, kiddos, really rotten.

How could Paul be content whether he was in prison or if his life was literally a shipwreck? Because Paul was constantly seeking to be in the will of God instead of his own, was constantly sacrificing his own comfort for the sake of the gospel, and was constantly being confirmed, strengthened, and blessed by God because of his obedience. He was given a supernatural power - that means something kind of like magic, God magic - to do things that most other humans could not do. And guess what? The bible tells us (in Ephesians 1) that God will give you the exact same power! 
If you want it!

Which leads me to my second desire for y'all.

I don't want you to be happy. 
I want you to be holy. That means, I want you to seek that God-power to make you content. I want you to want the Kingdom of God more than your own kingdom. And that's hard, babies, that is so hard. And that usually means passing up a lot of what the world considers happiness. But it means that you will achieve blessings directly from God that most of the world never dreams of because they are too occupied with the achieving the perfect birthday present!

This means you may be poor, 'in want' as Paul said, and that's okay. It will never, ever be okay with the world for you to be poor. So you'll be up against the world. But not your dad and me, loves, because it was never our goal for you to be wealthy - at least not in the way that the world considers wealthy.

Darlings, we love you so much. You will never even grasp how much we love you until you have children of your own, and then you'll get it, and then you'll apologize for the ways you treated us ;) 
But our goal is not to please you. Our goal is to please our Heavenly Father. And nowhere in the bible does the Lord command that we save our money to send our kids to college.

But the Lord does command us to care for the orphan around fifty times. He does tell us to care for the poor around 300 times. He does tell us that when we care for the neediest, we are caring for Jesus Himself. And in chapter six of the book of Matthew, He tells us to seek His kingdom 
first, and let Him worry about the rest, like college tuition. Because it's all His anyway.

They said that one day y'all would resent us for using 'your' college money to go and get your sister out of an orphanage in Ethiopia and bring her home to you.

But I know my babies. Even at your tender ages, I know your hearts, and I have already seen you weep for the least of these. I know the prayers I offer up to God that He and not the world would shape the desires of your hearts. I am trusting Him to answer those prayers.

So, sugarbears - I just don't believe those people.

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...