Sunday, April 26, 2009

In remembrance...

We received the news that my (Garden) Grandma went to be with the Lord yesterday, exactly one year to the day that my Grandpa passed away. They were married 57 years.

It was just last Saturday that we were in Mo and got to visit with Grandma. She was so excited to meet Ayana for the first time. Thank you Lord for that precious time!



I love you Grandma, give Grandpa a hug for us.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

OMG, so TRUE!!!

Ok, I saw this on Jen's blog and I had to post it to! So funny!




Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Our weekend...

We got to go to MO to see the family. Most of them met Ayana for the first time, including her older brother and sister. We had so much fun. It was hard to leave...I miss you guys already!



Thanks mom for hosting a very fun weekend!

Sunday, April 12, 2009

My Redeemer Lives!

Jesus has risen from the dead and was I praising the Lord for His gift?
No, all I was doing this morning was hustling to get ready for church and getting Easter baskets ready and wiping snotty noses and getting cranky from lack of sleep.




Mark 16:1-8
When the Sabbath was over, Mary Magdalene, Mary the mother of James, and Salome bought spices so that they might go to anoint Jesus' body. Very early on the first day of the week, just after sunrise, they were on their way to the tomb and they asked each other, "Who will roll the stone away from the entrance of the tomb?"

But when they looked up, they saw that the stone, which was very large, had been rolled away. As they entered the tomb, they saw a young man dressed in a white robe sitting on the right side, and they were alarmed.

"Don't be alarmed," he said. "You are looking for Jesus the Nazarene, who was crucified. He has risen! He is not here. See the place where they laid him. But go, tell his disciples and Peter, 'He is going ahead of you into Galilee. There you will see him, just as he told you.' "

Trembling and bewildered, the women went out and fled from the tomb. They said nothing to anyone, because they were afraid.


Lord, I repent for putting emphasis on the wrong things today. Today is the celebration of the precious gift you gave, Your sons life and then Resurrection. It's not about Easter baskets and bunnies. Thank you Lord that I can face death with confidence. Thank you that I can look forward to eternal life. Here and now, I can live in the power of His resurrection. There is no better gift or Holiday to celebrate. I love you Lord, THANK YOU!!!!!


Friday, April 10, 2009

Would you like a glass water?


Hi all,

We have been home for 7 weeks now with our Ethiopian Princess. We want to continue to be a part of Ethiopia beyond just our adoption.
Some of you have already heard of Charity Water and have joined in on this wonderful cause. In case you haven't, I urge you to pray about donating WATER.

We have a TIME BOMB!





WHY WATER.
Right now, 1.1 billion people on the planet don't have access to safe, clean drinking water. That's one in six of us.

WHO WE ARE.

charity: water is a non profit organization bringing clean, safe drinking water to people in developing nations. We give 100% of the money raised to direct project costs, funding sustainable clean water solutions in areas of greatest need. Just $20 can give one person in a developing nation clean water for 20 years. To find our more about Charity Water: go to their website at: http://www.charitywater.org/

A fellow Ethiopia Adoptive parent and blogger, Lori, has started Team Ethiopia. She and others are raising money to build wells in Ethiopia. we are excited to be a part of it. Thanks Lori, you are AWESOME!


In Lori's words:
Team Ethiopia's mission is to build well(s) in Ethiopia where most of our adoptive children came from. After many of us parents have been to Ethiopia we came home different on several levels. One thing that is very clear to us is that we need and want to do more for the Ethiopian people. They are beautiful inside and out. Dirty water causes many kinds of illness and can even cause death. Several of our children came home to America with some of these water born illness' that thankfully could be treated here.


The urgency of this cause is enormous and the cost is so little. Please, donate any amount you can. Our goal is to try and get every family to donate $50. But any amount will get the job done. Together, Team Ethiopia will bring water to the many men, women, and children who desperately need it.




But please, if you want to donate to our team well, you MUST do it from this page and not from the charity: water main page. If you donate from the main page then your funds will go to the general fund and not to our well.


Click on the picture to donate now!


Team ETHIOPIA! 96 members and climbing!



Live Drilling from Ethiopia:




Thank you for considering this wonderful project!

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Sick baby girl...

So baby girl is sick. I knew there had to be a reason why she wasn't excited to see me when I got home the other day. No seriously, I have noticed she has not been herself. Sure enough, she woke up yesterday with goop all in her eyes and looked so bad, poor thing.

Things got worse and she didn't sleep hardly at all last night. She was having a hard time breathing and was whining and crying all night because she felt so bad poor baby. I was able to rock her to sleep a few times but it was short lived. I had to put saline drops in her nose and it kept running for hours and I would try to suck it out but it wasn't working that good. Of course, she thought I was the devil after using the nose sucker on her. Way to bond mom!

So I was exhausted by this morning and decided to not go to work but to take her to the doctor instead. Diagnoses: She has a cold/fever and allergies. They cultured her eye to make sure she didn't have pink eye too. If she didn't think I was the devil with the nose sucker, she did now with having to hold her down to get the eye culture.

It's 11:10 pm and she finally is asleep but I don't know for how long. I'm going to bed to try to get a few hours of shut eye before I have to get up again.

Please pray that Rick and I don't get sick too. Savannah already has it.

Motherhood: It can't be fun all the time.






Lilypie Waiting to adopt Ticker

Bed time or Play time?

I took these a few nights ago at 10:30 pm when Ayana still was not asleep... How can you resist that smile looking at you saying, "let me out of jail please."
















Lilypie Waiting to adopt Ticker

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Another day...

Today was a little better than yesterday. I came home and Ayana was taking a nap. When she woke we cuddled. She isn't feeling well. One of her eyes is watering badly and it looks a little hazy. She is also acting weird. Not eating much, very sensitive and crying a lot.
I am going to take her to the doctor tomorrow and have her checked if I can get her in. She is on allergy medicine and I have kept the dogs away from her lately just in case.

Work was crazy again today and I had to go to a Booster club meeting for cheer tonight. Ugh! I hate those things.

Breathe, one day at a time...



Monday, April 6, 2009

HARD day!

I had a rough day. Today was my first day back to work after being off for 6 weeks with Ayana. We have a caretaker coming to the house to watch her while I’m at work. When I got to work, 6 weeks of backed up work waiting for me that needs to be done yesterday. Overwhelming!!!!!!!! Then an agent wanted to show our house in the middle of the day at the last minute and the house wasn’t exactly in showing condition so I rushed home and the time I would have spent with her for lunch was spent cleaning.
I get home after a hard day and Ayana didn’t act excited to see me but was in love with the caretaker. I guess I should be happy she likes her but I have to admit, I was so jealous. She normally gets so excited to see me. Will she think the caretaker is her mommy and not me??????????????????

Heartbroken,

Amber

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Who knew adoption was so controversial?

I was watching the news and saw that Madonna was rejected by the Malawi court to adopt her second child. Madonna's case has sparked much debate on International adoption. From what I read, she was rejected because part of the Malawi law requires prospective parents to live in the country for 18 to 24 months while child welfare authorities assess their suitability — a rule that was bent when Madonna was allowed to take David to London in 2006. When she was able to adopt David, this caused a lot of controversy in the adoption world. In addition, her son may have had family that could take care of him and it was questioned if he was a true orphan. Madonna is appealing the recent court decision.
This post is not to give my opinion on this case...see below.

Madonna and David

"Mercy"



The reason why I bring this up is because there has been a lot of chat on the adoption yahoo groups, blogs, personal emails sent to me and more about International adoption and some difficult questions. The media is now bringing attention to some of these topics. Some of those questions include but are not limited to:

Are the children being adopted true orphans?

Should the children be allowed to leave their birth country?

Why don't you give money instead of adopting so the child can stay in their country?

Why don't you adopt domestically and not internationally?


These are just a few of the questions/comments that we have encountered personally not just heard on the media.

I read an article today that was written after the Madonna court rejection. It really sums up my thoughts and feelings and gives the answers that I would give to some of these questions.

The article was written by Melissa Fay Greene, an author and mother of five adopted children. Melissa is the mother of four biological children, four children adopted from Ethiopia and one adopted child from Bulgaria. In the adoption community, She is a very well known author of a book called, There is no me without you.




Here is part of the article published by CNN.com:

CNN: What's your initial reaction to the news that Madonna's adoption of a Malawian child has been rejected?

Greene: Surprise. ... It was awfully tricky with Madonna's first adoption, when the child turned out to have devoted family members nearby. [The singer's adoption of a Malawian boy was finalized last year.] And if that's true with this child also, it seems a similar sticky situation.

That's not the situation for the majority of orphanage children around the world, who don't have caring grandparents or aunts and uncles a short walk or bike ride away.

I think it gives people an odd perspective on what international adoption can mean for children who don't have any support network outside the walls of an orphanage.

You often hear attacks on international adoption as robbing a child of his or her culture, and that's both true and false. It's true that an internationally adopted child loses the rich background of history and religion and culture and language that the child was born into, but the cruel fact is that most children don't have access to the local, beautiful culture within an orphanage. ...

There's a culture in orphanages that children are eager to escape from, and it's a culture of being reared as a group and not being doted upon by parents. For any child, that's the bottom line. The fact is that a human child wants that mommy or daddy or both. We're just wired to want that and to need that. And there's no way an institutional setting can give a human baby what the child needs. It's impossible. So you have to balance priorities. ...

I think what some of the human rights group say is absolutely accurate: that international adoption does not begin to solve the problems of the world's orphaned children. It's truly not the answer. ...

At the same time, international adoption, even though it doesn't solve the whole problem, it solves a problem for a few. I think it can be a brilliant solution to the problem of adults wanting a child in their lives or wanting more children in their lives and the problem of children who want parents in their lives.

To read the rest of the article and to hear more answers to some of the questions that were posed in this post, go HERE.

Well said Melissa!

So most of the time when we're living our day to day lives, people are very supportive. But sometimes, people can be downright rude and judgemental. To be blunt, I don't care if you approve or not. I can't please or be popular with everyone. We followed all the US laws and all Ethiopian law when adopting Ayana. She was an orphan in an orphanage with no one that could care for her. Money would not give her the love of a parent. I know that God called us to adopt from Ethiopia. When God is in control, it can't be wrong, right?
Sorry, rough day... ranting.



Saturday, April 4, 2009

6 weeks...

6 weeks ago today,
we met an Angel that changed our lives forever!

We are soooo blessed!

This is a first...

video

I don't know exactly what you call that sound, but I think it's sooo funny.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

What has Ayana been up to?

We have had Ayana at home for 5 weeks and she has been in our arms for 6 weeks on Saturday. Time flies...She has changed so much, so fast. We are soooo lucky to have her!!!!



Ayana Health Update-Part 2

Ayana recently finished her last round of antibiotics. The antibiotics that she was given at the orphanage and that was given to us for her to continue to take...she was completely immune to them from what we can tell. They had to put her on a stronger medicine which made her stomach upset which resulted in many of blow outs. It was hard to tell if she had Giardia or if the medicine was making her do that.

Her stool was tested for a hand full of things. All the tests came back negative. From the research I have done and the advice from other AP's, I have learned that Giardia doesn't always show up the first time and they are stubborn little suckers.

Now that she is off antibiotics for a few days she is no longer have blow outs and she smells a lot better if you know what I mean.

Her ear infections cleared up and her congestion is gone if she stays on her decongestion/allergy medicine. If I forget to give it to her, she quickly gets very congested again and runny or stuffy nose.

She is eating like crazy and is gaining a lot of wait. If you remember my last post, she wasn't even on the growth chart the last time I took her to the doctor but it looks like that will be changing fast! She is getting pleasantly plump!

So to sum things up, she is very healthy from what we can tell and she is amazing! Praise the Lord!



Lilypie Waiting to adopt Ticker