Thursday, August 31, 2006

Leave It To Avery

Leave It To Avery is a blog that I frequent from a guy who in many ways is similar minded to me. Not a common occurrence in my experience.

Avery is a Vineyard guy, who seems to look at church things from an out of the box perspective, and he and his wife Heather (who blogs at Burakaeyae) are adopting from Ethiopia as I write this. This is much of who Lisa and I are, and we have so few people who really understand who we are that I am drawn to these guys.

Oh yeah...he also has a great sense of humor, and just happened to pick me as his first "Caption Me Wednesday" winner, so I am his Wednesday Journeyman this week. But that has nothing to do with all the praise and sucking up, etc. Still very objective with my opinions.

Avery did what I wanted to do in July, which is go to Ethiopia to see his kids and he has blogged it all at his site, so go and check it out. A great adventure story from the heart of a father perspective.


Monday, August 21, 2006

Happy Birthday Gus!

Yesterday was my youngest son's 1st birthday. Jeremiah Gustaf had to share the day with one of Lisa's cousins who got married, so the remnants of cake on Jere's face are also crumbs from his first wedding cake.

This month my oldest turned 16, and my youngest turned one. No more milestones for a while for us.

He is pure sweetness, and while I long for this age to last forever, I can't wait to see what the next stage will be like for him. If only we could have it all, and keep them forever.

Rich, proud dad of this sweet boy.

Sunday, August 20, 2006

They Know

On Thursday we got the message from Julie in Addis that the girls got their welcome bags, which means they know they have a family, and they know who we are. They also have picures of us to look at for hours each day.

Julie's message said:

They got their welcome bags yesterday, we have pics for you but Rich took them on his camera and I didn't download them. The girls are so very happy! Marta shared her pictures with me with such a beautiful smile! Much happiness for your two now!

I wanted to wait on this post until I have pictures of them opening their bags, seeing us for the first time, but Rich & Julie are swamped over there right now, so those will have to wait. This pic is from Julie's visit with the girls a month ago.

It is such a relief and brings us much peace to know that they know who we are. There is still much uncertainty for them beyond what a picture can tell, but it is something to start with.

I pray that God gives them the same head-over-heels kind of love for us that He has given us for them.


Thursday, August 17, 2006

My new clock

I love my new clock over on the right because I can sit here and see what time it is where my girls are without doing any math. But, like many things in life it is a blessing and a curse.

I love sitting here right now thinking it is 5:40 pm over there so they are near eating dinner (?), or in the morning (their time) wondering if they wake up happy or grumpy, and I love praying for them at bedtime, etc. But it is also killing me to think "what are they doing right now", "it is daylight over there, so maybe there is someone with them taking pictures of them as I sit here", did they wake up happy or grumpy today, and other much more manic thoughts.

I really wanted my clock to be something analog and real cool, but it needed to have the date and am/pm to keep me from having to think. Jeff wouldn't know what to think if I had something cool anyway.

So, all this to say I love my clock. Now, eat your veggies girls...


Wednesday, August 16, 2006

The Uganda Orphans Fund

We have recently been supporting The Uganda Orphans Fund through some product sales they do and I thought I would give them a plug. Proceeds from the sales of their coffee and necklaces go to support their mission, which is:

Our goal is simple and straightforward: to continue building orphan homes and provide care for these needy Ugandan children as long as it takes to see them all housed and provided for.

The daughter of some of our friends recently got back from a mission trip to Uganda to visit many of the orphanages they run, and through their church we got wind of this organization.

Now it is the only coffee we are drinking, and it is awesome. I drink it really dark with sugar, Ethiopian style, while Lisa prefers hers as a wet cap preferrably served while still in bed.

The necklaces are simple and beautiful, and we have given them to everyone who is praying for our girls. Meklit and Marta are loved greatly and being prayed for lots because we have gone through lots of necklaces!

If you want to check them out, the link is above, or over there to the right under The Real World.


Saturday, August 12, 2006


The only word that comes to mind when I think of our girls, and what they do to me...I am smitten. For me there is something different about this adoption, and I am completely consumed with thoughts of Marta and Meklit while I wait. Some days I can't seem to do much more than think about them, and I just ache inside. I just want them to be home. This feels like such a long wait.

The process is so much quicker than dealing with China, so in reality it is going so much faster, but to me it feels like it has already been an eternity. I think I just burned another 3 minutes of the wait though!

Our friends Rich & Julie Hehn are in Addis right now, and spent some time with our girls. I woke up this morning to an email from Julie with lots of pictures, and her telling us that she took Marta to AHOPE to see Meklit yesterday, and had a wonderful visit with them both. She said:

It was precious to see them together. They love each other so very much. Marta is a dream, so sweet and caring.

The process is also so much different from China in that you regularly get info and pictures and first hand accounts about your kids. The flow of information is so wonderful. You can't wait until it is your turn to go over and be the one to help other families find or connect more with their kids.

The girls will get their gift bags in the next day or so, and then they will know about us. My hope and prayer is that they will be as taken with us as we are with them. It is hard to imagine that they could fall as hard as I have though.

So thank you Julie and Rich. You poured more fuel on the fire, and I am just smitten...


Thursday, August 03, 2006

Destination Ethiopia

I read a great blog this morning written by Denise Baker, who is an intern volunteer for AAI (our adoption agency) at Layla House, where Marta is. Her first post is long, covers her first month there, and is really good. The blog is Destination Ethiopia, and is well worth the reading time. Just go to the blog, and click on the "Read" link to get to the full post.

Denise is really a good writer, which makes for entertaining reading through much of what is her daily life stuff working over there. But the parts that got me were the happy and sad encounters that she has with the people in Ethiopia, mostly being children. After reading it I am sitting here with a very uncomfortable feeling, and trying not to let the feelings of sadness overtake me. When I think of my girls being there, it just makes me ache, and injects me with a sense of urgency to get them home.

Then I have to think about the other kids who are there, and I quickly can see how people like Julie and Julee and their families have adopted so many children (25 and 20 kids total in each of those families). There is so much need that it can seem overwhelming, and I haven't been there yet. I can't imagine what a wreck I will be after being there looking into the eyes of these kids.