Our Journey To Charlie & Levi...

After 17yrs of marriage and "8" amazing children, God has continued to keep the fire for adoption burning in our hearts. Crazy?... Maybe?!?! But....Doesn't God call all of us to do CRAZY things for him? Isn't that what it means to Live for Christ? To make a difference ONE orphan at a time. So after months of praying that this little guy would find a forever family, he FINALLY has!! OUR FAMILY!! Join us as we pray, cry, fill out mounds of paperwork & fundraise to bring our son home. We give God all the glory for choosing to adopt us & for giving us the opportunity to Choose Charlie...And because we could not get Zhora(Levi) off our minds and God obviously placed him in our hearts... We're bringing him home too!!

Friday, August 27, 2010

Rollercoaster RIDE.....Day 18

In FOUR hours we will be on our way to the airport to board a plane HOME. We spent time with the boys tonight and will not see them for 2 1/2 weeks:( But we will be Hugging our sweet children at HOME in less that 48 hours. Yay!!!! This was not part of our plan, but we are reminded once again that this is God's Plan!! So here's the latest...Our facilitator went to petition the judge for our court date and found out the judge is out on sick leave & will not return until Wed. Which meant that she would have to wait until Wed. to petition for our court date, & then we may or may not get a date the following week. So, as of now it looks like we will have court around Sept. 14th. That will give us 2 weeks home with our kids and then we will both have to return for court. At that point Sid will be able to come back home immediately after court & I will stay to finish up the boys passports, medicals, visa, etc...etc... And then
BRING THEM HOME!!!!

I will go before you and make the rough places smooth; I will shatter the doors of bronze, and cut through their iron bars. And I will give you the treasures of darkness, and hidden wealth of secret places, in order that you may know that it is I, the Lord, the God of Israel, who calls you by your name. ~Isaiah 45:2-3

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

**UPDATE...Day 15**

*UPDATE*

We had our 2nd SDA appt. for Levi and everything went well:) We are picking up our referral for him in a couple of hours. So tomorrow morning we will go through the same steps we did with Charlie minus the meeting with the orphanage director because he already went through Levi's file with us. Once everything is complete our facilitator will be able to submit us for COURT! We should have our court date & time late thursday or friday. Yay! Please join us in praying & believing that our date will be soon so that we can move forward with the adoption & also so we can return home to hug and kiss on our children during the 12 day waiting period. God is good & we are thankful:)

Just to Make you laugh....Day 14 & 15

video

I promise we are trying to stay outta trouble at the orphanage. LOL

Today We are WAITING...We were told not to go to the orphanage this morning because we SHOULD be having our 2nd SDA appt. Yay! But....We are still here waiting. Hopefully we will get a call soon. Please continue to pray that things progress & we get a court date soon.

..but those who hope in the LORD will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint. Isaiah 40:31

Monday, August 23, 2010

Groundhog Day......Day 11,12, & 13

To try to add a little variety and help every day feel a little less like we are in the movie "Groundhog Day," We have become explorer's of the city in between or orphanage visits... Now, for many of you I believe you are fully aware of what is like to go to new places and check out new things with Sid. It is ALWAYS a challenge, alway fun, and most of the time embarassing!!! LOL... But at this point we are desperate for entertainment! Ha! The focal point of our saturday was "Wedding Picture Crasher" Sid's goal was to try to see how many wedding pictures he could manage to get himself into. My only condition after he walked right up & got in the pictures while the photographer was taking the picture, was that he had to do it incognito:) We saw more than a Dozen brides, so the following is only a little sneak peak of our "Wedding Photo Crasher"

Sunday, we went to the Children's hospital to see if any children wanted to go to church with us, and they did!!! We took 3 children via walking & bus to church and then returned them to the hospital after. What little sweethearts!! We had Pizza for lunch with the Peipon's (my new favorite food here) and then had our evening visit with the boys. We did Wheels on the bus, The Lord's army, Jesus loves me & of course Pat-A-Cake with Charlie. When we sing The Lord's Army of course we stand up & do all the movements. I am sure the workers think we are Weird American's, and Levi looks at us like we are definitely Weird. Or maybe he is just in Awe!!! lol We had dinner with a sweet family from NY that are adopting 2 sweet little ones & we finally left the restaurant when they started turning the lights off on us. Great fellowship & wonderful conversation. Hopefully they are huggin on their little one's as we speak:)

Today is flag day here & tomorrow is their Independence Day, so there are flags everywhere and stages, and activities going on. I am sure we will be right in the middle of it all tomorrow:) We had a great visit with the boys this morning & have hung out at our apartment this afternoon. Storing up energy for our evening visit!!



Levi LOVES for you to spin in circles!

They both want in Daddy's lap

The most exciting thing about today is that 7 of our 8 children are starting school today.....We are missing many first's, but know that God's hand is on this whole thing and that it is His timing not our own. So incredibly thankful to our wonderful family for everything they are doing to help with the kids and thankful to our amazing kids for understainding that this is all part of God's plan for our family & soon there will be TWO less orphan's in the world! We Love ALL of you & miss you bunches:)

Friday, August 20, 2010

Today's Visit....Day 10

Today we woke up to cooler weather & rain!!! We have gone from high 90's to 60's. For all of you adoptive families that just went home, sorry you didnt' get to enjoy the COOL!! LOL This morning's visit went great. We had a good time with both the boys. Every day we find new things about them that we didn't know...

Things we have learned about Charlie:

  • He does not like to be taken back to his groupa at the end of our visit
  • If you tell him to put his tongue in he WILL
  • He loves to play Pat-A-Cake, Wheels on the Bus & The Lord's Army
  • He is NOT interested in coloring, but likes to look at books & will try to repeat us
  • He can now say AGAIN PLEASE (In his little husky voice)
  • He does not like Levi to get too close to him

Things we have learned about Levi:

  • He LOVE, LOVE, LOVE'S to ride the tricycle(especially down steep hills. Ha!)
  • He loves to lay his head on your shoulder
  • He Loves to play with books & will color in a coloring book
  • He likes to lead the way, but always wants to make sure you are close behind
  • He has flat feet and the cutest little duck walk

On the swing AGAIN....

Not sure what got into Charlie, but he initiated this Bear Hug:)

Silliness

Ticklish BIG time

That cute little walk

I'm bored with the Slide...

Clapping for himself...Yay!!!!

God Continue's To Stand Beside Us as we WAIT for our court date....This is the hardest WAITING part of our whole journey so far. Please continue to pray that we will hear soon:)

Very WELL Said....

For all of you dear women with hearts that are longing to adopt, but your sweet hubby is not quite on board yet, this post is a must read!! Because I have heard these same statements from SO many women, and never knew quit how to explain it, I thought I would share this post. I couldn't have said it any better. Thanks Amy:)

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Progress.....Day 9

We have been incredibly blessed to spend time with many other adoptive families sharing our struggles and our victories with one another. God is so good to give all of these families other adoptive friends going through the same process to comfort & encourage. We have met, hung out & mainly stuffed our face's with families adopting 1,2,3 & 4 children!!! So far 8 families who we Love dearly are either headed home with their little one's or just starting the process. Please join us in praying for each of these families~~~The Wojcik's, Bollinger's, Lewis', Becker's, Nance's, Enberg's, Diston's, and the Clark's(from Ireland-where I will be visiting one day, Ha!)

The Lewis', Diston's & Us - Pizza Yum!!!

The Clark's, Nance's, Becker's & Us - The Reece's Rainbow Hang-out:)


We have also been blessed to spend time with children at the Children's Hospital here. What a blessings to be able to sing and play with such beautiful children. Although I do believe the nurses thought we were crazy singing and dancing around. LOL They said they have never seen adults do that. Too funny!! Thank you to the Peipon's for letting us join them:)




Now on to the progress.....We recieved a phone call from our facilitator around 2:30 saying someone would be picking us up to bring us to the notary to sign a document asking for the 2nd SDA appt. for Levi which means that Charlie's paperwork is complete:) Yay! This means that as soon as we have our 2nd SDA and Levi's paperwork is complete we will have a court date! The only bummer is that Mon & Tues are a holiday here. So please pray that this does not slow the process. Also when we arrived at the orphanage for our evening visit, we found Charlie inside getting his picture made. So we brought Levi in and they both got their pictures done for their passports!!! Yay! They even showed us the printed pictures before we left. One more thing we can mark of the list. Our morning visit was good. The boys are warming up to us more & we have a learned a few words to help us communicate with them better which has helped. They are very obedient, but the language barrier is a nuisance. In addition to that because we do not already have a child with DS we are trying to learn what is orphanage behavior & what is DS behavior. Challenging:) LOL Tonights visit was cut short due to the photos, but Levi was having a BIG time on his little tricycle & Charlie was a little grumpy because he had gotten a shot. (I'm guessing an immunization he may have been missing)


***Please continue to pray that the process goes smoothly and quickly. We are missing our children already & can't wait to return home. I'll leave you with a few of my favorite pictures...





Ready to Blow this joint!

Finally A belly laugh from this little guy...


Levi's FAVORITE thing:)

Loves that Swing!

A return demonstration of Pat-A-Cake...We do it about 25 times in a row. Each time we finish he says AGAIN(in his husky growling voice) Now we're working on Again Please:)

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Brother's....Day 7 & 8

This morning's time with the boys was great!! We spent time with Charlie alone and he was much more gentle & listened to us. We were a little worried about how he might act when we went to get Levi, because we had only seen them seperately. So we took him with us to get Levi and to our surprise he really didn't seem to care one bit:) Levi on the other hand felt like this about sharing us with Charlie....As he threw himself down & pouted. lol

He did come around after a while & decided it was'nt so bad:)

This is the ONE lone swing & they LOVE it!!

HAPPY 6th BIRTHDAY CHARLIE!!!!!

Today is the day that Charlie would have been transferred to the institution, where he would have had little hope. On monday the director said to us as he went through his file, that he only had two more days. It breaks my heart to see how many other's will never have a family and instead spend the rest of their short lives in an institution:(

We Love you Charlie!!!

Levi is SO Ticklish!! And about every 5 minutes he holds his arms up & says Mama:)

Monday, August 16, 2010

Meeting Charlie & Levi...Day 6

This morning we were up early waiting for our driver. The plan was to pick up the facilitator, go to the social service office to pick up inspector, and then to orphanage to meet with director & then meet the boys. Then we would travel to Notary & then we could have a 2nd visit after 4:00. We had a full day, but a very BLESSED day!!! Our meeting with the director went very smoothly, and we were able to ask lots of questions. He went over all the information in both of the boys files and told us we would see them BOTH!!! Yay!!! The only thing really new that we really didn't know was that Levi has a ASD & VSD. We knew he had a heart defect, but that it had not needed surgery. He sees a cardiologist every 6 months to make sure it has not worsened & so far the VSD has closing a little & the ASD is still open. So, our first stop will be the cardiologist once he is home. Charlie was born with an ASD, but it has closed!!

The children were all playing outside so the director lead us out to meet Charlie & this is what I received when they told him this is your mama....


We spent only a few minutes with him and we were off to meet Levi.... Now, Levi was extremely focused on spreading a little blanket out & simply did not have time for us. His goal was to just pretend we were not there. Ha! So we hung out & played for a little bit & then had to go back into the building to pick up documents and head to notary. However, as Levi's little groupa came through the door, Levi spotted Sid, and this is what he got:)


Our afternoon visit was great! We spent the 1st hour with Charlie & then his groupa went inside & we were able to spend the next hour with Levi. Charlie (AKA Wild Man) was so excited when we went to get him from his room. He squealed & laughed. We went for a walk, blew bubbles, played on slide & swing & LAUGHED....Boy does this little man have a great laugh!!! He is ALL boy:) He threw himself on the ground when we returned him to his nanny, but it was very short lived. ~~~~ Levi (AKA Cuddle Bug) was not so sure about going with us, but he finally came to me & laid his little head on my shoulder. After a little walk, he decided that he might try letting Papa hold him for a bit & that's all it took for Sid to become his new best buddy. We played with a puzzle & made roaring animal sounds. He would take each puzzle piece and roar & then show it to his Papa & smile. When we returned to his groupa he look at his nanny and said something and then laid his head on my shoulder & said Mama. Love it!!! He fussed only a little when they had to go inside, once we told him Paka Paka(goodbye) & Zaftra(tomorrow)and then he waved as he went inside.

~What a SWEET...SWEET...SWEET day God Blessed us with today~

Ok..I kinda like this guy:)

Maybe if I hold her REAL tight she won't put me down:)


Levi working hard on that puzzle

Charlie letting me know..He can do it himself!

Seriously contagious LAUGH!

A little balancing lesson!!!

God wants to be glorified!!! This whole thing is His!!!

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Metro Madness.....Day 4 & 5

Over the past 2 days we have been on & off the Metro, turned around, turned around again, walk up to the street, walk back down, walk up to the other side of the street, etc...etc... It has been quite entertaining. LOL I have no doubt we will have it figured out eventually. Right now I know it's 2 stops to McDonald's & that's what's important. Ha! ~~~~Yesterday we spent the biggest part of the day with the Wojcik's. We found our way to the ZOO, soaked our feet in the water fountains to cool off, and sat & people watched from the air conditioned window seat at McDonald's. Then the Wojcik's were off to their region to meet their sweet little girl. ~~~~Today we rode the metro and then a bus to pick up children from the children's hospital to take them to church. Only one little sweet girl decided to go and I believe she loved every minute of the attention she got! After church, which was actually in English & translated for the congregation, we traveled with the Peipon's(our sweet missionary friends) to purchase an air mattress at the mall & then had lunch and listened as they shared stories of how God has been working here. It is always a blessing to spend time with them. ~~~~Next on our agenda was taking the metro to see if we could find the orphanage. This is where the metro madness comes into play. lol We did manage to make it to the end of the red line & we just started walking down the street. We had heard it was about a 10 minute walk. Just when I was ready to turn around, there it was peeking through the trees:) (It was 9 minutes to be exact) Ha! We snapped a few pictures & then made the trek back to the Metro & finally back to our little flat! Whew! What a day!


This is who I'm hangin with!!!

Self-explanatory


One of the many exotic zoo animals...

Too HOT even for this guy...

**Today God has filled my heart with a new peace. Confirmation that his hand has been in every part of our journey to bring our sons home. He has worked everything out in his timing, on his own agenda, not mine. I will continue to follow Him wherever He leads. Never again to sit back and just read the stories about other's doing amazing things for Christ, but actually doing them. Because I know that there is NO risk involved when I am obeying my Jesus.**
*This is OUTside looking in...Tomorrow we'll be
INside looking out!!!*
"Do not merely listen to the word, and so decieve yourselves.
Do what it says"
~James 1:22

Friday, August 13, 2010

Life's Good...Day 3

Today we met the Bollinger's for lunch at a little cafe. The food was good, the waitress spoke english, the bathroom was nice & most of all the fellowship with fellow Texan's was such a blessing! Please pray for this sweet couple and their son as they travel to visit their children for the 1st time & that they would not grow weary as they have already been here 25 days. After a couple of hours we got a call that our driver was on his way to take us to pick up our referral so that we can see the boys on monday. So off we went to the SDA again. We signed our names a couple places and left with the entire dossier and a single piece of paper that says we CAN SEE CHARLIE!!!! Our facilitator has explained that since the boys are at the same orphanage we should be able to see them both even though only Charlie's name is on the referral. Please be praying that that is the case, cause my heart will be sad if I can only see Levi from a distance:(

We left the SDA on foot & walked & walked again. We saw many of the cathedrals & ate at an Irish Pub(Ha! I wish this were Ireland). So far the food has been yummy everywhere we have been. We had no problems on the Metro. Woohoo!! And we only had one "What happens in EE stays in EE" with the Wojcik's:) Ha!!! LOL......

Charlie's Referral Letter

McDonalds Menu

Sid joining in some wedding pictures....lol

Entrance to St. Sophia's Cathedral - over 1000yrs old

A Nice little reminder!! Thank you Jesus for making this possible...

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Metro & Monkey Dude...Day 2

Day 2 followed a very restless night, followed by oversleeping & having to rush to get ready. Then our phone was not working, because I knocked it off in the floor, so we did not get the message that a taxi was waiting for us. So finally Nikko shows up at 10:00 which is our appt. time. And we fly, I mean drive to the SDA. Luckily the Wojcik's have made it before us & are able to go in and then we go in after them. As my hands are dripping with sweat they ask a few questions & then we sit and listen to them talk back & forth. The lady leaves the room and then returns shaking her head NO & then much more talking back & forth occurs. At this point we know that something is not quite right. Then Serge tells us that because the papers were submitted for Levi later, we will have to have a 2nd SDA appt. for him. Uuugh! They did let us see both of the boys files, including sweet baby pictures & thankfully we will pick up the referral papers tomorrow at 3:00 which will allow us to see BOTH of the boys on MONDAY even though we still have to have the 2nd SDA appt.!!! Taking a picture of the both of the boys to the next SDA appt. so that I can trade them for the baby picture in their files. Thanks Mom, for the scrapbook otherwise I would not be able to get my hands on the only baby pictures they have:)

After lunch with our facilitators & lots of information, we headed back to rest & then out to explore & meet the Wojcik's at TGIF's. We did manage to get off the metro at the correct stop, then we walked, & walked & walked. Finally after asking about 6 people, all we can manage to get was a $6.00 taxi ride around the block. Ha!!! We knew we we're close:) After dinner we walked around, purchased a microphone so we can Skype with the kids, and had a confrontation with a Monkey. Hmmm...Weird I know, but as we are taking pics in the fountains the man makes his way into our pics, and then tells Sid that this is his work & he must pay!!! He wanted $6.00. He made a big scene and as usual I hit the road while Sid smooth talked the guy. Needless to say we will be avoiding that area in the future.. LOL Last, we went the wrong way on the metro, got off and went back the other directions, Sid fell UP the steps for about the 4th time today, & we crashed in our apt. Home Sweet Home:) Here's some pictures from today...


SDA Entrance



St. Andrew's Cathedral Next to SDA


Sid is Dangerous with the video camera!!!


"The Infamous Monkey" Yikes...



Time frame For the next few days:

  • Pick up referral papers at SDA for both boys Friday 3:00
  • Meet boys at orphanage on Monday
  • Wait to hear appt. time for 2nd SDA appt
  • Wait to hear time for court date