Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Truly wordless

A "wordless Wednesday" entry, because words can't honestly explain the emotions that arise when I see these pictures. 

Caption of photo: The tragedy of Ethiopia spooks aid workers like Jean de Cambry, an MSF emergency Coordinator who has witnessed these terrible situations in other countries. "It's very bizarre," he says. "It's so green, but you have all these people dying of hunger."

Click here to see the complete set of pictures: 

“If you can't feed a hundred people, then just feed one.”
 Mother Teresa

Thursday, September 23, 2010

What is in a name?

How many times have you heard "I hate my name, or I love my name." A person's name has a life long impact on an individual, being a big part of their identity. Both of us were named after someone in our family so we take great pride in our name. Choosing a name is exciting but also anxiety provoking. Just think of the importance of that one seemingly small decision. There are many things to consider when thinking about a name: sound and compatibility, unfortunate rhymes or connotations, the meaning behind the name, just to name a few.

Now, with the variable of the child being adopted there are even more issues that need to be considered. Since our daughter will be born in a different country/culture, keeping her birth name is another way to help preserve a part of her past, her culture, and her identity BEFORE we became her parents. You might wonder who gives our daughter her birth name? Well 70% of the children in the orphanages are found in a public setting (the child being purposely left in a location where they know the child will be found) with the other 30% of the children taken to the orphanage by an extended family member. We hope that we are able to keep the name she was given as her first name, however if her birth name isn't received well here in the states we will at least keep that as her middle name. If we have to go this route we would like to find another Ethiopian name to give her and we feel that once we see her picture her name will easily come to us. Right now our daughter is known as "Baby D."

“Don't forget your history nor your destiny" ~ Bob Marley

Monday, September 13, 2010

We have arrived

DHL notice: 9/13/2010     4:10 pm Shipment delivered.   Addis Ababa, Ethiopia

Our Dossier has finally arrived in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. Although our hearts have been in Ethiopia for quite some time now, we love the idea that an actual piece of us has arrived in Ethiopia...we now have a physical presence. We were smiling all day long thinking about the next step in this journey. The 10th of each month will now have a meaning, it is a marker, with each month that passes we are one month closer to our daughter.

To celebrate (and to give us a reason to try another fabulous Ethiopian restaurant) we went to Queen of Sheba for dinner. It was wonderful to have another another family member try delicious Ethiopian food. What a way to start the Ethiopian New Year!

“Every man gotta right to decide his own destiny.”
~ Bob Marley

Saturday, September 11, 2010

Enkutatash - The Ethiopian New Year

Today, September 11th, is the Ethiopian New Year! Ethiopia still follows the Orthodox Julian calendar which consists of 12 months of 30 days and a 13th month. Enkutatash is an important festival in the lives of Ethiopians. After a heavy rain season consisting of three months, the sun comes out announcing that spring has arrived. The highland fields turn to gold as the Meskal daisies burst into flower.

Melkam Addis Amet or Happy New Year!

September 11th is both New Year's Day and the Feast of St. John the Baptist. The word "Enkutatash" means the "gift of jewels" and refers to the gifts Queen of Sheba received, "enku" or jewels, when she returned from her visit to see King Solomon in Jerusalem. Enkutatash is not exclusively a religious holiday. The spring festival has been celebrated since these early times and when the rainy season ends, dancing and singing can be heard throughout the villages in the green countryside.  After dark on New Year's Eve people light fires outside their houses. The main religious celebration takes place within the Gondar Region and includes three days of prayers, psalms, and hymns, sermons, and large colorful processions mark the celebration of the New Year.

Friday, September 10, 2010

Dossier is off to Ethiopia: the official wait begins

We can finally start the official "referral" wait! Currently the average wait for a referral is about 4-6 that time we can see our daughter's beautiful face! We received word that our dossier was sent to Ethiopia today and will arrive tomorrow. We wonder how many times we will be checking the DHL tracking number over the next 24 hours, probably several. Everyone says that the wait is the hardest part, and I believe that, so we will be keeping ourselves busy with projects around the house, some traveling, and preparing for the arrival of our daughter. 

“Everything you want is out there waiting for you to ask. Everything you want also wants you. But you have to take action to get it.” ~Jules Renard 

This journey for us has been incredible already for so many reasons. Yes, at times it is an emotional roller coaster, but we feel so incredibly blessed to be given the opportunity to be on this journey of love.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Weekend of bliss

“We may run, walk, stumble, drive, or fly, but let us never lose 
sight of the reason for the journey, or miss a chance to see a 
rainbow on the way.”   ~ Unkown author

We had a wonderful weekend filled with several adoption events which were hosted by our agency. We feel so thankful to work with such an incredible agency, they feel like an extended family already. We enjoyed watching all the children run around playing and laughing. We were thrilled to meet more families, the families in our adoption support network are simply amazing. We also met our agency's lawyer from Ethiopia who was visiting, what a sweet man with a beautiful smile. This is the picture from Friday night's event at the Childrens Museum. I purposely made it blurred for privacy reasons. I wish that you could all see the smiles in the crowd. Every event this weekend was a gift to us.