Sunday, December 28, 2008

It's Been a While

Wow, what a busy couple of weeks. Last weekend we had my husband's family over to celebrate the holidays. It was a bit cramped in our home but I think everything turned out just great. We were concerned about the weather, which by the way ended our celebration early, but everyone made it to and from our house safely.

We spent Christmas Eve and day with my side of the family, my Grandma cooked the most delicious prime rib. That reminds me of a Christmas a few years ago, the last time we had prime rib on Christmas. My Grandpa was grilling the prime rib outside on a gas grill (even though we live in Wisconsin we grill outside all year long). He had it sort of slow cooking on very low heat so he wasn't' watching the grill at all times. He went outside to check on it, and he very calmly asks for my uncle. Low and behold, the grill was on fire and the garage was full of smoke. My uncle turned the gas off, put the fire out, and managed to miraculously save the prime rib. No one was hurt, well, except for the gas grill which was done for. We finished cooking the prime rib in the oven, and it was delicious.

I also was able to catch two movies over this past holiday weekend. My 16 year old niece and I went and saw the Benjamin Buttons movie which was pretty good. It's super long and kind of slow, but it was neat watching Brad Pitt go from a baby who was 80 back to an 80 year old baby. It was great spending the time with my niece as I don't get to see her as often as I would like as she lives a few hours away. We then saw Marley and Me, which is the saddest movie I have ever seen in my life. I read the book, I knew what was coming, but it just was unbearable. I was literally sobbing for the last half hour of the movie, and not to mention a couple parts in the middle as well. I always said Steel Magnolias was the saddest movie I have ever seen, but this takes the cake.

Cassidy, my 8 month old niece, celebrated her first Christmas this year. She was much more interested in wrapping paper and boxes than she was in opening her own presents. Next year she will be almost two and should really be into the present thing. She will also have a new cousin, and I was constantly daydreaming about how Christmas would be like next year. Oh, speaking of presents, I am writing this to you from one of our gifts we received this year, a new office chair that also has a massager. That's why this post is so long cuz I don't want to get up from this chair.

We are now number 32 on the unofficial list. One referral went out the 2nd half of December but we are hoping for a new batch of referrals the first part of January. Here's to hoping for quick referrals to the top of the list waiters.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Helpful Hubby!

Whew, it's been a busy week for us. This weekend we are hosting Christmas for Randy's side of the family. We have been busy cleaning, grocery and Christmas shopping, and not to mention removing snow from our driveway, sidewalks, and front stoop. I have to mention what a wonderful hubby I have as he has been a huge help, doing all the laundry this week, and he even cleaned out our pantry, just started cleaning it without me even having to ask him. He'll even be more busy if we get the 9-12 inches of snow they are predicting for Friday. Hopefully the snow storm won't put a damper on our Christmas plans.

Congrats goes out to all the families that made it through the Ethiopian courts this week. Wow, what a beautiful group of kiddos. Here's to hoping their birth certificates and travel plans come quickly. We are still number 33 on the "list" and I don't expect any movement before the new year.

We made a little progress on what is to become the baby's room. We cleared everything out of the room, tore up the old carpeting and carpet pad, and filled in the nail holes that were in the wall. The next step is to paint and get new flooring. Then we can start thinking about getting some furniture set up. Once we get through the holidays I hope to really get going.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

What a Day

Today was quite a day. Of course I have to mention the snow storm that hit us. Every school in the area was closed, even Madison Public Schools, and they never close. Today was also chemo day for my Mom so we braved the weather and made it to her appointment. It was important to her, and me for that matter, that we made it as it was sort of a turning point in her treatment. She is officially half way through her chemotherapy, and today marked the last dose of what we call the red, evil, drug. Athough she still has 12 weeks to go, the chemo drugs she will now be taking have less serious side effects and should be more tolerable. I have really learned what a strong woman my Mom is. She has faced this disease and treatment head on, not once feeling sorry for herself, and always putting others before her.

So this brings me to the next interesting part of my day. As Mom and I were talking about our adoption, her oncologist asked where we are adopting from. Turns out, the oncology psychiatrist adopted a baby from Ethiopia as well so he sent her over to visit with Mom and I. Because of the snow storm, all her appointments canceled so she spent a lot of time with us, talking about her experiences and even showing us tons of pictures. She used the same agency we are using and could not say enough wonderful things about her whole experience. She adopted an infant and she is now a beautiful three year old toddler. After talking with her and seeing her pictures, it really does seem to be worth the wait.

Speaking of wait, today marks our 8 month anniversary of officially waiting. I have to say, the closer we get to referral, the more anxious I get. My mind is constantly wandering, could our future son or daughter already be born? I think about his or her birth family and wonder what they must be going through.

Monday, December 8, 2008

That Was Quick!

Wow, our passports arrived in the mail last Friday. It took exactly one week. One more thing to cross off the "to do" list.

Last week a batch of referrals went out. We are now #33 on the "unofficial" list. Our case worker told me on Friday not to expect any news on our referral before the 12 month mark which is what we were expecting. I just hope it doesn't get any longer. I did some number crunching and with the average number of referrals per month versus the number of people I believe to be waiting, it seems our wait will go way past the one year mark. I really hope not. For some reason I am prepared to wait a year, but I don't think I could handle much longer than that.

Monday, December 1, 2008

World AIDS Day

Today is World AIDS Day and I have to admit, it has much more meaning for me this year. Not only have I learned so much about Ethiopia and the culture, but I have also learned the devasting affects this pandemic has on this part of the world. If you have some time, please visit here to view this website. It's about an amazing woman in Ethiopia who opened her home to AIDs orphans. It also has some very interesting facts, photos, and links to other wonderful organizations.

Nothing much new to report on the adoption front. Randy and I finally applied for our passports, and we have an appointment in January with the travel clinic. We both have had our hepatitis vaccinations, but I am sure there will be more to come. We are currently number 38 on the "unofficial" list, but today I counted seven families ahead of us that are waiting for siblings, so really I guess you could say we are around 31.