Whatcha doin?

The past couple of weeks around the Foster house have been pretty neat, if I do say so myself  :)  Crazy?  Why yes, but that's how we roll!  Here's what the past couple weeks have looked like....

-Getting home from Budapest--that travel alone was crazy and patience-testing.  May I add that although I lost my sainity while going through unexpected complications with security and customs and started tearing up to two women who were complete strangers as I explained "I need to get home!"...all over the thought that my bags could get lost and heaven forbid our paperwork that was signed by my husband who was across the ocean at the time and needed to be in our agency's hands ASAP would not get home.... Well yes,  I'll be honest. It is pretty goofy thinking back on it.  But, at the time, I thought "these people just don't get it!!"

-Exploring the new world of a pediatrician's office--something our agency requires us to do before accepting our referral.  While I sat and waited in the very.quiet.room. while listening to the humbled stay @ home dad next door via the very.thin.walls. explain to the pediatrician something about his daughter's bowel habits.... I decided to distract myself from their "private" conversation and whipped out my camera...

-Weirding out the FedEx people when I asked them to take a picture......thankfully, she got her manager and all smiles unfolded when I explained to them what this was for :)

-Welcoming my hubby back home after his long business trip :)  I wasn't the only one who missed him...It's good to be loved and Labs know how to hit it on a special note!  Brie climbed up and snuggled in for an afternoon nap with J ....

-Looking at endless nursery room ideas after returning our cute JJ Cole bedding that will need to find itself a home somewhere else.  We're not settled, but we're getting closer and we realize we still have some time.  Here's a couple ideas we've stumbled upon while looking at one of my favorite Little D related sites, Project Nursery--check them out for great ideas around your home.  And there's always our beloved Ikea ;) ... wonder what her room will look like?....stay tuned ;)...
Super cute Bananafish bedding found here.

This mom, Aria, over at Project Nursery, made one of the coolest nurseries I've seen!  We're scoping out Craigslist to find a mid-century dresser like the one above...
We LOVE Ikea...this pendent light will be hanging somewhere in her nursery

-I recently read a new book that's geared towards the friends and families of adoptive families.  It's called In On It by Elisabeth O'Toole, and I found it to be a really great read.  Written by an adoptive mom, her focus isn't to the adoptive parents, but rather to the friends and families to those around them.  She wrote it to help them understand how important their role will be and how they can be in on it [i.e. the adoption] :)  Check your local library to see if you can snag a copy otherwise, Amazon is where we ordered ours.  It's a wonderful book and I wish I could share it with all of our close family and friends before Little D comes home.

So that's just a few of the musings of our time since the awesome news we announced about two weeks ago about our referral!   On the front-line of prayer requests: The Ethiopian government has begun their limited processing of court cases (going from 50 cases a day to now 5 per day), and our family, along with a dozen others, are now in the midst of waiting out this new process.  We're not certain of how long it will be before we can travel to meet Little D and attest to the judge that we are madly in love with her and that she has a permanent place in our family forever.  But, we have witnessed on several accounts, that God has more power than we often think possible or give credit to, and so we are going to Him frequently, asking that He'd give the ET government the resources and time that they need to do a thorough, safe job with bringing families together.  We want Little D to be home, like yesterday, but we also know that it's not about us.  Truly.  All entities are doing the best that they can and it's our role to patiently support them.  As we wait, we're comforted by some awesome blessings already:  several families who are traveling to Addis Ababa (the capital) have offered to take pictures and video of Little D for us!!!!  We're thrilled!!  We can't wait to see more pictures of her and hear the nannies pronounce her name for us :)  There is great hope in that fact that she is being lovingly cared for by our agency's nannies.  She has been removed from the state-run orphanage and is now in a home where she is being cared for in wonderful ways.  Do you see it?  God is providing us with a lot, all around us, and we have the option to either choose to a) anxiously turn to frustration and fear or b) rejoice in the fact that He is taking care of this little girl and her parents ;)  We're going with the latter one--and we hope you will too!

We'll keep ya'll updated on the little moments, as well as the big ones too as things unfold.  Thanks for coming along with us on this amazing adventure of becoming parents!


We have GREAT NEWS !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

We can't believe we're actually typing these words, but.....after 7 and 1/2 months of waiting...........


We are thrilled, and excited, and surprised, and overjoyed, and smiling from ear to ear!  Oh my goodness, where to start?!?  This is such a neat story, filled with God's hand in every detail, and it's something we just can't believe we're the recipients of!   Let us tell you about our little girl ;)   

God has known all along what our story would hold and to our surprise we got the wonderful news of our referral while we were on Justin's business trip in Budapest, Hungary last week!!  There are so many little details that needed to happen--way beyond our control or, I must point out: even our knowledge of what would need to happen to make everything come together.  This is truly GOD you guys!!  Justin and I could have never, ever orchestrated this to happen the way it has.  It it AWESOME.  And mind blowing.  It is leaving us speechless as we now fully see and know that His hand is weaving our family's story together and it is unbelievably beautiful.

Wanting to save our story, her story, for our little girl, we'll share some of the details because this story is just too good to not share!!  But we'll also keep some behind so that someday, when we're holding our daughter in our arms or rocking her to sleep, we can tell her about the amazing God that created her and protected her and brought us all together in a way no human could have successfully directed alone.

The news came on Wednesday night, March 30, when Justin and I had just gotten home from dinner.  He is currently in Budapest, Hungary for business (I flew home Friday morning), and while we toiled over which trip I'd join him on (he will return again to Hungary in June and then in August/September), the day of his departure got closer and closer. Finally, just less than a week before his flight took off, we made my reservations so that I could join him on this trip for the first half of his 14 days there: to bring home to him amidst stress and all that comes with leading big projects.  It just so happened that my work schedule was also the most opportunistic for me to go during this particular time as I'd only have to miss one day of work.  [Insert: Hi God! (wink) We now see where your hand was guiding our decisions!]  So we booked the flight, packed our bags, and headed over to Budapest.  Fast forward to Wednesday.  That morning we got up, Justin headed off to the plant and I embarked on a morning spent doing something I absolutely love: cooking with local Hungarians.  It was one of the highlights of my trip and when we joined up back at the hotel to go out for dinner, I was full of energy and excited to tell him all about my day.  We headed out to a great local restaurant called Iguana, where most ex-pats grab garb and hang out.  It happens to be one of Justin's favorite places to eat.  We had a really fun date talking about our future family and how intrigued we were with the European way of baby gear vs the American stuff we'd registered for just a few weeks ago.  After dinner we caught the Metro and came back to the hotel room and were ready to call it a night.  It was then that I casually sat down at our laptop and moved the mouse to check the weather for the next day.  Justin's email account popped up and in bold print [you know the kind when you have new unread email] it said: Ethiopia - Referral Given.  I went NUTS!!!!!  I was jumping on the bed, giggling and shouting "its here, its here!!!!  oh my gosh!!!!! I can't believe it!!!!" over and over.  My very mellow, handsome hubby sat on the bed staring at his work email from his Blackberry....I think he was in total shock!! We sat down together at the computer, opened the email and there before us were two beautiful, big, melt your heart brown eyes that just seemed to call "I'm yours".    As we sat there just staring, we thought, I can't believe our little boy is here :)   Little to our surprise, as we would find out minutes later, God had an entirely different desire for how our family grows.  Because as we opened the rest of the email, we learned that we are expecting precious three month old, beautiful little girl!!!!!!!!!  We spent the next day praying, fervently and honestly to our Father that He would help us guide us in our decision.  And on Thursday night, over Whoppers and Cokes at Burger King in Budapest, Hungary, with beaming smiles we toasted to one another and said, "to our little girl!!!!".  

For anyone who has been apart our story at any point along this great adventure, you will have known that a) Justin and I have been anticipating this amazing news for years--literally--we have been longing to grow our family through adoption since our dating years, and b) that we were honestly expecting a little boy.  All we can share with you is that we know, with no regret and no doubt, that we are to begin our family through the adoption of this beautiful little girl.  When we jumped on full board for this adventure, we trusted Jesus Christ from the moment we began that we had the capacity in our hearts to love a child who needs to know what the love of a family truly is.  We are thrilled that God has surprised us, and that we're now: joyfully, incredibly excited and more than thrilled to announce that we're going to have a little girl!! 
A few goodies from Hungary to remember this remarkable trip!
So, now it's time to make some changes to the baby registry, start looking at pink and purple ;) and begin to plan for a little girl filling our home with laughter, smiles, and tears that her daddy and mommy will soon grow to love unconditionally!  This is one of the greatest gifts Christ has ever blessed us with and without Him, we cannot imagine missing out on His perfect, marvelous direction of our lives.  We're hoping to travel sometime in August to meet her and then bring her home this fall sometime!!

Because of Christ,
Justin, Kati and "Little D"

Although we cannot post any pictures of our little lady, "Little D", on the internet right now because of Ethiopian law, please do not hesitate to come see us because we would love to introduce you to our little girl through the pictures we have of her!!!!!!!!!!!  She is special!!!!