Friday, July 31, 2009


are leaving on Tuesday. There was an opening in an earlier group. We leave Tuesday, as in the day after Monday, which is just after this weekend.

I would love to write something, but all I can concentrate on are things like finding a teether, and counting diapers, and buying Meaza a ten dollar pink watch with hearts on it.

We are coming back on the 15th, or the 22nd. To be determined. We still have her tb test to get out of the way. We are going early anyway. We want to see them.

We can't wait.

Enough already.

It is time.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Monday, July 27, 2009


Three Words.... AHHHHHH MAZ ING!!!

Here is a link to some beautiful pictures taken by Marshall.

I will write about it soon.

It was lovely.

I am lucky.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

And So it is Written...

It is truly trippy to see your name listed as someone's mother on a birth certificate. It is finally beginning to seem real.

Does anyone know how to say, "Don't worry, it'll be okay" in Tembarssa?

Today our best friends and our goddaughter arrive from Santa Fe to attend a party for these two children. My mom flies in from Wisconsin as well. The house will be full of some of my most favorite people.

These kiddos are already loved by so many.

We are tentatively leaving in FOURTEEN days.

I just threw up in my mouth a little.

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

In a Classic Case of...

In a classic case of " Your blog post sounded so pathetic yesterday that the Universe decided to throw you a bone," we received M&m's birth certificates.

And, for the three people who didn't hear me shouting on Facebook, we travel August 13th (probably sooner if we can).

That is just over three weeks from now.

She will be home for her birthday.

He will still be a baby- a LARGE baby, but a baby nonetheless.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Tidbit Tuesday

"The nannies are taking good care of Meaza, and as a result she is showing improvement physically and mentally."
"Melese sometimes gets upset when someone leaves his side after playing with him for a while."

Just in case anyone was wondering if I am still in the "Happy Idiot" stage... Not so much. Now it is the anxious longing stage. I long for these children. I miss them. I want them home. I am worried about them. I need to be with them. I'd like them to be past this next, big, transition. I'd like to be helping them grieve. I'd like to be moving forward together. I'd like for their healing to begin.

I'd like to take them in my arms.

I'd like to bring them home.

Saturday, July 18, 2009


I was going to write a long post about the uncertainties of International adoption, and about what has happened in Canada, but I will just send you over to Kerri who has already explained it, and who has some great links so that we can help.

This woman, when she found out the news, hopped on the next flight to Ethiopia to make sure that her girls were safe, and to see if she could get them home. Harrowing.

Read about this family, also struggling and scared. And this one.

Please sign, join, and advocate for these families.

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Tidbit Tuesday*

"When Melese is playing by himself he enjoys cooing and babbling."

"Before every meal one child gets up and prays for the food and Meaza puts her hands over her eyes and follows the prayer."

* Steven thought I should mention that these tidbits come from the social report from CHSFS, and that I am not just making random stuff up.

Sunday, July 12, 2009

Sunday Garden Tour- Honey at Last!

Cherry tomatoes, so sweet they rival Hot Tamale Candies as the preferred snack.

Broccoli, have yet to try. (Note to self: Eat more greens).

New Mexico Green chile, not as hot as we like, but certainly flavorful.

Tef, getting dwarfed by the barley.



The wild, indigenous....

neighbor's softball.



Who knew dogs liked honey so much?

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Future. Love. Paradise.

Liv Tunsitu.

This is Liv Tunsitu. She is a sweet angel, and I got to spend a few hours with her last week. As soon as her mom dropped her off, I plopped her on the couch and asked her what she wanted to do. She slowly turned her head, lifted her hand and waved hello to the 8x1o pictures of M&m that we have on our wall. She had to say hello to them before anything else.

Although it was bright and sunny, I had a hard time getting LT to go outside and enjoy the day. She wanted to get some reading done instead.

Turgenev? Really? Come on LT pick something lighter, it is the summer...

Faulkner? Really? The kid likes the classics. I insisted she pick something lighter...

She told me it was time for an Amharic lesson. She is quite the taskmaster...


She made sure Ted's nasal passages were clear, and I finally convinced her to relax in the hammock with me...

We both like bracelets.

We went back inside for tea.

Last week someone said that they thought LT looked a little bit like this man. I didn't really see it until this happened...

Day-O! Day-Ay-Ay-Ay-O!!!

LT came home just over two months ago. She was quiet, and a little bit withdrawn. For the first couple of weeks, I never heard her make a peep. One day, I hopped into her mom's car and heard some exuberant chirping coming from the back seat. LT had found her voice.

Amy, LT's mom, lives five minutes away from me. I wish that I had met her 13 years ago when we first moved here. Amy is a remarkable person. LT seemed just a little bit wounded when she got here. In less than three months, Amy has fully embraced her daughter, and given her the love and encouragement that she so desperately needed.

Amy has not only given LT her voice, she has taught her how to sing...

She has buoyed her spirit, and she has taught the wee LT how to stand on her own two feet, and see herself for who she really is...

a beautiful, resilient, remarkable little girl.

We love you LT, and can't wait for you to meet M&m. They will be so lucky to have you as a neighbor, and as a friend.

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Tidbit Tuesday

"Melese has the power to catch people's attention with his outgoing personality."

"Meaza is an affectionate child who loves to be around people all the time."

Sigh. Smile. Somebody pinch me.

I feel the same way that I did the day after my wedding; happy, tired, moved, and loved. My heart is full. Can you imagine what a brand new reader must think of this blog? They would have no idea. Thank you for sharing our joy.

Speaking of sharing our joy, Tanya is throwing a Virtual shower for M&m. Tanya helped me enormously during the wait. She was just above me on the waiting list. We would commiserate over e-mail. We both struggled. We both, at times, gave up. We both considered what we would do, and how we would go on, if our adoptions just didn't work out.

On the day that Tanya got her referral, she called me and said these words,

"Julie, I have two sons. I am a mom, and you will be too".

Hot tears streamed down my face because I thought, well if it worked for Tanya, maybe it would work for us. I believe that, for a little while at least, Tanya gave me my hope back. It left again of course, but at that moment she helped me. I tried to do the same for my sweet friends who, believe it or not are still waiting. I called one friend, and another, and one more. But I am afraid that I failed miserably. I had hoped to give them hope as Tanya had done for me, but instead I fear that I sounded like a glib, lucky person; spouting all those platitudes and words that I never, ever believed myself.

So on Thursday, Tanya is having a party for me on the interwebs. Sigh. Unreal. I don't even know what to say about that. My friends here in LA are already throwing us a party at the end of July. My mom is coming out. The happiness stores are overflowing.

Here is the link for the Virtual Shower. I don't know what goes on, but I bet you won't get fed if you attend. It does seem, however, that if you attend while you are at work, at the very least when your boss says, "Themia, why are you drinking champagne in the middle of the day during office hours?" You can say, "Don't bother me, I'm at a baby shower."

Did I mention that Tanya's two sons are, at present, coloring with, and being charmed by one M and one m? Did I mention that if the stars align I will travel to Ethiopia and meet this woman from Minnesota whom I have never met before? Did I mention that our children will know each other before we know each other?

Sigh. Smile. Somebody pinch me.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Countdown to Court: One

I had several ideas for a picture today. It felt wrong to just post a picture.

I needed to talk with you, my extended family. You have helped me get here, to this day. Thank you.

Tonight, on a late Wednesday evening, I think about the pictures that I was considering posting.

I thought I would post a photo of a Redwood tree and tell you something that Steven said to our social worker in 2007,

“Julie and I are a like a tree, our roots are deep but our branches are thin. We need more branches.”

One tree.

I thought about posting a picture of a family member whom I love very much, who once, when very frustrated with us said, “You and Steven are such a….such a….UNIT!!!”

And we are. We are a unit.

One unit.

I thought about posting a picture of a kite I picked up for Ms. M at a garage sale. Steven was in the middle of our street the other day, flying this kite. I haven’t seen him fly a kite in over ten years.

One kite.

I thought about posting a picture of the baby hawk who starting living in our yard about two weeks before we got our proposal. Our neighbor said that it was the first time in forty years that he had seen a baby hawk in this neighborhood.

One hawk.

I thought about posting a picture of an idyllic beach scene, and have it represent one plea, (prayer being too strong a word for this agnostic), just a plea; a plea we make to the universe to bring us closer to these two remarkable children.

One plea.

I thought about posting a song. Maybe the Jackson Browne song where he sings, “I’m gonna be a happy idiot…” because that is how I feel lately, like a happy idiot… so very happy.

One song.

But instead, no pictures, no songs.

Just me here, right now, filled with so many emotions. So many emotions.

My head is full of images from a care center in Addis Ababa. My mind is reeling. My heart is racing. I forget to eat. I wake up at 4 am. I count down the days.

I also feel like I have a secret, a secret that many of you share. I feel like shouting,

Hey you! Yeah You! Listen, do you want to have a really intense experience that changes your entire life? Do you want to feel more happiness than you ever thought possible? Do you want to fall in love with a country that is beautiful and proud and strong? Do you want to meet some of the most amazing children on the planet? You do?

Then adopt from Ethiopia.

Start a blog.

Find your family.

Find your friends.

Let go.

Fall in love.

Begin again.

One secret.

For those of you who asked if I was going to share their pictures…

Of course.

You are their family too. Without you, and your support, this mom would have never found her way to them. Thank you.

One thank you.