Another Step Closer!

I just wanted to post a quick update to let you know that we are getting closer (still a ways a way, but closer)! Our Home Study is officially complete and has been approved by our adoption agency! Praise the Lord! We are almost finished collecting documents for our dossier. The dossier is a collection of official documents that will be sent to Ethiopia. This must be complete before we can be given a referral. After a few more paperwork steps and fees to be paid, we will simply be waiting. Lots of things have to be done in Ethiopia like translating our dossier, a court date, etc. which can lead to a long wait. As we wait, please pray for our patience and for our children that they are taken care of and loved!


October Frenzy!

October has always been a crazy month for my family. This one has been no different. We always kick off the month by celebrating my dad’s birthday (the 2nd). As you know, the triathlon was the 5th. I had the privilege of going home the following weekend for a wonderful time with family and friends. Since I was in high school, mom and I have done the Race for the Cure together. It is something I look forward to every October. We always meet up with a dear friend of ours, do the race, and then head to Cracker Barrel for a delicious breakfast! My great friend Honna joined us this year as well, which I hope will become part of the race tradition (hint hint, Honna)!

After the race this year, we were able to host another one of our October traditions at mom and dad’s, the annual Soup and Pie Party. It originally started as a way for us to celebrate October birthdays because so many of us have them! Everyone who comes to the party brings a soup, a pie, and a pumpkin. We fill our bellies full of goodness and carve pumpkins for prizes! It is the perfect way to celebrate fall! I just love this time of year!

This trip home was very special for another reason as well. Remember my mention in a previous post about a lady we had never met sending us support money for the adoption? Well, I had the privilege of meeting Lisa during my trip home! We had a quick but wonderful lunch before I headed back to Louisville. It was so great to meet Lisa and hear her heart! I am so excited to see what the Lord is going to do in her life as she too is seeking the Lord’s will about adoption.

Fast forward through a week of sleepless nights writing report cards…

On the 16th of this month our dear friends, the Benges, welcomed their precious son Maddox into the world. Maddox was born a couple of weeks early but is healthy and beautiful! We were blessed to spend some time with them the day he was born and loved every minute of it! There is something so sweet about a fresh baby!

On the 17th we celebrated my birthday! The night before, Matt sent me on a scavenger hunt through the house to find my gift. It was very cute and well thought out! He did a great job planning! After solving some of his riddles, I found my gift… a trip to the spa! I was SO excited!!! I was totally not expecting anything. In fact, the week before the triathlon I had to buy a couple of things for the race and just wrapped them up and put a card on them which said “to me from Matt!” But his gift to the spa totally makes up for him forgetting my birthday 2 years ago! (Ok, he really didn’t forget, he just didn’t say anything about it when he first woke up!) J For dinner we went to an authentic Ethiopian restaurant! It was amazing!!! We ate family style with no utensils! We had beef, lamb, chicken and tilapia. Fabulous! (Except for the poor lamb, I couldn’t bring myself to eat a sweet little lamb!) We will definitely be going back! I can’t wait to learn how to cook some of what we had to eat for our children when they come home! The birthday night ended with friends at our place and cake from the Pie Kitchen (or Package Inn as some think I say)! Our lifelong friends Nick and Allison are up for a wedding and staying with us which made the night even more special! Thank you to all who made my birthday so memorable! Twenty-seven is good!

Well, the second half of the month looks a little more relaxed than the first! Mom’s birthday is the 22nd and things are pretty calm after that. Because we have been so busy, we haven’t had much time to work on our paper work for the adoption. My hope is that we can get started on that very soon. We have been accepted by our agency and are now collecting official documents for our dossier. After collecting our dossier, we will get it sealed in our county, in Frankfort, KY and in D.C. Lots to do, but so worth it!!!


I TRI-ed!

I wouldn’t necessarily consider myself an athlete. I love sports and all things outdoors, but more of what I do is just for fun!  I have always wanted to compete in a triathlon, but never really set my mind to it until this year.  I mean, like I really needed something else to consume my time!  But I wanted to loose some weight, so I set the goal and was determined to do it!  The entire process has been such a wonderful experience!  I started training about 12 weeks ago.  I found a training plan on line that a guy had made for his senior citizen mom to use to train for her first triathlon.  I figured that would be a good plan for me!  Having grown-up on a swim team, I wasn’t worried about the swim portion of the race.  I wasn’t worried about the bike too much either, except for the fact that my bike is a $60 walmart bike!  I was most concerned about the running.  I hate to run!  When I started training, I would run 1 minute and walk 2 and it was torture!  But with persistence, I slowly learned to run at a steady pace for miles!  When I would go for runs, I would carry a small card in my hand with prayer requests on it.  It was a great time for me to pray for those I love and keep my mind off the pain! 

As the triathlon drew closer, I became more and more nervous.  Could I really do this?  Was I going to come in last place?  I continued to pray that God would give me the strength to finish and a peace to calm my nerves.  I also prayed that he would give me someone to buddy with during the race, since I was doing it alone.  God answered my prayers!  Before the race started I met two women who had done a few triathlons and they were so sweet to talk with me and answer my questions.  I had so much fun talking with them; I almost missed my swim start!  Yikes!  The bike portion would have been hard to do with a buddy, especially when everyone has $1,000 bikes and I had my 30lb walmart bike!  I just used this time, all 18 miles, to enjoy God’s beauty in nature and soak it all in!  When I got to the run, the first mile was pure pain!  My legs felt like jelly and steel all mixed-up!  I was tempted to walk, but I caught up with a 60 year-old man on mile 2 who was a Godsend!  He encouraged me and finished out the race with me!  I’m sure he could have just blown on, but he was so kind to stay my pace and chat as we finished the race!

Matt was preaching at a D-Now this weekend, so he wasn’t able to go with me to Lexington for the race.  Thankfully I have some amazing friends that decided to go with me and be my cheerleaders!  They were incredible support and I am so thankful they were there!  Lindsey and Marisa would find me at different points throughout the race and cheer me on.  It was so very encouraging!  I also have the best parents in the world that drove up from Knoxville to see me race!  I was so excited to see them all at the finish line!  Thank you, Lord for this amazing journey and for caring me through!  By the way, I finished the race and didn’t come in last place!  J    


One Step Closer

Today we went to the office of U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services to file our I600A.  We aren’t exactly sure what this document does/is, but we know it brings us one step closer to bringing home our family!  When we arrived at the office, the lady asked us for a COPY of our passports and marriage license.  We had brought the originals, but not copies.  She kindly directed us to the post office, a block away, to make copies.  Thankfully it was a beautiful day for a walk!  Here are a couple of pictures of our journey downtown…