Saturday, October 24, 2009

We've Had A Birthday!

We have had a big first birthday at our house on Oct 16! It was, of course, a princess party. Our princess is always so active that almost all the pics are blurry, but I think you can still see thru it all that she is a precious one! We are still running on adrenaline here and more in love with her than EVER!!!!! She has brought so much fun to our family. She is a truly a joy in our lives.

Friday, October 9, 2009

Since We've Been Home

Since I am done writing all about our trip, I am sooooo excited to tell you now all about what life has been like since we have been home.....Its FABULOUS! Annsleigh is so well adjusted already....sleeping all night....eating non stop....perfect clean bill of health from the pediatrician, and he checked EVERYTHING....and her personality is just precious....she is cuddly and loves to be rocked and hugged....yet she is bubbly and silly and giggles all the time. The giggles always give her the hiccups! She babbles all the time like Pebbles does. Sounds just like her...How precious! Everything that I prayed to God about such concerns as bonding and sleepless nights and attachment just never were issues. He took care of all of that! She instantly took to the whole family, but is very attached to me. I do housework with her in the sling, or I do nothing but hold her and cuddle, which sometimes is what I do...cuz she will grow quick...and she is walking now. I am just so grateful I got to see her first steps before I have to go back to work on Sunday, night shift....YUCK! But, it will be ok....gotta do what you gotta do! Anyway, we also already had our court appearance here in TN for our readoption, so we are all done with major paperwork and expense now.... and I will post mostly pics for a while to catch you up....thanks for reading!

Home coming on Sunday at the airport

Asleep at last in the bassinet on the plane

Annsleigh meets her Uncle Chris

Annsleigh meets big brother Bradley

Bradley truly adores his sister and is very very protective of her. He cries if she falls down like all babies do. This is one happy boy! He helps change her diapers and helps sing her to sleep and rubs her back with me when we lay her down. He could not be a better big brother. He is such a big help and everyone is adjusting fabulously!

Our Journey To Ethiopia Day 9 - Sunday

Annsliegh meets her NeNe!

Annsleigh meets her Pa!

Annsleigh meets her ciocia Terri! (thats Polish for aunt/I grew up with that one!)

Annsleigh meets her cousin Jon-Thomas!

Annsleigh meets her cousin Jacob!

At about 1AM we got into Dubai and we are to get another hotel stay for some sleep....and this time the Dubai airport was very very busy...and we had to get a transit visa for Annsleigh...this was very confusing for us at the airport...go to one desk...he says go here and there.....we go here and there....and that guy doesnt know why we are at his we go back and forth....stand in a long line for them to scan Annsleighs to the front of that line and he didnt know why I was there...they dont do that on babies....well....I just about had enough at that point....and I learned something about myself that I just never ever knew after 46 years.....when I am beyond exhausted....I there I was in the middle of the Dubai airport just crying and balling ...... walking in circles going here and there!...I just wanted to blink my eyes and I us be HOME!!!!!poor Brad....trying to put up with me....but finally we got it to the hotel, took hot showers and took a 5 hour nap..left for the airport by 7AM and the 16 hour flight began....It was quite interesting....Annsleigh cried EVERY time I left her to go to the bathroom. She cried ANY time Brad held her. I had to hold her the entire time. We had a the way....dont ever let your travel agent talk you out of bulkhead seats at least on Emirates. The bassinet is wonderful if you can get your baby up in there asleep...but....make sure your TV screen is pulled up and out before she sets it up or you will not be able to see your own screen. Such as the case with me....the bassinet is in the way of getting your own screen up....but most of the time watching anything was out of the question for me anyway. Annsleigh fought sleep most of the way...she was hyper....hyper ...hyper...what a handful!!!! Finally she fell asleep over Canada somewhere and she really never woke up until we got to Houston....She fell asleep again and woke up in Nashville and it was just beyond words to describe how well she instantly took to the whole family. and them to her...the pictures say it all!

Our Journey To Ethiopia Day 8 - Saturday

This morning Brad went shopping at the open markets while Annsleigh & I had girl time. And I got our packing done because we are heading for home tonight!!!! Cannot wait to get back & introduce Annsleigh to her brother. This night we caught a 7PMish flight back to Dubai....

Our Journey To Ethiopia Day 7 - Part 4

After a little while in the van all of us took a vote on if we wanted to stop & eat. One of the guys was starving so we stopped at a really nice restaurant to grab a bite to eat. It took a very long time for our food and all we all ordered was soup and sandwiches. So that put us even later at getting back to the HOH. We ate & went on. After a while Tesfu's cell phone rang & he handed it to Brad. Brad couldnt understand & hear what was being said so he handed it to me. All I got was "Tihune's mother is...." so we gave the phone back to Tesfu & he told us that Tihunes mother will be at the HOH tomorrow 8AM. WE said OK....although we thought that was strange. Birth parents at the HOH? So they get to go there? Do they EVER? What if she saw Annsleigh?(Tihune)? We found out that the sick birth mother in the hospital had recent contact with her 2 girls who were being adopted in our group. WHAT?!? Didnt know birth families went to the HOH or even knew where it was. Didnt like hearing this....thought about it long enough to get another call on Tesfus cell & we were told Tihunes mother there now! What? Ok....but is she at the HOH NOW? All I can think is what if she sees Annsleigh? All this confusion! Its is getting late and there is lots of traffic on the roads now....dusk. Other folks in the van were mentioning they were missing their already prepared and paid for suppers at the HOH and Ethiopian Guest mind wandered when the van pulls over in the middle of nowhere.....Why? Someone says "Its Tihunes mother!" WHAT?!? WHAT IN THE WORLD?!?....and.....sure enough Brad & I get out of the van to meet this very pretty well kept small framed woman & her 3 year old daughter....I was in shock and fumbled to find my list of questions for the birth mother that I had prepared hours & hours earlier. And I had to ask someone in the van for a there....on the side of a very busy road on the edge of the town of Addis....van door wide open with engine running....& beggars coming around we proceed to interview Annsleighs birth mother....not at all the way I expected her interview to go. It sure took away all the emotion I was afraid I would show when talking with her. We hugged her, learned some things we can share with Annsleigh like she has 4 sisters, one of whom we met....precious 3 year old. She did allow a picture of her and the 3 year old with us on the side of the road...WOW! We got back in the van & on & on to Addis. We got back to the HOH when it was dark out. We picked up Annsleigh and Tsegay handed us her ticket to ride! .....her birthcertificate & passport! Be sure NOT to open this brown envelope....only airport immigrations in America open it...I also asked Tsegay why we never saw the orphanage & he said they were in the process of moving....and this was what they thought was best... maybe so...but they could have told us. Anyway, we got back to the Melkam & shared our Fig Newtons and Raman noodles with the Rahals since they missed their supper at the HOH tonight. We also heard back from our travel agent....we go home tomorrow! YAY!!!! We all slept very good that night. I guess we finally adjusted to the time change and all just in time to head home....but we are very ready for home....end of day 7!

The sugarcane in WenjiTypical street with houses in Wenji? I wonder.....could this be the street Annsleigh was born on?

Typical homes in Wenji.....I wonder.....could she have been born here?

Sugarcane plantation in Wenji