Monday, December 22, 2008

We are getting soooooooooooo close!

We got an e-mail from Tony at CHI (adoption agency) stating that we had an urgent matter to be taken care of "since we were sooooooooo close to getting a referral", she didnt want to have anything detain us. She said that when families start getting close to receiving a referral, they have staff in Ethiopia check all the paperwork and see to it that everything is in order. Well, they did not see that our Visa-37 cable ever got there. That means that if we were there to bring her home, she would not be able to get her visa to travel here. So, we have to start back to USCIS (immigration services) resubmitting our adoption approval (they already sent it once back in May) to the NVC(National Visa Center) so they in turn can submit everything (again) to the Ethiopian Embassy. I got an e-mail today from immigrations stating they did send it today to the visa center, so everything is getting taken care of. It just felt good to hear those words out of Tony "we were soooooooo close to a referral!" that it really sugercoated the stressful news learning the paperwork got lost somewhere! None of this delays us receiving and accepting a referral, but it needs to be done way before we travel to get her:)

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

28 weeks now = 7 months

We have been waiting 28 weeks now, which in my book is 7 months. (being a NICU nurse, 28 weeks is 7 months along). Last month I got some folks stirred up by declaring my 24 weeks as official 6 months. We sent our dossier in June 3. I count by weeks. Like when you are pregnant. If you just say the months like a lay person, it would seem we arent 7 months until Jan 3. But, I cannot help the way my mind works and the way when I work in the NICU, time is counted in weeks. Oh well, never mean to confuse anyone or stir up anything, but I am excited about this and cannot wait until we wont be obsessing about "now do you mean weeks/where are you in line/how many days/months/etc." In a couple of months none of this will matter. As a matter of fact, there were 8 referraks in the last 2 days!!!! We are so excited for all the families. Then, the obsessing begins with getting the referral packet and the courtdate and travel and packing. They say that this post referral wait is the worst. The agony of wait after you've seen the precious face. Cannot wait to see the precious face. In all the 8 referrals, there was only 1 baby girl, so we only move up a smidge. I guess we are #14ish maybe.

Friday, December 12, 2008


Been a little down lately. First of all, the very good thing is that there was a sibling referral yesterday for the Zubers for twin 4 year old girls. I am so happy for them .They have been waiting quite a while. And today another family got a sibling referral also. But, up til then, there has been a long dry spell again for referrals. GIRL referrals especially. We were hoping for a referral between Thanksgiving and Christmas and now that Christmas is approaching, and nothing has been going on, we are probably looking at a Feb referral, which means an April court date, which means going to get her in May!?!? Everything is just taking so long. I did find out we are #15 on the list!

Thursday, November 20, 2008


Wait just a minute! There were 5 more referrals yesterday, not just one! All these referrals have got my head spinning and I dont even know how many thats been in just this month. Either way, we are getting very close to our turn!

Wednesday, November 19, 2008


Another referral today for a 2 month old baby girl! Congratulations to the Fine Family! They waited just over 7 months.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

This Is Hoaglandville

Its my Christmas Snow Village! It took a good 2 days to put up and I find it very relaxing to just sit there and look at it and enjoy being in my own perfect little world!

6 Months Waiting!

I just realized we didnt even post celebrating waiting 5 months, and now it is 6 months already! That means we have been incredibly tied up with taking care of all the pups. We still have 7 of them and at 6 weeks of age, they are a handful (and a mess xs 7)! We sold Tiny Tim, the one I had to bottle feed. He has his new forever family. It really cannot be that much longer for us to get our referral. For a baby girl, I think the longest wait has been 7 months. Wish I knew if she was born yet, because I want to buy all the 2008 babys first Christmas stuff. Wont be able to buy 2008 stuff next year. And, there was another referral yesterday for a 2 month old baby boy! Lucky family!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

WOW! 4 more referrals!

This has been a very exciting month so far for referrals. 4 more families got their referral call today! All boys ages raging from a few months to 19 months. I just cannot imagine the experience of getting THAT phone call. I cannot wait. Hopefully wont be too much longer. I mean, Annsleigh's room has been ready for so long that its already gotten to be kind of a junk collecting room......again.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

A BIG Refereral Yesterday!!!!

No, its not ours, but I am honestly just as excited for this family as if we got the call. The Kerrigans have been waiting for siblings for over 11 months. And who would have guessed that their little sibling group would be TWIN INFANT BOYS! They are not even 3 months old yet. That is the most wonderful news I could have heard today (second to our own referral call, but I think that is still a couple of months away).

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Another Referral!

Yay! Another referral today for one family waiting for a year now. They received a 4 year old and 18 month old siblings. The wait time for siblings is much longer. We dont get sibling referrals too often. And I know this family has got to be over the moon. Very happy for them!

Monday, November 3, 2008


Just a quick post to announce another referral today for a 5 1/2 month old baby girl! YAY! I have no idea anymore what number in line we are, but I am beginning to prepare myself for receiving a referral in Jan, instead of by Christmas. That would be 7 months waiting then. Anyway, hopefully not. But congratulations to the family of this little girl!

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

6 Referrals This Week!

Congratulations to all the lucky families! The ages of the children ranges from 6 months to 6 years. The wait time has been 3-7 months. Soon, all this mental calculating will come to an end and we will get our call!

Saturday, October 25, 2008

The Pups are 2 1/2 weeks old!



Tiny Tim






Since there is no adoption news recently, I am going to update our puppy pics here. They are available for "adoption" to contribute to our adoption airfare fund. Will ship to any state. Wow! By the time they are with their new forever families, we may have our referral! That would be wonderful. I need her home with me BAD. I have been having to supplement Tiny Tim with bottle feeds, and I have taken him into Annseigh's room, wrapped snuggly in a towel and sat in her rocker and feed him. That is ridiculous! ....And no I have not put him in her crib..........yet....

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Week 20!

Its been 20 weeks since waiting for a referral. It has gone by fast. Typically the families in our agency have been waiting for 6 - 6 1/2 months for a baby girl referral, so it should not be much longer before we get our call. We are very ready, except for getting our immunizations. We have been putting that off. But, we cant put it off much longer. So we will be doing that very soon. Luckily, my work requires a booser DTaP and flu shot, so I got those free. Anyway, not much else to post on the adoption. There has been another little lull in the referrals again. Hopefully this week we will hear of some more blessed families!

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

8 Pups = Ethiopian Airfare!

Tiny Tim

We have 8 Chinese Shar-Pei pups for sale! The money will cover the cost of our airfare to travel and bring Annsleigh home. They are 1 week old now and adorable. Taking care of them and momma Cheyenne sure is passing the time waiting for a referral. We are already at week 19! And another family received their referral last week. Congrats to them! (Look for more pics to come, as these pups grow. )

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

We Have 8 Babies!

Our sweet Shar-Pei, Cheyenne had her pups last night. Poor thing had 8 babies! And they are gorgeous. I am sure we will have many more pics to show as they grow. It was a long night for all of us, but she did all the work. We are exhausted today, and all just taking it easy. Anyone interested in a pup, just let me know! (PS another referral today moves us up the list! A 15 month old boy got referred today!)

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Another Referral Today!

There has been another referral today! A 6-month old baby girl will soon meet her forever family! They have been waiting 6 months. So, we have probably a couple more months waiting, but the excitement when another family receives their referral is contagious! We move up to #50ish now. Congratulations to the lucky family! I cannot wait to post that we have our referral.

Friday, October 3, 2008

More Referrals!

This has been a very exiting week for us waiting families. There have been 5 referrals in the last 2 days! And most of them were teeny tiny 1-2 month olds. For any waiting family, this creates a wave of exicitement and hope because we know it will one day be our turn. We are now moved up to about #51 on the list.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Waiting 16 weeks Now!

I cannot believe we have been waiting 4 monrhs now. And very soon, courts in Ethiopia which have been closed for the rainy season will reopen and I feel that referrals will come quicker. I still anticipate to get our referral ( which is when we first get our call about our baby girl and see her for the first time in an e-mail pic) at about Christmas time and travel to bring her home the first of the year. Maybe we will be pleasantly surprised though and hear sooner. Anyway, I have been doing a little bit of nesting and spent today in her room getting her crib put together. And as soon as Bradley got home from school, he noticed it and climbed in. He fits in there pretty good and wants to sleep with Annsleigh. I thought that was sweet. In the meantime, her first doll "Anna" is patiently waiting there for her.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Random Pictures Having Fun!

A hole in 1 for Bradley!

You might be a redneck if you fish with a BB gun!
The Stones River is literally a stones throw from our house.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Mike Lewis, better known as The Jesus Painter came to our church today and what we saw him do was truly moving. It is as if Jesus uses Mikes hands arms and fingers to move them in such a way to give us a glimpse of Jesus in a portrait. He has worked with Steven Curtis Chapman, Michael W. Smith and at the Dove awards. What a blessing for him to visit our church , and he will visit yours too. Just go to and have your church book him. He will paint the most amazing portraits of Jesus in about 10 miin using big paint brushes and coarse strokes. He splatters red paint at the portrait to put the blood of Jesus on it. It is something you have got to see and if you go to you can watch videos of it. His paintings are also for sale. Take a moment to check this out. God definitely is using this young mans talent to convey messages and meaning. It left the entire congregation speechless.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Threee More Referrals Yesterday!

So happy for all the families! Another 9 month old boy (unless it is the same one as the day before, but I like to think not!), a 6 month old boy, and a 6 year old girl all got forever families yesterday. That moves us up up up the list! And things should really keep moving as October nears and the rainy season comes to an end. I feel like I want to work on Annsleigh's room, but I am waiting for my sister in law to finish painting a "garden" in her room before we get the crib together. It would feel more real if it was all done. But, I have learned that it is very true that good things do indeed come to those that wait. ( We are about # 53 now in line for Annsleigh!)

Thursday, September 11, 2008

Happy Ethiopian New Year!

Today is New Years Day in Ethiopia, the year 2001. And I am sorry to say I really cant explain yet why it is only year 2001 for them, other than they follow a different calendar year than we do. They have 13 months and the 13th month is like only 6 days long, etc etc. and there are other different days and numbers to months too. Anyway, I cant think of a better way to celebrate the Ehtiopian New Year than with a referral. And no, not ours yet, but one family did get a phone call today for a referral for a 9 month old boy! Moving up to number 56ish now! Keep 'em coming!

Monday, September 8, 2008

More Referrals!

Finally, after 2 long months, our agency has called 2 families today with news of referrals! What lucky families they are! Both babies are boys. One is 9 months old and the other is only 6 weeks old. How precious is that? For those not familiar with what this means, it means these families are called that they have a baby picked our for them. These families are e-mailed their first glimpses of their baby by e-mail along with any info on the infant/or infants birth family. The families have to contemplate accepting the referral. ( I think as soon as I see the pic, it's a done deal for me). All this really means that we move up the list to about #57ish. But, not all the waiting families are waiting for a less than 6 month old baby girl as we are. Some are waiting for boys, older baby girls, or siblings. So I realize that this number is bogus. But, trying to keep track of it helps me focus on any movement closer to us getting our referral call about Annsleigh. Hope there are more referrals soon!

Friday, August 29, 2008

Great Granny "Fish"

Annsleigh's great granny has gone to be with the Lord today. She will be missed terribly, yet she lived a long and very full life. We were blessed with her presence in our lives. She was the best mother, grandmother and greatgrandmother. She has taught us all the value of family and traditions and she is now where we all hope to be someday. I only wish Annsleigh could have met her. However, great granny already finished knitting a precious blanket for Annsleigh. One day, I will post a picture of Annsleigh cuddled up in it, as if to hug her great granny. Please pray for great Pa as he will be lost without her. They were married over 65 years. By the way, they are great Granny and great Pa "Fish" because they own the Nutcave Trout Farm in Wartrace, TN. And the restaurant there is called "Granny Fish's". They have the best fried trout and endless hushpuppies ever.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

3 months Waiting!

We have reached the 12 week mark in waiting for Annsleigh. I've got to admit that it has not gone by that fast. With no new referrals all month, it has really actually made me focus on it even more. We have also been very worried about Granny "Fish", Annsleighs great granny. She has been in the hospital for about 6 weeks now with many complications following a kidney infection. She is not expected to recover. So, we have been kind of down around here lately. That with the long absence of referrals has kind of made for a long long month. I have cleaned out Annsleighs closet, but havent been able to work on her room much other than that. Maybe I am also bummed because I was supposed to announce that I lost maybe 8 pounds in the last month, and instead must admit I really have lost nothing:( But, I am still exercising. Maybe its all that muscle I am building up, and not the spoonfuls of peanutbutter Ive been eating as my comfort food! Come on month 4!!!! Come on referrals!!!!

Monday, August 18, 2008

Our Baby's First Day of Kindergarten

Seems like he was just in diapers and learning to walk. Now look at him. This is a bittersweet day. He is such a big boy now, going to school. And I do want to see him grow up, just not this quickly! And I didnt even cry today. He didnt either. In fact, he didnt really seem to miss us at all. That made it much easier. It was only a 3 hour day. And, lets see, in that three hours, they had recess and lunch..... hhhmmmmm. He did say that all he did was play. I guess that would be about right! And, by the way, he is growing his hair out, or else we would have a new school hair cut. And.... he picked out his clothes.... No striped button shirts for this boy!

Wednesday, August 13, 2008


Seven years ago I married the love of my life. We met on the internet in a chat room. Imagine that. Soon after we met, we got married, and here we are now 7 years together. And, we have the most beautiful little boy in the world, Bradley. We have had many many failed pregnancies to try to have Bradley a sibling. I was completely happy with where we were and what we had, or at least I thought I was. I was fooling myself. I had a change of heart sometime last year. I no longer felt that I was the one needing to carry the pregnancy in order to have our child. The Lord opened my heart up to adoption and here we are. I've got to say the I married my best friend, my soulmate and Brad and I are so looking forward to bringing our little girl home. We celebrated our anniversary by having dinner and a movie; thanks Rich and Cindy for keeping Bradley for us! We had a great quiet evening together.

Saturday, August 9, 2008

First Things First

Before we went any further with Annsleighs room, I really needed to finish Bradleys room. We have been in our home for over 2 years now, so I really think it was time to get his room together. So, here it is. Bradleys Batman bedroom! It was fun to do and he loves it. It has helped getting him to sleep in his own bed. Now, on to cleaning out what is to be Annsleigh's closet!

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Two Months Down Waiting!!!

Well, it has been another month passed since waiting for a referral and I am very happy that it has gone by very fast. We have had a very busy month helping our friends move to Tennessee from Chicago and getting settled into their home. This included me getting hurt and requiring 15 stitches in my left hand helping them move a refrigerator. Oh!!! The things you do for the people you love. The next month I hope stays busy with getting Bradley into kindergarten and used to school, and going to bed early. I have to admit, I have been very layed back and not really giving him a bedtime, but I am trying to work on this now, so when school starts he might be more used to it. I also actually started to "work-out" today! Brad & I joined the local athletic club in an effort to make ourselves healthier. I hate exercising, so this is a major accomplishment for me. I also started weight watchers (again). I've gotta get some of this weight off! Hopefully, when I post that we are waiting 3 months, I can report that I have lost at least 8-10 pounds! We shall see....

Friday, July 25, 2008

No Referrals!

Well, my computer is back and up and running, and I see that I virtually missed NOTHING!!! I am just a little disappointed in July's referrals. It started out with a bang, and then nothing. I guess thats just part of it, but I pray for more referrals soon!

Monday, July 21, 2008

Out of Touch

I have to send my computer off to be fixed so I will not be able to post much in the next couple of weeks! I'll miss keeping up with all of the exciting referrals and travel, so I may need an update when I am back up and running!!!

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Another Referral Today!

I am so excited to once again announce that another lucky family received their referral call today for siblings! Congratulations to the happy family. So, that should put us at number 59ish!

Monday, July 7, 2008

Another Referral Today!

Another family was blessed with a referral today!!! Congratulations to Deanna and her family. Their precious baby is only 9 weeks old. How tiny! That moves us up to maybe # 60 in line!!! Every little move up makes a difference!

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

One Month Down!

Just want to give a cheer to 1 month done waiting for a referral! I cannot say it went by as fast as I thought it would, but the next few months will be very busy for us, so maybe it will go by quicker. My best friend/sister and her family have moved down here to TN from Chicago and we will be helping them get settled in a new home. And we have to work on Annsleigh's room. Plus work like we always do, so hopefully that will keep my mind off the days that pass, so heres to starting our second month!

Friday, June 27, 2008

Taking 4 Giant Steps Forward!!!!

Yesterday was just the most exciting day yet in our adoption process. Four families got the call for their referrals. And Lisa & Shawn were one of the families!!!!!! They have been waiting for over 6 months just for the referral. All the families are over the moon and dont even remember the long wait. I am just ecstatic for all of them, and also because of all these referrals, that moves us up I think rather quckly to # 61ish!?!?!? WOW! This has been a very big month in the Ethiopia program!

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Taking A Baby Step

I was really looking for some kind of other pic to post as far as taking a baby step goes, cuz we have taken one baby step up to maybe #65 on the waiting list. Another very blessed family received their referral yesterday! Congratulations to them! But, I just had to post this very amazing photo I came across of a tiny foot pressing against his mommas belly. That is amazing. I have had 3 biological children, but I have WAY TOO MUCH body fat to have been able to see this. I thought is was incredible! If any of my fellow bloggers have ever been able to see this themselves if they've been pregnant I would really like to know.