Saturday, January 26, 2008


It's been another busy week here in Michigan. The hospital seems like it has been extra busy lately. My patients have been sicker and there are more of them. I usually work 12 hour shifts at the hospital, but this past week has been so crazy that I haven't gotten out in under 12 1/2 hours, usually 13. Boy my legs can sure tell that extra hour. Luckily I only work 3 days a week instead of 5, because I definitely need the extra time to recoup. The increased patient load I think is due to the freezing cold Arctic type weather we've been experiencing. Brrrrr.... I guess I'm getting ready for the Russian climate this time of the year. This week Krasnoyarsk was showing -22F. We were at +8F. Still almost a 30 degree difference, but I think now that my body feels this cold it wont make any difference.

Aside from working long hours this week...on my days off I did start packing. One suitcase for Russia and the other for Florida. Here's a few pictures of the items I've set aside to take for "T"in the Russia suitcase. Three outfits of different sizes from 12mo - 18mo, to see which size she'll fit into, A small quilt that her grandma made for her to keep until she can come home with us, and a few toys to play with during our visits.

I haven't heard any news from CHI this week, so I am headed for warmer weather in the south. I'm leaving Chesterfield on Wednesday and flying into Orlando. Mom is already in Florida soaking up the sun (when its not raining), so she'll come and pick me up. We'll spend a few days in Melbourne Beach where she has been staying at some friend's "park model", since January 4th. She has been fortunate to have wonderful friends that have shared a park lot with her (and Dad when he was alive)for the last few years. This time I get to see where they've been hanging out all winter. Then on Feb 1st, we'll pack up Mom's stuff and we'll head back to Orlando and stay at Mom's time share beginning Feb. 1st. While at the time share we get to go and visit all four of the Disney Parks. Yippee!!! I just picked up our Magic Our Way tickets from the Disney Store today, so we are all set. I'll head back to Michigan on the 6th of Feb. and hopefully by then I'll have some more news to share on the adoption front.

In other news....Pastor Jill had her surgery last week and everything went well. Now we just have to make sure she doesn't over do it :0) and follows the docs orders to rest. Are you reading this Jill??? Be good while I'm away.

I had a chance to visit with my brother Russ's family yesterday, and share a delicious spaghetti dinner. My niece, Samantha has been at home with her parents (my brother and his wife Terri) since she had her little girl Illiana, as her husband was deployed for military duty only 3 weeks after the baby was born. Today, Samantha and the baby had to fly back to their home in Washington (the state). We're hoping that her Daddy will be able to come home soon to see how much she has already grown, and before he misses too much. Yesterday was my last chance to get in hugs and kisses with the baby, until they fly home again in the summer. She is so darn cute. I'll talk to Samantha about posting a pic sometime. My other little great niece who will be turning 3 this year was over as well. She just loves her little cousin so much. I got some great pictures of them together. These are the two little ones that will be close in age to my Little Russian Princess. I just know that they are going to have so much fun together.

My sister Robin and her family came over this morning and joined me for breakfast and coffee. Brandon, her son, and my nephew, just found out he has been accepted to Northwood College in Midland. Yeah Brandon!!!! I can't believe he is turning 18 next month and now will be going off to college next year. Wow, time has flown....It seems like just yesterday, or the day before :0) that I was at the hospital holding him a few minutes after he was born. While I'm in Florida,Brandon is going to stay and watch the house as well as Jake the dog and Grandma's cat, shadow (who is also staying at my house).

I think I have everything ready for my trip now, just have to finishing packing the clothes. I probably wont post again until I get back from Florida. I have to work the next three days, and then I'm off. Hopefully more families will have news of travel and court dates over the next week. My agency's Russian coordinator has been in Russia this past week setting up more regions and hopefully working out any kinks in the old regions to make things run smoother and quicker for everyone.

Hang in there my little "T", Mom's bags are almost packed. We just have to wait for the government to find you and pair us up together. I pray every night that God is watching over you and that you will get to come home soon. Know that you are Loved so very much already.

Wednesday, January 16, 2008

The Wait continues....

The long two week Holiday season is finally over and the old feelings of excitement and anticipation of "the call", coming in at any moment have returned. I worked on Monday the 14th, which was a good thing, because I probably would have been sitting with the phone in hand all day long, not able to do anything else for fear of missing that call. I guess I was secretly hoping that by magic the call would come in that day. Anyone else "waiting" share similar wishes for the 14th? Alas, the call has not come in yet... maybe by my birthday in February??? Who COULD happen! I have to keep reminding myself that God holds the master plan and He has the perfect time in mind. I just need to be patient...., but it is oh so so hard some days.

Yesterday, I kept busy reading a couple more family blog sites and doing the necessary household choirs like laundry and cleaning. It continues to amaze me how one puppy dog can bring in so much dirt from outside and lose so much hair in just a couple of days.

In the evening I went with my sister and her teenage daughter ( now 16 and driving, yikes...they grow up so quickly), along with a friend of my nieces, to the high school varsity basketball game. We won!! Way to go LCN! Oh, I almost forgot...I also went and voted before the game. It was Michigan's Primary voting day yesterday.

Today begins a new day of waiting. After grocery shopping this afternoon, I think I'll start packing a few things for my Little Princess for trip #1. One of the other adoptive families who recently returned from trip #1 said that she wished she had started setting things aside earlier, so I will take her up on her advice.

Tomorrow my friend and our church Pastor is having surgery, so I'll go up to the hospital in the early afternoon and see how she is doing. Please say a prayer tonite for Pastor "J" that she has an uncomplicated surgery and a speedy recovery.

Friday, January 11, 2008

Region Chosen for Adoption

I have chosen the Region called Krasnoyarsk to adopt from. It is in the middle of Russia, about a 6-7 hour flight from Moscow. I chose this region because it is new to my adoption agency. I accepted in hopes that the wait time will be shorter and that I would be closer to the top of the list. I believe I am about 5th in line at this point. I'm not exactly sure how many of the families ahead of me have requested baby girls, so its difficult to judge the wait time for me. I just know that it is a longer wait for girls than boys, and could be up to 12 months. Hopefully not, but for those asking how much longer....well, there you have it.
Mom has been telling everyone that she knows about her soon to be adopted granddaughter and has everyone praying that she will arrive soon. The power of prayer has moved mountains in the past, therefore, I'm counting on it helping to bring "T" home quickly for her sake and mine.
As the wait continues I continue to find things to do to occupy my time. I'm trying to pick activities that are either geared towards adoption, or activities that I might not be able to do with a toddler at home. Here's a list of some of the things I've done over the past year to stay busy:
1) Went on a cruise to the Carribean last March with Mom (which I had promised myself I
would do after graduating from Nursing School in Dec. 2005).
2) Once Dossier completed, bought "T's" crib and started working on the nursery
3) Painted the kitchen and living room
4) Re-did the basement after it flooded last spring. (That's a whole story in itself) This project
has taken many different days of sweat, blood and tears over the course of at least 8
5) Read adoption books by Dawn Davenport "The complete book of International Adoption",
and John Maclean " The Russian Adoption Handbook". I highly recommend both of them.
I sit at my kitchen table every morning that I don't have to go to work and read a chapter
in one of them. ( I am now re-reading them for about the 3rd time.) :)
6)I've become very active in church activities, and making new friends through church. I'm
new to this area, as I just moved here 2 years ago now, so this group of friends has been my
constant source of strength and encouragement. I Love you all !!!!
7)Spending time with family
8)Joined on-line chat groups which are adoption oriented for support from families going
through the same process.
9) Planning a trip to Florida at the end of January to visit Mom, whose down there now, and
also to see one of my favorite places on earth " Disneyland".
Yep!! I'm a Disney nut, I'll admit it. Before moving back to Michigan to be near family, I lived in California for close to 10 years. I was out in Southern California near Disneyland, so now every year I have to go down to Florida to get my Disney fix. I sure hope "T" will like Disney as much as I do.

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Learning how to blog!

Well....I'm taking the leap and learning how to blog. (Notice I said this has not been as easy as others make it look).

I have begun to create this blog site to share my journey of adoption with my family, friends and other families who are on this wonderful emotional roller coaster of a journey called adoption, or with those who have already adopted or those who are considering adoption.

I actually began this journey a little over a year ago now. It was December 15th, 2006 when I realized how much I truly wanted to have a family of my own. This wasn't the first time that the thought had crossed my mind, oh no...for I had thought about it many times before. But, it was the first time that I felt God working in my heart telling me it was time to do this and that adoption was the way to go. I prayed all night long that night. I was scared..not sure if I could do this by myself. God just kept speaking to me and saying that he would be there every step of the way. All I had to do was " Build it and she would come", like the field of dreams. The next day I awoke and began doing the research and contacting adoption agencies. On January 3rd, I signed an agreement to work with Children's Hope International. I had also decided at about this time that I would adopt a little girl, an infant if possible, but definitely under age two. I chose Russia as the country to adopt from, mainly because that's where I felt God was leading me. I just heard him say " your daughter is in Russia".

From those days a year ago.. the ball has just continued to roll. I keep trusting God to bring "T" home soon. There have been many emotional roller coaster days in between then and now. A few of the hardest times were going through, or preparing for my homestudy. I was so afraid that I would be rejected as a parent, but my social worker made the home visits very comfortable in an uncomfortable situation. She remains very supportive to this day and continues to stay in touch even though my homestudy was completed and approved on March 14th, 2007. I just love her and will continue to use her knowledge and support.

Another scary sort of thing for me was getting fingerprinted by the Homeland Security personnel for the I-600A and I-171H forms. It was just so official I guess, though looking back I wonder what was so scary about it. Then there was the psychologist visit. Again other person to pass judgement on whether or not you would be a fit parent. I've passed all of the tests and paperwork.

Once all of the pieces were complete it was stressful and exciting all at the same time gathering everything together and getting everything notarized and the apostilled. I will never forget the feeling of excitement I had on the day that I finally had all of the papers completed in my hand with their gold stickers on them and carefully putting them in an envelope to send off to Children's Hope, saying here is my completed Dossier. That was June 6th, 2007. On June 29th I received word that my dossier had been sent to Russia. And so the celebrating began and so did the very long wait that continues today.

During the time between completing my dossier and now, Children's Hope International's accreditation with Russia expired making it more difficult for the agency to complete adoptions in that country. Wait times for everyone were beginning to drag on and get longer. We were all feeling depressed, and then the rollercoaster of emotions started again. Children's Hope received it's new accreditation on December 14th, 2007. This time it is non-expiring in Russia. Yippeee!!! What a great Christmas present, even if I didn't get my wish of having a referall by Christmas, this was the next best thing.

This past week has been Russia's Christmas and New Years celebration, so no adoption news has been taking place although my adoption agency has sent out emails stating that they expect things to begin happening quickly beginning next week. They have also continued to say that anyone adopting a little girl will take longer due to the availability of girls under 24 months. More boys are available for adoption than girls, because Russians are adopting more of the girls apparently.

While I have been waiting I have pretty much completed "T"'s room. (That's as much of her name that I want to reveal to everyone until I see her for the first time). Here's a couple of pictures to share.

It's been sooooo much fun putting this room together. I just can't wait to bring my Little Russian Princess home. I will be adopting from Krasnoyarsk, Russia. A region in the middle of the country. I'll try to insert a map on my next blog. Hope you all enjoy.