Monday, December 28, 2009
Sunday, December 27, 2009
A new recipe from my brother --white bean chicken chili
Saturday, December 26, 2009
Today was spent making more baby food, putting together some of Ari's gifts and trying to figure out how to install a car seat. For some reason Abby left the car seat project to me. I spent about 1.5 hours working on it and finally got it figured out. Then realized it was crooked. So Abby came out and helped me and I think we got it secure. It's still funny that we will be in Ethiopia for 9+ days with him, driving all over the place with him in our lap. Then we will land in Springfield and within an hour we will be confining him to a car seat for the first time in his life. I'm hoping they have one of those car seat checks in the next couple of weeks so we can double-check and make sure he's locked and loaded.
The countdown clicker is under 2 weeks....11 days until we leave, 13 until we meet. I sure hope he likes cowboy boots, sports gear, and Ferraris!
Tuesday, December 22, 2009
Monday, December 21, 2009
Friday, December 18, 2009
Thursday, December 17, 2009
- i got my passport back. in six days. it's amazing what can happen if you are willing to pay a little extra. everyone keeps asking me if i got my passport. it was such a huge deal at the time, but then it came in the mail 6 working days after i mailed the request in, and then it's not such a big ordeal. i had forgotten that i had blogged about it and there are actually people out there that read this (and care) what we are writing. so yes, i got my new passport, along with my old one back. we should be good to go.
- after 2 weeks and "interviews" with 3 different pediatricians, i think we have finally decided on ari's doctor. it's really weird to talk to doctors and see if they are qualified to take care of your child....a child you've never seen or touched. but i think we've made a a great decision. we just hope ari feels the same way after his first week home (and all the shots, tests, etc. that he is going to go through.....poor buddy)
- the nursery and supplies are slowly coming together. there are still a couple of things we haven't decided on. (monitors, etc) but the list of unknowns is getting smaller each and every day.
- we have a car seat. but we haven't opened the box yet. no reason. just haven't taken the time to read the directions and realize how complicated this install is going to be. hopefully i can get abby to video my first attempt at putting the car seat in.
one last random: happy birthday to "uncle matt". not officially an uncle, but a great friend that ari will always know as "uncle matt".
Wednesday, December 16, 2009
Now we have room for extra stuff......we just have to monitor the 50 pound limit. It's hard to believe that three weeks from now we will be in the air on our way to Ethiopia. One more day down.
Tuesday, December 15, 2009
Better stories tomorrow...
Monday, December 14, 2009
Sunday, December 13, 2009
Saturday, December 12, 2009
After we got the battery in and all the pieces put back together, we thought we would see how it worked. And surprise, surprise, it worked like a champ. Then Abby started reading the instruction manual. Come to find out the weight limit for the bassinet (with "D" size vibration unit) is 15 pounds. 15 pounds? 15 pounds! That's all good and well, except we were told last week that Ari is already close to 18-20 pounds. Awesome. So all the work to get the vibration kit working were in vain. We read more in the instruction manual and learned how to take the bassinet out. Below is the pack-and-play as it sits in our bedroom. Everyone keeps telling us we won't believe how fast he will grow up. We had no idea he would already outgrow his first bed...before he got home. C'mon January!!!
Friday, December 11, 2009
Thursday, December 10, 2009
Tonight we went to a small gathering after work, went to see The Blind Side (amazing), and then had a small dinner at 10:00. Made it home just in time to see the opening credits of Frasier so we could guess what the opening credits would be. (In case you didn't know, the opening of Frasier is alway different -- a light will blink, it will rain, there will be a train, some lights will go on in the building.) Yes, this has become one of the highlights of our day. One of the reasons this is a highlight is because we know another day has come and gone and we are another day closer to Mr. Ari.
We have become "those people". Those people being the ones that whip out photos of their children -- even when people don't ask. But we feel like we can since it's so different than most people. And 99% of the time people actually seem interested to see the pics and hear our story. Or at least it seems that way.
Another day down, another day closer. Hope you like the new ticker.
Wednesday, December 9, 2009
One month from today we will be on an airplane to go get him.
Tuesday, December 8, 2009
And the newest picture of our little man which was taken last Monday, November 30. Cute, cute, cute!!
Sunday, December 6, 2009
This past Saturday Roger and I were showered with our friends' and families' love, both for us and already little Ari. Thank you to all who attended. There were quite a few of you we haven't seen in a while, and just your presence on our special day meant so much to us. We appreciate all of the wonderful gifts and orphanage donations we received -- thank you for your generosity! Thank you also to Jeff and Becky Kelley and Brian and Tammy Wilmsmeyer for hosting such a beautiful shower. You made it very memorable for us.
Wednesday, December 2, 2009
Oh, yeah, we got a new picture of Ari two days ago. His hair is long! And adorable. We will be taking Curly Q's Milkshake to Ethiopia. And he's still chubbalicious. And we got a report from some friends he's happy and healthy. It really doesn't get any better than that. Unless our agency calls us tomorrow and tells us we have a confirmed embassy appointment. That would be better.
Monday, November 23, 2009
We are still waiting to hear of our embassy appointment. We're being told it will likely be the first or second week in January. Hopefully we will have confirmation soon. I'm sad he won't be home for Christmas, but it is still just around the corner and we are not complaining one bit! I am planning to be completely done with work by the end of next week and then it is full steam ahead with travel and more baby preparations!! We can't wait!!!
Abby: When does your passport expire?
Me: June, 2010.....WHY?
Abby: Just reading and in different publications it says your passport cannot expire within 6-months of travel. In order to get a VISA in to Ethiopia your passport has to be good for at least 6-months after you arrive.
Abby: Looks like you are going to have to get your passport renewed.
So this morning I did one of the most nerve-racking things I've done in a long time. I mailed off my current passport, along with a check, two photos and application to the passport office in Philadelphia. It's nerve-racking because right now I have NO WAY of leaving the country. We aren't expecting to travel until the first of the year, but now the race is on to see who can get their paperwork ready first: Me or Ari. At least there aren't any Holidays this time of year for the Passport office to take off. Oh wait.......
Just another fun step in International Adoption. Lesson learned.
Friday, November 13, 2009
Thursday, November 12, 2009
I did read a great post today on another blog that describes our current situation exactly, written by Alisa, an adoptive mother who has been through it and now has her son home. So hopefully it will give you a better perspective that this is the nature of the Ethiopian courts, it's not just me and Roger who get to experience all these wonderful delays. If you make it through court on your first try, consider yourself lucky!
And to put it all in perspective, I thought I'd include this forward that I received a while back and still think about often because I think it speaks a lot of truth. And because I'm getting tired of writing about our adoption.
1. Life isn't fair, but it's still good.
2. When in doubt, just take the next small step.
3. Life is too short to waste time hating anyone.
4. Your job won't take care of you when you are sick. Your friends and parents will. Stay in touch.
5. Pay off your credit cards every month.
6. You don't have to win every argument. Agree to disagree.
7. Cry with someone. It's more healing than crying alone.
8. It's OK to get angry with God.. He can take it.
9. Save for retirement starting with your first paycheck.
10. When it comes to chocolate, resistance is futile.
11. Make peace with your past so it won't screw up the present.
12. It's OK to let your children see you cry.
13. Don't compare your life to others. You have no idea what their journey is all about.
14. If a relationship has to be a secret, you shouldn't be in it.
15. Everything can change in the blink of an eye. But don't worry; God never blinks.
16. Take a deep breath. It calms the mind.
17. Get rid of anything that isn't useful, beautiful or joyful.
18. Whatever doesn't kill you really does make you stronger.
19. It's never too late to have a happy childhood. But the second one is up to you and no one else.
20. When it comes to going after what you love in life, don't take no for an answer.
21. Burn the candles, use the nice sheets, wear the fancy lingerie. Don't save it for a special occasion. Today is special.
22. Over prepare, then go with the flow.
23. Be eccentric now. Don't wait for old age to wear purple.
24. No one is in charge of your happiness but you.
25. Frame every so-called disaster with these words ''In five years, will this matter?"
26. Always choose life.
27. Forgive everyone everything.
28. What other people think of you is none of your business.
29. Time heals almost everything. Give time, time.
30. However good or bad a situation is, it will change.
31. Don't take yourself so seriously. No one else does.
32. Believe in miracles.
33. God loves you because of who God is, not because of anything you did or didn't do.
34. Don't audit life. Show up and make the most of it now.
35. Growing old beats the alternative -- dying young.
36. Your children get only one childhood.
37. All that truly matters in the end is that you loved.
38.. Get outside every day. Miracles are waiting everywhere.
39. If we all threw our problems in a pile and saw everyone else's, we'd grab ours back.
40. Envy is a waste of time. You already have all you need.
41. The best is yet to come.
42. No matter how you feel, get up, dress up and show up.
44. Life isn't tied with a bow, but it's still a gift.
Tuesday, November 10, 2009
I am not mad at our agency, per se. I know they are doing the very best they can with the resources they have. But, due to my control freak nature and desire to know all there is to know (yes, I have always been this way), it is difficult to endure this process with no real explanation. BUT, I have finally come to the conclusion I don't need an explanation. Because even if we had an explanation, it wouldn't change anything that's currently happening with our case in Ethiopia. So for now I am working on letting go. Learning how to live gracefully under pressure. The highs in the adoption process are so very high and the lows so incredibly low. I think there is a learning curve to managing it all, realizing that you will experience both ends of the spectrum before the day arrives when you meet your child. We do believe Ari will eventually come home, but we are working on letting go of our expectations. They do us no good. When it is meant to happen it will happen. Maybe that's Thursday. Maybe that's in six months. Maybe that's in two years. Until then we are doing the best we can to reflect international adoption in a good light, to enjoy today and not yearn for tomorrow. So I apologize when the difficult aspect of this adoption comes through my words. It just means we are experiencing some lows.
As the heavens are higher than the earth,
so are my ways higher than your ways
and my thoughts than your thoughts.
As the rain and the snow
come down from heaven
and do not return to it
without watering the earth
and making it bud and flourish
so that it yields seed for the sower and bread for the eater,
so is my word that goes out from my mouth:
It will not return to me empty,
but will accomplish what I desire
and achieve the purpose for which I sent it.
Monday, November 9, 2009
Thursday, November 5, 2009
And then to end "College Week" I am heading up to Des Moines this weekend to see my cousin Megan who is following in my footsteps and attending AIB College of Business. I'm looking forward to being in the old dorm building again, reminiscing, probably driving Megan crazy with all my "I remember when" stories. I CANNOT even believe it's already been 10 years since I started college. Wow. So, yeah, it will be good to be out of town this weekend and have a distraction for two days before our next court date on Monday. We are, so, so, so hoping things go well on Monday. There are five or six other families with our agency who also have court the same day, so I'm hoping that works in our favor. Does that make sense? Probably not. At this point any logical reasoning we used to have has gone out the window. We have become really good at speculating about all sorts of circumstances that could, would, should work in our favor. Anything to get us through the day at this point.
Saturday, October 31, 2009
A little recap, shall we? We learned Tuesday, October 27th, we did not pass our first court date due to lack of paperwork and that our case would not be rescheduled but instead would be heard ASAP once the paperwork problem was fixed. Now we're being told our court date has been rescheduled for November 9th, along with a few other (4 or 5) families with our agency who were given this date a couple weeks ago as their first court date. So it appears they are, after all, fitting us in. This is good news and we are happy, although maybe a little guarded. Okay, I'll speak for myself. I am a lot guarded. I feel we may be getting "best case scenario" information instead of reality. The bottom line is this: Ethiopia is 8,000 miles away. They are oftentimes lucky to have electricity for 24 straight hours let alone a decent Internet connection. The communication sucks. It's like that game, Telephone, where you start with a message with Person No. 1 and by the time it gets to Person No. 5, it is no longer the same message and you're not sure what is accurate and what is not. Hopefully we will be on the receiving end of a good, accurate message next Monday! Until then I will continue to feel like laughing, screaming, and crying all at the same time. That's totally normal; right?
Tuesday, October 27, 2009
Tuesday, October 20, 2009
Friday, October 16, 2009
Wednesday, October 14, 2009
We also received two new pictures of Ari yesterday. Roger and I are still priding ourselves on the fact that we were able to recognize him from approximately 30 pictures of, well, 30 other babies. He. is. gorgeous. And his hair has grown a lot in the last month! And we were lucky enough to get a picture of him awake and holy cow his eyes are amazing. And he has chubby little fat rolls on his legs. Oh, he just melts me. Please pray for Ari's continued health/well-being and for us to receive a quick court date. I know there's so many of our friends and family out there thinking of us, wishing there was something that could be done that would make this process move faster, and if we could all just direct our thoughts and wishes into prayer, I think it would be so powerful. Thank you again to all of you for your continued support.
Friday, October 9, 2009
Thursday, October 1, 2009
On a crappy note, we found out yesterday that the Ethiopian courts have delayed their re-opening. All summer we were told courts would be reopening on October 5th. Now there is talk they won't open until October 12th due to training. Or maybe even later depending on where you get your information. It really sucks. We are trying to remain optimistic. And patient. Really trying. We are sooooo over waiting. We have been waiting for so long, I can't remember what it feels like to not be waiting. You'd think we would have made Waiting our friend by now since he's been a part of our lives for so long. But, no. We despise him. We are ready for the next phase of our life to begin, thank you very much.
To be clear, we are not expecting to be assigned a court date the minute court opens because, seriously, that is just completely unrealistic. We were just hoping to hear sometime in October that we have been assigned a court date and then to actually go to court and pass by the end of the year. That's not too much to ask for; right? And that could technically still happen, but with all the unexpected, never-ending delays, I think the chances of that coming to fruition are getting slimmer and slimmer. Maybe he'll be home by Valentine's Day. I should probably set my sights on that now instead of Christmas.
To all of you Ethiopian adoptive families out there (or anyone else who just wants to stay in the know), I've found a blog that has proven to be a great resource for getting reliable Ethiopian adoption-related information. It was started this past spring during the abandonment issues, but it has continued on it because it is such a great resource. It is http://www.ethioadoptionnews.blogspot.com/. Basically it works like this: Adoptive (waiting) families can email what their agency has told them about court, embassy, MOWA, change in procedures, wait times, etc., and then the blog administrator posts anonymously all the different emails she's received. The source of the information is not revealed (i.e., what specific agency is saying what), but you basically get to look at the whole picture and get an overall sense of what multiple agencies are telling their families and then decide for yourself what is most likely to be true depending on how many agencies are saying the same thing. To rely on one agency (even your own!) for timely updates and info we've come to learn is pretty ineffective and scarce.
So there's our update. I apologize for the lack of blogging. It's mostly because we haven't had anything exciting to talk about . We're just anxiously awaiting court to re-open and to get assigned a court date. Mostly we're just trying to not get sucked into the suckiness of this waiting, and that sometimes includes taking a break from the blog. We have done so well since receiving his referral; we're just trying to stay distracted and busy so we don't go back to the not-so-great emotional place we were about two months ago. We have received some beautiful pictures of Ari, though, and for that we are so grateful. He is a beautiful baby, and I'm not just saying that. And he looks really healthy and peaceful. He's sleeping in all but three pictures we've received so far. Hopefully that habit will continue on when he gets home?!? In some ways his pictures make the waiting easier and in some ways it makes it harder. I look at his pictures and just want to reach my hands into the photograph and pick him up. I have a conversation with myself on a daily basis how it would be totally reasonable and financially feasible for me to fly to Ethiopia and visit him, meet him, love on him, let him know that he has two parents who are just beside themselves with anticipation to love him and make him the center of their world. And then that thought process leads to how it would be more than fine if I just stayed over there and visited him every day at the orphanage until we pass court.....and then Roger gets there ....and we go to our embassy appointment...and get on an airplane and fly home. Someday.
Wednesday, September 23, 2009
- Thanks to Amanda for the new blog look. We needed a change and she totally hooked us up. On a related note, thanks to Courtney for the referral of Amanda.
- Thanks for NY Kate and IA Kelly for coming in this past weekend. I'm pretty sure all had a great time.
- Thanks for Neighbor Jeremy for the PBR hook-up this weekend. Who knew that Bull Riding was so amazing. And who knew that my wife would rather watch bull riding than the Emmys.
- My dog Jill started her own Twitter Account
- USC Football lost. Figures.
- Mom and Pop Wasson are both sick, so we haven't been able to announce Baby Wasson's name to them...or the world. (Maybe that will help them get better.....faster)
- Abby and I are trying to plan an Ethiopian Adoption Gathering for early October
- Abby and I are trying to plan a Vegas trip for this fall...anyone want to go?
Other than that, life as usual around the Wasson Household. We are still waiting for courts to open in Ethiopia (rumor date of October 6th) -- We probably won't know anything more about the next step until October 6th --- but it will probably be a while longer before we hear anything. Until then we are just happy that families traveling to Ethiopia have been able to take pictures for us. He looks great. Can't wait to introduce you to him.
Monday, September 14, 2009
With all of our IVF and other science fiction, I never shared any of our trials and tribulations with Gramps. For goodness sakes, he's 92 years old and listens to the TV at volume level 51. It takes a lot to carry on a long conversation. This week was my first week to see Gramps since we had our referral and I had pictures to show him. I did as best as I could to try and explain everything to him, and I think he got it. He just kept saying how great it was and how excited he was for me and Abby. For once I was thinking and got out my iPhone to take a picture.
Saturday, September 5, 2009
Tuesday, September 1, 2009
Wednesday, August 26, 2009
Finally -- I know! It took us a little while to figure out how to upload our video. Apparently high def makes it a little more complicated. Sorry! We're rookies. I have a feeling we'll be video uploader experts within the next year once we have more material to play with!
Okay, I feel the need to give a little introduction to our video. First of all, sorry for all the gum smacking on my part. I HOPE I don't normally chew gum like this. I'm blaming it on the nerves.
Second of all, our first reaction at seeing our baby's picture was shock at how big and healthy he looks! We had mentally prepared ourselves to see a tiny, little malnourished baby since that is oftentimes the case of young infant referrals. That was not the case at all and while we are so, so thankful for that, it took us a little by surprise!
And the second round of excitement towards the end of the video is us discovering (after we scrolled further down in the email) that we had not one referral picture, but two! Another wonderful surprise! And he had a completely different expression on his face in the second photo -- hence our confusion. It was an amazing, surreal, crazy moment. As you will see, even as we were gazing at his pictures, we still couldn't really believe it was happening.
Sunday, August 23, 2009
Friday, August 21, 2009
A little info on our little man:
- He is approximately 2 months old -- date of birth listed on his paperwork says 7-9-09
- He looks amazingly healthy! He weighed approximately 9 pounds on 7-24-09 -- chubby for an Ethiopian baby!
- He has an Ethiopian name that we will use as his middle name and a first name Roger and I have picked out for him that we will share with everyone after we pass court (Sorry, Grandmas!)
- He has big, sweet cheeks and gorgeous brown eyes
- We are falling madly in love with him.
We would love nothing more than to share his beautiful face with everyone, but that will have to wait until we pass court. As for how things will progress from here on out, there is still a process. We are now waiting to learn of our court date. Ethiopian courts will be closing within the next week or so and will reopen the beginning of October. We will probably not learn when our court date is until AT LEAST October. Hopefully we will GET a court date before the end of the year and hopefully we will travel to bring him home in January or February. These are all estimates and that's all the information we have. We, of course, will post any new updates as we get them.
In case you were wondering who won the "guess our referral date" game, it was my mom who got it right on the nose -- August 20th!
I believe Roger will be posting our video of us seeing our baby's picture for the first time in the next day or so, so check back soon!
Monday, August 17, 2009
Tuesday, August 4, 2009
Zoe in her pink sunglasses. She always has these on. And keeps them on.
Cruz and Caden modeling the "7990" shirts.
Cruz offering to share his pizza.
Cruz in Roger's hat