Monday, January 31, 2011

court update

Hey ya'll!

I apologize for my lack of blogging...hehe I've been on tour in Puerto Rico this week and very busy traveling from city to city. It's been a lot of fun, although I miss my hubby terribly!!

Just wanted to log in for a few minutes and let everyone know that we just received confirmation from our agency that the judge declined our appeal for an earlier court date. Although, a bit disappointed, we are trusting in God that He knows the best timing and He sees ALL things. So we are reassured in the promise that He works all things for our good.

We thank you so much for your prayers and please continue to keep us in your prayers as we prepare to travel to Ethiopia on March 4th and our court date on March 10th.

Please pray that ALL of the documents needed are in order and ready for court on that day and consequently, for a prompt embassy date/visa appointment shortly after.

I'll keep you posted as more news come in.

God bless you all!
Keyla

Friday, January 21, 2011

calling all prayer warriors!!

We just received a wonderful email from our agency travel coordinator asking us if we would be interested in appealing the Ethiopian courts for an earlier court date....hmmmm....YES, WE WOULD!!! :-)

This is not a for sure thing but we have begun the process and we'll wait to hear back from the courts.
I call upon you all my prayer warriors to PLEASE keep this in your prayers as we implore God to move within HIS will.

I will keep you all posted as I hear any news.

Blessings,
Keyla

Thursday, January 20, 2011

Why Ethiopia?

The question we get asked most frequently by people is, "why Ethiopia?" My first thought usually is, "why not Ethiopia?" but instead I try to explain the horribly poor conditions found in this beautiful country and how many children are in need of love, food and families to take care of them. Sometimes it is hard to do that with words, so I am showing a short video that in my opinion does a fantastic job of conveying the reasons why we should all be concerned about the children of Ethiopia. Please watch!
(feel free to pause the playlist at the bottom of the page to hear the video)

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Our courier angels met their son TODAY!

Our courier angels met their son today in Ethiopia!! She's been able to communicate via Facebook and her blog and this is how she described her experience today. Not long until it is our turn!! :)

--
http://www.amomentcherished.blogspot.com/
How do I put into words....

the emotions of this moment, this culmination of so much prayer, anticipation.
I am inadequate. It was everything and nothing like I had imagined.
As our van bumped down the street that held the Transition Home,
that held my son, my heart beat out of sync, clapping against my chest manicly.
Tears spilled at my lids, as the America World sign came into view.
Then those gates, oh those gates that I had seen in countless other
adopting family's photos and videos. Only this time they were real....there....
before me. As the gates opened my heart began to thrash even more wildly.
My eyes blurred, my throat burned. We were the first family alphabetically to
meet our child. This was it. No more waiting. No more wondering.

We handed off cameras, and stood on the porch.

What to expect?

What to expect? My heart beat out.

The moments seemed to slow to an eternity, and then he was there before us,
being brought to us. He was woken from a nap for our moment, and terrified.
He cried huge crocodile tears, and as I held him to my thumping chest his chest
beat out a similar rhythm as mine. Wild. Flesh, blood, hearts. My son. The one that
God sewed into my heart the very first time I learned of Ethiopia and her orphans.

My hands were so hungry to know him, his curls- soft and springy, his skin- chocolate
satin, his cheeks and neck begged to be kissed, and my lips found them over and over,
as his tears splashed me wet and warm. He smells of Africa. I smell of another world,
and it frightened him. He would bury his head in my neck and nuzzle in my shoulders,
and then quickly withdraw from the foreigness of my scent, my shape. Jim reached out
to him. Daddy, son, they were perfect as their tears mingled.

I wondered if it would feel anything like real love. And it did. It does. He settled.
He slept in our arms for hours, we began to bond over a bottle, and rice, and songs
and dance. Giggles, little hands exploring my face, my hair, and my hands mimicing
back.

He is my son. Heart of my heart.

The dance has begun.



Photobucket

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Courier angels...

This week we are so grateful to a family in New York adopting through the same agency as ours, whom we haven't met in person and probably never will, who are making their first trip to Ethiopia tomorrow and have graciously offered to take our sweet Ethan a care package from us. As I have posted before, Jeremy and I recorded our voices reading the lovely book, "Guess How Much I Love You" so the caregivers at the transition home can show it to him every night before he goes to sleep - that way he can start recognizing our voices! We also sent him a warm outfit since it can get a little chilly there at night.

We pray for all of the families, including our courier angels, who are traveling this week for their court date. May God bless them and keep them safe. We also pray they can pass court on the very first try!

Here's a picture of our care package goodies.

Friday, January 14, 2011

random thoughts...

It is almost the weekend...Yea!!

This week my mom came over for a quick visit and after I gave her the latest on Ethan's room preparations, we sat down at the dining table and started going through some old photos. It was so much fun! One of the photos reminded her of a funny story about me. She said that when I was in the 2nd grade I came home with a very serious look on my face. Apparently I took her by the hand and told her, "mom, you need to sit down because I have something very important to tell you." So we both sat down on the cold floor, indian style, and I grabbed her by the hand and told her, "mom, I am in love with Luis (we're still trying to figure out who this Luis is...) and I am going to marry him when I turn 19-years-old." She said, "ok, you do that." We both laughed so hard until our sides hurt.

It made me think of all the funny little stories Ethan and I will share in the near future. I look forward to the day when we sit at a table going through old photos and I get to tell him all of the funny things he used to say when he was in 2nd grade!

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

The battle of the mind

All,

I know most of my blogs are lighthearted and fun but brace yourself, I'm about to get REAL serious on you.  As Jeremy and I prepare to become parents, we have been taking inventory on the things in our lives that need tweaking in order to be a better example to our baby boy. Everything from the things we watch on tv, the things we say around the house to how we spend our free time has all gone under the microscope in the past few weeks all with one goal - to better serve our child.

I came across this blog about an amazing family who's mission in life is to bring awareness of the 147 million orphans in the world who need loving families who will take them in. She recently posted on her blog about the effect the movies we watch have on our minds. It was so inspiring to read her thoughts because I have been thinking about the same thing for a few weeks now. I know it is long, but I invite you to not only read it in its entirety but also to meditate on it as we aspire to be an example to our children and to the world.

--

Taken from: http://joiningthejourney.blogspot.com/
My children absolutely LOVE the "25 Days til' Christmas" movies on the family channel starting December 1. The whole month of November they speak of building a fire, pulling out the blankets and snuggling up on the couch together. As our family has grown, the couch snuggling has spread to the floor with masses of pillows and blankets...we LOVE it!
Last weekend (the entire weekend) the movies were the Harry Potter series. NOW, I know that this is a VERY controversial subject, but since this is MY blog, I am going to share my heart about this issue. I have heard ALL of the reviews about this series in the literary world. I know that all of the experts and critics believe that this series of books/movies are extraordinary. The issue that I have, not only with Harry Potter but also sex filled movies, is that AS BELIEVERS we HAVE to be aware of the war that is going on in the spiritual realm all around us.
There have been times through out my life where I have come face to face with demonic oppression. IT IS REAL. The spells that are cast, the lives that satan has taken over and ruined is REAL. The things that you see on Harry Potter (while we think of it as entertainment and "imaginary"...IT HAPPENS!) If you do not believe me, ask a few people who live in third world countries that deal with witch doctors and I guarantee you that they don't watch it for entertainment. People are ALIVE on this earth, casting spells, sacrificing children, killing people on a daily basis to bring satan glory and we are watching or reading the same type of "witchcraft" here in the US as entertainment. If you have had a spell cast on your or your children and you had to rely on our sweet Savior to heal your body and free your children from the bondage that accompanies it....you would NEVER desire to read about it or watch it as entertainment. If you are a believer you believe that satan is real OR NOT. If you believe he is real...then why subject yourself to his lies? Now, I know that Harry Potter is not sacrificing children but what YOU need to know is that what goes on in the Harry Potter series is the SAME witch craft that leads to all of the other. That they would show witchcraft during the season of Christ birth angers me to no end. Just another little jab from satan...easing his way in on such a precious season to celebrate our Savior.
My friend Katie is surrounded by children who have pierced their ears, pulled permanent teeth, or have marked their skin permanently so that they will not be used as child sacrifice. IT IS real....it is SAD....and as believers we HAVE to educate ourselves on this matter. The real question is...."is it worth it for us to just ignore it for our entertainment?"
The same holds true with movies that open our minds and hearts to sexual lust. When we sit and watch a couple having sex on a big screen, (and I KNOW that they do not show EVERYTHING just enough to leave the brain to wonder...which is actually worse at times) we are opening our minds and hearts to the source of 70% of broken marriages today. SEVENTY PERCENT..... All for the sake of entertainment...don't you wonder if God wonders if we even have a brain in our heads? Why on earth would we subject our minds and hearts to the very thing that is breaking up our God ordained relationship?????
47% percent of families said pornography is a problem in their home
Pornography a significant factor in 2 out of 3 divorces
9 out of 10 children aged between the ages of 8 and 16 have viewed pornography on the Internet, in most cases unintentionally
Average age of first Internet exposure to pornography: 11 years old
Largest consumer of Internet pornography: 12 - 17 year-old age group
Every second - $3,075.64 is being spent on pornography
Every second - 28,258 Internet users are viewing pornography
Every second - 372 Internet users are typing adult search terms into search engines
Every 39 minutes: a new pornographic video is being created in the United States
The bible is full of scripture speaking of the heavenly hosts raging war against the evil one. There is a war going on DAILY. Events may seem to occur randomly, with little or NO meaning. People who view the world this way have overlooked one basic fact: the limitations of human understanding. If we only knew how our Savior's heavenly army is fighting on our behalf each and every day. We would never doubt how much He cares for us. This is why we must walk by faith and not by sight. Trusting in HIM moment by moment.

Monday, January 10, 2011

The birth of a tree!

Happy Monday everyone!

I don't know why but Mondays are simply not my favorite day of the week. I have a feeling I am not alone in this sentiment. For about a week and a half I've had the pleasure of hosting a great friend of mine, Camille, and unfortunately she had to leave today. We've known each other since we were in 4th grade and it is funny to see how quickly we can go back to being silly kids again with just a re-telling of a story or a silly song we used to sing. It was a lot of fun having her here with us and catching up with her.

While she was here, I was already planning on painting the baby's room and she was gracious enough to offer a hand. Not sure how but somehow the idea of a tree drawing on one of the walls came about and poor Camille got stuck with the task of bringing it to life. I just knew she had what it takes and she did not let me down! In a few days, she took a few colors and put together an amazing masterpiece. I know Ethan will truly appreciate "titi Camille's" gift to him! :)

I have a short video of "titi Camille" painting the tree and a few photos of the process. The next step will be a little scarier, for me. I am tracing some small animals to paint around the tree and I hope I don't disappoint "titi Camille"! :-)

Stay tuned for the grand finale in a few days...

video








Monday, January 3, 2011

COURT DATE RECEIVED!!!!!!!

Well, happy New Year everyone! Hope you had a great holiday season and feel refreshed, renewed and ready to face a brand new year. Oh, What? shut up Keyla and get to the court date part!?!? :-)

Ok...so today we received the phone call we have so anxiously been waiting for! Our court date is officially on (drum roll please!) March 10, 2011~ Yay God!!!

We are currently looking for flights but most likely will be leaving on March 4 or 5. We can't contain our excitement so if you're not in the mood for screaming and jumping, you better stay away from us!! ;-)

We received an update on Ethan last week. He is doing very well. We got to see his little 3 teeth on the bottom-front of his mouth (TOO cute!). He rolls over, pushes himself up when doing tummy time and says "mama" (TEAR!). He is not crawling yet, though. I just went to Hallmark today and bought one of those books that allows you to record your voice. The book is called "Guess How Much I Love You" and Jeremy and I will record our voices reading the story and that way he can get acquainted with our voices. We are sending him a photo as well so he can begin to recognize us. How exciting!!

We'll keep you posted as more information comes along. In the meantime we have to apply for our visa and plenty of paperwork to come! But we don't mind at all!!

Blessings!
Keyla