Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Happy 6 Months Baby Girl!

Today is Zoe's 1/2 birthday!  It's been a little bittersweet.  Although I'm so happy to celebrate her 1/2 birthday, I soooo wish that we had her home and could celebrate with her.  When I think back to Evan's first year and how much fun we had celebrating each milestone, it's hard for me to think about how different things will be with Zoe.  I hate that she has to go through so many milestones in an orphanage, but it is what it is and there's nothing we can do about it.  So I'm trying to CHOOSE JOY today and I think we may have a little 1/2 birthday party for her tonight (and take pictures to show her someday).  I'm also trying to take comfort in the great things we have heard about the nannies in her orphanage and trust that they are loving her and celebrating in her milestones while we can't.

I got out Evan's monthly scrapbook I made for his first year just to see what he was doing at 6 months...  This is what I had written:  "It's your 1/2 birthday!  This month you can sit up all by yourself!  You're also loving fruits and veggies, sleeping all night, rolling more often, making lots of noises, and wearing 12-month clothes.  You've found your feet and love to smile and laugh.  You are such a joy!"  He weighed 21 lbs, 12 oz at his 6-month checkup (HE WAS CHUBBY).  When Zoe had her check-up a couple of weeks ago, she was about 16 lbs (and I think she'll be a little chunker too).  We're so thankful for our chubby Ethiopian baby girl!  A huge blessing for sure!

Oh, and I have to share this story... A couple of days ago Evan was praying before breakfast. He prayed "God, please be with daddy and help him to get to work safely, and please be with Zoe and help her to be happy today... Thank you for our food and everything you've blessed us. Amen. " Needless to say, I was a puddle of tears when he was finished.

Sorry this post has been a little choppy, but I wanted to write down my thoughts on our baby girl's 6 month birthday!  WE CAN'T WAIT TO HAVE HER HOME!!  We are still hoping to hear within a week or so when our court date (1st trip) will be...  Thanks so much for the prayers and encouragement!

Friday, April 15, 2011

While we wait...

We've been keeping busy while we wait to hear about our court date (the first time we travel).  We should know within a few weeks exactly when we will be meeting our little Zoe girl!  Here is a glimpse of what's been keeping us busy.  Evan had his first dentist appointment and did extremely well...

  Thanks to Mel (Drew's cousin) for making his first dentist experience a positive one!
I think the Usborne book about going to the dentist and taking Spot (his dog in his lap) also helped!

 Drew and I also got some of our travel vaccinations this past week.  Who knew our arms would be so sore (the tetanus ones were the worst!)??
 Evan and I went to an Easter party with all kinds of crafts and an egg hunt this past week.  So much fun!
 I think I've been doing a little nesting.  I cleaned out Evan's closet and moved the "too small" clothes to the basement and got out his summer ones.  Oh how I love an organized closet!  In the process, we also found this
 dragon costume from Halloween last year and he spent a couple days wearing it NONSTOP.  One morning this week he walked into our bedroom at 7:00 wearing it and roaring at us. Too cute :)
 Our lifegroup is studying this book and we are LOVING it.  DEFINITELY changes your perspective . I would sooo recommend this to anyone wanting to be challenged in their faith. 
We also went to a wedding in Indy last weekend.  Evan had soo much fun!  Loved this picture of Cal, E, and Drew!
And lastly, all the playing we've been doing and fun we've been having tuckers a little guy out.  He's been napping much more regularly during his rest time.  Love this little guy so much...

Although the waiting is so much harder now that we've seen Zoe's picture and totally fallen in love, we are trusting in God's perfect timing and trying to soak up every minute with little Evan.  Things will definitely change around our house once Zoe comes home! 

Thursday, April 7, 2011

Great News, Great News, and more Great News!

Yesterday was a great day! First of all, I need to update you that Zoe was moved to an orphanage in Addis Ababa (the capital of Ethiopia) earlier in the week!  This is a good thing because she will be much closer to everything and not in as remote of a location.  The orphanage she was moved to is where she will stay until we go meet her.  After we pass court, she will be moved to our agency's transitional home in Addis where she will stay until we go for our second visit and bring her home...  Yesterday, our Ethiopian director (Woudneh) took Zoe to a doctor to be checked (this probably couldn't have happened if she hadn't been moved- praise the Lord!).  She hadn't been checked by a doctor since she was 1 1/2 months old.  We hope to have the official doctors report today, but everything looked great and Woudneh said she is so nice and sweet!  Hooray!  Just makes my heart so happy!  And the last piece of good news- we will be filed for a court date TODAY!  Our agency has said that we should expect to hear back with a court date within 2-3 weeks.  This will be the date that we will travel for the first time to meet our precious Zoe!  Thanks for all the prayers for our sweet Zoe and the process!  We are praying that everything moves smoothly from here on out, but we know that God may have other plans and we are trusting in HIS perfect plan.....

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

She has a name!

We have decided on a name for our baby girl- Zoe!  Her middle name will be her African name ("A"), which we can't share publicly until we pass court and she is officially a Baker. We are still on cloud 9 and find ourselves dreaming of her and talking about her all the time.  I have no idea how many times I've stared at her picture...  As far as where we are in the process now- we hope to be filed for a court date yet this week, and then it will probably be 2-3 weeks before we hear back with a court date.  Once we know our court date, we can start preparing for our first trip!  Saturday night we celebrated in Fort Wayne.  We went shopping and bought Evan and Zoe matching shirts.  Evan couldn't wait to wear his, so he wore it to church Sunday and proudly told everyone about his baby sister in Ethiopia. 

I LOVE this next picture.  I have framed one of our pictures of Zoe and Evan is kissing her.  He has started to go over to it a lot throughout the day and tell her Good Morning, Goodnight, I love you, etc.  I cannot wait until we can have her home and he can FINALLY love on this baby sister he's been wanting for so long! 

We will keep you posted as we hear anything new about Zoe or have any new updates about the process!!

Saturday, April 2, 2011


I can't believe I'm actually typing this- but we got our referral yesterday!!! The best April Fools Day EVER! Our baby "A" is 5 months old and absolutely perfect. She has the most beautiful dark eyes and the chubbiest little cheeks. We are already head over heels in love with her and just can't wait to bring her home! For those of you wanting to know the story of how it happened (and for me to keep a little journal of how our day went):

Drew and I had talked Thursday night about how it had been several weeks since we had touched base with our adoption agency and he suggested we call yesterday (Friday) and see what the status of everything was. I woke up Friday thinking about our baby more than normal and even put on my Africa shirt. I just had a different feeling. So I called and talked with our agency's director Friday morning for quite a while. She totally had me fooled and although I felt very good about where we were in line and everything else we had discussed, I had NO idea that we would be getting our referral that day (she knew and was waiting on one more paper before she could give us our referral and she knew her instructions were to call Drew first). I called Drew and relayed the details of our conversation and we were both happy and relieved that we were making progress and getting closer to our baby girl. I even had a conversation with Evan and cried (happy tears) telling him that I thought we were closer to seeing his baby sister's picture. I put him in his room for rest time and got to work doing some things around the house. Then, strangely at about 3:30 I heard the garage door go up and Drew was home. His eyes were all red and I could tell he'd been crying. He said "We got our referral." Immediately, I started shaking. He said Sheila, our agency's director, had called him at work and told him (since we had instructed her to call him first). He told her he didn't want to know anything yet and just to email him pictures and him and I would look at everything together when he got home and then call her back. So we set up the videocamera and taped ourselves seeing our daughter's face for the first time. It was a precious moment I will cherish forever. Then we got to introduce Evan to his baby sister. He was happy, although I'm not sure he's going to be over-excited until he actually gets to meet this sister he's been hearing about for so long!. Then we called Sheila back and got more info and made a TON of calls to family and friends. I have no idea how many times I have looked at her picture. I just can't get enough of her and can't wait until I get to hold her and tell her how much we love her and how much everyone has been praying for her before she was even born.

To answer questions for those of you who have been asking:

-No, we do not have a name picked out yet. We wanted to wait until we saw her picture and African name. We may try to incorporate part of her African name into what we choose, or keep one of her names for her middle name. Not sure yet.....

-We hope to travel sometime at the end of June/early July for our court date and to meet our baby girl. Then we are hoping to go back in September and bring her HOME! I'm so praying that we get to celebrate her first birthday as a family together.

We treasure all of your prayers as we continue on in this journey. Please join us in praying for our baby "A", that she continues to receive great care at her orphanage, and that she can be moved closer to the capital city (Addis Ababa) soon so that she can receive even BETTER care and we can have more access to updates about her in the next few months (right now she is in an orphanage north of Addis-very remote). And please pray that as we file for our court date this week that things will go as smooth as possible so we can bring this precious little one HOME as quickly as possible! We continue to trust in God's perfect timing and know that he is in control of this whole process and every little detail involved. Thank you all for the prayers and support you have shown us since the beginning of this journey. We are beyond blessed.