Friday, October 23, 2009

Good News and Frustration

After all the tests on both the girls has come back and everything is normal...with one exception. Charis had the BCG shot sometime while in Ethiopia to help eliminate the chance of her developing TB. So when she went to get her TB test it came back as a false positive and we had to get the chest x-ray (came back normal) and now they have to treat it. The treatment? 9 months of antibiotics! We're totally glad that she does not have the disease, but frustrated to put her on the meds for something she most likely doesn't have. Anyone else have to do this that adopted from Ethiopia?

I guess it's all part of the journey but I'll tell you this: If you have an HSA and are adopting I highly suggest you start dropping some serious coin in the account because you'll need it. Those lab tests were ridiculously expensive!

Other than that all is well on the home front and we're getting family pictures taken tomorrow. Come back for a visit to see!

- Dave

Friday, October 9, 2009

Monkeys & Snow


Soon after we got Jacee home, we had to buy bedrails because she fell out of her bed a couple times. She has always slept in the upper left side of the bed. I assumed this was because she had shared a bed with several kids at the orphanage, and that became her "spot". We've been trying to get her to learn to sleep in the middle of the bed so we can eventually remove the rails. We have her move to the middle, but she always ends up back in her "spot, "crammed against the bedrail.

A couple nights ago, I decided to try a new approach. I put a pillow on the left side, forcing her over toward the right. She got a concerned look on her face and said, "No! Monkeys!" while pointing at the window on the right side of the bed. After a few minutes of discussion, I came to the understanding that when she was in Africa, monkeys would come in through the window at night, get into the families food, and make a mess. Jacee's still working on English, but this appears to be a genuine concern based on past experience. I look forward to asking her about this when she is older to see if monkeys really did come in their house.

I assured her that no monkeys could get in the house. She slept fine and left the pillow on the left side while she slept closer to the right. Again tonight we had the discussion about monkeys, but I think she understands now that no monkeys can get in the house. David had the idea to put on an ape mask and wake her up during the night, but we decided that wouldn't be a good idea.



This morning I told Jacee to take Chelsea (the dog) downstairs and outside. Before long, she was back in my bedroom...

J: Mom. Trees.
Me: Trees? (Then I remembered. The forecast had said there could be snow). Trees white?
J: No. Blue. (She then pointed to something that is white. Okay, so we're still working on colors).
Me: That's white. Are the trees white?
J: Yes, trees white.

I went down and looked. Yup, snow. October 10th. Crazy. And it's quite a bit of snow.
We bundled up the older girls and David took them and Chelsea sledding for a bit.
Aside from the crying spell from cold hands, Jacee enjoyed her first experience with "sah-noh."

Monday, October 5, 2009

God's Not Fair

Well, we haven't posted much lately. I'm not sure if people are checking in or not [Hi, Erica! I know you are.] We plan to get family pics done soon, but for now, here are a few we've taken at home.

Before jumping in, I thought I'd explain the girls' names. We named our four-year-old Jacee. It's pronounced like Stacy, with the emphasis on the first syllable. We kept her original Ethiopian name, Zemenesh, for her middle name. We named our 7-month-old Charis, as in charismatic without the "matic." Charis means "grace" in Greek. She really had turned out to be a little gift of grace, an extra blessing after beginning this journey with the plan to adopt one child, and such a joy. Her middle name is Takelech, which is her birth name.

The past few weeks have gone better than we could have hoped. Our girls are incredibly sweet and frankly, pretty easy. Is this how international adoption is supposed to be? We were told that Jacee is quite shy. Not so. She is outgoing and has a great sense of humor. Laughter is a huge value in our family, and Jacee, in all her silliness, has been a perfect fit. Charis is pretty much happy and content all the time (except when she's hungry or has Swine Flu--or whatever flu this is), and loves to watch all the craziness. She's sitting like a pro (so we don't mind that Chelsea the dog uses the Boppie). Davi is having a great time with new sisters--not always using the best judgment, but nobody's been killed yet. All of a sudden she seems so grown up to me.

We feel so privileged to have these three girls. When I consider that God placed these girls in our family--not any other children, but THESE girls--I am so humbled and grateful. It's not fair. Why should we be so blessed? Why does He give such incredible gifts? We don't deserve them, but oh, we are thankful for them. We belong to such a gracious God who, thank goodness, doesn't give us what we deserve. Not just in eternal life (which is HUGE in and of itself), but in the blessings throughout this life.

- Gina