Archive - June 2011

The same village
The Weekend of “C”
Yard Sale Wrap Up (hint… this is good stuff)
Yard Sale!!!!! Can you feel the excitement?
A few Tukula items left!
June Numbers
It’s finally time for “that” post

The same village

Adoption is obviously a hot topic at our house.  Explaining our upcoming adoption to the kids has been less challenging than I anticipated in the beginning.  Charlotte was 6 months old and Elliott was 2 years old when we started our process.  C had no idea what was going on at the time but has grown up with the knowledge that she has a little sibling in Africa.  E latched on to the idea from the beginning and talks about him like he’s just down the street.  “When are we going to go get our brother in Africa, ” he asks on a daily basis.  I don’t know buddy, I don’t know.  Hopefully soon.  Our little guy comes up in bedtime prayers and late night conversations.  We mull over all of life’s big questions: How does God stay with me all night? Where did the stars come from? What is my brother doing right now?

As of late, Elliott’s wonderings have taken an interesting, slightly amusing, turn.  It began when he met a new friend from South Korea who had just come home to his forever family.  As soon as that precious little boy walked away with his mommy Elliott turned to me and said “We’re from the same village.” With a matter of fact expression, a little pride thrown in there too I might add, he waited for my response.  I let out a tiny giggle and informed him that no, he was not from the same village, he was in fact from my belly.  He was pretty adamant about his “adoption” story and was further disappointed when I continued to insist that he was, in truth, born in New Orleans, Louisiana.  Poor guy.  In his eyes adopted kids are rock stars.  This makes sense, we are dedicating months and years to the pursuit of these kiddos.  And they deserve it.  But I promise you, Elliott has gotten equal billing on our radar.  He’s our little showman, the apple of our eye.  The only male grandchild.  My friends, he is not lacking in the attention department.  Granted, Charlotte is a charming little thing and steals the show from time to time, but seriously, neither of them lack parental involvement.  This is obviously not a “pay attention to me” tactic.  He simply thinks adopted children are awesome.  Good deal, I agree.

Elliott not only thinks adoption is awesome, he has taken it upon himself to adopt others.  When I say “others” I mean insects.  Last week he captured an “orphan” firefly and insisted we keep him because he had no family.  He rescued an “orphan” worm and tried to reunite him with his family.  Too many adorable little stories to retell.  At first I tried to explain, worms aren’t orphans, blah, blah blah.  But I realized that he is doing his part to understand.  His brother isn’t here.  We don’t know when he will be here.  So until then he will “adopt” worms, fireflies, ants, stray toys and anything else that appears to be lonely.

It’s funny how we see ourselves in our children.  I may not be adopting insects but I’m certainly filling my time.  Celebrating others as they complete their families, watching these darlings come home to their waiting families.  Getting excited with other mamas as they prepare to meet their kids.  Thank you God for surrounding me with others who are moving in the same direction.  It really helps when you’re in the trenches of the adoption battle… doing anything in your power to bring your child home and realizing that you can do nothing.  My advice to others hanging in this space with me; fill your time with things of meaning. Help others. Volunteer.  Pray.  But don’t get discouraged.  If you’ve got to adopt a worm to stay sane, adopt a worm.  Elliott can help you through the dossier.

Love this guy (=

The Weekend of “C”

My little girl turned two this weekend.  I can’t say the time has flown by.  It really seems like she should be two.  My goodness, the girl talks a mile a minute and rules the house with her princess wand.  To her credit, she is a gentle and kind ruler. We spent the weekend visiting with grandparents, lighting up baklava with two candles and partying at our neighborhood summer festival.  I’m dreaming of the day I can give Charlotte a trip to Africa or Haiti for her birthday.  Can’t wait to have that heart of gold on a trip with me.

Post-birthday Morning (=

Yard Sale Wrap Up (hint… this is good stuff)

What a weekend! Especially after the discouraging week I’ve had. No one discouraged me, it’s self-inflicted, but still discouraged nonetheless. I think God planted this crazy little sale right in the middle of my dark little pool of self-pity. I think he was getting tired of me pleading for something He’s already promised. This is how I would sum up our dialogue lately:
God: “Remember Erica, I told you to do this, remember?”
Me: “Yes, so what’s up God, when is this thing going to happen.”
God: “I already know, and it WILL happen.”
Me: “Well if you won’t tell me when I’m just going to sulk until my phone rings.” “Just go on doing stuff while we wait, whatever.”
God: “For real? That’s how you’re going to be? There are millions waiting, get over yourself”
Insert a bit of God hitting me smack in the face with my self-indulgent attitude, adjusting said attitude and then following that up with a blessing. Such a God move. He’s so cool.

Here’s the good stuff.
I woke up, stopped complaining about things going slowly and thanked God for allowing us to be refined by this process in the first place. We held a yard sale with the Huber family, they are adopting from Haiti, and spent the last 3 days sleeping very little, battling rain storms and a sign stealer while peddling donated goods to anyone who would stop by. We got soaked and stinky but had a great time just being in this thing together. This all came about because we can’t have sales in our neighborhood, the Hubers probably can’t either but they have a good location and nobody threatened us with a fine. We pulled this entire thing together with no planning and just a couple of days to gather stuff. God took our preschool toys, vases, snowman dishes and cassette (yes cassette) players and multiplied them like fish and bread. He moved in hearts and they dropped dollars into the donation jar. Friday was decent weather, it rained in the morning and we struggled with tarps and kept towels handy to dry things off. Saturday was complete with black clouds, tornado watches and downpours. Terrible weekend for a sale really. But God reminded us that he would provide just as He promised. We took in just over $2,400. Split that between two families and we were each able to add $1,200 to our funds. Top that off with having fun with Mrs. Rachel Huber and that’s not too shabby! But seriously…that total is awesome.

Looks like a beautiful day for a sale right.. just wait 5 minutes

Ah, that's more like it: tarps and storm clouds

Yard Sale!!!!! Can you feel the excitement?

We are joining forces with the Huber family to put on the ultimate yard sale.  Seriously, this thing is no joke.  The Hubers are adopting little Bobby from Haiti. Such a cutie.

The Sale will benefit their adoption, our adoption and Calvin’s mission trip to Haiti next month.

Huge Multi-Family Yard Sale 127 Lake Ridge Road in Mansker Farms

Friday June 17th: 7am till 2pm
Saturday June 18th: 7am till 2pm ALL ITEMS HALF OFF AT NOON!!

All priced to sell!

Furniture: Coffee table, end tables, accent chairs, contemporary tv stand, kitchen table and chairs and more
Teacher/Educational Items
Kitchen Items
Home Decor
Kids outdoor equipment
Children’s toys Infant, toddler, preschool, young child
Baby Equipment
Complete set of contemporary dishes, service for 8
Book shelves
Clothing for kids and adults

And Much more, this sale will be huge!

A few Tukula items left!

We only have a few Tukula items left!  Check out the quantities and let us know if there is something you can’t live without!

Click Here!

$20 Blue Market Tote: Tukula Means We Grow!

June Numbers

Well, here they are!

15 for a boy

14 for siblings

It’s finally time for “that” post

I can’t count the number of times I’ve said “our referral is coming soon.” I can’t count the number of times I’ve said “it will be any day now!”  As a result I’ve decided to stop saying things or hoping for any kind of time frame that sounds good to me.  In fact I may avoid even allowing the word referral to come out of my mouth from this point on.  Let me pause here and implore you not to leave me any encouraging comments, I’m really okay with being in this place.  When we started this process it really looked like we would be home with our child in ten months.  That was a year and a half ago.  In January of this year we were looking forward to having him home in 2011.  Now I’ll be elated if he makes it by 2012.  That’s just the name of the game now.  Ethiopia was once a fast-moving program.  Unfortunately there were agencies and people who took advantage of Ethiopia and used unethical practices.  As a result, Ethiopia had to slow things down drastically in order to review cases.  Have they slowed down too much?  Are they slowing down to the detriment of waiting children?  Maybe.  But I’m not in their shoes, and I can’t really say at this point.   I do know this.  People must do their research when choosing an agency.  Don’t choose an agency because of their quick time line or snappy customer service.  Choose an agency that has a great reputation for ethics and gives back to the community they facilitate adoptions from.  We made a decision almost two years ago to leave an agency that had questionable ethics.  I guarantee you we would have a child in our arms right now had we stayed with that agency, and I would have spent the rest of my life questioning whether or not he came to us for the right reasons.  Yes, the process has been LONG but I can rest at night knowing that things are being done right.  Now… back to me being bitter in this process.  Yes, bitter.  It’s a hard season for us right now.  We are a family of 5 but there are only 4 bodies in the house right now.  It’s like we are missing a limb.  He is part of our conversations daily, the kids ask when he is coming home… I ask when he is coming home.  And there are no answers.

Lately, as I’ve talked to friends who have their children successfully home, they tell me that they wrote massive “I’m at wits end” blog posts and POOF, they got the call.  Well, that’s not going to happen for me but I’m glad it did for them.  I may have a bad case of adoption envy, I don’t know.  I do know that I’m okay.  I’m playing, working, getting things done.  But I’m also not okay.  As I said, we are missing a limb on our family tree.  That’s a hard place to be.  God is hanging in there with me.  Reminding me that I’m residing in His strength.  Without that strength this post would probably have to be censored.

That was supposed to make you laugh a little at the end of my bitter resolutions.  But it’s the truth, without God in my life this process would cause me to cuss.

All Content © Erica Ho, Goodbye Normal