Monday, May 26, 2008


Hello and Good-bye
(with our facilitator's sister and sister-in-law, her caretaker)

Beautiful Curls

Embassy Day

Putting on Purell

Daddy and Daughter in Mirror

Those Sad Eyes

Those Happy Eyes
Playing "Knock-Knock" with Daddy

El Avion (the airplane)

Home with Her Sister

Blessings to you,

Sunday, May 25, 2008


It's good! :-)

Both flights were early. Immigration went long. Cupcake loved flying (except the seat belt thing).

In Houston, when we got to the sign that says "Immigrants - this way, U.S. Citizens - that way", it hit me. It really hit me. She's home! I started bawling. Two years of battle - now it's over bawling.

We had a group of close friends welcome us at the airport in St. Louis. I bawled - like a baby.

She is soundly asleep in her new bed. She acts like she feels right at home, here - like she always belonged here. Except, of course, that she is investigating EVERYTHING. :-)

I'm exhausted. And good. :-) Really good. :-D

Pictures, tomorrow, I hope.

Blessings to you,

Friday, May 23, 2008


Other one word descriptions...



Happy... (us and her)

Antigua :)

Blessings to you,

Thursday, May 22, 2008

We´re here

We´re here. The Embassy went fine except Cupcake´s name is spelled wrong. We´ll change it the US. Not much time. I´ve got a kid to chase. :)

Sorry no pictures. No way to do it.

Blessings to you,

Saturday, May 17, 2008

Seasons, Time and Eternity

The other day, I was reading Ecclesiastes during my quiet time. I had randomly opened to the familiar chapter that reads:

A Time for Everything
There is a time for everything,
and a season for every activity under heaven:

time to be born and a time to die,
a time to plant and a time to uproot,

a time to kill and a time to heal,
a time to tear down and a time to build,

a time to weep and a time to laugh,
a time to mourn and a time to dance,

a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them,
a time to embrace and a time to refrain,

a time to search and a time to give up,
a time to keep and a time to throw away,

a time to tear and a time to mend,
a time to be silent and a time to speak,

a time to love and a time to hate,
a time for war and a time for peace. Ecclesiastes 3:1-8

I've been thinking a lot, while running around, trying to get things in order...

Around here, Spring usually lasts about 2 days. It's cold and rainy, then, for two days, it's beautiful and 75. Then it turns unbearably hot through the end of September. This year, it's been unseasonably cool. We've had a whole lot of rain, but when the sun is out, the weather is absolutely beautiful. It reminds me of Guatemala - the Land of Eternal Spring.

Spring is the mingling of two seasons. It's a mix of winter and summer. I feel like our lives are at that point as well. There is a time for everything, but some things are mixed. We'll be uprooting Cupcake from her homeland and planting her here. As she heals, and we discover all the hurts this precious one has endured, it will kill us as parents. We'll be tearing down unhealthy thought and behavior patterns and building up new ones (both hers and ours). Laughter and weeping will be mingled. We're dancing for joy, and yet our youngest daughter will be mourning the loss of everything she's ever know. I'll be learning when it's time to embrace and when to refrain. We love our little Cupcake with all our hearts, but we hate the wrongs that have been done to her.

As happy as I am, it's a bittersweet time for me. Adoption involves loss. There's just no two ways about it. I'm so sorry Cupcake has lost so much. I'm sorry for the hole in her birthmother's heart.

And then, I have survivers' guilt. While we are celebrating, we have many friends whose adoptions are stuck and uncertain. And then there are those who won't come home. I can hardly bear to think of it. God puts this crazy love and desire in our hearts. Sometimes it ends happy, and sometimes it doesn't. And sometimes, "limbo" lasts WAY too long.

As I was considering this, I continued to read the passage. Then, I came across this amazing verse:

I know that everything God does will endure forever; nothing can be added to it and nothing taken from it. God does it so that men will revere him. Ecclesiastes 3:14

Did you catch that?

I know that everything God does will endure forever...

I know it. You can take it to the bank. It's a sure thing.

I know that everything God does will endure forever...

God has done this. This whole adoption thing is so much bigger than we are. He put the desire in our hearts. He matched us with Cupcake. He brought it to completion, against all odds. He will work in her heart to heal and give her ultimate fulfillment. He has done, and is doing it all. We are just yielding to His lead.

I know that everything God does will endure forever...

Forever...that's a long time. Our lives will be forever changed. Actually, they were changed forever back in October '05, when we first stepped out in faith. What God does endures forever. Wow! Try to get your mind around that.

For those who are stuck and those who have lost your children, God gave you the desire and He matched you with those particular children for a reason. I can't understand why, but I know it's wrapped up in eternity.

Blessings to you,


Tuesday, May 13, 2008



We just received the coveted email from the US Embassy!!!

Not the one that says "a further notice is coming".

The one that says "Your Embassy appointment is scheduled for May 22, 2008"!!!!!

This is how it happened...

I was on the computer, searching for news of "PINKS" - otherwise known as Embassy appointments. I heard the familiar "You've got mail." I click over to email.

Oh my word!!!! It's from the embassy and the subject is "Guatemala appointment" with Cupcake's name!!!! So I open it and click on the attachment. The first thing I see is a box with "May 13, 2008".

My mind starts reeling. That's tomorrow!

The kids come running as I'm stumbling around the room - unable to speak - unable to breathe.

Oh my word! Tomorrow!?!? I've got to go NOW!!! is the 13th...hold on a minute....that's today's date?

Oh NO! We missed it!!!!

No, wait, maybe that's the date of the document.....?

Oh... it is... Oh...the appointment is for the 22nd.

Oh, thank you, Lord!

By this point, I'm laughing and crying. The kids are rolling on the floor laughing at their crazy mother.

I call Daddy. I get out the words, "We got it!", before I burst into a hysterical laughing/crying fit. Daddy cannot understand a word I'm saying between my laughter and sobs. I choke out, "I'll email.. bye"

So...that's how we found out that our precious Cupcake is coming home.

Blessings to you,

Apparently, I Was Right

The Embassy must send out a worthless email within 72 hours, just to officially say they did something. We received another email this morning stating:

"We received your fax. A further notice will be coming."


Thank you for that worthless piece of information.

Yesterday, our agency sent an email to the Grand Pooh-Bah down there asking him to look into things. Tomorrow, I will be calling our Congressman and possibly Senators.

I'm telling you, DON'T MESS WITH MAMA BEARS!


Friday, May 9, 2008

72 Hours and Counting

We faxed our letter to the Embassy on Tuesday morning. They received it no later than 9:00 our time. They are supposed to respond/act within 72 hours of receiving all the required information. We emailed to ask them if they indeed received the fax and did we send enough to satisfy their needs?

So, yesterday, we receive an email from the Embassy. It says, "We received your fax on 5/6/08. A further notice will be coming."

So what was that? Was that their response? Have they done their part, and now they get another 72 hours? In my book, that DOES NOT COUNT as a response/action! And we don't even know if they are satisfied with what we sent them. GRRRR!!!

What's worse --- the Embassy will not give out a phone number. Email only - with the note that says, "We will respond to you in 8 days or less." I would just like to speak to a real person who can tell me what is going on. I guess they are afraid of people like me - Mama Bears.

It's Friday again. At 9:00 this morning, we passed the 72 hour window...or did we? I understand that 72 hours might include this entire business day. Another weekend is coming. Mother's Day weekend, at that. If we don't hear today, you will find me curled into a fetal position, sucking my thumb, rocking back and forth.

Please pass the chocolate.

Blessings to you,

Thursday, May 8, 2008

National Day of Prayer for the Orphans of Guatemala

Please go visit JuJu's Crew to see what this is all about.

Some of those are my friends' kids.

Look into their eyes.

Pray for them.

Things in Guatemala are very discouraging right now. PGN is a mess. They are overstepping their legal bounds. They are not honoring the "grandfather clause" that all "in process" cases were supposed to fall under. The US State Department is doing nothing to ensure American families are protected. It's ugly.

And then I would like to add:

The three children shown here with Cupcake will likely never be adopted. Not because they have intimidating special needs, but because they are missing one piece of paper, and it can't be gotten.

Please remember to pray for those children that will never know a family. They will never know what it's like to be tickled by Daddy. They will never know the smell of their Mama's hair. They will miss so much. May the God of Heaven be their Father. Amen.

Thank you, JuJu, for organizing this.

Monday, May 5, 2008

Famous Last Words

If everything goes smoothly...

Ha Ha Ha!

What was I thinkin'?

Some things might go smoothly, but everything...come on!

Today, we received an email from the US Embassy in Guatemala, but it was NOT the email we wanted. It was an I-72. That is the generic "Everything is not all right" form the Embassy sends to adoptive parents.

The trouble...

Cupcake was originally a relinquishment case. Her birthmother chose to place her for adoption and would sign her approval at various times during the process. The Embassy had a case number for that adoption. When her case went into abandonment, the old case was void. When she got her Certificate of Abandonment, we began an entirely new adoption process, with a whole new case number. So the Embassy has an old case under her name and a new case under her name. They cannot continue with the new case until the old case is officially closed out.

So the Embassy needs proof that the old case is no longer valid. It was not entirely clear what the Embassy needs in order to close out the old case.

Our facilitator emailed tonight. He thinks a letter from us authorizing the close out will be proof enough for the Embassy, since we were the original adopting parents in the old case.

We've written the letter and we have unsuccessfully tried to fax it several different ways. We WILL make it work tomorrow if I have to go to Kinko's and pay $200 for an international fax.

We have a plan in place and the fax should be at the Embassy before they open for business tomorrow....if everything goes smoothly. :-)

Blessings to you,

Friday, May 2, 2008


We're heading into another weekend. :-( Boo hoo hoo! :-(

We really thought we'd get the coveted email on Tuesday. (That was 4 days. The average lately has been 4 days.)

Then we really thought Wednesday. (But our minds were occupied with all the other news.)

Then we were sure Thursday was our day. (Last night at 9:00, I discovered that the Embassy was closed for a holiday. Can you guess which one? ...Guatemalan Labor Day aka May Day.)


So we put all our eggs into today's basket. (It's looking less and less likely every minute.)

So, here we are facing another weekend with no word. They are giving out appointments for May 9th today. That was the perfect day in my mind. It's Mother's Day weekend. We could go down Thursday, Embassy Friday, spend the weekend in Antigua, pick up the visa Monday and fly home Tuesday.

Oh well. :-(

PS. I am not psychotic! All adoptive parents are like this!

Thursday, May 1, 2008

Rough News Day

Besides the fact that we've had no news... :-(

Two things happened yesterday/today that are heavy on my heart.

First of all, some very dear friends that are native Guatemalans (E___ and N___) have suffered a terrible loss. Yesterday, we found out that E___'s father went missing last week. They feared foul play. This morning, we heard the worst news possible. They found his body....murdered. This is a precious Christian family. They are the kindest, most gentle people I know. And this isn't the first time violence has touched their lives. When N___ was 8, she witnessed the murder of her own father at the hand of government thugs. I can't imagine the pain they are going through. My heart is breaking for them. May God give them the peace and comfort that only He can give.

And then...a dear friend who is on this adoption journey with me has been matched with 2 children with long, drawn-out, difficult cases. She found out yesterday that her oldest will be kicked out of PGN in about 2 weeks. I can't describe what this information does to a hopeful mom's heart, but I can tell you it's a kick in the gut.

And the news was worse on the younger child...Long story, short... Almost a year ago, they literally lost her. A judge ordered her to be moved to an undisclosed orphanage. After months of searching, private investigators, etc...A miracle happened! They located her about a month ago! She was doing well in a wonderful Christian orphanage. Things were falling into place, even though adoptions are still closed in Guatemala, there was a lot of reason to hope. Well, yesterday, she got word that a judge ordered her to be moved to another undisclosed orphanage. They have literally lost her again. It is so discouraging.

So, there you have it. When my friends are hurting, I'm hurting.

With heartfelt tears,