Thursday, December 30, 2010

October 20th (Day 6)

Our gotcha day!!!!!

Around midmorning Matt and I headed to the Gladney Foster care to pick up Solomon along with the Lovin family to pick up their son. (Now I can't remember why we went there instead of having him come to us....maybe because Travis had an appointment and couldn't bring him?) So we went first. We met Michael (in country staff member) outside of the care center and decided that we wanted him to bring Solomon out to us instead of us having to take him out of the care center. So we nervously waited outside the gate as he went upstairs to go get him. I started tearing up listening to all of the care givers say good bye to him and thinking about all he was losing. This almost 11 month old had been living here at Gladney for 8 months. This life was all he knew and he was losing it all to go be with two strangers. He had no idea what was in store with these people he was about to leave with. I just couldn't imagine what he was thinking.

Finally Michael walked through the gates with him. After talking to him for awhile I reached out to hold him.  He looked terrified. Matt and I continued to talk to him and try our best to comfort him as he looked pretty scared. I walked around with him as the Lovins met their son.

We got in the car and that is when the tears started coming from Solomon. He clung to me and was terrified of the car...luckily our guesthouse was pretty close. When we got to the guesthouse he just crashed and slept for about 2 hours with his daddy. I just stayed awake and watched his sleep.

Then it was time for his first bottle from daddy.

Then later that day Solomon played with his cribmate Tate Plumb and guesthouse roommate John Lovin.

We're a family!

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

October 19th (Day 5)

court date, visited Solomon, lunch, sight seeing, process group

I remember waking up this morning being so nervous, even though the Lovin family had briefed us on their experience from the day before. (Of course this was when there were two separate court dates on different days, our MOWA date had happened two weeks earlier) I couldn't eat breakfast and I just remember being very emotional thinking about everything that had led us up to this point. We went first to meet the Gladney lawyer, a woman, who reviewed some of the common questions that the judge might ask. She was very straight forward/ matter of fact. We then went to the court room and waited in a room being one of the first families there. Then other families starting coming in including parents who were there to relinquish their rights with their children. I remember trying to hold back tears thinking about it and thinking that Solomon's mom had been here just a few weeks ago. The lawyer sat across the room and seemed as if she was trying to get us in quickly. We waited awhile and were the second family called in. The judge sat behind a desk and was very soft spoken. She asked us a few questions while filling out paperwork, all yes/no such as :

Is this child referred to you, have you met him, do you plan to incorporate ethiopian culture, do you have biological children, does your family know about the adoption, are they supportive, and maybe a few more. 

Then she said "she is yours" (even though Solomon is a boy). Matt and I looked at each other and just smiled and left the room. Matt said he had turned around and thanked the judge and she smiled at him. We were parents it was such an exciting, overwhelming moment. 

After our court date we were able to go visit Solomon. This visit was amazing! The caregivers were different this time. When we walked in Solomon was sleeping in his crib, they woke him up and handed him right over to us. The whole time they were trying to make him smile, showing us his skills, and encouraging us to be with him. 
(Our first family picture)

We stayed and played with him and some of the other children in his room. It was a great visit. (At this point we had decided to go to Awassa, where Solomon is from, over the weekend and take placement as soon as we got back).

After our visit we went to Top View restaurant (another good place to eat) with the Lovins, Plumbs and in country staff Travis, Joanna, and Belay. 
(View from Top View)

It was at this meeting that we learned that our embassy date was going to be Thanksgiving week...woah. We had been hoping we would be home before then but here is why. Apparently it takes a mandatory 3 weeks for the birth certificate and other paperwork to be completed. Gladney gets 10 appointment slots every other Thursday with the US embassy and since 10 families had just had court dates the week before us it moved us to Thanksgiving week. (of course this may have changed...since things are always changing). 

After talking with the in country staff we (us and the Lovin family) decided that we were not going to go to Awassa and that we wanted to take placement of the boys ASAP. So we decided that tomorrow we would go to the care center and Michael (in country staff) would bring us the boys. AHHH!!

We then went to the Alert Hospital gift shop and watched the men and women make their beautiful crafts. They had lots of pot holders, napkins, table cloths, pillow covers, blankets, clothes, and other items for sell. 

We then went and got some coffee before we had a processing group held at the Gladney office just to talk about our process and things to think about in future with adopting Ethiopian children. The woman leading the group had some nice insight and helped us think more about future issues that might arise. We were once again with the Lovin family and felt comfortable enough talking about our children's stories when asked by the counselor. 

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

October 18th (Day 4)

 eating, shopping, sightseeing

On October 18th the Lovins had their court date and Matt and I stayed in at our guesthouse and just relaxed for awhile. We were told that we might get to visit Solomon if the Lovins got back in time but unfortunately we were not able to. Our guesthouse was located pretty far from the court building.  Gladney only allowed us to visit around 9-10am. Well we decided to celebrate the Lovin family passing court and went to have lunch at the Lime Tree. This place became one of our favorites to eat at. They have an amazing Lime juice that I got every single time we ate there...they had lots of desserts that looked amazing but I never got any. We were all still pretty jet lagged but decided to go shopping.

We went to the souvenir shops near the post office area.  You can negotiate your prices here, but Matt and I were not very good at we were still figuring out price conversion. I would suggest taking a calculator. We ended up getting some wooden animals, a ball for Solomon, a tea set and a few other things. There are lots of beggars around this was pretty heart breaking.

We then drove up to Entoto mountain area and stopped along the side of the road to take a few pictures. These pictures were taken with our video camera as our camera battery was dead. There are woman who carry eucalyptus branches down the mountain...don't know how they do it. 

 The Lovins decided to go back and rest at the guesthouse. Matt and I wanted to do some more sightseeing so we asked our driver what he recommended doing and he suggested the Lion Zoo. I had heard that it was pretty sad and not much to see, but our driver was so excited about taking us that we decided to go. The animals are kept in small concrete cages.

Our wonderful driver, Solomon, knew how to make this baboon do some tricks such as opening his mouth and had the crowd of people laughing. Watching him do this was the best part. We also had some people from Asia who wanted to take a picture with us..kind of strange this happened several more times throughout our time in Ethiopia.

We then went to Lucy's for dinner for our last night as a couple of two. Lucy's was also another restaurant I would recommend. We had so much excitement/nervousness to think that tomorrow we would hopefully be granted the right to parent our little man. 

Thursday, December 16, 2010

October 17th (Day 3)

Our Guesthouse, Meeting the Lovins, Meeting our driver -Solomon, MEETING SOLOMON!!! and seeing Ethiopia

So after leaving the airport we drove to our guesthouse to drop off our luggage and pick up the Lovins to go meet our boys. We stayed at the BnB guesthouse It was basically a two bedroom apartment that we split with the Lovin family. It is new and owned by a Gladney driver - Hennock. The guesthouse had a kitchen with an oven and fridge,  a dinning area, and a living area with lots of couches. The bathroom had a shower tub combo. In the living room there was a wall of windows that would get tons of sunlight and become quite warm in the mornings. There was a balcony with a beautiful view of the mountains and all the construction that is going on.
(Matt out on the balcony)
The Bnb is located close to the Gladney care centers and out of the city area. The power went out frequently at 6pm. So bring a flashlight. There were two sweet girls who we lovingly referred to as the "ishi girls", because that is all they seemed to say, who cooked us breakfast and cleaned for us. The breakfast of eggs, pancakes, cereal and bread was the same every single day for the 3 weeks we stayed here :) Right next door to our apartment was a one bedroom apartment where the sweet Plumb family stayed!

So before traveling, Joanna Lovin and I had arranged to stay together and share a driver as we figured we would have the same embassy dates and be there together. Never did we think we would be there 6 weeks together but we were and I would not have made it without her. God totally looked out for me and provided me with just the right person I needed. It could have been really bad sharing an apartment and driver with someone who I had never "met" but it worked out sooo well. Even the husbands got along and liked each other.
(Travis and Joanna)

So after meeting the Lovins we changed out of the clothes we had been wearing for three days quickly freshened up as much as we could and headed out to the care center to meet Selamu aka Solomon. Our amazing driver - Solomon - picked us up. Driver Solomon was THE BEST and I highly recommend him if you could pick your driver. I just can't say enough wonderful things about this man. He took such good care of us and made our stay that much better.

So on our way to meet our son so many feelings were going on through my head..would he come to us, would he let us hold him, would we recognize him, what would his personality be like??
(on our way to meet Solomon)

So we arrived at Solomon's care center with the Lovins so they could meet their son for the first time as well. We went in their child's room and then went upstairs to see Solomon. As soon as we turned to go up the last flight of stairs I saw him playing on the play mat in his room!! We walked right in and sat on the floor to play with him and his roommates. Cautiously we picked him up and he seemed ok with us holding him. We were told we had an hour with him. 

(Don't you love those big eyes and chubby cheeks??)

Nobody introduced us as his "parents" but I guess the caregivers figured it out. After about 10 minutes one of them came and took him to feed him away from us. His room was pretty small and crowded with us in there. The other caregivers were encouraging her to let us feed him but she wouldn't so it got kind of awkward.  We played for a bit more with the other children in the room and then left :( It was a strange visit. I was really expecting them to be more encouraging of us to be with him and do things for him but that didn't happen on this visit. I understand that he has been there for 8 months and these caregivers grow very attached but at the same time all I wanted to do was love on my baby. I was happy he let us hold him and interacted with us the 10 minutes we got. 

After our visit we went to the Hilton to use the internet (as our guesthouse didn't have it hooked up at this point) to let others know we had arrived and met our son. We then went and had our first taste of ethiopian coffee, saw some sights of the city and went to the grocery store to buy a few items. Then it was time to shower and sleep!!

Saturday, December 11, 2010

October 15th-the morning of the 17th (Days 1-3)


On October 15th we began the trip that led us to Solomon. We drove down to Charlotte, NC and had lunch with the Capps family before heading to the airport.

Our flight left around 5:30pm and was headed for Munich, Germany. We flew Lufthansa. I don't know how many times I asked Matt if it was real, were we really doing this, were we going to Africa, were we getting to meet and get our son? AHH!! I was so excited that first flight full of nervous energy that I couldn't sleep (of course Matt did because he can sleep anywhere). Boy did that end up backfiring on me.

Once landing in Munich we had a 40 minute layover to catch our next flight to Frankfurt, Germany. Matt and I knew that we had to hurry to make our next flight so we ran, I mean ran. We were those people you see running wildly through the airport carrying our backpacks and carry on bags. We ran up flights of stairs, through the hallways, up more flights of stairs, did I mention the flights of stairs, all the way to the security check point. At the check point, the security person made us take out and turn on every single piece of our 4 electronics that we had one at a time. This slowed us down. After putting back our stuff in our suitcases and running to the gate, sweat dripping down us and hyperventilating from being out of breath from running and carrying our probably 50 pound carry ons, we were told that they closed the plane and were no longer loading passengers, even though the plane was still sitting there. What are you kidding me?? Didn't they understand we were headed to Frankfurt to meet up with the Lovin family and then go to Africa to meet our baby???

We headed to the Lufthansa counter with our heads hung low out of breath and sweaty to find out what we could do to make it to our next flight. The woman at the counter was talking to us but neither Matt nor I spoke due to being out of breath and in shock that we actually missed our flight. I realized we weren't answering her questions when she asked if we spoke English. After searching several options some which took us to Turkey, some which had us landing in Ethiopia at 2:30am....we settled on a flight to Frankfurt in 2 hours (causing us to miss our flight to Ethiopia with the Lovin family) having a 12 hour, yes 12 hour layover in Frankfurt and then flying Ethiopian air to Ethiopia arriving a whole day later than expected. The staff at the ticket counter for Lufthansa was so nice and really felt for our situation. The only problem was no one in Ethiopia knew what happened and when we would be arriving so they could pick us up. Luckily we had our in country staff's phone number with us and the Lufthansa staff let us use their phone for free to call and let them know our situation, but unluckily they didn't answer and there is no way to leave a message.  AHHH! The thought of landing in Ethiopia with no one to get us was a little daunting.

So we boarded our tiny plane to Frankfurt which was only about 30 minutes long and we didn't even get to sit together. Once we arrived in Frankfurt we set out to find our gate and set up camp since we would be there for 12 hours! The only problem was no one seemed to know what gate Ethiopian air would fly from and why in the world were we at the airport so early to catch our flight. While waiting we bought minutes to the internet and I messaged everyone I knew who was in ET to let them know what had happened and if they could let someone know what time to pick us up. Luckily I was able to get in touch with a staff member and she assured me that someone would be there to pick us up..what a relief. So now that that was settled what would we do for the next 11 hours...we walked around, ate a few times, went through the duty free shops, went to the bathroom, checked the flight screen and asked people where our flight was leaving from every hour (which no one seemed to know), and Matt did a little of this...

But I couldn't sleep. Lets just say we had the B terminal memorized at the end of the 12 hours. We were tired and dirty and all I wanted to do was sleep and take a shower. About an hour before our flight was to leave we found out our gate number and began to watch Ethiopians arrive...making this trip seem more real.  So after being awake for 2 days straight I took an ambien and slept until we arrived in Ethiopia on October 17th at 7 something in the morning. We were in the back of the plane and so that meant we were last in line to wait and get our visas. But we were in Ethiopia we had made it. Nervously, I requested a 60 day visa but was told that I would have to come back to the immigration office if I really needed it and was only given a 30 day visa. Matt and I found our bags and had no difficulty with the porters or with anyone wanting us to open up our suitcases. After getting your bags you have to have them x-rayed and then you can enter the main part of the airport. Lots of people were standing around with signs but none had our name so we found the Hilton sign and then saw Travis right away. I was so glad that someone was there to pick us up; such a relief. We headed out to the car to go to our guesthouse the BnB and finally meet up with the Lovin family. I was immediately taken in with the beautiful mountains surrounding us and just soaking up the sights when I hear Travis ask us if we would like to meet Selamu??? (we weren't scheduled to meet him until the 18th) Umm yes please forget the sleep I had been longing for or the fact that I hadn't showered in 3 days. Take us to Selamu!!!

Saturday, December 4, 2010

All about Solomon

Can I just say I love, love, love this baby boy! He is doing so well at home. It is hard to believe that he is actually here with us.

(watching snow fall)

We recently took him to the doctor for a one year check up and here are his stats:

Height 31 3/4  (95th%)
Weight 23 - 7.0 (50-75th%)
Head 18 3/4 (75-90th%)

  • He currently is taking a few steps and LOVES to walk around with one or two hands held. He also loves to stand up on his own from the floor. Still crawls to get around.
  • His favorite toys are a baby einstein musical toy that lights up and stacking cups
  • He loves dancing to a good beat and tends to stop dancing when others start dancing with him.
  • He enjoys a good game of peek-a-boo and covers up his head instead of his eyes most times
  • He waves bye when he wants to
  • He tries to say up but it sounds more like mmmbah
  • He is starting to put things up to his ear as if it was a phone
  • He drinks from a sippy cup but loves his bottle and cries whenever he sees it.
  • He is eating more and more table foods. Loves puffs.
  • He reaches toward a light when asked where the light is, and he finds the dog when asked as well.
  • He loves his mommy and daddy.
  • He can snap his fingers.
  • He typically sleeps through the night from 7:30pm to 6:30am. He usually takes two naps during the day around 9:30am and then again around 3:00pm
  • He likes to make a squinty eye face

I promise to start blogging about Ethiopia next week...

Friday, November 26, 2010

We are home!!!

We left October 15th and arrived home November 25th.  It was a wonderful,  hard time, and I am glad I did it. More to come on our trip but here is our handsome little man!!

Solomon Zachary Selamu Capps!

Friday, October 15, 2010


We are really doing this!! We leave in about an hour for the airport in Charlotte. We fly to Munich then Frankfurt (where we meet up with the Lovin family) and then to Ethiopia!! AHHH!! So happy. We meet Solomon for the first time on Monday. Tuesday is our court date. After that we head to Awassa Solomon's birthplace to see where he is from. Then we take placement of him on October 25th. Matt leaves the 27th :( Then we wait to find out when we get our Embassy appointment so we can come home.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

We Passed

It's official!!! We found out today around 4:20ish that we passed and are set to leave on Friday!! Lots to do...I can't wait.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

And the waiting continues..

So our caseworker was not able to get in touch with our in country worker (Belay) to find out if anything happened with our case today or not. Hopefully we will find out tomorrow....I feel like I keep saying this. I am so ready to celebrate that we are leaving FRIDAY.

Friday, October 8, 2010


So we found out today that the person who needed to make our case official did not show up. So our case has been postponed until Tuesday. Not the news I wanted to hear. Apparently there are no issues with our case they just have not made it official that we passed.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Our court date

So today was our first court date. I received the call around 12 EST from our caseworker. Solomon's mother did show up and relinquish her rights. The judge did not officially rule in our case but that is supposed to happen tomorrow. Our caseworker said that he is being a little slow about making things official and she seemed to think that everything would work out and that we would be able to travel as planned next Friday. NEXT FRIDAY!! AHHHH!!  I can't believe that our time is now here! We should get placement of him on October 25th!!!!!!!

Anyone who wants me to take pictures I would be happy to. Just send me an email at lmt3195 at yahoo dot com

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Last week Matt and I spent a whole week at Emerald Isle Beach with our families (my in-laws, brother (not pictured), sister, niece, brother-in-law, my parents and brother-in laws parents).

We had a great time even though it rained for 80% of our time there due to some tropical storm.  So I had lots of time to relax. I read two books and got lots of sleep (things I know that will be hard to come by in a couple of weeks).

While we were on vacation we got our CIS appointment letter in the mail. So yesterday we went down to Charlotte and were able to get our fingerprints taken!! Such a huge weight is lifted off of my shoulders. I contacted a senator to see if they could expedite our fingerprints to make sure they are in Ethiopia when they need to be. The updated fingerprints have to be in Ethiopia in order for us to bring Solomon home. They usually take 4-6 weeks to arrive once they are taken, so hopefully they will be there in time.

Next up is our first court date. It is scheduled for 10/7/10. As it is scheduled in Ethiopia, a ruling will be made while we are sleeping (hopefully). MOWA (ministry of women's affairs) has to declare that Solomon is legally up for adoption and that all of our paperwork is in order so that we can adopt him. Please keep us in your prayers

1. Pray that MOWA will actually meet and give us a positive ruling so that we can travel over as planned on 10/15
2. Pray for Solomon's mom. She has to relinquish her parental rights and I can't imagine the emotions that she will be going through. Pray that God will give her peace and comfort her.

We probably will not find out how MOWA ruled on our case until late afternoon at the earliest. I will keep you posted.

Thursday, September 23, 2010

Breathing a sigh of relief

Yesterday we found out from the nice lady at the NBC that our re-fingerprint appointment with CIS would be 10-20-10....No!!! We leave for Ethiopia on 10-15 and have our court date on 10-18 so no way we could make that appointment or want to come back from Ethiopia just to be fingerprinted. I asked the nice CIS lady if there was anything she could do to change our appointment...she said no and said that we could try talking to our local CIS (Charlotte, NC office). Devastating.  I then recontacted our local senator, contacted another senator and contacted a NC representative to see if they could help. All this time I had been playing phone tag with Kristin our caseworker with Gladney. We finally connected yesterday and she told me that we had done everything she could think of to do. She encouraged us to go to our local office and plead our case. She said that it can take 4-6 weeks for our fingerprints to get to the right place in Ethiopia, but that they could help expedite things if needed. Then Matt and I asked for everyone to pray that somehow someone would help!

So I made an appointment with the Charlotte CIS office to see what they could do. Luckily Matt and I were able to go down this morning at 8am. Both of our jobs have been so encouraging and allowed us time off. We waited our turn and told our story to the woman behind the window at CIS. She said that since the NBC took over adoptions there really was nothing they could do to help. Then she said maybe we could try asking the fingerprint office but that there was probably nothing they could do. Well I lost it and started crying and cried all the way out the building. Matt had to get directions and off we went to the fingerprint office. Once there, we talked with another kind woman and told her our situation. She told us that as soon as we get our appointment letter from CIS we could come anytime to get fingerprinted it shouldn't be a problem!! Yeah!!! So excited!! So now back to stalking our mailbox and hoping that letter comes today so we can go tomorrow and get us one step closer to Solomon.

Thank you so much for everyone who prayed for us...God definitely heard our prayers.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010


I thought I would share what is going on. We have to get fingerprinted for the US Citizen and Immigration Services (CIS) as part of our adoption paperwork. Fingerprints are only "good" for 15 months (don't ask me why) with the CIS. Our fingerprints expire with CIS on 10/7.  So why is this a big deal...well we have to have current fingerprints in order to bring Solomon home. We leave on 10/15 for our court date in Ethiopia.

I sent a request to get an appointment to be re-fingerprinted back in August (it was back to the paperchase days of checking the mailbox every day to see if our appointment letter was here). Well we still do not have an appointment. AHHH!!!!  Last week I started getting really nervous that this was going to set us back and that we would have to come back from Ethiopia without Solomon (my plan is to stay until we bring him home). So I tried to contact our local CIS office in Charlotte to see if they could help (this is where we go to get fingerprinted)..well let me tell you that this can not be done. Their phone number is disconnected and their email no longer works. It tells you that you need to call the CIS national benefits center (NBC) or email them (having to wait 2 business days for them to respond). So I tried calling them and the person on the line didn't understand what I was talking about and told me that all adoption information needed to be sent by email to the NBC. So I emailed telling them my situation and seeing if someone could help get us an appointment to be re-fingerprinted before we left for Ethiopia. I waited my 2 days for someone to respond and this person was not very helpful...telling me I needed a SIM number for her to access my file. I don't know that I have a SIM number. So I went through all of the millions of adoption paperwork that we have to see if there was a SIM number on something..never found it.

So I remember reading about another families struggles with fingerprints and decided to contact our Senator's office as they suggested. They also told me I needed to email someone with their office (still haven't heard back from them). So I emailed the NBC again hoping for someone else to help me and a nice woman was able to tell me that our file is in the computer system and she should know our appointment time tomorrow and would we like to email her tomorrow to find out our appointment date..YES!!! (not sure why the first lady I emailed couldn't tell me this) I am so nervous. I so want an appointment before we leave for Ethiopia and there is a small chance that it could happen.  If for some reason our appointment is set for after we leave I will be calling the senators office non stop to see if they can help give us an earlier time.

So that is a lot of rambling and probably doesn't make much sense. The important thing to remember is to Please Pray that our appointment is before we leave on 10/15 and that the fingerprints make it in time to Ethiopia so that we can bring Solomon home quickly.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Happy three years

Happy Anniversary to my wonderful husband! Today we celebrate three years together as mr and mrs. I am so excited to start this next year as a family of three. I love you Matt!

One month from today we will be flying to Ethiopia...crazy!!!

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Another update

We got a new update and one of the cutest pictures yet. Here is what our agency rep. had to say about him. 

S. is such a happy little guy.  I’ve probably said that before, but it bears repeating.  He’s so interactive and playful.  The slightest interaction with him brings a huge grin to his face and causes him to laugh loudly.  Today, I visited with him while he stood in his crib and kept his perch there above his little corner of Foster Care 2.  He likes to know what’s going on, so if he’s in his crib, and not playing on the floor, then most likely, he’s standing up keeping himself up-to-date on the goings on in his room.  What a delight he is! 

I am loving his little personality....Only 45 more days till we get to meet Solomon!!

Monday, August 16, 2010

Travel plans

So since finding out about our court date it has been plan, plan, plan. We have tentatively made our travel plans!! In two months, Matt and I will be on a plane to Ethiopia or hopefully in Ethiopia. Ahh I can't believe it. I am ready to hold and love on our baby boy. We will do the scheduled Gladney events and when Gladney is finished hosting us we plan to travel to Awassa where Solomon is from and visit his birthplace. We get to travel with another Gladney family...who I can't wait to meet in person!  

Once we get back from Awassa we plan to take placement of Solomon immediately and begin being parents. Matt will stay for another couple of days to be with Solomon and then he will go back to the USA. I will stay in Ethiopia with Solomon until we get our US Embassy appointment in Ethiopia. This appointment will be 3-6 weeks after our court date (once we go to this appointment we may leave Ethiopia with Solomon).  But I will not be alone the same family who is going to Awassa with us will also be staying (the mom and her new baby that is)!!! We plan to stay at the same guesthouse as we remain in Ethiopia awaiting our embassy appointments. My mom and mother in law will come over the last week I am in Ethiopia to help me on the plane ride home with Solomon.

I know this will be an emotional and life changing trip on so many levels but I can't wait. The hardest part is that although these are my doesn't really matter. It all depends on if things go smoothly on our first court date on October 7th. (the one we don't go to) If things go well then we get to travel as planned, if things don't go well then our travel plans could be pushed back to another date. All of this unknown is stressful, but I feel as though I have planned for what I can. I have to keep telling myself that God is in control of all of this.

To get ready for this trip I have been re-reading lots of families blogs who have previously traveled making notes of places to visit and eat at while we have free time. I am still trying to figure out which guesthouse to stay at. I want to stay in the city where we can walk to things and really see what Addis Ababa is all about. I am also trying to figure out airlines and what will be best on the way back home with a one year old...doing several layovers or one really really long flight.  I am hoping to get tickets soon. There are so many little questions to figure out such as how many diapers do I bring since I really don't know my return date, what will Solomon be eating, what will I be eating, will he be on a bottle or do I bring sippy cups, etc. I know all of these questions will be figured out and slowly things are coming together as we have gotten more tentative plans. Any advice would be greatly appreciated!

Wednesday, August 4, 2010


Today we received an updated picture and a description of how Solomon is doing:

S. put on quite a show today for all in his room to see!  The caregivers were getting him to laugh and squeal with delight over and over.  It was really delightful to watch.  Other than entertaining, S. enjoyed “talking” to me today.  He’s quite the conversationalist—for a toddler, that is.  What a joy he is!

I can't wait to meet this baby boy!!

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Court Date!!

Matt and I were at home about to eat dinner. Matt was blessing the food and asking God to give us a court date quickly. No sooner had Matt said Amen then my phone starting ringing. I saw the famous 817 area code and was so excited to hear Kristin on the other line. She was calling to tell us of our court dates!!!

Our MOWA (Ministry of women's affairs) court date is October 7th.(we do not travel for this one) If all goes well then our official court date is October 19th. We will be in country from the 17th-24th. We get to meet Solomon on the 18th...crazy!! I am so excited and so glad that we got our court date before the courts close in August. Now we really need to get on the ball with getting Solomon's room ready. Sooo So Happy we got a court date!!!

Monday, July 19, 2010


So in our referral pictures that we got there was only one picture of Solomon slightly smiling. This week we have received several pictures of Solomon from families who have recently traveled to pick up their children. I am glad to report that Solomon looks so happy and is very smiley in almost all of the pictures. He has the best smile ever! I can't wait to get him and show him to you all! He is now sitting up in most of his pictures. We even got some videos of him laughing! So great to see videos..I just can't explain it.  And apparently he loves to bounce while standing.I was also told he was heavy so I really need to start lifting some weights to prepare for him.

We are still waiting for a court date...I hope we hear something soon, this wait is HARD!!

Monday, June 28, 2010

How we are doing..

We are without words to describe how happy we are right now to be matched with our little Solomon. Well maybe I shouldn't say little...Solomon is a good eater apparently. I went out shopping this weekend to get Solomon some stuff to send for a care package. Our 7 month old guy is in 12 month clothing according to his height and weight measurements from when he was 6 months old. Crazy! I am so glad that he is a healthy growing boy.

Thank you, thank you, thank you to everyone for being so happy for us. Can I also just say how wonderful this Gladney adoption community is. Everyone has been so encouraging. Right now there are families in Ethiopia and getting ready to travel who are going to love on our boy. This family is going to give Solomon a gift from us. It was so hard to narrow down what we wanted to give him. We ended up giving him an outfit and pjs (I hope they fit him) along with a photo album of us.

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Referral - the call story!!!!

Ahhh!! We got our call today!! It still feels like a dream and hasn't really set in yet. Here is how it happened:

So I was at work and it was after 2pm. I was thinking that since Gladney hadn't called yet that we were not going to get our call today because they were having an Ethiopian conference call for families this afternoon. So I figured our caseworker would be busy preparing for that conference call. So I went on with my day.  I was across the hall from my office and I heard my phone ring, but I didn't make it in time. Before I could see who it was it started ringing again and I saw the famous 817 area code.  I immediately started shaking and my heart was about to beat out of my chest. I answered and Kristin, our caseworker, told me she had our referral ready for us. All I could say was Oh my gosh like a million times. I told her that Matt and I wanted to be together for the call and could call her back in 30 minutes once we met up.

So I called Matt and he did not believe me that Kristin had actually called me. After several seconds of telling him I was not joking and that this really was the call, we agreed to meet at his work to hear about our referral after he went home to pick up the video camera. I left work and went straight to his office. Once we got the camera and computer all set up we called Kristin back. She sent us our email and we saw the cutest, I mean cutest baby boy ever! God has truly blessed us.

He is 7 months old and has the biggest brown eyes and chubby cheeks. He is just amazing! He is described to be very social, smiles easily and loves attention. I can't wait to get my hands on him. We have decided to call him Solomon.

So for all of you who are not in the adoption community, you may be asking what is next. Well now we wait some more. They are busy getting Solomon's papers ready and in order and will then submit them to the Ethiopian court system. In Ethiopia the court system closes down for the rainy season sometime in August and opens back up in October. Once we receive a court date we will travel over to Ethiopia for the court date and then come back to the US. Upon passing court we will then travel back to Ethiopia and bring Solomon home. We hope to have him home around November. Please continue to pray for us as now that we have seen his face it will be hard to be patient and wait for a court date.By the way we are not allowed to post any pictures of him until he is officially ours.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

Number 1

We are number 1!!! I just read all about Shannon's call and then saw that Joanna got her referral yesterday too! So that makes us number one for a boy and a girl. I can hardly contain myself. AHHHH!!!!

Saturday, June 12, 2010

8 months down...

Today marks 8 months on the wait list. I sometimes feel like this picture as all I think about is our baby and when we will get the call, court date, travel..etc. Hopefully our call will come soon. Unofficially we are number 1 for a girl and number 3 for a boy. Yeah!!!! We need to get on the ball with girl names..we don't have any yet that we both agree on. We have about 4 that we are considering for a boy. I am guessing that we will not make it through courts before they close for the rainy season as they have not yet given anyone a court date who has to travel twice as far as I know. So I am coming to grips that sometime in Oct/Nov we will have baby E in our arms.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

While we are waiting

So "the call" really could come any day or it could be months. But just in case it could be any day I am carrying  my phone around with me wherever I go and for that one split second when it rings I think this could be it. Although we haven't gotten the call yet, I did get an important phone call today. We found out that our crib had arrived at the store and was ready for pick up :) Luckily my dad was able to help us bring it home because it never would have fit in Matt or I's car. Thanks Dad.  Here is Matt putting it together:

Here is the finished crib with my current baby in it! I love how it came it..ordering online can be tricky when you can't see or touch the object so I was a little nervous, but I am so happy with it.I can't wait till there is a real little baby in this room!

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Katie and Kevin

Katie and Kevin
This weekend was my third wedding of the year that I was in :) This one was extra special though because it was Matt's sister and he got to marry them. We are so excited for them and were glad to be apart of their day. And as Nana said: Next time we have a family celebration it will be because of a little one. Here is hoping that that next family celebration is soon!!!

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

7 months down

Today marks 7 months down of waiting on the waitlist. Hopefully we have less than 2 months left. Sometimes this process doesn't seem very real, but I know that as soon as I see that face it will become more and more real. Until then I continue to pray for Baby E and stalk the FBI list! It is so exciting to see all the referrals and court dates coming through...can't wait until it is our turn.

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

I'm an aunt!!

Very early this morning my sister had her baby girl...Emma Kate. She weighed 6 lbs 3.4 ounces and was 20 inches long. We are so excited to have this sweet little one join the family. It's our first time to be an aunt and uncle!!

Monday, April 12, 2010

6 months down...

That's right folks we have 6 months down! Time has gone by fast and yet slow if that makes since. We need to get on the ball and finish our training videos and get a crib so we can start working on the nursery. Currently the average wait times still remain at 9 months, but the referrals have been coming really fast and we are quickly moving up the unofficial list. 9 months puts us in July. We are #4 for a girl and #7 for a boy in our age range according to the unofficial list!!

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Meeting Ginger...

Tonight I got to meet with a fellow Gladney mom who is ahead of us on the waitlist..and really close to getting her referral. What a blessing it was to talk about everything that we are going through and have already been through. Before I knew it a couple of hours had passed by. Our friends and family have been really supportive throughout this process but it was so nice to talk with someone who really knows what I am going through. Hope our baby E's get here soon!

Monday, March 22, 2010

Our fundraiser..

This past Saturday my sister and bro-in law (with the help of our families and some friends) put on an adoption fundraiser for us. They did such a great job and I will be forever grateful. We had a spaghetti dinner and silent auction. There was a great turn out and we feel so blessed to have such supportive friends and family. We hope that we got people thinking more about adoption and that God would stir someone's heart to open their home to an orphan. My father-in-law took a lot of pics so once I get them I will post some.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Some Changes...

Today we received news from our agency that there are some changes. The federal courts in Ethiopia now require families to travel twice (we were only going to have to travel once to bring our baby home). Now we must travel once for us to appear in court and once for us to pick up Baby E to come home to the United States.  The first trip will be about 5 days. The next trip 7 days. The time between the court date and embassy date could be 3-6 weeks. At first Matt and I were really bummed I mean this is more expense. Plus we get to see our child and then have to leave-how hard will that be-I just can't imagine. But we are trying to look at the positive this does mean that we get to go to Ethiopia twice. We get to see our child's homeland and experience it twice. Plus we get to see our baby hopefully earlier than we would if we had to wait until after we passed court.Well I am assuming that we would get to see our child the first visit..I don't really know. We always knew that adoption was an ever changing process and never set in stone. We also know that God is in control and knows what is best for us and our baby.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Boy or a Girl

So Matt and I have put on our requirements that we would be honored to have a boy or a girl. From the very beginning most people from our agency have told us that we would probably get a boy since so many people request girls. Not sure why this is but they just do. So even though we requested either gender I have it in my mind that we will be getting a boy since that is what I have heard. When I refer to baby E I see in my mind a boy and when I look at baby stuff I gravitate more toward the boy side; I have more boy names picked out...etc. Today I decided to count on the unofficial list for our agency and see where we are in regards to waiting for a boy and for a girl. Currently we are at number 11 for a boy and...number 11 for a girl. Not what I was expecting...I thought surely we would be a lot lower on the list waiting for a girl. But there we are equal for both a boy and girl. Matt and I both still feel that it will be a boy, but maybe God has a sweet beautiful girl waiting for us. 

Sunday, February 14, 2010

4 months down

We have reached the half way point on our waitlist (average weight time is now 8 months)!! I really feel like the past 4 months have gone by fast, so I hope the next 4 go by just as fast. I just wonder where all the referrals are at?? I can't wait to see my baby's face.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

We will miss you PawPaw

 PawPaw, Alan, Matt

Last night PawPaw Capps went home to be with the Lord. We will miss him dearly. He was the sweetest man who loved his family so much. Please keep the Capps in your prayers.

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

to take a day or not...

The weather around here has been crazy. First it snowed a ton this past weekend - around 8 inches which is a lot for winston-salem, rained all day today, and now it is supposed to snow this Friday as well. The only bad thing about this is that at my job we never close and I mean never so if I feel like I can't come in to work due to the snow then I have to take a vacation day. I am trying so hard to save my time for when I am out on maternity leave which hopefully will be some time this summer!! So here is hoping the snow holds out till after 5pm on Friday.

Is anyone else excited that tonight is LOST night???

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Keeping Busy...

Over the next couple of months my life will be consumed with wedding showers, weddings, and baby showers. It seems that most of my friends are going through these major life changes all around the same time :) I am glad to stay busy and to help pass the time as we wait for Baby E. So my first event happened this weekend as my dear friend Kelli had her bachelorette party in DC. I realized that I am getting old, because it was really hard to stay up till 3 in the morning hanging out. There were 16 girls total, so it was a lot of fun to catch up with some who I haven't seen in a long time. Here is the beautiful bride to be...her new last name is going to be Queen..very fitting for her. 

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

3 months...

Today marks 3 months on the waitlist. Currently the average wait time is 7.5 months for an infant. :)