Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Our Homecoming!

Our dear friends captured our homecoming on film.
It brings tears to my eyes every time I watch it
{which is multiple times a day, because Moses LOVES it}

I can't believe this was only 2 1/2 weeks ago.
Oh, how our world has been rocked
in the most amazing way, ever. 

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

family blog.

Hop over to our family blog to see the newest pictures of 
our our sweet boy! 

We're doing great and loving life as a family of three! 

Sunday, September 2, 2012

we are HOME!!!

We are HOME!!!!

I have so much to write about...and so many pictures to share...and stories to tell. 
But, they will have to wait for another day....
for my sweet little boy should be waking up from his nap soon. 

I'll leave you with one of the many favorite pictures from our homecoming. 
A special thank you to our dear friend who beautifully captured the day.

{our family of THREE}
reunited at last. 

so blessed. 

Sunday, August 19, 2012

new beginnings: a letter for family & friends

Dear friends and family,

Our family of three will soon be reunited and life as we know it will quickly come to an end (and we couldn't be more ecstatic).  As we prepare to bring Moses home we want to express our gratitude for your love, support and prayers during the last two years.   It's hard to think about the last two years without tears--for the beauty that rose from ashes with the loss of one referral and acceptance of another--for my mom's heavenly homecoming--for our SON--for the support of family, friends and strangers, and for the new friendships that emerged along the way.

I am one blessed mama.

(who cannot wait to have her son in her arms, again).

With this new season of life approaching, life in our household is about to look drastically different.  Moses calls us "Mommy" and "Daddy"....yet, he doesn't know what these words mean. He needs to learn that we will be the ones to fulfill his physical needs.  He needs to know that he can depend on us...and together we need to learn how to become a family. 

In order to do that, we have specific things that we will do, to help Moses adjust and begin the bonding process.

We will be the only ones to meet M's physical needs (which includes feeding, comforting, holding, hugging, kissing, etc).  We ask that you respect this by giving high fives instead of hugs or kisses as he begins to learn boundaries (and as we teach him it's not ok to plant a kiss on just anyone!)

We will be "cocooning" for awhile.  We'll be laying low...with the three of us. We will be spending our days at home. We will try to decrease the amount of stimulation in our life as the seeds for attachment are planted.  With time we will venture out more and continually assess how our sweet boy is adjusting.

Please don't read this this post thinking we are pushing everyone away. We are not trying to create a barrier between our community. Rather, we are trying to create the bond of our family. We want him to meet all of you, but we also want him to learn that there is something drastically different with the two of us compared to everyone else he meets. Please respect our efforts in the coming weeks as we make this transition.

We are so grateful for y'all.
Thank you for richly blessing our lives and praying us through.
Time to pack!

with love,
Emily & James

Saturday, August 18, 2012

NINE months.

Nine months ago today we received
a phone call that forever changed our lives.

We saw his face for the first time.
and we fell in love.

precious child...
the wait is over.
we'll be there soon.

Friday, August 17, 2012



{travel dates pending}

we'll be in Ethiopia within the week...


overwhelmed with joy
and gratitude. 

God is faithful.

now off to work for my last shift 
for the next 12 weeks!!

Wednesday, August 15, 2012

August 15: Mercy

I'm sitting at my favorite coffee shop...with some of my favorite people. As my heart longs to be in Ethiopia, I'm striving to take in the blessings of today.  We haven't heard from the US Embassy. We're still waiting for them to open our case...yet, we remain hopeful it will happen this week. This is a hard season of life...and a painfully hard time of year.  August 19 marks six years since James' mom went home to Jesus.  August 19 also marks the day my mom came home with hospice.  It was two days later, on August 21, that my mama was welcomed home into the arms of Jesus.  Tuesday marks one year .  I'm reposting the blog entry I wrote one year ago today....days before our world was rocked. The words resonate deep within my soul and with tears streaming down my face my heart will choose to say, "Lord, blessed be your name".


August 15, 2011: Six years ago the old familiar hymn, "Great Is Thy Faithfulness" permeated my life in a new and tangible way.  Six years ago my mom aquired a rare auto-immune disease that left her organs failing as she lay sedated and vented in the intensive care unit.
Mom spent weeks in the hospital fighting for her life and every morning I would head northbound on 131 to be with her and my dad.  Morning after morning as I approached the "s curve" the sun would be rising--brilliant in color and size--the light so bright it blinded my vision for a fraction of a second.

As I drove thinking and praying for my mom the rising of the sun was a tangible promise of a new day ahead. My heart swelled with the words of the old familiar hymn...

"Great is thy faithfulness
Great is thy faithfulness
Morning by morning new mercies I see"

The words never so sweeter--the promises never so true.  Now six years later the memory of those mornings have not fled. The power of the hymn continues to bring tears to my eyes and I can't help but raise my hands in gratitude and surrender.  The last few weeks as I've been driving to the hospital in which I work, and I approach the on ramp, the sun appears, brilliant in color and size.  The words of that old beloved hymn flood my heart once again.

What a powerful reminder--a much needed reminder for my life-for our adoption-for my mom's health-and daily stress and struggles.

"All I have needed thy hand hath provided
Great is thy faithfulness, Lord unto me"

Now six years later mom is beginning the evaluation process for a heart transplant.  And today we're one day closer to seeing the picture of the child God has chosen for us.  

What a journey--we've come so far and for this girl who never was a morning person--I've found beauty, joy and a peace that surpasses all human understanding in the rising of the sun.


August 15, 2012:  My mom is healed. We have met our son. We're days away from bringing him home. We have come so far. Good things are happening, friends.  God is at work.

Friday, August 10, 2012

joy comes in the morning

Yesterday we were told we we wouldn't be submitted until next week.
...the tears were many and the heartache great.

another week of waiting felt like an eternity. 

and our boy is half a world away.

But, our God is bigger 
and mountains were moved.

we awoke to an email from the US Embassy.

and it read: 

"Congratulations!  Your adoption case has been submitted..."

Praying we may be cleared quickly 

and our sweet Moses will be in our arms soon. 

we're so ready.

Thursday, August 9, 2012

thursday blues.

We weren't submitted to embassy today...hoping and praying for next week.

thanks for your prayers love & support.

Friday, August 3, 2012

2 years strong.

We started on this journey 
August 3, 2010.

Two years have passed.
We've come so far and the finish line 
almost feels within reach.

It's humbling to read and reflect on the past two years.
(click here to read the post that started it all
and  here to read about 1 year mark)

...to remember where we started
and why.

like how it's all about HIM, not us. 
It's HIS story and He is at work. 

To surrender the details, the heartache, 
and our calendar and timelines to our 
Heavenly Father.

it's not easy...
and I often find myself wallowing in self-pity. 
I had a cupcake for breakfast to prove it. 
(and maybe three before I went to bed last night). 

This journey is hard....
yet, so beautiful

God is good.
and faithful.

and as August carries on, I will cling to that. 

(and new pictures of Moses certainly help, too!)

much love, friends.

Thursday, August 2, 2012

not yet...

we weren't submitted to embassy.
we didn't get answers.

praying we'll hear something soon.

thanks for praying.

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

anticipating. hoping. waiting.

Muse finished his last round of meds on Monday.
He had a follow appointment with the doctor on Tuesday.
We're anxiously waiting to hear the results....
...and for him to be cleared medically.
Once this happens our case can be submitted to the US Embassy.
{which can only happen on Thursdays for agency}

Praying we may be submitted tomorrow...
and if not, may the next week go by fast. 

oh, sweet child...you make my heart swell 
with an indescribable amount of joy.

my arms long to hold you again.
praying we may reunited soon.

until then, may you enjoy every moment in your pink crocs.

(and please don't let them cut your curls, again)

I like them a lot
and I love you even more.

soon, child....soon.

Friday, July 27, 2012

more of Muse!

Two blog posts in one day!  (crazy!) I couldn't resist sharing the newest pictures of Moses that arrived in my inbox this morning. He has grown up so much since we saw him last (sigh...)
But, he's rocking the stone washed skinny jeans (and oversized tee) better than anyone I know.
Rock on, child.
You're one amazing kiddo.


We're still here....still waiting and rejoicing that we're another day, week, and month closer to reuniting with Moses.  It's hard to believe it has been eight weeks since we said goodbye.  We're getting there, friends....we're getting there....

In the meantime we've been blessed beyond measure by sweet friends and co-workers.  Two showers have been thrown in little man's honor (pictures to follow) M's arrival is beginning to feel much more real now that trucks, trikes, and little tikes paraphernalia is tucked away in numerous rooms of our house.

it's a beautiful sight.
Our house is transforming as our hearts prepare for the most exciting part of this journey, yet.

Our case should start moving again, soon.
We're getting close.
I can hardly contain my excitement.
Praying it may only been a few more weeks!

so ready...

such joy.

[pure love].

we're coming, precious child, we're coming. 

Monday, July 9, 2012

real life friends.

we have talked on the phone 
a million times in the last 18 months.
we have shared in each other's joys
fears, and frustrations.
we have cried for one another...
and we have laughed. 
we have prayed fervently for one another
and our sweet ethiopian babes.
we've walked this road together 
from {almost} the beginning.
it's been a whirlwind...
and an honor 
and joy
to walk this journey together. 
{and yet, we had never met}

 last monday our worlds finally collided 
in the dulles international airport. 

with their sweet boy in tote.
it was perfect.

so grateful for you, chase family.
so happy your sweet boy is home.
so privileged to call you friends.

Thursday, July 5, 2012

new pictures!

here are new pictures of Muse 
oh, how he brings us an 
incredible amount of JOY.

a huge thanks to Jen & Trevor for loving on him and 
taking these precious pictures for us!

 LOVE that smile
 and those eyes!

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Muse's Medical

On Thursday we finally heard back from our agency regarding Muse's medical exam.  However, we were told his exam never took place...

...and it wouldn't for another six weeks....

...and then we would have to wait an additional eight weeks for another test to be run...

...and then, our case could be submitted to the US Embassy.

James told me the news over the phone.
We were devastated.
We were confused, frustrated, and.....a mess.

We made phone calls, sent emails, and did more research.

On Friday we heard back from our agency.

The doctor was wrong and the information relayed to our agency was incorrect.

Muse DID have his medical exam.

However, the doctor said we would have to wait for him to finish his current medication (six more weeks) before the TB test portion of his medical exam could take place....and THEN we could be submitted to the US Embassy.

SIX weeks is better than FOURTEEN...

But....it's still feels so far away.
We're waiting for clarification and for our questions to be answered.
Hopefully, we will have answers early next week.

We're so ready to have him back in our arms...

please continue to pray for that miracle.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

No news...

We're still waiting to hear the results Muse's medical exam....maybe tomorrow? Thank you for your continued thoughts and prayers.

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Friday, June 15, 2012

videos & prayers.

Friends, we were just notified that M's medical exam will be taking place on Monday.
We need your prayers...

We're pleading for peace as the outcomes of his medical exam will greatly effect the timeline of getting him home.  May we not be anxious, but whole heartedly trust in God's perfect timing...

We're also praying boldly that he passes his medical exam.

Thank you for joining us on this journey of a life time!  Have a great weekend [and enjoy the videos of Muse below!]

[such sweet words]

April 2012
[best friends]
Thanks for the video, Jen!

Monday, June 11, 2012

Ethiopia: day SEVEN (and Q&A)

Day SEVEN in pictures! (and a little Q&A!)

Q. How did you decide on his name?
A. His given name is Muse [moo-say] which translates to Moses.  We gave him the middle name, Kai [kye]: It is of Welsh, Scandinavian and Greek origin, and the meaning of Kai is "keeper of the keys; earth". Also possibly (South African) and means "beautiful".  source

Q. When will you bring him home?
A. Our estimated time frame is six weeks to six months. 
[he's so worth the wait]

Q. What was your favorite part of your trip?
A. Simply loving on our little guy.  

Q. What did you think of Ethiopia?
A. It was beautiful...and heart wrenching...rich in culture...and hospitality...there was great JOY and deep heartache...it was life changing... it will always hold a special place in our heart...it will forever be a part of us and our family

Q. So what's next?
A. We have to wait for the courts to issue us an adoption decree. Once this is written our agency can apply for his birth certificate and passport.  He will also have a medical exam.  Once these things are completed our case will be submitted to the US Embassy in Ethiopia.  Once the embassy clears our case we will travel back to Ethiopia to pick up our boy!

Q. What can we specifically pray for?

A. Our sanity while we wait!!! (kidding!....kinda :) ) We would love prayers for Moses...for his tender heart during this wait.  May he remember us and our time together. We would also appreciate prayers for his health.  He has been diagnosed with various lung issues and has been receiving proper treatment.  He is doing GREAT, but he has to be cleared medically to come home.  We would love prayers that he would pass his medical exam with flying colors! 

thanks, friends for your love & support. 

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Ethiopia: day SIX

Day six...

 driving to the House of Hope

look closely....
(and then can i get an "AMEN?" )
 daddy & Moses moments
 love those eyes...
 and that smile.

 oh.my.stars...I miss him!

thumbs up.

lunch time

another sweet day spent with our precious son...