Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Meeting Lucy #2

I wrote about the travel and my first glimpse of Lucy a couple posts ago ... I had Lucy in my arms and was staring at her, and touching her face and hands. She was more beautiful then I ever could have imagined. Lucy was also tinier then I thought .. very lightweight. After about a minute she briefly opened her eyes, looked right into mine and then fell back asleep. A few minutes later she was awake for good. I saw her beautiful smile. The nurse went over her care ... and then I was told to remain in the infant room until I knew how to take care of her. I had no idea how long that would be. I didn't really mind being there but I knew the other families were back with their children and the room was crowded with nurses, nannies, babies, and my friends. It wasn't long before I was allowed up to the guest rooms. I was told that the nurse would be up often to check in on us. As I walked up those stairs I realized how profoundly my life had changed. I held her for awhile ... willing her to spit up so I would have an excuse to change her. Lucy was very verbal ... made all sorts of cute baby noises. She was content. I was a little overwhelmed, not with her care but with undescrible, never felt before emotions.

Sunday, February 25, 2007

Photos Galore

Lucy is growing up so fast. This weekend we had a substantial snow fall, over a foot fell. Lucy finally got the love of the snowy outdoors and we went outside several times a day. Friday night was her last night with her beloved pacifier. I am not normally a "fan" of weaning by a certain age, but Lucy is going to have surgery (adenoids) in a few weeks and since she probably won't be able to use a pacifier during recovery I decided we better start now. She's done pretty well. She's a little traumatized, and has "processed" it a lot. Last night she processed it from about 1:30 am - 3:00 a.m and I was close to finding the pacifiers again. We made it through. I was going to try to describe the photos under each photo but I can't figure it out so I'll do it in numerical order: Photo 1: nothing really to describe, other then "sweet girl" 2. Lucy put this outfit together on her own, a bit Holly Hobby .. we were going through her next size clothes and she pulled out the dress and put it over her outfit. It matches and it might become a favorite outfit. 3. Lucy was putting herself in the box ... she gets all curled up and expects a thrill ride ... she isn't scareed of anything except Santa. 4. her new favorite thing is brushing her teeth (aka eating the toothpaste). 5. my other kid "Sassy" the snowdog 6. the bank of snow blocking our exit 7. swinging in the snow 8. as soon as we would get settled inside Lucy would start putting her outdoor clothes on again to go "side" 8. Sitting on a huge snowpile

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Meeting Lucy ...

I can’t believe I didn’t write this down earlier. These are important memories. I was busy living in the moment at the time, and being exhausted in the months that followed. Somewhere is a little notebook that Sara, one of my travel companions (and good friend) kept while we were in Ethiopia. That notebook would be handy right now. Here is what I remember: We left day on October 22 2005. Before we left we watched the Maya Wrap Sling how to use DVD. The DVD made me nervous, the Maya Wrap seemed more complicated then a sling should be … I remember something about a “shoulder cap flap” and the importance of having that placed correctly. Hmmmm. I figured, we’d survive, shoulder cap flap or not. We got to the Minneapolis airport early but it helped calm my nerves. Our baggage was checked through Washington DC. We ate lunch at Chili’s in the airport. I kept thinking about Lucy and how far away she still was. Our flight went smoothly to DC. Once we got our luggage we made our way to Ethiopian Air to check in. The man at the check in was suspicious about why I had a ticket for a baby for just the way back. I was nervous, wondering if it was supposed to be some sort of secret or something … even when I let out the truth about adopting, he still seemed very confused about where the baby was…. He let us on the plane anyways. We were seated and ready for a long flight … and it was a LOONNNGGG flight. We slept very little. The plane was SO HOT. I have never been in such a hot “vehicle” my whole life … and we were stuck there for eternity. Before we got on the plane we connected with the two other families who were staying at the center at the same time as us … one was a family from MN, adopting a 4 yr old girl, the other family was from Atlanta, adopting a 1 yr old girl. Finally after forever, the plane touched ground in Addis. What joy! It was simple getting through immigration and collecting our luggage. We didn’t wait long before we connected with Tesfaye and Massy. They took us to the guest house. We walked by the rooms where the babies were sleeping/crying. One of the nannies said “oh Eskedar” when I said “Eskedar?” They didn’t want me seeing her that night. It was hard but I walked up the flight of stairs to where the guest rooms were. We settled in our room. It actually wasn’t hard falling asleep that night … but I (we) woke up very early the next morning … a combination of the loud call to prayer, the excitement and the jet lag. After breakfast we waited around anxiously for Tswaye to come and get us … FINALLY she came … and we were brought downstairs to a room. She asked us some questions about what we wanted to do that week … I barely remember that. She then asked if we were ready to meet our children. I was first, since the other children were at the care center down the street. Lucy was sleeping in the last crib on the left. Sleeping on her tummy under mosquito netting. I lifted her out of her bed … heaven. She was wearing a sleeper with a pink elephant … the pink elephant was what I picked out as her “theme animal” long before. I had the same sleeper in a larger size at home. Because of the enormity of the emotion of that moment, I focused on the wonder of that pink elephant. I held her and stared at her It wasn't until MONTHS later when I saw a video clip that I realized how noisy that room was.

Saturday, February 17, 2007

No pictures tonight

Hi ... I tried to post photos from the great outdoors but my dial-up connection is just so slow ... this will have to wait until I have access to something faster. We had a lot of fun on our adventure north. We hiked in the snow ... peed in a outdoor toilet (unheated, single digits, cold ... but no spiders). Lucy isn't a fan of the cold. She didn't dig being outside as much as I imagined she would. She did fall asleep in the backpack on our first hike ... so once again (like last year) I had snoring in my ear in the pristine wilderness. The word "hot" really hit home in the tiny one room cabin heated with a stove ... I think she "got" that I really meant for her to not touch the stove as she kept eyeing it suspiciously and pointing at it "hot" "hot".

On another note ... my heart is breaking for an adoptive mom whose baby died in Ethiopia. The mom was meant to travel in the next week .. the baby's death was sudden. I can't imagine this but at the same time I have heard it happen so often. It's so hard to fathom ... even with the best care possible ... still babies are dying there that would likely survive here. I keep forgetting, only to be reminded with a brutal slap ... we are blessed here. Even in the midst of pain and suffering ... we are blessed to have the resources at hand to save lives, to prevent deaths. We are blessed. My heart goes out to this momma ... I hope you find peace ... and that when you are ready I hope you find joy in your daughter's sister when she comes into your heart and arms and yes I held my girl tight tonight ...

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

February tradition ...

It's so much FUN to be on year two of family traditions! I love traditions. I just might have to have a Franklin Covey planner dedicated to the various traditions I try to implement so that I don't forget. We've had our 2nd Thanksgiving (auntie Jen and Lucy watching the parade), 2nd Christmas (drinking baileys in our coffee, that's me not Lucy), New Years although we have yet to come up with a traditional activity ... Ethiopian Christmas at our house, ... and tomorrow we leave for our 2nd annual "retreat" ... we spend one night at a casino hotel near lake Mille Lacs, and then hike/snowshoe at a nearby state park. This year we are spending night two at a cabin in the state park. The cabin is one room, teeny tiny with a small stove to heat the place and electricity but there is no runnign water in the entire state park. This should be interesting. Spending time outdoors in the silence (well, the silence PLUS the noise of a 20 month old) should be so refreshing. AND the best thing?????? What is one to do in a tiny one room hotel room or cabin when ones daughter is sleeping or napping???? Well obviously you veg out by reading, bathing or sleeping. I am not going to spend naptime or bedtime frantically cleaning because I cna't do it when she is awake. I think I'll probably spend about 15 hours in bed between nap and sleep. Look forward to nature photos later this weekend. Gotta charge the camera battery!

Monday, February 12, 2007


Here are some new photos of Lucy. Anyone know how to put videos on here??? Do I have to put it on an online place like youtube or googlevideo? If anyone knows please advise. Thanks.

Tuesday, February 6, 2007

Saturday, February 3, 2007

Peace and quiet...

As much as I cherish my time with Lucy ... I have to admit that my favorite time of the day is right now. Early morning. I try to get up about an hour before the Lucita. I pick up a little while the coffee is brewing. I get the dishes soaking. When my coffee is done I sit at the computer. The lights of the house are off. Lucy is snoring away. The dog is laying at my feet. No TV, no music, no phone. I just love it. The weekend mornings are the best because I can just sit and drink coffee until she wakes up ... weekdays I have to stop after the first cup to get myself ready for work. Weekends are based on the natural cycle of Lucy's sleep/wake. Now that she's feeling better she's sleeping more. Lucy was definately feeling good yesterday. We are still keeping to the house to let her fully recover before more germ warfare hits her at daycare Monday morning. Yesterday, what a hoot ... she accidentally fell once, but the fall was so dramatic and since she was on the rug, it wasn't painful. I had a friend over, plus auntie Jen ... we laughed at Lucy's fall. Lucy stood up, got this funny look in her eyes and then fake fell ... oh she was making a joke!!!!! What a riot. OK ... gonna go make that second cup ... yummmy.

Thursday, February 1, 2007

Small celebrations...

Tonight was weird. First, I left Lucy home with grandma and grandpa again while I babysat Isaac (4) and Nathan (2). Please don't tell Lucy this is what I was doing ... it's like cheating on your kid. Lucy LOVES Isaac and Nathan and starts screaming with joy when we pull up to their house. Lucy helps me keep these two boys in line about one night a week. Well, I just couldn't bear to expose her to any possible new germs/viruses ... she's like a sponge for these buggers, so I went alone. First of all it is WAY easier watching two boys, then it is watching two boys and one girl!!! I arrived home to a happy Lucy. She's still not able to breathe through her nose at all and I hear her in her bed gasping occasionally (not a sound I will ever get used to). BUT... tonight I am not afraid she'll actually be unable to breathe. This is a good sign that Lucy is recovering physically and I am recovering mentally. Second small celebration is ... she officially has only one bottle of Isoniazid left!!!! We are entering our 9th month of the 9 month treatment for latent TB. After this ... she's free to eat fish and take tylenol (something we could have used a couple days ago).