The last entry.

This blog was started, honestly, so that I did not have to answer the same questions over and over. It did not really turn out to help me in that way, but it became theraputic as the months of waiting continued. In addition, we now have a nice record of our journey to our son. Our son is now home and so this is my last entry. I'm sure that we will join the blogosphere again in the not too distant future, but probably under a title like: backtoethiopia.yada.yada. :)

People have asked about our trip. I really cannot tell about it, really, without getting very upset. Fortunately for you, Reader, you'll be spared my red face, popping veins, and frantic tears. (A huge sigh.)

I think that it's Rob Bell's writing style that aggravates me so, and here I am about to give him a nod. Ugh.

-The Bethany staff in Ethiopia is amazing. We were all so blessed by their hard work, passion, and care. Thank God for them! Please pray for them.
-The Ethiopians that we met were so hospitable. We stayed at Ethio Comfort Guesthouse and left in tears after the most informative and best coffee ceremony.

-Our son was very well taken care of in Ethiopia. Thank God!
-None of us (NONE OF US) does enough with all that we've been given. Yes, given. What we have... our time, money, everything, is not really ours! Give it back!
-Herds of goats ran in front of our taxi everyday, on side roads and on highways.

-Our sixteen hour flight home was not the nightmare that I had imagined it to be. Thank God! However, I do not want to take that flight again for at least a year. :)
-Our fruity, Ethiopian-American welcome home was just what we needed and wanted. Thanks Fs and K!
-A teenage boy offered me some of his meal, a meal that he needed and was given, to try to calm my tears.
-I loved the constant loud-speaker prayers from the neighborhood place of worship.

-Holy rain, Batman!
-Neither Rob nor I could get ourselves to take many photos of other-than-adoption-world Ethiopia. We snapped a few out of the car windows, but barely any at all. Here is one of our favorites:

-We have a very calm and happy baby boy. Oo! He is so cute!

-Rob tasted the meal pictured below twice, if you know what I mean! I think he may have ingested some kitfo "juice." Ulch.

-There are around 400 children in one orphanage that I was told about. That is ONE orphanage in ONE city in ONE country on ONE continent! There are too many children without homes. NOT ONE of these children asked for this situation or did anything to "deserve" the situation. We all need to do more!
-You should all sponsor a child or family through Yezelalem Minch or Esperanza Viva.
-God gave me the two things that I had been praying about for months regarding our trip. I do not deserve such blessings.
-All of the older kids, waiting for their families at the transition house, kissed Israel goodbye. So sweet!
-We had delicious guacamole and clearly homemade, wonderfully greasy chips at a Mexican restaurant in Ethiopia.

I leave you here, Reader. We are now a family of three. Until the work of becoming four begins...


Too sweet

I'm still not prepared to write about our trip. Until then, here is another look:


Home... and the biggest sigh ever.

Dear All,

We are home. This is going to be so short, because I'm still travel woozy, but...

Here he is! Girum (Amazing) Tadege (God has saved him.) Israel Robert Stensberg! You can call him Israel, or Izzy.


God willing, by this time tomorrow...

... we will be waiting at our gate at the airport, probably sharing a tall, soy mocha with no whip cream. AH!!!!!!

Tomorrow we leave for France for a bit of a vacation; and then later in the week, we will fly to Ethiopia to pick up our son. I canNOT believe that this is happening. It is a good thing that there are piles of lists and scattered suitcases everywhere to tell me that this is real... that once we leave tomorrow, the next time that we are in the U.S. will be with our son.

And, by the way, our son is THE BEST LOOKING BABY IN THE WORLD! Yes, I made that superlative statement, and I will not retract it. We received updated photos of him this morning, and... wow. He has the most beautiful eyes with these expressive, quirky eyebrows.

Please pray. Please pray that we, along with the other four families, have safe and efficient travels; that I've packed enough formula and diapers; that all of our paperwork is in order; that we three stay healthy; and that we can learn a lot about Ethiopia. I'm sure I'm forgetting something...

Just so you know, I will not be updating our blog while in Ethiopia. It is possible, but I just do not want to. I love being away, unplugged... no phones, no computers. So, until we return as a family of three...


Duérmete niño, duérmete ya...

Cradle? Check!

Auntie LACA, do you remember those sheets? I've recycled them to fit the mattress from GranD.


We are almost ready.

We have one small list of things we still need to buy before finishing packing, which includes formula. I am so scared that I am going to run out, and I hear that they do not sell it in airports. So, although I probably have enough, I'm going to buy and pack more. We have copies of our e-tickets, even one for G! It's so weird to see his name, printed on a ticket with mine. We have a shnazzy ticket holder from Susan Parr's travel agency with even shnazzier baggage tags. We have rides to and from the airport. (Thanks Mr. T. and Uncle Matty with Auntie KK!) And, we have hotel reservations. What else? Am I forgetting anything?