Right now we await the Ethiopian Courts to open back up after being closed for the rainy season. That is scheduled for the first week of October or so, but who really knows, it's Africa and we are only on a need to know basis and well frankly, it's really a vacation because um, Ethiopia is like in a 60 year drought so we really shouldn't call it the "Rainy Season".
Our Family Coordinator said that they may still issue court dates before it opens but that since our referral just arrived, she doesn't expect us to hear anything for our case until after Court opens. You are welcome to pray that we do in fact hear something because it sure would aid in planning.
Once we receive a court date, we will arrange our travels and go to Ethiopia. Trip #1. We will be bringing our two oldest kids
During trip #1, we will meet little "Z" and spend time with him. We will also go before the judge and let him know that indeed, we want him to join our family of course we do, when you see his precious face you'll be wishing you were the one standing in front of that judge. Darn he is CUTE! We pray and so can you, that we pass court the first time (50% do not). If we don't, that will be another delay as we wait for subsequent court dates and for our agency to gather any information that MOWCYA (the ministry of woman's, children's and youth affairs) is missing. We will not return for those court dates should they be needed. We will come home without "Z" you can start praying now, I'm not sure how they will physically get me on that plane when I'm fighting to stay with him.
Once we pass court, which we pray is the moment we stand before the judge, we then come home and wait for our agency to submit all our paperwork to the US Embassy for clearance/Visa etc. This usually takes 4-6 weeks though recently, we are seeing this take longer. You can also start praying they'd pick up that pace, can you imagine waiting even a day with your child being on the other side of the world? Once we are cleared, we go to Ethiopia again and this time we return with our precious boy!! Go ahead and cheer, you know you want to! Yes, we do welcome large airport welcome home parties ... but we will address in a future post some rules about how we will go about transitioning our little guy. In other wards, don't come and pick him up ... you are a white person, he will be in a foreign land, he will have left everything he knows, you will speak a weird language, smell weird and be all together frightening to him. IE; you can smile and cheer and welcome, but as I tell my little girl, only with your eyes, not with your hands for a while.
So what do we do now? We wait, we pray for our little guy, we pray for these details even now and we trust. And well, because I am a planner and I need something to do because, hello, I'm only 19 days into this wait and I feel like a crazy woman, we also begin gathering donations that we will bring. You can help too. There are many things needed in the transitional home and orphanages. Let me know if you can gather some of these things. I can come and pick them up and together, we can bless the socks off of some precious children!
We will be bringing lots of extra bags and very little clothing on our trips so we can bring these things that right now are needed in our two transitional homes. This is what we have been notified as of now is really needed.
There are several items that the transition home is in need of for the older children: • Musical instruments
• Athletic clothing and shoes for soccer
• Christian videos or DVDs
• Swimsuits for boys and girls -this one interests me, I've been to Ethiopia, where in the world are they swimming and please tell me they are also asking for life jackets. ;-)
Orphanage and Transitional Home General Donation Needs: o Puzzles for young children
o Toy cars and trucks appropriate for toddler aged children
o Diaper rash ointment (A+D preferred)
o Children’s clothing (new or slightly used); Boys and Girls; sizes 0-8 years. Clothing needs include day clothes (especially pants), pajamas, underwear, and shoes.
o Diapers for up to 30 pounds
o Toys to stimulate babies such as colorful objects, rattles, etc. that are appropriate for babies up to 2 years
o Unscented baby wipes
o Powder formula with DHA/RHA
o A + D Original Ointment, Diaper Rash and All-Purpose Skincare Formula
o Hand Sanitizer
o Enfamil or Similar Lactose free formula (*the following Generic Brands with identical nutritional value to Enfamil & Similac are also acceptable: Parents Choice formula from Wal-Mart, Target’s generic Formula, Kirkland formula from Costco)
Medications/Medical Donation Needs** o Multivitamins
o Chewable multi-vitamin (2 years to 9 years)
o Adult multivitamin (9 years plus)
o Infant’s and Children’s Tylenol (acetaminophen)
o Plastic and Latex disposable gloves
o Baby nose saline spray
o Mouth and nose masks
o Benadryl liquid/elixir
o Permetherin for scabies
o Lice kits
o Toothbrushes, toothpaste and dental floss