Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Merry Christmas Caroline!

My Dearest Caroline,

Merry Christmas my little angel. I pray that you are having fun and enjoying your day. Today is Christmas, it is the day of our Savior's birth. If you were home right now, we would be reading Luke 2 in the Bible. We would have already opened all of your presents from Mommy and Daddy. We would have already played with all the goodies that Santa brought you. I'm sure Peaches, Peanut, and Coco would be making a huge mess with all the wrapping paper! We would be getting ready to go to Aunt Christi's house to spend the rest of the day with Aunt Christi, Uncle Stan, Savannah, Nana, and Pepaw. I'm sure you would look stunning in your beautiful Christmas dress. As soon as we get there, we would look at all of Savannah's presents and then would nestle by the fire as we get prepared to eat our Christmas feast. Nana sure worked hard to make all of our favorite dishes. I wonder what will be yours. Will it be mashed potatoes? Or will it be cornbread dressing? I can't wait to see what you decide!

My sweet angel, unfortunately, we are not together today. I want you to know that we love you so much! Our hearts ache for you and we desperately want you home with us. You are so very loved. Today, you will wake up and get a nice warm bottle and bananas for breakfast. I'm sure your foster mom and dad are preparing a special meal for tonight. I'm almost postive that you will get to taste it! As you get ready to go to sleep tonight, please dream of your daddy and me. We will be dreamimg of you and our Christmas next year. Next year, we will have an amazing Christmas together. I'm so sorry that I was not able to call you today to wish you a Merry Christmas and to tell you how much I love you. I tried, but the phone lines weren't working. My sweet baby, I'm telling you now...I love you and your daddy loves you. You are the most special gift and promise that God has given us. Please remember our voices and hugs. We will be together soon. We have so many people bombarding Heaven's gates with prayers for you. Hold on tight, Mommy and Daddy will be there soon.

We love you, Caroline!

Mommy and Daddy

Saturday, December 22, 2007

Perhaps a glimmer of HOPE???

For those of you who know, our agency told Tim that we were kicked out of PGN last weekish. I really don't know what to believe anymore. Anyway, our agency emailed Tim last night and told him that our case is back in PGN and our case is moving along quite well. Quite well??? Well was bringing Caroline home by Thanksgiving or at the latest by Christmas.

I've had to totally step out of the race and now God is running it for me. For those of you who know me, I am stubborn and very strong willed. Unfortunately, I didn't let God take over the chaos for me and I kept getting involved by helping Him out. I describe it as a basketball game. I'm out of breath and there's still plenty of time left in the quarter. God is sitting on the bench and I'm about to pass out as I run up and down the court. I keep looking over at God and telling him that I can make it a little bit longer, just sit tight and I'll let Him know when I need to sit down. I'm finally out of breath and I let God in the game.

My glimmer of HOPE comes from all of you guys praying for my family. You guys are bombarding Heaven's gates and God is hearing all of your prayers. I just can't thank each and every one of you enough. My heart is at peace and I know that she is coming home. Caroline IS coming home. God promised her to us and He will not take her away.

My students at school just never cease to amaze me! They are such little prayer warriors! Before we left for Christmas, we did an "open" prayer time and they each prayed for Caroline. My heart was so FULL! There is truly nothing sweeter than a child's prayer. THANK YOU!

Again, thank you and we wish each and every one of you a very, Merry Christmas!

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

total breaking point is here

You know how you reach your breaking point???? Here it is...you want to literally pull your hair out, scream at the top of your lungs, throw your most expensive crystal against the wall... I am here. It is official, it is breaking point. It has now been 71 days without any news. I decided to call PGN one more time to verify our case. Our case is NO WHERE to be found! This is now the third time I have heard the same thing. The lady tried to look up our file with Caroline's full birth name, half name, mother's name, mother's half name, date of birth, misspellings, mother's date of birth, date we went "into PGN", and NOTHING!!! NADA, ZIP, ZILCH! Each time I talk with our "not so tenacious" facilitator, he says "call me back in 45 minutes, call me back tomorrow". Well, 45 minutes is UP, tomorrow has already past (many times)! I'M FED UP!!!!

Sunday, December 9, 2007

A Perfect Outfit for the Perfect Song

No News just Pics!

Daddy and I are reading our favorite book Guess How Much I Love You!

May I have some aqua por favor?

Caroline? How do I get fat cheeks like yours?

Pretty as a Picture!

I know...I'm adorable!!!

Friday, November 30, 2007

STILL WAITING!!!! But that's okay...

No news again! It's not bad news, but not the news I was expecting. According to our facilitator, he didn't get the two cases he was expecting. How am I feeling? I'm actually okay with it. I told him that I've been praying really hard and I refuse to accept any bad news. God knows that I can't handle bad news, so he's taking a little longer until the time is right. I think he thought that I was crazy! I guess it does sound crazy to a non-believer. But, as I've been reminded, God is going to be seen moving in our case. There will be no other explanation as to how it was done, but God and His hand. When we started this process, I never would have thought that God would use us in His plan. Perhaps His plan is to move our facilitator's heart. To some, the only way to believe is to see. Remember Thomas???? God will deliver Caroline and in the process, He will perform amazing miracles. I just know it. Today was not our day, but that doesn't mean that next week won't be. Just keep praying for our miracle. I'm to call back on Monday. Maybe it's going to be Miracle Monday???

Thursday, November 29, 2007

No News for Today :(

I just got off the phone with our facilitator and we still don't know anything. He did say that one of his cases was kicked out (it was not one of the original two), but he doesn't have any information on our case. I have to call back tomorrow afternoon to find out if we are coming out. I suppose that actually no news is good news right now. I prayed for an OUT, but was not willing to accept any bad news. I didn't get bad news, but didn't get the information I was looking for. Please keep praying for Caroline to be released tomorrow. I have accepted the fact that Christmas is not happening, but I cannot and will not accept a kick out.

Hey God, can You hear me????

Dear Lord,

I'm waiting by the phone in excitement and nervousness. Lord, today I'm supposed to call Guatemala to see if we are out. Lord, I just pray right now that you bless our family with good news. I pray in your Son's name that when I make the phone call that I'm only given good news. You tell us to ask for our desires and believe in faith that you will answer them and you will. Lord, I will not accept bad news of any kind. Please calm my fears and nervousness and take them away. Lord, you are Almighty and Powerful. Lord, you can turn your hand and deliver Caroline out of PGN. Lord, you know where her files are and your timing is perfect. Lord, you are Perfect. I trust you and believe in you and you will answer my prayers. Lord, please, please, please answer my prayers tonight. Amen.

Monday, November 26, 2007

Tough, tough day

Today has been a tough, tough day. Actually, it's been a pretty tough weekend. We left our little angel back in Guatemala on Saturday morning. Like I've always said, it's just unnatural to leave your child in a foreign country with strangers. Um, strangers??? I guess I can't call them strangers, they are the ones raising my child in my absence. I hate that! I hate the fact that I can't bring her home. I hate the fact that I don't know the answers to when she's coming home. I hate it, I hate it, I hate it.
I've refused to talk about it. If I talk about it, then my feelings become too real. At this point, I feel that I must supress my feelings so that I can function. All day long, I thought that at any moment I was going to burst into tears, uncontrollable tears. All I keep thinking about is watching her walk away from me. My heart is broken and my mind is numb. As a matter of fact, my whole body is numb.

Friday, November 23, 2007

Still Praying for Our Christmas Miracle

Worth the Wait???
You bet!!! I'm totally worth the wait!!!
Sleeping Beauty
My little Rollie Pollie

Yesterday, our facilitator told us that he knew of two cases coming out of PGN. He wasn't sure whose or the details. Ours wasn't one of them. Now, the good news is...we are still IN PGN and not KO'd. No news really is good news right now. Unfortunately, our friends, the Millers, were one of the cases that were KO'd. Needless to say, Thanksgiving wasn't a joyous time for them. My heart broke for their bad news and my heart is still prepared for the worst for us. I am hoping that since we had such a difficult time with our PA, that the worst is over. Tim had thought that the facilitator told them they were out. I looked at him and I thought he was going to vomit. For the first time during this process, I saw the pain on his face. Someone else's joy was his pain. However, when I told him the facts, he felt really bad for them.

We were looking at windows of opportunity for a possible pick up trip in December. The Marriott is almost completely booked up! We think we may go ahead and make possible reservations for about a three-four week period of time.

Please continue to pray that Caroline comes home before Christmas. I can't bear to think that we won't have her home. My heart actually cannot go down that road. PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE join us with this prayer!!!

Thursday, November 22, 2007

Caroline and Samantha (foster sisters)

Caroline and Samantha (foster sisters)
Heads leaning towards each other
Alejandra (daughter to FM), Caroline, Juliza (FM), Samantha
Our Foster Family and Us (it took 4 pics to finally get this one!)
Aren't I the most adorable baby????

Happy turkey day! We have no news to report from PGN yet. Our facilitator told us that two of his cases are supposed to come out today, he doesn't know which ones and if they are approvals or KO's. We have been praying that one of those cases is ours and it is not a Kick Out! We won't know anything until much later in the day.
On Tuesday night, we celebrated Caroline's foster sister Samantha's 1st birthday at the Marriott. It's really neat to see the two of them together. They are super cute and definitely recognize each other. I bet our foster mom is enjoying her vacation this week! I wonder what she is doing...sleeping and enjoying the peace and quiet!!!

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

We have some movement!!!

Caroline has been constipated and we've been worried about her for a few days. How much prunes does it take to get some relief??? A LOT!!!! We are getting some outage and now we are moving on to prune juice and apple juice. I don't want to call the doctor for help, but we may need too. She's feeling much better and can stink up a room! Pray for some softer and more regular movements soon. (I never thought poop would be so good!!!)

Monday, November 19, 2007

Hello from Guatemala!

We are here! After a rough start in the Atlanta airport and our room not being ready when we arrived, we finally have our sweet baby in our arms! Caroline is so big! She is weighing in arouned 20-22 pounds and is full muscle!!! (yeah, right!) She is so happy and full of personality! She is very playful and loves all of her new toys. She picks each one up and inspects it before it goes directly to her mouth.

Apparently, according to the doctor, she is to fat for cereal. They bypassed the cereal stage and went directly to food. Good and bad...I brought down enough cereal for every baby in Guatemala in September and I was not prepared for actual food this trip. I did bring some food, but not the food that she's been eating. The fostermom says that she eats bananas in the AM and chicken flavor Gerber in the PM. What???? We totally missed stage 1 and 2 with the foods???? Oh well. I've been giving her bananas mixed with her cereal and sweet potatoes and squash at night. However, she is a little "stopped up", so she's been eating prunes! Still no news to report from that end! YIKES!!!

Caroline is having a little separation and stranger anxiety this trip. My sister warned me of this, but I sort of dismissed it. She prefers me over Tim and tends to cry when she has to stay with him. If she doesn't see me, then we are okay, but if so, we are in TROUBLE! She loves him, but I guess she's at the age that she has preferences. She'll get better with him and maybe he won't be so nervous around her soon.

The past few nights have been rough sleeping. The first night, she woke up 3 times and cried out. But, she went right back to sleep. The second night, she woke up every hour crying. As soon as I picked her up, she went back to sleep. Last night, was horrible! I put her down around 9 and as soon as I would get her sound asleep, she would wake up crying. If I picked her up, she'd stop and go back to sleep. This went on for hours! I finally gave up and held her in the bed with us. She then went to sleep and slept until 7:30 this morning! I swear that I am being manipulated by a seventh month old baby! Weird, huh?

Stay tuned for later...

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Beautiful Caroline

One of my parents at school brought me this poem she wrote for Caroline. Melissa was sitting EARLY one morning doing her devotion this week when she felt that God was telling her to write down these words. She claims that she is not a poet (I'm not sure if I believe her!!!), but I do belive that God provided her with these words. As I read it, I began to cry! (Imagine that!) It is the most beautiful and sweetest thing! I'm going to get it written in calligraphy and framed and put it in her room. What a sweet reminder that God is in control and He hears my prayers! Thank you Melissa!

Beautiful Caroline
You are held so near yet feel so far
Beautiful Caroline
Your Mom's heart's desire for such a long time
Beautiful Caroline
You were chosen with love from a Father above
Beautiful Caroline
And so your Dad waits for his princess with love
Beautiful Caroline
The timing's not ours but it's perfect and true
Beautiful Caroline
We trust in our hearts that you'll be home soon
Beautiful Caroline
Until then we pray and have sweet dreams of you
Beautiful Caroline
The precious gift of the One who is Faithful and True
Beautiful Caroline

Saturday, November 10, 2007

T-Minus 6 nights (just for a visit) and a very delayed update

It's countdown time! No we are not out of PGN, but we are going to see our little Carolina on Friday! We are so excited! It seems like it's been forever!!! The great thing...Tim's going with me! He hasn't seen her since June and I can't wait for him to see how much she's grown. She's totally going to win over his heart one more time!

I've been a little down lately, no news to report. Thanksgiving is approaching and I am pretty bummed that we don't have our daughter home with us. We were right on track to have her home in November, but for some reason, God had other plans. I know that God's timing is perfect, but I sure would like to know why the beginning of November wasn't the right time???

I've been trying to refrain from calling down to PGN because of the fear of what I may find out. My friend, Becky, whose daughter is in PGN, volunteered to call down there for me. According to PGN, we are on the 2nd reviewer's desk and Laura (PGN lady) thinks that we may be there another 2 weeks before we can go to the director's desk for the final sign off.

I am praying for a Christmas miracle. I would love to have her home before December 25th. I am asking for everyone to please join us in this prayer.

Now for an update on the home front. I am unfortunately still in my aircast. Apparently, my injury isn't healing as quickly as the doctor hoped. Last time I went back, he told me that I had to "baby" my ankle and try to stay off of it as much as possible. However, I guess I am a horrible patient. This past Monday, I went back to the doctor in hopes of getting my aircast off, to find out that I am a HORRIBLE patient! My ligament is not healing and there is still way too much swelling and tenderness around the joints and bones. The dr. said that the bruising around the tallus bone is not gone and I need to wear it for another 3 weeks. I almost started crying! He then proceeded to tell me that if I went on bedrest for the next 10 days, then he would give me a cortizone shot and an ankle brace to wear to Guatemala. However, it's called REALITY, JOBS, AND ADOPTION! Oh, well. I'll see what happens this Wednesday when we go back to the doctor.

My mom finished Caroline's bedding and is now working on the curtains. Caroline's bedroom is looking so cute! We still need to paint, put up plantation blinds, and get one more piece of furniture. Her room has been put a little on hold because of my injury, but it will be finished well before she comes home! I'll post pics of her room later!

Monday, October 22, 2007

Very FUNNY and yet, humiliating!

Okay, so my dear friend, Becky is in Guatemala this week. I sent a package down to the fostermom because she said she was nearly out of cameras (YIKES!), batteries, and would like some Aveeno bath stuff. So, Tim and I go shopping for some goodies and Becky volunteered to deliver it for us. Well...Becky's husband called this afternoon saying that she is having difficulty with the phone lines and can't get through to the FM. What does she want me to do with the package?

Now, I think I know Spanish, so I decide to call the FM to speak to her. HOWEVER, my spanish isn't so hot! I spend 6 frustrating minutes with her husband trying to get him to speak English and he's trying to get me to speak Spanish. I understand the language much better than I speak it, but NOT TODAY! Tonight, I managed to frustrate us both!

I call my friend, Aneth, who is the spanish teacher at our school, for help. She tells me how to say that "I have a package at the Marriott for you and so on..." What happens if he starts asking me questions, I say. "Don't worry because you've said 'hablo muy poco espanol.'" Well, evidently, I sounded pretty convincing because he starts speaking 90 miles a minute! I just kept saying "pardone and no comprehende". SO....who knows if he'll give the FM the message and if she'll get the package! Oh, well...so much for my future in teaching Caroline to speak Spanish! LOL!!!

Oh yeah, I also told him that we would like for him, his wife, and daughter to come eat dinner wtih us at the Marriott in November. However, I "think" that I told him that I wanted all his money!!! Oops! He started laughing and said yes, yes! Do you think he understood??? :)

Just a funny moment in the life and journey of our adoption of our little Carolina!!!

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Happy 6 month Birthday!

Thank you so much for giving us our little girl. We love her so much and feel so honored that You chose us to be her parents. You have given us an amazing responsibility! We are so excited to be able to tell her of You and Your awesomeness! Lord, we pray that You protect our little girl and keep a close watch on her. We pray that she continues to be healthy and happy and most importantly, loved by her foster family. Lord, we know that Your plans are perfect and You will deliver Caroline to us when Your time is right. Lord, You also said to ask and let You know our desires of our hearts. Our desire, Lord, is that You bring Caroline home before the holidays. Lord, we ask that You lay a pressing desire on each of the reviewer's hearts and minds. We ask that each reviewer be drawn to our file, as if a flashing light and alarm is going off. Lord, please continue to give our hearts peace and take away the anxiousness that we are feeling. Lord, we trust You and love You and give You all the praise and glory.

Sunday, October 14, 2007

An uplifting moment that turned sad

On Friday night, I broke down and called our foster mom in Guatemala. I've been feeling really sad and missing her so much, that I decided to call her. We have a good friend who is fluent in Spanish so he came over to be my mouth! For the first few minutes, I was strong and happy and then it hit me like a ton of bricks. I was talking to the person who is raising my child for me right now. How messed up is that???

Caroline is very happy and healthy. The doctor in Guatemala reports that Caroline does not have a hernia and what we saw was just fat. What??? I know what I saw and I know the American doctor that looked at it was not wrong! However, this turned out to be a blessing because I was very worried that the doctors would do surgery on her without my permission. God is protecting her and calming my fears by giving the doctors blinders to the hernia!

She loves the jumparoo and still enjoys the bouncer seat. She eats about every 3 hours and is always smiling. The FM also said that when she plays the casssette tape (Tim and I reading our favorite books to her), she smiles a huge smile! I pray each night that her foster family will love her and take good care of her. My prayers are being answered as the FM said that they love her very much. I also feel that she is in excellent care.

After I hung up the phone, I totally lost it. I started crying (more like sobbing) and it made me miss her so much more! I don't know if I'll be able to call her again! Tim thinks that I've been more emotional lately due to the fact that I can't do anything. I'm still a slave to my cast and crutches and I have lots of time on my hands for my mind to wander to Guatemala. I just didn't realize that the last part would be so difficult! I describe us as running a race and we are running downhill with the finish line in sight. Now, I'm not a runner, but who knew that running downhill could be so hard! When is this race going to be over? When is our family going to be complete? When will my heart stop aching? When...when...when...?????

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Monogrammed Caroline--For Lou!!!

Hey Lou!! You suggested that I get Caroline some monogrammed clothes, is this what you were talking about? I also have the monogrammed pillowcase dress that my mom makes. Wait until you see the stuff I have for her at home! We definitely need to get these two southern belles together!

Also, if anyone sees anything they like, I am making and selling custom made burp cloths, bibs, onsies, and pillowcase dresses. If you want to see ribbon choices, just send me an email and I can hook you up! bethany.rose@eagleslanding.org

Saturday, October 6, 2007

More Pics to Brighten Up the Day

I thought I would post some new pics of Caroline to brighten my day. I'm having a sad day and feeling a bit down. I'm sad because I miss her SO much. I'm also sad because of the weather. The weather you ask??? Yes, the weather. It's an incredible fall day outside and I would love to have Caroline home so that we could take her to the park. Of course, I couldn't walk with her, but Tim could push both of us in our chairs/stroller and we could just enjoy being with her. Fall is quickly approaching and this just means that's one more season we don't have with her. Please continue to pray that we can bring Caroline home as soon as possible. We need her home, our home, our lives, and most importantly, our hearts are missing a piece!

Aren't these the most adorable slippers? Caroline loved wearing them!
Hey Daddy! Come see me soon!
Please don't make me wear this! I look horrible in orange!!!! (I bleed blue!)
Mommy and Me
What is on my feet?????

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Entering PGN

Today, we have good news! We entered PGN!!! YEA!! PGN is the last step in the Guatemalan system that separates us from Caroline. It's basically the attorney general's desk. It consists of three reviewers and then gets the final sign off from the director. Supposedly, they are pushing cases through to get families out before the holidays. Keep your fingers crossed, but more importantly say your prayers! Please be in prayer for a speedy PGN process so we can bring Caroline home around Thanksgiving. We would love to have her home before the holidays so we can show her off to our families! The Lord has blessed us with Caroline and we know that His hands are guiding our process. Again, please continue to say your prayers for a quick homecoming and to continue to keep Caroline safe and healthy.

Ava and Caroline

We met this wonderful family in July when we were visiting Guatemala. Caroline and Ava instantly took to each other and became best friends!

Hey Ava! Did you check out my penguin??
Oh, Caroline...I love your new manicure!
The Proud Mommies!
The Proud Grandmothers!
Thanks for inviting me over to play! I'll see you soon!!!

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

The Perfect Embassy Outfit?? NOT!

Over Labor Day weekend, I purchased the most beautiful dress for Caroline. I bought a "big" size, so that she would be able to wear it later. This dress was going to be the most perfect dress...the one to go to the US Embassy. For some reason, I was a little worried that it might not fit her, so I put it in my carry-on bag and took it with me to Guatemala. I was completely right to be worried...I tried it on and it fit her! There's no way that she's going to have enough room to grow into it! So...I'm going to put it on Ebay to sell. I guess that means I get to go shopping!!! I'm sure Tim's going to love that! Enjoy the pics!

The dress is perfect!
I know...I look adorable!
What do you mean I can't keep it??????
I think I'm going to cry!
A new dress?? YEA!!!