Friday, December 28, 2007

Monday, December 24, 2007

Sunday, December 23, 2007


Our beautiful kids!
Andrew(18), Anthony(12), Alex(8), Edline(7), Love(4), and Josiah Blessing (6months)

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Bring on #7! Just kidding honey!!

Josiah is such an easy baby! I could not have imagined an easier transition, a happier baby, and a perfect fit he is into our family. He truly fits like a glove!

It's been 3.5 years since we brought home our girls from Haiti. I can honestly say that, that was such a hard time for me as a mom. I had to do a lot of attachment therapy for both girls, and reteach their little brains how to cope in various situations. There were daily tantrums, sleepless nights, attachment parenting ALL THE TIME, food issues, surgeries, attitudes and some huge defiant behaviors! On top of trying to be mom to my three othree other boys. I wasn't able to spend much time with my bio boys for those first 6 months. But, all it was worth it in the end. Our girls are secure, very loving, respectful, and healthy. God really stretched me in so many ways!
So, for our next adoption, I was prepared for anything! Including disabilities.
God truly gave us such a wonderful gift with Josiah Blessing! I seriously could not have even imagined it being this good! Josiah is one of the most happy babies I have ever been around. He is forming great attachments with us, always being within eye shot of me, and always rewarding us with smiles. We did take him to church on Sunday. It was great to see that he started recognizing the difference between strangers and our family. When I was in Liberia, he smiled at everyone. Now, he is more reserved in smiling at strangers, and looks to me for assurance. I love that!
His daddy and siblings are so in love with him! I love all the helping hands I have. Having 5 other kids to help is awesome!
No I'm an not thinking about a #7! I was kidding!

Monday, December 17, 2007

Liberia trip, part 2

Went to bed late Wed. night. I had to change rooms in the hotel, and ended up with a fabulous room! I only wish I could have had this one all week! If anyone is staying at the Cape Hotel, request room #302!
Had breakfast on the terrace, overlooking the ocean. I am getting so anxious to finally have my baby boy! My driver shows up on time, and go to the office. Wait for Sydney and Prince to walk to hopspital together. They are needing a few medical reports for the Consulate. Meet his dr.,greet Blessing and his nanny! He looks ready to go, we just have to wait for the bill. ($125 for the six days!). He finally gets discharged!! I am never letting you go little one!!
It's off to the Consulate again to give the medical report and to show off Blessing.
Alma let's me know that Blessings visa should be ready tomorrow by 11!
We go back to the hotel and relax and socialize with the staff and Manager. Blessing charms every single person he comes in contact with! He is such a joy!
I enjoy a huge plate of Liberian rice on the terrace with Blessing charming the staff, and thinking how much was done this week to get to this place. God has been so faithful and given me so much streangth and peace this week. I don't know how anyone could live a life with out our wonderful Father God! I would be completely lost and wondering.
Blessing slept through the night, (due to all the meds he was on). We had a wonderful breakfast, exchanged emails with some staff members, then it was off to the Consulate again. Visa wasn't ready til 2:00, so Tama, Chris and I had lunch at my hotel, checked out, said goodbye to staff. Picked up visa, went to office, no time for orphanage, and off to airport. I was so hot and covered in sweat from running around all day, I needed a shower! Airport was fast, but the employees were pretty rude to me. I never did get all my boarding passes, which later caused some headaches in Brussels. Flight was great, Blessing was an angel, (7 hours), charming everyone in our path! Thank God for the wonderful Brussels air and AA employees. They bent over backwards to get us our boarding passes, that weren't in the computer. We ended up getting a whole row of seats for the 9 hour flight! How awesome!
Blessing was an angel the whole time, we went through immigration, handed over our paperwork, and got out of Chicago before the big storm!
Friday night!! We are home! My beautiful children and husband, all waiting with signs and open arms for us! What a beautiful picture of God's love! So many blessings to be thankful for! Scott did a great job of being dad and mom all week, and Love did great at Jennifers house too!

Liberia has changed me, moreso than Haiti did. I know God has plans for our lives doing something for Liberia. I can't wait to know where He leads!
God Bless,

Friday, December 14, 2007

Thursday, December 13, 2007

I will never complain about my home again!


At Catholic Hospital

At Church

The fog is lifting...

The lack of sleep is hitting me! We are trying to get Josiah on a sleep/eat schedule. It's failing so far!! UGH! I need sleep!

I will try to write a few things about this experience, as the "cat naps" allow!

We decided that I would make the trip to Liberia, to finish our adoption myself. I had information about the agency we were using, that required me to go get Blessing, and to get this information to the staff in Liberia, before "things" started going downhill. This agency here in the state, which I will not name, has been doing some unethical things. Thank God for such wonderful Christian staff and friends, that were the vital tools to getting everything done! I have such gratitude to all of them!

I left for Liberia on thursday 11/29, got into Monrovia, Liberia on the evening of the 30th. Was picked up by "our" private driver, who Greg and Brandi had already hired for their week stay. Went to the hotel, which by the way, was an awesome hotel! Met up with my "room mate", who is also a double agent...(ha ha).
Didn't get to bed til really late! Saturday was going to pick up Josiah from the orphanage, but then found out he was rushed to the hospital in respitory distress. So we went to the hospital to meet my little guy! Oh my goodness, what a precious Blessing! He gave me the biggest smile a momma could ever want! Found out he had Malaria and Pneumonia, and would be there for a week! I was so dissappointed, but so glad I could see the care he was getting. He was being well taken care of my his nanny, nurses and dr. Went to the office to meet a few staff members.
That night, Greg and Brandi, (and Henry),took our "group" out, along with some staff members, to the Golden Beach Restaurant. It was good food and good time!

Sunday, we went to Pastor Charles' church. Was an hour late because our driver never showed!!! (pretty common though). The service was in a "hut". If there is rain of too hot, the turn out is very few. It was a great African service! Went out to lunch with the pastor, his wife, "our group", and driver. Had great conversation!

By the way, getting around Monrovia is VERY difficult! There are HUGE pot holes everywhere, people everywhere, cars weaving in and out between pot holes, people, and other cars. The horn is your turn signal/warning sign/get out of my way sign!
To go for a 5 mile drive, it takes about 30 minutes! If there is water or sewage on the road, you just go through! It's hot, the air is so polluted by exhaust and dust. I wore a blanked of sweat and dirt every day. Thank goodness of our wonderful hotel room with air conditioning and hot showers!!! The Cape Hotel is what made my stay better than expected! (Plus my "group and roomie!"). The staff was fabulous, the food was good, room was clean, big, had refrig., air, and nice big bathroom. I loved my showers every day! Although, it did leak and left a lake on the bathroom floor everytime I used the shower! Not complaining! The hotel also was across the street from the ocean. So the views were great! Staff was more the accomodating! I was at the hotel for three days by myself, and was so well taken care of!

Monday went to hospital to spend time with Blessing. He is such a sweet smiley little guy! Oh I just fell head over heals for him! Met with the staff and how we would navigate all that needed to be done in less than a weeks time! A lot!!
Went to visit another orphanage who will start adoptions soon. They literally had nothing. Thank goodness for saving donations! "Our group" decided that our donations would be appreciated here, more than the other orphanage who has donations flowing in, and are having to be stored! Makes no sense! Give donations to others who need them people!!!!!
The school and kids at the orphanage, ALL of God's Chrildren, is wonderful! Vera, who is the mom of the orphanage, really has a heart for these kids and their education. I hope to be able to help them more in the future.
By the way, getting to the orphanage required going over this one bridge. Took an hour just to get across, not because it was a long distance, but because of all the cars and people crossing.
Got an appointment with Alma, the Consulate for Tues. Yahoo!

It was our routine for the week, to start off with breakfast in the dining room together. Breakfast was included. Coffee was good! This was such a treat to start off the day with friends and breakfast!
Tuesday, went to hospital, met with staff, went to consulate for initial meeting. Went shopping! This is so fun! Ended up buying a fabulous Large African drum!
Alma, the Consulate, is such a sweet person! She is working so hard on getting kids to families, but done ethically!
Buster, a staff member, made supper for us and brought it to the hotel! We all enjoyed the food, but loved talking with the staff more!
Went over paperwork with Chris that night.

Wednesday. Went to office, hospital, said goodbyes to the rest of my group who were going home!! I felt such a bond to them. We had been through so much in such a short time! Got the news that Blessing would be released tomorrow. Met Blessing birthmom. She is beautiful and is so happy for Blessing. I can't imagine what her heart must be feeling. We were able to spent a lot of time together. We went to the hospital together. She was smiling the whole time! We went to our Consulate appointment without Blessing, which went sooo smoothly! Alma did want to see Blessing once he was discharged! No problem!
Went to the hotel, had a quiet evening, supper on the terrace overlooking the ocean.

I will post the rest later along with pics! Gotta go!
Love, Christina
(Love you Brandi and "little bird").

Monday, December 10, 2007 Christinas little corner in the BIG world...

Sunday, December 9, 2007


After a long 32 hours traveling time, Blessing and I are home safe!
I am in a state of fog right now, but soooo happy to be back with our whole family!
All the family is enjoying our wonderful new baby boy! He was an absolute angel on the whole trip! His pneumonia is clear and has recovered from malaria, (after 6 days in the hospital).
I can't say enough wonderful things about the AOH staff in Liberia. They are true angels!

I promise details later! Thank you for all the prayers! I felt completely blanketed in prayers my whole trip!

What an awesome God! Thank you Lord for this amazing gift!

Love, Christina