Living in Poland

We made it everyone. we arrived around 11a.m and were met by the CHI agent who took us to our apartment. Let’s just say culture shock and leave it at that. We then were given a walk around the village to show us were to buy food and the bank and what not. We went back to the apartment and then the social worker arrived and so we all, the social worker, CHI lady and her husband, and Trey and I all went to meet Mary. On knocking the foster mom and Mary opened the door. Oh, she is so cute and was dressed so pretty with her hair in pigtails and barretts. She was quite shy, but after two hours she was on my lap and we were coloring. She brought out all her little books and braceletts and toys we sent over to show us and she would hold them and say,”my mama, my tata”. By the time the social worker and CHI wife and husband left Mary was asking when she would go home with her Mommy and Daddy. It was great. We went to her home Monday morning and had a great time with her and that’s when she really shined. We had court monday at 1:00 and it was long but we were blessed to be given a two week bonding time till Oct. 5 then 2nd hearing Oct. 6 which Trey will be here for. We then have a vallidation time after that which we will appeal for it to be shortened or exempt so that we can move on with getting her passport and visa to come home. We were granted custody that day and Mary came to visit us that night and then they brought her to us Tues. morning. She went to bed without crying and she has been great. We are so ready to just come home with her.Things are very different here, but we are doing well. The foster family speaks no english so we communicate through books and writing down the translations. It gets really funny at times. There are other children here that need homes and we are so sad for them as we can see some of them are hurting because there is no mama or tata for them. Today she took a nap on Trey’s chest, they both did. She is definatly a Daddy’s girl and she is so orderly in everything. She does it all by herself with no problem. I am going to have quite a helper when I get back. She is excited to have playmates Anna and Jenna in the neighborhood. She can’t wait too see her brothers too. We are so homesick for our boys. It is hard to think we have only been gone 5 days, it feels much longer than that. We miss you boys sooooo much and can’t wait to see you!!

Love you all,

Mommy and Daddy

Harmony Hornets/Carnival

Last night Mr. M had a chior performance at the local county fair. We all paid $8 to enter, got hands stamped and then could ride all the rides as much as we wanted. Boy did we ever ride rides! The boys were thrilled as we never ever go to these things. We rode lots of rides and then M sang and then we rode some more. By the time we got home and cleaned up and pj’s it was late and all were exhausted. We really had a great time with them and I think they won’t forget this moment of family fun. I know Trey and I won’t because we are both still a bit queezy from those rides. We let them sleep and hour late ate a big breakfast at home and then checked them in tardy. Better tardy than miserably dragging through a long day of school. M goes to Harmony Hornet practice every Thursday and they have only been practicing for 4 weeks and they just all did so well. They sang patriotic songs and were really great. M loves this as you can tell in the photos.  The weather was beautiful and just the best temperature today. We went riding in the jeep to errands. We got more Poland news today that says we will meet our daughter on Sunday!!! We are thrilled that we get to see her so soon and not have to wait till after our first hearing. We had our conference with CHI and then the CHI social worker, all went well and we are better informed on some things. All good news and motivational towards bringing Princess home soon. We now have our hotel in London and our apartment in Poland is prepared for us too.  My parents get in town Thursday which is a relief, we are so glad they will be coming then and not Friday as we would practically be running out the door to get to airport if they came on Friday. We have 18 more things to get done on our long long to do list, but 13 will get done tomorrow with no problem which leaves all day Thursday and part of Friday to finish the rest. The boys kept asking us if we can go back to the carnival next year and they said, “Yeah and next year Princess will be with us so we just have to come back so she can do it too!”

5 Days!!!!!

  • Five Days till we leave for Poland. I can not believe it! I have been busy as ever, but there is still so much to do before we leave. Trey was gone all last week, but while he was away he did pick up some travel luggage, hiding money belt, ipod earphone splitter, a new book and our Birthday boy a present and going away gifts for the others.
  • I just bought some rub ons for Princess’ room and some cut out letters and paper for her name which yes I am aiming to have on her walls prior to us leaving so that her room is pretty and ready for her.
  •  I’ve been cramming in the Polish language and note taking.
  •  All of the boys lunch food, snacks and money in their accounts is taken care of. The freezer is adaquate for when they come back home.
  • Fill my suburban up and clean it out.
  • Copies of keys need made and given to the caregivers.
  • Finalizing of the boys caregiver schedule printed and handed out.
  • Directions to schools, movies, doctors, church, stores , etc. printed for my parents.
  • Double checking documents needed in Poland.
  • CHI conference call tomorrow.
  • 2- parent/teacher conferences to attend this week.
  • Withdraw kindergartener on Thursday.
  • Oldest child school pictures Friday a.m. then check him out.
  • Paint “Witam” sign for foster parents.
  • I do have Princess’ suitcase already packed with her washed cloths and foster parents gifts.
  • Fill out stop on mail at post office.
  • Find replacement teachers for 3/4 year olds in late service(we had month of September).
  • Occasionally sleep and remember to eat.
  • Love on four boys before we are a part for unknown time.:(
  • Exchange cash for perfect new crisp dollars.
  • Contact cell phone service to enable use of phones in Europe.
  • Contact banks and credit card providers.
  • Renew AL, MS hygiene licenses
  • Love on boys and love on them some more!!

Indiana Jones Birthday

   We celebrated an early Birthday for our third grader whose actual Birthday is 9/27 but we will be in Poland so we wanted to do it before we left. It was really a last minute deal as I just pulled it all together this Wednesday and he took some invitations to school on Thursday and I delivered the others in the neighborhood too. He had asked for an Indiana Jones Birthday so I was off to Party City and Dollar Tree and Wal-mart to gather the party supplies. With Halloween coming up, the stores were full of skulls, skeletons, spiders and stuff, so I was able to get things that were Indiana Jones themed.The boys were a bit confused about getting skull things, but then thought it was way cool because we do not celebrate Halloween so I guess they figured this was the closest they’d ever get to it. Trey went to Tractor Supply and got rope and hose and pre-cut them for all the boys so they were ready to go when the boys arrived. Trey showed and had all the boys make their own Indiana Jones whips!!!! They loved it and had the greatest time doing it. I just hope I don’t show up to church tomorrow with angry, welted Moms that had the whips demonstrated on them! So the party activities consisted of making the whips, jumping double dutch, running, playing, cake, ice cream, present opening and goodie bags. Birthday Boy had a great time and was so happy to have had his Birthday party with Daddy and Mommy! This mom feels better too and so relieved that we were able to pull it all off before we left. With not knowing exactly when we will come back I was sad that he may not have one at all. Hopefully his actual Birthday day will be okay since he had his party early. Happy 9th Birthday sweet boy!!!

BAMA vs TULANE

Saturday we took the two older boys to the Alabama vs Tulane game. The little guys stayed with good friends of ours and even spent the night and we all met up at church this morning. We had a great time. We sat in the Tulane team seating because we were there to support Jordan Ellis a senior Tulane LB.  We have known the Ellis family for years in MS. Jordan even babysat the older boys when we lived in Long Beach. We had a great time and got to see Jordan make the hardest hit on a BAMA player that had him out cold. It was incredible! Way to go JORDAN!!! We are so glad to get to keep in touch with long time MS friends. This was our first football game at such a large stadium and it was sold out. We definately were amazed to see so many people all together for a game. Tulane did not win but we were so glad to get to see Jordan play. Thank you Jordan #44!!!

Just for Fun

I was photographing Princess’ cloths for a post and our little man wanted me to take pictures of him jumping off her stool.  He jumped over and over and over again always having to look at the picture on the back of my camera. It was the funniest thing. He was giggling so hard drool was coming out. He had so much fun. Here are the better photos of the jumping.   **** Oh, darn. I loaded the photos and while editing I saw you could see Princess’ pictures in plain sight. We have a huge cork board with her pictures on it that we made for our adoption yard sale so people could see who all the money was going toward. We have it leaning against the back wall in her room where the jumping photos were taken.  Sorry everyone, you’ll just have to wait a little bit longer to see those. 😦

President and Treasurer

 VOTE FOR S    VOTE FOR E    VOTE FOR S    VOTE FOR E    VOTE FOR S     

Thursday was a day of listening to campaign speeches at our Intermediate school. My friend Sherri and I supported her daughter, S and our oldest E.  S was running for President along with 17 others and E was running for Treasurer with 8 others. It was a fabulous time. All of the kids did such a great time on their speeches. S and E are good friends and joined forces in their campaigning. They worked on their speeches at our Wednesday night Life Group and Trey typed it up for them. I was so proud of both of them. They delivered their speeches with clear voices, confident and with smiles on their faces.  E spoke of his leadership abilities being the oldest of four boys and soon a sister 3 years old from Poland and of being on the kids Praise and worship team at church. He spoke of loving God and wanting to tell others about His love for them. It was really enjoyable to see our children with nervous excitement. They were wonderful. So they gave their speeches Thursday morning then voting was after that. Friday the results came in and despite their enthusiastic delivery neither of them made it. They were fine with it and we love the experience they had. A great thing is that since they ran for these higher positions and did not win they are automatically able to run for class representative and they don’t even have to write a speech. E was so thrilled about that as he did not want to write yet another one.  Sherri videod the speeches so if I can get E’s and can load it then maybe you can hear it too.  

Presidential Speech

Presidential Speech

 

Waiting for his turn

Waiting for his turn

Treasurer Speech

Treasurer Speech

Treasurer Candidates

Treasurer Candidates

I love this boy!!

I love this boy!!

Tickets Booked

Tickets are purchased! We still do not know how long we will be there. We had to write another letter to the judge with detailed reasons why we want or need the personal time with child or “bonding time” to be set for 2 weeks. Our agency feels it will be set for 2 weeks the judge just needed the request.  So we have the tickets and know how many bags we can take. We know who will keep the boys, we’re just fine tuning the schedule. I’m organizing all the documents we’ll need with us. We’re having the cash we need exchanged for clean, crisp, new dollars as many European countries will not accept anything less. I have lots of school snacks to buy and will take them to the homes the boys will be at. I have letters to write to the school principals and teachers. Copies of medical insurance cards made. The list goes on and on. Lots to do to keep us busy till we leave.  We are so excited and just can’t believe we have our tickets now. We wonder if Princess knows how soon we will be there for her? So exciting!!

Sending #7

In preparing to travel I have been told that many airlines now charge for any and all luggage. Some allow one checked and then charge for second and so on and some allow one or two carry ons while others don’t. I was planning on sending Princess two more packages anyways so we decided to just send the rest of her cloths so that we don’t have to take and pay for another luggage and so it will allow for more room for our packing. We have gifts to take over anyways so we have to account for space to put them. I’ll take an empty tote to her foster home to pack the cloths we sent . We asked our agency to convey this message to the foster mom so that she doesn’t think we are too indulgant and spoiling her. Basically we are just sending over ahead of time what we would be bringing. This allows for Princess to recieve two really BIG packages too which should make her smiley!! Here’s what we sent today.

September 22 Till ????

We have our first hearing set for Monday, September 22 at 1:40pm. YEAH!! We do not know yet how long we will be there for because the Judge has yet to say how long. He may not say till we have our first hearing which is extremely stressful on us as we need to make arrangements for the 4 boys to be cared for. We tentatively have people who have volunteered to keep them, but without knowing when we are returning it is hard to make a caregiver schedule.  Leaving the boys for an unknown amount of time is wearing on us. Please pray the Judge will allow us to just be there 2 weeks or at least let Trey return after 2weeks and I’ll finish out the time and either fly back later or stay until I can bring her home. We just absolutely can not leave our dear boys parent-less for an extended unknown time. They are wonderful little guys who are full of energy and excitement and they just need their Mommy or Daddy.  Also Trey has to arrange for others in the company to attend meetings he’ll miss and to run the jobs he’s responsible for and on and on. He can not just fly away and not give the others a time when he’ll be back.