Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Birthday "Package"

Mikayla turns 3 years old on September 13th, so today we mailed off a few items for her birthday. Everything we send has to be flat, so our friends Josh and Renee (who we are hoping to be "travel buddies" with) suggested paper dolls - great idea! I found a very cute paper doll book on Amazon which arrived yesterday, so I cut out all the pieces and took pictures of the doll wearing different clothing items (so she would hopefully understand the concept). We sent her a "singing" Winnie the Pooh bday card from Mommy & Daddy, and a Snoopy birthday card from Eli. We also stuck in some puffy My Little Pony stickers, and some new pictures of our family and her bedroom! Can't wait to read her bedtime stories and tuck her into her own bed.








Thursday, August 20, 2009

Bummer News

Today we found out that Holt's Embassy Date for 9/8 was canceled due to the Ethiopian New Year holiday. This means that the 15-20 families currently waiting to travel have all been pushed back on their travel dates. Some families fortunately found out today that they will be traveling for the 9/22 embassy date, which although we are sad it's not us, we are happy that more children will be coming home soon! We will "likely" be assigned an embassy date of October 6th... at least that's what we're hoping for at this point. Not the end of the world, but not quite what we anticipated. This whole process has been in God's hands, and this too is all part of the Plan. I'll be honest though, tonight I just feel frustrated and kind of depressed. And I think that's okay! Tomorrow is a new day :) Before we know it, she'll be home.

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Still Waiting...

I was sure that today was the day. I was sure we would hear about our travel dates. But we didn't. Bummer. It is just so difficult to know you have a child on the other side of the world, and you have to wait to be told when you can go see her. I don't understand what the hold-up is right now, or what paperwork still needs to be in place, but at this point I don't care. I would hop on a plane tomorrow if I could, and just stay there with her until the paperwork is done :) That's where I'm at! Even at this point in the process I need to constantly remind myself that God is the one ultimately in control, and His timing is perfect (sound familiar?). Well, tomorrow is a new day... here's to hoping! Please God?

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Twitter

Okay, so due to the fact that blogging and Facebook take up too much of my life already, I purposely had not signed up for a twitter account... until now. I finally made the leap a couple of days ago due to the fact that some adoptive families have been successful posting "tweets" from Ethiopia to let everybody know what's going on throughout their trip. It is quite likely that we will not have an internet connection during our time there to support emailing or blogging... but we might be able to tweet from the phone. Not sure yet. If it works out, fabulous. If not, well, at least I can know what other random things people are doing or thinking at all times. :) If you are on twitter and want to "follow" me, here's the profile: http://twitter.com/bjhutchison.

P.S. We are still waiting on any news of travel dates... waiting... waiting...waiting... in the meantime, I think I cleared out the travel and medicine sections of Target the other day during my massive pre-travel shopping extravaganza (aka: "let's think of everything that could go wrong or that i might possibly need on this trip and make sure i have it")

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

FREEBIE!!!

Okay, so we have very cool friends and we feel very blessed :) Over the past few days, with our travel time drawing close, we have been thinking through the remaining finances we have yet to raise. I thought about once again highlighting our tshirt sales on our blogs, but I've already done that... not to mention the link sits on the sidebar 24/7. So many friends and family (and even people we don't know) have played a role in helping us bring Mikayla home, whether through prayer, words of encouragement, or financial assistance. In the past I have mentioned an upcoming post about God's provision, and I promise that is still coming... it's just that the story hasn't ended yet, so I wait with eager anticipation knowing full well God will come through and what a testimony it will be share!

Needless to say, within the same 24 hours, two friends contacted me to ask if they could purchase an extra tshirt to do a "freebie" giveaway on their blogs!! This not only meant a couple of extra shirt sales, but also a couple of amazing posts on OTHER people's blogs about our tshirts, and caring for orphans. These posts have led to other posts on blogs of people we have never even talked to before! WOW! So why am I telling you this besides the fact that it is awesome they did it? Well, I want you to have the chance to WIN a FREE tshirt and support the care of orphans at the same time! If you're interested please visit:
  • Stephanie, my beloved friend from college who traveled to India with me where our eyes were opened and hearts were broken to learn what it truly means to be an orphaned child. Go leave a comment on her blog for a chance to win!
  • Megan, my adoption buddy... we have never met in person, but they are preparing to bring a little one home from Ethiopia just like us and would love to have you follow their journey!! Right now, she is hosting "Guess the Referral Date" game... so go play!
  • Oh and if you don't win, but still desire to purchase a shirt, you can always click on the picture of the tshirts in our sidebar to go to the ordering website!
Our prayer is that these tshirts would speak a message, far beyond helping us bring Mikayla home. We pray that as they are worn, others would NOTICE... would ask QUESTIONS... would come to KNOW... and come to CARE. Everyone has a role to play, and the stakes are high. Let us be bold and do our part. The children are counting on us.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Celebrating!

Tonight we celebrated being the parents of our new daughter by heading to one of our favorite restaurants... Pei Wei! Eli had his own celebration at Nana's house, which was equally exciting as she had just purchased some new toy dinosaurs :)

The above picture is us smiling with joy because we have a beautiful new daughter whom we can't wait to bring home! Our agency takes the conservative stance when it comes to posting pictures of her, and advises us not to post any pics on websites until we travel. So, you'll have to wait a bit longer to see her gorgeous face on this blog.

We now wait to be assigned an appointment date at the U.S. Embassy in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. Hopefully we'll know what the date is within a few weeks! We're crossing our fingers for September travel dates :) We know our agency has two reserved Embassy appointments in September, and each appointment can accommodate 10 children... so we're hoping to be in one of those two groups.

Stay tuned...

Praise God!

WE PASSED COURT!!!!!!!!

(More later...) :)

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

More Waiting...

No news about our court outcome today. Our agency informed me that they hope to hear news about it tomorrow.... I hope so!! :)

Monday, August 3, 2009

Totally Dependent on God

At our Harvest launch team meeting last night, we talked about how it is difficult to truly depend on God in many situations. Even if we want to depend on God, it's so easy to step in and control things ourselves, or to convince ourselves that "we know better." I will admit, if there were a switch I could flip tonight that would ensure our court case would pass, I would be extremely tempted to flip it. Fortunately, that temptation doesn't exist and we are left in a situation where we have absolutely no control over the outcome of what could happen just a few hours from now, on the other side of the globe. All we can do is trust that God is good and He is working. He has brought us to this point in this journey, and He already knows what will happen. Everything will come together... in His time. As I have been pondering and praying for tonight, the Lord brought the words of Isaiah 45 to mind... although we are not preparing for a physical battle, our court date is, in a sense, a spiritual battle. So, tonight we will PRAY. And we will rest with assurance that the Lord has gone before us, and has already paved the way for His Will to be done.

"I will go before you and will level the mountains;
I will break down gates of bronze and cut through bars of iron.
I will give you the treasures of darness,
riches stored in secret places,
so that you may know that I am the Lord,
the God of Israel,
who summons you by name."
Isaiah 45:2-3

Sunday, August 2, 2009

Priceless Tidbits!

This weekend has been very exciting, in that we have received multiple emails from families just returning from Ethiopia who had the opportunity to meet and play with our sweet little princess. It means so much to me that despite being jet-lagged, and trying to settle in with their new children, they took the time to email us such treasured information :) Here are some tidbits of the info we received from each family (you can see the similarities that jump out from the separate observations):

Family #1
  • YOUR DAUGHTER IS........ DROP DEAD GORGEOUS. Seriously! She is simply stunning.
  • She is very reserved and quiet. Super shy.
  • She has a smile that will melt your heart and eyes that will brighten any day!
  • She is a charmer, not a fighter. Many of the kids have the "survival of the fittest" attitude and steal toys, kick, hit, bite, scream....not your girl.
  • She is tall and skinny, has a full set of beautiful teeth, good coordination, can carry on conversation (in Amharic), and is very attentive.
Family #2
  • She is gorgeous. We all knew it was her immediately.
  • Her hair has gotten a little longer, and she has the most beautiful smile.
  • She is kind of quiet, but not in a shy way.
  • She seems like such a little lady for being just three.
  • She was definitely one of the tallest toddlers there.
Family #3
  • First of all, she is GORGEOUS! We couldn't quit staring at her. Absolutely beautiful.
  • Her hair is a bit longer now, curly all over her head.
  • The first time I saw her, all the kids were eating lunch. The other kids had food all over their faces and hands, but "A" was eating careful, dainty, little bites.
  • She is very quiet, and seems kind of reserved.
  • Another day I watched all of the kids playing with balls in the courtyard. "A" stood very quietly in the middle of the group. She seemed to not quite know how to play or who to play with. I'm sure she must feel very overwhelmed by all the new kids.
Needless to say, now more than ever we want to bring her home as quickly as we possibly can. We are so thankful to have received this information and appreciate those of you (you know who you are!) who passed it on to us. It means more than you know.

We now continue to trust and pray for our court date...

Saturday, August 1, 2009

2 Days

"I lift my eyes up to the hills, where does my help come from? My help comes from the Lord, the Maker of heaven and earth."
Psalm 121:1-2

"Seek justice, encourage the oppressed. Defend the cause of the fatherless, plead the case of the widow."
Isaiah 1:17