Blog Archive

Monday, May 31, 2010

Love in a Package

I'm so grateful for a friend who arranged to have someone bring a package with her to Uganda for Joseph.  My mom was so nice and made a scrapbook of all the Benson relatives so that Joseph could get to know all of the Benson side of the family.  I think there are about 32 of us so he has a lot to learn.  He will have 13 more on Shawn's side!  That's a lot of people.  I'm also tucking in some vitamins................I am a mom!  Benson sent a couple of books............Notice anything interesting about our family picture???? Thanks to my dad for his photo shop skills!
Thursday, May 27, 2010

Gratitude List For the Day!

-Visa's are being issued!
-Beau got antibiotics for his strep throat! So grateful we have access to medicine
-We don't have a LG order with the wrong words
-We have amazing kids who have a heart for the poor and needy
-My kids are all healthy
-Shawn has a great job
-I'm alive!
Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Encouragement Day

I'd love to hear from anyone who is following the blog.  Drop us a comment and send a hug.  I see lots of visits but don't know who is out there. 


Today has been a little hard.   Shawn talked to the lawyer and he said he tried to meet with our judge and she sent her clerk to tell him to go away.  I don't know what that means.  My hopes of getting Joseph home before courts close seems to be fading.  Today I gathered so much strength by thinking about the women beaders in the IDP camps that our foundation helps support.  I thought about their struggles, HIV, poverty, lack of water, education, food, being widowed, war, loss of children.  What on earth do I have to be sad about?  Yes, there is a hole in my heart and I know it's normal to be sad when things get difficult in this adoption, but really if I take my mind back to the beautiful, resilent women I met when we traveled in January I can't feel sad for long.  They give me so much courage.  Today I honor each and every one of them and I pledge to continue helping them through the work I do with our foundation.  I can't wait to see them again!
Tuesday, May 25, 2010

The First Time I Met Joseph

I just ran across this photo.  This is the moment I met Joseph.  He was playing football and I walked by.  I asked if I could join in (I'm not hard to miss in this picture, the only white, female out there).  Anway, we played with a ball made out of sacks and Josehp and I ended up conecting on some great plays.  That's where I met this sweet boy!  In fact, the one year anniversary is coming up any day now!

Random snaps!

Mango Jamba Juice and More Late Night Calls

Shawn just called the attorney and he still hasn't talked to his "associate"  So, he said call back in two hours.  Shawn is going to set his alarm and call.  Hope we get some news.

Today I was in Safeway and my  tummy started rumbling and I thought, "I'll get a Jamba Juice".  I looked up at the menu and saw "Mango a-go-go". The ingredients were mango, pineapple and passionfruit juice.  I was feeling a bit down so I splurged and ordered one.  I picked the Mango drink because the fruits remind me of my beloved Uganda.  The liquid slid up the straw and as it touched my tongue so many senses came to life.  I was there!  I was back in Uganda sipping passionfruit juice.  I was eating the sweetest pineapple from the side of the road.  Tears stung my eyes as my senses completely grabbed ahold of me and threatened to sink me.  I got it together quickly and went about my day.  But, just for a moment I felt like I was home. 

Heard At Our House

Last night while praying I couldn't help but chuckle when Benson said this:

Benson: "Dear Heavenly Father, We pray that the dumb people at the embassy without brains in their heads will start issuing visas.  We pray for all the people who are suffering in the world. We're grateful for etc, etc etc". 

Out of the mouth of babes! I couldn't be mad at him as he is frustrated too.  It must have worked because visa's are going to be issued again.  The problem now is our court hearing.  Still waiting to hear.  Shawn tried to call our attorney for about 4 hours this AM but couldn't get him. We'll call tonight and hopefully have an update. 
Monday, May 24, 2010

Still Waiting

The attorney sent an "associate" to meet with the judge.  Whether the meeting ever happened today is unclear.  The attorney and his associate never crossed paths again.  Shawn will call in the AM.

I have been thinking a lot about patience lately.  This something I came across that is helping me through this.

"Patience is not passive resignation, nor is it failing to act because of our fears.  Patience means active waiting and enduring.  It means staying with something and doing all that we can-working, hoping and exercising faith; bearing hardship with fortitude, and even when the desires of our hearts are delayed.  Patience is not simply enduring; it is enduring well"!  Deiter  Uchtdorf

I wonder how well I am doing at this.  This quote has given me something to chew on for sure, and has helped get me back on track.
Thursday, May 20, 2010


Today I'm looking and choosing to find things good in all of this!  I received a nice call from my dad yesterday.  After telling him what was going on with this roller coaster he said something like, "Just remember you're fighting for  one of your kids now".  I thought, "He gets it"!  How affirming to know that your own dad believes in what you are doing.  He is so open minded and has been such a help through this.  He's a quiet guy, but every time I see him he'll say, "How's my grandson"?  Today I'm grateful for my dad.  Grateful that he is willing to hop on a plane at the last minute to help me bring Joseph one step closer to coming home.  Grateful that he "gets it".  Joseph is ours.  We are committed to him.  This is no different then if we were fighting for any of our other kids.  Love Ya Dad!  I know you don't read the blog, but just the same I hope you can feel my gratitude when we're together.
Wednesday, May 19, 2010


Yesterday I was in the library with Beau (age 8).  He asked me, "Mom, how long do we have until Joseph can't be adopted"?  I told him, "Eight months".  He looked at me and between the sobs said, "Mom, I just want my brother to come home".  I think this is a sign that I need to be more careful keeping things even on the home front.  Obviously the kid feels stressed too.  Sweet, sweet Beau. 

It's Late, I'm Weary

It's late and I'm weary.  I can't sleep so I've been sitting on the internet hoping that I will get an e-mail from our lawyer.  The news we heard today isn't great and I sent some specific questions to our lawyer in hopes that we can get some answers.  It's 9:30 AM his time, thus the hope that he could answer my e-mail is keeping me awake.  Hope is not lost, not at all.  God has brought us too far and there is a reason we were assigned this judge.  I'm just waiting to learn why.  I don't know when I'll be leaving.  With most judges I would say I could be in Uganda any day, but with this judge things are very unpredictable.  The airfares are jumping quickly and are up to about $2800.  A week ago they were around $2000.  Joseph starts his second term of boarding school on an e-mail that his money is due and he has to have a bunch of supplies.  I have had no notice of this so tomorrow I will focus on wiring the money and getting him settled.  It will help keep me busy.  I'm doing a bead party for African Promise tomorrow night.  I always enjoy an opportunity to talk about the foundation and raise awareness.  I hope I'm emotionally stable enough to stand up there and talk.  We still haven't told very many people about our adoption and I'm sure my emotions betray me at times and people wander what in the world is going on with me.  Anyway, the fight goes on.  Praying and staying close to the Lord.  He is stretching me and I am learning to rely on Him in ways that I never have.  I am thankful for that.


Our application has been assigned to a judge.  The judge is not the one we were hoping to be assigned to.  I don't know much more than that.  The attorney can't seem to give me any firm answers.  Keep praying.  We need it!
Tuesday, May 18, 2010

No News (that is, no good news:)

Still waiting for word......................................please pray for our case that we will get a court date and that we will get Judge M. O. We need all the faith and prayers you can muster.  Thanks for the strength you give us.
Sunday, May 16, 2010

Dear Joseph,

Dear Joseph,
It was so great to talk to you today.  I'm so glad that you are feeling well and that you are safe.  Today when you told me about your grandmother crying when you left her, my heart broke for.  I cannot wait to meet Esther and reassure her that she will always be able to talk to you, and that you will always visit Uganda and her.  I know that she is so happy for you and that is why she wants you to be adopted so that you can have a better life, still, I know it is hard for her.  Today when we talked I promised you many things.  I promised you that when I come (or dad) that we will take you to Jinja to see the source of the Nile and that we will go to see the elephants and giraffes.  Sometimes when I make these promises I worry.  We have promised to give you so many things, a family, an education, love.  What if things fall apart and we can't get you home.  I wonder if it's right for me to make promises when things are teetering every day.  I tried as hard as I could to explain to you why we aren't there yet.  I know you are waiting everyday and it breaks my heart each time you say, "I am waiting for you Mother". I wish there was a way to explain to you how hard I am trying to get there, how hard we are trying to get you home and how much you are wanted and loved.  Things will work out Joseph.  Your faith is much greater than mine and I know your prayers will be heard.  You will pull us through this.  You have taught us so much about faith and hope.  Can't wait to see you and hug you again.  Dad is so jealous that I am coming first.  He is really sad and wishes it was him coming for court.  We love you Joseph!

Letter’s From My Cute Niece’s and Nephew’s To Their New Cousin

letters from benson's

letters from benson's2

This week I got some beautiful letter’s and picture’s from the Utah Benson’s.  They all wrote welcome letters for Joseph.  For Some reason I can’t get the letter’s to scan properly, so I’ll below I’ll post some excerpt’s.  I am going to bring the letter’s to Joseph along with a photo album of all his cousin’s and family members so that he can be prepared for this big crazy family.

MAX, AGE 16: We are all praying so hard for you to be able to live here, and I hope it all comes together soon!  Can’t wait to meet you!

JAKE, AGE 9: I started to make a book called Adventures with Alex.  I haven’t dedicated it to anyone, so I will probably will pick you.  You might be one of the characters.  You will have to see what it is like.

WHITNEY, AGE 14: I just want to welcome you again into our family…. I don’t think I can wait much longer to meet you!  I am so excited!  I know that you are going to add so much to our family… You already have.  Hopefully I will see you soon cousin!

SETH: AGE 12: I wish you the best of luck, we are praying for you.

Saturday, May 15, 2010

No News

Have tried to call and e-mail our attorney about 40 times since yesterday and he either has his phone off or doesn't answer.  Still waiting............................
Thursday, May 13, 2010

Can't Say Much, But Prayers Needed

Received some confusing and  possibly bad news.  Over the next 12 hours if you feel like praying, please pray for our case.  Thanks.
Wednesday, May 12, 2010
"Don't forget in the darkness what God promised you in the light."

Yes, It's filed, but what in the heck does that mean?

Again, the rollercoaster of adoption is taking us for a ride.  Yesterday we thought I might be on a plane by Friday, now we don't know.  Our attorney was supposed to meet with the judge yesterday to see if she can squeeze us in, but, she wasn't there yesterday.  He has asked me not to come until he knows something.  He says he will meet with her tomorrow(that's bedtime in the US). So, when I wake up in the morning I will call him and give an update!
Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Application Filed

The APPLICATION is filed.  It's 10:30 PM and I just spoke with our attorney.  I don't really know what is going to happen.  In his words, "We are struggling to get a hearing before the judge goes on leave".  He said he has an appointment to meet with the judge this afternoon which is when we'll be sleeping.  So, not sure what is going to happen but I will call him in the AM which will be his evening.  I don't think I'll sleep tonight!

Update, Tuesday!

I know that my affidavit arrived at the attorney's office at 4:30 PM and was signed for.  I couldn't get in touch with him, but I will be staying up late tonight to call (it will be WED AM his time) and make sure he is going to file that AM.  I am packing my bags in hopes that I have to get on a plane in the next few days.  I should be stressing out, but I feel so excited!  I know it's hard on Shawn when I'm gone so thanks in advance to all my wonderful friends and family that will bless us while I'm away!  I feel so incredibly greatful to have you!
Monday, May 10, 2010


Talked to our attorney today.  He says that he will file tomorrow and asked if I could be in Uganda next week!  Yes, I can!
Saturday, May 8, 2010

Good Things on the Horizon!

Well, my affidavit is somewhere over the Atlantic right now and will arrive in Uganda on Tuesday.  As it stands, the other affidavit's will be re-done on Monday.  At least two of them.  There are two others that need to be re-done and the attorney will have to arrange that.  Joseph's grandma, his caretaker and Joseph will have to go to Kampala at 11:30 on Monday to sign the new affidavit's.  Next week could bring good things.  I am alway cautious in my optimism considering the past disappointments, but I have to admit I feel like things are going to move in the right direction this week!  The sun is out and we went on a bike ride around the lake and that along with the sun has done wonders!
Friday, May 7, 2010

Update..............And the ride continues................

Well, since last night at midnight when I last posted some things have changed.  I can't go into detail, but, I was able to get new affadavits for myself then I signed and notarized them and shipped them off to Uganda.  There were 6 papers and it cost $114 to get them there by Tuesday.  If, (big if) everything else can be fixed by then our attorney "promises" he'll file which would then mean we would get a court date.  Holding my breath but feeling hopeful!
Thursday, May 6, 2010


I posted this so I could remind myself  how happy I usually am!  Can't wait to feel that good again when this is all over.  Seems like all the smiles I put out lately aren't real.  I'm a good faker.  The above photo is a real one though and  it makes me happy to remember feeling that way.  And, I just had to post a photo of Joseph's Grandma B.  She is excited to meet you.  Isn't she cute!  Couldn't ask for a better mommy or grandma.  I just realized I sound so much like Eyore.  Funny thing is, on this roller coaster the next day could bring great joy.  I hope I sleep tonight!


It's midnight.  No one would believe me if I told them what today brought. Down, Down, Down, Up.  I did make a phone call, an important one, I waited up and got a person on the line who seems to never answer their phone.  There is a glimmer of hope on the horizon.  I prayed mightily before I made that call and there may be progress.   Now, the waiting starts again.  I never give up though, ever.  Thanks for the kind comments from other PAP.  You guys are really, truly the only ones who can understand any of this.  I pray for you too. 

Bad News

 More bad news today.  As it stands our application for a court date is ready to file, except for one thing.  This one thing stands in the way of everything.  There may not be anyway around it.  Try as I may a solution doesn't seem possible right now.  Without this "thing" we cannot file and unless a solution is found we won't be bringing Joseph home.  I am going to stay up late tonight and call our attorney.  I've been on the phone with people for 3 hours today.  This week alone I've bought and used $50.00 worth or calling cards and they are almost gone.  The problem I'm having with all of this is that I feel like the human connection is getting lost in all of this.  THIS, is about Joseph but because of all the bureaucracy, money, papers etc. the task of giving this boy a home sometimes feels hopeless.  I'm trying hard not to be sad.  I know that Joseph would be so worried if he knew how bad I'm feeling.  I know he would say, "Mother, have faith and God will provide".  I'm trying to listen to his voice telling me that.  His faith is so big and I'm clinging to that right now.  We aren't giving up in any way, but, we could really use some extra prayers, I just don't know if mine are big enough:)
Once our eyes are opened we cannot pretend we do not know what to do. God, who weighs our hearts and keeps our souls knows we know and holds us responsible to act. Proverbs 24:12
Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Not So Tough

I am really mad at myself right now.  Today has not been good.  I've felt depressed, sad, confused and dark all day.  I thought I was tougher than this.  When we started this many months ago I remember telling myself that this journey was going to be hard and I knew from other families stories that it would try, test and challenge me.  So why then is it getting the best of me?  I am the kind of person that likes to make things happen.  During this journey I have been able to control much of what happens because I push, research, network and do anything humanly possible to push things along.  I feel stuck right now.  Promises have been made and broken and each day keeps turning into the next and there is nothing I can do about it.  I feel so alone and so powerless.  Some days, my faith is strengthened by all of this and I feel my self being stretched spiritually and growing.  But on days like today I feel lifeless.  This is a hard pill for me to swallow.  I have been blessed with a happy disposition and rarely feel depressed but this situation is starting to get the best of me.  That is why I'm so angry at myself.  Didn't I know that this was going to be hard????  Yes! Yes! Yes!  Even thinking of the families that have much worse situations hasn't given me comfort today.  That is usually the best medicine for me.  Thinking about the families who have left their babies in Uganda do to the Visa situation.  I know I will get through this and most days feel very hopeful, but, today just stinks.  I know too that things are only going to get harder.................I know I need to toughen up.  Chances are that if and when we get guardianship we will not be able to get a visa and I will have to leave Joseph in Uganda again.  I need to brace myself for what is ahead, but for today I just can't.  Maybe tomorrow.