Wednesday, August 25, 2010

So Many Firsts!

First night in his own bed.  Home at last, safe and sound.
Grandpa Gillies came to meet Joseph!

Seattle......................
Walking through Pike's Place Market in Seattle, Benson and KJ got so many weird looks.  In Uganda, it's totally normal for boys to hold hands.  We're working on this, but hated to tell him that this wasn't acceptable in the US as normal behavior.


Pikes' Place Market, Seattle, Washington
Shawn "trying" to give Joseph a haircut.  It's a bit different than what he's used to, but he is getting better!

First swimming lesson!
Wrestling with Benson

Welcome home sign..................first day of church.
Dad, Mom and Joseph
Siblings, all together looking over the Sound at Grandma and Grandpa B's

First time in a hot tub!
Welcome home son!
Saturday, August 7, 2010

Home At Last!

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Getting off the plane……………
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Brothers!
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Family of Seven! Finally reunited!
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Peanut and Big Brother
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We’re Home!
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Touring the house.  Joseph’s new room!
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The Grand Tour!
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Meeting Aunt Holly and Crew! Go Chelsea!
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So many firsts!  A dilly bar from Grandpa, then the ice cream truck.  The neighbor kids couldn’t resist and a they bought Joseph a push up pop! 
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Great friends already!  We are so blessed!!!
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Some of the new cousins!
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Brothers!
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Notice the Uganda currency, the ice cream man didn’t take it! Ha!
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What a beautiful, crazy and overwhelming day!  We were greeted at the airport by Grandma and Grandpa B, Grandpa Gillies (a surprise who came from Reno) and of course Shawn and the kids.  We made it through immigration biting our nails.  At the last minute I noticed the passport b-day is different than the other b-day we have on the immigration paperwork.  Talk about scary, but no one seemed to notice.  After getting home we were blessed to have some welcome home signs all over the house compliments of our wonderful neighbors and friends.  At this point Beau would not stop talking!  Joseph, “Have you ever had a waffle?   Joseph, do you like chocolate milk?  Joseph, do you like your room”?  It’s good Joseph loves kids and could handle the 50 million questions!  We then took a tour of the house.  Joseph’s bedroom looked great.  When I left it was a storage room and Shawn did a great job getting things ready and our good friend bought him bedding.  After that we had many visitors and just hung out outside. Joseph was quite overwhelmed and getting very tired, but I made him stay up until 8:30PM.  I cannot express the joy that I feel having him here.  We are complete, yet I still have a hole in my heart knowing we left his brother and sister behind.  We are committed to helping them in any way and will maintain contact with them as much as the center they live at will allow.  What a blessing to reunite with them, but how hard to seem them apart again.
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F and Big Brother
  
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Brother G…………
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Reunited!
Wednesday, August 4, 2010

This Is Not The End, Only The Beginning

I just slept.  No, really, I just slept!  I slept a peaceful and deep sleep.  The weight that has been on my shoulders for the last year has been lifted and I was finally able to let me mind go and sleep.  I've had problems sleeping for so long and this deep, blissful sleep is a sign to me that I can now rest.  Joseph is safe and soon I will be tucknig him into his own bed at night.  There is no way for me to describe how difficult this last year has been.  No one could begin to comprehend unless they had been through it themselves.  I often compare this journey to Joseph like someone trying to dig a tunnel through  a mountain using a spoon.  It has completely consumed every single minute of everyday and caused great stress.  I can only breathe a great, big deep sigh of relief.  I have learned so much about myself and I have had my testimony strengthened in the process.  I believe that God worked this miracle through Joseph's faith more than anyone elses!  My son has been able to teach me so much about faith!  God did not let him down.  To top this glorious ending off, I got up the courage to call the center where Joseph's brother and sister have been adopted and they granted us a last minute meeting with them tomorrow.  Grandma hasn't seen them for years and we are going to bring her a well.  What a gift!  God knows that these 3 need each other!  I couldn't be more grateful.  I will update with photos as soon as I can.  In the meantime, thanks to all those who prayed and loved us through this.  The challenges we face when we get home are not over, yet somehow I am ready to face them knowing that our Journey to Joseph is over!
Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Visa!!!

We are going to pay for the visa tomorrow AM!  We will be flying home and getting in on Friday at 11:30 AM.  Can't wait to see everyone!  As we come to the end of this part of our journey I can't help but marvel at the many miracles that have taken place and give thanks where thanks is due!  Thank you to everyone for the support, love and especially to those who have helped Shawn and the kids!  We're coming home!!!!
Monday, August 2, 2010

Visa Appointment

Today was a big day.  It seems like once you clear one hurdle in Ugandan adoption, you don't have a lot of time to celebrate before the next big challenge happens.  Thankfully things seemed to go well today.    We had some long delays due to technology issues, but the interview went very well.  We met with the head consul, Bridgette. She was very kind to us.  I will find out tomorrow how long it will take to get the visa.  Praying for no glitches:) Thanks for the prayers and support.  This is my 4th week in Uganda and Im ready to come home and I know Shawn is struggling, so I feel pretty down about that, but we are enjoying each other and making the best out of things!