Wednesday, April 30, 2008

US Embassy Day!

Sorry no post yesterday.  It was a bit long and exhausting, of course in a good way.  Can I just say that the Lord is so good and has blessed us with the most perfect baby for us.  He is scrumptious!  And so calm and sweet and laid back...just don't take away the pacifier!!!
 
It was really hard to leave the TH.  Silas has really had a mom these last months in his nanny.  She has taken another babe under her wing and as soon as I figure out which family he belongs to, I will let you know...so blessed!
 
It was emotional to leave.  The nannies bought the kids Ethiopian traditional outfits.  Many pictures.  Marshall prayed over our group before we departed.  Bittersweet is an understatement.
 
Apryl took tons of video of all of the kids, I'm sure you're glad to know and Marshall painstakingly (did I spell that right?) went around with the camera.  We will sort it all out when we get home...thanks for sending permission.  Ya'll have some beautimous children waiting for you over here.
 
Today was Embassy day.  Successful, but hot up there!  They expedited our visa since we also need to get a German one.  Tomorrow is a holiday though, but we may get out of here early.  Please pray that all will fall into place.
 
Must get back to Silas and his daddy.  We're about to leave for a group dinner.  Wish I had time for more juicy details and personal emails.  Keep that encouragement coming.  Can't wait to share more when we are home. (I'm sure ya'll will pray harder, knowing the sooner we get home the sooner you get pictures!) ha!!
 
We love you all!  I'll try to post more later...
 
Love all the way from ET!!!
 
jill, marshall & silas


 


Express yourself wherever you are. Mobilize!

Monday, April 28, 2008

Perfect Fit!

What a day!!  We went shopping this morning...fun!  It really kept our minds off of the fact that we were GOING TO MEET OUR SON TODAY!  It helped even more when we found out that the kids were out of the TH getting their medicals done... 
 
The whole day was a surreal experience and one I'll never forget.  We got great video and pictures (which I'll try to upload with this).  Silas is a perfect fit.  He is so laid back and just a happy boy.  Do not take that pacifier away, however.  He's a pacifier boy for sure. 
 
Marshall spotted him through the window and then my hands really started shaking.  I couldn't even wait for his nanny to bring him to us....I went to her.  I couldn't wait to hug her too...she's been a mother to our son for these months.  He is loved.
 
He giggled and cooed and then fell asleep in my arms.  Pure heaven.  Pure, pure heaven.
 
We spent a few hours at the TH.  I know all of you are waiting for pictures of your gorgeous children...they are gorgeous!  Apryl and I are going to work hard tomorrow get pictures of all of the kids and video too. :)  If you have not given us permission by email to photograph your kiddos, please do so and copy both of us.  We want to make sure we follow the rules and get pictures to you.  Did I tell you that your kids are gorgeous?  Every one of them is just precious....tomorrow we'll be loving on them even more.  And the care packages will be given tomorrow too...it was crazy today and I didn't want it to get lost in the busyness.
 
We reluctantly left the TH (emotionally drained and exhausted, but would have slept on the floor if they would let us ;).  We headed out to a traditional ET restaurant for dinner and music and dancing.  Remind me to tell you about the dancing...there was some audience participation. :)
 
I need to get out of the Harbaugh's room and get stuff ready for tomorrow.  We are exhausted and elated and so ready to have Silas full time.  He looks like us.
 
All of these children are handpicked by God for our families...it's amazing to see it up close and personal.
 
Love to you all!
 
jill, marshall & silas mezmur 
 

Sunday, April 27, 2008

We are IN ET!!!

Hi everyone!!  We are here, safe and sound.  Our travel group is precious and we're enjoying getting to know them.  Seth and Apryl feel like old friends.
 
Our flight was long, but good.  We stayed on the tar mat in Khartoum a little longer than expected because of a dust storm.  It was all in all a great flight.  A full flight.  All of our luggage got here too...answer to prayer!
 
We're on our own, so to speak today, as it's Easter here.  Tomorrow morning we go to the grocery and lunch and then to MEET SILAS MEZMUR, himself.  My heart is full (understatement).
 
No pictures yet.  We're taking notes for you families about to travel (congrats!) and those to follow.  By the way, we noticed they are now accepting 1996 series bills for exchange at the bank at the Hilton.  Tuck that away for future use.
 
Please keep praying for us.  All is well and we are joyful.
 
And can someone email me to make sure this worked.....I'll try to do it once a day and want to make sure it works. 
 
We love ya'll and next time you see us we will finally be TOGETHER!!!


Spell a grand slam in this game where word skill meets World Series. Get in the game.

Saturday, April 26, 2008

3-2-1 blast off!!

It's 0345 and we're on our way!!! I promise to try to update as I can...we are not taking the laptop, so we'll do it when we can.

This is it. Silas, here we come. For real!

Congratulations to the new referrals...haven't even had time to chime in with congrats!

Pre-congratulations to those on the cusp of a referral too.

We will love on your children and take pictures of them....promise! It's a true honor.

Our love to you! Talk to you soon....

Friday, April 25, 2008

the final countdown

doo-doo-doo-do!

In less than 24 hours we will be on a plane to Ethiopia! Wowsers!!

A few more things to wrap up today and we're on our way.

There's no way we would be here if it weren't for the Lord. Just thinking about each miraculous detail that had to take place for us to be united with our son...it's almost too much to take in. Our son.

Please pray for:
  • safe and smooth travel
  • protection from sickness
  • sweet and peaceful transition for Silas
  • bonding
  • consulate and visa details to fall into place
  • precious beginning for our family

I will try to update from ET....hopefully we'll figure out pictures.

Chapter 1 is almost finished and we're on to Chapter 2. I can't imagine it being any better. The Lord has done immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to His power that is at work within us, to Him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen. Ephesians 3:20-21

Thursday, April 24, 2008

details, details

We woke up to our in-country itinerary this morning. Very exciting!


Lots of errands to run today and packing. I can't wait to see it all in bags and ready to go.


Oh, did I tell you? We're leaving for Ethiopia day after tomorrow! Day. After. TOMORROW!!!!

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

the furniture

Did I need to rearrange the living room furniture today?

No.

Was it on my list?

No.

Is it now on my list with a line through it?

Yes.

Is unnecessarily rearranging furniture a good way to burn nervous energy?

Why yes it is.

Monday, April 21, 2008

Sister



No, we're not "those weird people that think their dogs are their children", but we DO love our dog. Sophie, often times called Sister, is a really sweet girl. She's going to LOVE Silas. She loves every child she comes into contact with and she also loves a certain stuffed bunny that I did not pose her with in that picture.















Marshall can be quoted as saying, "I never knew I could love a dog this much." She'll be 2 in July. Would it be weird if we had a birthday party for her? Maybe we'll meet some nice new neighbor dogs.



In case you were worried about what Sophie will do while we're in Ethiopia, she is going to her home away from home. She has reservations at her favorite hundepension (that's a dog hotel). This place is also where she gets her hair done and she gets excited if you even mention the ladies' names that work there. Sometimes I question if she wants to come back home when we're there to pick her up.


We've had some nice weather days so we've taken her out on some long walks. We have fields and a forest near the house, so we make sure no one is around and we let her off leash. Really, no one can be around. She's done very well and we don't leave her off long....don't want to push it.

On another note, we had our Travel Conference Call today and should get our in country itinerary tomorrow. We're REALLY going to Ethiopia to pick up Silas. This week. My list is dwindling and has kept me busy...a very good thing. Just a few more details to come together.

4 days to go!!!

Friday, April 18, 2008

if this don't make your day...


I don't know what would! This is Fortuna, the head nurse at the Transition Home.

Only eight days to go and we are getting ready! We went downtown today and got the necessary paperwork for Silas to get his Schengen visa to come into Germany. That is a relief and a few lines to cross off my list.

The update that came with the picture said that:

Silas just couldn’t get any cuter! He is responsive to the TH staff when they talk to him and touch him…he just smiles and coo’s and “talks!” He is very engaging, alert, and makes great eye contact. He can locate sounds by turning his head in that particular direction. He gets lots and lots of attention and loving! He continues to be very healthy and happy!

Did I tell you we're leaving in 8 DAYS!?!

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

note to self...

Dear Jill,

Next time you are taking a break from your List, do NOT spend that time watching adoption videos on You Tube.

Why, Jill, you ask? The result is NOT pretty. It makes your mascara run and your heart ache for your son even more.

So, just stick to the List, sister. No time for emotions!

[Also wanted to say that it looks like I'm not the only one who writes on the list just to immediately cross off. Thanks for confessing, ya'll! See post below and comments...]

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

travel progress

We've watched miracle after miracle unfold in this adoption. Just this week we've watched details come together that God is IN. Marshall got clearance (permission) to travel through Sudan and in Ethiopia. We bought our plane tickets today. To see Silas' name on a plane ticket makes it even more real. He's coming home with us! And we're confirmed for a bassinet on the plane ride home. Hallelujah!!

I've gone into total "list" mode. This means that I have a long Word document titled "Things to Do for Travel" and another titled "Things to Pack for Ethiopia". I'm a list girl. I enjoy marking things off. In fact, I enjoy it so much that sometimes when I accomplish something not on my list, I go ahead and write it after the fact and immediately draw a line through it. Some call it certifiable, I call it visual! I'm breaking down the long To Do list down each day so I can stay focused on something other than we are leaving in 10 days.

Being busy has helped me not go crazy thus far.

I've decided that I'm through with winter. I have stopped wearing my winter coat. You may see me walking the dog in flip flops. I will not put that stinkin' coat back on. I want my capris! I want my flip flops! (Don't worry, I would not be as careless with Silas and dress him inappropriately for the weather at hand.)

I may just get my way. It's summer weather in ET...mid to upper 70's. I can't wait!!

We will also be there during Orthodox Easter. I think it will be special to celebrate our Risen Savior again. (ET is about half Orthodox Christian and half Muslim, give or take.)

So, that's what's going on. Still much to be done, but we are so close to having our boy. So close. I'm off to cross things off of my list....

Thanks for checking in!

Friday, April 11, 2008

Victory in Jesus!!

WE PASSED COURT!!! I uploaded a Silas Slideshow above. Click on the Thumbnail above and turn up your volume.

We would like to introduce you to Silas Mezmur Coen.

Praising the Lord for His Faithfulness!!! Thank you for your prayers!!

More details to come...

i might need some

Just sayin' this may be a long day. From what I understand (Kari, how do you know these things? :), Girmachew goes to court at 1630 Ethiopia time, that's 1430 Central Europe time and 0830 Eastern Standard time.

Stay tuned. I'll post as soon as I know something. I know I said that in the previous post, but just want you to know that I have your back.

In the mean time, praying without ceasing!!

court countdown: 0

This is it. Court appointment is today. As soon as I know something I'll let you know.

The Lord is near. Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Phil 4:5b-7

Thursday, April 10, 2008

court countdown: 1

more day!!

I stayed up until midnight so I could have the pleasure of posting this. Oh yes I did.

I cannot believe that our court appointment is tomorrow. I mean, I'm ready, I am just thrilled that it's finally here.

If you are in the States, I'm asking you to pray BIG on Thursday night. Ethiopia is 9 hours ahead of CST. Euro-folks, we are only 2 hours behind Ethiopia. You pray BIG too!

Wednesday, April 9, 2008

trust

My neck and shoulders were a little tight yesterday as we tried to tackle travel details and bringing an Ethiopian child into Germany....there are a few extra steps there. I'll admit it's all a little stressful and I let it get to me. We could go the US way or the German way...it's a big decision.

This morning I was reading in John. The first verse I read was 14:1...Jesus is speaking:

"Do not let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God; trust also in Me."

I hear You, Lord. You've got it covered! Thank YOU!!

court countdown: 2

days!

And we've know about Silas for 2 months and 2 days.


Tuesday, April 8, 2008

adoption symposium

I want to plug the Adoption Symposium that's coming up on May 10. We went last year and plan to go again this year, with Silas.

If you are interested in learning about adoption (all types), are in the process, want to know what the process is, wonder how on earth you adopt while living in a different country, or just think adoption is great for other people, you should attend.

The KMC Adoption Support Group website has all of the information for the symposium, as well as their monthly meetings. The site also has lots of good information and resources.

It's worth your Saturday, for sure!

Prayerfully, we'll see you there.

court countdown: 3

days!

Sunday, April 6, 2008

snow, real snow!


I met Marshall down in Garmisch on Wednesday. He had a conference and I got to go along for the ride and enjoy the fellowship (Farkle!) and relaxation. It was there we got the official news that if all goes well on Friday, we will travel to Ethiopia on 25 April to pick up Mr. Squishy Cheeks.

This is snow, by the way. The flakes were HUGE like floating cotton balls.


I made a list today of all that needs to be done before we go. It's really not bad. I just need to come up with a plan and check items off of the list, one by one.

This is what I woke up to on Thursday morning:








Here is my handsome man on the streets of Garmisch and me from the opposite direction...maybe we should get a tripod so we can be together? I'm sparing you the self portraits this time...









Sophie enjoyed her time at her vacation home with staff to meet her every need. When we picked her up she was in the office and it was like she was inviting us in to show us her digs. She has reservations at the spa for our ET trip and the days the packers come to pack us out. Maybe Silas and I will check into the hundepension with her. This is her new favorite friend....she has a serious crush on this bunny with which this picture was not posed:

court countdown: 5

days

Friday, April 4, 2008

Silas Sighting!

We got an update today from Rachel at the Transition Home. This is what every mother wants to hear:

Measurements:
Weight: 12 pounds
Height: 23 inches

Silas continues to be a delightful baby. He is easy to make smile. He is a favorite among the nannies….they feel proud that he is growing and developing well!

The picture she sent looks like it's all he can do to keep his head up because of his big, squishy cheeks! I love it!!

Are you ready for this???

Court date: 1 week from today.

Travel: 3 weeks from today.

Yes, I said TRAVEL.

If all goes well at the court appointment, we were told that our tentative travel date is Saturday, April 26. We will probably leave on a Friday to get a direct flight, but sometimes I babble with too much information.

I still can't believe we got a referral.
I still can't believe we have a son.
I still can't believe our court date is in a week.
I still can't believe we are traveling this month....in 3 weeks.
I am, however, ready for all of it!! I could leave tonight with just a back pack and a diaper bag.

Silas, here we come, our little man with squishy cheeks!!

Ok, Everybody, count down with us....