The greatest experience, the one which shakes a soul with hopes and fears, the results of which are never ending, and incidentally, the one which pays the biggest dividends, is to be found in the adoption of children.
--Anonymous

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

UP AND DOWN AND ROUND 'N' ROUND

As a child, I loved a carousel; the calliope music, the beautifully painted horses and the way I could get lost in an imaginary world as I was carried round and round in a never ending circle. Today, the thought of spinning around in circles is enough to make my head hurt but adding the up and down motion to the mix would surely cause an upper GI cleansing, if you know what I mean.
Our adoption is a bit like a carousel ride lately. We seem to be going in circles. I'm up one minute, down the next and it is beginning to make me sick! My meeting with the new lawyer in Guatemala was unusual. He offered to get Nola out of the orphanage (for a price of course) and he also offered to let her live with him and his family. That offer made me go hmmmmm. It sounded odd to me and a little uncomfortable. I think he sensed my uncertainty in that proposal and told me he and his family had fostered many children in the past and he and his wife were adoptive parents so that made me feel a little better. When I asked him what we would need to give him for foster care expenses, he said whatever we wanted to send would be fine. He also told me what he thought it would take (the amount of money) to get Nola's hearing moved up. We talked for about 45 minutes and then I was left to consider everything he had to say. He was very kind but there was something about him that just didn't feel right. I did my own investigation and didn't find any negative information about the man. The thought of getting Nola out of the hogar was so tempting and he said he could get that job done quickly (within a couple of weeks). Even though my gut instinct was saying "don't do it", my heart was already dreaming of the time I would be able spend with Nola during visits if she were with a foster family. I had talked myself in to it, and Mark agreed we could pay his fee.

After deciding we should have some sort of contract drawn up, I contacted the lawyer one more time to get all of the numbers straight. Well, that's when things began to change. Foster care went from "what ever we want to send" to $500 per month and the amount to get the hearing moved up doubled. I've read too many stories of families who got mixed up with lawyers who charged fees on top of fees and we can't afford to be one of those families.

So for now, we're stuck waiting again. I'm praying our original lawyer will miraculously grow a conscience and get himself motivated to push PGN to get their investigation finished. Even if the judge won't move the hearing up, at least we could know the outcome of the investigation and know if any birth family has been located who may want to raise Nola. If no family is found, there is no reason why the judge shouldn't allow the process to proceed (not that she seems to need a reason to hold things up).

Family News
I have been terrible at updating lately. So many family moments have passed without proper blog attention. I almost don't know where to start.
Our sweet Riley celebrated his first birthday! That seems unbelievable to me. Of course I had to make him a barn cake. He was born into a farm family so it was only fitting.
Mark and I decided (at the end of November) to put down hardwood flooring in our living room, dining room, hallway and master bedroom. The process was much more tedious than I had planned and took longer than I had planned. Tim and Jay chipped in and helped to speed the process along. The end result is absolutely beautiful!!! I couldn't be happier. I wanted a rustic looking wood with knots and lots of color variance. We put down a natural finished Walnut and it's perfect! We were going to get braided rugs to put down in some areas but I don't want to cover up the wood!
Since the house was torn up with the hardwood installation extravaganza, we had to put decorating for Christmas on hold until just this past week end. That's certainly not the norm at our house. Usually the Christmas decorations come out the day after Thanksgiving (and if I had my way they, would stay up until Valentines Day ;)
Our annual candy making day was yesterday. Wow, there is a table full of stuff and there are still some things we didn't get made. Maria and Dawson kind of slowed things down a bit this year. I felt like I just got things going and would have to stop to take the dog out or rescue him from Maria's clutches. He actually could eat her up if he wanted to. It's a good thing he's such a good sport.
I'll have to post some pictures later. I still have Christmas shopping to do, although I'm so far ahead of normal, it's almost comforting.
Wishing you all a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

Gordon Mote - Don't Miss the Glory