Saturday, April 10, 2010

Homecoming!!!

Yay!!! Whoo Hoo!! We finally made it home. Thank you so much for all of your prayers and thoughts!! We were so lucky to get out when we did as the Embassy was going to be closed for Easter and we could have been stuck there another week. Sorry I am now just posting. I have had a very difficult time doing anything as my kids won't let me out of their sight. Plus we are all so tired around here. However, it couldn't be more incredible at our household!!! We are all bonding and doing wonderful!! Here are some pictures of our homecoming in the middle of the night at the Salt Lake City airport. It was so beautiful! Zoe did amazing. The entire time we were in Africa she only wanted me (or sometimes Josh) to hold her. She would only smile and laugh after she had been around someone for a while. However, when we got to the airport and met everyone it was amazing. It was as if she knew they were family! She let people hold her, she gave kisses and hugs and smiled and laughed lots!
Here we are as a family for the first time!
Here is Calvin (my almost 7 year old) with Zoe. He is her protector and loves her. The second day she was home he told me "Mommy, she is just so cute, I can't stop staring at her". It brought tears to my eyes!
Martin (my 4 year old) can't get enough Zoe hugs and kisses. Luckily Zoe loves to give kisses. He plays with her and just loves to make her laugh. Zoe sure loves her brothers!

Zoe loves my mom. She wanted to be with her at the airport (even when I was standing right next to her). My mom comes over almost every day (as she only lives 15 minutes away) and Zoe loves it! I am so lucky to have such an amazing mom. She is the person who took care of my boys while we were away for 4 weeks. I love her so much!!!

Here is my dad. He was right there helping my mom do everything she could for our boys. I think it is because of him that I didn't have a nervous breakdown in Africa when they told me I would have to stay for 2 to 3 weeks longer. Thanks dad!!

This is the sight we came home to. I can't believe all the people that came even though it was the middle of the night and it was even during Spring Break!!! Zoe already has so many people who love her!
Here is Zoe with my little brother Spencer! Aren't they so cute!!

Here is Zoe with my other little (but bigger) brother Brandon. Both of my brothers are single- so if anyone knows any cute girls.... (ha ha!!!)

This is Josh's sister Rebecca. She lives near us and was amazing also while we were gone. She spent many nights at my house with my kids. My boys just love her and her husband John. I am so grateful to have them in our lives!!
This is Josh's sister Jessica. This was a huge surprise. She flew in from Boston area. I couldn't believe it when we were coming down the stairs and saw her standing there! She will be here for about 2 weeks in total. It has been so fun for everyone to be with her. The kids love playing with her!!
Here is one of my best friends Trish and her daughter Liv. Trish and her family were supposed to be in St. George for Spring Break. However, they put it off for a couple of days to see Zoe. Trish and her mom are actually the reason why we gave her the name Zoe. I was so excited to see Trish here! Isn't her daughter Liv so cute? We are already setting up play dates for the two girls!! By the way- excuse how messy I look in all of these pictures. We had been traveling for 35 hours. Oh- and can I just say that I love girls!!!! Daughters are so much fun to dress and play with!
Here is Trish and Mark with two of their daughters Liv and Whitney. I really must thank Mark because I know he probably wanted to be in St. George but he still came to the airport!!! I have such good friends!!!
Here are the Towner family. Anita, Eric and their daughter Angela. These guys are basically my second family. They work with us and travel with us and are just part of the family. I was so excited to see them there.
I can't tell you incredible everything has been since we got home. Zoe gets along with everyone. She is so relaxed in our home and our boys are doing really well. Although Martin is a little emotional since he isn't the baby anymore- everything feels so natural. I was also nervous with Zoe being 2 years old as we had initially requested a baby. But in reality it has made the transition even easier. She is old enough to play with our boys, old enough to eat dinner with us in her high chair and although I still hold her lots, I can also put a lot of attention on my boys as well. For those of you thinking of adopting only a baby , just know that adopting a 2 year old is awesome!!!
I know that God wanted her to be in our family. And I am sure she knows it as well. She is so happy. She smiles and laughs with the boys all day long. She plays games and mimics everything we do. She is very secure with herself and she knows this is where she is loved.
I will post more pictures hopefully tomorrow. And I am almost finished on all the information for those of you planning to adopt from Rwanda. I will be sending out emails really soon with lots of information and details on what I wish I would have known and done. ha ha!!
Anyone else who wants the information please leave a comment with your email address. I will not be publishing these email addresses. It's not a lot of information, but if I would have double checked and done some things differently it would have saved us a lot of time in Africa.
Also, I know that many of you have left questions. I had a hard time getting to those in Kenya as it was $10 an hour to use the internet. However, now that I am home and finished the itinerary for Rwanda Adoptions, I will soon be answering all of your questions. And hopefully since we got the Kenya Embassy contacting and talking to the Rwanda Embassy that will solve a bunch of problems with delays.
Thanks again for all of your prayers. We are so grateful to be home with our daughter.
Just one last note. I get the question all the time on how I can love her as much as my kids I gave birth to. Well, I would like to finally answer that question first hand. Adopting her feels like I gave birth to her. I love her, want to take care of her, want to protect her and want to hug and kiss her just as much as my boys. She may not have been born from my tummy, but she was born from my heart. She is my daughter. I knew it from the first moment I saw her. I am filled with the same love for her as I have for my boys. God knew that she was mine- it just took a little while for me to find her that's all.

2 comments:

God and Ponytails said...

So happy for you! It was very encouraging as we are awaiting our 2 year old little man from Rwanda! And a little nervous about an older one! So keep the posts coming! Can't wait to see how you all adjust!

Kim and Steve said...

Adoption is so amazing and I'm so happy that another family member can now feel my joy. Without adoption, Steve and I would not have a family. And without adoption, you would not have your amazing Zoe. I can't wait to meet her.