Sunday, June 28, 2009

Birthday Pictures.

Time to share a few pictures of Noah's birthday. For those of you on Facebook there are a ton of pictures there to check out. These are just a few of my favorites. Noah Tamirat's birthday was friday but we didn't do cake and presents until Saturday. Friday in his traditional Ethiopian outfit with his stool from Ethiopia.Sandbox fun. This has a picnic table attached and was his big present from momma & daddy. He spent about an hour in this and loved it. New car purchased with birthday money from Mimi, PapPap and grampy.

Fun with cake.
Noah Tamirat had a great first birthday with Mommy and Daddy. Maybe next year we'll have a bigger party with family and friends but I think this was the best choice for birthday #1.

Friday, June 26, 2009

Happy 1st Birthday.

Today is Noah Tamirat's first birthday.

One year ago today Sean and I were on our way home from a fun vacation in Tennesee. We were praying that our homestudy would be waiting in our mailbox so we could mail our dossier to AGCI and finally get a spot on that waitlist. It seemed so long ago that we had signed contracts with them. Our case manager had told us before we left to try not to think about things and just enjoy our vacation but our son was never far from our mind. We wondered about him and his birth mom constantly. Little did we know that on the day we were traveling home to Maryland he was being born in Ethiopia. Did his mom have any idea at this time that her son would be raised far away in a different country?

We are so blessed to have been given the gift of Noah Tamirat. He is our joy.

12 things about Noah

1. He is very strong willed & determined. I hope this serves him well later in life

2. He is very curious. We are hoping this leads him to amazing discoveries and not into trouble

3. He is a good eater. Noah is still eating mainly formula and baby food but he also eats some table food and we haven't found anything he won't eat. He likes chicken, olives, grapefruit, cheese, oranges..

4. He loves his bathtime and we can't wait to see how he likes his pool.

5. He is a happy & loud boy

6. He is already becoming a baseball fan. We turn the tv on to the orioles game and he screams..not sure if they are cheers or screams of frustration. He wouldn't be the first orioles fan to scream in frustration i'm sure.

7. He is very loving. We cuddle alot and he gives kisses more freely.

8. He loves mommy & daddy. He might go to others for a brief time but he doesn't want mom or dad out of his sight for long.

9. He has grown so much in the 2 short months he's been with us.

10. He took his first steps on May 18th just a couple days short of 11 months old and 2 days short of being with us for a month. I told Almaz it wouldn't be long

11. He is so loved by everyone that meets him

12. He is our beautiful, determined,strong willed, loving, ,happy, excitable, wonderful little big man

HAPPY BIRTHDAY NOAH TAMIRAT we can't wait to celebrate many more with you.

Monday, June 22, 2009

A playdate at the Baysox.

We don't have many friends with children Noah's age so since he left Hannah's Hope he hasn't played with many kids. However we are lucky enough to have some friends we met at the baseball stadium so Noah gets a playdate with his new buddy Jake. I hope these guys grow up to be good friends and love baseball. The following is what happens when you try to get two active little boys to pose for a picture. Jake checkin out Noah.

Where's Jake?

Noah what are you doing down there?

Jake come and eat this book with me.

I think there are some pretty cute pictures here. We will keep trying for that perfect pose.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Happy Father's Day

I want to wish a happy Father's day to all the special men that have been and are in Noah Tamirat's life. And a happy fathers day to two of my fav guys my dad and my husband. I'll leave you with a few pictures..because everyone loves pictures.A Couple people from Hannah's Hope that were very special to Noah Tamirat.Noah's first picture with Grandpa (my dad).
Noah and Daddy at a baseball game. Happy 1st fathers day babe love you. Daddy happy fathers day don't know how many this is but hope you have many more. And happy fathers day to the men at Hannah's Hope who love our children but don't always get the recognition and thanks that the special mommies get.

Friday, June 19, 2009

From Ethiopia to America. What a difference a couple months makes.

I'm sure this post doesn't need much explanation. Tomorrow will be two months since we held Noah Tamirat for the first time. As you can see he was very serious.

At home our very smily fun loving little boy.

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

All Gods Children International.

"The greatest experience, the one which shakes a soul with hope and fear,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"

Ok so i'm doing this post now for a couple reasons
1. I don't think I have ever done a post about our agency or how we choose them
2. I have received alot of questions about AGCI on other website
3. Someone left me a blog post asking about them but didn't leave me a way to get back to them so i'm hoping they will come back and read this post.

I don't think we choose AGCI as much as I feel we were led to them. I first heard of them soon after we had started the discussion that we might need to adopt in order to complete our family. I was watching an episode of Adoption Story on TLC and a family was adopting a child from Guatamala thru AGCI. Everything about this episode drew me in so much that I thought for sure our child would be waiting for us in Guat and that this was the agency for us. I got on their website right away and requested an information packet. I joined adoption forums that related to Guatamala adoptions and started researching everything I could about that process. However it wasn't the right time for us to start the process. During the wait I continued to research I checked out one other agency that totally felt wrong (for very good reason ) we talked about domestic adoptions, we looked into foster care adopt none of these were right for us we knew international adoption was what we were being called to do. Around the time we were getting more serious I again contacted AGCI. I received another information packet in the mail and since my first contact with them they had started a new country program. There were many rumors about Guatamala shutting down so as we looked into what other programs AGCI had to offer their newest program Ethiopia seemed to be the perfect fit.

Thru this process is was made clear to me that none of this happens in our time, its god's timeing, his plan we just need to follow and be patient. He led us to AGCI not to adopt from Guatamala but to know our agency when the time came, He brought the Ethiopia program around at the time we were prepared to start our process , he knew from the start that our child would be waiting for us there. What an incredible ride it was and I"m so glad we choose to follow where we were being led.

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Learning new things.

Since bringing Noah Tamirat home our lives have changed alot in some way and not so much in others. I had experience with young children either nieces and nephews,friends children or ones I babysat for when I was younger so some stuff was new to me and some wasn't. Over all I think this mommy thing is going well.
I never knew that a baby's finger nails grow so much faster then an adults we cut them at least once if not twice a week. Kind of crazy. I never imagined that changing diapers wouldn't bother me..ok so i'm not saying its my favorite thing to do but really its not as bad as changing the diaper of a child thats not yours. I just want to do everything I can to make sure our son is happy and that includes changing stinky,wet diapers. If you want to become a parent for the first time take the patience you have for other children and multiply it by at least 3...if you can handle that much patience your well on your way to full time parenthood. Seriously everytime I'm almost at my limit somehow I look into his eyes and find a little bit more to give because I love him so much.
Noah Tamirat is growing and changing everyday and not a day goes by that he doesn't make me laugh. Of course there are also days he makes me want to cry and rip out my hair. He definitly knows right from wrong and is testing boundries on a daily basis. He will look right at your with his adorable smile as he's doing something you just told him 2 seconds ago not to do.
He's to stinkin cute and he knows it.
I think I expected us to get looks when we are out in public with him, I was even partially prepared for comments because lets face it two white parents and a african child is not your typical family make up. What I didn't expect is how much attention he would get. I know babies get attention ,women will glance at them or say they are cute sometimes but seriously we can't leave the house without being told several times how cute or beautiful he, women, white, black makes no difference this kid draws them in like flys to the point that you almost want to disappear and just live as invisable people. Noah now says mama and dada but we still don't think he knows who he's supposed to say them to. He has pretty much said dada since we came home mama is new. We'll keep working on it. For now i'll leave you with a couple pictures of the boy who draws attention everywhere he goes.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Ethiopia Day 5 Our last day.

Our last day in Ethiopia. Today we intended to hang out alot at the hotel and hope Noah Tamirat got some good naps in before the long journey to America. We were more then ready to get home and start our life as a family of 3 but did our little guy really have any idea what was about to happen today? We went over to Hannah's Hope for a little bit in the morning and this is what happened when one of the special mothers came outside and saw Tamirat.
She scooped him right up and took him inside. This is where Daddy found him when he went looking. One last time to play I really don't think he understood that he would never see them again.
About 5 minutes before we were leaving for the airport we walked back over to Hannah's Hope with another family in our travel group to get the traditional family picture in front of the gate that neither of us had gotten during the week. Thank you Allen & Sarah for taking our photo.

Here is a picture of Noah Tamirat with one of the drivers from Hannah's Hope Danny. We learned that these two had a very close bond. We were sitting on the steps at the hotel when Danny brought a couple people back from shopping and as soon as he saw us he called out to Tamirat. Its a good thing i had my arm around his waist because his little arms and legs started going and he was squealing in excitement. Danny jumped right out of the van and ran up the steps saying "tami tami tamirat" oh how happy my little guy was. We had to get this photo of Noah with his two favorite Danny's
When we were leaving for the airport and Danny said goodbye to Tamirat I think he finally realized that he was leaving and not going to see this place or these people again. He got the saddest look in his eyes and just started wailing. I recognized that look because it is the same one I saw in the eyes of his birthmom when she said goodbye to him. What a heartbreaking moment for our little guy and my heart was broken for him. The trip to the airport was a bit of a blur..Noah was asleep in my lap and I was just trying to take in our last moment in Ethiopia. All of a sudden we were there and unloading luggage, saying goodbye to johannes and making our way inside. After going thru security we made our way to the checkin desk and things slowly went down hill..let me remind you it was late so already well beyond the time that we were tired and just wanted to sleep. The baby woke up hungry and crabby from being sick and teething. I couldnt juggle him and luggage and a bottle so he pretty much had to cry until we could get rid of our bags and I could feed him. Yes this made me look like a horrible mom and I was getting lots of looks. But wait it gets even worse we got upstairs to our gate and went thru security there and they pulled Sean aside..apprently we had to much birr and we couldnt bring it all with us so there was a big to do and next thing i know someone is taking him away and all they said was "he come with us we be right back" I had no idea where they were taking him or why they were taking him away. I was hot and tired and the baby was having a melt down. He bit me several times and wouldn't stop crying and yes at this point I had a melt down I was scared and frustrated and left alone with a fussy baby and I am forever grateful to the couple that stepped in to help me out. I have no idea what their names were or what agency they were adopting thru but they truly were a god send. They sat with me until Sean came back . The ladies husband talked to the person at the ticket counter to find out where they would have taken him so he could calm me down, he walked with Noah to give me a break...I will most likely never see or hear from these people again but I hope they know how much I appreciate everything they did for me that night and I hope their lives are richly blessed for the kindness that they showed to me.
Sean did come back and we boarded that plane and never was I happier to be on my way home. Noah slept thru all take offs and landing and actually slept thru the entire layover in rome. When he was awake it was typical 10month old behavior of not wanting to be confined to a seat and wanting to yank out and toss everything in the seat backs. Over all I don't think he did bad on the flights. We were very jet lagged by the time we landed at Dulles on Friday and were very thankful for the quick trip thru immigration and happy to see my parents waiting for us.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Ethiopia day 4 Final post.

The last post for Day 4 finally. I told you this was a busy day for us so I felt it needed many posts. Our last stop for the day was the cultural dinner. I will start by saying if this was just any dinner we probable would have skipped it due to the fact that Noah Tamirat had been congested all week and was now cutting two teeth so not in the best of moods. Not to mention this would go well into bedtime. However we felt that this was an important thing for us to experience with him to learn more about his culture and to taste the foods and we are so happy we went. I'll share some pictures from the eveningNoah Tamirat with Almaz. Sometime before he spilled her drink on the floor I guess. She did tell us he's a handful and a bit of a trouble maker. We could tell she was very fond of him .This beautiful woman worked at the restaurant. At one point I looked up and she was walking around with Noah Tamirat. Almaz assured me this was fine. The food. Not sure what it all was since Almaz ordered but it was all very tasty.

Noah Tamirat hanging out with Danny. He decided he was going to grab some injera and actually ate some later in the evening. He had a very close bond with Danny.
Mommy and Tamirat enjoying the music and Dancing.Some of the amazing dancers. We have most of it on video so we can show Noah as he grows up.

What an amazing evening. Tamirat fell asleep on the way to the hotel so we had to gently change him into jammies and lay him in bed.

*coming soon (hopefully) our last day in Ethiopia.