Monday, September 1, 2008

Pictures!


The Beautiful Ethiopian countryside

We could not get this toy out of Mihiretu's mouth after he went to sleep


The kids playing



Mommy and Mihiretu




Daddy and Tigist





Daddy and Mihiretu

























Mihiretu playing while mommy changes his first blow-out diaper

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Our First Night Home

I can't tell you all how wonderful it is to be in our own home with our children! It's 5:30 am, and we've all been up since 4am. We were able to sleep from 5pm to 4am last night. Mihiretu woke up crying twice but I was able to rock him to sleep both times so we are all feeling fairly rested. The kids are in the family room right now playing with a Noah's Ark their Auntie Jean got them. Tigist is singing something in Hadiya (the language they speak in her village) and I of course can't understand what she is singing, but I can pick out one word, Hallelujah! I asked the guard at the guest house who speaks Hadiya what she was singing about one day and he said it was a praise song. I'm not sure if she is singing the same song, but it's such an amazing feeling to know that she has already been told about the Lord.

Our trip home was extremely long, and the kids each had their moments, but we made it and had the most wonderful welcome home celebration at the airport. Thank you so much to everyone who was able to come greet us. I was in a jet-lag haze, so I'm sure I didn't express my gratitude very well, but I was truly touched and overwhelmed with the love and excitement that greeted us. Hannah, you are amazing! The video you took and posted on our blog is priceless. I watched it this morning while holding Mihiretu in my lap. He was eating a nectarine and "feeding" me with his sticky little fingers. Thank you so much for helping us share our journey with everyone!!

We can't thank you all enough for all your prayers while we were in Ethiopia. They were answered everyday. Jeff and I never got sick, the adoption process and paperwork went extremely smoothly, our children are absolutely beautiful and healthy and we feel like real bonding is already happening. It makes a world of difference that the children were loved so much by their Ethiopian family, I believe that they have and will be able to transfer that attachment to us so much easier. We are so blessed!

As soon as we are unpacked and can find our cameras we'll post pictures from our trip. We had some memory card issues, so we didn't take as many pictures as we wanted, but we'll post a few soon. Thank you all for sharing in our journey!

They are precious in His sight

You should be able to click once on any image to make it bigger.

I can't even begin to tell you how amazing and beautiful these two children are. Here are a few pictures from our time at the airport. I know that there were about 30 cameras going, which means that there were somewhere between 100-1000 pictures taken in the short 20 minutes at the airport. If you happen to have a great pic you would like to share - email it to me and I'd be glad to add it to the blog.

Welcome home!

The family - waiting to meet their new granddaughter/grandson, niece and nephew, etc...

The girls - Sydney, Sophia and Grace -
waiting to meet their new friends!

The Paparazzi!

The Greene family!!!

Neighbors & friends - they'll be sisters in no time.

Friday, August 29, 2008

They're home!


Thanks to all who were able to join us at the airport. We had quite the crew to welcome Tigist and Mihiretu to Oregon. We took many, many, many pictures, but unfortunately I won't be able to post those until late tonight or tomorrow. For now, here is some video of our day.


video

My favorite quote of the day was from a stranger coming out of the international area. He took one look at all of us and said, "There must be a celebrity that is coming." I wanted to tell him that yes indeed there are four celebrities on their way!

The Greenes are home and (hopefully) catching up and sleep. I am sure we will hear more stories and see lots more pictures as the jet-lag wears off and things settle down.

At Kristen's shower we talked a bit about providing meals for the family as they settle into their new normal routine. We will be coordinating that this weekend and next week. If you would like to bless the Greenes in that way, send me an email so I can add you to our list. My email is hannah@crownrep.com

Please remember to keep Jeff, Kristen, Tigist and Mihiretu in your prayers. We will update with specific prayer requests as we hear more from Jeff and Kristen.

Thursday, August 28, 2008

Come say "Hi!"

A "welcome home" party will be meeting at the Portland Airport to greet the Greenes when they arrive tomorrow! If you would like to come see the kiddos and say a quick hello to Jeff and Kristen, we will be meeting in the international arrivals area (downstairs near baggage claim) at noon. We don't know for sure how long it will take to get through customs, but the flight comes in at 11:50 am on Northwest Airlines from Amsterdam, and we don't want to be late.

If you have any questions, please feel free to call Marisa (503-577-8146) or Hannah (503-936-9045).

Hope to see many of you friends and faithful blog readers there tomorrow!

PS: Don't forget your camera!

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

A Long Trip Home

As we sleep tonight (Wednesday) the Greenes are packing and preparing for the long journey home. Twenty-seven hours of travel with awaits them!

The four will be leaving Ethiopia at 10:45 on Thursday night (that is 8:45 Thursday morning here in the Northwest). They have one stop in Amsterdam before landing in Portland at 11:50 on Friday morning.

Please pray for Jeff and Kristen as they are preparing to leave Ethiopia with their children. Pray for Tigist and Mihiretu that they will understand as much as possible and have peace about this transition. Please pray for the four of them that they will have a smooth trip home, that they will be able to sleep as much as possible, and will have no hang ups at any of the airports. Also, please pray for good seats on both planes, and if possible that they will be seated at a bulk head with a bed for Mihiretu.

48 short hours from now the Greenes will be putting their babies to bed at home!

"Everyone loves her"

An update sent from Jeff at 9:15 Wednesday morning (Portland time).

We picked the kids up yesterday (Tuesday), and had a goodbye ceremony at the care center. It was fun, but a little long and all the kids were crying by the end. We went to the US Embassy and got our visas, it only took about an hour and was pretty easy. Then we came back to the house for the rest of the night and dinner. It went pretty well, except Tigist had a terrible cough, and could not stop coughing at one point.

Tigist coughed most of the night and was pretty fussy, so neither Kristen or I got much sleep. Mihiretu slept great though. Both kids are so much fun. Tigist makes Mihiretu laugh so hard, she tells him what to do. They just love each other, she is always kissing him and it puts a big smile on his face. Kristen is spending most of the time with Mihiretu, because he cries bloody murder if she leaves him now. Today (Wednesday) was a fun day, we stayed at the guest house all day and played with the kids. Tigist took a nice nap, then had another coughing fit so we took her to the doctor. They said she had an infection and gave her some medicine. We just gave her a dose, so hopefully she will be able to sleep better tonight.

Both kids eat like maniacs. They really will eat a whole plate of food each. Plus they eat cheerios nonstop between meals. We just gave both of them baths and got them nice and clean, and are getting them ready for bed. We leave for home tomorrow night!! We can't wait for everyone to meet them. For right now, we don't think it will be too bad to have people around the first couple weeks. There are 7 other families in the guest house right now, and it is going just fine. Tigist is the life of the party here, everyone loves her. She runs around hiding from me and yelling "daddy" all day in her cute Ethiopian accent. We might not get to write again, so if not, we will see you when we get home.

Please pray for Tigist's cough and infection, and that the flight is not absolutely awful.