Thursday, 30 April 2009

Today's Blurb

Me and Mr Messy managed to de-clutter most of the dining room :-) He still has the mantlepiece full of work receipts to sort out, but the rest of it is done! Little Prince's art desk lids now even shut!! And I was getting terribly anal, but I even sorted out his huge pencil & crayon pot and threw away all the broken ones!! Then I got all the stuff I couldn't persuade him to throw away stashed away in the attic!! Our house is going to start shrinking from the top down if I put much more stuff in there!!!
Mr Messy picked Little Prince up from school, and got caught in a mega downpour, that luckily stopped as quickly as it had started and just in time for the children to get out of school :-) I went to the Train Station to pick up LMS who is home for the weekend AGAIN!!! Well her excuse is that is her birthday and she wants to be at home with her family, and also go out with her home friends to the coast to celebrate too. I took her shopping for some new Summer clothes, but she is so fussy we didn't buy too much. And for some reason my feet were killing me, so we didn't shop for long anyway!! We felt like such wimpy shoppers lol.

After a lovely tea, cooked by Mr Messy, I headed off to the supermarket! Last time we went I forgot to get any Diet Coke and I've spent all day craving one!! I must have been desperate as I drove 20-25 minutes to the supermarket, late at night to get one!!! So according to my friend S I'm nesting, and now I'm having cravings too!!!

More sorting out :-)

I've been using our local Freecycle network to get rid of our excess stuff and have just sorted out getting rid of our dusty old bikes. We haven't used them in years and aren't likely to use them again any time soon, so they might as well go to someone (less lazy lol) who can make use of them. Which means there will be more room in the cottage/garage at the bottom of the garden too.

I think today's next mission is the dining room!! I walk into our sorted out lounge and feel so light and airy, but when I come in the dining room it still feels so oppressive and cluttered! Its full of unwanted clutter, paperwork and general stuff - it won't be soon!! Mwahahaha :-) If I keep this up we won't have anything left lol

Wednesday, 29 April 2009

Sorted the Sorting :-)

I've spent all morning sorting out the tip, that is now known as Little Prince's bedroom!! All toys are now back with their friends in their nice cosy boxes and you can see the floor!! I think this afternoon I am going to see if I can get his border up, and finally actually finish his room!! Mr Messy is going to give the jigsaw border in New Child's room another coat of white emulsion and then we've got to get all the "good but not currently played with toys" up into the attic!! And all that before Little Prince finishes school at 3.30pm. There is not a chance we'll get all that done lol. Its going to take me ages to just move enough furniture so that I can get the border done!!!

Well after looking at how I've got to do the border, its looking like a two person job! Mr Messy doesn't do wallpapering of any kind, so we've volunteered LMS :-) She's home again tomorrow, so we can get it done over the weekend sometime. I think me and her get the easy job, Mr Messy has got to wrangle Little Prince and Drama Teen lol.

UPDATE 2: I managed to get all the sorted toys into the attic, with minutes to spare before having to go and get Little Prince from school!! And Mr Messy has given the whole of New Child's bedroom a coat of white emulsion. Once Little Prince is in bed later, Mr Messy will be doing one more coat of white and it will be ready for the real paint tomorrow :-)

Tuesday, 28 April 2009

Sorting Out!!

Today's mission was to sort out Little Prince's toy boxes, which had started to explode and were taking over the lounge! It took hours, and I filled a bin liner with broken bits and unidentifiable bits and cr*ppy bits!! I have also packaged up loads of "still good but not currently played with" toys to go in the attic. If he misses them, I can get them down again, if not they will go to the charity shop in a month or so!! I had talked to Little Prince about my plans to do this, and despite being a total hoarder, he seemed quite happy about it!! He has been poking in the rubbish bin and objecting to some of the bits in there, but they are broken or the only piece left of a toy, so they are going anyway!! I can't believe how much more room there is in his toy box, and there are even some of the smaller storage boxes that don't have things in them!!
Mr Messy sanded down the painted jigsaw border in Little Prince's old room, and got a coat of white emulsion on it too. I used really bright primary colours for the border, so it needs toning down before we redecorate, or it will show through the new paint!! You can see what I mean from the picture lol. The crude black scribble is to cover up Little Prince's actual name on his toy box using my wonderful technical abilities!!! And the picture was taken not long after he moved in and still used a cot - don't worry he sleeps in a big boy bed now lol.
Hopefully that's me on the right after tomorrow's mission!! I am going to do the sorting thing in Little Prince's bedroom, as a LOT of downstairs toys have migrated up there! There are plenty of toys (like his Playmobil knights) where I know there should be more bits and I'm presuming they are up in his room as I can't find them anywhere down here!!

Monday, 27 April 2009

Poor Neglected Blog!!!

I've been a bad blogger lol. I can't even blame being h*llishly busy either!! I've been h*llishly procrastinating as usual though!! I've made lists of the things I need to do, and I will get them done (at the last possible minute, but shhhhh don't tell everyone lol).

When I got back from Ethiopia it was the day that the Easter school hols started, so I was thrown right back in at the deep end. Well not sooo deep end, as LMS was still here and helped me out loads :-)

During the hols, we had various happenings lol. Drama Teen turned FIFTEEN!!! Oh my goodness!!! I can't believe its been FIFTEEN years since she was born a tiny gorgeous little baby. And she has grown into a lovely, talented and beautiful young lady, I am an extremely lucky Mum :-) Belated happy birthday, love you more than words can say :-) She had the customary "sleepover" party for her birthday. Although I put "sleepover" in quotes as there wasn't much sleeping involved - pizza eating, film watching, chatting and staying up all night party, would be a much more honest description!! It was funny watching all the zombies queue up for the bathroom the next morning lol.

I also had a birthday recently and I've decided that as I turned forty already, that birthdays now start going backwards - so I am now celebrating my THIRTY NINTH birthday (again lol). Me, Mr Messy, LMS and our friends Post Lady and her husband all went out for a meal in a lovely Stately Hall, that serves home cooked organic food - yum yum :-) We had a great time and the food was delicious, but I have a sneaky feeling that Mr Messy was killing two birds with one stone, and was scoping out the place as a potential business partner lol.
Since the Easter hols LMS has been back to University, come home and gone back to University again!! She is a little sweetie and came home to see me for my birthday, and then couldn't resist staying for the weekend too :-) During the hols before she returned to Uni, me and her went down to London so that she could attend her appointment at the American Embassy, to get her work Visa for her Disney stint this Summer. I got the easy part, I sat in a nearby cafe relaxing and reading a book, while she attended the appointment. The sole purpose of my accompanying her was to look after her mobile phone while she was in the Embassy, as NO electronic devices are permitted whatsoever!!! NO mobiles, NO iPods, NO nothing!!! The appointment consisted of multiple fingerprintings (as if they would change from one hour to the next?!?!), multiple checking of the documents she was required to bring (again why checked so many times??), nearly four hours in the Embassy and a two minute "chat" with the Immigration Officer!!! THEN she had to pay to have her own passport sent back to her!!! Which has now arrived safely back, duly stamped with her Visa - well stickered to be exact lol. It has put me off taking Little Prince and New Child to visit her while she is working in Disney World too!! As New Child wouldn't be a UK citizen until after readoption over here, and that can't happen until New Child has lived with us for at least 6 months, then I'd have to go through that whole rigamarole with New Child!!! Not sure its worth it for a holiday, even in Disney World!!! Which is saying a LOT coming from me - the biggest Disney Nut around!!! Once I'd gone over to the Embassy building to meet LMS, I had to laugh at her worries that she wouldn't be able to find the place - it was SOOOO obviously American lol - the flag, the giant eagle etc!!!
Me and Little Prince spent quite a lot of time together, including going to see Monsters Vs Aliens, which he LOVED. The story line was very simple and straightforward, and he had no problem understanding it. Our last visit to the cinema was to see Bolt and the mixture of real life and film action in that film had him as confused as Bolt was lol. He did tend to treat it as a variation on the pantomime we saw at Christmas, and talked through a lot of it, not too much shouting out thankfully!! But he was no better or worse than most of the other kids in the cinema which I was grateful for, perhaps because I'd deliberately chosen an afternoon show time, where it was bound to be full of other kids!!
I have also become best friends with Ebay!! I now have two black bin liners stuffed full of clothes for our New Child!! LMS seems to think that I'm trying to build a disposable wardrobe, but I don't know what she means!! I do have to admit to not being terribly practical either - over 50 outfits, but only ONE bib!!! I think I've got a smidgen over excited!!!
This week's plan is to tackle decorating New Child's bedroom, the bedroom that was until recently Little Prince's. There is nothing wrong with the decor, and it is suitable for New Child too, but I think that it would help Little Prince feel that his new sibling wasn't taking over "his" bedroom if it was redecorated and looking completely different!! And on top of that I'm all excited and want to redecorate specifically for New Child, just like we did for Little Prince. Although the way UK domestic adoption works, we didn't want to tempt fate and redecorate his room too early in the process and ended up doing it in about 10 days, whilst also coping with the emotional upheaval of visiting him at his foster carer's house!! SO giving myself over three weeks to get the decorating done seems quite a luxury!!! Fingers crossed I haven't left it too late to get started!!

Mr Messy is on a break between contracts, and is using the time to market his new photography business much more widely. And has begun to forge links with the local bespoke wedding cake shop, the local image consultant (that I visited to be made over) and a local organic cafe, who have agreed to display his work :-) We have also visited a Wedding Fayre to get ideas for Mr Messy to start exhibiting at Fayres himself. Although the one we visited was mostly made up of photographers, but none of them seemed to do the "lifestyle" images he does and (I know I'm biased!!) none of them seemed as good as he is. He has also joined a local Networking group, and after chatting to another photographer in the group has found that he is probably one of the first lifestyle photographers in the area! Which could make his business stand out and become a market leader or could mean there is no call for his style of photography and it will all fall flat!! Everyone keep your fingers crossed its the former!!! And here are a few of his images that I've stolen from his website lol (NO they are not of my family).

I think he is hugely talented, and once he gets his name out there he will do very well - its just working out HOW to get his name out there that we're still working on lol.

Sunday, 12 April 2009

LMS's Last Minute Decision

Sadly LMS has decided she isn't coming to Ethiopia with us :-( I'm upset about this, but totally understand her reasons, and although I'll miss her (and her assistance!) a LOT, I think she is doing the right thing.

She is going to visit her Boyfriend in America. He has been very down recently, partly because of the economy over there and the constant threat of losing his job and partly because his family and friends are being very negative about his and LMS's long distance relationship. And also probably, because she misses him lol. LMS is hoping to be able to convince Boyfriend's family and friends that she isn't such a bad person (they don't approve of her not being a committed Christian, her drinking (she is a student!!) and her being over here!!). I think that once they meet her they will realise what a sweet, kind and loving young lady she is and will hopefully be a bit more supportive to Boyfriend about their relationship.

Its going to make our trip to Ethiopia more difficult, and Drama Teen thought I was joking when I said she would need to be helpful on the trip!! But it is me and Mr Messy that have decided to add to our family and it isn't LMS's responsibility to help us with that and we will cope just fine :-) And once Little Prince gets over the disappointment he'll be fine too!!

Thursday, 9 April 2009

Our Future Child

I am still refusing to give any details of our future child publically on this blog, partly because it is forbidden by the Ethiopian authorities and partly respecting the fact that this child is not yet ours. Our child is still a ward of the Ethiopian state and as such I cannot make decisions about whether or not to put their image or details on the internet.

But I can say that our future child is PERFECT. He/she managed to completely capture my heart while we were in Ethiopia and there is an empty space there waiting until we can meet again. I gaze at photographs we took of our future child daily and ache to see him/her again. It is so hard to be seperated from a child that my heart says is already MY CHILD, but bureaucracy says is not yet my child. Every email from others who are in Addis Ababa at the moment is both a comfort and a torment.

Stay well little one. Don't forget me. I would never have left you if I didn't have to and I'll be back as soon as I can.
Lots and lots of love


The contrast between rich and poor, haves and have-nots in Ethiopia is STARK.

We saw family homes that took up whole streets, just round the corner from family homes that consisted of a few bits of corrugated iron cobbled together.

We saw pampered boys and girls attending a birthday party at the Hilton and we saw starving children clinging to their mother's hoping to eat that day.

We saw people drive round in brand new flashy cars and other cars that looked like they were held together with nothing but sticky tape.

We saw the love and devotion of a crowded church congregation and the selfishness of people who didn't want to step outside the Hilton as it was "dangerous out there!"

We saw the unearned privilege being born white gets you - we were politely ushered through while non-whites were searched or asked to pass through metal detectors as we entered shops or high end hotels.

We saw children living in an orphanage who have nothing to call their own play and share nicely (and also one little boy run off and hide the toys he managed to snatch lol) and we saw spoilt Western teens complaining their manicures weren't up to scratch.

We saw staff working under conditions that would be unthinkable in the West, who still managed to be loving and caring to the children they were looking after.

We saw ETHIOPIA :-)

We saw a little snippet of life in a faraway country that is going to be part of our family for generations to come. I hope we can convey some of what we saw to our future child and have them grow up proud of the country he/she was born in and the people that nurtured him/her until he/she could join our family.


The orphanage doesn't allow visitors on Sundays, so me and Baby Sis planned to visit the Hilton Hotel to see if we could send a photo of our new child home from there. We had tried using the Guest House internet, but only succeeded in crashing the computer!! During breakfast one of the Danish sisters asked if we would like to accompany her to an Ethiopian Church that their driver had invited them to go to. At first both sisters were going to go, but the newly adopted little boy had had a rough night and the Mum sister was too tired to go. We leapt at the chance of this experience, as we hadn't done any sightseeing or seen anything apart from the orphanage!

I'm not sure what part of the city the Church was located in, but it was a real Ethiopian family church, not a sightseeing, tourist opportunity. We arrived after the service had started and sat crammed in at the back of the Church. The sermon and singing were all in Amharic, although we were able to recognise some biblical names. The children were all in Sunday School outside, but one very cute little boy was obviously fascinated by the ferenji and kept coming sitting near us and edging closer and closer to the strange people. As soon as he got within touching distance one of the Church Wardens would notice him and haul him back to where he should be lol.

The congregation were obviously very devout and during parts of the service would raise their hands and sway from side to side. On a couple of occassions whatever the Minister said caused some to ululate or shout out. The driver translated some parts of the service for us, but for most of the time we just tried to soak up the atmosphere and the feeling of being in the real Addis Ababa.

I came away from the service feeling profoundly guilty for taking our child away from this loving and devout community and country, although growing up in an orphanage would our child ever get to experience this? I also had a very numb bum as the service was over two hours long, which seems longer when you don't have a clue what is going on!! After the service the driver escorted us back to the car and then apologised that he would have to leave us there while he went to say goodbye to his friends. Once he had gone a skinny and dirty little girl came to the car window telling us she was hungry, it was heartbreaking she really did look starving. The Danish sister gave her some biscuits, which she tucked into with relish.

When the driver dropped us back off at the Guest House he refused to take any payment for taking us to Church, he said it was his duty to go to church and he couldn't take money for that.

The contrast with our Sunday afternoon was stark! We decided we would go over to the Hilton to use their fast internet connection and to swim in their pool. The Hilton grounds were like another world! Our drivers humble, beaten up car looked very out of place next to all the brand new shiny motors around! There was an airport style security scanner at the entrance, but we were waved past it without having to be scanned. The lobby was all marble and posh sofas. We made our way to the business centre and spent half an hour sending emails, checking our social networking sites and updating our blogs! Then we went off in search of the pool.

We hired our towels, got changed and headed for the pool. A pool attendant showed us to a pair of unoccupied sun loungers, and then brought us a parasol. It was so hot that I stayed under the parasol the whole time, I just have to look at a picture of the sun to burn to a crisp!! Baby Sis sunned herself and even braved the pool once. I found the whole experience to be very very uncomfortable. We were sat next to two spoilt teenage English girls (diplomats daughters??) who spent the entire time complaining about their hotel manicure, the state of the bars in Marrakesh or the hotel in general, whilst reading trashy celeb magazines. They were very rude and condescending to the hotel staff and made me want to slap them HARD! Spoilt little rich b*tches! We also saw a parade of guests going to a birthday party on the grounds, and could hear the laughs and squeals of the children as they played the party games.

When it neared the time we'd asked our driver to pick us up, we took turns having a shower. The showers were WONDERFUL :-) Big, hot and powerful!! That sounds rude - but I am definitely talking about showers here!!! We both felt so clean and fresh afterwards :-) Back at the Guest House we both agreed that the shower was great but we weren't sure if it was worth the nauseatingness of the whole day!!

The Orphanage

We spent most of our days in the week we were in Addis at the orphanage. Most days our driver would pick us up at 10am and we'd return to the Guest House at about 4pm.

On the first few visits to the orphanage I seemed to have developed a defensive tunnel vision. All I registered, all I saw, all I allowed myself to see was my new child. However, the many, many, many other children broke through my defenses and it was heartbreaking to realise just how many children there were in just this one small orphanage :-( The majority were small babies under 12 months old, then there were about 10 toddlers and a handful of older children. The orphanage director works tirelessly to place the children and the majority were already allocated to families, which eases my heart a little. I just hope there are no hold ups and the children, especially the older ones join their new families soon.

I wish it were possible to adopt more of the children, one two year old little boy who so reminded me of Little Prince at that age and a little girl slightly older who was so loving and caring with the other toddlers in particular touched my heart. Then there were the two older boys, who were so desperate for a hug, a touch a cuddle. One spent an hour stood by my side as I cuddled our new child, just letting me hug him and stroke his tummy. He told the Nurse on staff that he loved me. I hope his new Mummy and/or Daddy arrives soon and gives him all the cuddles he so obviously needs.

Apart from one or two children who were obviously ill, all the children and babies are healthy and well taken care of in the circumstances. And I saw how hard Nurse worked to care for one ill toddler, assessing him and working out what in her meagre store of medications would help him. At first I was scared to ask how he was, he seemed to have disappeared and I worried that something awful had happened, but a few days later he was out and about with the other children, not fully recovered but tonnes better than he had been.

The babies and toddlers are all weighed weekly and I was allowed to take a copy of our child's weight record. I was also told that I would be allowed to take away the immunisation record once we have legally adopted.

There were some worrying things about the care the babies/toddlers got. For example we were told it was cold when we were there, and so the toddlers were kept in their cots all day, except to eat! And the tiny babies were kept swaddled up, wearing hats and covered in thick blankets, the poor things were so hot and sweaty! The slightly older babies seemed to spend their whole days in car seats, and most of them had perfected the worrying art of self stimulating - either flicking their fingers in front of their faces or kicking their legs to rock the seat. And the nappy rashes were horrendous, it turned my stomach watching our child's nappy be changed and listening to the cries. I did manage to get in touch with another UK adopter who arrived the day after we left and got them to bring nappy rash cream, I hope it helps.

I am not complaining about the way the babies and children were cared for, the staff did a fantastic job with their very limited resources. The babies were all held to be fed and all the children seemed to be happy and healthy. Its just not the same as having a committed parent(s) who are solely looking out for one or two children's welfare, and that is the environment that children NEED to thrive. No matter how good an orphanage is, its not a family, and all children NEED a family.

New Flower Guest House

We weren't impressed by our first view of the New Flower Guest House. It was late at night, we were tired and we were ushered along a short downstairs corridor and shown a tiny room, nothing like the ones they show on the website!! The shared toilet/shower room next door was erm basic!! But we were too tired to care and just got ready for bed and slept. The bed creaked and groaned every time we moved, and it wasn't a double - either that or we'd both grown a lot on the flight over!! And don't even ask about the barking dogs!!!

However, during the next week we learnt to appreciate the Guest House and the extremely helpful staff. The accommodations were pretty basic, but they were throughout Addis - if we wanted Western comforts we would have to pay Western prices for a room at the Hilton or Sheraton! There were at least three power cuts during our week's stay, but the Guest House owner explained that electricity is rationed through the city and each area of the city takes turns at having no power. And I've read reviews of many different Guest Houses on adoptive family's blogs and most of them mention power cuts and barking dogs - so its just a feature of staying in Addis lol.

The other guests were all adoptive families and it was lovely seeing them interact and start to bond with their new little ones. While we stayed there was a German couple adopting a baby boy, two pairs of Danish sisters where one sister was adopting and the other sister was supporting them, an American couple from Colorado adopting their second baby girl and a Canadian couple adopting a 5 year old daughter, as a sister to their previously adopted 13 and 6 year old Ethiopian children.

The atmosphere was one of mutual support and assistance. I gave one of the Danish sister's my spare memory card for her camera. She was saving all her pictures to a memory stick, but was terrified that something would happen to them and she might lose them. Then when she and her new baby became covered in "bites" and her sister wasn't she used some of the medication I'd taken, just in case it was Scabies. The other guests allowed me and Baby Sis to use the upstairs (warm!!) shower and we all pooled knowledge of where to eat, where to shop and what to buy :-)

So we went from an "OMG what have we DONE??" attitude to the Guest House, to feeling so at home and comfortable and LOVING it :-) And I've just booked to stay there again when we all go over for our Court Date :-)

Despite our initial misgivings I would heartily recommend it to everyone as a lovely calm welcoming oasis in a busy city.


Soon we were landing in Ethiopia. I was finally in the same country as our future child, wow what a feeling :-) We collected our luggage, although a porter insisted on loading our trolley for us, after such a long flight the assistance was very much appreciated. We then went off to join the queue to get our entry Visa (or we could have got the visa then our luggage - I can't remember!!). We were near to the front of the queue, so it didn't take too long, but I'm not looking forward to this when we've got Little Prince causing chaos with us!!!

On our way out of the Arrivals Lounge we were stopped by security who wanted to check the receipts for our checked baggage and make sure we only had our own bags. Luckily I knew that this was a requirement and had the receipts ready for inspection. Our Guest House had said they would be at the Airport to meet us, so we were disappointed not to see them holding a sign outside the Arrivals! We hung around, tried (unsuccessfully!) to send text messages home to let people know we'd arrived safe and sound, but no matter what we tried they wouldn't send!! VERY frustrating as we'd had no problem while sat in Khartoum Airport!! We waited and waited for the Guest House driver to appear, and kept having to put off other taxi drivers who were touting for business. Luckily our mobile phones did work to make calls, and after calling the Guest House our lift finally turned up. It turns out that there was a road closed and he'd been on his way :-)

He seemed awfully young, I later found out he is similar age to LMS, but extremely competent. Although he did blanche when he saw the amount of our luggage, and when we saw his tiny car we realised why!! He must be an expert at playing "Tetris" as he managed to fit us and all our luggage in :-) The Guest House was only a few minutes from the Airport, and we went straight to bed when we arrived.


I'll try to remember what we got up to and post about it all, but I might have forgotten some bits and others are just too difficult to describe.

Well our journey started with a drive to the Airport. Mr Messy and Little Prince took me and Baby Sis and despite the very early wake up call, Little Prince was quite happy and chatty on the way to the Airport. In fact he managed to hold it together and not get upset until the moment he walked out of the terminal holding Daddy's hand, he turned round managed a feeble wave and started to sob. Which of course set me off too, thank you for the hugs Baby Sis. It was hard taking that sobbing image of my little boy with me as the last I saw of him for a week :-(

I had been sent a HUGE box of baby clothes by a fantastically generous friend, and was a bit worried about whether or not this would be accepted by the airline. But there was no problem whatsoever checking it in, our only problem was lifting it onto the conveyor belt lol. Our local Airport is only teeny, so it took no time at all to check in, but then we had to wait for the security station to open so we could go through to the Departure Lounge. Once through we got a drink each and sat watching BBC World News while waiting for our plane to be ready to board. My stomach was churning by this point, what on earth was I doing?? Travelling half way round the world to meet a complete stranger who would become my child!!! How insane is that?!?! And how would I cope in a completely foreign country?? I'm a fussy eater would I find things to eat?? What if something went wrong?? Baby Sis was very reassuring that we would be FIIIIIIIINE, but no matter how reassuring she was I kept finding new things to worry about!!!

Our first flight to Schipol was short and sweet. And for once I was so worried about what I was undertaking that I wasn't worried at all about landing and take off!!! Once in Schipol we had an hour or so before our next flight, so we went upstairs to the cafe area for a drink and to try what they said was free internet access. They lied - you had to pay, so we didn't bother. Before we knew it, it was time to board our next flight. While checking in there was a small boy lying on the floor screaming, and its just our luck that he ended up sitting across the aisle from us!! He was not a happy flier!! His mum had a small baby to deal with too, who seemed to take up all her attention, so it was left to the other passengers and the flight crew to help out with the little boy! Luckily once he was able to take his seatbelt off he calmed down a lot :-)

I watched Madagascar 2 and kept getting told off by Baby Sis for laughing too loudly!! What can I say?? It was a funny film!!! Then I watched most of a home makeover type show, before the man in front decided to recline his seat which meant I couldn't see my screen properly! I "heard" the end of the show!!
I had a lump in my throat as we flew over the area where some of Little Prince's birth family come from. One day we hope to take him to visit the area. Our first stop in Africa was in Khartoum, Sudan. The plane landed allowed passengers to embark and disembark and then sat on the runway for a couple of hours with the doors open, while we were refueled. After a while we realised we could wander around the plane, so we walked to the back doors to get some welcome fresh air. It was so warm! The Air Steward told us we weren't allowed to take pictures out of the door, luckily he hadn't seen us taking some out of the window lol. And even more luckily neither had anyone else, I don't want to become a diplomatic incident!!
The Steward also took really good care of the little boy, playing a card game with him that seemed to involve throwing most of the cards on the floor while laughing lol. He even found a box of Airline chocolates and shared them between all the children on the flight :-) However, after this taste of freedom the little boy was even more reluctant to be fastened back into his seat for take off! The Steward had to squeeze in front of the little boy and hold him in his seat during take off (the family were in the bulkhead seats so this was just about doable!) with the little boy complaining "owie" the whole time!!

Home safe and sound :-)

Well I've been home for almost a week, but wanted to spend time with my family and get my thoughts together a bit before posting.

Little Prince coped extremely well with our separation, although he has been extra clingy and a bit wild since I've returned! Thank you Post Lady for pointing out that I must be a bad influence on him, as he is fine when I'm not here!!! Mr Messy and LMS think that being in his usual routine, and at school each day helped Little Prince cope enormously and they are probably right. His teacher was so understanding, letting him have a picture of his new sibling and another of him and me together pinned up by his table, and making sure the other staff knew to be extra nurturing with him while I was away.

I am really proud of the way the whole family coped without me :-) I returned to a lovely tidy(including Drama Teen's bedroom!!!) and clean house, with the washing all taken care of. I returned to a fairly calm Little Prince who had lots to tell me about what he'd been doing. I returned to a pair of sisters who had argued but not killed each other!! Well done everyone - you all did great :-)

Friday, 3 April 2009

Almost home

We are back in Europe, but stuck in Amsterdam as our flight has been cancelled due to fog!! We are hoping to get put on a flight aftr lunch and get home later than expected.

Sorry I haven't updated the blog, but the internet connections are so very very slow in Addis, that I just haven't been able to log on!

It was agony to leave our little one, and every mile we travelled from Addis cut like a knife.

Being in Ethiopia was an experience that has changed my outlook on life and humbled me completely. Once I've had chance to spend time with my family and got my jumbled thoughts together I'll try and write about the experience.

Missed you all


25th May 2009 - See New Child again & Court Date

23rd May 2009 - Fly back to Ethiopia

26th March 2009 - Fly to Ethiopia :-)

3rd March 2009 - Dossier Arrived at Orphanage

26th February 2009 - Dossier sent to Ethiopia

22nd December 2008 - Dossier back at DCSF

28th November 2008 - Certificate of Eligibility ISSUED

6th October 2008 - PASSED Approval Panel

7th July 2008 - Homestudy Update Started

28th Feb 2008 - Told LA we wished to change country


Formally withdrew from the China Adoption Programme 17th July 2008

LID (Logged in Date) with CCAA 16th August 2007

Documents to China 10th August 2007

Passed Approval Panel 5th March 2007

Homestudy started 6th June 2006

First Contact with our LA 1st Jan 2006