Friday, October 30, 2009

Think Cubic

So another week has come and gone, but this week and last week were especially hard because we know our baby has been chosen and is waiting at this point to paperwork to be done before we can move to the next step. So days tick by and I think of that sad song from the disney move an american tale -- somewhere, out there, love will see us though... and I continue to shop for baby items at a furious pace with a crazed look in my eye, then stuff them into a 12x12x5" flat rate postal box to mail to Rwanda. As Ikea says, think Cubic- and so every last atom of space is taken up with my latest baby item nesting spree--
here's what fit in the modest sized box,(which is currently glowing, pulsing, and occasionally singing electronic lulabies as some gadget inside goes off spontaneously under the extreme pressure within the box:)'s first Bible
2. Fisher price crib soother with jungle animals and 20 continuous mins of music
3. "gentle Giraffe" large stuffed giraffe with 4 song settings including heartbead and samba drums (and money from the sale goes to help giraffes, an added bonus!)
4. froggy taggies blanket
5. super soft and warm white baby blanket (wish they made this in my size its so soft)
6. baby photo album with family pictures
7. musical keys with family photos inside
8. hanging infantino pengiun with pull-and-play music box (and yup, a family photo slot)
9. toy telephone
10. toy crab
11. 2 onesies 18-24 mo size
12. 2 pairs of socks
13 recieving blankt
14. desitin full size tube
15. travel baby powder
16 sample packs of diaper rash cream
17 sample pack of lotion
18 2 bottles of infant tylenol
19 infant liquid multivitamins
20 thanksgiving bib
21 winnie the pooh chewable crinkle book
22. old mcdonald finger puppet glove with book attached
23 pair of wrist rattles
24. thank you note to Peter our power-of-attorney

Yes, contents under pressure. it was an intricate masterpiece of stuffing, molding,shaping, squashing, taping and praying. I then coated the entire box in about 6 layers of packing tape, crossed my fingers and said a prayer it arrived intact to our POA peter. I'm going to mail it even though we don't have our referral yet so the second we do peter can take the baby its entire "Shower-in-a-box"
I can't wait to see who our baby is!!!!

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Update from Rwanda

So we heard from our Poa that the minister has not yet looked at and reviewed any kids files yet. That is a bummer. So basically wait for now ...we are getting good at that, unfortunatly.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

One Year Waiting

This past saturday marked the 1 yr anniversary of when we met Tina of Mugisha ministries who help us begin our journey of independent adoption from Rwanda. I can't beleive a whole year has gone by and I think of all the personal changes and growth we have made as a family over the past year. Bill and I have had many serious conversations about the steps we are about to take, the challenges we are going to face, the burdens we will carry, and the blessings that will come from this choice- and every time we still both smile and know in our hearts this is what *we* want to do, and this is what we feel God wants us to do, more importantly. Who wouldn't want the blessing of a child? There is no greater Gift to us than a baby.
Like the Nike slogan- Just Do it.
I'll end with this verse from Isaiah 54
"Enlarge the place of your tent,
stretch your tent curtains wide,
do not hold back;
lengthen your cords,
strengthen your stakes.

This is the Bible's version of "you need an addition to hold all our children..." That would be awesome.

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Waiting and Waiting (and shopping...) in the 11th hour

SO, this week we HOPE is the week we get our referral- the email that will change our life and a child's life forever. The vital stats on a young life who has already experienced great loss, but is about to experience great love as God "takes the lonely and puts them in families". Is it a boy or a girl? how young or old? why is he/she in need of a family to love him/her? God has known this child before he or she was born and has amazing plans for him / her and us as well. We are humbled by this awesome gift and responsibility.
To make the wait a little more fun, I hit TJ maxx and target and bought a whole armload of baby toys, blankets, clothes... you name it, I grabbed it. I also started going through emilia's old toys and clothes and have gathered 2 full suitcases of *stuff* so far to bring along. Looking at bins and bins of leftover clothes and toys in the basement makes my a little ashamed of all we have while others have so little. Im happy for it to be getting "new homes"!
We got brother/sister a little thanksgiving bib that says "i'm thankful for my family" since we're hopeing to be getting him/her thanksgiving time or early december. We also got a photo album for babies to chew on that holds 8 family photos which we filled with his/ her new mommy, daddy, sister, cousins, and grandparents.
Also a clever little set of keys which you can put a small picture in each key-- mommy, daddy, and big sister! And of course, a first bible just like I got our daughter when I first found out I was pregnant- The inscription is very much the same- Even though we have not met you yet, God knows you and loves you. We can't wait to meet you. Love, Mommy Daddy and Emilia.

Monday, October 12, 2009


We have a baby chosen for our family!! We don't know who, but next week we will finally find out who he/she is! All the medical tests have been done, and the nuns have to forward the baby's info to the Gov't before we get "official" word.
We are so happy! We will keep everyone posted.
We are now the Cropf Family of FOUR!!
Thank God for this great news. I had the strongest feeling this morning when I opened my email our referral would be here. And thoughts of the baby all weekend!

here is the letter from the power of attorney Peter:
Hi Jen,

Today I was able to meet with the nun at the orphanage..
Talking with her this morning, she said that she has already done the medical tests and for the identified children for about 12 families including yours. She has not yet submitted the results and all the information required to the ministry, she was to take them today but Velonique is not in the office. She has made an appointment with Velonique on this coming Friday, it is when she will submitt all she has for the kids according to the martching files. So..let's wait patiently to hearing from Velonique later this week or early next week.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

An Age of excess...

No news on our baby yet, but tongiht was a strange mix of emotion for us. We were lucky enough to go the Children Hospital's biannual Carousel Ball, their major fundraiser for different children's health issues. Well, this year one of its main fundraising projects is childhood obesity. I was looking around a room of the richest people in Philadelphia, dripping in diamonds and slathered in furs, realizing they are donating millions of dollars to help "fat kids" while I have a little son or daughter in an orphange half way around the world who is drinking watered down baby formula made with contaminated water and children are dying of starvation. Not that childhood obesity need not be addressed, (and not to be insensitive to the struggles of overweight kids) but it just seems soooooo strange to be fundraising to prevent obesity in the privledged few while starvation is a reality for the vast majority. I felt my face burning with indignation while I thought of the baby whose face I will be seeing in a few short weeks for the first time. BIll and I exchanged looks and sighed at the irony of the whole situation.

In other news, I found two awesome adoption videos- I hope to add one of our own soon!

Friday, October 2, 2009

Eye of a hurricaine

When I was 8 months pregnant with my daughter, every passing day felt like we were drawing closer and closer into the eye of a hurricaine. A calm before a storm. Not just any storm, but a life changeing, life consuming, life-will-never-be-the-same-storm. Well, as the final 4 weeks tick by until our referral of our son or daughter, I feel as thoguh I am again the the eye of the hurricaine. But this time, I read about things like reactive attachment disorder, failure to bond, and "terminated adoptions" and I am sort of freaking out. It's just a harmless little baby, right? (Ha!) But, I do need to be prepared for the worst case scenario so I can be the best possible parent. I don't want to just hope "this won't happen to us" because it can. It's a risk you take adopting an institutionalized child. Just like you take a risk with a biological child, for genetic diseases, dangerous births, mental disorders, on and on. But I know I owe it to my son or daughter to give them this chance, and to give us this chanch, at becomming a family. I'm sure with any little problem that arises we will get "I told you so's" from our often less-than-supportive extended support network, but this is a limb we mentally have to prepare to go out on. I hope for the efforts our family with be stronger, our love extended, and the world a better place for one child and one family waiting to adopt that child. Taking the road less traveled has always been the one I prefer.

But, non-the-less, prayers and support are appreciated as we sit in the eye of a hurricaine. I can only trust in God, know He is the one who is sending us on this path and He won't give us more than we can handle.

In other news, I added a great song by Brook Frasier called Albertine. Every time I listen to it I get re-energized for our adoption, and I feel like i'm needing some energy these days. Not just because I have lyme disease either, but that doesn't help matters!
here is Brooke Frasier's video for Albertine (the name of a girl she met while in Rwanda)

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