Wednesday, December 30, 2009

We're Gonna be in the Paper!

The Pell family has made the local newspaper. A reporter from the News and Record came by our house yesterday to interview us about our adoption journey. She has found our blog online and wanted to do a before and after story about us. The first article is going to run this Sunday and the second will run the week after we get back.

We started blogging about our adoption process with the hope that by sharing our story, others might consider adoption as a way to grow their families. Adoption tends to be an intimidating venture and we found it difficult to find information and make decisions when we first started the process. We have tried from the beginning to be as transparent as we could with the ups and downs, heartaches and joys, and also with the overall logistics of adoption. We are so excited that this article could be another way to encourage others to think about adoption and orphan advocacy.

I will try to post a copy of the article next week for those of you that don't get our paper.

8 more days till we leave!!!!

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Financial Update

We haven't posted an update on our finances for a while. I have been waiting to book our plane tickets as the prices were bouncing all over the place. As of today we have been given $16,893 toward our adoption!!

This number blows us away. We are so humbled by the generosity of others. This total will cover all of our travel expenses along with the post adoption fees that we will owe over the next year. Thank you just doesn't even begin to express how much all of your support has meant to us. Thank you, Thank you, Thank you!!

Friday, December 25, 2009

Merry Christmas

The presents have been opened, the stockings emptied and Christmas is coming to an end. Though we had a wonderful time as a family of three, our baby boy left the holidays seeming just a bit off. Just not quite as special and complete as it should be. We can't wait to be a family of four. Just two more weeks and we will be on our way!!

Merry Christmas to you all!!! Hope you enjoyed your holiday!

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Confirmed Travel Dates!

We have confirmed travel dates:

Flying out on January 8th (my birthday!!)
Arriving in Addis on January 9th
Meet Johnny on January 10th
Embassy Date on January 11th
Fly back out late January 15th 12:20 AM
Arrive back in Greensboro January 15th at around 6:00pm

So excited!! Lots to do!!

Monday, December 21, 2009

No News on Confirmed Embassy Date

No news to report today. Hopefully tomorrow. We have plane tickets on hold leaving January 8th and returning to the states on the 16th so hopefully we will get the green light tomorrow and we will be set.....

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Tentative Travel Dates

We got a call from Christy today letting us know our family has been tentatively listed for the embassy date on January 11th which means we would leave on January 8th!!! She is hoping that we will get confirmation by the end of the week so that we can book our flights. Here we come baby boy!!

Monday, December 14, 2009


Yesterday we got the best gift from one of our blog buddies......she remembered seeing our sweet little man and told us the following:

"Oh, I totally remember him! Yes, he and ____(her daughter) were roommates and he stood out to me because he was so gorgeous. He and _____ (her daughter) seem to share the same personality too -- very easy going and very sweet. I remember him sitting and watching all that was going on with intrigue, and taking it all in. He also stood out to me because of all his fun hair

So... the word that I think describes your boy is content. He seems like he's a quiet observer."

What a wonderful suprise to get a first hand account of our son. It sounds like he is going to be laid back like our daughter was at his age. What a blessing!!! We also got some new pictures and some video that I can't share online but was so wonderful for our family to see.

Update on Travel: Our caseworker called today to let us know that there is an embassy date scheduled for our agency for January 11th. This would mean that we would leave January 8th and meet our son on January 10th. It is not confirmed that our family will be scheduled for this date but it sounds like we have a pretty good chance. We are hoping to get a confirmation by the end of the week on our travel date so we can buy our plane tickets!!

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

A special prayer for Johnny

Most of you probably don't read all of the comments on our blog so I wanted to make sure that I posted this one from Emma's aunt and cousins:

"Whooo Hoooo!!! I've been stalking my email and your blog for news this morning! The boys and I just prayed for Johnny and this is what Luke prayed, "Dear Jesus, I want to teach Johnny how to play drums when I get older and please keep him away from sharks." Jack prayed, "I want to teach him how to drink water." Love you and miss you. "

Oh, I love hearing the prayers of little ones. Thank you again for all of your prayers and encouraging words over the last month!! We hope to introduce our baby boy to you all soon!

We Passed....Again!!!!

Christy just called to let us know that we were approved and passed court last night! Thank you so much for all of your encouragement and prayers. I am once again breathing a sigh of relief.

We are hoping to travel early January but nothing is set. With all that has happened I don't know that I can fully celebrate until we have a confirmed embassy date and get our plane tickets. Tonight we will celebrate taking this next step....hopefully in the next couple weeks we will be notified of our travel dates and be able to celebrate without reservations.....

Please pray for the Hernandez and Wenzel family who go to court for the second time tonight.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009

Court Tonight Once Again

We go to court again tonight. Please pray that the letter from MOWA is there and that we pass with flying colors! Also that we find out first thing tomorrow either way so that the anticipation is bearable (this would be around noon NC time)

Sunday, December 6, 2009


Back in October, I was expecting to have our son home by now. I remember thinking, probably by Thanksgiving but definately by Christmas. Then Thanksgiving came and went, I went through the disapointment of not making the first travel group and found hope in being included in the next. Our court date came and and with it great news. We breathed a sigh of relief, our waiting was coming to an end. It was looking very good that we would have him home for Christmas. We waited for our travel call and instead were faced with disapointment again. It took weeks for me to feel like I had come to terms with the ramifications of our delay follwed by a week of hope that our wait would once again come to an end and then....disapointment again. Many have described adoption as a roller coaster of emotions. I would say this is a very accurate description of how we have been feeling. And so here we are....hope is starting to peek through once again......expectation of passing court on the third try is beginning to form......please Lord let it be followed with relief not disapointment.

We are praying for the miraculous. We are praying that whoever is responsible for our paperwork at the Ministry of Women's Affairs dreams dreams about our family tonight. That he or she can't shake us out of their mind. That getting that letter done is at the top of their list to do when they enter their office tomorrow (tonight for us). Please pray with us that our wait comes to an end and that if it does not, that we are able to give our disapointment to our maker that is able to bear it for us....I am no longer able to bear it alone.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009


A representative from our agency went to the Ministry of Women’s Affairs today to inquire as to why we (and several others) did not pass court. They were told the MOWA needed more time to review our file and was not able to have the letter of approval to the court on time. Seriously?!?!?! They have had our paperwork for almost four months now. Someone is not doing their job or we are getting overlooked. They had four weeks from the time of our last court failure to review our paperwork. This is so frustrating. We have asked about contacting MOWA ourselves and our case worker said that she would advise against this as it could cause them to be annoyed with our persistence and put us at the bottom of the stack again. It makes me very nervous that our letter still hasn’t been written. There is no guarantee that it will be written and get to court in a week if it hasn’t been done by now. MOWA is aware that we have a court date on the 9th but they were also aware we had one on the 6th and 26th of November. There is nothing left to do but pray that whoever is responsible for our case will get it done and to the courts in time for our court date next week. The emotional roller coaster we are on is getting pretty old............

Tuesday, December 1, 2009

Rescheduled for December 9th

For some reason our case was rescheduled for December 9th. We will have to go to court for the third time in an attempt to make Johnny our official son. We are so dissapointed by this news and frustrated that we feel so helpless in all of this.

Another family that has been walking this path with us also received the same news today. Our agency is trying to figure out what happened but has no explanation for us. I would assume the same letter that was missing for the first court date is still missing.

This means that leaving on Christmas is definately out and so it looks like some time in January would be our travel date. My heart is broken once again.