Saturday, February 16, 2008

Our day with Nicolae - February 16, 2008

Today Teri and I spent the day with just Nicolae. It went very well.
First, we played outside in the snow together at a park near my apartment. It was so much fun to see Nicolae and Teri throwing snowballs at each other. We all had fun playing together and laughing. The kind of laughing that screams fun and great times!

When we got back to the apt., we all changed out of our wet clothes and relaxed for bit. We spent the next hour or two doing puzzles, coloring and talking with Bev via skpe. It was so precious to see Nicolae sitting on Auntie Keri's lap (aka...Auntie Teri) talking with Bev via the computer. Nicolae is writing a note to Bev. 12345...

Afterwards Teri and Nicolae made cookies together. Yum.
Then Nicolae and I spent time drawing and coloring together. It was a full day filled with lots of great memories.


Friday, February 15, 2008

Let it Snow! Let it Snow! Let it Snow!

Today, Teri and I went to visit both of the boys. We went to see Cristian first. This is when I found out that I don't get to have the boys overnight this weekend. Seems I need to put in a request every week at the DPC in order for the boys to stay overnight at my house.

Once Ani, Cristian's foster mom, started telling me about it, I remembered that Sara had to do this for Luiza. I just didn't even think about it at all. I just figured once I was given the o.k. to have them on the weekends, it would be every weekend. So disappointing, but what can I do?

We visited with Cristian for a little over an hour, then headed to Nicolae's.

Carmen, Nicolae's foster mom, also told me about having to request to have the boys over the weekend. Both Carmen and Ani felt sorry for me. They knew the reason this happened is just because I didn't know. Now I know!

So, the new plan is to spend the day tomorrow with just Nicolae and Sunday with Cristian. Cristian is going to the mountains tomorrow, so I can only spend tomorrow with Nicolae anyway. Teri and I both thought it would be best to have a day just for Cristian as well.

Teri and I spent just about the same amount of time with Nicolae. He asked again if this weekend is when we were finally going to America!

Here is a picture of Nicolae and I pretending to wait to go to America.

It started to snow tonight just as we were leaving Cristian's house. It was amazing how much more snow there was after we finished visiting with Nicolae. In fact, it is still snowing.

Here are a couple of pictures of Teri and I right before we came home

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Some other cute moments....

This last weekend, shortly after we got to my apartment, Nicolae says so happily, "So this is America! I love it! " It was so adorable. I explained that no we were still in Romania and that we would not be going to America until later. I also told him he would know it was America because we have to ride in a plane to get there. Then he said, " oh you mean next weekend!" I wish.
Why can't the government think like Nicolae?

Also on Monday while we were in the waiting room at the hospital, Nicolae and Cristian were playing together with the toys. There were other children there too. Well, it seems that one of the other children wasn't playing fair and Cristian ran over to me for help.
I think this is huge. He came to me instead of his foster mom.

Anyway, just wanted to share these moments before I forgot them.

Love you all..
oh. I just talked to mom again on skype. She is tired, but seems to be doing fine. Please keep her in your prayers.

Monday, February 11, 2008

Our First Weekend Together

Hi Everyone,
I wish I could say that the first weekend with the boys was amazing and everything I hoped it would be, but that wouldn't quite be the truth. Reality is... it was more difficult than I had wanted it to be. It was hard!
I have to remember though that there were a lot of new things for both of the boys. Being together all day, being with me,being in a new apt, having new rules....having RULES...and then throw in the language barrier on top of that. It was a lot to take on. Thankfully....I mean PRAISE GOD ...Teri was here with me.

My Hero

Nicolae and Cristian certainly tested their boundaries. Thank you Super Nanny. Each time they crossed the boundaries they were put in the "chair" and couldn't talk or get up for 5 minutes. Then they had to apologize. They both had plenty of moments in the "chair".

Chair- an actual chair or just a space on the floor.

The best part was that they actually stayed where I asked them and didn't question it. THANKFULLY. I was certainly sending up Praises for this.

Although it was hard, there a lot of positives to this weekend too. Nicolae and Cristian got to spend time with each other which is something they have never done before. They both stayed the whole weekend and didn't cry to go home either...a huge thing to overcome. I was also able to understand them and they were able to understand me. So all in all it was a good start to becoming a well behaved happy family.

More positives...Sunday was definitely better than Saturday.....a noticeable improvement for sure. We actually got to a place where we could do a fun project together. It was really quite enjoyable and the boys could see that good behavior had its benefits. We painted flower pots for their foster moms.
Oh and....
Nicolae even asked if he could call me Mommy instead of Mama Debbie. It was one of the first things he shared to his foster family when we took him home.

Both Nicolae and Cristian were anxious to share about their weekend and were asking what we were going to do together next time. I guess overall... it went fairly well.

Today, Monday, Teri and I left early this morning to meet with the boys and their foster moms at the hospital. The boys have to get full physicals done for the adoption.

While we were there, Nicolae was telling both the moms what happens when he or Cristian misbehaves at my house. He told them all about it . He also told them that first he was in the chair, then Cristian, then him again, then Cristian AND he told them how you can't move or talk or anything! It certainly left an impression on him!
Today at the hospital, they played together in the waiting room at the hospital and even managed to sit in the same seat without fighting or arguing. They actually were able to play nicely together. Yay!

Afterwards all five of us went to the park to play. Again, the boys did well So...there is hope.

Teri and I are home now and plan to watch Project Runway....and RELAX!
Please keep praying.

Thursday, February 7, 2008

Another Reason to Celebrate!

Woo Hoo! I just found out that I get to have the boys this weekend!
I will get them on Saturday morning and take them back on Sunday evening! Please pray that our time goes well and that the boys can actually make it through the night with me.
I am so excited. Yipeee!

A Reason to Celebrate!

It is a "Yes" for Karen's adoption!
Karen just called and told me that the courts in Braila said "YES" to her adopting Beti.
She doesn't have any other details than that. But...YES is a HUGE detail. Thanks for all you who have been praying for Karen and Beti. What a wonderful answer to prayer.

Karen's Court Date and My Meeting with the DPC

Karen's trial went amazingly well. She doesn't know the exact answer yet, but her lawyer was 99% sure it was going to be a positive answer.

She said there were three lawyers. One lady was "semi-interested, the other lady could care less and the guy was yawning. So it started off really bad. In fact, the Braila DPC lawyer came up to her lawyer before things started and told them that he was instructed by Braila DPC to be tough on Karen and make things difficult for her today. (Attack her for not being able to speak Romanian etc. ) Amazingly, he ended up saying nothing at all.

Her attorney spoke very well of Karen and refuted every argument they had against her. Even the prosecuting attorney even spoke on Karen's behalf by the end of the meeting. He stated how she had met all the requirements and had dealt with everything that had been thrown at her. His recommendation was that they award Karen the right to adopt Beti.

Karen said by the end of the meeting all three judges were sitting on the edge of their seats, listening intently. Praise God. They posted their decision today at 2 pm, but her lawyer couldn't get there this afternoon. She will find out tomorrow.

Thanks for all of you who have been praying for Karen and Beti. I will let you know as soon as I find out

My meeting went well too. Teri and I met with the foster mom's at the DPC. Cristian wasn't there, only Nicolae.

I was in the other room when they(Nicolae and the foster moms) showed up. Miss "Used to ignore me lady...Alina", was showing me pictures of her baby and just talking up a storm with me in
When I went back out to the waiting room I realized that the moms had shown up and were in the other room. I went in right away. Nicolae came right up to me and then turned and introduced me to one the the ladies. He told her that I was Mama Debbie, his mom. It was very cute. She asked him if I spoke Romanian. He told her that I could speak a little bit of Romanian. He also told her that he spoke English.

She then proceeded to ask him what he knew in English. The first thing she asked him was how to say Te iubesc in English. Immediately he responded, "I love you very much!" Then he winked at me. So darling.

Anyway, we (The foster mom's, the boys and I) will go to get the medical reports done on Monday. Yay. The DPC just told the moms this is where you will go and this is when you will go. The DPC also explained the situation about me having the boys on the weekend and that we will know tomorrow whether or not the boys will stay the night with me. But, if not, I will come and get the boys in the morning and keep them until the evening on Sat. and on Sun. We will all know tomorrow what is happening.

Afterwards Teri and I went with Carmen and Nicolae back to their apt. We spend about 2 1/2 hrs. there. I took some adorable videos and the three of us put the Scooby Doo puzzle together. It is very easy for Nicolae to put this puzzle together now. He kept giving us pieces and telling us where to put them. Cute.

Tomorrow Teri and I are hoping to go to Mary's apt. She and her husband Adi live upstairs from Karen. We are supposed to make sarmale. Then we will go and visit with Cristian. Tomorrow night we are planning to go to the Hard Rock Cafe that just opened up. And sometime during all of this I will hear from the DPC about whether or not the boys will get to stay with me on Sat. night.

Love you,

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

Today's Adventures

Pavement -1 Teri -0

This afternoon as Teri and I were racing to get to the police dept. before they closed, she lost the contest with the uneven pavement. She was down for the count! She tweeked her glasses, scraped her face, her hand and her knee. Ouch! She is fine. She is just bruised and battered. Foarte atractiva. (Very attractive).Needless to say....we didn't make it to the police dept. Oh well....there is tomorrow. I felt/feel so bad for Teri.

This morning Teri and I met up with Mr. Mocanu to get the papers legalized. The one paper was a Declaratie for the adoption. It declares that I will assume full responsibility for the boys. We had to go to two different notaries for this. Happily, I was able to do it without a translator. Yea!
They made me read out loud and of course asked me several questions. While my reading was a bit slow and not too impressive,they could tell that I understood what the paper said and I was able to understand them and carry on a conversation. Far from perfect, but certainly improving.

Afterwards, Teri and I went to the DPC to turn in the Declaratie. Liana, Alina and Luminita(not my neighbor) were all there. It was really nice. They are so friendly now and are doing all they can to help me. They speak in an combination of Romanian and English. Luminita translates when I don't understand. I speak in Romanian when I can and resort back to English when I don't have the words to get my point across. It works out fine. So different from when I used to go there.

Today, I found out that I MIGHT NOT get the boys for the weekend. The director is apprehensive about me having them overnight. The DPC is responsible for them and she is leery until the court gives me permission. The DPC ladies disagree with her. They believe I need to start having the boys now. So we shall see. I will know for sure on Friday morning. Either way it doesn't slow down the process (Hmmm...can it really be slower? I don't care to find out!)
So if I don't get to have the boys overnight, I would be able to take them for the day, but they would sleep at their own homes. This is until the court says yes and I have the 90 day placement.
Please pray for this situation. Maria Nitulescu is the Director of Sector 2. She is the one that makes this decision. I really do want to get the boys with me.

We are home now and Teri is resting up from here battle with the pavement. Since she thawed some hamburger... with her face...I thought we would have burgers with Mac-n-cheese for dinner tonight. Yum. Thanks Teri!

We will go back to the DPC tomorrow with Cristian's and Nicolae's foster moms at 10 am.The ladies from the DPC will discuss about the medical exams and more about what is to come. Cristian and Nicolae will be there too. Yeah, I will get to see both of them together. I hope it goes well.
Please pray too that we can get the medical exams for the boys done very quickly. The longer it takes, the longer I have to wait to file the papers to adopt.

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Today's meeting with the DPC

I think today's meeting with Liana from the DPC went well. I get to have the boys this Friday- Sunday!
I will get them just on the weekends for now. They want to see how the boys do...especially Cristian.

I am very excited and a bit nervous. The language barrier will be one of the biggest challenges.
Thankfully, Teri is here too, which will help. Two on two are much better odds.

We went to see Cristian again this afternoon. It was a good visit. I had a list from the DPC of paperwork that I need to get from Cristian's foster mom, Ani. She is so nice. I know this isn't easy for her either, but she is very supportive and I really appreciate that. She will make copies and give them to me on Thursday. The boys have to have medical exams too on Thursday. I am hoping to go with both Nicolae and Cristian. I am not sure how much it will cost me to have their medical exams done, but it is all part of the process.
At Cristian's, we played "Bunica" aka "Old Maid". It is his favorite game for sure!
We also played "Barrel of Monkeys". Ani, was the Champion!
Now Teri and I are at home getting ready to eat dinner. Tomorrow we go with Mr. Moncanu to legalize some more legal documents. And hopefully, I will get to see Nicolae as well. Thanks for all of your prayers!Love Debbie

Sunday, February 3, 2008

Cute pictures of Nicolae and Crisitan

Just thought I'd send a couple cute photos of Cristian and Nicolae. The one of Cristian was taken by his foster family at the park outside their apt. Enjoy.

Please pray for tomorrow's meeting with the DPC

I was hoping that my meeting with the DPC would be today, but Mr. Mocanu just called and said that Liana, my social worker, can't meet until tomorrow. So, we are meeting with the DPC at 9am tomorrow morning. (Tuesday)

I would appreciate your prayers. Pray that things can move quickly and that I can get the boys in my home. I am praying that I can have them at least for this next weekend.
Also ...I would appreciate your prayers for Correy Grubaugh. She is a teacher/parent/friend of mine. Her father died on Sunday. It was a long drawn out situation.
Here is an excerpt from Correy's email.
I just wanted to thank you all for praying for my dad all this time. He passed away about 9:30 this morning, very peacefully, thank God. We are all exhausted, drained. Tomorrow we go to the funeral home to make all the arrangements. We'd like to have a memorial for him next Sat. Greg is up here with me now (praise the Lord!) & we will be staying this next week to help Cindy with everything. There is so much to share, but I do want to say at least that God's hand was clearly evident in the loving, caring people He sent to take care of my dad through not only this past 6 weeks, but even before that. Also, I had a wonderful time with my brother who came up for a few days while dad was still aware of things. Praise God for that, too.

Thank you all in advance for your prayers.

Saturday, February 2, 2008

Sleeping the day away....Literally!

Teri and I slept all day....I mean all day We roused for the bathroom and said hi to each other, but that was about it. Guess we needed it. I haven't slept that long ...well in forever. Of course unless I was sick. I think the broken bones finally caught up with me. My body was tired.

Teri said she was so tired she couldn't even stay up to read. She just is now able to read more than a paragraph before falling back to sleep. This afternoon we are planning to go over to Luminita's to bake some cookies. I guess we should try to do something "productive".

hmmm....debating.....actually get up or go back to bed. Smiles

Friday, February 1, 2008

I am legally a foster mom!

Today Teri and I were busy. We met with Mr. Mocanu first thing this morning to apply for another police report. I need it in order to be able to adopt. They expire every 3 months. Then Teri and I hiked on over to DPC 2 to check in and see how things were/are going. Sylvia was the only one there. Even so, I was able to sign and receive my Atestat. Which means...I have foster care mom status now. Official documents and all! I called Mr. Moncau after that to set up a meeting on Monday with the DPC. We will all meet to together and find out exactly what the next steps will be. I should be able to get the boys darn quick. Keep those prayers coming.
Teri and I then hoofed our way back the apt. to eat lunch and get some gifts ready for the boys. We had about 45 minutes at home and then headed over to Cristian's house. It was nice seeing Cristian again. He is a dink in comparison to Nicolae. Teri and I were only able to stay about 1 1/2 hrs. because we had plans to see Nicolae today too . Even though Cristian's visit was short, it was nice. It seemed like forever since I had seen him. Ani asked us to please stay longer on our next visit. Ummmmm...OK! A no brainer for sure. So sweet though.

We then made our way to Nicolae's house via public transportation and lots of walking. It was great to see him again too. We hung out in the house for a while and then we went to the park. Teri and Nicolae spent time getting to know each other on the swings. It was cute when he called her name. He was saying Teri, but it sounded like Keri. We spent about 4 hrs with Nicolae. S

Around 8 pm. we headed back to the apt. We were on the go for 12+ hours today. A bit exhausting. Especially since we are still feeling the effects of jet lag, being just a bit out of shape oh and the obvious broken collar bone and rib. Even was a great day.
We just got done eating some spaghetti for dinner and Teri is resting her weary body on the couch. Tomorrow will be a get up"whenever" kind of morning. Teri is good to go with that.
FYI...On Monday we will go to the DPC again. We get to see Cristian again on Monday too. We scheduled to see Nicolae again on Wednesday. Hey...who knows? By the end of the week the boys could be staying with me. It seems fast, but it isn't totally unrealistic.
So please keep those prayers coming.