Revelation 3:8 (New International Version)
I know your deeds. See, I have placed before you an open door that no one can shut. I know that you have little strength, yet you have kept my word and have not denied my name.

The child is the beauty of God present in the world – that greatest gift to a family.” (Blessed Teresa of Calcutta)

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Gotcha Day for Joshua!

Hi Everyone,
On Saturday we drove 3 hours to Plovdiv to bring Joshua home.  We meaning myself, Madeline and Marty (our driver) and Eva our translator.  Stephanie and my daughter Nideya remained behind at the hotel because the car was not big enough.  The ride was beautiful. It was beautiful when I was here in March but now it was especially beautiful being that the trees and fields were green.
When we arrived to his village,  it began to really hit me.  I was coming to get my son. He was to be no longer an orphan.  We saw some of the other orphans playing outside and they were unaware that we were even there since they were on the other side of the house.  We rang the door bell and were greeted by a nanny who was wearing all white and she and our translator exchanged a few words then she looked at me and smiled. She asked me something in Bulgarian and I just smiled and looked at the translator.  "She is asking if you have missed Rossen".  Oh yes, I nodded and smiled and she seemed very satisfied.  When we reached upstairs and walked into the directors office,  it really hit me.
The scene was so moving.  Joshua Rossen was sitting back on the couch with his little legs dangling off the couch with his hands crossed "waiting" so well behaved while the director sat across in a desk with a mountain of papers. She was writing something or sorting some of them when we arrived and she stood up and greeted us.  She had come in on Saturday to release him from the orphanage.  This was very kind of her because most directors would not do this and make the family and child wait until a weekday. I appreciated that she came in. She asked me if I wanted to get him dressed or did I want one the nanny to do it and I said I would.  I then folded his old orphanage clothes and handed it to the nanny. It was very old yellow worn clothes but I knew for sure it would be used on another child. I then signed 2 papers and received a hand shake. The translator and her reviewed some papers and my passport numbers to make sure the file was correct and I was then handed an old small photo album with pictures of Joshua that had been taken during his life in the orphanage. His orphanage had made it a point to take a picture every year on his birthday. He did have a cake during his brithdays. How sweet is that.
Joshua is a very calm easy child and he has done well so far. He just does not know how to hold a cup or feed himself at all, He is 7 years old and looks more like a 3 1/2 year old he is fitting into 24 month clothes perfectly. He grinds his teeth and rocks but he also sleeps all night and will come easily wherever I am sitting to sit on my lap. Thank you Father for adopting me and allowing me to adopt Joshua Rossen. thank you for taking care of him all these years and not letting him be forgotten. Thank you for everyone who has donated and prayed and sent beautiful messages helping us to make Joshua an "orphan no more".

Gotcha Joshua Rossen Abram Brown!!

Friday, July 20, 2012

We made it to Bulgaria!

Hi Everyone,
  We did arrive one day later then expected.  We missed our flight to Germany so we had to stay in Virginia for the day. The weather delayed us (we had to wait for our plane to arrive in RDU) at first but then when we arrived to Washington a jet food truck was in front of where the plane parks.  The pilot made an announcement that the truck was unattended and they were looking for a driver to move the truck....funny at first but not funny when you are already delayed.  So then we asked where our gate would be and they told us the wrong gate number! As we arrived to the gate the attendants stated that the plane was being held and that we must hurry.  They looked at our ticket and began to tag our stroller and infant car seats. It wasn't until after a few more minutes when another attendant looked at the tickets that she are going to Germany and told the first attendant. " By the way" she said, "you will never make it to the other plane because of the distance". Well she was right our plane left 40 minutes prior to us arriving at the correct gate.  We ran but it did not work. We then noticed that our strollers were tagged for France!
So here we were with no one around except the cleaning people. We eventually had to go to the outside and start again, no hotels available, no refund or voucher for a hotel and luggage somewhere in holding with us anable to get it because of security reasons.  We finally at 3am made to a hotel paid 40 something for a taxi (one way) and hotel cost of 179!  This was no way to start but we had no choice so we made the best of it.  In the morning we found out that our plane to Germany would not leave for over 12 hours but at least we had seats being held.
so what did we do to pass the time?....we went to the mall! We went window shopping but by now my feet had blisters from the flip flops so getting a pair of different flip flops was a must. We also had to get some hygiene stuff since most of ours was in the luggage that was somewhere in the airport.
Well, we did make it to the next plane with much time to spare and we departed at 2205. The rest seemed simple until we were at baggage claim..... the announcement was made that there was no other luggage coming. Here we now were with no luggage or strollers! what can you do but shake your head and laugh and fill out missing luggage slips.  So here we are and despite it all we are all safe and happy to be here.  We feel so very lucky that God has given us this opportunity.  Tomorrow we should be picking up one child from the orphanage.  We are just hoping our luggage arrives.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Hi Everyone,
Well the wait is over, tomorrow July 18 is the day I leave to bring my children home.  I will travel to Germany and then to Bulgaria.  I am so so excited.  On July 15  Sophia turned 16 years old  so being there on the week of her birthday is very special but knowing that before the week ends she will no longer be in the the orphanage is amazing.  When I look back to when we committed to these children,  I never imagined how God would help us bring them home.  What God did was place people (people who love Him and love other human beings) and placed them in our paths to help us along the way.

I worked the past 3 days  and my older kids did an amazing job helping me get the house ready for me to travel.  They did an amazing job that is why I was able to quickly sit and update you.  Thanks kids, love you. The little ones are still sleeping so I will plan my day mostly packing and tying loose ends around the house. Steven will stay with the children while I travel. My oldest daughter and son  will also stay and help daddy.  I will be traveling with my 12 year old and 11 year old girls.  To say that they are happy is not enough....they are beyond excited.  They were adopted when they were 4 (Nideya) and 6 (Madeline) so actually being a part of traveling to bring home their new siblings is something very important to them. Yes, it was a lot of money to buy their tickets but this confirms to them that being adopted is not a second choice it is not by accident, being adopted into a family or being born into a family is a Blessed event. We have shared so many tears remembering how they became our family. Madeline came to us on New Years Eve as an emergency placement.  She remembers being led in with her brother and sister crying and afraid.  They had been driven to our home because of the tragedy happening at her biological family  home and she remembers being afraid no knowing what was going to happen at this new people's house. Nideya had been placed in her 3rd foster home and was to be adopted by them when her foster parents changed their minds.  They did not have any children and as they adoption of Nideya and her brother were coming to a close, they became afraid and changed their minds.  Nideya remembers also being afraid, she was leaving her foster parents home for reasons she did not understand.  These girls have come such a long way. They have grown, built trust, come to love others, us and themselves. They have learned to forgive those who have hurt them. My girls are now being the foundation for these 4 children. I cry just thinking about it.  The girls tickets,  mine, my friend Stephanie (who is also in the middle of an adoption so she was unable to pay hers) and 4 return tickets for the kids were all a little short of 11,000  yes that is Eleven Thousand dollars but it is worth it!  I am so Blessed that one of the mom's who previously adopted emailed me to tell me that her daughter Sabrina had saved up her money and would go to help us bring the kids home.  Sabrina is 17 and she has worked so hard to be able to do this.  I am so Blessed!!     In less then 48 hours we will be at the airport!!

Well I will post pictures of all my luggage when I am packed.  I am still having stroller decisions to make.  I am trying so hard to not bring to much so we do not have to pay extra at the airport...wish me luck.