Thursday, July 31, 2008


Well, it is time to put the blog to rest. It's clear that I don't have time to keep it updated, considering it's been two months since my last post. A lot has happened since my last post ...

We celebrated our one year anniversary of "Gotcha Day". Kali has changed so much since we first saw her, yet she is still the feisty little girl who can hold her own with any rough and tumble boy.

Our 3 oldest kids are scattered all over the world ... Channing is still in China, but we hope to have him home soon; Landree spent six weeks in England and feels as if she will be back there again soon; Jordan is in his 5th week of Navy boot camp at Great Lakes, IL and will be graduating a month from now.

And Carson will be starting "big kids school" (Kindergarten) in a few short weeks.

But the biggest change of all since my last post ... kindergarten will be in West Texas. Yes, we are moving. Rick took a new job out west and we are moving in just one more week. Considering our house sold in only two weeks, it is clear that this move was meant to be. Life has been hectic, to say the least, trying to get all the logistics of a cross-state move (and when it's Texas, that's a big move!) in order AND continue working full time AND taking care of two little kids. Yeah, I know ... cry me a river, my own little pity party. I can't wait until all of this is over and we can settle back in to normal life. But I will miss my house and my life in North Central Texas.

I had the cutest picture of the kids waving goodbye, but alas, the picture is on my other computer which is sitting on a Bekins moving truck right now.

I know I will always keep in touch with some of the friends I have made in our adoption journey ... all the wonderful people at Gladney, Rachel, Kathy, Carol ... we will never be completely out of touch. And I know I will see many of you again at another Gladney function. New friends await in the Midland GFA as well.

Blessings to you all!

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

Our Munchkins

These two never cease to amaze us. They are the very best of friends and every bit brother & sister. They squabble and fight over toys and who gets to watch what on TV, with the frequent "he's touching me" or "she's looking at me" thrown in for good measure just to make sure we are listening. Then the next minute they are playing and laughing and having the best time ever. They take very good care of each other and always have each other's back. For a while, Carson seemed to be fully in charge ... deciding what they were going to play, making all the rules (and of course changing them midstream to his benefit), and ordering Kali around. But she has come into her own and she is now quite comfortable throwing her own orders around. But he's still such a great big brother to her.

Funny story from Wal Mart ... I had both kids with me one day doing a little shopping and we stopped in the kids' clothing section. Kali was riding in the kids' seat on the cart while Carson was walking with me. We picked out a few things and proceeded to the food section where we ran into my mother. We stopped to talk a minute and I noticed a shirt in the cart that I had not put there. I picked it up and asked, "Where did this come from?" Kali smiled and said, "Me!". It was a pink shirt, the right size for her, and it said in big letters on the front FUTURE PRESIDENT. Don't ask me how she managed to snag this shirt as we were walking past the rack, and in the right size no less, but it was so prophetic! Now, we just have to get rid of that silly little law that says you have to be born in the USA to be President!

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

The Fatal Kiss!

Thank goodness it was just my normal over-reacting! Like I said, I actually didn't think about the possible bigotry until much later in the evening, so it wasn't my first reaction at all ... but I still had to ask. I had to know! The answer ...

The assistant director actually laughed when I asked her if Kali's skin was the "issue". She assured me that they have no tolerance at the preschool for such things and that if a parent had "issue" with Kali's color, that parent would not be welcome at the daycare. In fact, she said that many of the parents are quite fond of Kali and often talk to her when they drop off their kids. Apparently, this particular little boy who has the "issue" had been at another daycare prior to this one and some things happened. She could not tell me what things ... and honestly, I didn't want to know ... but the mom now tends to over-react herself over something as innocent as a kiss from an affectionate 3 year old. But hey ... depending on what the issue from the previous daycare is, I might be just as overprotective of my children.

Whew! Now I don't have to go and beat someone up ...

Monday, April 7, 2008

The Kali and Kuri Reunion!

We meet again!

We finally got to have the long-awaited reunion of the two good buddies from Addis Ababa! Of course, it didn't quite go as we had hoped. Kuri very much remembers Kali, but Kali wasn't quite so sure about Kuri ... after all, she's been here now for almost 10 months and little 3 year old minds just don't remember too much from being 2. But it was still a really nice reunion. Kuri was a little shy at first, but by the time lunch was over, she was laughing at things and having a good time. They did NOT want to stand next to each other for a picture, so we had to trick them and take the picture when they didn't notice. Of course, smart as Kuri is, she figured out I had taken a picture and was none too happy with me.

We can't wait to get together again with the Waltons. The next time should be much easier since the girls have now become reacquainted with each other.

On a side note, I think I may have just experienced my first bout of bigotry with Kali ... I think. I am going to have to dive into this a little further and report back tomorrow. I went to pick the kids up from daycare today. They were on the playground so I stopped there first to pick them up before going into the school to get their things. One of the teachers came up to me with a strange look on her face and asked me if I had been in the office yet. Kali was sitting off to the side of the playground with a little boy and another teacher was talking to them, so I just assumed she had gotten in trouble and I asked if that was it. The teacher tells me, "Well, no, not in trouble. But she (lowered voice) kissed one of her friends today on the lips. They'll tell you about it in the office because they have an incident report for you to sign." An incident report!! for a 3 year kissing another 3 year old!! The horrors! So we head into the school to get their things, and the assistant director pulls me into a side room and quietly tells me, in a very hushed voice, that Kali had kissed one of the other students, went and played, and then came back and kissed him again, all in the span of about two minutes. I guess my face must have said it all, because she quickly tried to explain to me that this little boy she kissed "has ... umm ... issues with this." What kind of issues?? They do go to a church-based preschool, but it's Methodist, for goodness sake ... not something super conservative where kissing is only allowed between two consenting married adults! I told her that I didn't understand why it was such a big deal ... she's only 3 years old after all. There was absolutely nothing sexual about it ... she kisses her brothers on the lips too. So she tries to tell me that it really isn't a big deal, but some of the parents make it into a bigger deal than it really is. Ok, I can kind of understand that. Parents who don't know that ALL kids bite each other around the age of two make a big deal out of that too when their child happens to be on the receiving end of a bite (even though their child is probably also doing a little biting of their own). I am still a bit flabbergasted by it all and she proceeds to ask me if I am mad. I'm not mad, just a little confused. Why would they make such a big deal over a 3 year old kissing another kid, and in such hushed tones???

So I am cooking dinner this evening still in a state of confusion by it all and it hits me ... is it because she is (gasp!) B-L-A-C-K? Is that the "issue" the assistant director spoke of? If so, it has to be an issue with the parent, not the child. "Some parents make a bigger deal out of it than it really is." And the hushed tones, pulling me into a side room so as not to be overheard by another parent ...

I WILL ask about this tomorrow and report back. I sure hope I am wrong about this ...

Monday, March 31, 2008

Reunited with Belay

Gladney just celebrated their 120th Anniversary and the festivities were great. The best part of the shindig was that we got to see ALL of the wonderful Gladney people who brought our sweet Kalkidan to our family ... Ryan and Abby, Scott and Monica, Mary, and the Great Belay (or is it Saint Belay?? inside joke). Even got to spend the evening chatting with Piper's mom, Rachel Elliott. So sorry that we didn't meet up with you guys again on Saturday, Rachel. Soccer interferred. And we missed the Kali/Kuri reunion ... I just knew that the Waltons would be catching up from jetlag. Drat and double drat!! But we'll have that reunion very soon.

Sunday, February 24, 2008

A Letter to Ethiopia

Dear Children,

Your prayers have been answered!!! If all goes as planned, meet your new family.

The Wolfe Family

We know you will love being Wolfe cubs!

With all the love in Texas,
Rick, Becky, Landree, Channing, Jordan, Carson and Kali

Look what we got!

Such a beautiful surprise we received last week from our sweet Aschalew! Scott and Emily Lydick returned from Ethiopia just a few weeks ago and brought this beautiful oil painting for us from Aschalew. He had a friend paint this from a photo he had. If you look closely, you'll see the elephants in the bottom right corner ... we were at the Ft Worth Zoo.

This painting will definitely take a place of honor in our home once we have it framed! What a wonderful tribute from one of the kindest, sweetest young men we have ever met! And a very special thanks to Scott and Emily for bringing this home to us ... even when the airport officials made you take it off of it's frame.

On the home front, we have a comedy team on our hands. These two kids keep us in stitches. I know I keep saying that it is amazing how well Kali speaks English now, but it is true. People who now meet her would never know that English was not her first language and that she has only been immersed in English for 8 months. So, she has re-discovered Dora and Diego. The little girl who previously could not sit through 5 minutes of any other TV program or movie will now sit and watch Dora or Diego videos for hours ... that is, if we allowed it. It is the first thing she asks for when she wakes up in the morning, the first thing she asks for after school, and the last thing she asks about when she goes to sleep ..."Tomorrow, I can watch Dora?" She interacts with everything they say and ask and she can even count to 5 in Spanish now ... except for the 3 ... she jumps straight from dos to cuatro. And then tres pops in after cinco. But hey ... 3 languages now! Aschalew would be jealous ... he asks me to teach him more Spanish in every letter he sends.

Anyway, last night we took them to see a show and got into an interesting conversation in the car on the way home. We decided that we would all have a race today to see who was fastest, and Dad and Carson began a battle of words ...

Dad: "Hey Carson, my friends call me Lightning."
Carson: "Well, my friends call me Speedy the Racer."
Kali: "My friends call me Dora!"

What a character! Rick has decided he is going to handcuff Kali to the couch when she turns 16 and make her watch a marathon of Dora videos so she knows what we have been going through now!