Monthly Archives: February 2009

Christmas in February – Books, Books & More Books!

Ok, so my favorite past time is reading; and every year, at tax return time, I allow myself to splurge on books. I usually go through and buy a couple hundred dollars worth of books that I’ve been collecting on my Amazon Wish list.

This year, I struggled, to buy a kindle or not buy a kindle. I’ll cut the suspension to a minimum: I didn’t buy a kindle.

I figured, buy a kindle for 400$ and then have almost nothing to buy Kindle books with; and additionally, the thousands of books I already have, very few are in Kindle format, and of the 140 or so books on my wish list, only about 7 of them were available via Kindle.

Plus the Kindle is still not color, and still doesn’t have WiFi access. So, instead, I bought a couple hundred dollars worth of books – and now I need to build a bigger book shelf.

If you’re interested in seeing the types of books I buy and read, you can check out my Amazon media library:

NOTE: That doesn’t cover any of the Audio books I listen too, however, I try and buy the books of audio books I listen too, so that I have them to reference if I ever need to recall something I heard.

I hope to someday be able to get my children to read all of these books too; it’ll be like I have a family library – where the kids can come and check books out and read them (if people still read hardcopies then [re: Kindle’s, et. Al.].

There and back again…

We made it home yesterday – after waiting 5 hours in the Haiti terminal, getting three hours of sleep in a Miami hotel, and another 2 hour flight and 5 hour drive. We are exhausted, and emotionally drained. To top it off, I think we picked something up on the way home, because we’ve been quite sick since Saturday evening.

I want to talk to our girls so bad; I want them to know that we didn’t abandon them, that we are still alive, that we are coming back for them, but I can’t – yet – and even if I could – how much would they understand?

It’s like these two people stepped out of a television show (Skype), made them happy for a week, showered them with love and affection, attention, and even physical possessions, that I’m sure they’ve had very little of – and then, like a dream, they woke up again one morning, and we were gone.

Do they know we really exist, do they know we really do love them, do they know that we’re coming back for them. Do they?

I was thinking when I got home, the famous words, of my most favorite movie: “The next time I go looking for my heart’s desire, I won’t look any further than my own backyard; if it’s not there, then I never really lost it to begin with.” – but that’s not entirely true – I am SO happy to be home, and the trip to Haiti has made me appreciate so much in my life that has gone unappreciated – I am truly a new person… but… I left part of my heart back in Haiti – so I now can’t really say that my heart’s desire is all in my own backyard… how very heart breaking…

 

Lord, please tell me… when can I be whole again? L

– Christella

– Fabienne

At the Orphanage…

Wow! I’ve never been so overwhelmed so quickly. We went to the orphanage today, and went down into the toddler room – and we were swamped by 20 some odd toddlers, saying “mamma me”, “papa, papa” and covering us, and holding upraised hands with little fingers that were flashing “pick me up, pick me up”.

Every child had to have their turn, being held by “Papa” – and for each child I picked up; I got HUGE grins, and smiles, and then I put them down and moved on to the next child.

I was overwhelmed during that time, and felt almost a little dirty because of all of the runny noses and dirty hands that I had all over me (and I’m a clean freak). But later on, as I was leaving, I was also overwhelmed with sadness, as I saw these faces starting at me from around the back yard to wave goodbye.

 
 

Many of these children are being adopted, but because of the laws of Haiti, they have been waiting SO very long, and very rarely get to actually feel the touch of their parents.

HIS Home for children was amazing; the love they are given, the care they are given, but nothing, and I mean nothing can compare to the gentle brush on a cheek from mamma or papa. I was overwhelmed with sadness as we left, and waved goodbye.

A couple of the children, one especially, who had almost died when he had first come in, and had went

and had a treatment in the states and came back HIV positive from a blood transfusion, this little boy touched my heart.

He was going around to everyone and kissing everyone, and hugging everyone. He even asked me to go around and give out kisses and hugs with him. Every time he saw me he would look up at me and give me a huge grin, because I had helped him up the stairs when we first got there and he was terrified, and then gave him a couple chocolates.

I’ve been fighting back constant tears today, realizing that we are leaving our girls in two days… I hope they understand, that they can begin to understand that if it is God’s will, that we will be back for them, as soon as we can…

The Beach in Haiti…

We went to the beach today – I’m happy to be alive! LoL

 
 

We drove on some roads that had recently been reopened after the kidnappings slowed way down, we drove through a street called ambush alley. We drove on the highway at 60-70 mph, without seat belts, crammed to the point of not being able to move into a vehicle, where there are no dividers in the road, no laws except the law of survival; it was indeed an adventure. Above and beyond that, the beauty of the country is marred by the destruction of last years’ hurricane, poverty, trash piles everywhere, on everything – covered in shanty shacks, and the constant smell of poisonous burning plastic. We bought some fried bananas from the many street vendors that were all over the streets everywhere….

Christella was sick on the ride over, so we all got bathed in half digested pineapple (5 times) – poor Fabienne was covered, but she didn’t make a fuss at all, while she squirmed a little bit, she put up with it! It was gross – I almost lost it – but I held in my breakfast!

The ocean was beautiful, and there were no bad smells there (except the men’s room, but I’ll spare you the description of that)! The water was so salty that you would float – we picked up tons of amazing shells, and coconuts. Fabienne was scared to death of the waves, and most everything else – it has been a week of wonders for this little girl that has been in the orphanage since she was a tiny baby – but she warmed up to the idea, and was having a great time with Christella. Christella was going around picking up shells and sea glass for Amanda.

The girls had a blast when we got home tonight. We got to see Fabienne playing for the first time – giggling, laughing, running around and screaming like a little girl! She is so amazingly sweet, cuddly, she LOVES Amanda, followers her around, loves to play with her hair. Christella continues to be amazing, she tries to please us, she shares everything she is given even coming from a place where she had nothing (that is such a blessing to see). She is such a SMART little girl, and she eats like a horse! Tonight, however, she got really grumpy and started to pout when she got really tired… she was using the “I don’t understand you” card – ignoring what we asked her to do – even though we knew all well she could understand us!

 
 

Anyway, here is a picture Amanda took of our visit to the beach today… it was amazing – although I can still smell burning plastic!

 
 

 
 

        

 
 

Our trip to Haiti…

Ok, there are so many wonderful and amazing things to say about our children and our experience so far.. but Amanda has been keeping everyone apprised of how things are going (with pictures too). Right now, because I’m exhausted, and I don’t feel very well – I’m just going to say…. I ate goat today!

  

Getting ready… emotionally for our trip to Haiti

One week left until we hop on a plane and fly over the entire eastern coast of the United States and land inside of Haiti.

I don’t think I’ve ever been more worried and excited all at the same time!

I have three beautiful, wonderful children here at home that I’ve never been without for more than a day. Three children that I haven’t ever spent as much time as I would like with, three children that have so much potential and possibilities and capabilities if they can grow up in a loving and caring home filled with their mother and father.

If something was to happen to us, they’ll live on, I know they will, they’ll adjust, they’ll have to, and they’ll be loved and cared for, I know they will, but it just won’t be the same for them… how would they cope, would they be raised the way we long to raise them, would they have a loving relationship with God their father? Would they blame God, and if they do, who is going to help them understand and accept His will?

And then I have two beautiful, wonderful little girls that are in Haiti. I do not know them very well, except that they are fearfully and wonderfully made in the image of our Father and creator, that they have no home of their own, and no family of their own, and that I have this indescribable desire to love them, and hold them, and give them out of everything great and small that the Lord has given to me. And what if they lose yet another set of parents?

Would they all have the wisdom to say: “Blessed be the name of the Lord: Blessed be his name in a land that is plentiful, where the streams of abundance flow: Blessed be his name when the road’s filled with suffering, when there’s pain in the offering, Blessed be his name… He gives and takes away, but my heart will choose to say, Lord, Blessed be your name!”

While life is always on the edge, and at any moment something could happen to me or Amanda or both (may it never be), I weep for the possibility that my children could lose their parents, and also that our daughters from Haiti wouldn’t ever get to know the love that we have to offer them. The fear that no parent wants to face, and yet, it’s always there…

To leave my children without a father (or mother) would be something I hope they never have to face, but don’t misunderstand, I don’t fear for my own life (well – except that I hope I don’t go painfully ), because I truly believe for me “To live is Christ, but to die is gain…”

Lord protect us, and give us the strength to face anything you send our way!