December 31, 2007

Happy 2008...

Straight from La Antigua Guatemala!! It's been a whirlwind 2 days but we have settled in-- and I am loving it! I terribly miss Rich and my pooches already but I know we will see them soon. In the meantime, I have a little bundle of love that brings me so much. Nathan is doing wonderfully. He is such a happy little guy...

We made it to the hotel last night @ 6pm. We love it here. Maria Elena, the innkeeper, is so accommodating. We have everything here we need and more. It's in a perfect location only about 2 blocks from central park.

The New Year's eve festivities here in Antigua are overwhelming and amazing. The Guatemalan people know how to ring in the New Year right! Although we were back in our room before 7pm, we did walk around this evening and got to experience the sights and sounds of the celebation. Right now the fireworks are going off near the Arch and CNN is here filming it all.

Yesterday was a special day for Nathan as he was united with us forever! We love him so much and we feel SO incredibly blessed to have been given the best gift of all in 2007. I can't think of anything else that could top it.

HaPpY NeW YeAr 2008!

Pictures coming soon!

December 29, 2007

And I'm off to Antigua!

After packing almost all day, I have 3 full suitcases, a deluxe stroller, a diaper bag and myself to get to Guatemala! I've got some good books for the plane, and hopefully after a long nap, I'll arrive in Guatemala tomorrow without any problems. It's finally come when we will be together forever. It sort of feels like a dream because of all the waiting-- but the time has finally come and I couldn't be happier!

Happy New Year to all!

A few pictures to leave you with...

My dad had this sweater made for Nate in Vermont... I think it's so cute.

Nate's snowsuit to return home in!

Nathaniel's Nursery

December 28, 2007

An Update...

Well, it really wasn't a surprise but we did not get our birth certifcate this week. The request for Nathan's birth certificate was submitted on 12/3. Monday will be 4 weeks. It is supposedly taking at least 6 weeks because the mayor is anti-adoption and doesn't believe in American's adopting children from Guatemala (yes, this is otherwise referred to as corruption). We received word today that our attorney has been going weekly to check on the status and has another meeting with the mayor next Wednesday after the holiday. I know we will get our birth certificate but it is not likely for another 2-3 weeks. I am in communication with my agency and have plans to go to the civil registry myself the second week of January with my attorney if we do not have a birth certificate.

I was frustrated today over the fact that people keep asking me, "Now, could something go wrong and prevent your child from coming home". I know people mean well and most people are not involved in the complexities of international adoption, but I do get frustrated with these questions. Of course, Nathan will come home but it will happen in the right time and we have no control over that. I am thankful for all my friends and family who are always so supportive, but sometimes I am just so perplexed at the questions I am asked. Ok, vent over!

MORE IMPORTANTLY- my life as a childless woman has been flashing before my eyes....when I drove home tonight, I realized it was the last time I would drive home without Nathan in the backseat....I realized that tomorrow would be my last time eating dinner in my house without a baby...I CAN'T believe the time has come. Bright and early Sunday morning I am flying to Guatemala and will arrive there @ Noon. I will have Nathan mid-afternoon and we'll be settling into a life in Antigua until the time comes for us to come home. I am really excited to have all this bonding time with him and to explore Antigua. I am in contact with other women who are fostering and we have plans to meet weekly for lunch and more! It should be a true adventure and an experience I will never forget.

December 27, 2007

Christmas 2007 Pics...

Kate in her new sled...(she loved it!)

Kate, Juanita, and Dad

Molly and Kate


Dad and I...

There was lots of snow in Vermont and it was definetely a white Christmas!!

December 21, 2007

A time for family...

Tomorrow I head to Vermont to spend time with my family for a long weekend. I love Christmas. It's always been such a celebrated holiday in my family and Rich and I hope to pass that on to Nathan. As Nate's 1st Christmas approaches, I do feel a sense of sadness that we will not be spending it with him. However, I am comforted that he will spend his 1st Christmas with his mama Maria in Guatemala. We'll have all the Christmas' to come.

I wish you all a very Merry Christmas....with family, friends, and those you hold close to your heart.

December 18, 2007

December 16, 2007

BUSY weekend

It was a busy weekend! I started my Christmas shopping and I finished all in one weekend. I was brave- I don't recommend shopping at Target 9 days before Christmas in the middle of the day! It took me 30 minutes to get out of the parking lot. :-)

The holidays have come so fast. This past week Rich put up the Christmas tree and we decorated the house. We have a dept. 56 village collection and I love it. Rich made a tradition to buy a new piece every year.

We went to our neighborhood holiday party today and then came back to finish Nate's room. It's all done with a few exceptions. I ironed all his bedding and got everything in order. His curtain is up and we just need to hang one more piece. Then, I'll dust it and it will be complete.

I came to the realization today that this was my last full weekend at home before I leave to go down to get Nate for my extended pick-up trip. Next weekened I'm going to Vermont to visit my family for the holiday. Rich will stay home due to his work schedule and then I'll be back so that we can spend Christmas day together. Then, I finish my last 3 days at work and I'm off. I'm flying direct this trip out of JFK.

Finally, I talked with Maria this week through our translator. I am starting to feel so sad that Nate will be leaving Maria. She has cared for him wonderfully since he was 2 days old on May 10th of this year. I can't even begin to imagine the bond they have and how truly difficult it will be to say goodbye. I feel fortunate that Maria and I have connected so well. She is such a caring woman. While we were talking about meeting and saying goodbye on the phone, she began to cry. All she could say was how happy she was that we were going to give him such a good home, but that she would miss him terribly. It was clear to me in this conversation how much she really loves him and how much she has given to him and to us. We could not be more grateful to her. I promised her we would forever stay in touch and I hope to get back down to visit her in the next few years. I'm putting together a scrapbook of pictures of the last 6 months since we received Nate's referral. I think this will be the perfect goodbye gift...

Here are a couple pics of our holiday decorating and toy assembling fun (disclaimer: assembling an exersaucer should not be in the top 1 million things to do before you die. :-))

December 12, 2007

Our official BLOG Christmas card!

From our family to yours...

Merry Christmas! May 2008 be a year filled with health, peace, and happiness!

Warm Wishes ~ Emily, Rich, and Nate

Here's the latest...

I'm here! It's been such a busy week I've barely had time to keep my head above water. I wish I was reporting that we have a birth certificate....but we don't. We were told by our attorney that it would take a week and that we were submitted on 12/3. We should have had our birth certificate this past Monday...but updates came in from our attorney today and we didn't get one. Both Rich and I thought it was interesting that our attorney said it would only take a week as most birth certificates from where Nate was born take 6 weeks. I requested an update from our attorney again this week so we should hear something in the next couple days.

The good news is that I CAN'T believe I am leaving in 2 1/2 weeks to see Nate forever!! I will be meeting Maria at the Marriott on 12/30 and then we'll whisk away to Antigua....I'm really looking forward to spending some quality time together before we go home. At this point, we realistically don't expect to get home until the end of January. The embassy is officially not issuing PINK appts. until the 2nd of January we're just hoping for an appt. in January. The holidays are sure to add at least 2 weeks to the process. Especially with how close we are now. We'll see.

I called Maria myself last night. My spanish is rusty but we could communicate. She was out shopping and said Nate is doing really well. His hair is growing like crazy and he's a happy boy. He LOVES his cereal. Just hearing that was enough to make my day. I've started getting all my things together for the trip. This time is different than all the other trips because I don't know how long I will be down, I'm getting a cell phone and bringing everything and the house, too!

December 9, 2007

Kids and dogs - A perfect combination

I just can't wait to introduce Nate to Junior and Benny....I know we'll get a few good laughs out of their mischief together, too. :-)

December 8, 2007

21 days...

Until we see this sweet face FOREVER!!

I can't believe it's getting this close to Christmas! The time is flying. I was away for work this week so I haven't posted much. I talked with Maria last night and Nate is doing really well. He loves his cereal and he's over 15lbs now. You'd never know it because he is a peanut but he loves to eat-- he's going to fit in perfectly with mom and dad! :-)

We hope to hear an update this week on the birth certificate. Once that is received, we should have our embassy appt. in about 3 weeks or so. We are heading to GC on the 30th of this month and will be staying until the end. We plan to leave the day after we get our visa. We are hoping for less than a 2 week stay but as we have always said- this process is unpredictable. We did inquire about our birth certificate because the civil registries in Guatemala can be unpredictable also, and our attorney assured us it would only take him a week. That would mean we should hear news this week. We'll be staying at the Marriott if our stay is less than a week; if it's longer- we'll be staying at a bed and breakfast in Antigua - Hotel Casa Ovalle.

Here's wishing you all a peaceful weekend!

December 3, 2007

It's Official!

More great news to share (cue the drum roll please!): as of 11/30/07- Nathaniel is OFFICIALLY a Hoyt and is legally our son!! His birth mother signed off for the fourth and final time. This is GREAT news! Now we are just waiting on our birth certificate which we have been told will take one week. From there, it's 2-3 weeks to travel! Once we have the birth certificate, our attorney will get a passport for Nate and then submit the file to the US embassy. All that will need to be completed at this point is the 2nd and final DNA test on just Nate. That's a breeze! We'll have a more specific timeframe once we know the DNA has been completed.

I still can't believe we are this close to getting the little guy home! Prayers to all our PGN friends who are still waiting for that SPECIAL call! :-)