The first step is to penetrate the clouds of deceit and distortion and learn the truth about the world,
then to organize and act to change it. That's never been impossible and never been easy. ~Noam Chomsky

Tuesday, April 9, 2013

New Year, Fresh Start

You know its been a while when...

you have to type in your entire blog URL because your new computer (the one you bought months ago) doesn't automatically start to load it with the first few words

you can't remember your blogger id or password

you can't even remember how to start a new post!

Today is day 1 of a new year. January 1, 2013.

Last night I held Ariam close and looked in her eyes telling her that she made 2012 the best year of our lives. She laughed. And maybe it was a bit dramatic. But it was true. Through the ups and downs, Ariam brings a light, a fire, a sparkle and a huge sense of happiness, peace and optimism to our home.

So that we won't forget, here are the biggies of 2012:

- Both of us changed jobs early in 2012. I left a job I had been working on for the past five years and began a new long-term consultancy. J settled into his life as a college professor and has never been happier.

Who we pretend to be...

Who we really are...
- At the end of March we traveled to Haiti for a week during J's spring break to meet our son, "Mr. Dimple." It was a very special time with a special baby.

- Travel. We did some. It wasn't up to our pre-parenting level of fun, relaxation or adventure. But it was memorable:

I took Ariam to California in May. (I was facilitator for a workshop at the Christian Alliance for Orphan Summit.)

Aya and Papa (my parents) joined us

We reunited with friends from Ethiopia!

Our small Ethiopia friends taught us to run naked on the beach (this was right before she stripped)!

We had a mommy/daughter beach day and made precious memories.

Ariam received and lost at least 4 pairs of sunglasses in the summer of 2012

J flew home in July to the small city he grew up in on the West Coast. It was an unplanned trip. He was back in his hometown for the funeral of his best friend, Alex. Alex's death was so sudden, so unexpected. It marks the heartbreaking mid-point of our 2012. We miss him every day.

Our best man.
J, Ariam and I went to Minnesota for a week in late summer to see old friends. It was supposed to be a girl's only trip but after Alex's death we decided not to miss opportunities to be together as a family and to see the people we love in person.

Met and fell in love here.
In late summer we celebrated baby brother's first birthday with cupcakes and a song. Ariam added to the growing stack of presents, cards and other artwork she is diligently creating for his arrival home.

Grandpa Jack made Ariam this awesome go cart. She spent late summer/early fall riding it as often as possible.

Gordon the preschool class mascot spent a weekend with us!
I went to London for work and spent a weekend with a dear friend in York. Prayed for miracles at Yorkminster Cathedral. We giggled our evenings away and walked/shopped with diligence during the day.

Was pampered, cocooned and completely loved and taken care of (and laughed until my stomach hurt and I couldn't walk) with this old friend and her hubby in Royal Tunbridge Wells.

Friendship that has taken us from  flip flops and stray dogs in rural Thailand to high heels and scones in England.
The fall was filled with pumpkins and trick or treating and sunshine.

I wish I could freeze them this way/this moment in time forever.

A light up princess crown from England (from Jackie and Ollie) was just the perfect accessory.
We drove to Santa Fe for a beautiful last warm fall weekend in early November.

Our solace. Our place of peace and escape. Closer to nature and closer to God.
Spent Thanksgiving in a small mountain town with wonderful friends and kids who plan to marry and make us beautiful babies. ;)

 - We ended 2012 the way we began it, with an epic 16 hour, 2 dogs, one restless preschooler, road trip to stay with family in Texas. This year it was much improved by the spacious used minivan we were rocking and the wonders of the ipad.


And now I am watching the Rose Bowl parade. Specifically the part where a man coming home from overseas military duty surprises his wife and child on the parade route. My tears dripping on the keyboard.

I think it's safe to say that 2012 has made me hold what I have closer than ever while at the same time reminding me that our human earthly lives are so incredibly fragile and fleeting.

As a family, we have 2 goals for 2013.

1. Be even more diligent about making memories together and spending time with the people we love.

2. Bring home baby brother from Haiti. This girl of ours is so ready to be a big sister.

~ A


  1. Test to check new comment format.

  2. So glad you are back. Been thinking about you and now I know how to hold you in prayer.

  3. glad you're back too! love the update!!!

  4. How nice to "catch up", here's hoping 2013 is all you're hoping for!

  5. WOOO HOOO! Boy, have I missed your voice!

  6. Loving the changes on your blog. Like, so much. I'm also loving you. This is great to read, great to see, great to remember. And those precious babes in our future? Gasp. We will buy them lots of presents and make sure they know THEY are the best things out there. We'll also eat lots of cookies because that's how we roll.

  7. 1. enjoying your blog again.
    2. loving the beautiful photos.
    3. praying for the swift homecoming of mr. d.

  8. Love your blog, love your 2012 stories, love the photos!! I really hope that during 2013 we will get to see each other. The latin boys in DC want to play with Ariam and Alex. Everyone misses you here including Javier.

  9. So glad to see you back! I'm praying you have your sweet son home soon.


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