Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Caleb and Steven's Kindergarten Graduation

Friday morning, May 27, Caleb and Steven officially graduated from kindergarten--though oddly enough they still had to go to school the next week. (I didn't know and kept them home on Tuesday -- Monday, of course was Memorial Day)
Caleb introducing himself and telling everyone what he wants to be when he grows up.Steven's turn to do the same. He wants to be "himself."
Steven, Grandma and Caleb. Steven got a special award "Mr. Hard Worker" Caleb got a special award, "Mr. Manners."
At this point Steven was crying. I don't know if he was just over-whelmed with it all, or what.
Steven, trying to pull himself together

Monday, May 30, 2011

We have a new daughter!!!/More prayers please

Here we are munching away on pizza in the dining area at our lovely motel. The kids' friend, Nick, accompanied us.

Billy showing off his purchases: Denver Broncos shirt and cap and his Las Vegas puzzle.

Praise the Lord!! Here's the fantastically great message we just came home to from Toni our facilitator. (We left for Boise yesterday morning after worship to attend Kevin's nephew's graduation party in Nampa yesterday afternoon. We then stayed the night in a motel, went swimming, had a great breakfast and then spent hours at Toys R Us and Boise Towne Square letting the kids spend their accumulated report card/chore money. Anyway, knowing that court was Sunday at approximately midnight our time and having no computer access until Monday evening was a KILLER)

Congratulations! Your adoption of Abby was granted this morning. Now the only problem before it becomes final in 7 days is to have it written this evening and filed with the court tomorrow morning. The judge should drop in at the court by the end of the day tomorrow and sign it. Then she leaves on a vacation. Since I wasn't present (my colleague and friend represented me and you), and since I am only now arriving back in Sofia (4 pm), I don't have access to the papers of the case and thus don't have the info and details necessary for the court decree to be written. Praise the Lord, my friend agreed to stay after the hearing today and take down notes with the info and write the court decree tonight. Tomorrow morning it will be filed with the court secretary and the big trick would be for the judge to actually go to her court office and for the secretary to take the court decree to her.

Please pray for three specific things as I am doing too:
1. No factual mistakes in the written court decree (I completely trust my friend but I am kind of a nerd when I don't do the things MYSELF and make sure everything is correct);
2. The judge will actually go to court tomorrow;
3. The secretary takes the decree to the judge for a signature and the judge signs it.

I will keep you informed as I find out any new development.


Thursday, May 26, 2011



Here is the surprise! Even before informed about who the judge is, I got both of the news today - the judge is nice and the court date is May 30, Monday, 9 am my time!!! However, the judge asked for a social report to be provided by Abbi's Social Services proving that the adoption is in her best interest. Now, that's a feat to come up with.... We almost don't have time and even if the SS write the social report TODAY, it won't get to the court by Monday. So I had to pull up all the strings possible, with the SS, with the Director of the Center, etc. So finally, we came up with the following: they would fax the social report to the court tomorrow or Sat. which is a business day and will then mail it snail mail. The SS talked to the court and the secretary of the judge agreed. So, for the hearing we WILL have a social report, it would only be a fax, not original. Please, DO PRAY that the judge will accept the fax and that she would grant the adoption in the hearing!!!


Saturday, May 21, 2011

Today in the Life of the McClains

Today started very early for Scheri. She was supposed to be showered, curled and dressed by 9:20 for her friend's quinceanera which is a very special celebration of a Mexican girl's 15th birthday. Scheri is one of the chamberlains--or "dancers" as Scheri calls it--and has had several practices and other appointments over the last weeks in anticipation of the occasion. Last night Scheri and I took a quick, late trip over to Twin Falls to purchase some last-minute clothing details. This morning we spent a good while putting her long, thick hair into ringlets. Her dance partner met us here and I drove them to another friend's house. From there they were all going to be driven over to Twin Falls for a special mass in the birthday girl's honor and then on to the party's locale. I'm not expecting her before midnight.

Today was just gorgeous--we're talking 70 degrees--which was a welcome change from the unusually cool, unusually wet spring we've had so far. I took Billy, Caleb and Steven down to Shoshone Falls (about 20 minutes from here on the Snake River) and it was beautiful (as a result of our unusually damp weather) We could not have asked for a lovelier day--warm but not hot, not windy, no long wait for parking. The water flow was tumultuous, the mist rose high into the air and there were rainbows, even double rainbows, visible from a variety of angles. Perfect.

Teresa and James chose to stay home. I had taken Teresa to the hardware store earlier this morning to pick up some paint samples. She has been spending hours painting the very detailed doll house she has assembled and had used up the variety of colors we had on hand. I truly am very proud of her perseverance--especially in light of her ADHD.

Kevin has spent the day in the next town working on mowing, power, water and who knows what all.

Real World vs Virtual World

Here's our current message from Toni:

"Unfortunately, there's no judge appointed yet. We checked with the court but your case was waiting to be distributed. No call from the court either. I'll let you know the minute I hear something."


By the way, it's great to be back on the computer. We had a virus posing as an anti-virus program!! It was called something like Vista Security, had an official-looking shield, was warning of multiple serious threats to our internet security, and would NOT let me access the internet at all. If you get such a visitor to your computer . . . DON'T click on it (spoken from sad experience) Thankfully the very nice and knowledgeable young guys at Microchips "cleaned" our computer, got its guts in updated-and-ship-shape order and were even willing to write a collaborative letter to our plastic money company explaining what they'd had to do to remove the bad stuff from our PC (silly me had purchased a life-time subscription to the false remedy)

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Computer Issues/Adoption Update

Good grief!! This is trickier than trying to blog from an internet cafe in Kiev!! And the words on the screen here in our public library are even in English.

Last Saturday night I was sitting at our computer, trying to go through about 100 emails that had accumulated over the 4-5 days I had been away from the internet, working on a blog post about the amazing Orphan Summit I'd just attended when . . . I was kicked off the internet. My internet page shut off, internet connection shut off and I was told that dastardly villains had invaded my computer. GREAT!!

I really try to leave computer issues to my husband because I am so annoying to the computer geeks on the other end of the phone line when I call for help. They truly cannot believe that a person SOOO unknowledgeable about the computer could possibly exist in this century. And my sweetie has the good fortune to be away at a Water/Wastewater conference right now--leaving us with no internet, a broken-down washing machine and a front door that will not open. Poor guy! I feel sorry for him facing all these fun issues when he gets home.

So it finally occurred to me that I could come down to the libary and check emails. GREAT NEWS!! Toni from AbbyLand emailed on Monday and said our dossier is finally in the courts. She will be checking back on Friday to see whether we have been assigned a judge. She asked again that we be praying for a good judge and fast court date.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Christian Alliance for Orphans Summit VII--the not so good part.

Sign at the Louisville airport welcoming travelers to the Christian Alliance for Orphans Summit VII
The gorgeous and HUGE facility that housed the conference
Some pictures of my suite

I'm quite sure my entire church would fit just in the foyer area of this place.

Here's the trusty vehicle I rented to get me around there in Kentucky.
I couldn't pass up a photo of the horse in front of the Kentucky Derby shop at the airport.

I just got home this afternoon from Summit VII in Louisville, Kentucky and I really don't know where to begin to even try to express in words what a profound experience this was. My head is swimming, my heart is over-flowing, yet my fingers sit idly on the keyboard for prolonged periods of time. I truly do not know how to start.

So I guess we could just get the bad parts over with. On the way out I sat in the middle seat (my least favorite spot) on both legs of the journey and between two guys each time. Between Boise and Denver the elbows of the guys on each side of me were both extending beyond their armrests, I very truly had about 1 inch of space between the toe of my shoe and the outer perimeter of my carry-on suitcase stowed securely under the seat in front of me, and we had some pretty decided and on-going turbulence. Also about Monday I'd started getting a scratchy, kinda sore throat and sure enough the 'common cold' had found me. Wednesday I started with the Thera-Flu medicine. Good grief! Thursday afternoon and evening and even more so all day Friday my poor red nose was just a non-stop flow of watery snot. So, so, so disgusting! And here I am in the middle of all these people just blowing and wiping, discarding tissue and trying to take notes! We are talking gross!