Ok, here is the post I started last night trying desperately to stay awake, but it didn't work...As you'll see, two hours of sleep isn't enough for me!! I fell asleep in the middle of typing and woke up in the middle of the night drooling on my laptop! LOL!
I am so bummed that I couldn't blog last night! But it has been a whirlwind two days!
Yesterday morning (it feels like a week ago, really!) I got a phone call from Gloria, our translator, that an appointment for Luisa's ID card was set up for us. We had 10 minutes to get dressed, gather all the documents and be outside the gate to wait since the appointment was in a half an hour and we were a 45 minute drive! Brent stayed home with the 6 others.
Apparently, there are elections getting ready to happen for their congress (their equivalent) so this office was super busy and wasn't going to allow us to come. Thankfully, she pulled a few strings and got us in to the office. We met Nora in a parking lot to get the new Birth Certificates with "Trautman" written on them. She also gave me some precious 8X10 photos of the kids from about a year ago that she snagged from their file at ICBF. Boy, I can't tell you how much of a treasure they are! What a gift!
We raced over to the ID office (not sure what it really is called!) and after waiting for a while, Luisa was able to get fingerprinted and a new card. She was a little grumpy because she had started running a low fever and didn't feel good.
Then, we raced back to the apartment where Brent had Cindy and Jonathan waiting by the gate so we could go get their new Colombian passports. We met Nora and her assistant Edwin at the passport office (right next to the court) and they walked us through all the details of getting new passports. The man was so sweet. He even let all the kids get fingerprinted after they saw me do it!
Then it was off to the Notaria office (notary) so that I could sign a document (I think it might be another power of attorney) so that Nora can be the one to request the children's file from ICBF. Problem was, they needed Brent to sign and he was still back at the apartment with the bio kids. So the other Gloria raced over to pick them up and brought him to the Notaria. While we were sitting there, Gloria called to the other contact person in Bogota and she set up our kids Embassy Doctor appointment for the next day- in Bogota!!That meant we were leaving ASAP!
Brent took the kids back to the apartment to swim and I went with Gloria #1 to the Avianca Airline office to buy our Medellin to Bogota tickets. Unfortunately we had to take a flight that left 5:50am or else the prices were double! We ran through Exito to pick up snacks for the plane and made it home around 4pm. I knew I had SO MUCH to do. So Brent kept the kids in the pool so I could start packing.
I was totally disorganized. We had planned to travel Sat or Sunday so I wasn't prepared. I started throwing things in the suitcases just to get going. We had several people stop over to tie up last minute issues...The apartment person to collect our rent, Gloria our translator who was able to take most of our food, and then Nora and Blanca came over for an hour or so to give us the copies of all the birth certificates, sentencia and legal proceedings.
Cait and Grant were gracious enough to stay up until around midnight to help us pack but they are exhausted today! Luisa was sooo anxious and excited that she couldn't stay asleep. Finally we had to put her on the floor in our room so she'd go to sleep. I think we ended up getting 2 1/2 hours sleep!
In the morning, Gloria and a rental van came to the apartment around 4am and we were off to the airport. kkdkm
ok... this is where I fell asleep last night!...LOL!
We made it through the airport in Medellin easily and quickly. Said our goodbyes to Gloria! We'll miss her! She is a hoot!
The kids LOVED the airplane! It is such a short flight (half hour) that they barely got to do any of the fun stuff I'd packed in their bags. Between a graham cracker snack and a drink, that was about all they had time for!
Sylvia and Jaime (her husband) picked us up in their van plus a rental van. We drove to the adoption hotel we are staying at- called Hotel Paris. MANY other families have stayed here and loved it. And we were very excited because some friends I'd been communicating with via email were staying here with their three newest additions to the family! They have been here 7 weeks (Bogota courts are SLOW!) and they've been anxious to have some English speaking people staying here! It has been so fun meeting them and discussing the process and adoption transition issues.
We arrived at around 8am, so we had breakfast here at the hotel/bed &breakfast. We have two bedrooms and then there are common living rooms, common dining room, a swingset out back and an additional little casita (small house) that is full of toys for the kids to play with. The kids loved all the toys and so far are getting along well with the other children. There is another family that is visiting with their previously adopted kids that are from Finland and another family with a new daughter but I can't remember where they are from...
Yesterday, the kids played in the morning with all the toys. Then around 1:30, Brent took the chicos to the Embassy Medical Visit. I was worried that they might possibly need some vaccinations and there was no way I was going to be able to restrain them for multiple vacs. Last time was a traumatic experience- for me! LOL!
Thankfully, they didn't need any vaccines and everything went well.
There is a document that the Medellin ICBF has to send to the National Bogota ICBF before we can go to the Embassy. It was supposed to be delivered via fax to the Bogota ICBF yesterday (Friday) but when Sylvia called, it was not ready. So that means that we can't get it until Monday. Only problem is that the US Embassy is closed for Memorial day, so even though we can get the paper from ICBF, we can't take it to the Embassy until Tuesday. Bummer. It puts us a day behind. We were all psyched to go home on Wednesday, but now we are thinking we'll have to leave on Thursday (unless we take a late Wed. flight...which we'll see...)
Today, we had hoped to go to Monserrate, but it was pouring when we woke up. Also Quinn had been still running a fever and I wasn't sure if he'd be ok. So we hung out while the kids played all morning. After lunch the other family took us to Unicentro Mall. (It looks exactly like one of our malls at home. Just all in Spanish.) Our guys had never been to a large shopping center before, so they did surprisingly well. I think having the other children there (who have been LOTS of times in the past 7 weeks) helped them to know what to do. Or what not to do!
We went to a bookstore and I got more coloring books. The kids go through them like crazy! The other family is planning to homeschool so it has been fun talking about education and other homeschool stuff! Then we went to Whopper King (kinda like Burger King!) for ice cream. It was mass chaos to get everyone the flavor they wanted (11 kids were there! Our 7, their 3 and an extra girl who lives at the hotel) but I think under the circumstances we did pretty good! At least we didn't lose anyone!
Since we've been here, I feel like we are seeing some regression with the chicos. I don't know if it would have happened even if we were in Medellin or if it is due to the upheaval with a new location and new rules and new everything, or what. We have had multiple tantrums since we got here. Some short, some long- though not like the 3 hour one in the first week we had them! Praise the Lord! I anticipate that coming home is going to be full of more regression. It is going to make things challenging, to say the least... at least here, we don't have to cook or clean and we can easily take the time to see the tantrum to the end without feeling like everything else is falling apart. I am really looking forward to being home, but dreading it at the same time...
It is much colder here than in Medellin. I think today was a high of 63 degrees and in the low 50's at night. I miss Medellin! LOL! Oh, well, we'll be back to spring/summer weather in a few days!