Thursday, December 31, 2009

Catch Ya Later 2009!

What a crazy fast, crazy busy, crazy exciting year it has been. Wow 2009 - you really brought it! But now - we are all excited and happy to have you behind us and we look forward to 2010 with positive enthusiasm for what she may bring us.

For the third year in a row now we hung out with some of our very bestest friends in the world. These guys are like family - and though we were down a few from a full house (The Graham Fam was sick - we missed you guys!) we still managed to have a great time.

So long 2009! It's time to go...

Man... what a difference a year makes! Check out our girls from this same gathering last year!

Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Mean Muggin' Meron

Who taught the girl to mean mug? We had Meron in her Santa hat for some last minute pics before we tear all the decorations down and I asked her to "make a funny face."

So what does she do?

Tilts her head back, purses her lips and proceeds to mean mug the ceiling fan, me, mommy and anything else in her field of vision!

She's a goofball...

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

A Princess on Our Hands...

Meron got some official princess dress up gear for Christmas. Feels like the title of "princess" is becoming more and more legit...

Monday, December 28, 2009

Happy Birthday Jesus!

Meron woke us up on Christmas morning singing this tune over the monitors at the top of her lungs. Loved it...

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Four Generations

Meron managed to wiggle her way into 2 separate pictures making up 4 generations of her family! Pretty cool...

Saturday, December 26, 2009

Joyful Cousins

Meron got a chance to hang out with her cousin Maddie today - and even though they don't get the chance to see each other that often - I think the picture speaks for itself...


Friday, December 25, 2009

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Christmas Eve Blast From the Past...

Tonight was the first Christmas Eve we spent in GA as a family. As long as I have known Laura we have always packed up and headed to NC a day or two before Christmas - but this year we wanted to start some Camp Hoffman traditions of our own.

This would also be the first time we got to experience Christmas Eve service at our church. And though it was great and God definitely showed up - the real gem came afterwards when we were picking Meron up from the nursery.

Some of you might remember this post - when we met an awesome Ethiopian woman that lived near us. Or you might be familiar with this post - when we met her and her beautiful family at their church and attended a service with them.

That was almost 2 years ago - we had gone back by the restaurant where we met Masresha - but were told she no longer worked there. We were bummed.

Well - tonight as we were exiting the nursery amidst like 7 billion other people I hear someone say to me "Is that Meron?" and I looked up to see Masresha, her husband Challa and their 3 kids.

What?!?! Yep - they had come to our church for Christmas Eve service! To make a long sappy story short - we were thrilled to be reunited with our friends and to meet their newest addition! We made sure we had contact info this time around and I for one plan on staying in a little better touch!

Once again - God stuck us where we needed to be when we needed to be there. Thanks God - for the joy of reunited friends on Christmas Eve!

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Gift from the Government

Yeah - they don't happen that much, do they? I mean those guys are typically more on the receiving end of things...

So imagine our surprise when tucked in between the Christmas cards in the mailbox today we found our coveted 171-H form from our friends at the USCIS! Only 6 days after they had received everything at their office!

For those not in the world of adoption - this is definitely a gift - these things typically take upwards of 2-3 months. And it's an important one too - it is basically the U.S. Citizen and Immigration Service giving us the go-ahead to bring our child home!

We sat in the garage in the car a little stunned and then tried to call somebody - anybody - who would understand! We couldn't get anybody...

But then when Meron got home from school and we told her - well - see below... she summed up how we all felt! Hold on little Hoffman - we'll be there soon!

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Merry Trunk-mas

Last night we all got to meet up with some of our (and Meron's) best buddies - Scott and Kelli (and their niece and nephew too!).

Any night that involves Scott, Kelli and Stevie B's is a good night indeed for Meron... but then they upped the ante by taking her out to their car and spoiling her with some Christmas presents. Meron was having a blast!

Afterwards we all traveled to check out some Christmas lights and Meron was snoozing hard before we were halfway home. Thanks a ton Scott and Kelli! We love you guys!

Monday, December 21, 2009

Nice Shoes!

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Cookie for the Teachers

Mommy made some goodies for all of Meron's teachers at school tonight and Meron even got to get in on a little bit of the action.

I think she enjoyed the "receiving" part of this one more than the "giving."

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Comfy Jammies

Meron's Granny sent her a little package with the most comfy pajamas ever. If only I could squeeze into a 3T - I would be rocking those bad boys right now...

Friday, December 18, 2009

Round II Update

Well - we are officially "Gladney Approved" now. Feels good. Feels like we reached a milestone of some sort. All this time our homestudy was being completed we were also able to be preparing our dossier in tandem - so we are actually doing pretty good.

Next up? Waiting on the good ole US Government - we need to get our USCIS approval and then we're off to the races. Circumstances are a lot different this time around and we've taken a much more faithful and laid back approach (we've already learned about all we could about control).

We know God has long ago chosen our daughter - Meron's sister - and we are trying to be patient - to be still and know He is God while praying daily for her safety and that even now, at her young age, that she can be making an impact for God wherever He has her at the moment.

We can't wait to bring you home girl - we got lots of love up here in Camp Hoffman just stored up and waiting for ya!

Thursday, December 17, 2009

School Pictures

Meron got her first set of school pics taken (these are pictures of the pictures - I know, I know - I'm a tech guy with no scanner). And we love them!

But I gotta say - after her last bath I did a full body inspection looking for the "grow up" knob.

Cuz hers is obviously stuck on WAY TOO FAST...

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Partying For Our King

I am digging this age right now with Meron. It's a ton of fun to watch her experience all these new things - and whats even more fun is getting to make new traditions with her and our friends and family.

Last week - some of our coolest friends - strike that - these guys are family to us - had us over to celebrate the birth of our king. It was a giant birthday party for Jesus complete with food, crafts, toys and little baby Jesus cupcakes! Meron had a great time AND she got to start understanding early on in her life what this season is all about.

Thanks you guys for an awesome night and I really hope this ends up being one of those cool traditions we carry on!

"Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord." - Luke 2:11

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Our Little Chef

Monday, December 14, 2009

Three Amigos

Sunday, December 13, 2009

This Time of Year...

This time of year is just magical with kids. I am not sure I ever really got it until this year - and it has nothing to do with Santa or gifts or any of that. There's just something magical about it - and I am loving watch Meron just soak it in.

If I could bottle up what she is feeling in these pictures - I would drink it every morning and shower in it every night.

Thank you God for giving us this little reminder of how good life really is...

Saturday, December 12, 2009