Thursday, May 6, 2010

Warm Weather and a Prayer Request

We have certainly enjoyed the lovely spring weather that we've had this year. I've never been a real "outdoors" kind of girl, but let me tell you, that changed last year with the introduction of a little boy to my life! Yikealo and I were both going a bit stir-crazy after being inside so much during our long winter. He gets  bored with more sedate indoor activities after awhile, and I can only handle so much of the following: "Mom, PLEASE play with me!" (This is always said in the whiniest possible voice and usually after I've just spent 2 hours playing with him and have finally stopped in order to catch up on the laundry.) Needless to say, these longer, warmer days have been a huge blessing!

Yesterday, the temperature was supposed to hit 80 by early afternoon, so Yikealo and I dug out his wading pool and filled it up. We added 4 or 5 kettles-full of boiling water to the frigid stuff from the garden hose and then let it warm up in the sun for several hours. By the time we finished lunch, it was the perfect temperature, and he splashed and played in the water for two hours while I sat in my camp chair, read a book, and soaked up the sunlight. Ahhhhhh.....bliss!!!! I did manage to get some cute pictures, so I'll have to share a couple...

By the way, the only way to actually get good smiles out of this child when you have a camera is to look at him sternly and say, "Yikealo, don't you DARE smile! I mean it! I'd better not see any smiles!" It works every single time. If I don't play the mind games with him, and simply ask if I can take his picture, I get something like this:
...which is not exactly attractive. I'm sure that Ethiopian authorities would be thrilled to get this in his one-year post-adoption report, don't you agree?

Oh yeah, and he also wanted to "show me his muscles," which looked like this:
I'm not sure exactly which muscles he thought he was showing off, but there you have it!

The other amusing picture is his imitation of me being irritated about something, and I have to admit, he sort of nailed it: the hands on the hips, the furrowed brow, and the pursed lips.

We have definitely learned that everything that we say or do WILL be repeated. Take last night at bedtime, for instance. I was snuggling him for a bit, and in spite of being absolutely exhausted, he kept bringing up some new topic of conversation so that I wouldn't leave the room. I answered about 20 random questions and then said, "Yikealo, that's enough. Go to sleep!" He replied in his best authoritative voice (while pursing his lips and emphatically shaking his finger at me), "You go to sleep too! Menden times I tell you go to sleep? Two times? You better listen! If you don't go to sleep right now, you is going straight to the chair! You hear me? I don't have time to fight with you!" Okay, so I have to admit that I started laughing and tickling him at that point, which really didn't do anything to settle him down, but it is sort of humiliating and funny at the same time to hear him imitate us perfectly.

I do have a quick prayer request. Next Tuesday, we are scheduled for an interview with USCIS (Citizenship and Immigration Services for those of you not in the adoption world.) About two months ago, we discovered that we could not get a social security number for Yikealo without first obtaining a certificate of citizenship from USCIS. We sent in a 7 page application with a huge stack of personal documents and another hefty check, and a few weeks later we received the summons for this interview. I don't know what they want, but these are generally not friendly, pleasant people. I'm sure that the official age change is throwing them for a loop, and I would just ask for your prayers that our interview goes smoothly and that we can finally complete the steps to full citizenship for our son. It's a little bit ridiculous when the citizenship  hoops take significantly longer to jump through than the entire adoption took!


  1. I always love your posts. You do such a great job of showing his huge personality through words. I can't help but love your little guy. Will be praying for the USCIS issues to be resolved (easily!).

  2. Too cute. Love the muscles. We call it the parrot stage- and you have to be soo careful. Kids can remember almost anything!!! he he he.

    Will be praying for your uscis thing- our experience has never been friendly, but HEY I BELIEVE IN MIRACLES!!!!!!!!!!!!

  3. Love how you captured 'life with Yikealo' in pictures. The 'muscles' picture totally cracked me up. We will be praying for your USCIS interview & would love to know the process/outcome. We have been trying to obtain citizenship for our little guy, too, and recently were told we need to get our state government involved since no answers are forthcoming from USCIS. Should (continue to) be interesting...

  4. Yea... the muscles were funny but he NAILED the irritated mommy look! hee hee We were never asked to go to USCIS for our COC. Lots of paperwork and they made a mistake on his birth YEAR so more paperwork. I was irritated but we got it all resolved easily. I'm nervous that they wanted you to make an appointment. I'LL BE PRAYING!