The holidays have kept us so busy I haven't had any time to post lately. We are so fortunate to have such an amazing family! On Christmas Eve I quickly finished up some baking to take some goodies to Joe's Aunt Pam and Uncle Rick's annual Christmas Eve open house. We had a fabulous time playing with all the kids and talking with family and friends. We have such an amazing family.
For me, a huge highlight of the open house was getting Dasha, Joe's cousin and her husband's newly adopted daughter, to play with me. She is such an amazing little girl who has made truly amazing progress since she arrived to her forever home from Kazakhstan in mid November. She has some incredible hula-hooping skills and tried her best to help me master the art of the hula hoop. To her dismay and amusement, I really wasn't a very quick learner. It's been years since I touched a hula hoop... and during that time I seem to have lost the touch. Nevertheless, Dasha and her brothers, sister, and cousins were a joy to play with and kept me busy running around outside enjoying the 75 degree weather.
Christmas itself was a great day, despite the disappointment we felt that the blizzard in Colorado had prevented dad and Zak from making it to California. It was a bit of a holiday hold-up. We opened some presents and still fixed a fabulous Christmas dinner, but with the guys missing, it just wasn't the same. Mom, Marty, Joe and I dined in style on the patio since we had such perfect weather.
Two days later dad and Zak arrived and we had our second Christmas. Since they've been here, Joe took dad and Zak to see his site, we went to the San Juan Capistrano Mission, took Zak out on the town in Laguna Beach, played Laser Tag in Sherman Oaks (dad's Christmas gift from Marty), and then partied it up at Marty's place for the New Year's Eve countdown.
All in all, it's been a great year. I can't believe it's now 2007 and we will soon be actually starting the adoption. Joe and I need to start gathering papers to speed the paperchase as the homestudy and dossier prep stages of the adoption get underway. It's amazing to think that as early as this time next year, we may be blessed to be the parents of one or two amazing kids.
Next steps: order certified copies of our birth certificates and marriage license, complete application with placement agency and homestudy agency... making our journey "OFFICIAL!"
Stay tuned...!!!! May you all have a happy, healthy, and fabulous 2007!