One picture in the Shutterfly book was of me wearing a beautiful African blouse, skirt, and headdress made by one of our Burundian friends, Christina. The picture is of me standing between Christina and her daughter Delaya, and when Papa John flips to this page, my daughter giggles so hard that she falls down to the floor. I can't understand much of what John says, but I do hear him saying "Oooooooooh, Congolese-Americain Mama!" My little girl gets so, so tickled in both videos when she sees this, and it cracks me up completely, partially because the sight of myself in this African outfit is also funny to me. It makes me very happy to see my little girl smiling and laughing--laughing so hard that she collapses! We have not seen this before. In fact, most of the pictures we have seen of her so far are very serious.
Speaking of serious, my baby boy appears in one of the videos, and he doesn't smile the entire time. He seems sleepy and maybe a little sick. He recently went to the hospital for malaria, so we hope he's not suffering the lingering effects. Maybe he had just gotten up from a nap. Our agency contact says our little boy is very quiet, and has not yet learned to make noise when he needs something. Such is the personality of a neglected child, and I'm so glad he's somewhere where he is getting constant, loving care from a group of nannies.
The best news of all is our agency thinks we (me and my parents) will be able to travel in January or February. I have a feeling it will be more like February, mainly because a couple of errors and inconsistencies were found in the kids' Congolese governmental paperwork. In the meantime, we have a lot to do. I still need to clean out the kids' room, get rid of lots of clothes and junk that I've stored in there for the last four years, and shop, shop, shop! Anyone in the Memphis area have a crib they want to loan me? I don't think it will be long before we switch to a toddler bed, so I hate to buy one.
One last thing: As we quickly approach Christmastime, I am collecting money to provide Christmas for 35 African refugee kids here in Memphis. (See post below for details.) Please consider helping these children--any amount will help.
Thanks for keeping up with my journey. Hope you had a happy Thanksgiving. Much love from the Boltons. We have much, much, much to be thankful for this year.