Monday, January 03, 2011

Ready, Set...Go!

If I haven't mentioned it (hah!) we are going to India. In an unbelievable twist of fate, the stars in the heavens have aligned and we received confirmation two days before Christmas that we could travel and needed to be in Pune mid January to meet our Sugar Plum. To complicate matters a bit, our adoption agency contacts were on vacation from Christmas through New Years and our in office representative left, when she suddenly got a call that a domestic young mother had chosen her family to adopt her unborn baby, guessed the week of Christmas. Where did this leave us? In a state of panic when one considers that we were originally planning to travel sometime in the spring, gladly losing 3 months of planning and preparation.

So with Christmas plans beginning to unfold, we were simultaneously planning to travel here!

Shreevatsa - November 2010

For some, namely Devi Rose, a young and very excited big sister, our plans were set and she was all ready there, at least in spirit. This picture, one of many drawn recently, depicts her little sister Treya/Sonalika standing beneath a mango tree in the sunshine. The salutation stating her love for her before ever even meeting.

Other preparations have been going on too - like trying out this new mode of transportation. Devi has never been a great walker and with our plans including navigating the crowd at the train station, and hikes in the jungle, we figure this is the best way to keep us together and all happy...well, maybe not daddy's back!

But before any concrete travel plans could be laid, we had a couple of things to take care of first. Namely...Christmas and all it's festivities. I love this picture below because it is awful, giving one a bit of a picture into the panic and hysteria that had begun to mount which we are trying to keep concealed. Dressed up, late for church, out of focus, exhaustion on all of our faces, perma grins and with a tree growing out of daddy's head. Yes, that is what it feels like to prepare one's home for a new child, plan an extended stay in India, host a Christmas dinner and celebrate Jesus' birth all at the same time!

Amongst the stacks of research and between internet searches, it came...Christmas came! It was wonderful. We invited my dad and his friend Gail (in town from AZ) to join us in watching Devi experience the wonder of a Christmas morning. Devi, however, was quite serene, suggesting that WE should open presents instead of her. Once coerced into opening something, she carefully unwrapped the package, no ripping, as this is the manner in which a big sister conducts herself. We all expected mass hysteria and a ripping frenzy, over in a matter of minutes. In the end, we took a break for breakfast and let her open at her leisure well into the afternoon.

Ross Family Christmas 2010

I made dinner for these guys! My extended family. We had beef tenderloin - with recipe sent from my friend Michele, a chef. It is no secret to my wise cracking family that I am challenged in the meat cooking department and true to form, this year did not disappoint. Who knew cooking meat dabbed with butter at 500 degrees would create smoke? I mean a LOT of smoke. At one point, the women, including Devi, were fanning the plumes of smoke billowing from the oven toward the fan and open windows with kitchen towels while debating whether to OPEN THE DOOR or LEAVE IT SHUT. Meanwhile the two retired firefighters in the crowd, standing in the background with folded arms commented about spontaneous combustion, fire extinguishers and escape plans. Never the less, the meal was delicious and prepared perfectly. The bonus? In true epicurean style, they took the wonderful aroma of the meal home with them to enjoy later in their clothing and hair.

Taking a few last minutes of the year from travel planning we celebrated Oma's birthday and began our New Year by packing the decorations away, downing the tree, washing and arranging a wide size range of Devi's hand me downs, not knowing what size Treya might wear, building a crib and rearranging most of the furniture upstairs to accommodate 2 girls sleeping together in one room and turning the nursery room into a play room (which means all toys contained in one room with a door to shut out the mess!) All this in 48 hours! The good news is we do have a completed itinerary that was finalized last night...phew. We leave the 6th and return on the 29th. NOW we take out a suitcase!


Anonymous said...

I've been checking in often to see about travel plans...SO happy to see they are coming along and a plan is in site.Sounds like you had a wonderful Christmas.Can't wait to hear all about your trip.

Our Family of 5 said...

WOW,you have been a busy bee!!:) But you will get time to rest and unwind on that long plane ride.
I am so excited that you are leaving soon.I know this is so much faster then you were anticipating,but this is so great!! Gidget;0

The Pfeiffer Family said...

WOW!!! A flurry of activity has been going on at your house! This is great news to have your travel plans already made. It sounds like you will have a wonderful trip full of sight seeing, adventures, and best of all meeting your precious Treya in person. Becoming a family of 4 on India soil will be amazing! Can't wait to follow the rest of the journey. Safe travels to you all.

April :-)

Emily said...

True to form, you and Pat continue to amaze me with your endless energy and organization! I love hearing all the details in your preparation for Treya, no doubt, she will love to hear them as well. I am holding all of you in my heart as you make this journey, it will be life changing and amazing!! Blessings Julie, and hugs too, Emily

Peter and Nancy said...

I love that you shared ALL the glorious details like your tenderloin smoking, etc. And I think Patrick looks very handsome with a tree growing out of his cranium!

Like Leveta, I've been checking obsessively to see when you travel! We are SO excited for you, and can't wait to hear about your adventures and see those first pictures with all four of you!
With love,

Laura said...

How amazing! It sounds like such an exciting time for all of you... frantic, but exciting! It's fun to read your posts and how you seem to handle everything with humor and grace under pressure! I'll be watching for updates and more pictures soon! Laura

SarahinOK said...

So excited for you! Love your cooking story too! Sounds like something I would have as part of our christmas festivities... :)

We'll be praying for all of your trip prep/planning/travel/health/bonding/etc!

Jennifer said...

Yikes! I'm dizzy just reading all that! You leave in 2 days! Holy cow!! I've been thinking of you a lot, and I'm glad to see a post.

I'm glad Christmas was a good one. I laughed at the smoke as I did the same thing just 2 nights ago!

Enjoy the packing frenzy over the next two days- or at least good luck surviving it if 'enjoy' isn't quite the right word. :-)

Karen said...

I've been checking & checking too -- THRILLED you have plans in order. Wow! We can't wait to follow your trip. After all this time... finally you will have Treya in your arms. Ah! What a miracle.

Thanks for the great stories & plentiful pics. You guys are pretty amazing!

Sending much love,
Karen & crew

pjtj said...

Hello! Congrats on your travel approval...which you are probably enjoying right now! We are adopting a little guy, Vikram, from India and celebrate with others who get their travel approval! Cannot wait to hear about it via blog! Blessings to you as you become a family of 4!

The Labontes said...

OMG! You're leaving in 2 days! How wonderful! What a whirlwind few weeks for you guys - and it looks like you used every minute to create wonderful memories.

CANNOT wait to see the 4 of you together!

The Harmons said...

Goose bumps! We are so so happy for you and are anxious to read about your trip and can not wait for that picture when she is in your arms!

Anonymous said...

Have you seen these? Is this something you may wish to purchase for your ADORABLE daughter?

Not By Chance said...


Truly excited and overjoyed for you!

Susie and Family

Cindy said...

What wonderful news Julie, Pat and Devi....we are happy dancing for you in NC. Can't wait to see you guys as a family of and prayers to you.

Melanie said...

I am so excited for you, Julie! You are so close to holding and meeting Treya face to face! I look forward to following your trip. Blessings on your travels.

Shad and Maggie Alsworth said...

Soooo excited and can't wait to hear you've landed safely and have Treya in your arms. What a fabulous way to start off the new year! Looking forward to seeing pictures. I miss India so much! All of the mishaps make me miss it more! :)

Sandy & Butch said...

SO excited for you guys to go get your little Treya!!! Our prayers are with you!
Hugs, Sandy