3.22.2011

Crib Part 1

My good friend, and carpool buddy, M gave Luc and I one of the cribs her daughters used. (Super excited! Especially since we have no idea how long Lando will be in a crib.) I picked it up Sunday after we had brunch and a trip for a pedicure celebrating C's birthday. It is not my week to drive the carpool, so there have been bets as to how long the crib would be in the car. (M and C were both guessing two weeks, since I do not drive the whole car pool for another two weeks.)

I am happy to report that the crib is out of the car! It is currently sitting in the sunroom awaiting cleaning and assembly. This will be part two of the crib story. I am thinking it may be a multi-part miniseries. . .

3.17.2011

Something Catchy

I've got nothing. In speech class you learn all about beginning your speech with a great attention getter to draw in your audience and get them to listen. Plus you should have a good vehicle as your transition from point to point that relates back to your awesome introduction and helps you wrap everything up. (Thank you Mrs. R.)

In education classes you learn about the anticipatory set. The purpose of the anticipatory set is to:

  • Provide continuity from previous lessons, if applicable
  • Allude to familiar concepts and vocabulary as a reminder and refresher
  • Tell the students briefly what the lesson will be about
  • Gauge the students' level of collective background knowledge of the subject to help inform your instruction
  • Activate the students' existing knowledge base
  • Whet the class's appetite for the subject at hand
  • Briefly expose the students to the lesson's objectives and how you will get them to the end result

Side note- Thank you about.com. Please do not think I actually got out notes from college that would be at least 9 years old to get a good definition for anticipatory set. However, they are downstairs in the filing cabinet, just in case.(Not sure whom I should thank here. Peggy? Ellen? Madeline Hunter?)

So my point to all of this? I don't have anything catchy to introduce this month's official waitlist numbers. We are excited about them, because they are official (gotta love things that are official), but our unofficial numbers are even better.

Why the difference? You do not officially go off the waitlist until all of your referral paperwork has been returned to AGCI. (You have to admit, this does make sense.) So this is a phone call month, but obviously it has taken awhile for this to happen with everything happening in the adoption world. So "B" sent an email as her anticipatory set to our March phone call, which happened to include our waitlist numbers.

So the official numbers. . . .

Boy

unofficially #18 for boys, at least until tomorrow's unofficial list posting

Girl
 unofficially #27 for girls

Siblings
unofficially #18 as well

We are very excited about our official movement, but even more excited about our unofficial movement!

3.13.2011

Sambussa

One of our favorite Ethiopian foods we have had so far, is the appetizer sambussa. We fell in love with it when we ate at Demera and have tried it at every Ethiopian restaurant we have been to since. (Okay, so far it has only been 2 others, but we have still tried it.) I love the spicy, mouth burning of the berbere sauce from Demera the best, while Luc prefers the sweetness of the berbere from  Ethiopian Diamond. So far, we haven't had a sambussa we haven't liked.

We have seen several spellings for this awesome appetizer sambussa, sambusa, and sanbusa. I am not sure which is correct, but I do know I highly enjoy eating it. Tonight I made sambussa using the recipe from Ethiopianrecipes.net. The recipe was really easy and I highly recommend it.

Sanbusa Turnovers

Ingredients
Dough
1/2-3/4 cup cold water, 3/4 cup butter, 3/4 cup oil, 5 cups white flour, 2 teaspoons salt 

Meat filling
1 1/2 lbs ground beef, 3/4 cup of finely chopped onion, 1/4 cup oil, 1/2 cup pine nuts, 2 teaspoons salt, 1 teaspoon pepper, 1/2 cup of finely chopped parsley, 3/4 teaspoon cinnamon


Directions
—-To Make the Dough—-
Melt the butter with the oil.

Combine the flour and salt in a bowl, make a well in the center, and add oil and butter. Stir vigorously until combined, and then add water until the dough holds together and comes away from the sides of the bowl.

Wrap the ball of dough in plastic and let rest in the refrigerator while preparing the stuffing.

—-To Make the Meat Filling—-
Work all ingredients with the hands until fully combined.


—-To Assemble the Sanbusa—-
Preheat the oven to 350°F degrees.

For each pastry, take a walnut-sized piece of dough and roll it out into a 3 inch circle.

Place a teaspoonful of filling in the center of the dough, fold the circle into a half-moon shape and pinch the edges firmly. (Another traditional shape is the triangular pocket, formed by pinching together the edges of the circle in three seams that meet in the center over the filling).

Place the pastries on an ungreased baking sheet and bake in the oven for 45 minutes, until golden yellow, or deep fry in vegetable oil.

sambussa with berbere sauce 

3.11.2011

Reasons to Celebrate


After this week, and all of the different updates and rumors about Ethiopian adoptions, it is good to focus on the good things. (With still five weeks to go before Spring Break, it can be difficult at times to always be positive at school. We (students and teachers) could all use a break.) So here is what I am currently celebrating:

  •  Multiple families with our agencies not only received referrals this week, but also court dates! This is such great news and has really been uplifting for me this past week.
  • Walking with Joey after school.  (He only barked because the super huge dogs along our route were out and barking at him. I think our almost 7 year old puppy is finally growing up!)
  • Watching a rerun of How I Met Your Mother with Luc. (I love this show.)
  • Eating lunch outside of the building today with friends.
  • A weekend without a lot of school work. 
  • I am celebrating the fact we had a teacher in-service yesterday afternoon and all day today. (I am almost ¾ of the way through the school year!)

With all that is happening in Ethiopian adoption, we haven’t received our official March numbers yet, which is okay. Luc and I are celebrating our “unofficial” numbers. So, "unofficially" we are:

Boy


Girl

 Siblings

Even with all of the uncertainty, there is a great deal to celebrate! "Unofficially" there has been a lot of movement.

3.08.2011

Please Act

Last week MOWA (Ministry of Women's Affairs) in Ethiopia announced they are reducing the number of adoptions they approve and process by 90% beginning March 10th. This means they will be decreasing the number of adoptions they approve per a year from 4,000 to less than 500. For children who are currently within orphanages in Ethiopia, and legally available for adoption, could wait for up to an estimated 7 years before going home to their forever families.

Please pray for Luc and I as we process this information and wait to know what this will mean for our journey to Lando. Just as importantly, pray for those who have received referrals for children in Ethiopia and do not know when they will be coming home. More importantly, please pray for the children who are directly impacted by this decision.

Please take time to help by signing this petition below. This petition comes from an advocacy group working in Ethiopia. 

JCICS Call to Action

Joint Council: Emergency Campaign for Ethiopian Children
What You Can Do:
1) Sign the petition to the Prime Minister of Ethiopia, Meles Zenawi – and pass it on!
2) Have you adopted from Ethiopia? Please send us up to 3 photos and 50 words or less with what you would like the Ministry to know about your child – we’ll compile the information and send a book to the Ministry of Woman’s Affairs. Send your photos and stories to advocate@jointcouncil.org by Sunday, March 12, 2011 to be included. Please note that sending photos and stories gives Joint Council unrestricted right to use the information you provide.
3) Share…Please send this Call to Action to family members, other adoptive parents, and everyone you know! Post, forward and share your adoption stories via Facebook, Twitter, and blogs. Make sure you include us in your posts so we can all hear your stories! Here’s links to our pages: Facebook, Twitter and our our blog.
4) Stay informed: Get up-to-date information regarding the situation in Ethiopia by signing up to receive information from us: click here to do so, make sure you choose “country and issues specific information” and “Ethiopia.” And don’t forget to follow us on Facebook, Twitter and our our blog.
5) Help ensure our advocacy can continue: Joint Council is a non-profit and receives no government funding. Please join us in ensuring more children live in safe, permanent and loving families. Donate today!