So Long!!!

So sorry....I've been a bad blogger again!! The internet here has been terrible these last few weeks...It cuts out every 5 minutes or so and is sometimes out for several hours!! It has been very frustrating and difficult to work with!

Big News!!! My girls are officially Canadian citizens...On Oct 17th Sidney flew to South Africa to hand in their applications and to hopefully find out how long it would take to process...The day that he handed in the applications everybody was busy and couldn't tell him how long... same thing with the next day and the next....So on the third day he asked them if he really needed to stay in the country or if he could go home....so they said come back tomorrow and you can speak to someone about it....so he went back the next day and they were closed!!! so he asked the guard at the gate, saying that they had told him to come back today!! he phoned and they said to send him in...their was still no one for him to talk to they said, but then they handed him our applications back saying that they were all APPROVED!!! It was finished..our girls were citizens!!! The one glitch though was that we had to apply for our girls passports in Lusaka, as apparently I needed to sign the application as well as they needed to see both mine and Sidney's birth certificates as the girls were too young to sign for themselves! So about later the next week we traveled the 4 hours to Lusaka to apply for the passports....of course we needed to get a few more papers and new pics for the girls (thankfully we had all decided to go in case this happened)...but we were able to get everything and hand in the application all in the same day!! They said that everything looks find and they will call us when our passports are ready...which should be 5 business days...which would make it this Friday!!! Lord willing all will be well and we will get them on time as planned!!!

The sad news is that the little girl (Prudence) with cancer passed away on Saturday night! We had taken her to the hospital that morning as she was having a very difficult time breathing and our oxygen tanks for some reason weren't working properly...but she was a very sick little girl and the Lord decided it was time to end her suffering! Please pray for her family, her mother has been by her side the whole time since she was first admitted to hospital about 4-5 months ago...Prudence had several younger brothers and sisters...the youngest being only 2 and this will be very hard (of course) on their family...Please also pray for our nurse her at Grace as she had spent a lot of time with Prudence and will be missing her the days and weeks to come!!

In just 2 weeks we will be starting our journey homeward...I can't believe it is that time already...sometimes it seemed it would never come...but now that it is here...I'm realizing how much I am going to miss the kids here!! Our leaving will be a little bittersweet!! but I'm am very ready to be home!!!

The girls are doing very well...both are walking now..Eden for the last 3 weeks...and Cassidy for the last couple of days!! They are so proud of their new accomplishment, as well as being able to climb onto and off of the couch!!! Lately Eden seems to think that any frustration in life...no matter how small warrants a very gigantic, at the top of her lungs scream!!! Especially things like her sister taking something from her or pushing her...and not being able to get on the couch first try!!!...lol...Cassidy finds it far more effective to whine about said frustrations for a good few minutes (instead of screaming) both can be frustrating...especially when they both do them at the same time!!! but sometimes they are just so stinking cute...I can't help but laugh cause even when they are causing me frustration, they are so adorable I haven't always the heart to scold them!!!

Well...I'll try to post again soon...to make up for my long absence!!!

2 WEEKS!!!!


So ready to have this adoption finished!!

I'm so ready to be done...no more paperwork..no more worrying that other people aren't doing their jobs properly and quickly!! I just want my girls visa/passports and I'm ready to go home to Canada!! I have been preparing the packet of documents that we have to send to Pretoria, South Africa...hopefully this week...and gathering any last minute ones that I don't have yet. Sidney has to drive tomorrow to Lusaka, to get the adoption certificate and the revised birth certificates...now I don't quite understand why they are giving them new birth certificates...I mean yes, we did change their names...but can't you just give us a name change document instead of a new birth certificate! I don't know, nothing here in Zambia is particularly logical!

I believe that I have one more paper for the head of Social Welfare to sign and then we are done with them!! No more having to pretend to be really nice...lol....My only worry is that I have forgotten something, and that everything will be delayed because of it, and then we won't be able to come home for Christmas. Well, I also worry that Pretoria is going to take their sweet time issuing the citizenship, and again, we won't be able to go home by Christmas. These last few weeks I've been really feeling ready to go home...Fall is probably my favorite season and I'm missing it...Its quite warm here now...which I've never truly enjoyed like some people I know...and would rather be cuddled up listing to the rain and baking cookies. The problem with that is that I have to leave all the kids here and I'm going to miss them so much...I've been really enjoying getting to know all of them..some of them really well...and its going to be hard not seeing them for a long time!!

Prudence (the little girl dying of cancer) seem to be doing a little better now that she is receiving really good care. She is no longer vomiting and isn't in any pain. The team bought her a beautiful baby doll and she just loves it...she keeps telling her nurse not to take it away while she sleeps...she's not allowed to move it...and whenever she wakes up the first thing she does is look or feel around for the baby doll!!! I can't imagine never having a toy before...Just another insight into how very spoiled we are in Canada!! My girls are only 1 and have several toys that they are already bored of and don't want to play with...Cause you know...the box that it came in is much more interesting!! Please pray for Prudence's mother as well, she has been with Prudence the whole time that she was in the hospital and is here staying with her now, but she has 3 other children at home younger than Prudence with the youngest being 2. The other kids are being cared for by their grandmother but they haven't seen their mother, or her them in almost 4 months!!!

God Bless


Off to Lusaka!!

Tomorrow we are off to Lusaka again!! We have to take the twins to have their picture taken for their Canadian passports!! The photo store in Mandahill is the only photo store that Canada will accept the photos from!....So...we get to drive for 4 hours with two 1 year olds...lol...won't that be fun!! but we are also going to go to the huge craft fair again so that will be exciting!!

The team has gone home now, but mom will be here for 2 more weeks!! YAY....We've been having some trouble getting our Letter of No Objection from the Canadian government...Mostly because our adoption agency hasn't been very helpful, and told me that I had everything I needed...and then at the very last minute said that I still needed to do a whole bunch of things!! It was very frustrating, I think I have completed everything they asked for now...although it took me 3 very stressful days of attempting to download and scan things that the internet here is too slow to handle...It took me 3 hours to download the adoption orders to an e-mail and send them!!!AHHH..sure teaches you some patience!!

The team found in the hospital a little 10 year old girl who is dying of cancer...the hospital couldn't do anything more for her, and had decided to release her to the compounds...Not a very nice place to spend your last days..no food..and no comfortable place to sleep!! She had bed sores down to the bone from the poor care that she was receiving at the hospital!! The hospital is a place that I don't even like to visit and she had been their for 3 months and 3 weeks! She has such a pretty smile and was just thrilled when we set up a tv in her room to watch cartoons!! I don't think she has ever seen a cartoon in her life, and when we asked her what her favorite toy from home was she said " I've never had a toy". So Susan asked her if she could have any toy she wanted what would it be, and she wanted a baby doll. So the team went a bought her a beautiful baby doll..Its so sad..she's such a beautiful little girl!! My heart just breaks to think what she has had to go through at only 10 years old...but soon she will be with the Lord in an amazing place without pain!!

The team also found at the hospital a 6 year old boy in serious need of antibiotics, and when Susan offered to pay for them...the doctor got very upset with her and refused to let her pay...Their was also a 2 year old little boy that was skin and bones...he didn't weigh more than 8-10 pounds and the hospital wouldn't let Susan help him either...It's so frustrating...I hate going to that hospital cause you see so much suffering and they won't let you help...you just have to leave and pray that the Lord takes these children home quickly....Their is also a set of 2 day old twin girls whose mother died in childbirth, and the father isn't around that are living with their grandmother who isn't able to care for them!! I so wish we could adopt them too...but I think 4 kids all within one year is more than I can handle...I just pray that somehow they go to a good home and get out of the compound!!

Well...this has been a long post...and some of it very sad..If you can all pray for these kids, for comfort and peace!!

May the Lord bless you all!!


They are official Braaksma's!!

The judge has finally signed Cassidy's adoption order!!! It is official...both of my girls are official Braaksma's!! No one can take these girls away from us now...the Zambian side of this adoption is finished! I am so thankful for my girls..every day I enjoy them even more!! Now we just have to get their Canadian visa's and take them home!! In 8 weeks and 1 day we will be flying home with our girls!! This day seemed so far away when our journey began and yet it is almost here!

My mom is here now!!! The girls love her and she's having lots of fun getting to know them!! On Sunday we had a little birthday party for them with Oma!! They were the most serious birthday girls I've every seen!! We could hardly get them to smile while eating their cake!! Oma bought them a little toy phone and camera and they love them!! It's so cute watching them play with them!! Eden now has both bottom and top teeth!! and Cassidy has her bottom and one top tooth!! They are too cute!!

Here's some pics of their teeth!!


She's almost here!!

My mom will be arriving in Lusaka, Zambia tomorrow at 11:30ish...I'm so excited!! I'm leaving the twins with daddy and going with Kerry to pick them up from the airport!! The team that she is traveling with have already been to Myanmar for 1 week and now they are coming here for 1 week...but mom is staying on without them for an extra 2 weeks!!! So she will be here for 3 whole weeks!!!

Not much has been going on here!! Definitely feeling the need for some adult interaction!! I love the people here, but the cultural differences and language make it hard to interact on the same level that I am used too!...although most of them speak very good English they still have a strong accent that I find hard to understand!! I feel bad when they have to repeat themselves 3 times for me to understand!!

The twins turned 1 on Sept 7th!! We just did a few balloons and I made a cake...We are doing their big birthday when Oma gets here (TOMORROW)...Yay...I think we will do a BBQ next week sometime..with cake and balloons... I'll post some pics for sure! We are still waiting for the Judge to sign Cassidy's adoption order and I'm also gathering all the paperwork so that we can send it to Pretoria! Eden took her first step on Sept 9th...She will stand by herself for quite a while and when I put out my hands to her she stepped once before falling!! She is so cute!! She will actually try it where Cassidy won't!! She won't even try standing by herself!! They both have both bottom teeth and Eden has one top one!! and more are coming!! I love their little personality's and I'm so enjoying them every day!! I can't wait to bring them home!!


Frustrating Court Date!!!

So frustrating!! Our lawyer told us that we only needed to bring the father to the court date as the mothers wants have no significance in this country!!! Then when we go to the court date the judge says that he's not granting our adoption order until we come back with the mother on Aug 31!! It was really frustrating...especially when we found out from a friend who had adopted before us that our lawyer new that we needed both parents!!! I've always thought that it was very sad that they were going to court to fully give up their children and the mother doesn't even get to come!! I had almost decided to bring her anyways, but then decided that our lawyer might not like that....Boy, should have listened to my first instinct! Anyways, our new court date is Aug 31...which hopefully goes much better than the first one!! Please pray that the Judge grants the order this time!!! and for comfort for the birth parents!!!


Cute babies...and a bad blogger!

I have discovered that I'm not the best blogger....lol...I read some people's blogs that post everyday, or almost everyday!! I can never thing of what to say once a week...let alone once a day....So my excuse is going to be that the internet here is to slow and unreliable for me to post more than once a week...lol...Thats my excuse and I'm sticking to it!!! So...what's new around here...well, we are waiting for our court dates! Edens is on the 24th and Cassidy's is Sept 2! My mom comes in exactly 5 weeks! We seem to be doing a fair bit of waiting!! Teams have just left and its fairly quiet around here!! The kids are out of school on break, and are really enjoying playing with my girls...which I quite enjoy as it gives me a break from trying to figure out how to entertain them!! The weather her the last 3 days has been very cold for some reason! We've had to bring back out our jeans and sweaters...All in all not overly exciting!! but here are some pics of my cutie girls..now that's exciting!! I still don't have any pics of the teeth cause they are still not quite through enough to get a good pic...Although Eden now has both bottom teeth!!!

Someone please come play with me!!

My beautiful girls!! Getting so big.. can't wait for everyone to meet them!!