Our Trip: Sunday – February 25, 2007

Time is flying by since we’ve been home and I need to try to get my memories written before they slip away. We’ll see how much I can write before dinner.

Sunday morning we picked K. up at her orphanage and went to church with Ray and Lauralee, along with the Smith family and their two children. Ray and Lauralee founded the church we were visiting, so we were honored guests. The pastor gave us a tour of the new building. Most fascinating to us were the bunkrooms which are sleeping quarters for people coming to church from outlying villages.

The music was lively and the people warm. I gave K. a small Magnadoodle to play with during the service. At one point Lauralee nudged me and gestured toward K. who had written “apple”, “bird”, “dog”, and “cat” on the toy! We were amazed. She has been in school for a short time and is so bright. Somebody has made my job of homeschooling just a little bit easier.

I ended up standing in the back of the church with W. who grew fussy after a little bit. I have spent countless church services standing in the back with a baby in my arms, but this was the first time that I could look out the windows and see small shacks with tin roofs spread over the hillside. I went outside and sat on the steps with some young girls who were carrying babies on their backs. A toddler reached out and touched my arm with one finger and then with her whole hand. Soon she was rubbing my arm with vigor – I think she was trying to figure out what was wrong with my pasty skin.

After church we went to a nice restaurant where many of us ordered a layered fruit drink called “spris”. It was beautiful to look at and tasted great. The food was also quite good. I believe it was K.’s first time in a restaurant, but she acted like a pro eating french fries and Ethiopian food. Apparently she doesn’t like carrots, so she piled hers onto my plate. She had no difficulty expressing her preferences!

After eating we headed back to the guest house where we were picked up by a driver and taken to visit the family of some friends from our town at home, Jada and Roba. These friends have not been back to Ethiopia for ten years, so we carried over gifts and photos for them. I was very tired and as we drove W. threw up all over me soaking my shirt and skirt. All we could do was laugh – we were so tired and completely out of our element.

We picked up Tabor, Jada’s brother, who directed our driver to their family home which was in a rural area outside of Addis. When we arrived, we were greeted warmly with kisses on both cheeks and even a kiss over my heart from Jada’s mother. They were so happy to meet us and to receive things from their family in America. They had prepared a meal for us including a meat dish which none of them could eat because it was a time of fasting for Orthodox Christians. One of the girls did a traditional coffee ceremony which I will tell more about in a later post. The children took me on a tour of the property which included some very nice vegetable gardens all on drip irrigation; a project of Jada’s youngest brother. Jada and Roba’s nieces

Russ and E. with some of Jada and Roba’s family. Jada’s mother is holding W.

Tabor’s wife and son

Finally it grew late and we left amidst more hugging, kissing, and photo taking. As tired as we were, we felt that it was a highlight of our trip to spend time in a family home and experience lovely Ethiopian hospitality. We had another opportunity to experience this again at the end of our trip with a different family and once again we were touched. I hope to write about it later.
Children in the neighborhood – they loved having their photos taken.

These ladies came out to see us as we were leaving.

More soon.

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Let me introduce myself. Russ and I are the parents of twelve children by birth and adoption, and sometimes more through foster care. I'm the creator of One Thankful Mom which has been as much of a gift to me as to my readers. In 2011 I became a TBRI® Pracitioner* and have lived and breathed connected parenting ever since. I'm deeply honored to be the co-author, together with the late Dr. Karyn Purvis, of The Connected Parent; it is her final written work. I love speaking at events for adoptive and foster parents. I'm also the co-founder of The Adoption Connection, a podcast and resource site for adoptive moms. I mentor and encourage adoptive moms so you can find courage and hope in your journeys of loving your children well.


  1. PastorMac's Ann
    March 25, 2007

    Oh Lisa what an amazing tiime. Thanks so much sharing it with us.


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