Wednesday, June 29, 2011

2 new Golden's

Praise God!!!! We went in, the prosecutor said he had no questions for us and that he supports our petition to adopt. The judge then went to make her decision, coming back within a few minutes saying that our petition to adopt the boys is granted!! woohoo!!! After the 10 day waiting period their birth certificates will read Josiah Daniel Golden and Jackson Levi Golden, with Joel and I listed as their parents!!!! God is so good!!!
Thank you all so much for the prayers! You may or may not know that our first court date was postponed because the prosecutor asked for more time to research our motives in adopting the boys. He thought that we might be gaining financially from adopting children with special needs from Ukraine. We have been praying these last few days for God to show him our true motives, and that today's court would go quickly and smoothly without him asking a lot of questions. And God answered that prayer in a big way!!!! We weren't even in the court room 5 minutes before the judge was off to make her decision!! Woohoo!!

Tuesday, June 28, 2011


We have court tomorrow at 11am, that is 3am central time. Please pray!!! Please be praying that the prosecutor has no objections to the court granting our petition to adopt the boys!!! We are hoping it will be a quick and smooth process tomorrow with no more surprises! But no matter what, we know God is in control and for that we praise Him!!

We will update tomorrow afternoon as soon as we get back to the apartment. Right after court we plan on visiting with the boys so it might be later in the day before we get a chance to get online. Thank you so much for your prayers!!!

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Wow, what a birthday! joel

Well, Hello again!

I am back in said unnamed eastern European country with my beloved wife and soon to be official two sons….very excited!  Today was my 36th birthday, almost forgotten but thanks to facebook reminding all my friends to remind me, it was remembered!  Yesterday was miserable for me, I had a sinus infection set in and all that goes with it but today brought hope…hope of seeing my boys again.  We had to skip Saturday because of me feeling ill and lack of sleep catching up with me (something I would have never thought to happen but sometimes your body can’t take any more). 

Since I had flown in Thursday, I had only had two visits to the orphanage.  Avisit with both boys Thursday afternoon, and Friday’s was cut short due to timing of court and the craziness that went on there.  We felt a need for a short visit after and a desperate need to get on our knees and do some praying.  Our court has been postponed as requested by the prosecutor and all we can ask is that you pray for him, we will be seeing him and the judge again Wednesday for her ruling.

Today was hard to get around to actually going, the temperature has dropped into the mid 50s-60 and there is rain and 20 mph winds, something I did not prepare for!  We have a 10 minute walk to the metro and a 10 minute walk from the metro to the orphanage so it was cold and miserable…add the sinus stuff to the mix, a lack of long sleeved shirt or jacket and I was mentally whooped before leaving the apartment! 

But once there, Jackson really got me going…I had no choice and wouldn’t have it any other way!  He was so fully of energy and something else that I can’t put my finger on, maybe….YOUTH!  This little man was wound up and needed some of it run out, and I was the man for the job.  There was ball, drumming, banana snatching (from some unsuspecting other mom there), running….and his favorite, get daddy to block me from running down the hall or ramp to outside!  This kid is so fun and smart!  He is learning sign language in the few hours a day that Rachel was with him and copying movements and actions that we do, it is absolutely amazing what a little love and one-on-one time can do for a child!  After an hour, this dude wore me out!  Luckily, we had an hour to recover before Josiah’s scheduled time J

I was about asleep when Josiah was brought out to us, looked like he was too!  I didn’t know how this little guy would keep us occupied for our visit, but man, he too can ware a dad out!  He is so studious, and at first I didn’t know he was actually doing it for a reason…maybe just because he doesn’t have anything else to do, but then….  As he was watching my fingers move, he started moving his the exact same way and then as he watched my feet move, he was moving his feet in the exact same way!  It’s just that he needs some one-on-one time, a little love and guidance.  He is trying so hard to learn what is going on!  He even gave me some verbal communication (I think he wanted a steak and maybe some pepsi, Rachel called it baby babble) which he has not done that much.  I continue to be amazed by both of these little guys and am blessed to finally be here to witness it!

Please pray for our next court hearing on Wednesday at 11 local time, 3am central, specifically for the prosecutor.  We also ask for prayer for these boys to continue the bonding process with us.  This is a very tiring process and we ask for prayers of endurance and strength as well!

Friday, June 24, 2011

Court and a visit

We had a great visit with Jackson today! He had just woke up so was still sleepy, but that makes him very cuddly :)  He played a little but for the most part just went back and forth between Joel and I to be cuddled and held. His favorite part was when Joel and I sat on the same table and he was able to get up and snuggle in right between us!! Our hearts melted! Oh how I love this little guy!!!

As for court, it has been postponed until Wednesday at 11am. Please continue to pray for that outcome!!

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Daddy made it!! Yay!

Daddy's back!! Yippee! Joel got in yesterday evening and we headed right out the door for the orphanage. He got time with both of his little guys :)
We'll visit again tonight, but probably not Josiah as he seems to have a cold and is just not feeling well. We'll give him a couple days to get better so we don't spread whatever it is he has to the other kids in the orphanage.
And then tomorrow comes!! We have court tomorrow at 2pm!! Can't wait! Then the countdown begins!! I am really excited to bring my boys out of the orphanage to stay with me, but I am a little sad at the thought of leaving this place. I truly enjoy it here and hope to return soon.

Here are some pictures from daddy's visit, which is what you've really been waiting for anyway ;)

Monday, June 20, 2011

A Message from Dad!

Wow, it's been a long time since I've posted anything on here....sorry about that!  The past few weeks have been ones of struggle and shear exhaustion.  My workload is enormous, and I have finally completed a huge job that God had given me as another test of faith.  Normally, I don't mind putting in crazy hours or being gone from home for a week or two at a time...but this was different!  After leaving the unnamed eastern european country, leaving my wife to bond with and teach our two little men (in the limited visiting hours each day) and our sons, I came home to an empty house and a job that would be impossible by anyones standards.  Fortunately, I don't judge possibilities by "anyones" standards...I judge them by how the Holy Spirit leads me, and during much prayer and counsel,  He told me it could be done!

 So I embarked on a quest to complete the workload required of this job, calculating the many possible ways in which it could not be done, only to surrender (AGAIN) and let God take care of the fine details.  Friday night, I completed my last location...only by the grace of God.  A pace was set that no one, even me at times, though possible to complete...but what God sets in motion, man can not stop.  I had thought of posting the details of these jobs, the problems that arose, the issues with my van that were ongoing, and calling them as they seemed...PROBLEMS!  But, there are no problems when you are led by God, being obedient to the calling at hand.  There may be obstacles to overcome through hard work and prayer, but there are never any problems!

Today was actually one of relaxation before flying back, an unexpected on at that, preparing to take on the role of  father and provider and to be more tired than I have ever been in my life (from what I'm told).  Tomorrow I fly back to that foreign land, ready to greet my wife whom I have missed more than ever in my life, and ready to get to know my sons.  I can't wait!  

Sunday, June 19, 2011


Okay, so we now have internet at the apartment, my friend is here, and we have a court date!!!! Woohoo!!!

Friday the 24th at 2pm is our court date. Joel flies in Tuesday afternoon so he will have a couple days with the boys before court (and a couple days to sleep off his jet lag LOL).

Thank you to everyone for your prayers. I'm about to head out to go visit my little men for the day but will try to get back on here tonight or tomorrow to update a little more on what's been happening, and of course to post some pictures :)

I apologize for the lack of blog posts, and more importantly pictures, the last few days. I moved apartments and do not have internet where I am now. So when I do get to a place with wifi I spend it catching up on emails to those at home holding down the fort, and of course chatting with Joel J
I have still been visiting the boys. And, wow, are they cuties!!! The seem to be growing and learning so much, but I know that most of it is just that they have skills I haven’t seen yet. Josiah, though, is so cute how he is so into his hands and feet! And Jackson is getting so good at “gentle” (meaning, NOT clobbering mama upside the head, but instead gently touching my cheek, lol). And he shows me new skills every time he is given a chance. We now realize that he is going to need not only a soccer ball at home, but a tricycle. It amazes me how quickly they both pick up on something also! And as far as communication, well, Jackson already says ball, and tries to say gentle. And Josiah already understands when I ask him where his hands are! He will hold them up and look at them! So stinkin cute!!!!

I know there is a serious lack of pictures, but it has been very hard to get some while spending the time playing and interacting with the boys, especially Jackson. Every time I pull out the camera he either sits down for a cookie (since he knows they are in the bag) or he comes to me with his arms out to be held. Cute, but not very helpful in getting pictures J  Hopefully though, this little problem will be a problem no more. A friend from home is flying in tonight to stay with me until next week when Joel flies back. I am hoping she won’t mind being a photographer while here.

So besides visiting the boys, I’ve just been enjoying soaking in the culture here. And trying new food! So far, I am loving it here. Especially the little coffee shop down the street where I use the wifi! They have some very yummy cheese cake and other deserts! And their cappuccino isn’t so bad either J I’ve also spent the last couple of days with Lindy House. They just adopted two sweet little boys who I had the pleasure of meeting. They leave tomorrow for home, but it was such a blessing to be able to spend time with her, getting to know her better and meeting her little ones before they left. I also got to meet the Cox’s little girl. So beautiful!!! I consider myself so blessed to have met 3 orphans no more!!

Well, that’s what has been going on here. Still waiting for a court date, but hoping it will be next week some time. And very much looking forward to my husband joining me here and getting to know his boys! 

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Saturday visits, and a surprise

Visited the boys today and it was wonderful! Jackson is calming down and hitting me less (yay!!) and I've discovered that he drinks very well out of a sports water bottle. Just don't leave it open if he can get to it because he does know that if he swings it around squeezing it that it will spray. Not sure how he knew, but he did! Good thing mama thought ahead and had it closed while he was showing off his knowledge :)

Josiah is a wonderful baby! When they brought him out to me today he gave that little smile that he does and reached right for me, placing his hands very gently on my cheeks! Even his caregiver gave a smile at how cute it was. And when the director came by and was talking to him saying mama, he turned and looked right at me. That little munchkin knows who I am! Love it!!

And the surprise today.....when I went back for my visit with Josiah, there were people all over. They were sanding and painting the cribs and wooden buildings the kids play in, and the benches and the bridges. It was awesome!!! I was just thinking the other day as Jackson slid down the ramp of the bridge like it was a slide that, oh boy, he's going to end up with a splinter or two!! But now he won't!

And now for the pictures :)

 In this picture, he was reaching for me to hold him. Every time I would get the camera out for pictures he would do this :)
 Painting the bridge that Jackson loves to play ball on!
 One of the finished cribs.
Sanding the crib that Jackson's groupa uses. (this guy thought I was a little crazy when I asked if he minded if I took his picture :)  lol)

Wednesday, June 8, 2011


I’ve been tossing this blog post around in my head for quite a few days now. It feels like weeks, but then I realize that I have been here less than two weeks. It feels like lots more than that already!
This post is about homesickness. I always thought that feeling homesick was an emotional feeling of missing that which you are accustomed to. I never realized, before now, that it is actually a physical thing. My mind and emotions are not screaming to go home, sleep in my own bed, eat my own food, sit on my own couch, drive my own car, or any of that. I am glad to be here spending some time with my boys and experiencing this new culture. But there is definitely a physical feeling, one I can’t truly describe but might put it as not being comfortable in your own skin, feeling yucky and not knowing why, or like when you are hungry but nothing sounds good. As I was sitting here a few days ago in a foreign land where there are few people I can communicate with, trying to come up with a description for this physical feeling, it hit me (or rather God showed me). Jesus had to have felt this when he was here on earth. If I am feeling this just being away from my home, country, friends & family, how much MORE would He have felt it being away from God?! And He endured it much longer than I have to, and I will not have to go through what He did at the end of it to get back to where I am homesick for. Once again, it hits me just how much He endured for us. How can I not do this little thing He is asking me to do in order to give two orphans a family? So whenever that physical….whatever…hits me, I now praise the one who has walked this path before me, for he knows exactly what I am feeling. And I remember exactly what He sacrificed for me. And I become ashamed that, at times, I find it a little difficult to do these small sacrifices for my boys so I complain to God that it is too hard so I ask Him to make it easier. And I turn that complaining into praise for each trying, difficult, hard, emotional, crazy step. For it brings me closer to Him.

The Lord is my strength and my shield; my heart trusted in Him, and I am helped; therefore my heart greatly rejoices, and with my song I will praise Him.   Psalm 28:7

I would have lost heart, unless I had believed that I would see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living.  Psalm 27:13

He who is of a proud heart stirs up strife, but he who trusts in the Lord will be prospered.  Proverbs 28:25

Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge Him, and he shall direct your paths.  Proverbs 3:5-6

Monday, June 6, 2011


We have internet!!

Today (I mean yesterday) :)

What a great visit with the boys!!! I got Jackson first and played with just him for a bit. But he just wanted to be held. Whenever I’d put him down to play on anything or to just walk around he would just look up at me and hold his arms out. As soon as I’d pick him up he’d snuggle right in. LOVED IT!!! J  He wasn’t just wanting to cuddle though, he wanted to play, as long as it was on my lap or beside me on the bench or standing between my legs. He had to be touching me. We walked around a bit, with me holding him of course, and I started humming to him. He LOVES music so I thought he would enjoy this. He did. He started laughing!!! LOL Something about me humming just struck him as hilarious. I also got him snorting again today. I’m chuckling to myself now thinking of how cute he is snorting when he laughs.

After about 45 minutes I went and got Josiah too. Boy was that a little crazy. Jackson didn’t want to be put down and then they brought out Josiah and handed him to me. The nanny must’ve seen my plea for help written on my face because she made the motion of pushing a stroller with a questioning look on her face. I only nodded my head, but it was an emphatic nod!! What was really sweet though was that Jackson wanted to push the stroller with me J  It was hard for him because the handle was too high so I picked him up once again and he helped me push that way. He did great….until he ran his brother into a curb, making him slide down through the spot his legs go! Yikes, I’m learning really quick how to handle two kids at once with one being mobile!! LOL

Since Jackson didn’t want to walk or play, just sit with me and interact directly with me, Josiah just hung out in the stroller watching us. He LOVED the toy I brought for him, yay! And we talked with him and sang to him also. But I wanted a little one on one time with the little guy so as Jackson’s group headed inside for the night I just took him over to go in with them. Then I spent the next 20 minutes or so just holding my little guy, talking with him and singing to him. He just kept studying me for the longest time. Then he snuggled in. Ahhhhhh, what a feeling!

It was a really good visit today, but I think tomorrow I will have separate visits with each of them J

For all you Mentos lovers out there, I found watermelon Mentos!!!  And actually, they aren’t all that bad! I am loving trying new things here, especially these chocolate bars with some kind of strawberry cream cheese filling! J

We moved apartments today also, into something much smaller, but MUCH closer to the orphanage. It is wonderful! Except we don’t have internet yet so this post might not make it to the blog for a couple days. Hopefully we will have it tomorrow (Monday) so I can post this. Oh, and hopefully tomorrow we will run into the Whites at the orphanage!!!!!

Sunday, June 5, 2011

It's hard being a dad!

Well, I wanted to just put a small post up about what I've had to do.  Maybe for some insight into the mind of a man going through this or hopefully to prepare some men for going through this phase of the adoption process.  We had to make a tough choice on accepting a huge project for work or letting it go so I could stay in country with Rachel the entire time.  After much prayer, we decided to let God take care of the timing and accept the work he was providing for us.  I'm getting better at trusting God, or so I thought.

Today is the second day that I've been back in the US.  The first day was all flying and I'm still somewhat out of it, but I am missing my wife.  It hit me as we prayed friday night, that I was leaving my wife in a strange country with limited communication, a few friends and the facilitation team contacts.  I travel all the time, but leaving her was hard.  As we prayed, I accepted the fact that God loves her more than I ever could and that I had to give her up to our LORD.  I miss the boys too!  I can't tell you how much I bonded with them in the few short hours we had.  So Dads, if you are going to come back and leave your wife "in country", make sure to pray and to trust....He will be faithful!  And every time you start to miss your lovely wife, let it be a reminder to pray for her and the time she is spending with your children.

In Christ,


Saturday, June 4, 2011

Day two

We have a climber!!!! Jackson is a little monkey!! And boy is he limber :) And strong! Daddy had him by a tree and he reached up, grabbed the limb above his head and started doing pull-ups!!!

He also loves Lecrae (Christian rapper). He was jamming to some Lecrae songs Joel had on his phone!! Every time I tried to get a video, though, he'd stop! But that boy has some moves!! (some good, some....well....weird! lol) We have also come to the conclusion that he needs a little drum set. And some other musical toys/instruments. Yes, Aunt Heather, you were right. I do believe the saying goes, "never say never".........
And even though he was bonding with daddy while jamming to Lecrae, he did say "mama" today!! Woohoo!! And when we went to go get him, he came to us with his arms held up! So sweet!

We got time with the little guy today too. He was sleeping when we went this morning so we went back after lunch. They brought him out in a stroller and he gave a little smile. But shortly after we picked him up and were holding him and playing with him, he got really fussy. No loud crying, just really big tears, one running down each cheek :(  Broke my heart. So I held him close and tried to comfort him. That seemed to do the trick. Then a few minutes later he was fast asleep. So sweet!!! Can't wait to go back and love on him some more!!!!!

Now for what you've really been waiting for :)

Thursday, June 2, 2011

We met them!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

What an exciting morning!!! We went with the Rays to the orphanage this morning to meet our facilitator thinking we would then go to another building for some paperwork. When our facilitator got there we actually just went in to the director's office and started learning about the boys histories. Then, because his naptime was just beginning, they brought us Josiah. Poor baby had just started falling asleep when they brought him to us so we didn't get but a couple minutes with him. Sweet baby boy!!!!!!!
After that, some more official business and info. Then in walks Jackson!! What a sweetheart!!!! He loves being held and snuggled and tickled. He also loves to tackle, but he does it so gently :) And he always laughs when you fall down! He loves music and dancing. Guess we'll be loading Joel's phone with music for the trip home! He had a great time today outside with Daddy, especially walking over a little wooden bridge over and over and over and over.... I think Daddy love it too ;)

Okay, so enough with the details, here are some pictures :)

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

It's our turn!!!

So I've just realized that it is now our turn :) For months as I've gone through this process I've read blog posts about families going through this process. How they got here and had their SDA appointment, met Serge and Yulia, met other families for dinner, took showers with no shower curtain, the quirks of their apartments, etc. Well, now it's our turn. It's a little surreal that now I am actually experiencing those things myself!! We've met Serge and Yulia, we've had our SDA appointment (where we actually never got asked any questions!!), I've taken the shower with no curtain (and got everything wet!), I'm learning to buy stuff when I'm not exactly sure what it is (poor Joel has been surprised with chicken a couple times!), we met other families for dinner. It was so cool to realize that we were one of the families in the pictures that are showing up on blogs now!!! For so long I've dreamed of this time happening, when we'd get here and meet the boys and get them home. Now that it's here I can't even describe how it feels. Even though you've read all the blogs about what it's like, it's nothing like experiencing it yourself!!

Right now we are just enjoying our time here, especially the grocery shopping/cooking!! Because just because something looks like something on the package, doesn't mean that's what it really is!! LOL  I am just sorry that Joel has to go home in a couple of days so he won't be able to experience as much. And I am so thankful that the Lord has placed the Ray's here with me so I have someone to experience this with!! :)