This week Alina and I are preparing to head back to Latvia for our second court appointment in the adoption process. While it is a long trip to get there, I am so, so excited to go back to Latvia! It is difficult to put into words what Latvia means to us, and how we feel about the country and her people. Often times when people adopt internationally, they see the worst side of a particular country or region...our experience this time has been exactly the opposite. Latvia is a beautiful, strong, resilient country, and the people we have met through this adoption journey - from Alina's foster family, our amazing lawyer, and the court workers - continually demonstrate all that is good there. It has been a humble blessing to us, and we will always, always love this place.
To make this trip even more fun, my mom is going along! (Look out, world!) She is excited to see Latvia and meet all the people we love there, and I can't wait for her to see her first stork nest. It means a lot to me to have someone else in our family see Latvia, too.
We have one more trip after this one to finalize the adoption, and then in a few years we plan to take all five of us back for a few weeks. The boys really want to go now, but finances aren't as accommodating as we'd like, and a court trip won't be as much fun as a full out vacation there. We've already started saving up for our family trip back, and the boys are already talking about what we'll do and see when we go!
Between homeschooling, packing, and just the new day to day life of a family of five, things are busy, but good. We are all settling together in a permanent way, and it feels great for our new normal to feel more and more...normal. Six months ago I couldn't imagine where we are now, and I am nearly speechless when I think of where God has brought us and what He has shown us about Himself. I would not have imagined we would have so much laughter and joy. Alina is such a blessing.
And soon we will be Latvia bound!