It is difficult to imagine that Elizabeth, Sarah and myself head back to Romania tomorrow. It has been a very stressful month in many ways but oh so much was accomplished.
We did see my daughter Kathleen - a very painful experience/s. 5 of the 7 days in CA were spent on getting documents cleared up, both for the girls and Kathleen. The Lord was with us every step of the way. When I finally got Kathleen enough documentation to appear before the Romanian Consulate their office decided to close for 2 days (I won't EVEN go in to that right now but it was so...so...so ROMANIAN!) In the consulate office I had a form shoved in to my hands as we were ushered out. That night I took it all to the Lord - why was I allowed to get all the supporting documentation done only to be turned away? I finally dropped off to sleep to awaken with a God thought - "read the form!" The form told me the name of a special stamp that the police had referred to in Arad and how to get it. I was a little confused as it would take another trip to Los Angeles and getting Kathleen to do another road trip with me was a real challenge. A pastor friend in CA got on the Internet and put the name of the stamp in a search engine and VOILE! There were service agencies who, for a hefty fee of course, take a notarized statement to the Dept. of State official in the capitol and get this stamp - after that they would Fed Ex the document to me. I have that document! I have Social Security Cards for Elizabeth and Sarah, I got Kathleen's birth certificate and applied for her picture ID. God is good. As we prepare to leave it is very emotional for me as I leave my daughter behind in a very bad state...HOWEVER God has promised me He would care for her, it seems like she just won't be a part of our lives.
We went to Las Vegas and the girls met their Aunt, Uncle and cousin - the Keller family. It was a special reunion for me and such a blessing for the girls. Their cousin Lindsay is getting married and we were able to see her in her gown and go with the family to their dance lessons for the reception. We all wish we could be there for the wedding.
I drove from CA to Vegas and then on to Phoenix. My grandson Benjamin is being adopted there by a friend and her husband. Benjamin is a special needs child and has come so far since being with Ruth and Doug! I am so blessed that he is so loved. The girls were sort of angry with me for many years that I did not go to the States and gather up their brothers. Michael, Nathaniel and Kaleb were adopted in closed adoptions and the girls now realize that we would not have been able to care for Benjamin and provide him with what he needs in Romania. They also got to see how wonderful an adoptive family can be. The other 3 boys are well within the sight and hand of The Lord too. Ruth and I took the 3 children to Grand Canyon, Bearazona and a Fred Flintstone village. I took the girls shopping there also. Oh and yes - Elizabeth and Sarah got their ears pierced - that was a biggy for them. While in Phoenix I was able to visit with my former pastors, Richard and Carol Maiden - it was a special time.
Today the girls are at Universal in Orlando. Elizabeth just called, they just got off the Spiderman Ride and "it was the coolest thing ever!" The first thing on their "to visit" list here in the Orlando area was Gator Land. They also visited Sea World. The Ball family is hosting us and have graciously taken Elizabeth and Sarah to visit all these places. I would not have been able to do it! I enjoyed their pool, the beach and a movie! The Balls will be moving to Romania after the first of the year. We are all excited.
OK - that is the last 30 days in a nutshell! I hope to post a few pictures after getting home. My gosh, we have hundreds! I know everyone has held down the fort for me in Romania and did an awesome job while I was gone.