Friday, March 23, 2012

Lottie Mastewal's Room

In a crazy, God-ordained answer to prayer, we are leaving for Ethiopia tomorrow!  AND....  we will be home BEFORE Lottie Mastewal turns 1!!!  I am still reeling from the way He blesses and answers prayer.

You would think I might have TONS to do before we leave (TOMORROW!), and that I wouldn't have time for blogging - and you would be right!  But I wanted to get the blog post about her room done before we brought her home.  For the sake of time, this will be mostly pictures and not so much explanation.

The rocker/recliner was originally my great-grandmother's.  So glad we could have it re-upholstered and use it in Lottie's room!

All of the photos above the crib were taken on our first trip to Ethiopia.  We purchased the yellow fabric for the blanket at the ALERT Hospital in Addis.

This was Rob's childhood table that he painted for Lottie.  Chairs are from IKEA.

The dresser, as well as the coral side table were purchased from RetroChic Restorations.  LOVE them!  If you live in the DFW area, I would HIGHLY recommend them!

The lamps were originally brass, from my Grandmother's house.  My brother-in-law had them electroplated in alternating brushed and polished nickel.

We first found this ACRYLIC chandelier at Home Depot, but were able to score it for a MUCH better price on eBay!

Thursday, March 22, 2012


We received the email this morning from the Embassy that we've been waiting for! We are cleared to go back to Ethiopia to bring home Lottie Mastewal! We could not be more ecstatic. We are hoping to leave next Tuesday or Wednesday, but it may be tough to get tickets, so please pray for us. If we can get tickets, it's looking like we will either be home or headed home on Lottie Mastewal's birthday. What an amazing answer to prayer! Praise God from whom ALL blessings flow!!!

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Ethiopia Trip #1: Day 3

Our third day in Ethiopia was Sunday and our friend, Bonnie, had invited us to go to the International Evangelical Church with her.  The pastor introduced himself to us before the service started and it turned out he was from Azle, TX.  SMALL world!!  It was an AMAZING morning of worship.  The message, the music, the overall experience.  I think I cried through most of it.  We didn't have our camera with us on Sunday, either, but fortunately Bonnie had hers so we have at least one photo to document the day:

After church we went to lunch at Avanti, a VERY nice restaurant.  I would highly recommend it to anyone traveling to Addis.

After lunch we took Bonnie and the kids back to their guest house, and then had a lazy afternoon hanging out with the other families who were at BJoe.  We loved our stay at BJoe.  The best part was the hospitality of the staff.  By the end of the week they felt like family.  And of course, the rooms were very clean and nice. 

And the grounds - because of the weather, everything is green and lush. Just gorgeous!

Later that evening we walked to a restaurant a block or two from BJoe called, Cloud 9.  It was in a small-ish mall, so we walked around and looked in the stores for a while before we headed back to BJoe. 

On our way back to BJoe, we ran into the "tissue boys."  We had been warned about these boys.  They sell individual boxes of tissues that they carry around in a shoe box lid.  However, they're really looking to pick your pockets by pressing the lid into your waist as a distraction.  When they approached us, they initially asked for food.  Rob had some granola bars on him, so he gave them each one.  Then they started asking for money.  Rob told them NO, and they immediately focused on our friends.  The sad thing is that they weren't even any good at it.  The one kid looked directly at my friend's pocket, and then went toward her with the tissues.  They also knew what they were up to, so they just kept saying NO, trying to keep their distance and eventually they left us alone.  At the time I thought it was funny and slightly annoying, but I got to thinking about those boys the next day.  I asked our driver about them.  Did they have families, or were they street kids?  Street kids.  And I immediately became so sad.  They have no choice.  It's steal or die.  Living in America all of my life, I had no real concept of what extreme poverty looks like.  I will share more of our experiences in future posts, but that experience really helped me begin to see that there was so much more to poverty than I had ever even imagined.

We slept well that night, knowing we would be seeing Lottie Mastewal again the next day.

Ethiopia Trip #1: Day 2

After a really great night's sleep on Friday night, we awoke to nice showers and french toast for breakfast. 

Our good friend, Bonnie, was in Ethiopia with her kids, waiting until she could bring them home, so we went to visit her at her guest house.  We hung out with her for a little while, and then walked a few blocks to a restaurant for lunch.  Unfortunately, we didn't have our camera with us, so I have NO PICTURES of our time together :-( 

After lunch we walked a few more blocks to a roadside stand to do some souvenir shopping.  Bonnie's husband had posted a box of Obama pens on Facebook a couple of weeks earlier and we thought it would be fun to get some for our family.  This is the picture I'd seen on Facebook:

This looks like a store, right??  Bonnie told us she thought she remembered where they were sold, so we followed her.  We crossed the street (oh yes, we walked across an Addis street!!) to what looked like just a sidewalk with some corrugated metal on the side of it - sort of like you might see around here when there are buildings under construction.  Then I noticed that Bonnie was actually peering into openings in the metal.  When I looked closer, I realized that they were tiny little roadside stands.  And I mean tiny.  Like there was a shelf on one wall - maybe two, and barely enough room for a man to stand in there.  When Bonnie finally located the correct stand, it sold pens and gum.  That's all.  There were a few different kinds of pens to choose from, but of course we were looking for the Obama pens.  The man running the stand was SO nice.  For all of the pens we bought - between us and Bonnie, it was about a dozen - he took each one and tested it out to make sure it worked before he sold it to us.  Then, he grabbed a rubber band to put around the bundle, but asked Rob if he could do it, pointing out the fact that he only had one arm.  That little side trip was about the biggest adventure of our time in Addis, but we have such fond memories of it :-)

Later that afternoon we went back to BJoe and then out to dinner that night with the other family who was there for court. 

Thursday, March 8, 2012


Our file was submitted to the Embassy today!  It will probably take about a month, or so, for us to clear, but of course we're praying that it's sooner.  Regardless, I will very likely make sure I'm with Lottie on her birthday.  Please pray that the Lord would give us wisdom as we try to plan.

Yesterday we received some updated photos from our agency.  Enjoy!!