Friday, December 11, 2009

Our Christmas Newsletter

The Year That Was...

Wow! What a year! In March we travelled to Ethiopia to bring home twin 3-year-old girls, Esther Ruth and Chloe Grace. Since then life has been more fun than should be allowed.
While we were in Ethiopia, we were able to travel 12 hours outside the capital to visit the village where our girls were born. We met their birthfather (their birthmother died giving birth to them) and some of their extended family—an experience that we wouldn’t trade for anything.

Some highlights of the year include going to a parade and riding the Sky Lift to Natural Bridge on July 4th, visiting great-grandparents and extended family in Illinois and New York, a Curious George 4th birthday celebration for the girls (their birthday is September 4th), a trip to the Louisville Zoo after finalizing the adoption in our local court, going to the Blue-White scrimmage in Rupp Arena, a spontaneous Sunday afternoon drive to Cumberland Gap National Park on an unusually warm November day, Thanksgiving in Indiana with the entire Neild fam, Essie’s first snowball during an early-December snow, and the girls’ first Christmas season complete with lights and goodies and new stories about reindeer, snowmen, and mean old Mr. Grinch.

It only took the girls about 3 months to pick up conversational English, which is pretty good considering they did not speak any English when we met them. The trip home from Ethiopia was long and exhausting, but the girls loved the ride in the airplane. It has been fun to see the joy of discovery as they continue to be amazed by the new world in which they live.

Matt is working as the Office Manager for the Jessamine County Public Library and serves as music director at our church. Amy continues to love her job as an adoption caseworker. It has been great that she can work out of our home most of the time, so she can be there with the girls. The twins did not qualify developmentally or financially for our local preschool, so they are home all day.

We want to thank all of our family and friends for the prayers and encouragement that they have offered over the past year. The adoption process was long and, at times, frustrating, but we would not trade our girls for anything. Merry Christmas!

Essie & Chloe's Corner

Essie and Chloe have adapted so well to their new home and culture. We have absolutely no room to complain. They are very into the Disney princesses (Cinderella is their favorite). Essie loves spaghetti, Chloe is a big fan of pizza, and they both love just about any kind of fruit. Corn-on-the-cob is also a big favorite with the girls, because they remember eating it in Ethiopia.

The girls also love music. When they first got home, we had just bought Bart Millard’s CD “Hymned Again”, and that is their favorite. Chloe loves “I Saw the Light”, and Essie loves “I Stand Amazed”. They both really like the songs “Power in the Blood” and “By and By” by Selah. And yes, they are already huge Kentucky Wildcat fans. They recognize Coach Cal and Coach Brooks by name on TV.


Anonymous said...

thanks for the kinnell recap of the year 2009- read the post above and i'm crying again...

RACHEL said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
RACHEL said...

I hope our sweet one from Uganda will adapt as well as your girls seem to have adapted. I love seeing the "after" side of adoption... your family is beautiful!

Jennifer said...

What an amazing year! Have a wonderful Christmas with your beautiful girls!

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