“Neenee, I cleaned up all my toys!” announces Dija over the sound of Trey vacuuming.
“Dija you still have more to do. I walked past your door and saw there’s still a mess. Neenee if you put all the chairs up on the table I can finish my job.”
Wow, dictator Trey is in the house!
It’s Saturday morning and we’re getting ready for tomorrow’s celebration. We’re having an “It’s Official” Party and the kids are helping plan it. So cleaning the house is on the list and then picking up cake and filling the water jugs. They want to be a part of all of it. They like parties but this one is special to them. Almost like a birthday but not quite.
There are a few secrets about the party I cannot put into publish until they happen – the kids know what it is but they don’t know that it’s a surprise for some people. We’re having cake with Trey’s choice of words on top – “It’s Official.” We’ll have a video loop playing with pictures of the kids over the past 22 months that they have been living here. Uncle Justin is setting up the big screen with projector for those who will attend via Skype. There will be a special announcement made via Skype from Wichita, Kansas. Uncle Jeff and Auntie Lisa will make a special appearance because it’s the only way to get in on the action! Jeff will be announcing the children’s new official names.
We’ve invited family and close friends and neighbours who know and love the kids and have been by our sides during the process that has brought us here. The kids will feel the love as they understand that everyone is coming to celebrate that it’s official. To them official means they will live with Neenee and Papa forever. We will be the parents who will take care of them forever. They know we are very happy about this decision that the Judge has made concerning them. They watched the decision happen in the court room and thanked the judge with us.
It’s been a busy emotional week. Not only are we explaining adoption and court process but the children also attended a citizenship ceremony. It was finally Papa’s turn to become a Canadian. Explaining to the children where we would be going was interesting. You see Papa wasn’t born in the same country that we were born in. “I was born in Canada, Dija was born in Canada, you were born in Canada, Nana was born…” Trey started listing the entire family excluding Papa. He was getting the picture!
Dija politely interjects, “Only girls have boobies right Neenee?” I’m not sure she was following the discussion. So I continued to explain how Papa had lived here a long time but needed to write a test and go make a pledge to become a Canadian. It was quite the ceremony. The kids took it all in and were happy to get in on the photos at the end of it all. A lady that I know and love was officiating so it made it rather special for us. Elizabeth Par Johnston (google her she’s pretty amazing) did the official pledge and led us all in our commitment to be Canadian Citizens. Then we sang our national anthem. Nobody told me it would be so emotional! Perhaps it was in part due to the overload of emotional “stuff” this week? Then the family made the evening news. Lots of people told us about it but somehow we managed to miss it each time it was on.
Stay tuned for the after party blog… oh after trick or treating too. I’ll share the new official names then.