Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Before and After

Dear Friends, I have so much to say and so much to share that I really don't know where to begin. I haven't even begun to tell you all about our trip to Ethiopia and how LIFE CHANGING that was.... and now there are so many things we're experiencing on the OTHER side of the adoption, the "we're home now" side, that I'm nearly paralyzed not knowing where to start to catch up on my blogging. So bear with me and please be patient with me--- it has been a WHIRLWIND of WONDERFUL for our family but because I am overwhelmed by my thoughts (and yes, my emotions too) I've decided that tonight I'm just going to share some recent family photos and gather up my energy to begin telling you more about our amazing and humbling journey..... tomorrow.

BEFORE. This is the first moment that we met Joshua Nahome. Notice the fear, sadness and uncertainty in his eyes and in the second photo, notice his closed body language. This is a picture of EVERY orphan in the world....a child that is scared and lonely.

AFTER. This is Joshua Nahome 2 weeks after joining our FAMILY. Notice the joy, excitement and love in his eyes and his sweet spirit. These are pictures of a child that was an orphan but now has a family to call his own. We are so blessed to witness and be a part of the miracle and gift of this child's life.

Joshua Nahome FINALLY sat down in the bathtub to play with Joel Daniel and thought it was so funny! Isn't this picture a hoot? I love it!

Joshua Nahome found a ziploc bag of my Valentine ornaments and has carried this ziploc bag around my house for 2 weeks now and he periodically decorates himself and whomever happens to be near him.....usually Joel Daniel!!! Are you smiling yet?? Isn't that smile just contagious?

Everyone loves it when Dad gets on the trampoline.....here's the Newsom Team minus Mom, the photographer, having a great time together!

Another picture of Joshua Nahome all decorated up with his Valentine ornaments. This sweet little boy makes us laugh every day and he is a precious treasure to our family. We are very thankful.

This adoption has been good.
This adoption has been hard.
This adoption has been heartbreaking.
This adoption has been heartwarming.

This adoption has brought us more joy than I can even put into words.

We are Very Very Blessed,

Today I am reminded of the scriptures that God used to bring us into obedience to adopt Joshua Nahome. The Bible says....

John 14: 18 "I will not leave you as orphans: I will come to you."

Matthew 18:4 "Whosoever therefore shall humble himself as this little child, the same is greatest in the kingdom of heaven."

1 John 3:17 "But whoever has material possessions, and seeth his brother have need, but has no compassion on him, how can the love of God dwell in him?"

Thursday, July 23, 2009

speed bumps......

"The Lord is my rock, and my fortress, and my deliverer; my God, my strength, in whom I will trust; my buckler, and the horn of my salvation, and my high tower." Psalms 18:2

"These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world." John 16:33

No matter what the dilemma might be tomorrow......I know it is in God's hands and I'm giving it to him!!

We've faced MANY challenges and speed bumps in the last few days (and even just today!) that have slowed us down but NOT defeated us!! This afternoon, I had to just LAUGH at Satan's attempt to attack our family!! It's really NEARLY funny!! WE ARE STANDiNG FIRM AND OUR HOPE AND FAITH AND TRUST IS IN THE ONE TRUE LIVING GOD!!!

The tribulations.....well--- we've had to buy a new truck for Joel in the past week and now my car is in the shop as of today!! HAHA!! Crazy but true..... no car trouble for YEARS and the week after we return from doing God's Will for our family by adopting from Ethiopia.....BOTH cars have issues! I don't know about you, but I think we are UNDER ATTACK!! Joel's truck was DUN. Blown up and had to be salvaged. Hopefully, my suburban will be repaired without too much time or expense! We are really thankful for the "Emergency Fund" and still see God providing for us in the middle of the trials. GOD IS GOOD, ALL THE TIME!!

Joshua Nahome is doing very well. Better and better each and every day. Communication is slowly but surely getting easier as I understand his Kembatanese language more and he understands my "Texanese" language more--- the middle ground is growing and it is getting easier to communicate!! :) He has been eating a more varied diet today and in the past 10 days, he has already gained 6 pounds! WOW!! He eats well and he also sleeps well and is a very jolly little boy for the most part!! He is still having a few meltdowns every day but they are getting less intense and his recovery from each meltdown is faster now, also. He's a sweetie and we are super thankful that he is a part of our family. The transition is going better than I had expected. Here's a picture of him sleeping while we were in Ethiopia..... he is precious....

We'll keep you posted as I have time!! Please continue to pray for us!!!


Monday, July 20, 2009


We ARE alive and well.....it's been so long since I updated you all that I thought you might wondering!!! HAHA! It's been a very eventful few weeks for us and I'm thankful that we are beginning to "settle" and things around our house are beginning to "settle" also!!! If any of you out there have ever adopted and then also moved to another state around the exact same time frame, it's not easy but my testimony remains the same.....my God moves mountains, and with God, ALL things are possible!! We are sooooo blessed and even though things have been hectic and a little crazy here for Team Newsom--- we are STILL in the game and we're hanging in there and we are crazy happy.

For starters, I'll share a few pictures of Joshua Nahome......

We've been home from Ethiopia for 8 days now and we're transitioning to life with 5 kiddos!! It's been very interesting to watch the dynamics of our family change and it has definitely a matter of prayer as well!! Nahome is doing really great. He is a very sweet, smart, and loving little boy. Of course, he has had many moments of frustration, grief, rebellion and emotional meltdowns but after a time-out (his time-out chair is always in MY LAP in the rocking chair, BTW) he eventually comes around and becomes loving and happy again. If I were in the mental health profession, I would say that he is dealing with all the changes in a very healthy emotional way and for that, even though it is painful for me to witness, I am thankful. I have cried many tears for him while he has cried.....most of my tears were tears of compassion but a few times, they have been the result of exhaustion. Rest and time outs are also good for mommies too!!

The rest of The Team is transitioning well also. Joel Daniel has probably struggled the most but mainly because he and Joshua Nahome are so close in age that there is some serious competition for toys going on!! They are learning to share with one another--- today was a breakthrough day with each of them taking turns much more easily and without such a high decibel level! :) Madilyn, Jackson and Hannah have all handled the addition of an additional sibling with amazing grace. They are super compassionate and understanding and have had many moments of kindness that have made me a proud Momma over the past few weeks. :) Daddy Joel is doing well also and he was BLESSED BIG this week as he was supposed to start his new Army job today but when he went to visit his new boss on Friday, he was instructed to be sure to take the 10 extra days of transition/move allowance leave so that he could make sure we, his family, were taken care of and settled before he begins his new job. AMAZING. We had both assumed that since we just took 3 weeks of adoption leave that he would not be allowed to have the additional leave.....God is so good. Really, "CAN YOU BELIEVE WHAT GOD HAS DONE?" --We are so thankful because the extra few days to get settled will be wonderful and really is another amazing provision by our Lord. We really needed the days and God provided them.

Here is a photo of me, Joshua Nahome, and Tigist- Nahome's birth mother. Many of you know that I prayed for an "open" international adoption to some degree. I really think open adoption is amazing and God did it. Tigist is a beautiful young lady (now age 17) and we were so honored to get to meet her, ask her lots of questions and spend time with her. We were also privileged to meet her entire,very large family! Nahome is one lucky little boy to have a huge loving Ethiopian family and a huge loving American family!!! They were really wonderful to us and after seeing and being there-- God gave me such a peace and understanding about the WHY of Nahome's adoption. I am so thankful for the experience and for the relationships that were developed during such a short but profoundly moving visit. I am already cooking up plans of our family returning to Ethiopia and trying to spend a week or two with Nahome's Ethiopian family in the next year or two. There are so many needs there and we are praying that God will continue to open doors for us to possibly go back there and do medical missions and share the gospel to the children and families in his village. I say "continue" to open doors because he has already opened some amazing doors here! We're praying God will make His plans clear to us. Anyway- that's another story for another day.......here is the photo of Nahome and his mothers!! :)

Please do continue to lift us all up in prayer as we continue to settle in. Here are some scriptures I've been pondering today.....

Deuteronomy 5:33 "You shall walk in all the ways which the Lord your God hath commanded you, that you may live, and that it may be well with you, and that you may prolong your days in the land which you shall possess."

Philippians4:9 "Those things, which you have both learned, and received, and heard, and seen in me, do: and the God of peace shall be with you."

Proverbs 13:7 "There is that maketh himself rich, yet has nothing: there is that maketh himself poor, yet has great riches."

Psalm 73:26 " My flesh and my heart faileth: but God is the strength of my heart, and my portion forever."

Truly Blessed,

Tuesday, July 14, 2009


Hello!!! We are HOME! Praise the Lord. Our trip was amazing and we are so blessed by Joshua Nahome Newsom. He is transitioning well. He's healthy and happy and loving playing with our other kiddos. He's a sweet and smart little boy. We've had a few hard moments where he has had healthy emotional responses (tears and crying) to all the changes he's experienced over the last week, but he is already finding comfort in our arms and recovers quickly from the tears. God is so good.

Our trip was amazing. Ethiopia is a beautiful country with very loving and friendly people. We made some great friends while we were there and feel that God has more planned for us in Ethiopia! We'll be going back for sure!! We were able to travel 8 hours south to Nahome's home village and meet his birth mother and his entire extended family. They are wonderful and we fell in love with them all. It was a very meaningful trip and God gave me such a peace and understanding about our adoption of Nahome. I was able to see first-hand the WHY of his adoption. Her love for Nahome was so evident and we were so blessed by her. Nahome is a lucky little boy to have 2 families, Ethiopian and American, that love him dearly and are brought together through his life!

Our agency, BFAS, blessed us beyond measure. I was so impressed by their extreme efforts to finalize all the documentation necessary for our Embassy appointment. God was with us in Ethiopia and our week was full of "CAN YOU BELIEVE WHAT GOD IS DOING" moments. I'll share each and every one in another post (later) because the experiences were all so unbelievable that I am still processing it all! God is so good.

I haven't downloaded my pictures yet..... there are hundreds and hundreds! I have lots of photos of the other children at the care center and I know all of you BFAS families are waiting so I'll try to do it later today or tomorrow. Your children are all doing great and we spent hours and hours loving on them this past week. Rest assured that they are being well cared for and shown lots of love by the nannies. Well--- that's it for now.....I'll post again soon (with photos) and begin sharing God's goodness and our Ethiopia stories with you! You'll won't believe what God did on behalf of Nahome and our family!!

"Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us, to Him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus to all generations, forever and ever. Amen." Ephesians 3:20-21


Thursday, July 2, 2009


....for there is no other way, to be happy in Jesus is to TRUST and OBEY.

Proverbs 3:5 " Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding, in ALL your ways acknowledge Him and He will make your paths straight."

Our trip was delayed by one week due to delays in obtaining Nahom's official court decree and birth certificate. We leave for Ethiopia at 3pm tomorrow, Friday, July 3. We will celebrate our very first GOTCHA DAY with Joshua Nahom Newsom on Saturday night in Addis Ababa! YEA!!

Can you believe ALL that God has done? I am so humbled by His presence and hand in the very details of our lives. In ALL that He has taught me and shown me. Amazing. We have stepped out in faith and are travelling tomorrow. There are still some pieces of the paperwork puzzle that must come together before we can bring Nahom home with us--- but we are TRUSTING in our Lord with all our hearts. It is so very exciting to already KNOW that HE has worked out all the details to serve HIS purposes and HIS will--- all we have to do is TRUST AND OBEY. Please do join us in praying that God continues to bless on our adoption of Nahom and that HE works out the tiniest of tiny details that need to happen. HE KNOWS THEM ALL and we know that HE can MOVE MOUNTAINS! We are not leaning on our own understanding
--- we are trusing and acknowledging HIM. Thank you Lord, in advance-- for all that you have and are going to do to bring home Nahom.

I do want to share our latest "CAN YOU BELIEVE WHAT GOD HAS DONE FOR US" story......
my sweet husband takes care of the finances in our family. Months ago, we calculated the costs of Joshua Nahom's "ransom" and we were going to be emptying out God's savings account for our family in obedience to this calling to adopt and still be short several thousand dollars. It's God's money and it took a big step of faith, some lessons in trust and obedience but we have gladly given it back to GOD. We applied for some grants but received letters back that we were not the chosen recipients. Well-- when it was time to buy tickets last week.....Joel checked our bank account and you are right, GOD did it!! The EXACT amount we needed, PLUS a few hundred dollars was there--- the several thousand dollars we were short was deposited in our account! CAN YOU BELIEVE WHAT GOD HAS DONE?? Amazing. The deposited money was legitimate.... it was from our employer and it was an allowance for our Army move in July. We had totally forgotten that we would be receiving this allotment and we got it right before we needed it. God knows. We were so blessed.

God is good. All the time. Please do pray for us as we travel and face many unknowns!! We are super excited!