Hello, stranger. Thank you for raising my son.

In addition to keeping friends and family up to date on our adoption process, this blog is also serving as a sort of digital scrapbook for us to look back on and remember our journey.  FYI: this particular post falls more in the category of the latter.

When we found out that Baby W was living with a foster family who has been caring for him since birth, we knew that it was likely that they have a uniquely significant relationship with him as a foster child.  We read in our travel and culture books that gift-giving is a very important part of Polish culture, and we knew we wanted to give them something (or a few somethings) to honor them and show our deep gratitude.

But of course, that begs the question … what gift can you possibly give that says “thank you for lovingly raising my son from birth”?

Nothing.  There is none.  Trust me, I’ve been thinking about it for a long time.

We eventually decided to give up trying to think of a gift we could give them that equaled the one they were giving us, and just think of things that come from our hearts, represent who we are, and maybe give them a glimpse of the life we will be giving Baby W.

We came up with these things:

  • A handmade scarf crocheted by me for the Foster Mama
  • A beautiful, cozy blanket from the Amana Woolen Mill (local, handcrafted piece of Iowa)
  • Pumpkin Spice Coffee (because there is no flavored coffee in Poland, and pumpkin is the food of my people)
  • A scrapbook of pictures of our family and our home

Because we have been a little unsure of how things are going to go down in Poland, we weren’t sure if we would have the opportunity to meet the foster family in person or give them the gifts in person.  Yesterday, though, we found out that we will have that chance – in a big way!

First of all, we found out that by the time we get to Poland, Baby W will be in the hospital for a pre-scheduled, in-patient physical therapy intensive, where he will be until Christmas Eve.  His foster mother, fabulous woman that she is, goes and stays with him the hospital for the duration of these visits.  This means that although we will technically gain temporary guardianship of him on the 19th, we won’t actually be getting him on that day, as he will be in the hospital (sounds like somewhere out of town).  We are hoping we’ll be able to visit him in the hospital and learn from his doctors/therapists!

Anyway, this means that the earliest we could get him is on Christmas Eve.  Even though I have been excited about spending our first Christmas together as a family of three, we realized that taking him from the only family he has known on Christmas Eve would probably put is in the category of Worst People Ever.  Thankfully, the foster family alleviated this potential conundrum and offered for us to spend Christmas with them in their home!  This will give us a chance to experience a true Polish Christmas, get to know the foster family, ease the transition of leaving with Baby W, and give us a Christmas experience of a lifetime!  It also means that we can give our gifts in person – on Christmas!

Thankfully, we already bought the blanket and coffee awhile back.  For the last several months, I have been making the scarf and putting together the scrapbook.  Yesterday, I finally finished them both!  I took pictures of all of the scrapbook pages, because I wanted to remember them and keep them all.  I thought I would share them here for the purposes of our own digital adoption scrapbook, and for anyone else who is interested in seeing!

 

Photo Dec 10, 11 59 11 AM

Photo Dec 10, 11 58 56 AM

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Photo Oct 15, 10 57 00 AM

Photo Oct 16, 10 24 44 AM

Photo Oct 15, 1 14 23 PM

Photo Oct 15, 11 50 56 AM

Photo Dec 09, 11 11 50 AM

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Photo Oct 28, 11 56 28 AM

Photo Oct 28, 2 14 09 PM

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Photo Oct 28, 8 02 27 PM

Photo Dec 10, 12 00 08 PM

Photo Dec 10, 12 00 46 PM

Photo Dec 10, 12 00 51 PM

Photo Dec 10, 12 01 07 PM

Photo Dec 10, 12 01 12 PM

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