Nov 23, 2008

To follow our trip while we are Vietnam please use this link and save it to your favorites.

Thanks for following us to Vietnam!!!

Leaving as 2 coming back as 3

Here we go. Off to become mommy and daddy. What an adventure it has been. We are so excited we can hardly stand it. We only got about 2 hours of sleep last night and have a long two days ahead of us. Please keep us in your prayers!
We love you guys and cannot wait to be home with Ema!!

Nov 22, 2008

Packed and ready to go!

Well today is our last day in the US. I woke up this morning with a nervous stomach and couldn't go back to sleep so I decided to get up and blog. I still have lots of things to do...teach my parents how to use the web cam, go to Wal-Mart to get the most important item.....SNACKS, go visit my grandmother, finish cleaning up my house,etc,etc,etc. I cannot imagine what the next two days have in store. On top of being extremely jet lagged, Kirk and I are about to become a mommy and daddy to Ema. Can you believe it? I am surprisingly calm about it. Don't get me wrong, I am excited but I am not busting at the seams yet. I guess that will come Monday night at 10:30 PM when we finally land in Hanoi, Vietnam.

Nov 20, 2008

Time fly's when you are having fun

I have never been one that likes change. Kirk and I are very routine people. We get up at the same time every morning, we do the same thing every morning, we carpool to work. After dropping Kirk off, I go to work and begin my routine. Later, I pick Kirk up we then go home change clothes and head for the gym. Kirk lifts weights while I run. Once finished, we come home, eat, clean up the kitchen and then it is time to go to bed and start over the next day. For 5 years, this has been our routine in a nut shell. Today, all of this changed. I handed over my calendar that I have kept up all of my patient information on to a fellow nurse (Shawns) that will be taking my place. She has been riding with me for the past few months and has been getting to know all of my patients. Today she took me to lunch to bid me farewell. While I am very thankful that I am getting a break from my job and will be soon meeting Ema, but for me it was a sad day. (Yes I cried)
So what is next? Kirk and I will be finishing up all the important things for our trip tomorrow: hair cuts, manicures, last runs.....oh and PACKING! Kirk and I have been dreading packing. We have the suitcases down but that is it. Tomorrow night should be fun. Our family is celebrating Thanksgiving and we will be watching our last Memphis game for a while.

Nov 18, 2008

The Visa's have arrived

Finally our Visa's arrived! We can now legally travel to Vietnam to pick up Ema. It is getting closer and closer everyday! It almost seems like a dream. I cannot believe that in a few days I will be meeting the child that I have long awaited to meet! I cannot wait to see Kirk with her and watch how she quickly becomes a Daddy's girl.

Nov 14, 2008

Packing for Ema

Nov 12, 2008

Labor Pains and Excitement

We are finally wrapping up the last minute things in order for us to be able to hop on a plane and head for Vietnam! We have Ema packed, but after tallking with some friends about their trip to Vietnam to pick up their beautiful baby girl Maria,we are sure that we packed way to many clothes and will need to take a few things out. We put up the Christmas tree and all of the other Christmas decorations this weekend. We thought it was better to do it now than to have to do it once we are home. Kirk and I got our shots done yesterday. (that is the labor pains) I know, I know, yes I am a nurse and yes I HATE shots. We got a tetnus shot (ouch), a thyphoid fever shot(ouch) and a Hepatitis A shot(ouch)!! Our arms are killing us today. Oh well, little Ema is worth all the pain. We bought Ema Magna Doodle yesterday to help occupy her on the plane and Aunt Amy gave Ema a bunch of movies for her to watch. Ema is ready and as for Kirk and I, all we have left to do is to run 1 more half marathon on Sunday (Kirk and I will be road warriors)and pack ourselves. I cannot believe that the time is here for us to finally meet Ema! I cannot imagine what that day is going to be like.

Nov 6, 2008

A look back ...

As I look back it is hard to believe that we have been working on our adoption since May 2006. I would like to take a brief look back at this amazing journey that led us to where we are today. I remember the struggle I went through when deciding to adopt. I thought of it as me giving up a little of my independence due to the fact that we were adopting because I had been diagnosed with Multiple Sclerosis. It took many tears and much prayer before I allowed the Lord to reveal to me that this was HIS plan. MS was His plan, adopting was His plan and HE is in control. I struggled with this for a while but I found that trying to understand where my life was going was too complicated and that it would just be better if I sat back and enjoyed the ride. After I allowed the Lord to take control, this is where Ema came into the picture. I want you to realize that Kirk and I fell in love with this child way back in May of 2006, before we ever had her picture, before we had been blessed to see her face....from the very beginning. I remember when we chose her name. Kirk and I had been to Memphis and we had been talking about what we would name our first child. I had always wanted to use Emily because that is my grandmother's name and she and my grandad adopted my mom. They are the "cornerstone" of my family and I have always been very close to them. Kirk's full name is Lee Kirkland and we decided to use Li after him. This is how we came up with Ema Li Richardson. Being the excited parents that we are we began getting her nursery ready right away. Her room has been our safehaven through it all. Many times Kirk and I would go in her room only to imagine a baby being in the bed. Many times especially in the trying times before the September 1 deadline, I would go in her room and get on my knees and pray for her, for guidance, and for Kirk and me to have patience. Well, here we are two years and 5 months later, and we got the best news of our lives today. Today we were told that we are to be in Vietnam on November 25th. That's right, we will be celebrating Thanksgiving in Vietnam with the newest member of our family... Ema Li Richardson

Oct 28, 2008

Our trip to Nashville

This weekend we made our final trip to Nashville to have ANOTHER document (I-171H to be exact) state certified. We were told that other couples were having to have theirs certified and that it wasn't clear if we needed to or not, so being the overly prepared, overly anxious, don't want anything to stand in our way of meeting Ema Li soon, kind of couple, we went to Nashville one last time. Kirk and I love Nashville and always jump at the idea of staying the weekend there. We went shopping on Sunday to get Ema some winter clothes. The poor child has got a closet full of summer clothes but no winter clothes. While it may feel like summer all year long in Vietnam, it is already freezing here in Tennessee. Kirk is so excited about Ema and our upcoming trip. He is so excited that all day we shopped and shopped and shopped and he never batted an eye while swiping that debit card. He was so cute, such a proud daddy! He would hold up a little dress and say "this is cute I think Ema needs this." It didn't work for me while in Ann Taylor when I would say.. isn't this cute, I think Emily needs this. I can already tell that she is going to be a daddy's girl. Kate,if you are reading this go ahead and start on a boy for us so I will have someone :)
I posted some pictures of Ema's clothes. (that is Kirk in the background, passed out from shock)

Oct 22, 2008

Nervous Jitters!

Well if you are reading my "family blog" you will know that I think I got food poisoning from a restaurant that I ate at on Friday night. I have been really sick and I am STILL recovering. Well, today I was trying to figure out what is wrong with my stomach because I have always thought that food poisoning reared it's ugly head then left. I began thinking, what could be wrong? Nerves! That could be some of the problem. I am about to be traveling to VIETNAM! Oh my gosh.... VIETNAM. Kirk and I are about to leave our life here for a little while and travel 23 hours on a plane to a place where VERY FEW people speak our language to finally meet Ema. I have known for a long time that this was going to happen eventually but I guess I had gotten into the habit of when someone asked "Have you gotten the baby yet?" saying "No, we are still waiting." Now I am saying actually Yes we should be leaving any day! OH MY GOSH! We will be leaving any day to finally meet Ema! The most scary part is she is 17 months old. We are skipping the part where they eat, sleep, cry, and poop. We are going straight to the active having to be entertained part. Kinda scary! Exciting scary! I am sure that all new mom's get the feeling of, what am I doing, can I do this, can I be a mom? I know that God be with us every step of the way and I know that my mother better be by a computer so that I can communicate with her for advise! Well, our next step is packing our bags, can you believe it, we are FINALLY packing our bags!