The Garrisons

Follow our journey on adoption #3 for child #8!

Saturday, February 26, 2011


Well, since I've blogged, we've traveled approximately 16,000 miles half-way around the world to bring our kiddos home. As you can imagine, time has slipped away, and I haven't been the good blogger I intended to be! We are HOME now, which is a wonderful thing to say. We always love our time in Ethiopia, but nothing is sweeter than home.

The kids traveled like champs and are doing so well at home. Things are going much more smoothly than I had prepared myself for....we've truly been blessed by sweet kids. They are affectionate and loving, and try their best to go with the flow and do what is expected. We are loving getting to know them better. There are, of course, hard things, but all of it is to be expected. The language barrier is our biggest challenge, and it's just hard to parent children when they don't understand what you are explaining....or they can't tell you why they are upset. These are obviously things we knew going into this, and will get better with time. Sleep is another issue we know will resolve itself over time.

I will post more about our transition in time (I think - if I ever have any time!), but for now, enjoy the pics of our sweet kids!
Aleigha and all dressed up to go to Hayden's b-ball sweet!

Elijah cheesing it up with Solomon....if Solomon looks a little nervous, it's for good reason....

Hold still...this will only hurt for a minute!

Grace, enjoying a beautiful day at a park in Addis Ababa.

Sweet Solomon.

Aleigha...pretty girl.

We are so blessed to call these children our own.
To God be the glory!

Friday, February 11, 2011

Never The Same

It's's here!! The time has come for us to bring our children HOME. I can hardly believe it as I type these words! You know how sometimes you plan for something for so long that it doesn't feel real? At times, that's exactly how this felt. But, as I pack their little backpacks, and their clothes in the suitcase - it hits me. Things will never be the same.

We are no longer the Garrison 6. We are now the Garrison 9! Three children are no longer orphans, but that have a mommy, a daddy, and four new siblings waiting for them. They have a home. A family. Our at-home children are watching God redeem three precious lives before their,things will never be the same....and that is good.

Yes, we'll have more laundry, more mess, and more noise. But, we'll also have more hugs, more love, and more blessings. As I write this post and ponder that this day really is here, my heart fills with gratitude. Gratitude that God would see fit to use our family as a part of his redemptive act. I don't understand his grace, but it is good.

"From the fullness of his grace we have all received one blessing after another."
John 1:16

Tuesday, February 8, 2011


We were cleared by the embassy for travel yesterday!!! We were shocked, since we were only submitted last Wednesday. Shocked, but of course, thrilled! They gave us our choice of days next week to appear at the embassy (in Ethiopia) and so....we'll be on our way SOON!

Our plan is for Nathan, Haley and I to fly out of Indy on Saturday afternoon, spend the night in DC, and then take a direct flight from DC to Addis on Sunday (arriving on Monday morning). So, in less than ONE WEEK, I will have have these babies in my arms!! We should be home next Saturday (the 19th). (That feels so good to say!!) All of my children under ONE roof!

We would appreciate your prayers for safe travel, health (no altitude sickness - yuck!), and most importantly for our kids' hearts as their world is about to change...pray that they won't be afraid, and that their little hearts will be able to endure the transition.

So, it's an exciting time around the Garrison household! We are grateful to be at this point, and so close to bringing our children HOME!

Praise the Lord! Praise God in his sanctuary; praise him in his mighty heavens! Praise him for his mighty deeds; praise him according to his excellent greatness!
Psalm 150:1,2

Thursday, February 3, 2011

Emotionally Schizophrenic

OK, so that's probably not really an actual term....and hopefully it's not insensitive, but that describes a bit of how I feel lately. I am all over the place with my emotions, and honestly, without even 'cleaning it up' for blogland, I can say that overall I have a sense of peace about the upcoming changes to our family. It's just's big.

I am at peace...and yet I am anxious.

I am confident...and yet I am afraid.

I am excited...and yet I flinch at the changes to come.

I'm attempting to surrender my life...and yet I am selfish.

I am not in control...and yet I try to be.
(Believe me, I've tried this one...not only is it impossible, it's painful to try)

I want you all to understand - this fluctuation of emotions has nothing to do with my desire to be these children's mommy. It's just real. Most of the time, we just focus on the 'I'm so excited to bring my kids home' emotions. But there are also the 'what are we doing to our life' emotions to contend with. The truth is, we are changing everything about our lives. There are many things I am excited many firsts, so many new experiences with our kids, watching them learn and grow, and even comforting their little hearts. However, the unknown is scary and surrender sometimes means letting go of all that is comfortable. Selfishness creeps in and I think of the ways my life will change.

So, I'm busy sorting out my emotions, packing my bags, and praying for embassy clearance. Because I do want my kids to come home. I miss them and want them here - even if it's hard. The emotions, I know are normal. And probably even good. And I know that God will see us through the hard days and bring blessing we can't imagine through it all.

Not to us, O LORD, not to us but to your name be the glory, because of your love and faithfulness.
Psalm 115:1

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

All Good News

We got an update on our kids this week! They are all doing well, and we are so fortunate that they've been healthy. They are reportedly looking forward to our arrival to bring them home! We, too, are looking forward to that day! Here are a few little tidbits about them from our updates:

Grace: Fast learner with a good attention span, caring, happy, and sometimes quiet.

Aleigha: Confident, happy, relaxed, and 'so loving in her personality'.

Solomon: Cheerful, big smiles, happy, imitates others, and good physical development.

In other good news, our paperwork was submitted to the US Embassy this week!!! This is huge, because it's the last hurdle before we can bring our kids home. We are waiting on their approval of the case, and we will travel right away! We hope to hear of our approval by next Friday! We'll keep you posted!!