His adoption was scheduled for 2pm, which meant we had plenty of time to get ready to go. When we got to the courtroom, we waited for just a few minutes, then were told it was time to go in!
The judge came in, we rose when asked, then sat down. After preliminary introductions, I was asked to take the stand, and for the second time in my life, went to the stand and was sworn in.
It was a little nerve-wracking to be up there, answering questions and hoping that I said everything right, but I made it through.
When the judge asked me if there was anything else I thought the court should know, I looked down over the table, and saw Andy sitting there with his adoption dog, and the only thing I could get out was how thankful I was that he was of our family.
Dave was called to the stand next, and I felt my eyes filling with happy tears and he testified about how proud he was to call Andy his son. It was a reminder that he is the perfect dad, chosen by God, for our children, and it was a precious moment for me as I thought about God's provision of Dave in the lives of our children.
The judge and our lawyer went through most of the details after that, then the judge asked Andy if he'd like to say something. He was very nervous, but I went up with him, and he answered the judge's questions about whether he felt loved in our family with a "yes." He told the judge about his first Christmas with our family, and told her that he wanted to be adopted.
After Andy was done, the judge asked Isaac if he'd like to say something, and Isaac all but ran up to the witness stand. Never short of something to say, he proceeded to tell the courtroom about how he wanted Andy as his brother, and also that he would like to show everyone the new sound chip in his build-a-bear, but couldn't because he had been told not to unless asked.
Then, both Dave's and my dads spoke on our behalf, affirming their support of our family, and it was time to pound the gavel and make it official!
The judge let Andy pound the gavel, which was quite a thrill. He pounded the gavel so many times that I'm quite sure he must have issued several extra decrees by mistake, but the judge was so friendly and nice through it all. She even let Isaac pound it too! (Now they both want their own gavels, and are often heard through the house saying, "I pounded the decree, so now, fill-in-the-blank-with-whatever-they're-arguing-about is official!)
We then went to a place that I will no longer call by name in happy posts to celebrate the new adoption. That may be another post for another day, but despite ridiculously awful treatment and abismal levels of customer service by the owners of the establishment (one of the least of the problems was that I was snapped at for not bringing my own silverware, cups, plates, and napkins. To their restaurant....), we managed to have a lovely time celebrating a wonderful occasion.
Due to the chaos caused by the mean people at the unmentionable place, I forgot to tell Dave that I wanted a photo of us with the cake, so this is a picture with most of the cake and us.
In case you can't see it in the photo (which you probably can't), Andy is holding the piece with the his adoption date, 12.28.11.
|A fun picture with a fun Uncle and Aunt-to-be!|
|Our little family|
We ended the day with just the four of us. Andy chose to go to dinner at Fuddruckers, and afterwards we went to the Holly Jolly Light display, which the boys loved.
It was a wonderful, celebration-filled day, and it was so wonderful to be surrounded by dear friends and family. We are blessed beyond measure, and give thanks to God every day for bringing Andy home to us!