In Jinotepe, Nicaragua
As we travel about with our kids and meet people who haven't seen us since we adopted our 4, there are some questions that tend to pop up. I thought I would answer them here in case anyone else wants to know but hasn't asked. I answer all honest questions as honestly as I can (meaning I won't tell details of my kids' lives they do not yet know or are not ready to tell themselves). So ask away! But here are the top five questions with answers. :)
1. Are they siblings? Yes. They are now of course (*wink*) but have always been siblings.
2. Couldn't their parents take care of them? Let me answer this way. In the country of Nicaragua, before a child can be free to be adopted the following must be done: All known relatives must be interviewed by social services to see if they can care for the children. This is done no matter how long the children have lived in an orphanage. Any known relatives who declare they cannot take care of the children must write a letter stating this. Then, this investigation must be brought before a judge to ensure the law has been followed and if so, he declares the children "abandoned." Then, the case goes before a group called a consejo and they also make sure the law has been followed by social services and the judge and they must approve that the children are legally "abandoned." Then once the adoption is finalized, the U.S. Gov't must be satisfied that these children meet the definition of "orphaned" before they are given a VISA to enter the United States. Was this procedure followed in the case of our children? Yes.
3. Do they speak English? They are learning. It is probably a bit slower for them then it might be if we adopted one child. But because they can speak to each other in Spanish and because the English speaking Twombly's have learned a good deal of Spanish, they are slowly but surely learning English. They understand a lot more than they speak. They are a little shy with their English with people outside our family.
4. How do I keep up with laundry? Before we left for Nicaragua our washing machine broke. Friends in our church heard of this and blessed us with a washing machine. It has a much bigger capacity than the one we had!! I keep that thing humming for a good part of the day! The kids help me fold often! When I have a day away from the house, boy does it show with the laundry. I try not to let it get more than a few loads ahead of me. :)
5. Is our house big enough for the addition of 4 children? Yes. Is it a big house? No. By American standards our house is tight. But at the same time, there really is plenty of room. We have all our girls in one bedroom and our boys in another. Our kids' rooms are pretty big.