August 21, 2016

Court Day

August 4th was a very special day in our family’s life.  While Estela was placed with us on September 29th and she has known us as mama and papa ever since, we were not a legally recognized family until our court date.  This last year has often had us feeling very vulnerable throughout the adoption process, so it was a great relief to know that we would be a forever family.  Kevin was working in Minnesota on our court date, so it was just Estela and I and our lawyer.  We were able to finalize with another adoptive family who has been a special gift to us on this journey.

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The courthouse is the white building on the left.

Adoption Day Iphone (13)

Talking with Papa before court.

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This day was filled with waiting, waiting and more waiting. 

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We enjoyed reading the book, “I love my dad because…”

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We are family!

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Kisses and a mural!

During the hearing, I was asked to share my “palabras” or words on how the transition has been to having Estela as a part of our family.  I read the following words, which Kevin and I prepared in advance.  I teared up and had to take breaks as I read these important words.  Estela did not seem too concerned as she played with her play dough.


Your honor,

First and foremost my husband and I want to thank for the the great opportunity and responsibility that you have granted to us in the caring for and nurturing of Estela Maryuri Lane Zonnefeld.  Our lives were forever changed for the better on September 29, 2015 when we received a call from Mi Familia that our little girl was waiting for us.  At the center in Managua, Estela soon feel asleep peacefully in my arms and would soon come to call us “mamita” y “papito.”  She has fit so perfectly into our family as if she was always here with her father and I.  We are so thrilled that we will get to spend each and every day of our lives together as a family.  We cannot imagine our lives without this precious little girl.  We are saddened by the difficulties that she faced before joining our family and are committed to giving her the tools to heal and become whole.

We have now lived in the beautiful country of Nicaragua for almost five years and are excited to pass on the culture, history and traditions of the country of lakes and volcanoes to our daughter.  We also look forward to continuing the relationships we have developed while living in Nicaragua as we will be visiting Estela's home country and living here again in the future.  Estela is first and foremost a resilient and strong, young, Nicaraguan, a caring and loving child, who though has faced much diversity shows us so much hope for the future.  We thank you for entrusting us with this little miracle, our daughter, Estela, Maryuri Lane Zonnefeld.


Su honor,

Sobre todo, mi esposo y yo queremos agradecer usted por la gran oportunidad y responsabilidad que ha otorgado a nosotros en el cuidado y crianza de Estela Maryuri Wren Zonnefeld. Nuestras vidas cambiaron para siempre y para el mejor el 29 de septiembre de 2015 cuando recibimos una llamada de Mi Familia donde ellas nos dijeron que tenían una hija para nosotros. Pronto, en el centro de Managua, Estela se durmió tranquilamente en mis brazos y días después comenzó de llamarnos mamita y papito. Ella se encaja tan perfectamente en nuestra familia como si ella siempre estuvo aquí con su padre y yo. Estamos muy emocionados de que podemos pasar a cada día juntos como una familia. No podemos imaginar nuestras vidas sin esta preciosa niña. Estamos entristecidos por las dificultades que ella tenía que enfrentar antes de unirse a nuestra familia y nos comprometemos a darle las herramientas para sanar y convertirse en integral.

Ahora hemos vivido en el bello país de Nicaragua por cinco años y estamos muy contentos de compartir la cultura, historia y tradiciones del país de lagos y volcanes a nuestra hija. También esperamos seguir con las amistades que hemos desarrollado al mismo tiempo viviendo en Nicaragua, visitaremos el país con Estela y esperamos que podamos vivir aquí otra vez en el futuro. Ante todo, Estela es una niña resiliente y fuerte, joven, nicaragüense, un niña cariñosa y amorosa, que aunque ha enfrentado mucha dificultad, nos muestra tanta esperanza para el futuro. Gracias por confiar en nosotros esta pequeña milagro, nuestra hija, Estela, Maryuri Wren Zonnefeld.


Lorena said...

Such a special day we will remember forever!
I'm so glad you were determined to find that delicious restaurant and ice cream after circling Jinotepe 10 times! It made the day so fun!
Love you guys!!

Dena said...

Thanks for sharing your blogs, Cassie, and it's rare that I read one without tearing up. I absolutely love your photos, and the creativity. The photo of you and Estela with the mural is vibrant like your personality! May this new transition be smooth and filled with joy.

Cassie and Kevin Zonnefeld said...

Lorena! Yes, it was so great to celebrate with you even with my directional challenges! We have loved going through this process with you and your sweet family.

Dena, thank-you for your sweet words! I hope that our paths cross sometime soon, maybe on a roadtrip?