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We are the Ducommuns! There are 4 of us now-Craig, Laura, Zamara, and now Mahashavah, our 1 year old son. We adopted Zamara from Ethiopia in 2008. Our son is also from Ethiopia and we are hoping to bring him home soon. We live Flagstaff Arizona. We are so glad you found us. Take a look around and don't forget to leave us a message.

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Thursday, December 16, 2010

At the hair salon!

Today was braid day! I picked Zamara up early from school and we went over to Angie's Hair Salon to get her hair braided. A friend had won a gift certificate at a charity event and passed it along to us. Zamara wanted to have extensions to make her hair longer so she could flip it around her head.

She had a lot of fun. Karen gave her candy, washed her hair, and made her feel very pampered. It took about 2 and 1/2 hours. (whew!) Zi did so great. She sat there the whole time watching videos on the ipod. I think it looks so cute. I didn't get any "after" pictures, but will take some tomorrow morning.

It was all great fun. I love that Zamara is girly and likes this kind of stuff.

Christmas School Program

Last night was ZiZi's school program. It was so cute!! She did such a good job (very little nose picking-which was an improvement from last year). We have video too but I haven't checked it out yet to see if any of it was usable. It was kinda dark in the auditorium and the pictures didn't turn out so great. Well, enjoy!

Also, today is hair braiding day at the salon! So excited to see what Zamara will look like. I am a little misty eyed thinking about this being her first time to the salon for braids. I will post pictures and video soon.

Merry Christmas,

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Thankgiving Pics

We had a great Thanksgiving here in Flagstaff. Craig's parents came to visit. We had a lot of fun and did a ton of cool stuff. We went shopping on Black Friday, ate a lot food, made a gingerbread house, watched movies, played 3-year old board games, and drove to Williams (exciting, I know!).

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Zamara's 99 Cents Store Adventure!

As some of you may have heard over the last few months, we have been struggling with potty training. She had been doing good all summer and then fall hit and she started to throw fits whenever we even mentioned the potty to her. We have tried all sorts of methods: stickers, candy, princess underpants, etc...NOTHING DID THE TRICK. It did not bother her in the least when we threw away her precious "Arial undies". And that is saying a lot since she is in love with princesses. She just doesn't care if she has an accident in her panties. It seemed to be worse while she was at school since the teacher had 6 kids to look after and didn't have time to look for the "signs" that ZiZi was about to go potty in her pants. So it seemed for more than 2 weeks Zi would come home in not only a diaper but new clothes as well since hers got soiled.

The problem is not that Zamara doesn't know how to use the potty or doesn't know when she has to go, it has to do with control. I am convinced of that. She is very stubborn and willful. She had just decided that she wasn't going to go potty on the toilet anymore.

This last week though, we had a bit of a breakthrough. It wasn't anything we did, mind you. She just decided that she wanted to use the potty again. She even said things like, "Mommy, I need to go potty." It was amazing! So after 1 week with NO ACCIDENTS we decided to reward her.

On Saturday while Craig was at work, Zizi and I emptied her piggy bank and collected $1.15. I had her put the money in her purse along with a few other needed items (i.e. Buzz Lightyear action figure, a fake care key, a mirror, and a sippy cup) and we headed off to the Dollar Tree. I told her she could use her money to buy anything in the store she wanted. She was so excited. I even brought her little toy shopping cart so she could wheel it around the store and collect her items.

She was so excited and obviously felt very grown-up as we headed to the store. She was clutching her purse and kept checking to make sure her money was there. As we walked in the store, she put her purse in the front of the cart ("just like mommy does at the grocery store"). Our plan was to find several items that she MAY want, put them in the cart, and then make a decision at the end of the expedition.

The toy section is in the back of the store, so as we were heading that way Zamara saw a display of porcelain statues. They were horribly designed and painting was poorly done. Of course, you would expect nothing less from the $1 store! She was riveted, however! She picked out several statues and put them in her cart. One of the statues looked vaguely like Snow White.

So we finally got over to the toy section and we found several fun ideas: princess watch, coloring book, horse-head stick thing you can gallop around on, sparkling tiara, etc...

(side note: as we were looking at toys a boy of about 10 walked by us. Zamara yelled "oww!" and I looked over at her. She told me the boy had pinched her. She usually tells the truth, so I am not sure what happened or why the boy would pinch her.)

Once we had all the items collected, I spread them out on the floor and let her decide which one she wanted to buy. She loves watches, so I was thinking she would choose the princess watch. However, she waled right over the Snow White figurine and said, "I want this one". I tried to dissuade her for a few minutes by talking up the virtues of the watch, horse-head, and other items, but her mind was set! It wasn't that I didn't want her to have the figurine, I was just worried that she would try to play with it and it would break, and then she would have a meltdown.

We quickly put away the other items and headed to the check out counter. She put her statue on the conveyor belt and started to collect her money from the bottom of her purse. When it was our turn, she handed the checker her money, he handed her the change along with a receipt, and we headed out the door. She had the figurine in one hand and the change/receipt in the other. As we got in the car, I asked her if she wanted to put the change/receipt in her purse. She did not. She wanted to hold it. As we drove home, she looked lovingly at the Snow White statue and continued to say, "She is SOOOO beautiful". It was enough to almost break your heart (of course, she also said a strip mall was "sooooo beautiful" so I am not 100% clear on what her criteria is for "beautiful").

Anyway, Snow White now sits on the shelf in her room. 5 days later, she is still very happy with her first "real purchase". And I am happy to say, that Snow White is still in one piece.

Have a great day!

Thursday, October 28, 2010

We are officially DTE!!!!!

Hello friends and family! As of today, we have completed our paperwork (called our Dossier) for adoption #2!!! ...and it only took 10 months. (whew!) Yesterday we received our last piece of paperwork in the mail. Today I went down to Kinkos to make 4 copies of all of it.

So, before everyone gets too excited, let me explain what comes next in the process:

It should arrive in Virginia at the main AWAA office on Monday. If everything looks good then it will be sent to the Ethiopian Embassy in DC to be Authenticated and then it's off to Ethiopia. When that happens we receive our DTE (Dossier to Ethiopia) number. This number tells you where you are at in line to get a referral. With our last adoption we were family #21 which meant that we could track approx. when our referral would come by knowing who had already received their referral. When we got up to #19, we knew we were close. The Ethiopia program has grown substantially so it will be interesting to see what number we are at after 3 years.

Our agency cannot give us an exact time frame since there are tons of variables in the process. Anyone who has been to a foreign country can understand how easily things change. They have given us a estimated time for referral from DTE to be 4-8 months for a healthy child ages 0-12 months. We are requesting a child 0-12 months, either gender, and we are open to special needs. This may or may not speed up the process for us.

So in a nutshell, we are moving forward, but we still have a while to wait. It is good to be over the hurdle of completing the dossier, though. Please keep us in your thoughts and prayers as we prepare to wait. This is by far the hardest part of the process and prayers for patience would be appreciated!

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

End of June Pictures

June has been a very crazy month. We have done tons of stuff. Here are a few things:

1) went to Middle School Camp

2) moved ZiZi to a big girl bed! (she could crawl out of her crib!)

3) Craig's family came to visit: Uncle Mike, Aunt Angie, cousins Logan and Eric.

4) got sick 3 times: the flu, a cold, the flu again

5) ZiZi got sent to the "principals office" at school for kicking her classmates during nap time.

6) went to Phoenix for the 4th of July.

Here are some pictures of the events of the last month

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Oregon Trip

In May we visited my family in Oregon. We had such a fun trip!!! It was very laid back. We did a few fun things though. Abbey's Pizza! A trip to the Oregon Coast! A combined birthday party for Travis and Craig. Visits from Brad, Sarah, and Patti, and Andrea. Here are some pictures of the trip:

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Cute quotes from Zamara

at the dinner table: "Dear Jesus-God, thank you for mommy. Thank you for Daddy. Thank you for food. Amen!"

while hiking on a windy day: "The trees are singing. They say 'I love you'".

in front of our senior pastor: "Mommy has boobies"

this morning while blowing her nose: "eating boogers is no-no. Yukkie!"

talking about her friends at school: "I pinch Aiden. It no-no. I go time out".

talking about Daddy: "Daddy boy. He handsome!"

Saturday, April 24, 2010


Happy Spring everyone! it snowed this week in Flagstaff...I guess Flagstaff doesn't know it 's spring yet. Zamara and I headed down to Sedona with Michael and Kyla Garrison and their little girl Kate, one of Zamara's friends. We had a good morning and afternoon walking around and enjoying the sunshine. Daddy had to work so he couldn't join us. I love the picture of the 2 girls in front of the fountain back to back. Kyla mentioned that whenever they sit next to each other she thinks of the song "Ebony and Ivory". I do too!!! So cute!

Monday, April 5, 2010

Happy Easter!

We had a fun Easter weekend. Craig worked most of the weekend so it was mainly Zizi and I hanging out together. We had a lot of fun! Friday morning we went to Stroller Strides for class and then an egg hunt. There was a professional photographer there getting pictures. She took the amazing picture of Zizi in the hat. Later in the day we took a bath and then made it to the Good Friday Service at our church.

Saturday was pretty boring with the exception of making lemon scones (yum!) and macaroni neclaces. Zizi was the chef and did a great job with both projects!

On Sunday we made it to church (with only 2 morning meltdowns over clothing and what I can only imagine was a tantrum because I put the strawberries on the wrong part of her plate), went to brunch with the Garrisons, and then had an egg hunt and dinner at our house with the Garrisons and Grayums.

Overall it was a fun Easter. This year Zamara realized there was candy inside the eggs and we had to make an effort to keep it out of her hands...she still found some and we had a hard time getting her to sleep after all the sugar.

The "paci" fairly is coming on Wednesday and taking all of Zamara's pacis to babies all over the world who need them. She does not need them since she is now a "big girl", which she enjoys reminding me of at least a few times a day. HOWEVER, this girl is addicted to her pacis. She tells me she dreams about them at night. To help ease the blow the Paci Fairly will also be leaving her with some new springtime jammies as a gift (Daddy messed up this morning and mentioned that "mommy and daddy were going to shop for her new jammies today". To his credit he did try to recover by saying that we were shopping with the Paci Fairy). Hopefully that fact has slipped her memory. We have been talking about it for a while, but I don't think she really understands that she will no longer have pacis to sleep with. We are praying for a smooth transition but we are expecting a few sleepless nights as she adjusts to not having them.

We hope everyone had a great Easter. We look forward to talking to you all soon.

blessing, Laura

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

First Prayers and Easter Eggs

Every night at dinner we pray for the meal. If we forget, Zamara will always remind us half way through dinner. Over the last few months she has been learning to pray by repeating what we say. We usually keep it simple and to the point.

Tonight we prayed and she repeated us as usual. Half way through dinner she said she wanted to pray again. So we stopped eating and folded our hands and she said her very first prayer all by herself!!!

"Dear Jesus, thank you for dinner. Amen"

It was soooo cute. Craig and I both got tears in our eyes.

After dinner we colored Easter eggs. It was a very fun night!

Have a great Easter everyone!

The Ducommuns

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Friday, February 26, 2010

More Pictures to choose from

Here are 5 more pictures to choose from. Check out the post below this one for 5 more photos.