FC: Lucas Tate DeKoster
2: Best Buds | Lucas was first "introduced" to us in September, 2011. Mama Mary at the Beacon House had been told about this adorable little boy in the Accra hospital and when she met him, it was love at first site! She knew he would be a perfect match for our family of "princesses" And once we saw his picture, it was love at first site for us too! What a cutie!!
3: Friends are the chocolate chips in the cookies of life.
4: “Other things may change us, but we start and end with family” ~ Anthony Brandt | First Christmas 2011
5: Good times! | Happy New Year!!
6: Lucas with his BH friend Sammy.(Elijah Shultz) The boys were born only 2 weeks apart. They were also together at the same hospital before coming home to the Beacon House.
7: All things grow better with love.
8: (clockwise) Lucas in his walker, A young friend visiting the Beacon House, Haley holding his buddy
9: “Be who you are and say what you feel because those who mind don't matter and those who matter don't mind.” ~Dr Seuss
10: Meeting Lucas | On February 10th, 2012, we received the email saying that we passed court and Lucas was legally ours!! So we immediately booked tickets to fly out there to sign the 1-600 and to finally meet Lucas. We left on February 14th and came home on February 21st. It was a very long flight over there... 5 hours to Wa Dc and then 11 hours across sea to Ghana. But so worth it to meet our son! He was even more perfect in person than in the pictures!
11: Families are like fudge...mostly sweet with a few nuts.
12: First few days of getting to know each other
13: “To us, family means putting your arms around each other and being there.” ~Barbara Bush
14: The house we stayed at was AMAZING We had 7000 sq. ft all to ourselves. It had 4 master suites, 2 balconies on 3 levels, marble everywhere, and awesome views! We also had our own pool and 2 house keepers and a driver that took us where ever we wanted. Talk about roughin' it!
15: Life brings simple pleasures to us every day. It is up to us to make them wonderful memories. ~Cathy Allen
16: A Father
17: with his son
19: Happy baby!
20: Family Fun
22: Sweet baby boy
24: Hug a little, Love a lot!!
25: The 2nd day we went to visit Romana and the Beacon House. We got to see some of your friends and where you went to work with Mary every day. All the people there loved on you. You were well taken care of. Mary had you very spoiled. So spoiled that she would have to leave the BH once it got too hot out because they didn't have a/c and you got "cranky" in the heat!
26: Mommy with her son
27: Cherish the small things
28: Family Fun
29: You LOVE to kick your feet, stand and JUMP or sit up like a big boy! | I'm a BIG boy! | I'm a BIG boy!
30: The house we were staying at had a HUGE pool which was a great way to cool off since it was sooo hot there! We tried putting Lucas into it; he wasn't too sure about the whole water thing. So he ended up in his tube at the side of the pool most of the time which he loved just as much! He LOVED being outside!
33: Lots of beautiful plants and flowers outside by the pool. So different from the plants we see in the Pacific Northwest
34: “Other things may change us, but we start and end with family” ~ Anthony Brandt
36: Touring the city of Accra, Ghana. The only time Lucas ever sat in a carseat was if Mama Mary had to drive somewhere herself and couldn't hold him. Otherwise he was always on a lap!
37: Mama Mary took us to a great pizza place while we were there
39: (to the lft) Mary's house and Lucas' bedroom and play area | For our last night in Ghana, Mary had us and Romana over for dinner. It was a nice treat to have a home cooked meal. But, we also had to say good bye to our little boy. At that point, we didn't know how long that would be for.
41: While Shawn and I were in Ghana, we had an opportunity to do some sight seeing. We first went to visit the suspension bridge in Kakum National Park,about a 2 hour drive from Accra.The day started with a torrential downfall and didn't stop until half way thru the "canopy walk". Suspended about 100' up in the air, the bridges were awesome! Although very narrow and a bit nerve racking with the swaying up in the trees, we were very happy we took time to visit this
42: The second place we stopped at was the Cape Coast Castle. in Elmina It was a slave castle back in the late 1400's. About 100 males & 500 females would be "stored" there for 6-12 weeks waiting for the slave ships to dock and ship them to the Americas.