Last year when I announced that we were adopting older kids from Ethiopia, a dear friend and co-worker gave me the name and number of her neighbors daughter, Kristy, who also had recently adopted an 8 and 10 year old from Ethiopia. Kristy and I became internet penpals and have developed this friendship from our computers. This week they were in town to visit grandparents and we had the opportunity to get together, finally meet, introduce the kids and compare notes. It was awesome to finally get to meet her. We hugged huge, and I felt like I was getting to see an old friend after a long separation. It was awesome! Kristy has been a great inspiration to me as well as a "go to" girl about older adoption. She was there when we didn't pass court the first time. She was there when we were making our travel plans. She was there when we got home, and I didn't know where to start. I was there as she went through the process of adopting another child. I was there when she didn't pass court several times. I was there as she went back to Ethiopia to get the child she could not forget about. For those of you adopting children, the best advice I can give is to develop relationships with people who are exeriencing the same thing you are. Whether you are adopting older kids, or a toddler, or a baby... find someone who is in the same shoes as you are. The friendships I have developed along this journey are treasures to me. The friends I have through the internet, this blog, the Yahoo group are invaluable resources and sources of love and support to me. Thank you!