Friday, March 23, 2007

The Heldts go to court

Well I am pleased to announce that as of this morning, thanks to the Santa Barbara County Superior Court, Yosef and Biniam are legally, once-and-for-all our sons-! FINALLY! Hooray!
We had our court hearing at 8:30 a.m. this morning at the courthouse here in Santa Maria (now how many children can say their adoption was finalized at the same courthouse that the infamous Michael Jackson trial was held at? Hehe). We arrived to a huge crowd of people waiting outside the courtroom. Apparently everyone goes inside, and the judge calls each group up individually to hear their case. We were all packed in there like sardines.

The bailiff (this was SO out of Judge Judy!) then told everyone to remain seated as the judge, fully wearing the robe and everything, walked out and took his seat, and announced that court was in session! This was very exciting. Then the judge made the announcement that the adoption cases would be saved until the end (they're confidential so the room has to be empty when each one is heard.) WHAT?! How on earth were we supposed to keep an infant, a 3 year old, and two 2 year olds happy and quiet during all of these cases?!

Fortunately a man (presumably a lawyer who knew the ropes) sitting in front of us said we could wait out in the hall and they'd call us in when it was our turn. So we did that and were finally called back in. (I was a bit bummed I wouldn't get to hear all of the cases, as I find these things interesting.)

Now it was VERY exciting because we got to sit up at the table. Then we had to be sworn in! We had to stand and hold up our right hand and repeat after the clerk (I'm telling you this made my day). The judge asked some questions and then pronounced that it was in the childrens' best interest to be placed with us, and pronounced them our sons! (Sadly, no slam of the gavel). Then we went up to have our picture taken with the judge. Anna and Biniam were terrified of him.
So that was our day in court. We even got to see the bailiff boot someone out of the courtroom--a 20 month old boy (from Guatemala), for screaming and crying. (That last picture is of us with the judge!)

22 comments:

Brenda Williams said...

Congratulations!!!

darci said...

yay, yay, yay! so happy, finally. congrats!

lindsey said...

i am so happy for you guys. my eyes are welling up with tears of joy for you! sounds like quite an exciting day, and how precious that all of this was postponed so katie could be there with you, too!

dillyweed said...

I love your big smiles in the picture with the judge. What an exciting day. Congratulations Heldts!
-Briana
http://dillyweed.blogspot.com

Mike and Rachel said...

It's so funny this man has the power to make thiem your sons. They have always been yours, before you ever knew them, but now the world knows it too!

And what's that interesting contraption you have Kaitlyn in? I have been looking for something to snuggle our soon to be little one to me with and that thing looks pretty cool. It wasn't a bjorn, was it?

lisa said...

that is so exciting. glad its finally OFFICIAL! That must be a great feeling.

Brianna Heldt said...

Rachel it's a Moby Wrap (thanks Lara!) I REALLY like it. It takes a little practice putting it on but you get the hang of it. I like it more than the bjorn b/c it's basically like you're holding the baby. Also I find it provides better support than the bjorn.

Carrie Borsgard said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Carrie Borsgard said...

Hooray!!! Yay for the ever growing Heldt family, you are now officially one big happy family!

I love watching court stuff too, I am so nosy!

I have seen a couple moms with the Mobi wraps, I hope they are still around when I have kids, I want one!

Samantha said...

I use the moby wrap too, Brianna. I have tried a Baby Bjorn, a sling and now the wrap, and the wrap is by far the most comfortable. I have never bought one though. I just buy 5 yards of stretchy material and cut it down the middle and then I have 2 wraps! I like it because it is truly hands-free. The baby is so snug, secure and can sleep really well when on the go with their little hear tucked into it. I get stopped so much when I wear it though. Jeromy thinks I need to start selling them! Congrats on the adoption being official!!

erika said...

What a happy day. Your family is a light for the Lord to shine in the world. What a great thing that you have chosen to live the words of Christ. We are all "the least of these." He loves us all. Congratulations to your whole family.

Jeannett Gibson said...

It's kinda weird to congratulate you on the boys...cuz, well, they've been yours for so long! Amazing how legal details can affect a family so much! Congrats and yay!

Kristen Borland said...

yea!!! this is soooo exciting! congratulations, guys!!! and what a fun little experience it was too! ;) i would have liked to have heard that gavel slam as well, brianna. but a picture with the judge is pretty cool (couldn't the photographer get a little closer, or was he scared of the judge too?).

hey, i'm liking this moby wrap thing! i might have to look in to that next time.

shell said...

yippie!congrats! you guys look great and i keep giggling at the micheal jackson comment. nothing like that can ever said about living in indiana!

Brianna Heldt said...

Samantha, that is so awesome that you make your own! Pretty great that just a long piece of fabric can be so handy.

Kristen, I know, the photographer (the bailiff actually) apparently didn't know how to use the zoom. But he had a gun, so I figured it best not to antagonize him! :)

Jeannett I agree it's weird, b/c they've been "ours" for so long now. I am just grateful to have this behind us.

Brianna Heldt said...

Oh and doesn't the judge totally look like the dad on the Mike Meyers movie "So I Married an Axe Murderer"?!

Jeannett Gibson said...

btw, how long did you guys end up havng to wait before you were called in? Just curious...

Lyle & Sheri said...

congratulations - such wonderful news. Blessings to your family!

Sheri & Lyle

Brianna Heldt said...

Jeannett we arrived at 8:30 and were called in about an hour and 15 minutes later--ugh. (Kind of like McGhie's office!)

Lara Laity said...

What a sweet day. Thanks so much for letting us all be a part of it. I miss you guys so much. And I'm glad the moby is working out great.
Just curious, do you have to go through a whole name change process now or did you get to walk away with new birth certificates for them?
Much love,
Lara
P.S. Does Anna know we are in Florida now and no longer in "Sippy-sippy"? =)

Tamara said...

Okay, I have been reading your blog for months and I JUST now realized that you can click on the pictures to make them big! I was wondering where the baby was and then people are talking about what the judge looks like and I was thinking they had super-vision... then wha-la, I clicked on it and I could seeee!!

Oh yea, and totally excited about being OFFICIAL and your court experience, I get ALL of my legal knowledge from Judge Judy!

Brianna Heldt said...

Lara I miss you too! I've been wanting to email you (I'm so curious about your plans for Fresno that you mentioned) and will do that soon--I promise. :) (Now that Kev's not at home taking up the computer :).)

There is a name change process that takes place but in conjunction with the readopt. When we submitted all the forms for the readopt we also had to fill out some stuff for the name change. The boys get new birth certificates with the new names. We also had their birthdates changed (the judge had to approve that.) Oh and no, I need to inform Anna of your location change! I'll do it tonight and will see how she pronounces Florida.

Tamara, hehe, that is hilarious! Glad you figured it out! (I think Judge Judy is so mean, don't you?)

 

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