We drove to the library the evening before, in the gentle rain that she called “tinkle rain” instead of “sprinkle”—until her brothers corrected her in spite of my silent efforts to stop them. She beamed at me in the rearview mirror, her yellow polka dot hood peaked over dark blond hair. Even a quick trip to drop off overdue books is exciting; but I had still more thrilling news to deliver.

IMG_8661 “Tomorrow is a very special day,” I said.

She sucked in her breath, dark eyes round.

“Tomorrow,” I said, “is Finalization Day. That means Petunia* will be a Kinnard now. You know how we had to sign lots and lots of papers to adopt Petunia?”

“Yes,” she said, solemnly.

“Well, tomorrow we sign the last paper. And a very important person, called a judge, says ‘Now she’s your daughter forever!’ And then Petunia will be a Kinnard forever. Isn’t that so special?”

IMG_8423 Her hands clasped her cheeks. “Tomorrow? Just one day? That’s so short!”

“Yes,” I said, as the drenched green lawns slid by and the windshield wipers squeaked.

“And then Petunia will be a Kinnard! And then she’ll be a Kinnard forever, just like we are!”

IMG_8737 “Yep,” I said. “Finalization Day!”

She regarded me with shining eyes. “That’s what you call it,” she said, with a shy smile. “I call it Party Day, because it feels like a party.”

So Party Day it will always be. June 11, 2014—Party Day forever.

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If you would like to contribute to our adoption fundraising

If you would like to read the previous posts on Petunia’s adoption

*Note “Petunia” is a nickname we use on the blog, not her real name.

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