Nina at her first Kazapalooza in 2009
Kazapalooza is an annual reunion of families who have adopted in Kazakhstan. The weekend long event started in 2008.  That first year I did not attend.  I wanted to but alas at that time I was still in the painstaking waiting phase of our KZ adoption.  I remember looking at the photos with envy and vowing I would attend the next year.  Well I did attend that next year in Nashville with my gorgeous little Nina Bea by my side.  That weekend was a chaotic whirlwind. No relaxing conversation for this new mother of a two year old!  Still it was good, really good, to connect however briefly with other families who shared this bond of living in and adopting from Kazakhstan.  Let's face it how many people in your neighborhood can relate to that?

The next year I was invited to be a planner. I was glad to do it although I ended up not doing much to help because it turned out that was the spring we adopted Macy from China. We actually came home from China four days before the Kazapalooza weekend.  A lesser woman (read as "less crazy") would have skipped that year but not us.  Oh noooooo, we put the whole family back on a plane and headed to Milwaukee for Kazapalooza 2010!  Once again not a lot of time for relaxing but still important connections were strengthened.

Adoption, adoption from Kazakhstan in particular, is this amazing life changing experience that deserves celebration and needs community.  Adoptive parents and adopted children can all benefit through a connection with other families who share the joy of the adoption experience.

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