Monday, November 30, 2009

Two Years Ago

It is hard to believe that 2 years ago we said yes to adopt a little boy. The process took longer than anticipated but with our first Thanksgiving with him, the wait does not matter any more. We are so thankful for our son and what a joy he has brought to our lives. Princess is still not that thrilled with him but is slowly warming up. She sometimes will comment on the cute things he does. We are also excited that he decided he liked his toddler bed and sleeps in his own room. We found out that he did not like the rails on the bed. This all happened on Thanksgiving. He did wonderful at the dinner and it was great to see that he has not lost his Mandarin. At his preschool, one of the teacher known Mandarin and will talk to him in Mandarin if she thinks he does not understand the English directions. He also has a couple of classmate who first language is also Mandarin so it has helped him know that he is not the only one. He really like the little girl and will say her name when he sees her. It is hard to believe he has only been with us for 4 1/2 months. Times flies when you are having fun. It has not been all kick and giggles but the good times out weigh the troubled ones and his adjustment is going fine. A lot of things are just typical three old behavior and to be expected until language skills are better, They have improved and we will hopeful get a good evaluation with the speech therapist in a couple of weeks. He still will only talk for us and takes awhile to warm up to other but we had a good breakthrough on Thanksgiving and are hopeful.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Celebrate and Big Boy Pants

This week has been better! We had a dentist appt and everything went fine! NO CAVITIES!!!!! A time to celebrate. We also while waiting for PT to get out of school got some big boy underwear and have been wearing them the rest of the week! Since he picked them out, that was the trigger for him! Yeah! Next goal to be accident free for a week!

Saturday, September 12, 2009

Seven Weeks Home

We have survived being home for seven weeks. It is hard to believe that much time has passed. We are having more good day versus challenging ones. I wish I could say everything is great. I will be honest. I got to learn to let go of some things. Language barrier is one I need to just be a little more understanding. I know he understand a lot and is really starting to mimic but he needs more time. I hoping once he gets in a classroom setting he will have more immersion and this will help. He repeat a lot of words and we can understand his attempts but most people cannot. He was evaluated by the Plastic Surgeon and he says everything looks great. Will probably do a revision before kindergarten. We will have his team meeting on October 1st and will post more about that later. We keep getting the run around to have him evaluated by the school district. We were schedule to have a meeting the 11th but they asked if we could postpone until the 25th. I voiced my frustration and told them I will just wait for the team meeting before coming to them. Maybe I should give them the benefit of the doubt but I send my DD to private school because of the things CA schools do. Yes we live in a area with good schools but I worked for LAUSD as a consultant for 8 years and saw the waste and know more than I should about my local district. I realize they are working with the limited budget that they get and I know it is beyond their control. I digress! So will call after October 1st and will try again later. I have him in a gymnastic to help with his gross motor skills and we have all the Speech Therapy tools when PT did speech. He does not seem to have any issues there just needs immersion.

PT is getting to like her brother more. She is tolerating him and even saying he is cute when he does certain things. I should have spent more time reading on her transition than his. This has been most of my struggles. I try and remember that she had 6 1/2 years of our undivided attention and now has to share. I knew she would regress but how she regress was not expected.

Thankfully I am reading other adoptive moms struggles and it has helped me with my issues. As I said earlier I need to learn to let things go. Being a Project Manager for a number of years, you always learned to solve problems. But LM problems are not a easy fix and time is the best. I really miss having some me time and am trying to work some in. I forgot how busy we are once school starts. PT has gymnastics and music outside of school. We are working on time schedule that works. The kids have decided that the 15 minutes Mom has in the morning to herself is a no go. They keep waking up earlier each time I wake up earlier and I have given up that so begging hubby to take them when he gets home but again PT schedule interferes with my me time. At least I have the hour she is in gymnastics this gives me some time with other adults. Things will come with time. I just need to get a good schedule going. Then I will work out my issues. At least I can say I have not gained any of the weight I have lost during the trip to China. I am getting more exercise with this one. He keeps me on my toes. He also likes to take walks but not everyday. He really likes the jogging stroller and that helps with me getting more exercise too. I get an upper body work out pushing the stroller up the hills we live in. Problem is the air quality is not so good with the Station fire. We do not live that close but the jet stream brings ashes and debris our way. You can see ashes on the car some mornings. So far my allergies are not flaring to bad.

Potty training is my other item which is slow in coming. We were told he was potty trained and just had a pull-up for travel. Well he regressed which was to be expected. When you think that we is ready to go again, he takes a few steps backwards. He is just too comfortable in a pullup and too busy to go to the restroom. He also drinks a lot of water and seem to need to urinate every 15 minutes which also has made pullup easier for him since he does not have to stop and go. I tried training pants and after the 4th clothing change before lunch I decided he is not ready. The preschool we want to send him requires that he be potty trained and can not send he there until he is. Due the dependent care deduction that DH has we need to get him into preschool as soon as possible. I do not want to make this an issue and will give him the time he needs. So I am research other preschool which will take him without being potty trained.

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Last Day of Summer Vacation

We spent the last day of summer vacation at the beach. It was LM first time to the beach. Since the beach was at a military installation, I was unable to get pictures of his first time at the beach. He is very unsure of the ocean. He screamed when the waves got close and I was holding him. He would laugh at PT when she went into the waves. I finally got him to touch but that was it. Finally LM had fun playing in the sand away from the waves. We got to see sea lions, dolphins and many different waterfowl. LM did not seem that interested in them. He was just happy playing in the sand. PT was happy to have the waves to herself but ended up playing in the sand with LM.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Three Week Update

Asleep eating noodles
Cool Man riding my Hot Wheels

Look at me go

It is hard to believe that we came home three weeks ago. Things are progressing well. LM has his moments but they are overshadowed by the hugs and kisses! He is all boy! PT was active but never this active. He is constantly on the go! Only a few accidents but one major one which ended up as a nice knot and cut in his head. His gross motor skills are slowly catching up. Thus until they do, I expect more falls, bumps and bruises. We have finally figured out the sleep pattern and naps. He wanted DH for nap today! That is a first. When DH is at work he is happy to have Mom but on the weekends he follow DH everywhere. Sleep time is also DH time. It will be interesting when DH start to travel again. DH is going to miss PT first days as a first grader. He has to fly back to the east coast. I see exhaustion on my part until he gets home. Jet lag took until two week before it got better for me. I also think I was drinking too much caffeine before bedtime. We started swim lessons this week for LM. He seems ok with the water but gets exhausted quickly. It sort of helps with sleep time since we have lesson early evening 5:50 to 6:20. We eat then bath and go to bed. Things have slowed down on the eating aspect also. I think he has maxed out. He is eating more normal for a three year old. The ped. said everything looks good. He is 70% in weight and 20% in height on the American charts. Can you say linebacker. They are predicting he will be about 5' 7" to 5' 9". He might actually be taller than DH or at least the same size! ENT appointment went ok. He thinks there might be fluid in the ears but will wait and see until this fall. We have hearing test schedule for Nov and this will tell how his hearing is and if we need tubes. Ped. thought that only one ear had any fluid and even that ear was not that bad. So we can only hope, wait and see what will be next. I made an appointment with Plastic Surgeon but still not sure if I will go back to CHLA with him. PS is now out of network and I do not know if I will keep both with him. I will need to make a decision soon since the appointment is in early September. I at least need to call CHLA and see when I can get him in for a Team meeting. If I can get in sooner I probably with go with CHLA.
Will post more pictures later!

Friday, August 7, 2009

July 24th - Traveling Home!

We had breakfast as a family today. Our last breakfast in China. DH decided he wanted to go back to the shopping center to pick up a couple of things. I went to a store and picked up some Ma Ma and Ba Ba shirts since I picked up Je Je and Di Di shirts for the kids. We wore the shirt day for travel to find each other with ease. So DH left to go shopping while I finished packing in the room. He decided to save the taxi fare and walked back. When he got back we went down to see what time we could extend check out since we were not going to leave until 6 pm. We decided to take the shuttle van from the hotel and bought our tickets. We finish packing and check out. Then we left of bags at the hotel and had lunch Lucy's. We took our time eating. We then requested to get into the play room and they let us in. LM and I spent the rest of the time there until it was time to leave. DH and PT decided they would go to McD's to get the last 4 Hello Kitty's for PT collection. They left while LM and I played. They walked back. They said the shuttle was full this time going to the shopping center. Since we did not do the red couch on oath day we had our pictures taken today. We probably should of taken the earlier shuttle did not realize it would take us that long to get there. We should of realize that it was rush hour. But we still had plenty of time. Note: Save a little back for people who help with luggage at airport. We were short and only had a $50 American bill on us. Lesson learned. Again the crutches helped a little but not a security. This was the first time we had to take our shoes off at security. Getting on the plane was interesting. This is first time getting a plane that large outside. The plane left Guangzhou late and so we were late getting to LAX. LM slept 11 of the 13 hour flight. PT slept 11 also. They again were not strict about buckling in LM and he prompt fell asleep before we even got off. This time I made sure PT was wake when the food came out. On the flight to China, she missed the food and was mad and hungry. Once feed she went to sleep. LM fell of the seat once, I thought I had told DH, I had to go to the bathroom. LM fell off just as I had moved away to the bathroom. Lesson learned never trust a sleeping husband. We made to LAX without much trouble. This is one time I wished DH pride would have given in to a wheelchair. I had to carry LM since the stroller was waiting with the rest of our luggage. I had heard that LAX was a nightmare. Again we got faster service since DH was on a crutch. Then they only had one person for the immigration but he indicated that it would be faster if one parent went to get the luggage while the other wait for the paperwork. DH went for the luggage. Once he got back he took the kids to the bathroom. By the time he came back the paperwork was done and we were off to get the car. Our first stop was IN-N-Out for a hamburger and shake. LM at first did not like the car seat. He screamed all the way to In-N-Out. On the way home, we found he like the shake more than screaming and promptly fell asleep. No more screaming. We got home about 11 pm. It took everyone a while to settle down. LM did not go down until about 2 am. But it was not so bad since we all slept in until afternoon.

July 23rd - Free Day

LM liked the chair at the Video store.
PT with her McD's cup watching LM.

LM and DH again had breakfast before PT and I but we were not that far behind. Again LM and DH went to the playroom while PT and I finished our meal. Most people were going home today. Since we could not get a flight home until tomorrow we had a free day. We decided to go back to the shopping district instead of the electronic district. We took the White Swan shuttle and deciding if we wanted to walk back. We decided to take a taxi ride. The taxi ride was short and was not as bad a I remember 10 years ago when we were in China. We had lunch McD's for PT again. She really likes the Hello Kitty that they sell that are not part of the Happy Meal. DH has got ordering down to a art. Everyone seems to take pity on the man on the crutch and two kids and harried wife. They actually bring the food to our table for us. One thing about McD's is that they are very busy. It is hard to find a place to sit down. It is interesting that there is another just across the plaza. And they are both one the second level. You have escalator going up but not going down. Could not find the elevator. We did a little shopping. I was looking for a new purse but could not find one I like for the price. They were not in a bargaining mood. We both another dress for PT and a traditional outfit for LM. We got a good bargain on them. One of the few we found. Once we got back LM, PT and DH went for a swim. I decided to visit Jordon store. I found a number of bargain and was happy with my purchases. PT wanted to do a little shopping so LM and DH stayed at the pool while PT and I went back to Jordon. She found a few thing which we brought back. Off course she like the 7 eleven store it has the gum we let her have and Gatorade to drink. We have to stop and pick up some things for her there. PT wanted to try dinner at Lucy's. Menu is the same but we ordered different food. Then we went home and bathed the kids and went to bed. It seemed we were always in bed before 8 pm.

July 22nd - Oath @ Consulate

Decide to use the Ergo to go to the German restaurant. He fell asleep about half the way there. LM seemed to like it and it was better than carrying him.

LM and DH went to breakfast while PT and I slept in. It was different to just have the one child again for breakfast. I am getting used to being a family of four that just the two of us seemed weird. LM and DH spent the rest of the morning in the playroom. That was one place that was very air condition almost to the point of freezing. PT and I join them later and watch LM play. He is really opening up to DH. He has gone to both of us really well and still prefers me over DH but not as much today. I think it helped having breakfast time alone with Dad. We had lunch at the Deli Shoppe again. And did a quick swim at the pool for the kids. Then off to the consulate for taking the oath. LM was having a small fit on the bus but them promptly fell asleep. He woke up in time for the oath and seemed much happier. We really have not kept a regiment on naps will try when we get home. After the oath we decided to go dinner at Italian restaurant. The food was ok. PT liked the pizza. This is the first time I have seen her eat more than one piece. PT has never been much of a pizza eater so this was a moment. I now know LM is not much of a vegetable eater. I got a veggie soup for him and I ended up eating most of it. They had a good seafood dish I was able to eat also. LM does not seem to like pizza. Another child who does not care for pizza. We will see more when we get home. It took PT six years before she would eat it. PT and DH stopped at the playground while LM and I went home for a bath and to get ready for bed.

July 21st - CA Day

This was a quiet day. We just went swimming and hung around the hotel. We were all tired and needed a day of rest. Everything went fine with the consulate. Guide can by to has us sign a document and we were done. Just had the swearing in ceremony tomorrow. We ate lunch at Lucy's again and had dinner German restaurant. Food did remind me of what we had in Germany but that was 10 years ago. On the way back to the hotel we stopped off at the playground. PT again had a request for pictures. She is getting used to the idea and it does not bother her as much. I figured since we are in Guangzhou she would have less request but have had just as many as Nanjing.

July 20th - TB resuls

LM and I slept in this morning. PT and DH again went to the playroom to wait for us. We quickly ate breakfast and off to the Pearl Market we went. PT was happy to see McD's. We picked up some more gifts and a few DVD for PT and LM. We left PT and DH at the shopping center while LM and I were actually able to catch the shuttle back to the WS. The TB test went without any problems. I think I was holding my breath the whole time. LM and I had lunch at the hotel room and off course PT and DH had lunch at McD's. After they got back we went swimming as a family. LM really likes the water. I will have to make sure that we have swimming lesson when we get home. Since we were tired out from swimming we just went to the Deli Shoppe and had a light evening meal in the room.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

July 19th - Sightseeing

We decide to do a little sightseeing since it was cooler in Guangzhou than Nanjing. It was still hot but did not seem as bad. We first visited the Old Chen House. Our guide last name was Chen. We enjoyed the woodwork and ornate detail of the buildings. LM decided he did not want to be in the stroller that much today and preferred to be carried my mom. After the Chen House, we went shopping at the provincial art crafts shopping center. We picked a couple of jade pieces for each child and stamps with their names. We had his American name then instead placing this name we used his Chinese name at the bottom. After shopping we went back and got some food at the bakery/deli shop. PT got a pastry and I got a rice dish to split with DH and LM. After lunch, PT and I went swimming while DH and LM stayed behind to take a nap. We decided to venture out this evening and get some food for the evening meal. We decided to go to the Thai restaurant. The food was good but take additional napkins along with you. You only get one.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

July 18th - Medical, Visa photo and paperwork

Since we got in late, we woke up late. DH and PT did a tour of the hotel while LM slept. They found out where to eat breakfast. The White Swan does put on a pretty good spread. This is where we found out LM likes hard boiled eggs. He seems he can't get enough of them. We also found out the word for apple. The reception desk had apples and mints. Every time we were at this level we had to stop and get an apple or a mint. We meet our guide and did paperwork prior to going to the medical. One thing about the 800 process there is less paperwork at the end of the process. We did most of it prior to travel. Then we were off for the visa photo. Something set off LM and he did not settle until after the medical. He ended up having 4 shots and TB test. He did well for the TB but once they had me restrain him for the shots. He got really mad. He does not like being restrained. After the medical, we had lunch at Lucy's. This made PT excited since she could have french fries. The food was ok. Since LM was worn out from the shots. He and I stayed in the room while DH and PT went swimming. We were going to take LM for his first swimming later that afternoon but the pool closed due the weather which really blew in quickly. We ended up eating the evening meal in the room with the snacks we brought with us.

July 17th - Travel Day

Today we flew to Guangzhou. But since we had an evening flight, we spent the day hanging around the hotel. We decided to check out at 12 noon and leave our bag with hotel. We went to the McD's that was closer to the hotel since they had a small playground. It was very crowded and we had a hard time finding a place to sit. LM did not like taking off his shoes for the playground but finally did. He liked going down the slide. We then went and rest at a park area and watch the people going by. It was so hot and muggy we decided to go back to the hotel and hang out in the lobby. On the way back we found a market which was located in a pedestrian underpass. It is near the Drum Tower. We wish we had found this earlier. LM fell asleep on the way back to the hotel and I sat in the lobby while DH and PT found a cool and quiet place to play cards. Our driver to the airport was late and we hit traffic on the way to the airport but still made it in time for our flight. We found out that LM does not like to be restrained in any way. I tried buckling him in the seat and he had a meltdown. The flight attendant did a great job in trying to calm him down. It finally took an orange! The rest of the flight went well. We decided not to buckle him in on landing. (I know bad parents) And it went ok. A shuttle to the white swan was waiting for us and we got checked in around 10:30 pm. It took LM awhile to settle but eventually crashed.

July 16th - Free Day

Today was pretty much a free day. We decided to venture out today. We found the Metro and decided to take it. Lesson learned. Take the Metro not during rush hour. We found the elevator down to the trains. But somehow the person who was verifying that we had token was not to be found. We got on the train and where we wanted to exit trying to explain was fun. They decided just to let us our without paying. Too much trouble those Americans. We decided to go to Walmart to pickup a few more supplies. DH and I had a discussion on where to get off and we got off one more station longer than needed. So we ended up walking a further distance. Typical male! This is DH response on how do we communicate with LM. He is typical male he grunts and points to what he wants. No need for words. Just like dad! After much sweating! We were able to find it. We spent time in the cooler section cooling off. My shirt was soaked through. I do not remember the last time I had soaked a shirt like this. Interesting thing about the Walmart is you pay for your bag. We placed most of what we bought in the backpack. We found the right Metro station. It had an interesting shopping center which we checked out. DH had to try meat on a stick. He has no idea what he got but he enjoyed it. This time we were able to get ticket and they showed us where the elevator was for DH and we got back to the right stop this time. They had someone waiting for us to take our tokens and the same elevator we came down in the morning. We know the routine now. We spent the balance of the afternoon in the hotel room cooling off. That evening we reviewed notary documents and then went for a nice Chinese restaurant. There was a lot of fun and everyone except PT at well. PT did like the duck dish. MIL used to cook duck. It brought back memories. We went back to the hotel. We found out that LM liked sleeping on the floor. He sleep very soundly.

July 15th - Sightseeing in Nanjing

What another hot and muggy day. It started out in the day with precipitation. LM still is eating well and enjoyed breakfast again. Today we toured Nanjing Cloud Brocade Museum, Zhonghua Gate City Wall and Confucius Temple. I enjoyed the museum since it was inside and not in the hot humid weather. I also enjoyed seeing things in action. Interesting how they keep the looms working. The city wall was interesting but since we did not take the stroller, it was hard on LM and I did not get to see as much. The Confucius Temple was fun. This is where PT got her first request for a photo session. The whole time we have been here, they had touched her hair, face and stared at her. It has taken sometime to get used to but I think she is soaking it up. We picked up a few things at the Pearl Market and PT got her first fan. Since it was again hot and muggy we spent the afternoon at the hotel. LM had his first meltdown. DH and PT went to get some lunch and I stayed with LM until he calmed down. Finally, noodles did the trick. Really wishing this hotel had a pool, it would of helped with the downtime and possibly some cooling off. We decided to try and find the electronic market. That was an adventure. We hit one store which had more salespeople than customers. I did find a store which sold crocs but they seemed more expensive than what I bought my pair for. On the way back, we found a McD's closer to the hotel. We stopped for an ice cream cone. Again, we ate what we had in the hotel room for the evening meal. Best weight loss plan ever. Too hot to be hungry.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

July 14th - Offical Adoption day

LM enjoying the fountain and stroller

One tired and hot sister!

Give me more!

Enjoying the food

Getting ready to go for evening meal

Brother and sister eating bananas

LM and his Ayi

Today was our first breakfast with LM. He is a eater. He really likes his food. We went back to the Jiangsu Adoption Center to do registration and notarization. We got to see the nannies again. LM had to show them all this stuff. He had to make sure everything was packed to take with him. The stacking cars were a hit along with the bowl with a cover and the two cups that stacked with covers. We found out he like cars and he came with one of his own. We also found our how much he likes phones. We had to unplug on the phone of the desk so he would not make any calls. Luckily, there was a phone in the bathroom so we could receive calls. The morning went without much fanfare. The nanny had to sneak out so LM did not know she had left. When we left he seemed sad but did not cry. From the center we got our first taste of Walmart. This is where we bought the stroller. We also pickup some water and drinks. Coke Zero must be new since it looked like it special display. We spent the rest of the afternoon in the hotel room. It was too hot and muggy to take him out. We ventured out for evening meal. We decided to try one of the local restaurants that we saw on the walk to the bank. The walk was a lot easier with the stroller. It was an interesting place. We had to go outside to their picture menu to order. Then they brought out a Indian man to speak English to us and he tried to interpret but he said they speak a different dialect than his Mandarin and we will be interested in what they will bring. The food was good and they even had a dish to match my level of spiciness. I to try spicy dishes. One thing about LM he at least will try things once and sometimes twice. He tried dried cranberries and make a face to be remember always. He proceed to throw the balance in the trash. The next day he tried them again and can't get enough of them. After the evening meal, we went to the children store to buy some shoes for PT but just ended up buying a play cellphone for LM. The night time wasn't as easy. He did not want to go to sleep and he trashed all night long. I did not get much sleep. DH and PT got more than me.

July 13th - Gotcha Day

The day started out early. PT was up around 4 am. She loved looking out the hotel window. There was a construction site not to far and she enjoyed watching them from the room. They were working early to beat the heat. It was interesting to see a crane working at 4 am. PT kept asking what time was breakfast. She was hungry. Every 15 minutes she kept asking. So finally we went down to breakfast at 6:30. She was happy to see that it was a western type of breakfast. She is our breakfast queen. It is the only meal we don't struggle with. She eats most breakfast type of items. Our guide was not going to pickup us up until 10:30. To burn off some nervous energy we decided to go for a short walk. We did not go far since it was already hot and muggy. We can back to make sure that we had everything needed. Made sure gifts were assembled and his backpack was full of fun items. We got him a doggy backpack and filled it with stacking cars, bowl and stacking storage cups. Also, we had a Thomas Engine bag given to us from a friend. Her son took it with him when they traveled. We had hot wheels inside this bag. Once the time came, we had to sit in the warm office to wait. The staff and our son had taken the trains and we on their way. It was around 11:30 by the time they had arrive and he was hungry. Since I forgot to pack the Cheerios, I had granola bars along which he stuff into his face. Then I had a sippy cup with water for him to drink. Was not sure he had any sucking but he did and he downed the drink without any issues. He had our picture book which we sent and would point to DH and me saying ba ba and ma ma. You could tell that he was unsure of us still and would wonder back to his nanny. We received a memory book with pictures and craft done by our son, his finding ad, schedule and a gift. I was surprised and happy to receive a gift from the orphanage. It was a nice token and will be treasured. When it came time for the nannies to leave. He grieved! Boy did we find out he has a set of lungs to him! We went back to the hotel room and I stayed in the room with him and DH and PT went to get some lunch and to bring me back a diet Coke. (McD's) Little Man finally feel asleep crying. By the time they got back, he was in a better mood.

We met our guide again and headed to the bank to exchange $ to RMB. All that worries about having clean bills was unfounded. She looked them over but not as through as I had heard. It was a long walk and I found LM to be too heavy to carry and decided it was best to get a stroller. After exchanging money a show around the neighborhood, we went back to hotel to do some more paperwork. Since it was an early morning and it was hot and muggy our and I was exhausted from carrying LM. Our guide took us to an eating area and where we could go shopping for kids clothes. We decided to eat the snacks be had at the hotel. I had brought some noodle along for myself and made them. Come to find out LM really likes noodles. He proceed to eat all my noodles. This was ok since I was not very hungry due to the heat. LM and PT actually feel asleep early and we were blessed with an uneventful night.

Sunday, August 2, 2009

July 10-12th

Our travel day! It was quite the day! It was my parent's 50th Wedding Anniversary. We were able to make the picture of the whole family minus our son. After pictures we took the 5 hour drive to Denver to catch a plane back to LAX. We had a 4 hour layover before we flew off to China. Since we spent a week back in NE, we had packed two sets of luggage. We had enough time to get back to the car and switch luggage. Things worked out as planned. PT slept most of the flight. DH and I slept off and on. The worries about DH and crutches were not to be found. It actually helped! We figured in China that we would not get any preferred treatment. But we made it through customs and to our connecting flight to Nanjing in record time. The only thing that was hard was the long walk to our gate from customs. Getting off the plane in Nanjing reminded me a little of Burbank airport, getting off the plane onto the tarmac. The shuttle to baggage reminded me of Dulles Airport but more packed! We only had our temperature taken three times. Once getting on the plane, once getting off in Guangzhou and lastly at the hotel.

Someone forgot to tell me that Nanjing would be hot, muggy and smoggy. I figured it couldn't be worse than Florida in the summertime. But it was! We decided to take a walk to get some water and some other things to drink. That was quite the adventure! We enjoyed walking down the sidewalk and seeing all the little stores. We found a three level shopping area which we had to tour and see what they had. This is were we bought our drinks and water. PT was happy we had found the McDonald's. We had to stop and get an ice cream cone for her. I liked that they gave you a menu to point to what you want. There also happened to be a customer who could speak English who did some translation. We survived our first McD's purchase. Since we were all drenched from the humidity and heat we went back to the hotel and promptly fell asleep.

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

We are Home!

Sorry for no blogging but we were blocked and the person I had to do it for me got very sick and is still sick. Everything went well as planned. No quarantine and daughter did well during the trip. So all those worries for nothing. We received our son on Monday the 13th at around 11 am. He was very hungry! We feed him and gave him some water and he was good to go until his nanny left then he grieved. Since it was so hot and muggy on Nanjing we did not do much tourist things. And he weighs in over 30 lbs. We ended up getting a stroller. It was too hot for the carrier and he was too heavy to carry everywhere. Due to the TB testing we left Nanjing a day earlier than planned. Saturday the 18th he had his TB test along with 4 shots. Guangzhou was not has hot and muggy as Nanjing due to the tropical storm that hit Hong Kong area while we were there. It was more refreshing and we were able to do more things. Will post pictures later. Still very let lagged. Once we get back on a schedule I hope to add more about our trip.

Friday, June 26, 2009

Travel Dates

We leave July 10 and arrive home on July 24th


Leave:July 10 LAX 23:50
Arrive: July 12 Guangzhou 06:20
Leave: July 12 Guangzhou 08:30
Arrive: July 12 Nanjing 10:15

Leave: July 18 Nanjing 11:00
Arrive: July 18 Guangzhou 13:10

Leave: July 24 Guangzhou 21:00
Arrive: July 24 LAX 18:50

Friday, June 19, 2009

Another Comforting Word

Psalm 121:5-8 The LORD watches over you- the LORD is your shade at your right hand;the sun will not harm you by day, nor the moon by night.The LORD will keep you from all harm - he will watch over your life;the LORD will watch over your coming and going both now and forevermore.

PTL!!! TA Finally

We got the call yesterday that we have TA. Now to find out when we will travel!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Have been busy with daughter has the last day of school yesterday and she had a friend over for a sleepover. So have not had much time to post this!!!!!

Monday, June 15, 2009

Waiting for TA longer than LOSC

Well it is officially a longer wait for TA than the LOSC for us! Today is day 76 wait from the date on our LOSC. And of course no word today! Too sad to say any more words!

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

More Comforting Words

Psalm 5:11-12 But let all who take refuge in you rejoice; let them sing joyful praises forever. Spread your protection over them, that all who love your name may be filled with joy. For you bless the godly, O LORD; you surround them with your shield of love.

Psalm 32:8 The LORD says. I will guide you along the best pathway for your life. I will advise you and watch over you.

In Happy moments, PRAISE GOD
In Difficult moments, SEEK GOD
In Quiet moments, WORSHIP GOD
In Painful moments, TRUST GOD
In Every moment, THANK GOD

Now the wait continues and I have gone through my words of comfort. I will need to keeping reading them to keep my sanity! It has been 64 days from LOSC and still no TA.

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

More Comforting Words

Romans 8:28 And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them.

Psalm 118:24 This is the day the LORD has made. We will rejoice and be glad in it.

Isaiah 26:3 You will keep in perfect peace all who trust in you, all whose thoughts are fixed on you.

Monday, June 1, 2009

More Comforting Words

Psalm 33:20-21 We put our hope in the LORD. He is our help and our shield. In him our hearts rejoice, for we trust in his holy name.

Nahum 1:7 The LORD is good, a strong refuge when trouble comes. He is close to those who trust in him.

Isaiah 41:13 For I hold you by your right hand - I, the LORD your God. And I say to you, Don't be afraid, I am here to help you.

Taking Action

This is a copy of a post from one of my Yahoo groups!

As some of you know, under the Hague Convention, children are required to be up to date on all immunizations recommended by the CDC prior to entering the US. In my opinion, for many reasons, it is both cruel and unethical to require newly adopted children to possibly receive several vaccines prior to entering the US. There are reports of children receiving 6-7 vaccines just a couple of days prior to boarding their flight to the US. Below you will find the letter I found and adapted concerning this issue. If you are an adoptive parent, future adoptive parent or a US citizen who finds this requirement as ludicrous as I do, may I ask a favor? Would you please copy and paste this letter, inserting your own personal information, and send it to the Congressional representatives for your state? Not only are you exercising your right as a US citizen, you are helping to protect the health and well being of our children.
You can find the contact information for your state here...
Dear (____________________________),
My name is _______________. I am a soon-to-be adoptive Mother of a______________ born in the People's Republic of China. I am writing this letter to ask your office to both quickly and diligently work toward correcting a Congressional oversight in the Hague Convention that effects internationally adopted children. This oversight requires immigrant children adopted from Hague Convention Countries be up to date on all Center for Disease Control (CDC)recommended vaccines prior to entering the United States.
When the Hague Convention was passed, new regulations were issued in the Federal Register on October 30, 2007 at 72 FR 61301. The amendments revised the Department of State regulations to provide for intercountry adoptions that will occur pursuant to the Hague Convention. This provided a new definition of"child" under the Immigration and Nationality Act, amending 101(b)(1)(F) and adding 101(b)(1)(G). Public Law 105-73 provided the exception for newly adopted children from the vaccination requirement by allowing for a written affidavit from the child's soon-to-be physician in lieu of receiving vaccinations abroad. While revising the law for the Hague's implementation, in an apparent oversight, Congress forgot to extend this part of the process. As stated above, this oversight requires these newly adopted children become up to date with all of the CDC's recommended vaccines before they will be granted entry into the US.
It is important to note most of these children come from orphanages in developing countries. Various countries may have given the orphans anywhere from several to no vaccines. Often they have received vaccines relevant to diseases in their country and not required by the CDC. Some may have no medical record or an outdated record of the vaccines they received at the orphanage. Without Public Law 105-73 in place, the newly adopted children would be required to receive the vaccinations again.
As you can imagine, adoption is a very complicated process both emotionally and physically. Taking this into considering, these vulnerable children may be required to receive a mega dose of vaccines all in one day, just days before they board the lengthy international flight home to the U.S. To date, there are reports of children receiving 6-7 injections at their medical exam in Guangzhou China in order to comply with this requirement. In my opinion, this is both cruel and unethical.
As is the case with many children, they may be medically fragile at the time these vaccinations are required. As the law stands, there is no available exemption for anyone, including the medically fragile. If the family wants to return to the United States with their child, the injections are mandatory without exception.
It is important to note, as the law stands today, these vulnerable children are now the only class of U.S. immigrants that are given no possible exemption from their overseas visa immunization requirements. All other U.S. immigrants are allowed the possibility of exemption due to medical necessity or religious or moral grounds. Can it really be this is a result of the Hague Convention which was intended to actually provide MORE protections for these children?
The best way to handle vaccinations, and the way it was done pre-Hague, was once at home the child's Pediatrician orders a blood test to discover the child's titer antibody levels. With test results in hand, the Pediatrician recommends only those vaccines that are shown to be missing, on a safe time schedule.
We ask that your office quickly seek to extend the previous exemption that allowed adopted children to postpone their immigrant visa vaccination requirements until they are safely at home. Such an exemption would be similar to 101(b)(1)(G) Public Law 105-73 which provided the exception for newly adopted children to the vaccination requirement by allowing for a written affidavit in lieu of receiving vaccinations abroad before receiving an immigrant visa.
Thank you for your consideration in this matter. I look forward to your prompt and timely response. The well being of some of America's newest and most vulnerable citizens depends on it.
citizen of the great state of (__________) and adoptive parent

Sunday, May 31, 2009

More Comforting Words

Joshua 1:9 I command you - be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid or discouraged. For the LORD your God is with you wherever you go.

2 Corinthians 4:117-18 For our present troubles are small and won't last very long. Yet they produce for us a glory that vastly outweighs them ad will last forever! So we don't look at the troubles we can see now; rather,we fix our gaze on things that cannot be seen. For the things we see now will soon be gone, but the things we cannot see will last forever.

Psalms 37:24 Though they stumble, they will never fall, for the LORD holds them by the hand.

Saturday, May 30, 2009

More Comforting Words

1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 Always be joyful. Never stop praying. Be thankful in all circumstances, for this is God's will for you who belong to Christ Jesus.

James 1:5 If you need wisdom - if you want to know what God want you to do - ask him, he will gladly tell you. He will not resent your asking.

Isaiah 58:11 The LORD will guide you continually, watering your life when you are dry and keeping you healthy, too. You will be like a well-watered garden, like an ever flowing spring.

Matthew 11:28 Then Jesus said, "Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest."

Hebrews 13:5 Don't love money; be satisfied with what you have. For God has said, "I will never fail you. I will never abandon you."

Friday, May 29, 2009

More Comforting Words

2 Corinthians 1:3-4 All praise to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. He is the source of every mercy and the God who comforts us. He comforts us in all or troubles so that we can comfort others. When other are troubled, we will be able to give them the same comfort God has given us.

John 14:27 I am leaving you with a gift - peace of mind and heart. And the peace I give you isn't like the peace the world gives. So don't be troubled or afraid.

Jeremiah 29:11 For I know the plans I have for you, says the LORD. They are plans for good and not for disaster, give you a future and a hope.

Proverbs 3:5-6 Trust in the LORD with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding. See his will in all you do, and he will direct your paths.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

More Waiting and So Comforting Words!

Well it has been 51 day since we go the call for our LOSC and no word yet. China is celebrating the Dragon Boat Festival this Thursday thru Sunday. This mean none will hear anything until Monday next week. If I count the days from the date on the LOSC it has been 57 days. I try not to pay attention to the Rumor Queen but it is said that it takes 58 days from LOSC to TA. So I am hopeful to hear next week.

So to pass the time I thought I would add some God's Word Gives Comfort to His People. (New Living Translation)

Philippians 4:6-7 Don't worry about anything; instead pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank him for all he has done. If you do this, you will experience God's peace, which is far more wonderful than the human mind can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live as you live in Christ Jesus.

Psalm 46:1 God is our refuge and strength, always ready to helping times of trouble.

1 Peter 5:6-7 So humble yourselves under the mighty power of God, and in his good time he will honor you. Give all your worries and cares to God, for he cares bout what happens to you.

Saturday, May 16, 2009


Psalm 37:5 Commit your way to the Lord, Trust also in Him, and He will do it.
I read this in another blog. and thought this would help with the wait.

I am a numbers person and so I decided to see how much time has passed since our LOSC was issued. It has been 46 days since the issue date of LOSC. It has been 37 days since it was at our house. It has been 19 days since it was sent back to HAS.

It is hard not to read about delays due to the flu virus but I just read and have hope that things will come in time. I have put my full trust in him and it will be when it will be. I always try to find the positives. Hubby has more time to heal. Will not have to take daughter out of school. I will get to see my oldest niece graduate from high school. I can only hope and pray that my parents will get to see their new grandson on their 50th wedding anniversary. That would probably be the best gift ever. They have been so supportive and understanding.

I actually had one night that I did not think about adoption. My daughter had her dance recital on Thursday. She had 5 different dance/cheers to remember and did really good. Her first one was cheer, next was ballet, third was tap, fourth was hip hop and final was jazz. She has made so much improvement over the last three years. So from the time I picked her up from school to the recital we were busy doing hair, makeup and dressing for the show. She had to change clothes twice backstage without Mom's help. She look great! Thanks to the helper from school. This helped with the waiting that day.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

LadyBugs, LadyBugs

My daughter and I saw two ladybugs today.

See what I have found about LadyBugs and Adoption:

"Many adoption websites, books, announcements, and other items feature ladybugs. Interestingly enough, this has no roots in Chinese culture (although they are red). The basic story is this: Several years ago in China, as the international adoption programs were beginning to take off, there was a fall season where the ladybug population grew unusually large. This was thought to be a lucky charm for those that were adopting, so now whenever ladybugs are seen, it is said that more beautiful children are being referred to wonderful waiting parents and families."

"From this incident the legend has grown, so that now ladybugs represent happy adoptive families being united with beautiful children in China. Additionally, on Shamian Island in Guangzhou, there is a very special shop a shop catering to adoptive families called The Ladybug Corner. Many adoptive families visit this shop for souvenirs of their journey. Many other China adoption stores, websites, books, announcements and other items feature ladybugs, which have become synonymous with successful Chinese adoptions."

Saturday, April 25, 2009

I-800 Approval

Well that wait is over. Now it is hurry to wait again. The next piece of paper is called an Article 5 Letter.

This is the process for Article 5 Letter. After USCIS provisionally approves the I-800 and transfers the case to Consulate Guangzhou through National Visa Center (NVC). We sent a copy of the approval with DS-230 visa application, copy of the growth and medical reports, original signed LOSC and a passport sized photo of child to our agency. Agency delivers to Consulate Guangzhou. Upon receipt of all required documents and fees, Consulate Guangzhou provisionally adjudicates the DS-230. Consulate Guangzhou signs the LOSC and issues and signs an Article 5 Letter.

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Receipt/Acknowledgement Notice

Well it only took seven days to get from Chicago to Lee Summit, MO. They received the I-800 4/10/09 and the receipt was dated 4/17/09. Now it is sit and wait longer for provisional approval. Well I got half the birthday taken care so I have been busy during this wait time. I thought I would put a timeline in this entry.

Received referral 11/07
LOI sent 12/07
PA received 2/07/08
DTC 12/03/08
LID 1/14/09
LOSC/LOA 4/6/09
I-800 approval 4/20/09 Update 4/24/09
Article 5 ?

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Still Waiting for I-800 approval

Still have not heard about our I-800 approval. Wait we will! This has given me time to catch up or should I say start the birthday bonanza with our families. We as least have a one birthday a week now until Mid-July. Then they are sporadic until around Christmas time. After the end of January, it is sporadic until end of April again. So you can see I need this waiting time to do the Birthday rush! Especially if we are traveling during this rush time. I hope to have them all taken care of by the end of this week. I really need to start packing and getting ready for this trip. It will be here before we know it. Better get busy and wait!

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Cast Off and Dr Appt

Hubby got his cast off yesterday! He is now in a walking boot. Physical therapy will start soon. Hopefully he will be limited crutches by the time we travel for Theo. I survived spring break and the number of doctor appointment this week for my daughter. I guess I was getting ready for when Theo gets home and the number of appointment we will have. Daughter is doing great. No braces until her six year old molars are level with the rest of teeth. That could be this fall or next spring but coming soon. This mean bone graph sooner than later for her. Her 6 year old check went well. She is in the 40% for height. After 6 years of being in the 25% we jumped up! Still predicting that she will be 5' 2" to 5' 4". This mean she will be as tall as Mom. I was hoping she would get the tall genes but no such luck.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Lady Bug Sighting

We saw a lady bug today while my daughter and I were visiting the zoo today. Once we got home the boards were listing a bunch of LOA/LOSC today! Such happy news! I know the adoption boards were going to be busy with news since we sighted a lady bug! Now if I could get some good news I would be excited.

Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Daughter's ENT appointment

Yesterday I took my daughter for her quarterly ENT appointment. Everything went great. She had a hearing test and her hearing is normal! Her ears look good. She still has on tube left in her left ear. She lost the right one about six months after placement. This is her second set of tubes. We hope she will not need another set. It is strongly looking this way!!!!! The scar tissue does not seem to be affecting her hearing. We will be being see him again in July. I even made an appointment for Theo at the same time. I really am hoping to have him by the time of the appointment.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Happy Easter!

Well this will be the last Easter without our son. I really missed the idea of having two kids to wake me up to say the Easter Bunny was here and to have each one the kids sing at church services. Yesterday was hard to see the 3 years at the Easter egg hunt knowing my son is not with us yet! I am not much one for tears but I was babbling and crying until it was time for my daughter turn. It helped that the neighbor's son and my daughter were together for the egg gathering. We even colored eggs together later that day. Their son is 6 months older than my daughter so we have done a lot of things together. They can't wait to add another boy to the cud-de-sac. It is currently dominated with girls. Poor Theo he will be dominated by girls on my side of the family. He will be grandchild #11 and grandson #4. I will have the youngest girl and the youngest boy when we go to my parent's 50 Wedding anniversary party this summer. Atleast I know we will be home with him prior to the party and he will get to be included in the family photo. Hubby side of the family is balanced on the other side. He will be grandchild #6 and grandson #5. That is right my daughter is the only girl on my husband side. And yes boys you are giants to the little princess. I do not think any of the boys are below 6 foot anymore. It is hard to believe the third one will be 21 in a couple of weeks.

Just wanted to say Happy Easter to everyone!

Thursday, April 9, 2009


I got the I-800 form off to Chicago today. I was up late last night making sure all the documents were filled out right. I made sure everything was scanned for verification. Hoping the holiday will not slow down things too much. We start spring break tomorrow! We have a ton of doctor appt set up for everyone. Did not plan it this way it is just how it happens. DD see her ENT every 3 months, we have her 6 year old check and her 6 month dentist appointment. Hubby gets his cast off next Friday. He is looking forward to that! He only had it on for 2 1/2 weeks. Next he will have a walking boot. Well I better get some sleep. Do it now while I still can!

Monday, April 6, 2009


Yeah! The day after I finally decided to post about our long wait for LOSC(hence the "81 Days" post), it came! I guess whining helps and 8 is our new lucky number or we will make it his lucky number. We've been super busy with our lives. This week is Library week at my daughter school so I had signed up to read today and it was also the parent volunteer meeting so it was late morning that I saw a message on my cellphone. You could of knocked me over with a feather. Or maybe the sinus infection caused that! I now have a lot of paperwork to do. Time to destroy another forest!

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Day 81

I always thought seven was my lucky number. My bio daughter was 7lbs and 7 oz. at birth. She was the 7th granddaughter born on my side of the family. I started labor on the 7th even though she was born on the 8th. But waiting for LOA has turned into the 80's. So lets see what I can make with 8. My daughter is the 8th grandchild on my side. Her birthday is on the 8th. The day of both my husband and I birthday can be divided by 2 to get 8. Our son will be the 8th boy if you combine husband 4 nephews and my 3 nephews. You divide the years we were married before daughter was born by 2 you will get 8. (even thought we were days shy of 17 years)

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Current Pic's

Day 77

Today is day #77 in our wait! It is a little tough since another family who has the same LID announced that they have LOA on the 75th day. Wait we will! On the bright side, hubby fractured his heel on March 10th and so the wait is better for him. He had the stitches taken out today and the heel looks great! He finally has a cast! The cast will come off on the 17th of this month. He will transition to a walking boot but can't place weight on it for a couple of more months.