Thursday, December 28, 2006
I went to the mailbox today and was surprised to find two packages addressed to Lexi. I know this sounds strange but I just stood there shocked. Packages addressed to our daughter! Somehow, it made the whole adoption more real. I came inside and gently opened them wondering who had sent them. Inside the first package was a ladybug finger puppet. I still couldn't figure out who they were from. So I opened the second on and found a beautiful stuffed ladybug. Then I figured it out. The packaging invoice had my sister's name on it. Only then did I remember that Kelly had posted that she and Shirley had mailed a package to us.
Thanks so much Shirley and Kelly. This was a great surprise and really meant a lot to me! The ladybugs are soooo soft and snuggly.
Wednesday, December 27, 2006
And this is where we want to be... the matching room. Once we're here, well be ever so close to referral time.
(And by the way, these pictures are courtsey of Love Without Boundaries.)
Monday, December 25, 2006
This afternoon we went to see "Pursuit of Happyness" (great feel good movie!) and then went to dinner at the China Buffet. I thought it was a perfect thing to do. Next year, we'll do it again and take Lexi. I taught the owner's daughter several years ago. They always speak to us and ask about when we are going to China. They gave us a 2007 calendar with the great wall on it today. It actually has all the months on it! :) When we opened our fortune cookies, I told Geoff it was going to say "Your fortune is that you will get a May referral". Funny thing was, Geoff's had the pronunciation for May on it. Mine had April. Either month would work for us.
Sunday, December 24, 2006
Sunday, December 17, 2006
This ornament is from Geoff's mom. She brought it to us on one of their visits this year. It's so cute! Here we are... a cute little snowman-family!
Saturday, December 16, 2006
On of the topics on our DTC group has been Christmas traditions. I've been reading lately but not posting so much. It's such a busy time of year. Well, several people have posted about having Christmas trees in their daughter's room and I've been thinking about having one for Lexi. This morning I mentioned it to Geoff and told him that we needed a pink tree for Lexi. (I actually saw a hot pink one last weekend in Jacksonville... along with a lime green one and a banana yellow one at the Macy's children's' shoe in dept.). I told him that we could decorate Lexi's tree with all the socks and hair bows that we have for her. Later on in the day, he announced to me that he was going to town. When he came home he had this tree... a perfectly white tree to match her room. We immediately put it together and decorated it with Lexi's things. We topped it off with one of the hats for her. She better like hats!! It now glows in her room with the first blanket we bought her and some of the cute stuffed animals we have for her. I sure have a wonderful husband and Lexi is surely bound to be spoiled rotten by her daddy. This has been a great Christmas Spirit day!
Monday, December 04, 2006
Monday, November 27, 2006
Sometimes I feel like a love sick teenager. Remember those days, where every anniversary was noted? Those we've been dating for a month, two months, etc... I've become acutely aware of time passing as we wait and today is 9 months down. Just imagine how thrilled we'd be at this point in a pregnancy. The fact is I am somewhat excited with every month that passes and even every day for that matter. So here we are hopefully past the half-way mark.
I find the most silly things to divert my attention. Yesterday I discovered that my milkweed plants have aphids. Naturally, I began looking for ladybugs in hopes that they will help me with these little pests. I found 4 ladybugs! But two of them were in a spider's nest. I have a nice little food chain going on in my flowerbed. I rescued one of the ladybugs from the evil spider and then began talking to it about eating the aphids. So this is what I've come down too? Talking to insects in the great effort to take my mind off the wait? Today there is one little ladybug out there to remind me that good things are to come and silly as it may sound I find it very comforting to know that ladybugs have found my house. I promise, I'm not losing my mind. I'm just a bit paper pregnancy stir-crazy.
Sunday, November 26, 2006
I made these little poems to send out to some friends and family. I mailed them out to all of the East Coast Girls. I figured what the heck... the wait has been "poopy" so why not have some fun! Actually, Melissa at work found the poem, then I put my scrapbookin spin on it. Fun stuff! You can bet that if I only had one class, I would have given these out to the kids but with over 600, it is just impossible!
Saturday, November 25, 2006
And now that we are home, this has been my spot all afternoon... reading a book that is supposed to help me with my dissertation SINCE I'm revising yet, ONCE AGAIN!!
Oh, as far as Geoff's tattoo... not. We took a taxi all the way to Hart and Huntington at the Palm's Hotel. The tatoo he would have gotten without Lexi's name on it was between $400 - $600 dollars. Just let me go on record saying "I told him so!!". He could have gotten one a lot cheaper locally. At least common sense won over. So a synopsis of my take on the "bests" of our trip:
Best Free Show: Big Elvis
Best Buffet: The Buffet at Belliago
Best Shopping Mall: The Desert Shops at the Aladdin
Best Free Mood Music: Wayne, the Saxaphone player and his side kick at Houdini's at the Monte Carlo (Wayne's Rules: No boy bands, No girl bands, No rap, No Celine Dion)
Best Free Dance Music: Some "place" at the New York, New York
Best Way Around Vegas when you don't want to walk: Taxi (for a group, it far beats the monorail!)
Best Eating Value: The Breakfast Deal at the Barbary Coast $3.45 for 2 eggs, bacon, hashbrowns, and toast! Delicious!
Sunday, November 19, 2006
It's the night before we leave and I think I am only now getting excited about the trip. Not so for Geoff... he absolutely loves Las Vegas. Why?? I have no idea. He really doesn't gamble that much but he loves to watch others. He'd probably love to go visit the King of Cars with his Blue Genie!! He's been saying that he is going to go to Hart and Huntington and get a dragon tattoo with Lexi's name on it. We'll see if that happens or not. I love the idea because he is not just getting a tattoo for a tattoo's sake. He has actually thought the process out. The Dragon in Chinese is a symbol of strength and protection. Knowing my dear hubby, a tattoo is something he would not do on a whim. It's something that he would do solely for himself. I'll keep you posted.
Saturday, November 18, 2006
After only staying with Samantha one night and dealing with morning and afternoon traffic I opted to get a room close to the conference. (Again hubby to the rescue in getting me a room and helping me find the hotel.) This helped a lot and allowed me more time at the conference with a LOT less time driving. It was just a bit lonely being all by myself but I did learn a lot at the conference and even came home with a few free t-shirts!
Saturday, November 04, 2006
It's chilly tonight in the southeast! It's really a big deal as we run our air conditioners most of the year. We don't really get 4 seasons. We get warm and hot most of the year. Well with a chill in the air, Geoff felt sorry for Sable and Patches because we recently had them groomed and we always keep their hair very short. So he broke out their sweatsuits. I can't help it, it just makes me laugh to see them in doggie clothes. However, once they were dressed, I immediately thought of Pirate (Stephe's adorable little pup!) He gets to dress up all the time and he is just plain adorable!
So Pirate... let's play the dating game! Would you rather go out with Sable???
Sable has the little pouting thing going . Neither girls have much dating experience. Sable loves to play with doggie toys. She is very independent except for her slightly un-natural fixation on one toy at a time habit. (Hopefully if chosen as Pirate's cyber-date, she won't turn into a stalker-dog!) Sable is more of a Southern Belle in distressed type as she often will see if someone will feel sorry for her and put her on the bed so that she doesn't have to expend much energy and jump up on her own. Her best asset is her beautiful, cute face!
Patches has the coy "check me out!" look going on. She is the snuggling type. She just loves to be cuddled and petted. Patches loves to snatch up Sable's toys and play the "see if you can get it game". She doesn't really like toys, just likes to mess with Sable. She is very smart and can track a squirrel with just a quick sniff but she has the most irritating habit of licking. If she isn't licking herself... she is licking whoever is touching her. Bad habits aside, she is a loyal companion .
So Pirate... what do you think? Need a date?? And can you ever decide between these two gorgeous southern belles?
Friday, November 03, 2006
Thursday, November 02, 2006
Great News! CCAA updated their site to reflect referrals through Aug. 25, 05. They actually covered a few more days than last time. Could this be the beginning of a slight speed up in the process? I sure hope so! I think having Carol's Rose Colored Glasses is working already!
I just love watching people post referral photos! Our agency got 6 referrals today. The babies were between 8 - 12 months old. They don't expect them to travel until early January. If you want to see a real cuties, check out this website.
Oh, I can't wait until it's our turn!!
Wednesday, November 01, 2006
Tuesday, October 31, 2006
I couldn't resist this one last post. Jenna and Charlie brought my great-nephew trick-or-treating tonight. Poor Josh hates to have his picture taken so I opened the door and snapped a picture. Then I felt bad afterwards because the poor baby was just totally embarrassed to be dressed as Sponge Bob! He finally started acting like himself after they took off his costume. Seeing Josh tonight reminded me of something that I haven't really thought of. Josh is one of the reasons for Lexi. We were perfectly happy (so we thought) not having a baby until Josh was born and we babysat him. It was like a light went off in us and gave me a glimpse of what a great Dad Geoff would make. I had long suppressed my longing for another child and honestly was afraid to unleash that feeling again. Within two months Geoff had convinced me that it was possible and that we COULD and WOULD find a way. Here we are almost 4 years later. So I give you "Sponge Bob-Josh Pants!"
As you can see, our SP wraps packages that are not short of tape! I had to use a knife to get in them and put some elbow grease behind it. She must have gotten lessons from my daughter Sara!
Turns out, our secret pal was no "stranger"! Ours was Carol and Bill! How exciting and funny! We've been buying for each other all this time! This is after we opened everything. The package included two dresses, a pants outfit, a pad of stickers with Lexi's name on a bunch of different stickers (something we thought we'd never see because everything we have seen with Lexi spelled on it has the e at the end), a cute little ladybug sign, and an Infant-to-Toddler feeding set! (This is ultra nice! We have a modern type dining room set that has a counter-top height table and tall chairs. This will be perfect Lexi so she'll be at our height!) It felt like opening packages at Christmas. The outfits had a special note that explained the outfit choices.
There was a cute blue jean outfit was for "shopping for "Bling" with Mommy! I'm sure my fellow Precious Pandas would love this!
This daisy dress is for "the perfect little tea party for the THREE" of us.
A ladybug dress for "twirling for Daddy!" It's so adorable!
This sign says "County Your Blessings". I love the ladybugs of course! And everytime I see it, I'll be reminded of my wonderful secret pals and what a blessing they are and have been to us!
Included in the package with instructions to open last were a pair of glasses. I was certainly confused of this item until I read the reveal letter. At the very end of a very nice letter was a the statement "I hope my rose-colored glasses serve you well!" Carol has been the most positive person on our Yahoo Group. She swore up and down last spring that they would be going to get Emily this fall even as the wait grew longer and longer! She kept refering to her "Rose colored glasses". I have to say I'll HAPPILY and GRATEFULLY wear them. I put them right on! Don't they look so nice with my new haircut! I'll have to try to not sit on these in the car! :)
I also had to post this picture of the mess Sable made with the tissue paper that wrapped the outfits. My title reflected how I felt like it was Christmas... well, Sable agreed. This is what she loves to do with Christmas paper. She had a ball!
Carol and Bill leave for China in the morning. I am so happy for them. I can't wait to hear Emily stories. I also can't wait to introduce our daughters one day. We will go to the Mid-West to meet them one day. We have been so blessed and I hope they can somehow know how much we love and appreciate them.
Oh, and there was one more thing. It was a feather decorated with beautiful ribbons tied with heart in the middle. It had a poem next to it. I'll finish this post with it. I teared up reading it and can just feel our special connection. It just gives me chills.
An Angel's Touch...
The other day I looked above
and saw an Angel near
I asked for a favor for someone I love
and hoped my message was clear.
let my Friend see
She's loved so very much
will you promise me
to let her feel your touch.
The Angel spoke and moved my way
That's when it's feather fell...
"This gift is yours to
give her this day,
It proves my promise well."
So sweet! Thank you Carol and Bill from the bottom of my heart!
Here it is Halloween 2006. So what's it like at our house tonight? Interesting! Geoff is at the front door stalking for trick or treaters. Not to scare them or anything, just to keep them from ringing the doorbell and driving the dogs nuts. Of course, we have them in the bedroom chewing on a chewstick.
When we do get trick or treaters, he lets me know and we both go to the door. It drives Geoff crazy when they skip us! He cracks me up because he NEVER, EVER comes home without first turning on the tv but tonight, he's been too involved with the trick or treaters. Before the kids started coming we agreed to give them 4 pieces of candy but when the kids come and he grabs a handful of the candy!
This has been fun. We actually got to tell the people we "Booed" who we were. The funny thing was they had NO IDEA!
We had a couple come to our house with about a 9 month old baby dressed as a baby bear. So how do you know when you are ready for a baby? When you ooh and awh over the baby bear and want to tell them that this is our last Halloween without Lexi and to come on in and see the nursery. (I wanted to... but I didn't!)
Monday, October 30, 2006
My right hand.
My left hand.
See the callus on my right hand near my wrist? It really hurts too. I've noticed that the more I blog, check my Yahoo groups, and read other's blogs, the worse it gets. I use the computer all day at work but I don't think that's the cause of my callus. I'm trying to use a mouse now instead of the pad on the computer. Maybe I need to invent some kind of hand/wrist wrap to avoid disfiguring of hands for extreme Internet addicts. Of maybe start my own 12 step program. Who would of thought adoption would lead to this?? I can see it now... Lexi, your mother has odd shaped hands and carpel tunnel syndrome from waiting for you!
Sunday, October 29, 2006
By the way, Stephe is so great about researching everything and sharing it on her blog. I read her blog all the time to stay up to speed on various topics. She thinks of things that I probably won't think of until after our referral. I'm more of a fly by the seat of my pants kind of planner.
Tuesday, October 24, 2006
This is Geoff with Kate. Kate wrapped Geoff around her little finger in no time flat! She had him reading with her and drawing. She's such a great little artist.
This is a group photo of Susan, Wendy, me and her darling daughters. We had the best afternoon. I hated to leave. I can't wait until we can do this again.
And here is Geoff with baby Dan a few weeks ago when we went to Atlanta to see Samantha, Dan and the baby. He's such a cute-pie. I just love to see Geoff with little kids. He's going to be such a fantastic dad!
Monday, October 23, 2006
Of the 8 caterpillars, I only found 4 chyrsallis'. The rest must of crawled off somewhere so I couldn't find them. There's another one that is getting close to hatching. You can tell because the of the difference in color. This is a picture of one that was taken about a week ago.
This is the same one almost ready to hatch! This is just the coolest thing! I sure hope these babies make their way to Mexico for the winter!
Sunday, October 22, 2006
It's funny all the things we (as in the adoption community) do to make the time pass the wait. Our Jan. DTC Yahoo Group has begun another Secret Pal Swap for those of us who wanted to continue having a SP. Orginally, we thought we'd have our daughters by now so the first SP swap was due to end in November. So of course, I signed up!
Yesterday, I got my first package from my new SP. This month's theme was "Toys to Take to China". My SP did such a great job! Everything is just perfect for taking along to China. I have to say she made my day yesterday. I was sort of down in the dumps over the seemingly ever increasing wait and was feeling a bit under the weather. It really helped lift my spirits!
Saturday, October 14, 2006
So off we go to the next neighbor. I quietly walk to the door where ANOTHER dog barks at me but at least this one was inside! I put the package down, rang the door bell and ran like crazy to the car. Again, no one was home! That just took the fun out of my booing.
We came home watched some tv and about an hour later went back out to check to see if the packages had been discovered. YES!! Not as much fun as having them home like I was when my package arrived but still fun. I can't wait to see what happens!
When we started the adoption process I think we were just so happy to have have an avenue to have a child together that we didn't really foresee what would lie ahead. There have been so many ups and downs. It took us 6 months to prepare the dossier. That was unexpected. I thought it would be a breeze. I keep thinking back to the homestudy process... why on earth did they make us do so many things to prepare for the baby??? The baby gate is my biggest complaint. It's right in the kitchen blocking off the laundry room. Every time I go in there it's like a huge reminder that we don't have a baby. I asked Geoff to take it down last week but he hasn't done it yet.
Another thing that is a constant reminder of no baby are the blasted outlet covers that Geoff bought... he didn't buy the cheapy kind that pop right out. These are Mommy and Daddy proof as well. I can't even get them off. And when I do manage to get one off, I've been tossing them in the trash. I'll be using the ones my Secret Pal gave me instead. Then there are the cabinet door locks. I hate those too! But considering it took my Dad about 4 hours to get them installed, they will never be removed. I also had to redo all the cabinet arrangements for the homestudy and move the knives and sharp objects to the highest shelf. All of this just seems to be an unnecessary step until we actually have a referral. Then they should check the house. We've had all of this in place a year now and at the current rate of referrals, I won't be anytime soon that we will actually need these changes in our house.
And of course, there is the nursery. I go in there at least once a week and ask Geoff where the baby is. Yesterday, we had our Fall Festival at school. I hate these things as does every other teacher in the school. They feed us pizza before it starts and a bunch of us were eating and talking. One of the girls told me that Lexi wasn't going to just be our baby, she was going to be the whole schools. Everyone is waiting for our baby. I thought it was a very sweet thing to say.
I think I'm in a funky mood today because I finally took the time to read my Yahoo group posts and one woman posted that she had 8 months of waiting behind her. (We have 7 1/2) Then she said that she thought she had 10 more months of waiting. I can't even entertain the thought of 10 more months. I just CAN'T. I keep thinking that referrals will speed up and that we only have until March for our referral. That I can handle. When I allow myself to think about the wait going to 18 months, I just go into denial mode. I know I'm rambling but hey, this is my blog and it's for my thoughts and today I just feel the need to purge all these negative thoughts from my brain.
Friday, October 13, 2006
Last night, I was sitting in my recliner watching an old episode of "Ray" when the door bell rang. After getting past our fierce dogs , I opened the door to find no one in sight. I finally looked down and found a Halloween Basket full of goodies! At first, I thought it must be from my school Secret Pal but then I thought, no... she has already "gifted" me for October. Well, the basket contained a poem that explained it all.
The Phantom Ghost has come to town,
To leave goodies you have found.
If you do not wish a curse to fall
You must continue this ghostly call.
First, post this ghost where it can be seen
And leave it there till Halloween.
This will scare other visiting ghosts away.
Be sure to participate, don't delay.
Second, make two treats,
Two ghosts, and
Two notes like this.
Deliver it to two neighbors that might have been missed.
Don't let them see you, be sneaky, no doubt...
(And make sure they put their Booed Ghosts out!)***
Next, you will have only one day to act, so be quick!
Leave it at the doors where the ghost has not hit!
Deliver it at dark when there is no light...
Ring the doorbell and run, and stay out of sight!!!
And last but not least, enjoy the season.
Don't worry, be happy for all the right reasons.
Be cool, have fun and remember, don't be seen!
Share the Spirit of Halloween!!
It was so much fun!! Unfortunately, I had our Fall Festival for school tonight and couldn't exactly make the one night turn around for the "Booed" chain but I WILL be "Booing" two fellow neighbors tomorrow night!!
I just love stuff like this!!!
Tuesday, October 03, 2006
Some of the girls brought some gift items for the trip. Here's some of my stash!
Let's test my memory (ECG please correct me if I am wrong) .... the notepad, pen and magnets are from Melissa. The candy bar was part of Stephe's goody bag which was filled with all kinds of useful items! (I ate the Butterfinger mini's on the plane on the way home!) The teddy bear, take-out box, fan magnet, chopsticks, and rubber ducky are from Lori (my dear roomie!).
Awww... the Magic Cone is from Sheryl. The magic cone gift made a very funny, memorable moment at Stephe's house. As a group, we had discussed the magic cone and it's usefulness (OR NOT) in China. Sheryl ordered us all one for our trip and of course, about made us pee our pants when she gave them to us!!
This is my China Teddy Bear as he is now... wearing my "bling" from Kathy. We wore these all weekend too! We also had tiara's from Hope AND Sheryl.
And of course, this is my dear China Teddy again before I rescued him from Muffin. As soon as I took him out of my suitcase, Muffin tried to claim him as her own. Of course, I had to rescue the poor Teddy!
We ate well also! We had, Texas Salsa from Cheryl, Derby Pies made by Hope from Kentucky, Whoopie Pies made by Kathy from N.H., and a delicious dinner of baked Ziti and meatballs made by Susan from FL. I brought pralines from Savannah Sweets. I had the best Hoagie I've ever tasted in Philly in the market and tasted cannolis for the first time. Yum! I, however, did not taste the China take out lunch that they sold on the streets of Chinatown. It was two flavors (sweet and salty) of rice with meat wrapped in a Lotus leaf and tied up with some kind of string. $1.00. Price was right... but my courage was not.
Our SP has done it again! September's theme was "something to take on the trip to China". Our Pals just had the most useful ideas ever!! They sent us some electrical adapter plugs, an ID security kit, a security neck pouch, baby Orajel, some Johnson's wipes, and a ladybug address book. Wow! This is the perfect gift!! I didn't even have any idea where to get all the travel plugs and the pouch thingy! Agencies advise to use these instead of wallets while traveling to China because although the crime level is low in China, pick-pocketing is common. All of these items will be necessary for the trip. Thanks Secret Pals... you are the best!!