Monday, July 31, 2006

Lots of Baby News....Just Not Our Turn Yet.

Lots of lady bugs!! (ladybugs are good luck and a symbol in China adoption) The recent group of referrals from the CCAA have arrived and the baby pictures are just starting to post. Congratulations to all the families!! I added a link to RQ (china adopt talk). She has posted links to blogs with referrals. Have fun looking at these cutie patooties :)

Sunday, July 30, 2006

This Months Music Choice By Hannah :)

Thursday, July 27, 2006

I thought learning to speak Mandarin was hard...Try China adoption lingo!

As a special ed teacher I am dealing with acronyms and weird lingo constantly, ADHD, EMD, LD etc but I am thinking that the China adoption/ adoption lingo may have special education beat!! The first one "the paperchase", all that is the insane amount of time it takes to get all of the required paperwork together, notarized, authenticated and state sealed. You have to be sure that your LOI (letter of intent, your promise to china to be a good parent) is with all of your paperwork.You are chasing your important papers so you can be DTC ( Date to China). This is the date your paperwork is mailed to China. Once you are DTC you anxiously wait to be LID (Log in date). This is when the CCAA (China Center for Adoption Affairs) actually logs you paperwork in as received. After your LID you patiently wait for your referral. This is the info and picture of your child. After you finally receive and accept your referral you wait a little bit longer for your TA (travel approval). When you travel to China you may go to your child's SWI (social welfare institute) and you will probably stay a few nights at the WS (White Swan hotel). Ok that is just the basics.

While you wait for your child you will hear things like "gotcha day", "forever family", "APC", and "RQ" . Gotcha day is referencing the day you finally meet your child in the flesh! An exciting day for sure, but gotcha kind of sounds like I am going to grab and run. I don't think we will use "gotcha". Next for what ever reason the adoption community calls when a child is adopted they are in their "forever family". Is it me or is this kind of goofy?? I mean really aren't all families forever?? If not, there are a few branches of my family tree I would like to hack off ! ( just kidding family members) We will not be using the goofy forever family thing. APC is an adoptive parenting board on yahoo! It stands for A-Parents-China. A great source of info, but be careful what you say, its not the most open non-judgmental board out there. RQ stands for Rumor Queen, a highly addictive blog that filters rumors about China adoption and more specifically when the next group of referrals are coming.

There is more if you want to post on a adoption board. DD (darling daughter) DH (darling husband) etc. As for the TBG gang our Mandarin is moving along. To be honest we are just working on "baby Mandarin". Hannah and I can now say with confidence baby don't cry, baby don't be scared, Mommy and daddy are here, and I love you. We have a few more lessons and we hope to work on time for bed, go to sleep, eat this , please and thank you :) all parenting essentials. LOL (laughing out loud)

Hope everyone is well,
TBG Gang
(call me if you want to know what the TBG stands for :)

Sunday, July 23, 2006

Running out of steam on this subject...

I was planning on raving about intrusive questions that strangers tend to ask families who have adopted children from other countries. Really, I picked a title for my post and everything. "Who ever said there was no such thing as a stupid question ?" But after ranting about this all week, and even stirring the pot on my "liberal" adoptive parents board I am tired. I guess Chris and I are the type of people who don't ask lots of personal questions of strangers or newly introduced people. Ok, maybe I will blog about this after all.....sorry Patti, I know I have driven you crazy with this:) The first question people tend to ask us is why are we adopting? Kind of personal I guess, and hard to answer. We came to this decision together as a family, but there are lots of reasons why this is the right time for us to grow our family. I still have not come up with a suitable short answer yet. What would happen if someone asked me and I told them I was unable to have anymore children and this is how we wanted to add children to our family?? Would that person suddenly feel like a dope for asking such a personal question ?? People ask for lots of advice on the yahoo adoption boards, and they are a great source of info. But I have to tell you I am amazed weekly about things that people will say and ask families with children from China ( and I am sure any other country where the child is racially different from the parents). The grocery store line seems to be the place for complete strangers to ask personal questions ( its ok for someone to ask how old your child is....I am not a total nut), such as is her father Chinese, how much did she cost ( Not kidding), does she speak Chinese ( particularly an odd question when the child in question is a baby who still takes 2 naps a day etc). I am not sure how nicely I will be able to handle these types of questions from strangers, I realize that it is important for me to model appropriate behavior, but I also have a responsibility to protect my children from rude and invasive questions. And I honestly think I will be able to tell the difference between someone who is interested in international adoption and someone who is just being nosy because the grocery line it too long. Oh well, I was a lot more fired up about this in the beginning of the week.

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Quilt square examples :) 80 more to go......

Ok I have had lots of questions about what the quilt squares, what kind of wish (good of course, NOT inappropriate ML ;)
Anyway here are a few pictures of squares I have gotten so far. Some are fancy, some just have a simple message hand written on a piece of paper. Remember I need a 7x7 inch square and a 1x1 inch square with your message or wish for Sophie. I know you guys can do this!!

Sunday, July 16, 2006

Just a few things.....

No adoption news, sorry :( But I did happen to score the ultimate bargain of the week. We ran into Target to get Ben a new book to read, and as we were cruising through the baby section I spotted a Britax carseat on the end cap with a big clearance sign. There was only one with a little red sticker.....$109!!! This particular carseat runs about $220. I tossed that carseat in the cart faster than you can say "have you heard any news about your baby yet?" I know there are a few of you wondering why I had a cart when we were going to Target for a book, well its Target, you never know what you might find! Here is a picture of Sophie's very safe bargain car seat!!(post if you found a better bargain)

We went to a friends house on Saturday for dinner. Heather and James are also adopting a little girl from China and are anxiously awaiting their travel approval. We had a great time, James is a master burger maker and Hannah had a blast with all of their pets (two dogs and two cats). Hannah loves her animals. Check out Hannah and Murphy snuggling on the kitchen floor!!

Monday, July 10, 2006

Fair Warning!!!

This is fair warning for those of you related to us, I have put my mother in charge of collecting quilt squares and wishes from family members up "North". Did I happen to mention that she is on her summer vacation with L-O-T-S of time to harass all of you. She will be leaving NC Tuesday, my advice would be to go to the store asap and buy a 1/4 yard of your favorite fabric. Then with love and thoughtfulness write or type up a wish for Sophie. (Can't decide on your favorite fabric, well your kids can write up a wish for their new cousin. I need 100 squares!!!) This way when she calls you will be able to say "Sure Fawz, no problem I have Sophie's wish and quilt square right here". Believe me you don't want my mother stalking you!!!

This quilt will be so important to Sophie as she gets older. I want her to know that we have been talking about her, praying for her, even before we saw her sweet face. I read on another adoption blog about a women that had made a quilt for her daughter, most of the squares were from strangers. She was truly saddened that she received few squares from the members of her family. Our family can easily come up with the 85 or so squares that I still need. Just remember Fawz is in charge of these and she will find you!!!!

Have fun shopping for fabric.


Friends are safe from my mothers wrath, unless she has your phone number:)

Thursday, July 06, 2006

Our adoption agency called today......

Well our adoption agency called today.....but it wasn't exactly the call we have been waiting for. I have to say that my heart was leaping out of my chest when Ben came and told me that J from LH was on the phone!!! I had to interrupt J and tell her I was freaking out!! J called from LHAA to ask us if we would be interested in a SN (special need) boy. Living Hope had recently received files for 5 children with varying special needs. Three of the five were boys!! Unfortunately we won't be able to adopt a boy.....this time. All of us, the kids included, are preparing for a little girl. But I have to tell you that getting that phone call today was crazy! I was shaking. Chris said that they must know that I like to be prepared, and that this was my practice run :) I have to be honest I am not sure if I'll ever be prepared for the "phone call" It was nice to hear J's voice from Living Hope, she was kind of giggling. It has to be the best part of her job, calling parents and telling them that she has the file of their possible son or daughter! I can't wait for the next call from Living Hope:)

Monday, July 03, 2006

What to do while we wait......

We are so happy for all the families who have received their permission to travel (TA) and for those who received their referrals this month!! Thank you for posting those pictures. We are a l-o-n-g way from getting our referral. So what do I do while we wait ???? Well I look a cute pictures of sweet Chinese babies waiting for their families to come to China to bring them home. I also visit different blogs and websites that are doing amazing work in China. These organizations and people work with the Chinese government to take care of children. Many of these children have special needs that need serious medical attention, others are in foster care and need financial support to stay with Chinese families until they are adopted. I am going to add their blogs for you all to see. Please visit the love without boundaries website and sponsor a child in China. You can sponsor an operation for a child with heart disease or a cleft palate, there are ways to support children with donations to nutrition and educational programs. Who knows you may sponsor our Sophie.......