Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Happy New Year!!

This is our year, and it feels so good to say it!! While the year has flown by, it still seemed like another year left in limbo, and now we see the not only the light at the end of the tunnel, we can actually see the end of the tunnel.

So as we ring in 2009 here in Dallas, know I am wishing you and your family, health, happiness, prosperity, and hoping all of your dreams come true. Thank you for your friendship, good wishes and blessings!!

So......out with the old, in with the new!!

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Thank you Santa, this is all I wanted!!!

Oh my goodness, all I really wanted was an update on our girl, and I was convinced that was not going to happen until next week. But I came home to the best gift ever.

Look at our girl!!!! I am just head over heels in love with this girl. I think that is a little dimple coming out on one of those cheeks!!! I can't wait to get my hands on her.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Christmas Hearing

Our first hearing is scheduled for Christmas day. So less than a week from now Hayden's birthmother will have to go to court to express her desire for adoption. This is what starts our court process, and then we will hope that we hear nothing. No news is good news under these circumstances. I am sure this will be a very difficult day for her, and I will be hoping that she can find some peace and comfort in her decision. I think she wants a better life for her daughter, and we will do everything to provide that for her. But it will never leave my mind and heart that this women is giving me the most valuable gift ever, and I will never be able to thank her in a way that will suffice, other than to give her baby girl the life that she hopes for her to have.

Tuesday, December 09, 2008

Santa, all I want for Christmas is..............

Here was Sophie and Finley's visit to Santa yesterday!! I just want you to know the one where Sophie looks like she might be talking to Santa.....She is actually asking Santa to take Finely back to the NorthPole with him!! Finely is trying to convince Santa that she is a very good girl, and that she never ever bugs Sophie!!
Yes, I know I am a freak that I took my cockers to a boutique Childrens Store(that I do all of their embroidery) and paid to have our dogs picture taken with Santa. Can you believe how much he really looks like Santa??? He actually loves our dogs!!!

Sunday, December 07, 2008

Happy Birthday Baby

*Yesterday Hayden was 3 months old!!!I am so anxious to see her update, I am certain she will have changed so much. I hope she is smiling now.

* I love etsy Lassiegirl and Pish Posh are two of my favorites. So much to buy, so little money to buy it all.

* I am picking up the dresser I bought for Hayden's room on Wednesday. They painted a very pale pink, and I can't wait to see it in her room. I am almost done with the room, and as soon as it is all complete, I will post some pictures. It has turned out even prettier than I envisioned. My friend came over the other day, and she walked in and said it looked like it was out of a that is a compliment in my book!!

* Hayden's care package arrived last week, so I hope her foster family uses some of the items we sent.

* Went to our first Christmas party on Friday, one down and only 2 to go. We limited the number of parties we rsvp'ed to this year. Did I mention that I am sort of over going to Christmas parties.

* D and I went to a Yoga class today, and I know better than to lay by him....he got me laughing, and the teacher came over at the end of the class and said she was worried that I was either laughing or having a seizure....I was trying to keep quiet. No more Yoga for D, at least not with me:)

* We cleaned all of our flower beds out and mulched all the leaves this afternoon. I feel so much better having that accomplished.

* My Christmas cards are almost ready to go out. I think I should be able to put almost all of them in the mail on Tuesday.

* Just bought Photoshop Elements 7, we will see how it goes. Any advice, please feel free to offer it up.

* We have sent the letter to pull our paperwork out of China. It was time to be done with our China agency. Had planned on waiting until we were home, and give us a few months to decide, but it was time, and a little bittersweet, but I am glad to be cutting our ties with our agency. I wish them the best and hope that things get better for them.

*I owe many phone calls and many thank you notes. I am swamped in embroidery right now with the holidays(my busiest season) and I promise they are coming, I am going to work on checking that off my list this week.

*I sell these great address stamps for a great price on my site and if you stop by take a look, and enter the coupon code "holiday" I will give you a 10% discount on your stamp. These make great holiday gifts as everyone can use one, and mine are one of the best deals on the internet. I can get them to you in about 10 days, so if you want them by Christmas you still have time!

Well that is about all I have working right now here in the great state of Texas. Oh, my good friends are in China right now picking up their twin boys(yes, you heard me right, twin boys)

I am outta here for a bit, I will see you around the neighborhood:)

Sunday, November 23, 2008

So now what?

Mostly we just wait now. We are hoping that we will get an update with pics, video and milestones, but we may not until next month. Our paperwork is there, and now we just wait to hear for our first hearing. But here is a step by step list of whats to come in the next few months. I did steal this from Lisa, and Heather....Thanks

HEARING: 1-3 MONTHS AFTER OUR PAPERWORKD GETS FILED IN TAIWANa) The family court office in the county where the child was born reviews the case/petition and a Judge is assigned to the case.b) The judge reviews and considers the case and schedules a "hearing". Hearings are handled differently depending on the circumstances of the birth family, the judge's schedule, persons representing the birth family and those representing the adoptive family. The time involved in getting a hearing scheduled depends on the judge's schedule (docket) and that of everyone else required to attend.Hearings can result in: The immediate decision to finalize the adoption (though this is rarely the case) or the judge may request more information (again, this is rare). Usually, the hearing simply provides the judge with more information about the case and allows him/her to rule on the adoption with confidence. Most often, the judge's decision (final ruling) happens weeks or even as long as months after the hearing.

Time line for 1st ruling - 1 to 3 months after hearing.2. Part I of Final Decree(First Ruling). Once the hearing has been completed and the judge has had time to review all the information, he/she issues the first part of the Final Decree. This is a short statement signed by the judge that is forwarded to all parties involved (social services organization on behalf of the adoptive family and the birth family) notifying everyone of his/her decision to finalize the adoption. This first part of the Final Decree must go to each party and there is a waiting period of 10 days before any further court action can occur. The birth family has until the end of this 10 day period to change their mind regarding the adoption. Once the 10 day period is passed however, the judge can make the final decree.Time line for 2nd Ruling - 2-6 weeks after the 1st ruling3. Part II of Final Decree (Second Ruling). Once the 10 day waiting period is over (and the court staff finds time!), the second part of the Final Decree is forwarded to all parties. When the second part of the decree is received by your child's social service organization, the court process is DONE!

Time line for official paperwork 2-4 weeks4. Household registration change and immigration requirements. Before the adoptive family travels, a lot must be accomplished by the child's social service organization. All court documents and background info on the child must be officially translated to English and submitted with certain paperwork to AIT. Also, the child must have his/her Visa medical exam which is forwarded directly (unopened) to AIT's immigrant visa office. At some point the child's guardian must file for a household registration change. The household registration is a file located at local government offices in Taiwan that contains certificates and information about each person in Taiwan. Your child's household registration is attached to his/her guardian's file until the adoption has been finalized by the Taiwan courts.

Once the child has been legally adopted in Taiwan, the guardian files with the government office to remove the file from theirs and create a new file showing that the adoptive parent(s) are the new legal guardians.The household registration change takes a day or two or a week depending on the placing organization and the local government office.JOH families are typically given 1 to 3 weeks notice to travel. Adoptive Family receives travel date. Each organization in Taiwan is different in when and how they schedule a travel date. Some wait until all of the above paperwork is filed and then give the family notice to travel quickly. Some schedule the travel in advance, while they work at preparing the above documents.So.. that means that within 4-6 months we can travel to Taiwan to pick our girl up.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Trip to TECO

Okay so this is TECO in Houston(well the 20th floor) Greenway Plaza. You can see there are still some windows out from Hurricane IKE, but it was easy to get there and in and out quickly.....and they were really nice, very unlike my trip to the Chinese Consulate so long ago.
Here is the actual office, and I was one of 3 people in there, walked in handed her my papers, she doublechecked them, wrote my receipt, collected the money, and said to come back in 2 hours. She then asked how old my baby was, and how I was matched with her. I then of course had to show her a picture. She was so sweet about Hayden, and then proceeded to show the other ladies in the office the picture. They were all just telling me what a beautiful girl I had, and what beautiful eyes she had. It was very sweet. When I came back to get the paperwork, they had it ready for me, and as I left they said I would have to stop back by when I got her home so that they could meet her:) Yeah that didn't happen at the Chinese Consulate.

Here is the TECO stamp that you need for your paperwork. I was expecting a sheet on the front, but all of the documents had this stamp for the authentication. The paperwork for this adoption has been so much easier than our paperwork was with China. It is to the point, and clear cut on who needs to do what, and not a lot of duplication.
Our paperwork left for the agency last night with Fed Ex, and should be leaving for Taiwan today!!! So things are going well, and smooth at this point, and we are now looking forward to our first update.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

High Ho, High Ho it's off to TECO I go

Well one last step in the process to get us started in our court process, and that includes a trip to Houston to TECO(Taiwan's version of a consulate) I have to get our paperwork authenticated, so I am headed this afternoon to Houston to spend the night with my sweet MIL, and will be at TECO when they open in the morning to drop off the paperwork and go back to pick it up a few hours later I hope, and then into the FedEx envelope it will go. After a stop at our agency, it should be in Taiwan on Thursday.

I will post the process that we will go through once I am back home. But I don't expect to be hearing much for at least 6 weeks or so. I do think we will be getting an update right before Thanksgiving, so we will get to see how much our girl has grown, and how much she has changed. So we will be looking forward to that update.

So that is all that is going on right now except for the fact that I have started to get really busy with Holiday stuff with my business. I am knee deep in things that need to be embroidered. So I have plenty to keep me busy for the next 6 weeks. We are boxing up our care package, and I will mail it in the next week or so. We think Hayden is probably about 2-3 weeks from being moved to her foster home. So I want to send it, so that it arrives shortly after she moves.

Hope everyone has had a great weekend, and the upcoming week looks good!!

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Thank You

I will never be able to email or write thank yous or call everyone that has been in touch with me the last week. We received so many nice wishes, and congratulations, flowers, was all so overwhelming. You forget how many people care about you.

I truly want to say thank you to each and everyone of you that has been a part of this journey with us. I do not know how I would have ever made it without my friends, the friends that I made, the stories, the blogs, the good and the bad and the ugly. This is really a journey no one understands unless they witness it themselves.

So from the bottom of our hearts please know how important each and everyone of you are, and know how thankful we are to have you in our lives and along for this journey.

We are still just flying high, and looking forward to finishing up our paperwork and getting this court process started.

You can go to You Tube and search Hayden referral and see the video I have of our little Missy.
I think she is already a little dramatic just like her mama!!

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Our turn has finally come!!

For reasons I will not share, I have had to remove our good news. Thank you to all that have sent such lovely messages to us....they have meant so much. I especially would like to thank everyone for their friendship over the last 30 or so months, could not have made it without you. You have helped make this one of the most amazing weeks of my life.............I am a MOMMY!!

I will be going password protected, so make sure to those who know me, and I have communicated with to send me your email so I make sure you can continue along with our is just starting to get to the good stuff!!! I will send you an email letting you know the new address as soon as I get it ready, trying to do it myself, and redecorating my house~piece of cake, new blog~not so much:)

Sunday, November 02, 2008

"i" love you

Look at my newest toy!!! I am in love:) My very sweet husband was feeling bad for me(those who know me, know why) and he came home on Thursday night and surprised me with this little gadget that I didn't even know that I wanted, needed, or couldn't live my life without. Now I understand why everyone that has one says it is amazing, and you can never go back to a regular phone. I am pretty sure this phone would clean my house and do a few loads of laundry if I is that amazing. So thank you to the sweet man I married, it did make me feel better, and now I also have a really cool phone too.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Project Dogway

I bought the dogs pink, not for winter, no, not to keep them warm and dry, mostly because I thought it would be was and it is, not so much to them:)

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

If only I lived in PA.

If I lived in PA or NJ or even NY, I would be driving to the Lilly warehouse sale. Someday, I will actually make it to this preppy crazed shopping experience. I will be in heaven, and I will buy to my preppy hearts content. If you live in the area I highly suggest you high tail it over there and check it out.....I have heard it is amazing. Oh how I love pink and green and boy do I love LP, hail to the Lilly!! They will have really cute little girl clothing as well.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Look what the postman delivered!!

I have been patiently waiting for this pinnie to arrive, and it did today. It far exceeded my expectations. How cute is this pinafore? It is reversible, and I can just see it with jeans, leggings, a long sleeve t-shirt under it, maybe some cute bloomies. I am just in love. It could have only been made better had I been able to monogram it. I bought it here
Ashley's things are really well made, and the fabric is great quality. Trust me when I say that I will be frequenting Lassie girl's shop a lot. I covet many of the things she has on there. Go visit her and let her know I sent you:)

Can't wait to see my sweet girl in this darling dress. It is my favorite thing in her closet right now.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Look what I made.

I have no idea if I will need this or not, but I have always wanted a boppy, and now I have a boppy. You can buy a boppy insert at Jo-Ann's using your 40% coupon, and I have had this old chenille bedspread for about 3 years now waiting to do something with it. Well now I have done something with it. How cute is this cover?? I tell you I don't care if we ever use it, it looks really cute, and right now that is what I care about:) It can just look nice in the nursery.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Is there a twelve step program for this??

I don't think the numbers are that bad if you are already home with your baby, in fact I think you could use a bit more in the way of choices if you are already home. But considering we have no idea when we will be home with a baby this seems a little obsessive. I know you all can make me feel better with some good justifying reasons for having this many accessories when it is all still pretend. That is 19 pairs of shoes and 51 hairbows. I have actually added to those bows since this picture was taken, I now have no room left on the hanger and will need to take off the ones that will be too big for her to wear for a bit so that I have room to add.

Sunday, October 12, 2008

$o You Think You Can Dance???

Yup, I love this show!!
Yup, I love Twitch!!
Yup, I was there Friday night, and I will load some pictures tomorrow for your viewing pleasure. It was awesome, it was better than the show, and they did all the dances I loved on the show.
Yup, it was great!!
Yup, there were a lot of teenage girls there!!
Yup, didn't care, we still had a ton of fun.
Yup, if it comes to your town it is worth the price of the ticket!!

Monday, October 06, 2008

For the love of Monograms

I am absolutely giddy with how the baby's monogram turned out. It is in chocolate brown, and I think it looks amazing. I ordered it from here This is above the daybed I have in her room, and I think it has added a nice little touch to the wall.

Sunday, October 05, 2008

What I love about fall

I love how my entry way looks in the cute is that wreath holder....zoom in so you can see what it says.

Friday, October 03, 2008

Look at that little pumpkin

Sorry, but just had to post this picture. Look at my little girl!!! Is she so cute or what??

Wishing everyone a great weekend!!

Thursday, October 02, 2008

My latest purchase

Okay, over the course of 2 1/2 years of being in the adoption process I have looked at many items that I knew we would need. I have spent hours reading consumer reports on items that have safety standards. From traveling I had seen every make and model of stroller checked on the plane, and been to cities where it is a must to have a really good stroller. So I had long ago determined that I was getting the Maclaren Techno brown and pink stroller for my car. I had already purchased a less expensive Maclaren for D's car.

Well last week while at TJMa## with a friend(not shopping for a stroller) I come across this Peg Perego Pliko M3 stroller, it caught my eye because of the kelly green color. Because I have been looking at strollers on-line I know how much they all cost, and had just relaxed about the price of the stroller I was vying for. But I started pushing this green machine around and feeling how good it felt to drive, and then attempted to fold it up, which happend rather easily(not normally an easy task for any novice such as myself) I knew it was a fairly expensive stroller, and I was loved, loved, loved the color, the features it had and the the ease of driving it. But there was no price to be found....I love free!!

Anyway, we asked one of the sales people and she told us how she was not sure why someone had even removed it from its box(that was priced) and that she would have to find out for us. In the mean time I continued looking at it and experiencing all that it had to offer me. Then the manager came and said he had another particular stroller in the box if I was interested in looking at that was more expensive than the one I am looking at and says it is $149.00......hmmmmmm I am thinking well then how much is the green machine if it is cheaper. He then says, how about I sell it to you for $119? I was in utter shock that I couldn't even speak for a minute, and then the thought raced through my mind that if I jump too quickly he will realize his mistake and tell me the "real" price. Thankfully my friend was there to tell him to mark it and we would take it!!! I almost felt guilty walking to the checkout, as it felt like I was shoplifting I was getting such a great deal. Needless to say the Maclaren pink and brown stroller will be going home with someone else, and I am thrilled with my big new green machine that I can remove the hood on and a big pink monogram will be going on soon:)

Good deal huh? I love when this happens, it doesn't happen often, but when it does it feels sooooo good.

Monday, September 29, 2008

Look who's home

Baby Finley is home now. I flew home with her from Birmingham last Thursday, and she was treated like a famous first class passenger. The flight attendants on AA were beside themselves once they laid eyes on her, and Finley never saw the inside of her bag again! They carried her around the plane, she met the pilots, her mommy was treated to a sweet note and some yummy champagne, and then I got to hold her for landing and carried her right off the plane. Thank you to those girls, they made our flight quick, and fun, and memorable. Finley did great, she loves to be held, and snuggle, but she also likes to play tug a war with your hair(ouch) She and Sophie are getting along great. I think Sophie thinks we bought her a toy... a very small toy. Finley only weighs 4 lbs right now. Finley does not hesitate to let Sophie know that she is done playing, or that she doesn't like the game Sophie has picked(pull Finley by the tail game) and seems to be very capable of taking care of herself:) She is a fiesty little 4 lbs:) We are happy as ever to have two now, and we just need to bring home our last little girl, then we will be full!!

Sunday, September 14, 2008

Nursery work has begun

**good idea on the tulle, I will either figure out a way to secure it so that Miss Priss can't take it from the post, or we will do without the tulle:) Thanks for the suggestion. Things we don't always think about.

**I have always needed this room as my guest room, and once Shiyu left, that room really became available for us to start working on the room. No news right now, sorry didn't mean to stir up any notions, just thought I would share what I am doing right now. I do love to walk in there and sit, so I am happy that we did start**

I have always wanted a chandelier in the nursery, and I was so pleased to have found something close to that vision. I think it adds just that little extra that every princess should have in her room. My biggest challenge to date has been those little pink shades. If you have never looked for them, let me explain that they are not easy to find nor inexpensive, but it was something I had to have, and once D had it installed I just had to smile with such accomplishment. If we sell the house, the chandelier is going too!! The picture does not do it justice. We just need to put it on a dimmer now.

First let me say that I love the crib, I think the crib looks amazing with the pink walls(pink potion if you are curious) but that has not how I have felt for almost 3 years. Let me explain; my nephew is 14, and when my SIL was pregnant with him my MIL so generously bought her all of her nursery furniture. This was the crib, and it was beautiful in his nursery. But I had always envisioned either painted white wood or cream wrought iron for our crib. When we announced that we were adopting both my SIL and MIL immediately and generously offered Michael's crib. They said they had both hoped that it would get used again someday by someone in the family. Well with such a gracious offer how could I turn them down? So we happily accepted and loaded it in my car for the drive back to Dallas. While the practical side of me was happy about not having to buy an expensive crib, and the sentimental side of me was happy to use something that had been bought with so much care and love, there was this other part of me that was saying that I have waited nearly 40 years to have a baby, and like your wedding dress you just want to pick it out hand me downs. Well obviously shortly after we took the crib we realized that we would not be getting a referral in 10-12 months as quoted, so we packed it away for "someday" Well as you can see someday has arrived, and when we painted the room, and put the crib together(no easy task) I just couldn't believe that for one second I considered not using this beautiful crib. I think it looks great and it doesn't even have the bedding yet. I think it will look amazing with the bedding. I am going to do tulle down the post to soften it a bit. I discussed with my MIL of putting some sort of small brass plaque with each childs name and birthday on the crib, and we will hope that someone else in the family will decide to use it as well and we can just keep passing it down.

This is the fabric I chose for the bedding. I love any and all Toile, and so I knew that I would always be using a pink toile once I was ready to start searching. So the toile will be the primary fabric on the bumper(with one panel that will have her monogram on of course) and the long crib skirt, and the choc brown shantung will be the ruffle and ties on the bumper, and the bottom trim of the skirt. I am using a pale pink shantung for the curtains, and I need to find one more complimentary fabric to make basket liners and such. The picture below was what I used as my design inspiration.

I still need a really cute dresser that I want to paint either cream or pale pink, and I will use that as a changing table, planning a trip to Canton to look for that piece. I also have ordered an overstuffed glider for the room. It is so comfortable, and look forward to sitting and rocking our sweet girl in it, and hoping that someday when she is old enough to appreciate it, that she will love her room as much as I do:)

Anyway, it feels a bit strange to be working on this room. But it was time, and it has proved to help me feel a bit better, and make things seem a bit more real.
I have loved buying things for her room, and since I have always known what I wanted the room to look like, I have been buying things for a really long time.
I will take a few pictures of the room once it is completed. I still need to get pictures and such on the wall, and then I have ordered a very large cocoa colored monogram that will go over the day bed in her room. I think that will add to the room. So that should arrive in a few weeks, and I can't wait to see how that looks on the wall.

Thanks for looking, let me know what you think. Again, I know it is not finished, but at least it is a start!!

Monday, September 08, 2008

Back from Vacation

We are back from our 9 days at the beach! Had a great time, it was hard to come home. But have a lot to share(I think) and will try to get things updated around here soon. Hope everyone is doing great, and getting settled back into the school year.

I have caught up on most of the blogs I follow, if I didn't comment I am sorry, I had a lot to read, and not a lot of time. Fair amount of good things going on, and it was fun to be gone, and come back with so much to read:)

check back, cause I will be back I promise:)

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

One way or another I am going to have a house full of black headed little girls.

Here is our latest baby born:

This is baby Finley, and she was born on Aug 4th. We will be going to get Sophie's little sister the end of September. We can't wait. She is a cocker spaniel.

Here is an updated picture of Miss Sophie who does make my heart feel good.

Sorry to have been such a bad blogger, commentor, and friend. Just feeling guarded, isolated, and trying to just cope. I will again be a good friend. I am thinking of you all, and try to catch up on reading periodically. For my friends that really are getting close, I am really thinking of you. I know the wait and the unknown must seem unbearable, but I hope it all just melts when you finally get that picture.

Taylor is coming home tomorrow, and we are happy to be able to have a little more time with her before she returns to school for her last year. She is doing well, and her leg and ankle are improving everyday. Thank you to everyone who sent us well wishes, they were very appreciated.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

The Gorge vs. The Rock

If you don't know, my stepdaughter has been a raft guide on the Arkansas river in Colorado for 3 summers. She has become a very experienced guide, and she is an adrenaline junkie.

On Monday afternoon we got a call from the rafting company saying she had been in a rafting accident.... let me tell you that is a call that takes your heart and your breath away all at the same time, I actually think I felt blind for a minute. She had been on a training trip on the Royal Gorge which is the most difficult part of the river in her area, and she was the lead guide in the raft. They were about 15 minutes from being out, and they hit a run that caused the raft to fly up and everyone in the boat did as well. Unfortunately "T" did not land back in her spot, she went up and came down in the middle of the raft and she said she knew instantly she was hurt, she was just hoping not bad. Her leg and ankle immediately swelled and changed to a dark shade of purple. They made it to a pull out place and got help. She said as soon as they tried to move her she knew it was pretty bad.

They rushed her to the hospital and it was determined that she had shattered her ankle and broke her fibula in two places. She was going to need surgery.

We got the call(freaked a little) it is very overwhelming to get a call that your child is hurt badly and you can't be there for them. We felt because she was in a small area hospital that we needed to concur with a ortho surgeon here that having surgery there was the best decision, or did we need to figure out how to transport her to Colorado Springs to a bigger metro hospital with an ortho surgeon on staff? Luckily we found out that there was a surgeon on staff in a town close by and arranged for him to be able to consult with the hospital she was at, and ultimately was allowed to perform the surgery. Anyway, after we determined the logistics we got in the car for the 12 hour drive. It was a long silent ride to
Colorado. We knew she was going to be okay, but it really stirs your emotions when an accident like this happens. We were so relieved that she was fine, and it had not been worse, but then it also reminds you that it could have turned out very different. We have always encouraged her to live her dreams, to be passionate about what she does, and for her that has usually involved risk and danger to a degree. It would have been very difficult to deal with that had everything not turned out the way it did. It was really good to see her face when we walked in. I am not sure who was happier to see each other...her or us??

She had to have many pins and a plate to put her ankle back together, and she had to have a plate and screws put on the back of her fibula to secure it back into place. She will have a cast put on in about 10 days, and will have that for about 8 weeks, and then they will decide if she can switch to a boot, and start physical therapy. Her last summer of rafting has come to a early halt, but she has chosen to stay up there and hopefully in a couple of weeks will be able to work in the office booking trips or something until returning for her last year of college.

It has been an exhausting week, and really has been an eye opening experience. While we can't worry about our kids and loved ones all the time and try and prevent them from doing the things they love, always remember to make sure to tell them you love them, and how important they are to you.

"T" we are wishing you a speedy recovery, and there is no doubt in my mind who actually won this you seem to think that you have an amazing "Gorge" story to tell. I know you will run the gorge again, but this time lets do it without breaking any bones!! The surgeon said he didn't want to see you again:)

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Long way home

After 10 short months(felt like it at least) our exchange student otherwise known as our youngest child Shiyu left to go back to China. The house feels so strange and quiet. She called me from the hotel in Shanghai this morning saying that she was there and ready to take a shower and go to sleep. Then she said how strange it felt for her to not be in her pj's having breakfast with us, and that it is amazing how EVERYONE in China smokes!! I told her to get some sleep, and to call me later.
OHHHHH, I miss her so much already. One of the best experiences of my adult life.
We know she will be back next year for college, so we are just pretending that our youngest is on a year long China exchange:)

Thanks Shiyu Magee for letting us go on this journey of a lifetime with are an amazing girl, and we love you very much!!

Friday, May 23, 2008

Can't imagine the loss.....

Many of you have already read about the tragic news of the Chapman family who lost their 5 year old Maria(adopted from China) this week. I can't even begin to imagine how they feel, or how their hearts ever heal from such a tragedy. I just know that when I viewed their video blog it just literally tore my heart to pieces, and just makes you question "WHY?"

If you haven't stopped by their blog to send them a note of condolences or to watch the videos they have so generously shared I invite you to do so here

There are a lot of things I think I could work through......this doesn't happen to be one of them. Please keep this family in your thoughts and your prayers.....they are going to need them:)

Friday, May 16, 2008

Introducing Princess Sophie

I can't believe it has taken me this long to get this picture and news on here.

March 26, 2008 was one of the best days of my life, I flew to Birmingham, Alabama to pick up our newest family member. I was thrilled beyond belief, I couldn't wait to see her in person after waiting 11 long weeks for her to mature enough to leave her momma. But when I arrived and the breeder took Sophie out of her bag.....I just lost it and started to cry!! She looked exactly like Miss Matty when she was a puppy, and I was instantly in love. She is the sweetest, softest, most snuggly little creature you have ever met. She is the princess, and she knows it without a doubt. She goes almost everywhere with me in the car, and she rides happily in her darling lime green bag I got her(of course it has her monogram on it!!) She is oohed and gooed over everywhere we go. She has healed her momma's heart, as I feel as though Matty has been cloned and come back to live with us. So much of what she does, and how she behaves it exactly as we knew life with a black cocker spaniel for 13 years. You can laugh, you can poo poo me for wanting a dog(child) that looks and acts just like our beloved dog who passed.....but I don't care, I feel better, and with the current state of adoption I needed to feel better, so I highly recommend is cheaper than therapy, and way more addicting than xanax!! David said he will start to worry when I start introducing her as my daughter. She does have black hair;)

So just for grins, I will post Matty's picture here, and tell me it is uncanny how much they look alike. You can't see it in Matty's picture, but she has a white chest too!

Also....Princess Sophie sends a shout out to her Aunt Buttercup who loves her, and wants one of her own(Iris needs a friend and won't mind a bit)She can't wait for you to visit again:)

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

We ate, We drank, We laughed, and We shopped

My lack of posting about the big trip to Canton is not for lack of excitement about the trip, it is because it turned into such a BIG trip that a "real" post was necessary.

There are moments in your life that you feel a bit nervous about an event, and then there are others that well, the nerves really are not there at all. This was one of the moments in my life. We have been planning this event for a few months, and until the last minute we were a little unsure of who would be attending the meeting of the minds(or shoppers) But once we were sure the Buttercup was on the plane headed south we knew the weekend would be just as we had hoped it would be.

Buttercup arrived on-time @ the DFW airport, and found her way to a car that we had left for her at the airport....I had a previous engagement that I could not cancel. She then used the mapquest directions to head for home to relax and mostly to let "the baby" out. She made it with flying colors, including her first trip to Chik-filet. I came home to find her with Sophie and wine and flowers on the island. We hugged, and the weekend started. I knew from the moment I met Buttercup on-line that we would be friends. I knew that she would be funny,cute, smart, insightful, and a friend that always makes you want to be a better person. We chatted, and played with Sophie(who loves her aunt Buttercup) Then I told her we had to run a few errands, which she happily agreed to. We picked up Shiyu from school, who has really been looking forward to meeting these girls. We then went home and just chatted, had some wine, and waited for Miss DeRouren to arrive. She did arrive, but her bags did not, and I must say Ame*ican E*gle must have spent a fortune on customer service training and their shi*ty baggage tracking system. We were told the bag was randomly left due to weight, and that it would come in the morning...."A" remained calm, and was such a good sport about it, I would not have been had it been me. Bags or no bags "A" is just as I imagined her to be. She is my secret pal(sends to me) and I can only tell you she has sent me some amazing things in the last year. Anyway, she is darling, fun, a REALLY good mom who adores her boys, she has a great laugh and an amazing smile.....and boy can she shop. We went home and made due without the bags, we talked, and got to know one another a little better, and planned that we would get up and head to the airport, St*rbucks, get ready and make our way East to meet up with Shelba and her friends. Now we would be here until tomorrow if I told you the luggage experience. I will just cut to the chase and tell you that the bag didn't arrive until 3:15 that day, so needless to say we did not make it to Canton until after 6:00 on Friday. Shelba and her friends had made it to the flea market where it was raining, but they risked life and limb and still shopped and had some Texas bar-b-que. I thought Shelba would be taller, but otherwise she was the artistic wonder that I knew she would be, with one of the cutest kids on the planet, and one of the funniest cousins I have ever met(loved you Melissa, and you still don't look a day over 18) Bobbi Jo and Virgina were hilarous, and so glad that I met them. Bobbi Jo good luck on the adoption of your son. Anyway, we made it in time to go to the Chinese seemed to be the local Athens(not GA) dining hot spot. Let's just say that I am certain that Zaget does not know about this dining destination. When Jello, and baklava are on the dessert buffet, you know that you should be eating somewhere else. But the company was immeasurable, hilarious, and I learned that John Tr@volta is gay despite what the average person might say. I also learned that Nicole Kidm@n is really not pregnant....surrogate....SHHHHHHH I learned so much more but I would have to kill you if I told, plus I have sold all of the info to PEOPLE.

The day of shopping in Canton proved to be a wonder of treasures, junk, other peoples junk, and some really good stuff. It was filled with a million dogs, strollers, and fried food. I claim that the best funnel cake maker resides at first Monday trade days....not your run of the mill 1 inch creation, oh no, it is the 3 inch yummy wonder that we enjoyed at the end of our 8 hours of shopping.

The trip home was the highlight: yes if you are ever in the situation of wondering do I take 19 North to Canton or 19 South to Palestine to go back to Dallas.....take 19 me on this one. After seeing the funeral procession in the middle of no where, the dead carcass on the roadside, and the vulture society meeting in the town square.....know that you went the wrong way, and regardless of how fast you drive; someone is going to miss their flight;(

The trip was really an amazing journey of fun and friendship that I would not trade for the world. I had a blast, I think the other peeps had a great time and felt the trip was worth the effort( a lot of effort at moments) I feel like I have made friends for a lifetime, and I privileged to be in the same company of these women. I can't wait to do it again, and go buck wild, and drink some crazyass hillbilly wine, and eat free in the holiday inn express lobby!!!

Thanks girls it was a BLAST!!! Pictures to come tomorrow, okay ONE picture, because I sucked that weekend with my camera.

Saturday, February 23, 2008

Gawd I hate lazy bloggers such as myself

Where does the time go? Can't believe that we are almost done with February, time just seems to pass faster and faster, but we seem to never get anywhere with all the time flying by. I think we are at 17 months at this point, not sure as I don't really keep track anymore, I figure there will be a day somewhere in the future when we get this random phone call that says I am looking at a picture of your daughter. We will say " oh yeah that's right we're adopting"

So much has happened since I really stopped blogging. I know that so much of what we talk about is in reference to our exchange student Shiyu. She has been such an important addition to our family, and we really can't imagine what a loss to our family it would have been had we decided not to have this experience. Really I can't believe what an amazing girl she is, she is so brave, smart, funny, cute, dedicated, motivated, and just an overall great girl. Some of you will get to meet her, and you will just be struck by her smile, and friendliness. She is going to do extraordinary things with her life. We really understand what a negative experience this could be if you were not matched to the right child, but for us they could not have matched us better. Hopefully we will be matched as well with our daughter. We will really miss her so much when the time comes for her to leave, and we really look forward to visiting her and her family in China, and we really look forward to her coming back to go to college....hopefully in Texas!!

We have had so many first with her, and it makes things that we take so for granted so much more fun and interesting. Her first homecoming parade, her homecoming mum, going to football games, her first choir performance, her first Halloween, and pumpkin carving, lest not we forget her first Thanksgiving, Christmas parties, decorating the tree, going to see the Christmas lights, Christmas, New Years, a trip to visit her cousin in SD, making the JV tennis team, making the math team, going on her first college visit to Rice University, her first American version of spring festival, and welcoming the year of the rat. She has become such an American girl, and if you just saw her walking through the halls of her school you would think she was just an Asian American girl, and while she still loves so much about her country, and misses her family and friends back home in Chongqing, she has melted well into our American life. She dresses like an American teenager, she likes to do what most American teenagers like to do, and she can't wait to go to college just like most American teenagers. If you ask her something she replies with "No, I'm good" she will yell from upstairs....." you know where such and such is"? she sounds sometimes just like an American teenager. Her English has improved so much. She would tend to not agree, but she seldom gets her translator out anymore, she hardly ever ask me anymore what something means. I am really proud of her. If only you could have witnessed her talking to the Rice admission officer.....she was so mature and asked such good questions, and made sure that they understood that she would make a great addition to their school.

It will be strangely quiet around here when she leaves. I will not have anyone here to help me with my Rosetta Stone Chinese, she won't be here to walk Gracie, we will not have anyone to cook yummy Chinese food for us, and no one to teach me all the computer tricks that she knows. I won't know how to turn my flash on and off on my camera, and she is always showing me news things on my phone. What are we going to do without her??

Well there is nothing really left to say that is terribly interesting. I hope you enjoy all of the pictures from the last 6 months that I have been so lazy to not get up. I will post more later in the week. We have some fun spring break plans, a few more college visits, a visit to Taylor, and a trip to San Fran in June. We also have a new puppy coming. But that news will have to wait for different day.

Hope all is well on your end, and I will try and do a better job of keeping up. I started this blog with the intention of it being about adoption, then it went to just the monotony of our lives, and now I am just at a loss of what to talk about that would be of any interest to anyone. We all certainly know that there is nothing on the adoption front that is positive, so we will just let that one go. I guess when the next round of referrals come out that we might finally get to say goodbye to 05' I guess that is actually an act of god, because it sure feels like they have been working on 05' forever!!

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Rare dogs, tennis balls, and gas!

Wish I had something really interesting to share, but the truth of the matter is......nothing. Well I guess I shouldn't say nothing, Shiyu made the JV tennis team this week. She is thrilled beyond belief, and this is an opportunity that she would have never had at home. With her 13 hour school day in China there is no time for the tennis team.

We are finally taming the wild beast in Gracie. We are hoping to get a friend for her very soon. She is a friend kind of dog, and we have been looking, and we have found, but it is a secret so you will have to wait along with everyone else. We also found out that Gracie is a flat coated black labradoodle....apparently really rare. I will agree she is rare, but more in a personality way. By the way rare flat coated black labradoodles shed, and they shed A LOT!!! Now there is something rare.

Taylor made a move to Durango to Fort Lewis College(?pretty sure that is the name) She has switched her major(yes, 2 semesters before she is due to graduate)-whatever- She is now an adventure education major, and word on the street is that she will only have to be there an extra semester(on her own dime that is)She is pretty fired up about this move, and very fired up about her major. Yes, if you are wondering that means she can go work for Outward Bound...which she could have with her English degree. But what do we know we are just parents.

D spends all of his free time surfing the web for a new car. Did you even know it was possible to buy a car on the Internet?? I am not thinking this is a good idea either, but again what do I know I am just a girl(or so I have been told)

For me I am planning some trips for us for the last 6 months that Shiyu is here, working hard on PinkPolkaDotz, and still nursing my bad back.

We found out that we are sitting on some natural gas, and the gas company is going to pay everyone in the hood for the is not a huge amount, but something is better than them stealing it from us. It might actually pay for what we spend on gas each year now.

Oh and we are about to celebrate our 16th month of being LID, that is nothing to celebrate. We are walking, but we are not moving.

Well that is all I have going on here, actually more than I realized when I started this post.

Hope this finds you happy, and smiling on your end.

Peace out:)