Thursday, October 28, 2010

The toy room

About a year ago, Steve and I sat and discussed all the reasons why NOT to adopt.

There were many. Some were actual legitimate worries/concerns that have to be VERY carefully weighed and discussed.

But, some... actually MOST were things like this...

"Where will we put the toys?"

You see, we have a "toy room". Stuffed to the gills with toys that are rarely played with. Usually, it's just a source of annoyance for me because it is ALWAYS a mess. I mean a "don't- walk-in-the-room-or-you-may-trip-and- sprain-your-ankle" mess.

Seriously, this was a REAL concern. I was afraid the mess would be all over my house.

It was an excuse really. And a really lame one at that.

This weekend, we are moving the boys into their NEW bedroom (x-toyroom). And, then we will start re-decorating their old room to make it fit for a one-year-old princess. Complete with pastels, flowers and ladybugs.

A little girl, our little girl, who now spends most of her day in a crib, will have a bedroom all of her own.

To think we seriously almost let a toy room stop us.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Hearts Melted






Sunday, October 24, 2010

Boys, Barbies and Church

Not a good combination.

As a was singing my heart out at the very end of service today, I glanced down at my three year old boy.

He had been busy undressing the three barbies that had been toted to church today in our "church bag" for K to play with.

They were now wrestling.

And then kissing.

As a 12 year old boy in the pew behind us looked on. Giggling.

Church with three kids is HARD. If they aren't talking, they are fighting. If they aren't wiggling, they are laying down and yawning. They are raising and lower the kneeler. They are interrupting prayer. They are fighting over who is sitting where.

And if they ARE miraculously quiet...

They are undressing barbies.


Luckily, I was surrounded by loving friends/moms and dads that giggled along with me as I threw up my hands and said...

I give up.

One thing for sure... no more barbies in the church bag.

Saturday, October 16, 2010

293 puzzle pieces sponsored!!! WOW!!!!

Thank you to everyone who has sponsored, one, two, five, ten, twenty or even fifty pieces! Each of you has made a HUGE difference in our life and the life of our little girl waiting for us in China.

We've got more puzzle pieces left!!!!!

Just $2 a piece. You don't have to sponsor 20, or even 10. We are grateful for every single one that is sponsored. One piece at at time and we will reach our goal of sponsoring all 1000 pieces.

So, please... if you haven't yet, please go up to the right hand corner of our blog, click the "Chip-in" button. You can use a credit card or debit card to sponsor a puzzle piece using Paypal. You do not need a Paypal account to use the chip-in button.

Read all about this unique fundraiser here for all the details and a chance to win a $200 gift card!

Thank you everyone!

October in New England

Hay Rides.


Fall Foliage.



Thursday, October 14, 2010

183 pieces sponsored and more news!

183 puzzle pieces sponsored... 817 to go! WOW!!!!

We are SO thankful to everyone, near and far, that have sponsored a puzzle piece for Grace.

Now the challenge, we need to keep this momentum going somehow.

So, if you haven't sponsored a piece yet ($2 a piece)... please, please consider. (see this post for an explanation) Every $2 really adds up!

Or, if you haven't yet... please post our fundraiser on your facebook page or on your blog. You get an entry into the raffle for every post on FB or a blog!

Again, a HUGE thank you to everyone who has sponsored so far!

ALSO, BIG NEWS on the paperchase to Grace!!!

We received our Log-in Date (LID) today! LID is the day that our dossier is officially logged into the system in China. One more step closer to our little sweetie!

We were told that it might take 4 weeks to get logged-in, and that it could take up to 4 more weeks for China to notify our agency that it was logged-in. We were logged-in and notified in just TWO DAYS!

The next thing we are waiting for is for China to thoroughly review our dossier and then (hopefully) issue the Letter of Acceptance (LOA)... the official approval from China that we can adopt Grace.

I'm sort of feeling bad that others out there that I "talk" to in adoption-land have been waiting more than a month for their log-in date. I wish we all move together through this process.

While we've been told there is a method to this madness (whose paperwork gets processed first, second and when), it sure seems like it's just luck. And we're getting lucky.

China in January? February? or will it be March?

There are still a lot of steps that we could get stuck (for a month or more) so I'm trying not to get too excited.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Sponsor a Puzzle Piece - Sponsor Grace!

We're getting close... close to going to China! About a year faster than we anticipated. We're really NOT complaining. :)

A couple months ago, B and S spent hours putting together this 1000 piece puzzle....

It's a painting (puzzle) by a San Francisco artist. This particular puzzle is of Chinatown in SF.

As a unique and memorable fundraiser for our adoption... we are asking people to sponsor a puzzle piece (or 2... or 10.... or however many you want).

$2 a puzzle piece.

Perhaps you want to sponsor a piece for every member of your family?!
Every piece counts!

We will keep a journal with the puzzle and write down each and every name/family that sponsor's Grace. In the end, we will hang this puzzle in a prominent place in our home... as a reminder to us about all those that helped bring our daughter home. We will keep the journal for Grace, so she knows how many people loved her and helped bring her home.

After we have all 1000 pieces sponsored. We will randomly select one sponsor to win a $200 gift card to merchant of their choice (Target, Home Depot, Pottery Barn... you name it!).

So, please... go ahead and use the chip-in button on the top right of our blog to sponsor. This chip-in feature uses Paypal. However, you do not need a Paypal account.

Also, we don't know 1000 people... so we will need all our bloggy friends to help to get the word out about this fundraiser. If you post a link to our blog post on your blog or you post on facebook... we'll give you an extra entry into the raffle for the $200 gift card. Please, leave me a comment (or send me an email) if you post somewhere.

If you read here you'll understand why all this fundraising. And you'll understand how HARD it is for me to ask ANYTHING of ANYONE. But, this cutie is calling us... and we need to go get her. So, I'll stretch way beyond my comfort zone... for her....

Thank you everyone!!

Happy Birthday Grace!

On September 23rd we had a birthday celebration for our littlest...

Happy FIRST Birthday Grace!

How else do you celebrate the birthday of your Chinese daughter...

Dinner at our local Chinese food restaurant, of course!

I know General Tso's chicken probably isn't considered very authentic. In the future... perhaps I can try to get the chinese cook book out and try to make something that more closely resembles actual food that is consumed in China. But, we did the best we could. :)

Followed by singing happy birthday and cupcakes!!

We were happy to eat chinese food and cupcakes in honor of her. But, how I wish we were together to celebrate this milestone. I'm grateful that this will be the very last birthday she spends without her family. We look forward to many, many more birthday celebrations TOGETHER!

Monday, October 11, 2010

Our Daughter...


We are SO EXCITED to introduce our precious daughter...

Grace Xiao Yun

Grace just turned one on September 23rd! We had a birthday celebration for her (birthday party blog post coming soon!) We think this picture of her was taken back in May or June.

Grace is waiting for us at the Jiaozuo City Welfare Institute, Henan Province.

We are very fortunate to have gotten our hands on a few other pictures of her that were taken a little bit later in the summer.

There are no words to express our absolute joy and love for our beautiful baby girl.

Some say she is "lucky" to have us. Actually, it's the other way around...

WE are beyond blessed to have her.

Even though we haven't yet held her in our arms... she has changed us in ways we never thought possible.

She is, most certainly, a perfect gift from God.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Some Would Gather...

Some would gather money
Along the path of life;
Some would gather roses,
And rest from worldly strife.

But I would gather children
From among the thorns of sin;
I would seek a golden curl,
And a freckled, toothless grin.

For money cannot enter
In that land of endless day;
And roses that are gathered
Soon will wilt along the way.

But, oh, the laughing children,
As I cross the sunset sea,
And the gates swing wide to heaven -
I can take them in with me.

-Author Unknown

(Carl Larsson)

Tuesday, October 5, 2010



For all of you following that aren't living and breathing the China adoption process.

That means...


Remember this... (our dossier)....

Our adoption agency FINALLY mailed our dossier to China today! It's been sitting at our adoption agency for over a month, but because we received our referral (!) we had to make a few changes to it. Then China decided that they were going to go on holiday and the China Center for Adoption Affairs (CCAA) has been (and will be) closed for FIVE days. So, our adoption agency held onto it for a few extra days so the dossier could be hand-delivered by agency representatives in China as soon as the CCAA reopens Friday.

Now we wait. Again.