Wednesday, August 22, 2007

We Received our Letter of Acceptance for Ethan!!!

Tonight our agency informed us that our Letter of Acceptance is winging it's way to us from our agency in Hawaii and we should have it by Friday. We should be traveling to adopt Ethan at the end of October. All of this will be confirmed when we get our TA (travel approval) which should be here by the end of September.

In two months we will have our sweet boy in our arms; I can't believe it!!!!

Monday, August 20, 2007

Such a Proud Day

Being a mother today has brought me great joy as it does most every day. Don't get me wrong; I have my moments with my children but by and large there is nothing that I have found as gratifying as being a mother.

I find myself really enjoying this full spectrum of motherhood that I am experiencing at the present. Being the mom to an adult son and toddler daughter keeps me very aware of where I am going and also from where I have been. Now, on this eve of receiving our Letter of
Acceptance for Ethan I am savoring this last couple of months as a mother to two before I am in the midst of parenting three with two being the exact same age.

Today was a special day for me and for my first born as he entered into Law School. During his orientation last week one of his professors told this classroom full of "dear in the headlights" first year law students that their "childhood was officially over" and that his job was to "train them as professionals that would not F*** up anyone else's lives". You gotta love a person who tells it like it is. I have never seen Justin look quite as excited as he does right now and he has suddenly taken on a new air of maturity that I have not seen in the past. He knows that he is finally studying the material that will train him for his life's work and he is taking it VERY seriously. I am so proud.

I find it quite amusing that as I am watching one child move off into his own world that I am also in the midst of helping my sweet baby girl navigate all of the firsts in her life. It is all so amazing that I have been given a chance to parent such a wide range of experience. Of course you can add to this the fact that I am an expectant mom of another two year old that has no idea how his life is about to change and how much love his forever family is just chomping at the bit to give to him. As I ponder all of this on a daily basis I find myself giving thanks for this family that Marc and I are building together. We have many stresses in our lives but every night as I reflect on my day I am truly thankful for the gift of being a mother to Justin, Katie Starr and soon to our son in China, Ethan Frederick Zhiqing.

This is the Mother and Child Statue in Yellow River Park in Gansu Province
where Katie Starr was born. The Mother represents the river and the
baby represents China. They say that the river nourishes China like a mother
nourishes her baby. I loved this statue so much when I saw it.

Saturday, August 18, 2007

and speaking of shoes....

I just found out about the Robeez Heart & Sole Caring about first steps Program. The Robeez Corporation will donate batches of their wonderful soft leather shoes to disadvantaged children around the world and international adoption is one of the areas that they support! Since the inception of the program, Robeez has donated over 135,000 pairs of adorable shoes and booties. That’s a lot of little shoes; so many in fact that if all those shoes were stacked up heel to toe, those donations would represent a height over four times as tall as Mount Everest!

I have applied for a batch and if approved the minimum that we will receive is 20 pairs. The only thing that we will have to do is pay the shipping and carry them over. We will be bringing them to Ethan's orphanage when we go to adopt him. Since there are only about 24 children in that orphanage presently I am hoping that I can bring all of them a pair of shoes :)
If you are a waiting adoptive parent and would like take part in this program please visit this link:

Friday, August 17, 2007

You gotta love a girl with an opinion

The other day Marc, Katie Starr and I went shopping at the mall and while Marc went to buy something that we needed for the house Katie and I went to a shoe store to look for some closed toe shoes for Fall/Winter. Well, Miss Katie is very attached to the shoes pictured here ~ her pink crocs that her Nana bought for her. She wants to wear them everywhere and even has to have them close by in the house. I did not even realize the extent of her affection for these shoes until I tried to try on another pair of shoes. She adamantly told me "No Mommy!! Katie no like and shoes no fit!! Every time I would get them on she would take them off. Of course, this made me giggle uncontrollably as well as some other ladies in the store. Believe me, it was no easy task to determine if these shoes would fit even though Katie told me they did not but Mommy eventually got her way and bought the new shoes. Katie came home and told her dad that "she no like the shoes" ROFL!!!

This is how Katie watches Sesame Street and her fav guy Elmo in the morning. Notice her crocs right next to her. Does this look comfortable? I don't think so but Katie loves it.

Monday, August 13, 2007

Thank you Sherri!

My friend Sherri is in China adopting her daughter Cami right now. Her daughter and Ethan were in the same orphanage. We have become quite close since we met on our Orphanage Yahoo group. We have lots in common including sharing a wicked sense of humor. Heck, we were even born on the same day. Well anyway, this wonderful woman took the time to ask the orphanage director about Ethan on Cami's Adoption Day. How amazing is that!! Here is what she reported back to me this evening. Thank you again Sherri!

"I wanted to tell you again about my conversation with Mr. Xiao. He is really delightful. When I thanked him for taking such good care of Cami, he said, "That is what we should do". He is serious only in his pictures. In real life, he is always smiling. When he saw us yesterday at the official meeting, he started talking to Cami from across the room and she whipped her head around. She really KNEW him. He is much more than distant director to the children.Also, I asked him about Ethan. He smiled and spoke animatedly for a long while. He chuckled and described him to our guide. She said that Mr Xiao likes the boy alot and he is doing very well and is happy and healthy. He was excited to hear that you would be coming for him soon."

Oh that day cannot come soon enough!!

Wednesday, August 08, 2007

This is delicious!

This is the phrase that Katie Starr blurted out yesterday morning at breakfast over her toast and yogurt. It totally made us giggle as we love her sweet little voice and we get to enjoy it quite frequently now as she is talking up a storm these days. She is now voicing her opinion over anything and everything and even uses her language now to tease us.

We have always had a bedtime ritual that ends with kisses and her telling us "Love" after we told her that we loved her. That was how she would say "I love you" before she could put sentences together. Of course that became I love Mommy and I Love Daddy as her language has developed. Now, here comes the teasing....she now will recite a long list of I love........(Insert all of the people that she has close relationships with such as Justin, Nana and Papa, Grandma and Grandpa and well as some close family friends). She teasingly will not utter the words I love Mommy and Daddy. She does this while stretching the words out as far as she can and giggling as she knows that we want her to tell us that she loves us. It ends with us saying goodnight and totally cracking up while she finally bursts out in hysterics and says; I love Mommy! I love Daddy! Then, when we leave the room she goes through her entire list again; laughing the whole time and omitting us all over again...what a stinker!! This little girl was the perfect match for our family as we love to tease each other. It is the way we show our love and have fun.

Monday, August 06, 2007

Updated Picture of our baby boy!

This is one of four pictures that we received today of Ethan. Again, a smile eludes us. Today Letters of Acceptance were received and we think that we may be in the next batch that should come in 2-3 weeks. Keep your fingers crossed......

Sunday, August 05, 2007

A Photo Shoot at the Beach with our FCC Beauties

We drove to the beach early yesterday morning to attempt a photo shoot with several members of our FCC Group. It was so much fun ~ not entirely successful photo wise ~ but truly a blast. Our photographer was an FCC dad who has a great natural talent and a real love for all of our children but many of his subjects were....well; let's just say a little unwilling :) Nevertheless, it was a wonderful morning full of laughing, crying, more laughing and more crying and after all of that was done just enjoying the ocean breezes, water and each other. Here are 2 videos from the shoot. Then I have loaded just a few photos from the hundreds that were taken.

My FCC Group is awesome and I treasure all of their friendship and support immensely.

The crying begins.........

The next 4 minutes of video after I reloaded batteries...oops!! Note that one of the moms keeps giving little snacks to the kiddos that are crying..too cute!

And then came a few smiles...