Tuesday, January 29, 2013

The Shared List

Currently, there are over 2000 special needs children in China that are on the list.  This list includes children that have been approved for international adoption that are not on a designated adoption agency's list.  Some kids on this list have sadly been waiting for years, and some don't stay on the list for more than a few days.  Unfortunately, this list does not include any photos.  One can request to preview the file and view the pictures of the child, but reviewing pages and pages of numbered children without pictures to tug at your heart is difficult.

Now, thinking back to our first adoption--I saw Christian's face first.  His face is what made an impression on me, instead of a terrifying list of disabilities.  Honestly, if we saw his information with no photo, we may have passed right on by without even requesting his file.

Imagine this:  

Child Number:  xxx
DOB: xxx
Diagnosis:  Multiple Disabilities

-Plagiocephaly of the left parietal-occipital region
-Inner and outer ear deformity (microtia/atresia)
-Musculoskeletal issue:  missing both radius and ulna on right side and has a malformed elbow joint
-hip assymmetry
-Scoliosis:  anterior displacement of L5 to S1

If that is all of the information that you are provided, would you have passed right on by that file?  
Or would you have been intrigued?  
Or perhaps overwhelmed?  

What if you saw his picture first, before that list of disabilities?

Christian, around 13 months

Christian, around 13 months

Forget the list of overwhelming disabilities and just look at that face.  This little one just needed his own Mama and Baba.

Thanks for reading!  If you still would like to donate, there are only 17 days left for our fundraiser!  Thanks to all who have donated, prayed, offered well wishes, and supported us.  Much love to you all.


Monday, January 21, 2013

Our Nana

I know that Nana would not want her face posted all over the Internet, but she is the one that I'm thinking of today.  We are making pizzas and calzones, as well as peanut butter blossoms.  It is haircut day for the boys.        It is tubby day for the three littles.  Life is good.  Eric got new light up sneakers yesterday, and he is in the BEST mood.  Maddie is making potato people--as always, she is so creative and such a little artist.  Christian's teacher wrote to me, and indicated that his significant hearing loss in his GOOD ear isn't impacting  him in class.  Thank goodness.  Ellie keeps eyeing those cookies and making sounds at them---"MMMMMmmm!!!"  It is starting to snow.

Life is good.

‎"Life's most persistent and urgent question is: 'What are you doing for others?'" 

- Dr Martin Luther King Jr

We are getting our fingerprints done on Wednesday @ USCIS.  We are thrilled to be this far in the process finally but we were recently informed that our beloved Nana must get her fingerprints done as well.  Which will certainly put off our hopes of submitting our dossier by March.  Or even possibly April.

While we are frustrated with the process, we know there is a plan in place, that there is a reason for the delays.

Nana is the one that cares for our baby Ellie daily.  The one that sings to her, cuddles with her, nurtures her.  She is counting, talking, and so able to love.

Nana is the one that I initially entrusted Christian with.  The one that cried with him as I went back to work.  The one that cuddled with him and kissed him to make sure that he was OK while I was gone.  The one that gave him cookies and love as I worked.

While we are frustrated with the delays, we are excited that Nana will be able to love our new children as we do.  Nana is also an adoptive mom.  Nana would love our new children as our own and she is the one that I entrust our children to.  And so if it is necessary that she needs fingerprints also, so be it.  We will wait for our new Chinese little ones.

While all of our children love their biological Nana and Grammy, they spend their mornings and days with this Nana.  The Nana that fixes their boo-boos. The Nana that prepares their breakfast.  The Nana that gets them on the bus.  The Nana that sings to them.  The Nana that gives them special chocolates.  The Nana that will---apparently--be getting her fingerprints done in order for us to proceed with this adoption.

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

A day in the life of...

a working mama.

5:05--press snooze.  x3...or more.

5:35-6:30--mad dash to get everybody ready, including myself.

6:30-7:30--hour commute.  Awesome.

7:40-2:30--work.  Today included midterm exams, making sure that every student got on the bus, file review, CAPT Checklist training, checking on student physicals, connecting with a couple of parents, correcting said exams, etc, etc, etc...How did my TO DO list get longer?!?  As soon as I cross off something I have to add 2 more things.

2:30-3:30--hour commute with 1 coffee, with a pit stop at the credit union

3:30-4:15--prepare dinner, play with the two smallest kiddos, and wait for #2 to get off of the bus.  Highlight of the afternoon:  a special package came all the way from Australia--finally--and it included a Thomas DS cover.  Does somebody look THRILLED or what?

4:15-5:30--carpool time with 6 kids.  There were 3 cool chicks in the back yelling out PADIDDLE, baby girl rocking out to some Van Halen and Rihanna, and Christian asking for the Call Me Maybe song.  Good times.

5:30-6:15--dinner, homework and making 3 kid  lunches for tomorrow, all with a 1 year attached to my hip.  Go me--I'm at the point that I can cook and hold Ellie at the same time, not even in her Beco.

6:15-8--cardio kickboxing @ the gym and stopping at the gas station, since I probably won't want to stop for gas in the morning with the anticipated snowy mix.

8:15--kisses for the munchkins, cleaning up, getting clothes out for 4 kids for the morning, and a little computer time.

I'm beat--and due to my kickboxing class I probably won't be able to sleep.  Go figure.  Crossing my fingers for a snow day for tomorrow, but a delay would be just fine so that I can get to work safely.

Days like this make me completely appreciate my Saturday and Sundays at home, and all of the days off that I have as a teacher so that I can hang out with the little ones.  Three days left until a long weekend, but who's counting?

Thursday, January 10, 2013

Made in China, with Love: One step closer to China--Notice of Action

Made in China, with Love: One step closer to China--Notice of Action:  A special little piece of paper from USCIS arrived today, and we are scheduled to get our fingerprints done on January 23rd.  Woohoo! ...

One step closer to China--Notice of Action

 A special little piece of paper from USCIS arrived today, and we are scheduled to get our fingerprints done on January 23rd.  Woohoo!

Clearly there is some excitement with this update.  Christian has requested ten brothers and sisters total.  

One thing at a time, kiddo.  

Meanwhile, we are keeping our eyes and hearts open for the right children.  

Sunday, January 6, 2013

How to adopt 2 at the same time in China: The Rules

Since it is highly unlikely that we will be matched with twins, we have to follow the following guidelines in order to proceed with adopting two children at the same time:


1.  -Submit dossier, receive log-in date, and get matched with child #1.  Once we receive the official approval (Letter of Seeking Confirmation) for the first child, we have less than one month to find a special focus child and request to move forward with that child as well.


2.  -Get matched with a special focus child, and the second match also will be a special focus child.  I believe that we would also have less than one month to find child number two after the first child is officially approved for our family.  

What is a special focus child?  A special focus child is one with greater medical needs or one that has been on the shared list for more than 60 days with no agency locking in their file.

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Christmas 2012 in pictures

The night before...

Christmas Day--relaxing at home--playing with OLD toys!

December 26--Spiderman DVD!

Ellie would just rather play with her paper


Christian at the big boy table with Uncle John

Maddie is beaming at the idea of all of the art supplies

Tablet?  What?