Thursday, December 29, 2011

I-800A Approval

We had a fabulous Christmas, made even better by getting our I-800A approval in the mail a few days before it.  This means we officially have approval from the US government to adopt Internationally.  When we get a referral we have some more paperwork (big surprise, I know) to get their approval to adopt the specific child China has chosen for us.  

Now we wait for our referral...and it might be in this next month.  Rumor Queen says so...but then she back-tracked and said it will be the 14th or 15th...given that we are the 15th that one day difference can be the world.

I should probably mention that when we get our referral it will not appear on the blog right away...and I'm not sure if I'll share her picture or not (until she is home, than of course, I will).   We have several family members personally that will expect us to share with them before we tell the world.  Given how many siblings and real life friends we have, it could take several days.  I know!  Of course, I'm closer to my on-line, bloggy adoption friends then real life people, but you cannot tell them that!

On the other hand, just because my blog is silent for a week or this last cannot assume we have a referral.  I could just have a new DS game.  Oh, and my husband and kids home all week for fun, food, and fights sweet fellowship.

Friday, December 16, 2011

Not Exactly the News for which I was Hoping

So there is a new rumor.  It isn't isn't isn't even more than a teeny-tiny rumor.  The rumor is that matches are coming for families with LID 8/8, 8/9, and 8/10.  Usually I wait to talk about the rumor until they are confirmed, but as we get closer to our login, I get more and more emotionally involved.

I have been telling most people we will most probably won't receive our referral in this batch or maybe even the next, meaning we will receive our match February or March, but based on my response to this heart of hearts was hoping for this batch (though that would be 8 days of matches.)  

If we got a referral now we might be traveling by March at the same time as a bloggy friend, but I would miss my church's women's conference. 

If we got our referral now we could tell everyone at Christmas and have a photo soon, but we might be delayed by having not gotten our i800A.

If we got our referral now it would be God's plan, but if we don't, it is not.

Really, it is as simple as that...and saying it, speaking always helps me.

Now this rumor is only and itsy-bitsy rumor, but my experience is they seem to grow into if it doesn't, if China does send matches all the way through the 15th, I will know who to thank, who will deserve the praise and honor.

In the meantime...

1 Peter 1:3-9:

"Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who according to His great mercy has caused us to be born again to a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead,  to obtain inheritance which is imperishable and undefiled and will not fade away, reserved in heaven for you, who are protected by the power of God through faith for a salvation ready to be revealed in the last time.  

In this you greatly rejoice, even though now for a little while, if necessary, you have been distressed by various trials,  so that the proof of your faith, being more precious than gold which is perishable, even though tested by fire, may be found to result in praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ;  and though you have not seen Him, you love Him, and though you do not see Him now, but believe in Him, you greatly rejoice with joy inexpressible and full of glory, obtaining as the outcome of your faith the salvation of your souls."

Oh, and if you just want to be encouraged by how powerful and loving God really is check out the links at Linny's Memorial Box Monday.  Some of the stories will bless your socks off. 

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Happy Annivirthday!

Today is my 14th wedding my friend whose birthday  is today reminded me.  We did go out to celebrate on was the only evening not planned in the whole month of December.  Okay, that is an exaggeration; I believe we have the evening of the 28th free.  Of course we could free up other days if anyone in Texas or Colorado wanted to visit.

Anyway, since I'm going out tonight with my MOPS table and I've spent the last 3 days straight working on photos from a friend's party (my first, and possibly last, paying photography job), I thought I should give a shout out to my incredible husband who encourages me, watches the kids, cooks, does laundry, works, laughs at my jokes, takes babies to the doctor to have staples removed (happening Friday), and overall is just a wonderful man.

I think he could do better...but I certainly can't.  Happy Anniversary, Oak.  May the next 14 years be filled with laughter.
By the way, tomorrow is his birthday...and I don't have a present for that either.  Maybe between Bible study, lunch with a friend, printing photos, and AWANA/Financial Peace class...

Friday, December 9, 2011

No Stitches

If you ask Sunflower to tell the story, she says, "They gave me apple juice in a CAN not a box!"

If you ask Huckleberry, he looks confused and furtive at the same time and says, "didn't Daddy tell you?"

If you ask SnapDragon, he says, "I was lying on the floor on my tummy relaxing when Sunflower jumped from the rocking chair onto my side...which hurt for just a second...and bounced into the green chair."

If you ask Oak, he says, "Sunflower jumped off the rocking chair, bounced off SnapDragon, and cracked her head on the brown chair.  She was just crying and running her hands through her hair when I realized they were bloody.  I very calmly put the served ice cream back in the freezer, told the boys to get their shoes and game boys (which are actually dsLites), and took her to Urgent Care. The Doctor pressed the injury together a few times and said, 'sorry, we can't glue this one.'  So they strapped her down and gave her 3 staples.  She cried a lot less than I expected.  Then they gave her some apple juice."

She did like the sound the stapler made and is now saying it every once in awhile out of the blue.
 "Chee, chee, chee...why is it in a CAN?

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Christmas is Coming...

There is a Holiday Bokeh Party going on...and I want to play.  Since I already posted this photo on my photo blog, I'm linking up here.

Merry Christmas! 
holiday lights bokeh party
Once we get our tree up I plan to be swimming in Holiday Bokeh shots...that is after I finish editing the pictures from a party I attended Sunday.

Always on My Mind

I don't think of myself as particularly sensitive when it comes to word choice or up on all the politically correct phrases, particularly when some phrases are correct or not depending on with whom you are talking.  Adoption language is the same way for me.  Yes, I've heard a lot of phrases, some of which I understand, some not, but most of which I try to avoid because it doesn't cost me anything and some people seem to really, really care.  Plus perhaps someday the person who will really, really care will be my daughter.

So this isn't about whether some phrases are appropriate or not, because I don't know, or even about me being offended, because I wasn't. 

This morning after my Bible study a friend was commenting on her 3 year old daughter's hair--"look how bad it is, it looks like she is an orphan."  This led to a discussion about how bad my children's hair always the extent that I got a "compliment" on their Christmas picture of their "sleepy heads."  (This also did not hurt my feelings.)

Then another woman chimed in that she calls her bed head "teriyaki hair" because it looks like she has chopsticks everywhere.

So I "know of" people on-line who would be offended that the plight of the orphan was trivialized or that another person would make a racists comment.  A part of me pondered those responses, but all I felt was sad...and I couldn't figure out why since I knew the speakers hearts' and intent and they are not offensive.

But you know what I figured out?  I'm sad for a few reasons.  One more intellectual sadness is that I'm pretty sure they would have not have said those comments if my daughter (who is not yet here) was on my hip.  I think they would have been conscious that at one point she was an orphan and that she is from China and would have held back potentially problematic phrases...or immediately retreated with embarrassment afterwards.  I don't know what that says about our culture or the actual appropriateness of certain language, but I know it makes me sad.  Partly because it shows she is not on their mind right now (which I find completely understandable).

But a larger part, the more emotional part, is sad because even in the most pessimistic of scenarios (aside from the never adopting scenario) we should be home with a 1 year old in less than 7 months (probably sooner).  That means somewhere in China today there is a baby who is between 2-8 months old...ALREADY an orphan...who has to wait 4-7 months to meet her new family, her plan B. 

And that makes me sad.  

Some part of me each day as I snap pictures, go to MOPs and my photography classes, as I play games with my children, as we go to Nativity plays, dinner with friends, as I enjoy life, a small part of me is always a little sad.  When the timeline was impossibly long and unpredictable, I did not feel this so frequently.  But knowing she has to have be born, has to have been taken to an orphanage, that possibly her caregiver or foster mom are falling in love with her knowing she will someday leave them, that she is hearing a language that should be hers but will be lost, that... 

It makes me sad.  (Maybe a little less sad when I'm arguing homework with my middle child...)

Now, I don't actually want this sadness to go away.  I don't want to go about life and forget her.  I believe this feeling will only help me have compassion for her, particularly during the transition if I can remember what she lost while I lived a life of privilege and joy.

I just do not know how intense it must be for the moms and dads who already know who is going to join their family but are still waiting and waiting to travel.  Someday soon, hopefully, that will be where we are at, so then I'll know.  Even though I expect it to be hard, I cannot wait.

In the meantime, we got 3 little children passports in the mail today...only one should be needed when we travel to China...but 3 passports means we are one step closer to being a family of 6, to bringing home our child and begin healing the wounds created by 1 year as an orphan.

Friday, December 2, 2011

My Kids

My kids might just be tired of me taking pictures of them.

 But I just can't help it.