Saturday, December 05, 2009

It's about time.. & some news!!

Autumn Moon 2009

Stripey & Spotty - Buffalos posing as Kittens!

Brother & Sister Love

They just do this when I bring out the camera...

EFP & Pony LOVE!!

Just LOVE that smile!!!

What the heck is that thing?

What? A Flounder? It looks like a sea monster!!

OH! THIS is what a fish looks like before Mommy cooks it??? I get it!

Fishing Fun!

I can not believe it has been so long since I had a moment to update the blog!! Seems like I never have a minute these days.. kids are so busy.. new job.. starting not to feel so much like a new job.. is wonderful but HECTIC!

AND... tada...

we are paperchasing again.... ha ha bet you didn't see that coming did ya? We received PA last week for a 5 year old girl residing in LongGang, ShenZhen, GuangDong... she has a repaired cleft lip/palate... and she has a beautiful smile!! Can't post pics yet (darn! cuz she is a cutie pie!) just exactly who we need! Her birthday is listed as 8.23.04 - so she fits right in between EFP & EBB!! Can not believe we have hopped on the roller coaster again.. but you know.. somehow this felt right.. it is a long story.. how we got to this place.. with highs and lows.. happiness and sadness... but then that IS adopting from China isn't it? Can't imagine travel before the summer and I can't really travel until well after July - so perhaps August (UGH GuangZhou in August????) or September.. and two or three of my favorite people in the world are (hopefully) going to travel with me while DH stays home with the Empress & Emperor.. while I travel for Empress Sassy Pants...

Spent most of the fall dealing with Imperial Daddy's unfortunate BOWLING injury... completely dislocated 2 fingers... requiring emergency surgery, 3 or 4 titanium pins and a hand surgeon specialist to preserve his ability to use his fingers... of course it was his left hand and yes, he is left-handed. To be fair we don't bowl.. and he had no idea that the finger holes came in different sizes.. so when he went to throw the ball and his hand stayed IN the ball when it traveled down the lane.. well, you can't even imagine the difficulty!! Then to top it off.. and as we have come to expect.. he bowled for another hour, and refused to go to the ER for a couple of days.. till he really had no other choice... and then we found out how serious an injury it was. Now, you would think that having him home for 2.5 months would have freed up some of my time.. no way. Well, enough about that! Finally he is back at work and mostly able to use the hand but he still has PT a few times a week.

The Empress is doing really well in her new center.. it was nerve wracking to move her but honestly she really needed a change and so new experiences.. though she still misses her two little friends especially. She is really a smartie and I can see that a regular school is just not going to cut it for her... haven't figured out what we will do about that but I am again touring the private schools in the area.... gotta sell the house. PERIOD. She is adding & subtracting, reading and knows all the sight words.... if she were a little more emotionally/socially mature I could easily skip the Kindergarten and go right to first grade.. but I don't think she is ready for the other kids quite yet. At least in her pre-K she is with great kids and she does seem to be blossoming and changing a bit.. she still has a hard time expressing her feelings to others... and I have seen her crumple at the suggestion that something she is doing/wearing/believing isn't what others do.. but she is actually starting to be ok with that too.. that is accepting that others are not always going to agree or like what she likes - it is not ok for others to disparage her for her likes and she absolutely can stick up for herself if she needs to. Love my little girl.. she is the absolutely best thing that ever happened to me.

The Emperor, is doing very well also. He is really a great kid.... finally showed some growth.. 3 inches in a few months then added one more recently.. so he is topped off at about 44" and weighs about 50 lbs!! Solid little guy - my boy!! His sense of humor is exactly what you would expect of any yo boy.. and let me tell you he is always in a humorous mood.. always. His teacher confirms he stays happy all day and even tries (and usually succeeds according to her!) to make her laugh.. all his teachers are impressed with his progress, how hard he works and how sweet and funny he is. I will say that I can't imagine our life without this little guy!

As for me.. well, making progress on getting the place organized to sell. We put a for sale by owner sign out.. and then someone took it. Oh well. We'll try again. I have a little more to do before I can get a Realtor in... but I hope we will be able to sell and find a new place we like as much, but in a better school district. Otherwise.. we are all good. Orianna is hanging in there - she has been a real sport about the interlopers. Kittens are adorable and very cuddly and LOUD.. one is a thief.. socks, pantyhose, hair scrunchies etc. the other is just funny... EFP is still so happy with her orange stripey kitty.. though it hasn't stopped her from wanting every FAKE animal in the universe for the holidays. I don't know I will do with all the fake pets.. ..tune in soon and see!!!

Friday, July 24, 2009


Life is hectic! No question about it. Two kids, two working parents... and a lot of blessings in the form of friends and family events. The kids are both happily settled for the summer. EFP started in her new school (close to where I work) and EBB is in Summer Day Camp - the first week was not so great.. but now he has made a few friends and we have explained to the camp director - what is what and all is well. I am sort of settling in at my new job. It is weird to be starting over and yet not starting over. I suppose that is the benefit of working at such a large place.. there are places to go and things to - in other areas or departments so it is like starting over - but with some history.
My new position has a great deal more responsibility - higher level authority and some back story that makes it difficult to get a handle on things at times. I am lucky though in a sense because just about whatever I decide (because there is no written history really) seems to be OK. I am navigating OK - watching for the obstacles etc. The people I work with are quite nice.. I fit in quite well - which is saying something. The kids seem to have adjusted to the new state of being also.
Moving EFP seems to have been a good idea.. scary a$$ trip to the ER and 4 Staples ... aside! She really seems to like it and the kids are great. I don't much like packing lunch everyday - for both kids - but it does seem to provide a more nutritious vareity of foods and I do get more say over what they are eating. EBB still wants to eat noodles more days than not.. but I am getting him to eat lots of other stuff too.. veggies, fruits, yogurt etc. so it is all good. Now to put into place my new diabolical plan of placing strategic notes into their lunch boxes with love and other fun stuff!!
We also added to our family. TWO KITTENS!! One is the (you guessed it!) an orange stripey girl named..... Stripey and a dilute calico (that is a Tortoiseshell with any white is usually called a Calico - and a dilute is paler) that is mostly white with little Calico spots who we call... Spotty (though I call her Puff Kitty) and we are just loving the uproar. We did have a pet challenge right off the bat as Spotty spent a few days in (outrageously expensive) emergency Animal Hospital for a disease we now know is "Kitty Fever NOS" (not otherwise specified) and has no known origin but takes the life of many a kitty. NOT this one I am happy to report. Our Free Kitty is now guaranteed gold standard!! We still miss our Cali though. And Eeks and Zan as well. So we are happy - but nostalgic about our new additions. Pics soon!
Well - that is all for now..

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Busy Busy Bees!

I know, i know... I am a bad bad blogger. It has been SO CRAZY around here lately... between my new job (yay me) the kids' activities (yay them) our family and friends... we have hardly been stationery!

We are heading into summer and it amazes me that a whole school year seems to have come and is now going!! Can I just take a few minutes to (brag, gush, overdo) say how proud I am of my little boy? He has worked so hard this year... and still he smiles and is simply the happiest little boy! Just today he graduated Kindergarten! He announced at dinner.. that now that he has graduated he is finished with school and will go back to daycare with his sister! LOL We howled! Actually he will start camp in 2 weeks... :-)
Both kids have had loads of fun in gymnastics this year and Saturday we attended the end of the year exhibition... we are so fortunate to be parents to these two amazing children... I have had my share of tears before they came into my life... and nothing has changed.. except now they are tears of joy. I tear-up all the time... thinking how life lead me to this place, these children... and in case you think I don't have enough to be happy about.. well, here goes a sample! These are miscellaneous shots.. from a weekend away, a fun Asian Cultural event, the gymnkhana, and my son's award ceremony at school! Enjoy.

Tuesday, April 07, 2009

Silly Chillies

At performance of National Acrobats of China - Staller Center
That is Mean EFP Face - and her very very silly brudder!

Having Fun with FCC at National Acrobats of China Show

Very silly boy!

Happy Birthday Empress!

Who is THRILLED to be 4!???


Monday, March 16, 2009

One year ago today..

In the meantime - let me tell you about one year ago today. We had a furious night re-packing, thanks to some person - who wanted to blow up a plane from BeiJing to LanZhou - we had to remove ALL liquids, gels, pastes, aerosols, and powders from our carryon and place them in or checked bag. Which meant that most of us had NOTHING ready for meeting the children. We flew the short hop and landed in LanZhou. EFP was already showing signs of illness and I was so tired.. we retrieved our bags and headed to the bus. You know, when I think of China I seem to see it from above - rather than eye-level, probably because of all the bus rides! Anyway - we were in the bus and XiXi (guide par excellence) tells us "The babies are waiting for you at the hotel!" I thought to myself - "Whew! Only the babies! Not my big boy!" Then XiXi came over the speaker and said - Yes, and One big boy too!" Uh Oh! At that moment I was panicked. And a little annoyed. Two years earlier - we begged to meet our babies a day early and our wish could not be granted. But on this day - there were other plans.

We roll up to the Hotel.. and so begins the adventure... trying to jam our family into a tiny little room - when I was sure we booked a suite (we had) and so the room situation had to be rectified. Meanwhile our little boy was waiting in a conference room with the other kids. We get the room straight (we end up in a super deluxe suite complete with euro shower, bidet and 2 plasma screen TVs) and head down to the conference room.

I have to tell you I was so nervous and worried. When I saw his little face... he was such a sweetie.. but so sad. He was so much smaller than we expected and he seemed totally bewildered. (I think I knew then that they had not prepared him really well.. but I had no idea!) Now I know - he was not prepared.

Something like this happened. "Here you go EBB, here's some peanuts, go with this person. Tada... today we are going to hand you over to a big bunch of big smelly scary white people who will say things you can't possibly understand... try to touch you, take your clothes... throw things at you and make you eat weird food... betcha can't wait!!"

So is it really surprising the child was terrified, grief-stricken, inconsolable, confused, howling like a banshee (in case you ever wondered it is not a pretty happy sound..) and well, not that into Mama???

He burst into tears about 20 minutes after we met him.. and didn't really stop (except for the trip to KFC) till the next day.. and even that was only temporary. His adoption picture is the saddest thing on earth. He was howling - tears streaming down his face.. so mad and sad at the same time.

I won't say - that I enjoy this piece of the journey.. I do not. I do not like thinking about the trauma for him.. how hard it had to have been.

What I will say - is that bad beginnings do not tell the end. Within days he was happier.. truly fell for his little sister and Daddy.. only Mama remained persona non grata... (and would be for a while) everyone else got smiles and silly grins.

But - fast forward.. or don't. Stop and think how you might have reacted.. and then you might be thinking.. how did this happen.. how does a child go from being so scared and grieving.. to how he is today.. well... the middle story is too long for this post. It has not been easy for him.. but it HAS been worth being with him on the ride.

My little boy... is at least 2 years younger than we thought (we are working on correcting this). Smarter and smarter all the time... truly bright. He is funny and has a charming way about him.. he is sweet and loving.. compassionate with a keen sense of justice.. he loves noodles more than anything. LanZhou is a wheat province.. not much rice. Every single day we were there we ate the most fabulous handmade noodles... every day. Breakfast for sure, and a lot of lunches and dinners also. Except when we were eating pizza with RED AND GREEN CHERRIES.. LOL

He misses those noodles. A lot. He loves his Mommy - for which I am grateful to the angels, stars and whoever else moved his heart in my direction. It pains me not at all to say - I love this little boy more than I thought it possible to love anyone... other than my darling girl. That they have each other and are so loving to each other is another gift I can't ever have imagined. I truly hope they stay this close to each other. My son makes friends where ever he goes. His smile is a winsome little grin that dares you to keep a straight face.. it rarely happens. He has had to overcome a mountain of challenges. Adoption is the least and most of it... his physical challenges, learning, language and family... all seem to be ok with him. He loves school and learning.. loves his family beyond anything and really really is a happy boy nearly all the time.

For what started as a rough trip - we have landed in a place that has a happy little family. My children are a constant source of amazement... as well as love and cheer. I can not be anything other than happy - when I have such treasures.

Monday, March 09, 2009

Silly Chillies... and My LOLCATZ

Dun't any kitty write lettas anymore?
Alz I gets is junkyee mail!

Billz Billz Billz - what yoused to be 1 mousey now 4 mousey!


Yummeeeez Billz iz tastees

Dunt laff at meeez.. me whiskas is funeee.... I dunt no why*?

Potz Lidz on Totz Lidz

The CYMBAL of fashion and good taste!

A two chillie cymbal festus for the restus..

*No actual kitty was harmed in the making of this blog post - the kids cut her whiskers, it doesn't hurt and they will grow back. And it will NEVER happen again!
She is hardly staggering around at all!!
Empress Kitty Puss is an all around good sport!

Thursday, March 05, 2009

Kids will be Kids.....

By the way - my son's new middle name is PORK - as in - he is such a HAM!

Tuesday, March 03, 2009

Snow Day!

Winter Wonderland!

It snowed - A LOT! (EBB's favorite add on to every sentence is A LOT!)

Take one boy, add 3 layers, a silly sense of humor and VOILA! You have Snow Boy!

She has been waiting all winter to do this...
then decided snowflakes are not that great tasting.

Yes - I promise these are MY kids - somewhere under all that!!

Snow Stats:
How many inches = 12"
Temp = 10
Layers of clothes on kids = 3 + Outerwear & boots
Time to dress = 20 minutes
Time in snow = 10 minutes
Snowballs thrown = 3, 2 by Daddy
Cups of Hot Coco w/marshmallows = 2
Happiness = Priceless

Empress Fussy Pants

Lilypie Kids Birthday tickers

Emperor Big Brother

Lilypie Next Birthday Ticker