Monday, April 30, 2007

Pictures, Pictures

Beds, Rituals and Friends

We leave a week from Tomorrow!

We are one step closer to being ready for Acer, Bill and my bro. James accomplished 'The Great Bed Switch part II'. In part I, we sent a bed to Mum's, brought a bed from Mum's sent a couch to Mum's and got a futon from Bill's brother John. This time we only moved a mattress from upstairs, built a bed frame and moved a mattress upstairs. So we are now sleeping on a queen sized bed instead of a full, and theoretically we'll have room for all 3 of us as we co-sleep for at least 6 months to help with bonding.

Who knew that the 3-4 inches of extra mattress space would screw up our night time sleep rituals so much. For the past 5 1/2 years, we've had a process of getting to sleep that has worked well, I snuggle on Bill then turn over & Bill snuggles on me & then he turns over and we butte snuggle. We happily sleep back to back because we both snore, so we came up with the butte snuggle term. But now there's extra space and it disrupts the process. I guess it's a good thing we're only sleeping like this for a week and a half, and the coming back from China with Acer, because we don't really have a routine it'll be easier to start a new one with Acer.

Last night was my work Toddler shower, we met after work at a local pizzeria. (Boy, were we wiped out after a busy day) I also had included a few ex-employees and frequent customers who had become friends on my guest list. I love it when people who don't know each other can get together and have decent and far-ranging conversations; to hear all the different subjects under discussion was pretty cool. My good friends Beq and Cheryl from work did a wonderful job. While I appreciate the wonderful gifts, the gift of everybody's support and friendship during this whole process is the biggest and best gift I could ever wish for.

Bill will be posting pictures later (okay, as soon as I let him know that I need him to, wonderful guy that he is)

Wednesday, April 25, 2007

More new pictures and Blankets of love

This winter while I was off, I did a lot of knitting. I knitted blankets for Acer and his Foster Mother, among others. I shipped off the blankets a couple weeks ago and they just arrived. The Ass't Director of the Orphange was kind enough to take pictures of Acer getting the blankets and to forward them to me. Acer's blanket is the bright mulit colored one in yellows and red and the Foster Mother's blanket is in the lovely blue, black, combos. I did a random pattern of knitting rows and purling rows for his, so it should have a unique texture for him to feel.
Also, a wonderful supporter of my efforts to get orphanage donations sent over 6 crib blankets. They were made with two different pieces of fleece, fringed & then the fringes were knotted together. These should be wonderfully warm and very washable for the orphanage. Best of all, she said a prayer with every knot.

Thursday, April 19, 2007

We'll Have Acer On Mother's Day!

Our final itinerary came today! We'll actually get our little guy on May 13th Mother's Day! I'm so excited!
Here's the run down
Group Schedule (detailed events are always subject to change):
Date Itinerary Hotel
Fri, May 11 Arrive in Beijing Radisson SAS Hotel
Sat, May 12 Sightseeing in BJ: TianAnMen Square & Forbidden City, the Great Wall (Juyongguan), Lunch is included; Orientation
Sun, May 13 Flight to Nanchang: MU5174(10:50a-13:05p)
Meet child in the afternoon Gloria Plaza Hotel
Mon, May 14 Do the registration and notary
Tue, May 15 Free day
Wed, May 16 Sightseeing: TengWeng Pavilion in the morning
Thur, May 17 Sightseeing: Countryside
Fri, May 18 Get the passport and all paperwork back, do paperwork for the ACS
Sat, May 19 Flight to Guangzhou: CZ3540(10:10a-11:35p) White Swan Hotel
Sun, May 20 Free day
Mon, May 21 Medical examination for children
Tues, May 22 Appt at ACS, Farewell Dinner
Wed, May 23 Go to ACS to take oath and get the visa in the afternoon around 6:00pm Departure to US in evening after 8:00pm OR next morning May 24th

Monday, April 16, 2007

An Acer update! Finally!

Here's the news we received today! Yeah! I'll be able to figure out what size he is, and maybe even buy shoes to fit! Such excitment! Yes, some things are phrased oddly, but the meaning comes through.

Report on Jing Shenchao’s latest growth conditions

Name: Jing Shenchao (景申超)
Sex: Male
Birthday: 21st Dec. 2004

Medial history:
He was born with congenital retina abnormity of both eyes: left eye with congenital leukoma; right eye with congenital retina development abnormity; corneas of both eyes are congenital small. This boy is smart, agile and has good feeling and hearing. His intelligence and physical development is normal. His nickname at home is “GuangGuang”.

Present growth conditions:
Height: 87cm, weight: 13kg, head circumference: 48cm, chest circumference: 52.5cm, feet length: 16cm, Teeth number: 14.

Physical movement:
He can try to grasp toys by feeling with his hands. He may laugh loudly while playing. He can recognize acquaintances and strangers through senses and voices. He knows the meaning of “no”. He can hold tea cup or milk bottle with both of his hands, and walk by himself. Also, he can throw balls or other things. When he is happy, he can applause to show welcome. He can eat candy and fruits by himself. He can stand up by holding other things. If you put him on a bed or a chair, he can manage to slide down immediately. He will move his body while listening to music to show he is very happy. If you ask him whether he wants to go to the park, he will nod or shake his head to say yes or no to show that he understands people’s language.

Language development:
Now, he starts to learn new things, and he is already able to name his families and acquaintances accurately. When you ask him how old is he, he will say three if he is happy. He will be very happy if you put him into a laver to have a bath, and at this time if you ask him to wash head he will do it by putting his hands on his head and kneading his hair. If you ask him how to eat, he will show you by opening his mouth and saying “a”.

Hearing ability:
His ability to hear is good and he can react to sound quickly.

Ability to adapt to environment:
He had a very strong ability to adapt to environment. He cares about people and things around him and can search for sound source after hear a certain sound.

He can cooperate with his folks to get dressed and untie buttons, put off shoes. He has a very good appetite, and his meals are mainly on milk (3 times each day, 260mL each time, every 4~5 hours each time). He is not fastidious about his food and defferent soft supporting good have been added.

Emotion and character
The relation between the boy and his foster mother is especially close, and the boy can get along with his foster father, older sister, grandma very well. He will be very pleased if someone hugs him. This boy is smart, active and lovely. He is outgoing and likes laughing. Though he has a little temper, after tease he will smile. He enjoys playing outdoors. He is bold and not afraid of strangers. He likes new toys, especially telephone toys with music, such as: music cell phone.

Jingdezhen City Social Welfare Institution

Saturday, April 14, 2007

Busy time back at work and at home

I finally started back at work on March 31st, just in time for the great temperature cool down. I did fine outside for about a week until Easter Sunday when the temperatures seemed to settle into my lungs. Poor Bill, we had a few weeks of normal household temperatures, but now I'm back to baking him.

The nursery trucks are starting to roll in and I feel much like the Michelin woman with 2 shirts, 2 jackets, a coat, scarf, headband and sometimes a raincoat to top it all off. Then they'll call me inside to diagnose some plant problem and I'll have to de-cloak just to be inside for a few minutes.

This year's never before run into problem was a spider plant with its own ant colony. I gave the little old lady some easy and safe solutions for her favorite old plant and told her not to vacation it outside ever again.

It is good to be back to work, many of the people are my main support group and are very excited for us to be going to get Acer. Not just my co-workers but also many of my regular customers are interested too. I think some of them will be making special trips out to meet Acer at six o'clock as Bill and I do a handoff in the parking lot.

We made our trips to get our vaccinations, perfect timing, we'll be able to get our second round the day before we leave for China. The third round will be about 5 months later, we obviously will be back by then but it's the last of the Hep series which won't hurt to have.

Easter Sunday we were at Bill's parents, Bill drove Mum in her car and they picked up his brother David. I made it after work. While it is a bummer to work Easter or Christmas Eve, you do get one perk of being able to take home a lily or a poinsettia. I found one with no open flowers and an incredible 20 buds to give my mother in law. I was over there Thursday and there were only 3 flowers open so it should be blooming for a long time yet.

Thursday we got together at the in-laws' again to address shower invites and hash out details. SIL Kerry has come up with an incredible tri-fold invite that I'll copy & post once I get a final version - incredible, Bill's reaction was 'Wow'

I also had to stop at the bank and pick up moolah in lovely crisp bills for various adoption purposes. I took the dogs with me (not into the bank) just figuring that someone would be far less likely to mug someone with two larger quadrapeds. Granted we live in one of the safest cities of the nation, and who would mug someone who drives the beater, but still, just in case.

Today we went to an incredible event at one of Bill's pastor's house where we were blessed (financially and prayerfully) by Bill's co-volunteers on the tech team. I was overwhelmed, I'd heard of the people but never met them and really couldn't believe their love and care. Many thank you have gone out to them and the Lord for putting them in our lives.

I've also figured out how to post pictures on and get them printed out. I've made Bill, Mum and myself little albums of Acer. Today I called our stepdaughter Alex and found out Which Walgreens was closest to her house (on the other side of the state), sent a set of pictures to print out there and paid for them on line. She now has the full set and has taken down a poster in her bedroom to display them all. She called to tell us this and to tell us she was going defend Acer against anyone who would make fun of him. That's our fiercely protective caring girl. She's also buying him clothing including a basketball outfit (that's her sport) next on her list, a tiny pair of croc's for him. Can't wait for her to get to meet him.

Well, it's been a week full of blessings. Three weeks until we leave!

Even More Pics

Just added a 17th pic, that we just got via e-mail yesterday!

Thursday, April 05, 2007

210 Pounds of orphanage donations needed

I've just booked our tickets and found out we're allowed to take 5 pieces of luggaage at 70 pounds each. We'll use two for ourselves and would like to take over three more filled with baby formula, medicines and diapers, diaper wipes, baby bottles, you know all the good stuff babies need and use so much of. I'm looking for 210 punds of baby goods by May 8th- let me know if you can help! These orphanages only get about 25$ a month per child so every little thing we can do, could make a huge difference in the life of a little one.