Monday, July 28, 2008

Blessings from a friend

Monica was the very first friend I made in blogland.  We've encouraged each other, celebrated each other's joys and triumphs and cried with joy with the first posted pictures of the other's adopted child actually in MaMa's arms.  We've sent up prayers for each other and helped through the fretful time of waiting and the various parts of life that make up family life.  Monica was actually the second person I left a phone message with after we heard that our agency had succeeded on getting Little Miss's paperwork for us.
Monica has started a new blog where she is selling her Longaberger baskets to raise money for Little Miss,  Chinese Starfish foster home and Love Without Boundaries .  The link to her new blog is at the top of the side bar and the other two are linked lower down on the sidebar.  I've always been blessed to know her, and now she's blessing us with these sales.
Thanks Monica!

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Working though bad news

Late last week we got disturbing news from our adoption agency, they had failed in their second attempt to become certified according to the Hague convention on International adoption. This, combined with China's proclamation that they wouldn't accept dossiers from non-Hague agencies after July 15th left us uncertain what would happen.
It was tough, I felt like I'd been kicked in the stomach. It was very hard to institute the pray without ceasing and the praise Him in all things, but I struggled through to get that point. We believe God has led us through this whole process, so why would he throw up this roadblock?
I waited for news and then sent a concise and polite email asking what our particular situation needed to have happen. I'm very glad I waited to ascertain until I was calm; on several yahoo groups I watched many people not wait until they got calm. It wasn't nice.
We still don't know why, but we do know that another agency will now be sending in our dossier to China so that there should be very little, if any, delay in our process.

Friday, July 18, 2008

Another conversation with Little Miss

Last night we had another conversation with Little Miss. Unfortunately, Bill was fighting a stomach flu and went to bed and missed a lot of it. She seems to be getting less shy, but also seems to like to just sit there and listen to us (me) talk. Acer joined me for the first little bit and as is normal, he was talking, and talking. Sarah asked how old he was and how long he'd been in the country and then noted that he talked a LOT. It's normal for him, but not for others I guess. She has many kids to compare him to so, I guess she has a better idea of normal than I do. Little Miss said piano was really the only instrument she was interested in learning right now, and isn't sure if she'd want to learn any sports or take dance lessons. She said she really just wanted to stay home. I think she'll still get judo lessons, along with her piano lessons, but I don't think I'll be signing her up for too many other classes, just yet. I think she's wise actually, she can stay home and enjoy her family, and then we we are less of a novelty, more everyday, I can send her to more classes.
I am going to send her to judo almost as soon as we get home though. She's so beautiful and so small that I want her to have some self-defence skills.  There have been blind Judo champions, so that's the way I chose to go.
I'm so used to Acer's constant stream of verbage that I just listen, respond and encourage with out even thinking about it too much any more. I pay attention to what he says, but not the fact that there is a constant stream of syllables coming out of his mouth.

Sarah, American Nurse working in the Foster home, lends Little Miss emotional support during these meetings (the stress of communication with new strange people who call themselves your parents must be enormous)

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Laundry, Beautiful Laundry!

Yes, Indeed I am celebrating laundry today because I can DRY it in the dryer! Our dryer coils went out and I have been tumble / air drying stuff for about a week. I've only been doing necessities because it takes so long to tumble one load. I was almost going to string a line in the backyard, but I don't have anything to attach it to.
Bill's brother David has been working at a job out here, so he's been spending nights here on the spare bed. He had the skills to fix it and so off I went to buy the coils. Last night he fixed it and today - fresh laundry for everyone!


I'd keep going but there was just another buzz and I have to put in another load!

Wednesday, July 16, 2008


Just a note, due to a $10 tip from a happy customer whose front yard I re-designed, We are over the $3000 mark on our fundraising. It's just incredible to me how many people have blessed us with their gifts of money, or purchases from our etsy store. Thank You All!

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Acer grows!

Yes, despite our thinking he would be the same height forever he has actually grown since he's been home. He's still basically in the same size, although some pants are getting short in the leg, yes, he still fits 2T's in most things. He wears a lot of different sizes in shirts, but he needs the smaller pants for his tiny butte self. Think if he grows any more though, he won't be able to fit the 2T's and will have to start living life wearing a belt. We don't let him sag, or plumber as we call it, if we can help it.
Here are our measurements over the last year.
5/25/07 35"
1/27/08 36.5"
7/15/08 38"

Monday, July 14, 2008

What's Up? Acer is!

Not exactly sure why, but Acer hasn't been falling asleep much before 10:30 many nights lately. I think it may have something to do with his gradual switch to me as his preferred parent instead of Bill.
Every since I bought a micro plush robe, Acer snuggles with me more. He'll even request that I put on the robe just to snuggle. I purchased it just before I went back to work this spring and I'm not sure if he just likes it that much, or misses me because I'm gone more, but I spend hours a day, on my days off, even in the heat, wearing the robe with a small child on my lap. I think this may be why I am now Acer's preferred parent.
Now, what does this have to do with Acer not sleeping? I think he doesn't want to go to sleep until I come home from work. I work the closing shift most days and don't leave work until some time between 9:30 and 10:30 and I get home a half hour later. So he is still awake when I get home, and he gets to make sure I'm home, I think.
The only upside to this is that he now sleeps about an hour or so later each morning and I get to sleep in a smidge, but it's throwing off his whole schedule, nap time, everything.
Oh well some bad, some good and it won't last long. After we get back from camping the end of the month, we're going to start getting him up early and practicing getting ready for school on time. He's going to be catching the bus between 7:30 and 7:45 to be to school at 8:30 so we need to practice our whole morning routine so we're not all stressed.

Speaking, okay writing, about sleep, Avon has Melatonin strips to help you sleep better. Many PVI (parents of Visually impaired) swear by Melatonin to help their kids fall asleep on a regular schedule. We've not had that problem with Acer, so why am I writing about it? See the July 9 What an Offer post.

Friday, July 11, 2008

Mosquito Repellant Anyone?

I was trying to think what I could/needed to buy from Avon. Yes, I was thinking of buying something from my own fund raiser, not sure how that would work, but I just didn't know what I would buy from Avon. I'm not into makeup, rarely wear any at all, most of the other items didn't fit into the 'NEED' category of purchases, which is what we are doing now, needs only. So then it hit me, Skin so soft and the other repellents. They even have a new one with Picaridin. I love that stuff. When you work outside in a nursery lot, biting bugs are all over. I like the Picaridin repellent because it doesn't melt plastic like Deet does, yet it keep the biting flies and 'squitos away. It even smells relatively decent, for a bug spray.

So.... if you still need your summer bug spray, please check out Tammy's fund raiser on the 7/9 what an offer post.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Chun Bin Updates 7-10-2008

Here she is our sundress girl!
The symbols on it are red fish. Red is a favorite, festive color in Chinese culture and the fish symbolizes abundance, overflow, and more than enough, generally referring to food, money, things like that. Black is not a mournful color, white is, somewhat a reverse of what we're used to in the west.

Wednesday, July 09, 2008

What an offer!

Yesterday I received an email from a chat group & blog buddy who adopted her little girl from Acer's province. Little Jasmine has some sight blessedly, but the Dr's aren't really sure what the extent of her eye problems are yet. After exchanging a couple emails last night, she posted this (below) on our mutual yahoo group. We are blessed by so many people in so many different ways during this journey it's incredible to me.

Help me to help Heather to bring 'Little Miss' home to her forever family

Heather BT was a great resource to me and my husband and
was extremely supportive to me as I went through my adoption journey to
bring my little angel, Jasmine home from China. I want to return the
favor and help her out too! I sell Avon and am going to donate 20% of
my sales in Campaigns 16, 17, and 18 to Heather and her family to help
bring "Little Miss" home to them. Please visit my website and help me
to help them!! When you check out, for
just $3.00 you can have your order shipped directly to your door
(Select Standard Shipping and put coupon code SHIP3 at checkout.)

Tammy Jarrett
DH Jeff
DS Jordan
DS Jonathan
DS Jacob
DD Jasmine JinSi Jarrett, Jiangxi Province, China

Tuesday, July 08, 2008

Hey Lady!

Yes, That's what was yelled at me this morning, as I walked along a busy street looking in closed stores and waited for the business I wanted to enter to open. I had planned a leisurely 20 minute stroll, just checking things out and then looping back through a park, with just enough time to land back in front of our insurance agent's as she opened.
Instead a balding white haired 70-75 year old man in a truck, stops in the middle of the business driveway he's exiting and bellows out the passenger window.
"Hey Lady! how far are you going?"
"I'm just walking to kill some time"
I continued to walk around the back of his vehicle, when I get back even to the window, he stuck his head out and yelled,
"It's going to rain today you know!"

Now I'm not sure if it was my tie dyed, peace sign on front and Peace, Love, Crabs on the back T-shirt or my 'lovely' super wild, post physical therapy hair which drew his interest (?) chivalrous offer (?) but I certainly wasn't going to take him up on it!

Monday, July 07, 2008

A few random things I've forgotten to post

The Thursday I brought HiHo, the new car home, I went to VBS in the evening. When we were out in the church parking lot after, God blessed us with the only triple rainbow I've ever seen. I like to think God was letting me know that he'd bless HiHo like he blessed The Beater.

We searched the maker and serial number of our piano and estimate it at 100 years old. The youngest it could be is 96 and the oldest 106. I love our new piano.

While we were out eating Saturday night, a song came on and the waitresses all danced choreographed moves to the well known song, including stomping and yelling. Acer loved it. He loved it so much Bill almost fell out of the booth laughing as he listened to Acer singing 'Oh, oh, oh, oh stay in a line' (stayin' alive)

Sunday, July 06, 2008

Beverly, This one's for you

We read the Lolcats most nights, but this one we had to post.
Finally, another picture on my blog, even if I didn't take it and it's not of Acer or us.

Saturday, July 05, 2008

Another week in review

Friday I was off work, and started PT for my back. Mum watched Acer and afterwards we went out to our local little restaurant for lunch and then to the thrift store where I picked up an new toy for Acer and a few more outfits For Little Miss. Even though we think she's a size six now, I was picking up some nice eights and tens. I look for stuff with beading, embroidery or textured decoration so she can figure out what she wants to wear.
Saturday I went in to work and then left work early because of my back. I made it until the closing shift came in and then left. I went home and tubbed. Acer was napping and it was wonderful, I could just read and not worry about it.
Bill and I sing in the worship band at church, we sang for the second time on Sunday. It went pretty well, we sang the song we'd practiced and then we sang a song we'd never practiced. I was humming it to Bill in the pew during service (it was the closing hymn) and then up we went, with no words in our hands. Bill said he was reading peoples' lips to see what the words were going to be. I don't think we did too badly, but it was humorous to be 'Leading' a song we didn't know. It was good, but that was all the standing I was up to, two hymns. I even sat during the other parts of the service you're supposed to stand in. :(
After church I connected with a Mom who has two daughters, one older, one ChunBin's age, but still in larger sizes. She's now a source of hand-me downs. I'm pretty excited to find a source for her. :)
Acer gets hand me downs from two sources and I rarely have to buy him anything but shoes. We have plenty of clothes. I love hand me downs, kids grow so fast that there's very little wear on most items. Acer, on the other hand hasn't grown much and so he's staying in them much longer and so we have plenty.

Monday was my day off work and I basically played inside with Acer. We did a lot of snuggle and roll on the bed. He'll snuggle in for a little bit; he likes it when I tell him " a story about a boy". The story I make up about whatever has happened in his life, whether in China or in the recent past. After that, comes the rolling. Somersaults, rolls, up and over MaMa. You name it, I am a rumpus room fixture. He has fun, and I get to lie down and play with him without hurting my back. Monday night we had band practice and then we came home to skype Little Miss on a re-scheduled night. We're supposed to call Thursday Nights/Friday Morning their time, but since we lost power last week, we couldn't and had to wait. Skype was acting up and so we didn't actually try for video, we just used it for cheap international calling. Little Miss' voice is different than I'd expected, more mature maybe, not sure, but I don't recognize it yet, have to ask to make sure. She was less shy than the last call and I think we enjoyed the conversation more. We are starting to learn more about her, what classes she takes and how she likes them and we tried to explain our schedule for the week to her.

Tuesday I went for back PT again. I have 5 separate back strains, cramps, issues, whatever you call them, and so they're working slowly on getting the swelling down, and getting it stronger. It's too early in the morning for me, but I did have a lovely 20 minute rest (nap) on a heated mat and then a soft tissue massage before they gave me two new exercises. I guess if it's always that nice, I'll take the too early time. I actually made it through a whole day of work too. I was almost amazed. I put one of those shapers under my work shirt and I think It stabilized my back enough that I could walk and work. I now wear one all the time and my back's much happier. Much hotter, but much happier. I also hit a lovely sale at Kohls too and even manged to get stuff for Bill and Bill's brother David and my brother James on really good sale. David wondered how I knew he needed more underwear and I simply replied "you're male". Went with my lifelong friend Vicki, she's as good at finding bargains as I and we can help rein each other in or urge each other on.

Wednesday is one of my days to work late and I made it through without too much trouble. It was raining buckets and so there weren't too many people out shopping for plants. Not sure why one customer I had was shopping. She randomly picked out three plants, had me pick out two others and then didn't buy two of the three she picked out. I was confused and sopping wet because she felt the need to get plants she knew nothing about and will probably return dead because she didn't want to hear anything about them and how to keep them alive. Sigh. Too many years doing this, think I'm getting too cynical.
In Wednesday's mail, we did get our I-171H; the approval from our government and the final piece of paper for our dossier.
Of course we got this just in time to hear that China has stopped accepting dossiers from Non Hague Accredited agencies, and of course we're still waiting or our agency to get accredited. We had to turn in one form to the US gov't early so it could be grandfathered in before USCIS stopped accepting it, and now this. Prayers that this week's meeting to get accredited would be the final one and they would pass this time without having to go back once again and change something, like they did before. We only have until August 29th before our Pre-approval runs out and I don't know what we'll do if they don't succeed.
Thursday I had minor cleaning fits about the house, now that I feel well enough in the back to actually bend down and clean stuff. I was grumpy about it, because others have been helping (thank you!) and I had to figure out where stuff was, but I was working on it. Nothing too exciting that day except I found that the dryer didn't seem to be actually heating stuff up, just tumbling it. (However today there seemed to be heat coming out, so I'll have to see)
Friday was a perfect weather day and we headed off to Bill's parents with Mum for the day. Bill was working at the city parade of the city his Library's in. He had an interesting time, from tying balloons to leading a section of ten groups to directing traffic. Acer could barely stand to wait until Bill came home to go to Yeye & NaiNai's. It was the first time all four of Acer's cousins were there at the same time. They played on the new play structure a lot and Acer loved being in the water the most of all the cousins. He can't wait until our pool is running this year. Between the power outages and our back yard neighbor's spruces being cut down (she warned us so that we wouldn't get the mess in a clean & opened up pool) our pool is still waiting to be opened for the year.
Today was my birthday, and the local Lions clubs' camp open house. We slept in and the hit the road. It's a very nice camp, we toured and admired and ate hotdogs. Acer can't go for another three years, but we figure if we go every year between now & then to the open houses, he'll be ready. Not sure when Little Miss will want to go to camp; sometimes it reminds kids of their life in the orphanage too much and they don't like it. We came home, planted a few things and then headed out to dinner. Dinner and then Icecream at Erma's. Lovely weather and a lovely day.
Well, that catches us up, hopefully with my back taking less of my energy away, I'll be backing to writing more frequently.