Saturday, February 27, 2010

When You Wish Upon A Star

February 13, 2010

During Chinese class Jakey discovered the word for star, "xing xing".

He decided Xing Xing would be a great name for a new sister.

I told him to be sure to wish on the next star he sees 
and hopefully he will meet his new sister very soon.

A few days later, on the eve of the Chinese New Year,
I took Jakey and Ava to the planetarium.
I spoke to the narrator before the show started, and asked him to do me a small favor and please read a special little script for me during the show.

As we sat under the stars in the planetarium,
this is what the narrator said:

"Right now, it is daytime in Michigan,
but in China it is night time.
Somewhere in China a little girl 
is sleeping under the night sky,
somewhere in this room 
under the stars are Jakey and Ava,
and the little girl in China is their little sister."

They both hugged me.
It was hard to sit still through the rest of the show after that.

After the show, the kids opened fortune cookies:
The message inside read:

I’m waiting for you in China!

I gave them very special photo books


Meet your new sister!

Later that evening, we attended a Chinese New Year celebration
...with some dancing

a little kung fu...

lots of fun

A Roaring Lion

Sharing happy news with Uncle

Good friends

...and a rub on Buddah's Belly for good luck!

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

The Long And Winding Road

My How You've Grown

We are on day 53 waiting for LOA. 

The typical wait to reach this milestone in our adoption process is 75 days. 

After LOA it could be another 2 months until travel approval and then we will hurry and get onto an airplane to bring Bella Jade home.

The waiting is the hardest part.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Two Different Kinds Of Love

Once there were two women
Who never knew each other.
One you do not remember,
The other you call mother.

Two different lives
Shaped to make yours one,
One became your guiding star,
The other became your sun.

The first gave you life,
And the second taught you to live it.
And the first gave you a need for love,
And the second was there to give it.

One gave you a nationality.
The other gave you a name.
One gave you the seeds of talent,
The other gave you aim.

One gave you emotions,
The other calmed your fears.
One saw your first sweet smile,
The other dried your tears.

One gave you up,
It was all that she could do.
The other prayed for a child,
And was led straight to you.

And now you ask me through your tears,
The age old question through the years.
Heredity or environment, 
Which are you a product of?

Neither, my Darling, Neither,
Just two different kinds of love.

Author Unknown

Saturday, February 20, 2010

The Starfish Thrower

Once upon a time there was a man who used to go to the ocean to do his writing. He had a habit of walking on the beach before he began his work. 

One day he was walking along the shore. As he looked down the beach he saw a human figure moving like a dancer. He smiled to himself to think of someone who would dance to the day. 

So he began to walk faster to catch up. As he got closer, he saw that it was an older man and the man wasn't dancing. Instead he was reaching down to the shore, picking up something and very gently throwing it into the ocean. 

As he got closer he called out, "Good morning! What are you doing?"

The older man paused, looked up and replied, "Throwing starfish into the ocean." 

The man noticed there were hundreds of starfish all washed up on the beach from a storm the night before. He watched as the man carefully continued to pick up the starfish one by one. 

"I guess I should have asked, ‘Why are you throwing starfish into the ocean?’" 

"The sun is up and the tide is going out. If I don't throw them in they'll die." 

"But don't you realize there are miles and miles of beach and starfish all along it. You can't possibly make a difference!" 

The older man listened politely. He bent down, picked up another starfish. He looked at the starfish as he prepared to throw it into the ocean, past the breaking waves and said – 

"I will make a difference to this one."

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Dear Family and Friends

We have been gifted a wonderful child who needs and deserves a family. Every addition to a family, regardless of the age, brings about some anxiety.

We realize our kids will have their own struggles and triumphs. They will grow as people through watching us get to know and love their new sister. They will also have to attach and get to know and love their new sister. This will part of the fabric of their lives. 

What a wonderful thing for them as they grow and understand the world to have

watched their parents bring in a new child who needs a forever family. They will learn to love her as we do.

I think as everyone adjusts to the new normal, we will have moments when we wonder, "What have I done?" or "What were we thinking?" Both before their new sister arrives in the anticipation of the change and in the middle of it all as we

go through everything. It will be challenging at times. Our older children may be resentful at times. 

Our kids will gain more than a sibling. Our children will develop compassion. They will gain a global perspective. They will witness their parents do hard things and survive. They will learn important lessons about life and love. They will gain a rich cultural heritage. 

And...there will be more action in the house, more laughter in the house, more bickering, more game playing, more running, more teasing, more noise, more tickling, more love in the house.

We hope you will join in our happiness.

Fall in love with our new daughter with us. 

Enjoy preparing for her arrival with us. 

This is such an amazing time in life. 
Thanks for your love and support.


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Our Adoption Timeline:

Begin Home Study:
August 10, 2009
Liu Chun Tian
Referral Photos:
August 19, 2009
Letter Of Intent:
August 24, 2009
September 2, 2009
(in 9 days)
Home Study Completed:
October 5, 2009
I-800A Sent:
October 6. 2009
Immigration Approval:
November 19, 2009
(in 45 days)
Dossier To China:
December 18, 2009
Log In Date:
December 31, 2009
(in 13 days)
~Happy New Year~
Letter Of Approval:
(in 74 days)
I-800 Sent:
I-800 Approval:
Cabled 4-7-2010
Article 5
Picked Up 5-4-2010
Travel Approval:
Leaving On A Jet Plane:
June 12, 2010
Forever Family Day:
American Citizenship:
July 4th, 2010