Wednesday, January 28, 2009
Don't know if my bad habits are rubbing off on the husband or if he is just super excited about his little girl - quite certain it's the latter. I found a box on the porch when I came home and opened it to find these cute noise canceling ear muffs and fuzzy headset for ipod. So cute and great protection. Made for babies and toddlers. Not expensive either. Think he got both for$35.00. Can buy on www.earplugstore.com (sorry Rosemary!) He even did something that is so typically me. He saw some ball players child at a game (okay that part isn't me) and looked up a pic of them on google. He found out what brand it is and ordered online. That is the part that is me, of course. I look up everything and research for hours if I want to find something. Little does he know that I had been eyeballing those ear muffs for some time after I saw Gwyneth's girl, Apple had sported them at a concert. Ruby will be in good company!
Tuesday, January 27, 2009
Feels so good to be home! Jeff is still out of town for business, but I woke up to find my two furry ones snuggled up in bed with me. So cute that they stayed up there all night! Our dog, Chloe, stays at the neighbors when we are gone, but Mr. Max stays home alone and just gets visits from the neighbors at feeding time. He must have been so lonely because he left out the longest, whiniest meow when I walked in the door and has been glued to my side ever since. He's usually very independent so it's really sweet. Both are just so cute and following me around from room to room as I unpack, do laundry, put things away, empty trash, etc. These are the furry little critters (above) snuggling on the couch after they got groomed a few weeks ago. Max got the lion cut. Note how thoroughly annoyed he looks.
I had my physical today to update our home study so one more thing off the list! AND - get this - Jeff's fingerprint approval came in already! We must have a friend or something in that office because that is some seriously fast work! Jeff has to get his physical next week and we do another home study visit and that's it! Since we don't have the referral yet, there is no worry at all that it won't be done and processed on time. So that is one good thing about the referral not showing up yet. The only one! Hurry up and get here already! There is a board meeting today in Thailand (it's Wed in Thailand though Tues here). I couldn't help but think about it all day.
Sunday, January 25, 2009
Sound like an oxymoron? Yea, that's what I thought too! When my friend Tammy suggested it would be a fun thing for us to do while holed up in our hotel rooms in Detroit I actually laughed. I was like, you want to what??? Isn't that for Grannies? Well, she was serious and so were a bunch of the girls. Hmmmm, I thought. Knitting??? Okay, well, far be it from me to not try something new. I borrowed some knitting needles from my Dad's fiance, Lyn, and decided to try. My friend Christine bought me some beautiful pink yarn so I could make something for the baby. I almost gave up after the first night. Tammy kept telling how zen and relaxing it was but for me it was extremely tedious and boring. I was so annoyed that I tossed the whole ball of yarn in the corner of the room and that is where it sat for a good few days. Then everyone started bring their project to work. And showing off their new creations. Now my pride started kicking in. If they can figure it out, then surely I can! So low and behold, I went to Tammy's room last night with another friend, Sara, and the 3 of us sat their knitting. I can't believe it. I can knit! And once I got the hang of it, it WAS relaxing. Who knew? I highly doubt this will be a favorite past time, but it is kinda cool to be making a home made gift for Ruby. I'll post a pic when it actually looks like something. Being a beginner I have decided to make something very simple. It will be a baby blanket for Ruby's first baby doll she got for Christmas. In pink, of course!
Tammy & Patricia all eager to start. These pics are from the first night, a week ago.
Christine, Sara, & Darci looking very determined and dedicated.
All of us settling in on the floor. You can see I am much more dedicated to what is on TV than my knitting. LOL.
Saturday, January 24, 2009
Up, down, and up again. (Sigh) What a ride. At least I am not staying down for long. A family from Wacap got their referral yesterday. While we are thrilled that another child gets a family and happy for that family (whoever they may be), I was rather bummed to hear only ONE referral came in. I read the word "one" and my heart sank. I thought they came in batches? Where are the rest? I was like, um, you forgot a few! I can't stand the thought of waiting yet another month and having to wait even longer to hold our little girl. Yesterday I saw a cute baby being held by her mom at the auto show and it got me all choked up. My baby needs to be held! Why oh why does she have to wait so long? It doesn't seem fair that she is in need of someone to love her and here we are so wanting to hold and love her, but we can't be there yet. I know everyone is doing the best they can to get these kids home with their families, but some days it's just so frustrating! And some times it just gets to me despite my best efforts.
Jeff was actually excited by the news. He took it as a good thing and feels confident that it means ours will be in soon. That thought is so much better than mine so I am jumping on his bandwagon and forcing myself to stay positive. After all, they ARE working on Wacap families now and that is GREAT. One more family is rejoicing and we are one more step closer to our daughter. A friend reminded me how other agencies have had them trickle in over a week or so period. So let's go with that! Here's to more referrals for us Wacap families this month!! Cross those fingers and and say some prayers, people! Pray, meditate, chant! Repeat after me: MUST. GET. REFERRALS!
Thursday, January 22, 2009
Like I can think of much else! But, no, actually, Think Baby is the name of a cool company that makes really safe items for baby! I ordered this cute set online last night. It's PBA free, phthalate free, lead free and a couple other things that I didn't even know were bad. Check out their products at www.thinkbabybottles.com.
Another cool online purchase I made last night was this Rubber Ducky that is actually all rubber. Imagine that. I have to admit, it's not the cutest rubber duck I have seen. But it is the safest. I got the sitting down version. Found it and these cute (and safe) bowls at www.parentingbynature.com.
There are still a few things I am drooling over and thinking about. I LOVE toys from Haba. They have so many cute things and are all made of wood and natural materials with non-toxic paint.
LOVE this little Garden set! Found it and a lot of Haba toys at Petit Baby. So cute and has little pegs for stacking. This one I am seriously thinking about. The edu-cube, too. Does anyone have one and did your child like it? The teether I am not sure about yet. I think I will still need it for a 2 year old. Do I need more than one? If I do, I am thinking about is this:
Sophie the Giraffe. A classic. Made in France of all natural rubber with no PVC or harmful stuff. Super cute and certainly a unique looking teether. I better get some sleep tonight...these late nights online are dangerous for my pocket-book! I like awake at night thinking, okay, what didn't I do? What am I forgetting? Suddenly I sit up and go TOYS! She doesn't have many toys! Oh, and she needs a teether...I think...and bath toys...and...
Wednesday, January 21, 2009
Is it excitement or anxiety? Hmmm. Not sure. I feel like I have been handling things okay, but my body (or brain) might be telling me otherwise. I just can't sleep! I lie awake and think of when we will hear the news, who I will call, what all I have to do, how I gotta get those darn baby gates up when I get home, things I still need, etc.
Of course, my hotel room may be a contributing factor. The heater appears to have 2 settings. Full blast dry-your-face-out heat or turned down freeze-your-toes off cold. Uggh! So I get up at least twice a night either gasping for air and some water or I am pulling on more layers. I adjust the temperature either up or down every few hours. Doesn't seem to be a happy medium for me temperature wise!
Other than that, all is well. Only 4 days left of the Detroit Auto Show and I am thrilled to be going home soon! My next show is in Philly so I can stay home awhile. Hooray!! The show hasn't been to bad actually. Not nearly as crowded at previous years. I guess that's a sign of the times.
Monday, January 19, 2009
There is such a buzz in the air lately! So much going on in the Thai adoption world and lots of activity on the yahoo group this week. People who are traveling, those who got their long awaited referral, others who are still gathering paperwork and trying to figure out this tid-bit or that. It's so exciting! Sure, we all have moments of stress. There are so many emotions and ups and downs that come with the territory. But look at the end result!
And in case you wondered...NO I am not always Little Miss Chipper. BELIEVE ME. When I realized our daughter wouldn't be home for Christmas I was a sappy mess. Total waterworks. But I have made a real conscience effort the last month or so to be as positive as I can. This is an amazing process. The journey to our first child. I have to wait anyway, so I might as well accept and embrace it. Savor every moment, every day dream, every ounce of sleep (LOL)!
Wishing much happiness and peace to those of you in process. Every day, every minute we are that much closer to our children!
Friday, January 16, 2009
Do they ever. If you haven't heard about it already.. a US Airways pilot safely landed a plane on the Hudson River in NYC yesterday. Unbelievable! Evidently, a flock of birds flew into both engines, disabling them and they needed to land right away. There has only been like 1 or 2 flights EVER to land on water like that and have a few people survive. ALL 155 passengers and crew made it off safely! Now if THAT isn't a miracle, I don't know what is! What an incredible story! Read more about it here.
We had a mini-miracle of our own today. Jeff got home to find 3 important things in the mail for us. Two were the PA Child Abuse Clearance forms (one for each of us) that are said to take 2-3 weeks. We got them back in a week! The 3rd piece of mail was the most shocking...my fingerprint approval came back already!!! We were told by our home study agency that they take 4-6 weeks. The guy who took them said it could be 6-8 weeks. I dismissed that thought immediately. I was like, okay, then 4 weeks! That's enough time. Well, here I got it back in ONE! Jeff has to go get his fingerprints done tomorrow, but with the quick turn-around I had, I don't anticipate any problems getting his back in a decent amount of time. We will have all our paperwork done and waiting for Cindy when she comes to do another home-study visit at the end of the month! And maybe even have that referral by then, too!
Thursday, January 15, 2009
...goes a long way! Got an email from Kate at Wacap last night. She said the DSDW emailed her the night before to say they are working on Wacap families and had been behind a bit. She felt that she would be getting the next batch of referrals from her VERY soon and even felt pretty sure about us getting ours! I know this isn't really new news, but just confirmation. Still it feels good. It's really coming! The way this process works, you have days where you just go, okay, am I making this up? Am I just overly optimistic that it will be here this month? There are no guarantees, of course, but even our agency feels confident in it which makes me feel it all the more.
In days, perhaps, or just a week or two I could be holding it in my hands. I just get goose bumps when I think of how it will feel! Having that referral and knowing with absolute certainty that she is ours will be amazing! Also to receive new photos and see how she is doing and growing...I can't wait to see! The last pic I have is at 18 months. She is now 21 months. How much has she changed in 4 months? Do babies grow a lot between 18-21? I don't really know. But I am dying to see her sweet face and get her full medicals and know everything there is to (currently) know about her. My baby. My beautiful sweet baby. She has no idea how her life is about to change.
Tuesday, January 13, 2009
"Being happy doesn't mean that everything is perfect. It means that you've decided to look beyond the imperfections." unknown
This week I am in the Motor City for the long and exhausting Detroit Auto Show. It is very cold here, there aren't a lot of great restaurant choices, AND there isn't a Starbucks. I was especially cranky about the last one as I love my super-strong skinny late! However, I have been working on something lately and quite simply, that is acceptance.
I don't have my referral yet. But I am happy and excited just reveling in the fact that it is coming soon. I am not in beautiful, warm Thailand holding my child. I am in freezing cold Detroit. But I will be there soon and appreciate it all even more! I didn't find a Starbucks, but I am lucky to have coffee...and breakfast....and afford to eat when I am hungry, unlike many in this world.
So today I am counting my blessings and being glad for what I have right now:
An opportunity to work a lot this month and next so my wait will go faster.
An opportunity to even have a great job in this economy.
An opportunity to see and hang out with many of my good friends the next 2 weeks.
A chance to miss my husband, making our reunion when we get home all the sweeter.
A couple weeks to work on my Rosetta Stone Thai.
Lots of time in my hotel room to catch up on reading.
And lastly, I found some ground Starbucks at the CVS to make my own morning brew in my room.
Life is good!
Friday, January 9, 2009
I am really a type A personality. (Okay, those that know me are laughing right now going REALLY? You think?) I have to be busy, active, productive, etc. Perfect for my new life with baby, right? I am sure we will not have a dull moment! :-) The thing is I handle pressure far better than sitting around. I am really so much happier being able to DO (ei: control) something to move things along than to sit back and wait and hope and wait some more. So, yes, I am tired , but I feel good. Mission(s) accomplished! Here's what I am happy about today...
1. Yesterday we found the last address we needed for the Child Abuse Clearance. Jeff's address from 16 years ago. Thanks to his Dad who has a sharper memory than I!
2. Jeff filled in the info, signed, and sent of the form so one more thing DONE.
3. Got my VERY hairy animals groomed and cut short yesterday, lest everything I own continue to be sprinkled with fur! They look so cute all buzzed down but that cat is NOT thrilled. Still hiding. Will have to post a pic on here later.
4. Got tire fixed on car and it only took 45 minutes. Just enough time to make some calls and check email!
5. Got nails, toes, and brows done. I love the people a the mall salon where I go. They are excited to meet our girl someday (even though I think they wish I was adopting from Vietnam since that is where they are from). I told them, if sometime soon I disappear for a few months it's because I am either in Thailand or adjusting to life with a toddler! I told them when I do come back there will be probably be nothing but stubs where my nails used to be! They laughed and said, it's okay, we fix you up and paint your daughter's nails, too! Too cute.
6. Found a great pair of cute but VERY comfortable shoes for auto show. You can not imagine how important this is until you stand on your feet in heels for 15 days straight. Priceless!
7. Finished laundry and started packing. Still have to finish that packing today.
8. Ordered my skin care online a few days ago and it got her just in time for my trip.
9. FINALLY, entered all the names in to invite to blog! Hope you all got here without too much trouble. I hate being private as I am not too private a person at all. But when it comes to our baby, I will have to be. I'm dying to put her pic on here, but am still going to hold out a little until we get our referral and possible until we get to Thailand. Just don't want to do anything that could mess things up. Especially when we are so close now.
Hope you are all having a wonderful day! Thanks for following our journey!
Thursday, January 8, 2009
Took me awhile to get to this. It may be me, but I haven't found an easy way to enter the names so I have to do them one at a time, while going back to my address book each time to get it. Painfully slow process!
More soon and new stuff to blog coming!
Wednesday, January 7, 2009
Or not! Wasn't sure what to call this post. Thought about it off and on all day. Should I call it Rain, Rain Go Away, Too Many Things To Do Today? Should I call it Holy Paperwork, Batman! or OMG I Can't Believe It's Not Finished! Once I blew through a few online forms and started checking off the list I thought I might call it I AM WOMAN HEAR ME ROAR! But when I got a flat tire on the turnpike in the pouring rain and I decided to go with the above title. Whew! What a day. Crazy, busy day. Ran like mad, had to drive all over creation to get the right forms and get things rolling for the home study, but WOW do I feel great! Got so much accomplished and will sleep like a baby!
So for those of you that are dying to know what on earth we have to do with our home studies, here is what WE have to do. Every state is totally different so call your home study agency right away if you think you have to update. Our home study agent AH (Adoption Horizons) spoke with our placement agency (Wacap) last night and they figured it all out. Here is what the home study agent told me we needed to do. To my surprise, it really wasn't that bad. Not NEARLY as bad as the first go-round of paperwork.
1. New home visit. Scheduled a date when I get back in town (Jan. 29th).
2. New physicals for both. I scheduled us both for Jan 27th. (AH will mail us forms to take with us to get physical and have Dr. fill out. We will turn in these forms to them on 29th.
3. State Criminal Clearance. Now I don't know about all states, but I did these online and it was very easy. Cost $10 each and I was able to print them out. DONE! (If only it was all this easy!!)
4. PA Child Abuse Clearance. This was fun. These take 2-3 weeks to process so to avoid further delay in having them mailed, AH's found a center in our area (well, sort of close) that had forms I could pick up. So I drove about an hour to get them, stopped by a bank and got a money order ($20 for both of us), filled them out while scratching my head trying to remember every address we have ever had and the middle names of all of our family members. Called the parents who came to the rescue with misc. info while I was driving in the pouring rain trying to find parking for Fed-X. I get to the Fed-X office and sign my form. I finish filling out Jeff's form and stuff the money order in with both and send to Jeff who's out of town on business. He will then sign and date his form and Fed-X the whole thing to the appropriate office. Whew! Thank God for technology, right? Where WOULD we be without phones, faxes, fed-x, computers and the like? My Garmin guided me to all my destinations today. Speaking of which...
5. New Fingerprints as per the new Adam Walsh law requiring a set to be taken for the state's records. The good news is you can register and pay for them online ($36 each). So I did that this morning and printed up both our confirmations and directions to the nearest locations to get fingerprinted. Well the closest one needed an appt and the 2nd closest was closed until the 11th...so I went to the 3rd closest which wasn't close at all! It was about an hour in the opposite direction of the office wear I got my forms and found a Fed-X. So me and my handy Garmin got the address queued and headed off for more rain, traffic, and excitement. I finally came screeching into the UPS Store parking lot at 20 min's of 5:00. They stop fingerprinting at 5 pm. Aaah, I had made it. The last task to complete. For the home study, that is.
I still have to pack and get ready for my 16 day trip to Detroit to work the auto show and get it all done by the time I leave Sat. And take the car in for a new tire. And call the plumber about the rain coming in the basement after they were supposed to have fixed the gutter problem. But that's another story...
Back to the home study....
Once Jeff comes home and does his fingerprints we will have to wait 4-6 weeks for those to process. Our agency thinks it could be sooner. I hope so cause those fingerprint approvals are the only thing that could hold things up. Our local US CIS office is really great. Jeff talked to them and they are aware of the situation and will expedite it quick for us. So I think we will be good to go! Just a little more patience and we are home free! Having to do all this paperwork should have stressed me out to no end. But instead it made me really happy. We made it to crunch time! We are rushing to get it done because WE ARE THAT CLOSE!! Even our agencies feel it. This is good stuff here. So bring on the madness! With it comes baby!
Tuesday, January 6, 2009
Okay, how cute it this? I just LOVED this stroller blanket from Oilebollen and could not resist! Love the print on it. Looks Thai-ish to me. At least more than any other one I could find. I just love that it had an elephant on it. Finding a cute, unique red one that wasn't too boyish wasn't easy. Got the red one to go with her stroller. Comes in blue, too, for those wanting one for their boy! Check out www.oilebollen.com, but be warned. It's a fabulous, but very pricey web site. Had I really thought about it I would have changed my mind, but it was so EXACTLY what I was looking for, so I just clicked, clicked away and it was mine. Amazing how something so easy can get you into so much trouble, huh? :-)
No news to talk about and haven't heard back from either our home study agency or Wacap. Still waiting to find out what we need to do for our home study. We heard we may have to re-do a lot of it, but need confirmation on exactly what needs done and what doesn't. So we sit. And wait. And focus on other things. For me that means packing and getting ready for the Detroit auto show and trying not to think about how much paperwork I will need to hurry up and do when I get back. At least I already made our Dr.'s appointment for our physical. One thing off the checklist, 10 more to go!
So today, I share a few cute things...
This is the antique glider Jeff's parents gave us.
Baby's first baby! A gift from my brother & sister in law.
The sweetest little outfit from my mom! Soft, too. May be her coming home outfit!
Beautiful, fluffy jacket from my mom.
Cute puffy jacket and sweats for when she is older from Dad & Lyn.
Cute little puppy from mom.
Sunday, January 4, 2009
Just had to jump on here a minute and say what a wonderful day we are having. Jeff and I are still in pj's and it's almost 1 pm! We woke up, had coffee, and have been snuggled on the couch lazily watching TV ever since. Got up to get breakfast and make a snack, but otherwise we have been total couch potatoes today! Gotta do that once in awhile! We watched HGTV for an hour, then put on a couple episodes of John & Kate Plus 8 that we taped. So cute! I just love a lazy, cozy morning, but we so rarely have time for it. I suspect we will have even less of it when we have a toddler running around! But that's okay. It will be even better when it's 3 of us snuggled up!
Gotta actually get moving now cause we are going to my brothers for a nice Sunday dinner in an hour or so. When we were little we always went to our Gram & Pop's house every Sunday afternoon for a big family dinner. Either that or we'd head over to Uncle Mike & Aunt Sophie's. Jason and I both loved the tradition so Jase is going to recreate some of the magic today before the big game. (Whatever that game happens to be. I haven't a clue.) I'm not into sports much so I will hang with Melissa and play with little Ryan while the guys watch football. Should be a fun day for all!
Here are a couple shots I meant to post sooner. A little special Christmas tree in our TV room. My favorite 2 ornaments are the sweet Asian doll given to us by fellow blogger Jessica and the letter "R" from my cool sister-in-law Tammey. Ruby was with us in so many little ways this holiday. Can't wait to show her these pics when she's older and let her know how much we all couldn't wait for her to get here!