Monday, August 30, 2010
Thank you so much for all of your well wishes and support. We are lucky enough to have an amazing family and group of friends who have seen us through this journey! We love you!
August 31 - Depart Richmond 4:50pm, connect to Chicago, leave Chicago at 9:25pm to fly over north pole!
Sept. 1 - Arrive in Beijing at 11:55pm (yep, we lose a whole day!)
Sept. 2 - free day in Beijing
Sept. 3 - Tour Beijing - Tiananmen Square, Forbidden City, Hutong Tour, maybe acrobatics show.
Sept. 4 - Tour Beijing - Great Wall & Ming Tombs.
Sept. 5 - Leave Beijing and fly to Hohhot, Inner Mongolia.
Sept 6 - GOTCHA DAY!!!! Cadence is in our arms!!
Sept. 7 - Adoption registration & notarization. At this point we can't "relinquish" Cadence in China - like we would!
Sept. 8 - "optional shopping trip to local department store"!
Sept. 9 - Wait for paperwork.
Sept. 10 - Receive Cadence's passport. Leave Hohhot and fly to Guangzhou.
Sept. 11 - Cadence's physical & shots :-(
Sept. 12 - free day
Sept. 13 - Consulate Appointment! (CA)
Sept. 14 - Take oath at US Consulate
Sept. 15 - Get Cadence's visa (AKA - our ticket home!)
Sept. 16 - Leave Guangzhou at 10am for Beijing
Sept. 17 - GO HOME!!! Leave Beijing at 6:55am, arrive in Richmond at 1:45pm!!
I-800 Prov. App. 06-28-10
Article 5 07-26-10
Travel approval!!! 08-13-10
Tuesday, August 24, 2010
Sierra wanted to do something for the other children in Cadence's orphanage, so she sent a letter to a fabulous friend of ours who heads up a knitting group - K1D2. The wonderful women in her group made some adorable toys for us to donate to the orphanage! We cannot wait do bring some joy to the kiddos! Check out the link below to see some of the items.
Sierra is celebrating her 8th birthday this weekend! Every year, for her birthday party with friends, she has chosen someplace to donate her "gifts". The first year it was items for the animal shelter, later on books to the library, and then bingo prizes for a nursing home. It has always been fun deciding what to do each year and we've always come up with a way for Sierra to take an active part in the giving process (ie. being able to actually drop the items off herself). Of course, she still gets plenty of presents from family & close friends, but she enjoys the giving too!
It was obvious what she would do this year... something for the orphans in China. Sierra wanted to collect toys & clothes to take with us, but luggage space is at a premium. So, we are collecting monetary donations for any party-goers who wants to participate and plan to buy items when we get over to China. Sierra is very excited about the things we will be able to give to the children who won't be coming home with us!
Friday, August 20, 2010
The Gift of Life
I didn't give you the gift of life,
but in my heart I know
The love I feel is deep and real,
as if it had been so.
For us to have each other
is like a dream come true!
No, I didn't give you the gift of life
Life gave me the gift of you.
Tuesday, August 17, 2010
Sunday, August 15, 2010
I'm worn out just writing about it! So while I managed to get the kids where they needed to go and appropriate gifts bought, I only managed about 50% on the actual celebrations. Sigh. Very frustrating that I cannot keep on top of everything and I apologize to everyone in advance for any of my oversights. That said, I need to get back to my packing list for China, schedule & arrangements for Laurel while we're in China, looking at house plans, planning Sierra's birthday party (the weekend before we leave) & getting her gifts!
Friday, August 13, 2010
Thursday, August 12, 2010
Monday, August 9, 2010
All of this has caused me to become borderline paranoid that we won't get our TA in time and hence, won't end up traveling until October! I know, the pessimist in me is winning over a bit. So keep fingers crossed and prayers coming that we get our TA soon!! (as in - this week!)
Thursday, August 5, 2010
On Thursday two exciting things happened. We went to the elementary school to meet the girls' teachers. I have to say that I really liked both of the teachers! Both were very friendly, warm, and inviting, giving the girls hugs before they left the classrooms. Laurel seemed more excited about kindergarden than she's been so far and Sierra's best friend from 1st grade is in her class this year again. Despite Sierra being in a "learning cottage" again (read: trailer) I left the school having a very good feeling about this school year!
The second exciting event is that we have purchased some land. Twenty-four acres that is still in our county and only about 10 minutes from the neighborhood we live in now. Brad has been itching to get back to "country living" and desperately wants a tractor. He's been getting the girls psyched at the prospect of chickens, baby goats, and a pony! We'll see how it all shakes out! Besides being close to my friends and family I am very excited that there is a neighborhood right across the street where we can take walks and ride bikes. I think it is a good balance for what both of us want.
Then on Friday Brad took his boards. For those who don't know, we have endured 3 VERY LONG years of Brad going to school full-time+ and me working to support our family. Brad has often been out of state to do clinicals and when he was home he studied constantly... all 3 years! I can literally count on my hands the number of days we have spent as a family in those 3 years and didn't have "studying" to do at some point in the day. Brad is now a CRNA!!! (nurse anesthetist) I am so proud of all he's done and SO happy it's finally over!
As for Cadence we are still waiting for our travel approval. Some families who received their Article 5 two weeks before us just got their TA on Friday. It's thrilling to think that we may be making plane reservations in 2 weeks! While I still have things to do I cannot wait to get her home. I worry about her all the time and wonder if someone is holding her, hugging her, keeping her comfortable. I am so ready to have her in my arms! I remember when I was pregnant and had some very bizarre dreams. I always chalked it up to pregnancy hormones. I had a dream last week that someone came to the house and said they had brought Cadence to us. We were introduced to "Cadence", a 14-year-old Russian girl... oops! I politely told them that she is actually 14 months old, not years, and that she is Chinese. They said they'd fix it! Hormones? I think not!
Monday, August 2, 2010