"An invisible red thread connects those who are destined to meet regardless of time, place or circumstance.The thread may stretch or tangle, but it will never break." -Chinese proverb

Saturday, June 30, 2012

Century Club

Well, I feel blue. I had high hopes that this would be the week. The week that we could finally move forward. But we're not. Today we are at 100 days in our wait for our LOA, which, in the adoption community, is called the "Century Club".  When you start your wait for your Letter of Approval to adopt your child, no one expects to be one of the very few who are forced to join the Century Club.  I certainly didn't expect it but I definitely feared it.  The more time we spend waiting for our LOA, the more time goes by without Liana.  The more time she spends in an orphanage.  I'm in a FB group of people adopting from the same orphanage as Liana and they're all on a similar timeline...or they were.  Everyone who was even close to being on the same timeline is moving on with plans on when they'll be traveling and everyone who was behind me, is moving on too.  I'm happy for them but I'm sad that I will be watching all of these families bring home their children and thinking that I should be with them.  I think the comparison is the worst.  If I didn't know that people who have been waiting so much less time than us were getting their LOAs all the time, then maybe it wouldn't be so hard.  But I do know and it crushes me.  Liana deserves to come home just as much as anyone else's child.  There's no reason to hold us up that I know of.  Nothing wrong with our dossier.  So why are we still waiting?  I don't know.  It's just bad luck.  We had a ridiculously long wait to get out of translation and now it looks like we're going to have a long wait to get out of review.  I know some other families in the same boat and some who have been waiting longer and my heart and prayers go out to them every day.  Tomorrow is the first day of July, which is a day that I've been dreading.  I didn't want to enter another month without being able to move to the next step toward bringing our daughter home.  I'm just sad.  I'm sorry to be so glum.  I know no one wants to read a post like this but I do think people coming behind me on this journey need to know that it does happen.  And I also want to, again, request prayers from anyone who is willing to pray for us.  Please pray that we and others in a similar boat, will get our LOAs and begin the next steps toward bringing home our children.  So I hate to leave a post on such a crummy note so I'll do what I apparently love to do, and add a picture.

Maybe this will help the crummy mood I just left you in. ;-)

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Retail therapy

Oh, this wait!  It's terrible!  Have I told you that I'm not a patient person?  Well, I'm not!  Keep in mind, everyone and their brother has gotten their LOA by now and I'm just sitting by, watching their progress.  It sucks!  And I hate it!  And I want to whine and cry and stamp my feet until I get my way!  And I have done all of those things (well, not the stamping but maybe I'll try it) but to no avail.  Ah, I can't do a darn thing and it sucks!  So, how do you cope with the ridiculous waiting?  Well, I could say that I clean my house until it's spotless or take out my frustration by exercising or something...ya know, productive but I don't do those things.  I like to indulge in some retail therapy.  Let's face it, our poor little Liana has nothing and in her 21 months has never had one possession that she can call her own.  Sad, right?  Well, I have fixed that problem!  She now has a closet full of new and adorable clothes and a whole bunch of toys.  Now, if I could only get her to them....

Here are some of my favorites

And don't worry, this is just a tiny sample of what she now has!  I do think my way of coping is productive, though.  I mean, the girl needs stuff right?!

Day 97, waiting for our LOA....

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

90 days closer...

Today is day 90 of our LOA wait so we had another celebration of being another 30 days closer to Liana.  We had our usual Chinese food and watched Kai-lan's Great Trip to China.  Here's the sign we made. 

Sorry, terrible picture.  It was nice to have some very recent pictures of her to use on it.  This will have to be our last celebration waiting for our LOA.  It has to be.  I can't do another one.  If we actually reach 120 days in this wait, trust me, I won't be celebrating.  Hopefully, that won't be an issue.  Hopefully, we'll have that elusive LOA in our hands very soon.  HOPEFULLY!

Friday, June 15, 2012


Oh boy, this has been a good week for us.  Guess what...our dossier has finally moved out of translation and into the review room!  After 85 days, we're finally out of translation!  Now, let's just hope (and pray!) that we're one of those families who get their LOA only 1 week after being out of translation.  If we can at least get it before June 30th, which would mark 100 days of our LOA wait, I will be a happy camper.  Please keep praying, it's working!!!

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Ladybugs and Liana

Ladybugs are sort of a good luck symbol in Chinese adoption.  This morning, I opened up the blinds in our family room upstairs and there was a perfect little ladybug just sitting there on the blinds.  The first ladybug I've seen all year!  I have to admit, I got a little excited.  I'm not superstitious or anything but I do think that if God wants to use a ladybug to encourage you, He can use a ladybug. 

Well, we're still in translation so nothing there yet.  However, WE GOT AN UPDATE WITH THREE NEW PICS!!!!  We have been waiting on this update for 8 1/2 weeks so it's been a long time coming.  We got only good news about our girl, which is such a relief!  We were also told in it that the caregivers love her.  In all 5 pictures that we now have of our girl, she is smiling and just looks so happy so I believe it!  This is such an answer to prayer!  So without further ado...here she is...again!

Could she be any more precious?!

And maybe a little bit mischievous? :-)

Monday, June 11, 2012

Lost in translation (prayer request)

So, here we are, 81 days into our wait for our LOA and nothing has happened to move us forward.  Nothing.  The first thing that happens during this process is your dossier is translated into Chinese, then it moves to being "in process" and last, it goes to the matching room.  I emailed our adoption agency and our dossier is still "in translation," meaning nothing has happened.  The gal with our agency assured me that she will let me know as soon as anything changes so I'm assuming that we're still in translation because I haven't heard a thing yet.  81 days and our dossier is just sitting on a desk somewhere collecting dust.  The dust must be getting pretty thick on it by now.  I'm tired of waiting and attempting to be patient.  Most of my adoption friends have their LOAs by now and many other people have them who haven't been waiting nearly as long as us.  It hurts, it really does, because it's not just Erik and I that are waiting.  Liana is in an orphanage and the date that we were hoping to get her is getting later and later.  If I could see that some progress was being made, any at all, it would help but we're in the same spot that we were 81 days ago.  The kicker is, once we get out of translation, we could still be waiting for more than a month to actually get our LOA.  However, I've seen people get it in as little as a week.  I'm hoping that will happen for us after having such a long wait to get out of translation.  So here it is, my prayer request: please, please pray that our dossier gets moving in China and that we're out of translation soon and that we get our LOA soon.

81 days...

Friday, June 8, 2012

Two crazy weeks

Well, since there's zero happening on the adoption front (do you hear the bitterness?), I will talk about the other things going on in our lives.  Warning: this will be a photo bomb.  We have had a seriously crazy last 2 weeks.  It all started with Ella graduating *sob* from preschool.  Two weeks ago, my baby graduated and will now be going to Kindergarten!?!  Here's a couple of pictures from that momentous occasion. :-)

My beautiful "big" girl

That weekend, for the first time in over a year and a half, we took a sort of vacation to Great Wolf Lodge.  It was only a sort of vacation because we only stayed for one day and we live only 30 minutes away.  But it was a great and much needed break.  Ethan slept in a "big boy" bed for the first time in his life and I don't recommend doing this for the first time when not home but they have these super cool bunk beds that are like they're sleeping in a wolf den so we had to let him sleep in one.  Yeah, well, guess where I spent most of my night...you guessed it, curled up in the teeny tiny bed with him.  Oh well.  And here are some pics from Great Wolf.

See?  How could I not let him sleep here?


Good times.  Well, a couple of days later, we had storms every night for 3 nights in a row.  This isn't exactly noteworthy since it's storm season but on the last night, we had one large boom from lightning that must've been right over us and our lights went out for just a few seconds.  Then, because our smoke alarms are hooked up to our security system, all of the smoke alarms went off.  Ella was already in our room and Ethan slept right through it all.  Amazing.  But the next day, we discovered that our cable and internet were out and we couldn't get it fixed until the next day.  Oh, the horror!  The next day, the lovely repairman came and fixed it no problem but when he left, the computer went nuts on me and stopped working.  So, Erik took it in to Best Buy and they said that our hard drive was blown and I'm guessing it was also from the storm or else it was just a major coincidence.  The awful part was that I had no computer for a whole week!  Terrible!  Who was going to stalk my adoption blogs?  And who was going to obsess over all of my adoption groups and what was going on in them?  Hmm?  Tell me!  Well, okay, so I still had my iPhone but still....

Okay, next up was Ethan's 2nd birthday!  We had a pretty low key birthday with just the 4 of us.  We went out to pizza and came back to the house for cake and presents.  He loved it!  He also apparently knows what 2 is because he got a case of the "mines" that night.  All of his presents were "mine!"  Oh boy.  It was fun though and he just loved everything about it.

Our terrible two year old

Okay, do you see that star confetti on the table?  Well, someone decided to swallow one of those and a few days later, well...he was a bit uncomfortable...well, a little more than "a bit."  I didn't know what was wrong but Ethan was in a lot of pain and then, I could tell he had swallowed something he shouldn't have but I didn't know what so I took him to urgent care who sent me to the E.R.  So, I took Ethan to the children's hospital near here and they did an x-ray, which of course showed nothing.  When the star was uh...removed, I had to laugh.  Really?  This much drama over a piece of confetti?!  But trust me, I stepped on one of those stars and they were sharp!

The next day, Ella had her ballet dance recital.  She did so great!  It's amazing, she started dancing when she was just 2 1/2 and every year we can see such a difference in her dancing.  Although, I (of course) think she's just a natural dancer.  She really is!  She's been dancing since she could sit up and rock to the music.  Okay, maybe every baby does but really, I think she's a wonderful little dancer.  And tonight, she had her first jazz recital. She loves jazz because it's "stylish."  :-)  She made me so proud tonight!  Here's a look back on her past recitals and the ones from this week.

Her first recital, when she was only 3!

See what I mean?  A natural!

Here's from last year's recital

And here is from her ballet recital on Wednesday

Jazz recital tonight

Oh yeah, day 78 waiting for our LOA.