Thursday, September 28, 2006

Wow, it passed without notice...

Huh, I didn't even notice that our 7th month anniversary of our LID passed right on by last week. I've been so busy, I didn't even notice. I usually have it on my mind each month around the 17th.

When we first submitted our adoption application back in August of last year, this is right about the time we would have received our referral if they would have stayed on track with 6-8 months. Last Christmas (like many of you) we celebrated our final Christmas without a child. I was SO excited back then knowing that next Christmas we would have Lauren here with was going to be SO special. We hung ornaments on the tree just for her and just knew that next Christmas we would be wrapping presents for her.

Now we are looking at getting our referral sometime around next June and I still haven't fully accepted the fact that another Christmas will come and go without Lauren. Everytime I think about it, I start to tear up and quickly try to direct my thoughts to something else (as I am doing right now). I'm sure many of you have been having the very same feelings and I know I'm not alone, which is very comforting to me. I'm so thankful for my waiting momma friends.

Now if only I could figure out a way to accept that we still have a long wait ahead so I can move on and enjoy the upcoming holidays, even without Lauren by our side.

Monday, September 25, 2006

Back from Philly!

I got back from Philly on Sunday evening and then I was up at the crack of dawn to head back into the office for a big dose of reality. I was dog tired and it was definitely a Monday in every sense of the word!!

I am SO glad I faced my fear of flying and got on that plane to Philly because I had an absolute BLAST with my Precious Panda "sisters"!!! I can't tell you the last time I laughed that much and felt that comfortable with a group of women. Even though we are from all over and have different stories of how we came to adopt, there is definitely a very special bond that we all share and an unspoken connection between all of us. I think we all felt the connection and will carry that with us during the rest of this wait and beyond.

Susan and I arrived on Thursday evening and stayed at Stephe's place in Deleware. On Friday afternoon, Cheryl (our 4th roomie) came in and the rest of the group trickled in later that day. Friday night we all got together at Stephe's place and Susan made baked ziti and meatballs (double click photos to enlarge).

Saturday morning we all met up and headed to Philly for our China town tour. It was raining at the beginning, but you can see that we made the best of, the weather cleared up pretty quick.

We had a great time on the tour and then headed to Reading Terminal Market for lunch, and then back to China town for some shopping. After we had our fill of shopping, we headed to Independence Hall to see the Liberty Bell...

...then onto South Street to hang out and relax a bit over drinks and appetizers. Our night ended back at the hotel hanging out and letting our hair down...what happened in Philly, stays in Philly...right, ladies?

Stephe, thank you so much for organizing this wonderful trip and being our hostess with the mostess for the weekend! To the entire Philly group, it was a pleasure meeting and getting to know each and every one of you! Thank you all so much for a fantastic weekend.

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Heading out tomorrow morning...

I'm heading out to Philly in the morning for my 2nd trip to meet bloggy friends! My 1st trip was to Salt Lake last month and I had a great time. This time instead of heading just one state over, it's all the way to the east coast!

I'll be meeting 11 ladies from my DTC group, the Precious Pandas. I'll be staying at Stephe's place, which is really cool because Stephe and I will be in the same travel group to China (we are with the same agency and have the same LID). I'm looking forward to getting to know her in person before we actually travel to China. Also staying with us is Susan and Cheryl. I also get to meet Kim of One More Makes Four who I've gotten to know a little bit (she's so sweet) and Wanda, who just sent me the cutest wishes page for Lauren.

Oh, did I mention that I HATE to fly and have been freaked out about the flight since Monday? I was nervous on the Salt Lake flight (which was only 1 1/2 hours), but I'm in full scale freak out mode for this 4 1/2 hour flight to Philly!!! I keep telling myself that this is good training for the dreaded flight to China, but judging by how freaked I am I think that Joe will have to knock me out and drag me onto the China flight on one of those rolling luggage carts! I'm on my own to Philly, so I have no one to roll me onto the flight!

Well, I'm heading off to start packing and then I'm going to take some deep breaths and try to relax a little this evening. I know you jet setters think I'm ridiculous, but I just can't help it. ;) At least I just suck it up and still get on the plane!

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

Another step ahead...

The CCAA just updated their website that they have completed review of dossiers logged in before December 31, 2005. This means that they are probably now reviewing January and February LID's!!! I would imagine they were partially done reviewing January by the time they updated their website, so with a 2/17 LID we should be getting really close to review. There are rumors that people with February LIDs have been contacted for clarification on their information, which is a good sign.

Oh my, I think I'm getting nervous now...I hope our dossier is in good order.

Monday, September 18, 2006

This and that...

I've been meaning to post a photo of this cute little mini-diaper bag I bought from Danesha of South Meets East. She has different fabrics she makes them out of and they are the perfect size for a quick trip out with a couple of diapers, a bottle and a small toy.

I love this Asian retro fabric...isn't it cool???

I guess Joe had a long, hard day at work today...what do you think?

Once Lucy saw him resting, she had to join right in and I just had to snap a photo.

I've been busy the past week with some blog re-designs...check out Journey to Annaliese and Bottles and Bones (formerly Welcome Home Lily). I love making Blogville pretty. ;)

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Chinese Cooking Night #2...

This past Saturday evening, Joe and I had a Chinese food cooking night at our place. The "chefs" for the evening were Michele, Heather & Damon, Nancy & Brian, Jennifer, and Linda Marie.

Linda came over a little early to help with the initial prep work and surprised me with a brand new rice cooker! This is probably the ONLY kitchen appliance that I don't already own. I know, those of you who know me are shocked that I didn't already have one. ;)

These were the recipes for the night (two of them we already tried and knew were good):

Egg Flower Soup
Egg Rolls
Kung Pao Beef
Shrimp with Snow Peas
Almond Chicken

Linda and I did some of the initial prep work before everyone else showed up, so by the time everyone started arriving we had the meats cut up and already marinating. Considering we had nine people in the kitchen at one time, the timing of everything went VERY well and we actually had all the dishes prepped and ready to cook at the same time. Of course we had a little help with these chocolate covered coffee beans (yum) and lots of red wine!

Here's Nancy hard at work on the Almond Chicken recipe...

and Michele giving a quick lesson on how to roll an egg roll...

Oh, and Brian hamming it up for the camera...

After all our hard work, we were rewarded with a really tasty dinner! My favorites are still the soup and the kung pao beef (from our first cooking night). The almond chicken was also really good. I think if you want to plan your own cooking night, you can't go wrong with these three recipes. Here's the kung pao beef and the almond chicken...

Thank you to everyone who joined us...we had a great time! As you can see, Lucy was just exhausted by the end of the evening...

Monday, September 11, 2006

Thoughts and prayers...

Today, my thoughts are with the families of the victims of the September 11, 2001, tragedy.

My prayers today are for the parents who lost their children, the children who lost their parents, and everyone else who lost friends and loved ones five years ago today. May you all know that our hearts are with you.

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

New Wish Pages...

Check out the good wish pages I received from Sandy and Shannon here. They are both so cute!