Sunday, December 30, 2007

I'm SO hoping that 2008 is the year that dreams come true for so many of us waiting for our referrals. I'm very excited about the possibility of Joe and I becoming parents this year. We have so much to do still before we get our referral and I'm hoping that we'll be busy enough to help the time go by quickly. We saved the best part for last...the nursery. I can't wait to get started on it.

Have a safe New Year's Eve and best wishes for dreams coming true in 2008!!

Saturday, December 29, 2007

It was a great holiday...

We had a really nice holiday this year. We spent Christmas Eve with Joe's family...everyone was here from out of town. On Christmas morning, Joe and I (and Lucy) opened our gifts from each other and then had dinner at our place with my Mom and my brother and his family. It was great to spend the entire afternoon just hanging out with was a very nice day. I also got a call from my Dad, in New York, and had a nice conversation catching up on things. He plans on being her in Phx for my nieces' and nephew's fall school break in October. Wouldn't it be awesome if we somehow were back with Lauren by then. I know it's not likely, but anything can happen.

Here are a few of my favorite gifts this year. This first one is for Lauren from Grandma...a cute little soft blankie and bib...

Joe gave me this beautiful necklace. He said the three connected hearts caught his eye signifying the two of us and Lauren. I thought that was SO sweet and I love it!

My brother, sister-in-law, and mom, gave me a software bundle of Adobe Photoshop Elements 6 with Adobe Premiere Elements 4.

This seems to be the most popular choice for digital scrapbooking...many more bells and whistles than the software I use now. Plus, I can't wait to try out the video making software. This will come in SO handy for all the China video and photos!

Question for those of you who already have this software...what's the best book for tips and tricks on how to best use it? Any suggestions?

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Merry Christmas friends!

I hope you all have a wonderful holiday. For those of you with little ones at home, hold them close and count your blessings. For those of us still waiting, our time will come and we will be sharing holidays with our little ones one day too.

Today I did a little last minute shopping with Mom and then finished wrapping gifts.

The tree always looks much better with all the gifts around it. We will unwrap with my mom and my brother and his family on Christmas day, then have dinner.

Here's Lucy modeling her new winter Olympics jacket from Old Navy. Everything on the doggie display was 50% off today.

Also got the cutest ever printed fleece and a solid color to coordinate with it at Joanne's. I think I'll make a blanket and matching pillow for Lauren to snuggle up with.

Saturday, December 22, 2007

Thank you...

for all the comforting words and your thoughts and prayers over the loss of our sweet Addy. Hearing from all of my bloggy friends has helped Joe and I both get through the past week without her. We are doing much better now and trying to focus on the long and happy life she had and how lucky we were to have her all those years. We are blessed to have so many good friends who have shown their support...thank you.

I couldn't help but snap this photo of Lucy the other day after her walk.

She jumped up on the sofa and laid her paw right down on the remote. Guess she wanted to veg and watch some TV...maybe Animal Planet?

Joe and I met my brother and his family and my mom last night at a brand new shopping area near us so my nephew could visit Santa.

Of course, I ended up checking out all the sale racks in the children's clothing stores. I got this cute fleece outfit for Lauren in The Children's Place for $16 total. I'm hoping it will fit next winter. It's a 6-9 mo. size. If you're already back from China, what size was your daughter wearing while there and a few of months after being home?

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

Good-bye, sweet girl...

Late Monday night at an emergency animal hospital, we had to say good-bye to our sweet Addy. Her heart was giving out and it was time to let her go.

She has left a huge hole in our hearts. She was so sweet and gentle, but stubborn and strong at the same time. She never let us skip any of her twice daily walks and would always let us know when it was time to eat or if she was hungry for a treat. She beat cancer and lived more than two years beyond what was predicted. It just wasn't her time to go back then and she knew it. She had more life to live.

Addy was over 13 years old and she lived a long and very full life. It was SO incredibly hard to lean over and kiss her good-bye, but we knew it was time. It's still hard to accept that she is gone and we will miss her terribly.

Good-bye, sweet girl, we love you!

Sunday, December 16, 2007

22nd LIDversary...

Tomorrow is our 22nd LIDversary. I can't believe it's actually been this long.

Just like the numbers in the graphic here, we have weathered quite a long wait with more to come. I so hope it's not much longer though, because we are getting pretty worn out. I know my waiting friends understand what I mean when I say worn out.

I'm tired of answering the dreaded question..."so, how's the adoption coming?" and responding to "it can't be much longer now" and "how come it's taking so long?". I just can't answer these anymore. I wish I could carry around a little tape recorder and play them my standard answer every time someone asks me about the adoption.

On another note...I'm almost ready for Christmas. I just need to wrap the gifts and do some menu planning and grocery shopping for Christmas dinner. I love this time of year and I'm excited about the holiday as usual, but it seems the waiting is worse around the holidays. The first two Christmases spent waiting were hard, but this third one is a killer. I keep thinking this will be the last...but I also remember saying the same thing the last two times.

It's tough walking through the mall and seeing all the families waiting in line to see Santa and wishing Joe and I were there in line with Lauren. Also, watching all the parents with carts stacked up with toys for their little ones and wishing ours had toys for Lauren. I've been throwing quite a few pity parties for myself this month. I know that I'm not alone and that many of you have had a party or two of your own.

Doggie update...our greyhound, Addy, has been having some trouble. She is retaining fluid in her back legs and they are all swollen. She's been having trouble with her legs for years now, but it's SO sad to see her trying to walk around with the swelling on top her usual pain. Our vet wants to run some blood work to see if she is having organ failure of some kind. She already has high blood pressure and a bad heart murmur and she's on several different medications. Please keep her in your prayers.

Sunday, December 09, 2007

New icon...

I finally created a picture icon for my mom to use when leaving comments.

She's had a high speed internet hook-up for a while now and surfs the blogs on my sidebar. I think it's really cool how "into it" she is. Most of our phone conversations include at least one reference to someone in Blogville. Sometimes I think she's more up to date on things than I am. She'll always let me know when it's time to move someone down on my sidebar to the "Waiting to Travel" or "In China" sections.

Before my mom had access to the web she was excited about the adoption, but I don't think she truly got the "why China" part of it until she was able to follow along and watch other families travel and come back home with their children. Now she is VERY excited and right on top of what's going on with referrals and what's new on Rumor Queen.

My brother also follows along and checks in on my blog daily. It really is nice to have my immediate family so into it and excited.

If you see a comment on one of your posts with this little ladybug icon, you'll know it's my mom checking in on you. By the way, her name is Linda.

Thursday, December 06, 2007

Referrals are in...

It's official...referrals have been issued for log in dates through December 14th. This means they processed 6 days worth of files last month.

There are 64 days between Dec. 14th and our LID...that's 9 weeks. Since they have been issuing about a week's worth of referrals each month, we are looking at at least 9 more months which firmly plants us at August 2008. The only way it would be sooner is if we see some referral batches of more than 7 days. Isn't it crazy to think they could take 9 months to process 64 days worth of files? If that's how quickly I moved at work, I wouldn't have a job anymore!

I'm off today and just kind of puttering around the house picking up and cleaning. I don't know why, but when I'm off and at home I watch all the TLC baby shows. You know the ones...Baby Story and Bringing Home Baby. This morning, a young couple brings their little newborn home in an outfit that says "Worth the Wait"...God, if they only knew what a WAIT actually was!! I thought, you've GOT to be kidding me! Why do I torture myself with these shows??

Actually, last Wednesday afternoon Bringing Home Baby featured a couple in China getting their daughter and bringing her home. It was their first child and it was so cool to watch. Did anyone else catch it?

Well, I'm off to get some things done and make my day off worthwhile.

Monday, December 03, 2007

Christmas tree challenge...

I'm taking Catherine's challenge and posting some pics of our tree. I just finished decorating it yesterday. I do the inside of the house and Joe does the outside.

As Catherine mentions on her post, it really is hard to get excited about decorating for Christmas while waiting for our little ones. During Christmas 2005, we were going to be home with Lauren in time to celebrate Christmas 2006 with her. Then when that didn't happen, we celebrated Christmas 2006 just knowing that was the last one without our daughter. Now, here we are with Christmas 2007 in a few weeks and again we just know we'll have her by this time next year. Do we REALLY know that for a fact....nope. Chances are, we will be...but I'm getting tired of saying "next year....".

Here's our tree...

and here's a few special ornaments we acquired during the wait...

Okay, now head over to Catherine's blog and let her know that you are taking her challenge too!