Monday, July 30, 2007

One Reunion down, one to go!


Kitty's first family reunion. I am sure she was thinking "what in the world are all these goofy people doing?" She wanted to EAT. She had a hot dog and a cupcake. She was having a great weekend with Jamie, Kyle and Andrea coming up to visit early and staying with us. Jamie is Kat's age and Kyle is Camden's age so they have a great time playing. Not to mention Andrea and I are cousins and the same age and we are good friends. We always enjoyed playing together when we were kids as well. It's fun to see OUR kids playing together and having a ball.
What did Kitty do at the reunion? Well she got into the middle of the game the older kids were playing and took the ball. Who's gonna tell that sweet looking little girl to give it back? She got to do a ring toss over lollipops but since she figured out there wasn't much competition since Jamie got one lollipop and decided she was set, Kat just started pulling them all up and dumping them in her bag. Ahh, the candy bags, my girl is hooked on her "candy" bags. She carried it around in her stroller like it was a baby, even strapped it in! She watched it like a hawk. She's quite the little piggy when it comes to candy. She decided to dance with the grandmas' when they got going and she was very funny- she started out playing her invisible guitar but then moved on to learning the "twist. " WOW! I caught her in mid jump, looking as if she's suspended- she was really hopping.

We didn't get to stay too long since mom was off to work, but it was fun. Malaree and Dono-bin even participated in the 3 legged race. Although they did not win. Jie Jie Malaree took pictures, not sure she will be winning any photo contests- although we have great shots of the back of everyone's heads, one of the chairs and one lovely shot of Jie Jie's painted toenails. THANKS Mal! Where'd ya get that pedicure?
Mom's impression of the reunion- well, now this is where it gets fun. Since this is our personal blog and not our FAMILY website, I can dump the nice comments and get down to the dirt.
Uncle Jim, STOP hanging over the chicken since you want to take home as much as possible so we all feel weird getting any to eat with you HOVERING over us. Also, put away your chest- button your shirt , DO NOT set chest hair on fire for entertainment purposes. DO NOT even suggest it. We are not wanting to see that.
Some people are looking their age. No names there. But wow! We are becoming our parents- scary! I wasn't sure what kids belonged to who- ahhh!
Mike, I didn't see ya, sorry I missed ya, would have loved to talked to you but if I saw you I didn't know you- sorry!
Kim, I love your hubby, he's a hoot. Nice kids you have too and I am glad you are my cousin. You came to our family from Korea as a little girl and I always thought you were so beautiful (and you still are) and what a nice person you are, you were part of the reason I knew I could love Kitty without reserve:) Also thanks for bringing home Dono-bin who didn't want to leave when I had to go.
I hear some people may not have been able to attend due to being detained- literally, like behind bars. Vicious rumors. Wild family.
Aunt Leona, thanks for the hug. You are such a good momma, grandmomma, I am jealous. I needed that hug. I love you.
Mom, do not invite me to "dance" to the oldies, it's not cute when my butt gets going and I could actually hurt someone if I decided to really have some fun. I doubt the DJ would have liked seeing a person flying through the air and taking out the speaker if I really "got down." Yikes.
Kids, next time clean up you OWN plates. Thanks for making MOM look like a HOG with 5 PLATES to throw away, like I ate 5 plates of food. And stop telling everyone that I ate my desserts first, you little monsters.
To the planner of the kids games, who ever you were, YOU are CHEAP> peanuts needing shelled are NOT, I repeat, NOT a kids' choice of "treats" Spring for some cheap candy. I'd much rather have wrappers all over than those darn shell pieces that are now littering my whole house. Try stepping on one of those too- OUCH! Cheapskate, buy CANDY!
To the dude who asked who I "belonged to" as if I am 5, you deserved me saying "no one, I just saw a picnic and decided to stop in for free food". HELLO- it was in the boonies, I have red hair, half the family has red hair so I HAD to BELONG- if you are that dumb, I hope we AREN'T related.
Okay, I've had my fun. I'll see everyone again next year. By the way, I may be fluffier this year but I had GREAT HAIR :) and you all thought YOUR family was bad.......huh?

Monday, July 23, 2007

Mini Vacation

Off we went to a night away, not far from home but in a hotel with a pool. Kat and Camden had a ball in the pool, but the hot tub was just a bit too hot for Miss Kitty. The kiddie pool, just a foot deep was nice, it was much easier to let her have fun in. Kat enjoyed staying in a hotel, she thought it was great fun. We haven't stayed anywhere since we were in China and then we were so eager to get home we NEVER wanted to see a hotel room again, but this was for fun. We shopped and got some school clothes, we were even able to have time for mom to get her hair done since 2 family reunions are in the next 2 weeks and if I'm going to be fluffy at least I'll have great hair! I even like it, it's got blond highlights which are supposed to be "sun kisssed" effects, yeah, with pale redheaded skin it's not quite believable but I bought it :)
After I got my hair done we went to an amusement/waterworks park. Camden and Kat rode rides first, then we split up, Kat doing the rides again and Camden with Baba going to the go carts and water slides which Kat was too small to go on. Yet again, mom must speak the praise of squeaky shoes with many small girls in pink running everywhere, I had NO trouble finding my girl:) Kat seemed to like the fish ride the best, she was all giggles when the fish went up and down, it was fun to watch her having such a good time.
We rode the kiddie rides about 3 more times till she was tired and starting to do bad things, like standing up, sticking hands out, and such that I said "okay, we are done."
Camden and Baba met up with us then and Camden was happy but had scratched up his legs from the slides. Both his poor legs. he even told me later he couldn't have a blanket touch his legs, they were so "broken". Mr. Drama King had 2 brush burns about the size of a dime and quarter, one on each leg. I think he will survive, but he isn't sure that his legs will make it yet. We may have to amputate. Ha HA!










Once we got home the kids were tired, glad to be home, crawled right in their beds and they slept like logs. Hopefully with sweet dreams of a fun day.
Tonight Baba took Camden and Malaree to a local baseball game, Kat was not happy to be left alone with Mom- yeah, mom is just MOM, she wanted CAMDEN> but since she would not sit still for a ball game so she was stuck with me.

Camden and her decided this morning to dig into the toy box that I bet they haven't even looked in for a month or more and they threw EVERYTHING out of it, it was like a treasure hunt. But then nobody wanted to put it all BACK. We found this hat of Camden's that says "I love mom". Miss Kitty looked adorable in it but I wasn't feeling the love from this face :) It was grouchy. So after some time of NO ONE offering to put all the junk back (imagine that) I told her we would work together and we got it all cleaned up.
What a mess. But it's done. Can I hope they think twice before doing that again? I must have wore Kat out since she is now crashed on one of her chairs, hanging half off of it. I didn't think she did that much work :) Guess her bath will wait till morning.

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Over night with Grandma

Miss Kitty had some fun this week with a trip to Grandma's to spent the night. She went along with Camden and was so happy to go. She came home telling me all about staying at Grandma's and "sleeping in Grandma's bed". Mom was not prepared for this, it became a necessity when I got to work Monday at 3pm and found out I was going to be staying for a 16 hours shift till 7 am. I can't bounce back from a double as easily as I used to so they went to stay with Grandma till I had gotten a few hours of sleep. Since I have not been away from my girl since we brought her home, I fretted and worried that she would be upset- ha- she was THRILLED> She was still mad from Camden getting to go when she had surgery and all she got was a sore throat :( I should have thought too that she was used to being with Po Po, so she is quite comfortable with both her Chinese and American Grandmas :) She played with Camden's car seat once she was home and was "tied" in with her nightgown- goofy girl!
We are very happy to hear that our Uncle Roy and family in Japan are safe with the earthquake and typhoon both going through in the last week. Too scary.
This week has gone by so quickly, it will soon be time to get school clothes.
Dono-bin and Camden slept outside a few nights, I think they have the wrong idea of roughing it. I'm not recalling ever having a cell phone, portable DVD player and laptop in any camping experience I had as a child. Wow, have times changed! Kat never did make it to stay up late enough to sleep out. She wanted to badly but then the boys did not want her to. Some dumb boy rule they were enforcing. They'll find out when she has something they want!
We had our re-check on Kitty's throat, they asked if she was more than 3 weeks post op as she has healed so well. Goodness, that's nice after all the BLOOD nightmares and such. She is just happy to be able to eat corn dogs for breakfast again. Her voice is nice and sweet now, not nasally and she isn't snoring at all. She is sleeping in her own bed and not fussing at night at all. Recovery is OURS!
It's been a good week, no incident with the ice cream truck, no big fights with Gie Gies, I think they are finally used to be off school and enjoying sleeping in and having playmates constantly now. I know Kat will be upset when Camden heads back to school.But we have another month to prepare for that so we will focus on the fun of summer for now:)

Friday, July 13, 2007

A day of giggles

Some days you just have to think you are raising the world's worse kids. Like when your 6 year old gives you a "wedgie" and then him and his 3 year old sister giggle like crazy. Bad, bad children. Who taught them this? Bad, bad, older brother Dono-bin. Shame on him.
We have been shopping the past few days, Miss Kat said to Gie Gie Derrik when we were headed grocery shopping (see, I did go back there again!) today in the car "Derrik, why you talking?" Apparently the Princess thought SHE had to be the one talking and singing and we were just to listen. It is a hard thing to get a word in edge wise around her. So like her mother. Oh, dear.
Dono-bin's birthday is tomorrow so today's song was Happy Birthday. ALL day! God help us, another teenager in the house. The big 13. Wow, where has that time gone? I can't believe it's been 13 years since I birthed that huge 9 lb 6.4 ounce child that ruined my hips for life. I just love ya Donovan.
Donovan got a tent with some of his birthday money and he is sleeping out in it. Everyone else was too, but so far Kitty has lost the battle to stay up, and Camden is going to be next. They never STAY out there anyway!

We got a fun letter from our family in China this week. Telling us more about where Kat is from. QinZhou. It stays warm there mostly year round, never any snow. Very Humid. They grow grapes, passion fruit, papayas. It is a seaside city so it gets windy. We knew it was a fishing area she came from, due to the pictures and her love of sea food. She will eat anything from the sea, clams, shrimp, fish, etc. She loves it all. Jie Jie Malaree was not thrilled to find out Kat LOVES clams, they are her favorite and she hates to share them as it is when we get some to steam :)
On our one shopping trip mom took Camden and Kat to the play area in our local mall and as they were playing we see this little tiny CHINA girl come to play with her family. WOW- not a sight we see often. So, of course, we HAD to talk to them. Funny thing, as us moms were talking away, Kat and Emma found each other without any help at all and they looked at each other then took off together like two little magnets, hooked together. It was so sweet to see. They clearly knew they were both China girls. They live nearer to us than our other friends and actually know of 3 other families that have China girls. I am so glad to know this. We exchanged names and e-mail and will keep in touch. I didn't think to take my camera but Emma was very close in size to Kat and just one month younger :) Longer hair though. She has 3 brothers and was very close to them, you could see. To think I worried that we lived in such a small town that we would have trouble finding other China girls for Miss Kat to be around. Should have known God would take care of that:)
Mom saw a young mother today, she had 4 girls ages 8 to a baby. Gorgeous girls. I told her she was so blessed as the 3 oldest were trying on shoes of all kinds. She said "yeah, blessed? " I said YES then she said they wanted a boy. I told her all about China- I said GO FOR IT -there are waiting BOYS- they are WONDERFUL. Miss Kitty had suitably impressed her by that time with her joining the fun of the shoe trying on (big mess) with her speech and her great personality. Then my big boy Derrik caught up with me and Kat and said "MOM, are you on the adoption thing again- comm'on." I just smiled and said "see how wonderful boys are?" As he dragged me from the shoe aisle. BOYS> they just don't get our love of SHOES :)
Yesterday we had to be thankful for the squeaky shoes like we never have before. We just pulled in when the ice cream truck came around. It pulled over across the street. It's truly one of those old time trucks with the music blaring and everything. Derrik went to get Kitty ice cream, Camden was in the house not feeling well but crying to be gotten ice cream, so I told Derrik to get him something and as he went to do so, he turned from watching Kitty and I heard her shoes. A car was coming, I saw it and I SCREAMED at her "NO Kitty, DO NOT MOVE!" Thank you God for her listening, thank you, thank you. She STAYED, the car ZOOMED by and Derrik realized what was going on and grabbed her. Between the truck blocking the view of her to this zooming car and the loud music blaring from the ice cream truck, she came SOOOOO incredibly close to being HIT in front of our eyes. I KNEW she was going to try to come to me and I don't know HOW she heard me over that music. Thank God for my BIG MOUTH.
To think I have saved 2 of my kids from being hit now, Derrik nearly walked out in front of a car going 55 mph+ due to him reading a BOOK and not paying attention many years ago. Again, My big mouth, saved him.
I know for sure I lost a few years off my life from the fear of both these incidents. So now the squeaky shoes are forever my favorite. I wonder if they will complain if I send her off to Middle School wearing them? Hummmmm.......

Tuesday, July 10, 2007

9 months since Gotcha!

Really. Just 9 months? No way! This is the child I longed for, cried for, felt a hole in my heart fill with joy on that day 9 months ago. Looking back at her pictures today, she has that "deer in the headlight" look, as if to say "what in the world has happened here?" I am glad we were so overwhelmed with love and joy that we weren't able to see that, it would have broken my heart. She looks so different today. Her cheeks are fuller, her hair is so much longer, her love for us is obvious. That she is loved and adored is obvious.
She speaks in mostly clear, full sentence English. Amazing. 9 months and she sings the alphabet song. She counts to ten then goes to 12, W, 13, 16, B, making us laugh. She knows purple, blue, yellow, red, pink, green. She constantly sings, today during lunch it was "Yummy, yummy for tummy." She LOVES all things girly, bows, dresses, flowers, nails painted, bracelets, earrings. She is forever helpful, wanting to get things for everyone. She copies everything Camden does, driving him nuts some days, but she is just a sponge, taking it all in.
What is left of her orphanage life? She has a small area in her hair (bangs) that was shaved practically to the skin before we got her. Like a MONTH before we got her, and it is just now coming in close to match her "bangs". It's got maybe an inch to go. It will be weird to not see that gap in her hair. But it reminds me that her head was shaved and I think that's terrible so I can't wait till that is gone.
We also noted that she tend to bite/chew on fabric- be it her dress or blanket or even my shirt when she is tired, we figure this is due to the practice of orphanages giving the children a small cloth to hold and sooth themselves with in their cribs. She doesn't do more than chew a corner, and has never ripped or ruined any cloth so we figure that as harmless.
She has her wonderful foster family, they sent her a package just yesterday with a gorgeous pink lacy dress, an Olympic stamp book and a panda bear. They are so good to her. They are part of our family now.
She has a forever family and a direct link to mom's heart. When I "heard" her cry after her surgery and no one else could hear her, I realized she is linked to my heart and I have mother intuition with her, just as I do the other children. Physically giving birth DOES NOT make you a mother, no way. It's your heart, being given to these tiny beings, blessing from God, to protect them and raise them with all the love and your very last nerve. The reward? Kisses, chocolate kisses, fingerprints on your car window, hugs, I wuv you's, silly stories, LOVE, love, and more love. 9 months of our lives with Kitty Kat. She is one of the greatest blessings God has ever given our family and we are very thankful for her.

Saturday, July 7, 2007

She's playful again

Miss Kat seems to be doing quite well these days. the last few nights she has slept through the night, in her own bed! Mom says "WHOOO HOOO!" Camden got paid back in full for the fruit snack frenzy, he was up at 3am with a belly ache and vomited. In mom's bed, of course. Do all kids have this secret code when it comes to gross things? Is the baby talk really a code for "puking- go to mom's bed", bleeding- do it in mom's bed"- ahhhhh! He was nice enough to do it over the side of the bed so that I got to wash the bed skirt and rugs along with all of the bedding and him :) I love my kids. Really.
Kat went to Chuck E. Cheese, she's getting to be a real regular there, ha ha. Our sitter ( a brave, brave woman) always takes the kids for various things over the summer so she took them for their Chuck E. trip yesterday. She had a little friend, Hannah to play all over with but mainly took to our sitter's oldest son (he's 13) and wanted carried everywhere by him. When she first saw him back months ago, we could not decide what she was saying, but she was just all over him. Then we realized he looked quite similar to her foster brother in China, same build, same hair color and she was calling him her foster brother's name. So sweet, that she remembered this Gie Gie and was clearly very fond of him.
So she had a good time at Chuckie's Place again and mom missed out on the headache- yeah!! Actually I was home doing the laundry- thanks Camden! I am glad they had a fun day.
Kat was playing outside today and she is one little monkey. She keeps climbing on the swing frame and swinging on it. She also can scale the rock wall FAST- and to come down she is yelling "me do it" so you can't even touch her even though she looks like she is going to fall. She goes up in the tree house and down, another hair whiting experience for her mother when I look. I asked her if she was part monkey and she said "yes".
Her Gie Gie Derrik came and wanted to take her for Chinese supper, something she is always up for. So off we went and she enjoyed talking with the girls, the owners' daughters. I got her to say Ni Hao "hello" to them but that was all. She was more interested in EATING!
She's back to singing all the time so her throat must feel a ton better. She sounds less like a"Chuckie" doll, thank goodness. She also has started pretending she is playing a guitar when she hears music, it's funny to see her "strumming away" with her pretend guitar.
A new favorite saying for her is "excuse me" and "I love it," I swear she sounds just like Paris Hilton- what does that tell you? Spoiled little Diva- for sure! She also says "man, come on" when something isn't going her way. We have also found that she thinks she is the ONLY person in a store aisle, she will KNOCK people out of her way and not move for people. Since we aren't trying to raise the Queen here, we are working on that issue with her :) Mostly people hear her coming in her squeaky shoes and give her lots of room anyway. All in all she is enjoying the nice hot weather and is doing well.

Thursday, July 5, 2007

Almost back to normal

If fighting with a brother is the sign of well being, then we are right on. Kat was fighting with Camden over who "owned the cat." Ha ha on them, I think Miss Toffee has all of us wrapped right around her paw :) But the Kat TT-I-TUDE is clearly returning.
We got up today and mom had the bright idea to go to the pool. Might have wanted to check a weather forecast before claiming that to all, since after we were suited up and thinking of going it proceeded to storm. Not just rain but thunder, lightening, the works. Even after it stopped and we thought maybe, it got dark again and stormed again. So there that went.
So for entertainment the children decided to eat their way through the day. I swear every hour they were asking for/hiding and getting "snacks." I bought a 20 pack of fruit snacks yesterday in the $275 grocery bill for the week, which nearly made me ill, and found the empty box today, just 24 hours later. AHHH! So they got the dickens for that. It's just crazy that they feel the need to eat up everything as soon as I go to the store. As if we will never get groceries again!! Have I said how much I love summer vacation? School starts in a month and a half :)

The fireworks were very nice the other night, Kat liked them and was saying "go boom" and putting her arms up. I figured she would not be afraid of them since they put off fireworks in China to celebrate, but often to celebrate the birth of a BOY :(
So we dedicate the fireworks of our July 4th to Miss Kitty, OUR GIRL, that we are proud to celebrate her birth, her life and what a special blessing she is to us. Not enough fireworks in all of the world to show everyone how wonderful SHE is!

Tuesday, July 3, 2007

Happy Independence Day!

Sleep is ours! Finally. The stronger pain medicine is able to go down Miss Kitty as she is eating better and can stomach it. So she is in less pain and able to sleep 4 hours or so without waking crying. No more hysterics either. Wow, I never thought her healing time would be so rough, Dono-bin and Brandon both went through the same thing but I can't recall either of them being so sore for so long. Chalk me up to OLD and forgetful apparently.

Kat is back to climbing on my back as I type, drawing me pictures, eating a corn dog ( boy did that make her happy!!!) and being 80% normal. We still have a bit of the Chuckie voice, the bad breathe and the pain at night. But she is on the road to recovery.
No big plans for the 4th but can I just say that even though my daughter's heritage is Chinese, we are proud to make her a Chinese American, to be a part of the land of the free, where she will have opportunities she would never had a chance to experience being in China. We all came from other countries to make this great country and she is blessed to be a part of the freedom to speak her mind, to work hard and prosper, to travel if she chooses, to marry if she chooses, to make her life be whatever she wants it to be without the confinements of a government rule.
I am happy she will NEVER have to face abandoning a child because it is a girl/ handicapped due to society pressure and government rules. We do not begin to understand the way of life in Chinese society, we do not condemn what we do not understand, we just pray for a better way for the babies and children affected in Chinese society.
We are proud to say "WE ARE Americans!! Happy July 4th to all. Celebrate our Freedoms :)