Thursday, April 30, 2009

The BIG news

We have some amazing news to share!

I'll start at the beginning. God led us to a precious 13+ year old girl to become our daughter. We hang on through mounds of paperwork, being the first family to travel with our agency under the new Hague Rules. We wait an agonizing 10 months to meet our daughter. We were sure we were done with China:) But was China done with us??

Fast forward to Feb 2009 in China. I meet our girl. She is shy, she is sweet. We are signing paperwork for her adoption and I am handed a translated police report for her. I start to read and my head is spinning. "She was found with 2 other children" HUH???? I ask- "who are these other children?" This makes no sense to me, children are not routinely found in GROUPS.

As the confusion mounts the guide asks our daughter. The guide looks at me with disbelief. My heart sinks. "MY brothers" was her answer.
What do we do?? I personally was devastated. How, why, when, who did this? How did this fail to be in her report, why were we not told, when did everyone else come to know this, what do we do NOW?
I Skyped Baba in tears- what should we do? How do we tear these children apart? Honestly I was heartbroken for Chloe. I couldn't sleep, I was so upset.
What do we decide? WE WANT THE BROTHERS. It's the only "right" thing to do.

Here's what we have done. We immediately asked about the boys. The answers we were given-
They were all at the same orphanage for many years together, both boys are still there.
They are bio siblings.
Everyone at the orphanage knew these 3 as siblings but they were not reported as siblings.
One brother with her did have a file for adoption with an agency in the USA.
So from there we attempted to have younger brother given to us while I was still in China to adopt Chloe. This could NOT be accomplished so I came home. We did know where his file was. Our agency for Chloe has since refused to help with funding for him so we are staying with the agency that has his file, they are helping us to go back for brothers, reducing fees where they can, giving us grant information, helping with other brother's paperwork needs.

What do we need- SADLY $$$$$$ is our ONLY roadblock. We do not lack funds or love to raise them, just funds to go back yet again- and sooo soon! We look at our girl and see a package deal. She is a sibling. We can not forget the boys. We did not expect to be parents to 10+ children. But God showed us this girl, led us to adopt her, for a reason.

We do not ask for one cent more than what we HAVE TO HAVE to get our dossier off to China for the brothers.
I've added a chip in on the top right so PLEASE, please HELP us bring Chloe's brother home. We can not post pictures of him from his file BUT there is a picture with this post, of Chloe and "friends" at the orphanage before she left, one of her own pictures and her brothers are not BLOND. Hint Hint.
As for other brother, he is NOT forgotten or lost. We are asking about paperwork for him, we want to bring home BOTH of these boys. No child is lost, every one is God's and deserves a chance. We will do all we can for him. We call him "Chase" as an American name. Chloe wishes younger brother to have name with "Ch" like her, we chose "Chance"as his name.
Chloe has known since we were in China that we were going to do everything we can for "the brothers." I don't think she believed it at the time, but she does now and she is THRILLED she has not lost them. I did not know at the time but when we visited the orphanage the last child we saw was hanging out the doorway yelling " bye, bye, bye" as loud as he could- IT WAS HER YOUNGER BROTHER! And when asked to buy anything she wanted in the store in China she bought gifts for her brothers.
I do not know how these children came to accept that they were to be taken from each other, and as far as they knew for forever, yet Chloe came to us sweet, willing, and wanting to be a part of our family. I am in awe of them. We cannot sit back and say "We don't have the money." I can't let it be the only reason we are not able to bring these brothers home.
If you feel like we do, that we have to go back for the brothers, please consider helping us, lift us up in prayer, help if you can financially, spread the word, we need all the help we can get. We invite you to share our story. Every dollar counts, every prayer is needed! YOU can be a part of the sibs story and change 3 childrens lives FOREVER- imagine what this means to THEM!
We will give them a loving family, they will be wanted, cherished and cared for by all of us, just as we wanted Chloe, they will not lack for LOVE. We will embrace them as our sons.
Most of all we ask- what would YOU do? Could you look in your new daughter's eyes and tell her "no, we can't go back for your brothers you love?"
We can't, we have to go back. It's like we left a part of her there.

We thank you for your support, for the hope you have given to our family that we can- indeed- keep these children together as a part of our family.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Update status

First and foremost- you all are amazing us! Your kind words, your generous donations, your prayers- WOW!

So many people, every $1 counts and is adding up to the amount we need. It's blown us away. We thank each and every one of you so much!!!

We chose younger brother's name - he will be "Chance" just seems appropriate. He is getting a chance to be our son. YOU ALL are making that come true.

I hope you all realize what a difference you are making in the lives of not one, not two, but THREE children's lives. Former orphans, now a part of us, all because YOU cared. They have a BIG family, filled with love, that honors their bio bond just wanting to be their family and made possible all because YOU cared enough to help!

Please feel free to share our story, link to our blog, whatever can help.

We couldn't do this without every single one of you!!! We thank you, thank you, thank you from the bottom of our hearts.



Sunday, April 26, 2009

Off to School

It's been quite the busy week for us so far. After all the yard work was done we have been covering service appointments for the foster boys as they all come due at once. They both have aides at school and educational plans we have to update every 6 months. Then we the aide hours to be justified and although they have made tremendous strides in behaviors there is still educational concerns.



S is speaking in full sentences, when he came he screamed and spoke one understandable word at a time, not easy to figure out what was wrong when he was screaming. Now that he is TALKING we can figure out what he wants, needs, is upset about and get him under control sooo much easier. He is very funny too, he dances, he put on his brother's pants and when I told him he said " my bad" and laughed. He's such a sweetie.



H is having a rough week. A teacher is leaving, he really likes her and he doesn't do well with people he cares about leaving his life. He craves stability and has it here but he needs it in all parts of his life. Otherwise he is making great strides, learning to get along with other children has been amazing to see him progress, learning to read:) He's such a sensitive little guy.



The "girls" and I went to lunch with S at his school today. He was thrilled to show us his "best friend" another child's aide named Matt. He just adores Matt. He was being a goof and bowed down like I was a queen and kissed my hand when we went to leave. His aide is amazing with him, it's super there are people love these guys when they need it most. H's aide, as well, is a fantastic person whom he looks up to.



The girls weren't too thrilled with lunch (sorry girls, this is what you will be eating in the fall at SCHOOL) so they came home and ate noodles, of course. They had fun seeing S and meeting everyone.



We went for shots for Chloe, we had to have to get her enrolled in school. She didn't need too many but she knew what was coming and didn't want to get out of the van:( I told her 4, it was 2 so she was happy it was just 2.

I think she is doing well, she pushes issues in public, she has told me "NO" when I tell her something, I have a request in to her friend again ( hope poor Lily is not sick of us) to remind big girl we do not do this to mother. Lily is such a help and we Thank God for her. She is able to be a "long distance big sister" to Chloe and help her wade the waters of this new life. It's mainly Chloe pushing to see who is in charge, guess what, it's MOM:) She's such a teenager:)



Otherwise our week is halfway over and we have accomplished much. Bed time now, time to thank God for all these blessing:) Night night all.










Thursday, April 23, 2009

Mom's Day Out

Not too often mom gets some time away from "the girls." "The girls" were driving mom nuts. All the "noodles" the "climbing up my back", the following mom everywhere- ahhhhh. I love 'em, boy, do I love 'em, but I needed to pee alone.




So as I am NOT the typical gal that goes for the day our to a spa and gets the royal treatment, nahhh... I took oldest son out to buy clothes for himself, a task he will NOT do without encouragement and we had lunch. I got Chloe some shorts, since it is finally getting warm here and I was able to buy 3 pairs without her along throwing everything in the cart as if there no limit to the bank rolls of said parents. Sorry chick, it's Ronald as your Baba, not DONALD Tr*mp.



I was able to leisurely shop (minus son's groaning which I am really good at ignoring:) We had lunch at a Chinese buffet, I told big bro he would be in BIG trouble if " the girls" got wind of that. Eating Chinese without them----oh no.




We've had a few issues of squabbles between the kids, a nasty game of Sco*by Doo I bought on trip out and a puzzle they fought over last night, Miss Chloe was not liking being told to share, went off in a huff, I stopped her from going to room and pouting, she stood in my room and refused to go apologize for about 10 minutes then Cam came up and I told them they had to be "good di di and good jie jie" so they apologized to each other and hugged. It's a learning process for Chloe to know how to be a part of a family. She spent MUCH less time pouting than last time she got upset and she was asking for noodles in about 5 minutes after the hug:) Oh and next trip out, mom buys SELF something not puzzle and game children will give mom grief over. Shame on them.



Next on the agenda, we were off to get the glasses adjusted, I really wish I had ordered her frames that had the molded frame instead of pads for at her nose, she hates them and was telling the woman trying to adjust them "cutta off"- yeah, cut them off. Pretty easy to get that. Not so easy to do! She readjusted them and she is complaining already they hurt behind her ears but they were totally out of whack from her messing with them, this does not help the matter of the soreness from misplacement on her face.



Then mom had a super conversation with Lily's mom, it's just incredible to have someone who has been there with blending an older child into the family, even to say " I know this is normal but it's driving me nuts" and have them understand. Thanks a mil Sally for your support. We love Chloe so much, it's very hard to hit bumps in the road and not question if we are doing enough to help her adjust.



Odd things Chloe does-

Pulls mom's toes till they pop, euhhh- I asked why not fingers and she looked at me like "what" then popped her knuckles herself as if to show me, come on MOM do that yourself. Okay then, you just get my toes:)

Ham slices in the noodles??

Hot sauce on every food imaginable and some not imaginable-yuck

Does not like to be too warm, the opposite of Kat, she is cold in 80 degrees, Chloe is trying to wear shorts in 40 degrees- brrr girl!


Can draw amazingly well, really gifted:) Not funny when girls draw mother- Kat starts out picture- mom is skinny with 2 lines above eyes "cause you old and have lines there" and sister takes it, adds a layer of fluffy, 3 more lines to forehead- mean, mean girls- no more noodle for them- ha!

Thank goodness some of Chloe's "halley potter" books have come, she was so excited she didn't understand why they took so long to come. I had asked her what "Halley Potter" called in China, well another "duh" look for me and "Halley Potter" from her. Okay then, I get it:) As you can see from the pictures, the "girls" must have own things to do or they will annoy anyone who dares to read aka ignore them:)

What we learned this week- everyone here has that same last name, you know the one Chloe said "no" to. Yeah!! Not so bad now:) She can sign it too- with help.


Chloe is official, we got her Certificate of Citizenship, after getting a letter saying she was over 14 and needed to have an appointment to be sworn in- mailed back her passport copy and a letter stating she was NOT yet 14 and could they send the certificate PLEASE- and it came in the mail :) YEAH!! She understands she is an American now.
She used to look at me and if I was looking at her she would say " what?" I would say "nothing" so now I get that "nuffin" right back at me, with a giggle when I look at her.


Mama and Baba who dated YEARS and YEARS ago had a special song that is now, sadly enough, used in MOP commercial that 5 children are now traipsing around house singing "Don't you want me baby, don't you want me OHHHH!" in voices to OUTDO one another, until mother hates song and never wishes to hear said song again. Imagine them in the store (they did this) and all 5 of them singing this as we grocery shop. I told them all they were wanted all right, probably by the police for breaking the noise ordinance:)





Tuesday, April 21, 2009

School anyone?

Off we went to kindergarten registration today. Is Kat ready for school?? I believe so. Her teacher may have to tape her lips shut to TEACH her anything- ha ha! She went to the "play area" so they could see how well she interacts with other children. This is what I hear- "Hi, my name is Kat, what's yours? I brushed my teeth today, did you?" Oh dear.


Then we got into the issue of school for Chloe. I asked about a meeting to set up getting her enrolled for the fall. WELL- our good 'ol school here has NO Asian children at all, their ESL (English as second language) help is for Spanish speaking students and they are "have concerns" that we wish to keep Chloe in Elementary school at her age. So I informed them that our concern was her education (imagine that) NOT the issue of her AGE. We want her to get a good base to build her education on, if she is placed too high she will get frustrated and will not succeed. Her age is just a number. She also is going to be severely socially delayed for some time to come. She is very physically small for her age, so it's not as if she stands out as a 13 year old in size.



So we will be having a meeting for the school to invite everyone who they think is necessary to see that she gets placed appropriately. Got a fight on their hands if they think they will be placing her higher than we wish for her own good. I can't imagine how they can say they know what is best for our child in this situation. WE know her best.
Also sending her into the Middle School here puts her in a school building with NONE of her siblings. I do not think that is a good thing either. If she needs someone or even feels scared she KNOWS the lower school is also the boys' and soon to be Kat's school as well. I'll let everyone know how it goes since they assured me that they would place her where we wanted BEFORE we brought her home, now they are singing a different tune. I will continue to home school her longer if needed, whatever will get her up to speed fastest.



Monday we spent some time scrap booking. Chloe did not understand what her book was for. I did the same as Kat and placed a baby doll picture for their first "birth" page and then went from there. She laughed at that picture and said "Kat?" I said "no." She said "Tristan?" I laughed and said "Tristan no China baby, and told her it was baby doll picture, that I have no baby picture of her." She laughed then really got into the pictures, she said "COOL" her new word of late:)



She did not understand I can add pages and I got to the China trip and was left with one page and she insisted we do the page of pictures of her and her friend Lily so we did it. I was able to get her to look at it and understand later that I can make the book bigger. She loves the book though, she has about 4 pages of her friends and children from the orphanage.
She enjoys looking through her book and the other kids' as well. Just makes her able to see her life story- albeit a lot of missing years of photos- but makes her see she is as important to me as the others who I have made books for- which is all of them at home now:) I think it also makes her see we care about where she came from and want to keep that for her.
That's our week so far..... wonder what else we can get into before the week is up- hard to tell with us-HUH?

Saturday, April 18, 2009

Spring pics

Click to play this Smilebox scrapbook: Poses in the Park
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I decided to haul the kids off to my favorite park for pictures. The wind was not cooperating and the kids got goofy on me, but I got a few good ones. Kat is very photogenic, she is easy to capture. Chloe and Cam, not so easy. But I was happy with the results for a quick shoot of them then PLAYTIME!

Enjoy:)

Friday, April 17, 2009

Bunk Beds


I finally did it. I broke down and got a THIRD set of bunk beds. I knew this was coming, as Kat is NOT the easiest person to sleep with. But when she continued to aggravate Chloe every night, then Chloe poked her in the eye with her finger, I knew it was time.



The girls LOVE them, their own bed, they are sturdy, they do not wobble, so Kat can climb all over them and they can take it. It's worked out so much better and I do not care that we are probably the only family anywhere with 3 sets of bunk beds and other beds to boot. Oh well, everyone has a bed.



I was able to sell the double bed Kat and Chloe got so recently and not go " in the hole" for the cost of the bunk beds:) Made me feel better that the bed didn't last any longer than it did for them.




We went to the park this week, Cam exclaimed it was " the most fun ever" even though we had been there before but hey, I'm glad he has a ball. They slept well that night. Then we had 3 days of rain, making me really glad I had gotten them out while I could.



S was really funny when he placed himself in the corner after going back to school finally on Wed, a full day after the other kiddos. He was NOT happy to have a long break, he never is, it throws him way off and upsets his routine. He did NOT behave the first day back, which is typical of him,. but it was toooo funny when I went to read his teacher's note that he said " I want to go to corner", and off he went. He is talking a ton more lately, doing really great.



Chloe is continuing to learn new words and is learning to count money as well. She has some of the sweetest sayings and faces. She says something like " pish" and sticks up her snoot when she doesn't like something or smells funny to her. She is going through an entire BIG bottle of Louisiana Hot Sauce per month. WOW, she likes the spicy and hot temperature wise. She ate quite a bit of candy, but does the whole "pish" thing to my favorite all time Cabu*y Eggs, ohhh yummy. She's gained 10 pounds. But still in 10-12 girls clothes.



She also "pish-ed" the doctor when we had a check up and he was treating her like she was deaf and dumb, telling her he was 57 years old. He started holding up fingers and she said in a very annoyed tone " I know-ahh, I know-ahh!" Way to go Chloe, you are no dummy.



The kids just love how she says " sank you" as she has trouble with "r" sounds and "t's". It is awful cute. She read a book Donobin had from our trip to Kat, we brought it home for him since he liked those books at the time. She asked for more so I got on http://www.amazon.com/



You can get Chinese versions of many books. YEAH! I asked about buying books while in China but she just shook her head "no" every time. Bet she regrets that now, I love to read and she often takes my current book and says " no book" to me. It was hard to explain they would come by mail, not immediately delivered via computer, but she finally got it.
I'm off to collect my kids, I dumped- oops, I mean took them to our oldest child's place (next door 'cause you can't move far from mom) which I have avoided taking Chloe there so far, but she now knows where video game central is and may never come back. Ha Ha!
Poor Big brother just called for help, Cam and Chloe are fighting over taking turns, Chloe will not give up a turn and she scratched him- this is something we are working on with her, she scratches when mad. NOT acceptable behavior. So now she is upset she got in trouble and crying. Hard to have any of my babies cry but sometimes necessary to release frustration:(
Gonna go sob myself now..................... I made her cry...wahhhhhhhhhh............................

Monday, April 13, 2009

Easter's over

Ahhh, the bunny is gone:) Rotten bunny hid baskets in some really tough spots, the microwave, behind coats. S did NOT take well to having to HUNT for his basket so he said "throw it away", and when I went to do just that he yelled "NO"! Funny kid.



Chloe did not know what to think of the hunting either, although she got into it when she realized what they were hunting for. She did need help to find hers.


Cam did really well with not getting the Leg* set he thought the bunny would bring. We really do not wish to encourage the commercial part of our Holiest holiday as Christians. So it's candy only and each got a color book.
Funny story about our dinner, Chloe took a look at the mashed potatoes, turned up her nose, I had her try one bite with gravy, she shook her head "no." I got our translation dictionary and pointed to "mashed potatoes" and she says -"oh, no ice- ahh ceeam", sorry doll, not ice cream potatoes:)


Today we are off to the park to wear out children who -

#1 are all off school
#2 have eaten their weight in candy,and need to burn some of it off
#3 are all off school
#4 are all off school
Picture of Kat I messed with my photo program and just loved how sweet she looks, don't let it fool you, she was a sugared wild child yesterday.
Picture of my super bro, Roy, and my sole living grandparent- my grandma. She is 94 and her sister is my aunt that recently passed away. My bro gave a fantastic tribute to Aunt Stella at her funeral, saying all of what we, her family were feeling. Good job bro. Love you tons.

Friday, April 10, 2009

Good Friday? Not at my house

It's Good Friday yet the children here are not being GOOD. So far S woke us up with his high pitched voice yelling as he does when anyone dares to try to sleep in- the nerve of us. Can't seem to break him of this issue- sigh.


Then as they all grumped their way downstairs, Chloe didn't want to watch Dora and S did. So she stomped to her room. Then after she came back down, Kat had put a CD on in the kids' room and Chloe wanted to watch TV. So Chloe, big boss that she is, went over and shut CD off, which started Kat whining.




I tried a small experiment. I said to Kat " She is not the boss, mother is and I say you can listen to that if you want." I figured the only thing Chloe would get out of that was "mother". WELL...........a certain girl understood quite bit more than just mother 'cause when Kat turned it back on she did not go turn it off and yell " Kat STOP" like she usually does, she started STOMPING up the steps to her room. I called to her and said " Chloe stop that" and she did. Hummmmmmm.... me thinks she just acted like a teenager:)



I was actually GLAD she did that. It gives me the knowledge she is catching on very easily, it shows her where she belongs in the family- she is not the boss here and can not be, and it shows a maturing emotional level and that she did respect me.


The kids are all off school today and that's not always fun, they take some time getting used to each other being home all day and Kat and Chloe accepting that their turf has been overrun by boys:)


I've gotten more "mom's" from our Chloe girl and an unprompted kiss on the cheek even for letting her watch TV in bed after Kat's bed time. Chloe is learning love:) She was watching me post about Tristan and when she saw a tear fall she wiped my eyes before I could reach for a tissue. She's a true joy to me, I am so glad to be her mom. She doesn't quite understand how Tristan is "our baby" but he had another mom. She is seeing that blood isn't a requirement to LOVE here.



Kat has been quite the ornery girl, as Chloe is working so hard to learn English we have a big alphabet book with pictures in it. Chloe knows almost all the pictures for each letter. But when she brought it to me this week and asked what the alligator was, she said something after I told her like " goobidygoo" and Kat.
WELL, I come to figure out little Miss Kitty Kat thought it was funny to tease sister who doesn't-know-English-as-well-as-her, and tell her wrong things when asked what a picture was in English. I recognized this nonsense word from the darling daughter, Kat who likes to make up words like calling her blanket " Po-wee sha" and other silly things.



Big sis had figured out alligator had to start with some type of "A" sound and goobidgoo" was NOT sounding like any "A" word she had heard before. SMART GIRL:) MEAN little sis.



It's cute too, when Chloe comes to the flower in our book she says "ME" since she knows Chloe means "blooming" like a flower. Not so funny when she point to the lion and his mane and says "you" meaning my HAIR, funny Chloe, real, funny. Good thing she got a mom with a sense of humor, huh?
Notice the green sweater Kat has on, from her wonderful Po Po, handmade with tons of love that she gave Kat when we visited them in China. Kat LOVES her Po Po and Gong Gong (grandma and grandpa) sooooo much and this sweater is her favorite thing to wear...... we sure love our China family and miss them so much.
BTW, Chloe's all better now from her pouting, a simple "yes" to Ramen No*dles for a snack and she is back to her happy self. Gotta love Ramen No*dles:)








Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Missing him


Our precious son, Tristan has been gone 6 months today, Hard to imagine life without you in it. Seems so long ago that I was holding you in my arms. I can still recall the sweet baby smell of you, the sweep of your hair. The joy I felt when you smiled for me, the fun of watching you thrive, kissing the bridge of your nose as my lips fit there perfectly from the day I met you till we had the pain of letting you go.


You came to us as a cast off, your doctors gave us no hope, the agency said you would not survive long, and look at what you showed them. You taught them all what love can do, that you WERE a person inside your broken body, not the vegetable they said you would be. You smiled, you cooed, you even SQUEALED for daddy once, you were so happy and excited. Scared your momma more than once but you were soooo worth every minute of sleep I lost, every minute you blessed us with your life.

I recall one night, not long before you passed, that the night nurse was worried about your breathing. This was the wonderful Mrs. Janine, the super nurse who was with us when you died. I KNEW if she was calling me down it wasn't good. So as I go downstairs at 4 am, and curl you around my fluff your breathing eased and you went to sleep. She was amazed and called you a turd, thinking she had disturbed my sleep for nothing.



Little did she know, I cherished those minutes to do nothing but hold you. 3 hours I held you till she left and you seemed content then. Off to do my mothering job on the rest of the crew, getting them off to school that day, never once missing those 3 hours of sleep. I held you as much as I possibly could, until your condition did not allow you to be as comfortable being held, then I laid beside you on your special pad so I could feel you breathe and stroke your hair.


You taught people who were hardened in their line of work, the thankless job of removing children "for their own good" to reconsider that 2 moms COULD share a child and love him as much as humanly possible. We worked with your birth mom, to give you the best all of us could give. Thus you left this world KNOWING you were loved, cared for beyond all measure. Your life touched people, they saw the joy your life gave us as they marveled that you were living on strong.
It was so hard to accept it was your time to go, I wanted to scream at the unfairness of it all, but then who promised us fairness? You were meant to be our son, you grew in our hearts, we saw beyond the defects of your body that made people stare and only saw the little boy we knew and loved.



Our family didn't look upon ourselves as anything special to have taken you in, YOU were OUR gift. You were the purest love and the most precious life I have ever seen and to be given the right to be your momma was a HUGE blessing.

I thank God, your birth mom and the agency for the honor of parenting you. You will live on in our hearts forever.


Dad and I miss you like crazy baby, but I'm so glad you are free. Some days I ache to hold you, but it's not to be, God has a special angel baby waiting just for me. Our son Tristan, we thank you for the 8 months of love and joy you gave us. You are forever in our hearts as our baby boy.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Bangs

I decided to give the girls bangs after looking at old pics of Kat and liking her with bangs better and Chloe pulls her hair up every day so she might as well not have it long in the front. Chloe has a natural curl to her hair, she is pushing them over to the side but even so she looks adorable with bangs. I am not sure Chloe's are straight, they are shorter than I wanted to go but the girl can't sit still when nervous and mom with scissors= nervous Chloe :)



The girls have been doing lessons on writing simple words and learning to write their last name. Ours is not an easy one, a nice long Polish name. Chloe said "no" when I told her that was her new name. Well, yeah, it is. Sorry 'bout that.



Chloe is speaking so much more, her language has just taken off. She has the cutest way of saying " I dunno know" with the shrug of shoulders. We went to the bank yesterday and she says "go shopping" and I laughed and said "no, no shopping" but we did get Chinese take out for our lunch.



I have noticed Chloe is slowing down on the constant eating now, she is realizing food is here all the time, and when we get low we go buy more. She loves the spicy hot stuff, the hotter the better, wow, don't know how she stands it. She also puts hot sauce on everything still. She LOVES corn dogs just like Kat, although hers is eaten with hot sauce, not ranch dressing.



She is speaking about 100+words, starting to form some sentences. She is much more gentle than at first, she is very good with Kat, she will help her in and out of her car seat, get her dressed, do her hair. Chloe is also a talented artist, she can really draw well. She drew a picture from a color book of a girl holding a cat, she wrote Chloe for the girl, and Kat as the cat:) It was fantastic and not traced.



Chloe has also gotten many things about family life, TV shows must be appropriate for little ones or it can not be watched. We do not say " shut up" we prefer " be quiet." That she can ask super nicely and mom may let her watch TV in bed for the hour difference of her and Kat's bedtime:) She doesn't want to go downstairs to watch TV in the family room, so we compromise.

Kat and Chloe are quite the goofballs, they enjoy many giggles during their time alone during the day and into the evening with the rest of the crew. Ornery girls, is what they are. Beware, she has a lovely pretend vomit, she has never really vomited. It's her teen opinion of anything she doesn't like. Drama queen #2 in the making? I'd say so.
Check out the video clip and see the fun these girls bring us:) Thye were like wild children tonight, too much candy in them and Easter isn't even here yet!

Saturday, April 4, 2009

Egg Hunting

Is there anything much more fun than an Easter egg hunt? Our foster agency holds one for the kids every year. 777 eggs for about 40 kids! No worries that anyone will miss out!


We got a ton of candy, won a basketball, PB eggs, bubbles, 2 kites, 3 lip glosses, a sand bucket, a bat and ball set, cotton candy. Also got gift bags for all the kids. I had to be the meanie mom and put back a huge portion of the candy, as to not have sick children and spare the recent dental work for the foster boys. They have some pretty extensive work and have certain candy they can not have.




Chloe figured out the deal quickly, grab eggs, place in basket. She was fast, but smart momma that I am, gave her and Cam the smaller baskets so they could only get so many. Really, no need to be hogging all the stuff:)



They did sack races and we ate, painted faces before the hunt and finished the day decorating Easter cookies. It was at a park the kids could also play at, so that made it a total blast for them.



They turned our Kat into a Bunny:)


It was really cold and windy, but sunny and warmer in the sun. We lost a few plates of food and 3 drinks to the wind. But it was worth it. The kiddos are tired and all tucked in for the night.


Chloe got her glasses this week, as the doctor warned, she is having trouble adjusting to them, she does not have a bridge to her nose so they annoy her. She keeps trying to pinch up her nose like she is trying to make a bridge and she points to my nose, I tell her " I know," she wants to borrow my bridge:) I'd give it to her if I could but then she'd have to have my hips too and we aren't gonna go there.




She is wearing the glasses longer each day, at first she tried to pull the " me sleep" and take them off as much as possible to pretend she was sleeping- ha ha girl, gotta give you credit for trying.
Chloe's English is getting better and better. She is talking much more. I am happy for her we are able to communicate better, it makes it less frustrating for us both.
She is more comfortable with the hugs, although she still needs to be prompted to hug Baba, she dislikes his whiskers, she motioned to him:) She is also learning "gentle." This has been a huge help with the rough play she was doing and she learning this well.
She finally called me "mom" HUGE GRIN HERE!!!! I have been oh, so patient (NOT) waiting for her to call me mom, unprompted. AND SHE DID!!! Usually she just comes to me and pulls me wherever she needs me, but she was in her room and called for me "MOM" then laughed. I could have hugged the pooh out of her but cool mom that I am I just said " yes Chloe?" and we both laughed together.
Kat and Cam just adore Chloe so I tell her she is example, she must be good Jie Jie so they behave. This helps to give her self confidence that she is teaching younger ones to do well, she was used to this at the orphanage so she is comfortable in this role.
It's not a picnic in the park, but we fully feel blessed by this child and her incredible story, we are not sugar coating anything but being totally honest so that others can see some of the issues we deal with and if they are led to adopt an older child to be as prepared as possible.
It's different, it's tough, but it's VERY much worth it- we don't have ANY regrets. We love her and are honored to be her parents:)






Thursday, April 2, 2009

Every day news

My brother Roy, who is my favorite (shh don't tell him that his head will swell) has informed me he checks the blog every day for news. Okay and I am superwoman who clicks her fingers and dinner is served, kids are bathed and in bed, homework is completed and English taught.


Oops, guess my name is NOT Samantha and hubby is not Darwood. Ha Ha. I can't possibly blog every day Bro. Just not that good. Glad to see my bro, even for the reason of a funeral. Saddened that like all families, we do not get together as much, nor do we have a family without a troublemaker. And NO it's not ME!


Pictures are self photos of Chloe and Kat in her jammies we got in GuangZhou, at the shop that benefits orphans. She looks like a proper little China girl, huh? Too cute how she loves to pose and felt her hair had to be in a ponytail for her to look right. Child has yet to figure out she's got a funky squared head that a ponytail does not flatter. Such is why momma doesn't put her hair that way:)
Don't worry though, she's perfect to us. Funky head, extra toenail and all. Couldn't love her more.



Anyway, we did the viewing thing last night, I took Chloe and Cam since she wanted to go and she actually had met Aunt Stella a few days before she passed. Someone in the family I obviously do NOT visit enough, thought Chloe was Kat. Years not going by THAT fast.



My older boys came in to stay so hubby could go along, it was a big help to have them here to do that. Hubby enjoyed the fact hat no one seemed to recognize me, now really, I have not changed that much, but he thinks it's the HAIR- yeah, back to that- which I'm still trying to forget and not HATE the hair.


I'm trying to explain Easter to Chloe, I don't think she is getting it at all. She understood the "Jesus" from our translation book. She does not understand the whole cross thing and how the Easter Bunny comes into it all. Can ya blame her? How did we even GET an Easter Bunny for our biggest celebration of Christian faith? I'm not really sure. But we do hide baskets and give candy, not to dishonor the holiday but to add to it, an element of fun for the kids.


I have finally convinced Chloe to let her hair down twice, I did a small trim on it when everyone else was getting their free mom haircuts, I had her sit and evened out her choppy hair some. She has such thick and gorgeous hair, wow. I am jealous. She is sooo pretty. Kat has thin hair, longer but very thin and not quite as black as Chloe's. Both just adorable in their own manner:)


Chloe made a HUGE leap of learning this week. One thing that orphanage children do NOT have- a say in anything. So whenever faced with a choice, she turns to mom and says "whatever mom wants". Food wise she has learned she may pick, but beyond that she would make NO choice about anything. So we picked up some sneakers for her and she picked 2 pairs, I said "no, just one" and she immediately wanted me to pick which one. I said "No. For YOU, not momma's" and pointed to her feet. So she HAD to pick. She went back after 2 times and picked the first pair she liked, a pink pair, she had originally got the blue so I was sooo happy to she her really put some thought into this. Small steps, but huge gains for her.

I'm off to get ready for the funeral. Saying goodbye, so hard but remembering the good, the wonderful memories out Great Aunt Stella gave us and we have now forever. Thank you Aunt Stella for those precious childhood memories. You made them great.