Monday, May 29, 2006

Family Pic

We have to do a 2 month update for our agency. They want a family picture. We grabbed all the kids and had my friend Cassie take a quick one cause we were all actually home at the same time for a few minutes. LOL!

Busy Weekend

We had a busy weekend this Memorial Day weekend. On Sunday we had a memorial service for my grandfather. He died two years ago, but he donated his body to science and this spring they sent his ashes back to the family. So we got together for a little service or rememberance before the ashes were buried. Then on Sunday Katie graduated. Whoo hoo! I was not looking forward to this event. It was 91 degrees out and humid. There were over 250 kids in her class and the gym was not air conditioned. BUT sitting in the gym fanning myself the band started to play Pomp and Circumstance and the Seniors started walking in I got all teary eyed. My little girl was graduating!! She graduated with an Advanced Scholar Indiana Academic Honors Diploma. She did her mama proud! This fall she will start college at Indiana University to become a Pharmacist.

Today we had some friends over that we have met during our adoption process. They live about an hour and a half away. We met them online and discovered we were using the same agency. They have been to China twice to add to their family and have two adorable daughters Kendall and Isabelle. Today they came to meet Olivia for the first time. Olivia did better than I though she might. I don't think she was real excited about sharing her toys, but we had no major meltdowns and it was a good learning experience for her. She also did not seem to notice that the two new friends were Chinese. When my friend Julia brought her daughters over Olivia seemed to tense up immediately when she saw them and I wondered if it was because they were Chinese. This was also within about two weeks of us being home so memories of her orphanage may have been still fresh in her mind.

Monday, May 22, 2006

Livi's Birthday

We celebrated Livi's birthday yesterday. It didn't take long for her to get into the ripping off the wrapping paper. She even spent the right amount of time checking each toy out before moving on to the next gift. She still was not feeling quite herself because of her shots and would not have much to do with anyone but mom. She also would not eat any of her cake. So we did not get any good messy cake pictures. She was scared of the candles so big sis Katie had to blow them out for her. LOL. We kept her party low key and only had grandparents and two aunts over (the uncles were working). Five cousins came too.

She also got a picture taken with two of her cousins. One is 7 months old and the other is 2 months old. They both weigh 15 pounds. Only 3 pounds less than she does. If you can't tell she hates having her picture taken and is less than thrilled on this day.

Saturday, May 20, 2006

Two Years Old Today

Little Miss Olivia is Two today. We don't know if she even celebrated her first birthday or not but tomorrow we are having a little celebration for her second birthday. Yesterday she got three of the five shots she needed to get caught up and today was not a good day for her. She was sore and running a 103 degree fever. She was quite cranky and wanted to take naps off and on all day.

We did get some good shots of her enjoying her bath this week though.....

This week Olivia also got a really neat mini quilt for her birthday from Kay "Nana" Wilson. She is the really neat lady that did the quilting for Olivia's 100 Wishes quilt. It was really neat to get that package in the mail.

I will post her birthday pictures soon.

Tuesday, May 09, 2006

Bring Me Hope

I know this video has made it around but if you have not seen it yet, grab a kleenex, pull up a chair and watch it. It is sure to touch your heart.

Go to the right side of the page and watch the 7 minute version of the Bring me Hope DVD. It is the best.

Monday, May 01, 2006

A Packet of Gold

When we received our referral of Olivia we of course looked up her orphanage (Guilin SWI) right away and found out that Half The Sky Foundation was in her orphanage. I contacted them during our wait to travel and asked them if she was in their Baby Sister Program (click on underline links for more info or to see pics). They got back with me right away (within 24 hours) and said that she was indeed in their Baby Sister Program and that after we were home with her and had officially adopted her, we could request all the information they had on her. When we were in China and on "Adoption Day" we were handed a packet of paperwork that had Half the Sky written across it. I couldn't wait to get back to our room to look at it. Unfortunately it was all written in Chinese. Fortunately there were many pictures of Olivia from babyhood up to her current age and enough dates on the papers that I could figure out that these looked like developement write ups on her for every three months from when she entered into the orphanage to when we were able to get her. They also included some hand and foot prints of hers and some pictures drawn by someone. I was very excited to say the least. Very few people are this lucky to have this many pictures of their children let alone information of the months of them growing up.

When we got home I wondered how I was going to get the information translated without spending a lot of money. There was probably 20 pages of information. My daughter, Katie, who is a senior in high school says, "Hey, there is a kid in my class who is from China, I can ask him if he could do it." So the next day she asks him and shows him a page. He says "Sure, I can read that and I would love to do it, for nothing." So for the next week to 10 days my daughter keeps bringing home a few pages at a time as he translates them for us.

These pages are GOLD to me. These are written by Olivia's nanny, and she refers to herself as Olivia's "grandmother". She talks about her the first time Olivia sits up, rolls over, crawls, talks, walks, gets into a rocking chair by herself, how many teeth she has, how she interacts with other children, how she is jealous when the "grandmother" has to care for a new baby that comes to the orphanage etc. She even talks about the day our care package arrives and she shows Olivia our photo album and she points out our pictures to her and how Olivia cries when one of the other kids takes her photo album away from her.

I am planning on writing a letter to the orphanage director and one to the "grandmother" before school is over so Katie's friend can translate them for me. I will send them with some gifts and pictures this summer. I want to show them and let them know how well she is doing and thank them for the care they took care of her. I am hoping I can get the grandmother to correspond with me either by letter or email.

I have added some pictures of what a couple of the pages looked like that were in the packet.

PS: I did give Katie's friend a thank you card and I put some cash in it for him cause we all know how teens like cash and I am not sure when he offered to translate all those pages for me that he knew what he was getting himself into. HAHA!