Thursday, September 28, 2006

It was a night of screams, laughs, and fun for all

Tonite a great time was had by all, well at least by my sister Katy, brother Jimmy, and me. The three of us went to Universal Studios to "celebrate" "Sweet 16".

No, none of us are celebrating our 16th birthday (all three of us long passing that birthday many years ago), but yet the kicking off of Universal's Halloween Horror Nights (its 16th year, where does that time go ?).

Many thanks to Jimmy for getting us in (it was employee night) and getting us three together again, and to Katy for taking time from her family to drive over from the coast to enjoy the screams and laughter with us.

Since the park was only open to employees and their families from 7:30 til 11:00 (although the gates opened late, so the park closed later than 11:00), the rides were closed thus "forcing" all to "enjoy" the houses.

Universal brought back the "classic" houses such as Norman Bates in the PsychoPath house [which to get there you walked and walked and walked (oh did I mention the walking) til you ran out of walking space, then you turned around and walked some more], the sweet grandmotherly killer storyteller in the Dungeon of Terror, the Caretaker in Screamhouse Resurrection, the People Under the Stairs, and Jack in Psychoscareapy Maximum Madness.

We got to experience 4 of the 7 houses, and loved them all. People watching made some of them much funnier rather than scary. My favorite "experience" was when Jimmy tried to hide to scare Katy, and while I was busy watching this happen missed the psycho actor hiding from me and jumping out of nowhere right in my path making me jump in "fear". Luckily my bladder wasn't completely full.

The evening then wound down with a relaxing "episode" of Bill & Ted's Halloween Adventures. This is always a must see. It included loads of funny spoofs, great music, and interesting dancing.

Thanks again Katy and Jimmy for a wonderful evening. I hope this trend of the three of us hanging out continues for many years to come. I love you guys !!

Monday, September 25, 2006

The frogs are invading, the frogs are invading

There's been a frog invasion in Orlando today, and they just may be taking over. They are frogs from Washington D.C., and they appear to be taking over our house and my office space (neither of which is a bad thing, at least from my viewpoint).

My dearest friend, Michael (better known to us as MLT) just came back from his mini-vacation and brought back with him the cutest "gifts" for Chynna (and me of course). He tells me that every time he walked by a frog in D.C. it would "ribbit" at him and then just "jump" into his shopping cart (I'm beginning to think I may be a bad influence on him after all).

Then his other excuse is his "little" kitty (better known as Murphy, his 10 lb killer housecat who hates all people but Mike) "told" him to buy the frogs.

I keep warning Mike that if he insists on telling others of these "illusions" , those little men in white coats may be waiting to take him to a padded room.

Despite all my warnings, Michael has outdone himself yet again. He really leaves me breathless with these thoughtful gifts.

First he presented us with Chynna's first backpack. This adorable frog complete with webbed feet, and oh how soft. I just hope Chynna won't get too embarrassed by her frog crazy mom.

Then he "had" to accompany the backpack with the "matching" frog coin purse.

And what girl's frog collection is complete without the '07 Frog calendar or wooden frog with dangling legs knick-knack, for placement on the edge of the bookshelves.

And then to finish off the froggie theme, Mike completed the ensemble with a fabulous frog candy dish (or chip dish, I am unsure which is the better description).

I love them all and am so honored to be soooo spoiled by him (I just love opening gifts, shhhhh don't tell, it's just our little secret).

Sunday, September 24, 2006

The vaccinations have started, the vaccinations have started

Okay, so after lots of gentle reminders from my mom (especially since she is getting her last Hep B vaccination tomorrow), Ray and I started our series of shots today. Of course after we explained to the doctors how we "had to record our shots" b/c we wanted to prove to our daughter the pains we went through to be able to bring her home, they relunctantly allowed us to take photographic evidence of this blessed event.

Ray of course had loads of fun watching me wince in agony (okay it didn't really hurt but the anticipation made it worse than it really was).

When it was Ray's turn, I totally forgot that I had previously gotten three shots b/c I got to watch him get injected three times (it's always better when it is someone else getting it, at least in my world it is). However, Ray had to be a "man" about it ("it doesn't hurt", "see I can take it"), although I know in my heart that he was "wimpering" inside.

Now we just have to go back again in a month, and then for our final ones in six months (and hopefully going to China shortly thereafter).

All I have to say is.....becoming Chynna's mom is soooooo worth the vaccination shots.

Saturday, September 23, 2006

With thanks to my secret pal

Today after coming home from shopping at Sam's, the Fed Ex man arrived with a special package from my secret pal. The theme was children's books and my secret pal sent the best books. We can't wait to read them to Chynna and will pack them to take with us to get our baby girl.

Thank you secret pal, we love them. We look forward to next month.

Dear Sweet Daughter

With thanks to Gayle Leubecker for writing this adorable poem (and the Horner family for sharing it with us on their blog), which touched me so much I had to post it here to share with you all.

Dear Sweet Daughter
As a girl I had a common dream, to be a mom someday.
My baby would have eyes of blue and hair the hue of hay.
But now my dreams have been transformed. New visions fill my head.
Now the tresses I long to stroke are raven black instead.
And in my dreams those eyes are not so big or blue or round.
Now in my dreams they're almond shaped and colored cocoa brown.
And in my dreams my arms can stretch across enormous seas.
They reach half-way around the world and hold you close to me.
As you grow in your mother's womb, carefully knit together,
you're also growing in my heart, where you will stay forever.
And in my dreams the moment your mother says goodbye,
I'll be right there to comfort you and hold you as you cry.
Our features may not look alike; we're different as can be.
But still I know the Father has created you for me.
And though I've not yet seen your face nor held your tiny hands,
And though we're half a world apart in very different lands.
I'll be right there to get you as soon as God allows.
But til He says the time is right I give you this vow.
I'll pray for your protection every night on bended knee.
For God will hold you in His arms, until you're here with me.

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Moms are great !!! (and I can't wait to become one)

I received this really cute poem and thought I should post this, so when Chynna reaches her teen years, I will have something to help me through the hard times (thanks Sue for sharing this one with us).


My daughter came home from school one day, With a smirk upon her face. she decided she was smart enough, To put me in my place. "Guess what I learned in Civics Two, that's taught by Mr. Wright? It's all about the laws today, The 'Children's Bill of Rights.' It says I need not clean my room, Don't have to cut my hair, No one can tell me what to think, Or speak, or what to wear. I have freedom from religion, And regardless what you say, I don't have to bow my head, And I sure don't have to pray. I can wear earrings if I want, And pierce my tongue & nose. I can read & watch just what I like, Get tattoos from head to toe. And if you ever spank me, I'll charge you with a crime. I'll back up all my charges, With the marks on my behind. Don't you ever touch me, My body's only for my use, Not for your hugs and kisses, that's just more child abuse. Don't preach about your morals, Like your Mama did to you. That's nothing more than mind control, And it's illegal too! Mom, I have these children's rights, So you can't influence me, Or I'll call Children's Services Division, Better known as C.S.D."

Of course my first instinct was To toss her out the door. But the chance to teach her a lesson Made me think a little more. I mulled it over carefully, I couldn't let this go. A smile crept upon my face, she's messing with a pro.

Next day I took her shopping At the local Goodwill Store. I told her, "Pick out all you want, there's shirts & pants galore. I've called and checked with C.S.D. Who said they didn't care If I bought you K-Mart shoes Instead of those Nike Airs. I've cancelled that appointment To take your driver's test. The C.S.D. Is unconcerned So I'll decide what's best." I said "No time to stop and eat, Or pick up stuff to munch. And tomorrow you can start to learn To make your own sack lunch. Just save the raging appetite, And wait till dinner time. We're having liver and onions, A favorite dish of mine." She asked "Can I please rent a movie, To watch on my VCR?" "Sorry, but I sold your TV, For new tires on my car. I also rented out your room, You'll take the couch instead. The C.S.D. Requires Just a roof over your head. Your clothing won't be trendy now, I'll choose what we eat. That allowance that you used to get, Will buy me something neat. I'm selling off your jet ski, bike & roller blades. Check out the 'Parents Bill of Rights', It's in effect today! Hey sweetheart, are you crying, Why are you on your knees? Are you asking God to help you out, Instead of C.S.D..?"

Sunday, September 17, 2006

Shopping, shopping and shopping

Although Chynna's arrival is far on the horizon, I can't help myself for shopping for her.

We don't know how old she will be, and we don't know how big, nor what she will look like, nor what her personality will be... these are all things we can't control (along with how long the referral time period will be).

However, shopping is a different story. This makes me feel more in control, like there is something I can be doing during the wait (instead of immersing myself into work, or going into depression or worrying), so when the weekends approach, the shopping starts (and when the weekend comes to a close, so does the shopping excursion, until the next weekend where the madness starts over again).

With many thanks to my numerous Yahoo Groups, I have finally located a set of stacking cups at Babies R Us (thanks again everyone for helping us).

Then while at Kohl's my mom and I found the cutest slippers (the ladybugs in the picture), and just had to have them (mom and I will be "twins" while in China). I am still trying to convince mom to wear them on the way to China (we will definitely be a topic of conversation, such as "check out those nutty women with those ladybug slippers", and "wonder if those loon's are adopting") but am a far way from convincing her (even with my "but mom it would be easier to take your shoes off if required in the airports, hehe).

The adorable crab is from Chynna's "adopted" aunt (thanks again Aunt Sue). It is a washing cloth that makes these adorable "bubbling sounds". Hopefully Ray and I won't wear it out playing with it so much before we actually get Chynna.

We'll try to control ourselves, but no promises.

I am sure this shopping saga will continue again next weekend...

Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Chynna's doll collection is expanding

Although we understand that the time frame for referral is rapidly increasing (to our dismay), we...okay I keep adding to Chynna's doll collection.

I ran across this adorable doll (Baby Ling by Language Littles) that speaks both Mandarin and English. She says the following phrases in both languages:

- hello
- how are you?
- what is your name?
- My name is Ling.
- Can we be friends?
- I like to run.
- Jump
- Dance
- Sing
- Play games
- Let's count to ten (and then actually does so)
- Good bye
- I love you

Ling's "voice" is actually a Chinese native speaking young girl, how cool is that?

She is totally amazing, and we can't wait for Chynna to be able to hear her and play with her.

Then we (okay already it was me again) found Dora World Adventure which speaks six different languages (absolutely amazing).

I have been practicing pushing the baby stroller with both Ling and Dora riding along, and haven't had too many accidents with it (guess I will get better with time).

Freckles however, knows when "mommy" is coming, and quickly moves out of my way (I wonder if that will be the case when Chynna is "riding along", can't wait to find out, only time will tell).

Now if that turtle carrying our Chynna referral will just speed up a little. Ray tells me he keeps asking the turtles he comes across if they have any information, but he hasn't had any luck in getting any hints from any of the turtles he has "rescued". We will keep you all posted as more information becomes available.

Sunday, September 10, 2006

A wonderful poem dedicated to Chynna's birthmother (and other wonderful mothers who give so selflessly)

While reading posts to my Yahoo Groups, I came across this beautiful poem and had to share it.

Somewhere on the Other Side

Somewhere on the other side;
A mother will soon have to hide;
The baby she nurtures day after day.
She wants to keep her but can't find a way.

Oh, the pain she must feel deep in her heart.
Knowing the day will come they will have to part;
Will it be near a market, a field, a train?
Whereever it is it will bring her great pain.

Somewhere on the other side;
A mother will soon have to hide.
And watch her baby cry with fear,
And long to hold her baby near.

A death to her as she lets go,
Who will find her baby, she doesn't know.

Somewhere on the other side;
A mother will soon have to hide.
Her baby was found and taken away.
And nothing will be the same after today.

Her arms are now empty her face full of tears.
The echoing cries are all that she hears.

Somewhere on the other side;
A mother will soon have to hide.
A part of herself that she selflessly gave;
This mother was so much more than brave.

She wanted her baby to have a life worth living.
She wasn't abandoning… she was giving.

Monday, September 4, 2006

An exciting family get together with thanks to my sister

Today was a really great a result of my sister's quick thinking (and terrific lasagna and other goodies). We had a family get together with my parents, cousins Eileen, Jay and Ari, and last but not least my sister Katy, her husband David, and my nephew Adam.

We got to be silly (putting on unique glasses), share loads of laughs, enjoy Adam's amazing magic tricks (cool to see a 6 yr old showing off his magic talents), enjoy the beautiful Fla. sunshine while "lounging" in the pool (and watching Adam and Ari amaze us with their swimming capabilities-- we still are quite proud of Adam and his ability to swim with such ease, and we are thrilled to watch Ari "try to keep up with the Joneses" by attempting to imitate Adam and "swim" with confidence), and eat to our hearts content (they even had a "sundae" station with anything you can imagine to put on it). We still can't believe how quickly Adam and Ari are growing up (where does the time go?).

We then proceeded to my parent's home to celebrate my brother's birthday (although a day late, no birthday celebration is complete without cake), allowing the day to continue a while longer.

All in all, today was a really great day, and one we will cherish always.

Thanks Katy, David, Mom and Dad for making it all possible. We really did have a great time.

Saturday, September 2, 2006

Happy Birthday Jimmy

Today is a special day. It's my brother's birthday.

Happy birthday to you, happy birthday to you, happy birth----day dear Jimmmmmmy, happy birthday to you. (And mannnnnnny more).

And unfortunately he is working on his birthday. What kinda fun is that??? He should be eating birthday cake:

And blowing out candles:

And opening presents:

But since he isn't doing any of these things with us until tomorrow evening.......we wish him the best birthday ever !!!!!!! We love you Jim !!!