Wednesday, May 21, 2008


At a China earthquake benefit concert last week, I bid in a silent auction for a wall hanging with the Chinese character for 'Patience.' I thought it would be an appropriate addition to our home but we were outbid. I've been browsing the internet for other options and came across this explanation of the two character word.

"Patience" is made up of two characters. The top character is a combination of blade and heart, literally the pain of being stabbed in the heart, meaning the bearing of pain or endurance. The bottom character literally translates as now and law, implying an imminent situation that cannot be escaped. Taken as one, this character means patience in the sense of bearing the burdens of life or accepting our destiny.
Some days the top character is more relevant than others. For example, the day last week when I ran into another school mom at the gym who asked, 'Have you heard anything about your little girl? I remember hearing about her when our kids were in Kindy (she's from Australia) and now they're going to 2nd grade!'
Yep, thanks for the reminder, lady.
My standard reply has become, "No, we're still waiting. ...and I promise we're not making this up!"

Thursday, May 08, 2008

Catching Up

Whew! It's been wild here lately. I'm going to have to bullet it out and then use this post as a guide to go back and play catch up later. Here it goes...

*Noah had his 7th birthday. For my sanity our kiddos have friend parties on even years and family parties/activities of choice on the odd years. Since it was an odd year, Noah chose to go to the arcade with his dad on his birthday which fell on a Friday and have a friend sleep over. He had a great time. He had a baseball game the next day. Afterwards, we went to Build.a.Bear where 'Chomp' was born...

*I went to Minnesota for an agency partner conference last week. I learned so much but have to admit that talking about the tough stuff in adoption for four days straight makes a person want to grab your dossier and head for the hills! I'm grateful to know that we have a daughter waiting for us in China. There isn't a horror story out there that can change that. Ultimately, we have to prepare for the worst and hope (and pray) for the best. It's really all we can do.

I cornered the agency's China team early in the conference but learned that their next LID was January 16th so there was little hope of receiving referrals while I was there. I really hoped to be a fly on the wall and observe the whole process from the other side if they did.

I only came away with a few tidbits of China info and it's not much. The first is that if this slowdown was occurring in the 90's, there would be a 'This too shall pass' attitude among agencies. However, the climate is such today for international adoptions in general that it is more likely that new norms are being established. As a person who has been hoping for a speed up for 2 and a half years, I have to agree.

Another thing that I found interesting but not surprising has to do with the CCAA's recent approval of concurrent adoptions. When I heard that CCAA had issued a statement that approved of families pursuing another adoption during their wait, I thought it was a kind gesture by the CCAA and an acknowledgement on their part that the slowdown was unfairly placing applicants' family planning on hold. Many adoption professionals feel otherwise-that it is actually another attempt to weed out the long line of waiting families. The perceived belief is that if waiting families pursue another adoption, they may decide that one child is enough and drop out, decide that the concurrent adoption was easier and drop out of the China line and process another adoption from CountryB, complete their interim adoption and become inelligible for their China adoption due to timing, or decide that they want another child from Country B so that their children have a common background.

I think that's about it. Nothing really new.

*Audrey turned 10 while I was in Minnesota. Matt did a good job of managing the birthday festivities while I was away. He took the day off, delivered a treat to her class, baked the cake, took pictures, etc. She is having a skating party in a few weeks. I still can't believe that my little girl is 10!

*On the weight loss front, I'm down 9 pounds and holding. I managed to build up my running to a whopping 10 minutes before my right knee started to give out and I switched my focus over to aerobics and more sessions on the torture device. The scale hasn't moved for a while but things that used to jiggle aren't jiggling (as much) anymore. That's got to count for something, right? I need to lose another 7 pounds by June 10th to make my next interim weight loss goal. It's going to be tough but I'm sticking to the program.

*Why is it that with all of the presidential election stuff going on, I'm more concerned with trying to determine which of the David's should win American Idol? Cook-Archuleta-Cook-Archleta-still can't decide. As much as I love me some American Idol, I can't wait for it to end and So You Think You Can Dance to start. Two weeks from today!!! I heard another rumor about Audrey's dance teacher scoring a dancing part on HSM 3. Very cool.

*I've had a blog makeover in the works for about 2 months. I couldn't decide on the title, layout, pics, quote, etc. but I think I have it all worked out so don't be surprised if you come by in the next week or two and things are looking quite a bit different. The Sarah McLachlan song was a test. Since it works, I can go ahead with my plan!

*You will never believe what Matt did for me for Mother's Day. I'll try to post a pic this weekend!