Wednesday, January 31, 2007

The Newest Dumbest Question

Yesterday I took my van in to have something repaired (which after 1 1/2 hours they didn't fix the problems). I had all three kids with me. Logan is not shy. He loves to talk. His jaws are always flapping. Anyway, the lady that is cleaning the waiting room comes up to us and starts talking. Strangers always seem to find their way over to make comments about twins or two babies in a stroller that don't look alike. Logan does his usual "these are my babies", "my mommy got them both at the same time", "and my baby sister is in China." This lady chats back with him and I stayed quiet waiting to see how Logan handled it. She completely understood him talking about his baby sister and how we're going to go get her soon.

She looks over at me and says "Are you going to DRIVE to China?" I didn't bust out laughing in front of her but I was definitely laughing inside.

We spent most of yesterday researching airlines and flights in and out of the US and China and still nothing reserved. Maybe I need to look into car rentals................ :)

Tuesday, January 30, 2007


I just realized I was posting under Tony's name.

How do I spend my Free Time?

Free time? What's Free time? You mean the time when Logan is at school and Nate and Andrew are sleeping? This is not free time. This is time to work on packing lists, packing what I have already, learning more about packing, paperwork, more paperwork, more and more paperwork, etc. etc.....

I have not moved from this chair since the twins went down for nap. I have no idea what to do when it comes to booking international flights with a baby that can't go through other countries and we're arriving in one city and departing out another. I've been on the phone with travel agents, searched online airlines, emailed others in our party finding out their plans, etc.

I did take a sec to send money to Brian Stuy. He has Madelyn's finding ad, the newspaper page it was on and I'm also ordering his DVD of the Xiushan SWI. I'm hoping Madelyn's cute little face might be in some of the video.

Not only are we making these arrangements but I have to fit in a First Birthday Party for Nate and Andrew. We're going to be in China on their first birthday. Yes, I'm feeling very guilty missing my two boy's first birthday. It breaks my heart. My friend they are staying with said she would have cake for them on their birthday. I'm going to try to have something for them when we get back. And they'll definitely be getting LOTS of presents from us from China for their birthday (gotta make up for missing this special day).

And while we're gone, I will have a new nephew arriving. My sister will probably give birth during this time.

So much to do, so little time...

We have DATES!

SUNDAY - We'll be leaving 2/23 to start flying over to China
Feb. 25th
arrive in Chongqing

Feb 26th
Receive your child at Civil Affairs Office
Begin adoption paperwork

March 2nd
Receive adoption paperwork and Chinese passport

March 2nd or Marth 3rd
fly to Guangzhou, Guangdong

March 5th
medical exam and visa photo

March 6th
Consulate appointment

March 7th
receive U. S. visa
4pm - Swearing-in-Ceremony
After 7pm – ready to depart from Guangzhou, Guangdong

Thursday, January 25, 2007

In just a few weeks...

We are going to see this face in person, not just in a photo. Earlier Logan picked up this photo and brought it to me and said "She misses us. I miss her. She needs her forever family."

It's finally becoming more real. We've got so much to do before our trip. Logan's passport is still not here. I called and they said two more weeks but to expidite it would cost $60 and that would only get it here one week sooner. Our agency is saying we will not travel until after CNY anyway so I think we've still got time. I've sent them an email just to make sure.

One evening next week we're making a trip to buy everything on our packing list that we don't already have. I'll be packed up by next weekend even if plans aren't all finalized. We'll be ready.

Madelyn - We're coming to get you! You've got a family and a home waiting for you, baby girl.
Posted by Picasa

TA's are HERE


Our agency stills says we're not traveling until after CNY but they'll try to get the earliest CA possible.

TA's arriving

RQ is saying some TA's are arriving for referrals on 1/3/07. OMG! Soon we'll have our TA. One person even commented that she is leaving out next Thursday. I could find a way to be ready next week if I had to but I'm kinda shocked she's already getting to leave. Then again, it is end of January. Where did this month go?

Another Panic Attack

The adoption process has got to be high on the list of most stressful things to do in one's life.

The phone rang about an hour ago and up pops the name of our adoption agency on the tv. That was new to me. We just switched over from cable to satellite and I wasn't expecting caller id on the tv screen. I leaped over toys, kids, kitchen counter and whatever else was in the way to get to the phone. I've only had a handful of calls from our agency, last one being the referral. Most of our communication is through emails. Our agency was wanting to know our current fingerprint expiration. I knew it but couldn't remember it so I go to our notebook full of all the adoption papers and find the I-171H that was sent after our fingerprints were done but not the current I-171H. We have four copies of an I-171H....first which is the original, one after the addendum to our homestudy, one after fingerprints were updated and the newest where we filed to extend our I-1171H since the original expired in Feb this year. I found all of the first three copies.

I knew the current one was in a folder but what I had forgotten was that it was in a Blue folder and not the manila folders. Tony had taken some papers to photocopy and they were placed in this blue folder. Somehow it got put up with other things in my desk instead of with the adoption papers. I probably did it. Over the weekend there were others sitting at my desk using my computer and I probably moved it out of the way. I know my heart was racing, I was shaking and yelling at Logan and about to cry b/c I was afraid I had lost these papers. Everything is okay now.

How can one piece of paper cause such panic? This is the paper that says we are able to furnish proper care to our daughter and that we are not criminals. Without this paper, we can not bring our daughter home. I think some people have been known to frame this piece of paper on a wall. Our first copy was in our fire safe until everything starting expiring on us.

I think I'll go try to relax now and try to lower my blood pressure.

Tuesday, January 23, 2007


I really do have three cribs in my house!

Today these two wanted to nap together. I'll do whatever it takes to get them to nap at the same time.

Just in case Madelyn doesn't like her crib, there is still space beside Nate and at Andrew's feet if she's wanting to cuddle up at naptime with her brothers.
Posted by Picasa

Sunday, January 21, 2007're IT!

Lee-Anne tagged me.....

A - Available or Taken: Taken
B - Best Friend: I have a few
C - Cake or Pie: Cake
D - Drink of Choice: Sweet Tea
E - Essential Item You Use Everyday: soap
F - Favorite Color: green
G - Gummy Bears or Worms: neither
H - Hometown: Forest City, NC
I - Indulgence: hot fudge cake
J- January or February: Is there much of a difference in these two months? How about September? Love the Fall weather much better than Winter
K - Kids and Names: William Logan, Nathaniel Cade, Andrew Cole, Madelyn Youmei (+ 3 angels)
L - Life Incomplete Without: chocolate......and my kids of course
M - Marriage Date: 9/27/97
N - Number of Siblings: 7 but I'm an only child
O - Oranges or Apples: apples
P - Phobias or Fears: thunder and lightening
Q - Favorite Quote: Am I suppose to have one of these? Seems like I'm asked this all the time but I don't remember what other people say in books, poems or speeches.
R - Reason to Smile: when all three boys play together and laugh together
S - Season: Now, Winter; Favorite, Fall
T - Tag 3 People: You, Him, Her
U - Unknown Fact About Me: Am I suppose to know this?
V - Veggie You Don't Like: Brussell Sprouts (copied this one from Lee-Anne)
W - Worst Habit: Ask Tony
X - X-rays: Teeth, Head, Gallbladder (gone now), Feet, If counting ultrasounds, gazillions of those of the reproductive organs,
Y - Your Favorite Food: Steak
Z - Zodiac: Cancer

Friday, January 19, 2007

Another Ladybug

Madelyn has her first Carebear now.

I couldn't help myself. Even Logan said she had to have it when he saw it. It's a small Carebear dressed in a ladybug costume. It's small enough that I might just pack it in our luggage to China.

I still have one of my old childhood Carebear's that I've saved to give to my daughter. It's a bit rough looking but it can be washed up.
Posted by Picasa

Monday, January 15, 2007

Having a Little Fun

There is truly no resting around this house. There used to be days that I would grab a pillow, lay down in the floor, try to watch TV but instead fall asleep. Those days are gone. Now if I get on the floor, I get clobbered, elbowed in the side, my hair is yanked, and I get drooled all over (if not spit-up).

Will Madelyn be as rambuctious as these three boys?
Posted by Picasa

Sunday, January 14, 2007

Logan's Favorite Color

Everyone knows Logan's favorite color is GREEN. He tells everyone this. Actually it's mine and Tony's favorite color too but we've never persuaded Logan towards this color. I've asked him for months now that if I paint his room, what color did he want it in and he always said Green. All of his bedding is Thomas and Blue. I let him chose his own color and he said he wanted Percy Green. For those that aren't Thomas the Tank Engine fans, Percy is one of Thomas' friends. I've spent the past two days painting. Yes, TWO! That's how long it takes when there are two crawling 10 month olds in the house and three kids with Pink Eye and I'm not all that well either. I still don't have the room together. We had to move the train table from the playroom to Logan's room b/c the little crawlers like to pull themselves up and destroy the track. This room will be cute once I get it back together. While the smell of the paint is still hovering around in his room, Logan has made himself comfy in Madelyn's room. Her room is still the cutest in the house. One of these days I might actually get around to the twin's room.
Posted by Picasa

Saturday, January 13, 2007

Care Package

We went back in forth on whether or not to send our own care package and eventually decided not to. It was advised (will not mention where this came from) to not send individually but we could go through Tonight I ordered for Madelyn a teddy bear, candies for the nannies and two cameras. I also ordered a Chinese New Year card since she will still be there during this Holiday. We will be taking some items for the orphanage when we leave for our trip but I will not be sending any from home to there before then. I really hope she received the teddy bear and we can get this back from them but most of all I hope we get the cameras back with pictures of her and her orphanage friends.

Thursday, January 11, 2007

New I-171H

I received this email this morning after emailing our local USCIS office regarding our new I-171H. One more step forward to bringing Madelyn home...

"Your application was approved yesterday, the approval was e-mailed to Guangzhou, and an Approval Notice (Form I-171H), is going out to you in today's regular mail. All action has been completed by USCIS."

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

Acceptance Letter

We have signed and dated Xiu Fu Yang's Acceptance Letter and it is on the way to our agency via FedEx. We have officially accepted her into our family.

Our pediatrician reviewed her medical reports and did not see any reason why we should deny this child. She looks completely healthy according to these reports. We already knew she was perfect but now it's official.

Monday, January 08, 2007

More on Madelyn's Middle name

Of course, most of the time here in the US, she will probably use the version Melissa posted earlier, “Youmei”. However, I expect that at some point she will probably be interested in exploring more about her Chinese heritage, and we wanted to give her a name that would be pleasing to the ear of a person who speaks Chinese.

In Chinese, it would be written as follows.

優美– Traditional Chinese Characters

优美 – Simplified Chinese Characters

yōu měi – Pinyin Chinese

The meaning of those characters combined would be “Graceful”, “Fine” or “Elegant”

One of the reasons Chinese is a bit confusing to native English speakers is that putting two separate characters together can give them a very different meaning than the two characters separately.

So while the two characters together mean Graceful, the meanings are quite different for each character separately.

/ / yōu - Means “Excellent” or “Superior”

/ měi - Means “America” or “Beautiful”

Although it was entirely unintentional, it sure seems like an auspicious sign that one of the characters in Madelyn's middle name can also be translated as "America".

Madelyn's Middle Name

I posted in the previous post meanings of Madelyn's given orphanage name. None of that really seems appropriate for this sweet little face. She probably does know that name among her nannies but is this really a good name for her the rest of her life? We don't know if her birthmother gave her a name and will never know this. Logan at one time wanted to call her Froggy. Madelyn was a name I pondered through when chosing Reagan's name. I really loved the name Madelyn but I don't remember why we chose Reagan over that. In July 2005 on one of my many trips to Wal-Mart, it did come back to me when I saw this Cabbage Patch doll at Wal-Mart.

Anne is my middle name. Ann without the E is both grandmother's middle names. Ann/Anne means Grace. I wanted my first daughter to have my middle name so we gave it to Reagan. So, back when I saw the Cabbage Patch doll, I came up with Adrianne as a middle name for Madelyn.

Now that we've seen her and know more about her culture, we want her to carry out her Chinese heritage in her name. Tony and I have been doing some research on names and what would be appropriate. Some parents keep part of their daughters given name or all. Some don't use any of it. Some give them more of an American name plus a Chinese name for middle names. Some even give them an entirely new Chinese name. Our daughter will remain Madelyn. There's no changing that. We've called her this now since before her birrthmother knew she was pregnant. What we have decided is to carry out my middle name but not as Anne but as the meaning to it....Grace. With a little help from the internet and a co-worker of Tony's who is from China, we have decided to name her....

Madelyn Youmei Hooker

Youmei means Graceful;fine;elegant.

We can change our minds before the trip. Once we get in China, that's when we need a definite decision on her name.

Sunday, January 07, 2007

Medical Report

Last night, or should I say early am, at 12:04 am I got online to check emails and discovered I had been sent Madelyn's medical translation just two mintues before. I had been out with friends to Wal-Mart and Starbucks so I was wide awake. I'm glad I was up b/c I wouldn't have know until this afternoon after church. I plan on taking this report to our pediatrician tomorrow but to me it looks like she is a very healthy girl. It seems like she's petite but everything looks good on the report. I'm not a doctor so I would like a professional opinion on the translations.

We received some personal information on her that I think should be kept private.

I do have her Chinese name translated:
Xiu - family surname (we already knew this); means beautiful, elegant, excellent;
Fu - means good fortune, blessing; happiness
Yang - means of water; vast
I still don't know if we'll keep part of this name or not.

We also learned from the report that she's clever, has a big, bright smile, laughs outloud, and her character is defined as an introverted, quiet little cherub who likes to smile. This alone tells us she fits into our family (except for quiet part - LOL!).

She's so precious and must be a true angel in her SWI to be characterized as a cherub. I really hope we can get some update information before traveling.

I've started a care package. So far I have three little t-shirts, three socks, disposable cameras, sample Mary Kay lotions and cleansers for nannies, and a few other items. We're going to fill up a men's size 13 shoe box full of goodies to send to Xiushan SWI.

Thursday, January 04, 2007

What's Next?

Wish we knew. I sent out some questions to our travel group. I think everyone must still be in shock. We think what's next is just waiting on translations and then we'll have our pediatrician review Madelyn's records. We're making packing lists, researching her orphanage, looking at hotels in Chongqing, reading about Xiushan and finding as much information as possible, joining all sorts of mailing lists, plus some. I'm also picking brains of past travelers and adopters. I welcome any information for pre-travel time and during travel that will help us.

Gonna Snap

If I hear ONE more time "You've got your hands full", I'm going to SNAP.

Well, guess what? I've got my hands full - full of so many wonderful blessings and I LOVE it.

3rd Photo

This is the 3rd photo we were told about. My scanner doesn't work so I did the best I could taking a photo of a photo. I love this picture. She looks happy here.
Posted by Picasa

So, What REALLY happened yesterday besides us going Spastic waiting on the phone call....

So, what really happened yesterday besides just getting a phone call?

Tony's post earlier said we were going spastic. That was probably an understatement. Fortunately we had someone sane here to help us out while waiting on this long awaited phone call. Kricket came to our rescue that morning and brought two of her girls with her. Her daughter's entertained the twins all day. Nate had whined all morning and when these girls got here, he did nothing but smile and play. I called her our Labor Coach but Tony later changed her job title to Nurse Midwife.

Before Kricket arrived, I was in full blown nesting mode. I had to have the kitchen clean, laundry folded, floors swept and mopped, etc. I didn't finish everything I wanted to do but at least the kitchen floor WAS clean. That changed after one meal the boys.

We watched for emails and other China adoption related posts on every board out there. The first time our house phone rang we both darted for the phones to discover it was one of my friends calling instead of our agency. This happened about 3 or 4 more times. One of those calls I slide darting for the phone on the plastic floor protection cover under my desk chair. I came close to busting my butt and injuring other body parts.

When the call did come through at 2:39, I was standing in the kitchen and Tony was close to the phone. He threw a piece of paper at me and he grabbed another. Luckily he had already found pens too. He took off with the handheld phone and I stood by the speaker phone. Kricket took off with the kids so it would be quiet.

I think we were both so nervous that we didn't know what questions to ask. I could barely write down the information given to me b/c of my shaking hands. We didn't have the photos until maybe 10-20 minutes later. In that time we were jumping for joy and making a few phone calls.

I sat at my computer waiting for the photos and when I saw the post come through I yelled for Tony and he grabbed Logan so we could all see them together. The first one that came up was Madelyn in the yellow clothes. I can't remember Tony's first words but I think he was in awe and speechless and continued to comment on how adorable she was. I couldn't believe how cute she looked and how little. I do hate they shave the girls heads which definitely stood out in the photos but I was prepared for that and knew that was a possibility. Madelyn doesn't exactly have the most perfect hair but we explained to Logan that she's got hair like Andrew (very little) but it will grow out. She will have the prettiest dark hair once it does grow out. Tony even said he was going to buy her a pink band with a bow to go around her head so everyone knows she's a girl.

The funniest part was Logan's first reaction.........."But I thought we were going to get a GIRL. That's a boy!" He saw her almost hairless head and thought she was a boy. We've had many comments before that Nate must be a girl b/c he has hair so I can see how a 4 year old would think the same thing about a baby with no hair being a boy. He was a bit upset until we explained to him that she was a girl and that boys don't wear pink. He knows now this is his sister and is excited about going to China to bring her home.

We spent the next several hours making phone calls on our cells and home number and sometimes one of us was using two at the same time. I don't think Tony and I really talked about Madelyn until after the kids were down for bed and then it was while sitting at our own computers researching her orphange, province, etc. We stayed up until midnight completely exhausted but so excited that all we could do was try to find out more about her and where she's from. I crashed when I finally laid down and didn't wake up until Tony's clock went off at 6 (very unusual for me to sleep this long in a row).

Today we've received flowers from my sister. I never got flowers when I gave birth to Logan nor the twins. I also got a box of chocolate covered strawberries and apple slices from my Secret Santa in the Moms Club I'm in. I'm guessing she did this special b/c of yesterday but I don't really know for sure. (We reveal Secret Santa's next week so I'll find out then).

Madelyn's medical report is here along with a Post-Referral guide. I received her mug shot also. She has a very cute grin in it and is wearing the same pink shirt as one of the other photos.

Many people have commented on the description "Fond of Quietness." Well, it's not quiet here. There's three loud boys here. Poor thing will have to adjust but she does have her own room and own crib and can hide away in her room to get some quiet time.

She also has her daddy wrapped around her finger already and she doesn't even know it yet. She's going to be a daddy's girl no doubt.

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

More about the Xiushan Orphanage

This Site has more information about the Xiushan Orphanage than you can imagine. Maps, Travel routes, GPS Coordinates, Photos, Mailing Address, Etc. etc. etc.

Chinese English Dictionary

I found a Chinese English Dictionary that may be helpful for some of the recent referral families to find meanings and pronunciation of words. (Generally, we will need to search as Pinyin, with the way we have gotten the names.)

Location of Madelyn's SWI

Just got this map of Chonqing Province from via the HFS DTC Mailing List.

We will be travelling to the City named Chonquing, the capital of the province. It is in the left hand side of the map.

Madelyn will be coming from Xiushan SWI (aka Orphanage) in the bottom right hand side. That's supposed to be about a 12 hour bus ride.

If she takes road trips like the boys do, I hope they give her a night to sleep off the grumpiness before gotcha day.

Here she is!!!


Call came at 2:39pm. Our agency received 15 referrals.

Xiu Fu Yang
DOB 4/23/06
SWI Xiushan
Chongquing Province

No photos yet but were told there are 3 - one she is missing a sock, cute smile, little hair, chubby cheeks

Moderate sleeper, holds up head while lying on stomach, rolls, sits up in chair, locates directions of voice, follows moving toys, laughs outloud, fond of quietness, quick to react. (Was told report was probably from October)

Wt 6.0 Kilo (13.2 lbs)
Chest 39.0 cm
Length 63
head 38.5

No teeth

We excited, happy, jumping for joy, etc!!!!!!!!!!!! Anxiously awaiting pictures

We are SO Spastic right now.

I can't concentrate on anything. I'm going back and forth between a dozen different browser tabs, checking for who got their referrals, where the cutoff date is for this batch (Although that won't be a concern for us), Checking email, etc.

Everyone keeps calling on our Home Phone, and I think Melissa almost broke a leg trying to get to the phone to see who it was last time. Meanwhile, she has commandeered my cell phone to make outgoing calls, to keep the home number open for THE call.

I think this is more stressful on me than the last time I was in the Delivery room with Melissa.

More from HFS

Hi dear families,

We have received the referrals and will now begin to go through the
process. Calls will begin as soon as copies have been made for all
files. We are very excited for you and look forward to speaking with
each of you soon.

Many blessings!

Any time now we will get the call!!!

From HFS

Dear expectant mommies and daddies....I know that you have all heard the exciting rumors that referrals are expected very soon. We do expect referrals but do not know exactly how many or when they will arrive or if it will be today or tomorrow. Like you, we are hoping for today! :-)When referrals arrive, we will post to the group to let you know!

For you curious moms and dads, here is a little info. about the referral process in our office....
1) We will copy all of your referral information to ensure that no information is lost or 'mixed up' with any other family's information. We are very careful and diligent to be sure that this happens quickly and before the excitement of the phone calls begin.
2) We will begin calling families on the numbers that have been provided to us for referral day. You will be given all of the information we have available in English - name, date of birth, province and social welfare institute and a description of your little one. There will also be some brief description of your child's development. We will verify your address to send the referral information and give you instructions on returning your acceptance.
3) Your child's photographs will be scanned in and emailed to
4) Your child's original referral information and photos will be mailed to you via Fed-ex along with a travel packet and initial travel information.
5) We will send copies of each child's referral information to our translator for translation.
6) A folder for referral photos has been created in the photo section of this group. It is named Jan 07 Referrals. Any family that wishes to share photos of their beautiful baby is welcome to post their new child's referral photo(s) in that folder.

We will not answer phone calls after referrals arrive because all lines are kept open for us to begin making calls. We will try every number we are given for a family until we are able to reach them. If you need to reach us during referral time, please leave a message. Messages will be checked and calls returned with first priority being given to referral families.Wow, I cannot think of any better way to start a new year than with a group of referrals. I know we all cannot wait to receive those packages, see those beautiful babies and to make those calls to our precious families! Again, we will let you know as soon as we know anything about their arrival.Happy New Years and Many Blessings to you all!

Referrals I've seen so far

Of the few referrals I've seen come in so far this time around, date of birth's seem to range from June 2005 (a set of twins) to June of 2006. I haven't seen any pictures yet. Hopefully this morning other families will start emailing or posting on their websites/blogs photos of all their new babies.

Tuesday, January 02, 2007

Going Nuts

Well, not going, already gone.

Today after hearing some referrals had already arrived in other parts of the world, my brain went to mush. I took my house phone to my van parked in the garage to make a call not thinking it wouldn't work after I pulled away from home. Not only this, instead of raising the garage door, I pushed the button to raise the back door to my van. Fortunately it had been parked up far enough that when the door went up it didn't hit the garage door or else I'm sure there would have been some damage. I've even been calling my kids the wrong names today (this happens many times but today was worse).

It didn't help today that I was deprived of sleep last night b/c Nate is sick. I took him to the doctor and he has tonsilitis. While speaking to his pediatrician today, I asked her about referrals and medical records from our daughter. She said all I had to do was leave the papers we receive at the front desk and she would review them and call us. No need for an appointment. Wow! That shocked me. She's even going to give us a list of meds to take and other medical supplies.

Off for a restless night.......or be back in a few. Either way, no sleep. Too excited about referrals.

Where is She?

Full Moon

I picked up Logan from his friend's house tonight and noticed the moon as I was backing out of their driveway. I had left my camera in the van so it was convenient for me to stop in the road, roll the window down and snap this photo. Isn't there a saying that a full moon means babies are coming? I'm not sure if that was meant for referrals but it sure looks like a good sign to me. Come on referrals!!!!!!

Monday, January 01, 2007

New Year's Resolutions

I've been thinking today about my New Year's Resolutions and I couldn't come up with any that I knew I would keep. Yeah, I'd like to lose weight, exercise more, blah, blah, blah everything that is said every year and it might work at first but then the Holidays at the end of the year come again or maybe even before that and all resolutions are gone again back down the drain. I took at look at Last Year's Resolutions and found this post not far from it.

I'm hoping this week is referral week for us. I can't believe I actually said "the adoption is easier for us" in this post. As for physically, yes, easier to adopt for us. Emotionally - nope. It's the same. It's been an emotional rollar coaster watching and waiting for our referral especially when we missed referrals last time by one log-in day. We signed the agency papers almost 21 months ago to adopt our daughter. During the wait we were blessed with two more children. Most adopting parents do not have this opportunity and I do feel guilty sometimes that I did get blessed with more children when others never have this chance (and no I do not regret having conceived them) but I do still long for our daughter. She is my family, my daughter, our children's sister. Under the new rules, we would not be allowed to apply for a daughter in China with a child under the age of one in the house. I can't believe this is actually a rule when the process is taking about 2 years to complete right now. If at that time of application there is a baby, he/she would be 2 or more before the new addition arrived. If there is a family qualified to be wonderful parents, then I really feel like it should be up to the parents to make that decision that they want to take on the responsibility of another child at the same time, but I'm not the rule maker and China has every right to their children and what families they should belong to. They do want what's perfect for these beautiful girls/boys and I respect that.

I have fears that something could still go wrong. Will I really see my daughter's face soon? Could referrals be delayed longer? Could we be turned down now b/c we don't fit all the new rules out? (This last should not be a problem but would if we were not logged in by May of this new year but I still can't help but worry.) There's been so many disappointments during our long wait. Last year we thought we would have her by Christmas, then Spring time, then Summer, then we told family maybe by November and then possibly travel during Christmas time and here it is New Year's Day and no referral. Our twins will be 10 months old Wednesday. Looking at them I wonder where the time went but then when I think of Madelyn it seems like it has been FOREVER since she came into our hearts and we've longed to see her sweet face.

Logan is so excited about his baby sister. Tonight we mapped out our plane flight with his ball that is shaped out like a globe. We traced with our fingertips from US, over the ocean, and onto China. He knows we are her "Forever Family."

So, my resolutions are not really something for myself but wishes for others....
To waiting parents - May your day come soon that you meet your new additions to your family and may she/he bring to you happiness and joy and that you will also be the greatest parent to this precious baby.
To first time parents (adopting or with bio children)- I wish you peace waiting to become a parent and hope the wait ends soon. Just know I've been there waiting and waiting and longing for a child in my arms. That dream does come true, just sometimes we have to wait longer than we want to.
To my children - I will promise to be the best Mother I can possibly be and love you more than anything else.
To my husband - My promises to you might be broken especially if I say I'm going to be a better homemaker but I do promise to try. :) I will be the best wife I can be and the best mother to our children.
To my friends - I'll always be a shoulder to lean on and someone to listen to you. I'll be there when you need me.
To everyone else - May you be able to keep your resolutions and have a wonderful 2007.