Tuesday, May 26, 2009

What? No updates? (One word: Facebook)

Here's Talia! (with big sis, Larissa).

In case any of you have been wondering what happened to my blog. I've now been spending my free time (what little of it I have), on Facebook. I can upload photos of OUR NEW DAUGHTER there, and stay in touch with all my family, friends and colleagues.

I invite you to join me on Facebook, and you'll be able to see what our family is up to. (By the way...I use my maiden name).

If I ever get a free week, I may retroactively enter the details of our trip to China...

In the meantime, these are photos that we took in Hong Kong (on our return trip), and recently in our home. We are so lucky for having such an happy, well-adjusted child!

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Happy 1st Birthday!

Ooohhh! Just look at those cheeks! I just want to pinch them right now! We were fortunate enough to receive some photos taken of Daisy on her birthday! The orphanage had forwarded the photos to Red Thread China, and Ann sent them to me this morning!

Daisy (I know...we have to decide on her 'real' name at some point) looks both bewildered and amused. I just love the grin on her face!

Wish we could have been there to help celebrate with her, but these photos will have to suffice for now. Just a few more weeks until we can actually hold her! (...and no, we still don't know when we're travelling).

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Care Packages

Daisy's 1st birthday is TODAY(!), and we won't be there to celebrate this milestone with her. Of course, there are so many milestones during those first few years of life, and we've already missed out on so many of them. With Larissa, we can tell you when she first rolled over, held her head up, laughed, babbled, stood up, walked, etc. We either have it all on videotape or in photographs. We threw Larissa a first birthday party with a Hawaiian luau theme, and had our tiny house brimming with friends and family.

It makes me sad that we weren't there for many of those 'firsts' for Daisy. And while Larissa will have volumes of photo albums to flip through that documented her first year of life, Daisy will only have her referral photos. If we're lucky, we may be able to get some photos of her on her first birthday. But it still won't be the same without us being there.

I contacted Ann at Red Thread China, (http://www.redthreadchina.com/) and ordered a birthday care package to be sent to Daisy's orphanage. I figured if we couldn't be there, then at least allow her to receive something from us. Ann forwarded a picture of the gifts that we sent. (The candies and tea are for the orphanage director and the nannies). We also enclosed a letter which expressed our deep appreciation for all that the orphanage does in caring for these children.

I also made our own care package for Daisy, which we will be sending ourselves later this week. It includes a photo album of our family, so that we won't be complete strangers on the day we meet. We've heard all sorts of stories about kids that won't stop crying for days, because of the unfamiliarity of the "new people". We hope that Daisy will realize that we will be her 'forever family', and the sooner she sees our faces, the better.

I've spent the better part of this weekend looking up airline fares and hotel rates. We still have no idea when we'll be travelling, but if we can somehow plan it so that we avoid the Canton Trade Fair (from April 16 to April 30), then that would be great. Apparently, Guangzhou (an overcrowded city to begin with) becomes even more crowded at trade show time. (Not to mention that hotel rates double or triple!)

Saturday, January 24, 2009


Here she is!
Ling Cha Yin
We're all so thrilled to see her face. What a cutie! Looks like a pretty intense kid, though huh? I hope we can get some photos of her with a smile!

Friday, January 23, 2009

Referral file!

I took time off today to pick up Daisy's file. When I went to meet our contact person, it was actually somewhat humorous, because the file that was placed in front of me was of the WRONG CHILD. (I guess there's two families that received referrals in this batch, and the names of the children are very similar.)

So...once I was in possession of the correct file, I quickly perused her information. She seems PERFECT! Of course, we still have to have her medical records reviewed by a pediatrician well-versed in 'adoption medicine', but once we have sent in our LOA (Letter of Acceptance), then we wait for China to send a TA (Travel Approval). This could take several weeks, and with the start of Chinese New Year in a few days, the CCAA may not be operating at full speed. Looks like we may not travel until April or May.

Anyways, here's what translated information I have thus far:
Name: Ling Cha Yin
Date of birth: 2/8/08
From: Shangrao Children's Welfare Center, Jiangxi Province (I mistakenly heard Guangxi yesterday in my telephone call with our agency)

From her physical exam on 9/15/08 (7 months old)
Routine schedule: 4-5 meals/day; up at 6:30 am, naps 2 hours, bed at 8:00 pm
Deep sleeper
Eating: milk, rice powder, congee, egg soup, green vegetables, noodles, soup, etc.
Motor development: holds head up, rolls from back to stomach, sits up alone, crawls (remember...this was at 7 months. Since she's almost 1 year, she's probably close to walking now...)
Personality: active; fond of playing with toys; fond of playing games, having a ready smile; closest to caretaker; loves toys with music

Now...if only we could figure out how to use our scanner, then we can get her photos posted. SHE IS ADORABLE!

Larissa is already looking forward to being a big sis to 'Daisy'. She was holding a little booklet of paper tonight, and she was pretend-writing a note. I heard her saying, "Dear Daisy, I'm really excited to see you..." as she scribbled up and down on the paper. How cute is that?

Thursday, January 22, 2009


Ok...so no photos as of yet, but we are going to become parents to a little girl!

As I was sitting at work today, keeping track of all the postings on the various websites that I follow...I kept thinking, "I wonder if we'll receive a referral in this batch?" My co-worker urged me to just call our agency and ask. (I didn't want them to think that I was an annoyance...). Anyways, just as our coordinator was about to call us, I called her, and she gave us the good news!

Name: Ling Cha Yin (sp?)
Birth date: 2/8/08
Province: Guangxi

(I actually did not get any of this info during the original call; I was so overwhelmed I forgot to ask her any questions, and I had to call back later in the day!)

Her health records and her biography will be translated and ready for us tomorrow, but I'm told that she's "very cute, chubby, and fair skinned" on the basis of her 3 photos. I'll take some time off work tomorrow to drive to SF and pick up her file.

Larissa is finally going to be a big sister!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

October 2008

Late entry...but better late than never.

October was a month where Roger and I actually got to spend some time alone together. Larissa was being watched by Grandma and Grandpa while we were away. First, we went to Las Vegas - for conferences. Larissa is NOT a fan of Las Vegas, since she still has bad memories of staying at The Venetian and seeing images of Blue Man Group in the lobby last year. ("Ahhh!...blue guys! blue guys!") She was more than happy to stay home with the grandparents when she found out that Roger and I had meetings to attend. Since my conferences were shorter, I got to spend some time shopping, and when Roger finished, we had some fantastic meals at the nicer restaurants in town.

A few weeks later, my employer sent all of its employees (and guests) on a San Francisco Bay cruise, during Fleet Week. We enjoyed a nice lunch, and saw an amazing show put on by the US Navy Blue Angels. Larissa probably would not have liked it due to the high decibels. Roger and I just liked being able to do something with other adults.

The rest of the month? Well, as usual, almost everything is focused on Larissa.

Visits to the pumpkin patch, birthday parties, school carnivals, carving pumpkins, trick-or treating...all the usual kid stuff. Larissa always gets to pick out the design of the pumpkin carving, and this year, she chose "Cinderella". She's always been very careful around sharp instruments, so I've been letting her actually poke out the outline of the design for the past few years. I think she did a great job!

For the record, Larissa was an Ohio State University cheerleader this year for Halloween. Both her grandfather and I are graduates of THE Ohio State University, and Larissa already dressed up as a Stanford cheerleader (well...technically, we never had cheerleaders, but that's a topic for another day), a few years ago. When Larissa was given the choice this year of either wearing a red or blue cheerleader outfit, she chose red. Had she chosen blue, we would have gotten a Cal Bears outfit for her!