Wednesday, December 2, 2009
Monday, November 23, 2009
Monday, November 16, 2009
Tuesday, November 10, 2009
Friday, November 6, 2009
Wednesday, November 4, 2009
We have just returned from our 'Meet Caroline Tour' with family and friends in Kansas, Missouri, and Illinois. We were gone for 11 days. Caroline got to spend her very first Halloween in Kansas City with her cousins Zane, 8, and Zacalen, 6. She was a butterfly (surprise, surprise) ...notice her 'squeeky shoes'......and sort of got the hang of how to do the trick-or-treating thing. For awhile she wanted to stop after each house and inspect the treats. And, she was holding up the 'pack' of trick-or-treaters, so she had to be carried to most houses. She had a good time....so did I.
Monday, October 26, 2009
Friday, October 23, 2009
Wednesday, October 21, 2009
Sunday, October 18, 2009
Yesterday, a couple of former students hosted a "Welcome Home Caroline" party near the university campus. It was wonderful to see several former students, many of whom now have children of their own, as well as several friends. Amber and Sierra did a terrific job of planning the party...the decorations were lovely and the refreshments were delicious. You will also see a picture of Caroline in her new 'party dress'.....like I needed an excuse to buy Caroline a new dress! Sierra sang 'When Love Takes You In' by Steven Curtis Chapman while showing a slide show of my China trip. Then, Mom read a 'Letter to Caroline'.....which amazed me because Mom doesn't like to speak in front of people....knowing that, I appreciated her reading even more. What a nice day! Thanks Amber and Sierra....thank you Jennifer for your involved. I love those girls!
Thursday, October 15, 2009
Sunday, October 11, 2009
Notice that Caroline has a cookie in each hand.
Today was an excellent day......Caroline attended church for the very first time and we were the guests of honor at a baby shower hosted by Bekki Johnston and her daughter Happi Stoffel. They are neighbors as well as members of our church. We received very wonderful gifts from everyone. We SO APPRECIATE the outpouring of love from everyone!
Saturday, October 10, 2009
Sunday, October 4, 2009
WE ARE HOME! We've been home since about 12:45 am on Thursday, Oct. 1. Let me begin by offering some humble thank-you's......to Jim and Sue Sonnefield for taking time to drive us to the airport on Sept 16 and picking us up when we returned. I also want to thank Myrna, Amanda, Lauren, Mark, and Mackenzie for meeting us at the house when we returned. What a nice surprise! Thank you to Heather for making the drive to O'Hare to greet us...that meant more than you can possible know. Thanks to my sweet cousin Ashley for posting on my blog for me while I was in China. I emailed all photos and texts to her and she took the time to post them. And my biggest thanks to my dear, dear friend Anne for making the trip to China with Mom and I....we could not have done this without YOU. No words can really express my gratitude to Anne....truly. I know there are more people to thank...but this will get things started.
Tuesday, September 29, 2009
Today was our last day in Guangzhou, and the only official business was to pick up Caroline's immigrant visa and passport. I also have the official envelope to present to the Customs agent in Chicago. Caroline becomes a U.S. citizen when she passes through Customs...amazing how that happens.
Our coordinator took the group to the Pearl and Jade Market one more time as well as Shamian Island. We had lunch at Lucy's and headed back to the hotel. Caroline took a nap and we did some packing. As I write this I'm still hoping that we can get everything packed. We did buy an extra suitcase for Caroline. It's full.
TODAY CAROLINE WALKED ON HER OWN WITHOUT HOLDING ON TO ANYTHING!! She is crawling, walking, giggling, acting silly and imitating me. She is making 'kissing' sounds and I taught her how to blow a kiss. She is starting to act like a 21-month-old. To me, she looks like a different person than she did a week ago.
Today's picture was taken at Shamian Island in Lucy's. She is doing what she loves to do - EAT. The next time I post on the blog we will be at home in Marion, IN. Our flight leaves tomorrow at 12:35 p.m. and we'll fly through Seoul, South Korea, then to Chicago. Jim and Sue Sonnefield are picking us up at the Chicago airport at 5:30 on Wednesday. I hope we have some friends and family greeting us at the International terminal of the airport...Asiana Airlines.
It's been an amazing journey, and we'll be glad to get home.
Monday, September 28, 2009
Today was a LONG day. We had to stay in our hotel room this morning to wait while my coordinator (David) took all of my important paperwork to the American Consulate.....if there was a problem, I would receive a phone call. When the phone rang my heart jumped out of my body....but, it was just David telling me that all of my paperwork was fine.
We had our group picture at noon.....Caroline doesn't pose well with big groups...but we made it. Then, at 3:00 we traveled to the American Consulate to take the oath. This was the culmination of such a long process and it was very emotional. I doubt that I will be able to talk about it without tearing up. Adoptive families stood, raised our right hand (most of us were holding our children) and repeated the oath. At the end I cried like a baby because Caroline is now truly mine. She is absolutely my daughter. *tears in eyes right now*
At 5:30 we went on a River Boat Cruise on the Pearl River in Guangzhou. We didn't really enjoy the food, but the cultural experience was fun The big story here was when the food came. Caroline was sitting on my lap because there were no 'baby' chairs. They brought a traditional Chinese bowl and spoon with noodles and rice. I started to feed Caroline but she took this spoon and started to feed herself.....she then took the bowl off of the table. I tried to put the bowl back on the table but Caroline became hysterical. She evidently thought I was taking the food away from her. We ended up putting the bowl in her lap. She then ate from that bowl for the rest of the evening, barely getting any rice or noodles on that spoon. I tried to help scoop rice on her spoon. We all realized that this is how she was used to eating.....probably given a bowl of noodles or rice and told to feed herself. Then, they probably took the bowl away from her when she was still hungry because she wasn't able to get much food on that spoon. I think that this particular type of bowl and spoon reminded her of her life before adoption. Learning more every day about this precious girl. I love her so much.
Sunday, September 27, 2009
Today has been a good day. We started the day with a leisurely shopping trip to Shamian Island. Mom, Anne, Kristen, Caroline, and I took a cab to the island. We ended up at Starbucks (again) for a snack. This afternoon I met with the other adoptive parents and our coordinators David and Elsie at the hotel to complete the seemingly endless paperwork that had to be done in order to get Caroline's immigrant visa. While I was doing that, the girls all took a nap. We ended the day with dinner in the hotel with another adoptive single mom from St. Louis and her little one. Oh, and Caroline stood on her own today and started immitating sounds that I was making. Caroline makes significant progress each and every day.
First time for Caroline to open a book.
Caroline giving us one of her sly smiles.
Evidence that 'Aunt' Annie fed Caroline whipped cream from herfrappucino at Starbucks. Caroline liked it.
Anne, Kristen, Chris, Gerry, and Caroline at the White Swan Hotelon Shamian Island.
Caroline wearing a hat.....it didn't stay on her headvery long but she looked cute in it. The hat is a bit big, sohopefully, she'll grow into it.