Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Adoption News

I just received this email from immigration:

Here is a copy of the approval letter in pdf format.  The original was mailed in time for the afternoon mail pickup. I look forward to working with you throughout the process.

Woo hoodie hoo!  This is the FBI/fingerprint approval letter that we have been waiting for!  For expediency, we have decided get MissE's approval after our paperwork is in Ch*na.  It costs a little more money this way, but we aren't time delayed then.  Of course, the dossier has to be processed, so realistically, it won't actually be in Ch*na for 3-4 weeks, but it is at the point where it is out of our hands - we have done all that we can do on our end!  I am jumping up and down excited!

Dollar Store Finds

OK - so the munchkin behind the juice cup wasn't from the Dollar Store - just a perk!  She loves rearranging the cupboards and drawers to make hidey places.

I did find a package of wall stickers - the kind that come off and on without leaving anything behind on the wall - at the Dollar Store - all 3 sayings for a buck!  Cool!

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Glasses and Disappointment

Yup - Chick-a-Dee is getting glasses!  These are the ones that she decided on, but hers will be pink!  She had a hard time deciding if she wanted purkle or pink!

Disappointment?  I have been holding my breath each day around mail time - hoping to see the envelope from Homeland Security in the box with our FBI clearance - the last piece of paper we need to have our dossier recognized by Ch*na.

I came home today to an email from Homeland Security saying that we are good to go, BUT . . .  since MissE will turn into an adult before we travel to bring Zabi-Chu home, she has to have a background clearance, too!  Yes, our rebel daughter - scary, huh!  For you who actually know that turrible teen, you will laugh - she is NOT turrible!  SO, one more hurdle to jump over and WAIT on before we can bring our sweetie home :-(

Monday, May 25, 2009

Memorial Day Fun

Do you see the mountain peeking in the background at the left of the picture?  Geography buffs - here is your challenge.  Name that mountain!  No fair for the locals to spoil the fun for those who really want to try to guess!

Hmmmmm, sitting on the boat and eating lunch at the dock.

IBoy getting the boat seaworthy.


MissE enjoying the relaxation.

Dad with the Barbie pole, even!

Chick-a-Dee fishing with HER pole!

?????  A couple of these creatures were stuck in the grass around the park.  Why?????

The boys fishing and having fun.

The girls having fun.

Mom trying her hand at the Barbie reel off the back of the boat.  I got a few nibbles and snags, but nothing exciting.

Dad's first catch of the day!

Caught, for real!

More Critters

OK - I have to admit.  I love having odd critters crop up and visit.  Properly housed, that is!  This is a lizard that we found in the garage, made a make shift "home" for it for a few days indoors, and then decided that it probably would rather go home to it's "mom"!

Chick-a-Dee finally worked up the nerve to hold it when she realized that it wasn't coming back into the house for observation.  What I wasn't able to capture on the camera is what she looked like when the lizard moved!  Oh My WORD - that girl jumped and screeched!

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Ascension of the Lord Jesus Christ

The Ascension of Our Lord, which occurred 40 days after Jesus Christ rose from the dead on Easter Sunday, is the final act of our redemption that Christ began on Good Friday. On this day, the risen Christ, in the sight of His apostles, ascended bodily into Heaven (Luke 24:51; Mark 16:19; Acts 1:9-11).

The reality of the Ascension is so important that the creeds (the basic statements of belief) of Christianity all affirm, in the words of the Apostles' Creed, that "He ascended into heaven, sits at the right hand of God the Father almighty; from thence He shall come to judge the living and the dead." The denial of the Ascension is as grave a departure from Christian teaching as is denial of Christ's Resurrection.

Christ's bodily Ascension foreshadows our own entrance into Heaven not simply as souls, after our death, but as glorified bodies, after the resurrection of the dead at the Final Judgment. In redeeming mankind, Christ not only offered salvation to our souls but began the restoration of the material world itself to the glory that God intended before Adam's fall.

The Feast of the Ascension marks the beginning of the first novena, or nine days of prayer. Before His Ascension, Christ promised to send the Holy Spirt to His apostles. Their prayer for the coming of the Holy Spirit, which began on Ascension Thursday, ended with the descent of the Holy Spirit on Pentecost Sunday, ten days later.

Air Miles

I have a situation that I would appreciate feedback or ideas on, if anyone has the time!

I have $600 in credit at Continental Airlines that I am able to gift to anyone I wish, it is good until sometime in January 2010 and can be used on anywhere that Continental flies. I had planned on using it to pay for our daughter in China to fly home. The catch is that Continental flies into Newark, NJ from Asia and we are on the west coast - out of Portland, OR or Seattle, WA! We COULD use it, but it would mean more expensive flights for the rest of us AND flying across the US, adding flight times!

SO, I am wondering if there is anyone who would be interested in just buying the credit and then I could use the money to pay for a ticket that would be more practical for us. We are still waiting for USCIS fingerprint approval, so travel, unfortunately, is not imminent!

Thanks in advance for your thoughts!

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

New Birds

IBoy got a call this afternoon from a friend who said that he had 3 orphan birds - was IBoy interested in coming to get them?

We think that they are starlings and they are very friendly!

They don't mind Chick-a-Dee petting them even!

IBoy is building a quick outdoor aviary.

They are still fledglings - some downy feathers on them and they don't fly very well yet!

We have gotten worms down them, so they are happy!

A New Skill - Nearly Mastered

Chick-a-Dee is learning to help out.  One of her jobs is to help set and clear the dinner table.  All of the sibs were busy, so I handed her plates and forks, and asked her to go set the table.  When I went into the dining room, this is what I saw!  Not too bad for a 3 year old!

Yup - this looks pretty good.

Oops - this one might get a little messy with no plate.

This person might be eating with their fingers!

Monday, May 18, 2009

Sunshine and Slime

Woooo Hoooo!  Of course I shouldn't get too excited, because it isn't supposed to last, but I SURE have enjoyed the past few days of sunshine!

Chick-a-Dee and Auntie catchin' some rays.

This is the beginnings of a walkway to connect the front deck with the side deck with some plantings close to the house.  I already have my Bleeding Heart planted - now to work around it!

Chick-A-Dee really enjoyed her "friend" snail!  She doesn't like worms, but she loved petting the snail's slimy neck!

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Nothing Much

Chick-a-Dee's 3rd eye surgery went well.  We go back next week for the follow-up appointment.  They were able to measure her vision and we will find out if she has glasses in her future.  Obviously, these photos were taken pre-invasion!  She was such a trooper and drank her goofy juice down like a big girl!

MissE in costume as "Belle".

Busy, busy, busy.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Set Back

We received a notice yesterday from USCIS (immigration) - NOT what I wanted to hear, though.  We went on the 5th to have our fingerprints taken for the adoption.  This is the last piece of paperwork that we need in order for our dossier to be sent to Ch*na.  We were told that we should hear back from them in 7 - 10 days.

Unfortunately, the notice said that my fingerprints were not good.  I drove to Portland today in the hopes that they would let me do a walk in appointment instead of waiting till next week (the appointment that they set up) for them to be redone.  We only had to wait about 1 1/2 hours until I was taken to redo them!  The tech said that if they are rejected a 2nd time, they will just go ahead and process them as best as they can.

Let us hope that by this time next week, we will be opening our approval letter!

Sunday, May 10, 2009

Hiking on Mother's Day

Each Mother's Day, we end up going fishing or hiking - this year it was a hike in the back 40.  The weather was PERFECT for it!

Some of the flora along the way.

Up to Salamander Pond for exploring.


Chick-a-Dee kept picking up the flat rocks and a twig to journal our adventure.  She narrated the story as she wrote!

Happy Mother's Day!

I woke up to a few surprises waiting for me this morning!  MissE and IBoy were up late creating some special treats for me.  

There was a sweet note written to me from the kiddos in this origami style pouch.

A new DVD to watch awaited me inside this package!

A close up of the "evil tomato"!

A cornucopia of wonderful delights greets me when I open the refrigerator.

This mum LUVS her sweeties!