Anna's Adoption

We adopted our daughter in August 2005. Take a peek at the process!

Sunday, June 25, 2006

Still Smokin'

There was one thing I was not prepared for before we traveled; the constant cloud of cigarette smoke. I think statistics show that 50-75% of Chinese men smoke. I'm not one who is truly bothered by smoking, but after a few days the smell started to really bother me.

We had a non-smoking room throughout our stay, but when the people in the rooms around you are chain smoking, you might as well light up too. This really bothered me after we had gotten Anna. If smoking bothers you, I would ask for a room on a non-smoking floor. All of our hotels had one, and we did not know to ask until we got to Guangzhou. It made a huge difference in the way that we felt, smelled, etc.

If you have medical issues that are effected by smoking, come prepared! Bring your inhaler, allergy tabs, eye drops, etc. Depending on the day, the smog, mostly in Beijing, could be nasty as well, and you could really be uncomfortable.

Saturday, June 24, 2006

A Year Ago Today . . .

Anna's Referral Photo

A Year Later . . . Part of a Family!
A year ago today, at 4:00 PM to be exact, I received THE phone call from our agency. You can dream about it, prepare your list of questions, get the camera set up, etc., but nothing will come close to that moment when your agency calls and says "You have a daughter! Let me tell you about her . . . "
Tell me about our daughter . . . OUR daughter. The little one we've been dreaming about, praying for, and longing to know for over a year. She now has a name, a face, and a story to share with us. We want to know it all. How does she look in her photo? Is she crying? Smiling? Does she look well cared for? The parental instinct to love and protect rushes in, and even though she is on the other side of the world, we want to do all that we can to care for her. So we read about her village, look up photos of her SWI on the internet, send a care package, and frantically wait for our TA.
I can't believe it's been a year since we received our referral, the day we were told that we had a daughter. There are some of you out there who were on this journey with me, and I want you to know that I'm thinking about you today. I'll never forget the frantic emails, the wonderful posts that announced "We Got the Call!", and the phone calls that shared tears of joy. What a blessing to have shared this journey with you! Happy Referral Day!

A Random Thought . . .

My oldest took this picture!

Don't forget to pack something that can keep documents "safe". When we were in China, we received a packet of information that contained her birth certificate, abandoment statement, etc. We had to give this packet of information to Immigration once we landed in the States. That ment we needed to carry it on with us along with all sorts of "dangerous" things; formula, toiletries, food, etc. We were also told that it needed to remain in "clean" condition; no rips, tears, folds, baby drool, shampoo, etc. If it looks altered or gets lost, guess what? You get to go back to your baby's provenice and start over! Wow. That sounds like fun!!

Luckily, we had packed a document protector that was plastic and latched closed. We stuffed this into our carry on and it worked out great. Don't forget to bring something to store these valuables while you travel home!