Two China Dolls and a Prince!

This blog chronicles the story of 2 of our adoptions, both older children when they came home. It begins in 2008 and will continue in the hopes we can be of encouragement and information to anyone thinking of older child adoption.

Wednesday, December 31, 2008


Ater 110 days of waiting, we have final approval from the Chinese government to be the parents of little Judi, who will be 3 years and 10 months old when we meet her! We are so excited and I admit I'm a little scared of how she will react to us, being so much older than Jazmin was. I can only pray that it will all come together as it is meant to be.
Jr took the kiddos to his Mom's and then Dad's house for 4 days and I had all these plans to do stuff in the house. But working and getting a sinus infection and Dad and I snuck in one last trip to Silver Dollar City, the house is at least presentable. But for the next 6 weeks, it's going to be a whirlwind of packing, cleaning, organizing, and storing things!
Love to you all and hoping you have a wonderful New Year! We're celebrating with some friends for the first time in a long time, so we're pretty excited about that, too!

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

A wonderful Christmas gift!! and 103 days waiting..

The lady we posted about, Sarah S, from Massachusetts, that won our gift card raffle has given us the most wonderful Christmas surprise: she has offered to donate the winnings back to us for the adoption! What an incredibly selfless gesture; I am still in awe of her generosity. Thank you, Sarah, so much; you hold a special place in our hearts!
Debbie and Jr; now 103 days waiting for LOA

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

And the winner is............

Each kid got to choose one name, then............ The Winner!!!--->>

Sarah S of Massachusetts!!!! We faced the daunting tasks of putting everyone's name on slips of paper to be drawn by our kids; thank goodness for spreadsheets!! We put all the names in a box, and had Jessica, James, and Jazmin each pick one name (see pics). Then Jazmin got to pick the final name, which was Sarah's! Thank you all so much for your support and wonderful comments! We are getting excited and sooo hoping our LOA comes this week. I keep thinking Judi is getting older every day and we've already missed almost 4 years of her life; I don't want to miss another minute! The waiting has begun to be hard on the kids; they literally ask every day when our approval will come. Jessica, my teen, even told me the other day she will miss us; be still my heart! This is the same kid who alternately will say she can't wait til we go, because she's excited about staying at her friend's house! I still wish so much we could take them, but with the increase in the orphanage fee, that's pretty much an impossibility now.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

First Christmas Program!

Tonight was Jazmin's first ever school Christmas program! She was so excited all day and couldn't wait to dress up! She loved having the jingly bell thing in her hair; all the way to the school she kept shaking her head, it was too funny! After the concert, I got the at least James and Jaz to sit still long enough to snap some photos. Jessica saw the camera and took off! I'm still determined to get all of us, even Grandpa, to sit down together and get at least one family photo!



I was just reading my last two posts and I seem to have a problem. It's obvious I'm focusing too much on the negative things going on right now, so I'm going to take this moment to accentuate the positive. First, my hubby, Jr - he is my complete opposite, when I am stressed, he calms me down. When I get mad, he just lets me work through it. And he's been right there with me as we've slogged thru the paperwork and ups and downs of adoption. He is ready for our new daughter, whatever her future may hold; ready to handle whatever reaction she has to us in China and just go with the flow.
Now, my oldest daughter, Jessica: she's had a rough start to 8th grade, but has just kept plugging along and never giving up. She's a beautiful, bright girl who has to remember sometimes she doesn't have to grow up so fast. In just a little over 4 years, she'll graduate, I can hardly imagine that day; she hates it when I just sit and look at her, but I'm trying to etch these moments on my mind because I know they'll be gone too soon.
James, my son, what a kid! I love talking to him about things, because he doesn't just accept things as is, he's got to know WHY! He'll debate an issue to death and has really stumped me at times with his views. He's smart as a whip, sensitive, and 100% boy. He started 6th grade this year and his biggest adjustment was learning to navigate the social drama of 6th grade; who's going with whom, who broke up with such and such, oh my!
And then there's my baby, Jazmin (who would be mad I called her a baby). She was ready to go to China yesterday! Thanks to her big brother and sister, she's 5 going on 20, and keeps us all in stitches with her antics. She's always ready for a tussle with Bubby (James) or a snuggle with Sissy (Jessica) and everyone who meets her loves her (because she's so sweet and polite, then comes homes and goes crazy with Bubby!)
We have a warm house, food on the table, and will have a nice Christmas. And I am so grateful to the Lord above for these wonderful parts of my life.

LOA news and Giveaway ending soon!

Well, good news and bad news....we found out our dossier (that's the big file that contains every little detail about us that China is looking at right now) is in the "Placement Room". This is the room where LOAs (Letter of Acceptance) are issued, but we've been told it'll be next week before the coveted acceptance is even possible. When you've waited 91 days already and you know your child is changing every day and you're missing it, it's hard to tough out even one more week!
We're continuing to try to raise whatever money we can; my current goal is one plane ticket (about $1,000), and including the giveaway on our blog, we're about 1/3 there. But it's slow going; Ebay can be cumbersome, Christmas is looming, and we still have to pay the deductible once our Jeep is fixed. To the 15 people who've entered our giveaway to help bring Judi home, know that your generosity is so appreciated and I wish good luck to everyone! The giveway ends Monday evening at 11:59pm; please tell your friends and neighbors if they want a chance to win some spending money for Christmas!

Monday, December 8, 2008

Getting soooo close!

We are at 88 days waiting for LOA. Now the wait has become real, so close to when we could really begin to expect it. It's amazing how important one little piece of paper is; how pivotal to a child's life. Recently, the CCAA (China Center for Adoption Affairs in Beijing) asked us for letters stating that some surgeries we'd had many years ago hadn't left us with any issues or ongoing health problems. They didn't ask this at all with Jazmin's adoption; they're being very particular now with every detail of a person's life. Our agency said this might delay our approval, but I hope not by much.
Today we also heard, after many months of rumors, that the orphanage fee is officially being increased from $3000 to $5100 starting Jan. 1. That means that we will be hit by this, UNLESS the CCAA takes mercy on us adoptive parents and pushes back the start date to March or something; pray that this happens! I'm already selling on Ebay, having our gift card giveway, putting away pennies and dimes; running out of fundraising ideas!

Monday, December 1, 2008

Giveaway has changed.......

In consideration of the economy, and to make our Giveaway more appealing to more people, we have decided to give away a GIFT CARD instead of the Wii! Currently, we will give away a $125 gift card to the store or stores of the winner's choice. The higher the donations, the higher the gift card will go; as it says, if we reach $500 in donations, the gift card will be valued at $175! If we reach 100% of our goal, we will give away a $200 gift card!
I hope this won't offend anyone; we purchased the Wii, so donations would have to get fairly high before we could break even, so we figured this way everyone wins! P.S. If you have already donated, your donation will be converted to chances for the gift card at $1 each; this is how it breaks down - 1 chance/$1, 6 chances/$5, 12 chances/$10, 24 chances/$20. I hope this won't offend anyone; if it does, I apologize and will offer a refund of your donation if you choose.
Thank you for helping us with our "Journey to Judi"!