Wednesday, January 30, 2008

DECEMBER 27, 2005

It looks like the cut off date for this month is December 27.....Yeah, we no longer have a box to confirm this 100% and Rumor Queen hasn't officially posted it, but I believe 3 agencies are saying that the 27TH is the cut off date and I'm going with it (because, it's MY blog and I said so! =).........So, what does this mean?

  • 71 days are left between the last date matched (December 27) and our LID (March 8).
  • Our agency only has 6 LID groups ahead of our March 8, 2006 group.
  • They completed 8 days this month.
  • They're about 9 days in February, 2006 when nobody is logged in (during CNY).
  • Call me crazy, but I actually think we might see Ava's face before the end of the year.
  • I feel really happy today.

Monday, January 28, 2008


  • Jeff and I are nesting in a BIG way. He has been busy cleaning out the garage (his territory) and I've been busy cleaning out the closets. I'm tossing all my BIG pants because I'm officially down 24 1/2 (must add the 1/2) pounds with my weight watchers diet. I figure if you keep your BIG pants in your closet....It's the kiss of death.

  • Went to the bank today to see to get a print out of our checking account. With all my credit card company drama of last week, I didn't mention that a company (that will remain nameless) deducted over $900 from my checking account in error last month. As of this morning, they still owe us about $200. I'm not at all happy with them right now.

  • Speaking of banking, did I mention that I FINALLY opened up my very own China savings account? You might be thinking....About freakin' time woman! I just liked the idea of having a separate savings account that was just for our China fund. I'm enjoying adding something in it each week and watching it grow....It makes me feel like I'm actually doing something instead of just waiting. I'm going to make sure that I have some serious cash in there so I can do some serious shopping in China.

  • I started going to the tanning salon a couple weeks ago. I'm so sick of winter that I finally caved in and bought a tanning package. If I wrinkle up like a prune, so be it.

  • My dog chewed up my only bathing suit and his dog bed. How can I find a bathing suit in Michigan in January?

  • Jeff and I have decided to sell our boat and camper. After Griffin's accident tubing last year, it took the fun right out of boating for us. Griffin would hop back on a tube in a second, but it shaved several years off his Dad's and my life and we want no part of it anymore. I think if we boat again.....It will be a sailing for us.

  • Jeff is going to have another guy start working with him in the next couple months. I'm not sure if it really means that Jeff will be working any less per week, but it does mean that we will be able to take vacations more often than we do. It's a relief when we do FINALLY go to China. If the other guy wasn't there then our business would have to come to a halt for those two weeks. Can you say, no money?

  • Referrals should arrive sometime this week. I'm trying not to get too excited about them getting very far, but it's hard. I just want them working on 2006....Is THAT so wrong?!

Wednesday, January 23, 2008


I came home yesterday and as I do most days.....I opened up my mail. I opened up a statement from my credit card company and immediately noticed that they hadn't posted my last payment that I had mailed to them. I immediately picked up the phone to call them (even tho I had all the checking account info at work) in hopes that they might have found my payment. Here is how the conversation went........

Me: Hello, I just received my statement and noticed that a check I had mailed out in December hasn't been posted to my account.

Customer Service: Mother's maiden name please.

Me: ######

Customer Service: Can you verify your home address and telephone.

Me: Yes, blah blah blah blah blah blah 555-555-5555.

Customer Service: Is this your phone number with the last four digits of 1111.

Me: No, I just gave you my phone number.

Customer Service: How can I help you?

Me: Like I said, I mailed a check out in December and my statement shows that you haven't received it. Can you check on that for me?

Customer Service: No, we never received it.

Me: Ummm, I mailed it out EARLY (well before the due date) on December 21, before I went out of town.

Customer Service: No, we didn't get it. If you mailed it in December we won't be getting it now.....It's already February.

Me: It's January, not February. (Thought in head.....It probably got lost because of all the flippin' Christmas card mail....February? What a moron!!).

Customer Service: Oh yeah, it's January. So do you want to pay by phone today?

Me: No, I want to call my bank tomorrow and if it hasn't cleared, I want to stop payment on the check.

Customer Service: You can still pay by phone today.

Me: No, I will call you tomorrow after I talk to my bank and pay then!!!! (Thought in head......You flippin' idiot!!!)

Customer Service: You know, we WILL be calling you if we don't receive your payment.

Me: No, you WON'T be calling me because I'm taking care of it tomorrow!!!!!! Listen, transfer me to someone that can cancel my card. (Thought in head.....HELLOOOOOOO, I called YOU!! If I was dodging payment.....I WOULDN'T HAVE CALLED YOU!!!!!)

Customer Service: Alright. (Possibly thought in head.....Geez, what's her problem?)


2ND Customer Service Rep: How can I help you today?

Me: I wish to cancel my credit card.

2ND Customer Service Rep: May I ask why?

Me: (Huge sigh) I have had this credit card for 25 YEARS and have NEVER once been late on a payment and and your customer service person has treated me as if I'm a total deadbeat and don't pay my bills!!!!! My check must have gotten lost in the mail and I called to try and get it straightened out. He keeps telling me to pay today and I told him that I'll pay it tomorrow after I call my bank and he said he WILL be calling me if I don't send my payment and I don't think he should treat people like deadbeats that pay their bills.....Just look at my payment history! (Totally out of breathe and red faced).

2ND Customer Service Rep: I'm sorry to hear that. Are you sure you wish to cancel your credit card?

Me: Yes, cancel it. (Thought in head.....Great, now I don't have another credit card and I knew my account number by heart cause I had it soooooooo long (and I used it a bunch of times!), but they shouldn't treat people like that....Oh great, I wonder if I can use a debit card in China.....I'm going to have to fill out an application for the next credit card that comes in the mail....That should be tomorrow!!!)

2ND Customer Service Re: Alright, your card has been cancelled. Is there anything else I can do for you today?

Me: I don't think so. (Thought in head....Sniff. I had that card before I was married to EITHER of my husbands and now it's gone. Just. Like. That.)

My relationship with my credit card company is officially over. It almost feels like a divorce or something. Twenty-five years is a long time and it was over in a heartbeat. I have no idea how long it's going to take me to get over how 0ur good relationship turned ugly so quickly. Can I use a debit card in China?

Tuesday, January 15, 2008


Alright, here are a bunch of pictures that I've been meaning to post for a couple weeks now. As much as I tried to keep them in some kind of order.....I failed. However, with my VERY detailed description (that will be posted DIRECTLY above each picture) I think even T will be able to follow along. =) Here we go............

This picture is of Jeff's brother Aaron. You will notice that Aaron was blessed with the most hair in the family! Alright, the truth is he is sporting one of Hope's Christmas presents (Hair by Jessica Simpson)! I think it's a good look for him!

This was taken after Christmas, but it was our Christmas celebration with Uncle Aaron and Aunt Shawnee. Sorry I don't have a picture of Hope actually wearing the hair. I'll get one at a later date.

This is Ian on the plane heading for Disney World! He had been wearing his Santa hat since Thanksgiving! AND he is STILL wearing his Santa hat as of today.......Ian is determined to keep Christmas alive all year long.

The Magic Kingdom.....My FAVORITE place on earth. I just LOVE the castle! I must love it or I would have never posted this picture of me! Note to self: Don't wear stretchy fabric.

This is Ian at Animal Kingdom. When he got bored digging for dinosaur bones...........

He buried his brother. Griffin is such a good sport. We buried him last time we were there too. I think it's going to be the L family tradition.
I've been to Disney World three times now and I have NEVER been able to get a picture with me and that darn Mouse! This year, they stopped the line JUST as we got in line. Hmmf. If I get my mind set on something, there is no stopping me! Here is Ian and I with The Mouse!

Alright, we did get our pictures with the Pooh characters (for a large sum of money for a buffet that TOTALLY wasn't worth the cost).

Ahhhhh, look at the beauty of the castle at night.....................................................
I have a story to tell with this family picture. Jeff was taking some pictures of us with the castle when a nice lady and her daughter walked up and asked us if we wanted her to take a picture of all of us. After she was done, we asked her if she would want us to take a picture of her family. The lady motioned for her husband to come over (we hadn't seen him up until then) and he walked over pushing a stroller with two of the CUTEST little girls from China in it! They were probably about three and four. I wanted to say something about us adopting, but I didn't. I also wanted to take a picture of them with MY camera, but thought it might freak them out!

Riding Splash Mountain. Yes, Ian is in tears. =(

Ian liked the dinosaur ride a little better. I didn't like the warm air that shot out of his mouth when he roared.
We made Ian ditch the Santa hat (it was VERY warm) and slap on a pair of ears instead.

Here is a picture of Princess Hope. The kids tried on every hat in every store in every park (alright, I made them).

I just love this picture of me and my little buddy.

This was the last picture we took on New Years Eve at Animal Kingdom. This was the only day that it rained (only about an hour) the entire week. The kids wanted me to remove the poncho, but I'm a rebel.

Griffin and Ian at the Rain Forest Cafe. We ate there on New Years Eve. We asked for our normal table for five......When they called our name they took us to a table for six that included a high chair. Do you think that it's a sign?
Here we are after we returned the rental car. It FINALLY hit us that we were leaving beautiful sunny Florida and heading back to the great white north. Can you feel our pain?

As promised.......Our Christmas tree (minus the tree skirt....I removed that sucker on Christmas night because I was sick of cleaning the cat hair off it every hair and velvet! Arrrgh!)

Here is the Ava section of the tree. Yes, that is a Year of the Dog ornament......I was SO sure she would be born in the Year of the Dog.

Oh yes, that's a little piggy ornament......I was SO sure she would be a Golden Piggy. Must find Rat ornament. Sigh.
Here are the Waiting for Ava 2005, 2006 and 2007 ornaments.

Alright, enough of all those ornaments.....On to happy things.......PANDO!!!!!!!! How cool is THIS......You get to go down the hill and they actually pull you back up on the other side! The people that are pictured trying to walk down the hill are making a big mistake. NEVER, get out of your tube before you make it all the way down. I took out several kids on my way down because they climbed out too soon. (Don't tell my social worker....It's not like they were hurt too bad.).

Here is a picture of Mr. Jeff riding back up the hill. There is a sign posted that says NOT to throw snow balls. Just saying.

Griffin and Ian having a blast on the hill.

Look at that athletic form and mix -n- match winter wear!

The last ride all hooked together. Jeff took these amazing shots riding in a tube that left just SECONDS before us!......I made that sound pretty exciting, huh? =)

That's all folks! Man, I'm beat. Blogging is hard work.

Thursday, January 10, 2008


Waiting for Ava is truly the hardest thing I've ever had to do in my life. It's so difficult for me wondering "when" and "if" Ava will be here and not knowing from one day to the next what the future holds with the China adoption program. Can you even imagine how hard it must be when you're only seven years old? Ian wants his baby sister more than ANYTHING in the world. ANYTHING.

Ian has wanted a baby sister since he was about three years old. I would pick him up from daycare and he would talk many times on the way home about wanting a baby sister. I have to say that although I have always wanted to adopt from China (since 1991 when I read an article on China when I was pregnant with Hope), it was Ian that started the ball rolling. Many days I would sit and dream of our little girl from China while Ian was expressing his thoughts for a baby sister.

Ian talks all the time about Ava. He questions all the time if I think Ava is awake or asleep and what I think she might be doing. He announced on Christmas that he loves Ava MORE than his Christmas presents (and when you're seven....That's saying something). He wonders why we can't just dig a hole and go and bring her home. He said once that he wanted to go and stay with her in China because he didn't want her to alone or scared. This morning while I was driving him to school he asked if there is snow in China. China and Ava are always on his mind.

Last night, Jeff and I were discussing the latest news from our agency regarding the adoption (and the removal of "the box"). In the letter we received from our agency, they state that things will start to pick up in 2009. Believe me, I'm happy to hear that they think this will happen (I'm not totally convinced), but the fact that we started our adoption in August, 2005 (!!!) doesn't make me feel all warm and fuzzy inside. It appears that things will continue to slow down for 2008 (although they stated in an email to me that the U.S. will continue to get referrals and travel approvals during the Olympics because our consulate is not located in Beijing...That's wonderful news!) and then pick up during 2009. Jeff and I were talking about the fact that we believe that it won't be long (in the next year or so) that we feel that China will shut the doors to international adoption and Ian heard those words. And he cried. I can't believe that he understood what closing the doors to international adoption meant, but he did.

Jeff and I tried to tell him that China has promised that those of us in this long line WILL receive a baby. We promised him that no matter what he WILL have a baby sister named Ava (although, making this promise scared the hell out of me).

I just wonder if the C*C*A*A* ever REALLY understands how much this wait (and the fact that we're kept in the dark) hurts adoptive families?........Even a seven year old feels the pain of this wait. I hope they know that.

Wednesday, January 09, 2008


I guess I should have explained what the box actually is (since kc was asking in the comment section)and what it means when it was taken away from us. The box pictured above (and I might add that the picture above is the LAST picture of the box in all it's glory) was a box posted on the C*C*A*A website that would let adoptive families know what the cut off date (your date that your paperwork is logged in is your LID and that date is very important in knowing whether you made it in that batch of referrals or not) or when your file has FINALLY made in thru the dreaded review room. It was the only information that the C*C*A*A gave to us on their website. All other information is provided by our adoption agencies (although most are pretty darned tight lipped, hence the Rumor Queen site). By taking away the box.....It takes away the only direct link we had to information from the C*C*A*A. I was also looking forward to seeing my LID pictured in that box (sometime in the year 2009 when things pick up....Yes, you can read that with sarcasm).

After sleeping on it, I realized something.......I DON'T NEED THEIR STINKIN' BOX!! =)


Is it just me......Or is it getting even darker in here?! I hate being in the dark.

Monday, January 07, 2008


Wow, that was a nice surprise.....I googled the number 22 and actually came up with something kinda purdy! This was the conversation in my head prior to finding this image:

Well.....Looks like another LID anniversary is coming up tomorrow. Guess that means that I better post something on my blog. Gosh, I've been too lazy to even do a post about Christmas or our trip to Disney or to take a picture of our tree (yes, it's STILL up so I might just throw one atcha in February, so stay tuned)....I'm such a loser blogger. I'm never going to find a cute 22 to post. It was soooooo much easier when we were in the single digits....Ahhh, the good old days when we thought we were just a cruisin' thru the wait....sigh. I think google images had waaaay cuter images for single digit numbers. I guess I could create something on that Rock whatever the heck it's called site....Ahh, too lazy. I'll just try google. BINGO!! Well....That's so colorful....Look at all those happy colors.

Doubt I will be able to find a cute number 23 for next month (said like Eyeore).

Tuesday, January 01, 2008

HAPPY 2008!

We got up at 5:45 this morning to head to the airport for our flight home. It's now 10:50 and we're STILL at the airport because our flight is delayed.....The reason, the crew needs more rest. Well, join the the flippin' club people. Soooooo...... Seriously, do you think they were out partying last night for New Year's Eve....What is the rule for that? They can't drink how many hours prior to flying? I need to google that info after I'm done here. I'm not a fan of flying so this is VERY unsettling news for me. Did I mention that I googled how often my airlines has crashed? It's probably why I read Rumor Queen....I like to know things....The good, the bad and the ugly.
I guess the weather in Michigan is as cold and frightening as ever. Why don't I live in a sunny and warm state? Why couldn't we just win the lottery and have tons of money and we could live any place our little hearts desired? I miss my animals (especially my little Luna). I will leave sunny Florida to see my babies and return to the freezing cold.....If the flippin' crew ever wakes up!!!!!!! Talk to you on the flip side.....Hopefully! =)