31 Mar 2007

The Dreaded Paint and a Surprise.

Firstly I want to send huge enormous thank you's to Doris, Dan and Daisy for the lovely card that arrived in the mail today accompanied by 2 packets of Smarties that just delighted Lily to bits. Thank you so much it was really sweet of you.

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Now on to the baby's room and the dreaded paint job.

The paint job complete with some rather fetching blue painters tape.

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The painters came back on Thursday and finished the room and once it was completed I sort of like it but it still didn't do it for me. I then realised that the room was bottom heavy and needed some life in its upper portion. I grabbed a couple of colourful things and asked Jacob to hold them against the wall while I looked. It really helped. So being me and having to have everything done yesterday I set to work painting some shelves in the same colours as the stripes and hit Pottery Barn Kids for a rug and window treatments.

Chopsticks Rug.

Yesterday Lily had a play date at a friends and then the older of the 2 girls wanted to come home with us so she did. They decided they wanted to have a bash at painting so I let them put a coat of paint on the shelves.In the time that it took me to turn around and put the camera down Caro had managed to knock the paint can over and we had a huge mess. No biggie! If you let kids do big people jobs you have to expect big people messes. We cleaned it up and they carried on. It wasn't the best paint job ever, but nothing that a little sandpaper couldn't fix.

Right Before Disaster Struck.

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So now I have everything except the artwork and some knick-knackeria sorted out for the room but I refuse to put it all together as a room yet since it is going to be occupied by my cousin for a couple of weeks and it is just wrong to let someone else christen the room. Sorry Stephen but you know I am a fruitcake. I am starting to feel good about it now and can't wait to get it finished and put all the stuff in it's rightful place and go to town dressing it up. Once that is done I will take some decent photos of it.

I will post my packing list and gift list a little closer to the time unless someone needs them now in which case I will email them to you.

29 Mar 2007

This Time v's Last Time

Going to China this time will be very different from our last trip there in 2003.
Here is a list of random thoughts in no particular order.

Last time we were first time parents.
This time we will have BTDT

This time we will have 2 schedules to contend with. Lily's and her Mei Mei's

We will confirm our flights out of China ourselves 48 hours prior to departure!
Last time we found out our seats from Guanzhou to Hong Kong had been sold out from under us and we had 15 minutes to pack and get to the airport. (not fun)

We will probably spend a lot of time ordering room service just so that we can get to know each other and not be surrounded by people all the time so that we can start to bond. We did this last time and it was wonderful, for us.

We won't be first time parents who carry the worlds largest diaper bag with them EVERYWHERE they go. We dragged this monster bag with us just to go downstairs. Hey, we were new at this and wanted to be prepared.

I won't spend weeks stressing about the gifts to take to China. I have so many lists about them now it will be a breeze. I can share the lists if you want them.

We won't pack quite so much stuff this time around. Everything you could possibly need is sold in China and the hotels all have laundry service.

We won't be quite as nervous this time as we have first hand knowledge that WACAP will handle everything and very well.

We will buy another stroller when we are there but this time we WILL take a sling or carrier of some type. New mummy arms are incredibly painful.

We will enjoy China this time and not be totally fixated on the adoption process.

We will take a suitcase filled with snacks and chocolate. I really missed my fix of the brown stuff. We will also take cup a soups again as we are not the most adventurous eaters. Anything with a head and eyes attached makes me YAK.

We will be taking a possible entourage with us. Hopefully my dad and Jeanne and definitely my cousin Andrea. They all know the rules with regard to the baby and they are fine with them. We can't imagine experiencing such an important time in our lives with out them. I know alot of people think this is wrong but it works for us.

When we get home we will put ourselves under house arrest for 6 weeks. This was something our agency recommended although they didn't call it house arrest. If you want to see Chopstick you have to come to us and then you leave and she stays put. It gives her a sense of home. We did it with Lily and it is hard cos you don't get to do so much but it helped her get acquainted with her new home really fast. Lily was a really easy baby so we will see with Chopstick.

We will brace for the worst and hope for the best with regard to grieving and attachement. Last time we expected a hard time and prepared for a hard time and were very pleasantly surprised.

We will have to buy another suitcase to fit all our loot in for the return journey, again. There will be more shopping this time around than last time.

We will hopefully get to meet some of you since there is a large group of us in close LID proximity and the way they are splitting up months who knows who will be there at the same time.

We will be just as incredibly giddy and excited this time.

There won't be a "last hurrah" for us in Hongkong this time around as we will have Lily with us but we will probably go to Beijing first instead.

When we leave our hands will be very full and our hearts will be overflowing with love.

P.S. I had all these cute little graphics for every thought and blogger said, "no way baby" and dumped every single one of them, the bas***d.

28 Mar 2007

A New Perspective And YUCK

Yesterday in the mail we received our new 171-h visa approval. It took exactly 14 days from the day we mailed the application and the huge wad a cash required for this little ditty, (why the heck they cannot be renewed or extended beats me). Anyhoo we have decided to look at the wait differently now and if things go at the same snail like rate we have another 6-8 months ahead of us which was the original time line. So we are going to act as if this was our first visa and now we are starting the new and very short wait. This sounds great in theory but we will see if it sticks.

Onwards to the YUCK part of this post. The painter came yesterday and painted 90% of the baby's room and I HATE it. I don't just dislike it or feel kind of off about it I HATE it and I never use that word. When I told Jacob he looked panic stricken and told me to go back upstairs and tell Carlos. I did and Carlos suggested I pull out the bedding and leave it out in the room and see if it grows on me, if not they will start a new paint job on Thursday. So far it hasn't grown. I had such hopes for this room and it looks bloody awful. I will post pictures when it is finished be it like this or some new fandangled idea. Fortunately it is only paint. Lily and Jacob both love it. I'm off upstairs to see if anything has grown.

27 Mar 2007

13 months

We have now been logged in with the CCAA for 13 months.

We were talking about the wait yesterday and agreed that it is definitely easier this time around thanks to Miss Lily. Some days I just think that this will be a perpetual wait for the rest of my life and that nothing is going to transpire. I know that is really quite daft because we will get our daughter but it just seems so very distant and unreal. The painting of the nursery is going to happen today that might make things seem more realistic.

When you add in the time frame for paper chasing we have been going at this for ever.
In a bright and sunny note this is month 13, we have 13 months behind us and these are thirteen months that we will never have to wait again. And this is it folks. NO more paper pregnancies for us, we are done and to steal a quote from my friend
Lori's hubby Marc, "our paper tubes are being stapled shut!"

26 Mar 2007

This Day Started In A Hurry

Yikes. We overslept today. I have an early appointment on Mondays and always get up at 6.00am. Not so today. I turned on the alarm clock last night and hit the hay. To my horror when I opened my sleepy little eyes this morning my clock said 7.54. I just lay there staring at it thinking something must be wrong and then I realised I could hear a fuzzy sound coming from the radio. A little person had apparently been playing with it and had turned down the volume and managed to set the dial between two stations. So my day started in a hurry and as you know I don't do mornings. I had 16 minutes to get up, showered and out of the house. It was a nightmare but I did it. Once I came home from work I headed back into the shower and started my day over again at a more normal pace! It worked I feel normal again. And here is the post that I was going to do before work.

Here are some photos of our day yesterday. We took Lily to the Youth Fair. It was awful: there were millions of people, smelly greasy food everywhere and loud obnoxious carnies yelling all over the place. I hated every second of it and we were there for 5 hours. I owe my father the biggest thank you for taking me to the fair every single year and riding all the rides with me. I never knew how awful it was for him but now I do. Jacob and I took turns riding the rides with her with me begging for the easy ones. But I sucked it up and we stayed and Lily had a blast. So much fun in fact that she was in bed asleep by 7.05 and didn't wake up today until I started crashing into things in my panic this morning.

This juggler lady was awesome and after Lily came running to me she said, "thats it run back to your mummy", as opposed to the normal, is that your mum. Turns out she also has an adopted daughter. We ended up chatting to her for about 5 minutes and she let Lily try out her equipment.

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On top of the world.....with me.

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Zoom Zoom.

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Roller coasting...Lily size

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The DO NOT TOUCH THE ANIMALS sign isn't much good when you can't actually read!

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Lily Doolittle talking to the ducks. When she squeaked at these ducks they would "talk" back. We got stuck here for ages whilst she held court.

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24 Mar 2007

From That To This

I have not been in Chopsticks room today. I started to clean it up yesterday but Jacob asked me why since the sanding of the drywall makes an even bigger mess. The contractors doing this work know what a freak I am as they are the ones that gutted and rebuilt this house 18 months ago so they hoovered the room before they left!
So we will be going from that ugly mess to this ( look down for photos) in 2 more days time. I have picked everything out but am still undecided about the painting. I cannot decide whether to go with green and cream stripes under the chair rail or pink, cream and green stripes under the chair rail. The top half will be a creamy color. Decisions, decisions. But it is only paint so if I don't like it Carlos will just have to redo it.
I can't wait for it to be done and Jacob even said that maybe this will actually speed things up. My cousins will be in there in another week so I won't be doing anything other than the paint until after they leave.

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23 Mar 2007

Under Construction

No, no, not the blog that would take some techy prowess. I keep telling myself it's going to happen ever since new blogger sucked me into it's vortex but apparently it's not. Our house is under construction. Well not the whole thing just one room but it's awful. ( my dad and his wife are rolling on the floor laughing at me grumbling about one room cos they have just gutted and rebuilt a 400 yr old house and this to them is a day off!)

We have finally got to the bottom of the hurricane damage from 2 years ago with the insurance company and we are now having the work done. Most of the stuff we had to do without them cos things like rooves are basically quite helpful. As this was cosmetic we left it since it is in a room we don't even use.

So today I had men with messy boots traipsing in and out, up and down, to and fro for hours and they are coming back to do it all again on Monday. Happy, Happy, Joy, Joy ?! In some aspects it is quite fun cos this will be Chopsticks room and I have all the paint picked out and the idea is ready to go but I am a self confessed clean freak and I am very obsessive about mess and things being in their rightful place and basically this is giving me a nervous twitch and an itchy brain. So right now I have to breathe deeply cos this mess is my life.

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Tonight was our Mandarin class and it was great. Lily is really picking it up fast and I love seeing all the children yipping away in Chinese. After the lesson the kids got to play and we were all taught how to make dumplings and then we all sat down and ate. It was so much fun and dumplings are one of Lily's all time favourites and now I know how to make them. I am not a great cook, I cook cos we need to eat but I do not enjoy it. But move over Yan cos I can cook too now!

22 Mar 2007

Just A Glimpse

The other morning as I walked Lily into her school the teacher who always stands outside to greet the kiddies commented on how Lily is always laughing. She really does laugh all the time and she is not the only one. Here is a glimpse into my days with Lily and why I am always cracking up.

Today it has rained cats and dogs all day here and so she went to school in her raincoat and wellies and carried her matching umbrella. I told her that if it was raining when it was time to come home she must put her raincoat on and I would meet her with her brolly. I didn't dare let her keep that in school for fear of her using it as a sword or something. It was raining so I met her and handed her back her umbrella. She put it up and we walked to the car that was parked just across the street, (that took forever as she had to jump in all the puddles that we encountered en route). Once we were at the car I said, OK sweetie put your umbrella down, and with that I turned to unlock the car and out of the corner of my eye I see her brolly float by me into the street and attack a brand new Honda Accord that was still sporting it's temporary tag. I yelled to Lily to stay there and don't move and dove into traffic to retrieve said brolly before the driver of the brand spanking new set of wheels had a clue that he had been accosted. When I got back to the car I asked her what she was thinking and she just looked at me and said, you are the one that told me to put it down! Yepper I suppose I did but that wasn't what I meant dearie. Never tell a kid to put down there umbrella, to them that means put it on the floor! Hubby just informed me that I should have said, close your umbrella not put it down.....hmmm, now that makes sense.

Act 2. Tonight Lily asked if she could serve herself ice cream so I said of course. She stood on a chair at the island and scooped some into a bowl. Then she climbed down and somehow managed to flip the bowl over and it's contents landed on the chair seat. She looked momentarily panicked and said it's OK I can fix it and starts scooping it back in the bowl with her hands. I tried so hard to use my stern voice and say her name but it was all just so comical that I burst out laughing and we both ended up sitting on the kitchen floor in fits of giggles. And now even typing it I am cracking up!

You see I try to be stern but she is just so darned funny. Well not her but the things that she does. I love my funny girl with all my heart and she just gets better by the day and if you don't believe me ask her daddy.

Talking of Daddy's I can now say that mine is doing better. We spoke tonight again and he is feeling and looking (according to others) so much better. I finally breathed tonight for the first time since Sunday and I think Jeanne (his wife) might start breathing again soon. And he thanks everyone for their wishes. Lily made him a card and she put a little pocket on it and put a red heart in to it and told me that was for when Grandpa needed some Lily love. He said he would need a lot of that. See she is unbelievably sweet as well as comical.

21 Mar 2007


One of Jacobs closest friends, ( not quite sure that is what guys call their buds but I am not a guy) has recently started a new hobby and it has to do with garden ornaments or garden art I think is what he calls it (again, a guy thing). Anyway he sent Lily 2 little ladybugs for her to paint and paint them she did. Actually Jacob did one and she did the other and I bet you can't tell which one was hers....wink wink Kick. She used special paint that is weather proof and now they are outside with Poki Homoki the frog.Yes I know Poki Homoki is freakish but he belonged to my friend Nancy and he has history to go with his freakishness. Thank you Bucko so much Lily loves her ladybugs.

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Thanks for all the q's regarding my father, he is doing OK at this point. I spoke to him yesterday and he promised to behave and be a good patient.(yeah right) He is in good hands because the cousin that stayed with me at Christmas and her mum are both nurses so he can't get away with to much cos we send in the cavalry and then act dumb as if we have no idea why they went to see him. Of course he reads this so now I am in deep doo doo.

20 Mar 2007

Another job, jobbed

This morning Jacob and I had our fingerprint appointment. The office that we have to go to is jampacked with people regardless of what time you go and you wait for hours and I always need a shower once we get home because it is so nasty in there. We had a 10.15 appointment and I even made arrangements to have someone pick up Lily from school at 2pm cos I know this place is S-L-O-W. When we arrived the it was reasonably quiet and we were in and out in 40 minutes! We were so impressed. The Miami UCIS (or whatever they are calling themselves this week) is currently taking 90 days to process the I600a with no exceptions, or at least that is what they are telling people over the phone however a friend of ours received hers in 14 days! We will wait with baited breath.
Since things moved along alot faster than we anticipated we headed off to do some shopping and found new bamboo blinds for the living room and then I found sheets for the baby's bed. I think Jacob nearly fainted when I bought them even though I asked him if he would be OK cos he is so superstitous and doesn't think we should get anything until we receive her referral. And talking of "her" if you have followed this journey for any time you know that Lily chose the name Molly for her sister but it seems that her name has changed and I am very happy about the replacement. I am not spilling the beans this time around she will still be known as Chopstick to us. (Yes that is why we are called Eggrolls and Chopsticks) my mum named Lily, Eggroll and that is all we ever called her until her referral since my mum also was very superstitous.

18 Mar 2007

Happy St Pattys (part deux)

Today we really celebrated Saint Patricks day by going to a St Pattys celebration for kids. We drove just over 100 miles to get to this place but I have to say it was worth every single, "are we there yet?". This is the kind of madness that we do all the time so the drive really wasn't an issue. The festival was brilliant but I can't say that it had anything to do with St Patricks day other than the very occasional shamrock and pot of gold however they did have a rock wall, paddle boats, bounce houses and the whole thing was set up amid a village of yesteryear. If the kiddos wore green or dressed like fairy's or pirates they got a prize so needless to say we were accompanied by a green fairy.
The big hit of the day was this huge pit filled with foam. Frankly it looked like so much fun I was a tad cheesed off that it was just for the kids. Lily didn't want to try it at first but then she changed her mind and we couldn't get her out. I am posting a kazillion photos and videos cos it really was one of our more eventful fundays.
If any of you live in the South Florida area I highly suggest this website,
www.sfparenting.com It is for a magasine that is distributed for free and it tells you all the local attractions and coming events plus it has some great articles. Todays event was sponsored by them.

Our Pirate Fairy

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Do you think she was having fun?

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We want to buy one of these for the pool!

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Damn rock walls, she loves em.

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Entering the foam pit quite gingerly at first

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Getting much braver

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Having the time of her life (and cracking us up!)

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And finally Lily and Mummy before the foam bath.

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On a down note we came home all very happy to get word that my Father isn't very well. I know it is nothing to serious but you don't know what kind of patient my dad is. On top of that the message also said that Nanny Rene tripped over her walking stick and landed in a big heap so she isn't so great either. The one who is really suffering is Jeanne who is playing Florence Nightingale to all. (I hate being so far away from home sometimes) Jacobs first word was, GO! But it isn't really necessary and my dad would be in an awful mood since he is always so active and chipper and he can't be that way at the moment. We hope you are feeling better really fast Daddy.

17 Mar 2007

Happy St Patty's Day....not exactly

Happy Saint Patricks Day to all. Only in Miami would the parade "for all things green" be held last week and the big celebration held the day after the actual day, but what can I say. In this town all the holidays last about 3 weeks anyway but usually something happens on the actual day. Not this time.

So we decided today would be a great day for a playdate so we invited Lily's friend "S" to come over and play. They were both dressed in green but that only lasted a few minutes because they morphed into Disney princesses moments after "S" arrived. These 2 are school chums and have hit it off from day one. We went to feed the horses because "S'''s mummy isn't to keen on them and with me there at least "S" was able to actually touch them. They had a great time and it ended with huge floods of tears when it was time for "S" to go home. Lily climbed into the back of their car and gave her the biggest hug and kiss and told her she could come back another day. I love watching Lily when she has friends over to play as I use it as an opportunity to see how she will feel about sharing her stuff once her Mei Mei arrives. Of course it will be alot different then as her Mei Mei will be hers.

Even Princesses have to snack.

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Cinderella gets her groove on

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16 Mar 2007

It's All Chinese To Me.

It was our second Chinese lesson tonight and I remembered the camera. Lily got stage fright tonight for a while but then she warmed up. This class is so much fun and you actually learn things that will be useful however I am sure I will never get the tones right and instead of saying something sensible I am sure I will tell some poor unsuspecting soul that I love their undergarments or something just as ridiculous. Lily is apparently doing very well and has great pronunciation. We even got homework this week.......yikes. All this for $5 a week. Actually the money is optional but you can put it in a love box????? I like to feel the love so I participate.

The little guy in this video went to nursery school with Lily and the 2 of them were inseparable from the second they met. Even the staff used to say, God help anyone who comes between those 2. He is such a lovely little chap.

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She can do it, why can't I??

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These are the Chinese phonics sung in a little song. I know the alphabet in English doesn't that count for something?

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15 Mar 2007

A post for Grandpa

My father does not have a sweet tooth however the man does have a passion for fresh cream and he will eat anything if it is covered, and I mean covered, in cream. He is genuinely disappointed when he finds someone that doesn't share his passion for the stuff and always says the same thing which is, oh well more for me.

A couple of days ago for dessert we had strawberries and I asked Lily if she wanted cream on them. She detests whipped cream in a can or cool whip but I offered her some fresh cream anyway. To my surprise she tasted it and liked it and now the rest is history. Now I must offer an excuse for her table manners here as they are plain old awful but it had a lot to do with every time she put food in her mouth I asked her a question so she answered me. She does not nomally carry on like this at the table.....I promise.

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The nectar of the Gods

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Somebody call Miss Manners....we have gone to the dogs!

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14 Mar 2007

Out Of The Mouths Of Babes

Lily has a new passion, handstands. She can't quite do them yet but she is trying and trying with her usual zest. She does them everywhere and I am starting to fear for her noggin. I caught her throwing herself off of the couch in an attempt to stay upside down longer. (eeek this kid is so determined) So we have decided to enroll her in gymnastics and her and I went yesterday to check out a couple of schools. The first one was Tumblebees and I loved it and so did she but we just didn't want to sign her up at the first one we saw so we went to investigate another school that has been around for at least 20 years. Once we arrived a"O's" the first thing I noticed when we walked in was how incredibly dark it was and as my eyes were trying to focus I was hit by a really hideous odour. It smelt terrible in there. I was looking for an office or someone to help when Lily pipes up in her usual stage whisper, Mummy it stinks in here and they probably have cockroaches here to. Well that was loud enough for everyone to hear so we just made our way back out of the door PRONTO. I had to laugh 'cos it was really nasty in there and there was no way Lily was going to be attending that school.....not that they would have had her after that comment!
So Lily will be starting a gymnastics programme soon and will also be going there for a couple of weeks in the summer, along with horse riding camp. She also wants to go to swimming camp. That is what we used to call her swimming lessons. Lily has been able to swim since she was 18 months old but each year she gets a week of swimming lessons to refine her skills. This year she will refine her diving skills.......yet another eekk. But since she does all this stuff I want her to do it properly so that hopefully she has less chance of injuring herself and giving us a huge cardiac event.
I have asked the social worker what the code word was in our home study report that she used to say, "send them an active one" and she laughed. This time around I begged her to leave the code word out but only time will tell. In all honesty, both of us would rather have a bouncy active child than a shy, quiet one. The CCAA truly does match so perfectly.
I tried to post this yesterday but Blogger must have taken a vaction day. It still isn't being very cooperative today as I see I have 2 different fonts and I cannot change it and I have only used one....Oh well.

12 Mar 2007

Whose Idea Was This

I am not a happy camper people. Who had this bright idea to change the clocks a month early? I understand for those of you living in a cold and dreary climate who are loving the fact that you now have some daylight but I don't like it. I love the nights when it is dark by 7 and the temps are getting cooler. Since we don't really have seasons here I suppose the dark evenings at least con my body into thinking it is winter.

Last night we suffered the same dose of reality shared by all parents in this country, a little voice saying, are you sure it is my bedtime it is still sunny outside. Lily has some serious blackout shades in her room for this time of year but they don't cover the whole house. We even let her stay up a little later than usual. She didn't make a fuss and she went to bed with her usual readiness.

However this morning as the alarm clock sang its chirpy little brains out at 6.30 this morning I wanted to chuck it at the wall or out of the window. It was pitch black outside. I don't do mornings when it is bright and sunny so how I am I expected to function in the dark....huh? Then I realised that Lily was still fast asleep, but I expected it after something that happened after she went to bed but more on that in a seccy. I let her go as long as possible then I went in to wake her up. She groaned and looked at me through very sleepy eyes and said, mummy, its the middle of the night I haven't had any sleep yet why are you waking me up? That killed me, I hated to force her up but the school department probably couldn't care less. She got up and I carried her downstairs where she instantly woke up and was her normal Lily self.

Can't we just leave the clocks alone and let nature take its course. It naturally gets lighter later in the evening anyway why do we have to screw with things? EEKKK here comes the hot summer weather........barfola.

The thing that happened last night to Lily unfolded like this: we had put her to bed and read her story and Jacob was watching the telly and I was blogging when we heard her crying and I mean really crying. We calmly walked upstairs (that is code for took the stairs 2 at a time in my case and 3 at a time in Jacobs case) and walked calmly ( again more code for ran as fast as we could) into her room. She was sitting in her bed wailing that Bunny was tied to her finger. When she goes to sleep she plays with Bunny's' ears and they are now getting threadbare. One of the threads had wrapped around her little pinky and was making her finger BLUE, I am not kidding about the blue part. We have no idea how long she had been like that before she panicked but it must have been a while. Jacob hit panic mode and I stayed calm. This a reversal of all things normal in our lives but I am really calm under pressure, him not so much because it was Lily. I carried her to the bathroom where Jacob is brandishing a pair of big scissors and she is screaming. I pick up a little pair of nail scissors and try to unwind Bunny but she was crying so hard. I finally got it unwound enough that I had room to maneuver the scissors and cut it off! We comforted her for a while and put her to bed in our bed but she still didn't go to sleep until after 9pm which is late for her. This added to the mornings sleepys. Her finger is of course just fine and Bunny is missing a few threads but that serves him right.

11 Mar 2007

All Better

Lily is all better today, thank goodness and thank you for all your wishes. Due to the fact that she was still a little floppy we put Sunday Funday on hold and laid low with her. She was playing hide and seek this morning for ages and it was just hysterical. We all like to think our kiddies are super bright and Lily is a smart girl but then she pulls off something like this and you are left scratching your head!

Nope, I cant see that big blue robe (with a lump in it )in the middle of the floor!

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This evening we went to Cracker Barrel for dinner. Finally one has opened in our area. I don't even like the food but the shop is so much fun. Lily agreed.

Trying on an Easter Hat at the Cracker Barrel Shop

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Sizing up a rocking chair and a checkers game, at the same place

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10 Mar 2007

Under The Weather

This morning I went off to work and left Lily and Jacob to their own devices. I came home after 2 hours (and on a Saturday to boot) to hear all about the tales and how they had eaten lunch out. They had a great time and only Jacob could have fit all that stuff into a short time.

Not long after I got home Lily announced that her tummy hurt and that was the end of the day as we knew it. The poor kid has spent the rest of the day in the bathroom. I don't know if it was she ate or just a bug but she handled it well and with a sense of humour. By the time she went to bed she was doing better. I was just thinking yesterday how lucky we are that she is healthy and never seems to catch what is going around....managed to jinx that big time.

9 Mar 2007

Mandarin 101

This afternoon Lily and I had our first Mandarin lesson and I learnt so much: It is not going to be easy, it is the hardest language to learn, Lily did so much better than I, it could be years before I can say anything meaningful, other than I love you and finally it is going to be fun as being in a class with my nutty kid is a hoot.

I forgot to take the camera, yes that is pretty shocking I know. I would have loved to share some photos of all the little ones singing in Chinese and jabbering away so it will have to wait until next week.

The lady who teaches it is the mother of one of Lily's classmates from nursery school last year and she has a very informal gathering in her home made up of her friends and their little ones. I had a glimpse into Lilys world today from 2 different angles. The first being that I was the different one. Every single person there was Chinese and I was not. Everybody looked like her and not me. I thought it was great to get the insight. And secondly, the workbooks that we use are all chinese so they referred to all things that are usual in everyday life. One sentence that we learnt to say was, my mummys hair is long and black. "T" being the diplomat changed Lilys word to blonde. But there again I saw how she has a different perpsective, not good or bad just different.
After the lesson we all had juice and a snack and then it was playtime. This was lovely as the kiddies continued to sing their new song, in Chinese. Lily was a little bit lost at first but I promised her we could get through it together and when we go to China for her baby sister she will be able to comfort her on Gotcha Day, that pleased her so much and she sucked it up and tried really hard.

Lilys first lessons from Mandarin Class.

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Oh and this little number keeps appearing all over the place so I gave it shot. It's quite fun and in my case very accurate about a few things.

8 Mar 2007

The Accidental Painting......gulp.

A few years ago Jacob had a Harley. Not just a little bitty girlie one but a big arse serious one.The one in the photo is not his but it was this model and in those colours however Jacobs had spokes, louder and bigger pipes and about 50 million other chromed accessories.( I am too darned lazy to go crawling into the cupboard under the stairs to find the rubbermaid with the photos in) He had that thing all dressed up and loved it very much. I loved it too. He had his first bike at 16 but that love affair ended very fast after he had a really bad accident and nearly had to have his leg amputated....Mama said no more!

So zoom forwards a few years and the bike is in the garage which had a better alarm system on it than our house because H.D. theft is a big business. We had spent the morning doing yardwork which in Jacobland means chop it down to the bare minimum so that you don't have to do it again for months and he had driven off to the dump to get rid of all the yard clippings. I meandered into the garage and noticed a lamp that I had been meaning to spray paint. It was an old halogen that matched nothing in the house so I thought since it worked fine that maybe it could come back into the house if it was a different colour. I found an old towel and placed it on the floor and thought I would just test the paint on the base of the lamp since I was busy doing yardwork. Well, the paint went on well and I stood back to admire it and thought, hmm, I wonder how it will look when it is done. So, being me and not paying attention to anything other than the project at hand I started to spray the pole thingy. I used large sweeping motions and went around and around the stupid lamp. ( note the lamp is stupid, it couldnt be me right?) I then took a step back off of the towel to admire my handy work and when I went to move my foot was stuck to a tacky floor. (stupid paint didn't remember to land on the towel). As I looked down I realised what I had done and with break neck speed I snapped my neck around to check, Betsy, (yes, the bike had a name) and I went cold with fear. It was covered, so too was everything else inthe garage including the wall, some tools, the lawn mower.....you get the picture.
I immediately closed the garage door and started to wipe the paint off. This particular paint had to have an acrylic finish put on it so I had a chance of getting it off if I was fast. That was when I realised how much paint was on the bike, oh yes, it was in every little chromed detail and all over his leathers as well. I panicked and started smearing the paint around cos it was not coming off easily. After about 20 minutes I heard Jacobs car pull into the driveway. I knew he would head into the garage first cos he was filthy and wouldn't enter through the front door so I ran to the side yard and begged him to go in the front door. He asked me what I had done and I declared innocence and begged him to just go and shower. He would not relent and finally I confessed. He ran into the garage to me promising I could fix it. He walked out and jokingly picked me up by my shirt at the neck and held me against the wall and said, fix it woman and then walked off. I swear he was smiling when he did that and he came back a few minutes later and started polishing chrome. Up until the day we sold the house we never did manage to get the paint off the floor and the walls. Thank god he has a sense of humour....I think you need one being married to me. Jacob seems to remember that day very clearly, it comes up in conversation alot around here but he always tells the story with a huge smile and his head shaking back and forth as if to say....you, my dear wife, are a moron. As for the lamp, it went to the dump shortly after!
Ahhhh, life in Dawnland! Now youv'e read it fess up!

7 Mar 2007

This, That and The Other

Tonight I have a few random things to yip about but nothing of great interest so be forewarned.

We re-filed for our i-600a today and Jacob had to fill out the forms as he is a citizen of this country unlike myself. Now Jacob remains calm under every circumstance known to man with the exception of something to do with Lily where she is hurt or sick, or as I learnt last time we filled this form out, filing forms with UCIS. So I joked with him to get it right and we started. Well wouldn't you know it by the 2nd line he had screwed it up so back to the printer for a new form. Off we go again and whammo, this time we made it to line number 5 before he screwed that form up too. At this point I decided to fill it out and just have him sign it. Well what do you know, the first q' was his name and I entered it backwards so it was back to the drawing board again. Yes we did finally get it but not before laughing uncontrollably at our incompetence. And to think, they allow us to adopt........odd, very odd!

We are not good parents to pets. Our tadpoles all died this week. We had special ceremonies for all of them and then flushed them down the loo with Lily having that honour after she said a little prayer. It was really cute. She thinks they have gone to be in fish heaven and that they will meet Nemo. We have one that turned into a frog and he is swimming around in his new digs very happily, or at least he was last time I checked.

Lily and I went bike riding tonight and she is doing really well and only occasionally falls off now. When she landed in a heap tonight she asked me to take her knee pad off and she immediately put it on backwards on her calf. I was somewhat perplexed until she explained that when she falls off the pedal whacks her in the calf and it hurts more than bashing her knee. Clever kid this one.

I have been accused most of my married life of living in Dawnland. It's a nice place to live as everyone is kind and sweet and nobody would ever take advantage of you or even think of being mean. My sisters hubby used to say that she lived in Sallyland so maybe it is a family trait. I live in the moment and sometimes I don't think things through as I am caught in the moment. For example I noticed the other day that our tile floor is looking a bit grim in the grout department and instead of being antique white grout it is starting to look like antique underwear. I was contemplating the best way to clean it and had this absolute brain wave. I would use the pressure cleaner. Yeah yeah smarty pants, I realize now that it was an atrocious idea but for that minute it seemed like the perfect solution. Thankfully Jakey was home and roared with laughter at my Einstein idea and then I came back to the real world. So I was wondering if anyone else suffers from their own world syndrome.. That isn't the worst thing I have ever done, the worst would be the time I spray painted Jakeys Harley Davidson by mistake. I will confess the tale as long as you guys share your stupid stories too.

Oh and one other little tiny thing. I have always known I have OCD tendancies but yesterday I got my hair cut and it now has loads of layers and it is making me bonkers. I used to be able to keep my hair perfectly straight with a blow dryer but now it has all these bits that misbehave and wave all over the place. My symmetrical, well behaved hair is no more and I can't deal with it. ARGHHHH, I need order on my head not bedlam.

6 Mar 2007

I'm Not Ready For This Yet!

Lily's class at preschool has been making phonebooks, if they want to, and in it they write the phone numbers of all their classmates. Lily finished hers a week or so ago but the teacher has put it up on the wall to use as an example so she doesn't have it with her which I am starting to realise is a good thing and here is why.

On Sunday evening we had just had dinner and I was in the kitchen with Jacob and Lily was in the living room and the phone rang and Jakey got it and I heard him say, Who is calling? The next thing he takes the phone and hands it to Lily. A little girl in her class had rung her and she was over the moon about it. She talked and talked, I don't think the other girl got a word in edge ways. After the phone call she bounced around saying, I had a phone call, it was for me. She gets a lot of phone calls from family members but I guess it isn't the same as having one of her friends call and only want to talk to her. She was so giddy. I, on the other hand, am not so giddy. I didn't think the phone calls would start until she was a teenager.

Oh, I grabbed the video camera and filmed her yipping to her friend:

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Referrals Are Here

This months referrals have been sent out and sadly for those of us who are still waiting the CCAA only matched 11 days worth for the whole month. So we are now at October 24 2006. This is getting very annoying to say the least and at this rate we could have another year to wait. Mind boggling to think that when we started this process again the wait was a mere 6 months and we purposely held on to our paperwork so that Lily would be a little bit older. (at this rate she will be geriatric)
Time to send UCIS a big fat check for yet another visa application for the little one.

5 Mar 2007

Chinese Cultural Festival

Vroom....that's where the day went!

Yesterday we went to a Chinese Cultural Festival at the Fruit and Spice Park. It was so hot again, we are suddenly having high temperatures of 90 degrees (almost time for me to crawl back under my rock until winter comes back) but we still managed to have fun and Jacob and Lily found what they thought to be a wonderful way to cool down. All Asian countries were represented and offered all sorts of crafts and information. Lily had to get a passport stamped for every country she entered..........she filled hers!

Not particularly Asian but fun!

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Dragon puppet show

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3 Mar 2007

Chocolate and Chihuly

Thanks for all your comments on the sleep deprivation. Giving Lily a nightlight in her bathroom worked and she took herself to pee last night, (she banged the door so I knew she was up and I of course snuck into her room a few minutes later to check she was OK) but she didn't come into us....progress.

Today we went to a chocolate festival at Fairchild Tropical Garden and it was wonderful. Not only was the
chocolate festival going on but there is also a huge Chihuly exhibit there as well. Lily was more impressed with glasswork than she was with the chocolate which truly surprised me. I thought they were both fantastic but you just cannot eat glass! We had a really fabulous time and tasted our way through the gardens. She took part in a scavenger hunt and managed to complete it and won a little ladybug for her prize. It was record breaking hot today which is not what you want at a chocolate festival but melted chocolate tastes just as good, ask Lily.


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So incredible

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Full Mouth
(BTW Lily has a walk in closet full of clothes but this is one of her favourites, hence she is ALWAYS in it)

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Ummm, that was tasty.

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This little piggy went snarf snarf snarf

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