Monday, December 31, 2007

Christmas

We were off doing the Family Christmas run the last 10 days or so. We had the chance on the 22nd to visit a good friend who is battling for the second time, the fight against leukemia. Her attitude and faith are incredible!

We then spend time with Cara's family, including a joint birthday celebration for her and her youngest sister. We did the murder mystery supper. The meal was awesome, and the mystery was a lot of fun. There were some awkward moments, such as when my mother-in-law was apparently nibbling on Shannon's husbands ear, or when my wife was apparently having an affair with the exact same person(soap opera anyone?!). But it was still a fun experience, and was a good time to be goofy and enjoy everyone's company.

Cara's middle sister and her husband have a 2 year old. She is a delight, and having a kid around for Christmas brings a freshness and excitement to everyone, so it was fun to watch her enjoying everything. She is a happy, boundless energy bundle of joy.

Then on Boxing day down to Calgary for a visit with my family. That was nice. Also got to take in Murray Hatfield's Magic and Miracles magic show. A decent show, and anytime I can see decent live magic, it is worth it.

(Picture of young girl playing DDR)
The theme for my gifts this year seemed to focus on reading, I got a bunch of books, love that. Also got another DDR dance pad(if you don't know what DDR is, you are missing out on a fun aspect of life- it is a game where the screen scrolls with a pattern of arrows you have to follow by stepping on the dance pad in the right pattern. I have no dance ability, but it is a fun activity and good exercise.)

There were other gifts, and I feel blessed by family and friends who gave thoughtful and practical gifts.

The only downer out of the trip has been yet another visit to Calgary where I have been unable to connect with the Vietnamese church I pastored a number of years ago. I miss that group so much. A part of my heart still remains there, special times with special people.

The New Year is gonna be an interesting adventure, hopefully by the end of it we will be gifted with at least a referral picture of our daughter to be, but it isn't gonna be boring until then either.

Upcoming adventures will include KungFu Randy: The adventure begins(I will be trying to start some sort of martial arts classes this year) and Cerebral Randy-I am working on trying to get some writing done and published.

Happy New Year to all and to all happy blog surfing!

Plurals

Thanks Mum for a fun forward :)

Ode to Plurals


We'll begin with a box, and the plural is boxes,
But the plural of ox becomes oxen, not oxes.
One fowl is a goose, but two are called geese,
Yet the plural of moose should never be meese.
You may find a lone mouse or a nest full of mice,
Yet the plural of house is houses, not hice.

If the plural of man is always called men,
Why shouldn't the plural of pan be called pen?
If I speak of my foot and show you my feet,
And I give you a boot, would a pair be called beet?
If one is a tooth and a whole set are teeth,
Why shouldn't the plural of booth be called beeth?

Then one may be that, and three would be those,
Yet hat in the plural would never be hose,
And the plural of cat is cats, not cose.
We speak of a brother and also of brethren,
But though we say mother, we never say methren.
Then the masculine pronouns are he, his and him,
But imagine the feminine: she, shis and shim!

Let's face it - English is a crazy language.
There is no egg in eggplant nor ham in hamburger;
neither apple nor pine in pineapple.
English muffins weren't invented in England.
We take English for granted, but if we explore its paradoxes,
we find that quicksand can work slowly, boxing rings are square,
and a guinea pig is neither from Guinea nor is it a pig.

And why is it that writers write but fingers don't fing,
grocers don't groce and hammers don't ham?
Doesn't it seem crazy that you can make amends but not one amend.

If you have a bunch of odds and ends
and get rid of all but one of them, what do you call it?

If teachers taught, why didn't preachers praught?
If a vegetarian eats vegetables, what does a humanitarian eat?
Sometimes I think all the folks who grew up speaking English
should be committed to an asylum for the verbally insane.

In what other language do people recite at a play and play at a
recital?
We ship by truck but send cargo by ship.
We have noses that run and feet that smell.
We park in a driveway and drive in a parkway.
And how can a slim chance and a fat chance be the same,
while a wise man and a wise guy are opposites?

You have to marvel at the unique lunacy of a language
in which your house can burn up as it burns
down, in which you fill in a form by filling it out,
and in which an alarm goes off by going on.
And, in closing, if Father is Pop, why is Mother not Mop?

Wednesday, December 19, 2007

LID 19




Number 19 is here!

Yesterday I got my final Twinrex shot, she hit a muscle, so moving my arm today keeps me alert ;) !

Todd won survivor, and we find out that Denise keeps the mullet type hair style because she needs it short for kitchen work, but still wants to be girlie for her hubby, good on her, most hubbies like long hair. I was blessed to have my wife grow hers out over the last year, and has just recently gone back to a shorter version, to make it more manageable, but it is a blessing when the little ladies do these simple things for their simple men. :)

We are doing a joint Bday party for Cara and her youngest sister, a murder mystery night. I am excited, should be a blast. I am the bodyguard of the deceased, Cara is the newly widowed lady... I hope I didn't do it, I love playing detective(I set up a detective agency and hired myself out when I was younger...did pretty good $$ wise at it too :) ). The sleuthing skills may be a bit rusty, but we will see.

Looking forward to seeing family during the holiday time... Merry Christmas to all. Celebrate Jesus!

Friday, December 14, 2007

down to 4



So survivor China is down to 4, and PEE GEE is gone. She was a scrapper, that is for sure. Right now I am hoping Denise pulls an upset, she has tried to stay on track with her alliances but we will see. This Sunday, the results :)

I was also delighted last night to see a new Office episode, as well as a new Smallville. Did the writers strike finish and I missed the news???

I haven't gotten around to making that trick yet, but thought I would post a picture of it from the manuscript I bought.



Not much else to report, I don't have reptile wars and salamander attacks, or interesting stuff like that happening in my world, but Tuininga Treasures blog(link on the side), is my favorite blog read these days, so thanks Janet for bringing a smile to my face as I read about your daily adventures :)

Anyone got a bunch of umbrellas to donate to me, heh :)

Thursday, December 13, 2007

well....

What to post....well been a slower week at work so I have been able to customize all the curriculum we will need until the summer, it is a big "sit and the computer and get square eyes" type thing done. YAHOO, that is an early Christmas gift to me!

The snow is falling and I have to start wrapping my brain around summer camp planning, UGH, crazy!!!

Looking forward to my day off tomorrow, I am hoping for a good time of reading yet again(life is too exciting/insane, my time off needs to be low key okay ;) ).

Had fun surfing through youtube and watching videos on some favorite songs...Daughtry- Home, Lifehouse- Everything, Casting Crowns... there are some very well done fan videos, time well wasted.

I have also enjoyed youtube for finding videos on magicians and contact juggling, helps get the creative juices flowing.

I may take some time tomorrow to work on a new illusion. The effect is I step into a small packing box, have the lid closed and then 15-20 broom sticks are impaled all over the box...and somehow I emerge unhurt. It looks cheap to build with good impact, so I will post some pics if/when I get it together.

I need to commit to some form of exercise before the New Year. I am pretty sure it will be some sort of martial arts, but I have to get off my butt and do some research on what our city offers and what is affordable.

Is this post random enough...heh welcome to my brain these days :)

ginger cookies are good, yummy, thanks Cara. :)

Survivor tonite, finale on Sunday...

Wish the writers strike would get settled. I need a new Office fix..

Craving for some mundane,routine days, boring to post about, but would be nice to experience.

Thursday, December 06, 2007

CCAA update- dec 14

Well almost a week done, from the 8th to 14th... so it will take them into Jan 2008 to finish off dec 2005. Congrats to the families who have their referrals, a wonderful Christmas present!

Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Yesterday followup

Yesterday was awesome! I didn't bother asking Cara about getting me a slurpee, I ended up with gingerbread cookies instead, a nice alternative! Spent the whole day on the coach, reading, relaxing, it was great! Read through a couple of big trade paperbacks(compilations of comic books stories for those of you not in the loop).

Cara has her special little friend over and Cara and Miss I had a grand time making cookies, I watched and thought, one day that will be our Julia there, that will be cool!

Heroes finale was more of a cliff hanger than I thought it would be, well done. Bring on Survivor Thursday :)

The mediation prep went well we will see how Saturday goes.

Back to the grind and time to punch out a bunch of stuff this week at work and get a bunch of loose ends tied up! *puts head down and just gives 'er*

Monday, December 03, 2007

Cold days, fun stuff



Winter is here, blowing snow, windchill factors, and the white stuff has arrived.
Last week was a really intense week with lots of work done(3 family counselling situations, sermon presentation, meetings, plus my nomral Kids ministry stuff), so I am giving myself a gift and actually taking time off(time earned)to chill...err WRONG word...RELAX, that is better word choice...

For me that mean curling up with a good book, either comic book or novel, todays choice-comic books. Even with the cold weather a slurpee usually goes well in this situation, but I am just not sure I want to get out of my jammies to go...perhaps I can convince my wife to go get it for me... hmmmm :)

I am hoping this little break rewards me with my body actually not getting sick, it has been giving me a couple subtle signs that a cold is wanting to take hold. I really don't want to go there. I HATE being sick. I just want to be left alone when I get sick. One, I don't want to spread the germs anywhere else, second, my male self suffiency gene kicks in and I am hard pressed to accept any help to get better, except for back rubs, back rubs are ALWAYS acceptable, anytime, anywhere!!!

Heroes finale should be on the tube tonite, that will be fun. The only perceived downer on this day is that I have to prepare some stuff for a conflict resolution event for Saturday, and have to talk through some of those details tonight, so I have to think about it sometime today. Oh well, whatever :) .

On the pet front, some great friends of ours are getting a Beagle for their family for Christmas, so I am looking forward to some puppy interaction. Sorry Janet, you can keep your cat :) LOL.

Congrats to the Septmember LID folks who just recently made it through the review room. In the next week or so I suspect we will see how many days of matching the CCAA got through this month. Got no expectations this time, I hope it is at least a weeks worth... we will see.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Yes, we are still here...

Yes, we are still alive...busy as all get out... not too happy to not even have time to blog...

So 18 months LID(back on the 19th), 1.5 years,probably another year, give or take some time *insert eye roll here*.

With the wait time people wonder if we should switch, in a word...."NO!"

Our heart is with our girl in China, it would feel like she would be abandoned twice, no way we could do that.That is reason enough.

If we were to consider a switch, say to Vietnam, it would still take around a year, and domestic has a number of concerns beyond wait times for us so we aren't considering that. Other countries are saying they have shorter wait times, but a number of china bound folks are dropping out and switching so I suspect wait times will quickly become longer there also.

We know the China Olympics will be yet another delay, in some way, in the process...but when it all comes down to it, you gotta be true to your heart...

Dec 18 I get my final shots, should have been September, man in some ways time sure flies...

What else is new:

*Enjoying Survivor China, we have only missed a couple of them. Heroes has 1 episode to go, Office is effected by the writers strike... and the snow is falling so seems we will be hitting the moive watching trend again soon.

*Costco got the Welch's fruit snacks back(they had another brand for a couple months)- I did a dance of joy, those things are so darn good!

*Only have gift certificates to buy to finish my Christmas shopping, got the rest done, Yahoo!

*We have successfully resisted the urge to buy a pet, of any kind, 3 times in the last month and a half. We know it is the urge to nurture and care for something, ANYthing, that is driving it while we are waiting.

*Cara has made some solid decisions on paint color and we have purchased a bunch of stuff to decorate the house and will be changing the paint color at some point soon. The quest to complete this is nearly done!

Well, I smell Chinese food cooking upstairs for supper... must go "supervise" to ensure everything turns out okay ;)

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

A boy named S


Cara and I had the chance to meet face to face such a special and amazing little guy. He came to Canada through an international adoption and would be considered special needs...but once you meet him he is just special...period! Those of us with "normal" limbs moan and complain so much about what we CAN'T do, well a boy named S(named that way simply for privacy sake) does more at the age of 3 with his so called limitations(he has only one finger on one arm and only one toe on one of his feet) than kids his age. He is incredible, inspirational and just too cute for it to be legal! His smile will crack the hardest of hearts and his abundant love just carries you away to a wonderful bright place.

He was saved from a horrible, unimaginable place, the abuse and neglect he faced is undescribable, and to have the spirit he does...he is one special person that I know God will use in incredible ways, he has already impacted those in his circle of influence and that circle will just get larger as the sky is the limit for this little guy.

It was an amazing time to spend with his family and S and we can't wait to see their faces at the airport,along with our family, the day we bring Julia home. Their love and support for us as we have travelled, and continue to travel this adoption road is wonderful and we thank them again for it!

Hopefully they still love us. S asked me to show him some magic tricks, so I did some basic coin tricks with a dime, and then "infused it with magic" so that, in the presence of his parents I said," If you put this dime under your pillow, in the morning it will turn into a loonie!" He ran to his room and put it under the pillow right then. Knowing how smart he is, I bet there have been countless dimes since our visit under his pillow, so I wonder how much our short visit has cost the parents, LOL :).

late congrats

Late congrats to those who were matched up to Dec 8. A whopping 8 days this months...let's hope they break some double digits coming up!

Do you ever rework song lyrics?

I do all the time, I had an amazing experience at a personal development seminar where I had the chance to do that with a song. It was Keith Urbans "I Can Fly". With some easy word changes it became a song of worship. It was combined with a stetching...no shatering of personal comfort zomes that was incredible. The seminar, which is not relgious orietnated is Choicesseminars.com. WELL worth checking out. It will be life changing.

time....stands....still for no one
I know this is true
I've.....been.....stuck here waiting
then along....came.....you

You gave me back the love I had, the faith I lost, the life I knew
I wanna thank you for the love that you give me
and the sun that you put in my sky
but you don't know how much you've lifted me up
but I feel so alive....

That I could fly......
That I could fly......

There's no way I could have made it this far with.....out.....you
You came to me just when I needed someone to believe that I could make....it....through

You gave me back the love I had, the faith I lost, and the life I knew
I wanna thank you for the love that you give me
and the sun that you put in my sky
cause you dont know how much you've lifted me up
but I feel so alive....

That I could fly above the clouds
Fly so high we never come down
just you and I
I'm so in love....
with you.....
with you.....

yeah...

yeah I spread my wings....

You gave me back the love I had, the faith I lost, and the life I knew
I wanna thank you for the love that you give me
and the sun that you put in my sky
You don't know how much you've lifted me up
but I feel so alive.....

I wanna thank you for the love that you give me
and the sun that you put in my sky
and you don't know how much you've lifted me up
but I feel so alive...

That I could fly......
That I could fly......
That I could fly......
I could fly......

spread my wings

let me tell ya
I said I need your love
I need your love to
stay with me Jesus

oh I need your love
I need your love to
stay with me Jesus

oh I need your love
I need your love to
stay with me Jesus

yeah I need your love
I need your love to
stay with me Jesus

you and me side by side walking through the woods in the pale moonlight and it feels so good!

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Slow train to China



What does a Daddy-in-waiting do at slow points in life? He daydreams about what the situation he is in would look like if Julia was with him...here is a true account of one of those experiences!

Last night, on the way home from kids club, I encountered the train crossing,so I put the car in "park" and my mind wandered...

"What would I do if this was me a couple years from now? Julia would be with me, as she would have been part of club, and we would be waiting...I know... I would come up with some stupid, silly little game we would play. How about this, we would pick a letter of the alphabet and any time that letter appeared on one of the train cars we would shout it out, whoever shouted it out first gets a point."

Not surprizingly, I won that game, a shut out actually ;)! But I think that the game is a gooder, so I filed that away for a later use. Back to the day dream...

"Man, what a long train, we need another game...I got it, we predict how many cars will pass before the caboose. Julia and I would pick a number and then count them, one at a time, alternating back and forth... and we would use funny accents to up the entertainment aspect of the game."

"What is that? Sure, 15 cars sounds good Julia, I'll start 'One'-done in my robot voice...'Two' (No, I didn't actually here her voice, I am simply creative, not crazy ;). No need to call the social worker to reassess my viability to be a sound parent). 'Three'-done in my Scottish accent...'Five'-Aussie accent...'7'-English accent"...Despite what my wife says, I am SURE my doing those accents sound different...they do to me!

The count went on..."Well my precious daughter we were off on this one... 35 cars!" I take the car out of park, drive the rest of the way home, get in, have a quick shower...and despite the train, we still weren't too late to watch 'Kid Nation' on TV...

"Shhh, I know you are up past your bed time, but mum is downstairs running a craft class, she won't be upstairs for a while...we're safe!"

Opps, I fell asleep on the couch, with my little girl curled up next to me...we got caught... we all have a good laugh, and head off to bed.

Wonderful day dream...that will one day be reality!

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Awesome creative ministry skit



Thanks to Chris P a friend from Winnipeg days from posting this on my Facebook, I love creative ministries, I do magic tricks, clowning, etc, messages set to music, are powerful... love this skit!

Monday, October 22, 2007

What moms go through-set to song :)



Well done and hilarious :)

Friday, October 19, 2007

LID 17




Seventeen months and counting... I am running out of fingers and toes...

Unmet desires suck. I have desired to be a father for over 20 years, I have loved on kids, other peoples kids for that long, poured into them, invested in their lives. God has used that desire, in a sense, to define my calling as a pastor. Nothing gets me more excited, and brings a smile to my face, than being around children.

I can be having the lousiest day, and if a kid comes by the church I can't help but be drawn out of my office, dark clouds disappear, and I can't help but smile. I love kids!

I don't begrudge that I have had 20 plus years of pouring into other peoples kids. I am so excited about doing that in my current church, still, after all he years of loving on others kids, but it doesn't satisfy the deeper desire to be a father.

Maybe my zeal for other peoples kids will diminish when I get my own? Nah, I just can't see it, in fact I think it will just make it grow as I will learn and experience even more about kids and be that much more excited about sharing it.

I would love to be able to start this fathering thing while I still have some energy left in my body, I ain't getting any younger! Running around with the kids on Wednesday night at our Kids club is a real rush...until about 9:00 that night, then this sneaky, but solid, wall creeps up and slams me down..."ugh what muscle is that, that is feeling like it is going to erupt out of my body...I didn't even know there were muscles there!"

I don't mind the concern others have as they see me hunched over trying to get my breath...I wasn't offended at all when the dear 97 year old saint of our church offered ME her walker...no, not at all, gotta love the love shown..right?!

I would just like to be able to run around in a park piggy backing my own child, pushing her on the swings, making goofy faces at her and doing stupid stuff to amuze her, rather than everyone elses kids...Let me be hunched over gasping for breath and totally elated that it was for JULIA... I have refined these actions down to an art, I don't need more practise, I WANT to do these things with my daughter.

Thursday, October 18, 2007

Yummy food

Yummy food click here

Came to this site by happy accident. Warning! don't click if you have a hungry tummy ;)

Friday, October 12, 2007

A letter from CCAA

Got this from one of the yahoogroups I subscribe to:

A preface to the response to the FCC open letter from the CCAA from the
presidents of the FCC Chapters of Greater New York, New England, Northern
California and Southern California.

Dear FCC Members:
The Chinese Center for Adoption Affairs has responded to the open letter
sent from the FCC Chapters of Greater New York, New England, Northern California
and Southern California and subsequently co-signed by several other FCC
chapters representing over one thousand additional FCC members.

We are extremely pleased to have received any response at all. When we wrote
the letter, we hoped to receive an official response but did not
necessarily expect to receive one. Frequently a Chinese government agency would not
issue such a response except to a similar-level government agency. The fact
that the government felt our letter warranted a response at all appears to be an
indication of the respect and gratitude the CCAA holds for our community.
To the extent that you may disagree with the views of the Chinese government
or their analysis of appropriate placement guidelines, we do ask you to bear
in mind that there appears to be great reciprocal respect for our community
despite the differences of opinion between our community and that of the CCAA.

We have had the letter translated by two different people familiar with the
Chinese adoption program and also had those translation reviewed by others
who have extensive experience in the field. The translation( s) that we have
posted represent our best efforts to render a faithful translation. Any errors,
of course, belong to us.

A translation, however, can only go so far. When you read the letter we ask
you to consider the following points:

-Although the tone may strike many American readers as overly formal and
bureaucratic, this is normal for written communications from Chinese government
agencies.

-Our goal was to provide feedback from the FCC community and to demonstrate
our concern about the children of families now considered ineligible for
adoption in China. From the CCAA a detailed response it is clear that our letter
was carefully read and considered.

-We had no expectation that FCC would affect a change in China's policy. The
letter confirms that the CCAA is comfortable at present with its
prioritization. While this is bad news for those who have lost eligibility, it is good
news for those who feared that any criticism, no matter how diplomatically
couched, would jeopardize adoptions already in process.

-We hoped to receive further detail on the rationale behind the policy
changes, and this letter does provide some greater explanation, especially with
respect to single parent eligibility. The explanation is unlikely to bring
comfort to those families no longer eligible for adoption and those of us who
support them, but it does explicitly put on the record some information that had
thus far been only speculative.

In closing we would like to thank those who have helped us to better
understand the CCAA's response. We are also deeply grateful to the many, many FCC
members who have emailed us. No other topic has engendered such a response
from our members. The constructive feedback provided a new window into the
diverse perspectives of our member families, yet underscored the true sense of
community that we share from coast to coast. Your heartfelt words have touched
and inspired us.

To all who have participated in this process, both in China and America, we
express our heartfelt gratitude. The Chinese adoption program is undergoing
one of its most profound changes since the program began. Over the last 15
years, we have seen many changes take place, and there may be other changes in
the future. Families with Children from China values all its children and all
its families - each and every one of them - and will continue to do so. Even
as these changes may occur, we will keep faith with the diversity of FCC
families all over the world.

Shanti Fry
FCC New England

Margie Berman
FCC Greater New York

Peggy Scott
FCC Northern California

Jeri Okamoto Floyd
FCC Southern California

FIRST TRANSLATION OF LETTER FROM CHINA CENTER OF ADOPTION AFFAIRS

Dear Shanti Fry,
Your letter was+ forwarded to us. First, I would like to thank you for
giving your attention to China's international adoption affairs. We are grateful
for the assistance and support you have given to the adoption families and
adopted children.

It's the universal truth that parents are the fundamental unit of a society.
They play a vital role in a child's growth and character development.
According to “Hague Convention, in order for children to develop their character
to their full potential, they should be raised in a family environment that
nurtures of happiness, love and with an emphasis on mutual respect for one
another. International adoption aims to help those orphans who have lost their
parents or family to establish a family that could ensure they have all the
rights they are entitled to. Therefore, China Center of Adoption Affairs has
been abiding by the principle of “ensuring childrens best benefits in
international adoption since the beginning. The mission of our center is“all for
the children. Through endless efforts and generations and generations of
devotion can we assist ten thousands of orphans to find homes that could provide
them with an environment that is contusive to establishing emotional
stability within the family unit. During the past 10 years, China Center of
Adoption Affairs has received the consent, support and collaboration of
American government, adoption associations, and large number of adoption families.

China Center of Adoption Affairs has gained a reputation of having
comprehensive policies, structured regulations, and transparency in the adoption
process. It has attracted large amount of international adoption applicants, which
resulted the increase of number of applications to China Center of Adoption
Affairs. At the same time, as the Chinese society progressed and people
become more aware of the issue, plus the rising of domestic adoption, the number
of children for international adoption has decreased, which can no longer meet
the demand of international adoption. Under the circumstance, in order to
ensure adopted childrens best interest, we also have to select the most
suitable adoption family for these children in all areas. This was realized by the
Hague Convention principle.

Your letter has mentioned the issue of single parent adopting children in
China. We would like to express our respect and understanding toward their
personal choices. Meanwhile, we believe 1) it is difficult to exclude homosexual
single parent to apply for adoption. The law of Chinese government doesn't
empower the rights of homosexuals. In addition, due to Chinese traditional
culture, it makes most Chinese families harder to accept this social phenomenon.
Because of the culture differences, social welfare organizations who act as
orphans guardians are not willing to send children to homosexual families. 2)
Due to the absence of mother or father in a single parent family, it can not
function completely; it is not beneficial to childrens psychological
development. Countries around the world have recognized this issue as well. 3) If
any accident were to happen to the parent of a single parent family, it is
likely that the adopted children would loose the family again.
Besides, the main purpose of adoption is to find a family for those children
and not to find a child for the family. Thus, under the circumstances that
international adoption can no longer satisfy the demand, we should consider
married couple as priority to ensure our adopted childrens mind and spirit can
be developed in a proper family oriented environment.

Of course, we must consider adopted families devotion and the desire of
having a child as we sincerely provide most sufficient and quality service.
Offering priority adoption process is one of the means to make sure the benefit
of adopting families. As of now, the wait for international adoption
applicants has been postponed to 17-18 months. It's expected that the waiting period
would be longer, which is not what everyone hope to see. Other foreign
adoption organization suggested that we should categorize adoption families
according to their different situations. As responsible as we are to adopted
families and organizations, we have taken the advice. Adoption families that have
as better qualifications will be placed under priority adoption process,
effective May 1, 2007. By doing so, it shortens the waiting period and eases the
anxiety. For adoption organizations, they could make adjustments according to
the actual situation and make further arrangement on the amount of
international adoption applications. Therefore, to select most qualified
adoption families is our job.

We all needs to be more versatile and make adjustments when we perform any
types of work based on its demand and current situation. It's the same for
international adoption process. In order to accommodate the large number of
applicants with limited number of available orphans, applying priority adoption
process is a practical solution China Center of Adoption Affairs had adopted
from international adoption. The policy of China's international adoption does
not change. As the work progresses and the actual situation changes, it is
possible there might be other adjustments on priority adoption process.

Hopefully you have a clear understanding of how China Center of Adoption
Affairs applies the priority adoption process. Other American families who are
preparing for adoption in China can know about this matter through your
organization. Should you have any question for China Center of Adoption Affairs and
international adoption, please contact us. Let's work together to maintain
the order of international adoption and the relationship we have built so
earnestly between China and America. Together we protect the interests of adopted
child and the adopted families.


With best regards.

Lu Ying (sig.)
Director
China Centre of Adoption Affairs
_________________________----

What does priority placment mean? hmmm, in my mind it means those with a "better" dossier would get matched sooner, so then the whole LID would be less of a scheduled or dependable thing. Since the new regulations they brought in last December,which had all the crazy health, finance type restrictions are enforced in May 2007 , I suspect that would give some indicator as to what priority files would look like.

We still fit in those updated ones, with only a couple of issues, so I guess we would be considreed near priority, if they used that gauge...

So maybe this means by May 2007 they expect to process priority wise and quicker at least in the perspective of those who fit priority...but what does that do to the whole LID group thing... like always, it seems like some stuff gets answered, but generates more questions... so again left saying" I really don't know if this helps us, makes it faster, or doesn't really change too much: Gotta love it *eye roll*

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

November is Adoption Awareness month

http://www.adoption.com/national-adoption-awareness-month/

Some cool ideas....

Monday, October 08, 2007

November 2005 finally done

They finished November, finally...another whooping 5 days of files done...gessh it could be 2009 easily before things happen for us at this rate, but still holding hope out that we will get some sort of speed up at some point.

Thursday, October 04, 2007

Survival ritual...

Cara and I have settled into a survivor ritual as we wait, and mark weekly our time to watch Survivor China, that was threatened this week by a meeting, but lo and behold the meeting was canceled and Survivor China is back on! Yahoo!!!

I am glad Ashley got kicked off last week, not that she was a big pain like Dave?(the camp leader)...but it is awkward trying to watch the show with all the upper female anatomy flinging everywhere, and she is one of the big offenders. I have conditioned myself to look away when the Big B's start flopping and flashing, but I was spending more time counting the bird seeds our dove threw on the floor than actually watching the show, that just isn't enjoyable...so that factor is now dramatically reduced thus increasing my enjoyment level(while I am sure a number of other male viewers will STOP watching now that she is off.)

I suspect we will see more of the culture of China shown once there is a few more challenges under their belt.

Frosti is standing out as an interesting guy... then there is the gay mormon... interesting mix there...Chicken was booted the first week, that was too bad, having the "character" character around makes for some fun interactions...

Adoption wise, sounds like a small batch, although nothing confirmed...well, let the Thursday show ritual begin!

Sunday, September 30, 2007

Olympics

I called FOI to get clarification on the olympics and what delays it could cause, it was a good news/bad news kinda thing.The good news is for Canadian adoptions matching will not stop over that time, the bad news, Travel Approvals could be delayed up to 3 months at that time. What that means is that normally when you are matched you then have a 6-8 week wait to get TA to go over, if your match happens around the time of the olympics you could tack on another month and a half or so before you get approval to actually go to China and get your child. China has travel restrictions in Bejing due to pollution issues etc and the Canadian consulate is in Bejong, so adoptions can't be finalized without a trip there. US adoptions don't have that issue, they will just steer clear of Bejing...

Thursday, September 27, 2007

August out of review room

This doesn't effect us at all, but now all of August is out of room 2 and into the final room, man that must be record time...congrats to all august LIDDERS...they are still on Nov 25 2005 matching and no new news there...

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Office Fan



I am hooked. Now this show isn't for the kids, but other than a few episodes crossing the line to a degree, the rest are hilarious and have brought many smiles to my face.

My favorite character is Jim, he is the one without glasses, and Dwight is supernerd/geek and these 2 are constantly going at it, Jim pranks, annoys and mocks Dwight like no other, it is VERY fun to watch. the clip is one of their classic moments...just had to share it :)

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Fly trap!



Got a new baby... plant that is, my green thumb (and rest of me that is attached) went to the greenhouse for my usual green tour and on the way out I found a Venus Flytrap, so $7 later it was mine!!!!

A Venus Flytrap is a carnivorous plant that catches and digests animal prey (mostly insects and arachnids). The trapping structure is formed by the terminal portion of each of the plant's leaves.

I have yet to get it to eat a bug, but when time allows...

A couple of my smaller bonsai's looked at it a little nervously when I brought it home... :)

Saturday, September 22, 2007

Blessings



Wow, have we been blessed. We have been given a wonderful gift from my mom and dad. My Father-in-law helped us out last time to get a car when we were in a pinch and that car has served us well, but has started to give us some stress recently, prompting us to try to be proactive in finding a car while this one still continued to work. So we asked my side, particularly my dad, to look for something with the money we were able to give to it. My dad is great at finding deals and knows cars, neither skills I possess.

My parents then decided to bless us by contributing more $$ to ours, much more, and the car we now possess(isn't the one featured above :) ) is a 2007 Malibu LT. What a gift. Warranty on it, only 16,000 kms on it... reliable transportation worries are gone!!!

It relieves so much pressure, to know that when we get Julia, we have a safe car for her to be in, and one that will allow us to transport the stuff that comes with baby, and we won't be sinking money into repairs, which will be awesome as we need to keep saving for this adoption and beyond.

We are so blessed, and thankful, a wonderful gift as we wait for our most precious gift!

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

16th month LID



We are at ?sweet? sixteen for being logged into China, we should be able to say we are past the half way mark.

Our LID celebration will be tomorrow as we watch Survivor China on TV.



The other exciting adventure is the pursuit of a newer vehicle, I am blessed that my Dad is helping out with this as well as my mum. I am not mechanically inclined...I simply can't tell if a car is a lemon or not(the only lemon I am good with is using it in stirfry cooking... I cooked some stirfry chicken with some sliced lemon in it, and then removed the lemon before serving and it was awesome, that and some ginger and a bit of teriaki sauce...very nice!!). My dad is hunting to find us something reliable and my folks are sooo blessing us by also helping financially...we are chipping in a good portion by they are also...what an overwhelming blessing!

Fall has come and seems like it may be leaving quickly, it is getting chilly out, BAH! We will have to do our annual fall picture taking ritual soon methinks... pics to come :)

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Paul Brandt album review

Awesome.


nuff said.....







okay, maybe a few more words...





Great!

Solid Christian focus....


I have had the album Risk on loop since picking it up on Tuesday morning the moment the store opened!

I love the song Dust, the second favorite is Risk-

"I’d rather stand on the edge of a cliff
Hang my toes over a bit
And then jump in thin air
Even if it scares I and get hurt

Chorus:
I’d rather burn with desire
Deep in my soul
And love like a fire
That’s out of control
And laugh and dance and fall and chance and kiss

I’d rather live my whole life with a sense of abandon
Squeeze every drop out
No matter what happens
And not wonder what I’ve missed
I’d rather risk

Well I guess i could just play it safe
And forget about love, hope, and faith,
With my eye on the shoreline
Keeping my boat tied
And staying home

Oh but I’d never discover new land
By keeping my feet on the sand
No, I’d rather set sail
And get carried away by the storm"

I love the truth in it and the challenge to me to take healthy risks. I am a pretty easy going, low key, get the ship moving and just keep it going in the right direction person. Jumping without a plan isn't high on my list. But the chorus

I’d rather burn with desire deep in my soul
And love like a fire that’s out of control
And laugh and dance and fall and chance and kiss

That is what is in my heart, or has been, so it has been a good reminder in light of recent past experiences that try to knock that desire to "love out of control" out to Spit in the face of that fear and take the risk.

Taking this adoption journey has elements of risk, hurts, worries, frustrations, but even this far along and with a long leg still to go I certainly have felt it worth the risk from the start right through!

Monday, September 10, 2007

July is out of review room

Congrats to those with July LIDS, man the review room is cooking, let's send some of those folks over to the MATCHING room please and get that happening, they are only on Nov 25 2005 over there, we need a speed up!!!!!

We went to a picnic yesterday put on by Christian Adoption Services, it was awesome to see how many families in our area have adopted. We met a few families in the process as well. There were no Asian babies at the picnic, and just one couple, which we had met earlier in the process who are adopting from China.We know there are a few more adopting from China, but they weren't there.

We had our Sunday School kick off and overall that went fantastic. We have doubled our program, which was daunting, less than 2 years ago they were going to cancel Sunday School, Then I came on staff and we got life back in it and in less than 2 years we have doubled it...God most certainly blessed us. We still have a few gaps to fill, but I am jazzed over a really good start.Well, must get week two ready to go!

Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Birthday Bash



Well, September 2 was the milestone 38th birthday for me. My actual day was spent at church preaching in the morning then going to a get together to welcome our new interim pastor to our church(which ended up being rained out). On the Monday I conceded and let Cara invite some friends to come to a party.

I am not a big birthday person, it isn't that I care about aging, in fact, I don't see myself as an age, I never remember how old I am, anything someone asks me I have to sit down and do the math, and these days I don't have enough fingers and toes, so it is a challenge!

I enjoyed the day a lot. It was nice to just hang out with friends and be normal. It was especially nice that my mom got to meet Cara and my close friends.




A real good friend, and fellow comic book collector, blessed my socks off by giving to me Amazing Spiderman #5. The comic was published in 1963! What a rush to hold something that has so much history to it...a real treasure!

At my age and with my eclectic interests people know it is best to just give gift certificates or cash. I will be getting some magic tricks with it, Paul Brandt's album, more comics, maybe some bonsai supplies, and some tv series on dvd(Heroes maybe?), just not sure what yet.

I did pick up Teen titans video game for PS2. I am a kid at heart. I am currently playing Neopets Darkest Faerie PS2 game. I am not into the blood and gore games. This way I also have games kids can play at my place when they come over, so it serves both purposes.

I can also with almost complete confidence say that before I am 40 I will have Julia in my arms... I just have to be able to say SOMEthing concrete, I truly hope it will be before I am 39,but today I can at least say 40 with confidence...truly this adoption journey is a wacky one...

Monday, September 03, 2007

Bah still in November

4 days of matches done(up to Nov. 25 2005), so much for the rumor they were dipping into December... BAH I say!

Friday, August 31, 2007

Fun article on chinese food translations

Crazy Chinese food translations

Heh, some stuff certainly gets lost in translation...

The lock yourself in boy


an update on the little guy Cara has occasionally looked after,you know, the one who locked himself in our bedroom the first day he was over...well...he locked himself in a room at his own house the other day :)

Cara was able to walk the mum through the "take the door frame off" routine, but the little guy unlocked the door before the operation was complete. I wonder if he is going to grow up to be a locksmith? :).


Excited that my mum will be here tonight for a visit, that will be fun. I love having the kind of relationship with my mum that she is as much a good friend as a parent, that is such a treat.

Thursday, August 30, 2007

Friends are amazing



2 posts- 1 day....heh :)

Cara and I are soooo blessed to have a special friend who we know prays sooooo faithfully for our Julia. Having that kind of power and protection that prayer provides is positively precious!

We can not wait for Julia and Sam to connect as we appreciate Sam's mum VERY much!We are blessed by all who are praying for us, but wanted to give a special "shout out" at this time. :)

Back to more regular posting

With Camp done, holiday done and normal(yeah right) Fall upon us, I should be posting more regularly. I have missed reading others blogs also...

So what is ahead?

Final shots for me in September then we are all done with that...

Just at the time we had saved what we needed for the adoption we have to snag some of those funds to get a more reliable vehicle... on the bright side(can't believe I just typed that) we will have time to replenish that fund before we need it to go get Julia...

I just discovered another member of popular Christian music is adopting from China. The lead singer from Casting Crowns, on their latest album, which was just released on Tuesday(thanks Tracy A for the album :) ), mentions in the liner notes about waiting for his Chinese daughter...

Once I get our JUMP program running at church(Sunday school), I will get the sponsorship papers done...

We had a wonderful time away at Tumbler Ridge BC



This is a picture of one of the Falls we went to see. Being out and seeing the majesty and creativity of God's creation is always refreshing to me, and was definitely necessary. We enjoyed very low key times, and I was soooo thankful for the family in our church who let us use their condo/apartment which made the trip very cost effective and therefore not a stressful event.


September 9 our adoption agency(Alberta branch) is hosting a picnic up here, we still need to get details, but that could be a nice opportunity...

What is ahead on this blog?

An update on the lock yourself in a room child...

The jigsaw puzzle saga...

Visit from Mama B and Mr. B...

The next round of matches should be popping up soon...

Paul Brandts album...

I age another year...

and some movie and book reviews...

Sunday, August 12, 2007

LID 15



Well 15 months Logged In...One and a thirdish of a year...455 days...10920 hours... I'll stop there :) .

This is an odd LID this month, Cara isn't around for it, she is at a conference in Calgary, so I am alone. That isn't a bad thing, the introvert in me enjoys that even though I miss my wife. I have eaten stirfry all weekend, I experimented and added lemon into my ginger/teriaki sauce to much success :).

I mentioned this LID is odd, in that I am in more of a detached mode this time around, just not in baby mode, feeling like "the event" is still too far away. My head, and even my heart aren't really focussed on Julia. It is a weird place to be.I don't know why, other than it is disheartening to not know when this part of the journey will end, is she born yet? Many times along the road I have thought about that, imagined what it would be like for her, prayed for her, but today it is like...how to pray... I suspect she is likely conceived by now, but I am a concrete thinker, I like tangibles and the floating line of when stuff happens gets to me at times.

I suspect the emotional drain of experiences here in Canada in my world lately have also contributed to this. I do know I won't stay in this place long, my passion for being a daddy is too strong and my character quality of perseverance(some say bullheadedness :) ) will certianly see me through this journey til I get to the destination that will mark the start of a brand new adventure after that :) !

Saturday, August 11, 2007

One month until...



I get Paul Brandt's new album "Risk"...which has the song Dust I posted a while ago.

Life, and living it, can certainly be a risk at times, and a wild journey, and some parts of it...to be blunt, simply suck and are unfair and tear at a hearts sense of justice and fairness. There are times your heart gets trampled, unjustly, unfairly, and you feel so attacked and left bewildered, "What on earth did I do to deserve this?" and you discover you didn't do anything to deserve it and then get left wondering "Why the heck then do we have this target on our back?" I wish I knew the answer...but regardless I am glad I can say I rode though it with no regrets on how I lived, loved and honored my Lord through it.Sadly, others involved in this can't say that, and that saddens me.

"we had ups and downs
we got spun around
we held on when the going got a little tough
it took love and faith
and some give and take
and grace
no we didn't even see the dust"

I heard this song near the peak of the crisis, and it was a cool gift from God to encourage me. There is still some dust and crap still left to have to walk through, and that sucks, that stuff/people connected with it are so trying to be a distraction and downer to all the positive and good that is wanting to emerge and move forward, but my attitude moving forward at this point is:

"shot gun everybody getting for the long run
dont know where we're going
but the out come comes with a little bit of trust
lets go following whatever where the wind blows
flying with our hands out of the window
we didn't even see the dust"

We are in this for the long run, we trust not man, but God, and will follow whatever way the wind of His Spirit blows, and keep our eyes and heart on Him, and not the dust and crap others try to pull out and put in the way!

Camp



I haven't had much time to post, nor read my dose of others blogs since we have been at camp.I direct 3 weeks of elementary camps as well as provide backup and support for some of the youth camps. The camp we serve in, is by no means a luxury resort...the picture above is of an outhouse...ours aren't anywhere as good as this one, and there is no running hot water showers, just a big wading pool with a tap on it suspended on a structure...it does wake you up in the morning!

These are not complaints however, as I *LOVE* camp ministry. I never attended a camp as a child but started counseling at one when I was 17. I had an 18 year run of doing camp, and then had a 3 year absence when we were serving at a church in Winnipeg. But with my current position it included directing camp. It is awesome. The last 2 years I have directed here, we have had fantastic staff. And this year Cara was down there with me for the 3 weeks, which was great. It was great to serve with her, it was also good for her to experience camp so hands on...now she understands why I come home from camp excited about what God is doing,while at the same time being completely fried and barely able to stay awake. It is non stop work, but so worth it, to see kids experience God in new and profound ways, to worship Him in a beautiful nature setting, and see staff and volunteers be used by God in amazing ways.

Cara and I are hopeful, although with the looming "WAIT" who knows what the time line will be, that by next camp season we will be trying to figure out how to do this camp thing with Julia with us.

In September we will need to finish off the last of the immunizations and at that point I will step out in faith and fill out the sponsorship papers we got 15 months earlier for the Canadian government end of things.

Friday, August 03, 2007

Nov 21 polished off

From the CCAA Site:
The CCAA has finished the review of the adoption application documents registered with our office before June 30, 2006.
The CCAA has finished the placement of children for the families whose adoption application documents were registered with our office before November 21, 2005.


Well they whipped through the June review room stuff really quick this time, but the important room for us, now, the matching room putts along...Just under 6 months of files for them to match before they get to us.

I haven't had time to post much due to summer church commitments to camp, but in another week will look forward to catching up and catching folks up...

Monday, July 16, 2007

Number 14- LID

"14 is considered to be one of the unluckiest numbers in Chinese culture. Although 14 is usually said as "shi si," which sounds like "ten die", it can also be said as "yi si" or "yao si", literally "one four". Thus, 14 can also be said as "yao si," literally "one four," but it also means "want to die" (要死 pinyin yào sǐ). In Cantonese, 14 sounds like "sap6 sei3", which sounds like "sat6 sei2" meaning "certainly die" (實死)."

Well, we don't believe in that kinda thing, and although it is a few days early, thought I would post about the 14th month since LID.

Wanted to take this post to reply to some of the replies to posts made here...so here we go...
Anita- we had for supper General Tso Chicken Balls, rice, sweet and sour pork, and a beef stir fry mix. We went out shopping to find "fortune" cookies, but didn't find any at the store :(.


Charlotte- Thanks for your constant prayers and encouragements from the Word! AND thanks for clarifying about the wedding shower story, folks could have started thinking I am alot weirder than I already am! Even though I think I have great legs ;)


Janet- Paul Brandt is awesome! Thanks for following along our journey, we are enjoying following yours, we have to find some way as families to connect, I think we would have a hoot together! We can't wait for you to be out of the Review Room either!

Carala and Terence- We need to connect,summer is insane for us with bible camp, but we will look forward to connecting after that!


We appreciate each person who lurks and who posts and I have enjoyed being able to express stuff on this blog, I enjoy writing, never get enough time to do it, or do it as well as I would like, so this is a fun way to connect and express.

14 down, who knows how many to go, but we celebrate 14 months CLOSER to holding our Julia!

Friday, July 06, 2007

How we celebrated getting out of the Review Room



Upon passing this milestone, we decided to celebrate. So we prepared a Chinese food feast, sat down in front of the tv at a small, lower table, pulled out the chopsticks, and ate while watching Lost Girls of China again, the documentary done(and reviewed early on after I started this blog) on the process of Gotcha day.

It is wonderful to know we are no longer under review in this area of our life, that our file has been accepted, and now the only barrier to our gotcha day is time.

Matching room

Okay, we moved out of room two and into room three, the final room. We still have a tremendous wait ahead, but here is the process that will eventually happen(you really want me to try to predict a time line? 'Tis nearly impossible, at least 9 months from now, hopefully no longer than a year from now), this is snagged from another site...

How the Matching Room works(snagged form the Rumor Queen site)

First, they review the baby dossiers and make sure there are no issues with them. We are told that they then count up all of the baby dossiers that are eligible for matching that month and then look to see how far this stack will go in the parent dossiers without sending out a partial day, and they pull all of those parent files. That is the likely cut-off date. Sometimes something happens and they don’t get this far. Sometimes something happens and they get farther.

Next they match orphanages up with agencies. This orphanage has six babies, this agency has six families. These two orphanages are in the same province and have a total of 12 babies, this agency has 12 families. When they are through with this is when (I believe) some agencies start to get information about the cut-off date. Or at least it is when they used to start getting information.

And then they start matching individual babies to individual families. At some point during this part of the process most agencies used to hear from their person in the matching room to let them know how many referrals they will be receiving and from what province(s). Some agencies shared this information with their clients. Some chose not to. Recently I’ve gotten the feeling that many agencies are still getting this information but they are being given orders by the CCAA to not share this information with the families.

Just as in the review room, each matcher is assigned certain agencies and is responsible for communicating with their agencies. Some matchers tell their agency the cut-off date, some matchers tell their agency “you have X number of referrals arriving”, some matchers give their agency a list of that agency’s families that will be receiving a referral. And some matchers don’t say anything at all to their agencies.

The next question that comes up is generally how the matchers match families and babies. I’ve heard from several people who have had the opportunity to speak with someone who works in the matching room. The various conversations seem to all agree that they first look for something that stands out: a matching birthday, a baby who looks a lot like a parent, or a baby who likes music and a parent who teaches music. Several matching people have stated they match by bone structure of the baby’s face and the parent’s faces (this is why they need our passport photos, so they can compare our mug shot with the baby’s mug shot). Some have stated that they used Chinese astrology, also. Once they’ve matched the obvious matches they then start to look at things like age of child requested. The age requested is not a priority for them, they feel they are matching families and not filling orders.

Thursday, July 05, 2007

We are out of the review room!!!!!!!

The CCAA has finished the review of the adoption application documents registered with our office before May 31, 2006.
The CCAA has finished the placement of children for the families whose adoption application documents were registered with our office before November 7, 2005.

PTL,this means there are no problems with our file, nothing we need to update and that we have moved into the matching room.

Matching room is still taking tons of time, no new news there, rumors have it that they have done up to November 14 of 2005, we are May 19 2006. November and March(2006) are huge months, with the other months being average(whatever that means).

What does this mean timeline wise... again, hard to say, 2008 is as accurate as I can be, then you have the Olympics in the summer of 2008, and who knows how that will impact stuff, but the good news is, it is for sure gonna happen, THAT is worth celebrating, and is news that can't help but brighten the day!

Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Dust

shot gun everybody getting for the long run
dont know where we're going
but the out come comes with a little bit of trust
lets go following whatever where the wind blows
flying with our hands out of the window
we didnt even see the dust

see how far we get
driving straight ahead
getting lost
didnt seem to matter much
all we had was time
and a yellow line
looking back we didnt even see the dust

chorus: shot gun everybody getting for the long run
dont know where we're going
but the out come comes with a little bit of trust
lets go following whatever where the wind blows
flying with our hands out of the window
we didnt even see the dust

ohhhh yeah
didnt even see it

we had ups and downs
we got spun around
we held on when the going got a little tough
it took love and faith
and some give and take
and grace
no we didnt even see the dust

shot gun everybody getting for the

chorus: shot gun everybody getting for the long run
dont know where we're going
but the out come comes with a little bit of trust (ohhhhh)
lets go following whatever where the wind blows
flying with our hands out of the window
we didnt even see the dust

come on now!

lets go following whatever where the wind blows
flying with our hands out of the window
we didnt even see the dust
Paul Brandt Video Dust


I love Paul Brandts music, this is his new song/video.He is a Christian, and although this song/video focusses on a human relationship, it is speaking to a current situation we are experiencing. I will blog a bit more about it in time...until then just going with the direction the wind blows and trusting...

Thursday, June 21, 2007

Review room updates and misc stuff

In a yahoo group adoption list I am on it was reported that some folks with an early May LID, from outside the US and Canada,have been asked some immigration type questions from the CCAA(they were expecting it due to some moving or something they did), so further proof more May files are being looked at. That is encouraging. The other reports I have seen have had them asking for not too threatening stuff, lessening the worry of many that the new medical/ finacial/ social regs they enacted for files logged in from May 2007 on are being applied to current files in the system.

Hopefully we will see some updates on the CCAA site for the review room as it has seemed like ages since that date has moved.

Fathers Day Part 2


PUP TENT-PUP NOT INCLUDED

No, we didn't go camping on Father's Day. In fact, neither of us likes camping in tents. I want 4 solid walls around me. We both love nature, but want a bit of protection from some of the meaner or less comfortable aspects it brings to life :) .

Sunday afternoon Cara and I are sitting in the back yard in the gazebo enjoying the nice weather, there is a light breeze, that helps keep the mosquitos down, and we see it is a nice wind to dry out the neighbors pup tent.

Then, out of no where there is an INCREDIBLE burst of wind, it felt like it was trying to lift the gazebo off the concrete block pad it was on. Papers started swirling around in the yards, and it grabs this pup tent, whips it around and up in the air, AND it starts to fill it up, like a balloon.

You guessed it, one pup tent balloon floating up, up and away!



Any one remember the cartoon Underdog? Could HE rescue the PUP tent? I used to watch the cartoon all the time :)




Okay back to the story...

So I tear off in my sandals after this thing, it just kept getting higher and blowing further away. Cara went to try to alert the neighbor about it.

I tracked that thing like 10-12 blocks, people were thinking maybe there was a UFO sighting seeing this odd thing in the air..then asking me, "Is it your tent?"

"Nope, just trying to save it for my neighbor."

I really wanted to rip off my shirt, pull out my blue cape, and fly up and get it...but wisely, I refrained, one must keep a secret identity!

At this point we are at the far edge of the city and open fields with new construction, and there is a huge excavated pit, like 12 feet deep,and several hundred feet wide and long. The wind died down and it started to descend into the pit. Undaunted I jumped in to try to get it, only to discover, the pit was muddy

The suction from the mud yanked both my sandals off my feet, I quickly pulled them free and ran, bare foot, tender tootsies and all to the tent. About 35 feet from getting it the wind gusted again, filled it up, and carried it out of the pit.

At this point the neighbor actually was in visual range to see what was happening,but alas he had no super powers and was useless.

Here is some info you need to know, I am around 5 foot 6 and a bit...go back and read how deep I said the pit was....I'll wait...
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.
.


Yup, pit is 12 feet deep...How to get out... with a crowd now gathered, watching the adventure, it was impossible for me to engage my super powers and leap out of the pit.

Relying on my smarts I found a way out(it was muddy solution, but it convinced the people I looked normal enough, so my secret identity remained secure and I continued in pursuit of the pup tent!)

It finally came down and I was able to retrieve it. The neighbor caught up to me at that point and we walked out of the field, past the pit, back into the subdivision to his car where he drove me home. Mission accomplished!

Fathers Day Part 1



Saturday night we wanted to unwind and watch a movie. I had bought "I am Sam" a month or so ago, so we popped it in. As soon as it started I realized, "UGH,this was a good choice so soon to Fathers Day!" Let me unpack that statement a bit. The movie is fantastic, amazing acting by Sean Penn and the little girl(name escapes me and I don't feel like Googling for her info right now). He is disabled, gets a girl pregnant and she leaves him and the baby, then when his daughter is still a young child she is taken away from him,and he fights to get her back. I was really proud of myself, I only let one tear flow, it was a doozy, but only one. Could have cried through half of it easily.An emotional movie close to what can be an emotional holiday.

I see myself as an expectant Father, but I didn't want any big focus on me on this day, for this year(you better bet I expect a huge event the first time it rolls around when I have Julia in my arms). Part of it, is it is hard to deal with the reality I am close to being a Father, but it still not be a tangible reality at this point, so I didn't want to embrace this day. It would spoil it for me, I think, because I will feel like celebrating it when I can actually, physically, do the role of Father, and until then I just want to hold that "holiday event" off until it can be reality. It is kinda like anticipating the presents under the tree for Christmas, but then opening them up early December, then come the 25th,it is a let down...

So those are some belated thoughts, but present feelings on this day. Things have been so insane at work that I have simply been too overwhelmed to focus on putting this stuff down. So on my day off(finally) I can do that :).

Saturday, June 02, 2007

Adventures in Childproofing part 1



Cara has decided to help a friend out by babysitting their 18 month old boy a couple days out of the week. So this has prompted us to child proof the house earlier than we had expected.

So, instalation of baby gate at top of stairs, no problems there, and it actually seems to work, a miracle, from someone who makes Tim the Tool Man Taylor look like a genius...

Then I got down on my knees and crawled around the house to see what it looked like from that perspective. I put protector plugs in the elctrical sockets, I moved hanging cords, moved the cactus collection up higher, and we made decisions about what drawers we will lock and which we will keep unlocked, we put the door knob protectors on the bathroom and our bedroom. We were set...or so I thought.

First day with the little guy, he is behaving great, then early afternoon I get a frantic call from Cara..." He has locked himself in our bedroom, where is the key..."

Randy:That door knob has a lock on it????
Cara: Where is the key?!
Randy:That door knob has a lock on it????
Cara:(says something I would get in trouble for writing).... JOKING!

As a side note, she had the car so I am unable to get home.

Cara: How do I get the door open?
Randy: Is the bedroom window open, you could use the ladder and get in that way...
Cara: Of course the window isn't open, you hate having light in there so it is boarded up tighter than Fort Knox!!!
Randy: How come this is suddenly my fault?
Cara:(says something I would get in trouble for writing).... JOKING!

*Okay the last 2 lines were never said, some creative license please :)

Cara: It is pitch black in there, the plugs are exposed, the humidifier is at his level...ARRRRHHHH he just turned the radio on... I hear diaper rubbing...ee is dancing in there!!!

I then seek to instruct her how to pop the edging off the door frame and slide a knife in and pop the knob so the door will open.

Cara: I can't get it...
Randy:I can't get there, you have the car...
Cara: (says something I would get in trouble for writing).... JOKING!

While I am trying to find a ride from work, a friend pops by the house and they get the door open.

The little guy is happy as can be.
The wife is as relieved as can be.
This blogger has as fun story to tell.

Saturday, May 26, 2007

May in Review Room

It has been confirmed that at least SOME May dossiers are in the review room stage, this is good news, and will be a relief when we are through the review room knowing there isn't more stuff we will have to do or redo in order to move on in the process.

Rumors have it that CCAA has done around 2 weeks worth of November dossiers, that would be nice, ANYthing would be better than the 2 days worth that was done recently. November is a huge month with lots of dossiers in it. March 2006 is also a large month, the other months are smaller, so hopefully that will work out to no more than a 2 year wait, we are still hoping it will fall closer to an 18-21 month wait...but as always time will tell.

Monday, May 21, 2007

1 year LID!




Well a couple days late, but we have hit the magical 1 year mark. In some regards the year has flown by and hasn't seemed that long, I attribute that only to the busy world we are in, 365 days without our daughter is still 365 days too long.

However, we know God is in control and has the right time planned, we can't know all the reasons, but something that seems to be an indicator is that when we first logged in we were told, "Ehhh, it could be around a year wait". So we were thinking that in the summer we could be preparing to go to China.

It didn't take too long to realize that wasn't going to happen...and a "bright side" of this, is that my Senior Pastor has just resigned(that is most definately not the bright side...hang in there I am getting to it!) and is likely leaving the start of July...IF the original adoption timeline had been in effect, that would have been chaos trying to transition and sustain ministry at my church as my role is going to change, in some way shape or form, for some time now and for the future, until we see who God has lined up next to come on board. If we were trying to prep for baby right now, I would be a nut(nuttier) case. This way(here is the bright side ;) ) we can be here for our church family and do what we can, and so when OUR time to transition comes(with the arrival of baby) THEY can be there for us, like we know they want and desire to be.

So those are the main thoughts going though my brain as we look at this 1 year mark. Speculation is 18-24 months total Logged in Time, but only One really knows, and He is good, and His timing perfect, even if we can't fully see it at the time.

Sometimes, as time passes we see the wisdom He has shown in His timing, other times it requires some faith to trust that His character is true and He hasn't changed. He hasn't, He won't. THAT is always worth celebrating!

Thursday, May 17, 2007

White swan

White Swan renovations article

Why is this interesting? well the White swan is famous for being THE place adoptive families reside in during their final leg of the adoption journey. The famous red chair pictures occur here(where everyone in your travel group puts their child on the couch with all theother smiliing happy content babies for a perfect picture...

Monday, May 14, 2007

Survivor



My favorite didn't win, Yau-man made fourth, if he was final three he would have won, as shown in the reunion show. That sucked.Sure showed a lot about the words and character of Dreamz, yes, it is a game, and Dreamz played it but that game betrayal sucked... oh well...but did you all see where the next Survivor will take place? Yup, in CHINA!

Let the "Survivor in China" to "Adoption from China" comparisions begin! lol! Feel free to post any here, you know I will be as time and inspiration hits!

Thursday, May 03, 2007

Interview me...

Snagged this from Janet, who snagged it from someone...here is a link to her blog
Janet's blog


If you want to participate:
1. Leave me a comment saying, “Interview me”, or words to that effect.
2. I will respond by emailing you five questions, but I get to pick the questions.
3. You will update your blog with the answers to the questions.
4. You have to include this explanation, and an offer to interview someone else in the same post.
5. When others comment asking to be interviewed, you will ask them five questions.

1) If you could go on vacation anywhere in the world (assuming that you
already have your little one), where would you go?

I would love to go back to China, or some other Asian country. I think Vietnam would be my next choice. I admire a lot of Asian culture and think it would be a wonderful shared experience with Julia. Other than that I would love to go to one of the big Comic Book Conventions, like in New York or Chicago, take that in as well as some of the local touristy stuff they offer. However the most recent vacation Cara and I talked about is doing a Garden Tour Vacation, visiting different places that have botanical gardens, butterfly gardens that kind of thing.

2) What is your fondest wish for your future child?

That she will grow up to love the Lord and serve Him faithfully.

3) Are you an organized, "list" kind of person, or a "fly by the seat
of
your pants" kind of person?

Organized list person, with the ability to fly by the seat of my pants, although I prefer the risk of death by paper cut(lists) over crashing high speed into a wall.

4) If you could see any river in the world, which one would you see?

Mississippi, because it is fun to say the word and spell it. :)

5) What was your favourite subject in school?

English. Enjoyed creative writing, just don't have the time these days to really focus on it, so most of the writing I do is fairly basic and to the point, making anyone who reads it(like the poor souls who visit this blog) shake their head that this is my answer to this question! :)

Thursday, April 19, 2007

11 month LID



Well here we are again, another LIDversary.Exciting things planned. It is my day off. I will be shortly going to sit in a doctors office with tons of sick people to get a prescription refill, where I will then make another appointment so that I can actually get in to see the doctor at a reasonable time when I get sick from the germs found while waiting in his office for too long.

Cara is going to help clean up a friends house as their little baby girl has been really sick and hospitalized for the last couple of weeks. She then has a craft party to teach at.

I am warming up leftovers for supper.Break out the party hats and streamers :)

We cleaned behind the washer and dryer at our house and I fought with the dryers vent tubing for 15 minutes to try to get it to stay on vent extensions that the house builder cut off WAAAAAY too short. Only banged my head on the shelving once. Party on!

I think the hilight of the day will be killing the Ruppie monster on the Neopets Playstation game I just bought the other day.Food, festivities and games, this is a rockin party...

Oh, it started to snow again, heh, I am okay with that, I raked the front lawn yesterday and put down some fertilizer, so this will save me money, I won't have to water it in and pay for that on the water bill, GIFTS at this party too! WOW!

The hedge took a beating over the winter, not sure if it was from the tons of snow or the neighbor girl running over the hedge with her boots when it was covered with snow, but a bunch of busted off branches, likely have to replace 3 or 4 of them. Perhaps I can salvage the broken ones and start training them as bonsai...this party even has challenges to it.

So I now wish my wife and myself a Happy 11th month LID! The month that had it all...except a referral...bummer way to end a party...ahh but what a party it will be when that referral finally comes...THAT will be THE BEST PARTY ever!

Tuesday, April 17, 2007

twenty things...

This is not new, seen it around, but since busy at work, and not in a mindset to blog yet, here is some other person's wise ramblings...



Twenty Things I Wish Adoptive Parents Knew
(an excerpt from the book by Sherri SHerrie Eldridge)

1. I suffered a profound loss before I was adopted. You are not
responsible.

2. I need to be taught that I have special needs arising from
adoption loss, of which I need not be ashamed.

3. If I don't grieve my loss, my ability to receive love from you
and others will be hindered.

4. My unresolved grief may surface in anger toward you.

5. I need your help in grieving my loss. Teach me to get in touch
with my feelings about my adoption and then validate them.

6. Just because I don't talk about my birth family doesn't mean I
don't think about them.

7. I want you to take the initiative in opening conversations about
my birth family

8. I need to know the truth about my conception, birth, and family
history, no matter how painful the details my be.

9. I am afraid I was given away by my birth mother because I was a
bad baby. I need you to help me dump my toxic shame.

10. I am afraid you will abandon me.

11. I may appear more whole than I actually am. I need your help to
uncover the parts of myself that I keep hidden, so I can integrate
all the elements of my identity.

12. I need to gain a sense of personal power.

13. Please don't say I look or act just like you. I need you to
acknowledge and celebrate our differences.

14. Let me be my own person but don't let me cut myself off from
you.

15. Please respect my privacy regarding my adoption. Don't tell
other people without my consent.

16. Birthdays may be difficult for me.

17. Not knowing my full medical history can be distressing at times.

18. I am afraid I will be too much for you to handle.

19. When I act out my fears in obnoxious ways, please hang in there
with me, and respond wisely

20. Even if I decide to search for my birth family, I will always
want you to be my parents.

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

Not even gonna mention

... that they only porcessed 2 days worth of dossiers...unreal... just can't go there...

so in random news...

Enjoyed anniversary number 5, that went well and was enjoyed by all :).

Enjoyed worshipping with our church family on Easter Sunday, it was nice not having anything to do for a change, so I could just sit and enjoy...that changes back to normal now, with me preaching the next 2 weeks while Bill is away(the senior Pastor). Got a good jump on it so I am hopeful this will be a kick butt productive week that allows me to not just catch up but get ahead on some things so I can focus on preparing for camp. Although the snow isn't gone yet, camp will be here WAAAAY too soon.

Enjoyed the first of the 2 Pretender movies, will watch the second one maybe this week.

On Sunday I was holding an 8 month old little asian/canadian baby, from a family in our church and had 2 people come up thinking we had gotten Julia already...I like the fact that I am told I look good holding and Asian baby...DON"T like the fact, it isn't ours for some time to go yet :(. Even though the wait time *IS* getting to me at times, there is no way I could see turning back, or pursuing another avenue for adoption. It was reassuring to read in another couples blog what I have been telling myself, that when the wait is finally over and we have Julia, that all the holidays and times when you feel like it is "another holiday without her" those times magically disappear. Can't wait for that magic trick :)

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

What's up...

Time is flying, can't beleive we are into April already, it is nice that since "the wait" is such a wait that the rest of life seems to be flying by, it is also scary. Cara mentioned to me she is filling her schedule with extra business parties etc to keep her mind off the wait, which is helpful for her. Me, on the other hand, am simply busy and thinking, "when can I make a break come in here", I WILL not be this busy when Julia comes along, come hell or high water, I don't know what has to change, but something will. I won't look back on her child hood and go"when did she suddenly grow up?"

Speaking of growing up, my mom has her B-day today, sucks we can't be there to celebrate with her in person, but Happy Birthday Mummy :)

Had another gospel magic show at a church last night.Had something happen to me that has never happened in 15 years of performing, I do a routine where I explain the Gospel and how there is punishment for our sin, but that Jesus takes it away, and have a wrist chopper,which I call a guilt detector tester, which cuts stuff, but I say when a person has a belief in Jesus HE takes their guilt and sin so they can't be hurt by it.

I put the kids wrist in it, slam it down, and SURPRIZE, no damage. Well, I have done this trick literally hundreds of times, but last night, the kid started crying before I did anything. I always whisper in their ear,"it is a trick, it won't hurt", but no go this time. NEVER had that happen before. One time I had the kid in the chopper and I sensed tension so I asked him quietly why he was nervous, he said" I have to go to the washroom,NOW!" So I let him out and he runs off the stage holding himself(he made it fortunately)

But back to last night, so I let this 11 year old go back to her seat, and she sends up her 4 year old baby brother instead! I am thinking this is gonna be a lost cause and should just scrap it, but away we went, and the little guy did awesome. Performing is unpredictable, makes it a challenge but I love it.

Easter is just upon us, as is my(our) 5th year anniversary,so lots of good stuff ahead in the next few days...