Saturday, November 27, 2010

14 Degrees in Nanchang today...and what katie thinks about Julia...

Well checking the weather in Nanchang today it is 14 degrees Celsius and there is light rain expected, weather is 13-19 degrees this week.

Katie seems to be preparing well for Julia. She points at every picture we have, of her calling her name. even little icons on facebook which are finger sized she will spot and smile and yell" JULIA"!!

She keeps saying "Julia, hold" and makes a cupping motion with her hands like holding a baby. She will be surprised when she sees a 20 pounder named Julia, heh. I think she will be a great big sister and then will have really bad moments of NOT being a good sister, when the jealousy kicks in I think Katie will be quite the handful, but will then turn just as quick from a protest to giving hugs and kisses.

In other news I decided to shave my head(some would say that wasn't much of a task, it was almost there anyhow LOL). But it was for purely practical measures. First off, by the time we get to China it will have grown in to a decent buzz cut, which is my normal, and second,by the end of the whole thing it will still be a good length and not need any maintenance so it is one less thing to have to deal with.

I have to figure out how to use the digital camcorder better in the next 2 weeks, I have to find our camera, it has disappeared and we kinda want to take pictures while in China. I am also working on some close up magic tricks I can share with people there, if they approach us. Love may speak any language but so does good magic :)!

I am also hoping, if I can get the camcorder figured out and find out how to upload to youtube, I have a special little poem i found and trick I want to post, we will see...well Katie just woke up from a to go hang out with my girl...

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

In a couple weeks....

Wow, time is flying, and it is GOOD! Really only a couple weeks to get everything ready. We have another car seat to get, but otherwise I think our big shopping spree is done and it is now just getting it into suitcases.

We decided to bring some dehydrated food, just in case we can't find safe food(I have a nut allergy and Cara is allergic to fish/seafood) our facilitators will make up cards in Mandarin for us to advise restaurants to avoid that, but we want to be prepared either way.

It is funny how we have been preparing for 5 years yet there is still a feeling of" are we ready?" Ready to have her in our room to work out cosleeping stuff, ready to engage the multiple bottle thing again, and double the diapers and how on earth will we deal with naps and bedtimes with two...knowing we will of course do it, but until you actually EXPERIENCE it, you always have a question of whether the plan will work LOL.

We still need to see our TA(Travel Approval from China) although we have been assured by FOI we will have it, so I am not worried.

Just have to get a bunch of stuff done at work so think click along until the New Year and then I can relax. After the initial thrill and rush of it all, I am pretty numb and just going through the motions right now, until we get closer then I know i will be thru the roof again, and I think once work commitments are done and we know we are ready, it will be an awesome feeling.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

We are in the News!

The local newspaper came by and interviewed us on our story and it made the paper, very cool. Here is a link.

Monday, November 15, 2010


Seriously checking out the game.

What a smile!!!!

Our Julia with her foster mom!!!!

height :69cm
weight :9kg
she has 4 teeth.

I woke up to this info sent from Ann with Red thread, the lady who we are using to send a care package to Julia. To have a pic of her foster mom, is such a gift. What an awesome way to start the week!!!!

Saturday, November 13, 2010

The Latest

30 days from now, she will be in our arms.....UNBELIEVABLE!!!!!!!

Flights are booked, I had totally forgotten that I had researched about whether the name on the ticket should be her Chinese name or her English name, so I have to go back and make some changes that way. I am really impressed with the Travel Agency our Facilitators use, they got us tickets for like $2000 cheaper with the same airline as the research I had done.

30 days from now, she will be in our arms.....UNBELIEVABLE!!!!!!!

Today we get pictures taken for the visas and send off that bit of paperwork.Going to rework the basement set up a bit to prepare for family coming after the trip.Turned away a magic show for this weekend, so that I have a bit of a break, I have a NUMBER of shows coming, plus extra work to get figured out, so trying to build some margin into life.

30 days from now, she will be in our arms.....UNBELIEVABLE!!!!!!!

Hearing mixed reviews on the hotel we will be staying at, hopefully it will be okay, peoples standards are so relative, so we will see.Gotten some great feedback from folks who have done this before, additions and subtractions for packing lists, things to watch for etc. It is awesome having a larger adoption community to tap into.

30 days from now, she will be in our arms.....UNBELIEVABLE!!!!!!!
30 days from now, she will be in our arms.....UNBELIEVABLE!!!!!!!
30 days from now, she will be in our arms.....UNBELIEVABLE!!!!!!!

On the Katie front, she is just an amazing little gal. She is learning new stuff all the time, I get great delight in making her smile, dancing with her, listening to her very serious stories, celebrating successes in early potty training journey...

On the Cara front, she is an amazing gal. She is applying stuff she learns all the time, I get great delight in making her smile while I do my funky dances with Katie, listening to her serious stories on how we are going to make things happen with 2 kids now...and celebrating successes in her potty training...techniques for our daughter. :)

Well, time for some awesome buttermilk pancakes, as I hear my girls are awake.

30 days from now, my OTHER girl will be in our arms.....UNBELIEVABLE!!!!!!!

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Boy it is hard to focus on work!!!!

Chatted with our travel person today and we are in the process of booking flights and coordinating that whole thing, researching hotels etc. I am REALLY impressed with the agencies travel agency, they seem to have gotten us amazing deal on the flights so far.

Hard to believe that in a few short weeks we will be on a plane.

Got a bunch of stuff to get done at work, it will come together, but boy am I easily distracted, more than normal these days, LOL. Just gonna enjoy it!

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Packing list-round 1

Here is a copy of what we have planned to pack, it is our first crack at it and i am sure items will end up added... We went shopping for some of the stuff we don't have last night, buying that, then paying our house and car insurance, oil change for the car, my Scottish savings side is freaking out. Fortunately I have booked a few magic shows this week and the hopes of a few more are in negotiations, so this will help a lot. We have been saving for years, I know we have enough, I just hate the idea of paying out large amounts of money, so I like it when I know I can replace aspects of it soon after.

Copy of Dossier & Addendum ?
Brown Envelope docs

Adult Medical Kit

2 Antibacterial wipes/liquid -one in carry on also
5 Packs of kleenex
Sinus pills
Benadryl cream
energC powder

Epi pen
Back Tylenol

Cold/Flu medicine
Cough drops
Eye drops
Pepto Bismal
Melatonin (natural sleep med) (used first night)

Advil (used 2x)
Tylenol head congestion (day & night)cold and flu

Robitussin cough
6 pkg. FFreinds, red and original

Baby Medical Kit
Scabies prescription
Digital Thermometer
Glycerin suppositories
Pedialyte (powdered)
Baby Tylenol and/or Motrin
Baby Benadryl
Teething Tabs
Butt balm/(Diaper Rash)
Ear ache medicine
Cold/Cough medicine- herbal
Saline Drops
Bulb syringe
Nail clippers

Adult Toiletries
aveeno Lotion

Q-Tips/Cotton balls

Disposable face cloths

Lap Top
Digital camera
Batteries/Memory Cards
Money belts
Passport/ID holders
Blow up neck pillows
Dishwashing Detergent
Plastic bags (asst)
Small scissors
hair rubberbands, bobby pins, hair wraps, claws and other Cara hair stuff
small First aid kit

laundry detergent (travel size)
bounce sheets
small calculator
bible (travel size)
1 roll duct tape (re-rolled to save space)
1collapsable duffle-bags (used for souvenirs)
luggage strap
9 Gifts to Give in China

Adult Snacks (few)
Formula (1-2 days worth)
adult snacks
oatmeal packs
dried fruit
jar baby prunes

Adult Clothing:

Winter coats
Winter hats

Walking shoes
2nd pair of shoes
Sweater or sweatshirt
3-4 outfits
Bathing Suit

Baby Stuff:
Diaper Backpack
Diaper changing pad
Baby Wipes
Bath Kit-Arbonne wash and oil/lotion
baby blanket
toys/cups -stacking cups, teething book
bottles 3 with liners
5 nipples
Bottle thermal holder
Tupperware formula dispenser?
Cuddly wrap
Sippy cups
Nail clippers
Diaper disposal bags -Walmart rolls
Swim diapers
Formula Dispenser
2 spoons
2 wipe-off bibs
2 bowl (disposable ones..can re-use)
wash clothes (disposable w/soap)
Baby Clothes
8-9 outfits
Bathing Suit
5 Socks
Hat winter
2 pj’s
2 onsies (used as pj’s, would pack 2 more)
1 sweater-white
Hair bows/sm. rubberbands
15 Diapers (used 10, bought rest in china)
2 burp clothes

8-Officials gifts

Carry-On (list of items to pack-already listed above)

Benedryl ~baby (for plane)

1 hand sanitizer

2 neck pillows (blow-up)
Folder w/ paperwork
1adult outfit each (shirt and undergarment)
small calculator

Tuesday, November 09, 2010

When we travel

We will have her BEFORE Christmas THIS YEAR!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

FOI just told us we will travel in December... after so many Christmases without her...not so this year!!!!!

I don't know how they pulled it off(well I know God made it happen...but I can't believe it is happening...
We haven't done any paper work other than send off the acceptance letter and now we will travel in a month...this next month is gonna be INSANE!!!!!!!


My dad with Katie this summer

Started the day by taking the multiple packing lists we had researched and edited and compiled it into is still 4 pages long and that doesn't include our clothing...WHOA!!!!!Should have expected that...

Still waiting on word on potential travel days.

We sent the approval letter off so fast, we signed it but forgot to check the box that says" will you accept this child". Heh, fortunately the govt agency called and with any luck it is presently on its way to China.

We have been blessed by MANY friends and families excitement and support in this leg of the journey. But we have also experienced some head scratching moments,where we figured some people would be more excited then they appeared. It dawned on me this morning, it is likely because they aren't as into the "adoption world" and how it works. Cara and I have this as OUR normal. That we have been expecting for 5 years to get a picture of our daughter and then expecting to wait a number of weeks and then go get her, but for the rest of the folks in the world, you get excited when baby is in arms, so we have altered our expectations of peoples responses, and are now confident that these same folks we wondered about will be excited when they see Julia in arms.

Expecting a visit from my dad next week, that should be fun.

Have a big youth conference to perform at in Edmonton, expecting that will be an adventure...

Trying to figure out how to have Katie in her room, Julia in ours, and how to deal with rocking, diaper changes etc so that whoever is not doing that, can get sleep...

Katie has been awesome in receiving the concept of Julia. a day after the referral she grabbed the picture held it up and shouted "JULIA"! We know she will not be quite as thrilled when she has to share Mommy and Daddy, but she will be an awesome big sister!

Saturday, November 06, 2010


Feeling so blessed this morning. Seems Wanzai doesn't do a lot of adoptions, but have already made a couple awesome connections with folks who have adopted from there. It is so valuable to have those connections, and through that we have heard there is potential to have a longer standing relationship with the foster family. Not saying it will happen, but there is a much greater potential than we imagined. For Julia(and us) to have the potential to communicate with the family who cared for her for the first part of her life would be one less loss in this picture of adoption. We still are waiting on word about travel time, but happily mailed off the acceptance letter yesterday.Wish there were more pictures to post, we got the actual photos yesterday and they have finer detail that doesn't show up in the posted ones, more accurate skin color,more detail of the cute little lips... we are going to get some copies done and get them posted around the house with our family pictures so Katie gets used to her!

Friday, November 05, 2010

what we were doing april 10 2010

Thought I would check to see what we were doing on Julia's birth day. It was a saturday. The night before I had traveled to Tangent alberta to do a big magic show. Cara had her Klingon craft group over and the calendar said "stay at home nite" as the week had been a busy one for both of us. So it was a normal kinda day on the surface, but it was a remarkable praiseworthy day as it was the day my Julia was born YAHOOO!!!! a few days before I posted this poem on the blog:

Mother Bridge of Love

Once there were two women who never knew each other.

One you do not remember, the other you call Mother.

Two different lives shaped to make you one.

One became your guiding star; the other became your sun.

The first one gave you life, and the second taught you to live it.

The first gave you a need for love. The second was there to give it.

One gave you a nationality. The other gave you a name.

One gave you a talent. The other gave you aim.

One gave you emotions. The other calmed your fears.

One saw your first sweet smile. The other dried your tears.

One sought for you a home that she could not provide.

The other prayed for a child and her hope was not denied.

And now you ask me, through your tears,

The age-old question unanswered through the years.

Heredity or environment, which are you a product of?

Neither, my darling. Neither. Just two different kinds of Love.


Wednesday, November 03, 2010


Jiangxi is centered on the Gan River valley, which historically provided the main north-south transport route of south China. The corridor along the Gan River is one of the few easily traveled routes through the otherwise mountainous and rugged terrain of the south-eastern mountains. This open corridor was the primary route for trade and communication between the North China Plain and the Yangtze River valley in the north and the territory of modern Guangdong province in the south. As a result Jiangxi has been strategically important throughout much of China's history

Mountains surround Jiangxi on three sides, with the Mufu Mountains, Jiuling Mountains, and Luoxiao Mountains on the west; Huaiyu Mountains and Wuyi Mountains on the east; and the Jiulian Mountains and Dayu Mountains in the south. The southern half of the province is hilly with ranges and valleys interspersed; while the northern half is flatter and lower in altitude. The highest point in Jiangxi is Mount Huanggang in the Wuyi Mountains, on the border with Fujian. It has an altitude of 2157 m.

The Gan River dominates the province, flowing through the entire length of the province from south to north. It enters Lake Poyang in the north, the largest freshwater lake of China; that lake in turn empties into the Yangtze River, which forms part of the northern border of Jiangxi. Important reservoirs include the Xiushui Tuolin Reservoir in the northwest of the province on the Xiushui River, and the Wan'an Reservoir(zh) in the upper section of the Gan.

Jiangxi's climate is subtropical. Average temperatures are about 3 to 9°C in January and 27 to 31°C in July. Annual precipitation is 1200 to 1900 mm.

Nanchang, the region's capital and the most densely populated city, is one of China's largest metropolis. Nanchang is the hub of Jiangxi civilization throughout its history, which plays a leading role in the commercial, intellectual and industrial and political fields.[4] While Ganzhou is the largest subdivision of Jiangxi.

Jiangxi is a rather poor province when compared to its neighboring provinces. It is located in extreme proximity to some of the richest provinces of China (Guangdong, Zhejiang, Fujian), which are sometimes blamed for taking away talent and capital from Jiangxi.

Jiangxi's nominal GDP for 2008 was 648 billion yuan (93.3 billion USD) and a per capita of 15,033 RMB (2,164 USD).

Although little known outside of the province, Jiangxi cuisine is rich and distinctive. Flavors are some of the strongest in China, with heavy use of chile peppers and especially pickled and fermented products.

In 2007, Jiangxi (specifically the Zhelin Reservoir, about 40 km from Nanchang) was the filming location for the fifteenth series of the American TV show Survivor.

Introducing our Daughter- Julia Hope

Orphanage she was at for 18 days

She is everything we hoped for, everything we prayed for.
We hoped for 7-9 month old at referral. She is 6.5
We hoped she was not left alone, she was found within hours of being left.
We hoped for foster care, she was in foster care after 18 days.
I was hoping she would have more hair than her dad... 3 out of 4 ain't bad. LOL. Her hair will come.:) :)

She is from Jiangxi(pronounced "jong she")

To finally see a picture of the face we have prayed for, cried over, longed for, for 5 years, is surreal, and has instantly filled that place in my heart that I have held open for her and refused to give up. Next step is filling that spot in my arms!!!

We will need a bunch of stuff to fall into place to get December travel in here. We need approval letters to move quick and get to all the right folks, we need there to be room in travel groups for us, appointment spaces in China for consulate appointments, visas to be in place...BUT if(dare I say WHEN) that all happens we could be celebrating Christmas in Canada as a family of four...if not early January would be the next travel group...

We got the Call

1:30 on Wednesday, we got the call. We have a bunch of appointments to make, get medical info checked, etc before we can make a formal announcement, but we are THRU THE ROOF excited!

Tuesday, November 02, 2010

Wednesday or Thursday

These could be very good days ;). That is the time frame we hope to get the call. We know files are now being translated(Tuesday) so hopefully back to Anne Scullys office on Wednesday and then maybe a call then or the next day....

Monday, November 01, 2010

waiting for the call day 1

As a record for our Julia of what we were doing:
We woke up Monday morning and we ate breakfast, it was around 9:15, I was feeling *anxious to check the Rumor Queen site to see if there was news, and indeed there was, that calls were being made. I jumped up and down and starting crying, your mom, usually the emotional one was excited but subdued(I don't think her coffee had kicked in yet LOL). I yelled, "get the question sheet!!!"(this was a sheet of questions we wanted to ask the agency when they call us with your information). I went and plugged in the battery for the camcorder so we can record the call so that we don't miss any details. Your mom is so excited now to see your picture and we can't wait to get you in our arms...

I packed up your sister and drove to work to get my computer so I could still try to do some work, while at home. I did get some done during the rest of the day, and fittingly it was prep for this upcoming sunday which we are having a special orphan sunday focus in our church. I was preparing a short 5 minute chat on adoption, as well as putting together some information for our church to help them in responding to orphan care, adoption and foster care.
Picked up a special coffee for your mom on the way home. I then spent most of the rest of the time checking email, checking sites waiting to get some word on anything as to when to expect the call.

Your mom and I decided to not let anyone know until we had gotten the call with the information in it, that is hard, I want to shout it from the mountain tops and run down the streets like a madman shouting out the wonderful news that I will soon get to be Daddy to a special little girl we have been waiting for, for 5 years.

I write this now at 5 pm, and I have had a wonderful,but anxious knot in my stomach all day. Where in China are you at? How old are you? Are you in an orphanage right now, or foster care, what food do you like to eat, will you take to "our food" easily, do you sleep well, do you know in your heart there are 2 people who already love you, are you dreaming baby dreams of family? Do you know it is close to reality, you are not to be left alone, you do not have to lose hope, you can know you have been prayed for, treasured in our hearts, and will be loved fully soon!!!!

C'mon phone call...can't wait to see your face....

calls are coming

We are hoping we get a call in the next day or so(hopefully today). LID may 19. Here we go!