Friday, June 27, 2008

Then and now -- Beach edition

Sisters in the pool, June 2007:

June 2008:

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Goofing around with Papa

Ting Ting enjoyed time with her grandfather (Papa).

(Credits: Swimsuit from Target's spring line, hair styled by Lauren, photography by Lance).

Monday, June 23, 2008

Ask a stupid question . . .

SCENE: Saturday afternoon, Atlanta airport. Mama and Ting Ting are leaving the women's restroom. For no apparent reason, Ting Ting stops walking and begins kicking the wall.

MAMA (exasperated): Ting Ting, what are you doing?

TING TING (happily continuing to kick the wall): I'm doing dis.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

So how's it going?

Ting Ting's description of her first day at the beach:

"Payed in dah sand, went in da waaader, Ting Ting swim (with dramatic pantomine), den waaader mouf: Pffft, pfffft, pfffft."

Yep, that about covers it.

We're on vacation!

Ahhhh, the annual family vacation at the beach!

It's a whole week of enjoying the water, the sand, the sun . . .

. . . spending time with loved ones . . .

. . . getting advice from our elders . . .

. . . thinking big thoughts . . .

. . . doing a little dance . ..

. . . enjoying "see-food" . . .

. . . and just hanging out.

(And just in case you thought I forgot:)

Friday, June 13, 2008

Aw, shucks

Beverly was kind enough to name The Rachel Chronicles as one of five (well, OK, SIX) blogs that make her day. She said some very sweet things about us in this post. She suggested that as a displaced Southerner I needed some Southern hugs, but in the days following that post, I think Beverly needed the hugs herself! Thankfully things have settled back down and she's still posting photos and stories about her absolutely adorable daughter, Glenys. Beverly's blog, "Motherhood and Other Ramblings," is a blog that makes my day, too.

Now I'm supposed to list five other blogs that make my day. That's a tough request because I read many different kinds of blogs regularly. So for this post I'll stick with blogs that made my day this week.

Not Just Pigtails and Polka Dots Anymore made my day Tuesday when I saw Michelle had posted new photos of her TWO children, Olivia and Owen. Michelle and I met online when we were both waiting for our daughters. Now Michelle and Eric have just returned from their second trip to China, where they adopted a son. I'm so happy to see them all home safe and sound.

You'd think that Wendy's blog would be depressing as her family waits -- and waits -- and waits to adopt a son and daughter from Guatemala. If anything could go wrong, it did (sometimes two or three times!) But little Levi keeps the family entertained, and teenage daughters Katie and Ashley keep things real. Today, Friday the 13th, they received the joyous news that Ahren will be coming home at last. He's 10 days older than Ting Ting, and Wendy and her family have been staring at his picture since he was just a few days old, so they're more than ready. And maybe, just maybe, they close to bringing home Peri Brynn soon, too

I stumbled on Breed 'Em and Weep a few months back, just when Jenn and her husband had decided to separate. Some of her posts have been emotional and raw, but others have been amusing or hopeful. Always they are riveting. (If you need a laugh, check out this post, in which her daughter embarrasses her in public but Jenn and her mother can't stop laughing about it, which makes it even worse. You absolutely have to read the comments, too, for dozens of other stories that had me in hysterics).

I used to love to read a blog called The Naked Ovary. At first it chronicled Karen's battles with infertility, then her process of adopting a daughter from China (I later discovered she was in my online DTC group, too). Karen stopped writing her blog while we were in China a couple of months later, though, and I really missed it. So you can imagine how it made my day recently when I stumbled upon Cheek, her new blog. And it really made my day when I found out she was pregnant! She just delivered a daughter this week.

And speaking of women who got pregnant after adopting from China, I really enjoy reading Dusty's blog. Dusty and Chet brought Mary Joyce home from China shortly before we traveled for Ting Ting, then they discovered they were going to have a second daughter, Katherine. Mary Joyce is a beautiful and funny little girl who is a lot like Ting Ting, and 10-month-old Katherine is a real sweetheart. I loved this video that Dusty posted the other day.

So, if you're keeping track, I listed three blogs of people who were members of my July 2005 DTC yahoo! group, two of whom later gave birth to daughters. (And even thought it is a MYTH that women "always" get pregnant once they adopt, I know of a third, too -- she just doesn't have a blog). The other two blogs are by complete strangers whose blogs I found by following a link and another link and maybe another. All of them "Make My Day" quite often, though.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Happy, Happy, Joy, Joy!

NEWS FLASH: At last, Lance has replaced his broken camera. The angels rejoice as we return to our regularly updated blog

On Saturday, Lance and I took Ting Ting to a picnic sponsored by our local Families With Children from China group. We had a great time.

Ting Ting had lots of good food to eat:

She got to ride the choo choo train,

and a horsie

(the wooden kind, that is).

She did a lot of running around:

(with Mama fast on her tail).

And, best of all, we ran into our travel mates Erik and Jennifer and their daughters Katie and Leanna. Leanna is two months younger than Ting Ting and is one of her Ba sisters -- they were under the care of the same Social Welfare Institute in Yueyang County, Hunan, although they lived in different foster homes.

Ting Ting taught Leanna a new game she had just invented.

It involved stooping down, picking a bunch of grass, and then standing up and putting it on Mama's (white) pants.

See, like this.

Leanna caught on pretty quickly, and both girls thought it was absolutely hysterical.

I guess you really had to be there . . . oh, wait, we have video!

Three cheers for Lance and his versatile new camera!

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Get a clue

Sunday afternoon I came home from running a few errands to find Ting Ting (freshly awake from her nap) snuggling on our bed with Lance watching an episode of "Blue's Clues." (That's a TV show for young children that features a puppy named Blue who tries to help his human sidekick figure something out by marking clues with big blue paw prints that the kids in the audience must help the human find). Ting Ting has only seen the show a few times, but she enjoys it when she does. When it was over, I took her into her room and she looked up, pointing excitedly, and shouted, "Mommy! A clue!"

Are you ready?

Here's what it was:

Sunday, June 08, 2008

This and that

The other morning I was making breakfast and Ting Ting went upstairs.

She's not supposed to climb the stairs by herself and she knows that, so as soon as I realized she was doing it, I followed her. I got to the top of the stairs just as she was disappearing into her room.

I fussed at her, then asked, sternly, "why did you do that?"

She came out of her room clutching her doll and her blanket and thrust them up at me.

"I needed my dis (this)," she said.

Saturday, June 07, 2008

Then and now -- Memorial Day edition

Memorial Day 2007 -- Playing on a slide at the local playground:

Memorial Day 2008 -- Enjoying food and family:

Monday, June 02, 2008

Eyeroll anyone?

Scene: Daddy and Ting Ting watching an episode of "Dora the Explorer." Dora and Boots have three items, but one is taken away.

Dora: How many do we have now?
Daddy: How many do they have now, Ting Ting?
Ting Ting: Dos.
Daddy (a bit surprised that she answered in Spanish): Dos?
Ting Ting: TWO.

(Please, Daddy. Everybody knows what 'dos' is.)