Sunday, October 29, 2006

Our Adoption Timeline

Just a quickie before I settle in for the night. I want to mention I likely won't be blogging much this week due to an up-coming WEEK FROM HELL. In anticipation, I am turning in early, and I thought I'd add another "required" post on my adoption-blog: the adoption timeline.

Here's the somewhat-edited version -
  • 12-1-05 - Sent application to CCAI (our agency)
  • 12-5-05 - Received the acceptance call
    • as an aside here, this is the SAME DAY we found out DH had to have open-heart surgery...
  • Early-January - accepted to Home Study (HS) agency
    • began HS
    • Sent I-600A
  • 1-18-06 - Final HS visit (the last of 4 visits)
  • 4-18-06 - Drove to Charlotte for fingerprints
  • 4-27-06 - Received 171-H (must have been a record!!)
  • Early May - Paperwork authenticated, and sent for Certification
    • We used a currier service, and received our paperwork back from DC in 7 days.
  • 5-23-06 - Dossier sent to agency (whoo-hoo!!)
  • 5-30-06 - I FINALLY turn 30!! Now, we're official!
  • 6-7-06 - Dossier sent from review to translation
  • 6-9-06 - our Dossier is sent to CHINA, baby!
  • 6-15-06 - Official Log In Date (LID). The WAIT begins in earnest...***sigh***
  • 8-20-06 - Received the Brown Envelope!!
So for those of you interested in this, but not "in the adoption know":
Now, from our LID to our Match, we were told to expect to wait 12 months. Others with the same LID were told to wait 14 months. Eitherway, we will likely wait 4-8 weeks once we are matched with a child until we are able to travel to meet her. We'll spend 10-14 days in China. Until we are matched with a baby, we don't know a THING. After we are matched, we'll get her given name, her birthday, her measurments and health status, and her orphanage and province.

Thursday, October 26, 2006

Baby Magic - the untold story

So, in light of my super cool Secret Pal (from the June Bugs 2006 Group), I thought I'd finally tell the story of how Baby M got her nickname (which is Baby Magic). Here's the skinny:

As many people who know us, or read my silly little blog, are aware, my dear friend Uncle Phil lives with us (that's a whole 'nother story!), and it was way back last September when he moved in with us. (We had painted our nusery in preparation for the baby...a lovely soft pink and green. It was the only spare room in the house, so we like to joke, we prepared to adopt a baby girl and adopted instead a 32 year old man...who lives in our nursery). Anyway, I digress. Basically, DH and I told Phil (who was NOT Uncle Phil at that time) that we were planning to adopt our first child, and he would be around for at least some of the paperchase (little did I know...). DH and I couldn't/can't agree on a name for the baby, so for a few months we simply called her "The Baby". Anyway, Phil was very excited about the possiblility of a baby and immediatly suggested that we name her "Ervin Magic Johnson Hatfield Seth Carley". Surprisingly enough, this was catagorically rejected due to two reasons:
  1. This was a mouthful, definitly. Can you imagine her first day of school??
    "And what's your name little girl? "My name's Payton Allison Smith" "My name is Jaydon Dresdon Jones." "My name is Ervin Magic Johnson insert-Chinese-name-here- Hatfield Seth Carley."...The whole class would fall asleep before she was done with her SECOND middle name! Anyway...
  2. More importantly, we didn't want to name our DD Ervin ANYTHING. (Go figure)
So, I agreed we'd consider his suggestion. He wasn't exactly pleased, but began calling "The Baby" Baby Magic everytime her talked about her. Baby Magic stuck. Now, we ALWAYS refer to the baby as "Baby Magic" or Baby M. We even used that when we spoke to our social worker for our Home Study!! By the end of our HS, even our SOCIAL WORKER was calling her Baby Magic!! So, now, when anyone asks what we're naming our DD, we say "Baby Magic".

As an addendum: Phil is already excited over the prospect of another adoption after this one. His suggestion for names for the next baby girl include: James Worthy Hatfield Seth Carley, Major Harris Hatfield Seth Carley, and simply "Baby Kareem"... Is it obvious Uncle Phil likes basketball (and is a WVU fan)?

Sunday, October 22, 2006

Mamma's got a brand new bag

So, I've been sewing. It's a good weekend when you can stay home and sew!! Here's my new bag:
It's basically a tote, and on this one the straps a little short, but this was just the prototype. I'm selling these too, should anyone desire a NEW bag. It's about 14 inches tall, and a little more than that wide. LOTS of room for crafting, books, groceries, baby stuff, etc. I've made the outside with 2 pockets, and the inside has one big pocket and 3 small pockets, but can be adjusted as per individual desires.

(Click on picture twice to enlarge to see detail)

Friday, October 20, 2006

New sewing project

So, last night after yoga, I came home and made a new sewing project for Tod's dog (modeling below), The Mad Lab. Check it out!!

Tuesday, October 17, 2006

Secrets - and the Adoption Catch-22

So, our 4 month (since LID) mark came and went here. Our agency tells us to expect about another 8 month wait to match. I TRY not to think about it. I TRY not to read the other blogs that talk about the slow-down in referrals. I especially try NOT to read the RQ blog, but yesterday I snuck on. It was aweful. She did the math for how many dossiers CCAA gets in a month, and then how many people had had their dossiers turned in. The number was roughly 1:3. One child for every 3 dossiers. Her speculation went on to say that at that rate, referrals could take YEARS... Then, just now I popped on and she said something about dossiers being referred by DTC, NOT LID...that would put us only one week closer (DTC June 9, LID June 15). But to some people, this is a big thing. Of course, it's ALL speculation. But hell, what ELSE do we have??

So, the big secret. The one I haven't told anyone...not even Tod... I looked at changing countries yesterday.Vietnam (our #3 country when we were choosing countries way back in the day) only has a 4 month wait time... 4 MONTHS. That means, if we'd have gone with them in June, well, Baby M would be Baby M from Vietnam, and she'd be home in time for Thanksgiving. THIS Thanksgiving. If we changed now, we'd have her say, by my 31st B-day. But, really, 2 things are stopping me from actually REALLY moving ahead with a change.

  1. As sick as it makes me, we can't AFFORD to change countries now. It wouldn't be THAT much in the grand scheme of things (cump change to a lot of folks out there), but to us...well, it's enough to make it impossible. In fact, it's also almost impossible for us to try to have a baby that shares our DNA, for that same reason. I can't imagine going from no kids to 2 in a matter of one year. If it were Tod giving birth, maybe! LOL. But I can't take time off work just to have a kid, then turn around in another 2 months and say, "oh, ha. I need another 3-6 months off for ANOTHER baby." It wouldn't be fair to Baby M. It wouldn't be fair to ANYONE. So, here we sit. The adoption catch-22.

  2. China called to us. I don't care how dumb you think that sounds, other China A-parents will tell you that's how it happens. China called; we just answered. Our Baby M is IN CHINA. If we change countries, well, we won't get Baby M. Period.
Doesn't this entire SYSTEM seem REALLY REALLY F-ed up? Lots of babies needing a good home, lots of good people with good homes wanting a baby... and yet, it takes YEARS to put the two together.

Control freaks do not do well in these types of situations....

Friday, October 13, 2006

Collecting Quilt Squares

So, for anyone out there in blog-land who isn't part of the June DTC group (I've got most of those squares!!), I am collecting quilt squares for Baby M's OHGWQ. Basically, I would like a piece of material about 8X8 inches square, and a note with a wish and your name on it) please include a scrap of cloth to go with the wish). Here's and example ->

Anyone want to help? Email me if you'd like my address to help me fill our daughters quilt with squares and her life-book with warm wishes.

Thursday, October 12, 2006

I LOVE the South

So, a very good friend of mine - the one who lives in BFE, Iowa - sent me this today:

"It officially snowed yesterday afternoon.....and again last
night. Nothing much other than a "light dusting" --- but I can't see
the boards on my porch."

Can I just say (sorry, JT), ICK!! It was 75 degrees here today and BEAUTIFUL. I was in a TANK-TOP and jeans...(I would have been in flip-flops, but I can't wear them and work in a lab. Fooy.)

Oh, and I saw the first camillia blooming today...they will bloom all the way through February or March. (Did I mention my gardinias are blooming again??)

I LOVE the South.

Tuesday, October 10, 2006


Is it TOO much to ask that we respect the people around us?? I have been told more than once that I expect TOO MUCH from others - be it fairness, kindness, thoughtfulness, respect, etc. For example, when driving, I try to be considerate and kind to those around me. Example - if someone is trying to turn into the lane I am in, or across my lane and it is both safe for them to do so, and they have their turn signal on (most people do not seem to know what these little things are here in the South...), then I will allow them to turn in front of me, or stop so they can get past me. I DO expect a wave, and nod, or SOMETHING that says "hey, thanks". MANY times I am disappointed, and much like Jerry Seinfeld, I am left asking "Where's my wave??". Ok, so as usual, I digress.

But in the case I am about to mention, I think ANYONE would have expected a little more respect/kindness/etc. Let me set the scene. I was at my dermatologists today to check a little mole-thingy looked at (turned out A-ok), and 2 doors down in the same building was a geriatrics’ doctor's office. As I was stepping outside my doctor's office to finish my coffee (so as not to break the NO FOOD/DRINKS rule in the waiting room) I saw a man and an older woman coming out of the old-people's doctor's office. The man was young enough I took him to be the woman's son. She was quite elderly, and needed some help to the car. The ENTIRE TIME I stood outside drinking my coffee the man was berating the woman. She was too slow. She was too frail. She was talking too much. Why won’t you shut up? (the man went on, voice getting louder and louder). I am so sick of hearing you talk. Shut-up. Shut-your mouth...

You get the idea. I was so horrified I was struck dumb. (I know, I know, NO ONE has ever seen this happen to me before, but its true. Me. Stuck dumb...). I wanted to storm over and insist the man treat (what I assumed was) his mother with more respect. At the VERY LEAST, treat her like a human being. However, by the time I finally decided to say something, they were far enough away I would have had to run over to them, and they were about in the car already, so I stayed put. I was walking back to the door to my doctor’s when another person came up behind me and said “I hope that wasn’t his mother! He was being just awful to her!” I agreed of course, and we actually spoke briefly about how sad it was to have witnessed such an event. I did mention, however, that regardless of whether or not it was actually his mother, NO ONE should be spoken to like that. NO ONE. It mad me angry, AND it made me sad. So many cultures treat their elders with the utmost respect, and in fact, part of the issue in China with having boys is so the boys will grow-up to take care of his aging parents. The aging parents are SO respected and are SO expected to be cared for, families will give-up their daughters so they can have boys to take care of them...(I’m of course, over-simplifying here, so you purists can just accept that). But why is it in our culture (and by this I mean AMERICA) we prefer to treat our elders as well, as a burden and as lepers?

I am sure no one reading my modest little blog would do that, but we all know people who would. Is it our parents that teach us that behavior? Did this man truly despise his mother so much that he treated her this way (and IN PUBLIC! Imagine how he treats her at home!!). It makes me wonder about the school shootings (recent and not-so-recent); did these children never learn to be kind and compassionate towards others? To respect LIFE, and the lives around them?? What kind of people were these PARENTS?? I hope to teach my daughter to not only respect her parents and her family, but her elders, her friends, her classmates, and ESPECIALLY HERSELF as well.

Thursday, October 05, 2006

Friends, again...

Haven't I posted like 10 times on this very topic? Isn't it ALL the same?? It may be. So feel free to skip this post, I don't think I have anything NEW to say. Just the same old thing, maybe dressed up a little've been warned!

So, I had this dream last night that my now ex-best friend called me to chat. In my dream it was both exciting AND upsetting, mainly because it was one of those dreams that was so realistic that when I woke up I felt that it had actually occured. As a little back story here, I give up on people as well as Plasmodiophora give up on their hosts, which is to say - I don't. Even when it is OBVIOUS I should. If my ex called me today, I'd talk to him and want to know he's doing well. Honestly! If B called me today, I would be both upset AND excited to hear from her. I considered calling her today, of course, but fortunately someone smarter than myself had encouraged me to delete her phone number months ago...Anyway, this all brought me to thinking about people and keeping in touch with current friends. I have a friend whom I see infrequently, and honestly do not know terribly well, but she is a wonderful person. I like her. She is bad about returning emails (a big part of that is she's a SAHM of an 18 month old), and occationally I think "Is it worth it to pursue this?". So far, I would say yes, definitly. But of other friendships, sometimes I wonder if it's worth "holding onto" them if it feels like maybe the time has passed, and that friendship isn't really worth saving. I go back to this ALL THE TIME, but I miss B. I miss being her friend, but that's a friendship that ended and I need to move the F on. But will I know when to move on in the furture from friends that aren't "good friends"? I think it's obvious in a recent case anyway, the answer is no...but maybe I'm learning. I am at the VERY least making some new friends, and there's something I never did before. Perhaps spreading the friendship wealth around is a better way to do things than having 2 or 3 REALLY REALLY good friends. Of course, I still have those 2 or 3 REALLY good friends, but now, I actually have become friendly with other people!! For me, it is a more "responsible" way to handle my social life. It must have something to do with the coming/onset of Motherhood. Do you learn to become more responsible because you are going to be a perent, or it is because you going to become a prent you become more responsible?

So far, I don't have an answer, but I do know, I have made more friends because I am becoming a parent, and so far, that's pretty good.

Monday, October 02, 2006

Playing catch up

I always feel as though I'm running behind. How is it possible that tomorrow is Tuesday already? Ok, ok. Secret guilt, I'm THRILLED it's Tuesday - GG is on!! My GG gal-pal is out of town, so it looks like I'll be wathing it alone...or rather, at home while the boys pester me about it. I think Phil might try to watch it with me, actually. Deep down, I think he loves the show. ;->

I had a wonderful weekend, although I didn't get to catch up with any of my gal-pals. I owe many phone calls, especially to the Mid-westerners out there. Somehow I actually forgot to charge my phone this weekend and managed to forget about it most of the weekend. GASP! Like going outside naked (ok, like going outside naked HERE in Raleigh, not like going outside naked back Home where no one but the deer would notice, and they wouldn't give two hoots about it), I constantly felt I was "missing something". I was! That and my car's in the shop again...anyway, long story short, I had a LOVELY weekend buying much material for hand-bags. I'm down to only 4 orders, so I need to get some more orders to keep me busy!!! What will I do if I run out of projects??!!! I've got months and MONTHS to fill here, people. Help me out! I've been reading other a-parents "To Do Lists". They depress me. They are all like : paint nursery. buy nusery furniture set. go shopping for cute clothes. Our nursery IS painted...but then a 32 year old man moved in. Nursery furniture? Well, what-ever hand-me downs people are kind enough to send our way, basically, is what will go in Baby M's room. Clothes? Well, another a-mom gave me tons of stuff, as did another dear friend. We're mostly set, since I don't have a clue how old Baby M will be, I don't want to shop...ok, now I'm depressing myself again. I'm going to bed before I continue to feel sorry for myself and all the other waiting parents out there...

Is it referral time yet?