Tuesday, April 28, 2009

My son...the drummer? Hmm...

I don't know why...I just have this funny feeling Owen might be a drummer. He's coming home to a music-loving family. About a week or so ago, I said to Jeff, "I think Owen might be a drummer." Not anything I can explain, really. Just a foggy little vision of a handsome guy behind a drum kit. Strangely, in my vision, Taylor Swift's Fearless is playing...probably because it's the song Emma and I listen to most in the car these days. She's a girl after her mama's heart. We have to start from the beginning of the album when we go somewhere, consequently we know the first 4 songs or so really well (about a 20-minute drive gets us most places we need to go). But seriously--look at his picture! I was sitting in church with this shot on my lap as I have been doing for the last 2 months now, and this week it dawned on me...look at his hands! He just needs the drumsticks! And then I saw our friend Rob, and he agreed...and said, "The block looks like the drum!" Gonna be buying my boy a drum. Yep.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Rotten TCAP Memory

So we just finished TCAP week...Tennessee's achievement test for kids through the eighth grade. Always a relief. I was telling Jeff this afternoon about how quite a few years back, I remember walking down the row past one of those boys who would have taken my scores through the roof. It was the end of the week, we were all tired, the test was done, the enormous booklet finally bubbled in from front to back, for better or worse with an approved, well-sharpened #2 pencil, and he smiles up at me with an obvious feeling of satisfaction and accomplishment and says, "Mrs. Trubey, time has flied." Yep, that's what he said. Time has FLIED. F-L-I-E-D. Son, HOW LONG HAVE YOU BEEN IN MY CLASS????? I just smiled back. Sigh. Learning is a process. Glad to be a part of it.

"Blessed are the pure in heart..." ('cuz they get CHOCOLATE!)

Exchange overheard from the back seat on the way to church, after Sophie notices that Emma has come armed with her purse w/money, and her Bible:

Sophie: "What is the money for, Emma?"

Emma: "It's for this girl, Jisha. We bring money to help take care of her." (Our church sponsors several children through Compassion International.)

Sophie: "So what's the Bible for?"

Emma: "The Bible is for chocolate kisses."

Sophie: "That's a little distorted, isn't it?"

Friday, April 24, 2009

Emma's Princess Ponderings

A couple of weeks ago Emma and I were headed in to Michael's when out of the blue, Emma pipes up, "Mom, do princesses have to go potty sometimes? And do they just have to raise up their dresses to go?" Stifling a laugh, I responded, "Yes, they do...everyone does." She says, "Eww...I don't like to think about princess going poo-poo." OK. Must...text...Lisa...I think to myself, as fast as my fumbling fingers can find my phone. Lisa replies back, "It probably smells like daisies and fairies..." and then I replied, "...and it is probably pink, purple, and sparkly."

Next installment...from the back seat, as she's buckling up yesterday: "Mom, do carriages have seat belts?" Oh, how I love this wonderful, magical place she's in right now. Here she is...last Halloween in all her princess perfection. Lucky, lucky me.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009

Back off, Shaddy Boy...

...these oh-so-cute shoes are NOT FOR YOU! Look at that golden snout, sniffing the aroma of those freshly unpackaged suede soles...just longing to chomp down on a delectable hors d'oeurvres of a chew toy and make short work of turning it into...well, never mind. I just registered at Target for a shower for BOY things! This is too exciting! Everything is moving so fast all of a sudden, and after being stuck in a quagmire for the last 2 1/2 years...it's hard to keep up with all we have to do. But when I saw these, and just one pair in size 12-18 months, I had to get them for Owen. I held the soft leather in my hand and tried to imagine them stuffed with a chubby baby foot. Too sweet.

Monday, April 20, 2009

One MORE...

I guess I'm only allowed to upload 5 images per post? But I couldn't leave this one out...because despite her unconventional choice of a place to practice, Sophie Trubey DID get out her trumpet over spring break! She really enjoys being part of the band. Thanks, Mr. King and Mr. Dickens, for keeping it fun, funny, and interesting. And her HMS band shirt? She cuddled up next to me this morning before heading off to take TCAP's and told me it's the most comfortable shirt she owns. A nice perk. Love this girl.

Easter week...in pictures

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Another Easter Miracle...

Sophie Elizabeth Trubey was born March 30, 1997, on Easter Sunday, and placed in our arms two days later (yes, April Fool's Day).

On March 27, 2004, I stood with Jeff and Sophie on China's Great Wall, just hours away from holding Emma; this was also Easter Sunday...her "Gotcha Day" would be the next day, March 28th.

On March 27, 2008, a baby boy was born in Chenzhou, Hunan Province, China, and abandoned 4 days later. In America, Jeff and I wondered if the wait for Chinese adoptions would ever speed up. Maybe after the Olympics. And so we waited. And waited. And I had to admit I had this little thought deep down inside, wouldn't it be neat to have a son? And we kept waiting.

A year later, much has changed. We are miraculously waiting on those key pieces of paper to come through so we can bring home that little baby doll looking boy, Chen Li Wen, our Owen. I must confess I sleep with his picture beside my bed most nights, I pull it out of my Bible at church so he can "sit on my lap" at church, and I just look at him for that hour and think how grateful I am, and I wipe away a tear or two because I know how much I love my girls, and how simply wrong it is that he is THERE and not HERE. So during the week of spring break and Easter week, three blessings happen. First, a friend from our travel group to China back in 2005 emails me out of the blue...she ran across my blog, and saw that we have accepted a referral for a son from Chenzhou--this was where her daughter was from! I remember that her sweet Katie was in a wonderful orphanage and she truly was well-cared for...we get back in touch, and I get a true sense of peace that our son is being loved and nurtured, even if he's not home with us yet. Second, our PA arrives, after waiting 30 days. And third, on the evening of Easter, I decide to check out the photos file of the yahoo group I had recently joined for families who have adopted from the Chenzhou orphanage. I notice that there are files labeled "Chenzhou babies, March 2009". My heart skips a beat. I cruise through the photos, and sure enough, THERE HE IS! I can't mistake the face I have stared at for hours. He's just sort of half asleep in a crib, and all I can see is his sweet face, but it is enough. I email the lady who has taken these pictures, and she is gracious enough to send us the full resolution photos so we are able to zoom in and really see how well his lip has healed up, and she even sends a snippet of video. An Easter miracle for Owen. Now I have one for each of my children. I literally smiled up at the ceiling when I found those pictures and said in my heart, "Aw God, you did it again! You really are something!" So here's that sweet boy.

Wednesday, April 15, 2009

Three beautiful letters...L-O-A!

They stand for "Letter Of Acceptance"...the official document that China sends to us to say Chen Li Wen is ours...and it came to our agency today!!! I was actually showing my math club the amazing 20-second snippet of video that came miraculously to us by way of a woman who visited the orphanage in Chenzhou where our Owen is, took some pictures/video, and posted them on the website of families who have adopted children from there (more in another post on this!) I had just finished showing them this little movie (who doesn't love to see a movie instead of doing TCAP review???) and the phone on my desk rang. I was shocked when our family coordinator Melissa told me she had received our referral acceptance today (also called LOA). I couldn't believe it! The kids knew something was up. I just held the phone out to the room and told the kids I needed them to cheer. They were happy to cooperate! I totally did not expect this so soon after just getting the PA last week...I was a worthless teacher the rest of the afternoon. Now that we have this official document, we can post this referral photo...meet Chen Li Wen, our son Owen Li Trubey.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Mamas, don't let your puppies grow up to be DOGS...

...cuz you can't do THIS anymore! When Shadow heard me talking on this video clip, he put his mammoth paws up on the desk and sniffed the screen. He's such a baby at heart still...such a lover boy. But the boy ain't fittin' in the swing any more, not at 70 pounds or so! This was on the first weekend we had him home. Just ran across this today...a "remember when" moment.

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Hang on, Owen baby, we're coming!

We got our PA yesterday! This is the "Pre-Approval", which is China saying "we have received the request by the Trubey family to adopt Chen Li Wen, and after reviewing their plan for his future (a 'Rehabilitation and Nurture Plan', we agree to proceed to move forward into the procedure for the adoption of this specific child." Our agency is wonderful and had no doubts that this would happen, we have long since been through review so if there were any questions about the documents we sent (our dossier), they would have come up at that time, however it is SUCH a good feeling to see this in writing (even if I was staring at Chinese characters! Thank God they provide a translation! :) Now to settle in and wait for the next set of coveted letters--LOA-Letter of Acceptance. Basically this says, we've done all the official stuff, he's yours once you get over here and sign the papers! THEN the last wait is for the TA--Travel Approval. Time to book the flights! Still hoping to travel in June. We're coming, baby boy!

Saturday, April 4, 2009

A. I'm a sucker for cute AND easy.

So, what was the question?

Question #1: Why did Ann change to Blogger from her other server?

Question #2: Why did Ann think about, and then decide against trying to make that cute birthday cake that looked like a purse for Sophie's birthday?

Question #3: What did Jeff think when he first saw Ann?

And the answer is, QUESTION #1!

Yes, I traded substance for style. Really, I don't know how much substance this blog platform has yet, I just know that I was having trouble getting all the cute freebies/background options to work on my other blog, and was getting really aggravated...and heaven knows, I need easy when I'm a mom of three--COUNT THEM, THREE kids, and for sure, when we are in China. There's not going to be a whole lot of substance when we are all trying to adjust to the horrific time difference over there while they haul us around from sight to splendid once- or if you're really super-blessed, maybe twice-in-a-lifetime sights in the first 48 hours or so, trying to get you on to China time so you are adjusted to your baby's schedule just in time for it to be completely disrupted in the most earth-shattering experience of their little lives.

Speaking of that trip, I remember arriving in Beijing and we made the decision to go that first evening with the majority of the travel group to see the world-famous Beijing acrobats. Sophie, who had traveled like a pro up to that point, had a major melt-down in the hotel room. In retrospect, maybe we should have just let her sleep, but by golly, we'd paid a bunch of yuan (about $60) to see the show, and we were gonna go! We made it to the bus, and I remember watching an incredible show through eyes that I could barely keep open. Tiny children juggling umbrellas up in the air on the tips of their toes, etc.--it was amazing. Sophie was sacked out next to me, and Jeff was on her other side, catching flies. Every so often they'd rouse from sleep at something really amazing, utter a groggy "Wow..." and pass out again. That was it. The next day was better, and then the next day we started to feel semi-human...I mean, hey, we were on the Great Wall! And, it was Easter Sunday! Someone actually had the forethought to bring along chocolate eggs to pass out to the children (it wasn't me!) Then we had our little angel baby placed in our arms...not a little 6-8 pound newborn, but a 23 lb. baby who wanted mama to hold her all the time. Didn't want to fall asleep because she was afraid of what might happen...a fear she lived with for several years. A new level of exhaustion set in. Then we came home, just when we'd adjusted to the time zone there. I remember her wide awake after her 2 hour "nap" we called bedtime. We played on the floor in her room and found snacks in the still-packed luggage in the middle of the night...fed them to sweet Summer, our dog. Can't believe we're going to do it all again!!! I'm so excited! But we definitely need easy in the blog department. :)

Testing Blogger...

Testing...how do I like this platform??? Hmmm...