Sunday, March 30, 2008

Please Pray for Tricia **updated at 6:30am**

Tricia is a beautiful young gal whose blog I found about 2 months ago and immediately her story found a place in my heart. Her adorable hubby Nate also has a blog and writes often.

Today they received a call that could change their lives forever and I'm asking you to please pray that all goes well.

You see, Tricia was born with Cystic Fibrosis and is now a beautiful young lady, 24 years old. Last fall just as Tricia was preparing to be placed on a transplant list for new lungs, God worked a miracle in their lives and they conceived a child. Beautiful, teeny-tiny Gwyneth Rose was born at just 24 weeks gestation, almost 12 weeks ago. Although a micro-premie, Gwyneth Rose continues to grow weekly and is absolutely adorable!

What happened tonight that has potential to change their lives forever is that they have received a call that there may be a new set of lungs on the way to Duke Hospital for Tricia!!! The transplant team is flying out of state to examine the lungs and if they are a good match, Tricia will be prepped for surgery early tomorrow morning.

Please pray for this precious family. If you want a pick-me-up, just take a moment to read some of Nate's blog and you may very well find yourself laughing right out loud! Their love for the Lord is amazing and they are trusting God to work miracles in the lives of their family. All 3 of them are currently living at Duke Hospital. Tricia, who is at this time permenantly on a ventilator and Nate on one floor and precious Gwyneth Rose in the NICU just a couple of floors away.

Please pray that the lungs will be a perfect match, for the transplant team, for all involved with the transplant, Nate, Gwyneth Rose and also for the donor's family who lost a loved one today.


**Update - 6:30am**
Last night's sleep was full of thoughts of Tricia and I woke often to pray for her. I was saddened to read when I woke up this morning that the lungs were not a good match for Tricia so she continues to wait. I ask that you please continue to keep this precious family in your prayers as her wait for new lungs continues. Please pray that she will stay healthy so that when lungs are available she will be able to have the life-saving surgery. God is in control and I know she and Nate are trusting Him. Continuing to pray.

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Celebrating 2 YEARS Closer to Hannah!!

Can you believe it?? 2 years ago today someone in China picked up my file, took an initial look at it, logged it in their records and I was officially logged with the China Center of Adoption Affairs!!! 2 years friends! In some ways it seems like forever and in other ways I remember that time like it was just yesterday.

I just looked back and reread what I'd posted to this blog on March 23, 2006 and honestly it gave me goose bumps!!! You see, just minutes ago I just finished writing an update letter to my email family and friends who may or may not follow this blog. Today I wrote,

'I would ask you that as I am anticipating her birth sometime this year that you please pray for Hannah. Pray that she will find love in the orphanage. Pray that she will have a caretaker that takes a shine to her and loves her in a special way. This type of love is so important for the formation of her little brain and the critical stages of formation it will be going through before she is in my arms. I cannot be there physically but God can put someone there to hold her, love her and care for her and this is what I’m asking you to pray for. Please pray that she will be loved and know that she is loved. I love her already.'

and if you read the post written on March 23, 2006 you'll see much of the same there. Too cool! The really neat thing is that the night I wrote the original post I had absolutely no idea that that was the day my file was logged in China. I would not find out that piece of information for almost 2 months!!

The other commonality of tonight's letter + the 2006 post that makes me laugh is the sentence 'my baby girl may already have been born!' Ummm...ya. That didn't happen! LOL!! This year though...this year!!!!!

Today I also purchased a little something for Hannah since it's a big day! I've had the Playskool Busy Ball Popper on my wish list so decided today to pick it up and put it away for her.

At 6 months I made her a Build a Bear.

At 12 months it was a new rug for her nursery.

18 months was a t-o-u-g-h time during the wait so I didn't purchase anything at that time but now I'm in a much better frame of mind and so today we celebrated with 24 long stemmed roses and a Busy Ball Popper!

Even though I don't know how much longer I will have to wait for Hannah's referral and then to meet her, I will wait. I will wait with a longing in my heart and an ache to hold her in my arms but...I will wait. Continuing to lean on God and trust Him.

I love you so very, very much. I cannot wait to meet you, to love you, to hold you in my arms and tell you how much I love you. I pray that even before you and I meet, that you will know love by those God puts in place to care for you in the orphanage. May you know what it's like to feel their loving arms hold you and may you know friendship with the other precious babies that will live their lives in the cribs near you. God has amazing plans for your my sweet baby girl and I am humbled to think that He has chosen me to be your mother. I love you baby girl. Mommy loves you....

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Winnings and Whinings

Things began looking up in the Roll-up contest this week as I rolled up a coffee on Monday and donut on Thursday! Do I hear a 'Wahoo'???LOL...after rolling up the coffee and taking the pic I almost threw it out before ripping off the winning tab. Oops!) Thankfully I remembered just before heading to the garbage. The funny thing was I could hardly believe my eyes when I intially saw the word, 'WIN' had been so long and I was just used to 'Please Play Again.' So yes, being oh so (NOT) humble I quickly sent out an email to the gang to let them know I was back in the competition! It's still anybody's race as no one has really taken off this year. Considering we're more than 1/2 way through the roll-up season we're surprised by the low numbers of wins. Last year's winner took home a whopping 13 prizes so we still have lots of coffee to drink to try and catch up to last year's stats.

Speaking of stats, you may have noticed that my sidebar stats have changed slightly. People have begun to feel sorry for me (read: they're tired of my whining about not winning) and, winning tabs are showing up as gifts and in the mail!! Monday evening I got an envelope in the mail from my Aunt (who is only a few years older than I am so it seems funny calling her 'aunt') with not 1, not 2 but 3 winning tabs in it!! Thanks!! She and my cousin Scott had put together some of thier winners and sent them to me hoping it would stop my whining.

Sorry to disappoint ya 'Auntie Marg' but I'm not gonna fix what's not broken. All I've done is change the labels labels on my table from 'Coffee and Donuts' to 'Real Wins and Whining Wins!' :o)

Have I mentioned lately that I'm 3/49? I'm blowing the 1/9 odds of winning to pieces!

Friday, March 21, 2008

Watch the Lamb!

Christ died for you and for me. Watch the Lamb.

Monday, March 17, 2008

Olympics Sneak Peak...Maybe.

I'm not sure how to add this video directly to my blog so instead I'll have to ask you to click here to see some really fun entertainment similar to what we may see at the opening ceremonies of the Beijing Olympics which will begin August 8, 2008 at 8:08pm! (When I first viewed this video a couple of weeks ago they thought it might be a behind the scenes view of preparations for the ceremonies but now it appears that it may be something else. Regardless it's a great video to watch!)

I've been a HUGE fan of the Olympics for as long as I can remember and knowing that these Olympics will be in the country that my daughter is living (or I'm guessing should be living by the time they begin on August 8th!) gives me chills!!

Hope you enjoy the video as much as I did. Beautiful!!

Sunday, March 16, 2008

Sew Much Fun!!

Last week I realized that now that Rebecca is 9 years old (how did that happen?) she might be interested in learning how to sew. I asked her and she was really excited to learn. We started with a tag toy as it's fairly simple sewing in straight lines and we had such a good time working on this project together! The first time I pulled out the camera to take her picture of our project she pretended to be shy. You can see that that didn't last long!

Here you have it, Rebecca's first sewing project: a tag toy!

Removing the pins after the first run around the toy using a zig-zag stitch

Sewing the front and back together. Hey, where did the tags go?

That's a lot of material to get through a small space!

Hey! How did they get there??

Showing her finished project off with pride!

I had originally intended to send this blanket to Ohio where I had an order outstanding but I quickly decided I couldn't part with her first creation. We talked it over and Rebecca's first sewing project is now tucked safely away for her to give to her new cousin Hannah when she arrives! A gift from the heart!

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Waiting Mommies Dinner #9

Last night a group of us gathered for another Waiting Mommies Dinner. We were excited to have the adorable Owen with us but Daddy missed him too much and snuck him away before I could snap any pics. He's absolutely adorable so hop on over to Ange's blog if your want to see pics of this little cutie. He also holds a place of honour in that he's the very first boy to earn a place at the Waiting Mommies table. We're hoping he'll be joined by many other boys this year but for now, the place is his alone. Welcome Owen! Congratulations Ange!!

Last night was a fun group made up of mommies adopting from Ethiopia, Vietnam and China. Here's the rundown of who is in the picture: (back row l to r): Jill, Ange, Anne-Marie (who was with us for the first time...welcome!!), Andrea, myself. (Front row l to r): Karen, Tammy, Lea, Julia and Bev. It was great to spend time with everyone! Looking forward to May 10th. Any suggestions for a gift theme for May? Please leave them in the comments area.

Last night's gift theme was 'Pamper Mommy'. Oh yah....that's a good theme! (Thanks Karen!) I received this adorable little mug that I'd seen on Lea's blog but had restrained myself from asking where she bought it. Now I have my very own and my coffee will taste extra special in that adorable mug....after Roll-up time is over! ;o)

Speaking of Roll-up time, my dear friend Karen showed up with this fun gift from she and her hubby Mike. A winning coffee Roll-up!! LOL!! It was beautifully wrapped in a gift bag and I laughed when I opened it. Thanks so much Karen and Mike! You're too funny! I'll think of you and smile when I enjoy my coffee.

I also wanted to add another beautiful gift that I received recently from my friend Julia who is also part of this group. It's the book, 'the Gift of an Angel' by Marianne Richmond. It's a beautiful book written to welcome a new child and the first time I read it there were a few tears. Thank you Julia! I'll treasure it and look forward to reading it to Hannah.

I am SO thankful to have this wonderful group of ladies in my life. Ladies who know what it's like to wait for so long for a child they already love so much. A supportive group of people who allow us to share our frustrations with the wait, question the unknowns (of which there are many) and also, celebrate our referrals and the addition of new babies to the group!

It really is quite funny I must say though when these new cuties join our group. In most baby situations everyone would be playing 'pass the baby' but we all understand the importance of the initial attachment and bonding period so we look on from a safe distance allowing mommy to be the one to totally care for baby. Oh yes, we oooo and awwwwe but just without the holding part. It's tough but we are all well studied in the adjustments mommy and baby are making so for the first visit we look on without holding. Now, after about 6 months home we're more than happy to hug, snuggle and do everything we can to help mommy out!

Thursday, March 13, 2008

(Defective) Rim Roller For Sale...Cheap!

Oh yes, you're reading that right. Current stats are 1 win out of 35 purchases! Can you believe it?!! It's keeping me humble that's for sure! Thankfully my friends are doing better than I am. Unfortunately, my misfortune is their opportunity to once again give me a hard time. This morning when I was in line at Tim's my friends all wanted to get in line behind me. They figured if they went to the same cash I'd been at it would improve their chances of winning as for sure I'd have taken one of the 'Please Play Again' cups out of the stack. Oh yes...great people I work with!

And so, I leave you with this picture:

Any takers? I accept Tim's refillable cards in lue of cash!

So Pretty!

As much as I have grown up with snow around me, there are still days when the beauty of it is almost overwhelming! Days when I find myself oooing and aweing each new place I look.

Tuesday morning was one of those days. A day when you need to capture memories quickly as one breeze can cause it all to blow away in an instant.

The snow was as light and fluffy as it could possibly be and every surface was decorated perfectly by God's handiwork!

Friday, March 07, 2008

Drastic Times Call for Drastic Measures!

If any of you have been checking the tally in my sidebar you'll see that my Rrroll-Up winnings this year are pathetic!!! Yes, you're reading that correctly. 1 coffee won out of 24 purchases...err 25 if you add this afternoon's 'Please Play Again' to the tally. Ugh!

The competitor in me (the one saying the next cup will be the big winner) wouldn't allow myself to take a competing coffee shop up on their offer...until this afternoon. After rolling up another 'Please Play Again' I took my losing cup, walked across the street to Country Style (CS) and traded in my losing Tim's cup for a free cup of yummy Country Style coffee. For this week only, CS is offering a free coffee for each losing Tim's cup that is turned in. Good way to bring in business at a time when their sales could decrease. I often buy CS coffee but during Roll-up time I'm normally loyal thru and thru to Tim's. Not today. I enjoyed a hot cup of CS coffee.

The competition at work is in full swing although so far there doesn't seem to be anyone running away with it. Dragging up the rear are Randy, Mark, myself and a few others. Randy is the keeper of the chart yet would you believe he's the only one of the group who hasn't won anything yet? His office is next to mine and you can often hear us whining to one another over the wall about our losing status this year.

He sent an email to the group with one simple picture and comment on it and within minutes the emails were a flying and a story had been formed. You could hear us chuckling throughout the office as each new comment/picture arrived. Hope you enjoy this as much as we did! (This is indicative of the fun, crazy people I work with!)

Randy: Why does Catherine keep walking by my desk and doing this all the time?

Cory: Because she saw you doing this:

Randy: And this is all I found:

Ken: Dibs!!!


LOL! We may not win free coffee and donuts very often but we sure have fun trying!

Thursday, March 06, 2008

Are You Smarter Than a Fifth Grader **Updated with Answer at Bottom**

Here's a word puzzle sent to me by a friend last week. It took a bit but was able to figure it out. It's not a trick question even. If you're up to the challenge give it a try and post your answer in the comments section or email it to me. I'll update this post on Sunday evening with the answer. Have fun!


This is not a trick question. This is a real math problem so don't say that
a bus has no legs. And there is no driver. Read carefully!

There are 7 girls in a bus

Each girl has 7 backpacks

In each backpack, there are 7 big cats

For every big cat there are 7 little cats.

Question: How many legs are there in the bus????


As usual, I don't do things the way most people do so to figure out the answer I needed to work from the end of the problem back to the beginning.

For each big cat there are 7 smaller cats:
(7+1) x 4 = 32 legs

Each backpack has 7 big cats:
7 x 32 = 224 legs in each backpack

Each girl has 7 backpacks:
7 x 224 = 1,568 cat legs per girl

7 girls x 7 backpacks:
1,568 x 7 = 10,976 cat legs in total

7 girls, each with 2 legs = 14 legs

14 + 10, 976 = 10,990 legs on the bus!!!

Thanks to all who particpated in the fun!

Tuesday, March 04, 2008

Many Reasons to Celebrate!!

As anticipated, this week's referrals included families whose files were logged in with the China Center of Adoption Affairs (CC*AA) in 2006!! Let's hear it for 2006!

I'm also here to mark another HUGE milestone in the adoption of Hannah! Those who have been here any length of time know that I love to play with the numbers and averages. Today, for the VERY FIRST TIME since my file was logged with CC*AA 23 1/2 months ago, I am able to move my guesstimation date CLOSER rather than push it further away!!!! Do I hear a big Yippee?!!!!

For the last year or so I have chosen to calculate my referral guesstimation based on the previous 12 months of referrals. (Referral stats for the past 2 years are available in my sidebar under 'Tracking Referrals'. Feel free to use this chart any time you wish.) With the most current batch covering 8 days, I was able to move my guesstimation back from July 2009 to April 2009! Yes folks, that's 3 whole months!! Could it move further away in the future? It could for sure, but for today...I'm celebrating!!

Please know that I've been 'knocked back' so many times that I tend to calculate based on conservative numbers so my dates may not be the same as yours. That's fine. I'm really hoping that I'm wrong and that my date moves even closer next month. The second month after the Chinese New Year holiday has historically been on the smaller side when it comes to referral numbers so for myself, next month will be a tell-tale month as to which direction things are going to move.

Shhhh. Don't tell anyone but I'm still holding onto the belief that I could have my referral before Christmas of this year and travel to meet my precious baby girl early in 2009! Can you imagine what a Christmas that would be having Hannah's picture in my hands and knowing I was only days away from holding my sweet baby girl in my arms???!!!!!

Yes, the excitement in the China adoption world is almost palpable these days!! We're up! We're excited and we're encouraged beyond explanation!

Welcome 2006! You were a long time getting here but we're sure glad you've made it!!!

Monday, March 03, 2008

Happy Birthday Boo!!

Can't believe you're 9 already! I remember the day you were born and the awesome priviledge of being in the delivery room when you made your grand entrance Rebecca! One of the very, very, VERY best moments of my entire life! I am so blessed to have a niece as amazing and loving as you are! I know you're excited to welcome Hannah home and you've been so understanding during this long wait. You tease me that I keep telling you, 'Next year when you're x Hannah will be here' and you know're right; I have said that for a long time! I can't wait for the day when Hannah meets her big cousin and I finally get to see the 2 girls I love together!

Happy Birthday sweetie! I love you SO MUCH! What a lot of great times we've had together! Here's to many, many more!! Can you imagine how much fun we'll have when you introduce Hannah to Disney? You'll be the very best tour guide and introduce her to all your friends there!
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