Sunday, August 30, 2009

Radio Show Follow-up

It was fun this afternoon to receive an email from the producer of CHFI's morning show asking if they could do a post interview to find out about what it was like to see Hannah's face for the very first time. Fun!!!

We're recording it bright and early tomorrow morning and they anticipate playing it sometime before or after 8:00 tomorrow morning.

If you want to listen in you'll find it here and click the Listen Live link.

Saturday, August 29, 2009

I'm Over the Moon in Love!!!

Here she is!!! My beautiful baby girl, Hannah Catherine XiaoFen!!!








Isn't she absolutely adorable?!?!?! I grow more and more in love with her every time I look at her pictures!!!

(Update: Hey...check out my sweet baby girl's shoes!! My friend Joy pointed out that her shoes have Mickey Mouse on them!! Isn't that amazing?!!! Heh....she truly is my daughter!! I love how God is into the details. Even little Disney shoes on my daughter!)

The pictures reinforce all I've heard about Dao County SWI, Hunan Province. They say that the babies are extremely well cared for and these pictures show that. There are mats on the floor, a soft teddy bear and her clothes are perfect for her! Thank you Lord for placing Hannah in the arms of those who are loving her and caring for her before we meet.

I have more details about my little one and will post those soon. For now, I know it's the pictures you were longing to see so I wanted to post them as soon as I could.

Thank you Lord for this most precious gift of a beautiful baby girl...my daughter!!

2 1/2 Hours and Counting!!!

Ahhhhhhh!!! Only 2 1/2 hours and I will be gazing at pictures of my sweet Hannah whom I love deeply already!!!

As you've followed along here my constant theme has always been that Hannah's entire adoption is a beautiful puzzle orchestrated by the Master Himself!!! Many times I have talked about God's perfect timing and He bringing Hannah and I together at the exact moment He ordained long ago. The first meeting would be by picture and even though that exact date and time was a mystery for me, it was never for Him. He knew that at exactly 10:00am on Saturday, August 29, 2009 He would reveal Hannah to me in the form of pictures! It gives me goose bumps just typing this knowing that the day is finally here!!! The exact day and time that she will be placed in my arms is still unknown to me, but not to God! He also knows that and once again in His perfect timing He will orchestrate that as well!!! Continually trusting Him....

Now, if you think this mommy sounds pretty calm then words have hidden my true emotions!! I'm a jumpy, giddy, excited, wonderful mess of emotions right now!! I got some sleep last night but it was so funny as 3 times I woke up and looked at the clock and it was exactly on the hour!

First waking was at 1:00 (after sleeping mere minutes at the most!) and I quickly did the math and thought....only 9 more hours until I 'meet' Hannah!!

Second waking was at 2:00 exactly and it was 8 hours. I celebrated!!

Third waking was sometime after 3:00 and I was up for almost an hour. Too excited to sleep and suddenly feeling the need to try again to fix my scanner. Alas, no luck. My scanner just refuses to work with Vista. Will be heading to my parent's place to scan Hannah's pictures it looks like!

After sleeping a little more, albeit fitfully, I woke again and looked at the clock as it read 7:00 on the button. I laughed as once again I'd woken exactly on the hour! And then....truly laughed out loud at myself as I realized the reason why I'd woken at exactly 7:00 was that the radio was playing as that's when I'd set my alarm! Oops!!! Excited much???

I'm off to get ready and then heading into Toronto with my parents for our 10:00 meeting...HANNAH's picture and referral meeting!!! My mom asked if I wanted her to pick up a Timmy's for me and can you believe I said 'No?' Given my track record these past couple of weeks I can barely hold a cup of coffee when I'm sitting still at my desk at work let alone in a van bouncing along the highway!!!

I'm off!!! Soon, so very, very SOON I will see my sweet baby's face; know more details about her; be able to read her medical report and get an idea of how big she is. Guess who's shopping today?

God is SO GOOD!!! Praising Him for answered prayers!!!

'I prayed for this child, and the LORD has granted me what I asked of him.'

1 Samuel 1:27

Video of Radio Dedication

Yay! They played my request! It was really neat to hear the DJ's voices as they learned a little of our story. They talked about our travel group both before and after the request was played. Fun!! I called them afterwards to thank them for playing it and also to answer they questions they had posed.

The picture isn't exciting to watch but the content moved me to tears...again. I think part of my bladder is permanantly parked behind my eyes right now and I'm guessing today will be no different!

Enjoy!! Baby Baby by Amy Grant!

Friday, August 28, 2009

Tomorrow I'll See Hannah's Picture!!!

I heard from my agency late this afternoon and TOMORROW is the big day!!!

I have an appointment at 10:00 to meet with my agency to receive Hannah's proposal including PICTURES!!!

I'll be travelling into Toronto to receive my proposal so I'm guessing it will be late afternoon before I'll be able to upload pics here. I'll want to share them with family and friends and then here. Wonderful things come to those who wait....I know! :o)

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Radio Dedication Request **Updated**

I've dreamed of doing this for over 3 years and tomorrow could be the day it happens it I'm selected!!

If you live in the Toronto area you might want to tune in to CHFI 98.1 at 8:00am tomorrow (Friday) morning. Each morning there is a 'Feel Good Favourite' request and I called in, shared a bit about the excitement our adoption group of families is experiencing and told them that we anticipated seeing our babies faces for the very first time tomorrow!! (It's looking more and more like it might be the weekend as we haven't heard any more about the status of the translations but I'm still holding out hope!!)

I'm not sure they'll play my request but they just might. It's a unique story so that might encourage them to play it and also, I've been sharing my adoption journey with one of the morning show hosts as she has a friend with 2 daughters from China. It will be fun to listen and find out!

If you don't live in the Toronto area you can still listen in by clicking here (8:00am EST) and selecting the 'Listen Now' link.

The feel good favourite of the day needs to be an up-tempo, happy song so I chose Karen Carpenter's, 'Top of the World.' That's exactly where I am knowing that I'll soon be gazing at pictures of my precious daughter Hannah!!!



**Update**
They played my dedication!!! So cool! They changed the song but the one they chose, 'Baby, Baby!' by Amy Grant was perfect!! I caught it on my Flip and hope to post it later today. It was neat that the DJ's were touched by our story. Cool!!

My Baby is 6 Months Old Today!!!

Wow!! It seems like it was just last week when I announced I was the Mom of a precious 5 1/2 month old baby girl and now she's 6 months already! ;o)

Even though I have yet to receive her referral pictures I am already madly in love with Hannah!! I imagine what she might look like; what she might be doing. Is she sitting up yet? Does she prefer to play on her tummy or her back? What does she see day to day? Who is caring for her and are they holding her close and gazing into her beautiful eyes?

So many questions and yet.....peace! Peace that only God can provide. He is looking after her and I am so very, very thankful for that!!!

I have had an opportunity in these past 6 days to reasearch Dao Xian SWI in Hunan province and may I tell you everything I have read is extremely positive!!! I'm working on putting together a post as time allows. There is so much I want to share with you and will as quickly as I'm able.

Until then...THANK YOU!!! You have been amazingly generous with your prayers, kind words, support, encouragement and love! I still find myself stopping to wonder, 'Did this really happen???' I know it did but oh, it is more than I could ever have hoped or imagined! God is SO good and I thank Him for entrusting Hannah into my care. I can't wait to be her mommy in person rather than from half-way round the world.

Tomorrow or Saturday will be picture day when I finally see pics of my DAUGHTER!!! Cannot wait!!!

Is it Friday YET???

**Updated**

I love my Uncle Timmy to pieces and he jokingly reminded me that last Sunday was his 64 1/2 yo birthday and nope...no mention on the blog! Whatever was I thinking???

Happy 64 1/2 Birthday Uncle Tim!!

Love you like crazy! Cathy xoxo ;o)

**gotcha!!**

Sunday, August 23, 2009

Still on Cloud Nine!!!

Wow!!! As someone said in their comment, 'Dreams really do come true!!' (Thought that was a perfect comment for this Disney gal!!) It's been a little over 48 hours since my life changed forever and I'm still on cloud nine!!

Friday evening was filled with phone calls with family and friends as well as a trip for celebratory ice cream with my brother and sister-on-law. Now that's the way to celebrate...with ice cream!! Dave and Trish had 2 of their boys with them as well as my niece Makenna who is now 10 months old. She's still such a baby and I was in awe to realize that Hannah would be 2 months younger than this when she is placed in my arms!!! Still amazed at this and continually thanking God for allowing her to be so young when we meet!!

I got a few hours of sleep Friday night but as soon as I woke up and realized that I was the Mom of a beautiful 5 1/2 month old baby girl on the other side of the world, that was it! I was up for the day with a grin on my face stretching from ear to ear!! I walked into the living room and was graced by all the wonderful gifts Hannah and I had been blessed with at the shower Wednesday. (That will warrant another post at a later time.) I looked at each gift with such different eyes now that there was a real live baby...my DAUGHTER Hannah XiaoFen....and she had a name, age, province...she was a real little person!! WOW!!!

Saturday was spent (still floating)with Sharon, Grandma and Grandpa. They put up with my giddiness and we talked and talked about Hannah! They even surprised me at supper with the gift of an adorable little pink hat and the cutest little pink boots you ever did see!! How wonderful it is to look at clothes and finally have an idea of size! I'll know more later in the week but it looks like I'll be shopping for sure since the smallest clothes I'd let myself buy were size 18 months!

I cannot begin to tell you how amazing and wonderful it is to know 'who' my daughter is!! God has a beautiful baby girl waiting for me in Hunan province and soon I will travel and we will forever be mother and daughter!!

I also want to say thank you, Thank You, THANK YOU for all your comments, well wishes, prayers, celebrations, emails and so much more!!! All of them have added to the joy of this amazing time!!

Counting down to seeing her pics and learning more about her! 5 more sleeps!!!

Friday, August 21, 2009

\o/ \o/ Praise God!! I Have a Daughter!!! \o/ \o/

It is with thanksgiving to God that I share this most amazing, wonderful news with you!!! God is so good and He has answered prayers in a beautiful way!!!

I want to introduce you to my daughter!!!


Her Chinese name is: Yong, Xiao Fen
Soon to be: Hannah Catherine (CN) Ryan
Born: February 27, 2009 (Yes...she's only 5 1/2 months old!!!)
Currently living in: Hunan Province, China
Dao County Social Welfare Institute
God is so good and I give Him all the glory!!! Praise be to God!

This is all the information about my sweet BABY girl that I have at this time. It looks like it will take about a week for everything to be translated and I will see my sweet DAUGHTER's face next Friday or Saturday!!!

I am already over the moon in love with her and SO thankful that I will have the awesome privilege of being there when she learns to crawl, walk, talk, her first Christmas and her first Birthday too! God is so good!!!

Today is a day unlike any other and I was thrilled to share the referral call with my Mom, Dad, best friend Sharon and her coworker and our friend, Marian!! We took lots of video and will share those later. You should have heard the shouts of excitement when we heard how old she was and then yes, I did the big, ugly cry!!! Oh well, I've done it more than 20 times again since then, each time I've shared her referral news with family and friends on the phone.

Our estimated travel time is the end of October. That seems like forever away but I'm sure it will fly by!!

My heart is overflowing with love for my precious baby girl! I cannot wait to see her picture next week and then to hold her in my arms in just 2 short months!!!


'I prayed for this child, and the LORD has granted me what I asked of him.'
I Samuel 1:27

The referral call is in!!!

This is M3 writing this, Catherine has asked me to let everyone know that she has received her referral call !!!!! She's off telling family members the good news right now and will be back on the computer later tonight to post the information.

Squeal!!! (she didn't tell me to add that part, I just couldn't help myself)

Calls Are Being Made in the US!!!

Disclaimer: This is NOT a true picture of what I look like right now!! Remove the chair and replace the calm bear with a crazy woman jumping up and down and that's more like me!

People in the US are receiving their calls! Not sure where things are with us here in Canada. I'm doing everything I said I wouldn't do: calling my agency and emailing her too. Asking questions I wish I'd thought to ask long ago!! If she receives referrals today, will she call today? If not, will she call on the weekend? Will Monday be the earliest I hear? Ahhh....why didn't I think to ask these things sooner???

Oh well, it's an exciting day to say the least and I have a huge smile that reaches from ear to ear and my eyes are about as big as frying pans!! My heart is racing and I'm sure hoping I remembered deoderant this morning!

Just checked RQ for the latest updates and began to shake when I saw this!!! So cool!! Finally, I'm on the Babies!! post and Hannah's referral is almost here!!

God is so good! Praising Him for His guidance through this entire wait and trusting Him for what is to come!

Friday Morning And It's Eerily Quiet Out There in Referral Land!

I've held off posting for a bit hoping to have something...anything to post but alas, no. RQ is quiet. No agencies have reported receiving a package. Nobody has received a call putting them on 'stand by'. Zip. Zilch. Nada. Nope!! Ahhhhh!!! The silence is deafening!! If anything changes you can be reassured I'll update here!

One cool thing I was able to do this morning was to add my blog to Rumor Queen's post requesting blogs to add to her BABIES!! post when the referrals so begin to arrive. That was super cool and I was shaking like a leaf just typing it! Here's my post...typos and all!

Ready for THE CALL and have my mobile CNN kit ready to roll!

**Update - Fri, Aug 21, 2009 @ 11:15am**

Dutch agency has reported receiving referrals!!! Ooooo....it's getting EXCITING!!!

Off for lunch at a Chinese restaurant. What a great place that would be to receive THE CALL!!

Never a Dull Moment!!

One minute I was enjoying a walk through the hospital halls with Grandpa and the next we returned to his room to hear my cell ringing. I picked it up to hear my brother encouraging me to head home as quickly as possible as there were terrible storms in the area and funnel clouds reported in cities not too far from us. The original plan had been for my brother Dave and his wife Trish and I to meet at the Marble Slab for ice cream about an hour later. If Dave and Trish were cancelling our ice cream date I knew this was serious! :o) Grandpa encouraged me to go to avoid the 'rain' (as all I'd told him was that there was quite a rain storm coming so as not to worry him about Grandma) and I made my way to the car.

Within moments of turning on the radio I quickly realized that just as Dave had said, this was no common storm!! The music radio stations had been preempted by weather stations and all were warning to take immediate cover and head to the basement as quickly as possible. Uh oh! I was still 20 mins from home. I called my parents as well as Sharon and Larry to make sure they had heard the news. We quickly decided that I'd head to Grandma's house and hang out with her in her basement so that she was not alone. All the time this is happening I'm realizing that Hannah day could be TOMORROW!! Was it really too much to ask the stork to fly through a tornado? Truly I don't think so!!

It was quite the storm I tell you! For the most part I enjoy a good thunderstorm but this wasn't normal. When the people at the radio station say this is the worst storm that they've ever encountered and are currently under their desks for safety, you know you're in for a doozie!! I was now 10 mins from Grandma's, funnel clouds were reported less than 10kms away and oh yah...the Flip was rolling capturing my drive just in case anything exciting happened! :o)

Very quickly many areas lost power, the sky turned a dark, slightly brownish/green colour, rain came down in droves and I knew I had to get to Grandma quickly!

I arrived and joined her in the basement. She knew there was a storm but wasn't aware of the severity of it and I wasn't telling her! We shared a wonderful hour in the basement sharing stories, reading sale flyers from the newspaper via flashlight and basically just pretending nothing much was happening. The basement was really quite quiet and we didn't know the severity of the storm and it was a wonderful haven for us.

Once things rolled over we went upstairs and she decided it would be a good night to take Sharon up on her offer and spend the night there. We all felt better knowing she wouldn't be home alone without electricity. As she was packing for the night she commented, 'oh, those poor women in labour right now.' I jokingly tossed back...'That's me!!' THE CALL could come tomorrow and I had no power (along with 70,000 other homes), my cell was down to 2 bars and **GASP!!!** I had NO WAY to check Rumor Queen to find out the status of referrals!!! That was the worst part! Whatever was I going to do??

I took Grandma to Sharon and Larry's and they invited me to stay too. Why not? Let's make this a party! I ran home, grabbed a few things and hunkered down here for the night. Sleep was not to come easily as you can well imagine. All I could think about was how far would I have to drive in the wee hours of the morning for an Internet connection to get my RQ fix? Or, would it really be wrong to call M3 at 3:00am her time to ask her to check RQ for me??? Truly, I think not! Heh...thanks friend!!

As I'm pretty sure you've guessed by now, my alternate plans will not be needed as power came back on around 12:30am. Phew!! That was an answer to prayers for so many reasons!! Guess I can cancel my 'What if they cancel work tomorrow?'plans!! Oh well, it was fun to dream while it lasted.

So....
1. The cell is charging
2. 'THE CALL' list is in my purse, in the car, on my desk and often in my hands too
3. The 'Flip' is charged and ready to go
4. RQ is being refreshed at an alarming rate considering how many people are doing as they should...sleeping!!
5. My heart is being lifted in prayer for Hannah over and over
6. My mind is saying, 'Go to Bed!' and my body is saying, 'Yah, right! For what??' You're in labour chickie and your baby could quite possibly arrive later TODAY!!!

Who's up for an all-nighter???

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Thursday Morning Update

Wooeee...my ears are still ringing from the (very friendly and joking) reprimands I got yesterday for not posting until the afternoon! Silly me forgot that it wasn't all about me and that many of you are also living every step of Hannah's referral right along with me! :o) I promise...it won't happen again...I hope!

This morning's news is that all is quiet. Yes, so quiet on the referral front that you could hear a pin drop! It appears the rumour that initial packages won't begin to arrive until tomorrow is proving to be true. Hoping those packages contain referrals and that the stork makes it's way to Canada tomorrow rather than Monday!!

I have another post brewing in my head so will put that up later today. Until then, praying often for Hannah and getting goose bumps thinking that somewhere in this world there is a file that holds her picture and mine, side by side....mother and daughter!!!

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Maybe the Stork Stopped for Coffee??

Sorry for the late post. I was up north this morning (am home now) and tried for over an hour to get an Internet connection but then found out that it was down all over the park. Called my parents and after them getting over the disappointment of this not being 'The Call', dad pulled up RQ and confirmed that nothing more had happened overnight to indicate that referrals might be received today. (It was funny to hear Dad read some of the comments on RQ where ladies are expressing their longings, desires and heart felt feelings of wanting referrals to arrive so that they could be mommies. :o)

The only lead we have right now is that there is an American agency saying that they're expecting a package on Friday. Will it be referrals? If so, will my agency receive their package Friday too or will there be one final weekend before receiving Hannah's referral?

It goes without saying that I'd prefer to receive her referral as soon as possible but if it doesn't happen until next week I've had a few days to prepare myself. Heh...can you tell I'm working hard on convincing myself that I can make it through another weekend if I have to?

Sharon and I were shopping yesterday and as normal I was drawn to the baby section in each of the stores we were in. It's wonderful and amazing to think soon...SOON I will know who my sweet Hannah is, how old she is, approx. how big she is ~ and so much more!! Can't wait!!! When we were shopping Sharon treated me to an absolutely beautiful CD called, 'China, A Romantic Journey'. It combines traditional Chinese instruments with a full orchestra and is absolutely gorgeous!! It's very calming which is a good thing right now! :o)

Until I receive 'The Call' ...tick...tock....tick...tock.......TRUSTING HIM!!

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Fly Storky Storky!! Fly!!!! **Updated**

Initial rumours from Spanish RQ say that referrals are in the air!!! Oh baby...how fast can that stork fly??? Do I dare dream that today... TODAY could be Hannah day???

Slept very little last night and woke often thinking of and praying for my sweet baby girl! God is so good and today may be the day that He introduces her to me!! Wow!!!! So many questions will be answered and I can't wait!!!

I'll keep you posted as I learn more!

** Update: Tuesday, Aug 18 @ 6:30pm **
No news on the Hannah front today but that just means I'll have to wait another day. I can do that!! After all this time, 1 night is doable! We received a HUGE answer to prayer today in that they're moving Grandpa closer to home Thursday which is a blessing we are so very, very thankful. Thank you Lord for answering that prayer!!!

See you here again - same time, same blog tomorrow!! TOMORROW should be Hannah day!!!

Thank you for all your prayers, comments, emails and love today!! It's been a great day and we get to do it all over again tomorrow!! Wheee....the stroller coaster continues for a little longer!

Monday, August 17, 2009

How Things Work With My Agency

I've had 4+ years to learn how my agency works and prepare myself but I'll be honest....I'm still saddened about one little big thing. When I receive Hannah's referral I will learn her:

- Chinese name
- Date of Birth
- City & Province
- Orphanage/Foster care
- Basic Information

Yes, as you've read the list you'll notice that her picture is not included. :o( I understand my agency's reasoning (confirming her availability with China; translating all medical information etc.) but it will still be SO HARD to wait those additional few days to see Hannah's sweet face!!

A time will be set up to go to my agency a few days after referral to receive the rest of her information and most importantly, finally see the face that my heart already loves!!!

Many agencies provide pictures right away so I wanted to share with you what will happen for Hannah so that you can be ready too.

On the bright side it will be another special moment, unlike ANY OTHER that I will get to experience!!! What will it be like to gaze into my daughter's eyes for the very first time????

Trembling with Excitement!!!

My heart knows that it will probably be tomorrow when THE CALL comes!!

My head knows that it will probably be tomorrow when THE CALL comes!!

My body? Now that's another story! I'm trembling with excitement so simple tasks like holding a pen, picking things up and even walking are proving to be a challenge today. :o) I've had one cup of coffee and spilled it no less than 3 times this morning!! Thank goodness for the Tide pen or I'd be in big trouble!

So, if you see a blonde gal with a pink sweater walking across the street seeming to be doing a bad impression of the 'Funky Chicken' that will just be me!!

Trembling with excitement in anticipation of what the week holds!!

For years I have talked about God's perfect time for Hannah's referral to arrive! Wow...that time is NEAR and I am beyond excited!!

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Showered with Family Love!! Part I

This weekend my parents and I travelled about 4 1/2 hours from home and spent a wonderful weekend surrounded by the love of family! The majority of our family lives in the Windsor area which is just across the border from Detroit, MI. My mom, cousin Bridget and Aunt Marg arranged to host a baby shower for Hannah there and it was absolutely wonderful! I love that my mom and dad's families know each other after spending much time together over the years so it was an added blessing to share Hannah's shower with all of them together.

Bridget had asked if I had any ideas of what theme I would like for the shower. She had thought about pink or ladybugs and I thought they were both wonderful ideas so she took it from there. The decorations were great and the cake...oh my, the cake!!! It was nothing short of gorgeous and looked like something I've only seen on TV. Thank you Bridget and Molly for choosing the cake and helping design it. It was GORGEOUS and oh so yummy too!! The top layer was white cake with a custard and fresh strawberries as a filling. The bottom layer was chocolate with chocolate mousse filling. Mmmmm! Bridget told me that when she ordered the cake she shared my story with them. When she went to pick it up she was told that all the ladies in the back who were working on the cake were told the story of Hannah's adoption and the longer than anticipated wait and they were all crying as they baked and decorated it. Heee...it was made with love for sure!! (After lifting this cake, I also have a whole new appreciation for those on Ace of Cakes and how heavy the large cakes must be!

Bridget designed a neat game where she found a number of famous people who have been adopted, figured out their Chinese zodiac signs and then had us guess what each person's sign was. It was fun. Hannah will most likely be either a Rat or an Ox. We'll know soon!! Aunt Marg and Mom bought wonderful door prizes and each person left with a gift to remember Hannah's shower. I'm so glad that they will have these memories. 4 people were able to take home the beautiful roses that decorated the tables. They know my love of flowers and how I've celebrated each log in date with flowers so it was neat how she incorporated these into the day too!

With the shower being in the summer, understandably some of my family were not able to attend but many were there and I'm so thankful for the time we spent together celebrating Hannah's upcoming arrival! You have all been so loving, caring and supporting during the wait and I am excited to share her referral with each of you!!

Here are some of my precious family who celebrated Hannah yesterday!!

Molly



Molly and Bridget

Aunt Sharon, Aunt Marg and Aunt Elaine

Joann and Erica

Michele and Aunt Elaine

Kadie and Jessie

Rachel, Aunt Elaine and Erica

Aunt Cheri

Me, Aunt Chris, Aunt Louise, Mom and Aunt Marg

Mom, Aunt Marg and Bridget THANK YOU so much for creating such a special day!!! It was absolutely perfect!!

It's now almost 1:45am Monday morning and I'm going to try and get a little sleep before checking to see if referral calls are being made in Europe! Oh wow...these next few days are going to be
E-X-C-I-T-I-N-G!!!!!

Showered with Family Love!! Part II

Once again, Hannah I were blessed beyond measure!! Not only was I able to share precious time with family that I don't see nearly as often as I wish, they shared many gifts with me to help me prepare for Hannah's arrival.

Here are some of the wonderful gifts that will be helpful to have when caring for Hannah and also games and books for her during our time together.








Hannah and I were also blessed to receive many gift cards and monetary gifts. Wow!! I'm going to purchase some special pearls for her at the pearl market when we're in China as a special gift from her Aunt. Also, some will be added to her Disney fund! You know my gal will be making her first trip to Disney early on and I already have more than half the funds saved for our first trip. Mickey...here we come!!

Tomorrow???

It's almost Monday in China and I wonder what Monday will hold? Will tomorrow be the day referral calls begin to be made? If so, does that mean tonight is the very last night in my life that I lay my head on my pillow without the title, 'Mom'? Wow!! Sureal, exciting, overwhelming, breath taking and so much more!! I'll keep you posted...

Saturday, August 15, 2009

Check it out!! **Updated**

Check out all the excitement over on K1's blog!!! So exciting!! Praying for you friend! Cannot wait to see a family pic and be introduced to your beautiful babies!!!

**Updated Sunday**
Kathy and Joel's babies have arrived safely. Keep an eye on their blog for the official announcement!!

Friday, August 14, 2009

Friday Morning Update

It's now Friday morning here in Canada which means it's Friday evening in China. So far, all is quiet on the referral front. Nothing appears to have happened in Europe overnight which leads me to believe that I won't hear anything until Monday at the earliest.

This weekend is a family shower so it will be a weekend full of family, fun, travel and so much more. I would love to have more information about Hannah to share with them but I know that they'll be super excited just knowing her referral is so very, very close!

I have to share one funny story with you that happened yesterday. A group of the girls from work were at a local restaurant for lunch. During lunch my cell phone rang and the girls jumped into action! Two grabbed for my purse to find the Flip video camera, one grabbed her own phone and aimed it at me to begin filming and one was grabbing for her phone to call Norma in the office to have her come over. It didn't end up being 'The Call' but it sure was fun to see them all share in the excitement and do their part! They're living every moment of this with me as we're working side by side in a test room so they've put up with a lot as my giddiness can be exhausting at times I'm sure! They do their part to keep me humble though by hiding my stuff on a regular basis and pelting me with paper snowballs just for the fun of it! They're a crazy bunch so I fit right in! Trust me, throwing paper snowballs is a great stress release when I feel like I'm on pins and needles and begin to shake each time my cell phone rings!

Next week Sharon has invited me to the trailer for a few days. Does she truly know what she's asking?? LOL!! I warned her I may be a giddy, excited, emotional mess and she said she's up for the job! She's well trained(?) in using the Flip (see below) so it's all good! This was our first 'accidental taping' and we didn't know it was recording. We've practiced since this taping and are all set to go!!!
video

Have a great weekend everyone! Next week is Hannah week!!! WHEEE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Matching??? **UPDATED**

An agency in the US is reporting that Matching may have begun. I know this sounds ambiguous but if it means my file has made it out of these shelves and is now on someone's desk just waiting to be matched with Hannah OR has already been matched to her...I'll take it!!!

I'm guessing that the next question on everybody's mind is, 'How long after matching do referrals normally arrive?' Unfortunately there is no hard and fast rule on that one. Sometimes it's the very next day and other times 2 weeks. I'm still guessing next week but allowing my heart to move to early next week rather than Friday. As always, we'll have to wait and see!

Last month when the 'Matching' rumour came out I was cautiously optimistic as I wasn't sure if I was in or not. This month I'm fully exploding with excitement knowing Hannah's referral is in this batch for sure!!! Can you believe it?? God is SO GOOD!!! Hannah time is near!!!

**Update - Wednesday at 6:30pm**
The rumour has changed from CCAA may be matching to CCAA IS matching!!! Ahhhhh!!!!!! Wow...Hannah's referral could arrive tomorrow...or a week away. Never a dull moment I tell ya!!

Single Digits!!!

Wheee!!! Should Hannah's referral arrive on the 'most likely' day of Friday, August 21, 2009 then we're down to single digits!! Can you believe it?!!

I know that this date is far from set in stone as referral batches arrive on a whole variety of days but it sure is fun to have one particular day to think about and fictitiously aim for! Referral batches can arrive anywhere between 19 and 38 days apart but the most common timeframe between batches is 31 days which is where I'm grabbing the Fri, Aug 21st date from.

There are still no rumours about matching yet which will proceed the referrals being mailed. August 12, 2008 is a day that my cousin Bridget and I will remember forever and for the longest time was the day we both thought Hannah was born. I'm not sure about that now but am wondering if today is the day that Hannah and I will be matched together in China? For those who have 'been there, done that' do you find out the actual match date when you receive your child's referral? The wait continues and oh how exciting it is!!!

Also, for any who may have missed guessing Hannah's Date of Birth and what Province she's living in, it's not too late!! Click here and enter the contest!

Counting down to referral and oh baby we're counting single digits!!!

Monday, August 10, 2009

Thank you Michelle and K1!

Thank you, thank you Michelle and K1 for all you did to create such a wonderful day yesterday! I couldn't believe how excited I was for yesterday to arrive and looked forward to it from the moment you shared the invitation with me. Numerous times each day last week I'd find myself figuring out how long it was until Sunday afternoon. After years and years of dreaming of becoming a Mom (and many of those fully believing that that dream would never come true due to being single) I couldn't believe that yesterday was a day celebrating my daughter coming home soon!! I had to stop putting on my make-up a couple of times to wipe away tears of happiness and then reapply the makeup once again. :o)

It was a treat to drive to the shower with K1! Given her current state of having 2 precious little lives so close to joining the world I felt it was only appropriate that I be fully prepared. When we met up I had a towel, scissors, string, a baggie of water (that I said were ice chips that hadn't lasted the trip), a kettle (not sure where I thought I'd get electricity but I know in the movies they always say to boil water!) and 2 diapers. I only have size 3 diapers in my house so I guess I was planning on K1 giving birth to 2 15 lb babies! :o) Shhhh....we won't share that part with her! We laughed together and the fun of the day was just beginning!

I started to giggle though as K1 and I walked to the front door of Michelle and Mark's home and saw a 'Baby Shower' sign in the door. I'm sure anybody looking at us would have thought the shower was for the beautifully pregnant woman rather than her friend walking beside her, showing ner ye a sign of pregnancy! :o) It really was quite humerous!

From the moment we walked into the house Michelle was the hostess with the mostess! There were yummy nibblies on any flat surface that could be found and decorations abounded. It was so neat to look around and see all the fun things that Michelle had used to decorate for this special day! K1 and I arrived early and enjoyed spending time with Michelle and Mark before he made himself scarce for much of the shower. He's a great guy but an afternoon of 'girl talk' would be a lot for any guy to handle.

Friends began to arrive around 1:00 and we were off! Laughing, joking, sharing stories of our waits, learning massive amounts about attachment from Liz and listening in awe and amazement to the story of Karen's recent whirlwind trip to Ethiopia to bring home her adorable son Denver.

Michelle had also prepared a beautiful lunch of sandwiches and salads. What a treat! For dessert she had made a delicious chocolate cake with straberry filling. I still find seeing Hannah's name in print takes my breath away!!

After lunch I opened their most generous gifts and was humbled by their generosity! Thank you for arranging for the group gift K1! It's perfect!!!

Once again we chatted and chatted and I couldn't believe it when it was 6:00 before the first people needed to leave! I had no idea it was that late as time with these precious friends just flies by!!

Michelle and K1...THANK YOU! The day was perfect and I appreciate more than you know all that you did to make is such a great day!!

False Labour Once Again.

It was confirmed late this morning that the US referrals that were received Friday were for families who had been logged in March 21/06 and were missed 2 weeks ago when the referrals came out.

For myself this means that I'm still tracking towards a referral sometime between August 19th and 25th with the most likely day being Friday, August 21st. That's NEXT week!!! Wheee! I can handle that!!!

11 more sleeps!!

Sunday, August 09, 2009

Blessed by Bloggy Friends...and, Rumour Update!

WOW!!! I was humbled and overwhelmed when precious bloggy friends hosted a shower for Hannah (and her mommy) earlier today!! Thanks so much Michelle and K1! The gift the group gave me made me cry (ok...their card made me cry long before I opened their gift!) and I am still in shock!! Can you believe I was speechless?!! They bought Hannah's car seat and I am SO thankful for their generosity! When driving home from the shower I found myself glancing into the back seat and having to remind myself to breathe as I saw her seat there. I have a car seat in my house tonight!! Wow!!! Thank you everyone!!

Liz and Ava also purchased some cozy and fun gifts for Hannah and also a few things for me to take to China to give away to the people we meet there. Thanks Liz and Ava!

This adorable bathing suit was sent by a special little friend. Isn't it cute?! Thanks friend!

















Here are the wonderful friends who made today so very, very special and blessed Hannah and I with such an amazing gift!! Front row (l to r): K1, me, Karen. Back row (l to r): Rhonda, Cari, Liz and Michelle. Those there in spirit: Dolores, Doris and M3. Thank you so much for your emails friends! As much as I would have loved for each of you to be there I understand it wasn't possible and it was so neat to read your notes and kind words!
Thank you, thank you friends!! I am so very thankful for the friendships we have formed and that we continue to share. Love you!!

PS - The latest news on RQ (Sunday evening) is that there was possibly a 2nd agency (this one in the US) that received referrals Friday. If this is the case then I could truly be in labour!!! Don't know for sure and will try to get some sleep tonight but I'm afraid that the contractions (otherwise known as feversihly refreshing Rumor Queen) could mean very little sleep will be had. As always, I'll keep you posted as I learn more!!

Sweet dreams! Mine will be of a baby riding safe and snuggly in her beautiful new car seat!!

Monday Morning Update: I slept surprisingly well and only woke twice to go to the bathroom check Rumor Queen! So far, no new news this morning. No further referrals have been announced nor has anyone posted that their agency is expecting referrals today. So far, it looks like it will still be another week to two weeks before I see my sweet Hannah's face but we all know that this could change at a moments notice. I'll keep you posted should anything change.

Until then....still in awe that there is a car seat in my house!!!
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