Tuesday, January 30, 2007

North Carolina Whirlwind

Thanks to my flight benifits with USAirways, I had the opportunity to visit a branch of my family in Winston-Salem, North Carolina last week. After 21 years in an airline job, if there is one thing for which I am thankful, it is the ability to visit family without the financial burden of airfare. My most recent use of my flying benifits included a visit to my brother, Paul, and his family on January 24. For the first time, I met the wives of my nephews Dale & Brian (hope I didn't scare them too much) and my grand niece, Dale & Melody's daughter, Annalise. The poor little gal (7 months old) was teething, so she couldn't help being kind of crabby. Paul & I tried in vain to figure out what was bothering her - teething? (we gave her baby Tylenol), was she hungy? (we fed her - she still cried) she needed attention? (we both tried walking her around the house) until Rhonda came home and discovered that her diaper needed changing. Oy! I have some learning to do! It'll happen, I'm sure. So .... I wanted to share some pics of my whirlwind journey, so they include .......

Paul (my brother) with his 3 bulldogs
Paul & Rhonda with Annalise, Dale (Paul's son & Analise's dad), newphew Brian & wife Ashley (expecting in April).
Mama Melody with Annalise
Melody, Annalise & Dale Schafhauser
Brian & Ashley Schafhauser (expecting in April)

Thursday, January 18, 2007

The Great Wall of China

A wall in Joanna's room is being reserved for some of the gifts we receive from friends & family in anticipation of her arrival. Appropriately, it is being called "The Great Wall of China" as it has always been our wish that our girl be aware and enriched by the culture of her birth country. One of our dearest friends, Deb, whom we've known for some 28 years or so, thoughtfully gave us this wall hanging of Chinese kids in traditional garb.
Deb has been a supporter and encourager through every chapter of our lives and we looking forward to sharing this next event with her. Deb's nephews call her "Aunt Bub" as she was instrumental in raising them after her sister (a single mom) died of cancer in the late 80s. Deb is actually "Professor Deb" at the University of Central Florida. We are blessed that such a woman of God is helping to shape the futures of our young people and honored that she will continue to be an influence in all our lives upon the arrival of Joanna.

Saturday, January 13, 2007

70 Days

Is this the "Year of the Impatient Parent"? The CCAA status for Applicant review has remained on January 31, 2006 for the last 70 days. Although referrals have been updated, the review process is stalled. At this point, we assume that our docs are in the review process and wait in the hope of being cleared soon.

Wednesday, January 10, 2007

The Pool Is Ready - The Prospective Parents Are Ready, Ms Zahn - Time To Do the Backstroke

Paula Zahn sure did the backstroke several nights ago when she readdressed the new China adoption restrictions effective May, 2007. Sadly, the first broadcast (see below) proved Miss Zahn's ineffectiveness as a panel moderator to steer the discussion in the proper direction. Instead, the stacked group swerved off course right along with Paula. If the show did one thing, it reinforced our convictions as prospective parents as to our mission to form families and not foster prejudice.

Here is the link to the transcript of the second broadcast.......

I have forwarded the above comments to the Zahn Posse.

Saturday, January 06, 2007

Creative Things to Do While in the Waiting Room - Zap an E-mail to Paula Zahn & Her Adoption Henchmen

So ...... I heard that Paula Zahn and her guests raised quite a stir amongst prospective adoptive parents of Children from China. Comments from panelists included "Maybe they think they can adopt a smart kid that is going to grow up to be a doctor", 'Americans have this love affair with girls from China. There is this belief, this perception, irrational as it might be that if you adopt a little girl from China, she's going to be intelligent, she's going to be more lovable....... Like the porcelain doll. We definitely see that idea of the beautiful Chinese little girl, as compared to do, they really want to adopt a black boy.", & other remarks not included in the CNN transcript. Paula, You don't want to stir up a bunch of charged folks in the "Waiting Room". From the sounds of things out there in Blogland, folks are finding the remarks were racist and unfounded. Judging by the fallout, some comments to Miss Zahn and her henchmen at CNN might be appropriate. So, here's the link to the comment form.....
Take a look at the link to the show's transcript ....... get ready for some hot e-mails, Paula......
The comments in the text of this posting are from the transcript of the Paula Zahn piece as aired on CNN. Please read the item for the full text.......

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

CCAA Update - Latest Referral Date

The CCAA has finished the review of the adoption application documents registered with our office before January 31, 2006.
The CCAA has finished the placement of children for the families whose adoption application documents were registered with our office before September 27, 2005.
Previously, the CCAA announced that those with log in dates before September 8, 2005 had received their referrals. Still no change on the review date. Our log-in is March 24, 2006. We're inching along.......

Incredible! The Harbin Ice Festival

Take a look at the link to amazing photos of the Harbin Ice Festival in Northeastern China. Incredible!

The Gaylord Palms Resort in Orlando tried to duplicate the festival with their attraction "Ice!"

Tuesday, January 02, 2007

A Thoughtful Christmas Gift

We received a book (from our wonderful friend) containing photographs of beautiful children in Chinese orphanages. The title "Mei Mei" is translated "Little Sister."
The Chinese believe an unseen red thread joins those in this life who are destined to connect. For photographer Richard Bowen, that thread led him to China's state-run welfare institutions, where there are thousands of children, primarily girls, growing up without families to take care of them. Mei Mei presents a poignant glimpse of just a few of these remarkable children. Composed against neutral backgrounds, these portraits capture the girls’ inner lives, away from their often bleak surroundings. The images show an almost endless range of expressions: small faces filled with longing and hope, joy and sadness, humor and mischief, defiance and despair. Through the camera's eye these young children are no longer orphans, but individuals whose personalities are as vital, distinct, and beautiful as any mother's child. When that unique human being comes into focus, the connection is made and the red thread becomes visible. And once seen, the bond can never be broken. --