Friday, June 26, 2009

Traffic in Beijing

Let's just say that I'm glad I won't be driving while we're in China.

A hilariously detailed description of the infamous Beijing left turn can be found here. The traffic is probably best described as synchronized insanity. The reason? Perhaps it's because the Chinese are never in any hurry to get anywhere.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

Wordy Wednesday

We are by no means grammar or word experts, but we just have to get this off our chests. Lee and I enjoy talking with each other about weird words and weird things people say. Ok, maybe we are "word nerds" but we accept the label.

There is no such word as "fustrated" or "flustrated". The word is frustrated. There is also flustered. But they are two different words.

There is no such word as "acrossed". The word is "across". This might just be a midwestern thing, we are not sure. But all we know, is that the dog swam all the way across the lake. Not all the way acrossed the lake.

There is no such word as "irregardless". It's "regardless", regardless of when, where or how you use it.

There is no such word as "supposably". I am sure you all know that! It is supposedly.

There is no "A" in definitely. This word is misspelled alllll the time. You can remember because it comes from FINITE.

And then there is "a whole 'nother" as in, "Oh, that's a whole 'nother story". There is no such word as "nother". It should be "a whole other story" or "that's another story".

The rule for you're, can't, couldn't, etc, is that the apostrophe goes where the letter would have (that is would HAVE not would OF) gone. For you're, it is in place of the A in "you are" and for can't, it is in place of the O in "cannot", etc.

It is "taken aback" - As in, "I was taken aback to hear that" - not "taken back"

If you are talking about someone who has died, they passed away. Past is used for time references, as in, "in the past, I have passed the food on the table to the right".

People LIE, things LAY. I still mess this one up and tell my dogs to LIE down. oops. You can remember this one, because people actually DO lie. Too bad.

One (other) thing that bugs me is that people don't know when/how to use the adverb. For example, "It worked fabulous!" should be "It worked fabulously!" or "The furniture was placed odd" should be "The furniture was placed oddly" or "Drive safe" instead of "Drive safely".

So that's it from the Wordy Wednesday post. Maybe we should have waited until the weekend and called it "Soapbox Saturday" but either way, we're done :)

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Happy Father's Day, Papa!

And so far this is the only picture we have of Lee with Olivia, thanks to our dear niece, Corene!

Friday, June 19, 2009

Fantastic Friday!

I didn't get it posted in time to be Thankful Thursday, but my mom found out yesterday that she is still CANCER FREE!! If you don't know, we call her our Miracle Mama, as it is truly a MIRACLE that she is still here! Thank you, God, and YAY MAMA!

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

We're BOOKED!!

From Twin Cities to Tokyo to Beijing and from Hong Kong to Tokyo to Seattle to Twin Cities! The in-country flights aren't booked yet, but the agency will do that! We used airmiles so we saved about $1000!!!

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Photo Updates!

Big Brother Philippe
Ge Ge in Mandarin, Frè (brother) in Creole
Big Sister Patricia
Jie Jie in Mandarin, Sè (sister) in Creole
We have had a lot of people ask if Patricia and Philippe know they have a little sister. They have known from the very first letter we sent them that they have a little sister who will come home from a place called China. When we visited them in March, we talked to them about Olivia, showed them on the map where China was, (and Haiti and Minnesota) and that we would be going some time this summer to bring her home, but we didn't know what she looked like yet. We are going to ask one of the families visiting this summer to take letters from us with photos of Olivia. There are two trips - one in late June, one in July, so they won't have to wait too long.

One of my favorite memories of Patricia is that every day she would take my hairbrush and brush through my hair. One of my favorite memories of Philippe is how when he was coloring or playing and was singing or humming and he caught one of us looking at him, he got a sweet, sheepish grin on his face.

One of Lee's favorite Patricia memories is her falling asleep on his lap, with her head on his chest. One of his favorite Philippe memories is when we were back at the orphanage at the end of our visit and our kids had to eat dinner after everyone else had already eaten. The kids were crowding around Philippe and he stood up, and one by one, spooned food into the different kids' hands.

We cry thinking of them. We ache for them, but for the most part we do have peace that they aren't home yet. China has a rule that there has to be a year between placements, so our social worker would not have even approved us for them if it didn't take so long, so basically things are just working out they way they are supposed to work out. Please do remember them in your prayers. We know that even though they know we aren't coming this summer, that it will be hard for them to watch the van pull up to the orphanage and we don't get out. They don't understand why we left. Why we didn't take them home. Please pray for them to have peace and joy. Pray for their health. Pray for them any way you can! Thanks!

Thursday, June 11, 2009


WOOHOO!! Travel Approval! We travel from July 8-July 22 or 24 - depending on the consulate appointment. That means we will meet Miss Olivia on July 13 - two days after her first birthday! We will be finding a cake of some sort for her to mash into her hair! Plus my birthday is July 15th and Lee celebrates his 40th on July 22nd! Happy Birthday to all! OH! And another correction! Our daughter is actually in Sichuan Province. Chongqing is a city, a county and a municipality, but not a province.

Oh, and for any wise guys out there, we have people stay at our house when we travel so the dogs are fed and let out...

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

When Doctors Lack Bedside Manner

Imagine being pregnant and hearing the following statement from your doctor after an ultrasound: "Well, you will have to come in tomorrow for your abortion because of how far along you are." It really happened to one mother, and she will never forget it.

Read the story here.

Monday, June 08, 2009

Keen on Keens

In preparation for China, we purchased some Keens. We needed shoes that could take on the Great Wall, the rainy season and heat of Chongqing, nicknamed "Furnace City" and Guangzhou, which is farther south than Furnace City. They are "ergonomic", waterproof, and since I can't stand wearing socks when it is over 60 degrees, I think that these are a good choice. PLUS! Of course we got them on sale!!

Here is what the website said about the ones I got - the WHISPER. I don't understand half of what this says, but it sounds pretty impressive! HAHA! Patented toe protection- Washable polyester webbing upper with Aegis microbe shield™- Secure Metatomical strap design- Quick draw elastic cord lace- Metatomical EVA molded footbed with Microban™- Compression molded low profile EVA midsole
AEGIS MICROBE SHIELD Aegis Microbe Shield controls the bacteria and fungi that cause odors, stains and product deterioration. Aegis technology is free of environmentally harmful substances. METATOMICAL FOOTBED DESIGN This internal support mechanism is anatomically engineered to provide excellent arch support and cradle the natural contours of the foot. KEEN.PROTECT Can a sandal protect your toes? The answer is yes. The reason is KEEN Patented Toe Protection where the shoe outsoles wrap up and over the toes for ultimate protection.

Friday, June 05, 2009

Cute Care Package!

We ordered a care package through for Olivia and the caretakers at her orphanage. The package includes candy and a letter for the nannies and orphanage director, a soft-sided album with pictures of us for Olivia, and a disposable camera. There are no guarantees, but it is our hope that they will take some pictures of her in her current environment and that she will be given the album so that she can see our faces before we meet her. We received this picture today, to show us how the package turned out! It looks great! We should be meeting our little girl in just about a month! Will let you know when we have travel dates!

Tuesday, June 02, 2009

Please pray...

...for our dear friends, the Flynns. They started the adoption process for this special boy, Jed, in October of 2007 and he was due to come home anytime now. God called him home to heaven instead.

The family is devastated as are all who cared for Jed at his orphanage. The Flynns are an amazing family whom we met on online through our Haiti agency, and we stayed with them last year and were instant friends family. We love them so much and ache for them as we know the pain of a long wait, as well as the emotional, physical and financial toll of international adoption, although we can't imagine a loss such as this. Please cover this family in your prayers as they longed to hold him and now will never have that chance. Jeddy was born without legs, and one comfort to the Flynns right now is that he is running and dancing with the angels in heaven.

Jediah Paul Flynn

July 7, 2007 - June 1, 2009

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