Saturday, March 31, 2012

Let the Fun Begin!

The kids and I headed out to Panama City Beach on Saturday after soccer games.  We always get a head start on CJ since we don't travel very well ;)  We made it about 4 hours and then decided to stop for the night.  Our hotel had an indoor swimming pool that we made full use of on our one night stay.

Friday, March 30, 2012

Help Kobe Help CongCong

Please take a moment to check out the new blog I helped create for Kobe's friend who is dying with cancer.   Bring Me Hope organization has stepped up in a HUGE way to get help for Kobe's friend.  A big thank you to all my friends who came together so quickly this week to make this blog and campaign for CongCong come together so quickly.

Thursday, March 29, 2012

A Hole

Who knew digging a hole could be so entertaining? The girls spent the whole hour that the boys were at soccer practice, just digging a hole in the ground. I guess working together with your best friends makes anything fun. Love these treasures!!

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Leesy Bug

Chillin at school today :)

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Happy Gotcha Baby Girl


Today marks one whole year with our baby girl Elise!  Click over for a reminder of just how much she has blossomed over this year.  What a precious gift this little girl has been to our family. 

Monday, March 26, 2012

Where Ian Is From

This trip I will be going to another new province in China, Shaanxi.  Ian lives in the capitol city, Xi'an.  Here is where Ian lives now, and where Travis and I will be staying our first week in China.  This will be my first trip to Xi'an, home of the Terra Cotta Warriors.

The second week, all 3 of us will then travel to Guangzhou, Guangdong Province.  This is where we finalize the US side of the paperwork.  This will be my 4th trip to Guangzhou, but I hope to stay in a different hotel, just to liven things up a bit.


Kobe said that Ian was up ready and waiting on him Sunday morning when he got to the orphanage. Kobe said that Ian must really enjoy Sunday School since he was excited to see him.  Here is a quick little video of Ian playing with his friend from the orphanage.

Kobe did tell Ian that I am coming in 40 days for him.  He said Ian got a sad look on his face, but at least this time he didn't cry.  Progress-haha.

Saturday, March 24, 2012

New Toy

Caleb has been busy on craigslist lately selling some of his "baby" toys in exchange for moving up to a "big boy" toy. He has saved and saved and finally he purchased this new ride. Growing up WAY too fast for this mommy!

Bubble Blast

Friday, March 23, 2012

2011 Adoption Tax Credit Refund

Sing with me...hallelujah, hallelujah, hallelujah hallelujah haaalleeeeeluuuujaaaaaaah!!

It's here, it's here, it's really really here! Full refund deposited today. The miracle part this is that MOST people who file the adoption credit wind up getting their refunds delayed, and delayed, and delayed.  MOST people have to send in receipts, and spreadsheets, and bank statements, and returned checks for a mini-audit that the IRS submits the majority of adoptive parents to.  Oh and this takes on average SIX months to finally get your full refund.

But by the grace of God-we didn't!!  God knew we needed it to go get Ian-and yet again HE provided.


For all you adoptive parents out there who want the gorey details here you go...

Mailed return on 2/16, Then started stalking the "Where's my Refund" website.
First status said April 1, then went to April 10, then to April 17, then both to April 24. Then to May 1 for about 2 weeks it stayed saying May 1.

Then about 5 days ago it changed saying:
Refund Status Results
Your tax refund is scheduled to be direct deposited on March 23, 2012. If your refund is not credited to your account by March 28, 2012, check with your bank to find out if it has been received. Please wait until March 28, 2012 before you contact us again because we are unable to take any action until then.

And it came true today! I mailed return to Kansas City, MO, and included just the 3 forms they wanted- no receipts or spreadsheet. Good luck to everyone waiting.

Monday, March 19, 2012

7 Weeks and Counting

By the looks of things, Ian had another great Sunday with Kobe yesterday. They went to church again, then did a little shopping, then off to a nice lunch with "Bob", Kobe, and Kobe's girlfriend.

Really love the fact that Ian is starting to get out and about and feel more comfortable doing new things. Kobe says that Ian used to always be very afraid of going places simply because he was afraid of new people. Oh how I pray that his little heart will start to soften more and more about being adopted. 
Exactly 7 weeks from today, I will meet my new son in person!!

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Enjoying Another 80+ Day

Growing Up

Even though I have tried to stop her!!

Tuesday, March 13, 2012


She's a maniac maniac....

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Outdoor Theatre

Church in China

Kobe took Ian to church and Sunday School this morning.  How cool is that?!?!? 

Saturday, March 10, 2012


Enjoying their abcmouse this morning!

Thursday, March 8, 2012

New Dates

After much thought, we have decided that it be best that Travis and I wait one extra week to travel to China.  So we will be going on May 4!

(Obviously assuming that all goes as planned getting our A5, TA, and CA on time.)
I will be spending Mother's Day in China without my mom or the rest of my babies :(  However, I will at least have my newest baby finally with me! 
The plan will be for us to return on May 17- finally a family of EIGHT.

Oh and for your reading pleasure, click on over here to learn more about adopting the older child.