Wednesday, October 28, 2009


So we are wrapping up Halainah's birthday plans. I have finally booked the clown. That was not an easy task. Do you know how much Clowns make? So that got me thinking...Since I need a job and clowns make a fortune...maybe that's the career for me. Hmmm I am going to have to think about that one.

My dad took a ride with me yesterday to meet up with the clown, sign the contract and give a deposit. So I went to set the GPS, and noticed that the address the clown gave me was not registering in the GPS. That should have been my first clue to just stay home. I had thought that the clown told me that her street number was 800 but the GPS only went up to 399. I decided to set off anyway, without the clown's number (big mistake). It took about a half hour to get there and sure enough the street ended at 399. So why did I think there was actually going to be an 800?

Well to make a long story short, we drove up and down the clowns road, and weaving through one way streets. Totally exhausted at the task at hand, I decided let's just go home...maybe a clown wasn't meant to be for
Halainah's party. So my dad said "she had to tell you 80 not 800...let's just try that." I was cranky and said, "how could I hear 800 instead of 80...but knock on the door." So then he asks me, "what's her name?" So I said, "Jeanette." So he said, "that's all you have...Jeanette...Jeanette the clown?" "Yes Dad, obviously I did not come prepared." So he went to #80, rang the doorbell, and asked for Jeanette the Clown. And it was her. He was right. Some times daddy's just have all the answers.

The clown wasn't in the best of neighborhoods, so he stayed in the car with
Halainah since she was asleep. I ventured up to the clown's apartment which happened to be above a store. So my dad kept calling me while the clown was trying to show me pictures of past events. I guess he wanted to make sure I was alright up there. At one point my phone went right to voice mail and he panicked...called me right back and asked why I didn't answer my phone. I guess parents never stop worrying. I sure hope this clown is good and all the kids have fun. She's going to play games with the kids, have a crazy hat parade with Halainah wearing the birthday hat, do face painting, balloon animals and tattoos.

What a crazy day yesterday was. Besides hunting down a clown, we priced out some catering places, we picked up the wine and some food items we needed. And today I am going to place the catering order. I just need some last minute responses on who's coming and we will be nearing the end of party planning.

Now I know
Halainah is turning 2 in just a few short weeks. But why oh why do they have to grow up so fast? She no longer looks like a baby...she looks like a beautiful little girl. Tony tells me I need to stop dressing her in such big girl clothes but it's just too darn irresistible.

Sunday, October 25, 2009


Without further ado, I present Halainah's most beautiful Birthday Invitations. Isn't it stunning? This invitation is so special to us, not only because it is simply amazing but because they were made with an enormous amount of love and kindness.

Andrea over at Two Little Birds has a heart of gold. She has been following our journey for a short time. At the time I only knew her through her blog posts and her beautiful comments that she would leave for me. I was shocked one day when I was reading through my comments that she wanted to create Halainah's birthday invitations as a very special birthday present. I was practically a stranger. And I was truly touched by her offer and stunned by her kindness. You see, Andrea is a busy mommy herself and I know how precious and limited time can be.

Andrea came up with the design and the wording of Lainey's invitations. And it was as if she truly knew what I wanted to say even before I told her. Since Halainah was turning 2 but this was our very first birthday with her we needed to somehow convey that in her invitation. Andrea captured every thing and more that I wanted Halainah's invitations to be. And she put up with a million photo changes from me. Please take a look at Andrea's work at: She truly creates such beautiful masterpieces.

Andrea, I will never forget your kindness and pure generosity towards us, a practical stranger at the time. This is such a beautiful story that will be forever written in Halainah's life book. We have added your masterpiece to her scrapbook where our family will treasure it forever. I simply could never thank you enough my friend. And I can only hope that I can follow in your footsteps and deeply touch some one's life like you did ours.

Friday, October 23, 2009


After looking at Halainah's pic above, can you figure out what my obsession is? I know you all must have guessed it. I am totally obsessed with Matilda Jane. I know I have mentioned it before on my blog. But this is serious folks. If I could dress Halainah in Matilda Jane every single day I would. But in order to do that I would have to first, find a job, than, find a second job to support my Matilda Jane obsession. MJ's three newest lines, Back to School and Gypsy Blue 1 & 2 are oh so cute and oh so tempting. I have outfits from both lines that I have been drooling over but have yet to purchase. And she is going to release her new Holiday line soon. When will this madness ever end?

"Must have Matilda Jane...Must have Matilda Jane!" Oh how I wish those words would leave my mind!

Tuesday, October 20, 2009


Don't be sad my most beautiful little angel. Mama will sing some nursery rhymes to you.

When we were in China, our guide Sissi would sing nursery rhymes in Chinese to our daughters while traveling in our bus. All 3 of our China dolls were hypnotized by Sissi's beautiful voice and the rhythm of her songs. Today, I came across the packet she put together for us filled with the songs she would sing. It brought tears to my eyes just thinking about how happy we were in that moment. The songs brought so much peace and comfort to our daughters in such a confusing time for them. Since this blog is Halainah's life book, I knew I must add a few of the songs our dear friend Sissi would sing to calm our daughter's fears. I sang them to Halainah this evening and she smiled from ear to ear. She started to sway back and forth and I knew that she must still take comfort in these songs. We made a promise to Sissi that we would sing these to our daughter's often. She even made us practice in the bus. So Sissi, this post is for you, our dear friend, we will never forget you.

Yi Shan Yi Shan Liang Jing Jing (Twinkle Twinkle, Little Star)

Yi Shan Yi Shan Liang Jing Jing
Man Tian Dou Shi Xiao Xing Xing,
Gua Zhai Tian Kong Fang Guang Ming,
Hao Xian Xu Duo Xiao Yan Jing.
Yi Shan Yi Shan Liang Jing Jing
Man Tian Dou Shi Xiao Xing Xing.

Liang Zhi Lao Hu (Frere Jaques)

Liang Zhi Lao Hu, Liang Zhi Lao Hu,
Pao De Kuai, Pao De Kuai,
Yi Zhi Mei You Er Duo, Yi Zhi Mei You Wei Ba,
Zhen Qi Guai, Zhen Qi Guai.

Da Mu Ji (I'm not sure which nursery rhyme this is in English, our Guide says it translates to "Big Hen". But she sang this a lot...I can still hear her beautiful voice)

Da Mu Ji Ya Hei, Ge Ge Da Ya Hei,
Wo Ai Ta Ya, Ta Ai Wo Ya Hei,
Ge Ge Da, Ge Ge Da, Ge Da Ge Ge Da,
Ge Ge Da, Ge Ge Da, Ge Da Ge Ge Da.

Ma Li You Zhi Xiao Mian Yang ( Mary Had A Little Lamb)

Ma Li You Zhi Xiao Mian Yang, Xiao Mian Yang, Xiao Mian Yang,
Ma Li You Zhi Xiao Mian Yang, Ta Zhang De Zhen Piao Liang,
Bu Guan Ma Li Dao Na Li, Dao Na Li, Dao Na Li,
Bu Guan Ma Li Dao Na Li, Ta Yi Ding Yao Gen Chu.

So why was my beautiful little angel so sad in the picture above? Well, because mama brought her outside on 3 separate occasions in her birthday dress to take pictures for her invitations. She wanted to run around and play and I wanted the perfect picture. I can't wait to show you the final masterpiece and how beautiful her invitations are.

Sunday, October 18, 2009


Hi my fellow bloggers. I feel like I have been away from the blog world for a while now. Life here in our house is busy, busy, busy. There is so much going in with Halainah's birthday and my grandmother and my job search and keeping Halainah entertained. We are trying to get in as much outside time in now before it gets too cold. Although it has been pretty darn cold in our neck of the woods for this time of year. I can't ever remember digging out my down jacket, putting the feather blanket on the bed and lighting our pellet stove in the month of October. I sure hope that doesn't mean we are going to have the coldest winter in history. Halainah hates being inside and will go to the door, turn the handle and say, "side" for outside. She's going to be sad in winter. I am going to have to stock up on crafty things to keep her occupied.

Halainah's invitations are finally out in the mail and have arrived or should be arriving shortly. Stay tuned for a really heart touching story that goes along with her invitations and a digital version in the next few days. The menu will be chosen this week. And hopefully I will find a clown that does face painting and balloon animals by tomorrow. I found one on Craigslist but am hesitant on hiring her. So if you know of any good clowns in my area...please let me know. Elmo is already booked...can't wait to see Halainah's reaction.

Below are some pics. from this weekend. Can Halainah be the next Gap kid or what? I LOVE her legwarmers that I purchased there. In fact I am totally addicted to legwarmers. I bought 2 pairs...the other pair are not as wild...but oh so cute. Gap happens to make the best quality legwarmers at least I think so. I bought a pair in target but they were of terrible quality. I may have to go back to the Gap and get her the matching vest or sweater:) Oh and they have the cutest furry boots...I have been dreaming of those too!

Enjoy the pics of my Gap girl.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009


Happy Birthday to my Jiu Jiu

How many Jiu Jiu's does it take
To make a Jiu Jiu heaven
Just one is all I need
And you're the very best forever

So that is why today I send
A birthday wish to say
Happy Birthday to my Jiu Jiu
Have a really special day

-altered from Heart Whispers

Halainah's exact words,
"I yew Jiu Jiu!" (I love you Jiu Jiu!)

And I might add it is oh so cute when she says it!

Wednesday, October 7, 2009



You’re not here by chance but by God’s choosing. His hand formed you, and made you the person you are. He compares you to no one else – you are ONE OF A KIND. You lack nothing that HIS GRACE can’t give you. He has allowed you to be here at this time in history to fulfill HIS SPECIAL PURPOSE for this generation. By Roy Lessin

Last year in October of 2008, we received our very last updated picture of Halainah. We requested more from her orphanage but none were received. We waited 3 very long months to meet our daughter with a picture from October 08 grasped in our hands.

It's so hard to believe that a year has passed since that time. Our daughter has changed in so many ways. She has changed from an oh so cute little baby to a most beautiful little girl. She has a smile that lights up a room and the heart of an angel. She is in every way OUR daughter. She clings to us in uncertain situations and when meeting a new person for the first time she immediately points to me and says, "Mama." We are simply the luc
kiest parents in the world to be blessed with such a miracle. We will NEVER forget those that helped us bring our daughter home. There is a special place in our hearts for all those that went beyond the normal call of duty to ensure that our little girl was united with her family.

We thank God for Halainah and all those generous and caring family members and friends and even strangers that have a heart of gold.

I was at my Grandma's yesterday and she had our famous October 08 photo next to a recent picture of Halainah and I was amazed by how much she's grown. What do you think?

Monday, October 5, 2009


We are one step closer to Halainah's Mei Mei (little sister). Tony and I had our medical physicals for our next adoption on Saturday. We spent a lot of time with the doctor and he was very thorough. Which is good I suppose. So another step down and about a bazillion to go. It's a huge relief to get this part done because it has been holding us up a bit. I know our social worker will be happy. So I feel like I accomplished something. However I have a million other things on my plate including finishing up Halainah's birthday plans. I am a little stressed about her party but hopefully things will fall into place.

Other than that Tony and I had a jammed packed weekend, like always. Of course we didn't accomplish all that we needed to. But we came close. We even squeezed in a little time to run into our 2 favorite consignment shops but I'm sad to report that we did not find any good deals...very sad.

And I can never put up a post without some cute pics. of Halainah. So here are a few that I took of Halainah on Friday before leaving for Grandma's and Grandpa's. Halainah was having a blast twirling in her tutu skirt in a big field across from our house. Halainah's super cute skirt was given to her by Aunt Deb. Thanks Aunt Deb! It was a little chilly outside so she's not wearing the shirt you gave her...I had to put on long sleeves.

I have to run for now...It's late here and I have much to do. But I wanted to quickly add that we took another step towards our 2nd daughter. And I have to throw it out there that I am incredibly nervous about this next adoption. Times are so unstable like we all know. It's hard to ignore the voices in my head that are saying, "what are you on earth are you going to afford another adoption?" I am trying to follow my heart and God's words, "And anyone who welcomes a little child like this on my behalf is welcoming me." - Matthew 18:5. This is God's plan.

Thursday, October 1, 2009


Since 1999, the orphanages in China are required to run a provincial newspaper advertisement for children that are found and brought to their orphanage. They are called "Finding Ads." These ads contain information about where and when the children were found and which orphanage is caring for them. Originally these were text-only ads, but most provinces now include photographs in their ads. These photographs are usually the earliest available pictures of the children, some from as young as a few weeks old.

We received Halainah's finding ad on Gotcha day which was January 4, 2009. She was handed to us along with a photo album, a bag of formula and rice cereal, a brand new bottle, a pre-made bottle and her finding ad. I tucked her finding ad away in our binder that contained all of our paperwork on that day. Even though I have been through our binder a dozen times since we have been home, I left her finding ad tucked away ever so neatly in the back.

Perhaps it's because I want to preserve it for Halainah when she gets older and wants as many clues to her past as possible. Or perhaps it's because there is something about it that saddens me so. In the short ad that was placed for her, it speaks of her birth date and the date in which she was found. I wonder, was she scared when her birth mother left her alone in front of her orphanage? I wonder, was she cold because it was November? I wonder, was she dressed warm enough or was she wrapped in a blanket? I wonder, if it was dark and scary outside? I wonder, who found her? I wonder, if this person was compassionate and held her close? I wonder, if this person whispered to her that everything was going to be alright? I wonder if she knew that she would never hear her birth mother's voice again? I wonder if her birth mother cried as she walked away from her newborn baby girl? I wonder if she left a note with her daughter? I wonder if she fed her before she left her so that she wouldn't be hungry? I wonder...and I wonder...and I wonder.

I believe there is just something about that little piece of paper that holds too many what if's for me, too many unknowns. But it was time to take out Halainah's finding ad and place it in her life book. It's a part of her past, regardless if it saddens me.

Halainah's Finding Ad was translated and it says, "Rao Qin Yang, female, born November 16, 2007 was found at the gate of the Shangrao Social Welfare Institute on November 17, 2007. She has a round face and little hair.