Thursday, November 23, 2006

Happy Thanksgiving

I just wanted to wish everyone a very Happy Thanksgiving.

I had so much to be thankful for this year. My son is healthy, my mom and brother are great, Anthony and I are healthy, but most of all we were blessed with a beautiful daughter. I thought of her often today and had some sadness wondering what she was doing and if she ate enough and if she was warm enough. I am sure most of all the parents in our situation had the same thoughts. But, I kept telling myself that soon, very soon we would be on our way to bring her home and we will never have to think these thoughts again, God willing.
I felt bad also because I did not make it to the cemetery to see my father. My father had 2 days out of the year that were his favorite. Thanksgiving and Christmas. When my parents split, I never spent another Thanksgiving with my father because it was the one holiday that my mother had at our house. With 4 sisters and a brother each one took a holiday. I would call him and talk with him, but didn't go to see him. He lived in Brooklyn and we lived in the island. I'm sure that it hurt him and I never really thought about it because he always said he understood, but now that he is gone, boy do I feel bad about it. I was never really close to my dad growing up, but when I got older things changed. We had our times that we didn't talk for a while but I always loved him. The best memories I have of my father are the times that he spent with my son. My father got sick when Joseph was 4 and he didn't want my son to see him get sicker and sicker. He died within 3 months. It took along time for my son to get use to that. I still can't believe it.
Wow, I guess I needed to get that off my chest tonight. In all my joy and happiness I still have some sadness . But isn't that always the way.
Well, I hope that everyone had a great thanksgiving and I am going to bed now because I will be up and out by 3 am to shop.

Wednesday, November 22, 2006

Ok, Ok This is Lily's SN

Alright, this is for everyone that keeps asking me what Lily Rose's special need is. She has a "Hearing Abnormality in her right ear". She had 2 hearing test and we had 3 ENT's check them out. The first 2 specialist are with Winthrop Hospital here in L.I. Dr. Lee is the Specialist that we contacted to look over her medical report, but he is not and ENT so he asked his colleagues to look it over for us. I don't think they really wanted to because they were not being compensated for their time and they were very vague and said that the reports were inconclusive. " Ok, thanks a lot for your help!!!!" I posted on one of the groups that I belong to just asking if anyone had experience with this type of SN and I got a ton of responses. One women in particular wrote to me and told me her husband was an ENT and that he would be very happy to look at her medical for FREE. Can you believe that their are still wonderful people in this crazy world. So I e-mailed Lily's reports to him and he called me on the phone 2 days later. He told me that the first test was no good. He said it was way off the charts and it was probably not done right. That test was done in Feb. 06 They gave her another test in July 06 and he said that although it was done at a very high level of sound, it seemed from what he read that she can hear and that maybe she just has a slight problem. It really is a leap of faith that we are going on, but at that point I had her picture for 1 month and I was crazy, mad in love. Anthony and I decided that whatever her problem is, we will just do what we have to do to get it fixed. God so had his hand in this whole process and I refuse to turn my back on what he made so clear to us.
Chen, HengYun aka Lily Rose is our daughter then and now. She will be loved just like I love my son Joseph. I always said that "Joseph was the reason I was born." So now Lily Rose is also the reason I was born.


I have to send a big Thank you to my friend Bruny. She did a big favor for me and I just wanted to let her know that I really appreciate it. If I could ever return the favor in any way, shape or form, just let me know.

I am really doing a happy dance over it. So glad that I met you.!!!!!!!!!

I would like to wish everyone a Healthy, Safe & Happy Thanksgiving.

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

Phone Call Details

Ok, here is how it happened for all of you that asked me for details on the CALL.

I call AH on a regular basis. Yesterday I called in the morning but the answering machine came on and I hung up. lol Joseph was off from school yesterday because of Parent/Teacher Conferences. So he had a boy scout "go-see-it at Carvel. I didn't hear my phone ring and when I got home I happen to see that I missed a call. It was my agency's phone number but no message. So at 1:46 pm, I called Stacey back and we were just talking about nothing important and then I asked her what she was so happy about and she told me that they just sealed the envelope with someone's Dossier in it and where sending it to China. So yes that is a happy thing.
Now, I usually ask Stacey if she heard anything on our PA and she always tell me "no". So I said to her "I am not even going to ask you if your heard anything on our PA because you never do". So, Stacey got really quite and finally said, "well, I don't have anything officially in writing, but you do have a verbal PA"!!!! Well, I almost fell to the floor. I was jumping up and down and sputtering words which I don't even know what I was saying. She then starts to tell me that I need to have my travel meeting very soon because TA can come at anytime. WOW, was so not prepared to hear that. I have so much to do and I have no idea where to start. I am on overdrive now. Have not slept because my mind is going a mile a minute and to top it all off, I have to start calling for Jury Duty in a week. Can you believe that.
I am not going to stress out just yet. I will get it all done and hopefully it will all work out. So that is my story. I hope you enjoyed.

Monday, November 20, 2006

We got PA !!!!!!!!!!!!!

Well, I just got the call today that we have PA !!!!(Pre-Approval) for our beautiful little girl Lily Rose. This is what we know so far. She was born on September 4, 2005. She was found on September 10, 2005 at the gate of Guo Tai Building in Chenzhou City. She was wearing a light yellow hat, and blue clothing. On that day she was brought to the Chenzhou City Children's Welfare Institute and the staff named her Chen, HengYun. "Chen" is the first character of the name of the city, Chenzhou. "HengYun" is their wish that when she grows up, she will have a constant drive to thrive & succeed & also will always have luck. That is the institute's good wishes for Lily Rose.

She likes to sleep with her hands over her head. They say that after she has a bath she likes to stretch her limbs without clothing.!!! Watch out daddy :~) lol She loves to be outdoors. She likes eggs, minced meats and noodles. They said she has fair, beautiful skin and she has cubby cheeks & a sweet loving smile.
I am so happy that I can finally post her picture for everyone to see. So here she is (if you click on the picture it makes it bigger)

Sunday, November 19, 2006

APC Adoption Conference

Well, today was the APC's 26th Annual Tri-State Adoption Conference at C.W. Post College. Anthony and I went last year when they had it in New Rochell. That is how we spent our 1 year wedding annivsary. That was the beginning of our journey to Lily Rose. We went this year because we are now in the SN program and wanted to hear some of the International Specialist speak. Well, I am so glad that we went. We met wonderful people today. First off we met Bruny & Joe. A wonderful couple that lives 20 minutes away from us and they are also adopting a little girl from China. They are going the NSN route and have a LID of 4/4/06. We wish them lots of luck in their journey to their little girl Faith. We hope to become friends with this family and have our girls know each other. I will be calling Bruny sometime next week.

We were listening to Dr. Jane Aronson speak and I asked a question about our daughters SN and when the lecture was over a women came up to us and asked if she could speak with me. Well, I am so very glad that she did. She has a daughter with a similar SN from China that our Lily Rose has and she offered her knowledge to us, which I am grateful for. Her name is Lauren and she also is the Co-Coordinator of the FCC L.I. Region. We spoke for a while and I felt a connection with her. I will be joining the FCC LI group this week.

Right after I met Lauren, another woman came up to me and ask to speak with us. Her name is Michelle and she has extensive knowledge of our daughters SN. She gave me her number and e-mail address and a few places I can call for info on Lily's SN. I have to say, just meeting these 4 people made my day. I was very happy today even though Anthony and I were up and out @ 6:30am.

We also got to see some of the great people from our agency. It was a lot of fun talking and laughing with them and just hanging out. The info at this conference is awesome. We walked around and spoke with different people and it was just great. We also got to see the International Specialist that we used to look over Lily's medical reports from China. We will see him 2 weeks before we travel and then Lily Rose will see him when we return home with her.

So, all in all it was a great day and I look forward to next years confernece.

Monday, November 06, 2006

We sent our LOI - for our Daughter

I was not going to post this until we heard that we had PA, but I really can't wait anymore. We are really happy and I wanted to share this happiness with all of you. We sent out our LOI (Letter of Intent) for a beautiful little girl on September 29th, 2006. We are so in love with this little angel. She has the sweetest face and the cutest heart shaped lips. She is 14 months old and we hope to travel by March of 2007. We have not heard anything as of yet. We are hoping to hear something by the end of the year. I hope that I am not jinxing myself by posting this without having PA (pre-approval) but I figured the more prays the better. So that is what I am asking of any and all that read this blog, please pray that we are approved and get TA (travel approval) asap. We really want to bring her home and have her SN (special need) taken care of. I will post more about her SN after we receive PA.
I just this very moment received our "brown envelope" This envelope contains all the forms needed for our Consulate visit in China to finalize the adoption of Lily Rose. This just made me really happy. Now, if I could just get that PA phone call, I would be over the moon.

A Big Thank You to a Special Family

I have to send out a big Thank You to the Cox Family. First off, thank you Maureen for notarizing all of our documents. What a huge help that was to us. To Noel for helping Anthony paint the 2 new added rooms in our home. That saved him so much time. To Kathleen, Elizabeth and Thomas. You guys are great. Thanks for being such good friends to Joseph. How much fun will we have in the summer of 2007 with LilyRose here? This family has given us so much for our daughter Lily. Beautiful clothes that were saved from when the girls were young. Beautiful little green velvet dresses for the holidays, Mary Janes, lots of summer dresses and so much more. I am trying to get some pictures to show what great stuff we got from the Cox Family. The girls gave Lily a doll accessory set which includes a doll crib, stroller, highchair, doll carrier. I have to take a picture of this because it is the cutest. We are truly blessed with wonderful friends. Love you guys.

Thursday, November 02, 2006

My Mom Is Great

My mom has been great. At first, she wouldn't talk much about the adoption because she felt that if she got over excited and things didn't work out, that would be a heartache for her that she could not handle. So now that we are moving towards something HUGH (which I will talk about in a later post) she can finally be excited. She is planning a baby shower for me and she has started to buy things for her new granddaughter. She really is very happy. I have to laugh because the shower is a surprise but we live in the same house. The construction on her part of the house is finished. We are almost finished on our part. So we have been cleaning her part like nuts so of course I "know" that the shower is soon. I am very grateful to her and my cousin Gina who will be Lily Rose's Godmother. Gina has been running around and coming here and helping my mom with all kinds of things. I have to say that I have been blessed with a great family. Yesterday, my mother and I ran to Toys R Us for some Christmas gifts for my son. Well, we came across the "seven dwarfs" and my mother had to buy them for Lily Rose. The cutest plush toys ever. Can't find snow white in a plush toy but still looking. I will post a picture in another post. But for now here are some of the things my mom got. The first little dress has little ladybugs on it. The white dress has little hearts all over it. This is a beautiful dress. My mother loved the 2 sweatsuits and she picked up the red ladybug also. So, our daughter is being so spoiled and she is not even home yet. But that's what it is all about.

More Thank You's

Here is another thank you that is a long time coming. To my special friends Peggy and Bob. Isn't it strange that you can feel such a bond with someone that you never met in person. Well, I have to say that I have a strong bond and a special place in my heart for Peggy. I have never met Peggy and Bob, but I am hoping that we can meet up soon. As soon as our girls are home. They are waiting on a Lilly too. (we are spelling it differently) If it wasn't for Peggy, I would not be waiting for my Lily Rose. Peggy helped me see that this is where I was suppose to be and she gave me hope and strength to continue in this adoption, which I am forever grateful to her for. So needless to say, she will be near and dear to my heart for the rest of my life. A month ago I received this big package and it had her name on it. When I opened it up, out came a bunch of clothes for our Lily Rose. I was so overjoyed. Then a week or so later another box came and it had some cute little things in it also. So, I just wanted the world to know how much we thank you.
I didn't post all the pictures of the clothes but you can get an idea of some of the great stuff I did receive.

Sending Out Thank You's

I just wanted to send out thank you's to our friends that have sent beautiful gifts to our Lily Rose. This cute little bear and beautiful blanket came to us a few weeks back from our friends April and Sean who are waiting for their adorable little boy Aiden. We are hoping to travel with them. April and I became fast friends recently. I look forward to our phone chats, with the last one lasting 2 hours. I can't wait to meet April and Sean in person. I can see that we will be friends for a long time to come. Being in this process and going through this long wait is hard enough, you need to have friends that are going through it too. April and I have been in fabric swaps together for a while also. We met on the OHGWQ group. Actually, I met some wonderful ladies from that group, but April is the one I speak with often. So April, I am so glad that you are one of my new "Forever" friends.

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Halloween Is Over

Thank God it's over. This is one of my worst days. I have never liked Halloween, even as a kid. I would never get dressed up or go trick or treating. My brother would share his candy with me every year. So how ironic that this is one of Joseph's favorite days. He got up at 6:15 am and stood by my bed and didn't say a word until I opened my eyes. Then it was a free for all. He wanted to get dress at that very moment. The school allows the kids to wear their costume for the day. It was a crazy morning. Then he got home and he was ready to go. His Godmother loves Halloween also. (see picture) She gets dressed up every year and comes over and takes Joseph trick or treating. I usually walk behind them and she takes him to the doors.
This was the first year that Joseph wanted to have a scary costume. So he choose Scream. He loved it. We started out at 4:30 and got home at 6:30 we had dinner and then we go to my cousins house a few blocks away. We have done this same routine since we moved out here. So needless to say, Joseph has like 3 full bags of candy. Thank God he knows that he cannot eat that much and we send most of it to the school for the teachers to give out during the day.
But for all the moaning I do, I get a kick out of Joseph every year. When he goes up to the door and the people say "take as much as you want" Joseph will take one piece and say "Thank You". I always get compliments on that from each person who answers their door. He might be the biggest pain in the neck sometimes, but he is very polite. He can't wait for his sister to get home so that he can take her trick or treating. I hope all the children had fun yesterday.