Tuesday, May 30, 2006

Corn! Corn! Corn!


Thursday, May 25, 2006

Who Knew?!!

Monday, May 22, 2006

Kate's First Haircut (because head shaving in China doesn't count!!)



PS: The outfit in the "after" picture was Kate's first layer of clothing on the day we met her. Still plenty roomy -- especially with the split pants. (I'll see if I can get good shots of that for another post!)

Saturday, May 13, 2006

Mother's Day Blessings

This is the very first picture of Kate that we know of. We're not really sure how old she is in this photo, but there's no mistaking that sweet face. It is the one that the Chinese officials used to run a "finding ad" to search for her birthparents before making her available for adoption. (If you look closely, you can see the markings from the Chinese seal on the photo.) If no one comes forward for four months (if I'm remembering correctly), then the child is considered an orphan and has the potential of being adopted.

Mother's Day has made me think a lot about Kate's beginnings. So many changes in such a short life -- from birthmother to orphanage, from orphanage to foster care, from foster care to her forever family. Kids shouldn't have to endure so many changes, but I look forward to telling her how loved she's been by so many. So many "mothers" who have loved her and blessed her on her journey. So many who have said their sad farewells so that she might have better opportunities and a family to call her own.

And, of course Mother's Day makes me think of my sweet Kate and how she richly she has blessed our lives, but tonight I'm thinking about someone else and praying that somehow she knows her child is safe, loved, happy and healthy.

I wonder if Kate's birth mother looked at her finding ad and longed desperately to claim her. I wonder if she's thinking about her now, as the Chinese do celebrate Mother's Day (to what extent, I'm unsure). I wish she knew what Kate looks like now, so she could carry that impish smile in her heart. I wish she knew that her daughter, my daughter -- our daughter -- is smart, sweet, funny and full of life. I wish she knew that my family loves her.

It's heartbreaking to know that our greatest joy comes from someone else's grief and sadness. I believe that if Kate's birthmother had one wish, it would be to raise her beautiful little girl into a happy, healthy young woman. Barring that, I am certain that what she would want for Kate HaiYang is a mother who adores and delights in her, who would do anything for her (even walk away if it meant giving her a better chance in life), and who would teach her to be proud of who she is -- all of who she is.

The day will come when Kate has some hard questions I won't be able to answer, and my heart will break right along with her, but there's one thing I'm looking forward to telling her: You have two mothers who love you, one who has the honor of telling you in person and one who desperately wishes she could.

Happy Mother's Day to all the moms out there -- whether your child is through biology, fostering, or adoption.

And a special Happy Mother's Day to those waiting (and waiting, and waiting and waiting) for their referral. My heart goes out to you as you suffer through this extended waiting period. It will happen, though. Let yourself believe.

And -- last, but certainly not least -- Happy Mother's Day to our moms. You've taught us how to live and how to love. Seeing you light up while playing with Kate has been extra special to us. We love you.

Tuesday, May 09, 2006

Keepin' Cool in the Pool

Kate had a blast at the latest FAC (Families with Asian Children) get-together. Great weather, healthy Kate and good friends all made for an awesome day!

Chillin' Out

Kate & Taylor sharing the inner tube. Awesome Sarah is giving them a ride!

Best Friends! Abigail and Taylor holding hands....

Hannah Joy -- Home from China for only 5 weeks. What a beauty!!!!

Taylor Grace -- Practicing her "Who Me?" look....

Thank You!!

Thanks for the kind posts and emails about Kate, her weight and her pediatrician. We are in the process of changing ped.'s, as I do think he's stressing me out to the point where I'm stressing our daughter out.

Good news!!! Kate is eating again -- like a bird, but eating. The ear infection is gone, the teething is almost done, and our daughter is BACK!

When we have her screened by the Early Intervention folks, we're going to mention the food issue (specifically her aversion to certain textures, her need for her hands to be clean, etc), but it's nice to see her eating again.

Thanks again for all your kind thoughts!

Friday, May 05, 2006

Bad Mother Starves Child, Film at 11

Many of you know that Kate has been having issues with eating. Issues as in, not eating anything or eating 300 calories a day.

As of the other day, Kate was down to 20 pounds (roughly the 2nd percentile on the growth charts). See her little rib cage:

We've tried everything under the sun, including:

  • setting food out around the house
  • bribing her with cookies and ice cream
  • going out to a restaurant (which used to be where she'd have her biggest meals)
  • giving her small meals throughout the day (these were equally rejected and thrown on the floor or on me)
  • hiding little snacks (like crackers) in her toybox because I saw her eat something out of her toybox once
  • feeding her straight butter (this works a little bit, sometimes)
  • and everything else you could think of


The pediatrician has told me over and over again that she needs to gain weight. Um, really??? Well, that clears things up. You mean my 22 month old daughter shouldn't be wearing 6 month clothing??!!! Huh, who knew?

HELLO....?!!! I know she NEEDS to gain weight. What I want and need to know is:
1. How to make that happen
& / or
2. What is causing her to refuse food / drink

Well, leave it to his lovely, intelligent and compassionate assistant to figure it out (we think):

  • When a little one has a persistent ear infection that has come and gone for four months and;
  • When a little one has taken three antibiotics and still can't get rid of the ear infection and;
  • When a little one has three of her 2-year molars coming in and;
  • When said little one is already a bit of a finicky eater,

And did she intimate that any of this was my fault, like the pediatrician did? Nope. In fact, she reassured me that I was doing a great job and that sometimes these things happen. Getting her better should fix the weight problem. So there, Mr. Know-It-All-Pediatrician who makes me feel incompetent. After our follow-up appointment in two weeks, Kate and I are heading elsewhere.

Oh, and on the ear infection front: Kate just finished a three-day round of injectible antibiotics. Already at 22 months, she's at the strongest antibiotic they have. Good news is, it's working. Bad news is, she's more likely to become resistant to that one and then there's nowhere to go but to a specialist.

One day at a time!

My Daughter's a Genius

Which probably explains why she can be so difficult and temperamental.... ;-)

Now if we could only get her to eat....