Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Missing Her So Much

How is it possible to desperately miss someone you have never met? Almost every day that passes, we think "Oh, if Miaya was here we could ........". Time is cruel that way, it steals the little moments from us when we aren't looking. Kim and I met later in life, and we sometimes think about the "lost" years we'll never have. Although, with the age difference, it's better we met a few years later! On our trip to Atlantic City, we were very aware of all the Asian girls we saw and constantly thought of Miaya.

But, I missed Kim long before I ever met her, though in a more abstract way, I knew there was someone out there for me, but had no idea how to find her. It's much more specific with Miaya, of course having the name makes her more real, but part of it is missing something you never knew you wanted. We know it's a near sure thing to get her, but there's always that chance. We think of her so much that she has become very real to us, and we are more than ready for the concept of Miaya to become the reality of Miaya. Oh, we still don't have her room ready, but we are ready emotionally and mentally for her. At least we haven't started dressing the cats in baby clothes -- yet!

The most recent batch of referrals came close to finishing June 2005, so we're officially at a 12 month wait, but it was still only about 2 weeks of log in dates in this batch, so we're losing ground with each batch. If this pace continues, we might still have 12 months to wait. Not something we want to contemplate. I guess it will happen in its own time, and there's nothing we can do to speed it up.

Sunday, June 25, 2006

Back Home Again

Well, our time in Atlantic City was interesting, Kim spent time in convention sessions, I tried to catch up on some professional studying and tried to catch up on some sleep. Thursday was set aside for Agriculture related tours, we visited fisheries, clam restoration projects, a winery (Really good samples !!!), a vegetable farming operation, a cranberry farm,and ate lunch at a local seafood restaurant. That evening we went to the Cowtown Rodeo in Woodstown, New Jersey. It's actually on the professional rodeo points circuit, and has been in in operation for over 50 years. It was an interesting demonstration , but two of the performers were hurt, and one hospitalized.

Friday afternoon, the convention sessions ended early and we walked up the boardwalk, got salt water taffy to take home, and walked on up to the steel pier area. Along the way, we walked on the beach and in the surf for a while. We had supper at the Hard Rock Cafe then strolled back toward the hotel stopping in some of the tourist shops, had some ice cream along the way and really enjoyed the evening.

Packing for the trip home was interesting, we stopped at the Borders bookstore outlet near the hotel and bought several books, and that plus all the convention freebies rather filled our luggage to near bursting. The flights home were a bit bumpy at times, but the skies were clear when we landed in Des Moines. I had been worried about one thing, since the first evening in Atlantic City, I had been wondering whether I had turned off the headlights on the pickup! It was a relief to see I had pushed in the switch.

The trip was fun, we both learned a lot, but it was good to be home again.

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

By the sea!

Hello from the Garden State! We're in New Jersey this week, Kim is attending the

National "Ag In The Classroom" conference in Atlantic City, and I tagged along. Kind of a vacation for us, we don't usually get to travel much. It is also serving as a "shakedown cruise " for China as we do not travel by air much at all. It looks like we need to get our packing skills sorted out! We had quite a few bags, but they were small. We had a good flight out, although getting up at 3AM to be in Des Moines in time catch a 7AM flight was a bit much. There were several others from Iowa on the plane, and we have got together some here, and we've also met people from all over the US.

Atlantic City is an interesting town, but so far we've not seen anything to bring us back again. We're not gamblers, so the casinos do not impress us. Seeing the ocean is nice, we both agreed we could sit and watch the waves for hours, something very elemental about the action and the sound. We walked through Caesars casino yesterday, and again it reminded us of a (very) bad science fiction movie as people sit in front of machines dropping in coins and pushing buttons, seemingly mesmerized by the flashing lights and spinning wheels of the slot machines. On the streets, there is a constant stream of tour buses bringing in more sheep to be sheared at the casinos. Sandwiched in between the big casinos are the delightfully tacky little tourist traps that are the heart and soul of a resort city like this. Some are clean nice looking shops and others are quite worn looking with tired looking merchandise as well. We took a walk down to the boardwalk about 1/2 mile from the hotel.

We all have an image on New Jersey as being one big suburb, but in fact the southern portion has a lot of farmland, as well as several large forested areas. This was quite obvious on the flight into AtlanticCity.

Monday, June 19, 2006

Shared misery is diminished!

We went to St. Joseph, MO yesterday to meet with Gary and Sophie from near Topeka, Kansas. They are also adopting from China through Great Wall China Adoptions and our log in dates are close enough that we may be traveling together to get our daughters. Very nice people, we had a great time over lunch at Houlihan's.

It's amazing how sharing our frustrations and worries helped to improve our outlooks and attitudes! I think we all came away feeling better and more optimistic.

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

The Adventures of Chou Chou Shu

Try this link for fun and enjoy The Adventures Of Chou Chou Shu (aka Stinky Mouse).

It's fun and a real hoot to see Chou Chou Shu and his friend Monkey explore their world, meet new friends and have adventures with their favorite boy, Hui Hui.

Sunday, June 04, 2006

Time does fly ... sometimes

But only in the fact that I've not been keeping up on my blogging. I've been busy with work, the farm, and just generally trying to keep ahead of all the little nuisances like the mowing the yard. The grass has really been growing the last few weeks and it's hard to keep up with it. We're just about done calving, only a couple of cows left to go. The twins are doing well, and thriving.

The last news we got has our dossier "pending review", which apparently means we have passed though the translation process without any questions, and now we're sitting on the shelf with several thousand other people waiting for the review process to begin. Review is where they will examine our paperwork to make sure it meets all the requirements and everything is in order. After passing through Review, we would go back on another shelf to wait our turn in the "Matching Room" where applicants are matched with a child. At this point, given the slower pace of referrals, we are still hopeful of a December referral, but more realistically looking for a January of February referral. And, even then, it would require the pace of issuing referrals to increase.

The slowdown in referrals has everyone constantly looking for news that might affect future referral times. Think back to when you were a young child on a long car trip, the question "When will we get there?" seldom got a reply that made sense. It's kind of like that.