Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Wow. Two years ago....

It feels like yesterday.

It feels like a lifetime ago.

And it feels like such an essential part of who I am that time doesn't even factor in.

But this I know for sure, it did happen - two years ago and half way around the world, in a small city in Taiwan.  That life changing moment of meeting my WeiChe, my son
Suddenly, the days and months leading up to the momentous event became a blur, now that I was face to face with this sweet baby, my sweet baby.  All the pain and anguish of waiting, wanting, needing to hold him dissipated in a moment filled with so many emotions.  Relief, fear, joy and awe intermingled in my heart, now that I was finally able to see and touch this baby I’d been dreaming of for so very long.  Once again I felt those emotions of becoming Mama, those emotions so intense and real that I hardly think I could describe them.  

We were now ~ finally ~ a family of four.  My baby was with us, which is where my heart always knew he belonged.

I don’t know how, but two years have passed since that wonderful day in Taiwan.  And in those two years I have learned so much - about love, about growing a family and about the nature of little boys.  And most especially about one little boy that has become so much a part of my heart that I can’t imagine how life was before him.

It’s incredible how much Sammy-Wei has grown in the last two years.  He’s becoming an amazing little boy with such a fun and outgoing personality.  He’s so full of life and boundless energy and he certainly keeps me busy, but his enthusiasm for everything is so catchy and so joyful that I delight in his non-stop nature.  He’s sweet and snuggly if you can catch him and is the cuddliest boy when he’s in the mood for lovins.  There is not a person that meets Sammy that doesn’t fall in love --- he’s just like that.  Even in his most devious moods he’ll win you over with his darling dimples, that sweet smile and those beautifully rich chocolate eyes.  
I think of his Birth Mother today more than other days.  I think of how difficult and maybe heart breaking it must have been to make a plan for her son, knowing he would become the son of others.  I swore to her then as I do now, he will be loved always.  We will affectionately keep her in our story of how we became a family. 
And I will go now, to celebrate with my sweet boy.  I’ll celebrate all the joy he’s brought in these last two years, all of the challenges and accomplishments.  All of the things that have made these last two years so very amazing.

Happy Family Day my big boy, WeiChe.  I love you from the bottom of my heart, for always.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Pumpkins can really roll

Yep.  True fact...pumpkins can really roll when given the chance.
I mean 100's of yards if the circumstances are just right.  And they can roll fast.  So very fast.

I know this first hand.  Not by choice but by a force of nature greater than I've ever encountered.

We call this force  Sammy Wei.

You see, Sammy doesn't listen to "no sweetie, don't do that" until he's found out just why you don't want him to do whatever "that" is.  So naturally when I asked (repeatedly) to NOT roll the pumpkin down the front yard he just had to find out truly why I was against it.

Well you can pretty much figure out the rest.  And if you've ever been to our house you really can envision just how a pumpkin can begin a long, fast roll.  See, we live at the top of a street that is just straight uphill and our house sits on top of another hill, so it's like the house on a hill on a hill sort of thing.  And at the bottom of that street is a very busy road.

By the time Simone alerted me (by screeching hysterically) the gourd was half way down the yard.  And by the time I got halfway down the yard it was on the street and beginning its very fast descent to the very end of the road.  With me running as fast as my legs could pump and still not catching up as it picked up more speed and bounced off the curb a few times.  Meanwhile Simone is in tears and yelling frantically for me to move faster, for it is her favorite pumpkin ever after all.  And there's Sammy, the one who put this whole thing in to say, just standing in the front yard wondering what all the commotion is about.  It is just a pumpkin after all.

By now I was quite sure we'd never see that pumpkin again.  I tell you that thing picked up speed, rolling faster and faster as it made its all the way down the hill and crossed over that already mentioned very busy road, somehow managing to miss all of the passing cars.  Finally it rolled up the hill across the street and came to rest in the woods about 10 feet or so in.         Amazingly still in one piece.

We've since retrieved the unbreakable pumpkin and Simone has it displayed well out of Sammy's reach.  She's really hoping that he learned his lesson.

But I'm guessing probably not.  It was really too much fun for him watching that pumpkin roll.....

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

The Great Pumpkin

Well, okay, maybe more like the Great Pumpkin Patch!
I cannot believe that Autumn is here already and that our annual visit to the Pumpkin Patch has arrived!  Yes, the leaves are changing color a bit, and yes the air is getting a slight bit cooler.  But Pumpkin Patch time......? 

But alas, it's true.  We made our super fun and flippin hot somewhat sunny venture to the pumpkin patch with who else but our FCC (Families with Children from China) group.  We had a spectacular turn out and the kids and parents had a wonderful and dusty afternoon together.

 The pumpkin patch we go to has expanded over the years and really had so much more to offer this year than last even!  And I laugh, because our little group seems to have expanded for this annual gathering as well!

And what a wonderful group it is, the kids just love to get together, with the older kids keeping a watchful eye on the youngsters and the middle kids finding new pals each gathering.  Simone & Sammy have found such great friends and role models.  I just can't say enough about how special this great group really is for our kids!

Okay, okay...on to the photos!

I caught my two in a few pictures...such cuties!

And then the pals came and they were all just off to play! 

Love this one of the "older girls".  They are such great pals!

We all took our hay ride over to "pick" our own pumpkins.  Sammy was in his own little tractor heaven for this.  All I've heard all week since is "Sammy ride red tractor"!  We all had fun on the ride and out in the dusty field picking out our prize gourds.

Oh.  So, I snapped the photo below for a reason.  You can't see too well but the hair on these folks was just a rainbow, and they had piercings on every imaginable visible part and tattoos galore.  Which is all just fine.  I have no problem with any of that.  But I was cracking up because as we all got off the hay ride this family just stopped and open mouth stared at us.  And in "normal" life I'd possibly be staring at them - funny how that works huh! 
And we got a family photo...yay!
And a group photo!!!
And another fun hayride back to the corn maze!

And on the corn maze side there was more than enough fun stuff to do!  Too bad my battery ran out of juice right around that point.  So I borrowed the following photos from my sweet Mama pal Julie.

Sammy & Adam went on a tractor ride.  Probably *almost* the highlight of Sammy's whole day.  (There was a petting  with bunnies and pony's and goats that played...sooooo I say toss up).

And this is just too adorable of the kids.  Julie truly captured such a cute moment...The boys all in their own little mischievousness, Simone fawning over baby O with Sweet Sis O looking on protectively-and with her arm in the stroller around her brother.  

So Happy Autumn Days to you.  Enjoy these days of Indian Summer while it lasts for surely the cold winter winds will be here soon!

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Taiwan friends

Yesterday we had the pleasure of spending the day in Chattanooga with some other families that have adopted from Taiwan and live in the general area!  There were 13 or so Taiwan dumplings and plenty of siblings to add to the fun.

Now you all know we have our local FCC group that is mainly made up of Chinese adoptees.   I love the Asian culture that we bring the kids through the group and the ties that they have to other Chinese and Asian adoptees. And its amazing to hang out with fellow adoptive families that have been down the same road and crossed the same great ocean to create their families.

So to meet some others that have been not only across those waters but to Taipei, Taiwan was really cool!  Ya see, we adoptive folk like to compare our stories.  You the flights were and how long they took, what hotels we stayed in, where we shopped and sites we visited, what the oddest/yummiest/most authentic meals we ate were.  So it was super cool to, for the first time, share and compare our Taiwan journey.  But truly, most importantly is that Sammy now has a connection with children from his birth country, just like Simone!

And boy were they all just darling!
Both Sammy and Simone quickly made friends and all of the kids just had the greatest time playing with each other and running all around.

  The park this was held at was amazing - Coolidge Park in Chattanooga.  It was just lovely and had a lot of great spaces for play.  So once lunch and indoor play was over we headed to the carousel - which all of the kids just loved.
And then outside for some more running and playing!  You'd have thought these kids had been playing together all their lives they all just had so much fun together!  And yep, the adults all had a really great time getting to know each other too!

This one ^ cracks me up...look at Sammy Wie's tongue. He's such a goof!

After the gathering we took the kids to the Chattanooga Choo Choo.  Since Sammy is soooo into trains right now we knew he'd love a quick visit there.
Which he did!  "Big big trains" he kept saying with glee!  
One of our new friends had the same idea and the three kids had such fun running around together, checking out the trains.

We took the slowest an interesting trolley ride around the grounds.

And the kids on board got to ring the trolley bell!  What fun....
And one last stop for a ride on a very little train.

One of  the Mom's from the group took this great photo below.  Too bad Simone wasn't in it, it came out so nice...could've been my new profile photo for the blog!  But I had to post it because I actually almost look good it's such a nice one of my guys!

So we had a fun filled day with some great new pals we hope to get to see more often!  I'm so glad to have such connections for Sammy and look forward to keeping in touch!