Thursday, January 29, 2009

My birthday gift

The email received from our adoption agency on my birthday:

"Hi Lisa,
Happy Birthday! I hope you are having a wonderful day. I just called your home and left a voice mail message to let you know that I received and reviewed your dossier today. All of your documents look great and I will ship your dossier to China this Friday, January, 30, 2009. Congratulations on completing your dossier! (=
I also want to mention that I received your medical conditions checklist and we will get you added to the Child of Promise list right away so we can start looking for a child for your family. Have a lovely evening and please let me know if you have any questions."

It now feels quite real that a sibling will be a part of Madi's future! Timeline: still unknown

Tuesday, January 27, 2009


I came across this funny story that I emailed to my Mom last year just before my birthday (she was two)--definitely worth sharing!

"This morning, Madi decided that she would rather stay home with Dada than go to church, so I took a ride with Andrew. When I got home, Madi saw me and came running in the house from the patio saying, "Shhhhh". I assumed maybe she had put Xiao Xiao down for a nap or something. She began to tip toe into our bedroom, and turned to me again saying, "Shhhhh". Jimmy was on the phone, so he didn't see what she was up to. She led me over to Dada's nightstand and opened the drawer to reveal a birthday card that she and Dada had evidently been working on this morning! Gosh, did I get a laugh out of that one. She was so proud of her work:-)"

Monday, January 26, 2009

Biba's Back!!

Boy did we celebrate the return of our beloved Biba! She was in New Hampshire for a while helping my brother's family adjust to their new surroundings. We enjoyed a nice steak dinner and a fun-filled evening and the weather was just perfect for her arrival!

Thursday, January 22, 2009

A Mother for Chocco

Tonight I was reading this book to Madi. It's an adoption book about a little bird named Chocco who can't find his Mommy. He looks and looks until he finally finds this bear who wants to be his Mommy.

I have read this book to her probably ten times, but tonight's reading was different. When I opened the book, she buried her head in my shoulder and was very sad that Chocco didn't have a Mommy. She ended up sobbing. I reassured her that Chocco does have a Mommy--the bear--and that the book has a very happy ending with a happy family. I explained that the bear adopted Chocco the same way we adopted her. Madi agreed that we don't look the same, just like Chocco and his new Mommy, but it's okay. Madi wasn't satisfied that the bear was really Chocco's Mommy.

Is it possible that deep down she already knows I'm not her biological Mom? It's scary to think about the parallels she could be drawing in her little mind. Can she handle the reality at such a young age?

Was she crying because our Mother-daughter relationship is so special that it hurt her to think about Chocco, or anyone, not having that? God, I hope so.

I think I'll tuck that book away for a while...

Hi Ho Cherry-O!

I love playing Hi Ho Cherry-O with Madi. I get such a kick out of her honest and blatant desire for me to lose! If I land on a bird or a dog and have to put 2 cherries back on my tree, she squeals with delight. And if I land on the bucket and have put all my cherries back, forget it! She'll throw her arms in the air and burst into a full-blown belly laugh! Of course, it's not quite so funny when she lands on one of those things! If she wins, we are both celebrating, and if I happen to win, she'll say, "Okay--now I get to win". Ahhh, the joys of teaching the concept of 'fair and square' sure is fun (for now).

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Madi's trip to the hospital

Grandma Murphy's been in the hospital for almost a month now. She has a tear in her intestine that resulted in a raging systemic body infection. This was on top of her course of chemotherapy that ended Christmas week for cancer she's been fighting. God bless her. I hope I have half her strength if I'm ever sick.

Grandma had been saying that she didn't want Madi to come to the hospital for various reasons. She didn't want Madi to get sick. She didn't want Madi to get her sick. Saturday, she must have decided that she couldn't go any longer without seeing Madi! She cleared it with the doctor, and then called us to give us the news. We talked to Madi about it, and she was excited about going to visit Grandma. She asked a million questions about why it was okay to go now, when it wasn't okay to go for the past three weeks, etc. We explained away. She misses nothing.

Madi was so excited about this 'first'. A trip to the hospital. It's so funny how kids see things! She was great. She wasn't a bit afraid. She noticed the tubes and bags and needles, but she was just happy to be with Grandma. She was fascinated with everything, and inspected every inch of the room. One of the highlights was the need to continuously sanitize her hands! She loves that stuff. Madi brought along one of her stuffed animals to visit Grandma too. She chose a stuffed puppy that Grandma had given her. Turns out, Grandma asked if she could keep the puppy for comfort! Madi was thrilled.

We went back on Tuesday for a visit and will go again tomorrow. Madi is looking forward to her visit, especially because Grandma requested another stuffed animal to rest her other arm on! We hope we picked the perfect one:-)

Grandma's doing pretty well, considering. The infection has been dealt with, and they are optimistic that the tear will heal on it's own, since she's eating through an IV. The hardest part seems to be the wait to go home. And for those of you wondering about Grandpa Murphy--he's been a trooper of a husband, as usual. He's at the hospital as much as possible right by her side.

Prayers, please!!

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

We're Authenticated!

Wow. Another milestone. Our documents passed certification and authentication!! I have a few more things to complete before our packet goes to Holt (our adoption agency) and then on to China. We are likely looking at another long wait, but we're making progress! Pray for us, please!

Monday, January 19, 2009

Our 'Little School Girl'

Madi wore this adorable dress to church on Sunday. She looked so darn cute, and you could tell she felt really cute in it too!!! She was really trying to look the part for this photo session, even with a granola bar in her hand. Check out those intense eyes!

Trip to the Strawberry Patch

On Saturday, we took Madi to one of her favorite places--the Strawberry Patch. Grandpa joined us, and Madi made sure he saw everything--from the birds and donkeys to the gazebo swing, where she enjoyed her ice cream.

Friday, January 16, 2009

Help Uncle Andrew!

Today we were experiencing technical difficulties with our DVD player. After about five minutes of trying, I finally gave up and said to Madi, "I'm sorry, Madi. Mommy just doesn't know how to fix it. What else can I possibly do??" She looked at me with a pouty face and replied, "Call Andrew." She obviously knows how much I've counted on my brother at times like these!

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Dora's influence

Today as I was helping Madi into her car seat, I picked her up and said, "Uno, dos, tres". Without skipping a beat, she said, "cuatro, cinco, seis"! I couldn't believe it! I don't think she even realized what she did! Anyway, I asked her where she learned that, and she said, "Dora"! Who says T.V. is good for nothing??!!

Back to Ballet!

I can't believe last week went by without a post to the blog! We were so busy getting back into the swing of things after the holidays. We took Matthew and Aunt Colleen to the airport last Monday for their move to New Hampshire. We started up the new session of Little Owls at the YMCA, and Madi is becoming more familiar with her new teacher, Miss Lora. Madi also decided last week that she wanted to take ballet lessons again! We signed her up and she started on Tuesday. She loves dance lessons. Especially because it will give her some new moves to teach Grandpa Murphy! She also loves her teacher, Miss Stephanie, who taught her jazz dancing lessons in the Summer.

Monday, January 5, 2009

Easy Baking

Today sure brought back childhood memories. Madi baked her first 'Easy Bake Oven' cake! Ahhh, nothing quite like cake cooked with a lightbulb. Gotta love it. I'm happy to report that they've improved the product within the last 30 years so that you can't actually touch the lightbulb! Thanks Aunt Karen:-)

Friday, January 2, 2009

Happy New Year!

We received some truly awesome news on New Year's Eve. Jimmy's college buddy and best friend, Danny, who has been waiting for a simultaneous heart and liver transplant, received the call that he and his family have been so anxiously awaiting for several years. So, on New Year's Eve, as we raised our glasses, we toasted Uncle Danny and his New Year's gift of new organs and a new start. His surgery began at 3:30am and we heard from Aunt Stephanie at 7:00pm on New Year's Day that the surgery went well and the organs are responding. The first 72 hours that follow are crucial. We pray for a speedy recovery, and knowing Danny--he'll give everyone just that.

We visited Danny and Stephanie this past Summer in Ohio. We flew in for a long weekend during their county fair. They actually arranged for Madi to show a pig at the fair! She was so excited, even though the pig was twice as big as her. Aunt Stephanie styled her hair and she looked adorable. Madi contended that she would get the job done--until she was in the ring with many pigs and many kids! Jimmy ended up walking the pig with Madi climbing up and down his side. I could tell that he was wringing with sweat. Better him than me:-)

We spent most of our time at the fair looking at the animals (smelling them too) and eating fair food. Madi was a champ with all of the rides, even the"big girl" ones that she hadn't been on before. We had so much fun visiting their home and spending quality time with Danny, Stephanie, and their kids. Madi loved all of their pets--especially JellyBean the bunny. We were so glad to have made the trip. We look forward to the days ahead when Danny and Steph can get on a plane to visit us in Florida again:)