Friday, June 27, 2008

My Biz

When we began our last adoption, I decided that the time had come to really buckle down and do whatever I could to help raise the funds which would be needed to bring Sophie home. Thus, I set out to clean out our over-stuffed closets and sell our treasures on eBay. This proved immensely helpful, and since then I have continued, with funds going towards an upcoming family vacation.
Currently, I am also now helping a dear friend of mine who is cleaning out her own over-stuffed closets as they prepare to move from here in South Florida to Shanghai!
Please take a peek at the items I have on my eBay site, in addition to some gorgeous Chinese outfits and shoes which I have opted to place in a DropShots folder. The prices of alll of the items in the DropShots folder includes USPS 1st Class shipping to the US. For shipping outside of the US I will email you a quote. If you are interested in any of these items, you may simply email me, being sure to include which item it is you wish to purchase and I will email you an invoice for your purchase.
Thanks to everyone as you help me to clean out my dining room, which is now STACKED with a ton of stuff! LOL

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Bowling with the Grandparents

Bowling with the Grandparents:

Livie, at her Aunt Jeri's house, waiting patiently to leave. Leave it to a 4 1/2 year old to find something interesting to do to pass the time!

Sophie with Neil's step-brother's girlfriend, Sam. Alas, Sophie was too young to bowl so she gets a little extra attention before everyone leaves!

Lindsay, Chris, Livie w/Will & Zach (their cousins) and Susan & Sam

Livie, Grandpa & Chris

Livie: Ready to go!

Funny Faces!

Lindsay & Grandpa

Chris & Grandpa

Lindsay goes bowling!

Note: underneath this STRAIGHT and DARK haired 14-year-old is a BLONDE and CURLY haired girl! Sigh. ;-)


Two Nephews Graduate from High School

Our two oldest nephews graduated from High School. One in Tallahassee, Florida, and the other in Pembroke Pines, Florida. Best of luck to both of these young men as they enter college and a whole new and exciting chapter in their lives! We are very proud of you both!

Mark, Eric, Matt (the graduate!), Kaylee & Lisa

Michael (aka Grandpa), Matt, and Susan (aka Step-Grandma)

Matt's Celeration Dinner (sorry we couldn't be there!)

Jeri, William (the graduate!) & Hank

Sandy (aka Grandma) & Will

Susan (aka Step-Grandma), Will & Michael (aka Grandpa)


More Photos of Chris' Big Game

Here are some more photos of Chris' Big Championship Game. Chris plays for The Chargers and dad, Neil, is the Head Coach. Thanks to my Father-in-Law for the photos (he is a much better photographer than I am...with a much better camera! LOL):


Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Happy Sophie Day!

Lin Xu
June 18, 2007
Wuhan, Hubei, China

Sophie MeiXu
June 18, 2008
South Florida, USA

Sophie, you have come a long way, Baby! Happy 1st Gotcha Day!
We love you SO MUCH and are so blessed to be your Daddy, Mommy, Sisters & Brother!


Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Speech Therapy, Football & A Hoochie Mama

The end of the school year brought about the end of Livie's Speech Therapy (via the EIP/IEP program). We will pick up again in August. Livie might not have gained much in regards to Speech Therapy, however she did grow leaps and bounds in regards to being in a classroom setting with a teacher and not having good 'ol mom within eyesight! The first couple of times at Speech Therapy poor little Livie did her typical tremors/shaking, but after that she became so much more confident and secure with leaving mom (who waited in the school office) and heading off to Speech Class. Her Speech Therapy Teacher is amazing and we feel so blessed to have her working with Livie.

Livie & Mrs. Williams

Chris (on far left)

Chris has played Flag Football for the past year. This last 'season' his team actually were 'co-champions'! Now, while I have never heard of co-champions, I have since learned that this is the title bestowed upon two teams who, after playing a double-header, go into over time not once, but TWICE, in order to try and declare a champion. In the 2nd overtime the hot and extremely tired 8-11 year olds begin making mistakes and injuries begin to happen one-after-another. Hence, the decision to stop after the 2nd overtime and declare both teams champions!

Chris LOVES, LOVES, LOVES all sports, and in particular all things related to football! He has now played for about 3 years and is really pretty good! My family is a football family by nature (Chris' daddy is a football 'nut' and HUGE Miami Dolphin's fan, his brother actually works for Florida State University's Athletic Departments namely the Football Program, my brother played H.S. football, my dad played H.S. and College football and my Grandfather played football for Knute Rockne's Notre Name's Fighting Irish's Championship Team in 1924 (my grandfather started for the defense...Wilbur Eaton)

Chris (on far right)

Chris & his team (The Chargers)

Sophie is a 'Shoe Queen'! I have never quite seen anything like it! In particular, Sophie LOVES high heels! I found these flip-flop style shoes at Payless (a size 6-7) and although she is a size 4-5 (yes, she is STILL a peanut and although she is now 2 1/2 years old (30 months) she is now JUST going into a size 5 shoe! She wears these shoes ALL OVER the house, but I must admit that I draw the line with her wearing them outside of the house. :-)

Sophie in her Hoochie Mama shoes!

Hoochie Mama shoes up close!

Every Princess MUST wear high heals!

Friday, June 13, 2008

Wendy's Frosty

Dads rock. And so does a Frosty over Father’s weekend (June 14-15). Why? Well, participating Wendy’s ® stores will be donating 50¢ of every Frosty product sold to the Dave Thomas Foundation for Adoption. The funds are vital to helping us find permanent, loving families for children in foster care. So how about surprising your dad with a frosty and enjoy a good treat for a good cause?
Help us spread the word about the Rockin’ Father’s Day Frosty. Send this
video to friends and family today!

Thursday, June 12, 2008

The Bowtique

The Bowtique
Just passing on a super-cute felt clippy that features a little Asian girl. I bought these from The Bowtique, and when I requested the Asian girl-style (initially they only had a blonde and brunette selection) the owner was kind enough to honor my request, and has since made these a permanent part of her line-up!
She has
other cute felt hair clippies, bows and headbands as well, and is currently offering 10% off of your entire order when you use the Coupon Code Summer10. This offer is valid through July 31, 2008.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Princesses, Haircuts and All Things Disney

In my attempt to 'catch up' on sharing some prime moments of this past year, I thought I would share our Spring Break trip to Disney World. This was Sophie's first trip to Disney, and although I have been to Disney countless times, seeing it through the eyes of a 2 year old who is seeing it all for the very first time is, well, magical!

Princess Aurora meets some REAL princesses!

Livie & Sophie with Cinderella

Belle with our 'little ones'!

Sophie & Livie (who is sitting in the Dragon's mouth!)

Princesses from China...and one hot and tired mom!

It's a small world, afterall!


Sophie's first *real* haircut (1st actual haircut was courteous Aunt Jeri!)

Complimentary Minnie Mouse Ears from The Main Street Barber Shop!

Livie gets in on the action with a Pixie-Dust hairstyle!

I am sure you are wondering, "Where was the rest of your family?!" Well, Neil had to work and so I headed off to Disney with the 4 kids. Let me say right here and now that obviously I am NOT a very wise woman! Not wanting to slow Lindsay and Chris down from all of the 'fast and scary' rides they like, I let Lindsay and Chris head off to ride the rides by themselves, thinking it wouldn't be any problem to take the girls - ages 4 and 2 - on the various *little* rides by myself in 90 degree temperatures!

Yes, the little ones had a blast and I single handily went through a small bottle of Advil due to a never ending backache (carrying Sophie quite a bit and having to lift Livie, who struggles with delayed gross and fine motor skills, on and off of rides) and a non-stop headache due to the heat and humidity. It was hard work, but the girls had a blast and the kiddos having fun is what it is all about! Since Lindsay and Chris were off on their own (lucky ducks!) no photos of them, but I promise they had a wonderful time, too!


Friday, June 6, 2008

Happy Livie Day!

Three years ago today we stood in the Conference Room at the Fuling SWI, Fuling, Chongqing, China and received a blessed gift from God - our daughter, Fu Ai Man...Olivia Grace AiMan - our Livie. She came to us incredibly scared, screaming and crying her little eyes out. Over time Livie began to let us in and began to let us love her. After a while her trust grew and from this she began to allow herself to love us in return. It was a hard-fought battle, but so incredibly worth every moment!
Livie and her Foster Mom

Livie's Foster Mom struggling with the realization that the time had come to hand Livie over to her Mommy & Daddy

We've gotcha and we're never going to let you go!

Dad, Mom and Grandma: tears of joy!

Livie: tears of fear and sadness.

3 Years Later: Our Sleeping Princess

Our Livie, oh-so sweet!

Livie with a smile that can light up a room!

We thank our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ, for His amazing gift of this precious child. Though we are not worthy of such a blessing, we are grateful for her every day!

We thank Livie's Birth Parents in China. Your loving sacrifice is cherished daily.

We thank Livie's Foster Mother, Father and Brother. You loved Livie unconditionally and without reservations. Your loving her gave her the ability to let us love her and for her to learn to love us in return.

We are forever grateful for the blessing of our precious daughter.