Saturday, July 5, 2008


This will be my last post at this site. Please feel free to follow us to the old/new blog The Complete Set.

Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Going Back

I am getting ready to return to my original blog. I just need to get the new heading ready since, as Julie said at the Hong Kong airport "You've found your number four!". I am planning the switch on the anniversary of us officially becoming four. Annika Day was on May 26 but we weren't all back together until June 4th so I will switch over one July 4th (or there about). I will post the link as the final post on this blog. Please feel free to follow us back to the old/new spot.

Sunday, June 29, 2008

Our Week

We had a pretty lazy summer week. Alex started reading camp and we took our first trip to the beach. We have been together as a family of four for a month and three days (although David was gone on business trips for two of those weeks). Annika is settling in well and making progress.
  • She is starting to roll and has so far got herself underneath the recliner and the coffee table. She hasn't quite figured out that she can use it as a way to get from one place to another but is enjoying getting around.

  • She likes to lay on her stomach and play with her toys. I guess it is easier to work things over when they are stabilized on the floor and you can get a good look at them.

  • She really enjoys eating things that you can chew. She discovered peas tonight. She also enjoys potatoes, crackers, bananas, and the Graduates diced pears. She is not feeding herself yet, but is trying really hard to get the hang of it. She is getting closer everyday to picking those puffs up with her fingertips.

  • She is a big time bouncer. She LOVES the jumper. She likes to really get going and then pick her feet up so she just bounces for awhile.

  • She has started standing with assistance. She also likes to bounce up and down by bending and straightening her legs.

She has an appointment to get evaluated by early intervention this week. I don't know that she will qualify but figured it was worth the effort to try just in case. I don't think you should pass up the opportunity for free help.

We went to the beach on Friday afternoon. Alex played in the sand with some kids while Annika and I relaxed on the blanket. The water was too cold, 54 degrees, to really do much swimming but it was a beautiful afternoon (besides the fact that it started trying to rain about 30 minutes before we left).

This is the results of Alex's first attempt to feed his sister by himself. You'll be happy to know that some of it did end up in her stomach as well.

Not only do life guards watch out for drowning victims and sharks, they also serve as photographers for beach goers. I wasn't sure how we would get a picture of the three of us together and than the life guard walked by.

He always brings the boogie board but doesn't use it since the water is freezing.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Mid Sommer

Last Saturday we went to a Mid Sommer party at the house of some friends down in Massachusetts. It was fun. There was some frog dancing (kind of like the Swedish chicken dance) around the maypole and singing and lots of good food. There were also several families who had adopted from China. There were children from about 12 years old down to 8 months. We spent the afternoon on a blanket in the shade with a family from our travel group (whose daughter is looking LOVELY, by the way. It is amazing what some good food and alot of love can do.) So anyway, I know you only come here for the pictures so her she is (I couldn't decide so I just posted a bunch with a bonus Alex at the end. David only got a couple of him because he was busy being chased by girls the entire party so he was hard to catch).

Check out the piggies!!! I still haven't mastered the placement yet, but at least they are looking less like antennae. Now she just ends up looking like her head is tilted to one side all of the time. She has now started to cry when I am just finishing up the first one. I don't think it hurts, I think she just knows they are lopsided with a horrible part and is embarrassed.

She really is pretty damn cute isn't she??? Can you see how I can't get anything done around the house???? Who has time to clean up when you could be kissing these cheeks??? Ya'll haven't even seen the full four tooth grin and the yucky face yet, they'll really do you in.

This is face has a couple of possible meanings. She has either seen something very interesting that she would really like to get closer to (we see LOTS of interesting things) and check out or she sees a man off in the distance who is not paying attention to her and she is trying to get his attention. She is very interested in men, especially if they have facial hair or wear glasses. She loves the pediatrician because not only does he wear glasses, he also has a goatee and mustache and wears a bow tie. She even overlooks the fact that he keeps digging obnoxious amounts of wax out of her ears every time we visit. (Check out that wonderful part between the piggies, I really need to practice)

And here is handsome brother, probably thanking his lucky stars that he has briefly escaped from the girls who were after him for most of the afternoon.

Sunday, June 22, 2008

The Flight

I want to go back and post about some of the memorable things that happened to us while we were on our trip. One of the most memorable was the flight from Nanchang to Guangzhou. The flight is supposed to be like an hour and a half long (SUPPOSED TO BE). We got to the airport fine, had no weight issues when checking our baggage, and made it through security without a hitch. When we got to our gate, there were several other families there who where not in our travel group. It seems that the airline booked out group of 14 families and another group of 11 plus one single family all on the same flight. We all thought it would be so neat, a plane full of babies. Well, the trouble started when we got in line to board. For some reason the line stopped moving. There was quite a commotion at the front of the line. The other travel groups guide was yelling at the airline staff at the gate for some reason. Our (wonderful) guide threw her hands in the air and went to sit down while the other guide continued to argue with this extremely short man (ESM; he was even short for a Chinese person) from the airline. It turned out that they had too many babies on the flight and they were not going to let us board. After much more arguing from the other guide, they finally decided it would be okay.

So we get on the plane and all of the non-adoption people are at the front and all of the adoption people are in the back. Okay, not big deal. WRONG!!!!! ESM approaches the other guide and more arguing in mandarin ensues. Eventually the other guide comes on the speaker system saying that there can only be 24 babies on the flight so two families are going to have to volunteer to leave the plane. Two families quickly volunteer and we are ready to roll. WRONG!!!!!! Seems they have some rule that there can only be one infant per row on airplanes. I don't know if this is only applicable in China or a rule everywhere, but it nearly started a riot on our plane. Like I said before, we were arranged so that ALL of the adopting families were in the back of the plane. The flight attendants started going through row by row rearranging people. Asking for volunteers to switch seats so that there would be only one baby per row. We were one of the first families to be moved. As we went to the front, a man laid into our (wonderful) guide. I don't know what they were saying (all in mandarin of course), but they had to be physically separated, and all of the women were patting our (wonderful) guide on the arm as she moved to the back to get another family.

As you can imagine, everyone was starting to get a little bit irritable and this is when the yelling started. We were in the 3rd or 4th row, pretty much in the middle of the fray. A rather large man behind us started in on one of the flight attendants shortly after we sat down. It is kind of scary to be in an airplane surrounded by people yelling angrily when you don't have any idea of what they are saying. I didn't know if they were mad at us or the airlines at first. Eventually the large, yelling man said it wasn't us it was them and pointed at the flight attendants. The man who went after our (wonderful) guide told me that he really commended us for what we were doing but we should have planned our flights better. I had already decided that I did not like him very well after his original argument. I told him that it was the airline that had screwed up the reservations because we were two separate groups of families. He just turned around and didn't say anything else.

After the yelling stopped, they gave us a boxed meal of a roll, grape tomatoes (which we were all deathly afraid of because they couldn't be peeled), a small bottle of water, a small packet of (what I later found out were) pickles, and a piece of sponge cake (evidently something that I did not know was a Chinese specialty before our trip). We then had to sit in the plane for about 45 minutes because there was bad weather in Guangzhou. We ended up being 3 hours late arriving.

We later found out that the arguing match between the other guide and ESM was as intense as the commotion that we experience in the front of the plane.

The most amazing part was that all of the babies behaved wonderfully. It was the first airplane flight for most of them. Annika ate some cake and then fell asleep. The yelling didn't even seem to irritate her. A lot of people were down to their last diaper and low on formula by the time we landed, but everyone made it in one piece with no meltdowns. The White Swan seemed even more wonderful after that experience.

Friday, June 20, 2008


It is currently 9:54 pm and Annika is still going strong. She usually crashes around 8. I don't know what her problem is this evening. She had a serious case of the sillies from 8 until I decided to give up and put her in the pack and play at 8:50. She had a bottle about 20 minutes ago and is currently laying smashed up against my leg (she moved from the middle of the bed until she was comfortable snuggled in) alternating between waving her right arm as fast as she can back and forth in from of her face and kicking her legs straight up in the air. She is seriously fighting sleep. She has been doing great for the last few days, going down around 8, waking up for about 20 minutes at 4:30ish for a bottle, and then up for good between 7:30 and 8.

The poor thing has been cooped up in the van for the last couple of days as we have ran back and forth between where we live and where I work. She is definitely more of a stay at home girl and gets tired of the car seat after awhile. (Now, here we go with the fake cough) I can't wait until next week when we can really work on a schedule. We only had one full day at home this entire week, the rest either involved commitments at Alex's school or little things I needed to do at my school before the end of the year.

Well, I'm gonna go see if I can wrestle her into submission. I almost win and then she does the full four tooth grin and wrinkles her nose and we start over. UGHHHHH!!!!

Saturday, June 14, 2008

All Night Long (Updated)

I forgot to mention in the big post that Ms. Annika Lin LuMu slept through the entire night. And to top it off, she didn't get up until 6 am instead of the obnoxious time of 4:30 which she had been favoring.

I have been telling everyone all day that Annika finally slept through the night and just now David told me that she woke up at 2:30 and drank a bottle. I don't know how I slept through that.