Monday, December 31, 2007


TO 2007!

I'm finding it hard to say good-bye to one of the most amazing years we've ever had! 2007 started out looking, well, like there would be a looooooooong road ahead before ending up with our daughter. There were twists and turns along this road, but it did indeed lead us to Miss Mia Hope Yudan!

I find myself looking ahead with wonder at 2008...what will it bring?

Nothing can compare to The phone call that changed our lives "she's all yours", to quote my adoption agency.

Nothing can compare to the heart wrenching good-bye to our boys for the 2 weeks we'd be without them in China.

Nothing can compare to the looks on our faces when we arrived in China ~ we could not stop saying, "I cannot believe we are in China!".

Nothing can compare to watching my husband walk down the Great Wall of China steps - his accomplishment written all over his face (and my water bottle in his backpack!!!).

Nothing can compare to the loud banging in my chest (which was my heart beating!) as we rode the elevator up to meet our new daughter.
Nothing can compare to the slow motion movements I remember of receiving my daughter in my arms.

Nothing can compare to driving home with our daughter and having Anthony throw himself into the car on us, the look of joy on Eddie's face when he saw mommy and daddy again.

Nothing can compare. Can it?

I'm not asking for any more. I do not need a thing. Just our health, happiness and togetherness forever!


Sunday, December 30, 2007


Christmas break has been very full, with visitors and Mia meeting new people ~ fun! One of my bestest friends (who moved away a few years ago) came to visit with her kids. They've never met Mia before and we were all very excited for this day. Unfortunately, Kara's daughter, Kacie was sick and couldn't come - we missed you and hope you feel better honey!!

Kara LOVES jewerly (even makes it), so knowing of Mia's love for the bling...well, you can see what she brought my little diva!

Thank you, Kara!

Anthony & Ryan devour our gingerbread house!

Connor and Eddie are spies (or something like that)

I miss spending time with you, my friend and look forward to our next visit!


Hooray, my nieces came to visit! Unfortunately, Mia ended up getting sick with a bad cold and slight wheezing! (I've never experienced the wheezing part with my boys, so I was so scared! "We" had our first nebulizer treatment at the doctors office and she seems a bit better now.) So, I didn't get to spend much quality time with the girls...but they were so excited to meet their littlest cousin...

Mia wouldn't let the girls get too close ~ they had to admire her from afar...

They got a little closer... the girls were surprised Mia will be turning two in February, as she is teeny tiny!

Mia "let" her cousins come up to her room, however she was more interested in reading her books for the moment.

Finally I got a picture of Mia with her GIRL cousins!! Yes, they snuck next to her ~ can you tell from her expression??!

Thank you to my nieces for being so patient and for giving Mia the space she needed. They just wanted to scoop her up, but with Mia not feeling the best she was not in the mood for "newness".

Cannot wait to see "K" and "A" for February break ~ hopefully everyone will be feeling well and we can spend more time together ~ I miss you guys!!


Yes, I'm still on Christmas day ~ like I mentioned, my blog isn't "accepting" slide shows and I don't want to post all the photos on one, this is where we're at :)

We dressed for church and came back home to eat lunch and play! Mia seemed to be coming down with something and was still clingy, but she would leave my lap or arms to play; mostly with her new kitchen or in her tent. She had a little lunch and went down for her nap...with Barney.

Not a great picture of us, but it's a picture of my daughter and I on Christmas!!

The wrestling cage is all set up and wrestle-mania continues...


"How'd this slipper get in my kitchen? It is soft though"

Up from her nap (I changed her into her fuzzy wuzzy skirt for her nap. I thought it'd be more comfy then a fancy dress!) Mommy's putting on some of her jewels Santa left in her stocking...

Mommy and Mia.
I will always remember this Christmas fondly; of course we had our daughter home with us to celebrate. Also, we are all healthy and safe; and we are blessed with an amazing family and dear, close friends. No wonder why I'm smiling as I write this post ~ what a New Year it will be - let all of our "success" continue!

Friday, December 28, 2007


Penny had to rest, but we continued to open gifts and "ooo" and "ahhh" over each other presents.

"E" loves all things 'tools' and loved this compressor daddy found in the Disney store. He looks very satisfied, doesn't he?

Mia loved this stuffed Barney, which I had daddy buy very last minute ~ it's these items the kids seem to love the most.

I am getting a huge kiss from my Penny-girl ~ she really is a sweetheart, a love and just the BEST!

We started this "tradition" of taking a picture of everyone laying in the wrapping paper ~ once all the gifts are open. Mia thought we were nuts, but Penny had to jump right in ~ there's no leaving her out!!

This fairy tent is one of my favorite gifts ~ it is just so darn cute. Yes, I would love to move in ~ it would be a lot easier to clean!

Mia likes it too!

Enjoying their gifts!

One of Mia's presents was a dolly diaper bag filled with ...diaper bag stuff. One of the items was a dolly potty....ummm, I know you're small Mia; but your hiney needs a potty a little bit bigger. Should I take this as a hint?

Yes, I heard the angels singing when I saw this. He's coming around folks! He loves to refer to Mia as "the baby"; and he told me today "the baby has the most beautiful eyes, doesn't she?"


Look at those wings...

Sprinkling some fairy dust for all the waiting families ~

Off to little lady!

More photos to come . . .


The morning began with "A" jumping into our room and telling us how he heard Santa...some banging last night. "E" followed in looking tired, but very excited to see what Santa left for us. Sleeping Beauty was still snoozing and the boys had been worried because she can sleep until 9:00am sometimes!! We tried to hold them off a little, but ended up waking Mia:

Here they come, Mia is a bit confused, but she follows the boys!

Mia just loves her kitchen ~ she's been playing with it everyday (Eddie too!)

I am so glad we put this together (and the kitchen) a few days before Christmas. It was so nice to see "E" jump on and try it out; and also for Mia to instantly enjoy her kitchen.

Our big boy has been a wrestling fan for a while now. Santa had to encourage him even more and leave this humongous wrestling ring with a "few" wrestlers. My "A" has always shown appreciation for any gift he has gotten ~ just love that about him (wonder where he gets his enthusiasum from??)

Mia wasn't sure what to make of this morning. She floated around and tried out everything.

"E" is a huge Spongebob fan and had to have this! Next year I will have to tell Santa to give gifts that are age appropriate, as this is for 7-12 yr olds...comes apart easily (my guy is only 4 yrs old!). However, he loves playing with the bikini bottom residents the most :)

These little basket that came with the kitchen were a hit with my "bag lady" as I call her. She just loves to collect things in her strollers, carts or containers.

Penny likes her new collar

"A" cannot believe she also got "people crackers" !
Since my blog doesn't like (or accept) slide shows for some reason. I will post pictures on seperate posts.

Wednesday, December 26, 2007


I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas. We did. I took many, many pictures; but not a ton. I wanted to enjoy and savor every moment with my family ~ not through a camera lens!

I wasn't even going to post any pictures yet, but I did end up doing a slide show at the bottom of this post.

You see, I've been reading other blogs and seeing their pictures from the past few days. So many are thrilled, happy and joyous because they have ALL their children home with them. They are enjoying all those special moments. Others are sad, waiting for their children who are somewhere in China...not knowing when they'll be home to celebrate with their families. My heart aches for them; as that could have been us. Had I not looked on the WC list in April, we would not have Mia here with us...

Which brings me to think of where she is from, what would have become of her. What has become of her cribmates and the other babies still waiting. "Did Santa visit Mia and the other babies in the orphanage", that's what "A" asked me. I'm not sure Ant. I have to believe that these babies will find their way to their families ~ but at what cost? How long? Why?

I do believe things happen for a reason. We wait because the right baby or child that is meant for us has to come in a certain time. Our time is now, but I pray time speeds up for those who are waiting ~ the families and the children.

Don't get me wrong, I do not feel guilty that we have our girl home with us. I feel blessed, thrilled and actually in awe. We just had our very first Christmas with our two sons and our daughter! We are finally complete.

I was just going to have this post be about. . . well, I'm not sure what the word is. I just wanted to say how grateful I am to have our baby girl here with us, without any pictures ~ just this ~ I do believe in miracles ~ it is so hard sometimes to have faith and hope. But without it, where are we?

I do believe in Miracles ~

(not sure why my slide shows won't post, but click on the top link for the show!)

This slide show is from Christmas Eve. Everyone comes to us and we have a nice dinner together. Mia was as busy as ever; which made it difficult to prepare the meal. Grandma and Poppy came by a little early to help out (since daddy was working!).

The boys had a wonderful time with their cousins, aunt, uncles and grandparents. We had fish, pasta and ham, among other foods! Mia was teething and had a runny nose - all she wanted for Christmas was to be held - by mommy! Poppy tried to keep her occupied while I cooked - she enjoys company and had a blast running around (when she wasn't in mommys arms :)

We opened presents and played and then ate some more. Miss Mia was pooped and I brought her up to bed. We always have a special moment when I lay her in her crib. She puts each hand up for me to kiss her fingers, then she looks into my eyes and says "mama". I say "I love you" and then in Chinese "Wa Ai Ni" ~ but I always think when she says "mama", I think, "Yes, Mia you have a mama" . . .

We said good-bye to our family and then daddy took the boys outside to sprinkle reindeer food on the lawn. The boys fell fast asleep and . . . Anthony said on Christmas morning that he did indeed hear Santa!!


Sunday, December 23, 2007


Oh the excitement is building...the countdown...things will be getting very busy, with cooking and wrapping and ironing and cleaning. I just wanted to take this opportunity to say Merry Christmas to all ~ I hope everyone thoroughly enjoys the next few days. I am going to try to savor every moment with my family and not get wrapped up in making everything perfect (did I just say that??). I will try.

I never dreamed that by this Christmas our Mia would be home with us. She is home. She is a part of our family. She made us complete!

Enjoy the Christmas card pictures that didn't make it (for obvious reasons!) :

On the chess table...

In a box (we did try to get Penny in the pictures,but as you can see SHE was getting stressed!)

By the piano...

Things are going real downhill now!

Kisses and tickles and silliness!
To BELIEVE in making wishes
and having faith they can come true.
To BELIEVE that you can find some joy
in everything you do.
To BELIEVE in giving gladly for no reason
just because,
To BELIEVE in love... that's what it means
To BELIEVE in Santa Claus !

Friday, December 21, 2007


We are gearing up for the big day ~ it's coming, it's coming! Christmas is coming!

Mia and I dropped E off at preschool and waited to go back for their "show" and snacks. While we waited I sang "Jingle Bells" for my girl, who thought I was hysterical, hmmm I thought I sounded pretty good:


E and his buddy, Hailey singing away!

Mia was ALL over as I tried to pay attention to the wasn't easy. She's always SO busy!

My big boy!

Not very lady-like missy (she gets that from Trish!, he, he!)

Not sure whose expression is better...
*Update: E is actually "liking" having a baby sister now. He is doing so much better and asks for her when she's napping. It is happening slowly, but things are calming down a bit around here. Thank you Santa, that's just what I wanted for Christmas :)