Saturday, May 30, 2009

Feel free to e-mail unsolicited advice to Please reserve the comments section of this blog for uplifting and encouraging words for Lisa and Tate.


Today we drove the 2.5 hours each direction to the Poyang orphanage. What an experience was had during the drive as well as the visit to the orphanage. I am still trying to process my feelings and thoughts and will share at a later date.

Tate was a trooper and slept in her diaper on the bus seat for at least an hour and a half....

A few funnies that has happened along the way.

The first outing as a momma, we went to a park, walked around and got back on the bus. We have been strolling Tate most places because it is HOT and she is a little HOTTIE. She loves to look out and is interested in everything. After our walk around this lake area, we loaded onto the bus. I sat down next to my mom- NO BABY. It was like I had forgotten that I was the mom and was acting like the aunt as my brother and SIL got the baby out of the stroller, collapsed the stroller and boarded the bus, baby in arms. I am so use to going places with these two as the aunt and not having the work of the kids, I kind of forgot that Tate was now my responsibility..... I am being much more conscientious about not leaving Tate behind.

As Nanny gifts, I hand picked 1/2 lb boxes of Sees chocolates and placed a picture of Tate on the box as well as made a postcard with her picture for a remembrance to take. Today we went to the orphanage with three boxes of Sees chocolate.... only two made it to the nannies. We could not help ourselves and ended up enjoying it instead. Hey that's just how I roll.

Friday, May 29, 2009

Tate Video


It is so strange how you can live a whole lifetime in the same area and not meet someone until you decide to adopt from China. This is the case when it comes to Tate's buddy for life. I was contacted by another China adopt friend in our area about a couple who was same LID and traveling with the China in country group. After several emails and chats, we realized we went to the same high school and graduated together. We both knew of each other but were not part of the same friend groups. The illustrious day arrived when we received our referrals... we could not believe both our new Chinese daughters were from the same SWI with only a month apart from each other. Tate is older by about 4 weeks and is so much bigger than Zelan. We think that Zelan was a preemie and was brought to the orphanage at 4 lbs. She is so beautiful.

I cannot believe that I have been a mother to Tate for only 4 days. She is so much a part of me. My body craves holding and rocking her. I am frustrated that she has to sleep. I just want to gaze and play with her non-stop. She is amazing. I really think she was fed and loved when she needed it and not on a schedule. Food is not so emergent to her as I expected. She eats well when she is hungry but will often refuse food and bottles if not in the mood. She reaches for me when she wants closeness, and coos oh so sweet. Today I was rocking her getting her ready for nap time and humming. If I stopped for a few moments to think of another song, she would start this singing like cooing to remind me to start again and would stop her cooing when I started mine.

Today in China is Friday. Friday and Saturday are the weekend days for the workers. It is also the Dragon boat festival. We walked to a local park with my brother, SIL, Mom, Tate and myself. There was so much going on in this park. People come there to do Tei Chi, ballroom dance, sword fight, sing, and play instruments.
I watched two men playing the most interesting stringed instrument. I know someone out there will know the name of it. It was a small round base with a few long strings going up the long neck. It was played with a bow. Such beautiful sounds this was making. While we watched the happenings in the park, we became the HAPPENING in the park for the park goers. If we stopped for a second we were surrounded by people. They were gazing at us. I decided to give them what they wanted and held Tate up close to my face for everyone to see. I did that so that Tate felt safe in my arms and no one would attempt to pick her up like they did the other day in the over crowded department store. Thankfully our guides provided a card for us to show explaining who we were and why we had the most beautiful baby they had ever seen. Ok, OK. That part really was not written on the card, but I know what these people were thinking while gazing at Tate. How can you not?
This was so sweet.... there was a grandmother with a grandson who had two balloons. I guess she wanted to give Tate one of there balloons. She asked which balloon he wanted to give her and she received the blue balloon. She had the crowd enthralled with her joy of that balloon. The little boy was quick to fix the stick back on the balloon or fetch the wayward balloon.

What a insightful experience to have to be the minority, the one to be looked at, the one to feel some what a little uncomfortable. I do love the Chinese people. The seem so full of love and friendship towards us. I actually had someone in speak in English and thanked me for taking this "orphaned child". I kind of cringed when it is put this way. She is the jewel that China has provided for me. A priceless treasure beyond measure.

Thursday, May 28, 2009


Touring good ole Nanchang today.... Most things were closed because of the three day DRAGON BOAT festival. We went to the porcelain factory but could only see and shop in the shops. I wanted to get Tate a little tiny tea set as a future Family day present.... I found one I really liked, and TRIED to negotiate it down. As my "tactic", I decided to walk away hoping they would call after me and meet my price. No such luck. I left there empty handed. Now I cannot keep my mind off of this sweet tea set for Tate.... I think I just might take a taxi to the porcelain shop and buy it.... it was only $22USD. What was I thinking????
Every day Tate gets to experience many firsts. Today bubbles, boat rides and McDonald's. She only has two teeth, but WOW can she gum things.

Here are a few pictures from today...
Hanging in the room

She loves her Aunt Michelle and Uncle John..... I could not have done this trip so pleasantly without them...

As said before, she is a champion pooper. She is in need of me right now.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Things I have discovered about Tate so far…

Discovering Tate First Impressions

  • She is a show stopper…. I get comments from government officials to teens on the street.
  • She has two small bottom teeth.
  • She is a champion sleeper and pooper.
  • Her hair needs some taming.
  • She is curious and investigative.
  • There is no question about her hearing. She can hear congee boiling from miles away.
  • She eats well, but does not seem like it is a novelty to be fed.
  • She is eating congee, bananas, eggs, noodles, rice cereal and formula. She had her first tiny taste of ice cream.
  • She was so loved by care givers and director. She is so on target with most everything, her skin is good condition, she has rolls on her thighs.
  • She has a perfectly formed belly button, a little “outtie”
  • She has the most beautiful long slender neck.
  • She is tall, with long legs.
  • She has the cutest way of sucking her thumb! She sticks her left thumb in her mouth with fanned out fingers palm facing out.
  • Last night she sang her sweet sounds to me as I rocked her to sleep.
  • People in our travel group think that Tate and I are a lot alike in personality. My mom, who knew me when, totally agrees!

Tate’s learning curve

  • Tate is a fast learner. I clicked my tongue at her a few times. Suddenly she is clicking her tongue. She will initiate play with the tongue trick, loves it when we laugh at her doing this trick.
  • She loves the stacking cups… not a surprise to me. I showed her how to clap two together. She made two concentrated attempts and was successful the third time with a soft clap.
  • We are working on clapping. I am sure it is just a matter of days before this will be on her skill resume.

Tate’s bonding

  • She did cry so hard on the bus when she discovered that she was not near her caregivers. She cried HARD with a whimpering wind down, then fast asleep. Ever since then she seems to be fine. Good eye contact, tracks me with her eyes. Wants me for comfort and snuggling.
  • We are so lucky to be traveling with eight amazing families… Four of these families have babies from Poyang. One baby, Hannah was her “special” friend. We have photos taken of these two together. Tate is usually reaching out touching her in the pictures. Yesterday they got to see each other. The both lite up with excitement. Tate reached over and grabbed Hannah. I let Tate go over and hug and touch Hannah, taking my hands off of her for a second. Tate let off a huge wail, which stopped instantly when I held her.
  • On the way to breakfast today, we stopped and talked to our China guide. Tate was in the stroller. She seemed kind of serious and concerned until I left him. She instantly became her happy sweet self.
  • Same thing happened later. I was carrying her and she was getting a lot of attention from the staff on our floor. We were on out way to the China guide’s room. The whole time we are in his room, she is snuggle in my arms with this serious don’t mess with me face. This look went away when she no longer felt that threat.
First Bath

I cannot believe that I have had my gal for only 48 hrs. She seems like she has been in my arms always….. Oh man, my heart burns with love for her.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Monday, May 25, 2009


Tate is sound asleep in her bed at 8:15pm!

It is so surreal of an experience it is here in China and holding my daughter. I am finding it hard to put this emotions to words.....
Set up...... We boarded the plan for Nanchang, got to hotel, had 30 minutes to "get it together", boarded the bus for the 10 minute ride, went up to the 28th floor....It was hot, I was brave and in shock! HOT, HUMID, hardly any air conditioning.
Cut to the moment.... As said before, we walked in and there were the babies. On a bench was a man and woman with two babies on laps and Tate between them. As we approached, the woman wanted to see my tag and immediately pointed to me and said Mamma to Tate YuZhu. This is the picture that is posted below in last post. The two other babies were handed off to their families and there sat Tate YuZhu on her lap. You can tell that Tate was special to this man and woman. I suspect they were more to her than just a caregiver. They watched every move we made, asked questions who all four of us were. Suddenly the most precious gift was place in my arms and went right to my heart. She looked at me with interest and straight on with eye contract. No fusses. Just interest. We did stay close to the man and woman while they watched every move we made. She was delightful. She laughed so sweet when tickled. Smiled. I was just a tad freaked that she was taking this way too well. No crying. Keep in mind the couple was withing 6 feet sitting on the bench. Suddenly we are boarding the bus and Tate realizes she is without "her people". She cries and cries.... much to my relief. The crying did not seem to stop. Finally she puts her left thumb so sweetly in her mouth and starts this fussy hiccuping thing, then drifts off to sleep. We sleep for about two hours. Again with the look of interest, spot on with the eye contact. For the first time, I changed her diaper and clothes and got to take a peek of her loveliness. She ate a full bottle, I clipped a bow on the pony and off we went for dinner at the buffet. I did give her congee and a few spicy noodles.
It is sooooo early here in China and she is waking up.... more to follow at morning nap time.
I will have more pictures!!
She is making happy sounds as she wakes!!!!
Also, blogger is down so thank you so much to my helper, Tiffany!


At 4:10pm in Nanchang Jiangxi China, she was placed in my arms....
When we walked into the room, Tate was standing up between a man and a woman, This is the face that we saw.
This is the metcha moment.....

Sunday, May 24, 2009


Less than 24 hours from now I will be holding my Tate...
I am unsure of the time the babies are scheduled to arrive in Nanchang, but I do know Tate has a 4 hour drive to get to Nanchang.
I do know that we leave Beijing at 11:30 am on Monday.... two hour flight to Nanchang arriving about 1:30pm.... I believe it takes about 30 minutes from the airport to Jiangxi Hotel.
In my secret dream of dreams (quoting Tiffany), the babies should be waiting for us to arrive..... I am packing the suitcases with this in mind.
I will post at least a picture as soon as I can. Blogger is not working here in Beijing but hoping it is available in Jiangxi.


What a surreal experience it was in the Forgotten City. Sprawling acres of buildings with me totally melting in the vast shadelessness of a beautiful sunny humid day. At the exit of the Forbidden City, I spied this poster. I stepped to the side of the group to snap the picture, turned around and the group had disappeared. All I could see was a ocean of black hair. I started scanning to locate the blue flag of our guide. Blue must be a popular guide flag color... too many to chose from. So there I stood in the middle of a bridge over the mote at the exit of The Forbidden City.... LOST IN CHINA. I paced back and forth hoping that someone from the group would miss me. When you are standing in the middle of China, alone, you start to wonder what a person just might do IF lost in China! Luckily, my brother (part of the travel posse with me) missed me coming back to find me!

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Day two Touring Forgotten City, Tiannmen, Olympic Venue, Summer Palace....

I have such a mommie brain.,... soooo tired and dealing with the jumble of what was organized suit case. I thought I lost the point and shoot, found it. Yesterday before we left for the day, I made sure everything of "interest" was hidden in a zipped suit case or locked in the safe. As I was heading out, I see my gallon bag of meds with all prescription meds... including my life saving important DIOVAN HCT a three months worth in the labeled bottles .... in the bathroom with my overnight make up bag... at first I thought it was okay to leave in bathroom thinking the cleaning staff was so nice... hey they are Chinese... everything in China is wonderful. this is where my wonderful Tate is.... but for some reason I had second thoughts and hid the bag well into the recesses of my suit case. After a full day of touring, I am back in the room and getting ready for bed looking forward to another amazing day of touring. I look where I remember see the meds, they are gone! I searched everywhere... no bag of meds to be found. I am now concerned that the added stress of travel and meeting Tate would elevate my unmediated blood pressure. After a restless night of trying to figure out how I would handle these missing meds, I decided to delve deep into the bags. There it was in all it's safeness of unforgotten caution.... What a relief and a blood pressure deflation.
Tourist pictures of China...... soon it will be nothing but Tate and China.

Me and Mom at the Birds Nest.... I am melting because of the heat!

Friday, May 22, 2009

Beijing Day ONE!

Feelings of combinations of being in awe and pure exhaustion. I am beyond words.
What a breeze the health check and custom was... really only people in masks coming in with a temperature gun checking for abnormal fevers.... QUICK, EFFICIENT, PAINLESS! I tried to take a picture of the masked temperature takers but was told "No picture!". It was like.... In, aim and onto the next passenger. For those traveling, no worries!
You never experience a true Chinese food orgy until you let a native do the ordering while keeping an open taste bud! Hot Pot last night and tonight??? Dish after delicious dish! I am so fortunate to have an amazing friend who has been living here in Beijing for the past few years.... She has two beautiful, intelligent Chinese daughters that just wet my appetite for Tate.
Today was a day of hanging around, relaxing and meeting some of our travel families! A recommendation for those who are yet to travel? Hire a taxi and have them head from your hotel to the BeiHai Park. Oh the places you will see! Ignore the crazy driving and look at the buildings with juxtaposition of high tech glass buildingsstanding watch over title alleyways of the hutang neighborhoods. Climb that hill of steps and gaze at the sprawling landscape that is Beijing.
Tomorrow we start the group tour of Forbidden City, Tienanmen Square, Summer Palace and the Beijing acrobats.
A few firsts for me today....
leachy fruit
squatty potty
I cannot get into blogspot so someone else is posting.... sorry not pictures.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

One Step Closer!

We got first class from SLC to Houston, first from Newark to Beijing... no real sleep until tonight... I am okay with this jet lag right now.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009


and running!!!! We left for NY (Newark) on Tuesday.... this is the group who saw us off at the airport. My traveling posse and cast of characters would be brother, John (starting from far right to left), SIL and fellow Paris traveling companion, Michelle, then me, and beautiful Mom , Sunny, and Tate's middle namesake. I am pretty proud at how well we packed for this trip!!!

My fun loving 79 year old dad or Gramps, will be holding down the fort with two VERY busy TEENS and one tween.... Smiley, Twinkle Toes and Sparkle. Smiley has the most important task to get Tate's car seat put in correctly and have it checked out by the fire station.

Just a quickie while I wait for my first class seat from NY to Beijing!!!

Next will be from CHINA!!!!

Monday, May 18, 2009


18 hours I will be sitting on a plane starting the long flight to China.

Here is the sketchy itinerary..... I am hoping when we actually get to China we will have more definite plans....

  • May 19 1100 leave SLC with overnight in Newark (NYC)
  • May 20 12:10pm leave Newark non-stop to Beijing.... hoping for first class.
  • May 21 arrive Beijing at 1:50pm China time!!! We will rest up, tour and do whatever while we wait for the other families taking the Beijing tour.
  • May 23-25... Great Wall, Forbidden City, etc in Beijing.
  • May 25 leave for Nanchang, Jiangxi. Meet babies (??? when)!!!
  • May 26,27,28,29.... legal stuff paperwork.... KISSING MY TATE!
  • May 30 Orphanage visit (??!!)... the most important place to see for me.
  • May 31 possible flying for day trip only to Xi'an to see the Terracotta Warriors. Dragon Boat Festival.
  • June 1 obtain legal documents
  • June 2 fly to Guangzhou
  • June 3 Medicals
  • June 4 Consulate appointment at 9:30
  • June 5 wait for VISA for Tate.
  • June 6 take the train from Guangzhou to Hong Kong***.
  • June 7-8 tour Hong Kong
  • June 8 fly home from Hong Kong to Newark..... arrive super late on the evening of June 8th.

***The Hong Kong trip is something that may change based on Tate's needs and how tired we are of hotel rooms and eating at restaurants. I just may hang at the hotel and love on my gal. Much more amazing I am sure than Hong Kong.

I have still yet to pack. In my usual travel fashion, I make sure everything is freshly laundered and just pack quickly.

I will blog while in China. I know you all are here to see the Tantalizing Tate.... so if you want pictures of China, you will have to go else where for that. I will take tons of pictures of China, don't get me wrong, only will post people pictures here.

Sunday, May 17, 2009


Yes, that would be me..... I will be the momma that will have boxes of special memories and projects made by Tate. I will be the dreaded momma you will want to run from screaming when you see me approach, You know the kind of momma that has a ton of pictures she MUST show of her amazing unique one of a kind child.

In honor of my referral for Tate, I have purchased and framed this picture. This is the picture on the wall of her kingdom. It is a numbered and signed Mary Engelbreit print. Something I wanted to provide as a memory for both Tate and me.

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On the back I have added her referral picture and the reason for the print.

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I did the same thing when I became DTC/LID for my girl back in March 7 2006. That time it was a print done by a adoptive momma of her China love.

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Also an inscription on the back commemorating this special moment.

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Friday, May 15, 2009


Today I started my FML.... or maternity leave. I am feeling a little uncertain about all this. With each step TAKEN out of the building towards my car I felt like I was walking away from my life raft. It is scary to think that for 90+ days I will try to make it financially on the four weeks of vacation and the measly savings I have gathered along this wait. I hate being frugal. I think I should have been born rich.

Happily, I can say, 4 more sleeps!!!!

Thursday, May 14, 2009


Oh what a difference a day makes! Wake-up call from Kris.... (Hi Kris) with news that if we want to do the Beijing tour we needed to be in Beijing on MAY 22!!!


Tentative plans...

  • May 19 (Tuesday) leave SLC to NYC (sleep over at airport)
  • May20 leave 1210pm NYC arrive Beijing at 150pm China time.
  • Since I work for the airline, I am hoping to get in first class to China.
  • As mentioned before, I get to fly for free so this is why we are traveling West to East.
  • We will arrive one day early so we can "rest-up" for starting the event that will change my life forever!
  • May 22-24th tour Beijing.
  • May 24 (Sunday) leave Beijing for Nanchang, Jiangxi.
  • In my secret dream of dreams, I hope the babies are waiting for us!
  • Hang out in Nanchang, fly to GZ.
  • June 6 take the train to Hong Kong.
  • Check out Hong Kong for a few days,
  • June 8 1020am leave Hong Kong for NYC
  • FLY FLY FLY FLY... should be home at 1124pm SLC time.

I am sure I will regret stopping in Hong Kong and taking the long way home thru NYC, but hey, I'm a gal after travel and adventure. Oh how I hope Tate will be too!

Wednesday, May 13, 2009


I might be premature about posting this but...

I need to be in China May 24!!! That would be 11 days from today!!!

I am not sure if this means we need to be in Nanchang for the babies, or if this means we get to Beijing for the the tour. Since not everyone is doing the Beijing tour in our travel group and since May 24th is a Sunday with the whole week stretched in front of us for the Provence process, I am thinking that this is the day we need to be in Nanchang.

Travel will be from May 24-- ending June 4!!!

Wow, I cannot focus on anything right now!

Tuesday, May 12, 2009


Now just waiting to hear when we travel. I am being hopeful the Jiangxi Provincial appointment is given without a hiccup.

Update on the FLIP or NO FLIP.....

I have an amazing Canon Rebel camera (thanks Ginny). I also have a digi camera that I forgot will do video as well. My brother who is traveling with me will bring his video camera for the gotcha, etc. When I get home, I will buy a good hand held video camera as well as the FLIP. I really want quality and zoom capacity, but would love the convenience of the FLIP.

I am off to buy passeys, nipples, swimmer and overnight diapers. What is it that shouts out BABY when you buy these things? I read on the nipple package that I need to "boil nipples for 5 minutes". Better get that done while I have time.

I am finally starting to pack stuff for Tate. I have bought the medicine and set out the clothes and the few toys I plan on bringing. With the hopes of her still having that mass of hair, I am making bows to match outfits. I did buy a special dress for her to wear for her official China appointment and the US Consulate appointment.

Next step dates of travel!

Monday, May 11, 2009


I'm perplexed, in quandary, so very confused. It seems like the blog world is big into the FLIP video camera. I am wondering if this is just a passing trendy gadget or is it in for the long haul? This will be a major purchase. I hope to be able to use this video camera way into the future. I am not a gal who has to have the latest, most up to date gadgets. Already you can buy the regular FLIP and FLIP HD. Technology moves much too fast. At first, I was going to jump right on the bandwagon and buy that FLIP. Now I am thinking of buying a small handheld video with ZOOM.

Before I dump a few yuan on the counter for that video camera for China, I want your advise. What would you do?

Thursday, May 07, 2009


Still no real word on the TA....

a few inklings that we will know within a week or so, but nothing concrete. There is comfort in knowing other agencies and families are getting TA's. This media caused Swine flu pandemic did not affect the TA's.

If indeed it affected referrals, I am heartbroken for those next up waiting March families. I have no pathetic words like "you will forget the pain when you see your child's face" or "if not for this long wait, you would not be given the child you were mean to have"... these words are not comfort for those who wait.

All I can offer is a {{{HUGE HUG}}} with understanding and hope.