Saturday, December 30, 2006

Finally-I can get on the internet!

What a trip!! We had the G&R on the December 28th and are hanging out at the hotel until New Year's Day when we will fly to Ho Chi Minh City. We are all getting a little stir crazy. Internet and phones here are horrible due to the earthquake in Taiwan. Doesn't make sense to me but that is what they say!

About Gracie...she is such a good baby! I can't believe how blessed I am because she is so healthy, easy-going and inquisitive. She will sit and look around at the people and the lights. Ceiling fans captivate her and she is not scared of loud noises. It is a new world for her. She is very active. She will stand in your lamp and jump. I always wear out first. Earlier today she wore me out and I handed her to Justin. She wore him out and was still ready to jump. I must have a Jumperoo!

She was worn out last night. All she is used to doing is eat and sleep. When we were at the orphanage the nannies would stick a bottle in their mouth and swing them in their cribs (swing them high) until they fell asleep. When they woke up, they did the same thing all over again.

We went to bed at 7:30 (when I say we I mean ALL three of us) and she slept until 11 pm when she woke up and whined for about two minutes. She woke up for a bottle at 3 am. After giving her a bottle, I was up for the day. That is how it is for Terri and I, in bed at 7 and up at 3 or 4. We are getting plenty of sleep, we are just really messed up on time. After her bottle she slept until 7:30. During the day she takes 15 minute power naps all throughout the day. It feels like she is always taking a nap, but it never lasts for long. Again, she took lots of naps at the orphanage.

Kelly, Justin, Lucy, Gracie, Terri and I went into Hoi An earlier today. We were so glad to be out of the hotel. It was great. So many quality silks and handmade crafts for such small sums. And you can bargain for the price. I am doing quite well at that, Daddy will be proud.

It is 7pm and Grace has had her bath and is sleeping on the bed like an angel. She is so beautiful. I will post pictures whenever I can. We will be leaving for Ho Chi Minh City on Jan 1 and internet will hopefully be better there. Love to all. We are doing good.

Tuesday, December 26, 2006

Hello from Danang

After lots and lots of flights, we are in Danang! We arrived in HCMC and had about three hours to shower (we were so stinky)before we flew to Danang. We are staying at Sandy Beach and it is lovely. There is a large terrace that overlooks the pool and the ocean. It is just a couple of doors down from our room.

After a year of emailing, I finally got to meet my friend Kelly. She is just as sweet as I knew she would be. The orphanage where our girls have been living is very small. Quoc (our guide) told us today that there are less than 10 babies in that orphanage!

There are two other families traveling. One is a single woman adopting a baby girl who is at the Hoi An orphanage and the other is a couple adopting a 5 month old boy from the Que Son orphanage where Gracie and Lucy have been living.

HERE'S THE BIG NEWS - I will be meeting Gracie in about 14 hours! It is 8pm here and we will be leaving for the orphanage after breakfast. This is the moment I have been waiting for. I can't wait to post tomorrow and tell you all about her.

My body is tired, but my heart is full.

Saturday, December 23, 2006

It's Almost Time!!!!

I can't believe that I am leaving for Vietnam tomorrow. I am going crazy trying to get packed. I am taking so much for her, I have to because you all know how I have been shopping for her. And it is doubtful she will be able to wear these clothes in the summer. Also, who knows what size she will wear.

I am worried that I am not taking enough for myself. I need to check with my sister and see if she has any room in her suitcase. But knowing her she hasn't begun to pack, even though we will be leaving home at about 6am tomorrow and we are having our family Christmas today. I still have to wrap!

I cannot believe that I will be holding Grace in my arms on Tuesday (Monday night here). I have waiting for this moment so long!! This may sound weird to many, but I am trying to prepare myself for the possiblity that I may not hear angels singing and feel immense love for her the moment I see her. Many have told me that they had built themselves up before they saw their child and felt that something was wrong when they didn't feel these things instantaneously. I know I will love her, I have been waiting for so long. But I don't want to ruin this by having unreal expectations. I hope this doesn't make me sound like an unfit mother.

Keep us in your prayers. I can't wait for you to see pictures of Grace!!

Sunday, December 17, 2006

The Countdown - Seven More Days

Grace is five months old today. On her next birthday she will be at home with her Momma, sleeping in her own bed (assuming we stay on schedule). This time next week I will be on an airplane heading to Vietnam and my daughter.

My daughter. Doesn't that sound wonderful? This week a coworker's daughter came by with her baby. I asked the baby's age and she told me that he is five months old. Without thinking I replied "my daughter will be five months old on the 17th." I realized as soon as I said it - I said "my daughter." It felt so good to say!

I am trying to finish packing. I still don't know what I am wearing for the G&R. I also need to pack a pair of pants and a long sleeve shirt. I keep reading that people are getting cool in the evening.

I received the visas. I still haven't gotten an in-country itinerary. I can't wait until I can see where we'll be staying. One week more.

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

I can't wait...

Finally, I have booked my flights. I thought this would never get done. I leave Nashville on Christmas Eve morning! Two weeks from tomorrow is my G&R. Grace and I will officially be a family!!!

My mind is always thinking of things I need to pack or pick up or finish arould the house. I wake up every couple of hours. I think God wants me to get used to sleep deprevation!

This is a bit surreal. It's hard for me to believe that she will soon be sleeping in the bed that has been empty, just waiting for her to come home. I try to imagine what our first days at home will be like. I can't wait to see her smile for the first time. She wasn't smiling in any of her photos and I try to imagine what her smiling face looks like.

I can't wait to hold her in my arms and kiss her sweet, chubby cheeks.

Tuesday, December 05, 2006

Less Than 3 Weeks Left

In less than three weeks I will be in Vietnam! Our G&R is scheduled for December 28 (but we all know how things can change).

I got new pictures today. How do you like her little hand? In this photo she is on her belly and supporting herself quite well. She has her little fingers out as if she is saying "just three more weeks Mom."

Friday, December 01, 2006

Leaving on a Jet Plane??

I am beginning to doubt that I will even be able to find a seat on a plane?!? We are supposed to be spending Christmas in Vietnam. However, I still don't have a definite date for the G&R. I am afraid that I might have to rob a bank to buy plan tickets. Even worse than expensive tickets, what if I can't get a seat on ANY flight! My agency's facilitator told me that wouldn't be a problem. THAT DID NOT MAKE ME FEEL BETTER. He can give me a date and that will make me feel better. I just need to chill and remember that the travel agents have extensive experience with adoption travel.

Now I must put my selfish whining aside and attend to more important business. Tonight I am sending up special prayers for three lovely little girls - Lucy Elise Pollard, Lily Ana Hamilton and Olivia Grace Puckett.

Baby Lucy is Grace's roommate, they have been friends for quite a while now. We haven't seen Lily Ana's face yet, but we know that she is somewhere in Vietnam waiting on her mom. Lucy and Lily Ana are very fortunate, they both have exceptional mommies who love them more than they could ever imagine. I am very thankful to call them my friends.

I pray that somehow these girls can feel the love that their mothers have for them, how we carry them in our hearts. Bless the girls and keep them safe. Bring us together soon.