Saturday, June 30, 2007

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Our Itninerary

So this is it. I still can't believe it! We are leaving on July 4th now instead of the 5th. Apparently there were no flights available on the 5th, so we had the option of leaving on the 4th or the 6th. The 6th would have been fine, but we would have gotten in to Beijing mid-afternoon Saturday and would have missed the whole sightseeing schedule for that day. We figured if we are going all the way to China, we'd like to be able to see what's there! So, long story longer, we are leaving on the 4th at 8:40am and we arrive back in Los Angeles on Friday afternoon, July 20th. We have a travel meeting with our agency on Friday so I'm sure we'll get a lot more information then. I've finally started packing and getting things together we'll need to take with us. My friend Allison and I are going on a final shopping trip on Monday to pick up any additional items we'll need that we don't already have. (Allison and her husband adopted their daughter from China a little over 1 1/2 years ago and have been such a blessing to us during this process. I know our girls will be great friends!) So that's the story for now. In the meantime, I keep standing in the doorway to her room, looking, staring and just waiting for our little Lilybug to fill it with life!

Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Concrete Travel Dates!

We got our confirmation email this morning. We will be leaving on Thursday, July 5th and returning on Friday, July 20th. Praise God! Our agency will contact us later today or tomorrow with a more detailed itinerary. It is such a relief having this information. Now it's time to get into gear and get packing! Woohoo!!!

Monday, June 25, 2007

Lily's Room

Here are some pictures of Lily's Room. We still have a few final touches to do, but it's done for the most part.

This is the new "Everyday Display" board from Creative Memories. It's magnetic so you can change out the pictures and use different scrapbooking papers to decorate it. I LOVE this!

This picture was handpainted by one of the teachers at the school where I used to work. Monika did a beautiful job and it goes perfectly in Lily's room. She also has a website if you want to see some of her other artwork and maybe order one for yourself!

Sunday, June 24, 2007


"Hello Travel Group 125,

We are happy to announce the arrival of all Travel Approvals!

Your travel group will tentatively depart for China on Thursday July 5th and will return to the US any where between July 18th - 21st. We have moved forward to request your Consulate appointment and hope to hear back from the Consulate within the next 1 -5 business days with a confirmed date.

Once we receive the official Consulate appointment date confirmation we will be able to establish concrete travel dates, finalize flights, and complete in country arrangements. Please continue to wait patiently for concrete travel dates, as we promise to contact you as soon as we have any new information.

Congratulations again on receiving your Travel Approvals! I know this final piece of the wait has been very difficult but you all have handled it with amazing grace and peace. May you all have a wonderful weekend."


Lily's Finding Ad

Look what we got in the mail yesterday!

This is Lily's Finding Ad. When an abondoned child is found, an ad is placed in the paper stating where and when they were found, their approximate birthdate and a description of what the child looks like. China allows time for the birthparents to reclaim their baby before making them available for adoption. How often does it happen that a child is reclaimed? I can't imagine very often at all. Here is the translation of Lily's ad:

Wang Yu Lian
A girl
She was born on August 15, 2006
On August 16, 2006 she was found at the gate of the Civil Affairs Bureau of County
She has a Buddha face and light skin

A "Buddha face" is certainly a perfect description of our girl! We are so thankful she was intentionally left in a place where she would be found right away. I can only assume she must have been loved to be left in such a place. I wish I could somehow tell her birthmom how grateful I am and always will be to her.

Thursday, June 21, 2007

Updated Travel Info

We receieved another email from our agency on Tuesday:

"Hello Families in TG 125,

Please know America World is continuing to pray for all of you during the continued long hard wait for travel approvals.

I am happy to share that we have received word that Director Lu has completed the processing of your travel approvals and they should be in the mail soon. Once they are mailed out from the CCAA they will still take two to three days to arrive at America World. Once they arrive we will need to request and receive Consulate appointments before we can confirm your travel dates. We are continuing to watch airfare availability and pricing to see if a departure on the 28th will still be possible once your travel approvals arrive. At this time there is a 60% chance that the departure date may need to be bumped to a week later. We will continue to do all we can to get all families over to China as soon as possible."

I must say that our agency has been incredible in keeping us informed about what is going on. I am thankful for and grateful to them. At this point I am letting go of travel on the 28th. With the amount of time it will take for the TA's to arrive to the US and then the time to schedule our consulate appointments in China, leaving on July 5th seems much more likely. While this may sound disappointing to most, I am actually pretty excited. Why you ask? If we leave on Thursday, July 5th, that means we should get Lily on Monday, July mom's birthday! Just one more piece of evidence to me that God's perfect timing is all over this.

"Yet those who wait for the LORD will gain new strength; they will mount up with wings like eagles, they will run and not get tired, they will walk and not become weary." Isaiah 40:31

Thank you Lord, for continuing to bless us with your grace and mercy during this process, for giving us the strength to get through this wait and for continually revealing Yourself to us as we wait on You and your timing, not our own.

Friday, June 15, 2007

Happy Birthday!

Happy 10 month birthday Lilybug! We'll be there to get you soon baby girl. Mommy and daddy love you soooo much!

Wednesday, June 6, 2007

And more waiting...

"Travel Group 125,

I am emailing to touch base with you to let you know that we are continuing to pray for your group. I know the wait is getting harder by the day!

Please know that we have confirmed that there is nothing wrong with your TAs. The workers at the CCAA are awaiting Director Lu's signature to be able to move forward with printing the approvals for your group. We hope to see them soon!

Our thoughts and prayers are with you at America World during this exciting yet challenging time."

Ugh! Well at least they are still anticipating our departure date as June 28th. I guess it's not looking good for the June 21st date we were hoping for. I just want to get my daughter!

Monday, June 4, 2007

Still Waiting...

No word yet on our TA. We got the following email from our agency on Friday:

"Good afternoon TG 125,

I hope this email finds you well. I wanted to send a word of encouragement to you as you continue to wait for your TAs.

As many of you have noted, a few agencies have begun receiving their TAs. America World is currently waiting on your group's TAs to arrive. Please know that nothing is wrong with your batch of approvals. The Travel Approval process works quite differently from the referral process. The Center does not send all of the approvals out to the agencies at the same time. Rather, they send out however many TAs Director Lu has been able to approve and sign. Unfortunately, they are usually staggered as they are sent out.

We are very aware of your excitement and readiness to meet your children. Hang in there! This week is the fourth week out from when the referral acceptances were received in China. It usually takes 3-5 weeks for us to hear back from the CCAA. They should be here shortly.

Once the Travel Approvals have arrived in our office, we will request Consulate Appointments for your group. It generally takes 3-5 business days to hear back regarding the confirmed appointment. At that time, we will have concrete travel dates for your group.

I look forward to working with each of you more in the near future regarding your travel plans."

I guess we should be used to waiting by now! In the meantime, we had a relaxing weekend. I am actually able to park my car in the garage again...woohoo! We are making progress on Lily's room, getting it organized and ready for her. I'll post pictures soon!