Monday, October 31, 2005

Who is waiting for Julia?

Here are some of the folks and furry friends that are waiting for Julia! We are hoping that tomorrow is the day that we find out what is happening!! Keep us in your prayers!!

Here is a map that you can add yourself to! It's a pretty cool thing!

Sunday, October 30, 2005

Momma, are you coming to get me?? I can't wait to see you!! Posted by Picasa

Riley says, "Come play in the snow with me!" Posted by Picasa

Sherman says, "Can't wait to give you a slurpy kiss, Julia!" Posted by Picasa

Dad and Anna would climb the tallest lighthouse to bring Julia home! Posted by Picasa

This adoptin' momma is tired of waiting, I want to go to China now!! Posted by Picasa

We're the proud new GREAT-grandparents!!  Posted by Picasa

Hi, I'm Anna and I can't wait to have my sister here! Hurry up Julia! Posted by Picasa

Is she here yet? I want my baby sister! Posted by Picasa

Still waiting...

As you can tell by the title, we are still waiting to hear about our TA (travel approval). Michelle and Randy got their last Thursday. I was bummed. More like down right depressed. I cried and yelled. After the small tantrum I realized there is no rhyme or reason for why people get their travel approvals. It's just we had planned on all going together. Ah well. Melissa and Larry B. haven't got their TA either and we really hope we get to the White Swan together. I will post links of 2 of the hotels that we are thinking we will be at. I'm not sure of the one in Beijing yet. I do know that I want to stay at the Wuhan Mayflower Hotel. Michelle stayed here and loved it. It seems nice. I can't get a link to work, so I will wait to post pictures later. :-)

As for being in Guangzhou (gwan-joe), we will be at the White Swan. It's where most adoptive families stay on their way out of China after the Embassy appointments. Here's the link for the White Swan:

So....we sit and wait to hear from Ming on Monday. Let's hope and pray that we get the word this week! :-)

Friday, October 21, 2005

Let the PACKING begin...

Since we have now begun our approach to the final leg of this journey, I have started to pack. Yes, pack. Why you ask? Because I had no idea how much stuff that I would want to take!! All the gifts for guides, foster parents, for Director Lu. Julia's things...clothes, snacks, toys, the ladybug backpack for Gotcha Day. I have my LL Bean bathroom bag STUFFED full of all kinds of medicines, potions, lotions and pills that we may need for the trip. I need to recheck what the dimentions are for luggage and for weight limits. Ugh, this could be the typical Melissa pack job, OVERWEIGHT. (No pun intended!) Right now I have an entire suitcase full of stuff to take. Wayne is going to have to pack super light! Hahaha! I also have packed a collapsable duffle/suitcase for all the souvenirs that I want to bring back. I just know that everyone is gonna love their Christmas presents from China. :-) So as for the waiting...we are now day 51. I am so hoping for a less than 70 day wait. I sure would like to be in China for Thanksgiving. Peking Duck and tea for my holiday dinner, please. I am sad when I think of leaving the kids for 2 weeks. yikes. What is Anna going to do? Well, she will have her Grammy Darlene and Poppa Bill. Speaking of Poppa Bill, he had surgery today to fix his foot. I sure hope all is well. I haven't heard anything yet. Cam I don't think is too worried about us going. I need to find out when elementary basketball starts. He wants to play again. I'm researching phone cards and cell phone rentals for the trip. Wayne will need a cell for work and I think it's just a good idea to have one incase something happens to the kids.

So...let's summerize where we are at. Still no idea of when we will travel. Travel approvals have been coming any time after about the 60 day mark. Let's hope and pray that is the case for us as well. Our visas should be back next week, around Wednesday. YAY! Yet another step closer. I will keep everyone updated on the progress and once we pick a website to host our travel journal I will send that along as well. Take care!!

Wednesday, October 19, 2005


I got an email yesterday from Denise Hope saying that she dropped off our visa applications and that they would be ready on the 25th. YAY! I'm still thinking that our TA will come on or around the 3rd of Novemeber. No idea why, but it works with the 17th date that I feel is the day we will leave.

We are now waiting to hear from Wayne's boss to see how much he is going to help us out. He previously had told Wayne that he could possibly cover the orphanage donation ($3000) and maybe more. Oh, if it only happens that way. I can hardly believe we are getting this close to the end. Could it be that in one short month from now that we will be in China??

Monday, October 17, 2005

~Snoppy Dance, Day#2~ (10/14/05)

Just when we conceded that we were not getting the "Brown Envelope" it came. Yes, it fricken A came!!! :-) I walked out to get the mail like any other Friday. Nothing special. I started going though everything we got, Christmas catalogs, bills, postcards to a few parties. Then, there it was...I could hardly believe my eyes. OOOHHH!! Ok, so what's so special about this brown envelope? Not a damn thing to be honest. It's just paperwork that we will need for our consulate appointment. Yep, just paperwork. No more info on Julia, no more info about when we will travel. Just something to help with the waiting process.

The second part of the Snoopy Dance Day was that we sent our applications in for our visas. We are using a courier to go to the Chinese consulate in Chicago and apply for us. YAY! I'm so hoping that we can get the 6 month visas like Denise mentioned that we could.

Finally, the third part of this 2 day late post...the 14th was Julia's birthday. I'm bummed that we missed it, but all the women on the late august DTC group wished us many happy more birthdays once Julia is home. :-) Happy Belated Birthday babygirl!! Momma and Daddy can't wait to see you! Big sister Anna is so excited and so is Big brother Cameron. :-)

Thursday, October 13, 2005

We got the WHITE envelope! Happy early Birthday, Julia Renee!

Adoption update! Michelle and I finally conceded that we both are not getting the "brown envelope". Bummer to say the least, but AAI has the documents that we will need while in China. So...We got the packet of those papers today! Nothing that spectacular. Just another step in the long road to Julia.

Speaking of Julia...her 2nd birthday is tomorrow. I didn't think that I would be that down about it, but I am. If only we had moved a bit quicker to get our paperwork going, she might be home already. The what if's kill me. I do have to remember that we are working on God's time, not Melissa and Wayne time. :-) I guess Michelle, Liz, and I were meant to go through this process together. My hope is that not only have I gained a daughter, I will have gained two life-long friends. We bought Julia a few birthday presents. Aunt Samantha, Aunt Theresa, Anna and I picked out an Eeyore pull toy, stacking barrels, and a little bug phone. I will post pictures of the presents once we get back from camping.

Ok...I've got to email Michelle about the raisins. I will post that story too, later. :-)

Wednesday, October 12, 2005

YEEHAWW...we got a "case" number and the OK to get our visas!

I got an email from Michelle at AAI today. Mary got word that we have a case number. Which means that they have processed (at least at the Embassy) our paperwork for immigration. Woohooo! So we are now hoping that will bring on the delivery of our brown envelope with all the paperwork we will need for Guangzhou. ~Snoopy Dance Time~ This is our number: GUZ 2005238027.

Also, Ming gave Michelle the go-ahead to get our travel visas! Another small snoopy dance. I'm excited. I get the feeling things are going to happen sooner than later. Liz and I are hoping to travel over Thanksgiving.

Ok..enough for tonight. Later! :-)

Wednesday, October 5, 2005

From itchy mom to itchy dogs/Letter translation

Well, the run on poison ivy is over, but now...the dogs have FLEAS. Oh lord, will it ever end?? So far Riley seems to be the bad one. Her longer hair gives them a better place to live; where as with Sherman, his short hair isn't a flea's cup of tea. :-)

No real news on the adoption front. I bid on some really cool stickers for the scrapbook we are working on for Director Lu. I've been talking to a nice woman whose son is from Xianning. She has nothing but really great things to say about Lu. YAY! I feel better about Julia being in his care as each day goes. I wrote a letter to the foster parents and had it translated into Chinese for them. It cost $50.00 but well worth the money. I wanted them to know how much we appreciate the job they have done and what they will continue to mean in Julia's life.

Ok..time to read some more Mercer Mayer books to Anna. She loves Little Critter books. Later!

Monday, October 3, 2005

AAI called...

No, still no TA, but they did ask about using video of Julia in a DVD that they are putting together with CCAA. They also called Liz and asked about using Isaac in the DVD too. How exciting! It apparently has something to do with a program called tomorrow's Child. I could be wrong, but I thought that's what Liz called it. I have a call into Michelle to ask about it.

We are also headed to Kent City today to get Cam's new bed. YAY! Then we are going to celebrate my birthday (#32) at either Olive Garden or Red Lobster. Whatever the kids pick. Hard to believe that I'm 32 I feel old!!

Sunday, October 2, 2005

Map of China

I'm posting a map of China, actually, I'm posting a map of Hubei. That's the province that Julia lives in. She is currently in the city of Xianning. She will be brought to us when we are in Wuhan. It's about 1.5 hour drive to get to there. Here's a little bit on Xianning.

Xianning, with an area of 9.853 square kilometers and a population of 2,696,100 is located at Central China. It neighbors Northern Jiangxi province on the east, adjoins Dongting Lake of Hunan province on the south, gaze at Jianghan Plain on the west and closes to Wuhan on the north. There are 2 cities, 4 counties and one tourist economic development zone under its jurisdiction. They are Chibi city, Xianan division, Tongcheng county, Jiayu county, Tongshan county, Chongyang county and Wenquan Tourist Economic Development Zone. There major traffic lines run through our city from north to south. They are Beijing-to-Guangzhou Railway line, No. 106 and No. 107 national highways, and the Yangtse River connects the east and west. So specially endowed with favourable conditions, Xianning is known as the southern Gate of Hubei Province.There are rich resources both above the earth and unearth in the region. Xianning is always famous for the beautiful names of the Hometown of Bamboo, the Hometown of Tea. Here, fine natural landscape and historical landscape are gathered. It is a green gem of Hubei province, with 41 percent of forest covering rate. Moreover, we have the Tomb of King Li, Chibi-the ancient battlefield of the Tree Kingdoms, Taiyi Cave, Chengshui Underground Defence Works, Jiugong Mountain Nature Preserve Area, Lushui Lake Tourist Vacationing Spot and Bamboo Sea.

Saturday, October 1, 2005

This is the map of Hubei. Posted by Picasa

The entire Wagner family (minus Julia because she's still in China!)...even MOM in the water. Major Miracle! Posted by Picasa

Wayne and Anna swimming in the ocean. Posted by Picasa

Uncle Wendell, Anna and Cam with the flounder they caught. Posted by Picasa

Wayne, Cam and Uncle Wendell with the SHARK they caught at our favorite red sand beach. Posted by Picasa

Both of the kids swimming, thanks Aunt Cherrie for the noodles! Posted by Picasa

Cameron at the pool at the Sleep Inn in Daytona Posted by Picasa

Anna on the plane from Detroit to Orlando Posted by Picasa

Updates, an Ultrasound picture, Yahoo groups and my poison ivy

Well, every time I come to check out the site, no one has updated stuff for me!! :-) here goes...

1. I have been talking to Michelle on a regular basis. She still feels as though we will get our TA (travel approval) at the end of October. I'm holding on to that with all my heart. It's hard to believe that I could be holding Julia 2 months from now. I guess only time will tell.

2. We bought Cameron a new bunk bed for his room off of Ebay today. It's a cool black one with a twin on the top and a full size on the bottom. We are looking at something similar for Anna and Julia, but I'm not sure yet. Michelle says she loves the ones that her kids have. That it's worked out great for them. I'm not sure if her Alivia is little stinker like Anna. ;-) Anyways, Cam is excited, now we need to head to Kent City to pick it up. He not sure what kind of bedding he wants for it. I guess that gives me something else to shop for.

3. Here's a picture that Sharon with the late august DTC group posted. I love it! I will probably print it out and put it in Julia's lifebook. Since we don't have an ultrasound picture of her like we do of Cameron and Anna, so this is as close as we are going to get. :-)

4. Speaking of Yahoo groups, I've joined a few. People with August DTC dates (more NSN adoptions), late August DTC just for SN adoptions, WCC (Waiting Children China) for families that have adopted or are adopting SN kids from China, COO (Carry On group for those wishing not to check any luggage, which is NOT us!), GGRCCC (Greater Grand Rapids Chinese Culture Club), MI-WCC (The Michigan version of the WCC), Atresia/Microtia (for people with the condition or families with kids with m/a), AAI (Adoption Associates has their own group for families that are adopting from China), Xianning and Xianning Culture (for families that have adopted or will be adopting from the Xian An SWI or Xianning City), Toddler Adoption China (speaks for itself).'s a full time job just keeping up with all the posts. Some groups have lots more action that others. Most have been hugely helpful. I'm hoping to meet some of the folks from the late august group. They are really a great group of women.

5. We bought an awesome backpack for the laptop. Even the computer gets something new for the trip!! :-) It's a Kensington that we got directly from Dell. It's super nice and it's got lumbar support for Wayne. I think he will be the one hauling all the paperwork and electronics from here to China. Poor guy! He needs to start working on those back muscles now. Anyway, the backpack is hella cool.

6. Thanks to Aunt Cheryl for taking care of us in Florida. Wayne says this was the best trip so far. Special thanks for the secret gift...I'll let you know what we pick out. ;-)

7. I'm trying to arrange a get together with Liz, Brion, Michelle, Randy and us. So's not been working out. Wayne is headed to New Jersey this next week for work (7th-14th). I'm going to try to put tons of energy into Cam/Anna's rooms to get things organized. Right now, Anna is sleeping in the toddler bed in our room. Not my ideal situation, but...she's happy and sleeping better. I'm sure that Julia will sleep in our bed anyways...

8. Sooo...some of you are wondering how I faired on the poison ivy front. Well, I still have some scabs from the worst parts. BLEH...I have been fighting this stuff for nearly 6 weeks!!! DON'T EVER GET POSION IVY! On top of that while I was in Florida I had an allergic reaction to the change in my laundry soap. More itchy bumps...more tubes of Cortisone 10. I'm not going to lie. It sucked, it sucked BAD. As of now, I still have a small rash on the backs of my arms and the tops of my thighs. :-( Not a happy camper.

Ok...I need to finish this for tonight. My fingers need a break. Take care and love you all!