Sunday, September 23, 2007

Settling In

Wow! Its hard to believe we're approaching two weeks since returning from China. However, we have officially recovered from the trip and are getting settled in.

Classes start tomorrow and Sarah is pretty excited about it. While we are still a ways from having regular conversations, the communication level is improving at a pretty good rate. She has had a couple of sessions with her tutor and Deb has been working with her using flashcards and a little writing each day. Plus, she is picking up a few things from watching TV and regular conversation. She's a sharp kid (no, we're not biased at all...grin), so while I'm sure there will be a few bumps in the road yet with learning English, I don't think it will be too long until those regular conversations are going.

While in China we picked up the first three Harry Potter movies. This week we watched all three (the first two in Chinese with English subtitles and the last one in English with Chinese subtitles). We were watching them downstairs with Mom and Sarah sharing the futon/couch and Dad on a chair next to the futon. During one of the movies, Sarah was cuddled up with Mom about halfway through the movie...I guess there is some magic in Hogwarts after all.

One of Dad's toys is an XBox 360 that had run into the red rings of death (for non-videogamers, this is a notorious problem with the 360's where it stops working) before we left for China. We had sent it in for repairs and got it back a couple of days ago. So, on Friday we went shopping and picked up Dance, Dance Revolution. Sarah quickly got the hang of it and started moving through the levels. Although, I'm not sure whether she had more fun playing it or laughing at Dad's lack of rhythm.

Also, on Saturday we had some visitors. Kevin's Mom and Dad came down for a visit. They surprised Sarah by taking her out to pick up a bike, so today we all went for a little bike ride.

Now for some "bad" news. We started this blog to keep family and friends up to date on our journey to Sarah (although we didn't know her name was going to be Sarah at the time). Along the way we have found many new friends. Some of you have left one or more heartfelt comments along the way and I'm sure many more have followed along, sending their good thoughts and prayers along the way. We truly appreciate all the goodwill that we have received. However, at this point we feel we are telling her story as well and that is more her story to tell instead of ours. We will leave the blog up for a little while longer, but it will probably be coming down before too much longer and this will likely be the last post. Please feel free to keep in touch through email. If you have questions, we will be happy to answer them. If you are just curious about how things are going send us an email. I won't promise an immediate or a super detailed response, but we will be happy to let you know how things are going.

We also hope that along the way, a few families that might find their hearts wondering about the possibility of older children have gained a little information from our experience and have seen that, while there are a few unique challenges, the rewards can be wonderful. The ability to bond as a family does not disappear at age one, two or three. Sarah will have fewer years in our home before going out on her own, but she will be our daughter forever. If your heart is with a baby, pursue that dream. However, if you have considered an older child, don't be afraid to pursue THAT dream.


Lesa said...

Thank you so much for allowing everyone to follow along it has been a WONDERFUL story. I wish nothing but the best for all three of you, but especially for Sarah.
I do hope that you will keep in contact with your agency group always. We all have become family of sorts and are always interested in how everyones children are doing.
My email is lesalambert, and I would love your private email address just to check in from time to time to see how you and Sarah are doing.
We are in a long waiting line for our daughter Mylie and hope it will speed up. Our LID is 6/19/06, and this will be our second adoption. My husband really wants to pursue an older child once we get our little one home.
I'm so happy to here she cuddled with mom!!

Sincerely Yours,
Lesa L.

septemberfirst said...

hello- we have been following your journey since your blog was posted on rumor queen. we are seriously considering adopting a girl born in late 1995. we cannot be dtc before march (b/c you have to wait a year after your previous adoption) so the soonest we will bring her home is fall, 2008. we would love your insight into older child adoption. please email
thank you!

Chairman Mom said...

We will miss reading your blog!

Take good care of Miss Sarah and good luck to you. We all enjoyed reading about your trip very much.

Mom of 5 said...

Following your journey has been wonderful. We have decided if we can do it again it will be an "older" child. Thanks for sharing !

LaLa said...

I can totally understand why you want to go "private" with your family. Thank you so much for sharing your journey with us. Your daughter is beautiful and I know she will continue to thrive under your love and care. Enjoy your family!!!

new girl said...

Wishing you all the very best! Thank you so much for sharing your story.

Susan & Matt said...

Thank you very much for letting us follow you along in your wonderful journey. Your best times are yet to come. Sarah will have the best holiday.

Mike and Barb said...

Yes, thank you so much for sharing your story with all of us. It has been an inspiration, and I wish you only the best.
May Sarah become your daughter more and more every day and in every way!
May God continue to grant you patience and understanding and perseverance!
She is a beautiful girl, and I wish you much much happiness!

Futurs parents de Mélodie. said...

Thank you so much for sharing your beautiful story. We also have been following your story since you posted your blog on RQ. Sarah is so beautiful and she seems to have such a good spirit. We wish your forever family the very best.

Isabelle, François et Lili-Anne (all waiting for Mélodie)

tochina_05 said...

Thank you for sharing your journey to Sarah. Sarah is an energetic, courageous, determined young lady.

We understand that now it is "sarah's Story" and wish you all, lots of joy and happiness

The Murphy's - CT

Shandra said...

I will miss the blog but I understand. Please don't forget about us. Send me your home address when you have time. Give Sweet Sarah a hug for us. Lilly still talks about her.

Dori's Mommy (Diana) said...

Thank you so much for sharing this part of your lives with us. Blessings to you!

Sylvia said...

I'll miss you! First saw you on RQ, and followed your adventure. My best to your new family.

lucy'scousin said...

I just read your entire blog tonight and wanted to thank you for sharing your wonderful journey. I lurk on RQ, my sister and her DH are adopting from china so I love to read anything about the subject.
What a wonderful family you have! I wish you all the best! Your little sarah is a total sweetheart.

Kathy P said...

I have so enjoyed reading your blog. I was given your name by Karen Gross - and will be traveling with them NEXT WEEK to pick up ten year old Ruby! Karen has graciously forwarded your emails - and given me some great ideas! Thanks so much. I would like to inquire about the book you bought in China, per your tutor's suggestion - to help Sarah with her English. Was it helpful? Would it work for a ten year old? I'd love to know. My email is Thanks,