Friday, October 31, 2008


Hope yours was as profitable as ours. :-)

Wednesday, October 29, 2008


Fu Sisters Fu-Ever!

I cannot let this day, our Gotcha Day, pass without sharing another story. Through the amazing power of the internet and (IMO) divine intervention, we share our Gotcha Day with another family......Sara's family. I 'met' Sara's mom-to-be through an adoption yahoo group, a Fuzhou adoption group to be specific. Another family traveling to get their daughter had captured photos of our soon-to-be daughters together at the orphanage. We became cyber-friends immediately, having so many chats about those amazing pictures and how our 'daughters' were friends a world away. But then, the divine intervention part...........we both got our notices allowing us to travel to China at the same time! We would not be traveling together, but we would be in-country at the same time. We made plans to try to find each other once there. As it turned out, we 'accidentally' bumped into each other while our girls were getting their medical evaluations! "Accident"??????? I don't think so.
We have since maintained our friendship although we have many, many miles between us. We have met with Sara and her family several times these past two years, and I treasure these times. We are sooooo extremely blessed to have this bond and for Mailia and Sara to remain Fu Sisters and friends forever.
So, congratulations to Sara and her family on their 2 year Gotcha Day!
I'm posting some photos of our girls............while living at the orphanage, after we found each other in China, and home in the USA.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

"Gotcha" X2

"Gotcha" day...........aka the day (in the int'l adoption community) that the face you've looked at for months, and sometimes even years, finally becomes a walking, talking, breathing child.......Your Child. This picture captures the exact moment that Mailia and I saw each other for the very first time. It still sends chills through me, and I almost never fail to start humming that old Roberta Flack song..."first time ever I saw your face".
Our 'gotcha' day is Oct. 29, 2006. Tomorrow will be two years. And I remember it all as if it were yesterday. Her first word (mama), followed by "where's baba? (daddy)", her first tears, her first shy smile, and then the giggles. She was scared, but trying so hard to be brave.......I was scared, wondering if I could be the mommy she deserved. But my fears were nothing compared to the unknowns this child faced....she was handed off to total strangers with nothing more than the clothes on her back.....she was now expected to call this person 'mama'.......she was to sleep in a strange bed, communicate with those who could not speak her language, eat strange food, and then walk onto an airplane that would fly her to the other side of the world where she would meet more strangers that wanted to hug and kiss her and talk to her in words she couldn't understand, and then a final airplane that would take her to meet her new 'baba', arrive at a house that was not yet her 'home', filled with animals that were called 'pets'. I cannot even begin to imagine the fear this child must have felt. But by the grace of God, combined with her courageous and curiosity-filled spirit, she faced each new experience of her new life as another big adventure. And she did it with a smile.

My daughter...........the most courageous person I have ever known.

Happy "Gotcha" Day Mailia! Your 'mama' loves you to the moon and back.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Johnny Pumpkinseed (revisited)

Last night was the monthly roller skating party for M's school. Just as we were leaving we bumped into her teacher. Ms. H. says that M's pumpkin project was "adorable", and is now on display, with her story, in the media center. :-)
I think she (we) got an A!!!

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Johnny Pumpkinseed

Our family and our extended families have been experiencing some of life's most difficult realities, making it tough to find things to blog about. But I wanted to share this picture of M. and her pumpkin project for school. Each child was to choose a character from a fairy tale, or a tall tale, then create a costume for a pumpkin and write a story about him/her. They had been learning about Johnny Appleseed recently, so she decided that "Johnny Pumpkinseed" would be perfect! As it turns out, I think she was right! We worked hard and he turned out so cute! Looks like an "A" to me. :-)

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

A new letter from PoPo and YeYe

We received another letter from Mailia's foster 'grandparents' in China. It took me some time to get it translated, but the English version finally arrived yesterday. For me it was another brief glimpse into my daughter's first years and I am humbled by these people who loved and cared for her when they themselves had nothing. YeYe (grandpa) wrote this letter and tells of Mailia coming to them when she was 2 days old, the orphanage dropping her off with 5 bags of rice formula and a monthly stipend of 90RMB, equivalent to roughly $13 US . He writes that "she eats a lot when she was little, so it's not enough for her. Her grandma makes rice cereal for her, she eats that every day because we were very poor." He then goes on to tell us that they kept her full time until the orphanage told them that she had to go to school. She was about 5 at that time. This is when she returned to the orphanage. After that YeYe would pick her up on his bicycle on Sat. mornings and return her on Monday mornings. At some point she became ill for what he writes as "about 70 days in spring". "PoPo (grandma) takes care of her days and nights, gave her some Chinese herbal medicine, and she was recovered little by little."
But then came the sad part that even Mailia's daddy said was a tear-jerker. "We brought her back on moon festival (when autumn/harvest arrives) and national holiday (1st week of Oct.) and this is the last time we see her. We go to see her next time and the orphanage say she is gone to US. PoPo cried out, no appetite for several days, misses her every day and night. The orphanage is no humanism (inhumane), they don't even tell us to go see her and keep a memory."

He then asks me to forgive him for not being able to write back sooner as they have 'been harvesting the rice'. He asked that we write back whenever we can so we can always stay in touch, and then to "please take good care of her".

I've probably read this letter a dozen times already, and get misty-eyed each time. I just cannot imagine what it would be like to live a day in their shoes. But I am ever so grateful to have this connection to Mailia's past and give all the credit to her PoPo and YeYe for doing the wonderful job of raising my child until I could find her.

I read the letter to Mailia and she stood beside me beaming with pride the entire time.
She is ready for us to write back and send more pictures. We most definitely will!

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Picture Day at School

She got to wear something besides a uniform for picture day and was pretty happy about it.
I can only hope the pictures come back with her looking as nice as she did this morning.