We designed this site in order to keep in touch with friends and family who are far away and in order to communicate with other adoptive families from around the world.

When we first started researching this wonderful way to become a family we read everything we could get our hands on. Even though there are a lot of great books out there, nothing was as informative or touching as the blogs we found by adoptees, biological parents, and adoptive families. So we are writing this blog now in hopes of returning the favor. We hope that if you are dear to us you will enjoy keeping up with our adventures. If you are someone out there involved in a part of the adoption triad we hope you will find information and comfort here and provide us with some of your own!

If you would like to get in touch with us we can be reached at:
Feel free to stop by anytime. We're happy to share our family story.

Take care,
Brian and Rosemary

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Boy, Button, Mouse?

We were looking at some of Button's paperwork recently and we were noting a major cultural difference between America and Thailand. On his official paperwork it carefully notes his astrological sign. On the Thai zodiac, which is very similar to the Chinese zodiac with some small differences, Button was born in the year of the mouse. This is also sometimes called the year of the rat (like the chinese zodiac) but on his paperwork it clearly says, "xxxxxxxxxxxx year of Mouse". I don't know if the two words are simply interchangeable in the translation to English from Thai or if they are actually making a differentiation between the two, but as his Mother, I prefer to think of Button as "year of Mouse".

For those of you who don't know, the legend of the zodiac is thus, On the Buddha's last day on this Earth he invited all the animals to meet with him but only 12 came. To reward them he named a year after each of the twelve. More recently in Thailand, it is believed that everyone should make a pilgrimage at least once in their lifetime to the Temple associated with their birth year. Anyway, this is what the internet tells about the Thai Zodiac predictions for the year of the mouse 2008:
"The Mouse character is industrious, disciplined, eloquent, shrewd and meticulous. There downfall can be in a selfish, obstinate, scheming and vindictive manner. The temple associated with the year of the mouse's holy pilgrimage is the Wat Phrataht Sri Jomtong, in Chiang Mai. "
Of course, all predictions aside, we are just waiting to see what kind of an individual our little (boy, button, mouse) turns out to be but we are awfully excited to get to know him!!

Monday, October 26, 2009

Survival Checklist

What have I personally learned about adoption so far? Almost nothing since I am not yet actively parenting a child. What have I learned about surviving the adoption process? Hmmmm... a pretty good bit. I'ld like to know what you guys have learned too! Tell us your tips for getting through. Here are some of my favorites though:

"Rosemary's In-Process Survival Checklist"
  • Make copies, in triplicate, of everything. Including your dog's rabies certificate.
  • Do not attempt to diet - it is futile. Do not hang out with people who are dieting. Do not even remain friends with people who are naturally thin.
  • Understand that if you hang new curtains, change your hair color or allow your nephew to camp in your backyard for the weekend your homestudy will have to be updated. At your expense.
  • Whatever "they" told you all this would cost - that figure is incorrect.
  • Only hang out with fun people, only do fun things, only see funny movies. Laugh as much as possible.
  • If the people in your life refuse to see how constantly difficult this process is, if they refuse to help you celebrate humor at every turn in the road, subtly let them know you'll be back in contact when all this is over.
  • Eat, drink, exercise, make love, laugh, travel, shop, redecorate or whatever else you need to do to affirm life. Be kind and loving to yourself.
  • Pray, say affirmations, meditate and journal but, no matter what, do not loose touch with that inner voice or higher power. The Whisper you hear telling you to put one foot in front of the other may be the most important part of this journey.
  • Be nice to other people because they are going through hard stuff too. Our adoption troubles are not the only difficult thing to ever happen to anybody during this time.
  • Pick up at least one new hobby, preferably two, because the last thing we need is free time. Try to make it something you absolutely won't be able to do after the baby comes home. Celebrate this time because even though we want to wish it away it will never come again.
  • Adore your partner! They are the only other person who knows what it really feels like to wait for "YOUR CHILD" so share the experience as fully as possible.
  • Do something you have always wanted to do and never made time/money/courage for. Make sure that you can look back on this season as more than just a pergatory period.
  • Even though the house is empty and you are desperate to give love - resist the urge to get a puppy mere months before bringing home a high impact toddler. If you do get a puppy though please call me so I can come over and play with yours. Brian says I can't have one.
  • Babysit for everyone you know so that in a year or so when Junior is comfortable staying with other people you can start raking in the favors.
  • Read, read, read. We can't ever read too many adoption books, blogs, chatrooms, and articles.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Weekend Whimsy

“It is not the strongest of the species that survives, nor the most intelligent that survives.
It is the one that is the most adaptable to change.”

- Charles Darwin

Thursday, October 22, 2009

This Stinks

As some of you already know, we've been having a rough time here on the homestead. I want to record this experience as clearly as possible for several reasons 1) this is Button's story and I want him to have the details. 2) For everyone who is thinking of adopting. 3) For our fellow P.A.P.'s behind us in line. Adoption is not simple and I truly feel that as a community we need to educate one another about the facts and the "felt experiences".

We spoke with our advocate at our agency and she said that all the DSDW meetings in Thailand have been booked through the end of the year and we are not scheduled to travel. So, barring a miracle, it will be 2010 before we meet our son. That was the first time I have ever been upset with our agency. I have loved working with them 100% of the time up till now, so this one little moment does not weigh very heavily into my rating of their organization. She said that Button's paperwork is complete and so is ours but we are just...waiting. And apparently, the DSDW doesn't care about the I-600 form that I was so worried about last time I posted. Just goes to show there's no sense worrying. Ironic, isn't it? Until now we have been led to believe that there was a numbered list that we were all moving up in order. Suddenly though the answer is simply, "They are very busy... Backlogged... They won't review your son's case until they decide to." It was sort of like a Bugs Bunny-explains-himself-to-the-sheriff-routine. "Yeah, backlogged, that's the ticket - backlogged!"

I'm feeling pretty angry. That tends to be how my personality processes this kind of thing. It's just too horrible to face head on without fighting back so I get angry. Brian feels a lot of depression and worry. He always tries to fix everything so he feels overwhelmed by things like this because they are unfixable. We would give anything to change the situation because every day is a day of Button's life we can't recover no matter what we do or what we pay. None of that changes how we feel about Button though. Our love for him continues to grow CONSTANTLY.

Pray for a miracle. Pray for the "backlog" to unjam itself. Pray for my insane rage level to abate before I go postal and climb to the top of a bell tower. Pray for our son to be happy and healthy everyday. Pray for the DSDW to decide to review our case. Even if you don't pray just light a candle for the kiddo, ok?


Monday, October 12, 2009


I am feeling sooooooo down today. The paperwork has got my nerves completely frazzled. We had to redo our homestudy in July when we moved from NYC to Virginia. Because of the new homestudy we had to file an I-171H form. First we sent the form to the NY state office because that is where we filed and all the forms said to do it that way. Then New york told us they had received the form but we needed to re-file with Washington D.C. So we did that. They told us it would just take a couple of weeks. After a couple of weeks we contacted them via email pleasantly asking where the heck our I-171H form was. They said we would have it in the mail in 1-2 weeks. That was 17 days ago. We emailed them again last night in hopes that they will respond today.

The worst part about all of this though is that we can't file the I-600 petition for Button until we get this @#&*!* form back and I am loosing my mind. For all of you who are not waiting parents also going through this crazy process, we CANNOT travel to pick our son up until our I-600 form has been processed by the U.S. government so we needed to start it yesterday already and it is horribly frustrating that we are unable to do so.

Yea, I am really worried right now and I feel angry too. I don't know who I am angry at because it's obviously not anyone in particular's fault. It's just a sad sort of nebulous anger that comes and goes like Eeyore's little black rain cloud. I am trying to be calm, say my affirmations, pray and stay positive but I want my son to come home.

Would you mind taking a second to send up a prayer or a happy thought for Button's homecoming? His Mommy would appreciate it more than you can know.


Friday, October 9, 2009

Weekend Whimsy

"Remember no one's more important than people!" -Julia Child

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

The Best First Book Ever

Well, it is book review Wednesday but I have been very busy with work and out-of-town company so I have to admit that I haven't found much time to read this week. But we do have a fantastic book review for this week! All of us prospective adoptive parents need to read a million books and it can be rather exhausting so it's fun to remember that we also need to start collecting books for the little people we are expecting. This week we got a wonderful reminder of that when a fantastic package arrived from Button's Grandmother a.k.a. Duchess.

We were delighted to discover that she had shopped around for a collection of Brian's favorite childhood books (big hits in my family too): Richard Scarry! We especially love The Best First Book Ever, which is just such a perfect classic and everyone should have it. I can't wait to spend an afternoon with my son searching these perfectly illustrated pages for Lowley Worm. Do you remember?


Tuesday, October 6, 2009

The Lifebook

So I've finally come to the place in time where I can no longer put it off. I really need to get started on Button's lifebook. Of course, I love celebrating all things Button, but not even that can help me shake my loathing of crafty projects. Bless his sweet heart this kid is definitely not going to have one of those super-special-fancy lifebooks made by the sort of mom who has a "project and giftwrapping room". I want to be that kind of mom, really I do, but I'm just not and that's all there is to it. I forget to photograph everything important, I get glue stuck in my eyebrows, I can't cut a straight line and I hate stickers. In short - I'm a very bad scrapbooker. Thank God for grandmothers or else our kids probably won't have a single surviving picture of their childhood.

So who has suggestions for EASY, no-fail scrapbooking? Ideally I would most like a website where I could drop all the pictures and text in digitally and not have to deal with all that cutting and pasting. You think I'm joking but Brian makes me use the child safety scissors. I know some of you out there are serious scrapbookers so hit me up with all your best tips and shortcuts! Or you could just volunteer to drive right over and work on it for me while I whip up something delicious for us to snack on. Now doesn't that sound lovely?


Friday, October 2, 2009

Weekend Whimsy

image courtesy of flickr

"No matter how you feel - get up, dress up and show up. Life is waiting!" - Dixie Carter

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Love In The Time of Color

I think one of my favorite social dynamics to observe are interracial couples. Here in our sweet little college town I see them all the time. I'm so happy to know that this generation coming up right behind me seems even more eager to forget race barriers. For me there is just something very full of hope and bravery about it. Perhaps it's because I grew up in a small town in the deep south where that was very much a "taboo". It was certainly something I never saw as a young child. I still remember the first interracial couple I ever met. One of my father's dear friends, a fellow minister, was a black man who married a white woman and in the social aftermath following it my parents had them over to dinner. My Dad sat us kids down before they arrived and said, "Remember not to act shocked when you meet his wife. She isn't the same color as him and that's ok. Jesus loves everybody and he wants us all to love each other."

The other day, I witnessed the sweetest, gentlest moment between a young Asian man and a beautiful black girl. They were walking through our pedestrian shopping center holding hands. He said something that made her tilt her head back and laugh. He stopped and touched her cheek in the most tender fashion and then he kissed her so sweetly that it made me want to cheer for him and good men everywhere. I wondered then what sort of lovely girl my son will bring home to us some day. I made a mental note to live my life in such a way that all my children know that no matter who they love their parents will welcome them. I don't want Button to ever feel he has to call home and say, "Mom, I met the most amazing girl but I just want you to know she's (insert race)." That sentence should never have to be uttered because Button should know that his parents don't care what color love is.