Thursday, October 27, 2016

10 Questions and a Gallon Bag

Some folks from our agency are headed to China on Friday for a short trip. They won't be visiting Fuzhou, where our girl lives, but they will be in Nanchang, which is nearby. So we had the opportunity to send a package to be delivered to our daughter. But it was only allowed to be the size of a gallon sized bag, as there are several other families sending packages to their children. We also were able to include ten questions that they will ask the orphanage director and/or her foster family. So just imagine for a minute if you had the opportunity to fill one bag for and ask just ten questions about a child who will be yours forever! What would you include? What would you ask?

Well, the most important item we put in the bag was a recordable photo book. Zack, Jonas, and I each recorded our voices, and it includes pictures of each of us individually, our house, her room, and family shots. Hopefully this will help her recognize us and get used to our voices a bit. Jonas's page is the most adorable, and Molly even had a page and I got her to bark! We also included a separate family picture that she can hopefully carry around or hang somewhere. I filled the rest of the bag with a little book, stickers, play dough, beaded necklaces, a headband, a fun straw, a panda finger puppet, and a mooncake. Oh, and a flash drive, because sometimes they will fill it with pictures for's hoping! I really wish we could have sent more. I was trying so hard to put a Christmas shirt in there for her, but it just wouldn't fit. Hopefully once we have LOA we can send another package, especially for her birthday.

As for the ten questions, it was very hard to limit myself! I'm a part of several China adoption Facebook groups, and the 10 question deal is kind of a common thing, so lots of good suggestions float around. You can see my list off to the right if interested. Hopefully when we are there, we'll get a chance to visit her orphanage and get many more answers.

Our dossier is now out of translation and review, so LOA could come any day, though it will probably be next week. It's definitely looking like early to mid-January travel now. It kills me that we won't be there for Christmas or her birthday, but I'm trying not to think about that right now. Anyway, that's the latest!

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Name That Name!

Back when we were adopting Jonas from Kyrgyzstan, we called him "Shamrock" as a nickname for months before we had decided on a name for him and before we shared that name with everyone else. While we haven't come up with a nickname for our daughter (maybe "Panda"-her room is black/white with purple?), we did decide and agree on what will be her first name just last week. We also know her Chinese name, which we will probably use in some form as her middle name, like we did with Jonas Shukhrat.

Lots of people ask us what our girl's name is going to be. I'm not sure if we'll be sharing it after we get LOA, or if we'll wait until we're in China. But I thought it might be fun to play the name guessing game like we did with Jonas. The winner (if there is one!) will get some sort of Chinese treat in the mail. Last time, two people guessed Jonah, which I decided was close enough to earn them some yummy Kyrgyz (Russian) candy!

To help you out, HERE is the link to my "personal naming rules" blog post that I wrote for Jonas's contest. Yes, I realize I am super picky and OCD about name choices! The only changes/additions I would make to that list include the following:

  • It would obviously very clearly be a girl's name instead of a boy's name.
  • I actually have taught one (just one!) student with this name in the past. I liked her, so it's all good.
  • Some people might ask how to spell it and/or pronounce it wrong, but they really shouldn't if they are looking/thinking!
  • It goes well with the name Jonas, especially since they are basically twins with their birthdates.
  • Along with a Biblical and personal connection to the name, this time there are also musical connections, ancestral connections, and an Australian connection!
Okay, that's probably too many hints for you super sleuths! Play along if you'd like, and comment on this blog post with your best guesses!