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8 posts from December 2006

December 29, 2006

Then and Now

Family FotoFun Friday Challenge #12 
Post your pictures on your blog and leave a comment here before ?/?/07.  This is an open-ended challenge.  I love seeing the before and after pics of the beautiful kids so please continue to share your link in the comment section.

This week's photo challenge is "Then and Now".   Post your child's referral photo then post a current photo next to it.  Here's the challenge:  Don't just post any current photo, attempt to match the clothing, background and pose of the referral photo!

If you've not gotten your referral yet, post a "Then and Now" photo of anything (or anyone) special to you).

Before_after_gwen As always, click on the image to see the full sized version.

This, of course, is Gwendolyn.  When we got her referral in July of last year, we were momentarily disappointed that she was already 14 months old.    But we now know that she had plenty  of "baby" left in her (more than Mommy actually needed!). 

She's the light of our life.  She's very contemplative and seldom cries.  She's shows utter delight at just about everything.  She's quiet but brilliant.  She climbs but never falls.  She's our dancer:  Graceful and elegant. 

The top photo is her original "mug shot".  To recreate it, I dressed her in one of my red shirts and draped a white sheet over the back of dining room chair.   I had lots of photos of her gorgeous smiling face but picked this one because the expression is closer to the original photo.

The middle photo is Gwen (formerly Xiao Hai) leaning on a piano at her orphanage.  The recreation is Gwen leaning on our piano at home.  Notice that I tried to match the orange shirt?  Yep, I get extra points!  Yay! ;)

The bottom photo was the hardest.  She's sitting on the floor with her teddy bear to her right.  Her sweet little feet are bare.  She's got something in her hand.  In the recreation, we had trouble getting her to sit still at all!  So, the cute little something in her hand is her cute little foot!  I tried to match the pants but my sense of fashion wouldn't let me put pink and orange together so I had to put her in yellow pants.  Minus 2 points for me!  (hee hee..... but worth it)  Next is Maddy:

Before_after Here's our little Sweetie:  Madeline!

Maddy's referral photos were taken at the same time as Gwen's (Jun 2005) even though we didn't get her until nearly one full year later.  The similarities are pretty amazing.  Both girls had the usual mug shot but they also had very similar sitting and standing photos.  Then there's the very amazing coincidence that they both had the same Chinese first name.

Maddy is Wicked Smart.  She's potty trained and skilled at transferring liquid from one small object to another (something she LOVES to do!).  We joke that she's going to be a Chemist!  She's verbal (and loud) and really opinionated.  She's definitely not mellow like her sister, Gwen.  But her spunk is very endearing.  She's our precious little parrot who delights in repeating everything we say and loves to please us.  She's incredibly athletic and can throw a ball with the accuracy of someone 6 times her age! 

In the top picture, we draped a red towel over the back of our dining room chair to recreate the mug shot photo.  The middle picure has Maddy "helping" hold the red towel on the chair (something she did for only about 4 seconds!).  The bottom photo is Maddy with her much loved "hershey bear".  It looks like she loved her original white teddy too!

This week's FFFF participants:

Cannon Fishbowl
Davis Days
Lily's Pad
And Chloe Makes 6
Vivi Claire And Bella Jane
Table For Six
My Cup Runneth Over
The Jade Road
Season Star
The Daily Grind
(D)rivvel Supp
Motherhood and other ramblings
Wee Sit Baby

December 25, 2006

Christmas 2006


December 22, 2006


Family FotoFun Friday Challenge #11 
Post your pictures on your blog and leave a comment here before 12/29/06.

This week's photo challenge is "Cowlicks!"

Cowlicks We thought it was unusual that Gwen has two counter-rotating cowlicks on the back of her head.  Since her hair was very short, they were very noticeable and attracted lots of attention when we were in China.  People went of our their way to try to communicate to us that the double whorl was good luck and meant she'd have a strong will (she does!).

When we met Maddy a year later, we were surprised to see an identical double cowlick in her hair too!  What are the odds of that?

The picture at the top of the collage was taken on Maddy's adoption day (the 2nd day we had her).  Gwen is on the left and Maddy on the right.  Because of her pigtails, you can really see Gwen's very clearly so I searched the archives for pictures of the back of her head and only found three.   I regret that we didn't take a really good picture of her double swirl when her hair was short.  Obviously we were more interested in photographing her pretty face! 

I Googled "cowlicks" to see how common the double swirl was and didn't find an answer but I did find some very cute pictures of cows licking! :)

This week's FFFF participants:

Wee Sit Baby (cute!!!)

December 15, 2006


Family FotoFun Friday Challenge #10 
Post your pictures on your blog and leave a comment here before 12/22/06.

This week's photo challenge is "Pigtails!"


These pictures were taken last March when Gwenny had just barely enough hair to put into pigtails.  She'd allow them to remain for about 3 minutes before gleefully pulling them out.   Since she was nearly bald when we got her 6 months earlier, I was happy to take what I could get and 3 minutes with pigtails were three minutes of Mommy Bliss!

It's hard to believe that the child in the next picture is the same child -- Just look at all of that hair!


I love this expression on Gwen.  She's almost two and a half and they have such "attitude" at this age!  She has very clear ideas of what's acceptable to her and what's not and she's not afraid to tell you all about it!   She doesn't speak much but still managed to find a way to make her will known.  That's my little Princess!

Gwen's not the only Little Missy with attitude in this house.  Just look at Maddy's picture, below and you'll see what I mean!


Here's Madeline with her first pigtails. 

This little girl  knows even more about 'attitude' than Gwen.  She seems to know that she's able to pull off an extra dose of it because of the cute little pigtails she's sporting. 

Really, my daughters are very sweet and not too full of "attitude" at all.  But the pigtails do seem to intensify the assertive part of their personality.  I wonder why that is? 

Maybe this FFFF challenge should be "attitude" instead of "pigtails"? 

I'll let you choose!  :)

This week's FFFF participants:

My Cup Runneth Over
Bicycle Built for Three
From Here to There...
Random Thoughts
Mei Mei Journal
Davis Days
The Daily Grind
Season Star
Wo Ai Ni
Herbivores go to China
Mikala Yin Born in our Hearts
And Chloe Makes 6
Vivi Claire and Bella Jane
Motherhood and other ramblings
Cannon Fishbowl
Ming Maizie
For the Love of Libby
Katie Lin Comes Home
Just Keep Swimming
Wee Sit Baby
From here to there....
Hiking through life...
The Smith Family's Adventures

December 12, 2006

Sponsors needed

UPDATE: Click <here> to see pictures of the children from Maddy's orphanage who are looking for sponsors.

Foster Care

Maddy was in foster care in Qinzhou from the time she was 8 months old until we adopted her at age 25 months.  That's 17 months she spent with a family instead of competing with 29 other children for the attention of a caregiver at the orphanage.  Some of the pictures from her time in foster care are shown here. 

We didn't know Maddy's foster care was sponsored through GHC until we were just about ready to travel to get her. 

Since then, GHC has given us all of her photos and reports and (with their permission), we've exchanged some email with the nice American family in Minnesota who sponsored her.  We are also now sponsoring a child from Maddy's SWI so that she can remain in Foster Care. 

There are many children who need sponsors.  The cost is only $38 to $41 per month and it's tax deductible.  You can even pay via pay pal. 

(click here for more) "Sponsors needed" »

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