Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Final Post from Canada and Change of Tone

Hi Everyone!
I have kept this blog light hearted for the most part with a touch of humour ... that's just how I get through things!
But today I need to change the tone ... we depart tomorrow for what will be the single most important trip and end
to a very long journey! On Sunday our dream of 10 years will finally be realized ... we will hold the most precious
gift ever bestowed upon us ... Cadence ... and we can hardly wait! We have planned for this and are ready ... BUT
our poor little angel has not! Her happy little short life is about to be turned upside down ... everything she knows
is going to be ripped from her in one moment ... our moment! Yes, we will give her a good life, yes she will have
opportunities, yes, she will be loved ... but she doesn't know that yet and won't know that for a while. It will be
difficult for all of us ... her especially ... so as you enjoy watching our family be formed ... please take a moment
to grieve with her for all she is loosing!

AND ... I cannot express into words how VERY GRATEFUL and touched we are for ALL the support from our family
and friends!!! We are overwhelmed, overjoyed and just so very lucky to have such amazing people in our lives!

Well, this is it ... my final post ... I can hardly believe it (and I better end ... the power is flickering!). Next time you
here from me it will be from the other side of the world! What a wonderful world it is after all!!!!!

PS - Let's get that count up to 30,000!

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Crunch Time!

Bags are packed and we're ready to go ...

I am hoping our 2 main pieces following us to Chongqing are under the 44 lb weight restriction ... my scale says they are but it is not working all that well! Hmmm ... maybe that's the root of MY problem!
I had the pool chemicals tested, the car seat inspected, my extremities waxed and my toes polished all this morning! And then ... Nat ... I RELAXED all afternoon by the pool! I'm going to recheck everything this evening ... just for good measure and then, that's that! I'm actually feeling oddly calm at the moment ... I'm sure that will pass! I do have some disappointing news ... my NB buddy who I was hoping to meet and travel with in China has experienced a glitch and will be travelling a week later than the rest of our group. I am happy for her in that her husband will be healed enough from surgery to join her ... guess things have a way of working out the way they are supposed to! I will certainly miss you Penny but wish you ALL the BEST on your journey to Lisa!
I really hope to be able to manage posting from China (Penny was to be my expert ... she didn't know that!). If I'm not able to manage that I will try to at least email a photo or two through my First Class ( or Hotmail ( accounts.
My only worry now is for my little 'guy' ... he may be very sad over these next two weeks. He will be in loving care with family and with his brother Lucky who has been staying with us for the past week. These two really get along well and they are just too darn cute for words ...

That's about all I can think of for now ... tomorrow will be my last post from home ... unbelievable isn't it?! I am in awe of it all ...

Monday, August 27, 2007

Evening Update ...

As promised here is a photo of one of the most amazing gifts ... homemade and absolutely beautiful ... and this girl has a full time teaching job AND an almost two year old! I am just blown away!

And what wardrobe isn't complete without pink velvet Puma 'leisure wear' ... hoping my girl is into lounging around ... me thinks it's a fantasy!

Speaking of pink velvet ... my ribbon for the border around the room came in. Well, that is obviously one thing that will NOT get done on the list ... especially with only TWO days to go! Any wagers as to a date you think I might manage to get it done by?

And sadly ... there was no good news from Costco ... my beautiful stilhetto To Do list book is gone forever! I am really bummed about it but in the grand scheme of life ... not a big deal! The only real pisser now is that all the notes I kept regarding transferring videos from my camcorder to the computer were in that book ... may need another tutorial after all Phil ... sorry!
Well ... some big things to do tomorrow morning... pedicure, wax, file for EI ... and then I am hoping to have one last relaxing afternoon by the pool ... we'll see!

Be Impressed ... Be Very Impressed!

We are officially packed ... well, I haven't weighed 'our' suitcase yet, but I am confident we will be within the acceptable range.
What should impress you is this ... I have packed ONE pair of sandals, NO jewelry and NO makeup! I can hardly believe it myself! Given that ... don't expect to see me in too many of the photos we take ... especially not close ups!
I will take a photo of all the luggage tomorrow, once I have finished adding a couple of things to the carry ons.
I would also like to thank Kara and Sara today for their beautiful gifts ... I'll upload some photos later this evening because you all MUST see ... I'll leave it at that! Right now I gotta get some dinner on ....

Saturday, August 25, 2007

Tears Were Not Enough!

I hate to harp about the whole 'list' thing ... again ... but it really is my lifeline and today ... everything fell apart, at least that's how it felt. Last week I took out this beautiful spiral journal book, that I'd been saving (with this gorgeous red stilhetto on the cover ... and shoes, well, they're as vital as my lists!). Anyway, I got myself organized ... list of things to get at 3 various places and then a list of what needed to be done each and every day from now til Wednesday. I actually sat in a few rooms to inspire myself as to what exactly needed to be accomplished before the trip. It felt great to have such a firm handle on things and feel really prepared! Well, all that planning went down the drain today! I took my beautiful book and set off on my final 'quests for Cadence'. First stop ... Costco ... where, as usual I got what was on the list AND what wasn't. I piled everything into the truck and set off for Michael's. Just as I pulled into the parking lot ... about 3 minutes away, it hit me ... the book ... I think I might have left it in the cart! I quickly parked and checked the back ... no such luck! Back I go to Costco and wouldn't you know it, for the first time those cart guys are on top of things and have cleared the corral. I went to every desk they sent me and ... nothing had turned up! Who the hell would take someone else's list of things to do? I know they are thorough, but come on ... they don't apply to anyone else! Of course, the book is brand new except for the first 5 pages I filled, which could easily be torn out!
That was the breaking point ... I sat in the parking lot and had a good sob! I know it sounds silly, but I really worked hard to make sure I thought of everything and have felt good that I knew exactly what needed to be done to get me through these next few days! I just feel so STUPID!!
In the interest of cheering myself up, the glass of shiraz my sister in law offered certainly helped! And of course I couldn't forget about my girl so I picked up a little something for her too ...

Well, tomorrow I will sit with my morning coffee and a new book and start anew .....

Friday, August 24, 2007

Last Room to Do!

Now that my house is pretty well in order, I have turned my attention to my classroom! It is surprising how attached and territorial one can become over their workplace. I know I won't be there this year and I'm happy about that! But I also know someone else will be sitting in my chair, using my desk, teaching my kids and I'm NOT so happy about that! I know I will get over it ... soon ... but in the meantime I am in there getting it all organized ... for WHOEVER!!! I spent the day cleaning, moving furniture, decorating and reorganizing ... yes, there are paid custodians but we won't go there! Should I mention while I was cleaning my classroom, I was also paying someone to clean my house!!! Does that sound ridiculous to you too? Anyway, I was really hoping the supply teacher would have been determined by now so that I would have time to review the protocol and student files and all the resources with her (or him), but the board didn'tt post the job until a couple of days ago and it doesn't close until 4:00pm Monday. My principal is in meetings all day Tuesday, so ... her and I will interview Wednesday morning, hire someone immediately (hopefully) and I will orient the person Wednesday afternoon 'cause I leave Wednesday night! Yeah ... I'm freaking just a bit! At least the room will be ready and I will be back in a few weeks should he/she have any questions. AND really, my teaching partner is a very competent woman who will be able to mentor and guide ... but like I said ... I'm territorial and I like things done MY way. Time to let go ... I know ... and I will!
Well, I am off to have dinner out with friends ... again ... third day in a row! I'm not complaining ... but I AM worried that the few things packed in the suitcase won't fit once I arrive in China!!!
Warm cheers and cool beers y'all .....

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Paperwork's In!!!!

We received the final papers today for our trip ... Visas, Notice to Travel and our passports ... we are now set to go!
I checked it over once, twice and once more for good measure and packed it up in the laptop case. I still need to include
4 copies of the 1st 2 pages of our passports but I have to go back to Jasmine's Blog to verify the type of paper it needs
to be on ... Jasmine's mommy and daddy had to scramble to get another set of copies done in China ... I want no surprise
stresses! You can quit laughing now!
Nancy and I worked VERY hard preparing 6 full homemade entrees this morning! What a great concept ... I highly recommend
this as a concept ... so far ... I'll reserve final judgement once I've actually pulled one out of the freezer and prepared it!
Other than that I have no more updates or musings for today ... except that I cannot find the cute little Canada T-shirt I purchased for Cadence way back ... for her visa photo ... and frankly ... I'm pissed about it! Alright ... gotta find out if Phyliss
is going to jail!

Wednesday, August 22, 2007


Well ... the Sante Fe needs some work ... to the tune of a grand ... yay! After this, I think the big expenses are done! Oh, not quite ... we ordered a secure cover for the pool when we close it. It really is money well spent I think, both from efficiency and safety standpoints! Now if only it came with a free pair of shoes!
Had a lovely lunch date with some of the girls today ... only problem, the guest of honour was a no show! We missed you Kelly!
Stayed up last night organizing my laundry cabinets and got up early this morning to start on the kitchen. Tonight, I have a few
more drawers to do and then I believe I have completed all of the cleaning items from ... you know it ... my list! To tell you the truth ... it feels good!
Tomorrow Nancy and I are heading to a place to put homemade entrees together that we can freeze and prepare at our convenience. Everything will be chopped and ready to go AND no clean up! I thought it might be a good idea to have some healthy, ready made meals in the freezer for when we return. A) I won't feel much like shopping and B) definitely won't feel much like cooking BUT C) will most likely be starving (not really a bad thing!).
My sister is having an ultra sound this weekend as the doctor thinks the baby may be in a breach position. I've been saying this baby is coming the weekend before we leave ... AND, obviously, it must be a male ... typical at that ... no sense of direction already!
Can you believe the ticker? ... we leave in 8 days!!! I can't actually believe it ... there are packed bags, a crib, stroller, car seat and yet ... it still doesn't seem real! It has been a long road to this point ... one that will be well worth it ... I know ... but until it actually happens ..... sigh, I don't know ... I'm just all over the place emotionally right now ... somebody pinch me!

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Making Progress ...

I am currently waiting for a few of Cadence's little outfits to finish drying so they can go right into her suitcase and then ... one bag is actually packed (pretty much anyway)!!! I've got some extra stuff in the Beijing bag (diapers, another bottle, some extra medications and a couple of changes of clothes for us all) and have laid out the carry-ons with their contents lists ... so I'm getting there! Tomorrow I will pull out the suitcase Sean and I will use for our clothing and personal items and hopefully I can manage to have all bags zipped up and waiting by the door in a matter of days!
Also, the talented Ms. Ronnie came by this morning to drop off, and help me hang, the drapery in Cadence's room. Let me mention that we just picked out the material at about 4:00 yesterday afternoon! How's that for service and efficiency? They look super ... THANK YOU SOOOO MUCH RL!

The plan was to wait and use the velvet ribbon, that should have arrived by now, as the ties, but Ronnie wanted to get them up before Cadence comes home and used some green ribbon she had for now with the intention of changing them once the ribbon is delivered. I don't know ... I kind of like the green!!!
Right now ... I'm tired ... I know ... wait until we get back and have a toddler to deal with ... but let's deal with now! I think what has been exhausting about the packing is the MESS!!! It seems everytime I get going there is an utter disaster left in the room and so ... there is a lot of clean up. On a positive note, I think the worst is over!
Another task completed today ... my cabinets! Ronnie's other half dropped by and installed them for us. I'd show you what they look like, but I'm taking a break from the clean up in the laundry room so it will all have to wait.
Oh, and as luck would have it, I've been noticing some stains on the driveway ... I took a whiff and think it may be something that needs attention so ... off to the garage tomorrow, first thing in the morning!!! Argh! That is one bill I don't want to have to deal with ... let's hope it's just a minor repair ... Thursday's my LAST payday!

Monday, August 20, 2007

A Few Accomplishments Today!

I was able to knock a few things off my list today ... booked a flight for my mom so she could visit her THREE grandchildren (note: there is only 1 at the moment!). I also put up the new window treatments in my bedroom. I guess I should clarify to say, the first window treatments ... yeah ... we've lived here for 5 years now ... what's your point? Much thanks to the very talented Ronnie who took this on! They look fantastic ... better than the photos ...

AND ... I made it to the Payless store to get my shoes! Won't we look adorable in these:

Of course, since I drove all that way I figured it was in my best interest to check out some of the boutiques! Oh boy, did I have to show some real restraint! I'll certainly head back when I have Cadence with me. And, I did manage to pick up this gorgeous number ...

Can you just imagine it paired with a little pair of faded jeans?! I also found a great little gift for my new neice/nephew who I expect will be arriving soon. See, the trip for the shoes was well worth the efforts!
Well, gotta get to the next item on my list ... vacuuming ... argh!!!!

Sunday, August 19, 2007

Practise Round!

Sean and I decided we would get ourselves ready and try out some traditional Chinese fare ... peking duck. I need to confess that A) we made some chicken as back up and B) the peking duck was made by the President (not quite traditional or authentic)! I am happy to report that we enjoyed it and will be having chicken salads for dinner tomorrow!

I spent a couple of hours in Cadence's room this afternoon with the suitcases ... it is not good! The Chongqing one is basically full and there are no clothes in it for me or my girl (or formula or Cheerios or any of the suggested medications for Sean and I). I do have a bigger suitcase but it is quite heavy ... there are weight restrictions! I guess I'm going to have to just pack it and weigh it and hope for the best! I have until Friday ... that is my designated date for completion ... we'll see!

There are a couple of families from our agency currently in China now who have received their babies and have sites ... Jasmine and Alex . You can read about their adventures and view their photos by clicking on their names. Enjoy their journeys while you wait just a little longer for ours!

Saturday, August 18, 2007

Nine Months Old!

Cadence is 9 months old today! We will see her in 2 weeks and be home with her before she turns 10 months ... yay! It is starting to get really exciting and emotional and scary and STRESSFUL! As anxious as I am to get there ... I'm equally anxious to get home!
I received the most exquisite gift from my friend Martha and her daughter Madison today ... I should not have expected anything less ... these ladies have FINE taste ...

And check out the back view ...

It is a Tiger Hat ... the tag reads as follows:
In Chinese folklore, babies wear this hat on their one year birthday to catch
all the heavenly goodness falling from the sky between the tiger's ears.
How cool is that I ask you! And yes, it came in the Kate Spade bag ... this will be one stylin' child!
Thank you so much!!!

And yesterday I embarked upon what SHOULD be my LAST handywoman project. Here is the initial stage:

You will have to wait for the final showing as I do need some guys to do the installation now that I've completed putting the parts together. It really is nothing spectacular but, something that will assist with my organizational skills! Well, that's the intention ...

Friday, August 17, 2007

Last Big Purchase

Yesterday the last of our big purchases arrived ... now to figure out the whole installation thing ... yikes! That's on next week's list. You might also notice the recent purchase Sean made for his daughter ... how sweet!
We leave in less than 2 weeks ... TWO WEEKS!!! I believe I have almost everything I need ... except for the formula and some meds for Sean and I. The challenge will be getting all the stuff in the suitcases ... and for those of you who are concerned about me ... I am only taking 2 pairs of shoes - walking sandals, runners and oh yeah, a pair of flip flops for the pool (okay, I guess that makes 3). Speaking of shoes ... the search is over! Payless has located a pair in my size about 40 minutes away from here ... I'm travelling to get them Monday! How great is that!!!!

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Taking the Day Off!

Today is all about me ... kind of! I haven't yet had an opportunity to have some of my gal pals over for a lazy day around the pool sipping margaritas, daiquiries, pina colodas and champagne so today's the day. I'm going to set out to Service Canada first thing this morning to ensure I have everything I'll need for EI and then I've got a 75 minute massage booked ... ahhh! After that it is party time! If I'm feeling up to it, I will start on the kitchen cupboards this evening, which aren't really all that bad ... except for the dry goods, under the kitchen sink and the silverware drawer. I am actually ahead of schedule! In fact, I've got another
'engagement' tomorrow at Nancy's pool and will feel no guilt taking another day off. Life has been pretty good ... waiting for the shoe to drop! Actually, waiting for the shoe to arrive ... no luck with the pink camos yet!

Monday, August 13, 2007

A Better Day!

Yesterday in the throes of my anxiety, my gal Al phoned and talked me through ... reminding me I'll have the most important things: food, diapers and loving arms! It was what I needed to hear! And my travel mate (whom I've yet to meet face to face) also phoned from her side of our country to give me the straight Dos and Don'ts ... so yeah, I'm feeling much better today.
Of course, getting a few things done off my list helped too! Things like redoing my list of things left to purchase, inventing a new list of 'outfits' I'm planning for the days in China for me and Cadence (with a laundry day and repeats!), getting all the cleaning done upstairs and putting together .......... The Limited Jeep Liberty All Terrain stroller! Had a little surprise during delivery ... more duty costs ($70), so now the stroller I found in the KMart at home has cost me more than double ... oh, well ...
I'm happy (plus Sean put that on his visa!). And I probably shouldn't go into the fact that now I wish I'd ordered their top of the line jogger, which in the grand scheme wasn't a whole lot more ... no I shouldn't ... so I won't.
Thought we'd try it out on our first baby ....

Okay ... 1 more thing left to do on my list tonight. It involves a bottle, a stained towel, and 100% coverage! I am not graceful ... I will fight every step of the way!

PS - N.C. I don't have enough drawer space for pants and besides they look so much cuter hanging on those wee pink
wooden ones ... you'll see!

Sunday, August 12, 2007

Issues ...

This child of mine has not even arrived yet and I'm already getting glimpses of how I will not be able to keep up with life! Take this blog for example ... I can't manage it! Now relax, I'm not saying I'm shutting it down or anything like that, I'm just facing the fact that I'm having trouble now ... so ... god help me! I have loads of outfits I'd love to show you but quite frankly, I can't spare the time to photograph them, load them on the computer and then upload them here ... there are much more pressing things to do!!!
Like shopping!~ You know I have 'issues' there ... I cannot go to a shop, mall, box store, etc. without purchasing ... especially if there is a sale! Once I'm on EI, I'm going to need some serious intervention for that! Take yesterday for example ... I went to HomeSense, simply to find ONE thing ... I came home with a cart full of 'clearance items" AND children's pant hangers ... something I have been searching high and low for! And, it gets better ... they're PINK!!

I also made a very practical purchase yesterday .... BIG sale on these!

Thanks for everyone's input. In the end, I just went with what was on sale and will try all the brands eventually to see which is best for my girl!
I will only touch on the packing for a moment ... to say that I am feeling completely overwhelmed all of a sudden. I am going through a mix of emotions here ... do I have too much stuff, not enough, do I even have the right stuff??? And I will even tell you that I haven't even started packing MY stuff yet! The anxiety is really starting to escalate ... I had to leave the room and shut the door ... I'll try again tomorrow!
On a more positive note ... I found the most ADORABLE pink camouflage sneakers for Cadence today! There is a matching pair in my size out there somewhere so of course, I'm on the hunt ... anyone near a Payless out there???? Anyway, the picture didn't turn out too well, but, I am NOT retaking photos of shoes ... I've more important things to worry about!

Thursday, August 9, 2007

Kicking Myself!!!

Okay ... I have a one track mind and am kicking myself in the behind ... which isn't too difficult considering its recent growth!
Since the stop at K-Mart, I have not been able to get the Jeep Liberty All Terrain stroller out of my mind ... I spent two days surfing the net for one ... to no avail ... almost! Ya know, I really should have asked about it at KMart ... maybe there was a shipment due or something but ... I'll never know (that's where the kicking comes in!) AND now ... it won't matter! Sean and I went to Toys R' Us and Walmart this morning to look at strollers and car seats and to be honest ... no stroller matched the Jeep so ... came home and ordered it!!!! Yes!!! There was ONE company of about 7 or 8 that would deliver to Canada ... not cheap (more kicking involved) ... but ... I'm happy!
So now you see, instead of kicking myself, I can use the stroller to work it off ......... ya think?! Scroll down to I'm Back for a picture ....

Wednesday, August 8, 2007

In Between Fire and Tags!

Just thought you might enjoy some anecdotes from our 10th anniversary evening!
First of all, we decided to try a new place this evening ... we'd heard many good reviews and wanted to see for ourselves.
I will say that it is a lovely place, despite its location, although a bit pricey. The menu was limited to a few entrees with ingredients unfamiliar to me, but I was willing to be adventurous. The service was .... questionable at the onset. Really, should
a server in the middle of taking your order interupt you to seat the couple who just stepped inside the doors??? Ah ... NO! And I must mention that she went right to taking our order without offering drinks ... not typical ... I'm chalking it up to inexperience.
in the meantime, while waiting for her to seat the new patrons Sean put down his menu ..... only to realize that it was soon on fire! Paper menus and candles don't quite mix!
Regardless, we did enjoy our meals ... they were artistic and exquisite!
At the last moment I decided I would use the restroom rather than wait the 5 minutes until we were home. I walked the entire length of the room. When I returned to my seat, a lady at the next table came over to tell me about my tags .... I forgot to remove ALL the tags from my dress ... and let me tell you ... we are not talking small price tags here ... we're talking the big huge brand tags ... 3 of them! I am such a loser!

I'm Back!

Had a great visit up north with our family ... ate and drank, drank and ate and ate and ate ... oh, and drank! The weather was great the whole long weekend ... and absolutely perfect for Carol's outdoor wedding. Only problem ... forgot my camera, so ... no photos! We even learned a new outdoor game in between the ceremony and dinner ... washer toss!
We did some shopping across the river and I found the perfect stroller for me (and Cadence)...

Of course, as luck would have it, it was out of stock! And now that I'm home ... I NEED IT ... and so, I have been looking madly on line! It will now cost me an extra $70 in shipping and duty costs but ... I want what I want! Unless, there is anyone out there planning on visiting the states in the next few weeks who could pick one up for me????
And finally, today is our 10th anniversary!!! Happy Anniversary Sean ... thank you for the beautiful flowers and 10 great years ... I love you and am looking forward to the next ten+!!!!

Thursday, August 2, 2007

Heading North!

Sean and I are off to the Soo today to enjoy some family time and attend a wedding. AND four weeks from today, we will be
getting ready to head to the airport! AND on this day next month we will hold Cadence for the first time! It is all becoming very exciting!
Enjoy a fantastic long weekend all!