January 27, 2010

Viva La Winter Warm Up



Luke, Sam and I were lucky enough to travel to Riviera Maya this January for a week of fun in the sun! We were also lucky enough to have my parents along for the fun!

First of all, I didn't know that it was a 3 and 1/2 hour plane ride to Cancun. Wow. I asked how long the flight was on take off. We took off at Sam's nap time. Sam doesn't nap on planes. It was at that point that I regretted the lack of DVD selection that I brought. We weren't "that family" with "that kid," but we were a close second.

We arrived...to rain. Ok, Ok. We have seven days, right? My prayers were answered! The next day, no rain, and all the days after: sunny and 80 degrees!

No one got burned. Everyone got a little tan. Sam, of course, is the darkest (maybe Dad is darkest) even whilst sporting SPF 70 (no joke) all week.

Mom and Dad were awesome! They took Sam for a day while Luke and I went to Xel-Ha for some snorkeling. We all switched off staying in the room for nap time. We switched around some for dinners as well. For the first few days, meal time was...a challenge to say the least. However, after we got Sam cranking on a schedule and he knew what to expect, he did just fine.

This was Sam's first trip to the ocean and the beach. He was hesitant at first, but eventually LOVED it. He would wake up from his nap, yell for papa, and grab a swim diaper. So fun!

Other things Sam enjoyed: flirting with Canadians (they were EVERYWHERE), drinking strawberry daiquiris (virgin...almost always completely), drinking pina coladas (virgin...again almost always-so maybe I gave him a sip of my VERY weak drink while we waited for his, how else are we supposed to get him to nap?!), feeding the fish (the giggles! oh the giggles!), laying in the sand, dragging around a yellow "caution: wet floor" sign like rolling luggage, yelling for PAPA all the time! and so many other fun firsts and great memories!

It was such a treat and very relaxing.

Sam loved playing in the sand:
This was Sam's favorite night time activity. Carry around the caution sign and apparently getting a chocolate Hitler mustache:
Sitting on the beach:
Good picture of mom and dad:
Good picture of the fam:
It was awesome.

Peace Out,
Michele

January 14, 2010

China Update: Paper Work (Keep reading, its not as boring as it sounds)

Oh my, ya'll. We had our first meeting with CCAI this morning and it was a doozy!

A lot of Chinese adoption is "hurry up, and wait." For the first 6 months, we hurry.

The first big part is called the "Dossier" a very French word for "Paperwork. And lots of it."

We have to compile a bunch of legal documents stating where we were born, married, etc. We order these documents from the states in which they occurred, in our case, 3. They send them to us and then, GET THIS, we send them BACK to the state of origin for another seal/stamp to certify the certified copy I kid you not.

Then we get finger printed at one place for one government agency and 2 months later we get finger printed at a very different finger printing location for a different government agency. Lets not get too streamlined people, geez, we have a bureaucracy to run!

So for the next 6 months, if you don't see me for a while, assume that I am on hold. with someone. from another state. forever. good times.

Now, the person we met with at the agency was so great! Her name is Hillary, and she didn't mind that Sam was a bit charming, we'll say, (he was all over the conference room). She just adopted a little girl last Christmas from China and she's a single mom. I don't know how she does it, but she was lovely and fun and I think we would get along nicely at a cocktail party (which we go to all the time, doesn't everybody?).

Well, that's about it for now! I WILL eventually figure out how to download pictures onto my Mac!

Peace Out,
Michele

PS-It bugs me that my Mac thinks that "ya'll" is misspelled or not a word. Work on that Steve Jobs. Or do I just spell it wrong? *Gasp*

January 6, 2010

The Food of Christmas

Before I post pictures from the holiday, I would like to give a well deserved shout-out to the food of Christmas:

Breakfast: honorable mention to The Country Boy Restaurant in Leiper's Fork, TN. It used to be a place that OSHA would IMMEDIATELY shut down upon entrance, but in new ownership has shown promise (they lost the chittlins' and added a coat of paint...smells better too, fewer rats, etc).

Lunch: At our house, we (like most red-blooded Americans) eat around 2-3ish, so you could say that it doesn't count as lunch, but when Mom and Dad do the cooking, you give a shout out. Also the Most Improved Side Dish Award goes to my sister-in-law Meghan, who after 4 years of leaving the potatoes to Luke and Mom, took things over and did us tuber fans proud.

Dinner: Soooo many options here. Sheryl (luke's mama) did a GREAT new year's eve dinner of pork tenderloin. My folks held solid with homemade pizza and big salad night, but this year we are going off the reservation and down to Cottonwood Subdivision. This is where Leisha's mom went rogue and made some kick butt Gumbo! Being a native of The Dirty Dirty, she brought the heat, and we thank her!

Drinks: The Cavener's win this one every year, and this year is no different. Dad made a great Chianti (much improved from last year's which was promptly made into sangria). Also (and this will be no surprise) THE LEMONCELLO!!!! LOVE IT!!!! A new addition to this year's drink line-up was Moonshine. Yes Moonshine. Mom and Dad's neighbor made it. I kid you not. It was about as bad as one can imagine. Check that off my lifetime "To Do" list.

So those are the big hitters from this holiday season. If I have forgotten a favorite, I apologize, but there is only so much room for:

THE FOOD OF CHRISTMAS!!!

Peace Out,
Michele