Wednesday, December 31, 2008


Interesting facts about Guangxi that I've found, so far:

Wikpedia says that Guangxi China became autonomous 50 years ago on Dec 11, 2008. So, 1958 they became an autonomous region.

Thinkquest says that: Self-government in ethnic group autonomous areas is affected through the local people's congress and people's government at the particular level. There are currently five autonomous regions in China. They are Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region founded on May 1, 1947, Ningxia Hui Autonomous Region founded on October 25, 1958, Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region founded on October 1, 1955, Guangxi Zhuang Autonomous Region founded on March 5, 1958 and Tibet Autonomous Region founded on September 9, 1965. In addition, China also has 30 autonomous prefectures and 121 autonomous counties (or in some cases, banners). The committee of the People's Congress and the head of the government of an autonomous region, autonomous prefecture or autonomous county belong to the area's designated ethnic group.

Organs of self-government in regional autonomous areas enjoy extensive self-government rights beyond those held by other state organs at the same level. These include enacting regulations for self-government and specialized regulations corresponding to local political, economic and cultural conditions; making independent use of local revenue, and independently arranging and managing construction, education, science, culture, public health and other local undertakings. The Central Government has greatly assisted in the training of ethnic group cadres and technicians through the establishment of institutes and cadre schools for minority ethnic groups to supplement regular colleges and universities. It has, in addition, supplied the ethnic group autonomous areas with large quantities of financial aid and material resources in order to promote their economic and cultural development.

Our guide in Guangxi said he thought Lil M was part of a "minority" group in China.

(this is also from the thinkquest site) - China is a large country noted for its dense population and vast territory. There are 55 minority ethnic groups in addition to the Han who represent 92% of the population. The defining elements of an ethnic group are language, homeland, and social values. 53 minority ethnic groups use spoken languages of their own; 23 minority ethnic groups have their own written languages.

Most of the 7 percent of the minority ethnic groups live in the vast areas of the West, Southwest (Mia is from Southwest China) and Northwest. The largest is the 12 million-strong Zhuang in southwestern China. Although minority ethnic groups account for about 7% of the population, they are distributed over some 50% of Chinese territory, mostly in the border regions. Equality, unity and common prosperity are the fundamental objectives of the government in handling the relations between minority ethnic groups. China exercises a policy of regional autonomy for various minority ethnic groups, allowing ethnic group peoples living in compact communities to establish self-government and direct their own affairs.


Tuesday, December 30, 2008

This is what I want to Lil M to know

It is OK to be Chinese. It is OK to be who you are. It is OK that you are American... a Chinese American. It is OK that you aren't fluent in Chinese... or maybe you will be! It is OK that you speak English so well. (even at 2 years old!!)

It is OK that you are who you are, and not a cookie cutter replica of Mommy or anyone else. It is OK to be different or the same, or whatever makes you a more comfortable you. I celebrate who you are. I want you to celebrate who you are.

I wish I could tell you more about your biological family. I wish I knew. I wish the world wasn't what it is today. Secrecy and un-openness disgust me. I pray that it is different when you grow up. I can't wait to see your children and your children's children.

You are natural,
You are loved,
You are family,
You are mine,
You are your own person,
You are everything you want to be and more,
You are special,
You are amazing,
You are beautiful,
You are happy and sad and allowed to feel your own feelings,
You are Mommy's "own" child, but I don't own you,
You are my daughter, and I love you.



I added a new group to Facebook today called International Interracial Adoption. Please feel free to join us.

I also added it as a link to the right called **Facebook Adoption Group


Monday, December 29, 2008

What a wonderful Christmas!!!!

The first pic is of Mia on Saturday... she's 28 months old now!!! WOW! :) She looks like a little dancer in this pic, I think it is so cute.

The rest of the pics are from Christmas morning. :) The first couple are of her and her new American Doll, Ruthie (from Scott)!! And then of her new handbag and headband! My little angel loves her accessories!! hehehe

Speaking of Lil M... she's just amazing. I know I say that over and over... but she is one of the happiest little souls I've ever met!!! I'm COMPLETELY and totally in love with her (as any mommy should be).... She makes me smile!!

Have a happy New Year!!


Monday, December 22, 2008

Too much

So, I've been thinking about Christmas all day. And about just how much I've spent... for Christmas and for the year. Yikes. And I have some debt to take care of... so, I'm prayerfully considering how to handle this. Of course, I want to give everyone everything. And I do. I like to give.

I'm considering whether or not to take/send a few things back. Like the stuff I bought *myself* for Christmas!! Actually, it wasn't for Christmas, specifically, but it was definitely due to the good deals during this season. What can I say, I like to shop.

But I don't like the debt I've accrued. It has me stressed. Don't get me wrong, there are some very valid reasons for some of it. And I wouldn't some of the decisions I made this year and last to help Sis. However, I need to get this under control.

So. I'm putting myself back on a budget. And setting some goals. Now, I just need to figure out what to do about what I've already done. Maybe not take things back, but maybe hold them back for another holiday. Yes, I think that would make me feel better. And maybe I'll donate some of it. I have some things to donate, anyway. That would definitely make me feel better.

I encourage others to do the same, if you can.


PS. The Duggers had their 18th child on 12/19. Wow! I don't know how they do it! I love that show.


I'm excited about Christmas. I would say that Christmas is my favorite holiday, even if it has become beyond commercialized and secularized. So, I thought I'd share my thoughts on the real Christmas and say Happy Birthday to Jesus... my Lord and Savior and best friend.

Christmas is a celebration of Life... the life that was born, that is the Word, the Truth and the Life. God incarnate. Our savior. I am forever grateful to God that He made the way for us to be in relationship with Him... not that there wasn't a way before. I believe there was. But us people messed up and got caught up in all the laws, rules and dogma of what we *should* do... and forgot the simplest truth of all. LOVE. Love God, love our neighbors... friends, relatives, enemies... and ourselves. Love, Love, Love.

Most of us feel so unlovable. Don't we? I know I have felt so unlovable so many times in my life. That is here on the horizontal plane. But the vertical line that connects me to God is filled with love. It is something I know. I feel it. And when I am feeling unlovable in other parts of my life, all I have to do is look up and pray.

I watched a show last night about twins. Actually, it was about how twins develop in the womb, and it was awe inspiring. Scientists are unsure why some identical twins aren't so identical... one might have a disease that the other one doesn't... even though they have the 'same genes'. When you see a baby in the womb, you will just be awe struck over the way that they develop. How is that not God? It is... it just is.

Which brings me back to Jesus. Happy Birthday Jesus. There was a time when you were in the womb. I wonder how Mary must have felt. Not only a baby, but God incarnate. Wow. Talk about awe and amazement. What is even better is Easter. When we see the fruition of Jesus' life.

So, I hope you will take a few moments this week to relish in the awe of life, love and God. I am.


Friday, December 19, 2008

How much is too much

So, I love to shop... and I tend to go pretty overboard for Christmas... for Lil M and Nephew, it will look like enough toys and such for probably 4 kids! But, you know, if we didn't do that, it wouldn't feel normal. Is that sad? lol. Actually, I don't usually buy expensive gifts for them, so they have lots to open... but I did get Chase a more expensive present this year. I hope he likes it. I got him a Nintendo DS Lite - with Pokemon on it.

Anyway, how much is too much? Do you have a limit? When it comes to Nephew and Sis... I don't usually have a limit. Maybe that's bad... but I love doing it. Of course, my bank account doesn't love it so much. I try to not just do this type of stuff at Christmas. Christmas is special, for other reasons...

This Christmas is a little tougher, because Sis doesn't have Chase on Christmas Day... only Christmas Eve. But we're going to treat it like Christmas morning, anyway.

Oh, Manna got sick yesterday morning and left an awful stain on the carpet. :( God love her. Now, I used some Resolve pet stain remover on it... and it is still there. Not happy about that. Got to figure out how to get the carpets looking better by the 3rd of Jan, 'cause Mom and Sis are coming over!! Oh, and my range hood (over the stove) has the stupid vent cover thing coming off... looks like a wire mesh thing. I took it off and it looks awful. And here I've been trying to get the house looking better!! NEVER - ENDING.

Another note, Mia hasn't been napping at daycare again. :( She seems so tired in the evenings... I wish I knew how to get her to nap there...


Sunday, December 14, 2008

cabbage soup

I've been cooking again... cabbage, this time. I like cabbage, but had never cooked it before. So, I thought I'd give it a try! Not too hard, and pretty good! :)

1 head cabage - coarsely chopped
1 onion (white)
1 lb turkey sausage
2 carrots (could have used more)
1 can of great northern beans
1 cup of cooked white rice
1.5 chicken bouillon cubes

Cooked the carrot (coarsely chopped) and half the onion first, with bouillon, then added cabbage, cooked turkey sausage and beans. cooked rice separately with the other half bouillon. Let cook until cabbage is translucent. Added spices (salt, pepper, paprika, celery seed and no-salt spice mix). Yum.


Monday, December 8, 2008


...some innermost thoughts from melissa...

So, today I've been thinking about Mia's biological mom. Actually, I've been listening to more adoption stories (who me??), and there were a couple that really struck me. They weren't women from China, so their stories aren't exactly the same, but wow. They cut through my heart. What these women go through to bear a child they don't raise themselves. Holy cow. I, absolutely can NOT imagine it. I mean I absolutely understand why some feel like they can't parent - for whatever reason. But I can't imagine what PAIN they must feel. To suffer, worry, think about... or force yourself not to think about... stuff down... the little piece of your heart that left that day. Unimaginable.

Lil M will never be mine biologically. But, man, I can't imagine not having been touched by this amazing little person. And what her mother must have gone through. Undoubtedly, torture. Even if she pushed the emotions down, or told herself she had to. Or if someone else did it. I just wish she could know the ABSOLUTE and UTTER JOY that Mia is. And I get to raise her. Who is blessed here? I can't even truly express it in words.

Amazing. I mean honest to God, lay prostrate on the ground, THANK YOU GOD. And thank you, Mia's mother for giving her life. She was her first mother. The one who is connected to her through the physical earth. Through centuries of history and duty and tradition, which are amazing. I can only hope and pray that I can be that connected to Lil M in the center our hearts and spirits and lives together...creating a new history for us both.

You know when I started this journey, I was sort of full of myself.. I mean, I *chose* to adopt. I'm a capable woman. I wanted a child. I have a child. But today, I feel so humbled. I have this awesome chance to help another person... become ...whatever she wants to become. I can tear her down or build her up. I absolutely could not love her more if she came from my body....



Lil M can count to 10 with me now!! This came about this weekend. She just kept going! Before, she could count to 2. lol. She says nine (one), two, three... and can count all the way to 10 with me! I'm so excited! She can't do it alone yet, but it's just a matter of time. :)

Her phrase of choice this weekend was "I did it!"


Saturday, December 6, 2008


I had to take Manna back to the vet today (yet another $110) to get her thyroid checked and weight checked. She went from 5lb 11oz last time to 6lb 09 oz today! Very nice. She's definitely been eating more. It would be nice if she gained a little more. They want to keep her on the same dosage for 30 more days, and will let me know Monday how her blood-work looks.

It snowed overnight! Mia didn't like it on her shoes... but maybe after her nap, I might take her out to play. :) We'll see if she likes it then... or maybe I'll wait until there is more snow on the ground.


Friday, December 5, 2008

Keep thinking...

I have been obsessed with adoption sites and stories again, lately. I'm trying to figure out why I think I could possibly handle two children... and how I might move forward... So, I keep praying. These thoughts aren't going away, so now I need to figure out why and what to do. ***as I sat here thinking of it... one of my fellow contractors just got laid off*** OMG. just gonna pray...

Lil M is doing great. We've had a long week. She hasn't been napping well, and I haven't been sleeping well. We've both had some sinus issues, but for the most part are in good moods, as usual. Some interesting little facts recently for Lil M:

She likes beans, any kind! (my girl!!) :)
She doesn't like meat too much (my girl!!) lol she would rather have beans than chicken.
She told me FOR THE FIRST time this week when she pooed her diaper!
She told Aiyee Mimi FOR THE FIRST time - to anyone, I'm so jealous - I love you Mimi!!!
She likes Blues Clues, Oswald, and Diego (he has a cat)
Her favorite stuffed animal right now is "Meow" her cat from Auntie Ellen. :)
She tells the Dog-dogs bye bye every morning when we leave.
She says nigh-nigh to the dog-dogs, cat (manna), moo (stuffed cow), meow (stuffed cat) and mommy.


Thursday, December 4, 2008

English Genius

Or so this quiz says. ;-)

Your result for The Commonly Confused Words Test...

English Genius

You scored 100% Beginner, 100% Intermediate, 87% Advanced, and 87% Expert!

You did so extremely well, even I can't find a word to describe your excellence! You have the uncommon intelligence necessary to understand things that most people don't. You have an extensive vocabulary, and you're not afraid to use it properly! Way to go!

Thank you so much for taking my test. I hope you enjoyed it!

For the complete Answer Key, visit my blog:

Take The Commonly Confused Words Test
at HelloQuizzy

bloody noses

Lil M and I both had bloody noses yesterday... it was very odd. I am sure it is due to the dry air. My sinuses are terribly sore and dry. She was coughing, too. But seems to be OK overall. So, I canceled dinner last night and tonight's play date. I just don't want to take a chance of either of us getting sick. I'd rather take it easy.

I did get some of her clothes better organized and mine, as well, last night. Doesn't that sound like fun? ha.

I'm beginning to fret over bills again, my contract at work, the economy... it's all ok, but if we are really in a recession, what might happen here in april, when my contract is up... work has been going really well, but you never know. ok, that's my whine/vent. God always provides.


Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Poverty and Scripture

Your challenge is to pick one verse or passage that has touched you and changed your thoughts on poverty and how the Lord might see it and respond and blog about it!

Well, one of my favorite verses is Romans 12:12
"Rejoice in hope, be patient in suffering, persevere in prayer."

I don't feel like I have a very good answer for this topic. But here goes. I would imagine that everyone thinks that poverty sucks. And since I'm not God... and I can't affect all people, I do pray for the suffering and for
those who live in poverty.

I am thankful for what I *do* have, and I try to give as much as I can. I feel like that's what I can do, because I believe in the power of prayer, and in my relationship with God, which gives me hope and patience (a relative term, of course) during my own suffering and for the suffering of others. Does it change things? I'm not sure, because there always seems to be poverty on some level. But I hope when I get to Heaven I will see that it did!

I wish I had a better answer. I think that helping those in need starts at home (in our own families, churches, communities), but that we need to think globally, too.

basketball season

We went to the Women's Crosstown Shootout last year (on December 1), where UC won. Mindy, Chase, Scott, Mia and I went... was sort of a family day, and I just realized it. I wonder how the game will go this year. It was our official first date, too, I guess... poor guy. Had to go with Sis, me and two kids!! lol We went to Skyline afterward to commemorate the day. Technically, we went to a lunch the week before, but that was after I asked him to the game. Yes. I asked him. LOL. No lack of forward women in my family. ;-)