Thank You!

It's been a few days since we first saw our little peanut's face, and it's still hard to believe it's real. I don't think I can even begin to describe how overwhelmed we are with all of the messages and calls of love we have received in the past few days. I cannot wait to tell our daughter how many people were waiting for her and were so excited for her to be coming home. She might be on the other side of the world from us, but I think she might be the most loved little girl in the whole world.

We have decided to name her Hannah Christine (since "peanut" isn't going to be great for a teenager!). She's named for her great-grandmothers, who we know would be over the moon with love with her. We now know that she was a preemie - she weighed just under 4 pounds when she arrived at the orphanage (she was found on July 3, just a few days after she was born). She is still tiny - at the end of October she was 24" long and weighed just under 12 1/2 pounds. The health records look pretty good, though I am going to have my doctor take a look at them next week (we're expecting a massive snowstorm starting tomorrow, so it'll be a couple of days before we can get out of the house!). In Kunming, where Hannah is, most of the children spend time in foster care, so it is highly likely that she is with a foster family right now, though we don't know for sure. All we know is that we are ready to have her home now! :)

Introducing Our Daughter!!!

We are so excited to share pictures of our little girl with everyone!! Our paperwork is all dated at the end of October, so I'm assuming that that's when these were taken, but she's such a tiny little thing! (She's sitting in one of those bouncy seats...makes it easier to realize how tiny she is!!).

All of our paperwork is in Chinese - it will be translated for us this week - but some of it we can figure out. But as of the end of October, the report is that she is a deep sleeper (yay!), can hold her head up while lying on her stomach, visually follows moving toys, follows you with moving head from one side to the other, is active, fond of imitating, fond of playing with toys, and fond of playing games! Hopefully we will get the rest of the report translated soon - I'm so curious to learn more about her!!

To answer a few, we haven't picked a name yet. Even though we have been waiting for four years, this was really out of the blue! When the phone rang this afternoon, I was worried that our agency was going to tell us that something was wrong or that we needed to get a new piece of paperwork done! It has been a few hours and I am still shaking with excitement! :) We don't know when we will travel, but it will likely be at the end of March/beginning of April. In 4-5 weeks we'll receive our approval to travel from China; that's when our agency can go ahead and make our appointments at the US Consulate and we'll find out when we actually travel!

It's insane to think that we've waited for four years, and now everything is happening at once, but it's very very exciting. I'll be digging out all of the "things to do after you get your referral" papers tomorrow, and we'll start doing some baby shopping this weekend! And, of course, I'll continue to post updates here! :)

HUGE News!!

After nearly four years, we have the most exciting news...this afternoon we received our referral from China!! Her Chinese name is Xi Xue Li and she was born on June 30, 2009. We have several pictures...I will post them later tonight! :)

This was a complete and total surprise...we have been told all along that our Log In Date is April 17, 2006, and the referrals that landed today only covered through April 5. BUT...ours was included!! We had sent our dossier to China at the end of March 2006, so it looks like we had been given the wrong LID, and in our favor! :)

She is in the Kunming CWI (the orphanage) in the Yunnan Province of China. We have a huge packet of information on her...unfortunately, most of it is in Chinese! :) Our agency is getting it translated for us, but they thought we would want to come and get her picture today! We hope to travel at the end of March/beginning of April...Mara has felt all along that we would be in China for Passover, and now it looks like that might come true!! :) This was truly out of the blue - we hadn't expected a referral for another 5 or 6 months - and we feel so very blessed! More to follow soon...