Sunday, March 13, 2005

Home, safe and sound

After a long and arduous flight, Amy and I landed safely yesterday afternoon. There was quite a crowd waiting at the airport for us when we got through Customs. I didn't take any pictures of the homecoming but I know there were a lot of flashes going off and at least two video cameras running, so I am sure we will receive some photographic evidence before long.

Friday, March 11, 2005

Dallas or bust …

Sydney Grace is on Japanese soil - she's an international traveller at age 11 months. We had a LONG day yesterday, but we're refreshed and only have one leg of our journey left :)

Thursday, March 10, 2005

Paperwork complete- let’s go home!

Our CCAI representative took our paperwork to the US Consulate here in Guangzhou this morning, and we have officially met the requirements for bringing Sydney home ... we do a small "giving of oaths" ceremony tomorrow, and then we're on the plane! Rollin continues to feel low, Sydney coughed LITERALLY for 20 minutes solid this afternoon and tossed her cookies (all over me - but hey, I don't really mind when it's my daughter :)), and I have developed pink eye. But, WE'RE COMING HOME!

I was talking with my mom this afternoon about this adoption as we spent most of the day shopping and carrying little Sydney around in the Snugli. I really would do this again in a heartbeat - not because it was "fun" or "vacation" or "thrilling" or "rewarding," but because the Gotcha Day experience is so fantastic that it makes the whole thing irresistable. To have prayed for this child even before she was conceived half way around the world; to have asked the Lord to protect and nuture her in her birth mother's womb; to have thought of her daily as she was born and very quickly abandoned; to ponder her adjustments with dozens of other infants in a room seeking attention and touch; to have conquered paperwork mountains and hurdled government obstacles; to have received her 6 months picture when she was already 9 months and put a name and face to a dream; to have prepared suitcases full of baby things and medicines and stuff for a 2 week vacation in what could seem to some like TimBuckToo; to have met 9 other families on the SAME road with the same burning desire; and THEN, to have this child, on a Tuesday afternoon at dinner time, put in your arms for EVER, never to be taken away, and never to be abandoned again, and to find that she is SO FULL OF LIFE already.... yes, I'll do this again and again because the Lord compels me to do this for His little children who will be my children, too. This little girl is just so fixed in my heart after all this time, and there are times these last few days when I think she knows it.

So, we will bring her home to you, her family and friends, as well. I have been buoyed up during these last few days by the vision of you all typing such great encouragement to us in the comments, knowing you are reading our adventure and praying for the Lord to guide and direct us. We can get caught up in the minute to minute bustle of life in a hotel in China with an 11 month old and meetings to go to and forms to sign and bags to pack and loved ones to nurse back to health ... this week I have really paused to think of you all and smile with a new spring to my step. I am so thankful that Sydney and this whole adoption process have meant so much to you all - I love knowing that the Lord is working out His purposes for all of us through her adoption.

Wednesday, March 9, 2005

Dr Bredenberg is on duty …

Well, we are just a pathetic little traveling party. Nothing life threatening, but sad nonetheless.

Greetings from Guangzhou

Anybody catch the number of that bus? Which bus? The one that ran me over...

I think this is the first of many things Sydney will be kind enough to share with me, and I appreciate the sentiment (really, I do!). This virus, however, can go away with my blessings. It acts like it wants to hang on and get a free ride to the States, but hopefully I'll be able to shake it off before that.

Anyway, you didn't come all the way to this site to listen to me moan about a sore throat and a fever. Let's get to the good stuff, like how we got to Guangzhou and what we've been up to since.

Monday, March 7, 2005

Literally spring fever - the Bredenbergs fall victim …

As every parent knows, the bond between a mommy and her child grows ever stronger with sickness. Although she was the picture of health for the first 4 days, 2 days ago little Sydney Grace started coughing just like most of the little babies in our group. We think someone involved in the transfer of the babies from Ningdu to our hotel must have started it all, but the upper respiratory infection has struck our little family and Grandma seems to be the only one unscathed so far. Rollin was out of commision most of the day with a fever, headache, sore throat, etc ... he wasn't even up for coming to our last group dinner here in Nanchang, which was very telling of how poorly he felt. I have been fighting off all the head cold symptoms as well, but our little Sydney Grace has been a very sad and uncharacteristically irritable baby. After sleeping 13 hours last night, she has been feverish, coughing, and blowing snot bubbles most of the day. Listening to her chest with my handy stethoscope, things sound ok but a little suspicious - I loaded her up tonight with Motrin, Benadryl, cough meds, and an antibitotic I had brought (my first-time mommy skills are at least enhanced by my degree). Right now she is sleeping restlessly - methinks she is having Benadryl/fever nightmares. And guess what - we get on a plane tomorrow! WHAT an adventure.

It has been quite warm and sunny here - instead of the 40-60's we anticipated, it feels more like 70 outside, and we're sweating with our long-sleeved clothes. That, combined with a we've-been-here-a-bit-too-long feeling and being sick, is making us all antsy and ready to move on. Rollin and I are ready to be home with our new threesome family routines to enjoy, and Grandma is just itching to get home and kiss on Josh and Beth. Nanchang will hold precious memories of our first days with Sydney, but home is where we long to be.

We've been spending the days doing grocery shopping (table foods for 11 month olds can be tricky here), visiting some local pagodas and porcelain shops and parks, and walking though the Nanchang Social Welfare Institute. This is the city orphange (not where Sydney spent her first 10 months - Ningdu Children's Welfare Institute is a good 6 hour drive from here). Although the little babies and toddlers we saw truly broke our hearts, the conditions revealed a well-kept place. I fear that other orphanages are not so encouraging. We snuggled with our little Sydney even more today, and I prayed that the future adoptive parents of those little ones would be able to come soon to bring them home, too.

Please pray for Rollin and Sydney particularly today - we'll keep you updated on their recovery, but tomorrow may prove to be awfully long with packing and travelling while sick. We will get our daughter's new passport in the morning, and then we start another marathon of getting 10 familes (11 babies) and all the accompanying adults on a plane and landed/situated at the famous-for-adoption-familes White Swan Hotel in Guangzhou. Hopefully we'll post more about our time here in Nanchang and the daily routines tomorrow night if all goes as planned. The Lord is merciful, and we lean on his mercy tonight.

Sunday, March 6, 2005

Musings from the Mommy

We have taken a 2 day break from posting here from China - partly because the activity level for the adults has slowed down, but mainly because we're getting a little stir crazy waiting for Sydney's passport to be processed so we can get on to Guangzhou. It's taken me this long to process my thoughts and emotions and reactions to this transition to motherhood. Reason? This little girl absolutely floods your emotions and overwhelms your heart.

Thursday, March 3, 2005

Exploring Nanchang

Today was a day with no plans so we relaxed, played, and did a little exploring.

Wednesday, March 2, 2005

Registration Day in Nanchang

Today we finalized our adoption in the eyes of the Chinese government!

Tuesday, March 1, 2005


They say a picture is worth a thousand words, so here they are: