Gryffin Gets a Mei Mei

Come along with Gryff and family on their journey to China to bring home his little mei mei.

My name is Gryffin and I am the worlds most spoiled Airedale Terrier. My mom and dad thought it was time I get a little we are all on an exciting journey for a little sister from China. I am very excited about this...except for the fact I will have to share my toys with her and be extra quiet while she is napping. For those who know me...this may be a little challenging!! My mom, dad and I are looking forward to sharing this long journey with our friends and family. Our hearts are so filled with joy...and we are all looking forward to an anxious and exciting year ahead...Please join us!!!

Monday, July 31, 2006


Well there is not much to report...except that we are one month down for the wait until our referral. Right now it is running about a year. This time frame can either slow down more, stay about the same, or speed up drastically. Lets hope it is the later!!! Our fate is in the hands of the miracle workers at the China Center for Adoption Affairs. I truly believe though, that the time frame will be whatever it needs to connect me with the little girl that is meant to be my daughter. I truly believe in the "red thread" that is connecting her directly to my heart.

According to Chinese folklore...there are invisible red threads that connects a newborns spirit to all of the people that will be important in their life. As the child grows, the threads shorten to bring these people closer together.

Monday, July 17, 2006

Group 53 Meeting

We had our first group 53 meeting tonight, with a dinner following. It was a really fun evening, and was so exciting to meet the 7 other families we will be traveling with to China. Everyone was so nice, and we really look forward to getting to know them better. Hopefully we can plan other group outings over the next year, not only to get to know each other, but also to help the long wait go by much faster.
I have to say that tonight made this feel REAL!! All of the paperwork, all of the finally feels like we are so much closer to bringing our daughter home. All of our lives will be forever touched by this incredible journey we are about to go on together. Congratulations to all of the group 53 families!!!

Wednesday, July 12, 2006


Today is the day we have been waiting for!! We received word from our social worker that our dossier was logged into the China Center for Adoption Affairs on June 30th. We are over the moon today about this good news...and are planning to celebrate!! This log in date will determine when our file comes up in the matching room, and we are sent a referral for our daughter. It will be easy to track our progress, by watching the CCAA dates prior to ours. Right now the CCAA has placed children with families logged in through June 28th 2005, so you can see the long wait ahead of us. Regardless, we are so happy for our news today...and feel that we are one step closer to bringing our daughter home.


There is a fun little thing around the China adoption community called a "ladybug sighting." Ladybugs are considered good luck in China, and are often used as a symbol for these beautiful adopted children. "Ladybug sightings" are magical signs you get during the long and frustrating adoption process to let you know everything is fine, and this is exactly what you are meant to be doing in life. I have had several "ladybug sightings"...some even long before I knew I was going to adopt. I feel as though this was truly someones life plan for me....they were just a little slow in letting me know!!!
Looking back many years...ladybugs were a special symbol between my mom and I. On valentines day, she used to give me pink tea roses and a ladybug. I dont really know when or why it started...but it was just our thing. One of the cute stuffed ladybugs is sitting on a shelf in the baby's future room right now.
When my mother was sick, she sat me down and told me not to be sad... that she would always be around me. She said she would come back as a whenever I saw one, she was there checking up on me. Hmmm....did she know something I didnt??
My first "official" ladybug sighting came, when I was on a layover, sitting in my hotel room, working on stacks and stacks of adoption paperwork. I have to admit my frustration level was quite high, and I was overwhelmed looking at all of the work ahead of me. All of a sudden a ladybug came crawling across the desk and onto my papers. I had to laugh to myself....I knew my mom was checking up on me...I also knew this was a sign from my keep going...I was doing the right thing. I worked relentlessly on my paperwork for the rest of the day.
My next "sighting" came one day when I was working on the airplane and met a lovely girl from Shanghai. We were having a wonderful conversation about China, her families story and plight to keep her and her sister. It was very inspiring to hear her story. Gary and I had been thinking about names for our daughter, and we wanted to give her both an American and a Chinese well as keep her given name from the orphanage. I asked her what a beautiful Chinese girls name is...and her reply was this..."I already know what you should name your daughter....her name should be Jun Li." I just remember getting chills and feeling my eyes well up with tears. Especially with her Chinese accent...the name sounded so close to my mothers name...Judy. Yes...this was another sign. (I think we now have a middle name!!)

Yet another "sighting" came yesterday, indirectly, in a phone message from my dear friend Lori. I was having a long day at work, feeling tired and a little discouraged (still waiting to hear about our LID) When I listened to my messages...there was one from Lori...telling me about a sign she got on my behalf. She was at the museum with her daughter Mia (also adopted from China) when a mother came to the play area to round up her two kids. She called out to them..." is time to go!!!" For those of you who dont know yet...Sabrina is the first name we have chosen for our daughter...and all know by now who Gryffin is. Lori had a good laugh to herself...and knew the story would make my day.

I know these stories may not seem like much to you...but for those of us that have been through so much, and have waited for so long for our children...any little glimmer of hope keeps you going!! I hope to have many more "ladybug sightings".....until the day...I can bring my own little ladybug home forever.

Saturday, July 01, 2006

It is really going to happen!!

It has been a slow week, as we are still waiting for our official Log in Date, which should come anytime now. This will be a HUGE thing for us to celebrate, so we will have to plan something very special.
We heard that our first Group 53 meeting is for July 17th, with a dinner following. We are so excited and emotional about meeting the other families. We are going to be sharing so many moments with these people and will probably be bonded to them for life. They too...will be enduring this long wait, the excitement of recieving our referrals, the long journey to China and the incredible day we will each meet our child for the first time. They will share the ups and downs of those amazing first few weeks, and be a great source of strength and support. Many of our daughters will be from the same orphanages and will most likely stay life long friends. Meeting the other families will make all of this seem so real. This is REALLY going to happen!!!

This week was an especially emotional it was the anniversary of my mothers death. It has been such a long road...grieving and healing. Some of the same emotions I have felt grieving for my mom...I also feel during this wait for my daughter. It too, has been such a long road. It is so close, yet still so far away. As with my mom and my daughter, I feel this overwhelming and deep love for this person...yet I cannot be with them, see them, hold them. Sometimes the longing is so very overwhelming. It is funny how similiar the feelings can be.
I found myself thinking this week about what kind of mother I had, and what kind of mother I will be. My heart is so full of longing to have that mother/daughter bond once again. I only hope that she is looking over me and will guide us through this incredible journey that lies ahead.

Sunday, June 18, 2006


We just want to wish all the dads out there a happy fathers day. It is a bittersweet day for all of us here. Gryffin is elated...he is a true "daddys boy". For the both of is filled with many mixed emotions. We are sad that our daughter is not yet with us, but excited that this may be the last year of celebrations in our family without her. I only hope somewhere out there a little girl feels the love and thoughts we have for her today.

We also want to acknowledge the grandfathers and greatgrandfathers...Tom, Dan, Opes, Pete and honorary grandpa Chuck, we hope you are excited about the new addition to our family. She will be blessed to have all of these special people in her life. I hope my own Grandfathers are somewhere over China, keeping an eye on our daughter until she arrives safe in our arms. I am also thinking about my dad today. I hope one day we can all heal, and that this truly special little girl will mend all of our hearts with love.

As far as Gary...she will be one lucky little girl to have him as a dad. those that know him can agree that...her clothes may be a little mismatched, her diaper may wait a little too long to be changed, he will sneak her to McDonalds without telling mommy, she will be chastized for "throwing like a girl", and groomed to be the next Annie Duke by the age of 5........but she will be the most loved and adored little "Daddy's Girl" in the whole world!!!!!

Thursday, June 15, 2006

The long awaited ultrasound of our daughter!!!


We are finally making some progress!! Our agency coodinator emailed us, letting us know our dossier arrived in Beijing on june 12th...and as soon as it is processed in their system we will receive our official LID. The second trimester of our "paperwork pregnancy" has officially begun. Unfortunately....we will have the gestation period of an elephant!

Sunday, June 04, 2006

THE WAIT BEGINS...Beijing or bust

We thought this would be a fitting time to start this we have officially completed the paperwork phase of our adoption. (6 months) We are looking forward to the long wait ahead with much nervousness, excitement, and anticipation. We will use this time to educate ourselves on raising an adopted child, preparing our home for the new arrival, fine tuning some of Gryffins manners, and celebrating the gift we are about to be given. We are truly the lucky ones to have this beautiful little girl enter our lives...and are blessed by all of the family and friends that will be supporting us and taking the journey with us.

We turned in our last important piece of paperwork for our adoption...(the 171-H) and now our dossier is traveling around getting authentications and translations. The ultimate destination will be the China Center for Adoption Affairs where we will be given our official LID (adoption speak for log in date) Once that is recieved...the official wait begins for our date to come up in the "matching room." China is looking at a slowdown in the we are prepared for a long wait.

Our agency has assigned us to travel group 53 with 7 other families that we will travel with to China. We are looking forward to meeting these families in the next month or so, and getting to know the people in which we will share a lifelong bond....our daughters.