Wednesday, July 30, 2014

Doing what we do best~Mei-Mei Reunion 204

There is one activity that all of our girls really enjoy. Because everyone likes to swim, we make sure that every reunion has a time for the kids to swim

They went back and forth from the hot tub

to the pool.

The adults enjoyed being together

After spending the afternoon swimming, we took part in another one of our traditions:
Eating out at a Chinese restaurant.

After we ate, we stood around the outside of the restaurant for about 45 minutes. It was as if we just hated to say goodbye.

Eventually, we did, but it was with sadness in our hearts that we wouldn't all be together for another year. On the positive side, the way time flies, it will be time to get together before we know it!

The next morning, we met Esther, Emma and Brooke for breakfast, then headed home.

Even in the bigger car, my two decided they needed some alone time.

 Elijah's tent

Abbey peaking out from her tent

I'm glad they had imposed their own exiles, because we were stuck in the car for an additional 2 hours because of a sad, sad wreck. A motorcyclist lost his life. The road was a two lane road, so no one could go anywhere for 2 hours.

Abbey entertained herself with Elsa while waiting.

Finally we made it back home with our heart full of gratitude for the life the Lord has given us, and the realization that none of us are promised a tomorrow. Therefore, we need to live every day as if it is our last. This is something that I, as I get caught up in the daily,"do this, do that", totally forget to do.


Sunday, July 20, 2014

The busy Mei-Mei reunion

We left our house in our little rental car about 9am, headed for Columbus, Ohio. The kids did really well with the drive. (The drives to NY and Holden, along with the "DV-go player", as Abbey has always called it, have gotten the kids pretty acclimated to long drives).

We made excellent time and were almost there, when John had to stop rather abruptly. Suddenly, our "check airbag" light came on and stayed on. I quickly scanned the owner's manual and read that this little warning meant the airbag could possibly do one of two things~
1. discharge for no reason or
2. fail to discharge when it needed to
neither of those two things sounded very good to us, so when we got to Columbus, John found an Enterprise and we went to get a different car.

The first Enterprise only had one car they would let leave the state. From the looks of it, I'm not sure it would have made it to NC. So, off to the airport Enterprise we went. What a good call that was! We were upgraded to a very nice car, twice the size of the one we had, all for the same amount of money.

We made it to Dorina's house, only about 40 minutes late. There was plenty of food waiting for us and the lawn games were just getting started. The girls didn't miss a beat, they picked up just like they had been together all year!

As darkness took over outside, the girls, (and Elijah), gathered and began watching, "Frozen". Abbey was completely in her element. It was fun to listen to them sing the songs.

The next morning, we went to The Center for Science and Industry, COSI. This was a neat, neat place.

Abbey dialing the old fashioned way

Your local news anchor

Emma and Elijah in the submarine

Abbey and Esther in a submarine

 The "high wire unicycle" was a hit with the adults (the kids were too small to do it)

 The car simulator was a hit with the kids

Especially our resident car enthusiast

Proof that men are just big boys…

This provided a mild electric shock. The men stayed here quite a while, experimenting with many configurations.
It was a really interesting museum to visit and we all enjoyed it thoroughly, but Abbey and Elijah would say it didn't matter where they were they were thrilled to reconnect with their "China sisters"

Abbey and Esther were inseparable

If there is an I phone available, Abbey will be there!

Abbey and Jody
It was a very busy day. More about the rest of the day and night will follow later.


Monday, July 14, 2014

Mei Mei Reunion 2014~Celebrating the bond

I know it's strange, but way back in 2006-2007 in an orphanage in Chongqing, China, there were some tight bonds being formed.
Abbey is on the far right
These girls probably only had each other as constants in their lives as orphanage workers came and went. They probably only had each other when they went to meet their forever Moms and Dads. Moms and Dads who were blubbering like babies, looked totally different from any one they had ever seen and spoke words that were totally unintelligible to them. They might have looked to each other for comfort when those parents took them traipsing around Chongqing and Guangzhou, hearing at every corner, "Ahhh, she from Chongqing? She a spicy girl!" They (most of them),were together on a long, but cushy (thanks to a sympathetic flight attendant who upgraded them to business class),  flight to another country, where upon landing they became citizens of that country, and…then…were separated from each other, taken to several different areas of the US.

But, their parents also bonded on that trip, and became fast friends, no, closer than friends, more like family! So, they make a trip each summer to get those girls together. Some of them have to travel very far to get to the reunion,  but they do. Because those girls and parents have an incredibly special bond. Just as God knit those girls into their families, He has knit those families together. Our girls were very young when adopted, but I know that they sense there is something wonderful in being able to spend time with another girl who shared babyhood with them.

This year we traveled to Columbus, Ohio for our "Mei-Mei Reunion".  What a special time! It never ceases to amaze me how we can go a whole year apart, see each other and pick up as if we've been together all year! The girls do the same. John and I are committed to nurturing these bonds between the girls and their families. There may come a day when Abbey needs the comfort of being able to visit  with someone who has the same beginnings as she.

The girls and their siblings
Parent, girls and siblings

We had a wonderful time. The weekend was full of activity and catching up. There's way too much to share in just one post, so the next few will be dedicated to  describing the 2014 reunion.


Wednesday, July 9, 2014

More "carnivorous" scenes from Dad

In an earlier post I relayed how Abbey told us that since her Dad said he was "carnivorous", it must mean "silly".

Based on the following pictures,  I wonder if she's not too far off the mark!

and I'll wager that Abbey is just as "carnivorous" as her Dad!


Friday, July 4, 2014

You never know what will come out of their mouths next!

Spontaneity, kids write the definition of that everyday. You can never really guess what they might say.
Example one from Elijah:

I was talking to a friend about another friend's daughter's baby shower, when Elijah chimed in,

"You know you don't have to push a baby out….you can adopt like mom did with me and Abbey!"

Can you tell he has sisters who have given birth?

Abbey also never fails to entertain us:

On the drive to Ohio, Abbey did something really sweet (no one can remember what),  when John said, "When you do something like that, you make me want to give you whatever you want."

With out missing a single beat, Abbey piped up and said, "Pull over, I want to drive!"

Oh, so much fun, living with little children!!!