Tuesday, November 10, 2009

More Pictures

In June we walked in the American Cancer Society's Relay for Life. Allan also caught his first fish with his cousin.

Welcome Allan

Way back at the end of May our friends and family came to a wonderful party to welcome Allan IV (Jun Ke) home. Here are a couple pictures.

Friday, April 24, 2009

What's in a name?

When we met our son in Nanjing we learned how to pronounce his Chinese name. We did not have it quite right... the best phonetic spelling I can come up with is JaWin Koo-ah. It sounds best when he says it and he often corrects our pronounciation. His surname is Hua which is also the word for flower in Mandarin. While traveling with us in China he would often say his full name, Hua Jun Ke, when he introduced himself to people. He was given this name when he arrived at Nanjing SWI. We don't know what his name was in his first family and he has not told anyone as far as we can tell.

When we met him he had many questions for us which he asked through our agency facilitators. One of his first questions was "what will my American name be?" We were glad that he was able to discuss this with us through the interpretor. He did not have an American name in mind and when we suggested Allan, which is his Dad's name, he liked the idea. When we first came home he was still calling himself Jun Ke and so were we most of the time. This week I noticed he has begun telling people his name is Allan when he meets them!

More family pictures

Here are pictures from "Forever Family Day" when we finalized the adoption of our son and the next day when we visited the Nanjing Social Welfare Institute. He lived there for almost two years. The lady in the picture is the Director. She was very fond of him.

Meeting our son

Here are pictures from the day we first met our son. On March 30th we met him for the first time at the Civil Affairs office. The younger children did quite a bit of crying as would be expected. He walked in looking very serious, then broke into a big smile. He did not stop smiling all day.

Pictures from Beijing China

In Beijing we visited the Olympic Venues. Here are the Bird's Nest and the Water Cube. Very impressive!

We also visited the Great Wall at the Badaling section. It is really a steep climb up! It was also very crowded with lots of visitors.

Saturday, April 11, 2009


We are back and everyone is doing well. Just trying to get over the
jet lag. We got home late Thursday night. Went to bed and all woke up too
early in the morning. Yesterday we were tired all day, but stayed up until
9:30 PM and all four of us slept through until 7:30 AM. Still dragging a
bit today, but getting stuff done. Laundry, groceries, etc. We are all
doing well, especially Jun Ke who seems to be adjusting great. He is a
good eater and tries everything. He really loves most fruits and veggies,
he esp. LOVES watermelon and bananas. He loves noodles, too. (more so
than rice or congee). We have been working on English words for things
with him. Later today we are going to color Easter eggs. Should be fun!

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Guangzhou Part I

Last friday the children received their Chinese passports and we all flew from Nanjing to Guangzhou. Jun Ke felt a bit car sick on previous bus rides so we gave him a half a dramamine. He did fine on this bus ride and the plane ride too. He loved the airport and the airplane. It is hard to fathom how amazing some of these "firsts" must be for him. He got a window seat too! The flight was less than two hours.

Then in Guangzhou we were taken to the White Swan. It is beautiful hotel on Shamain Island along the Pearl River. We have been able to relax here, swim in the pool and walk around Shamain Island. We also went to the Mainland city of Guangzhou yesterday and visited two Buddhist Temples. Taxi rides are very inexpensive so getting around is pretty easy.

We completed all the visa paperwork and had our consulate appointment today. Tomorrow we will all go to the U.S. Consulate and take the oath. Then the children will receive their passports with their US visas in them. They will have a special visa (R-3) which means they will emigrate to the U.S. and become citizens when they arrive there.

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Picture of the Happy Family!

We leave today for Guangzhou!

Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Family Day!

We are in Nanjing since Sunday! We met Jun Ke yesterday and he is the most wonderful, loving little boy. He is calling us Mama and Baba and calls Chloe the Chinese word for Big Sister. He is "Didi", little brother. He had a visit from the doctor yesterday and was deemed very healthy and very smart. We are sure of this as well. He eats and sleeps very well. He speaks a little English and uses many gestures. He also takes our phrase books and finds words in Chinese characters to show us. Since he can read Chinese we went to a bookstore and bought a stack of Chinese children's books including a Tom and Jerry comic book which he says is his favorite. He orders Chinese food at restaurants twice now and seems to banter quiet comfortably with all the waitresses. (I think he is a little flirt!)

Jun Ke and Chloe are getting along very well. Sharing the DVD player and toys and walking hand in hand together when we are out.

Today was the official adoption ceremony. We met the orphanage director who spoke very highly of Jun Ke. She says he is a very good boy and a favorite of hers. We took their picture together and she asked that we email it to her. Tomorrow we visit the Children's Institute where he has been living so that he can say good bye to the nannies there.

We'll post again but maybe not until Gaunghzhou.

Friday, March 27, 2009

In Beijing!

Hello All! We arrived in Beijing on Wednesday after a smooth trip to the airport and an uneventful flight. (Thanks to Mom and Phil for the ride to Newark). We were pretty bleary eyed after 14 hr. flight, when we were greeted at airport by tour guide and driver and taken to our hotel. The Crowne Plaza is definately four star! Very posh and comfortable.

We caught some sleep and then walked around area near hotel including the Night Market- an outdoor food vendor area, and the shopping district. Yesterday we saw many sights on our tour including the Forbidden City and Tiannamen Square. Also Temple of Heaven and an amazing acrobatic show. The acrobatic show was definately Chloe's favorite part. We also had a very fancy Vegetarian dinner at the Lotus Restuarant. Today we hiked the Great Wall and saw the Ming Tombs. Also the Olympic Venues. Quite impressive! The Bird's nest and the Water Cube are so much bigger in real life than they appeared on TV.

Chloe is not enjoying all the attention her blonde ("yellow") hair and pretty eyes are attracting. So many people comment about her and ask to take her picture. She just hides behind us some times. She did agree to pose for a couple pictures when children asked. She must appear quite novel to the people here. In general everything is wonderful. The tour is quite well organized and we are kept busy all day. We have briefly met three other Homeland Adoption families today, but we arrived a day before them and have a private tour. We will all be traveling to Nanjing together Sunday, then we will meet the other four families. We'll update you when we can.

Love, Bonnie, Allan and Chloe

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

Happy St. Pat's day!

Today was another beautiful early Spring day. We received our plane tickets in the mail yesterday, got prescriptions filled for Cipro (just in case) and bought small gifts to bring for the ophanage staff that have been caring for Jun Ke and the agency staff who will help us with the adoption. It is traditional to give people small gifts as a "thank you" and we will be wrapping them in bright red tissue when we get to china to make nice little gifts. (thanks Maia, again). We are also looking at getting a small digital camera for the trip.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

End of ski season

We had some BEAUTIFUL weather this weekend and really enjoyed skiing and seeing many of our friends at Belleayre. We are still packing, running last minute errands and counting down to our date to China. 9 days and counting....

Friday, March 13, 2009

Hello Everyone! We are busy getting ready to leave for China (March 24th) to meet our son and bring him home with us. Thank you to my dear friend Maia for setting up this blog and agreeing to keep it posted while we travel.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009