Thursday, January 29, 2009

Travel Orientation Conference Call Feb. 3rd

We have a Travel Orientation Conference call set for Feb. 3 hopefully they will be able to give us some close est. on travel date. We already sent in our LOA, travel agreement, and orphanage donation that was the biggest check we have ever written, hopefully it will do the kids still in the orphanage a lot of good. The only paper work type of thing we have left to do is send our passports to a currier serves that will hand deliver them to the Chinese consulate so we can we our visa's to enter China. We are getting so excited!

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Winter Onions?

A new co-op opened up in our town and Lori and I stopped by to see what they will be selling for the garden in the spring. When we pulled up I saw that they already had onion sets out front, so we picked some up. I don’t know if it was cabin fever or if I am just hoping to bring spring along sooner or both but I needed to get outside for awhile. I know it is still to cold for them to grow to any size without a cold frame/green house, so I looked in behind my shed and found everything needed to build one. Growing your own food is a good way to save money as long as you don’t try to grow a fifty dollar tomato. If I had to go out and buy the materials for the mini green house, I would have washed all my savings away. Last year I grew a bunch of onions all at the same time and at harvest time we cut them up and put them in Ziploc bags. When ever we needed onions for a meal we would just grab a bag and pop it in with what ever we were cooking. The amount we were able to grow last year lasted us a long time but we still ran out before Christmas and now have to buy onions from the grocery store. This year I hope to grow enough to last us until next year. We are also going to be doing some things different. I am going to start my onion bed off at different times, adding to it every four or five weeks so we will always have fresh onions through out spring and summer. I will be able to harvest the first onions I started today and start some new ones in there place in the bed and so on. Hopefully that will yield us enough yummy onions to last all year.

Cold frame covering the onions.

Important update on funds needed!

I said in the beginning that I would adjust the amount needed to help bring Norah home as we saved money and as people made donations, or if there was a change in the estimated funds needed to complete the adoption. We have gotten the LOA (Letter of Acceptance) and have to be ready to travel in 5-8 weeks. We still have a long way to go so last night our son who has been waiting to go to China with us for the last three years offered to stay home to take care of the house and animals thereby reducing the amount needed to complete the adoption. By my estimation that will drop the amount of funds needed to complete the adoption by $2,500.00. I have received the check for the big job that took me just over two weeks and as soon as it clears the bank we will be able to reduce the amount by another 1,500.00. As a kid we had a saying in our house, “Don’t count your chickens before their hatched.” and it has served me well over the years, so I have subtracted the $2500.00 already witch leaves us needing $5,280. I won’t subtract the $1500.00 until the check for work clears on Monday or Tuesday, so look for that number to drop significantly again. If it clears, that will bring us to needing only $3700.00. The most updated amount needed will be posted in red on the side of the page. If by the grace of God the number gets to 0.00 before March 16th I will put an end to the chip-in and breath a sigh if relief. If you can help us get to that magic number $0.00, Thank you. To all the people who have donated, and if you have donated and have a blog that I didn’t know about please let me know by Email. We want to make sure that you are recognized and thanked. We would also like to thank those of you that are unable to donate at this time but who are following us and keeping us in your thoughts and prayers.
Thanks Glen

Saturday, January 24, 2009

We would like to thank the following people for there help with our adoption fund.

If you have donated to our adoption and have a blog please email me your blog address so I can post it here with a Thank you.
Thank you. Roberta C. Of Cabot. Thank you.
Rose E. of Cabot, Thank you.
Cheryl D. of Mabelvale Thank you.
Kammy K. of Sherwood thank you.
Marcy S. of Guam & msn Thank you.
Bryan & Kim R. of Benton Thank you.
Phil & Denise R. of Cabot Thank you.
Tommy & Julie A. of Cabot Thank you.
Tom T. Of Cabot Thank you.
Carolyn & Michael W. Of Jacksonville Thank you.
Hussein of Reno Thank you.
Jerald C. of Reno Thank you.
Glenn & Sheri C. of Jacksonville Thank you.
Ken H. of Cabot Thank you.
Anonymous. of Cabot Thank you.
Bo B. of Cabot Thank you.
Weimin T. of China Thank you.
Elisa T. of China Thank you.
Sam T. of Phoenix Thank you.
Annie T. of China Thank you.
Donna, Andrew T. Thank you.
Charlotte W. Thank you again.
Cara H. of Bonaire, Thank you.
Tonya T. of beaver damspring, Thank you.
Laurie W. of Olympia, Thank you.
Heather & Mario E. Thank you.
Norah H. of Dallas, Thank you.
Kimberly F. Of Elkridge, Thank you.
Susie H. Thank you.
Michelle M. Thank you.
linda j & Family Thank you again for your help.
Stefanie W. of the Netherlands wow thats cool. Thank you.
Thomas D. of Little Rock, Thank you.
Heidi H. of Tucson Thank you.
Steve & Karen F. of Jacksonville Thank you.
Betty & John W. Of Sherwood
Thank you. Gary & Nancy B. Of Jacksonville Thank you.
Linda & Eddie D. Of Jacksonville Thank you.
Terry & Martha S. of Little Rock Thank you.
Mark, Syleie.& Emiley of Cabot Thank you.
Stephen, Sheila, & Max G. of France, Cool Thank you for your donation and kind words.
Charlotte W. Thank you again.
Mark, Kelly & Melanie Thank you.
The Incredible, Mike & Melissa B. of UT. Ha-Thank you.
Joe, Jody, Seph, Jillian, Chloe, & Caleigh, Of Chloe Faith & Thank you.
Sheryl C. Englewood, Thank you. so much.
Sandra B. of Jacksonville Thank you.
First Baptist Church of Jacksonville Marguerite Class, Thank you.
Angela H. Of GA, Thank you.
Scott O. Of WA Thank you.
Kelly W. Hampton, VA Thank you.
Stefanie W. of the Netherlands Thank you so much again!
Anonymous, Thank you.
Ritchie & Jane G. of Maumelle, Thank you.
Jerald C. of Reno Thank you again.
Tom & Linda S. of Cabot Thank you again.
Cortney D. of WA Thank you.
Becky & Don T. of jacksonville Thank you.
Laurie W. OH Thank you.
David and Mandy S. of OH Thank you very much.
Lisa L. of MI Thank you.
Danny,Jo Anne, & Makenna, of Cabot Thank you so much.
Pat & Don of OK, Thank you.
Mike of Sherwood, thank you.
Jeff & Alissa B. of, Palau thank you very much.
shea d. jonesboro, Thank you.
Cheryl D., Of Thanks again
Kathy & Dale Of NE. Thank You.
Debra C. Of VA. Thank you.
Anonymous, Thank you.
Tricia of Thank you.
Heather B., WA Thank you.

Bite Me Gateway!

Well, we got our monitor back from Gateway, who is now Acer by the way. They called me the other day at work and told me they looked at the monitor and they found the problem but it was not a safety issue so they were shipping the monitor back. When I got the monitor back I hooked it up to see if they had fixed the problem. That was a big no. The screen would come on for a second and then shut off. I have been using the small flat screen TV from our bedroom as a monitor. So I only had one option to try and fix the monitor myself because there was no way I was buying a new one at this time. I opened it up and started to look around knowing that if it was smoking like Lori said there should be some clue inside of what burnt out.

Aha! There is the foul smelling little bugger. Now, what is it? I stared at it for awhile till I could make out some writing on the one just like it that you can see in blue. That is the color the black one should be. I looked on the internet and found out it is called a capacitor at 3000 volts. The next day I was making small talk with the father of of the guy whose house I am currently working on about my monitor and he just happed to have a capacitor in his shop and gave it to me for free! What luck.

So I went to Radio Shack on the way home from work and bought an electrical sautering iron and sauter, for a total cost of $13.45. I cut out the bad capacitor and sautered on the new one in three minutes, put it all back together, hooked it up and..............

I got my monitor back working by myself!

So gateway paid for the shipping to the service center and for the shipping back to my house, and when they had my monitor open inspecting it and found the problem they could have replaced a $1.00 part, and let us know it was not a safety issue, but they did find a part that burnt out and they went ahead and fixed it. You know, out of good customer service.
Lori and I would have bought Gateway products until the day we died.
Now they can forget it! Hope my computor last a long time but if it ever needs replacing it won't be with a Gatway/Acer product. As Lori would say, "They're dead to me!"

Thursday, January 22, 2009


Our LOA came today we are thrilled we got it before CCAA is off for Chinese New Year. CCAI told us to expect to travel in five to eight weeks. WAHOO!

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Every Day Deserves a Chance

The following is an excerpt from a book we are studying in Sunday School class. Although Lori and I don’t always land in the side of the "dogs diary" we do our best, and think we have a much better life for being thankful for the things we have, and the “opportunities” that life gives us all.

Excerpts from the diary of a dog:
8:00 a.m. Oh boy dog food---my favorite.
9:30 a.m. Oh boy, a car ride---my favorite.
9:40 a.m. Oh boy, a walk---my favorite.
10:30 a.m. Oh boy, another car ride---my favorite.
11:30 a.m. Oh boy, more dog food---my favorite.
12:00 p.m. Oh boy, the kids---my favorite.
1:00 p.m. Oh boy the yard my favorite.
4:00 p.m. Oh boy, the kids again----my favorite.
5:00 p.m. Oh boy, dog food again---my favorite.
5:30 p.m. Oh boy, Mom---my favorite.
6:00 p.m. Oh boy, playing ball----my favorite.
8:30 p.m. Oh boy, sleeping in my bed----my favorite.

Excerpts from the diary of a cat:
Day 283 of my captivity. My captors continue to taunt me with bizarre little dangling objects. They dine lavishly on fresh meat while I’m forced to eat dry cereal. I’m sustained by the hope of escape and the mild satisfaction I derive from ruining a few pieces of furniture. Tomorrow I may eat another house plant. I attempted to kill my captors this morning by weaving through their walking feet. Nearly succeeded. Must try this this strategy at the top of the stairs. Seeking to disgust and repulse these vile oppressors, I once again induced myself to vomit on their favorite chair. Must try this on their bed. To display my diabolical disposition, I decapitated a mouse and deposited the headless body on their kitchen floor. They only cooed and condescended, patting my head and calling me a “strong little kitty”. Hmm---not working according to plan. During a gathering of their accomplices, they placed me in solitary confinement. I overheard that my confinement was due to my power of allergies. Must learn what this means and how to use it to my advantage.
I am convinced the other household captives are flunkies, perhaps snitches. The dog is routinely released and seems naively happy to return. He is, no doubt, a half-wit. The bird speaks with the humans regularly. Must be an informant. I am certain he reports my every move. Due to his current placement in the metal cage, his safety is assured, but I can wait. It is only a matter of time.

The day of a dog. The day of a cat. One content, the other coniving. One at peace, the other at war. One grateful, the other grumpy. Same house, Same circumstances. Same master. Yet two entirely different attitudes.
Which diary reads more like yours? Were your private thoughts made public, how often would the phrase “Oh boy, my favorite” appear?

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Learn Chinese with Chinese Pod

I have been studying Chinese off and on for awhile now with little progress. Matter of fact I'm picking up sign language a lot easier than Chinese. One of the tools that I have come across that has helped me the most is Chinese pod. Since getting the referral for Norah I have been listening to it during the day at work on an MP3 player. I work alone so it is not a problem to have it playing all day.
At Chinese pod they help you with the language but an added benefit is they tell you about Chinese culture at the same time. I have a long way to go but I am finally starting to pickup some phrases and understanding some of the words they are saying before they break down the dialog. If you haven’t seen Chinese pod yet you can check them out here.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Time is gone but not forgotten.

It is incredible the things the passage of time can wash away. The sharp hurt of the loss of a loved one ever so slowly with time hopefully will turn into found memories of the time you had with them. Even water given enough time will carve great valleys, caves, and canyons out of stone. When I started this blog back in September 03, 2005
I was thinking that Norah had already been born and that it was only going to be a six month wait for us after our dossier was in China to travel and to become a family of four. I was right on somethings Norah had already been born and was living in China, but I was so wrong on the time it was going to take us to meet one another.

I am greatful to have started this blog. I can now look back over the years and see my thoughts and feelings at diffrent times in this adoption. Like the one from Saturday, February 18, 2006 that is the same security blanket that we sent Norah in her first care package.


Saturday, February 18, 2006

Connecting with our daughter

"From the time we first decided to adopt Norah we have been picking up things for her when we are out. This helps us make a connection with her. One of the first things I bought for her was this security blanket. It wasn’t expensive but it means so much to me when I see it, I know that it is her security blanket."


Or this one from the time I met the man who was using Sign Language while speaking to a group at the Clinton Library.

Little did I know at the time that Norah coming into our lives was going to give me the gift of Sign Language.


Monday, August 18, 2008

President Clinton Library

"Lori and I went to the President Clinton library in Little Rock, Arkansas for his (Clintons) birthday for two reasons: it was free admission to the library on his birthday, and we have never been. So what the heck, when we got there much to our surprise they were giving away free cake and a watermelon to boot. We toured the library and looked at all the things that went on during his presidency. One of the most amazing things I saw that day was not the replica of the oval office. It was this guy; I don’t remember his name but I was very impressed with him so I had to get a photo with him to remember him by. We went into a round room to watch a short movie and he came in and started speaking and using sign language at the same time because there was a deaf couple in the theater. I sat in awe as he signed away telling us about the library and why Clinton picked that spot for it. He was very nice to talk with after the movie had ended and was happy to let Lori take our photo. I may try to get his name so I can write the library and tell them how nice he was to us and what an asset to the library he truly is.Glen "

So now let me get back to the purpose of this post. I was going threw our adoption file getting rid of some of the papers from the last three and a half years that we now longer need. When I came across the welcome letter I received from Joshua Z. the Co-founder & president of our adoption agency dated Novermember 7th, 2005. What an exciting time that was, paper chasing, and frustrating to have to deal with some U.S. agencies to get our paper work back. I started to see changes in the China adoption program about the same time we got done paper chasing in 7-22-06, and over the next three years we had good days and bad dealing with not knowing who my daughter was and how she was doing. Having to run into people that we had told about the adoption one year, two years then three years ago and tell them "maybe six to ten more months". One of the most painful times was when I ran into a guy I worked with over the years and he asked me have your gotten home with your daughter yet, when I responded with not yet we hope to hear something in the next six months or so. His reply was “Glen you told me that two years ago.”
Now I believe everything happens for a reason, even the things that are hard on you. Along with the pain, the long wait has brought some wonderful gifts to my family like Annie. She is such a wonderful person to have in our lives. We would not have met her if it were not for the long wait. Even Norah, the things that had to happen to bring this wonderful child into our lives took place over the last three years.
I have heard people say once you see your childs face all the pain of the wait will wash away. I wish that was true for me but it was such a painful time in my life, I don’t think I will ever forget it. The wait was something that I had to survive to get to Norah, and Norah had to survive it to get to us too…..

Wednesday, January 07, 2009

I have learned to say and recognize these words in ASL sign Language.

I spend about two three hours a day studying ASL, I do a couple of lesions in the morning before work and then at work I study it on my morning brake time and lunch time, then at knight I study it right before bed. All that studying is paying off.

These are the words I know how to say and recognize.
The ASL sign for Turtle is pretty funny.

Teddy Bear
Police Officer
Green Beans
Hot Dog
Peanut Butter
Vacuum Cleaner
Thank You
All Gone
I Love You

Monday, January 05, 2009


Need I say more? Brandon & I both have a good case of it, we are still going to go to work because he is off for Christmas break and we work alone so we can’t pass it along to anyone. On a plus side the job I am doing will take me about two weeks to finish and maybe another week to get paid on. Brandon is helping me, and is going to donate his earnings to the adoption fund. It is just what we have been praying for and we will be able to take a huge whack at the ugly number in red to the right when I get paid for it.

Saturday, January 03, 2009

Where there's smoke there had better be a new monitor!

Since getting the referral for Norah I have been trying to go over the different things in my head that we need to adjust in our families life and how we go about our daily routine. One thing I have thought of is we will have to do story time with Norah right before bath time, then bath, then bed, because going by the information we have on her she will be totally deaf at night when we take her hearing aids out for the night she will not be able to hear us. Which leads me to the other thing I have thought of, the Fire Alarm. I have found the smoke detector at the bottom of this post made by First Alert that has sound and emit’s a bright strobe to awake the deaf. I will put one of these in before we go to China. I need to ask around first because someone told me my county may provide me with it. The only problem is that if Norah sleeps as deep as Boo does we will have to drag out not only a 4 year old but a 17 year old in the event of a fire.
To drive home how important this is, when I was still at work yesterday, Lori called me and told me she was on the computer at home when the monitor started billowing smoke out of the back, she unplugged the monitor and tower from the wall and opened the doors and windows because the smell of burnt plastic is not a good one.
When I got home I inspected the monitor. You could not see any damage on the outside but you could sure smell it. I looked in our file and found out it was bought back in 2-2-2007.
I got the number off the back and had Lori call the company, because she is much better at dealing with customer service then I am. After a quick battle with the phone tree for two minutes she got an actually person, and told him what had happened. His response was oh I'm sorry since you bought the monitor just under two years ago it is no longer under warranty. Ok so what are we suppose to do with it? Customer service: well I would suggest you just replace it with another one. Lori: why would I replace it with another one of your products, besides I don’t think this is a warranty issue, this is a safety/defective product issue. Customer service- I'm sorry mama it is no longer under warranty. Lori- can I’m please talk to someone in the complaint department. He says yes and puts her on hold.
This was 10 minuets into the phone call I know because she documents EVERYTHING when she is talking to costumer service. One hour and thirty minuets later someone picked up the line, so for an hour and thirty minuets Lori listened to cheesy music and your call is very important to us please hold…..The person who finally picked up seems more interested than the first in our monitor. He asked Lori if she saw flames coming out the back and she told him no. He asked her again are you sure. By this time Lori is thinking have you had this conversation before. He then put her on hold again but told her he needed a couple of minutes to find out what to do. After he got back on he told us they were going to pay for the shipping to the company to get it fixed, and gave us a service code also. Don’t know what will happen but it may have been worth the 1hr.48min. and 13 sec. Lori had to stay on the phone. We feel that if the monitor had just went all black we would have taken the whole situation as like well it figures perfect timing, however, because it caught on fire someone at the company should and needs to look into it.

This is the smoke dector we are looking into.

"First Alert Smoke & Fire DetectorThe First Alert detector uses an ionization technology that is generally considered more sensitive in detecting flames. The strobe light flashes approximately 60 times per minute so that people who cannot hear alarms can be awakened. Licensed electrician needed to hook up. Designed for ceiling/wall mount. Ten-year limited warranty."