Sunday, November 29, 2009

Early Birds


Sojo and I are up early on the weekends. Well, Sojo is up early, and I follow her because I have no choice really. Dale, although chocked full of great qualities, does not count being a morning person as one of his gifts. We often let him sleep in a bit on the weekends.

The two of us head out on our bike to the local smoothie place for Sojo and Starbucks for me and Dale. Throw in a feeding of the fish in the lake, and it's very fun. Mind you, it's about a 3 minute bike ride, but Sojo takes longer to get ready for the ride than the ride itself. She packs her backpack with toys and also carries her orange crate where she stores her soy milk box. I think it's the process that makes her happy.

Adoption update: All our paperwork is in and being submitted to the Thai government as soon as the fingerprints clear. We are at the stage now that I remember so well with Sojo: being keenly aware of children around us and wondering what he will look like. I remember we always had cute jokes waiting for Sojo, like if we saw a middle-school girl in China, we'd say something like, "oh, look, there's Sojo in her awkward stage." or a college-aged Asian girl in Target, "oh,look, there's Sojo home from her first year of university.' Quite a fun stage!

Saturday, November 28, 2009

Life of Late

Life of late is busy. Too busy. The balance we strive for is a bit off-kilter, and that's just blah! Thankfully we have a long weekend coming up and then an even longer Christmas holiday shortly after that. In the meantime, we've been enjoying after-dinner bike rides (loving my new sherbert orange bike--puts a skip in my daily ride to school), picnics on the lily pads Dale made us all on the floor, and general happiness about the somewhat cooler weather in Bangkok.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

A Love List

Chillin' on a Sunday morning with Sojo. The weather in Bangkok is a cool 71 degrees today, which is beyond fabulous. We went on a Starbucks run this morning and didn't produce even one drop of sweat. Very atypical!

Just a few things I love about Sojo...

She is funky and she recognizes funky. Mom and dad brought us these fabulously funky shoes, and Sojo wore them to the choir concert at school the other night (a very handsome man was playing guitar in the show!)And she eats really healthy food. It's partly because that is what we give her but also partly because we aren't bombarded with tons of junk here (one of my fav overseas living benefits). You know you're on the right track when edamame gets a yippee for being a special treat.

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Drumroll please...


Our sweet little family is on its way to becoming a family of four. We are diving in again, and the adoption process has been started here in Thailand for a little brother. The craziest part of all is that we are told it will be only about 6 months until he is with us because we live here in Thailand. Even if it winds up to be longer, it is tremendously less than the wait in other countries. The timeline here is such that we should get a photo of him 3-4 months after the dossier is submitted and then a few months later, he can live with us. The Thai government will then check on us for the next 6 months, and then he can officially be in our family. We'll do the US required paperwork alongside the Thai requirements.

Sojo was super keen on the idea for a long time, even talking about him when she played hide and seek. "maybe i can play with my little brother. i can say 'where are you little brother?'" just melted my heart. Lately, though, the novelty has worn off and she has been telling us that she wants to be by herself sometimes. No worries, sweetie, we all do sometimes.

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Changes


Small changes happening for Sojo lately...somehow our very routine bedtime of 7:00 p.m. is not working for her anymore. We still put her to bed around that time, but there is some seriously skilled stalling going on. A now-familiar sound is her pittering-pattering feet coming into our room to say, "I need to tell you a secret." The secret is usually something sweet like 'I love you' or when she really kicks it up a notch, it becomes strange things like 'I like your shirt' or 'I like your hair.' Um...thanks?

The only good part about the stalled bedtime (and I mean the only good part as I had it set in my mind that 7:00 would be her bedtime until at least second grade, and I'm not kidding at all when I say that) is that she plays on her bed with her pink light on until she finally surrenders to sleep. We get a gorgeous peek-in every night now as Dale goes in to turn off her light. So peaceful.

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Naked Superhero!

We're still fully in the fantasy imagination stage over here and loving it. Just this week a new character joined us. Let's give a big welcome to...Naked Superhero! (she saves the day a lot!) Not sure why the naked part is important, but it's becoming a nightly routine. A big thanks to my mom who made the cool superhero capes. Can you guess who this character is? It's from a movie that we all love dearly. Think robot-obsessed kid meets robot in movie about saving the earth. Yup, that's Wall-E herself squeezing out a brick just like in the movie.

This is one phase we'd love to see last a long time. The other phase Sojo is going through where she procrastinates going to bed and cries a lot when she doesn't get her way--well, that one can pass by tomorrow.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Ladies and Gentlemen...

What a blast we had last night. We have a routine that Sojo plays by herself while Dale and I finish dinner, and while she was doing so, we heard rumblings of something going on and then watched her climb the toy shelf. Then she shouted out, "LADIES AND GENTLEMEN..." and said something else random about an audience. "Can I do a show?" she asked us. Uh, you bet you can!

What started out as just cute ended up being her putting on a 'show' for us for about an hour. Mainly, the show consisted of her climbing up the toy shelf, shouting 'Ladies and Gentlemen!,' singing twinkle twinkle little star with a few added lines of a random invented song, and then jumping off the middle shelf... ...over and over and over, like most of everything in our lives right now. But it was so much fun. "Can I do another show?" she asked us again and again.

Dale joined in the show for the grand finale (it's starting to look like a 3 year old version of Cirque de Soleil) and this gave her the chance to do the big jumps off the top. I already have visions of shows as she gets older with signs and tickets and all that fun stuff. And perhaps even some small parts for the parents as well. Great childhood memories of our neighborhood shows in New York running through my head. Such fun, that whole kid thing.

Saturday, November 07, 2009

Catching Up

It's been busy around here, and somehow the blog hasn't kept up with all the stuff happening. We are settling back into our own rhythm of things and enjoying a bit of cooler weather here in sweaty Bangkok after about 5 weeks of having my family with us. My brother suggested this 'overlap' family visiting idea last summer, and it's fantastic. It means we have some time with all of us here, and then some extra time with just one part of the family. It translates to lots of good quality time with everyone. Making me homesick for them just typing this....
Loy Krathong has passed again, the lovely Thai holiday of sending all your yearly baggage down the river, metaphorically speaking, with your krathong.

And someone is still fully in the robot phase, even posing for pictures that way now and riding around on a new-ish robot bike. My favorite part is when she walks up to a random person and begins acting like a robot. She's definitely quirky, and we so love that.

On a different note, I have had the extreme pleasure of working on a library project for an amazing place called the Mercy Center, located in one of the poorest slums of Bangkok. This labor of love was started by a teacher at our school, and we are now in the final stages of getting ready to open the library for the children who live at the orphanage (many of the girls in the circle with me live at the center) and for the surrounding community. I found myself in awe most of the day as we unpacked boxes of donated Thai books and sorted them. What I loved most is that the girls were supposed to be putting them on the shelves, but when I went to see how they were doing, most of them were fully absorbed in reading. Powerful stuff.