Friday, April 30, 2010

Visions of Our Family To Be

Our adoption process is proving to be a slow waiting game, which seems to be the case with adopting. However, we talk about Bodhi (the name we have chosen after the bodhi tree in Buddhism, which is so important to Thailand) all the time, and in Sojo's mind, he is almost here. So much so that her preschool teacher stopped me the other day and said, "I heard Sojo's brother is coming tomorrow." Hilarious because Sojo, unbeknownst to us, has been doing a countdown of his arrival at school, and all the teachers were getting excited. Our thought is that it won't happen until at least October or November at this point. We are still waiting for the second round of fingerprints to come back, and we cannot move forward until that happens. Crossing our fingers we can at least submit our paperwork before we leave for summer vacation in June.

In the meantime, the most beautiful relationship is developing between Sojo and Bodhi. Maybe it's because he will be old enough to be a playmate of sorts or because we all talk about him often, but she is smitten and protective and sisterly already. Every pair of pants that is too small, she saves for him. Every item we see that is tiny, she wants for him. And her family project from school--he is right there with us. Already a part of our family.

This waiting is so different than the last time. Sweeter because of Sojo.

And, in the category of something I never, ever want to forget...

Getting ready for bed the other night, Sojo said to me,

"Mama, when Bodhi comes, he might cry."

"I know, Sojo. It's ok. We'll help him."

"Know what I could do? I could take his bed and push it right next to mine. Then I could hold his hand if he cries."

That kid is something else.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Light Love

Around 4:45 each day, the light is simply magical in the living room. Captured this lovely photo.

Also recently discovered the coolest site where we are changing our blog into a bunch of hardcover books. Can't wait to find these waiting for us when we arrive stateside in June. If we keep going the way we are, the collection will be very similar to a set of encyclopedias one day.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010


Sojo has always been a water child. I can't help but imagine that living in an orphanage with a bunch of other kids didn't allow for the luxury of a big ol' bath complete with splashing until she was a prune, but the minute she hit the water with us, she has never looked back. What I love most is her fearlessness. She experiments with motion, dives (or attempts to--more like a bellyflop) and will surely freak me out in future years with backflips and such. And because she has always wanted freedom in the water, she has always been opposed to water wings. Flat out refused to wear them.
Lately, she's changed her tune a bit. She wants to be around the big kids in the pool, chasing them around and being a part of the social scene a bit. Poor thing isn't tall enough to touch the bottom, so I have to be ferrying her around to get her close to her chasing victims. She doesn't like it one bit and is craving independence.
Enter the water wings for older kids, borrowed from a friend here. They float just enough to keep her on top of the water while still making her work a bit by figuring out how to tread water. Now we can all chill in the deep end and hang out. A bit of independence for us all.

*Anyone notice that Sojo is NOT holding something in both hands while jumping in the pool? That stage is still a big part of her life, but for some reason not as much in the pool anymore.

Saturday, April 17, 2010

Lanterns Gone Awry

One of my favorite aspects of Thai culture are the paper lanterns that you can buy and send off into the sky, complete with a wish. I've only seen them every now and then, but they are just beautiful. I even wanted these for our wedding, but it's completely illegal in the U.S.

On our last night at the beach, I saw one of the lanterns floating in the sky from our hotel window. We all scrambled down to the beach to buy our own lantern to set off. One of the waiters helped us light the sterno-like firestarter in the middle (it's like a mini hot-air balloon). Only problem we had was the wind that night--too much of it and going in the wrong direction. Before we knew it, our lantern went sideways and headed straight for the dinner crowd and surrounding foliage. Panic! Dale took off like a rocket (he is such a 'save the day' kind of guy) and somehow managed to get a hold of it before starting a forest fire, but then it wound up getting stuck in a tree, still on fire. Not sure how, but we didn't set the island on fire, thankfully.

The comical part is that, as usual, this kind of stuff doesn't phase the Thais at all. The waiter felt horrible that he had to charge us the $3.00 for the lantern and it didn't work. As Dale and I were getting our heart rates back to normal on the beach, the waiter came back with a brand-new lantern to try again. We kindly said no thanks and called it a night.

Guess I get why they are not allowed in the U.S.

Friday, April 16, 2010

Dinosaur Claws

Back from the beach and soaking up the last few days of vacation. Our resident brontosaurus, Bronny as she likes to be called, was in dire need of some dino claws. Ok, maybe not dire need, but I thought it would be fun to go and get them painted nicely at the neighborhood salon. Sojo agreed and seemed to love it. She did mention right away that she didn't need a haircut as she doesn't like those at all. But putting on sparkly green polish--that she loved.

On our way out, someone stopped her to tell her she looked beautiful. She was seriously offended and huffed, "I'm not beautiful!" You see, that wasn't the purpose of this visit. It was just to have those claws look scary. But how can a perfect stranger be expected to know that?

Sorry though, Sweets! You are so incredibly beautiful. Glad the camera captured the essence of her beauty so nicely today.

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Koh Samet

When Dale and I met way back in Venezuela days, we loved living in a land where every weekend was a beach weekend and we had eternal tan lines. Dale's take on life is that it's good to live in a place where people go to vacation--gives you a vacation feel to your own life, I guess. And we definitely have that here in Thailand. A short car ride and speedboat trip brought us to the island of Koh Samet, where the sun is intense, the beers are cold, and the waters are a postcard blue.
We've even managed a few family photos on this trip. Sojo loves the one where she is laughing--a good snapshot of her personality.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Much Big Girl

Sojo is rockin' some blue toenails just like her mama always wears. She informed me yesterday that she was now a 'much big girl' and was ready. Just perfect for a few days of toes in the sand.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Settling in to Spring Break

Settling in nicely to our spring break, although amid the sadness that the protesting in Bangkok is no longer as peaceful as it was before. We'll be getting out of town for a few days starting tomorrow, and it would be great to see this resolved soon.

In the meantime, we're soaking up the vacation time a number of ways.

Sojo spent some time this morning talking to trees. This one, Treedy, told her it was okay to peel his skin off. Hmmm...
A new book I ordered for the library arrived just minutes before I left school for vacation. Savoring every word of this on the green bench.
Although it appears like we buy furniture every week, we really don't. But we've been waiting for about a year now to find the perfect reading chair. Found it and had it delivered yesterday. As if we need more excuses to read.

Our little swimmer has discovered a new way to move around. More on that soon. Off to Koh Samet tomorrow, an island about 2.5 hours from Bangkok. Sojo is psyched about the speedboat ride. I am psyched about chilling at the beach for 3 days.

Thursday, April 08, 2010


Our little space out back is turning into a funky little hangout. Dale added these wooden deck tiles and a few potted plants. Too bad we started it during the hottest time of the year, but it sure looks fabulous from the window of the air-conditioned living room! We hope to add a ceiling fan outside to allow us to sit out there more often. Until then, it's a great bubble spot, and we have an awesome plant helper.

Tuesday, April 06, 2010

Dino Princess

Always surprising me, that Sojo. I came home from school today to find her wearing the sweetest pink sundress. Since this is a very rare occasion, I wanted to get a picture of her, but I wasn't quick enough. She soon wanted to change into her 'dinosaur dress.' Here I am thinking maybe this was some sort of green outfit, but no, it was her Halloween dinosaur costume. Never mind that it's 95 degrees in Bangkok right now! Later on, I did 100% bribe her to get onto the new green bench and have her photo taken. The deal was she could put her dinosaur costume back on right after dinner if she took some photos.

And this...the joy of how the letter T is relatively easy to make. Lots of 'mama letters' on papers in our house lately. Don't forget the duck footprints in the bottom right corner.

Sunday, April 04, 2010

Duplo Heaven

We all are slightly obsessed with the Duplos. This scene at the window seems to be the first activity of the day and the last activity before bedtime. Thankfully, Popo and Gong Gong have acquired some for the Tucson time, and we are packing up ours here to bring home for the summer. Let the creativity flow...

Oops. Another reference to summer vacation. Must remind myself that it's still two months away!

Thursday, April 01, 2010

Summer on My Mind

We're still a few months away from summer, but with tickets purchased, family time is on our minds. I was going through old photos and found this one from 2 summers ago in Arizona. It solidifies what we thought--she is growing and stretching by the day and losing a tiny bit of those awesome chubby cheeks.