Sunday, November 30, 2008

In the mind of Kavanna...

David tends to think that Kavanna's thoughts run along the lines of plotting world domination like Baby Stewie in Family Guy. I think he's wrong. Clearly, Kavanna cares very much about world peace (not domination)... not to mention sartorial splendor and music. She's well rounded (in every way).

"Here I am with Mommy's friend Lisa and her daughter Julia. They brought me the prettiest dress in the world, and very unique. I love to be stylish! Lisa's mommy got me a cool onesy with the letter "K" on it. I think it'll be part of my superhero outfit for when I fight Stewie and his plots for world domination."

"Mommy's friend Andy came to visit. I don't know about this guy. He has white fuzzy stuff on his face. What's up with that?"

"Did I mention he brought me a beautiful dress? It is very splendid and warm.. perfect for the holidays , or for when I have a celebration party after saving the world from Stewie. Thank you, Andy!"

"Plus Andy is a musician who plays in a band. So naturally he has to be way cool. He even taught me how to play the keyboards..."

"Mommy, Daddy... clear out the garage. I'm starting a band!"

"Andy's mommy came to visit me, too. Her name is Shirley and she's a jazz afficianado. I danced for her and it was fun, fun, fun."

Tony & Val and their kids Nick and Milana came over, too, but Mommy didn't get any photos. I was too busy running around. After all, we superheroes are very camera shy."

Friday, November 28, 2008

Kavanna's first Thanksgiving!!

Kavanna is no longer walking.  Nope, not walking at all.  She's RUNNING.  It was hard to capture her in motion, but here are some (non-blurry) attempts.  Her party dress has a petticoat and side bustles.  It's very Mary, Queen of Scots (perhaps not a good comparison, hmmmm).  It's so unique and completely adorable.  I bought it the week we got our referral and hoped it would fit.  It does!

She's wearing white tights that I bought for Ariel in Scotland when she was six months old.  The coldest winter I ever spent was the summer I spent in Ft. William, Scotland (apologies to Mark Twain) and I saved them.  I didn't know I was saving them for Kavanna, but I was... and she wears them well.

First stop, Wendy & Jonathan's house for some pre-Thanksgiving visiting.  Here's Kavanna with Aunt Wendy and Cousin Maddie, my wonderful friends
In Curt & Kathy's kitchen, with Kavanna's first Thanksgiving turkey (she loved it).
Chef Curt...
Curt and Kathy with David and Kavanna... We had a wonderful time!   Thank you so much for having us over for Kavanna's first Thanksgiving!
We hope everyone had a terrific Thanksgiving.  After being in China, where so many people have so little, I have even more appreciation and thanks for all that we have...  I've always been very grateful for everything we have, and for the opportunity to pursue and achieve our dreams, but this year I'm more thankful than ever.  

Saturday, November 22, 2008

That Kavanna is smiling in her bath is a miracle.  She had a trauma at the pediatrician (all is well - she's developmentally on target, even a little ahead, and the doctor was really happy with her progress).  She had four shots and... (gulp) nine vials of blood drawn.  They need the blood to do a lot of testing to make sure her vaccines in China were effective and to check for various things.  She screamed (if you'll pardon the expression) bloody murder.  Poor baby.   

After it was over she clutched her stuffed animal and clung to us... she now has six Barbie bandaids and  horror of the children's lab... and she's made a quick recovery.

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Home five days... and doing great!

Here's Kavanna and the Big Girls (aka her posse).  I have barely had time to get online.  Somehow, playing with Kavanna, reading to her, changing her, feeding her, taking her on walks, sucks up nearly every minute of my day.  And you know what?  I love it!!

David is being a stay-at-home-dad right now.   Watching him bond with her, comfort her, be with her, play with her is... well, it's really sexy!!   He's been a great dad to Ariel and he's wonderful with Kavanna.

We have our pediatrician appointment today.  Kavanna is still very congested but otherwise seems well.  

Saturday, November 15, 2008

We're home!!

We woke up at 4am Friday to get to the airport in Guangzhou... after a short flight we had a seven hour layover in Hong Kong, and then a long flight home.  I got sick on the way home.  Very ironic, as I ate in local restaurants throughout China and was fine, but a ham sandwich on Cathay Pacific did me in.  Needless to say it was a long, long flight.  Feeling a lot better, now (thank goodness for the Pepto that I packed but did not need in China).  

Kavanna is enjoying her new home!
Here she is in her carseat:

Here she is on a living room chair:
Here she is sleeping in her crib:

We returned home to news that there are many terrible fires in the greater L.A. area.  My hearts go out to the people who lost their homes.   

Thank you to everyone who posted comments and emailed during our travels.  It meant a lot to us to hear from all of you.  Thank you for following our journey to (and now with) Kavanna!

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Red Couch Day... and walking

"They want me to sit on that red couch and pose for photos.  Sit still??  Ha!!  I laugh at the thought!"
"And my friends laugh, too."
"Daddy and me... and Jeff and Annabel.   I hate posing for photos."
"I'm crawling all over the place..."
"But I think I want to try walking.  I'm going to try to stand up..."
"I'm up!  I'm up on my feet!!"  (and she walked all around the suite, but we couldn't catch it on the camera because we were trying to make sure she didn't tumble)
"And now I'm down again.  Such fun."
We don't have digital photos of this, but today we went to the Guangzhou Zoo with our friends Karen, Jeff and Annabel.  We saw tigers, elephants, zebras, deer, white rhinos, bears, flamingos monkeys, and lots of other animals.  And then we came to a cage that held a most surprising sight:

Two small pomeranian dogs.  Yes, dogs.  Cute dogs.  Dogs that looked as if they should be in Paris Hilton's purse, not in a zoo in China.  They barked at us, seemingly begging us to take them home.  In China, dogs live in people's homes... and also at the zoo!

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

First of all, Ariel is feeling better!!!  The medication worked and she's feeling almost completely well.  Whew!!

Here are some photos from this morning at the White Swan.

Yesterday I stayed in the hotel with Ariel and David took Kavanna on the tour of some beautiful gardens.  I think the most beautiful flower was Miss Kavanna.

Today we're off to the Guangzhou Zoo... and later, we're doing the famous Red Couch Photo!

Monday, November 10, 2008

A gift from the orphanage

Kavanna was in foster care and her care was overseen by the Yulin Social Welfare Institute orphanage, which presented us with some gifts:  a silver bracelet with her name engraved on it and a disc with 79 photos of her, which are priceless to us.  Here are some of them.
The Yulin SWI.  Kavanna was found outside the gates of this orphanage.

Isn't she cute?
Very bundled up!
Kavanna and her foster mom.  She went into foster care when she was two months old.  I've been wearing Kavanna in a sling ever since we got her, just like her foster mom did, and I think it's been crucial in terms of our bonding.  
The foster families at the Yulin SWI.
Kavanna and two of her friends.  Check out those very disparate hairstyles!!
Kavanna is a happy girl.
Kavanna and her foster mom again
Kavanna and her forever family (minus one sister, who took the photo)