Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Of Course He Did

August 12, 2009 8:53 PM China time

Christi’s favorite phrase of late is: “Of course it is.” or “Of course he did.” or “Of course…” you fill in the blank. This is a reference to the general craziness of our lives. For example, today there were several occasions when the “Of course he did.” phrase would have been quite appropriate. “Xander knocked over a glass and it shattered on the carpet!” “Of course he did.” “Xander spilled his Sprite all over the floor.” “Of course he did.” “Xander found the chocolate and smeared it on the white bedspread.” “Of course he did.” You get the idea. This is actually quite a fun phrase and can be used in a variety of ways. “Christi, I forgot to tell you that I’m out of clean white shirts.” “Of course you did.” “Mommy, the toilet paper’s all gone!” “Of course it is.” “Christi, our dessert cost as much as our entire dinner.” “Of course it did!” (More on that below.) We officially give all of you permission to use this as you see fit:)

We are so in love this little guy. He’s our little Tasmanian Devil, ever curious and ever exploring, but he’s absolutely impossible not to love. He has THE MOST charming smile I’ve ever seen. It totally makes my day every time I see it. He wrinkles up his little nose. His eyes pretty much completely disappear. And he just lights up the world. We are both SO in love.

Xander loves swimming. The first time we went, he was very quiet and nervous as we walked into the pool. It didn’t take long for him to warm up, and the next time we took him, he went running in with a huge smile on his face. The swimming pool has circular life preservers that the kids can use as floaties. All three of them are loving it. They put their heads and arms through them and paddle all around the huge pool. Xander also loves it when I throw him up into the air. He counts with me, “One, two, three” and up he goes.

I think Christi mentioned that he’s a lot smaller than we had envisioned. It’s a sweet, sad thing to observe him. From the waist up, he looks like the skinniest little guy. He looks like he should be very light. But from the waist down, he is very different. His legs are both enlarged. One leg is way larger than the other. Both feet are also enlarged. I had thought the masses on his legs would feel a lot more solid. They almost feel like jello. They are filled with some kind of fluid, probably blood, and weigh much more than you would think from looking at him. But in spite of his physical abnormalities, he has the brightest outlook on life. He is constantly smiling. Despite the weight of his legs causing him to walk and run awkwardly, he walks and runs often and always does so in high spirits. He is truly a little ray of sunshine in our lives.

Today was fun. It was a day with no specific plans, so we ate a late breakfast, went to the hotel playroom, went swimming and just enjoyed ourselves around the hotel. Yesterday, Graci heard our conversation about forgetting it was our anniversary. She immediately hatched a plan. She insisted that we not go out for lunch today. Instead, she had us stay in our room. She asked me if I had a suit. I didn’t, so she made me wear the dressiest outfit I had with me. She did the same with Christi. Once we were dressed, we both had to sit on separate beds and keep our eyes closed so we couldn’t see each other or see what Graci and Jesi were preparing. It was the cutest thing. The used a towel for a tablecloth on the small table in our hotel room. They set a little lunch for us with the snacks we had here. Each setting had an apple and several grapes. There were also several small oranges on the table. At first I thought they were for us to eat, but Graci pointed out that they were in the shape of an 11-for 11 year of marriage. After we opened our eyes and saw everything, Graci said, “Now you can talk about love!” and she ran away giggling. How cute:) As we ate, the girls first served as our waitresses, then they danced and sang to entertain us. We have such good kids!

Tonight we went out for dinner. There’s a GREAT restaurant next door. We’ve eaten there twice and love it. We had a nice dinner. The total for he 5 of us came to $24.00. Very reasonable. Then on the way out, we noticed a freezer with ice cream for sale. We each ordered a small ice cream, and it came to $23.50! The girl who sold it to us noticed my eyes bug out of my head and she let me know that the two Haagen Daas ice creams we had ordered were $9.00 each!!! Are you kidding me? These were ½ cup servings. For $9.00??? They were even freezer burnt. Caveat Emptor! We will make sure we ask the price of things before we buy next time.

Well, it’s late and we are exhausted. We’ll post some more pictures tomorrow. Thanks for all of your comments, love and support. By the way, some of you have asked how we’re posting when blogger is blocked in China. Our friend, Dave Ausdenmoore, is posting for us. We just send him emails and pictures. Thanks, Aus!


PS. In the five minutes that have passed since I finished this post, Christi sat on a cup of Chinese jello that Xander had hidden under her pillow. Of course she did…


  1. Well now that Jer has let the 'cat out of the bag' - You're welcome guys - I'm honored and glad to be of such a minor service to our friends! (I've also let the first comment go to anybody else - except for today!)

    Just so your readers know - my family met theirs in GZ in December of 07 - their "Graci" trip and our "Braelyn" trip. They just managed to beat us back to China - we're hoping to go DTC next week and travel in December this year (Praying might be a better word!!)

    Jeremy and I bonded quickly and well - as did our families. We've had the chance to get to know Taylor and Parker - as well as Graci....and while we feel like we know the rest of the family, one day we'll make that an 'in person' visit!

    With pleasure we help you guys out - and we couldn't be happier for you guys!

    hugs - aus and co.

  2. Hey, Aus? Are you a commenter on Ohilda's blog, "Bouquet of Blessings", also? I've always wondered, but never asked. Till now. Of course, she did.

    "Now, you can talk about love"? Don't you wonder what kids are thinking? Well, I do. Of course, I do.

    Is there help for the X-man's condition on he is back in the USA? I remember researching it a bit when you first mentioned it, but it seemed pretty rare. I hope there is help available, in Jesus' name. Of course, she prayed.

  3. Graci is such a sweetheart! She fits in so well with the rest of the family. That's cute to see what romance is like in the eyes of a ten-year-old.

  4. We're so happy to be following your journey, I get chills and all teary just reading it. It really brings back so many precious memories for us! Those first few days/weeks are absolutely amazing.
    What a special boy X-man must be to have you two as parents. What an incredible family you have! That story about Graci and Jesi is absolutely darling. Blessings to you all!

  5. Wondering how Chinese jello is different from American jello...
    probably some strange flavor.
    My hubby and big kids ate pea popcicles and corn popcicles in Inner Mongolia. Me, not so much!
    Dear friend who is posting for this lovely family...(Aus)WHERE ARE THE PICTURES? How hard it is to hear about Xander's dashing smile and not get to see it! boo hoo!!
    I have the China itch again too, but waiting on God's timing.
    There are beautiful children all over the world, but there's just SOMETHING about China that is in my heart :) Obviously it's in yours too! :)

  6. Hey guys - in order of questions - Terynn, yes - I am the Aus that also comments on Ohilda's (we bonded over attachment issues...strange how adoptive parents talk eh?) and O and Marie / I depending on who was home have spoken on a number of occasions - in particular over Kai's illness. You can read up on us at

    Holly - I know that Jer and Christi are reading all the comments in e-mail and that they will probably take them to heart - but I promise on my kids - I've posted all of them that they sent me!! :)

    Jer and Christi - you guys will be starting the day in an hour or so - have a super one and let us know 1) when you will be going to GZ and 2) where will you be staying there?

    hugs guys - aus and co.


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