The Road To Ren

Our adoption journey to our son Ren William.

Musings by Elaine and other Blitherings. This blog was origonally intended to document our China adoption journey to our son Ren. Now we are home and this blog is about our family. I would love to have you sign my guest book.

Scroll to bottom to see slideshow pictures.

Monday, March 30, 2009

Our Day

Wow! I don't even know where to start. He does Kung Fu, I am not kidding. He has a smile that is dangerous. He didn't stop moving till he fell asleep. He is bigger than I thought he would be and is stocky, and strong. He talks up a storm, too bad I have no way of knowing what he is saying. He told some waiters today he tried steak an liked it! He tells me Bu and Bu yao alot, this means NO and stop it! He has a little temper, well who wouldn't when you were taken away from everything familiar. He loves to play hide and seek and has the sweetest giggle. He had his picure book we had sent him and knew us when he saw us! He also is aware of Caleb, Rachel and Christian as his guh guhs (brothers) and jie jie (sister). He is full of life. He ate like a horse and shared it with his friends. i am typing this in my sleep but wanted to post something before I go to bed. This little guy is going to give me a run for my money. I am hoping he was just over stimulated today and that is why he was so active ha ha ha! Here are some pictures. Mark is still really sick but got some antibiotics today so hopefully is on the mend now. I will have him post some gotcha day video later. (Whoops looks like mark took mostly video of gotcha day and not many pictures. Sorry for the teaser I will make him post some video soon!!!)

Sunday, March 29, 2009

We get Ren in a few hours!!

Hello to All! I have had a really hard time getting on the internet. Hopefully it won't be like this all the time! LOL! We are in Nanjing and get Ren today at 1:30!!! We are very excited. Keep praying for our health. Mark is still sick and we are going to try and see a Dr. today. Eden and I are better but still coughing. We don't want to pass any germs onto Ren! There are others in our group who are also not feeling well. We all need to get better :-).

Nanjing is a very interesting city. We arrived last night an walked around a little bit. I will try and post more after we get Ren. I have askedd Rachel to also post to my blog in case I can't get back on.

Eden wants to say Hi to Emma and her teachers and class back at Jenifer Elementary! She is having fun and misses you all!

Friday, March 27, 2009

Sat morning in China

I had trouble signing into my blog and could not post or download pictures. But here I am! We had a wonderful day at the Great Wall yesterday. It was sunny and cool, beautiful weather. Mark climbed the wall but Eden and I just went a short ways. She was very intimidated but the steepness and height. I was content to walk around with her and take pictures and enjoy the view. It was amazing to actually be there. Here are some pictures we took.

Today we are going to an acrobat show, and then packing up to fly to Nanjing tomorrow! 2 days till we meet Ren! Mark is still under the weather, but feeling better. Eden is feeling much better also. We all came back and slept from about 3 in the afternoon till 4 AM this morning. We probably set ourselves backward as far as our jet lag goes, but Mark and Eden needed to rest. We love Beijing and experiencing all the city life here. We hope to get out and walk around the city today.

Thursday, March 26, 2009

More from yesterday

I stayed up till 8:30 last night and was so proud of myself. I thought I had gotten a running jump on my jet lag. I slept for a good while and woke up refreshed at 11:30 PM! Ha so much for beating jet lag LOL! I made myself stay in bed till 4 AM and actually feel good today. So I found some free time to blog.

Since my photographer was under the weather yesterday my choice of pictures are pretty sparse, but I will have good ones later!

Below are 2 travel weary travelers who have just arrived at the Beijing airport. I feel totally busted now for having used my old skinnier photos on my profile and such. ACK! Here is Eden and her travel pal Tristan. Have Leapsters will travel! These 2 got along so well and entertained each other for hours! They both did sooo well for such a long flight! We are going to be with Tristan's family on this trip. They are a wonderful family and are adopting a little girl :-)! Praise God for good friends.
We are staying at a very nice hotel in downtown Beijing. Here is a picture of some really cool amenities we have in our hotel room.
I just had to post this picture. At first glance I did not know what was in these cans. They are actually masks in case of fire.

Eden and I made a trip out to the local Kentucky Fried Chicken by ourselves last night. It was fun. I actually crossed 4 streets all by myself with Eden in tow unscathed. OK well 2 streets it was 4 times around one one traffic light because I went the wrong way. Quite the experience if you have never done it. The lights are red the crosswalk is telling you to go and the cars, buses, and bicycles, scooters and carts do not stop. We were literally inches away from the moving cars and buses . Now that will get your heart rate up ;-).

Eden is feeling better today and Mark is on the mend. I am soo exited to meet Ren, 3 more days Wooo Hoooo! I can only think about this. I think I would enjoy the Great Wall more if we got Ren first and then went to the Wall (LOL), but I will do my best ;-).

We made it

We made it safely to Beijing after a 14 hour flight. It was pretty uneventful except Mark and Eden got sick. Please continue to pray that we stay healthy over here as it can be a pretty rigorous trip.

We are going to go see the Great Wall tomorrow. Eden is very excited about this. I will try and post pics then. I am having trouble posting pictures tonight so the pics might come later so stay tuned. Thank you for all the prayers and good wishes. God is Good!

Its 7:30 PM and I am making this post short because I am running out of steam! More to come.......

Tuesday, March 24, 2009


This will be my last post till we are in China! We leave tomorrow morning. It is kind of surreal for me today. I feel like I have been waiting for this day a long time. It has taken us over a year to get to this point. I have been telling everyone soon and the time would get pushed back for some reason. I really thought we would have had Ren home for a long time by now, but God knows best.

We will be united with Ren next Monday, so look for posts Monday morning EST. We will try and post pictures and or video! Thank you to all of you who have wished us well and have been praying for us! Your prayers are much appreciated but don't stop yet, LOL! I am praying that we all stay well, kick our colds, and a smooth transition for Ren.

Sunday, March 22, 2009


TA DAaaa! We did it! We got all our stuff in the above 3 suitcases! Whooo! Thanks to load master Mark who can pack anything! We are taking these 3 (above) with a back pack each. We may have to do laundry one or two times while in China but that's OK. It was a little challenging this time because we will be in 3 different places with different weather conditions. It could be in the 30's and 40's to the high 80's! I'm hoping for more moderate weather, 50's to the 80's, but I wanted to be prepared. We even packed bathing suits! Unfortunately for me I could not find my bikini (maybe on purpose ;-)). Oh well, I will enjoy watching Mark and the kids swim while I soak up the sun.

Friday, March 20, 2009

Getting Ready

Five days to go! The reality is really setting in and the count down has started! We have been packing our suitcases and checking off lists. Funny thing is I keep adding to my list!! I realized the other day that we will return right before Easter weekend! So Mark and I ran out and bought TWO Easter baskets and goodies! How fun was that?!!

We are taking 2 big suitcases and 1 small one for 4 people, for 2 weeks in a foreign country, and we are trying to keep each suitcase under 40 pounds, AHHHH ha ha ha ha ha!! Not sure if this is gonna happen. We have to include entertainment for a 5 year old and 3 year old (who doesn't speak English yet) for a 14 hour airplane ride home. I could take a suitcase just for this stuff!! Maybe they will sleep on the flight home....well one can wish can't they?? ;-)

Wednesday, March 18, 2009


Loyal companion, foot warmer, a good friend, my buddy. Bob would sing (howl) to me every morning. He was a good dog. A lot of you knew Bob and were generally entertained by him. Bob had a ruptured disc in his neck and other serious problems. Bob will be greatly missed.


'Nuf said.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Where Will We Be?

A lot of you have wondered where we are going in our travels. Mark suggested I post a map of our trip here on our blog.

March 26th we will land in Beijing and stay and tour for a couple days. We will be going to the Great Wall while we are there. This gives us a great opportunity to get acclimated to the 12 hour difference in time zones for us before we get Ren.

Our next stop is in the Province of Jiangsu. We will be in the capital city of Nanjing (see pic above). You can see that this is near the East coast of China right above Shanghai. This is where Ren is!!! We will be united with him on the 30th of March!! Ren actually lives about 2 hours to the East of Nanjing toward the coast. When ever you are adopting a child in China you always receive your child in the Capital City. We will stay here and finalize our adoption and complete some paperwork while we enjoy this city.

Then we fly to Guangzhou. This is a very tropical city in the South. We will enjoy our stay at the infamous White Swan Hotel on historical Shamian Island. I hope to enjoy nice warm weather while we are there. Everyone who is adopting must go to Guangzhou for their American Consulate appointment. Guangzhou was once occupied by the British and has a very interesting mixture of Chinese and British architecture set amid tropical palms and greenery! After our stay there we will fly back home through Beijing and be home on April 9th!

Saturday, March 7, 2009


We know when we are leaving for China!! We've made our plane reservations and are packing our bags! Our itinerary looks like this.

Departure for Beijing China: March 25th!!!

Tour Beijing get used to time zone

Depart Beijing and fly to Nanjing: March 29th

Try to actually sleep

Gotcha Day!!!: March 30th

Meet Ren for the first time

Paperwork and meetings

Sight see in Nanjing

Celebrate Mark's birthday in China: April 2nd

Depart Nanjing and fly to Guangzhou: April 4th

Consulate appointment: April 7th

Enjoy Guangzhou

Depart Guangzhou fly home!: April 9th

This is 2 and a half weeks away! We are shocked and amazed at how good God is to us. This journey took a lot longer than we had anticipated but all the pieces are falling perfectly into place. We will be gone over Eden's Spring break so she will miss less school than I thought! This is a great blessing! On another note we were supposed to go house hunting over Spring break. It will be interesting to see how God works this out and finds us a house. He already knows where we will be living and how we will find our home!

We are blessed to be traveling with 7 other families! How fun is that!? I have had the pleasure of getting to know 4 of these moms, so I am traveling with very good friends! In the adoption world there has been a tradition to give your group a name. That's what happens when you have too much time on your hands. We have been dubbed The Posse. We are moms on a mission. I can't decide if I should work on a gang sign for us or maybe cowboy hats. What do you think?

Thank you for all the congratulations and good wishes everyone! I love reading your comments and e-mails! We will be posting from China and hopefully adding lots of pictures and videos to this blog. Please keep posting while we are in China! You can leave comments by clicking on the comment link below my posts or in the Guest book link on the right hand side of blog.

Did I tell you I'm excited?

Thursday, March 5, 2009

TA!!!!!!! WOOOooo HOOOooo!!!

We got the call that we received our Travel approval yesterday!!! We are sooooo excited!! We are hoping to leave for China in a few weeks and be home before the trade fair in Guangzhou. The next few weeks will be spent getting our American Consulate appointment which determines the exact time we need to be in China, buying plane tickets, arranging hotels, travel, and PACKING!!

Here we come Ren! Time to Rock and Roll!