Chinese New Year!

chinese-new-year

Last night we went to China town to celebrate Chinese New Year!! Normally I decorate the house and make a big deal out of it but this year it kind of “snuck-up” on us and we had a  lot going on this weekend. I was away for work and Domhnall an Irish event in the city. So we decided to head to China town (NYC) for dinner Sunday night. We had a great dinner some Tsingtao beers and a fun night.  Extra nice that Wally and Lindsay could join us. Made us excited for being back in China in a few short months (fingers crossed).

We walked around a little after dinner to look at the lights and the kids went into one of the many souvenir shops. Its amazing how much they looks like the ones in China and have the exact same stuff for sale. While we were paying the women working there asked Connor where he was born. When Connor told her “China” she quickly cut the price of the kids loot in half. It was very sweet and Connor was very excited.

We are still waiting for I-800 approval but hoping to have it within the next week. We are still on target for April travel-fingers crossed.

My mom has bought some clothing for Ashling and my friend Amy gave me 3 huge bags of hand-me-downs over the weekend. Not to mention the hand-me-downs I have from Keira. So time to start sorting-Ashling is going to be one well dressed little girl.

Happy New Year!

 

 

 

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ASHLING

ashling-name

Ashling Siying O’Cathain.

Ashling was the only named we all loved-thus making it an easy choice!  We decided to “Americanize” the spelling of the name just like we did for Keira (Ciara). In Ireland Ashling is spelt Aisling but I thought it would be too confusing here.

Ever since we got pregnant with Keira we have had a “list” of Irish Girl’s names we both liked. I have always loved the name Fiona and was sure that we would use Fiona for our next girl. Well Keira would not even consider it. She was adamant that her sister would not be named Fiona. Lets just say my six year old won that battle….

Domhnall and I mentioned about 5 names to the kids and they both immediately loved Ashling. Good thing Ashling was also our favorite on the list.

On a plus side-we also LOVE the meaning. Ashling means Dream.  It seems so fitting for Ashling’s story, our desperate want of a 3rd child, and well I just think its perfect for her.  Keira means “dark haired.”  If you look and Donny and me it would have seemed accurate but instead Keira is my blond haired blue eyed girl. Connor means wise-which while isn’t the first word I would use to describe him- is still nice.

We decided on Ashling before we received her file. When we received her file and saw her name was Si Ying-we had to smile. We love how similar it sounds and hope it makes the name transition easier. Of course I am sure as a teenager she will give us grief for having a first and middle name that sound very similar!

 

 

 

 

Album on the Way

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Yesterday we sent our photo album to China for Ashling! The hope is that it will help her see pictures of mommy, daddy, Keria, Connor, Madra, the house, activities we do, etc. From what I have read orphanages differ greatly on how much they show the kids the books and how much they speak of the adoption. We are hoping that they show her the book and start explaining the process to her.

We know this is going to be a much harder transition than Connor (he was 20 months) but we are so ready for i!!!! Truthfully we cant wait. The wait is really hard this time. We want her home. On one hand we are so busy with life that I don’t think about it as much as with Connor. On the other hand after losing our girl in Haiti during the wait-I feel like I just need to have Ashling in my arms. Everytime I look at the videos (which is often) I just picture her home running around with Keira and Connor.

We had a scare last week with some paperwork issues. I cant wrote about them here but it was a rough 24 hours. Thankfully everything seems to have worked out.  Everyone around me knows what a nervous wreck I was!

Keira picked out bunk beds for her and Ashling over the weekend. She is so excited to get her room redone for her sister.  I hope Ashling likes emojis and sparkles 🙂 I have worked out my time off from work (so thankful) and we have started to think about travel to China and the timing of everything. So exciting!

Hang in there Ashling-we will be there soon baby girl 🙂

Fingers crossed for 1-800 approval soon!

 

INTRODUCING ASHLING O’CATHAIN

ashling-1

I am thrilled to finally announce we have been matched and are LOA on this beautiful four-year old!  I was waiting to post until I felt comfortable with where we were in the process. We cant share much information about her (since this is a public site) other than to say she just turned 4 and is a happy, healthy, beautiful and active little girl. Even more than that–she is our daughter, our sister and already loved!

We received her file on December 6th! I was actually a little bit in the adoption dumps that day. We had decorated for Christmas the night before (Mamo was in town) and had come across some Haiti items we got gotten last Christmas.  It hit me hard and I was feeling a little sad about Haiti and well about how long this adoption as taking.

Well everything changed that afternoon when I missed a call on my cell. When I called back it was our social worker with the news! As I was on the phone, Domhnall walked in from a meeting and we were able to open the file with pictures and videos. It was a pretty amazing moment. There really are no words describe what its like! We both could not believe how beautiful she is. Loved seeing her running around and chatting (in Chinese) a mile a minute.  We were a little shocked that she was almost 4 (turned 4 on 1/2) but quickly realized what a great fit it would be for our family.  We now have a 4, 5, and 6 year old!

The next week was filled with paperwork, talking to international doctors, and well just being excited. We submitted our Letter of Intent right away. Although we had some questions about her special need (since it was new to us) we knew we were saying “yes’ the moment we got her file.

 

We were shocked when we received our LOA from China a week later! With Connor we waited months for the LOA. Once we got the LOA we were able to apply for our I-800. This is the stage we are at right now.

We are anxiously awaiting our I-800 so we can move to the next step. We are guessing (and really hoping) that we will travel in April to China! Although I know April will be here before I know it and we have so much to do-the waiting is so hard! I just want her safe and sound and home!

Cant wait to bring you home Ashling Siying O’Cathain