Thursday, 20 March 2008

Look What I found :-)

Check out this website Colourblind Cards its exactly the answer to my rant of the other day :-) The pictures are GORGEOUS and the range is varied. Its brilliant :-)

Tuesday, 18 March 2008

Wrapping Paper VENT!!

Why get grumpy over wrapping paper you might ask?!?! Well have you ever looked at kiddie wrapping paper?? The ones with cute cartoon kids as princesses, spacemen, ballerinas or footballers?? Really really looked??? Well according to wrapping paper manufacturers only WHITE kids are princesses, spacemen, ballerinas or footballers (or anything else for that matter!!)!!! Little Prince has been to a few birthday parties lately and I have only been able to find ONE princess wrapping paper with multi-ethnic cartoons WELL DONE TESCO :-) But paper suitable for little boys - only vanilla flavoured kids!!!! This isn't my family!!! This isn't the world we live in!!! So WHY????????? Urgh and don't even ask about birthday cards - I'll be sending a LOT of cute cartoon animal picture cards in future!!!!

Thursday, 13 March 2008


I'm sorry but it had to happen some time!! And NOW is the time!!!! I'm about to turn MONICA!!!!! In case you don't know she is the obsessively tidy one from the TV series Friends - and that will be me!!! I want this house TIDY and I want it NOW!!!! Sorry LMS you are coming home to Monica-Mum in full swing mwahahahaha!!!

Ladies Wot Lunch

Today me and my friend are off on a shopping and lunch trip as soon as we've dropped the munchkins off at school :-) Life as a housewife can have its downsides (housework is BORING) but I can decide to go off shopping with my friends whenever I like :-) I love my life :-) Anyway we are off to an Outlet Centre that has a Monsoon and I'm going to look out for pretty pink and frilly things, for guess who (and no its not Little Prince lol). So anyone I 'owe' emails to, and I know there are loads at the moment, I'll chat to you tonight :-)

Tuesday, 11 March 2008

Stinky no more :-)

The shower is FIXED :-) It broke over the weekend and with three teenage girls (& myself) in the house its been a MAJOR catastrophe. But me and Mr Messy bought the new shower and today my lovely Handyman fitted it :-) I've just tested it and it works beautifully :-)


I've just this minute got back from the Post Office after posting out all my Its a Small World swaps :-) This is the most complicated swap I've ever joined and although I love the fabrics/info sheets I've received I wish I'd thought a bit more about how much work was involved before signing up!! The swap was in three stages, and for each stage you had to chose two countries. For each country you had to write an A4 information sheet, which had to include a Little Known Fact about the country and a wish. And of course I had to find fabric to represent each of the countries I had chosen too, which is difficult in the UK as there are so few places to buy quilt fabric from. And not forgetting washing, ironing and cutting out all the fabric for 20 participants!!! That's 120 squares washed, ironed and cut and 120 info sheets designed and printed and 120 fabric samples stuck to each of the 120 info sheets!!! No wonder its taken me forever to do!!! I've told LMS to shoot me if I EVER suggest joining such a complicated swap again!!!

Today's waffle

Mr Messy worked from home, so that he could take LMS back to university once Little Prince and Drama Teen were home from school. He took Drama Teen to school in the car this morning, as she loves not having to get on the school bus if she doesn't have to!! He also picked her up after school, and she actually remembered he was going to do that and didn't get on the bus, and leave him waiting in the car park wondering where she was!! LMS took Little Prince to school, which meant I could have a bit of a lie in :-) Aren't they lovely :-) I wanted to have a shower when I got up, but couldn't as our shower has broken!! With three teenage girls (and me) in the house that is a MAJOR CATASTROPHE!!! Me and Mr Messy found time to get to the DIY store and buy a new one, and I've arranged for my friendly local handyman to come and fit it tomorrow - phew :-) Earlier today me and LMS went to pick up the last bits of colour photocopying I needed for the most complicated 100 good wishes swap I've ever joined!! I really believe I bit off more than I could chew with this swap, and its taking me forever to get it sorted out and sent to everyone.

Me and LMS picked Little Prince up from school, and he was seriously not impressed that LMS was going to go almost straight back to university, even though we explained that she would be back on Saturday for her Easter holidays. He was still very sad and upset that she was going :-( As soon as Mr Messy and Drama Teen got back from school, they loaded up the car and set off for university :-(

It was Fraulein's college parent's evening, so once she returned home from college she had 1/2 hour to get herself sorted out before we set off back to college. Unfortunately as Mr Messy and LMS weren't here, I had to take all the kids with me. At the first tutor, I tried to leave Little Prince with Drama Teen but he just misbehaved and played up - so after that he had to sit on my knee and be quiet!! Luckily we weren't with any of the tutors for very long, as they were all very pleased with Fraulein, and predicted that she will get A's in all her AS levels :-) Hearing this upset Fraulein for some reason, and she was grumpy and out of sorts for the rest of the evening!! Strange girl!!! I think she is too much of a perfectionist, and doesn't think she is doing as well as she is, so resents being told she is doing well. After we'd finished at college we went to the supermarket to get Drama Teens ingredients for her cookery class, and then as it was getting late I took them all to McDonalds for tea - I couldn't face getting home and then having to cook.

When we got back home it was time for Little Prince's bedtime, he must have been tired as he didn't argue at all!! Fraulein then started to panic about a letter she has to send to her exchange programme to say what date she is returning to Germany - she can't find it!! She is convinced she gave it to Mr Messy, but when I got in touch with him he is adamant that she kept hold of it!! In the end she rang her programme co-ordinator, and I hope they managed to sort it out between them - she didn't come downstairs to let me know, so I'll just have to keep my fingers crossed!! As I had a loooooooong evening stretching out before me (I won't be able to sleep till Mr Messy gets home and that's supposed to be around 2am!!!) I decided to get on with sorting out the complicated 100 good wishes swap. I think I'm almost finished YEAH!!! I'll be able to get it in the post tomorrow and that will be a huge relief, as I've been feeling so bad that I'm behind in sending the swaps out.

Monday, 10 March 2008

Busy weekend

Little Miss Sensible came home on Thursday evening, as she and Mr Messy were going to attend a Buddhist meditation weekend, they decided not to go so LMS has been home all weekend. It was lovely to have her here :-) On Saturday Little Prince attended a school friend's birthday party in the village hall, and it was the most disorganised party I've ever been to!! The child's mum and grandma hid in the kitchen throughout the WHOLE party (2 1/2 hours!!) and child's 11 year old sister was left to run the games and look after the children!! The children were fed almost as soon as they had all arrived, which seemed a bit back to front, but liveable with. But then the party descended into chaos - the 11 year old tried her best to organise games, but the kids were hyped up and manic by then and weren't listening. When she finally managed to get them sat in a circle, she then left them sat there and went off with her siblings and friends - leaving a lot of very confused 4-5 year olds!!! She tried to organise musical statues, which went a bit better, once she had sorted the music out!! Musical chairs took almost 20 minutes to set up, during which all the children were running round shouting and popping the balloons and jumping off the stage!! In the end I took Little Prince home, luckily he had had a great time :-)Drama Teen, meanwhile had gone to the cinema with LMS, Mr Messy had driven them there and mooched round the shops while they watched their film. There is a big age difference between the girls, and they are completely opposite in character, so its really nice that they have found something they can do together!!
On Sunday morning Mr Messy set up his photographic studio and took some pictures of the three kids together. This is no mean feat, as Little Prince hates having his photo taken and doesn't co-operate at all. He does look a bit worried, and has a very strained smile in the photos, but Mr Messy said he will try and shoot them (photographically lol) more often so that Little Prince gets more relaxed about it. After the photo session Mr Messy took Drama Teen to town, where she was meeting her Young Man and a couple of other friends to go off round the shops together. I took Little Prince for his swimming lesson and LMS went to visit her friend, who is studying zoology, and has just returned from a field trip to Africa. LMS was supposed to return to university after tea, but decided to stay another night and go home on Monday instead.

Thursday, 6 March 2008

Seriously expensive nurseries wot I like!!!

I've just been window shopping on a site called Posh Tots, its seriously expensive, but I like some of their ideas, even if I don't like the prices lol. So here are one or two inspirations. And before you start Mr Messy I am DEFINITELY not ordering from the site lol.
I like the idea of a pink and green room and the above shades are something like what I imagine. Whether or not the nursery will end up like this is anyone's guess lol, I've got plenty of time to change my mind yet!!!

Tuesday, 4 March 2008

Latest China Adoption Forecast figures

Our prediction for LID 2007-Aug-16

If China did all future referrals at the exact same speed as they did this month: 2014-Jan-05

Our best guess - a weighted average of recent CCAA velocities, guessing that CCAA will perform about as well in the future as they are performing now, but might return to previous trends: 2013-June-16

That's our best guess for when you might receive your referral. Just at a guess, we can suppose that the CCAA either speeds up or slows down significantly, and show you those dates. If they speed up: 2010-Nov-09. And if they slow down: 2018-Dec-02.

GCSE Choices

I've just returned from a meeting at Drama Teen's High School, regarding her GCSE choices. This is a new thing for the school to be doing, they didn't do it when LMS was making her decisions. It was perhaps less helpful for us and Drama Teen than it would be for some other children/parents, as she has already got very clear ideas of what she wants to take and why. The Deputy Head was quite happy with her choices and reasons behind them, so now we just have to endure a meeting (all Year 9 pupils and parents) on Thursday, before we can make the choices official. I don't think Thursday is going to change anything so her are the choices from the Drama Teen Jury - Law, Combined 3 Sciences, Geography and Computer Animation. She is also required to take English, Maths, PE, RE and PSE, Drama Teen has also chosen to take an extra lesson in RE, to make the course into a full GCSE course. I hope that Drama Teen took note of what the Deputy Head told her that the Combined 3 Science course is a heavy workload, and that she needs to be organised to be successful in the Law course. She has the ability to do well in all her courses - so long as she puts in the sustained effort needed :-)

Contact letters

I've just finished, what I find to be the hardest job to do each year - Little Prince's letterbox contact letters. I know it is extremely important to write and send these letters, as it will keep a (probably tenuous) connection alive between Little Prince and his birth family, but I still find it hard to write. I'm pretty good at self analysis, but I'm not sure why I find it so difficult to write these letters. But whatever my problem with them is, they are now finally written and waiting to be sent off as soon as I hear back from the social services dept with confirmation of the birth family details.

Monday, 3 March 2008

Unexpected Shopping trip :-)

I thought I was in for a boring day, catching up on jobs round the house (which I HATE!!). But I was collared by my friend on the way home from school, while she was delivering the post (she's the village postlady) to see if I'd like to go to a nearby town shopping later in the morning. Shopping or housework?!?! Which would you pick?!?! Well it was shopping of course :-) I managed to get my Secret Pal gift, and will get that in the post in the morning - I can't tell you what it is as she might be reading lol. I hope she likes it!!

My friend got her Mother's Day present - dvd of Elizabeth I that her husband hadn't been able to get hold of in time for her. We had a lovely chat and lunch in a shop cafe, and generally had a great girlie time out :-) Friend's kids are at the same school as Little Prince so we made sure we were back in time to pick them up. Little Prince whinged most of the way home as he couldn't go and play with Friend's daughter (his on/off girlfriend!!) as we had to drop some paperwork off with our accountant. He cheered up once he realised we weren't staying for ages at the accountants and that he could go home for his snack.

Mr Messy was home early as he'd been out on a jobsite, so it was nice to have tea at a civilised time, rather than our usual 8.30pm-9.00pm. He is also on Little Prince bedtime duty at the moment, as we are trying to help Little Prince to see that Daddies can look after little boys just as well as Mummies can!! Not working so far, but we'll persevere :-)

Sunday, 2 March 2008

MY Mother's Day

I had a lovely lie in - I did tease Drama Teen that I stayed in bed so long because I was waiting for my breakfast in bed though. She didn't fall for it lol. When I did get up I had to rush to get ready so that me and Mr Messy could take Little Prince to his swimming lesson. He did really well this week, his teacher attempted to teach him the front crawl. Little Prince's technique leaves a little to be desired - there is a lot of arm and leg flailing and a lot of splashing, but not very much forward movement lol. As usual he thoroughly enjoyed himself and didn't want to come out at the end of his lesson, that was probably due to the giant inflatable Yellow Submarine that had been put in the pool for the play session. Once home I was given lovely Mother's Day cards one from Fraulein, and the other from Drama Teen & Little Prince (LMS assures me hers is in the post lol) and was presented with a daffodil that Little Prince had been growing at school. I don't think he remembered that I'd already seen it when I carried it home from school last Friday lol. I dropped Drama Teen off at the cinema to watch National Treasures with her Young Man, and came home and cooked a cordon bleu tea for everyone. Well actually I shoved a couple of pizzas in the oven and we ate them - its Mother's Day, you don't expect me to actually cook do you?!?! I took Little Prince to bed, while Mr Messy went to pick Drama Teen up again. Tomorrow I must remember to post my mum's and both mother-in-law's Mother's Day cards and order them all a bouquet of flowers!! Or my name will be MUD!!!

Mother's Day

To all the Mums and Mums-in-waiting out there

After the conference

I had got Mr Messy to book me onto a train quite a bit later in the evening, rather than straight after the conference ended, so that I'd have chance to explore the shops. However, faced with the worry of getting lost (I'd forgotten my little guide book with maps in) I headed straight for the tube station. I chickened out of shopping altogether and went straight to the train station. After checking my tickets would be valid, I got on the next available train. I was texting my friend and it turned out we were on the same train lol. She came and joined me, she had booked the First Class upgrade too :-) And the journey flew by, as we chatted the whole way home too. I was very impressed with the amount of leg room and comfiness of the seats in First Class - I'll have to do that again one day :-) Hint hint if you're reading Mr Messy lol. Mr Messy and Little Prince met me off the train and once I'd detached my limpet we set off home again. We called at KFC on the way home, and the food was dry and pretty horrible, or could it be that I was stuffed full of junk that I'd bought myself for the train journey lol.

The conference

I was right, the alarm went off way too early!! I dived in the bathroom first, as it doesn't take me too long to get ready in a morning (I don't wear make up - can't be bothered faffing around with it). On the way to the conference venue we grabbed some breakfast to go, which was ok but not wonderful. We were there quite early, so booked in easily with no queues lol. I was a bit disappointed that the only drinks on offer were tea and coffee, and I didn't have the right change for the vending machine so couldn't get a drink :-(

The conference was Chaired by David Holmes, Chief Executive of BAAF. He gave a short intro, before handing over to Celia Beckett of Kings College/Institute of Psychiatry who presented an overview of the findings from the English and Romanian adoptees study. This study has been following a group of Romanian adoptees who were adopted into the UK in the early 1990's and comparing them to a group of UK domestic adoptees. Basically the study has refuted media concerns about these adoptions - that they would be a high level of breakdown (WRONG - very very few adoption breakdowns); that the children would be so profoundly damaged by their early experiences that they wouldn't attach to their new families (NOT SURE - Ms Beckett said they had attached, but her descriptions of some of the children's behaviours didn't indicate a secure attachment?!?!); that adopting two unrelated, close in age children together would be a disaster (NO - there were clear advantages to having an adopted sibling). There was a lot more to the presentation than that, but that's as much as I'm writing lol.
The next speaker was Dr Peter Selman, University of Newcastle talking about Intercountry Adoption in the new millennium. During this talk Dr Selman compared the rates of international adoption (corrected so they were as a percentage of population) of the UK and other Western countries, and we adopt a dismal few children from overseas!! He also made a credible argument that the UK needs a proper "agency-style" Central Authority, that will make the effort to cultivate relationships with sending countries and will mediate between prospective adopters and their chosen country. If only...
After lunch was a talk by Chris Atkins and Dr Perlita Harris regarding the support needs of transnationally adopted children and adults. This was interesting as both speakers were international adoptees themselves, but unfortunately they just seemed to read off the slides rather than expanding on the info presented on the big screen.
Then there was a presentation by Greg Kelly, Queens University of Belfast on Aspects of Intercountry adoption in Ireland. The most interesting thing (for me anyhow) was the fact that people in Southern Ireland adopt many more children (corrected to a percentage of their population) than do the Northern Irish, which is the bit that is still part of Britain. I wonder why?!?! Mr Kelly suggested it could have something to do with a collective bureaucratic guilt over the children sent to far flung parts of the Empire in years gone by, but that doesn't really hold water.
Next up was John Simmonds, Director of Policy, Research and Development at BAAF. His presentation was What does research tell us about adopted children's development. It wasn't aimed specifically at international adoption, and just seemed a strange thing to have in there! I wonder if they just couldn't find a different, more relevant speaker?
Lastly we heard from Gill Haworth Director of Intercountry Adoption Centre. This again seemed to be saying that the UK needs a proper "agency-style" Central Authority, as not having one limits the options prospective adopters have.
After a fairly short question and answer session the conference was over, not a minute too soon as I was starving (I'd been near the back of the queue for lunch and there hadn't been much left) and thought I was going to fall asleep, then again my numb bum was keeping me awake lol.
I enjoyed the conference and hearing what the various speakers had to say. I didn't like the speakers who just read out what was displayed on the screens and also felt there could have been more time organised for discussion. There were a lot of people who wanted to ask questions who didn't get the chance.

Journey to OASIS/BAAF Conference

I set off on Friday evening, after Mr Messy had finished work, he was on a jobsite fairly near to home, so was home early enough to drop me off at the train station. Once we were on our way, I got quite nervous about going down to London on my own, worrying if I could find the restaurant where I was meeting people (or should I chicken out and go straight to the hotel?!?) and all sorts of other worries!!! After having some really clingy tight hugs from Little Prince I got on the train and found my seat, Mr Messy and Little Prince pretended to race the train when I set off - which Little Prince looked to be loving :-) I was sat next to a very chatty business man on the train, and we chatted most of the journey. He then very kindly took me to the right Tube stop and pointed out on the map which way I should be going - what a nice man :-)

Once I got off the tube I followed the directions on the map I'd printed out, and after a 20 minute walk I finally found the restaurant, near Harrods- I was so relieved!! But also disappointed that Harrods was already shut, Mr Messy would probably be relieved lol. I chatted to the people I was meeting while they ate their dinner, wishing I'd had more than a snack on the train, once they'd finished we went to the Tube station to go to the hotel. I hadn't realised (and Mr Messy hadn't told me!!) that I only had a one use Tube ticket, not a rover type ticket - no wonder the machine kept rejecting it!! The lovely lady who was manning the station said that as I was only going a couple of stops, that she'd let me through and to act dumb at the other end!! I felt so naughty!!! It worked though :-)

The hotel we were staying at had a huge marble lobby, and looked very posh, although nice the rooms didn't quite match the first impressions lol. Me and my friend chatted and gossiped until the early hours, which was a lot of girlie fun :-) I knew I'd regret it when the alarm went off the next morning lol.


25th May 2009 - See New Child again & Court Date

23rd May 2009 - Fly back to Ethiopia

26th March 2009 - Fly to Ethiopia :-)

3rd March 2009 - Dossier Arrived at Orphanage

26th February 2009 - Dossier sent to Ethiopia

22nd December 2008 - Dossier back at DCSF

28th November 2008 - Certificate of Eligibility ISSUED

6th October 2008 - PASSED Approval Panel

7th July 2008 - Homestudy Update Started

28th Feb 2008 - Told LA we wished to change country


Formally withdrew from the China Adoption Programme 17th July 2008

LID (Logged in Date) with CCAA 16th August 2007

Documents to China 10th August 2007

Passed Approval Panel 5th March 2007

Homestudy started 6th June 2006

First Contact with our LA 1st Jan 2006