Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Goodbye twenties!

A year ago today I wrote about being desperate to turn thirty so our file could go to China. Well, the day has arrived! I'm thirty! Unfortunately our file isn't going anywhere until we've completed the dossier and there are four more couples at the same point, but I'm still very excited! This is the biggest box to check yet!

I had a super fun weekend with a couple of quiet, last minute get-togethers with the excuse of my birthday, and there was a certain theme to my gifts... a jade bangle - my parents organised a friend in China who went shopping with an ex-jade dealer to select it, green tea caraffe, stunning Chinese cookbook and story, beautiful adoption book , red eggs (my cousin and her family are so awesomely thoughtful!), a red packet, a gift voucher and a cute shirt that says 'my heart is in China'. I also received a big slow cooker which I'm looking forward to using, and Aaron bought me a stunning diamond and gold locket pendant for my belcher bracelet.

The pic is from my fourth birthday.

Saturday, January 26, 2008

Happy Australia Day!

Happy Australia Day! Because we're so isolated, Aussies came up with our own lingo which makes no sense to the rest of the world. Inspired by an article in today's paper, I put a quick quiz together. Have a go and test how 'strine you really are (or whether you'd need an interpreter if you ever visited)!

  1. What does it mean to chuck a u-ey?

  2. Turn your car around

    Throw up

    Throw a sheep

  3. What is a Hills Hoist?

  4. Climbing apparatus

    Party on Ayers Rock

    Clothes line

  5. What do you do with a lamington?

  6. Kill it before it bites you

    Eat it

    Wear it

  7. What is vegemite?

  8. The greatest food known to mankind

    The greatest food known to mankind

    The greatest food known to mankind

  9. What are budgie smugglers?

  10. Drug dealers

    Bird watchers

    Swimmers for men

  11. Fair dinkum, ridgy didge and true blue are all what?

  12. Types of beer

    Ways of saying something is real or authentic

    Aussie cartoon characters

(after you get your score, click back and let me know how you went!)

** I've posted the correct answers in the comments

Friday, January 25, 2008

USA here I come!

Do I have any bloggy buddies in Seattle? I was told today that I'm heading there in March for a few days for work. Sadly I am not able to add any days before or after to scoot around America visiting people I would love to meet and checking out the sights, so I'm a little restricted... but if you're in the area let me know so I can work something out!

I'm a little concerned about how COLD I will be and whether I'll have enough warm clothes. I live in beautiful, warm Queensland where I get to wear a jacket only about three days each year.

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

About the dossier...

As I mentioned a few posts ago, we were approved for adoption by the Qld government last month. What that means now is that we are required to compile our dossier to be sent to China. The dossier must contain certain documents and information, so we've spent a few weeks chasing some of it up and still have more to go. We've been told we'll be the first couple in a new batch, and that we need to wait for four more couples to be approved and compile dossiers to they can all be sent to China together. This means that some of the documentation and requirements that have a life span (like finger prints and cheques) we have to hold off on arranging until further advice from the Dept so they don't expire too quickly.

In the meantime we've been busying ourselves with other dossier requirements, like doctor appointments - because the first comprehensive medical we did last year to prove eligibility isn't sufficient. Ewww. We have to have blood tests. Not cool. Ewwww.

When we've got everything ready for the dossier we'll be officially batched. It's not looking like it will be shortly after my birthday (next week) like we planned all along. Unfortunately for us, Queenslanders are no longer rushing to be part of the China program due to the massive increase in wait times. We were advised four more couples could be approved by March/April 'if we're lucky'. And then, if we're really lucky, we could even have a referral for a baby by the time the next millennium rolls around ;-) If you've got friends in high places, please send up a prayer for us!

**I added a new email subscription option - check out the right side bar to sign up!**

Saturday, January 12, 2008

A strange attraction

Two posts in two days. Try not to go into shock.

I read an article today about unknowing twins in the UK marrying each other. The twins were separated at birth and adopted to different sets of parents. They only discovered they were brother and sister after they married, at which point the marriage was annulled.

Mess mess mess mess mess.

Read the article here.

Friday, January 11, 2008

About names... again

I think about names a lot (hence one of my other blogs, The Name Warehouse), so anything to do with names AND China is going to get my attention. On the Eastern Journey blogged about Chinese people using English names last year, and then when Nancy shared the link to the video below I thought it might be timely to write an entry too.

When we taught in China our students mostly had English names. They really did it to make life easier for the foreign teachers. Many of them were given their English name by their elementary school English teacher (often a Chinese national who has never conversed with a native English speaker) from the back of some book from the 1950s. Consequently a great number of our students had names reflective of that era. Other students chose their own name based on famous westerners or movie characters, or they used a dictionary and picked something with a useful meaning.

I had a student who named himself Little Pig. Others were self-named Apple, Secretary, Hamlet and Eagle. Marking the attendance roll was fun, especially when someone would forget their English name. I remember a guy in my class had a girlfriend in one of Aaron's classes, and when I asked him who, he had no idea of her English name - and we had no idea of hers or anyone else's Chinese name!

This clip about English names in China made me smile, hope you enjoy it too! Long live Samanfar!

(In other news, I could have done the interviewing in this video! I understand and can speak just about all the Chinese that's used! It's pretty basic, but I guess I'm progressing!)