Tuesday, March 31, 2009

The Magic Kingdom

We headed out headed out (not as) early (as I had planned) to Orlando yesterday morning to surprise Isabel with a trip to The Magic Kingdom. Fellow teacher and WAP Laurie (a.k.a. Baby Hannah’s Mommy) joined us. Isabel just loves surprises and it was driving her crazy not knowing where we were going. Her first guess (and of course, my favorite) was “Are we going to Long Horn Steak, mommy?” [I almost drove off the road laughing.] It wasn’t until rounding the last bend in the ticket line that she saw a topiary of Minnie Mouse and started to realize where we were. Despite a momentary mental breakdown because of the length of the lines, the heat, the people, etc.... and wanting to leave shortly after arriving, all went well. [Okay, for the sake of honesty I should mention that the breakdown was mine…NOT Isabel’s. She was amazing!] She brought her princess snow globe to school this morning for show-and-tell. I left her surrounded by three little girls ooo-ing and ahh-iing. Magic.

Riding the tram to the park

My Little Water-Lover

Seeing Minnie in the Parade

How Do I Look?

Mom and Isabel at the Dumbo Ride

Unsure of the Lizards Scampering Nearby

And She's Gone...

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Book 'Em Part 2

I have always loved books. My earliest memories included visits to the library. The first book I can remember reading at the library was Blueberries for Sal by Robert McClosky. Reading enabled me to travel in my imagination long before I was able to do so in reality. During the long wait for Isabel, I started to collect some of my favorite childhood books including including Make Way for Ducklings (also by McCloskey) and Harry the Dirty Dog stories.

I discovered Andre Dahan at a book sale and just love his books. The pictures are beautiful and the story lines simple but sweet. My favorite is Dear Little Fish. By the Christmas after my dossier was sent to Beijing, her little library was already growing with great books including a wonderful present from my mom, A Family of Poems by Caroline Kennedy. Being from Massachusetts, how could we NOT have that one! : )
Through the years, my favorite gifts (both to give and receive) have always been books. Two exceptional ones that Isabel got as presents especially moved me... and still do. They are I Love You as Much by Laura Krauss Melmed (Thanks, Jackie!) and The Lamb-a-roo by Diana Kimpton (Thanks, Kate!) Get ready to bawl... especially with the second one, if you are adopting transracially.

Isabel's love of books is a joy to me. Even before she could speak very clearly, she was "reading". Here she is before she turned two. A year and a half later and there is a remarkable change. This is her this morning. I crack up at the way she holds the book like a teacher reading to her class.

I hope her love for reading continues to grow and that, in 20 years or so, she might be in a book club of her own. : )

Here are some pictures from this past year. My two favorites are the ones where she fell asleep reading. How many times I have done the same thing!

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Book 'Em, Dan-oh

The highlight of my month... getting together with great women, good wine and lots of laughter. Oh yeah... and disussions on books. (Don't want to forget THAT!) We have been meeting for over two years now and read a wide variety of books with the general themes of adoption, China and culture.