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Adoptive Parent Pet Peeves

I stumbled across a new blog today, Steve and Jen's and I LOVED their post on Pet Peeves. This post is completely their words except I substituted the names in it. It's a REALLY great post.
Luckily for me I haven't received any negative comments about my adoption. People, for the most part, have been positive and supportive through this process. Sometimes though people do say things to us that, although are well meaning, are not considered positive adoption language. Sometimes it is because of a generational difference or unfamiliarity with current terminology. Some may consider us too sensitive about these things but it is really not about us. It is about the little girl who we will soon be adopting. Just wanted to talk about some of the things that are frowned upon in the (Chinese) adoption community.

Lucky Child
Not to toot my own horn but I think I will make pretty good parent so any kid would be lucky to have me as a parent. Sometimes though there is the perception that by adopting from China I am saving a child. I will be taking Giorgia out of an orphanage or foster care and I do think that I will be giving her many opportunities that she would not have in China. But she will also be losing a lot by leaving China. We will be taking her away from her country and culture and bringing her to a place were most of the population will not look like her. Sometime in her life she will feel racism and discrimination and at that point I am sure she will not feel lucky. We are the lucky ones that China is allowing us to adopt one of her daughters and for that I will be eternally grateful.

I think this is a generational thing as in the past it was acceptable to refer to people of Asian descent as Oriental. This term is no longer acceptable just as it is no longer acceptable to refer to African-Americans as colored. Grace will be Asian-American of Chinese descent. People are Asian, rugs and furniture are oriental.

China Doll
When people refer to Giorgia as my China doll I know it is meant with the best intentions, that she will be a beautiful child. What people don't realize is that there are sexual overtones in the term. The term is used in countless movies in referring to sexualized Asian women kept hidden away for some westerner's pleasure. Most Asians abhor the term as well as it objectifies them. So it is not really a term I want used in reference to my daughter since she will be my daughter and not a "doll" I went to China to purchase.

Model Minority
Sometimes Asians are referred to as the model minority. The stereotype is that Asians are intelligent, hardworking and successful. A few people have bought into this stereotype and commented that "she will be smart" or "good at math". I don't expect Giorgia to naturally excel in any one area just because of her race. I hope Giorgia is smart but what if she struggles in school? I would hate for her teachers to expect her to be smart or not give her the support she needs just because she is Chinese and is supposed to be good in certain subjects.

Positive Adoption Language
Using positive adoption language supports adoption as just another way to build a family. Adoption is not better or worse than having a child through birth, it is just a different path that I chose to build my family. I will not use the term "real parents" when referring to her "biological parents". It is also not acceptable to call a biological child a real son or daughter when comparing them to adopted children. I will be Giorgia's mom/parent, and I assure you I am real. Giorgia will have a biological mother and father in China, she will know and hopefully be proud of this from an early age. But I will never refer to Giorgia as my adopted daughter, she will just be my daughter Giorgia. I see no need to make the distinction. One comment I have heard in the past is that I will love her just as "my own". Well of course I will, she will be my own child. The preferred term for "own child" is "birth child" and I think that is what is meant when people use the term. It may seem to some that using proper terminology is trivial but positive adoption language is really about the child seeing their adoption in a positive light and not as something to be embarrassed about or as second best to having biological children.

Popular Infant Cold Medicines Recalled


My update below comes from a newsletter that I receive called "Baby 411 E-Newsletter"

"Cough and cold meds: What’s a parent to do?

As you’ve probably heard, the manufacturers of the leading cough and cold remedies voluntarily recalled all products intended for kids under age two. A week later, an advisory panel for the FDA recommended that cough and cold medications should not be used in kids under age six.

What’s all the fuss about? There have been several deaths due to accidental overdoses of these products. And, even medications used properly can cause annoying adverse effects (like insomnia).

Bottom line: these products do not treat the disease, and aren’t that effective in treating the symptoms either. (We’ve never recommended them) So, instead of having marginal benefit with some potential health risk...it's a good idea to just stop using these products.

What’s a parent to do as cold and flu season approaches? Saline nose drops, cool mist humidifier, acetaminophen/ibuprofen for fever or pain, and lots of TLC.

Just to clarify: Tylenol (acetaminophen) and Motrin (ibuprofen) are fine to use. These same manufacturers make combo cough/cold/fever remedies that have been recalled. Confusing, we know.

"NEW BRUNSWICK, N.J. (Oct. 11) - Johnson & Johnson on Thursday voluntarily recalled certain infant cough and cold products, citing "rare" instances of misuse leading to overdoses.

The recall follows an August FDA statement warning parents not to give cough and cold medications to children under 2 years of age without a doctor's direction.

In a statement, J&J's McNeil-PPC unit cited "rare instances of misuse", which could lead to overdoses "particularly in infants under two years of age."

The products being recalled include: infants' Tylenol Drops Plus Cold; Concentrated Infants' Tylenol Drops Plus Cold & Cough; Pediacare Infant Drops Decongestant; Pediacare Infant Drops Decongestant & Cough; Pediacare Infant Dropper Decongestant; Pediacare Infant Dropper Long-Acting Cough; and Pediacare Infant Dropper Decongestant & Cough (PE) products.

Cough and cold products for children age two and over and single-ingredient pain reliever and fever reducers expressly labeled for infants are not included in the recall.

The recall comes two months after the Food and Drug Administration issued a public health advisory warning parents not to give cough and cold medications to children under 2 years of age without a doctor's direction. The FDA's Nonprescription Drugs Advisory Committee will meet Oct. 18-19 to discuss the use of cough and cold drugs by children.

Shares of Johnson & Johnson closed at $65.83 Wednesday."

Squid Soap

Squid Soap by Airborne Teaches and Trains Children to Wash Hands

"The flu already visited our home early this season, luckily it was mild. However, I'm sure it will return in full force, which is why I'm constantly on my kids to wash their hands. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, hand washing is one of the most important things children can do to help stay healthy.
I was lucky enough to receive Squid Soap by Airborne. It's the first hand soap designed to teach and train proper hand-washing technique to children, perfect timing for my three year old. "

Here's how it works:

Press the pump to get "inked" by the ink marker with vegetable dye.
Wash for about 20 seconds thoroughly to remove the ink mark.
Leaves the child with clean hands.
Takes the guesswork out of whether or not your child's hands are clean.
Fun and effective.

My three year old of course loves the squishy squid toy that came along with the "ink soap", as she calls it. At this age, getting her to wash her hands is certainly not a problem. I can't keep her away from playing in the water and making a huge mess in the bathroom. However, I do struggle with keeping the soap on her hands long enough to actually clean them. With Squid Soap, she keeps scrubbing until the ink is gone and we know she's cleaning them thoroughly.
Squid Soap is great kids of all ages and adults too, encouraging healthy habits that benefit the entire family.
Available at many leading retail stores throughout the United States."
To learn more visit Squid Soap

Beijing Hotels

I found an interesting article online called China and the environment: The U.S. could learn a lot from China by Roberta
I found this particular paragraph interesting...
"How surprised I was when I walked into my hotel room in Beijing! Lights, TV and all other electronic systems were operable only when the hotel key card was inserted into a slot provided on the wall just inside the hotel room door. When one left the hotel room and removed their key card, all of the electrically operated gadgets in the room would go dead. No energy was wasted when nobody is present in the room. A remote control center next to the bed allowed occupants to operate any light, television, etc. in the hotel room without getting up." read the entire article here.

Baby Food on the GO

I found this on a cool blog...

Squirt Babyfood Dispensing Spoon

Wee Travel Car Seat and Baby Equipment Rentals (Toronto, Vancouver, Victoria) loves pretty much everything Boon…especially the new Squirt baby food dispensing spoon. The easy-to-fill bulb holds up to 3 ounces of baby food. Just give it a squeeze, and out comes just the right amount of food. Squirt comes with a protective cover to seal food in and keep the spoon clean between feedings. By combining the spoon and food container into one product, Squirt makes one-handed feeding a snap so you can nurse your latte with the other. $8 wherever Boon products are sold.

Hand Sanitizer

I saw this post by the RQ on China Adopt Talk and this was her great info on Hand Sanitizer. Please see her blog for more IA Talk.
"I’ve seen so many people not using these things correctly that I thought it deserved a blog post. When in China we will all be using these after using a public bathroom, as many bathrooms do not have sinks, and even if they do there will likely not be any soap. Also, many restaurants do not have sinks or soap available, and after a day of sightseeing or even sitting in a Civil Affairs office, I think hand sanitizer is better than nothing at all before you begin eating. (And, as has been pointed out in the comments, even if you wash your hands, the water is likely not clean so you’ll still want to use hand sanitizer even if you do have an opportunity to wash the grime off of your hands.)
Here is what I’ve been told about hand sanitizers:

They need at least 15 seconds of being “wet” on your hands. Wipe and rub back and forth for 15 seconds.

The evaporation process is an important part of the process, don’t wipe dry, let it evaporate. The wet part of the process breaks down cell walls, the evaporation process dehydrates the cell and kills the organism. If you wipe dry you don’t complete the process. You should spend another 10 to 15 seconds holding your hands out and letting it all evaporate.

Children do not have to consume very much of it in order to get serious alcohol poisoning. Keep it away from kids when not being used, and carefully supervise when it is being used. If you suspect your child has ingested hand sanitizer and is acting strange, get medical help immediately.

There are some things that hand sanitizer will not kill, including at least one fairly common bug that causes diarrhea. (C. difficile) Something about it being a spore and not a virus or germ. If you can’t wash your hands after a BM diaper then you may want to do a combination of wiping them well with a wipe and following up with sanitizer AND keeping your hands away from your mouth and your child’s mouth (and your child’s hands if they put their hands in their mouth).

Soap and water are said to be much better than hand sanitizer at removing germs and viruses and spores from your hands. If you have access to soap and clean water, use it. Only use hand sanitizer when it is the only option.

And finally, I used the GermX wipes on the plane as I figured that would be easier to get through security since it doesn’t have to be declared as a liquid. I really liked them and I’ve continued to keep them in the diaper bag to wipe down shopping carts and public highchairs. Also, when there is actual dirt on hands I use the wipes instead of the gel.
But, again, the biggest thing that I see people doing that drives me crazy, is wiping off their hands after using the gel or liquid sanitizers. I’m told that it is the evaporation process that actually kills most of the germs, let it evaporate!

Stupid Articles

I missed his "stupid article" that was an uproar on one of my groups but here is the second one regarding the response that he's gotten. Can someone please send me the link to the first article.
Link of responses & his comments to the responses.

Motherbridge of Love

Motherbridge of Love
A celebration of love between parent and child!

This beautiful poem celebrates the bond between parent and child in a special way. Through the exchanges between a little Chinese girl and her mother, Motherbridge of Love offers a poignant and inspiring message to parents and children all over the world.
Text royalties from the sale of this Barefoot book will be donated to Mother Bridge of Love, a charity that reaches out to Chinese children all over the world in order to develop a connection between China and the West, and between adoptive culture and birth culture.

Xinran, the acclaimed Chinese author, broadcaster and journalist, is the founder of Mother Bridge of Love. She is also well-known for her best-selling books The Good Women of China: Hidden Voices, an account of the extreme difficulties and injustices facing women in China, and Sky Burial, the epic story of one woman's search for the truth.

The illustrations are so amazing, I just ordered the book! I can't wait to get it! You can find it here.

Surfing Again...

and I found this...

Asian Dreamland- Music CD
Experience bedtime music from Asia!

A harmonious collection of tranquil lullabies and soothing songs from Asian lands.

Putumayo World Music's upbeat and melodic international compilations are guaranteed to make you feel good! Together, a Barefoot Book and a Putumayo CD make the perfect gift. I found it here.

Kung Pao

If I can do it, anyone can! It's super easy and suprisingly super good! I tell you, if you want to make Kung Pao from scratch, it'll cost you a fortune in products to make the sauce. This handy dandy all in one kit is very inexpensive and like I said...yummy. (I obviously had too much time on my hands!)

Ingredients below that are in box. Just toss rice in pan with water, cover & cook.

cube chicken and cook.

Toss in chili peppers & Peanuts. Cook 2 minutes. Toss in Kung Pao sauce.

Viola! A super tasty dinner. :)

Pirate Wins!!!

and he made the newspaper too!!

(click to enlarge)

Ladybugs Hair Clips by Lil' Sugarplum

Darling ladybugs placed on a 1 1/4 Snap Clip on either white or green grosgrain ribbon . Can be made on a alligator clip-specify which clip type. Velcro inside for more secure hold for all hair types. Each ribbon end is heat sealed to prevent fraying. Ships within 3 business days of placing your order. Ideal for birthdays, everyday wear or gifts.

Buy them here.

Got Sipahh?

If getting your child to drink milk is a battle, you'll appreciate these innovative straws that instantly turn bland milk into a tasty, fun treat.

Unlike sugary, artificial mixes, Sipahh Milk Flavoring Straws are all-natural, contain no preservatives and, best of all, have less than half a teaspoon of sugar each.

And, they're fun. Filled with hundreds of little flavor beads that dissolve on contact with milk, the straws come in strawberry, chocolate and banana. Our favorite: cookies & cream.

The Australian company hopes to sell Sipahh in the US later this year, but for now, you can buy them online.


I know, it kinda looks ugly in the photo below!! Anyway, I was in Babies r us last night and fell in love with this stroller. For some reason, I'm completely into the black and lime green colors right now. It can fold down with one hand and I can lift it. (definately a plus) One of my best friends, when shopping for her stroller, was concerned about these issues and the turning radius. Some strollers are super hard to turn or have a huge turning radius which make them a pain when you are in a store. This stroller, completely swivels on a dime. It's awesome. I also love the side bags for storage. I hate the kiddy steering wheel but that's removable. It has soda holders and built in area for your CD player or Ipod and it has built in speakers.

So, My questions to those of you who've BTDT are:

What's the deal with inflatable tires? Is this a good thing or a pain?

Do I buy this for Giorgia now because I love it so much and I've been looking for 2 years and it might not be available when I get my referral?

Or do you think it's ugly and I can find better if I just knew where to look?

Jeep® Liberty® Limited 3 Wheel Stroller
by: Kolcraft

12" Inflatable Tires and Air Pump
Music on The Move Parent Tray
Multi-Position Reclining Seat
Electronic Toy Steering Wheel
3 Tier Canopy with Window & Mesh Pockets

Product Description

The Jeep® Liberty® Limited stroller includes 12" inflatable tires for a smooth ride and a tire air pump. The steerable front wheel can be locked for bumpy surfaces. The music-on-the-move parent tray allows parents and baby to enjoy their favorite tunes using their own personal stereo including an iPod (sold separately). The parent tray also includes dual cup holder and a locking lid. Features include a convenient 1-hand fold with padded, brushed handle, multi-position reclining seat, extra thick seat pad, electronic toy steering wheel with horn, car sounds and music, removable snack tray with dual cup and juice box holder, 3-tier canopy with window and mesh pockets, 2 removable cargo bags for extra storage, and a basket for storage. Its height-adjustable, 5-point harness and 2-stage footrest is designed for growing kids. The seat accommodates up to 40 lbs.

20 Months Down!


I'm creating a book list for myself and my fellow adopters. I'm looking for recommendations for any great books having to do with China, China Adoption, Attachment & Bonding, New mom, Parenting, and cute kid books. Pretty much anything goes. This list will be a work in progress and I've linked it to my Links on the right. Please leave any recommendations in my comment section. Thanks. Stephe

I have a large list already started but don't know where I put it... more to come...
"All About Adoption: How Families are Made & How Kids Feel About It"
By: Marc Nemiroff and Jane Annunziata, illustrated by Carol Koeller


Wild Swans by Jung Chung - life in China in during Mao's rule (Sharon)
Red Azalea by Ancee Min - life in China in during Mao's rule (Sharon)
Daughter Of The River by Hong Ying – Bernadette (see comment section)


When Mama Comes Home Tonight by Eileen Spinelli - recommended on SAC
I Love You Rituals by Becky A. Bailey - recommended on SAC
Families Are Forever – Bernadette (see comment section)

China's women rising

I think this is GREAT!


"I.C.E." (In Case of Emergency) Campaign. The concept of "ICE" is catching on quickly. It is a method of contact during emergency situations. As more people carry cell phones, all you need to do is store the number of a contact person or persons who should be contacted during emergency under the name "ICE" (In Case Of Emergency). The idea was thought up by a paramedic who found that when he went to the scenes of accidents, there were always mobile phones with patients, but they didn't know which number to call. Therefore, he thought that it would be a good idea if there was a nationally recognized name for this purpose. In an emergency situation, emergency service personnel and hospital staff would be able to quickly contact the right person by simply dialing the number you have stored as "ICE." For more than one contact name, simply enter ICE1, ICE2 and ICE3, etc. Be sure it's in your kids' cell phones also. It's a great idea that will make a difference! Michelle in DE

What did your mother teach you?

1. My mother taught me TO APPRECIATE A JOB WELL DONE. "If you're going to kill each other, go do it outside. I just finished cleaning."

2. My mother taught me RELIGION. "You had better pray that will come out of the carpet."

3. My mother taught me about TIME TRAVEL. "If you don't straighten up, I'm going to knock you into the middle of next week!"

4. My mother taught me LOGIC. "Because I said so, that's why."

5. My mother taught me MORE LOGIC. "If you fall out of that swing & break your neck, you're not going to the store with me."

6. My mother taught me FORESIGHT. "Make sure you wear clean underwear, in case you're in an accident."

7. My mother taught me IRONY. "Keep crying, and I'll give you something to cry about."

8. My mother taught me about the science of OSMOSIS. "Shut your mouth and eat your supper."

9. My mother taught me about CONTORTIONISM. "Will you look at that dirt on the back of your neck!"

10. My mother taught me about STAMINA. "You're going to sit there until all that spinach is gone."

11. My mother taught me about WEATHER. "This room of yours looks as if a tornado went through it."

12. My mother taught me about HYPOCRISY. "If I told you once, I've told you a million times. Don't exaggerate!"

13. My mother taught me the CIRCLE OF LIFE. "I brought you into this world, and I can take you out."

14. My mother taught me about BEHAVIOR MODIFICATION. "Stop acting like your father!"

15. My mother taught me about ENVY. "There are millions of less fortunate children in this world who don't have wonderful parents like you do."

16. My mother taught me about ANTICIPATION. "Just wait until we get home."

17. My mother taught me about RECEIVING. "You are going to get it when you get home!"

18. My mother taught me MEDICAL SCIENCE. "If you don't stop crossing your eyes, they are going to get stuck that way."

19. My mother taught me ESP. "Put your sweater on; don't you think I know when you are cold?"

20. My mother taught me HUMOR. "When that lawn mower cuts off your toes, don't come running to me."

21. My mother taught me HOW TO BECOME AN ADULT. "If you don't eat your vegetables, you'll never grow up."

22. My mother taught me GENETICS. "You're just like your father."

23. My mother taught me about my ROOTS. "Shut that door behind you. Do you think you were born in a barn?"

24. My mother taught me WISDOM. "When you get to be my age, you'll understand."

25. My mother taught me about JUSTICE. "One day you'll have kids, and I hope they turn out just like you!"

Thank you Blogger!

Thank you Blogger for your word verification of the day! Geez


I completely snagged this from another blog... Salome & Cael. (go visit them a congratulate them on their referral!) I thought my single girls would find in sadly amusing!!! lol.

My Kitchen

Rhonda, here is my super small kitchen...but I love it. The first photo is a "before" photo. There are no mirrored backsplashes yet and no cabinets came on the right wall.
This is the kitchen after the cabinets were put up, one regular one, one with glass doors and one corner shelf for misc stuff. The mirrored backsplashed are up and continue through the whole kitchen.
Below left is a "before" photo of where the pantry area was supposed to be. Now it's a bar area with a mirrored inside and glass shelves. Cabinets and countertop were added. I love it but that now I kinda wish I had a pantry. Add a little one and a pantry looks a bit more appealing. Maybe one day I'll show the inside of the cabinets like some of those challenges...but NOT today! ha. ha.

Three Names Of Me

I just got this book and it is really great!
A gentle, sensitive story of international adoption told through the eyes of a Chinese-American adopted girl named Ada Lorane Bennett. She explains how she came to have several names, the first was from her birth mother and is buried deep in her heart, another she received at the orphanage, and the third came from her adoptive parents. In telling her story, readers learn about Ada's life in America, her likes and dislikes, and a few facts about her homeland. However, it is the child's present life in the States and her love for her adoptive parents that is emphasized. A few Chinese words are introduced and explained within the context of the story. The book concludes with pages from Ada's scrapbook. Consisting of pictures and thoughts, they reveal what is important to her, such as family, friends, pets, as well as facts about Chinese culture. The theme of family should interest all children, but adopted youngsters will relate to Ada's feelings as she considers her past as well as present circumstances. Simple, lyrical text enhances the quiet tone of the story. Soft and delicate, the realistic illustrations capture the mood of the story and reveal Ada's thoughts about who she is and where she came from. The warmth and simplicity of this story, plus the positive message on adoption, should appeal to everyone. Reading level: Ages 4-8 Hardcover You can get it here.

Arctic Net Cooler Scoop

I've seen everything now! ha. ha. (but I do have to agree, the best ones ARE at the bottom!!)

Arctic Net Cooler Scoop
The Arctic Net Cooler Scoop is like the super hero of parties, fighting frost bite inflicted by ice chests everywhere by doing the scooping for you. Another amputation narrowly avoided. AND it has a bottle opener.
Ice chest drink scoop doubles as bottle opener
Durable plastic with hard edge for ice breaking
Designed to avoid plunging your hand into icey cold water
Diswasher safe
Ice chest not included
Find it here.

Congrats Hung!!!

Hung prevails, making him Top Chef!

Baby B'Air Safety Vest

How It's Used
Baby B'Air is worn by the infant like a vest. It is placed over the child's head, and secured by adjustable straps on both sides under the baby's arms. The third strap comes from behind, between the baby's legs, and buckles to the front with another adjustable strap. The excess straps Velcro neatly to the vest so that there are no loose straps.

The Baby B'Air can be worn as any other garment would since it is constructed of 100% cotton and comfortable to wear. After take-off, the parent feeds their seat belt through the loop on the back of the Baby B'Air, refastens the seat belt and tightens the seat belt. Your infant can now be held, fed and even changed while both parent and child remain securely fastened in their seat. The parent can read, eat or even nap knowing their baby cannot fall or pull from their loving arms.

Sizing Information
Size Fits Neck Opening
Small Infant/Newborn Has a neck opening of 16"
Large Toddler Has a neck opening of 19"

Note: Neck opening is not adjustable. Choose smallest size that child's head fits through neck opening without body slipping through. Sizes fit child up to 40 lbs. The FAA requires children over 2 to have their own seat.

Small - Infant/Newborn
Fits most children up to 6 months. Neck opening is not adjustable. SMALL fits child up to 40 lbs with head measuring less than 16 inches around.

Large - Toddler
Fits most children from 6 months to 2 years. Neck opening is not adjustable. LARGE fits child up to 40 lbs with head measuring from 16 to 20 inches around.

Singles with LID's

Please go vote if you are single with an LID! The poll is on the right side of this blog a quarter of the way down. It's bright pink! Let's see if we can get some numbers together. Thanks.

Cool tip...must try

Window Cleaning the Professional Way
I once asked a professional window cleaner at my place of business what was the secret to streak free windows and mirrors. He told me to put three to four drops of Dawn dishwashing liquid into a 30- to 32-ounce spray bottle. First spray and rub with a microfiber cloth to loosen dirt and oils. Then spray once more and use a squeegee. It really works! I never buy glass cleaners!
Karen A.

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