Tuesday, August 26, 2008

No News Yet

It's been a week since we've posted but we were hoping to put an update on the blog in regards to Lilymei's CT scan. We have not gotten any new info yet but I figured I had better put some new photos up before we start getting some phone calls and emails asking for more!

Lilymei checking out her hand....I don't know what she was looking at!

Just sitting in the laundry basket, waiting for Drew to take her for a ride.

Lilymei and Nate sittin' on the back porch, enjoying the morning in their pj's.

Wednesday, August 20, 2008

Updates!

Ready for church!

Cheese quesadillas at Margarita's are GREAT!  I love them.  I ate the whole thing!

Lilymei had her CT scan on Monday.  She did very well and tolerated the sedation with few side effects.  We have received preliminary results but we are awaiting the final analysis from a pediatric neural radiologist?? (something like that).  Right now what we do know is that Lilymei definitely has hydrocephalus and that she is still suffering from subdural bleeding.   Once we get the complete results we can get the MRI scheduled.  For that, we will have to fly 7 hours to Hawaii and visit Tripler Army Medical Center.  

Lilymei also had x-rays taken of her hips since she is very unsteady on her feet and not walking yet.  It looks like her hips are fine and we will need to continue to work with her on strengthening those legs muscles.  We are in the process of getting Early Intervention to come out and access her situation.  I'm sure she will be having therapy sessions beginning soon.  We will continue to post updates when we find out more details.

I can't get the video I wanted to load on the site tonight so I will leave you with a photo of our sweetie pie sleeping.....

Sunday, August 17, 2008

It's Good to be Me!

It's been just over a full week since we have been home now and every day brings new experiences for Lilymei.  She has been to the clinic a few times, to church, shopping at the BX and the commissary (grocery), and Saturday night she went to her first movie on base~Wall-E.  She did very well and the boys were excited to finally get to see the movie.  

Lilymei has not liked her bath time at all.  Bath time prior to Thursday night consisted of two parents struggling to shampoo and wash her, trying to keep her from climbing out of the tub, all the while listening to her cry.  This week we had a breakthrough, and as you can see by the photo below, she actually cracked a smile.

We spent Sunday afternoon at the Hyatt pool.  We were taking a chance that Lilymei would do ok with the water since we had gotten a few smiles in the tub this week.  

Nate and Drew acting their normal, goofy selves in the pool.  

Look!  Lilymei has a big smile on her face WHILE she is in the water!  She's come a long way from the crying baby at the pool in Guangzhou.  After swimming in the pool we took the kids down to the beach.  The ocean water was sooo much warmer.  Lilymei sat for nearly 45 minutes playing with shells and coral at the waters edge while the tide slowly came back in.  We knew she would turn into a beach baby!  

Look at me in my Buckeyes t-shirt!  Thanks Maddie!  I love my piano too!!

Lilymei has had so many firsts this week.  We heard her say DaDa and Mom, and she can clap her hands.  She is trying to stand without any help from us.   Saturday morning Lilymei grabbed the fork out of Scott's hand and she proceeded to feed herself breakfast!  She was so proud of herself!  She gives us the cutest little smirk when she does something that surprises us.  
 
"Oh, it's good to be me!"
Isn't she precious?!

Wednesday night, while the boys were at VBS, we took Lilymei to our favorite restaurant, Al Dente at the Hyatt.  Scott ordered lobster (above).  Look at what Lilymei thought about all the great food....

"For me!? Thanks Baba!!

Lilymei is such a blessing to our family.  We just love her to pieces.  Please keep her in your prayers as we head to the hospital tomorrow for the first of many tests.  

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Lilymei & her First Doctor Visit

I know many of you are looking for more pictures so here is an assortment of shots taken while we were in Hohhot and Guangzhou, China.  

Jean and Lilymei in the park in Hohhot, China.  It was a beautiful day and the park was very large with lots of shady areas. 

First family photo taken in the lobby of the Phoenix Hotel, Hohhot, China.  Notice the table behind Scott with various Olympic items for sale.  Nate is holding the Crocs bag containing a new pair of Crocs for Lilymei.  They have a little American flag in them which she wore to the American Consulate.  

Nate has taught Lilymei how to hold the TV remote.  

Lilymei looking at her swim diaper.  Too bad she doesn't like being in the water!

The gang with our favorite shop keeper, Jordan, of Jordan's Gifts & Souvenirs.  We visited with him several times.  He allows his customers to shop in peace.  That's one of the reasons we like him so much.  If you are in Guangzhou, check his shop out.  He is very near the Starbucks Coffee Shop.  Notice Nate's yellow rip-stick near him and Drew holding his.  

Our three beautiful children!!!


Here Lilymei is smirking while we are eating our last meal at Lucy's in Guangzhou before leaving the next morning.  We had just come from our American Consulate appointment.  

Here our girl is so glad to be out of that plane from Guangzhou to Tokyo!  She loved relaxing on the chairs in the terminal and proceeded to help Nate eat all of his McDonald's french fries.

Lilymei had her first visit to the pediatrician on base yesterday. Let's just say, from outside the exam room you would have thought we were cutting off her limbs.  She hated it!  We have collaborated with the doctor and it has been determined that Lilymei will have to have a few tests done at the navy hospital.  She will have blood drawn tomorrow (Wednesday), and then she will start the immunization process all over again.  We will keep you all updated once we know the results of her CT scan and x-ray.  It looks like we will be making a trip to Trippler (in Hawaii) for an MRI soon too!  Please keep praying for Lilymei's test results to show exactly what will need to be done for her continued progress in her health and well-being.   

Friday, August 8, 2008

Last morning in China, Finally Home!

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Lilymei's last morning in China, 8/7/08. She and Baba are enjoying a fun game of peek-a-boo. We were up by 4:30am China time. Poor Lilymei only slept 30 minutes the whole day. She was ready for bed when we put her down at 10:30pm Guam time.

Just off the plane in Guam, Lilymei is not very happy to put her feet on American soil. Lilymei did not feel well for the first flight from Guangzhou to Tokyo. She really enjoyed stretching out on the chairs waiting for our next flight in the Tokyo airport. We snagged a quick bite of McDonalds before our flight to Guam. Nate doesn't really like plane food so he was glad to get a bite before leaving. Lilymei loves all food so she was grabbing fries right off Nate's lap.

We were pleasantly surprised to see a group of friends waiting for us at the airport Thursday evening. Andrew L is getting his first look at Lilymei. He wasn't very happy when his Mama held Lilymei; he is the baby in his family.

Oatmeal, yogurt, and a blueberry muffin was on the menu for breakfast this morning. It's not the buffet at the White Swan hotel but Lilymei was happy anyway. We are so excited that she is sleeping very well at home, drinking from sippy cups, and scooting around all over the floor.

Yesterday we took Lilymei to the clinic to show her around a little before we go back on Monday for her doctor's appt. She didn't show anyone her big smile at the clinic but later in the evening we had a few friends over for cake and ice cream. She really opened up for them, laughing and smiling and waving bye-bye to them. She is so proud of herself!

We do have video of Lilymei waving and laughing we hope you enjoy it. Time for the boys to start mowing their 5 lawns of the weekend. Ugghh! Vacation is over!!

Thursday, August 7, 2008

We have a new American!

We made it home last night without much problem. Thank you to all that prayed and helped make our journey a memorable one. We would also like to thank all of the families we became friends with during our trip. We will continue to post, but first I have to go buy more diapers and milk...

Take care to all and look for more pictures within the next day or so.

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

One more day and we are heading home!!!





Yesterday was a big  day for paperwork at the American Consulate. All of our paperwork was in-order and we have our oath appointment today. Lilymei will get her Visa to enter the US also today. The group had the famous "red couch" photo taken and of course Lilymei didn't smile until it was all over. We have done some shopping and finding gifts to remember the trip. Lily is really making progress and is finally drinking from a sippy cup on her own. She is also starting to stand a little more on her own while holding onto something.

We are all excited about coming home tomorrow and getting back to a normal routine. Not that eating a gourmet breakfast buffet every morning and having someone clean your room is not routine, but...it is time for reality again. 

Hopefully everyone is enjoying the photos, it has been harder to post from Guangzhou than it was in Hohhot. We seem to be much busier here with the baby. Nate just stated that he is bored "watching a monkey and dog cook a meal on tv, is that what life has come to?" TV is less than quality here.


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Monday, Monday

Liwan Plaza in downtown Guangzhou, where the Pearl Market is located.  We had lunch at Papa John's Pizza.  That's one of the things we can't get on Guam.  It was good!

Lilymei is serious when it comes down to food.  Note the highchair with a cushion for the princess!  Lilymei is the proud owner of 2 bracelets.  She loves wearing them.  

Just messing around on the bed.


We had a very busy day yesterday (Monday) with Lilymei's medical clearance appointment to start the day. All we can say is, it was less than fruitful. I am confident the medical exam she will receive once we are back on Guam will be much more useful. We then toured a Buddhist temple where all of the babies received a blessing. Afterwards the group went to the Pearl Market for some shopping and lunch. We ended up eating at Papa John's and not purchasing anything at the market. The boys convinced our guide to stop at Carrefour (Asian Walmart) so they could buy 2 rip-sticks (a newer version of the skateboard). The boys couldn't be happier because the price was about 1/4 of what it is on Guam. 

Once we got back to the hotel, Scott was a little under the weather. Jean took the kids to the arcade and they enjoyed the evening having fun. Later, Lilymei had a chance to play in the Swan Room, which is a playroom sponsored by Mattel. Lilymei started chatting up a storm and laughing like crazy. She has really come out of her shell. We are sorry about no new photos lately, but there was a huge electrical storm that prevented us from posting last night.

Sunday, August 3, 2008

Guangzhou and Shamian Island, Good Times!

Daddy and his little girl with the Pearl River lights in the background. We had a good night to view the laser light and boat show this evening.
Lilymei acting goofy in the hotel room. She is really starting to open up more. The boys are great at making her laugh. Isn't she so cute!!

A nice family shot in one of the parks on Shamian Island, note the 5 funny looking children and the one adorable looking baby!
Here is Drew and a new found friend that had to "interview" him for her English class. Drew had to formally meet her and write his dream for the Beijing Olympic Games. We all had fun with this on Saturday of course we all received a gift from our friends.

Today we had to have Lilymei's picture taken for her Visa. We then introduced her to the world of swimming. Let's just say she is not a huge fan yet! The boys had a great time in the beautiful pool here at the White Swan. We ate dinner at Lucy's, again. Lucy's restaurant caters to western families and the food is very good. It was nice to have some old fashioned grilled cheese and apple pie ala mode. We have had a fun filled time here on the island. Lilymei is doing quite well and starting to open up more and more each day. We are going to the doctor in the morning for the obligatory medical exam. We will then be off for a fun filled day touring and completing the day with a dinner boat cruise of the Pearl River. We are finding Lilymei to be such a beautiful little baby in everything she does. She is currently "talking" in her sleep and it is so cute. We miss everyone and can't wait to get home.

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Here are the boys playing Chinese hacky sack in the park, quite a show for the Chinese!

Saturday, August 2, 2008

We made it Guangzhou!

Just a quick post to let everyone know we made it safe! The baby and Scott stayed awake the entire flight while the rest of the crew tried to sleep. We are all very tired and heading out for dinner. The little island we are staying on is nice and we can't wait to explore. More to come when we get a chance. We are staying at the White Swan Hotel if you want to google.

Friday, August 1, 2008

We did it and now we are heading south!!!

We thought this was a fitting sign to post as we truly feel blessed by God! (for those Olympic fans out there, this is the slogan of the Chinese workout gear provider)
We visited a great park today and Lilymei's finding place. We were all touched and had a great time visiting the park which had some amusement rides for the boys.
Cooler than a cucumber in Hohhot!

Laughing for Gaga Nate, as usual. Lilymei had a good day and is fast asleep already.



Well this is a short post because we have to wake up at 4:30 a.m. to catch our early flight to Guangzhou. We finished all of the Chinese paperwork and Lilymei is officially our daughter. She received her Chinese passport today and is good to travel. We are all looking forward to getting to Guangzhou and having more of what life has to offer!

Lilymei joined our family...

Lilymei was born...

Drew is...

Nate is...

Jean and Scott have been married....