Showing posts with label Trip to Korea 2009. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Trip to Korea 2009. Show all posts

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Some archived photos from Korea

I've had these photos saved since we left Korea.  I had hoped to find their families and I did find two of them.  So, I thought I'd go ahead and put the pictures of the girls and I visiting the babies at the Holt Reception Center in May.  These babies either didn't have foster families yet or were waiting for their families and living their during their entire wait.  These babies are well loved and there was no doubt how well taken care of they were by the house mothers.

The little guy here has been waiting for quite some time.

The babies below were under 5 months old.  The younger ones are in a whole separate room.

I held this little girl, below, for quite a while.  She REALLY loved being held.

Sunday, September 13, 2009

What a relief!

Chelsi has been so upset and has dwelled on losing her sunglasses we bought in Korea since we got home.  She swore she left them in the hotel.  Lois swore she saw her with them at our home airport.  The kids found them in the couch today!  She was so excited to find them.  They are cute and irreplaceable.

Bright day.

Cloudy day.

Thursday, June 4, 2009

We're home and doing well

Between just not having time to post and just not choosing to out of exhaustion I haven't done what I haven't had to in the last week.  We're all starting to catch up now and it feels much better.  The last two nights have been much better.  Jaemin grieved pretty heavily each time he got tired, day or night, since I picked him up.  He pushed away, thrashed around, you name it he didn't want us.  Brian decided we needed to really try a pacifier to help him through just a little, not to mention the fact that his first tooth just broke through Saturday and he also hurts.  We took him to the doctor Monday for a check up and to make sure nothing else was going on that we needed to know about.  He checked out fine, so it really was just grief and teething.

Since we got him to take the paci and attach to his snuggly he's been great!  He sleeps from about 8 or 9 to about 8 the next day with a couple of wakings in between.  They're very short lived the last couple of nights though.  Either we can put the paci back in and rub his back or give him a quick bottle and he goes right back to sleep.  Even the nap today got easier.  I just sat on the floor and held him and he went right to sleep.  He actually let me rock him like a baby which he's not let me do until now.  He's a HUGE cuddler!  He loves to give hugs and kisses and tells everyone bye-bye by waving.  He's extremely smart...we can see that already!  If daddy's playing with him so I can do something and they come to visit me he gets so excited!  He definitely has attached to mommy!  I'm seriously enjoying this little man!

The trip from Korea was rough.  It's a 15 hour flight with an infant, plus customs, immigration and layovers.  I promise, it's pretty rough.  He did great the first few hours of the 12 hour flight from Seoul to Chicago and then he hated sitting still.  The stewardesses on Korean Air took him for many walks since it was hard for me to get out with the basinett in front of me.  They kept telling me he was crying because he couldn't understand me, but if they quit walking he cried for them too.  :)  They were truly very nice.  It's a wonderful airline to fly.  We only had a 2 hour layover in Chicago, so we literally got through customs and immigration and ticketing just in time to catch the next flight.  He slept on the flight home, but it was only 1 hour.  We met with the entire family and a friend of ours met us at the airport too.  It was so great to be home!  Chelsi and Chase ran to each other, once she woke up.  The boys were so happy to have her back!  Jaemin didn't care for the carseat too much, but I sat next to him and he calmed right down and fell asleep.

Since we've been home, Cole's been dying to hold his brother.  He's still off limits to everyone except daddy and I though.  Shortly, we'll let Cole hold him some, but if he throws a fit I don't think Cole could hold onto him because Jaemin's so strong.  So we'll have to be careful with that.  Kaelin and Chase pretty much stick together as usual and do their own thing.  Chelsi was pretty loud and seemed jealous at first, but has gotten to where she loves to gently kiss her brother and give him small hugs.  He's almost as big as her for goodness sakes!

That's about it for now.  We're all doing great, catching up on sleep and finding our new normal with 7 people in a smallish house.  It's all good though!  :)



Here are some of the kids finally getting to swim!


Saturday, May 30, 2009

Coming Home Pics (Airport)

Thanks for taking photos Jane!  Jaemin got to meet daddy and his brothers.

Receiving Jaemin (Gotcha Day)

I'll have to post about that later....doing good to get this much done.  :)


Meeting Jaemin Pics

Chelsi's Foster Mother Visit

Kaelin's Foster Mother Visit

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

The Princesses Visit the Palace

We went to Deokunung Palace today.  It's a short walk from the hotel, we decided that was the one to see.  When we got there there were tons of people around.  They were there with signs and crying, mourning their former President who's funeral is tomorrow.  We do know it's at one of the palaces, but we're not sure if it's the one we visited or not.  We checked with the front desk about what time to leave for the airport due to the funeral and they said we'll make it there in plenty of time.

Right outside the palace a man who looked like he'd had a pretty hard life stopped us.  He gave the girls 1000 Won each.  He kept touching his mouth, so I assume it was for us to buy them some candy.  He just insisted they take it.  We visited the palace and it was truly beautiful.  The architecture in there is amazing and the artistry....  When we were on our way back to the hotel we stopped at a bakery to get some food.  They had Hello Kitty stickers by the register and Kaelin must have been eying them because the lady gave her one.  I tried to pay for one for Chelsi too, but she just gave me the stickers and gave me my money back.  The girls LOVE Hello Kitty.  At breakfast this morning a Korean couple stopped us to talk.  She is the director of the Korean Nursing Program at a university in PA.  She and her husband are apprently very active with the adoption groups in their area.  They were talking to us to make sure we were doing something similar in our area...the best we can.  They gave me their room number and insisted if we had any needs at all we should come see them.  They were both very nice!

We're leaving to get Jaemin in about 2 hours, so this is probably it until getting home.  See you all later and love you!


Presidential Mourners

This water clock is a Korean treasure.

Heungcheonsa Bell is also a Korean treasure.

Singijeon Launcher Carrier is a weapon used many years ago.

The girls in front of the throne hall.

View of the throne hall.

Inside the throne hall.

Neat looking tree on the palace grounds.

Steps leading to the throne hall.

Various pictures throughout the grounds.

King Gojong's modern palace.

Back to the market

I wanted to get pictures of the South Gate, but had no idea they had it blocked off after it was damaged in the fire.  So they have it hidden and are doing something with it.  But, we took pictures of it anyways.  The rest of the pictures are of the area near there, downtown Seoul, and Namdaemun Market where we went back to shop.  We finished getting everything I still wanted to get and got some great deals!  When we were at the market a guy stopped to talk to Chelsi.  He practiced his English with us and kept squeezing her cheeks to say how beautiful she was and then picked her right up.  I had to grab a photo of that!

Later, in the afternoon, we took the subway and went to Eastern to see Kaelin's foster mother.  We got there early and had hoped to hold the babies, but they must not let people do that anymore, so all we got to do was glance in there through the glass.  They showed us where Kaelin sat for her picture as an infant, got her shots, etc.  It was pretty neat to see.  When Mrs. Kim walked into the room we immediately recognized her and she us.  She cried a lot.  She was SO happy to see Kaelin again and couldn't believe how big she'd gotten and how round her head turned out.  She said she was really worried about her flat head as a baby.....I remember that being said on a video.  :)  She told us how good of a baby Kaelin was and that she never cried.  She's now fostering TWO babies!  She said one is seven months old and the other is 20 days!  Wow!  She bought Kaelin a cute little dress, some pastels to draw with and some hair accessories....she knows our girl!  Kaelin is wearing the dress tomorrow to meet Jaemin.....she loved it!  Kaelin didn't say a word the whole time.  That was the longest I've ever not heard her utter something, but she did sing the Three Bears song for her and her foster mother LOVED it and cried again that she knew some Korean.  She wants her to come back when she's older.  She wanted to know everything about Kaelin aside from what I write in letters every year.  She said she was very happy that we wrote every year and sent pictures.  That makes me feel better that she likes them and gives me incentive to continue doing it.  She requested that next year Kaelin also write a letter and draw her a picture, which Kaelin promised to do.  I am also sending her some pictures from today because she had to leave her camera.

While we were waiting to meet Kaelin's foster mother they put us in the computer room.  There was another couple in there from CO that were picking up their son.  We talked to them for about an hour.  It was nice to chat with someone from the US and about the fears of going home etc.  I'm a little fearful of our flight.  We were told in Chicago to call Korean Air a couple of days before we left to have our seats switched so we can get bulkhead and basinett, but when I called they said I should have set it up when we left.  Frustrating!  I'm going to try to talk to them when we arrive because they have us sitting in two rows with strangers on the aisle while we're on the inside.  Pretty sure those people are not going to like having us get up with 3 kids often!  They'll regret that for sure.

It really was a great day.  We walked to a local florist and got some flowers to give to Jaemin's foster mother tomorrow when we take him.  They're very pretty and money here goes a lot further on flowers than they do in the US.  A lot better flowers for the money....they are beautiful!

Observations from the week so far; people park their cars on the sidewalk and if you're walking there you better move 'cause mostly they don't stop.  Bikes and mopeds will run you right over as they weave between streets and sidewalks often.  We've been knocked around by people too.  They don't slow down for anything.  The subways here are super easy to figure out, but today Lois realized we could turn our tickets in at our home stop for 500 won back.  That was a good discovery.  We've had a mixed bag of reactions from people on the subway.  That's where the majority of the reactions have happened.  Most older gentlemen just love Chelsi and talk away to her and smile.  One man, today though, was saying things to us and was definitely not happy with us...but we have no idea what we did.

Tomorrow, we'll try the palace, but due to the former President's death we're not sure it will be open.  It's just a quick walk though.  After that we're going to baby proof the room and go get my boy!  YAY!!!!

This is one of the potties at the agency (squatty potty for women) :)

Kaelin's dress from Mrs. Kim.  Her caseworker said they call this kind of dress the princess syndrome...dresses for spoiled little girls.  :)

Not sure when I'll post again since tomorrow is baby night!  I should have some time in between to post about the palace, but after that....who knows!  Pray for our safety on our trip home!