On 8/28/2006 (a Monday) our lives changed forever. We got the call that told us all about a little girl waiting for us in China. She was almost 9 months old and was living in Southern China. This was a day we'd been dreaming of for 19 months. Eric took the day off so that he'd be home for the call, but the boys were in school. We knew the call was coming because our agency received referrals for family logged in thru 7/22/2005. Your log-in date is the date that your paperwork is entered into the system in China and regular referrals come in order based on your log-in date (LID). I was still a little nervous that we might not get the call cause maybe our paperwork was misplace or some other silly reason I came up with in my head. Our agency is in Colorado so I knew they wouldn't make calls until at least 10am. Needless to say we were on pins & needles from 10am on. In fact, here is a little video of that morning. This is the edited version.
A few minutes after noon we got the official call. After a few seconds of banter, Deb said let me tell you about your little girl. WOW! What a moment! After she told us all the basics and gave us instructions (including estimated travel of 9 weeks) she sent us a photo. Unfortunately it did not come through right away. She tried several different email addresses and we hit refresh a million times, but it still hadn't arrived by the time the call ended. It was nearly an hour after the call first came through that we got the email. I was so anxious to see it. What did she look like? Was she cute? What could I tell from the photo? This is what we saw~
First thing I noticed was her little elf ears and how they reminded me of Parker's ears. I'll be honest here...I didn't feel that instant connection to her when I saw the photo. I was thrilled, but I wanted to know MORE about her. People were telling me that she was cute, but I just wasn't seeing it. Anyway, the stork (Fed-Ex) arrived the next day with a package from our agency that contained 2 more photos. I was able to connect much more with Dori through those photos.
When I found out which orphanage she was from I knew she'd be in a blow-up Hello Kitty chair. We called her our little Hello Kitty baby and she still loves Hello Kitty to this day! My most favorite color on her in the whole world is light yellow. Can you see why?
These photos were taken 3 months before we got them so I wondered how much she changed. Our agency got updated photos & info a month after referral and we got to see current photos of our girl.
Shaving baby's heads in China is common place and you can see that she'd been shaved since the first photos! By the time we had these updated photos we had our plane tickets to China, which had us leaving Oct 25. The online customer service contract I had been working under for the last 16 months expired the day before referral, so I had lots of time on my hands. We made a smart decision to move the kid's bedrooms around (I was giving up my sewing room for the teen to have a room in the basement!) and that helped the time move quickly. It was so nice to have a pretty room ready for Dori, although she didn't sleep in it for a long time!
Here is a photo of Dori today with her referral photo!