April 29, 2007

Oh yeah...

I almost didn't notice, except that I happened to be changing out the monthly page on my desk calendar and there it was written in sharpie...

"Happy 13 Month LID to us"


Wake me when we're next in line...

April 27, 2007

Ribbonlicious Bragging

Hey all - my dear sweet friend Kelley just started the most adorable business called Li Tian Designs and her concept is simple and DARLING! It's a name tag for luggage, purses, duffle bags, backpacks, or lanyards around the neck - or just about anything you can think of. I personally can think of many uses for them and I must admit I am partial to the tag inspired by my very own, Keira Joy.

  • Keira's Diaper Bag
  • As a lanyard with Keira's referral picture on one side for traveling to China
  • Our luggage or my purse
  • Keira's personal luggage for travel
  • Something to have at my desk to remind me of her all the time...

My list goes on and on, but meanwhile - check out her shop here and you will see what I'm talking about...

Here's a little taste of what she does and remember that she can do just about anything you like color and theme wise - yes, she is that good!

Now I expect her orders to skyrocket after you all see this post! Haha!

Bye Bye Buddy

After five days together, my little buddy Keira Grace goes home tomorrow morning at 9am. Home to her mommy and daddy and Miss Christie gets her regularly scheduled programmed life back....ahhhhhhhh - relief....

But I will miss her...kinda...shhhh....

April 25, 2007

Dead...as a doornail

I've wanted to post...I've thought of posting...I even imagined finishing my series below and finally getting to Part I, with all the funny pictures that I have for you. But I haven't had time and let me tell you why....

Because I am dead as a freaking door nail -

Ok - let me really tell you why. I am watching my little two year old buddy Keira Grace full time this week. Not just during the day - but 24/7 from Monday-Friday, as in suitcase sleeping over full time. Let's say this together, shall we?


Listen, I know all you moms out there are chuckling at me right now - but let me clarify something. People keep on saying to me "well now you know, huh?" or things like "welcome to parenthood" followed by a hearty laugh and a slap on the shoulder. Let me just say to those people that it's a heck of a lot different taking care of someone else's child than your own. It has to be. She is used to her parent's way of doing things, their own set of rules, and a pretty tight schedule. I work from home full-time and sometimes more. I don't have a schedule outside of work, eat, and sleep Monday thru Friday - same goes for AB. Weekends are a menagerie of sleeping in, late breakfasts in bed (seriously... don't laugh), errand running, church going, shopping and or napping and gaming, free-for-alls.

When you have your own child, I imagine you have your own routine and your own rules and your own schedule that you gradually work into as you adjust to life "with baby". Your home is baby proofed (mine is not) and you just get into a groove. I have no groove. Not yet...saving that for Keira Joy.

I'm paranoid that she'll crack her head on our fireplace, get into our medicine cabinet, slurp down the extra soaps and shampoos under the bathroom sink, slink her way right out the dog door, sneak slowly out the garage door leading into the house, slip and slide right out of the highchair, and tip over and out of the crib. How will I explain any of this to her parents? Anton and I have saying that goes like this "babies are made of rubber". But only our babies. Not other people's babies. So I am exhausted trying to prevent any of the above from happening.

She doesn't like to be alone in a room, so she follows me around everywhere I go. Suits me, so I can make sure that she's not downing drano under the kitchen sink - but gawd...I'm ready to prop my eyelids up with toothpicks just so I can get some work done during her all too brief daily nap. By the time it's bedtime again at night, I'm too freaking tired from being on patrol all day to do a lick of work then either. So since I'm in charge of all my full time working duties and in charge of a smart and curious 2-year old, AND since AB is in his production week for Pirates of Penzance......sigh.....I'm just wore out and dead as a doornail. I can hardly believe I've made it through this post. AB leaves at the crack of dawn and comes home late at night after rehearsal. I had ten minutes of adult conversation tonight before he was too tired to talk any more about the bags under my "mommy bootcamp" eyeballs.

Quite frankly I was having a desperate thought tonight that referrals might speed up. As badly as I want Keira home with us, I really and truly started to panic - oh no...I can't do this...I can't make this work every day, day in and day out, round and round....for the next 18 years. Sob!

Pull it together, I tell myself. It will be different when it's your child. It will...

Meanwhile, I guess all that's left to say for the moment is that....zzzzzzz


April 20, 2007

What a keeper!

Today is our 6th Wedding Anniversary, to the day no less. We got married Friday, April 20, 2001. Our wedding was beautiful and lovely and we were surrounded by people we loved and cared for. Our ceremony colors were lavender, ivory, and silver. Even just six years have taught us so many lessons about love and patience, understanding and support, and about how to be a team...and we are...we're Team Bucher, as we affectionately refer to ourselves. A family from the day we said "I do". Our videographer caught something on tape that I will never forget - it's the moment after we walk up the isle, after being pronounced "husband and wife". We quickly exited and went to a room in the back of the church where we were breathless and elated, excited and filled with love for each other. The videographer followed us and though I don't even remember him being there, he filmed a teary exchange between Anton and I.

Anton says to me while holding my face between his hands and kissing me in between: "We did it! Babe, we did it!"
Christie: "Yes, we did!"
Anton: (slowly) We're a family now...
Christie: (confirming) We're a family...

Big sigh, big kiss and the next thing you see is us getting in the limo to head to the reception. (Which was the most fun I've had in YEARS!)

Fast forward six years: Whew did that fly by! But it has been the best of times and the hardest of times, as with any marriage. Wish they had given us a handbook for this stuff. Still, I cannot imagine my life with another and I adore AB beyond expression. I cannot wait until we are parents to Keira and get to experience seeing each other in that way.

Meanwhile, AB and I planned to go to a nice dinner tomorrow night to celebrate, and have had gifts sitting for each other on top of our piano for a couple weeks. (The suspense is killing me!) Meanwhile, I was puttering away on my computer and working when the doorbell rang and what to my wondering eyes should appear? Two dozen ivory roses with purple sprigs mixed in and a beautiful vase. Along with it was a balloon that said "I love you" and a card that read:

"I love you...Now let's do another 60 years!"

My gawd, he's dreamy!

I love you too, babe - and here's to another 60 years....


April 19, 2007

The last week: Part II - Camping and the Great Tent Disaster of 2007

Last weekend, some of my M3 sistahs and their hubbies (and me!) headed out of town for a camping trip at Lake Dead Possum or Creek of the Beetlehead, or Arrowhead Doodlesnart, or some such name that I have already burned out of my memory. We got to the site, set up camp - I in my friends lovely 32 foot trailer, and our friends Erin and Bob quickly got to work setting up their tent. They had decided to rough it, if you will. Beautiful tent - but it started raining a little and so we all set off to help them. As we were helping...the rain petered out and we thought "well, there went that storm that everyone was so worried about"...the tent was up - we all had a drink in one hand and a foldable chair under us.

I should have guessed that as I took this picture below, we had probably not seen the last of the storm...looking at it now - it's kind of comical that we didn't run for cover right then and there, but no. We were fierce and convinced the storm was a passing fancy...

Shortly after this picture was taken, we had a nightmare on our hands. The wind picked up and out of nowhere we were in a torrential downpour. We watched as Bob, who was still putting the finishing touches on his tent, came running out and just about that time, the tent started to collapse. Rods were breaking and bending...flaps were flapping uncontrollably...it was mayhem. From under the trailer canopy, we were still staying dry but Paul began to tell the story of the one time his Grandparents got caught up in a storm like this one and had their awning out and it got pulled right out of the ground and up over the trailer. At that very moment, my friends, the awning we were taking such pleasant refuge under sprung up, as if in response, and flung itself with a loud "WHACK!" up and over the trailer. Paul looked at me and said "like that!" Now bring in the Noah's Ark type rain and we are all standing out there - Bob still trying to salvage the tent - and us all holding on to the awning and trying to coax it back down - rain gushing all over us. The kind of rain that stings when it hits and the big fat drops that absorb every ounce of dry clothing you have on. Yeah...un-huh...go ahead and laugh...you'll get yours.

Recognizing we had no where to go and no where to hide until the storm passed, and having both mourned the tent sufficiently and jimmy'd the awning back to it's closed position, we all took shelter in the trailer (all five adults, one child, and two dogs). Once inside, and after the re-telling of what we had just been through had been played out and dry clothes were put on - we decided to make the most of it and just have fun anyhow. The trailer was certainly big enough to fit all of us and so we just got on with the weekend. Robyn, Erin and I (oh! and little Mister Rowdy) busted out the games - including CLUE, which I haven't played since I was a kid! Too fun...

It wasn't long before our resident chef, Robyn, busted out the Mamwiches. (she's gonna kill me for saying that!) Actually they were her own homemade recipe and they were hot and delicious!

We stayed up til the wee hours (as per M3 usual) talking and cutting up. Don't even ask what the cups are doing on Bob's ears. It was easy entertainment people...that's all I can say.

Our hostess and her host, Paul and Robyn - chilling in the "master suite" with their little baby! What a life-saver that trailer was!!

This picture kills me! It's Erin in the middle of a story - I don't remember what it was about (I know, horrible!) but the look on her face, and the look on Bob's face - adoration of his funny gal. Love it!

Me and My Funny Gal...Erin

Bedtime - come on now, isn't this a little more comfy looking than a tent??

Here's the gang of M3 sistahs...the next morning. Not too bad for just having woken up! When we woke up, there was no getting around it. The weather was still rotten and it was just outside the trailer door. We tried to go out a couple times, but the wind and bitter cold drove us right back in. There was just no pleasing the weather gods. After a rational process of elimination, we realized that neither our hike, our campfire, our smores, or our "sitting out under the stars" action was ever going to take place on this particular trip. We were doomed to the inside of a very nice, but let's face - you don't go camping to stay in it all day - trailer. Truthfully we still had a good time, but there was nary a moment more of camping to be had for any of us. So we cut our losses....literally...

Here is Mr. Bob with a pair of scissors, literally cutting his tent up so he can tear it down and get the heck out of dodge. It was totally ruined, and not salvageable. I think the scissors helped with the slight aggression he was feeling toward the crappy thing falling apart. Scissor therapy...now there's something I've never thought of!

Then we quickly dressed, packed up, and headed out. Off to my house for a barbecue and a Wii party. We were gonna get something out of this weekend if it killed us! And it darn near almost did! See the next post for more about the Worlds Largest Chicken and Wheelbarrow. Trust me...you will roll your eyes at least once in my next post...

~Seacrest Out!

Oh that reminds me! THANK GOD SANJAMAYA-FRIJAYA IS OUT! - I was gonna have to stop watching AI if he wasn't - so whew! Viewing pleasure crisis averted!

Just have to say....

that I love the Backyardigans!

If you're little one (or you!) haven't seen this gang of cuties...then you need to tune in to Noggin or Nick Jr. This show is so clever - about a group of 5 animated pre-schoolers who use their backyards to play all sorts of fun and exciting things using their imaginations. Reminds me of when I was a kid...before Wii and Playstation 3 were even a dream...

I can't wait to sit and watch this with Keira! It is soooo darling! Tivo it, you'll see what I'm talking about...it's only 25 minutes long.

April 17, 2007

The last week: Part III - Pirates of Penzance

Some of you already know that AB is in the middle of directing his middle school students in "The Pirates of Penzance". Wanting them to fully understand and appreciate the musical and to experience it themselves as an audience, he found that the Dallas Theater was putting it on downtown and so he arranged for them all to go. He invited me along and we had a good time and it was a beautiful show, and very funny.

The kids seemed to really like it and I had more fun re-living my "bus days" as we rode the big yellow school bus there and back. Of course, I forgot how loud it can be when you add in forty middle school age kids - Yikes!

Here are the pics and it was a great time! I had no idea how operatic "Pirates" was - that is until the lead Soprano belted out one high note after another. Whoo hoo!

The fun and rainy Yellow School Bus ride...

AB was suffering from a horrible headache - but it got better once we hit the theater...

We had three rows of students, all who were eager to see the musical. They were on their best behavior and we were very proud of them!

AB's production of "Pirates of Penzance", I think will be so much better now that the kids truly understand the production. So we only have two more weeks until opening night, and of course, I know it will be great. It'll be nice to have AB back as well, since he's been in deep production mode for two months! AHHHHhhhhhhhhh!

April 12, 2007

Easter Sunday

Now that I have fully vented below - I will carry on with our regularly scheduled programming...

Easter Sunday:

At left I am moving and shaking to some great Worship with my church. No pressure - only had to get up there in front of about 3300 people and give it my all!

For those that don't know - I love to sing me some good ol' church music...and as long as I can remember, I've been involved in singing at church. At age 11, I was the youngest person to ever join the adult choir at my then church in Sacramento, and was allowed to sing with the grown-ups because I guess I was just brave enough (or silly enough to think I was all that!) to get up there and do it. By thirteen I was singing solos regularly and by fifteen I was leading worship for my youthgroup. Fast forward eons and here I am still doing my thang - still loving it!

Sunday was really exciting - not just because we had so many people, but because we really had a powerful and awesome time of Praise and Worship, and because I got to lead at the helm, as it were, with two of my dear and respected peers, all under the gentle guidance of our beloved Worship Arts Pastor, Scott.

You can see in this picture most of the stage and the huge screens for easier viewing from the back. You can't see the packed building, or the amazing band that played with us that day. If you click the picture, I am on the front of the stage, right side, black suit. Fun!

It truly was a wonderful experience - and something I thoroughly enjoy doing!

Meanwhile, I had a little pressure because a family I love and adore showed up and made my morning! Erin, Bob and the lovely Mollianne made their way over to me after the service they attended (there are three services) and we got to hug and chat briefly. It was so great to have them, and it sounds like they might have found their future church home, so that was a wonderful added bonus! So glad you all came!!! Made my day!

Here I am with the lovely and darling Miss Mollianne - Princess of Easter Sunday....

Later we made the trip to see AB's parents and have Easter Dinner with them. She made a marvelous spread and we were able to unwind (after that busy and wonderful morning in Church!) and take a little nap. It was a very lovely day and it was truly wonderful to be on their gorgeous property with all the trees and flowers. Loved it!

Hope your Easter was wonderful too - He is Risen!

-Hugs, Christie

April 10, 2007

Change channels now if you're easily wounded...

Ok - that's it! I'm officially BENT BETTY! I just got an e-mail inferring a possible 24-36 month wait and apologies for the long and unpredictable process that this adoption has become.


I want to rip my computer off the cable and hurl it out the window...

I want to scream at the top of my lungs "this isn't FAIR!!!!!"

I want to cry and rant and rave about all my friends who are adopting and some ahead and some behind who are all feeling this same way...

I want to spit nails in the general direction of China...and my agency (can't help it...just mad in general to all those taking our money)

I want to throw myself from the highest ledge just to see if it hurts worse than this...

I want to close the door of that beautiful nursery and not open it until I have a child to put in that crib...

I want to fly over to China, grab our file and throw it at the first person I see who can actually make something happen and say "HERE! Here's a family desperately in need of their daughter...who are hurting and angry and frustrated and just want to be a family...! Here! Take this and match it RIGHT FREAKING NOW!"

I don't care that every couple months we get a new notice about how they have to close the offices over there and take another break...

I don't care that we're told there aren't enough babies to match with waiting families - because it's crap - Asia has one of the absolute highest number of orphans in the world.

I don't care that the Olympics are coming or that the Chinese New Year just ended (a freaking month + ago)

And I don't care that every time I turn around we hear more excuses about why things continue to slow down more and more.


I would like my daughter
now...It's been 20+ months since we started this process and almost 13 since we were LID. Now the wait is at 18-months and I'm just freaking out of patience. This is re-freaking-diculous! I feel lied to and cheated and ripped off and like someone just took my heart and occasionally takes it off the shelf to crap all over it and give it a little kick and then put it back in it's petri dish for more observation of how the human heart survives separation from their most beloved treasure.

To make people wait this way...to make them put their lives, the hopes, and their dreams on hold. To have people in a never-ending limbo game. To have children sitting in institutions one minute, one day, one year longer than they should ever have to...

It's just borderline disgraceful...

Shame on them...



CRIMINY! We're supposed to be moving forward in this process, not backward. Why do I get the feeling this process will only get worse...???


April 7, 2007

Happy Birthday to you...

Happy Birthday to you...
Happy Birthday, dear Dustin
Happy Birthday to you...

And many morrrrrreeeeeee!

Love you baby brother - happy 23rd!

April 3, 2007

Race for a CURE!

Family and Friends - This post is for my dear mother, Nila - please read below...

Why We Fight MS

It's very easy to go through life thinking bad things will never happen to us or especially to those we love. My Dad's recent heart attack and failure is proof of that! But, seventeen years ago at age 37, my dear Mom started showing signs of severe fatigue and pain. Her symptoms grew worse and worse, and a diagnosis remained sketchy at best. One sad morning, several years later, a stroke put her in the hospital and finally a diagnosis was found - she had Multiple Sclerosis. They found several lesions on her brain, indicating she had had the disease for several years. Today my Mom struggles with many deteriorating symptoms including trouble standing and sitting, difficulty walking, swallowing, memory function, and overall pain. She is 53 years old.

Having multiple sclerosis means that you may not be able to walk when you wake up. Or that you may suddenly have impaired vision. Or that your memory will fail you for no apparent reason. The symptoms of MS are different, and devastating, for everyone - the only certainty is that it will affect yet another person every hour of every day.

Why I Walk

I've registered for the MS Walk For A Cure on April 29th, 2007 because I want to do something for those, like my Mom, who have been diagnosed - and because I want to do everything to prevent more people from learning what it means to live with this disease. Today, there is no cure for multiple sclerosis, and with a diagnosis occurring most frequently between the ages of 20 and 50, many individuals face a lifetime filled with unpredictability.

Why You Should Sponsor Me

The National Multiple Sclerosis Society will use funds collected from the MS Walk to not only support research for a cure tomorrow, but also to provide programs which address the needs of people living with MS today. Because we choose to walk for those who sometimes can't, because we choose to donate to the MS Walk, we are getting closer to the hour when no one will have to hear the words, "You have MS." Having been through this as a family, I assure you - you never want to hear that said.

That's why I'm asking you to support my fund raising efforts with a tax-deductible donation. Even $5.00 will help! No amount is too small!

The National Multiple Sclerosis Society is dedicated to ending the devastating effects of MS but they can't do it without our help. It's faster and easier than ever to support this cause that's so important to me and my family. Simply click on the link at the bottom of this message.

Any amount, great or small, helps to make a difference in the lives of people with MS - people just like my wonderful Mother, who didn't deserve to be stricken with such a debilitating disease. I appreciate your support and look forward to letting you know how I do.

Mom, this is for you ~ I love you!

Thanks to all of you for supporting those like my mom whose lives have been changed by this disease.

Click here to visit my personal page.
If the text above does not appear as a clickable link, you can visit the web address:

Click here to view the team page for Nila's Sassy Southerners
If the text above does not appear as a clickable link, you can visit the web address:

P.S. If you would like more information about the National Multiple Sclerosis Society, how proceeds from the MS Walk are used, or the other ways you can get involved in the fight against MS, please visit nationalmssociety.org.

In addition to the MS Walk - I am currently involved in two other walks as well - please take a moment to review the following web pages and consider supporting their causes. It only takes a second for your own family to be changed forever. Perhaps one of these issues:

Breast Cancer

Pre-Mature Birth

Multiple Sclerosis

...have affected your family or friends. If so, won't you consider supporting the research and treatment of these dreadful circumstances by donating even $5 to the cause of your choice? You will not believe the difference it will make in the lives of those struggling daily with it!

The March of Dimes~ Walk America
Helping to Save Babies born prematurely

I'm walking April 21, 2007 for Jamie and her son Parker who was born at 26 weeks gestation, and is now a healthy three year old thanks to research and medicine!


Susan G. Komen Texas Race for a Cure
Helping to save lives and fight Breast Cancer

I'm walking June 2, 2007 for Erin and her mom, Barbara - who was diagnosed with breast cancer, but beat it and is now a survivor thanks to research and medicine!

Barbara's Bosom Buddies

Thanks for listening and I am grateful for your support!


April 1, 2007

Extreme Bathroom Makeover - well, sort of...

Our home is three years old. It's a little three bedroom/two bath cozy comfy type in a neat little newly developed neighborhood. We bought it brand new and I have loved it since the day I walked in the door. We just kind of fell into "first home" love with it. The only problem was that all the walls were white - kinda like a hospital. You know how it is?!? They schlep the paint on and as it's drying, hand you the keys. We had to move in - no time to paint first - we were living with AB's parents and had only the very little we had managed to jam into our cars for the cross country move. The rest was all in storage...

All this to say - over the last three years, we've slowly but surely made our way through painting the living room, entryway, hallway, and kitchen. We have LOVED the results every time. This last year as many of you know, we painted the nursery - and you've all seen through the pictures the work that took! (If you haven't seen it- click here and scroll down).

The bigger problem and the reason we don't just knock it all out at once, is because AB HATES (let me emphasize H-A-T-E-S) painting. I might as well ask him to stick hot pokers under his nails - because painting for him is torture. Far be it from my cheap self to hire a painter to come in and mess with it, I have to tangle myself up into painters tape, drop cloths, step-ladders, and 12 different kinds of paint brushes or rollers.

The guest bathroom has been bothering me for months - dare I say - years. I've had the same decor for ten years. No joke. It's the last room in the house that visitors often see that hasn't received a post-move-in makeover. No paint, no pics, no nothing. Just a plain old white bathroom, with a couple knick knacks and a shelf. Oh, and the purple decor I've had for eons. Two months ago I went to Home Depot and bought a luxurious (I'm Bobby Trendy now!) soothing and tranquil looking purple-ish paint. Kind of a misty ~ I don't know ~ almost silvery purple. I thought it would go great with the decor that was already in there and would really add a kick to such a boring little space. But, it sat in the garage with all the supplies and gathered dust.

Well folks - I could NOT take it anymore. At 6pm Saturday night, I had had enough white bathroom! Here are some pictures of it as it stood Saturday afternoon ~

AB had to be out that night - so I just put the ol' overalls on and started my project. So here we go - painted the room and with the first couple strokes realized we had more of a periwinkle than a purple.
Had to snap some pictures of this sink, because it was driving me nuts how plain it was. I already had an idea for how I was going to punch it up!

Sunday afternoon, the paint had dried, the tape came off and the project continued when I had AB "jump" under the sink for some wanna-be plumber magic. (*It should be noted fully that AB hated this project from the get-go. He was totally irked to be spending this only day off firmly planted in this tiny space for over an hour.*)
A quick trip out for some decor and supplies and wa-la! You too can have a bathroom makeover for cheap $$ and a little time and labor. We went with white decor and it really brought out a stunning stark contrast to the bluish paint job! LOVED it!

I also used all black and white pictures in my two frames.
It really added to the overall look and feel.

You might recall, there were no knobs on the sink cabinet draws or doors before. AB added these little beauties to kick it up a classy notch. I think they are awesome!

Now I never have to feel embarrassed when showing guests to my lovely guest bathroom!

Check out the gorgeous Hot/Cold Handled Faucet! Remember it was that old and plain standard knob version?

You can barely make this out, but see how nice it goes with the green in the hallway? Love it!

I am loving my new bathroom! It's amazing what a little paint and some cheap supplies can do for your home. I told AB "now we only have the master and the office left". He said "yeah, and have fun with that, Babe!". Egad! I hope he doesn't mean to leave me to my own devices. I'm a bit of a mess when it comes to drilling and measuring! Until next time when we tackle the Office - here's to Home Improvement!