Tuesday, September 13, 2011

Creating a Beautiful Lifebook - Painting Orphanage Life

Hello again! How is it going? I hope you've had fun researching your child's country (province, city, etc.)

hallway in the HuaiHua SWI
This week we're going to dig more deeply into the orphanage (or foster home) that your child spent the first months of her life. Many of you have been fortunate enough to procure pictures, from a digital camera you sent, or from a friend who traveled before you. My daughter's orphanage also has a Yahoo! page, which is a wonderful resource. Pictures of the outside, inside, the purchases they bought with our donations ... all of those pictures can add such insight into your child's first months.

Often the referral and update pictures you received are taken in the orphanage - those you can choose to highlight in the orphanage section or a separate section. If you have pictures from a foster family, by all means, include those, though if you have more than a few they may warrant their own section.

Another thing to add to this section is pictures of the orphanage director and the nannies, if you have them. While you may or may not have a picture of your child with her personal nanny, even the nanny who brought her to you has a bittersweet importance.

Another possibility is to add information about your child's first name. In Mae's case, her last name is Huai, for the city she was found in, HuaiHua City. Her first name is Xiang, which I discovered is the name of the major river that divides Hunan Province. I discovered information about the river and even was fortunate enough to procure a coal drawing of the river from an artist while in China. It will be in a frame eventually and a copy is in the "Your Name" section.

Anything you have about the orphanage is wonderful. It is her roots, her own story.

If you've missed earlier posts, you can find them again, in the box on the right, under Archives.

How is it going? Remember, we aren't trying to create the perfect LifeBook. Don't worry yourself trying to make something perfect. Just do it!

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