Saturday, January 30, 2010

Name Change?

Oh me, oh my! A name change? Could you help us out?

Hubby says I'm doing this just because I love the name game but (well, maybe he is kind of right but who cares!) No this is for real and I need your opinion!

Our older daughter is tentatively Emma Joy- I do love that name! However, we have a last name that starts with an M- so it can be a little bit of a tongue twister. We could go with Emily Joy?
Which one do YOU like better?

Our younger daughter is tentatively Ella Mei. I also love that name and the name Elizabeth Mei, too. She will be called Ellie- all the time. What do you think again?

The girls will be called Emma and Ellie or Emmie and Ellie. It is more their formal names that we are wondering about?

Hubby and I will make the final decision but what you say may matter or sway us!

Today (Sunday) is day 39 as we wait for our LOA! We know of a family that got it on day 52- that must be a new record- wow! Other families received it on day 64 and day 80. Our agency said the soonest anyone has received it for them is day 60. Hey, that works for me! So here we are (im)patiently waiting! We are hoping and praying to get our update on these two treasures this week! I will let you know just as soon as we hear!

Don't ya just love that pic of the two of them!

Thank you Jesus for your blessings!

This and That!

Billy is home from his J-term in Australia! It is so nice to have him home! Once again he is back to raiding the kitchen and eating all our food! I love it! The girls aren't so sure, they think he will eat something they MAY want! My older children are now better cooks that their Momma. As I have said before, I just don't enjoy cooking. I woke up this morning to the delicious smell of a loaded omelet! I said, I don't like to cook but I do like to eat. Unfortunately the omelet was not for me. Billy is still on Australia time and was up with the sun cooking breakfast! I can't even lure the older kids home with my cooking anymore. They are all way better than me! You know I could say that was my goal all along and because of me they are good cooks and capable in the kitchen! I like the sound of that! Or maybe they finally got hungry enough to make themselves some food!

I tried to use reverse psychology on Johnny. I told him that no matter what I want him to wear socks that DON'T match... it didn't work... Every morning he just reaches into the sock bin and pulls out 2 socks. He's okay with whatever he gets! Maybe his mother should be matching them up? Nawwwww!

We a child turns 16 yrs old and begins to drive it is very freeing for them and for the Momma. He can drive himself to school, to soccer and to friends homes. We actually see him more because he can come home and then go out again instead of just staying out with friends. It is really quite nice... until you walk into the garage and realize there is NO car for you... you are free BUT stranded!

This morning Anna was sitting up at the counter with Billy while he was eating and she discovered some chocolate on her foot. She put it in her mouth and Billy said "NO, Anna you can't eat that". Being the youngest of 7 so far my first thought was oh she must be hungry and thanks for getting it off your foot so you don't track it through the house! Obviously Billy was part of the first crew where we didn't do that well guess what things have changed we do that now! ;-)

My latest project are the bookmarks on my computer. (3,400 bookmarks) kind of embarrassing! I am checking everyone of them and getting rid of the ones that no longer are necessary. I have had this computer for 2 years and even 2 years ago we were at a different place in our lives- my how things change. I was researching older child adoption and homeschooling. Many of the blogs I followed did not have older children in them NOW I love the ones with the older kids. Love to hear families journeys and their continued adventure at home! Hubby thinks I will be done with this project sometime next year! FYI Hubby, I am half way through already!! I am still going to have too many but it feels good getting rid of some of them and organizing the rest.

Yesterday was a tough day at our little school. My number one student didn't much feel like doin school. It was an exhausting day of trying to figure out how to handle it but I have to say things worked out well in the end! Hubby and I stand strong and together on this issue so that helps and Sarah is learning who makes the decisions in the family and when she does this, she is really only hurting herself. She ended up missing out on a fun afternoon at underwater world, getting pajamas for her American girl doll and going to the Am. girl doll store. I really think she is catching on to all this however I know we will still have bumps in the road! I certainly makes life interesting!

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Answered prayer!

Have you ever prayed and prayed and prayed about something only to realized hey- he already answered it and I didn't see it- I missed it when it happened! It wasn't the expected answer but it was a good one. In fact it was a better answer than the answer I was praying for- he did it his way... his own perfect way. It leaves me almost speechless... I'm just letting it sink in now. WOW, our God is good! He never ceases to amaze me!

As I look closer I can see the blessing coming from this- I know what he is saying. He sent me a message through a friends blog. I read the words, I have heard them many times before but this time they were speaking directly too me. I saw them, read them, the lightbulb went on- only about 50 watts - a few days passed the bulb is brighter we are at 100 watts, the message is clear. (I wonder if it will get to 150 watts) Thank you Jesus!

Proverbs 3:5

Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding: in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your path straight.

I want to share everything with you, our God is so amazing! I want to show you what he has done. I want all glory and thanksgiving to be on him. But I cannot share yet- it is not my story right now to share. I look forward to the day that I can tell you. Don't hold your breath it is going to be a long time...

Wednesday, January 27, 2010


Ever since Sarah has been home she has asked us - "Why, didn't you bring Anna home first?" The question was on her mind from the beginning. We reassured her that she was not up for adoption at the time we brought Anna home and as soon as we saw her picture we grabbed her FAST! She continued to ask the question but seemed to understand the answer. She was always happy to say that we worked really hard and fast to bring her home. She sees what we do to bring Emma and Ellie home- she likes to see it- it reassures her that this is what we did for her.

As we talk about future adoptions she is beginning to open her heart to more children in our house. It is important to us that our children know how much we love them, how thankful we are for them in our family and that their will be others that we open our hearts too. At first Sarah was "What? How many kids?"- there is no magical number for us, we will just wait and see where God guides us. It is a very interesting journey and one that we find we will need to trust in our Lord with all our hearts.

Tonight Sarah said "Wow, I am so glad you got me second!"

a feeling of thankfulness- great!
happy to be here- super!
I like my family- excellent!
I think I can open my heart to more sibs- incredible!

Okay, okay, yes she is competitive and we all know that second is better that third, fourth, fifth, sixth, seventh, eighth (I have no idea how to spell 8th), ninth, tenth, (do you want me to go on?)

Thank you Jesus!

Monday, January 25, 2010

News Flash!

There is no August... it does not exist! Yep that's right!

Ya know, I have said, in my oh so gentle way, that our little Sarah has a strong personality. I know most of you probably have responded- ya, ya, ya!

Today Miss Sarah was going through the months and then paused at the month of August... She wanted to say October but her loving Mama decided to help her out and whispered August into her ear.

Her response was... "WHAT, there is no August!"

I held back my smile and said "Really? What a bummer? You just made summer shorter than it already is!" Our poor Auntie Kathy no longer has a birthday!

That is just one tiny example- it happens at least 3 times each school day! NOW, do ya wanna pray for me!

And oh, by the way 11-7 does not equal 4!

I am guessin right about now ya'all are on your knees prayin for me!


I appreciate it!

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Live each day, joyfully!

Struggling... a little with real life verses blogs verses things that are out of my control... I think it is so important to live in the present. I cannot live in the future- I have no idea what that future will bring. Sometimes preoccupation gets in the way with the present. I need to let go of that which I cannot control. Live now! Enjoy this blessed time with these amazing children! Fervently pray to our blessed Father in heaven, who is by the way, in control!

This has nothing to do with the Vikings game and those crazy New Orleans fans that keep cheering... (or the fact that we just lost the game)...

It has everything to do with filling my heart and soul with the spirit, serving, obeying, trusting and loving our Lord.

I do have a thing for sunsets. I know I have said this before but I feel so close to God and so in awe of him when I see such incredible beauty. My heart is filled with such deep joy and gratitude. It is a time that I need to spend with him. A time that I reckon myself to him and ask for forgiveness for being "off course". Do you have a place that you can just talk openly to God?A place where you know he will meet you there? It is the beach now BUT just so you know it was the bathroom for the first 30 yrs. of my life (I would go in there to be alone with him) , then it was the shower for the next 20 years. Seriously, I would go in there and just pray away... okay, I still do in the shower! But ya know I'm kinda likin the beach for the next 30 years (maybe I should say 40 yrs!)!

I do want my bloggy friends to know that I try to visit their blogs and leave a comment but often I get to do the first part without the second. I know it is so fun to have comments and I always try - I love your comments that you leave me. Sometimes I am just not able to leave then as much as I would like too. I try to go back to them but I ma not always able to do that. I do think the support we give one another is irreplaceable- we understand each other and we have been through similar circumstances. That is hard to find in this world... adoption bring us together. Let's face it we are unique families. WE NEED EACH OTHER! I know I need you!

Friday, January 22, 2010

A Little Excitement in the Middle of the Night!

The fire alarms in the building went off last night around midnight. Hubby and I where just heading to bed. It usually isn't anything serious but we are on the 18 floor so that meant we had to carry the girls down... you guessed it 18 flights. My calves are feeling it today!

It turned out to be an electrical problem nothing serious so after a half hour outside we all returned to our homes.

Many people just stayed in their homes and watched from the balconies. That's not an option for us being on the 18 floor! If it is was for real we would have had no quick way out of there!

I'm sorry I have to laugh a little- look how old the fireman is! The average age is about 60 yrs old. Wow, do I feel young!!

Of course after this the girls where scared and we slept 4 in the bed! Don't ask how today is going. Some of us didn't sleep well... It's not the beauty sleep I care about it the "I need to sleep to be a nice person the next day" kind, that I care about!

Thursday, January 21, 2010

Thankful Thursday- January 21, 2010

I am thankful for this wonderful husband of mine who is so up for all the crazy ideas that I have! What a blessing he is in my life! What a blessing he is to this family's lives! He definitely has a fan club- it's us!

I love sunsets! I can never get enough of this... It is so amazingly beautiful! It makes me want to fall to my knees in prayer and that is just what I do! Thank you Jesus!

Okay, I am driving myself crazy. We are waiting for an update on the girls. I so badly want all that I have asked for- measurements, pictures (lots of them) and answers to the questions we asked. I got a great list of questions from Mary Kate and then just modified a few of them to fit us and then of course I had to ask each one twice- once for each girl! I am a little concerned they may get tired of the questions- I hope not. I have been waiting very patiently and peacefully for the girls... until now. Our purposed time to travel should work out really well for us BUT you know I would leave tomorrow if they let me! Our update won't come for another week or two so I need to just "chill" and focus on other things. So adding to my thankful thursday list- I am very thankful for the opportunity to get an update on our two darling daughters in China!

I am also so very thankful that they will be joining our family. My mind often wanders and I think what will it be like when they are here! Will they love the sandy beach like Anna, the sunsets like their Momma, roller blading like their sister Sarah, or the warm weather like their Daddy?

I am especially thankful for the people in China that take care of these precious orphans. The modern day pioneers that give up everything that is familiar to them to answer God's calling. To go far away from home and care for those in need and for the unloved. Oh Lord, please bless them with your peace and with answered prayer.

I am so thankful to for the big girl in the middle who is helping us out at home and hanging out with her little bro and the doggies while we enjoy a little southern warmth! Thank you God for the helping hearts of our older children!

I am thankful for texting and cell phones! I can keep in touch with everyone in this family through modern technology! We have one in Australia, one in Denver, 4 in Florida and the rest at home. Oh and I can't forget! A BUNCH IN CHINA! ;-)

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Choosing to do it differently!

We have raise 5 wonderful children! We love them with all or hearts and I have to say I think they have "turned out" quite nicely!! Not all five are a finished project but they are well on their way!

Our five older children have been raised more "mainstream". They had many activities, many friends, the went to public or catholic schools. Our friends were the parents of their friends. We basically did what everyone else was doing but we still had a bit of a flare that was all our own! We had lots of fun and lots of busyness!

When I look back I can see a few mistakes we made. We let our children go to their friend's cabins and miss time with Grandparents, we were at times too busy and lost our family time, we put too much importance on our children's friends and what others were doing and we did not outwardly share our faith we kept it hidden inside (we still have a tendency to do that). All of these mistakes I do regret and would love to have a chance to do it all over again but that is not an option.

Instead the Lord has given us an opportunity to do it all over again not with our birth children but instead through the blessings of adoption! This time around we are making some changes. In fact our birth children have had to do a double take and question us at times. They were happy with how they grew up and they are not always so certain about our new philosophy. Usually they come around and can understand our thought process but they still are cautious about completely agreeing with us. We are okay with that - there is not one right way to raise children. All children are unique and have different needs. We are trying to meet the needs of our new children... and to be honest we need to meet our needs also. Happy parents make happy children. I love working hard, I love giving tons of love and time but I am not a martyr- I know when I need a moment to regroup!

What are we doing differently this time-
We are homeschooling our adopted children. They have already spent too much time away from us and we want them with us. We want to make up for the lost time. This is for their benefit as well as ours!
We are trying to be more open and sharing with our faith. We are trying to walk with Jesus in front of the children and ask them to share this wonderful journey with us. We want our children to have an appreciation for God's creations.
We are showing our children all that family has to offer. With a family a child's needs are met, they are safe and secure, and their is laughter and fun. They can learn about the world in a safe environment. We would like to teach them many of their social skills within the family environment and a few friends.
We like going to the beat of a different drummer and making our own decisions. We do not want to follow the masses in a direction that may be the wrong one for this family. In other words we will not do what others are doing just because others are doing it- hope that makes sense!
We are unique and we want to embrace and celebrate our uniqueness!
We plan to make many of our family decisions through prayer and through God's direction. We love how he has guided us so far!
We would like to do a better job at encouraging our individual children's interests and talents in a low key way.
Each day we are moving forward with God's peace in our hearts. I want my heart so filled with God that their is no room for anything else!

We are more committed to enjoying the simple pleasures that life has to offer. Slow down and see the beauty! Be peaceful and pray! (Okay I know that adopting a bunch of kids is not exactly slowing down and creating simplicity but that is the plan and that is the direction!)

We feel good about our decisions. We feel we are making healthy choices for this family! To many of you bloggy loving, Jesus loving, adoption loving people out there this is not a new direction. To us, it actually is and we are loving it!

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Do You Love Them As Much As...

Since we have adopted I have been asked that question a lot. I quickly check where the children are to make sure they are out of earshot and didn't hear it. I don't like that question because it alludes that the answer could possibly be no- that breaks my heart. However I tolerate that question for two reasons- I want to encourage others to adopt and I remember wondering that myself.

As we were having our birth children I remember how passionate I felt for them. I was prepared to protect them at all costs. I was a Momma bear and they where my cubs. I remember seeing other adoptive families and pondering the question "do they love their child as much as I love mine?" I never asked anyone but I did wonder. Over time I was able to see the answer- Of course they do! That dear child is a wonderful beautiful creation of God. Of course they love them every bit as much!

It was almost a relief to come to that reality. I couldn't imagine a child in a family and not having equal love and opportunity as their sibling. For me if freed me to have dreams come true, to add to our family as God guided us along in the path of adoption. I love seeing who will be joining us next!

Speaking of who will join us next- With all the chatter within the yahoo groups regarding contact with future adoptive children I want to be careful to do things the right way. To be honest I haven't followed the yahoo groups very closely because "surprise", we are busy. I have read a few posts here and there and do not want to take a chance at prolonging our wait in any way- it is already painful enough. Once you know who your children are you just want them home... now! We are hoping to get an update- through our agency sometime this month! I think we all have to be careful not to jeopardize China adoption in anyway! The children need us and well this Momma needs her children!!

I cannot believe how much Sarah is growing! I am putting away her clothes thinking that Emma and Ellie will be able to wear them BUT they too are probably growing! This should be one interesting closet they will have- Oh my, I think I have never had this situation- will some experienced Mom please tell me- should they share clothes or have their own? What n earth do you do if they want to all wear the same shirt and I don't happen to have 3 of them, just one?
I am thinking they will wear different sizes- I think... Sarah should be the biggest, Emma should be a size smaller and Ellie is the same size as Emma but she is broader built so they can share some things but she may need her own pant/shorts/skirts.

Have I shared with you that I am not really a very organized person! Sarah is organized. The other day she got frustrated with her underwear/sock and undershirt drawar- it is now perfectly organized! Our God sure knows what he is doing when he matches us up with our kids!!

Back to the LOVE! The answer is yes, yes, YES! Sometimes I feel like my heart could jump right out of my chest! I feel like "is this really true are these amazing children really MINE?" Oh how can this be- thank you, thank you, thank you JESUS!

Saturday, January 16, 2010

28 Years today!!

Today is our 28th anniversary! I am so grateful to God for bringing us together! I love my hubby with all my heart! He is my dream come true, my knight in shining armor! I love everyday with him! Thank you Jesus for 28 wonderful years! What a gift! I am hoping and praying for another 28 yrs. together!

Friday, January 15, 2010


This was Sarah's first time she had no idea what we were going to do. Sometimes it is too hard to explain and they just need to experience it. She knew one of the girls but they quickly all had fun together. I am so glad she is beginning to connect up with other kids at the gatherings!

The kids had a blast! They were all giggles in the beginning! We had to work hard though because we wanted to feed as many people as possible!

We did have to pause for a few pics!

Our large group did a great job! It is so rewarding when you see the results of your work! It is so worth it! I think the cost per volunteer is what it would have cost them if the had to pay minimum wage to have this done (?). It was free to us.

45 of us from our local homeschool group went to Feed My Starving Children today! It is an incredibly wonderful volunteer opportunity in our area. We package food for countries where there is not enough food and people are starving. One of the main countries they send the packaged meals to is HAiti. It is usually a rice, dried vegetables and soy/chicken mixture but today we package their new formula for babies and countries with dysentery. Our efforts will go to El Salvador where many people are very sick. They are having an emergency packing session on Sunday so the can send more meals to Haiti.

It is so much fun because you work together in groups. You don't even need to know the people in your group to have fun. It is a little competitive because the tables want to see who can get the most boxes packed. The kids have fun because they are as important as the adults in the group and the get to measure, weigh and pour the ingredients. The youngest person there was about 7 yrs old and the oldest was about 75 yrs old! It is perfect for all ages!!

We have three sites in our area and there is another one in Illinois BUT hey have a bus and will come to you if you want to do this as a service project in you church or other group. This year they will have been in all 48 states! Check out the website!

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Delete, Delete, Delete!

So many times I have sat down to post only to be interrupted, lose my train of thought and lose the momentum of the post. They all have ended up in the delete pile! You know when you feel strong about something, really convicted and the fingers are flyin... well, for me that would be three fingers since that is all I use to type with! Then someone has to go potty! Then someone else wants to talk about some sports issue on TV (Dad wasn't home- I was a distant second choice but I have ears so he thought I'd do... for now). Someone else is letting me know she gets the good seat for dinner because it is her turn to sit there and her lil sis has already planted herself in that spot. Well, you get the picture- delete, delete, delete. Someday I will remember those posts and try again!

Today I went to the eye Dr. I have had sore eyes and a couple broken blood vessels for 2 weeks. The diagnosis is... I have bruised eyes. Hmmmm, really? What does it mean... absolutely nothing. Use eye drops and don't rub my eyes so hard- okay- I can do that! I was certain I was going to have some fancy diagnosis. I got myself all worked up- you know anything can hurt if you think about it long enough! Yesterday they hurt- I was fixated on them. Today I was busy- they didn't hurt ;-)

This weekend we dived into the storage room- it is time to purge! This task could take us a long time, it's an ugly one! Perfect for those cold winter days. I couldn't bare to do this if it was nice outside! We are finding some interesting stuff! In the process I seemed to have misplaced my camera. I will try to attach a pic when Anna wakes up and tells me where she put it!! (believe it or not I am hoping she put it someplace- I would be bummed if I lost it!)

Big bro Matt is working on the family pic with Emma and Ellie added into it! I can hardly wait to get it! We will send it to the girls with a gift soon! (of course I am hoping for pics and answers to questions too)!

Sunday, January 10, 2010

The votes are in...

It was unanimous- all four girls will be sharing a room! Sarah and Anna are very happy about it!! We will be ordering 2 sets of bunk beds in February and hopefully the big bros will help us set them up! They are adorable and we are excited to get the room ready! We are having Sarah and Emma on the top and Ellie and Anna on the bottom! This company actually has full size bunk beds- they are pretty cool but Sarah is opting out of sharing one with Anna. If you've ever slept with Anna you would understand she is a kicker and a roller! We are going to assume that Emma and Ellie will sleep in the same twin bed in the beginning because I think that is what they are doing now in China. We are thinking that when they are ready to split into their own bunk they can get their ears pierced! It seems like our other two we ready to make a change after being home 3-4 months.

You all were so right on with what you said! Your comments were so helpful. I think this will really facilitate bonding between all the girls. We have a playroom downstairs, a bonus room for school and a family room so I think the girls will have plenty of places to hang out! I really appreciate your comments and I think with this crew Hubby and I will need to get a good night sleep. So having the girls together will accomplish that sooner rather than later!

The extra bedroom? Hmmmm? Well if you have been reading my blog you must kind of know me- so just use your imagination as to how we may use it! ;-D

BTW- we got the bunk bed ideas from Emily's blog! They are putting their two little cuties in the same room!

Thank you so much for your help!! This is an insightful group!!

Saturday, January 9, 2010

What Do You Think?

We are so thankful to have our LID! Now we can start to prepare for these special little girls t0 join our family!

First on the list are the bedrooms! We actually have two bedrooms that are close to being ready- Sarah and Anna are already rooming together. We just need to move Anna's clothes over! Anna's old room will be for Emma and Ellie. We will make a few changes but there is a double bed in there now and they like to sleep together so that should work out great! Except for the fact that now I am beginning to think of putting all four girls in one bedroom? This is where you come in! I need your advice.

Here is the situation- it would be so nice and easy to leave it as planned. Less cost, less moving, everybody has a little space.

Sarah would like to get bunk beds and have all four girls sleep in the same room. We wouldn't get them just because Sarah wants them but I am thinking it would be great for bonding for the girls. When Sarah and Anna came home they each slept with us for about 4 months. Em and El could do that but we all can't fit in our bed "and they all rolled over and one fell out!" We'd be certain to lose someone- probably Daddy! I think he'd voluntarily leave for a good night sleep! The other option is a mattress on our bedroom floor for the girls for the first couple months.

If they all slept together I could see that being very bonding for them. I am not to worried about hubby and I bonding because I am with the girls ALL the time and hubby is a very involved, loving, caring Dad. Em and El have already bonded with their birth parents and a foster mom- I believe they will be able to do it again with us and their new family.

My bigger concern is the 2 girls accepting/ bonding with their new sister that is near their age. Sarah is very excited about them but I can see them being not so sure about her especially IF she tries to separate them. That could be something so simple as playing with one and not the other- it could happen accidently and could cause bad feelings. I am thinking that Emma and Ellie may behave like twins because they have had to rely on each other for security for so long.
In China they tried to separate them and both girls shut down until they were reunited. They have however gone to separate schools, so that is good.

Sooooo, what do you think? Should we leave it as is? Will the bedroom with 4 girls in it be a zoo, without enough personal space for each child and cause more problems that actually helping them with bonding? Will it drive me crazy not being able to send children to their own room to get ready for the day/night. Or will we love it and see it facilitate us in becoming a unified family?

Please give me feedback when you can!! I so appreciate it!!

Thursday, January 7, 2010

We have our LID!!

I am so so excited!! We just got our LID! It was 12/24/2009!!

I prayed that it would be before Christmas and thank you Jesus for answered prayer!

So this means if we get our LOA on Feb 4th it would have taken 42 days. I know this is not going to happen to us but hey, I can dream!

If we get it on March 4th it would have taken 70 days. This could be a realistic scenario!

But if it takes longer like April 1st then it would have taken 98 grueling days - oh my, at that point this Momma will have an aching heart.

For those of you who are not with a China program LID means LOG in Date. That is when all your paperwork is in China and it is when you start the countdown to LOA- Letter of Approval. LOA comes somewhere between 42-120 days after your LID. After your LOA you wait for your TA- travel approval. I am not sure how long that takes now- think 8-10 weeks? Then families travel about 2 weeks after that! I think ;-)

It just doesn't make sense to me why some LOA's come so quickly and other take so long 42-120 days is quite a span. Does anyone have any insight on why this happens? If you get a chance please pray for Mandi! She has been waiting too long to bring Drew home. To the point of it being painful. The good thing is once you get LOA you forget about the pain of waiting for your baby. The focus changes to just get the TA and getting to China. Praying that your LOA comes very soon, Mandi and Matt!

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Too Cool!

Lately I have heard from a few bloggy friends and it has been so cool! Seriously cool! A while back a group of us fasted and one of the ladies just e-mailed me - her husband heart has been moved to adopt! That is about the coolest thing I have EVER heard! Wow, is our God good! Friends - he was a definite NO. Look (as Linn would put it) "How our God Moves Mountains!"

Two other emails were from friends that were adopting older and wanted to chat about it. Another e-mail was from a "vibrant" bloggy friend about "my age" that was adopting- incredible! Thank you Jesus!

I think my only regret is that we didn't adopt earlier. I am feeling the age issue- NO I'm not feeling old, I'm feeling like someday they are going to say no to us. That will be a very sad day. Anybody out here heard of families adopting when they were older that the magical 54/55 or when their ages added up to over 110??

If anyone wants to e-mail me and talk adoption please do! For me this is answered prayer! This is a day maker and even a month maker!

BTW- we should hear when our LID is very soon! I am so excited!!

God Bless your Journey to your child(ren)!

Sunday, January 3, 2010

I don't know what I would have done?

It is so wonderful to see Sarah become more comfortable in our family- truly a miracle only God could have orchestrated! She has done especially well this time with all the older children around. Her personal growth has amazed us!

Sometime the conversations can be very superficial and a little frustrating. There are a few language and comprehension issues. I have longed and prayed for more meaningful conversations with our daughter.

Today we received a Christmas card from her orphanage in Ch*na. It was addressed to hubby and I but it had her Chinese name on the address! She was so happy to see it written in Chinese and recognized it right away! That brought on a bunch of memories and she began talking. Talking about everything! I have noticed that her ramblings often start out factual and then drift into fantasy, but she had my complete attention. I could tell she meant what she was saying. She talked about her life in the orphanage, about people who where nice and those that were not nice. She told stories about school and how she cared for the babies. She spoke of some that died and some older children that never had the surgeries they needed.

That conversation lead into her Momma's heart for the orphans. How every child needs to have a Mommy and a Daddy. She was right there with me- for the first time I could tell she genuinely agreed. We talked about adopting her sisters- Emma and Ellie and whoever else God had in mind for our family. We talked about helping other orphans find their families- it was a good conversation. A really good one! She did not feel intimidated or threatened, she was so comfortable.

We talked about her life in China. She said she was so glad we came to get her quickly! Earlier she wondered why didn't we come when she was a baby, like Anna. We told her that Ch*na had not put her up for adoption and as soon as they did we grabbed her quick. Right away we saw her picture and right away we grabbed her! We new God wanted her to be our daughter!

She told us she was so glad we brought her home. We talked again how she is our daughter FOREVER! She likes the sound of that a lot! She is happy that Emma and Ellie will be in our family and that they will have a forever family, too. Of course, I do know there will be many "feelings" amongst the crew once everyone is home. We will work through it and become a family once again.

We have had conversations of life after the orphanage. She has seen many older orphans become caretakers at the orphanage. She has seen some of them leave, never to be heard from again. Today- it really dawned on her what would she be doing without her family, what would her future have been like? Today she said to us " I don't know what I would have done?"

I am not saying this in order to show her gratitude or to make us into heroes. I am saying this for all the other orphans that need a home. What will they do when they age out?

Saturday, January 2, 2010

A Little Family Time Away from the Cold!

Rumor has it that in MN it is 20 degrees below zero. That is 50 degrees colder than the weather we had at Christmas time. Just doesn't seem right-brrrrrr! Our weather has been very nice in southern Florida but today the high was only 58 degrees. We still saw people on the beach!

This little one provides us with our daily dose of cuteness!
Everyone gets a kick out of her- she's just too cute!

We did lots of swimming!

Sarah is such a good swimmer, it is amazing! She is so graceful in the water!
There are so many things we want to continue working on but when we see her progress over the last year we are so grateful!

Katie and Johnny went parasailing! This was Johnny's first time! He loved it!

The rest of us stayed on the beach and watched them. The girls loved playing in the water. We asked them not to get wet but obviously they didn't have their listening ears on!

The water weighed down her pants! Her cute little bottom was just about peeking out of her pants! I think she would be a good construction worker in the future- she has the sag down!

Up, up, up and away!

Not only did she love the water she loves the wet sand!

Throwing it was especially fun!

Sarah liked chasing the seagulls on the beach!

Kind of a bummer when you are all wet and you trip and fall over a sand castle!

beautiful owl!

On New Years Eve we went out to eat at our favorite restaurant. Captain is always there to greet us. He was especially talkative today! He does have a mean streak so we all kept our distance!

He is very pretty BUT looks can be deceiving!