Friday, November 30, 2007

Robin

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Robin,
Ella was sooo excited to open the gifts that you sent for her and Sophie yesterday! I couldn't get too many good photos, because she was so focused on the gifts and looking down the whole time! I wanted you to see this picture with the smile that says how much you made her day! Thank-you for your kindness and thanks for being there for me EVERY day! Your friendship means so much to me!


This is a picture of Robin's beautiful Lauren

 

Thursday, November 29, 2007

Adoption Awareness

As this month is coming to an end, I want to thank-you for celebrating adoption awareness month with our family! If you would have told me 5 years ago that we would be adding 2 more little girls to our family, I would have thought you were crazy! Hey, our other 2 children were getting older and easier to care for, I was working day hours again instead of evenings since the kids were in school full day, and we really had no desire to add any more children to our family. Things were comfortable. God had other plans, though! I am humbled every time I look into our girls' eyes. Humbled that God has entrusted me with 2 more of His children.

We often have people tell us how blessed the girls are to have us, but I can assure you that it is US that are blessed. We don't share our adoption stories with people in order to say, "hey, look what we did." We share it simply because adoption has touched our hearts and our lives. The children we left behind on each of our China trips remain in our hearts in a very big way! Many people feel that adoption is out of reach, as I once did. But it is not!! Every single child matters and God wants everyone of them to have a family.


I will not tell you that I think adoption is easy, but I can tell you that it is such a blessing from God. Yes, there is lots of paperwork involved and dealing with our govt. can be a real pain in the neck! The long waits can be frustrating and there are many fees associated with the process. The adjustment period with a newly adopted child can be tough. It took Ella 15-18 months to feel completely secure in her new home and Sophie still has a lot of healing she needs, but just look at these faces...we are the ones who have been blessed! The best things in life are not easy and adoption is one of the best things we have experienced in our lives. It is not out of reach. These 2 bring us much joy and they keep us young!

 

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

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Mom and her girls

 

Thanks Grandma!

Ella has a Nanny (my mom) and a Mamgu(Dave's mom), but she must have felt the need to have a Grandma. She adopted a friend of mine ,Joelyn, as HER grandma! Joelyn babysits her grandson, who is close in age to the girls and we get them together from time to time to play. Ella, being the little character that she is- has told me very clearly many times over that Joelyn is HER grandma-end of discussion. She even goes so far as to ask me and Sophie where Sophie's Grandma is. In other words, I have a Grandma...you can't have her-find your own!

Grandma gave her a Curious Buddies DVD for her birhtday. These pictures are for you, Joelyn. She loves it and it really tired her out! For those who might not know, as I did not, Curious Buddies is an interactive DVD that has the kids participate in all sorts of fun exercises. Ella really gets into T.V....you will remember her prayers for Zach and Weesy from the Dragontales. So, this DVD was right up her allie!


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Finding Ad

We just received Sophie's finding ad. It is always neat to have such an early picture of our adopted children. For those who are not familiar with what a finding ad is...it is a small ad that is put in the local newspaper to identify the children who have been abandoned. I think it is a bit of a formality as I doubt it is common that anything ever comes of the ad. The orphanages must place this ad before they are able to place the child with a family for adoption.


Below is a photo of the newspaper where Sophie's finding ad was. She is the first one pictured in the last row. There is also a brief description of where and when the child was found.




This is a close-up of her photo(on the left)




This is the newspaper where Ella's ad was listed. She is the first photo in the first column.




Here is a close-up of her photo(upper left)...no surprise to see those big beautiful eyes

 

Monday, November 26, 2007

I have been posting more pictures than writing this last week because I have been super busy. I will try to catch up a little here.

Chelsea has been busy applying to colleges. I can not believe she graduates HS this year and will soon be in college! She got a little mad at me the other day, because I told her I was not going to repaint the little girls' room since I will be moving them into Chelsea's room when she goes away to college. That did not go over big with her! She has the biggest bedroom besides the master bedroom, so it only makes sense to move the 2 little ones in there and let Chelsea have the smaller one since she will not be here except for holidays and summer. Maybe week-ends depending on how close she is to home.

Ryan had a pretty bad accident on his bicycle last week and ended up in the ER. He messed up his face pretty badly, but the plastic surgeon believed it would heal without him having to intervene. I have to say that it IS healing much faster and better than I thought it would. The kid has to be airborne when he is on wheels and has been this way since he was 3 years old. Some things never change!


Ella is having fun being 3 and telling everyone who will listen that she is 3 now! She is still my Dennis the Menace and even responds to the name Dennis when I call her that throughout the day. She LOVES to get into things she should not and the messier the better!


Sophie continues to make progress. She has revealed to us some pretty disturbing things that she endured in the orphanage. For her privacy, I will not go into detail about that, but appreciate you keeping her lifted in prayer. He knows what it is that she needs when you prayer for her, because He knows all of our needs!

I started back to work a few weeks ago, so my time is running very short these days. I work evenings, so the girls do not have to be in daycare outside of the home. One day, they probably will have to be...but for now the evening shift works out o.k.. We have a lady come into the home to watch them a few times a week in between me leaving and Dave coming home. Remember the post "Things 1 and 2 Meet the Nanny"? Well, she asked for a raise after only being here for a week! We had to tell her no, because we pay her very well already.



For those that do not know me personally, I work for Wal-mart and have done so for the past 11 years. I used to work in the accounting department and loved my job(no customers to deal with)! However, about 2 years ago, my position was eliminated and the only shift in the office starts at 5 a.m. I can not possibly be anywhere at 5 a.m. with little ones, so I had to go out into the scary, scary world of dealing with customers...who are often less than pleasant. The moods of people shift dramatically starting Black Friday right on through to the end of January. And I do not mean for the better. They are not happy and rejoicing the upcoming celebration of our Savior. No, they are mean and nasty like the scrooge...only worse! I went into work on Black Friday and almost every customer I dealt with bit my head off. Here we go...Tis the Season in retail!!
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Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Happy Thanksgiving!

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Thank you for the world so sweet,
Thank you for the food we eat.
Thank you for the birds that sing,
Thank you God for everything.



Our family wishes your family a Happy Thanksgiving Day! I read recently that the average calorie intake for turkey day is 5000 calories. Ugh!
Let's remember today, no matter what is going on, we are all so blessed and let's remember Who it is that blesses us.



I wanted to share this cute video clip that I saw on God Tube. It will certainly put a smile on your face!


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AMEN!!!

 

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

First Snow of the Season







Ella could not wait to get outside when she saw the start of this Winter's first snow. She got cold quickly though and came back in. Don't you love her hat? I found it at Gap. It is so neat to observe life through a small child's eyes. She was so excited one day last week, when we pulled into our driveway...she pointed out to me that the leaves of one of the trees in our yard had turned beautiful gold/yellow. I NEVER would have taken the time to notice that!

 

Monday, November 19, 2007

 


Chelsea and Ella teaching Sophie how to dance
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Saturday, November 17, 2007



It came! Love's Journey 2 is now being sent out and we received our copy. Click here to buy your own copy. It is a beautiful book filled with photos of children adopted from China and their forever families along with lots of personal stories and poems. Love Without Boundaries is an organization that brings so much hope and love and care to the orphans in China. Please read about all of the wonderful work they do at www.lovewithoutboundaries.com

100% of the proceeds from this book go toward helping the precious children in China who so need our help!


Page 140 has a photo of 3 of our kiddos...submitted before Sophie came home. It is the photo in the upper right corner.

 

Happy Birthday Ella!!!!








 

Friday, November 16, 2007

Remember this photo of Ella and her cute little friend from the orphanage? That little cutie, named Sam, went home with his family shortly after we brought Ella home. Many of you have asked about him...how he is doing and such. You can see in the last photo a recent picture of him. He is so adorable!! We do not live close to his family, but hope to meet them maybe this summer and get an updated photo of the motorcycle duo!




Here they are in the orphanage. It seems these two were very close to each other and I wonder if they shared a crib.



Here is the recent picture of Sam



Sam and his family sent birthday gifts for Ella and I wanted to post photos of Ella opening her gifts so that Sam and his sister could see her opening them. Tammy, thanks so much for being so thoughtful! Ella loved her gifts and it was so sweet of you to include Sophie and send her a matching outfit. Very cute!!

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Thursday, November 15, 2007

Starting to Celebrate

Ella brought cookies in to school today to share with her class for her birthday. The teachers made her this special crown and the kids sang happy birthday to her!!




When I picked her up, the teachers told the parents that they had a real fire drill today. Is it still called a drill when it is real? Anyway, there was smoke in the basement, the alarms went off, the kids had to evacuate in the cold rain, and the firetrucks came. She said some of the kids got upset with the loud fire alarms going off. I don't know if Ella was one of them. She seemed okay with it when I talked to her on the way home. But she just woke up from her nap crying about the fire bells! Uh, oh!!

 

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Splish Splash


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Welcome to our blog! We are happy for you to be a part of our "Day by Day" and to share how God is working in our lives. To read earlier posts, scroll down to the very bottom of the page and you can click on 'older posts'. Remember...we love to hear from YOU as well!