Tuesday, December 29, 2009

Blessed Again and Again!

Over the past week, two more wonderful families have given us generous gifts to help us with our adoption expenses! We are so grateful, and truly humbled! God is clearly working - doing what would seem to be the impossible! Yet, we are reminded daily...

"...all things are possible with God." Mark 10:27

Today we received the final piece of paper we need - our updated I171 from USCIS (Immigration). We can now move forward with making our Consulate appointment in Guangzhou and planning our travel!

We are getting so close to finally being with our little Shi Shi! Yet there is still SO much that needs to be done here to prepare, not only for our trip and for his arrival, but also for our girls who will stay home while we're away. My mom will come and take care of them, but I will need to get her up to speed on their school schedule, activities schedule, meal preferences, routines, etc. So much more complicated than when we traveled last - Hannah and Rachel were 5 and 2 then!

David's room has been a storage room for the last couple of years. It is slowly but steadily getting cleaned out. I am also trying to organize the rest of the house so that once we come home with an active toddler with jet lag, I won't have to do much thinking about running things around here!

Also, once we have our travel dates, I can begin making medical appointments for David for when we get home. He'll need the typical post-placement medical exam and blood work done, but I will also be making apoointments for consultations with cleft specialists, planning a course of action for his treatment. Then will come Early Intervention assessments and possible services.

There's a lot of work to be done to bring our little boy home. But it is the work of my heart, and I welcome it!

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

We Are Blessed!

Yesterday, as I opened the mail, I found a small note card in with the stack of Christmas cards. Inside was a lovely note - and a check. A check for a substantial amount of money. A check, the note explained, that was meant to help us with David's adoption.

I cried hard as Al hugged me.

David's adoption came up fast. And as anyone who is even remotely familiar with intercountry adoption knows, the huge expenses related to his adoption came up fast, too. We've been scrambling, crunching the numbers, weighing our options. I will tell you that we've both lost more than a few hours' sleep wondering where we would come up with that amount of money so quickly.

I've read many blogs written by adoptive families who have found themselves in this same situation. So many times, God has provided exactly what they have needed to complete their adoptions, often in the form of a surprise gift like this. I have tried to continuously keep in mind that God knows what we need, and He will take care of us, and especially David. The speed at which all of the steps for this adoption have been completed is evidence to us that He is working everything out. But surprise gifts of money are the kind of thing that happens to other people - not us. I guess I've been proven wrong.

Yesterday, Hannah was looking for something to do. She wandered into our bedroom, picked up my Dad's old King James Bible that I display on a little table and began to read. This morning she told me that she had chosen to memorize Isaiah 41:10, and recited it to me:

Fear thou not; for I am with thee: be not dismayed; for I am thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness.

What a blessing it was for me to share the news of our gift with Hannah in light of this verse she learned! I love when we can share with our children the real-life examples God gives us of His love and provision!

Friday, December 18, 2009


That's Travel Approval! It arrived at our agency late Wednesday afternoon, and I got the call from our social worker yesterday! This is the official OK to travel to China for the purpose of adopting our son.

Our son. It won't be long now...

We are just waiting on our updated I171 from US Immigration - that should just be another few days. Then we can schedule our US Consulate appointment in China, figure out what day David will be placed with us, and make travel arrangements (book flights, hotels, etc.).

We are praying that we will be able to leave China by February 14th. That's the start of Chinese New Year. The entire country will shut down for two weeks beginning on that date. If we aren't able to schedule everything by then, we will have to wait until early March to travel. It's looking good for us, but we're not taking anything for granted.

There is so much that needs to be done around here. I'm going through each room in the house, getting rid of stuff we no longer need. David's room is still a storage room. I'm going to spend much of Christmas break getting it ready for him - cleaning it out, putting new shades in the windows, setting up his crib and dresser, digging toys out of bins in the basement. I need to get an area rug for the wood floor, lamps, a bookcase. I'm excited to get working on his room, but I've had to put it on hold while we prepare for Christmas.

I keep trying to imagine a two-year-old boy running around our house. It's going to be fun! We're ready!

Thursday, December 17, 2009

Wednesday, December 02, 2009

A New, Um, Preoccupation

OK, so the other evening, this Houseful of Girls was discussing the arrival of the new Little Brother. I mentioned that since David was not yet potty trained, they would be blessed with the supreme privilege of helping me with diaper changes. The question was asked, since he's a boy, would putting a diaper on him be any different than on a girl. You know, because boys have "peanuts". I said no, diapers were worn the same way by both boys and girls.

So yesterday, Abbie and I were walking through Target, choosing a few small items to put in a care package we'll be sending to David in China. The store wasn't too busy - just a few old ladies and moms with young children.


Did I mention Abbie's voice could slice through steel, especially when she's discussing something she feels is of extreme importance?

"Ummm, yes, honey, he will, because he's a boy."

I quickly looked around. No one too close to pay much attention. Time to redirect.

"Oh, let's go down this aisle. I need contact solution."


Yes, honey, I'm sure she set you straight. "Mmm-hmm... Hey, what do you think you'd like to have for lunch today?"

"Can I have some of the chicken noodle casserole from last night?"

"Sure, we have plenty left over!" Huge sigh of relief from me...

"MOMMY, HOW BIG IS DAVID'S PE*** GOING TO BE? WILL IT BE THIS BIG (holding thumb and finger about two inches apart)?"

"Honey, he's a toddler. We'll see when we get him home and change his diapers... Oh, look, I need a new tablecloth..."

"Hey, Mommy, you know how Daddy travels a lot for work?"

Whew - definitely a new topic. "Yes..."


It's not easy getting out of Target without making eye contact with a single person, but I tried. Where does she come up with this stuff???