Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Aliyah update

WOW! Sorry everyone for not updating on Aliyah in a really long time. Things overall are going great and Aliyah seems to be adjusting well.

The good news is, that we finally have her ear infections under control. She had a tube placed in her left ear as well as it suctioned and cleaned in the operating room in September, and that combined with more antibiotics has so far done the trick! She has been antibiotic and ear infection free since early November.  She also has had a hearing aid since mid November and is hearing at almost normal level now--yaaahoooo! The funding for that was a HUGE answer to prayer as her hearing aid is not a covered insurance benefit and costs about $6000. We thought for sure we would have trouble getting her to keep her hearing aid on, but we don't. She loves it! She doesn't touch it and she even asks to have it on. We hope to have her hearing aid surgically implanted when she is a bit older- closer to 5. We have not talked much about reconstructive surgery for her ear, but we have a long time to think about that. That is not usually done until the teenage years.

Aliyah's first day with her hearing aid.

We have been working hard every week with 2 therapists, one for her hearing loss and one for speech. In October her language/speech skills were very low. She tested at the 0-2 month range. Meaning she had the skills of a 0-2 month old. We tested them again in mid December, one month after getting her hearing aid and she tested at 12-14 months! We knew she had made a TON of progress after she began to hear at almost normal level, but a years worth of progress in one month--amazing!

I have been struggling a bit parenting Dane and Aliyah. There are times where it is very hard to not compare or automatically assume Dane can do something because Aliyah can.  Although Dane is a year older he functions much younger than Aliyah and that has brought some challenges for me as a mom. I sometimes find it hard to balance Aliyah's needs as a new child and Dane's needs developmentally.

Aliyah is a very smart girl. Almost too smart. She continues to amaze us as she is such a sponge! Everything she sees or hears she absorbs. She catches on to things very quickly. All I have to do is show her something once and shes got it. She is a climber and gets into everything! She loves to know how things work and how they come apart. She is queen of throwing tantrums and knows exactly what she wants and doesn't. There is no telling her what to do and she takes absolutely no "guff" from her siblings! She is quite the firecracker! Despite her feisty side she does have a sweet side too. She loves to look pretty and loves hair bows. She is in love with every baby doll we own--You will usually see her toting one around. She LOVES to be hugged and carried. She still prefers her daddy, especially at night, but she has warmed up to me really well too. She adores her siblings, most of the time, and is liking the dog more and more. She is nothing like the quiet, clingy, lethargic girl that would not eat or drink, that we met in Ch*na. She runs and jabbers and eats everything you give her now. So thankful that she feels safe and comfortable enough to show us, a bit more everyday, of who she really is!

Aliyah and Dane- partners in crime!

Overall, she is doing really well. She is a great addition to our family and we are so blessed to have her home!

Our beautful children.


This post was a hard one to write. It was hard to hit post for fear that it is just far to personal, and it was also hard because I struggled to get my thoughts together enough to have them make sense. My heart has been so heavy lately and I think that has a lot to do with the fact that  I have been watching my youngest two struggle with what are unfortunately "normal adoption issues". It breaks my heart that they have deal with issues that are the result of a decisioion someone else made children had no say in that decision and the sad reality is that they will carry that forever. Thankfully, their story is a bit different than most, and that is because their birth mothers chose life, --and because my daughter was found. While it is true, having a forever family is a wonderful gift, it does not, however, heal all wounds....

I have been thinking about the day Aliyah was born an awful lot lately. I wish more than anything that I could have been there the moment our sweet girl was born...and it is not just because I would have loved to see her sweet newborn face.

It is because I long to know her birth mother, and father too. I wish more than anything that I could have talked with many things, heavy on my heart, that I wish I could have shared with them. Not hurtful things or words of anger, but words of love, of hope, of encouragement. So many things I pray they know; so many things I want them to know without a doubt... I pray they feel and know a peace that surpasses all of their pain.

I wish that I could have hugged them. Encouraged them. Hoped for them. Prayed for them. I would have done ANYTHING to help them keep their baby girl. I would have offered them money if they were too poor, or food or clothes. If it was her medical needs, I would have done whatever it took to help them meet those needs. If  it was simply because she was a girl- I would have educated them on the beauty of girls and their value...and again, I would have offered them hope for their precious daughter. And if it just wasn't enough, if they had to make the heart wrenching decision, that they simply could not keep her, I would have promised them that I will love and cherish their daughter always...

All of that I would have promised to keep my baby from the pain she feels now. All of that I would have promised to keep a family keep a birth mom from abandoning her keep a precious child out of an orphanage.

It is sad, really, really sad to think about all of the reasons these treasures are left and abandoned or even killed.

Babies die or are abandoned all over the world because of money.  Because of  physical deformities and medical issues. Because of their gender and policy rules and regulations. Or simply because they are not wanted. Not wanted--- think about that. The sad reality is there are so many reasons these babies suffer and die...and I could go on and on.

All of these things are "man made" ideas. They are evil. Pure evil. And, I am guilty. Guilty of not helping enough. Guilty of not offering more of myself and what I have been blessed with. Guilty of closing my eyes and living in my own little world.

It is written in His word how special we all are, regardless of rules and policies, and money, and  special medical needs.  Or even gender...

Psalm 139:13-14
13 For you created my inmost being;
you knit me together in my mother’s womb.
14 I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made;
your works are wonderful,I know that full well.

Exodus 4:11

11 The Lord said to him, “Who gave human beings their mouths? Who makes them deaf or mute? Who gives them sight or makes them blind? Is it not I, the Lord?

Isaiah 45:9-11

9 “Woe to those who quarrel with their Maker,
those who are nothing but potsherds
among the potsherds on the ground.
Does the clay say to the potter,
‘What are you making?’
Does your work say,
‘The potter has no hands’?
10 Woe to the one who says to a father,
‘What have you begotten?’
or to a mother,
‘What have you brought to birth?’
11 “This is what the Lord says—
the Holy One of Israel, and its Maker:
Concerning things to come,
do you question me about my children,
or give me orders about the work of my hands?


1 Corinthians 1:27-29

27 But God chose the foolish things of the world to shame the wise; God chose the weak things of the world to shame the strong. 28 God chose the lowly things of this world and the despised things—and the things that are not—to nullify the things that are, 29 so that no one may boast before him.

There is no reason for there to be homeless or abandoned children. There is no reason for a child to die simply because of money, or rules, or regulations, or disease, or deformities, or simply because of human desire.

There is no reason a mother should have to put her baby in a box and hope beyond all hope that someone would find her baby.

Mankind has failed. Miserably. We need to step it up. I need to step it up. We need to fight for these sweet children- they are worth it in every way.


Tuesday, November 6, 2012

New house?!

Yes, it is true!

I think we sold our house! EEEEKKKK!! We are scheduled to close on it on the 12th! We will need to be out of our house on the 19th of November. The slight problem we have is that we just finally put in an offer, and had it accepted, on a  house and there is no way we will be closed on that one by the 19th. That means we will be putting our stuff in storage and living in my mom's basement for a month or so. Not the most ideal, but better than trying to rent somewhere short term.

Our new house in not new by any means. It is an older home built in 1973. It is not what we imagined our new house to be, but we really like this house. It needs a bit of "mild" updating- some paint and carpet. An older couple have lived in it since 1976 and they have taken fantastic care of this house! There is such a warm feeling when you walk in. When my mom walked in she started to get tears in her eyes.

Some do not understand why we would by this house, and that has actually taken some of the joy out of buying this house. It has dampened our excitement just a bit.

I know we do not need to explain to anyone, but here it is. I will try to make it brief.

When we walked in, it felt like home! The house is charming and bigger than our current house. It will meet the needs of our family very well. We can see ourselves living in this house. We love the neighborhood. The biggest thing is that the price is well below what our budget is, meaning that we can continue to be involved in and support the the the thing that stirs and breaks our hearts the most, and that is adoption and the orphans of this world.  We would not be us if we stopped being involved. Please know that we are not trying to come across as "righteous" or "holier than thou." Wanting more, and bigger, and better is a daily struggle, and the more we prayed about it, the more we felt like buying this house was the right decision for us and our family.

So here are a few pictures of the outside.

front of the house
back of house- 3 season room
another view of the back

big fenced in back yard

Saturday, November 3, 2012

"Can he behave?'

It is no secret that our son Dane struggles e.v.e.r.y.d.a.y.

He tries to keep his impulses under control, at least most of the time, and he usually fails.

Yes, he asks the same thing over and over and over and over...

And, he cries a lot.

He has intense anxiety and worries too much.

To many strangers he looks naughty...not normal.

I wish I could tell them all that he tries.

He struggles.

Everyday we start over.

Everyday we work at over coming.

Everyday we learn.

Sometimes we fail.

Sometimes we succeed.

I wish I could tell them all that he is a normal boy.

He hurts and feels just like the rest of us.

This world just feels a little different to him than to the rest of us.

It is not wrong how he feels, it is just different.

He deserves everything wonderful just like us all.

I wish they could see him like I see him.

I wish they would give him a chance.

They would be surprised- he is wonderful.

He has overcome so much.

He has grown and changed and made so much progress.

If they really knew, they would be so proud of my boy.

Dane has taught me something. I need to see everyone thru the eyes of Jesus and not take behaviors or actions at face value. Sometimes I just need to look a little deeper. I am sure many that I judge, feel like I do about my Dane- they wish I could see them...their hearts. I bet if I looked closely I would be surprised too.



John 7:24

24 Do not judge by appearances, but judge with right judgment.”

Friday, October 19, 2012

The Three Deadliest Words in the World: It’s a Girl

The Three Deadliest Words in the World: It’s a Girl

Read this with tears in my eyes! This happens and this IS real! Dear God, please help us and these precious girls!

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Not Forgotten

Are not five sparrows sold for two pennies? Yet not one of them is forgotten by God. Indeed, the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Don't be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows. ~ Luke 12:6-7

143 million orphans world wide.
Yes143 million.
Think about that number for a minute....
let it sink in....
(Many of them have special needs)
These photos here are the faces of two former special needs orphans.
 Beloved, treasured, cherished every moment of every day.

I know, simply stunning right?

They ALL are.

I know not all of us are called to adopt, but we are called to help, to make a difference, to change this world... their world.
I know many of you have thought about this before, and many of you have helped us bring home our own priceless treasures, or have brought home or bringing home your own or have even help someone else. Trust me when I say we are FOREVER grateful to all of you.
But, I am asking you all to think about it again...
143 MILLION....
Please, think about how you can help.
Talk about it.
Ask about it.
Pray about it.
These kids NEED us!
We need to be a voice for the unheard. We need to bring light to the unseen.
We need to let them know that they are NOT  forgotten.

Matthew 25:42-45

442 For I was hungry and you gave me nothing to eat, I was thirsty and you gave me nothing to drink, 43 I was a stranger and you did not invite me in, I needed clothes and you did not clothe me, I was sick and in prison and you did not look after me.’
44 “They also will answer, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or needing clothes or sick or in prison, and did not help you?’
45 “He will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did not do for one of the least of these, you did not do for me.’

(Photos taken by Stacey Clack Photography)

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Living Life

We have had a lot of questions about how we are doing and how Aliyah is doing.
 Some have even wondered if we are crazy...

I know that it has been a bit since I have updated my blog. I honestly have so much to say and so much on my heart and not near enough time. It is all swirling around in my head and I hope to get  some of it out without typing a jumbled mess. I have typed and deleted, typed and deleted...

When we first met Aliyah her eyes were dark and empty... there was nothing but sadness. She was shut down and lethargic. She did not want to eat or drink. Her feet never hit the floor and it took days for her shoes to come off - she desperately wanted them on. She clung to Joel for dear life. She was terrified and scared.

Now, she is doing well, for the most part. She is a very social girl who loves her siblings. She adores her daddy. She seems to like me now too. She is a very easy going child who sleeps well. All of that seems and sounds great but the truth is she has no idea that we are her parents and she has no idea what having parents even means. She is not attached or bonded to us yet. So, we are working hard at keeping her world small and working on forming a solid attachment. That can be tough at times, especially when the rest of the worlds sees a cute, happy, social girl.
Trust is such a fragile thing. It is lost in an instant and it can take many years to get it back. It may take a long time for Aliyah to trust us (and probably even longer for Dane).

So, Are you crazy??

Yes. Yes, we are! We are crazy in love with our God who has brought us down this path.We are crazy in love with all of our beautiful, wonderful children...ALL of them! We are crazy in love with all the orphans in this world. We are crazy in love with China, Korea and the USA. . There are days, yes, when I an tired and beat. When life and the pain that comes with it seem too much. When the pain of my children's past seem daunting and the behaviors that result are hard...when my love does not seem like enough. There are moments I cry to God begging for His help. The dark nights when I lay awake wondering if we have made the right choices...when we look at our savings account statements and realize there is not much there. There are times when I wonder if we should have recovered a bit more financially after Joel lost his job almost 9 yrs ago. We struggled for many years after that. The second he started making more money we started working on bringing Dane home...and then a year later Aliyah. Moments when I wonder why we are still in this dated house (that we cannot seem to sell). Moments when I am jealous of what others have and wish we had it too. Moments when I want to hoard all the eartly posessions I can. There are times, like in China, when I just wanted to quit; the pain of my daughter rejecting me stung and hurt so deep.

There was nothing that prepared me for that. I knew it was possible, I had read the stores. Even heard the stories. Heck, Joel lived thru it with Dane. But oh my, everything in me hurt like never before. I had prayed for her, longed for her, cried many tears over her, dreamt about holding her and hearing her laughter... and she  h.a.t.e.d  me. Nothing, I mean nothing, prepared me for that moment. It seemed as if God had turned His back. I felt like He left me. I questioned myself and questioned God. My tears just flowed.

But the moments come.
Out of no where.
When the smiles start to show.
And the laughter returns.
When the trust starts to form.
When love starts to make a difference.
And the peace and contentment come.
They might not last forever, but the moments come. Bringing renewed strength. Reminding us why we are on this journey.  Reminding us of the love our Father has for all of us.
It reignites the love, the fire and passion that I have for the least of these.
I look at my beautiful children, and Yes, I am crazy for them all. I am crazy for my God. They are worth more than any earthly possession I will ever own!!

As for us, all is well here. We are living, learning and trying new things. We have had bad days, but we have had many more good days. Yet again, we are adjusting and growing in ways we never thought. We are following the lead of our Father the best we can. We are trusting, although sometimes hard, that He is leading us to what is best. We are praising God for all he has given us.




Saturday, July 14, 2012

Happy 2nd Family Day

Two years ago today, I was given a heartbroken, scared, and angry little boy--my son.
It is amazing to see how far our son has come in these two years...he is happy now. What a hard yet awesome journey it has been with him.
I am one blessed Mama!
Happy 2nd Family Day my sweet boy!! We love you more than words can say!!

Friday, July 13, 2012


Most of you know that adoption is not all sunshine and roses. It is filled with many losses and many tough days. There are many beautiful moments too, but most of the time those moments are not captured in a photograph or on film; they are treasured moments that we cherish in our hearts and minds.

We were so graciously blessed by a local photographer, Stacey Clack from Stacey Clack Photography, her and her husband were there at the airport and beautifully captured our bittersweet yet heartwarming homecoming.

Our homecoming is not just a homecoming to us; it is a promise to Aliyah.
We promise to never forget her birth mother or her birth culture. We promise to love her fiercely, to cherish her forever, to honor her always . We promise to laugh with her when she is happy and cry with her when she is heavy hearted. We know that welcoming her home to our family means that she had to lose so much.

I hope she will someday soon know how deeply she is loved and what a treasured blessing she is to us.

She is our precious daughter
and a sister to her siblings.
She is a granddaughter, a niece, a cousin and a friend.

She is loved.

Welcome home our darling Aliyah, welcome home.

Thursday, July 12, 2012

We are home!

We are home!!

On July 9th we had our  appt. to finish up paperwork on the US side. It was fairly simple.  Later we did some shopping and had dinner that night with some friends. We had a great time.

On the 10th (Chin@ time) we started our journey home. We arrived home on the 11th, after over 24 hours of traveling. Stacey from Stacey Clack Photography graciously blessed us and was there to capture our first moments together as a family...

Aliyah did so well during our travel home. And she seems to be doing well here at home too. She is struggling with the time change, which is to be expected, but she is loving our other kids. She has been laughing and smiling lots.
She seems to be getting used to me and allows me to hold her and feed her now without any tears. I know things will just continue to get better as the days go on.

I am so thankful for the blessing that Aliyah is to our family.

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Getting there...

We had a pretty good day yesterday. It started with Aliyah's medical appointment. That went as well as could be expected. She had a few tears but was easily comforted by Joel.  She was much more comfortable with Joel and Alaina yesterday than in the past few days. She played quite a bit yesterday and even sat in a highchair at lunch. It is so good to see her playing and even smiling a bit. I know things will just keep getting better and better. I cannot wait to see her blossom and see her personality unfold.
Her and I have a long way to go, but I am so thankful that she can at least take comfort in Joel. I am just dying to love on her, but we are no where near that point. I would be lying if I said that it did not hurt. But, when I think of things from Aliyah's point of view my heart just breaks. She has experienced 2 huge losses, if not more, in her life and asking her to trust me and love me is just too much for her right now...
 One of my favorite verses for her adoption is Habakkuk 2:3. God brings this verse to my mind all the time. I never knew it would come to mean so much to me.
Just because she is in our arms does not mean that our "adoption journey" is done; it is actually just beginning.

Habakkuk 2:3
 For still the vision awaits its appointed time; it hastens to the end—it will not lie. If it seems slow, wait for it; it will surely come; it will not delay.

The healing and trust will come in may seem slow to come but it will come.

Such a sweetie

Playing with Daddy

Yesterday afternoon we took a walk to Sh*mien Isl*nd. What a beautiful place! I am sure we will be back there soon. We had lunch on the island at Cow and Bridge- a Thai restaurant. It was very good too. Aliayh loved the steamed noodles.
waiting for lunch

One of the many statues on the Isl*nd- Aliyah did not want to leave Daddy's arms

We even strolled the streets of GZ by our hotel. What an experience to see. We loved seeing all the little shops.

Thursday, July 5, 2012

Day 3 with Aliyah--rest

We had tours scheduled for today but we cancelled them due to Aliyah's heavy grieving. I am so glad we did as Aliyah has been sleeping for most of the day and the temp outside is 106. Aliyah did fairly well this morning. She sat with me at breakfast and let me feed her and she slept for about 3 hours in my arms. I think Alaina has been a bit bored but has handled to quiet time well. We met up with another adoptive family for dinner....we had a great time.
After dinner Aliyah was all smiles for Joel and Alaina, she even walked a bit holding their hands. But with me she continues to cry when I try to get too least I had a few moments this morning.

Wenzh*u trip


 We survived our long drive and overnight trip to Wenzh*u. The reason we had to make the trip to Aliyah's birth city is because we needed to process her passport paperwork. Not all Provinces require it but Aliyah's does. The passport paperwork was fairly simple. Aliyah did have one pretty good meltdown when Joel handed her to me so her could sign some paperwork and pay for some fees. I went to the wash room and had a bit of a melt down too... I had a good cry.  It is so tough when you new child rejects you. Rejection is not new to us as Joel experienced it with Dane, but boy is it tough sometimes.

Aliyah did pretty well in the car as long as she was with her daddy. She slept for half the trip on the way there and back.

After we got back to Hangzh*u and checked back into our hotel and had some dinner Aliyah decided she was ready to be out of daddy's arms for a bit and played. We even got a few smiles. She even sat on the floor with me and we stuck stickers to everything.

At bedtime, she even decided that it was OK to take her shoes off...the first time in 2 and a half days.

We are making progress with her. It has been a tough few days for her and I am sure all the travel and different hotels has not helped.
Please continue to pray as we try to bring peace and healing to our precious daughter.

Finalized, West L*ke & trip to Wenzh*u

July 3rd
We met our guide at 9 am to check out of our hotel and to head to the Civil Affairs Office to finalized Aliyah's adoption. We just signed a few things, answered some simple questions and took a few pictures and just like that Aliyah was ours.

After that we did some touring of West L*ke in Hangzh*u while we waited for the Notary Office to finish some of our paperwork that we needed for our trip to Wenzh*u. Aliyah cried herself to sleep as we walked around the lake. It was so hot but simply beautiful.

 After we walked the lake we stopped to have some lunch and then headed to the Notary Office. We looked over our paperwork very carefully and then started our 5hr trip to Wenzh*u to process the paperwork for Aliyah's passport. It was a long trip. The only good thing about the long ride was that we were able to see the beautiful countryside. The pictures do not do it justice.

We will meet our guide at 8:15 tomorrow morning so we can check out of our hotel and go process the passport paperwork, which should take about 2 hours. We HOPE to be be on the road by noon and back in Hangzh*u by 6pm tonight.

We have some more tours scheduled for Thrusday but since Aliyah is having such a hard time we will be canceling those so we can just hang out and try to get some rest. Please continue to pray for us as we have one very, sad and scared little girl.

Monday, July 2, 2012


We need your prayers please. Aliyah began to grieve after her afternoon nap yesterday. She has been crying and refusing to eat and drink. This is no surprise to us, especially after we found out how special her relationship was with her nanny. Even though we expected this, it does not make it any easier. Please pray for us and Aliyah. Pray that Joel will have the strength he needs these next few days as Aliyah prefers to be with him --she does not want to be put down. She is very scared and unsure and we are doing our very best to comfort her.  Her shoes seem to be very comforting to her so we have been leaving them on, even while she sleeps. Please  pray that God will begin to heal her broken heart. Pray for us as her parents and family that we will feel God's presence with us and that we will have the strength we need as we try to bring comfort and security to our daughter. It is heartbreaking to watch your child grieve and know that there is nothing you can do to take their pain away.

We have our daughter!

We have our beautiful daughter!!
We met our guide at 9 am this morning and headed to the Civil Affairs Office to do some paperwork and meet Aliyah. We arrived and of course finding a parking spot was an issue due to the crowded busy streets. So our guide dropped us off and we waited for what seemed like hours while she parked the car.
The Civil Affair Office was very hot and humid, no AC, and smokey. We walked down a short hallway and headed up the stairs.
When we walked thru the doors Aliyah was standing right there. She was beautiful...the moment was so surreal. Her nanny was crying as she handed her to me. She loved Aliyah dearly. We were told that she loved her as her own.
Aliyah cried for a few minutes but seemed to settle quickly. She is a big Daddy's girl. She is sweet and smart. She is beautiful and an amazing blessing to us. She loves shoes, hairbows and bracelets. She totally melts our hearts.
We are in L.O.V.E.
Her nanny blessed us with several professional photo books of Aliyah as well as a flash drive and a disk full of pictures. She was very well loved. Please pray for Aliyah's nanny as she grieves the loss of Aliayh. Pray for Aliyah as she faces yet another big loss and adjustment in her life. Pray fo us too, as her parents, that we will be the best possible parents for her and that we will help her deal with the loss that she is experiencing.
It has been a very bittersweet day for us. It is heartbreaking to know that our blessing is the result of her loss.

Not only were we able to meet our daughter for the very first time, we were able to witness the miracle for two other families as well. What a life changing, awesome day.
God is so good!!

Day 3 the Great Wall

We started to morning by checking out of our hotel and then took an almost 2 hour ride to the Great Wall. We went to the Mutuanyu section where we could ride a ski lift up and take a "sled" down. WOW!! We had a fantastic time!! It was HOT, very HOT!! But it was amazing. Beautiful. Breath taking. We spent 2 hours walking and climbing. Alaina was such a trooper. She LOVED it. She never once said she was hot or anything.  
When we finished walking the wall we headed to a local restaurant for some more traditional Chinese food. It was fantastic!! We then, all hot, wet, and sweaty went to the airpot and took a 2 hour flight to Hangzh*u. We checked in about 10pm last night.

Saturday, June 30, 2012

Friday, June 29, 2012

Our visit to New Day

Yesterday we spent the day at  New Day Foster Home in Beij*ng. I can't even put into words how great our visit was. I left there, we all left there foever changed. The visit was far better than I ever imagined it would ever be.

The kids are amazing and beautiful. The staff is so wonderful. Alaina cried when we left there. She wanted to stay. We even met 2 very special mommies there. We have been chatting with them online for months now. It was so great to meet them and to see their children in their arms!

We sponsor Rachel and a few weeks ago she was placed in a foster family (yay for Rachel). Her foster family made a special trip to New Day so we could meet her. I am so thankful for her wonderful foster family and we were so blessed to get to meet Miss Rachel and her wonderful foster family. She is such a sweet little girl; she just melted my heart.

Joel made an instant buddy Levi. He is going to be a blessing to a family someday soon. What a fun little guy.

My mom sponsors Colton so we were able to bring a little gift from my mom to Colton. What a honey he is!! Such a handsome little man!

Like I said, all the kids there are absolutly AMAZING! What a blessing those kids have been to us!

(out of respect of all the kids at New Day I have removed their pics. Please check out New Day's blog, the link is below)

We are praising God for the awesome staff at New Day and for all of the work they are doing there!! All of those children there are so precious and loved.
I will never forget my trip there. What a life changing experience!!

For more info on New Day you can visit there blog at:

Thursday, June 28, 2012

We are here!!

We made it to Ch*na!! After a minor hiccup we arrived at our hotel in Beij*ing at about 5:30 pm Thursday (Ch*na time).
We had a very teary and emotional goodbye at the airport when we left. Our sweet David is having such a hard time. I am missing him and the rest of the kids like crazy already.
Alaina was such a trooper and did so well on the plane and while traveling. She is feeling a bit out of her element, but we have been able to talk her through it. We were even able to use it to help her understand how Aliyah is going to feel when she is placed in our arms.
It is about 4 am now. We all are wide awake and up. Today at 8 am a driver from New Day will be picking us up so we can go for our visit at New Day Foster Home. We are so excited and Cannot wait to meet all of the wonderful staff and volunteers and of course the sweet kids too!
I will post some more later and will hopefully have some pictures to share too.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

China Itinerary

Several people have asked what our itinerary is in China so I thought I would share it here. I still cannot believe that the time has almost come. We have waited almost a year for this day and we are so very close. I almost feel like we are begining a new journey. I know the next few weeks will be filled with many different emotions. Please pray for us as we journey half way around the world to meet our daughter.
June 27, 2012- late morning flight to Beijing. (home to Chicago to Beijing)
June 28, 2012 - Arrive in Beijing.  Your guide will be there to meet you with your name. Hotel check in.
June 29, 2012visit NEW DAY FOSTER HOME in Beijing
June 30-July 1, 2012-Sightseeing in Beijing, which may include Forbidden City, Tiananmen Square, Temple of Heaven and the Great Wall.

July 1, 2012- Flight to Hangzhou Province
July 2-6, 2012 - Processing paperwork in Hangzhou. Your guide will arrange your daily itinerary while in this city. 
July 3- take a van or train to Wenzhou, Aliyah's birth city, to process passport paperwork. Will be staying overnight.
July 4- Evening van or train ride back to Hangzhou
July 6, 2012 - Flight to Guangzhou. Your guide will take you to the airport to fly to Guangzhou in the evening.  
July 7, 2012 –Medical exam.
July 8, 2012 –Half day Guangzhou tour.
July 9, 2012 Your appointment with the U.S. Embassy in Guangzhou is today at 8:30 am. You do not have to appear at this appointment. Our guide will carry in all your papers at the time of the appointment.
July 10, 2012 - You will visit the U.S. Embassy today for your ceremony and receipt of your child's visa to enter the United States. It is a brief ceremony. You will likely be able to take pictures outside the building.
10:20 pm flight to Hong Kong. Stay the night in Hong Kong
July 11, 2012- Fly home. Depart Hong Kong 10:15 am.(Hong Kong time). Will be flying Hong Kong to Tokyo to Chicago to home and Arrive home at 6:47 pm

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

The count down

I am sorry that I have not blogged in awhile. I wish I could say that I have been too busy, which we have been busy, but not too busy to blog. The truth is that I have not been dealing well with the last few weeks of the wait. It is tough. Really tough. When you want something so bad and it feels like it is forever away. When things do not go as you thought and are delayed a week.  Yes, just a week, which somehow feels like forever. I find myself clinging to the promise that our Heavenly Father placed on my heart when we first started this process.

Habakkuk 2:3 For still the vision awaits its appointed time; it hastens to the end—it will not lie. If it seems slow, wait for it; it will surely come; it will not delay.

I know in my heart that my God has this all planned out and we are indeed leaving at the perfect time for us and for our beautiful daughter. And I know soon our daughter will be in our arms. I just wish that I could get my flesh to believe like my mind does.

We received our travel approval (TA) on June 6th. We were hoping to leave on June 20th but as you probably have gathered that was not able to happen. Instead we will be leaving on June 27th and return home on July 11th. We hope to meet Aliyah on July 1st or 2nd. Our appointment at the Consulate is July 9th- we are still waiting on the rest of the details. It looks like we will be meeting some of our friends that we have met on our FB group in Ch*na. I am REALLY looking forward to that. What a blessing it will be to meet some of our wonderful friends. There is even a possibility that we might be on the same flight as one family.

Financially, for the most part, we are ready for the trip. God has been working in some very BIG ways and has really blessed us beyond measure! Our "Food and Fire" fundraiser went really well. We had a lot of fun at our benefit dinner too. Thank you to everyone who has supported us by giving, praying, calling or sending messages, you have blessed us! Please continue to pray for us as we wait and journey half way around the world to bring home our beloved daughter and treasure of the King.

Soon this sweet girl will be in our arms!

"Fear not for I have redeemed you; I have summoned you by name; you are mine. When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and when you pass through the rivers, they will not sweep over you... For I am the Lord your God..
~Isiah 43:1-3