Monday, October 31, 2011

Halloween 2011 - Supers!

This year the boys insisted on being Super Heroes for Halloween! And of course, we never miss an opportunity to dress up for Halloween as well. We started early, trick-or-treating at a couple of neighborhood houses. It wasn't long before we were back home handing out fruit and candy...the boys' favorite part! We love seeing so many of our friends dressed up in their costumes! We really enjoy the time to be silly with our boys and teach them the positive aspects of the Halloween. We were so thankful for the opportunity to give to others, visit with neighbors and enjoy time with our friends. God is good! 

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Stretch Marks of a Different Kind

 We rejoice as the Lord continues to bless our family and stretch us beyond measure. Our hearts are filled with love and amazement as we continue on our adoption journey.

The last couple of weeks have been good. We are currently waiting for our Letter Of Approval (LOA). It has been almost 5 weeks since our dossier has been logged into China (our LID). Every time the door bell  rings, we race to the door to see if it is here. Always hoping its the Fed Ex man, we throw open the door, out of breath and almost knocking each other over. It's another neighborhood child selling goods to support an area school or agency. So, we buy another bag of popcorn and check the door later, just in case we missed a ring. And we wait. Oh, waiting is hard. Our hearts are stretched. But we know that God has a plan and the timing is always perfect.

When we first envisioned traveling to China, we thought that we would do it only together as a couple and spend the first two weeks with our daughter bonding alone. But the closer that our travel date draws near, our hearts ache just thinking about leaving our boys behind. Our hearts feel stretched to be in two places at the same time. We pray that God will direct us in the right path. Do we take leave the boys at home or take everyone? The choice isn't so easy when you see that it isn't just the two of us who long to cuddle and kiss our little girl. She has 3 wonderful boys at home who talk about her daily. The boys have a spot at the table reserved only for her. She has a special place in the car waiting to hold her as she giggles in the back seat. The boys helped us pick out her clothes, painted her room, hung up her Chinese lanterns, and continue to find toys that she may like. They tell everyone we meet that they have a sister in China waiting for us to come get her. We pray as a family for her day and night. She is ours. And they love her every bit as much as we do.

So we went ahead and got their passports...just in case.

Just after the passports arrived, we received an update on our daughter's status. We continue to invite you to pray for our family and our daughter as she is making great strides. A little over a year ago, her surgery was done to repair her myelomeningocele. The surgery was a success and a large scar reminds us that God had a hand in protecting her, even before we knew her. He not only gave her a biological mother that loves her enough to leave her where she would be found at 3 months, but gave wisdom to the surgeon to correct her spina bifida, and gave her a home until she could come to ours. He knows her intimately and holds her when she needs a daddy most. When we first said "Yes" to our daughter, there were some unknowns regarding her physical development. In the update it states that she is now crawling, standing unassisted, and walking with help. We believe that He will continue to answer our prayers and repair her legs. We are reminded that even though we are broken, He makes us beautiful. Through prayer, He makes all things new. Lord, thank you for saying "Yes" to us and for leading us to say "Yes" to our little girl. Thank you God for stretching our faith to still believe in miracles!

Included in our update were a couple of pictures of our baby. In the picture, we could tell that she had been crying. Now, we know that the intentions to include pictures were to allow us to see her as she changes and grows (which we are forever thankful). And we also know that babies cry on a daily basis as this is their way of communication. But, I have to tell you that my mamma heart broke. I realized at that moment that I'm not there to hold her when she cries or kiss away her tears when she is sad. I can't hold her close and tell her that it will be alright. But I know that there will be a day very soon that I will hold her hand and tell her that I am her mommy. I will kiss her and introduce her to her forever family. I will love her and promise to never leave her. I will possibly forget one day that she was so far away. And in the meanwhile I find comfort in 1 Samuel 1:26-28. "Yes, I am the woman who stood here praying to the Lord. I prayed for this child and the Lord granted me what I asked. So now I will give (her) to the Lord, let Him be the Lord of (her) life. Our hearts stretch as we desire to hold her close, but we find peace in knowing that God is holding her in His hands as we lift her up to Him.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

We Can Run, Walk & Roll

We were very excited to participate in the 1st Annual We Can Run, Walk, & Roll event sponsored by our local hospital. The goal of the event was to break down barriers of physical disabilities. The proceeds from the event were going towards purchasing equipment that will help individuals with disabilities lead more active lives. There were 416 participants that could choose a 5k or 1 mile course. We chose to walk a 1 mile...though C ran almost the entire race!! It was an awesome event to be able to participate in. There were so many special families with journies of hope, love, and determination! Thank you Lord for your many blessings and for all of the people who touched our lives today!

Friday, October 14, 2011

The Same Sun

This last weekend, we went to Omaha to enjoy some family time together. We had the opportunity to stay with the boys in the same hotel that we stayed in for the Holt gala.  This hotel also has a Starbucks in the lobby and happens to be the place that we had our first home study. So many great memories!

On the way home, we were talking about our little girl and realized as the same sun was setting on our side of the earth it was asking her to rise and shine in China. We wondered if she wakes up with a smile (like C) or if she will be slow to rise (like her oldest brother, Q)? Will she enjoy being cuddled in the morning or be more interested in her new toys? What will she like to eat for breakfast? We can't help but dream about her.

As we drove off into the sunset, I was reminded of how BIG our God really is today and always. That the same God who made us, who made the Heavens and the Earth, is also shining His light on us both. God not only loves us and wants us to walk in faith every day, but He wants us Believe Big that He has incredible plans for our lives. Believe Big to dream. Dreams to love one another. Dreams to end children living alone without a mommy and daddy. Dreams to answer the call when we are led by His love and grace.