Monday, July 12, 2010


                  WE ARE GOING TO CHINA!!!!

We got into the September travel group and are beyond thrilled!

We'll have the exact dates by the end of the week!

My heart is so overwhelmed with gratefulness to our faithful God would knows the precise time I will hold my new little girl in my arms. 

Sunday I awoke early to prepare my heart for church and felt burdened to pray specifically for Sophie's something was wrong, someone was hurting her or she was sick.

Today I chatted with my adopting friend in Georgia who was also awakened at 6am on Sunday with an impression by the Lord to pray for her sweet Sarah Ren. 

Please pray that:
  1. Our daughters in the Beijing Welfare Institute are well and safe.
  2. God would knit Sophie's heart closely together w/ ours and that her grieving would be minimal.
  3. We'd ( and our GA friends) be able to stay at the Marriott in Beijing and maybe even Guangzhou in order to save lots of money.

Care package to China is RECEIVED

Lots of fun news to share today!!!

We were told that Xueqin received our care package on June 28th, so she has seen our faces.

What is she thinking?

What is she feeling? Is she scared?

Does she think I'm a witch? (Popular folklore in China says that ladies with blonde hair are witches and eat their children!!!)

"I know I'm asking a lot, but on bended knee and with supplication, Father, I ask you to allow my mommy face to be etched in Sophie Rose's little heart so when we arrive in Beijing it is a great day of reunion and celebration not a day of fear, trepidation and sadness for my precious new daughter. I have faith that You can melt her heart that's been hurt by abandonment. I submit my will to You, commit my trust to You and KNOW that You will act. In my Savior, Jesus,' name, Amen." ( Psalm 37)

Changing the face of Chinese adoptions

The below link gives fantastic information about the changes in Chinese adoptions.

 Feel free to cut/ paste the link. I've included one excerpt that may help our family and friends understand why Todd and I MUST be the ONLY ones to care for Sophie's needs when she arrives home.

...Finally, Amy talked about orphanage conditions that adoptive families need  to be aware of, so they can understand some of the issues their children may face. 

First, as to attachment, adoptive parents need to be aware that children may have had numerous changes in caretakers.  A child might spend time with birth parents, especially since there's been an increase in older-child abandonment in China.( Sophie spent the first year with her birth parent) Then the child might spend time with the person who found her, who thought she might keep the baby before the neighbors or extended family said she wouldn't be allowed to.So the child is turned over to the police, who might keep the child for a few days before turning the child over to the orphanage. (Sophie spent an entire year at the police station before being taken to the orphanage, according to her paperwork.) The child might be in quarantine for a month at the orphanage who is trying to avoid the spread of HIV or Hep C. Then the child enters the young infant room, and then in a few months to the older infant room, and then the toddler room or foster care.  And the child in foster care may be returned to the orphanage for two weeks before the adoptive parents come.  With a special needs child who might have had hospitalizations and/or surgeries, the child would likely be alone at the hospital through all of this.(Sophie had surgery in 4 years old.)  The orphanage can't spare the nanny who might have been the primary caregiver, so they might send a groundskeeper to take the child to the hospital and then leave her alone.  In Chinese medicine, there is a great reluctance to give children pain medication, so post-operative time will be painful and scary for a child alone.  All of this affects attachment.

Second, children may have feeding issues.  Overcrowded orphanages don't have the time to hand-feed children, so bottles are propped and often boiling hot.  Solid food is beyond the resources of the orphanage, and most orphanages can't afford meat. Newborns might wait 5-6 hours between feedings.  Infants might wait 12 hours.  There won't be between-meal snacks for toddlers or older children.  Children are often hungry all the time, never feeling full. From this, you can expect aversion to certain food textures, no ability to suck, food hoarding, gorging, no off-switch when eating because no feeling of being full.

Third, children might experience "irrational" fears that aren't so irrational after all.  They would often be alone in the dark at night, with only a skeleton orphanage staff on hand.  There might be bugs and rats in the dark.  Fear of the dark, of thunderstorms, of animals, of bugs, are not irrational fears for these children.  Adoptive parents can't know what their children experienced in the orphanage, so must be understanding of these fears.

God's continual gift of hindsight

Today in the midst of wishing we were headed for China in the next travel group next week, I'm seeing God's hand in why were NOT.

Friday, Ellie and I were working out together when we both heard a big POP! I thought she had kicked her self and I proceeded to tease her when I looked over at her writhing in pain clutching her right knee on the floor.

It immediately reminded me of when I ripped my meniscus last year.

God cut Ellie and I out of the same mold, so as we got ice on her knee, we started speculating about how she could work her 2 jobs, the upcoming youth swimming party and of course, our trip to China.

To my amazement and joy, we were both able to see good things: if we were in the August travel group, we'd be headed to China on the 30th~ lots of walking on a bum knee is NOT our idea of fun.

She was able to see how she could serve at the youth picnic as lifeguard and tried to figure out how she could babysit Hannah/Hailey next week and be the "register" person at Home and School Connection.

In keeping w/ Ellie thinking~  she thought about the benefits of potentially being in a wheel chair in China~ first boarding at the airport and saved money b/c she couldn't tour w/ us. She said she'd come and sit in the hotel and chill.

 After a trip to MMI today, the PA said that she doesn't think that Ellie tore her meniscus; she did pop her knee cap off it's sitting place causing bruising, but that only requires physical therapy, not surgery.

God continues to gift us w/ seeing our trials through 'God colored glasses', and of course, we're grateful!

Thursday, July 8, 2010

So here's my updated (June/July) Sophie Bucket List that I continue to plug away at this summer!

Touch up painting around the house~ X
Stain the front door~ X
Learn 10 Chinese phrases~ x
Paint my bedroom/ bathroom~ x
Make a fire pit in the woods behind our house
Make a cod fish pond beside some landscaping
Lose 20 lbs-on my way!!!
Wash all windows ( I have MANY)
Adoption fund-raising yard sale- BIG CHECK X- raised more than enough money to buy Sophie's plane ticket home!!!
Clean all carpets~ this weekend
Make/freeze meals for homecoming
Plan 2010/11 school year- order TOG curriculum- Curriculum ordered

Life moves along

Life continues to flow as we await our travel arrangements. In the end, we made over $3,000.00 in our yard sale...only by God pouring out his grace. It bought Sophie's plane ticket and all of our Chinese Visas.

We visited my high school friend and her dear family over the July 4 weekend in Philly, PA and had a blast.
Jeff and Todd went to the PGA AT&T Golf Tournament, Pauline and I took the kids shopping, we went to the very 'resorty' YMCA for the day, went to a local Sovereign Grace Church and of course, saw fantastic fireworks. Pauline always makes lots of delicious food and we have lots of great conversation and reconnection time!We are grateful for the Galardi family!

Shane got his braces off last week, so now, both kids got braces on and braces off before we get to bring our Xueqin home. Come on TA! We missed the August group and are now praying to get into the September travel group.