"We witness a miracle every time a child enters into life. But those who make their journey home across time & miles, growing within the hearts of those who wait to love them, are carried on the wings of destiny and placed among us by God's very own hands."--- Kristi Larson
We are so excited about receiving our pre approval for our sweet little ladybug! We began Thanksgiving with an exciting email from Xiaoqing. At 1:26 a.m. (Yes, I said a.m.!)Xiaoqing sent us our PA for our sweet girl! X works so hard for her families and these sweet kids. She is a wonderful advocate for these children finding their forever families.We are really lucky to be working with her and BAAS!That afternoon we ordered her first care package through Lady bugs n love. Kelly and Angela are wonderful to work with! We are planning on sending a few more packages soon.
We are so fortunate that Ben Pei is living with a foster family in China. Ava was not so fortunate . She lived the first half of her life in a hospital and the other part in an orphanage.The day we picked her up she never looked back. We prepared for some mourning of the life that she knew but that was not the case with her. She graciously allowed herself to love and trust us over the course of the past year. What a wonderful gift that was and still continues to be each and every day.
I suspect Ben Pei's reaction will be a bit different.She is going to grieve for everything that she has lost.
She has a family.
This is the family she has had since she was a baby. They are who she loves and trusts. They are who she calls her mother and father.
In her little eyes ... she is home.
Sometimes I think it is so easy to get caught up in all our excitement and the planning that we loose sight of that little persons perspective.I am reminded of this as I watched Ava this Thanksgiving Day. She was beaming with a grin from ear to ear as she called out each family members name at the dinner table.This was her second Thanksgiving as a member of our family.She is a far cry from that scared and timid baby that joined us last year.Despite the fact that she did not grieve that former life, this has been one full year of attaching and adapting.And learning to love as only a family can. We are hopeful that Pei's transition into our family will not be difficult for her and preparing for all the emotions that she will be experiencing. Reality is that this transformation does not happen overnight. I think with the adoptive child you always are working at promoting attachment ,building trust and addressing abandonment issues. At the end of the day there is no greater reward than to have that child seek you out, crawl up into your arms and embrace you with such love that it just stops you dead in your tracks.Such a simple action speaks volumes to an adoptive parent.In that moment all of the hard work has been so worth it.
I look forward to the day when Ben Pei will wrap her little arms around me and let me know that she is now home ...forever.
I am doing a bible study with a great group of girl's (not ladies that sounds too old!) that live all over the country. Most of us have come together through our journeys of adoption and some are just friends . Most of us have never met face to face but we share one goal in completing Beth Moores "Living Beyond Yourself" bible study and are going to have fun in our fellowship with one another!
One of the fellow mamma's in the group, Mel, has been presented with somewhat of a challenge by her eleven year old daughter , Lydia. Lydia has fallen in love with a little girl on Reese's Rainbow named Darya. Darya lives in an orphanage in Eastern Europe. She spends her days housed in a crib . She is a beautiful baby girl that is deprived of some of the basic human needs.She spends her days sitting in a crib not touched or spoken to. I know we were all taught in school that there are three basic human needs: Food , Shelter and Water. As adoptive parents we know that there are actually more "basic needs" that we as human beings need. Some of us know this because our sweet kids were subject to just this kind of deprivation.
The challenge is that if Lydia can raise the $20,000 to cover the adoption fees, Darya will have a family and Lydia a new sister! Maybe $1.00,$5.00 or $10.00 does not seem like a lot but just think if everyone reading this donated something!We all have the power to change this child life!
Are you up for being part of this extra special challenge ?
If so, head over to my sidebar and visit their family blog.It is the button titled "Praying for God's healing for Hope" . Be ready to be inspired!
Also, visit Reese's Rainbow and take look at Darya.You can find the direct link in my lists of my favorite blogs!The website is set up to take donations towards a specific child's adoption. Be sure to specify Darya's name in the comments category.
After you see this sweet angel face then the challenge will be ...HOW CAN YOU NOT BE PART OF THIS!
I heard something this weekend at church that has been ringing in my ears since Sunday.
Journey's of faith have times of limited sight.
This is so true. Just think how many times in your life that you have been in the middle of something that you are unsure about . Maybe you are at a fork in the road and are deciding between the safe clear path or maybe you are looking at the other option. A path that requires you to relinquish control , close your eyes and trust that he will guide you where you are supposed to go.The second choice is what I imagine a true journey of faith is.In fact I know it is because it is what we did on our journey to Ava.Having enough faith that he will not steer you in the wrong direction but actually just where you are supposed to go.
I cannot think of a greater journey of Faith than adoption. You enter adoption with a limited scope of sight. In the end, I have found myself so deeply leaning on him and my faith more than any other time in my life.
Over the course of this process we have not once but twice thought that we had found our daughter only to find out that he had other plans.After each has found wonderful forever families you are left wondering ... what about us? We had pretty much decided that we probably would not hear anything for a least a few more weeks or even months . And I have to say that we were okay with that.
On Sunday evening out of the blue we recieved a call from our agency about a little girl.Not just any girl but the missing piece to our family.We were truly swept away!
We are so excited !!!!!
In a few weeks we will be able to make our official announcement but for now you will just have to trust me when I say she is so precious!
How many times in your life have you heard how God works in mysterious ways? As a child I had heard that a million times not really ever grasping the true meaning behind those simple words.It was not till I was an adult that this statement was better understood. As Adoptive parents we know , adoption brings about many facets of uncertainty and quite a bit of "mystery" to your life. Well, today is just another one of those days that he has revealed that mystery of his actions.At the time something does not go according to plan you want to say "Why did that happen? " or " That was not my plan". But I am quickly reminded that it is not my plan after all and his plan is always better! A few weeks ago we had fallen completely in love with the most precious little girl. We had really thought that this was to be our daughter. I had studied every detail about her file backwards and forwards. So last week, I am on my email and a post catches my eye. I recognize the medical detail/question from her file. So I risk looking like a complete crazy person and contact the sender.
What are the odds that this question is indeed about the same sweet girl?
Well, the odds were really good and indeed it was!After speaking on and off, I could not help but feel that this little girl fit in their lives like a missing puzzle piece.
I had to share that all of the prayers for this sweet little girl have been answered and she will know the love of a family after all!And this family is going to have the most amazing little girl!
So his ways do seem quite mysterious at times but I will continue to be amazed each and every time the meaning behind that mystery is revealed!
The past few weeks have brought about a lot of change. On the adoption front,We are sad to say that the little girl that we thought would be our daughter will not be. Without going into too much detail, it was not meant to be. More than anything please pray for this little girl that she will receive a family to love her. No matter how terrible this is for us the thought that she might not ever have that chance is the worst part of any of this.We have cried many tears over this but in the end you have to consider all factors in this. I have been so emotionally led through this process. Being led by your heart somewhat clouds your decision making process. I cannot change this about myself . In fact I do not want to change this about myself. If asked I would say that this is one of my best and worst qualities all rolled into one! So we have assumed our new roles. My DH is a little less emotionally charged in this so he is to bring in an unbiased and logical opinion. But when they bring that little girl in and hand her to him his heart will be gone!
I will leave you with a few photos of our Halloween festivities and our little stinkerbell. This is Ava's 2nd Halloween with us and the transformation is incredible! Last year she was unsure of the commotion.She looked like a deer in the headlights. This year she praced around in that Tinkerbell costume, danced the monster mash and handled her sugar rush with the utmost grace! When all the kids would gather around the coffin in the front yard and try to determine if the guy in there was real or not she would announce that was her bubby! All of the kids had a really great time! Next main event Thanksgiving...the year is going by so fast!
LID – Log in Date DTC – Dossier to China TA – Travel Approval (called other things in other countries, this is the Notice of Coming to China) CA – Consulate Appointment SN – special needs NSN – non special needs PA – Pre-approval (part of the SN process) PAP – Potential Adoptive Parent LOA – Letter of Acceptance – used in both NSN and SN process. In NSN program it is the document that allows you to officially accept a referral. In SN program the CCAA sends it after the LOI and before TA. LOI – Letter of Intent SWI / CWI – Social/Children’s Welfare Institute, what orphanages are called in China
The Starfish Thrower
Once upon a time there was a man
who used to go to the ocean
to do his writing.
He had a habit
of walking on the beach
before he began his work.
One day he was walking
along the shore.
As he looked down the beach
he saw a human figure
moving like a dancer.
He smiled to himself
to think of someone
who would dance to the day.
So he began to walk faster
to catch up.
As he got closer,
he saw that it was an
older man and the man
Instead he was reaching
down to the shore,
picking up something
and very gently
throwing it into the ocean.
As he got closer he called out,
"Good morning! What are you doing?"
The older man paused,
looked up and replied,
"Throwing starfish into the ocean."
The man noticed
there were hundreds of starfish
all washed up on the beach
from a storm the night before.
He watched as the man carefully
continued to pick up the starfish
one by one.
"I guess I should have asked,
‘Why are you throwing starfish
into the ocean?’"
"The sun is up
and the tide is going out.
If I don't throw them in
"But don't you realize
there are miles and miles of beach
and starfish all along it.
You can't possibly make a difference!"
The older man listened politely.
He bent down, picked up another starfish
He looked at the starfish
as he prepared to
throw it into the ocean,
past the breaking waves and said –
"I will make a difference to this one!"
On my way from Heaven,
God delayed my trip that day.
He said that I was special,
and then sent me on my way.
But not before he kissed me,
Right upon my ear
He left his blessed mark
to carry with me here.
He whispered in my ear right then,
that He loved me without doubt,
and then He closed my ear up tight,
so the whisper won't get out.
He told me both my legs were strong
and would help me stand up tall.
He told me both my arms would work
to catch me if I fall.
My eyes would catch my memories
to store within the pages of my mind,
My heart would fill with all the things I would love,
so many things, I would find.
He told me I could fall asleep
to my Daddy's bedtime tales,
and listen while my Mother sings
of seas and boats with sails.
One ear, He told me, could hear the sounds
that little birdies make.
The other ear was His gift to me,
a blessing for my sake.
For when I'm feeling sad, He said,
my other ear would hear,
His whispered words of eternal love,
left waiting for me there.