Saturday, July 19, 2014


I've been a little bummed this week.  We have entered the great unknown as far as the wait for Emily goes.  We are 16 days into our LOA wait.  Sixteen of how many.  Who knows?  Last year for Sarah it was 42.  That is very fast, especially for last summer.  Last year the central authority in China underwent a major database change and it was, in a word, disastrous.  We somehow managed to skirt past that and came out just as things straightened out and started working again.  Things are working fine now but wait times tend to cycle.  I don't really understand why but they definitely do.  You will see several weeks or months of LOA waits in the 40-50 day range and then it will get a little longer and a little longer and then suddenly it corrects itself.  Who knows?!  The fact of the matter is though that right now they are stretching between 70-90 days.  Almost twice as long as last year.  Once you get LOA you travel about 10 weeks later.  The days add up quickly and we are looking at Christmas at least.  I have prayed that somehow our whole family could go.  I have prayed for her heart to be prepared.  The thought of her waiting that much longer hurts my heart but maybe she needs that time.  It's just been a little discouraging this week.


One of the most precious things about adoption is the relationships with other adoptive mammas out there.  We just "get" each other.  The best thing this time around is that Emily's orphanage is a long time partner with Lifeline and many people are matched from that orphanage.  I have been able to send several letters to her and that has been so nice.

 This past week a precious Mamma was headed to China to get her sweet son who is from Emily's orphanage.  She was taking a letter and some stickers for her from us.  I knew what day she was going and so I woke that morning wondering if maybe she had messaged me.  Goodness knows she had way more to deal with than my letter but I checked anyway.  All of a sudden a message popped through!  A message with this precious picture.

Not only a picture but a reiteration of what everyone who meets her says.  She is sweet and soft spoken and precious.  And not only that but a letter.  A Letter!!!  From her!  She wrote us back and it is the most precious thing I own right now.  I am holding it close but I can tell you it did my heart good.  I have been doing some reading on teen adoption and it is deep, hard stuff y'all.  We are peaceful and are preparing and we are not under the delusion that because she is sweet that it won't be hard but this little letter just made things ok for today.  I can not wait to love her  in person.  She deserves that.

We are encouraged by her level of care.  The nannies at this orphanage are so good and we here nothing but good things.  She always looks cute and taken care of.  It is just a different experience for sure!  But she needs to come home.  She needs PT and school and her mamma and daddy.

I am so thankful that the Lord hears the cries of a mother's heart and has without fail during both adoption given us just what we needed.  It is such an exercise in trust and faith.  He is stretching us!  


Saturday, July 12, 2014

8 Months

Eight month sure flies by fast when you are in the thick of life.  And that's what it feel like right now.  It isn't always easy but we have a front row seat to what God is unfolding not just in Sarah's life but in all three, four, of our kids lives.  June- July have been busy and fun.  We've kept fairly busy but have had planty of lazy summer days.  We hit some MAJOR milestones in Emily's adoption.  It's been a good summer!

We started off June with a BANG!  VBS was so much fun and Sarah did great in her class.  We have been putting her with the 3 yr olds at church and that seems to be working well.  

The best part of VBS though?!?!?  Our precious church raised over $4,000.00  for the new foster home Lifeline is opening for the kids from Sarah's orphanage.  We were so blessed to be able to share about those children in church and our church responded in a huge way!  We are blessed and humbled and grateful!  The foster home is scheduled to open this week so keep that in your prayers!

Boys and Girls were dead even!

Next up, Sarah "ran" in her first 5K.  Actually she was pushed in a stroller by her Aunt Cam and uncle Josh but you know… it counts!  Sarah went to the Flash Dash with them while we took Will and Jenny to see Tim Hawkins.  Fun was had by all that night!


Sarah has continued with her gymnastics and is doing great, pretty good, getting better, getting in some good practice on her listening skills as well as gymnastics skills.  Girl still can't find the Big, Green wall and she can do a mean front roll.

On your belly Sarah- or not- whatever

We said goodbye to our boys for 16 days during June! Shane and Will spent 16 days in New Mexico on the Philont Scout ranch.  I have known this was coming since before we even started the proess for SArah so I had been praying for almost 2 years about those 16 days.  We did just fine and Sarah even slept pretty good. I was sure happy to see them home though!!  

Sarah also had her first taste of the ice cream man when a new ice cream truck made an appearance in the neighborhood.  Jenny was thrilled as well and used her quick math skills to figure an ice cream treat into her daily sugar/carb/insulin balance.

Enjoying the ice cream truck treats.

We played at the park with cousins.

And made a few early morning runs for biscuits.

We finally made it to the pool and Sarah has slowly learned to like it.  I can't imagine what was going through her head the first time.  You can see her clinging for dear life to Jenny.  But she has warmed up to it and squeals when we pull out her swim suit.

This was her favorite spot for awhile
While the boys were gone we made a road trip to Collins mississippi.  I know, living on the edge!  We went to the water park for the day and then drove over to Hattiesburg and spent the night in a hotel.  We ordred pizza, swam in the hotel pool and watched TV.  It was a fun, little road trip with my girls!

Sarah got new pink, sparkly crocs and to say she was thrilled would be an understatement.  They don't fit with her AFOs so we mostly use them for the pool or a quick errand but she has gotten better at walking in them and she just loves them!  

She went to her first MS Braves game.  In her pigtails no less! Her hair has finaly gotten long enough to put in pigtails and I love it!!

We had a special treat this month too!  One of the biggest blessings of our adoption journey has been the new friends we have made.  These relationships have been invaluable to me especially.  Most of these frienships have been "cyber" in nature.  Finally we were able to all get together.  We will add another sweet face to this group in just a few weeks!!  And then Emily will join in as the big kid this fall hopefully!

This was the best we could do

Fourth of July was so much fun.  We spent the fourth at home (and at the ER- Will popped himself in the eye HARD with an exercise rubber band making what should be a round pupil really really not round.  All was well though.)  We ate and played outside and watched fireworks later that night. It was a fun, family day.

Making Blueberry muffins

Enjoying the muffins out on the porch.  The weather was fabulous!

Corn on the Cob!  Even with no front teeth she can do a number on the corn!

Swinging with Daddy!

Legos with Daddy!

Sarah discovered the joy of poppers!

Fireworks!  She is still not sure how she feels about fireworks but she tolerated them for us.

It was a fun month full of lots of firsts.  She has made some big leaps in her language and I will post about those separately.  For now, I will leave you with what is my favorite picture from the last month.


Happy summer y'all!

Monday, July 7, 2014

A HUGE Leap towards China

It has been a great few days around here!!  We had a great fouth of July weekend and enjoyed being with our family!

Just a few days before that we got a great surprise!  Lifeline had sent a team to Maoming and I sent a small care package with them.  I emailed our SW and asked if I could just make sure she had gotten it.  She did way better than that and sent me 2 videos of our girl getting her package and reading our letter. To here her sound out "Mishishippi"  was too precious. It was not only so great to see and hear her voice it was confirmation to us that she can read Chinese characters. Our precious girl is only alloowed to go to school at the orphanage and so she is a class with younger kids.  The sweet nanny that was with her while she was reading it helped with a few words and encouraged her and gve her a big thumbs up when she finished.  I'm so happy she is being taken care of.  It is an entirely differernt expierence this time around!

Here are some screen shots from the video we got.

And then today we got a very important email!!!  I had a good feeling about today!  We found out we are offiially logged in China!  We were actualy logged in on July 3 so we are already 4 days into our next wait.  Yep!  From one wait to the next and this is a yucky one but I am excited to have four days behind us without even knowing it!  We were logged in last year on 7/8 so we are just ahead of Sarah's timeline.

Its been an exciting few days.  Please pray for our sweet girl.  Pray for her heart as she ponders over our letters and pictures.  I can only imagaine how she is feeling and I am praying for peace for her heart.  Please pray with us!