Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Grace's 1st Year -Gotcha Day 6/28/11

And this Wonderful Day Comes to A Precious Close

It was a great day and we closed it with a story. I read to Grace her favorite book "I Love You Like Crazy Cakes"
Then Guy read to her "Happy Adoption Day"
We showed her her scrapbook made by her Foster Care home and looked a video we made of pictures of her from the past year. (Which she has been watching over and over again the past few days since I put together- I will try to post it). Special special day!

So The Celebrations of This Day Go On...

So we then headed to a morning movie with Kelly and the kids and my friend Jeni and her kids (Jonathon and Christian decided to sleep - there teenagers that is what they do in mornings) . Grace had a blast, popcorn, soda and candy with a some Barnyard animals. It was a good morning.
We then picked her a beautiful blue flower at Kelly's house. She loves flowers and blue is her favorite color.
For dinner we went to a local Chinese restaurant, Asian Cafe. We visit there frequently so everyone was so excited to know we were celebrating our 1 year anniversary as a family and treated us to Chinese donuts for dessert. My sister and I celebrated together, after all we got our girls together. My mom was on a mission trip so was not there with us but I know she was in her heart. My dad was there to celebrate! Below is PawPaw with his girls!I think this is Grace and Lily's third boat full of chips and sauce

Our 1st Gotcha Day Started A Little Something Like This!

So I woke early this morning and blew up a dozen balloons with the helium tank. Grace loves balloons. So while Grace was sleeping soundly......
I quietly entered and released the balloons to hover above her bedThis was the priceless look on her face when she opened her eyes and saw BALLOONS!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
She immediately sat up and begin grabbing the ribbons and took hold of all her balloons.
And then she stood and just took it all in.....she LOVED IT!

So she carried them around with her and then we tied them to a chair where she ate breakfast and then pushed the chair around the house wherever she went the balloons went with her. So sweet when I put her down at nap, she looked at me and said Mommy balloons. It was worth a shot right? She wanted to awake again at naptime to more.....if only we could all wake up each day with our lives being celebrated in such a way! Her life is truly worth celebrating and the way God brought our lives together on this special day still takes my breath away. Our children really do come to us in all different ways, only God could bring them to us from a world away!
This little girl has taught us so much. I can't imagine we have given her a fraction of what she has given us. She is a bundle of joy. She has a contagious laugh, an unfathomable amount of joy inside such a tiny little vessel, the same amount of determination and strength she exudes astonishes me each day. Our little girl is a fighter in every sense of the word. There is a part of her story many don't know. But this little miracle we call Grace, is lucky to be alive. It is her shere will to live and favor of God on her life that she is here today. She pushes through and has perseverance beyond her years. She will also fight you or should I say take you out if you are in her way or try to take something of hers that well is "mine" - right Lily? She could tell you. On the other hand this little girls heart runs deep. She is always saying thank you, your welcome, God bless you, are you okay? Kissing someones boo boo or tending to you if your body hurts or your heart. She senses pain and goes right to the place with liquid love that melts you. She has an incredible sense of humor and is always making us laugh and you can't go a day without this little girl we get to call our daughter putting a smile upon your face and forever touching the lives of those she meets. We are blessed to be called her mommy and daddy. I just hope somewhere across this vast land in a country far far away, where this little girl took her first breath in the arms of another mommy, this day God gives this woman peace in her heart to know her little girl is now and forever will be loved! Thank you for her life!

Gotcha Day - Then and Now

1/28/10 1/28/11

Monday, June 27, 2011

Happy Gotcha Day Grace!

Take this journey with us....as we celebrate our 1 year anniversary today, June 28, 2011, the day our daughter was placed in our arms. I will never ever forget that moment. It is forever ingrained in this mother's heart. I will post a few things today as we just reflect on this very very special day. But for now, look at the difference a year makes. I have to say what really warms my heart is even as a little orphan girl she had such a contagious smile that melted a heart and brought a true ray of sunshine to many lives both in China and here at home! This photo was taken a couple days before we got Grace.

This is Grace with 2 of her friends Suhn (left) and Teagan (beside Grace). I was blessed to have travelled to get Grace with Sunh and Teagan's mom's. We had emailed each other before our trip when we realized our children were together at Angels House, and were thrilled to travel together to bring our girls home.
The day we got our baby girl! After a lot of tears and a little nap and no air conditioning she was sweaty and I know a very confused little girl. But from this moment forward she cried no more and was full of laughter, big smiles, and a whole lot of fun!
Our Grace now! 1 year later!
Our beautiful bundle of joy, our Grace!

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Logan Had A Great Week At Football Camp

Logan getting his award at the end of camp
Pulling the flag
Going out for the pass - yes he did catch it!
Off for the pass

Grace and Lily Enjoyed Some Playground Time

Grace loves to slide (and yes the shoes were kicked off, until of course Lily put them on, then Grace wanted them on again.)
That is the look when Grace realizes Lily is on the Whale Rocker that she insists is hers (like about everything else...she has a bit of a hard time sharing, unless it is on her terms of course that she can be as sweet as can be)
Lily - score Grace is off the Whale Rocker
Fun time driving
Rocking on the whale rocker.
These two are more like sisters then cousins. They love each other so much and can also have a knock down brawl. Sometimes they warm our hearts with how tender they are to each other and then other times we are laughing as the duke it out until we have to step in and break it up. They are so much fun together and we are so blessed to have journeyed this together! Thank you God!

Friday, June 24, 2011

Another Hurdle Jumped Today for Olivia!!!

Well we have jumped another big hurdle in our journey to Olivia today. We received our approved home study report!!! So we gathered the remainder of our documents and completed our I-800A (which is our immigration paperwork) and wrote another big fat check and mailed it all off to USCIS.

What's next? We WAIT (That is such a horrible word!)! We hope in about a month to hear back from USCIS with our fingerprint appointment which is required before immigration approvals are received. This whole approval process can take a few months. This part really stinks. Until we get our immigration approvals we can't do anything else.

Pray folks that this moves fast! This part can really expedite our trip to China if we get our approval quickly!

Sunday, June 19, 2011

Last of our Daufuski

Brandon and Grace

Me and kiddos
Me and Grace
Guy and the boys
Me and Guy

More From Daufuski - Photos 2/4

All the kiddos - 5 soon to be a complete 6 pack!
Guy with all his kiddos!
Logan catching a wave
Christian and his friend Chris riding the waves
Grace and the donkey, Maggie - who she loved! And I think she is found of Grace too!

We had a Great Time at Daufuskie Island

We had a great time at the beach. I posted like 65 photos on facebook and that was after I went through the many many more I took. So I am trying to cut that list here to even a smaller number since I can only upload 5 at a time. So enjoy some of our favorites and see facebook for more.

This is Christian skim boarding

Grace chillin with LoganGrace decides to hit the waves herself
Grace loved visiting Zelda the baby goat each day at the community farm
Riding the waves with Jonathon

Olivia's First Care Package Mailed!