Monday, January 30, 2012

No Consulate Today, But More Pictures....

God is so sweet, we did not get our Consulate Appointment today so I was very sad about that (hoping for tomorrow, 1/2 came in today) but I did get more pictures. Donna at Eagles Wing is so great to update their blog with photos from the Chinese New Year celebrations. Olivia's last one in CHINA! Don't you love that beautiful smile.

Eating dumplings
Celebrating with friends
Pushing her friend in the lantern races
Kites in the park
Beautiful all the kites for the Chinese New Year

Saturday, January 28, 2012

My Heart Is Overwhelmed!

I can not begin to express what is going on in this momma's heart. I am overjoyed that God would send such an amazing woman to be there for Olivia and to help prepare her the huge life change she is about to experience in about 3 weeks! I think about what it would be like for one of my children at the age of 5 to be taken for the only world they know. I know we will be very happy together and this is of God but our poor little girl doesn't understand all that right now. I am going to share with you some of what Olivia was told about us and her reaction (what a gift this is to get) but prepare your self and grab a tissue just saying...I've been weeping and can't stop...but oh now we know how to pray for our little girl...will you join us?

Donna, the lady who is with Grace, held back some of the gifts from her care packages and put them in a bag and also the letters and the photo album until the day she told her about us and her new family in America!

"I have talked to Gao Jing about being adopted and going to America. At first she said she didn't
want to, she was scared. So I just let the idea sink in, but of course I did not give her the option of not being adopted, that is not a decision for a 5 year old! She did not want to look at the family photos, but I had some of the other things you sent in a shopping bag and let her "explore". She
loves dress up things so the necklaces were a big hit. And she loved taking photos with the camera! She used up the whole camera taking photos of me and her friends. (Don't worry you will get plenty of photos) She quickly returned to her happy self and did sit with me and go through the photo album after a bit."

(okay folks I was think of her being so scared , and not even wanting to look at us...broke my heart, but I understand and I love how patient Donna was with her and how Olivia came around. The pictures I have attached are her exploring the bang..that made me smile)

"In the last couple of weeks she has become very happy and excited about going to America.
She enjoys looking at the photos and can tell who everyone is. When I was at her house a few days ago she was excited to show me her book and tell me about the photos. (SMILE) During the New Year camp last week, she was putting her name on a picture she had colored and I asked her if she wanted to know about her Meiguo mingxia (American name). I wrote it on a page for her. She did not want to know. She told me her name is Gao Jing. I told her that is just fine. (No
pressure) Shortly after I saw her carefully copying O-l-i-v-i-a. She has been writing it fairly often and is getting good at it. I hope this gives you some insight into how she adjusts that will help as you help her transition."

"So I think the adjustment to the idea of leaving here is going well. I don't doubt there will
be some sad moments as this is the only home she has known. She has many
friends and is well loved. I think it has been a happy life for her. We know
that what lies ahead is even better, but she doesn't understand that fully."

"Gao Jing has asked several times when she is going"

Oh my heart breaks at some of her comments, pain, fear and swells with joy at her embracing the thought of her very own family and the excitement and pride she is showing in us and her new life as well. Please please please pray for our Olivia. I can not imagine this kind of a change for a 5 year old.

Exploring the bag with all the gifts we sent pjs, chapsticks, and the necklaces are a hit - remember they were on in the Chinese New Year photos !
She is gonna love the V-tech camera I got her and am bringing to China - it actually communicates with her V-tech tablet I got her so she can download them too.

Oh how this melted my heart!
Hold on sweet girl, and oh God please prepare and protect her heart, take her fear and replace it with joy oh God and an excitement, let her see our love for her, let her know it in her spirit Lord.

Grace and Lily Love the Trampline

We had Lily over for a play date. These girls have missed each other while Lily has been in China. They had a lot of fun on the trampoline.

She could also enjoy sitting playing with the pine needles that fall when she needs to catch her breath from all the jumping
Lily LOVED it!
Blurry - but oh the joy on the face

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Grace and the ENT

Well our adventure continues with our little girl. If she doesn't get approved for speech (which I guess is a good thing - she is doing so great!) it was a method to finding a problem.

The good news is Grace passed her hearing test!

The bad news is her ear canals are so tiny and the wax builds up so quick and doesn't flush easy because of that. So even after a month we had to go through the horrid task of the dr. cleaning out her ears, the right being the worst. We will have to continue this monthly for now. As she gets older the ear canal will grow and they should flush better. So no fun, but needed.

There is also fluid behind her ear. The fluid is clear and not causing infections which is great but we can't leave it there long term or it will get infected. So for now we watch it and see if it starts to drain and if in a few months still there we will need to look at tubes so that it doesn't get infected.

So not a great report but something we needed to hear and address so in that I am giving thanks.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Olivia Making Dumplings

Found picture of Olivia on The Eagles Wing blog - love it, she is making dumplings for Chinese New Year. She has on the t-shirt we sent in her Christmas care package and some of the necklaces we sent her too so that made me smile . Won't be long now....

Monday, January 23, 2012

WE GOT TA!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

What an amazing Chinese New Year it has been! No we do not have our Olivia home yet to celebrate but we did get our TA - Travel Approval today! Which makes today even more super special!

Our agency has requested our Consulate appointment based on us leaving around February 15-17 as our first choice.

The U.S. Consulate is closed from January 22-28 due to the Chinese New Year. We should hear early-middle of next week with our confirmed travel dates! Then the real fun begins as we get ready to travel to bring home our daughter!!!!

Happy Chinese New Year

What an amazing night we had tonight celebrating the Chinese New Year with family and friends. There were 28 of us at a local Chinese Restaurant which included my parents, and 5 other local families who adopted from China (one being my sister, and another family who lives about 30 minutes away but we met in China!) This was a shot of Grace before we left...silly thing that she is.
A little more serious for us
Getting some love from her PawPaw
Braelyn and her daddy, Marc
Jaidyn giving Guy a big hug
Lily's response, that is my Uncle Guy and gave him a big squeeze. She has been sharing her Mommy and Daddy with her little brother for almost 3 weeks, she is not sharing her Uncle Guy!
Taylor and Christian, playing on the phone
Grace and Logan being silly
Jaidyn loves to give hugs, and Grace's face says all, "oh my gosh, here she comes"
"I knew it! Somebody help!"
Grace says to Marc, "I want to hold you " aka, "hold me"
Because she knows that means "this" , needless to say Marc ended up giving a lot of little girls rides.
Grace and her good friend Braelyn and Braelyn's daddy Marc
Caiya and Logan, these two have always had a special bond...her mom , Amy, and I are already talking arranged marriages...
Logan and Caiya

The gang, Grace (really another picture), Caiya (OMG!), Taylor (pretty smile), Jaidyn (hiking up that dress), Braelyn (oh yeah baby!), Laim (what the heck is up with all these girls!) and Lily (really, you guys can't be serious)

Sunday, January 22, 2012

In the Midst of Basektball Season

Logan is our only one playing basketball this season. I have yet to take my camera to a game, but this Saturday I thought I would. It was a great game to do so because he was playing against friends. There are 5 boys in the neighborhood that you always see hanging together. Logan and one of the boys is on one team, and two of the other boys on another. The fifth boy was there to watch Saturday. This is Logan above with one of his friends, Christian.
Logan shoots and watches to see if it goes in - swoosh! Issac his other friend watches too and Mason his cousin who is also on Logan's team. Funny just noticed Logan and Issac have the same number.
Love it...Grace insists on running across the court at 1/2 time to see her daddy who is one of the coaches.
And some peek a boo on the side line with her brother Christian
Love the intensity on his face
Headed down the court
Cool picture right, as the timer is about to buzz and he makes the wild throw from a far from the goal - no it did not go in, but hey great photo!

Saturday, January 21, 2012

Liam Is Home!

My sister, brother in-law, niece Lily and new nephew Liam arrived home from China this afternoon. Look at the joy on Kelly's face when she saw her kiddos and the rest of us there to greet them full of expressions of love!
Now look at that beautiful face that stole my sisters heart!
These two girls so missed each other, can you tell? Pure joy! Simple laughter!
Grace so happy to have her cousin Lily home!
Adorable, just adorable, he wanted to particpate in Grace and Lily's craziness but thought to watch from a distance for now is just as much fun!
Gosh I am going to pinch his face off!
He has stolen my heart!

Friday, January 20, 2012

TA Has Been Mailed!!!!

Well we wont' get our Consulate Appointment and travel dates confirmed before the Chinese New Year, but praising God that we did get an email from our agency tonight saying that our TA, travel approval , has been mailed!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! This means that our agency should have it by Monday.

So what does that mean? It means they will request a consulate appointment but we won't hear back until January 30 at the earliest of our confirmed consulate appointment due to the Consulate being close from Jan 22-28 for the Chinese New Year.

Our first option for travel they are going to request is leaving between Feb 15-17 and returning around Feb 28-March 3.

Our second option (if no consulate appointments during first option for travel) is to leave between February 22-24 and return between March 7-10.

Praying for the earlier dates because 1) we are ready to bring our daughter home and 2) the ministry I started in 2011 is putting on its first women's retreat March 30-April 1 and really need as much lead time when get back as possible as well as time for Olivia to settle in. Check out

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Lady Bug Stickers

This is what happens when you leave a 17 year old boy and a 3 year old girl alone with a package of lady bug stickers

A Blessing All the Way from Australia!

Well today we received a blessing. An email from the lady who has sponsored and loved our daughter Olivia since she was a tiny tot. She even spent a month with her at Eagles Wing and said it was her best vacation ever! This woman lives in Australia. Isn't God amazing he has no boundries when it comes to reaching out for "one"! She was so hapy that Olivia will soon be with her forever family. She said Olivia is the dearest, most wonderful litle girl.

Now come on TA..we are counting on you in the next couple days oh please....

Monday, January 16, 2012

Girls Room Complete

Grace and Olivia's room is now I think we can say we are ready for TA. Bedroom and bathroom updates -check, Shopping for Olivia and Travel -check. Now I am going to sit back and wait not so patiently for our TA....praying it comes this week before the Chinese New Year along with our CA so we can make our travel arrangements!