Safe In The Arms of the Shepherd

Safe In The Arms of the Shepherd
This is Who we want our children to know!

Monday, October 31, 2011

Chip in button up and running I think!

This is just in case anybody feels so led to help us get to China and back!

Poor Rick, or is he?

Let me see, there's Grandma Grace (Rick's mom), Gramma Margie (my mom), Brittany, Mia Rose (a.k.a. Meemurs, aka Licky-face Monsterhead Dog, a.k.a. Mimi), Holly Noel, (aka Licky-face Monsterhead Dog II, a.k.a. Ha-ey Ha Ha), then there's Hannah Gan a.k.a. Gan Gan, and YiLi Rebecca, and me, (wife and mother), and then there's:

Rick, husband, step-father, son, soon to be a.k.a. Baba, Daddy . . . "poor Rick" hmmmm - outnumbered, maybe, but "poor", definitely not!

The Bible says in I John 3:1: "Behold what manner of love the Father has bestowed on us, that we should be called children of God."  Psalm 127 calls children "a heritage from the Lord", going on to speak about fruit of the womb.  Yet, as we are grafted in to the fold, so are our adopted children also being grafted into our family! I see Rick being transformed into a "baba" right before my eyes and heart!  Look at those kind eyes!

Nope, Daddy and his girls, richest guy on Spruce Street! Now if we would just get our Travel Notice!

We have three daughters . . .

Sometimes in the hubub of the adoption, we don't forget our birth children, but they are in the background. One of the very first things I want to do as soon as we get home to Pennsylvania is have a photo taken with our three girls! One - single - picture - together!  And of course we will have a family shot taken! Brittany is a freshman in college nearby, and thus she will be unable to go to China with us. She called me last night, all excited, because she has decided to get her sisters charm bracelets for Christmas. She will start with hearts and their names engraved, but we have to wait until we find out which name each sister wants to be called. Her phonecall warms my heart, because this idea came from Brittany without any prompting on my part. I on the other hand have barely thought about Christmas yet!!! So let me introduce my beautiful daughter Brittany:

Brittany has the most engaging personality! She has a very big heart. I remember (OK here we go! I could do this forever!) when she was in pre-school she used to run up to children and hug them so fiercely that she would almost knock them down. We did have to temper that a bit, but the love for people was definitely there! To me, with Brittany being my only child (from my previous marriage), the fact that she without any hesitation opened her heart to these girls is from God above. This will definitely change her future in many ways, as well as the amount of time (at first) that I will have to travel and see her on campus, but she has supported Rick and I in every way! I love you, Brittany!

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Closer to travelling!

This is only post#2 for us, but I am going to plunge right in ! Better to get some things recorded for posterity than none at all!

We received updates on both of our girls in the last week! We sent them cakes, cameras and letters through Angela at Ladybugs and Love. In hindsight, I wished that we would have sent everything through her, but since we had a brother of a church friend leaving for China, we sent letters and photo albums with him. The albums were suede and had english words on the front (family, smile, happy, love, home, belong, etc.) We got word that Gan has received her photo album and that she was happy about it.

When we got no word from the package we sent through Angela, we decided to ask for official updates through our agency in case that was the only way that her orphanage would respond.

Very quickly we got these pictures and answers to some of our questions! OK, I'm not having a lot of success placing these pics correctly, but you can get the idea! We notice the biggest change in YiLi. In her video she is VERY outgoing, a real performer for the audience at the orphanage. Here, she looks almost solemn. I can only surmise that she is in overwhelm mode - look at the changes in her life recently:
  1. She used to go to Kindergarten at the orphanage, now she attends the Qingdao City School for the Blind.
  2. That means she used to go to the orphanage daily (from her foster home) and now she does not.
  3. Her hair has been cut off up to her ears. She got new glasses.
  4. Being 7, she must know something is up, but still not be able to see the big picture. Even receiving the cake, she might know she is to be adopted, but I can only imagine she feels very out of control.

With Gan, and knowing more about the openness of her orphanage, I feel that she understands what is about to happen to her.  She also probably knows what her life will be like if she remains in China after she turns 14. Being almost age 12, though, she will have to sign indicating her wish to be adopted.

My good husband reminded me (from scripture) of what our job is: In 2nd Timothy 3: 14-17, in contrast to the increasingly evil world,we are told :  "But as for you, continue in the things which you have learned and been assured of, knowing from whom you learned them, and that from childhood you have known the Holy Scriptures, which are able to make you wise for salvation through faith which is in Christ Jesus. All Scripture is given by inspiration of God, an dis profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness, that the man of God may be complete, thorougly equipped for every good work!"

To me, this says so much! Our godly parents gave us a heritage, we go forward with assurance, and we ARE equipped through Jesus for this work of bringing our beloved girls home and giving to them hope for an abundant life here and for eternity! We just have to plug along in faith, and God will be with us every step of the way!

P.S. You can see the tiniest little smirk on YiLi's face which is her personality coming through in spite of her "overwhelmedness" (Is that even a word LOL?). And I love love love Gan's smile!