Tuesday, December 30, 2008
Monday, December 22, 2008
Tuesday, December 9, 2008
On Friday, as I was house cleaning my little China baby told me she had to go potty (which she says often as she drinks water all day long). I told her to go down there and set up her stool and I would be there shortly. Well, to be honest...I forgot! A few minutes later Linzhi appears again with out her pants but her underwear was pulled up all the way...Hmmm, did sissy help you? Linzhi replied "nope, I do it myself". So we went in the bathroom and sure enough there was pee pee in the toilet and a little tiny piece of toilet paper stuck on the seat. I quickly asked Rachel, "did you help Linz potty" (not that I didn't believe Linzhi but I couldn't believe my EYES). Rachel assured me, "I was too busy to help her, I told her to do it herself"....LOL...
So yes, my little baby girl that we were told might never be independent from her mommy and daddy made a HUGE milestone on Friday...HUGE! I can't even put into words how much of a VICTORY this is for her and to top it off, she pulled her panties up over her bootie which she has struggled with, she could only pull them up mid thigh. I know the Lord was smiling down on our baby girl. He created her in all his glory and grace. He provided her with an undeniable will that completely puts CJ and myself in complete awe of HIM. We are just so excited to see what this kid will do next!
Friday, December 5, 2008
Secondly, I am approaching my 100th post! I am planning a giveaway so please stay tuned for more details. Also, I have taken my blog off private mode. I find it too hard to share with friends & family as I get the call or email "I forgot the name of your blog"...etc... Plus, I want to be able to share our adoption/family story with people that many be considering adopting a special needs child.
Lastly, Please pray for Troy and his children Bek and Syd. It's an emotional story about a young mother and wife that had cardiac arrest and slipped into a coma 2 months ago. I don't know him but I've been commenting on his blog and praying for his family. Yesterday, his sweet wife Hyatt passed away. Please go here to read their story. http://hyatt911.blogspot.com/
Honestly, following this journey has changed my marriage and the way I look at life.
Thursday, December 4, 2008
Oh well, at least my bangs were out of my face!
Wednesday, December 3, 2008
Wednesday, November 26, 2008
Tuesday before the holiday, CJ and I took Rachel to see the Rockette's. It was her birthday present from mommy and daddy. Our little girl has a passion for dance so she was counting down the "sleeps" until the day. She was in awe as she watched all the performances and for CJ and me our entertainment was watching her!
She looked beautiful in her Christmas dress (as always). We also gave her a balarina necklace at the theater during intermission. Our little girl is growing up and it's a blessing to watch. Enjoy the pictures!!
Tuesday, November 18, 2008
CJ and I are sitting here wanting to put into words how we feel at this very moment…hours before we are united with our little girl. To say we’re nervous/anxious would be an understatement. We are overjoyed with the feelings of being completely blessed too. This website is for Linzhi so with that said. Linzhi, your mama and baba love you and want you so much. You are our angel and even though you were not carried in your mommy’s womb, we carried you in our hearts. We are honored that God chose you to be our daughter and to think of all the millions of people in China he found you! Our darling, little angel. We pray that you come to understand how much you were wanted. Your birth parents wanted to keep you but the circumstances made it impossible and we hurt for them because they chose to give you life and a chance at finding a forever family. We will never forget the sacrifice they made and the heartache they bear not having you with them.In less than 4 hours you will be with your mama and baba and we will never leave you, ever. You will never go hungry or be afraid without someone there to comfort you. We will teach you about our Lord and Savior Jesus and our hope is that one day you will come back to China and maybe bring a baby home yourself. You are such a brave little girl and our hearts overflow with love for you.
FOREVER FAMILY DAY!!!!
Trevor and Rachel, we’d like to introduce you to your new sister and is she ever a cutie pie…. Absolutely beautiful!We are in awe of God’s grace!We met Jane in the lobby at 12:45 to go over some paperwork and exchange money then headed over to the civil affairs office. We were the first to arrive and as we walked in we saw through the big windows a baby coming. We knew the child wasn’t Linzhi because she was an infant. At this point CJ and I were getting very emotional, we kept looking out the window and sure enough we see Linzhi being carried in my the orphanage director! At that point we were shaking and all of us were in tears. In she came, not a peep out of her. She went to both CJ and I without any problem. At one point she started to get a little teary eyed so daddy gave her a cheerio and boy, she loves them! We were able to sit and talk with the nanny, she answered several questions and she kept telling us how smart she was but more on the shy side. We were also presented a special gift from the orphanage. They gave us a photo album with around 20 pictures of her throughout her babyhood. What a blessing for her to be able to have baby pictures to show her children one day! After that we went up to the notary’s office took our pictures for her passport and then headed back to the hotel. When we returned our guide Jane pre-ordered our dinner and it was delicious! Did I mention Linzhi is not a picky eater? She loves to eat and she gobbled up all her rice and eggs. She has also been drinking lots of water too so that in itself is a huge blessing. Many kids will refuse food and drink for a few days. Back in the hotel we were able to give Linzhi a bath, she fussed for a minute but then started splashing the water without a smile. After that we dressed her and played then the most exciting this happened. She walked over into her daddy’s arms with a big smile on her face!!! This is God’s grace again… then she walked right into mama’s arms with a smile! Praise God!!Her hair is thick and shiny and her teeth are beautiful white. She was fed well because she is not at all bony. She can bend her elbows but not too much and she is able to hold and pick up objects. Linzhi is also making excellent eye contact with both CJ and myself, thank the Lord again!At bedtime she started to grieve and it was just gut wrenching to see her in so much emotional pain. She kept looking around for something familiar, so mama rocked her and daddy walked her…finally she was able to fall asleep and now she’s snoring!!Please continue to pray that her grieving is less and less. She is such a strong, brave little angel and I know God will heal her.
Linzhi Rose, you have changed our lives forever. Linzhi is our sweet, stubborn little China angel that is always ready to give out kisses. Every morning she says in her sweet little voice "Morning Baby" or "Morning pumpkin". When I look at you, I'm still in awe that you're actually here with us!
Happy Gotcha day!!
Daddy & Mommy
You can view our complete China journey by clicking this link www.myadoptionwebsite.com/linzhi
Saturday, November 15, 2008
Rachel, you are the child that challenges me the most and makes me laugh the hardest. I see so much of me in you as you like all the sparkles and girlie things but I also see so much of your daddy in you too...happy to wake up and mechanically inclined, you amaze me how good you are at playing your Disney computer games. I love your sentimental heart for animals and for your sister. I love how loyal you are already to your friends and how you pick up on all the little details in life like flowers, leaves, lady bugs. God has such a unique plan for you little one and Daddy and I feel so overly blessed to be granted the opportunity to love you and take care of you. Our lives are much happier and blessed because we have you as our daughter.
Mommy and Dada
Friday, November 14, 2008
Hope everyone is happy and healthy!
PS... Thanks Jess for checking in on me! Hugs and love!
Thursday, October 30, 2008
We drove up to their apartment to park then we hit the train to bring us into the heart of the city. Emily chose a great Mexican restaurant for lunch and we just sat there and talked for almost 2 hours! Then we decided to walk off our lunch by checking our Columbia College (Trevor would like to attend this school), the Art Museum, Millennium Park, The magnificent mile...Just to name a few... We walked off our lunch and more! Our final stop was Garrett's Popcorn, it was delicious and a perfect ending to our perfect day!
This is a tradition I hope to keep with Trevor well into his adult years. We all go to the city pretty often which is great! Before I met CJ when it was just Trev and mom several years ago, we would hop the train for a day at a muesum, the zoo or just to walk around and shop. I love this time with him. He's growing up so fast, I love him so. =)
Mom and Trevor...He's so TALL!
Sunday, October 26, 2008
I won this dress through auction at this site http://bringinghomerachel.blogspot.com
Please go to this blog. This family is trying to raise funds to bring their precious daughter Rachel home from China.
Click on the picture to see the detail of the dress. I LOVE this pattern! This dress will be Linzhi's. First of all, it's size 2T which is Linzhi's dress size...Yes, my almost 4 year old is still is a size 2T for dresses (she's a little peanut!) AND I want her to have a special dress for a keepsake AND all the proceeds go to bringing this precious child home.
Not much else to report around here. It's been pretty quiet. Trevor and I went to Chicago to visit my sister Emily and her boyfriend Mike. We had a great time, I'll post about that later in the week with pictures.
Have a wonderful Monday!
Sunday, October 19, 2008
A few have asked what is Arhtrogrypsois. Here is some information I received from stuff I've dug up on the Internet. All is in aligned with the doctor that sees Linzhi at Shriners. **Please note, Linzhi only has it in her elbows, hands, fingers and wrists. She is considered mild because it has only affect her upper exteremities.
Arthrogryposis is the name given to a group of disorders characterized by multiple joint contractures throught the body present at birth. In the U.S., it occurs about once per every 3,000 live births, and affects both males and females of all ethnic backgrounds.
CausesArthrogryposis is usually caused by decreased fetal movements in the womb. The fetus needs to move his/her limbs to develop muscle and joints. If the joints don't move, extra connective tissue develops around the joint and fixes it in place. Some of the causes of decreased fetal movements are:
· Malformations or malfunctions of the central nervous system (most common cause), such as spina bifida, brain malformations, or spinal muscular atrophy
· An inherited neuromuscular disorder such as myotonic dystropy, myasthenia gravis, or multiple sclerosis
· Maternal infections during pregnancy such as German measles (rubella) or rubeola
· Maternal fever above 39 C (102.2 F) for an extended period, or increased maternal body temperature caused by prolonged soaking in hot tubs
· Maternal exposure to substances that can harm the fetus, such as drugs, alcohol, or phenytoin (Dilantin)
· Too little amniotic fluid, or chronic leaking of amniotic fluid, may cause reduced space for the fetus to move around
SymptomsThe particular joint contractures found in an infant with arthrogryposis vary from child to child, but there are several common characteristics:
· The legs and arms are affected, with wrists and ankles being the most deformed (think of the fetus folded up inside the uterus, locked in that position)
· The joints in the legs and arms may not be able to move at all
· Muscles in the legs and arms are thin and weak or even absent
· The hips may be dislocated
Some infants with arthrogryposis have facial deformities, curvature of the spine, genital deformities, cardiac and respiratory problems, and skin defects.
TreatmentThere is no cure for arthrogryposis, but early vigorous physical therapy can help stretch out the contracted joints and develop the weak muscles. Splints can also help stretch joints, especially at night. Orthopedic surgery may also be able to relieve or correct joint problems.
Ultrasound or computed tomography (CT) scan can identify any central nervous system abnormalities. These may or may not require surgery to treat. Congenital heart defects may need to be repaired.
PrognosisThe life span for an individual with arthrogryposis is usually normal, but may be altered by heart defects or central nervous system problems.
Information for this article was taken from:Chen, H. Arthrogryposis. eMedicine, accessed at http://www.emedine.com/ped/topic142.htm
Saturday, October 18, 2008
My cousin Lindsay is half way through chemo and is doing pretty well... Good and bad days but seems to be doing her best to take one day at a time. Here is a link to her Caringbridge website if you would like to read her posts. http://caringbridge.org/lindsayspringer
Here's an update from the aunt of Julia, the little girl from China that is going through treatments for Lukemia. I posted about her with a picture some time ago.
Tuesday Julia had her chemo along with spinal tap and a bone marrow aspiration. Julia's doctor called to tell us all results came back good, meaning the bone marrow sample showed fewer leukocyte cells, (chemo is working) and once again, spinal tap showed no sign of cancer cells in her spinal fluid. YEA!!! I have to tell you all I was surprised by the phone call even though Dr. Daggert clearly said she would call, but somehow I already knew her results were good. It is like what the bible says, "It's a peace that surpasses all understanding." I am so grateful to be spiritually at this place. Not to say there are not moments when I want to fall apart, or that it's not extremely difficult to watch Julia go through these brutal intensive treatments that play such havoc on her tiny body, but I am very positive on her outcome. We still are grateful for good results, and continue prayers for them, but Brian and I continue to stand in faith that ALL her results will be positive from now on.
Julia did get a platelet transfusion Tuesday which seems to be a trend with her. They usually perk her right up.
Again, I thank each and every one of you for your continued prayers. There have been so many acts of kindness shown to our family and we are sincerely humbled. Julia has been provided with so much love, support and distraction from the invasive procedures. Many of you have replaced her tears of pain with smiles of relief. We thank you so much.
Please continue to pray for sweet Lindsay and Julia!
Thursday, October 16, 2008
Tuesday, October 14, 2008
After the teens headed over to the local pizza place, we took the girls to a different area of the farm to visit the quarter horses, goats, chickens, turkeys and ducks. Miss Rachel LOVES animals, she's my nature girl so this was the highlight of the evening for her. She loves to feed and pet as many animals as she can. Now, Linzhi is a different story, like her mama. I will look but please don't ask me to touch! LOL... It was so precious to see them running around enjoying their first fall together. This weekend coming is the annual "Night at Sleepy Hallow" it will be held at the same farm. It is a fun time for both little kids and bigger kids. This will be Linzhi's first time at Sleepy Hallow and the pumpkin patch which we're going to try an squeeze in as well. I vividly remember last year at Sleepy Hallow when we were so close to leaving for China to pick up our little one. I can still see Rachel at the craft table making a trick or treat bag and my thoughts were "next year, she'll have her sister to share life with..." So this year, I will be snapping pictures of my little girls sharing the Sleepy Hallow experience together, I know my heart will be full. Trevor will be there too, he volunteers for the hay rides so I'm going to sneak some pics of him too!!!
We ended our night with a yummy dinner at Cracker Barrel. Now, that was the highlight of my Linzhi's night. She loves to eat...Just like mama, oh and daddy too! =)
Have a wonderful Wednesday!
Beautiful Perry Farm
Sweet baby Rachel loving on the quarter horses.
Time to clean out the shoes...Monkey see, Monkey do!
Miss Linz trying to figure out if she likes the quarter horses??? Not so sure...
hhmmm....is that a tongue I see sticking out of Linzhi's mouth??? Rachel in the background noticing before I did!
My little one LOVES little ones...