Sunday, December 26, 2010
Tuesday, November 30, 2010
What should I do?
Friday, November 19, 2010
Monday, November 15, 2010
Friday, November 12, 2010
We'll start with Madelyn. This evening my poor hubby was having a difficult time breathing. He's a long time sufferer of Asthma. It truly breaks our hearts when he has such a time with it and this evening for some reason he got bad almost to the point of heading to the ER for a steroid shot. Rachel, Madelyn and I held hands and prayed while Linzhi and daddy went to the bathroom. Madelyn asked intently what was wrong with daddy. I told her he was having trouble breathing but he will be OK. She looked very serious and sat down at the dining room table while I finished up dinner. Our dining area is open to the kitchen so I talked to her while I cooked, she got very quiet and a little red in the face. I asked her if she was ok? She got up from her chair quickly walked over to me wrapped her arms around my waist and started to sob. I got on my knees, looked her in the face and asked what was the matter!??! Through heavy tears she asked "Is daddy going to die?" Oh my heart! By this time CJ was in the kitchen and heard what she said. He grabbed his eldest baby girl and they hugged for a l.o.n.g time. For the first time Madelyn let her wall come down for her daddy. It has taken much time for this to happen, in fact we didn't know if it would ever happen because she was so close to her China daddy. CJ never pushed himself on her, he gave her plenty of space and little by little she would let him in. So tonight, our hearts were so blessed to witness the love she has in her heart for her new daddy. You see, we talk about her China mama and daddy all the time, we want to celebrate them with her because she loves and misses them so much and we are so grateful to them for loving and taking such excellent care of her. We pray for them and this has proven to help Madelyn. It is still heart breaking because as her English gets so much better she is able to tell me more and more. The other day we were talking about what her China mama would make her to eat. I asked her if she missed her and she said "yes but I not going to see again" Sorry folks, I could not hold it in, the tears welled in my eyes, when Madelyn saw this she said to me sternly (that's my Madelyn). "No cry mama, I happy with you." Oh my heart, I (we) love that girl so very much! I love having her in our home, I love watching her get ready for "Merry Christmas" and "Jesus happy birthday" Last year at this time we were devastated because we thought we lost her for the 2nd time and TO GOD BE THE GLORY she is here in our arms. God is so amazing. There is no way if it's God's way for things not to work for your good if you seek His will for your life. I am so grateful we didn't allow our fears to keep us from continuing the journey to get her. We will always be open to the calling of adoption, I just pray he's not finished with us in that department yet...wink wink...
Ok, Linzhi Rose. Yesterday we went to The Univ. Of Chicago to meet with a hand specialist Dr. M. We left completely amazed at what he is able to do for her! It's a process of several surgeries (4-5) but in time our Linzhi will finally be able to bring her hands to her mouth which means she will be able to feed herself, pull up her pants, comb her hair, overall she will be able to live independently one day IF and that's a big IF we allow her to leave (smile). Anyway, the first surgery is going to be complex. He is going to remove her Latissimus muscle from her back and transplant it into her Bicep muscle...Yep, can you believe it?!?!?! We were speechless. This will enable her to have the strength to bend her elbow to bring her hand to her mouth and in time possibly the back of her head. He will do one elbow at a time so once that is finished he will then go into her teeny tiny wrists to release her extremely tight teeny tiny tendon which will allow her teeny tiny fingers to extend and she will be able to keep her wrist in a neutral position. These surgeries will not be easy for her, they will require pain management, physical therapy and Miss Linzhi will have to learn how to reuse her hands. He also confirmed she does indeed have Arthrogryposis it's just very rare that she only has it in her uppers and not her lowers. He stated in the 30 years of his career he has only seen 4 cases and that includes our baby. Sweet Jesus is working out all the details for our precious Lu Belle. I will keep you all posted. We return on January 3rd to discuss the first surgery. Please keep her in your prayers.
My Rachel will be 7 on Monday (sniff sniff). We love that girl! She is such a selfless child especially when it comes to helping her sisters. She is the best swing pusher (Underdogs are her specialty), she never hesitates to help in the bathroom or if one of them needs assistance with getting dressed, she truly is a blessing to them AND she needs them too. They fight like the best of them but they love each other completely. God certainly knew what he was doing when He put those three girls together.
Trevor is doing great, loving his job and he's grades are amazing! I can't believe my baby boy will be 18 in January. I AM NOT OLD ENOUGH TO HAVE AN ADULT CHILD....DO YOU HEAR ME!??!?! Ha Ha...I had him at 19 so I guess I'm not that old... I wrote him a letter when he was a new born, I sealed it and tucked it in his baby book with a note attached "Do not open until January 12, 2011" This January he will open it and read the words his young mama wrote to him. Every time I think of it, I get teary because I remember writing that letter and thinking WOW, 18 years is so long away and yes it is a long period of time but honestly it went by too fast for me. My prayer is that he continues to walk with the Lord so that his time on earth will be filled Grace and Hope. I will always be his mama and will keep many tabs on him and be there whenever he needs me but actually "mothering" him has started to become less and less as he crosses the line from child to now young adult. It's all good and healthy for him but this mama's heart sure misses that 7 year old boy that would draw me pictures and sit next to me and let me hold him. I still get hugs and smooches but he towers over me now and it's not appropriate for him to sit on my lap anymore (lol) so I will tuck all my sweet memories of my little boy in my heart and look forward to watching my son grow into a Godly man. what a blessing it is to be his mom.
This weekend is party-ville at our house celebrating our precious Rachel. Monday I will post pictures and some words from my heart.
God bless to all.
Friday, October 29, 2010
First night home and no his eyes are not yellow.
Madelyn with our sleeping Tinkerbelle.
Saturday, October 23, 2010
* Madelyn is doing wonderful! We have a few crying moments but lately I've noticed it's set off by not getting her way (all the time). Madelyn is a little on the stubborn side and holds her ground which I totally get and admire but at times it gets her in a little hot water. I love how she expresses herself, she is very much getting her English down so she is much more chatty with us and LOVES to talk about China and her past life and of course, we gobble every word up. We've been talking about her China mama and China baba a lot! I think she felt she couldn't and now that she knows we encourage her to talk about them and that we welcome it, she brings them up all the time. They are now apart of our family, we pray for them and hope one day when we go on the homeland tour we can visit them. We always pray at dinner as a family and take turns doing it, I have asked Madelyn if she would like to say prayer and she always said no. Well, on October 20th (3 month adoption day), she eagerly asked to say grace...Oh what a joy to hear her praise Jesus and thank him for her family and meal. It truly blessed our hearts. She's our angel and brings so much to our family. Friday we attended our church's fall festival (pics below). Last year at the fall festival, CJ was in China on the mission trip smuggling bibles across the China/Hong Kong border and two days prior we got our denial letter from USCIS. I could barely get through an hour without tears but had to get it together to take my babies to the festival alone, without CJ. As we were there I remember praying/begging the Lord to move mountains so we can get our daughter home and I specifically remember being in church at the festival imagining Madelyn there the next year and this year she was. I got very teary as we were driving to church this year for the festival because as I glanced in the backseat there she was holding her Belle baby doll looking out the window not knowing how her mama and dadda's hearts were full of gratitude for those mountains being moved for her to become on less orphan. I am grateful for the spiritual battle we faced with the enemy to get her in our arms, I learned and hold firm to trusting ONLY in him. HE is bigger than any government, nation, person. He is King!
Now moving on to another blessing, Linzhi Rose. Linzhi's brain and spinal scan came back clear, no signs of any trauma which Dr. S thought she had so the mystery continues. It's kind of exciting because now that we know she doesn't have Arthrogryposis we have more hope that her little hands and wrists can be helped even more. We have an appointment on November 11th with Dr. S's partner Dr. M. Dr.M is a hand specialist and Dr. S. seems to think Linzhi needs her hands rewired and a tendon release and he is very confident Dr. M can get her some help. We are over the moon excited it's been three years that she's been home so it's time to get moving! All the girls are doing very well in home school, gymnastics and dance. Linzhi Rose out of the three stands out as being the most athletic, I see a future gymnast in our future!?!??
Rachel Catherine will be 7 in a few short weeks. Oh I love this child, she is growing up and expressing herself all over the place...fashion, drawing, decorating and re-decorating her room. I love when she comes into the class room with her leopard print clogs, a scarf, purse and make-up, I love it because I get it! I was/am the same way. We love so much of the same things. This weekend I had a bridal shower so I was going through my closet putting together an outfit/accessories and she was right there the entire time helping me and telling me how she wants to be a "fashion girl" when she grows up. I loved having her help me and today when I left she had to look me over and to my delight she said "mama, you look awesome!" Ahh, that kid of mine!
Trevor is doing great! His school work is excellent and he's been working now for a few months. CJ took him to open a checking account and now he has a debit card. He takes it very seriously and is being very frugal with his money (thank you God). He has also helped me with Madelyn and her math studies. It's nice because all three girls are in three different grades so I work one on one with each of them for math and reading so to have the extra help is awesome, plus it helps them bond even more. Trevor will be 18 on January 12th. I am very emotional about this big birthday. I am so proud of the young man he has turned out to be but I miss that little boy too. Motherhood is HARD! LOL... Sometimes you want to run out the door and sometimes you never want your babies to age. Praise God he's starting at junior college so he'll be home for 2 more years.
Below are some pics...Enjoy and have a blessed Sunday!
Finally a family picture!
Linzhi at the fall festival getting her face painted. (it's a dolphin-kinda)
Rachel the kitty cat.
Madelyn at the fall festival. A prayer answered! And of course, miss Linz too!
my pictures are not in order but this is Rachel becoming a kitty!
My girls love craft day, here's Madelyn painting her "Love" plaque. It went along with our bible study. See my chalk board behind her. It's chalkboard paint and works beautifully!
Tuesday, October 5, 2010
Have a wonderful God-filled Wednesday!!
All my babies... My heart is full. I know the sun kind of ruined the shot but I love it anyway.
Monday, October 4, 2010
Friday, October 1, 2010
These pics are not in order and I have to upload the pics from CJ's computer...Anyway, we started the morning with donuts and presents from mama and daddy and her sibs then we headed to Nana's Cakery for her party with friends. They were able to make 2 dozen cookies to take home and we had a little cake party in the back room. Then in the evening we had a family party with lots and lots of gifts. Those pics are on CJ's camera but I was able to get a few. Enjoy!
At the Bakery with friends.
Having cake in the backroom of the bakery with her friends.
Linzhi and cut Madelyn and Yes, my husband accidently cut my face 0ff in the pic... =)
Saturday, September 25, 2010
Monday, September 20, 2010
Some days well, life can be interesting... Today for example was Monday, grocery shopping day which means I get up at 6:30am, shower and leave the house by 7:30-8:00am to get my shopping done for the week which consists of 3 different stores due to prices and favorites. We start school late on Mondays so Trevor can be with the girls. I call it "home economics" class for Trevor. I managed to get everything checked off my list in perfect time, I knew it was going to be a great day! I pull in, Trevor helps me unload and then all of a sudden time was flying and one thing after another kept popping up making it impossible to get life in order for my three little peanuts. One needed this, the other that...oh my! The needs just kept mounting up and I was finding myself getting alittle frustrated with my life at the moment. I'm going to be real honest here so please don't judge. Some days I feel defeated. Linzhi needs bathroom assistance, help with feedings, dressing, hair, teeth, etc... Madelyn is pretty independent except for the bathroom if she's wearing pants or shorts of any kind. Rachel is my child that will challenge me from the minute she wakes up until she hits the pillow at night and now all the girls are bickering left and right over the most trivial things in the world! (yes, mom I know Allison and I did the same things) LOL... But all joking aside, today I wanted to be as far away from my house full of blessings as I possible could and I feel terrible about that but that's reality sometimes. I am finding myself very tired. Adopting an older child with a language barrier and with mild but obvious physical disabilities is tough...very tough and some days I talk to her like she understands me and then I forget and run to the translator and type it all in and pray she gets it!! *sigh* One day I know we will be able to communicate and I thank God for every little breakthrough we have with language but some times are more trying than others and bless Madelyn's heart, she is such a trooper. =)
So I admit, all heck broke loose today! But I will say this, we had a great day at school when we finally got everyone in order so we could get to the classroom AND best of all...Madelyn was able to get through the day without crying due to grief (Praise the Lord). See a little breakthrough. =) Tomorrow will be a new day and my girls will wake up with perfect attitudes and happy smiles for each other ALL DAY LONG...Ok maybe not but we'll manage through lots of prayers and I'm sure some laughs and maybe some tears here and there. So I am going to bed tonight with my cup overflowing with gratitude so when all heck breaks loose tomorrow, I'm going to run to my computer and reread my post. ;)
Have a great Tuesday!
Thursday, September 16, 2010
Tuesday, September 14, 2010
Thursday, September 9, 2010
I had a sweet video to post of Madelyn teaching Rachel and Linzhi Mandarin however, for some reason I can't get the video up!?!? So...I have some cute pictures of their Mandarin lesson today which was practicing writing Chinese characters (we bought practice books in Wuhan) and learning colors. Oh how I love to watch this! Madelyn takes it very seriously and so does Rachel, Linzhi...Not so much (lol). Rachel is picking it up quickly which gives Madelyn (and me) great joy. Home school is going great! We are very busy with projects and worksheets but we're having so much fun and it's such a blessing to have Trevor in the next room too. Tomorrow is Friday which means it's art class with Trevor. =)
**UPDATE** The director of Madelyn's orphanage gave us his personal email address and asked that we send updates so they can see how she's doing. So this evening I did just that and requested the update be sent to her foster family as well. Well, within an hour he emailed us back a sweet note and promised to forward the update to her foster family...PRAISE GOD! My prayer is that they have some peace of mind knowing how much she is loved. I know it will be bittersweet. Please pray for healing of broken hearts. I know they miss her and she misses them. I will be showing her the email tomorrow morning, I know she'll be tickled!
Rachel practicing Chinese characters.
Madelyn showing the girls how to write the names of colors in Chinese characters.