Monday, April 27, 2009

The Red Thread

The term "Red Thread" is a popular one among families adopting from China. There is an old Chinese saying that talks about a red thread extending from a child's spirit once they are born that connects them to all the important people in his or her life. The thread may stretch or tangle, but will never be broken. deep spiritual significance here, but I love the concept that the child chosen by God for our family was connected with our family from the moment of her conception. A wonderful fellow adoptive mom gave this red thread to me in December of 2006. It has been on my ankle since then and has been a daily reminder to pray for our future daughter as well as a source of encouragement to me. Soon it will have a home in Gracie's baby book - Thank you God!

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Stress...and a Priceless Gift

This has been a particularly stressful week. Fingerprinting appointment issues, passport and Visa snags, a mountain of paperwork and lists...Ugh! I know when we have our arms around our sweet girl, it will be worth every headache and curve ball that has come our way!

We DID begin our week with a wonderful blessing. Our wonderful babysitter, who is now a student at North Greenville University, told us she would love to house/pet sit for us while we are in China. She said she didn't want to be paid for her time, and that she wanted to do this for our family as a loving service while the final step of our long road is being completed! God's love is very evident in her life, and we are SO humbled and grateful for her selfless gift of time. We love you Heather!!

Sunday, April 19, 2009

Gracie's birthday party

Her 1st birthday cake

PF Changs


We've been thinking a lot lately about the many "firsts" we have missed with our new daughter. Since we missed Gracie's first birthday in February, we decided that we would go ahead and have our own celebration last month! We want Gracie to know she was honored and celebrated on the occasion of her special day. We ate at PF Changs, and went to the mall to choose her gift. Brian gave each one of our children a stuffed animal of some sort when they were born. We ended up at Build-A-Bear (why, oh why did I not come up w/ that concept years ago...) where Brian chose Gracie's first stuffed bunny. Can I just say that you can drop some big bucks in that store. Who knew stuffed bears needed glasses, underwear and wigs?

Life here has been a whirlwind. Here are some of the things we've been doing...

* Getting our paperwork ready to apply for travel Visas.
* Selling things on Craigslist.
* Buying a new dresser for Gracie on Craigslist (which NOT by coincidence is from the same collection of furniture that was in my room when I was young, and is now in our girls' room!)
Thank you God!
* Painting
* Researching Gracie's special need & talking with local clinics about her future surgeries.
* Going through baby equipment!
* Checking out flight prices for June. (ugh!)
* Sorting items for our yard sale next month.
* Sending a request to be fingerprinted. (For the third time - Go figure!)

Our heads are spinning with things that must be done, but we are so grateful to be in this place. So many of you have offered so many encouraging words, and have given great travel advice. (Thank you Kim and Lori!) We have heard from 3 out of 5 organizations concerning our requests for grant money. Each of those had to turn us down due to lack of funds. We are anxious to hear from the remaining two, and continue to trust God! In fact, someone gave us a check at church this morning to help us bring Gracie home. We are SO grateful! Many of you have also offered items toward our yard sale next month. You are awesome!
We've been given a tentative date of June 4 to fly to Beijing. Be still my heart! We covet your prayers over the next several weeks. God is good!

Monday, April 13, 2009

"God sets the lonely in families." Psalm 68:6

Population of Asia
- 3,780,819,792
Population of China - 1,338,612,968
Population of Guangdong Province - approx. 94,000,000
Population of Lianjiang City - approx. 620,000
Number of children in Gracie's orphanage - unknown

"ALL the days ordained for me were written in Your book before one of them came to be." Psalm 139:16

Thursday, April 9, 2009


Love so amazing, so divine,
demands my soul, my life, my all.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009


The poor UPS guy after he was told he was the Stork carrying
our daughter's important paperwork.

The official referral document for Gracie!

The much anticipated Letter Of Acceptance!

Daddy making it official.

Yesterday we received our Letter of Acceptance from China! We signed and dated it, and sent it overnight back to our agency. It should be back in China before the weekend. We will probably receive our Travel Approval in 4 weeks, and travel 2 weeks after that! (gulp)
So much to do!!!! We covet your prayers!

"With God all things are possible." Matthew 19:26

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Thank you!

Thank you to everyone who prayed for Quinn & for all of you who have been checking up on him! He did great. He was very brave and the surgery went very well. He had a tough time coming out from under the anesthesia, but was soon relaxed enough to eat a popsicle & watch a little Star Wars before we were discharged! He looks like a little chipmunk, and is enjoying playing w/ his new LEGOs and being mothered by his two sisters. Thank you God!

Sunday, April 5, 2009

Please Pray With Us

Would you please pray for our little guy tomorrow (Monday) morning? He is having oral surgery done at 8:40. The doctor will be removing 2 teeth and extracting a cyst that has grown in his gums. He is anxious, and his Mommy is trying to keep a stiff upper lip! :{ Please pray...
1. That Quinn would have peace in his heart.
2. That the surgery will be problem free.
3. That God would minister to Quinn's mind as he is put under anesthesia.
4. That his mouth would heal quickly so that he could enjoy his spring break!

THANK YOU!!!! We are anxious to sense God's presence and see His hand at work tomorrow!

Friday, April 3, 2009

LOA Baby!

Did you hear a loud scream at around 1:30 today? That's when I received a call from our agency that we received our LOA, or the official Letter of Acceptance, from China! We were told that our wait for this approval would be around 4 months. So, OK, our wait was 30 days!!! Our agency representative said she was shocked as well! We have had in our minds that we would travel sometime around August. I was told today that that now we should travel in June! We are now waiting for our TA, or Travel Approval, which takes around 4 weeks. We then will plan our travel dates around when we are able to get our Consulate appointment set in China.

When I told the girls, Ali said "We serve an awesome God!" I have to agree. My head is spinning, and my heart is full of joy. I just picture the hand of the Father guiding every piece of paperwork to exactly where it needs to be at exactly the right moment. The thought of possibly having Gracie in our arms on Father's Day is overwhelming. Praise God!

"O LORD, You are my God; I will exalt You and praise Your name, for in perfect faithfulness You have done marvelous things, things planned long ago." Isaiah 25:1