Thursday, August 13, 2015


As I write this, we are somewhere off the coast of Alaska, traveling at 510mph and nearly 34,000ft above the earth. Heading back to China. To bring a precious child, our Levi, home. Traveling far away from home isn't easy for me - I'm a self declared home body - I like it there. It's comfy and stable. But God called us out to be adoptive parents and that means we go where He leads us and so we go to China. The more I let go and just trust God to lead, I find myself living a life I could never have imagined. It's an amazing thing to watch God work!

I keep thinking about how Levi didn't ask to be an orphan, and he's not asking to be taken away from everything he's known to join people he doesn't know - yet. The life of an orphan is unstable, unpredictable, precarious, and sometimes life threatening. We felt this in an extreme way when we were in the process to adopt our Emme Rose and when we thought Levi might be taken back to his orphanage. Decisions are made for them by people who don't have their best interests at heart.  Fortunately, there were some very special people that fought to keep Levi where he is now and we know that God answered our prayers. He is doing a mighty work in Levi's life - and we want him to know about it one day.  

We also want him to know that these past nine and a half months we worked on paperwork, that he was prayed for, wanted, and we did all we could to bring him home. God provided for our adoption expenses again - of course - He always come through when we trust in Him and usually just in the knick of time! I know the next few days of this journey could be hard. I'm praying for this every time I stop to pray. I'm prepared to be rejected, pushed away, the one who he's mad at, the one he doesn't want. I'm also prepared to be the one who will pour out love, patience, understanding, and a good dose of mama silliness! I'm praying for instant bonding- but I know too well from our experience with Stella, that it could be more like running a marathon. I may have to work hard to win over a broken heart. I may have to pray day and night for him to accept my love. He is totally worth it all. 

Much like the Father waits, calls us back to Him - just wanting to love us - we will keep pursuing Levi's heart. Praying he will let go and trust us. 

"Let go my soul and trust in Him. The waves and wind still know His name. It is well...with my soul". 

Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Journey to Levi

I know it's been quite a while since I dusted off the blog and wrote something.  So today I might as well make it a big announcement post right?! See that little guy over in the corner that we have been sponsoring at New Day Foster Home? He is going to join our family this year as a beloved son and brother!

We are so excited to be in process to adopt this very special little man.  Levi will be his name. We've been working to bring him home for quite a while now, but only now do we finally have permission to post on blogs. China has said "yes!" and we are officially matched with Levi to adopt him.

Yes, Levi and Stella both resided at New Day - although we are sure they were far too young to remember one another.  But we see how God has had His mighty hand in this all along! When we found out that the agency up the road from us had Levi's file, we wondered if this was God's nudge to start the adoption process once again.  We so wanted to say "yes" to him.  Through lots of prayer, conversations and more prayer, we did say "yes!" and we now can't wait to meet our new son.  Everyone is so excited to be getting a new brother! A little boy was just what this family needed.

We should be traveling to bring him home in less than two months if all goes well.  Please be in prayer for a smooth finish to the paperwork process, prayer for Levi's heart as he gets ready to experience great change and accept us into his life, pray for safe travels and for a beautiful transition for all.

Wo ai ni Levi! We love you already!

Tuesday, March 31, 2015

One year!

I'll warn you right from the start that this post may (read: will) be heavy with photos and most of the photos will be doing the talking.  Today, marks one year with our precious Stella Claire! What an amazing milestone to finally be reaching.  I woke up though, wondering why I wasn't filled with joy.  Believe me, I'm so happy, very happy, that Stella has been with us a year.  As I got to thinking about these mixed emotions this morning over my tea, it really hit me how bittersweet this anniversary is for all of us.  Gotcha Day or Family Day, is a wonderful day, but it is also filled with heartache, confusion and just plain grief over leaving all that you have known.  As parents, we go into the day with anticipation of finally holding the child we have longed for in our arms.  That moment comes and then we are switched from the joyous moment, to the comforters of the child who has come to us with nothing - except the memories of everything that just was.  We are strangers.  Can you imagine being comforted by a stranger? The time that trauma takes to heal, through lots of prayer, lots of creative parenting, and lots of love is for us close to a year.  A year.  I can now say that our little girl loves us.  We've always loved her (from that first photo of a 6 month old baby with the biggest brown eyes), but there have been times this year when it's been hard to pour out that love.  Loving someone, opening your heart to them - just takes lots of time.  We have arrived.  Praise!

Last year - this was shortly after we met Stella and her nanny in the hotel lobby.

 Oh my - just look at that sweetness! Mama had a new cup to give her and food was the way to her heart (kind of still is!).  Our meeting came with smiles, no forceful placements into my arms.  We took our time and got to know each other until it was time to take her up to our room.  Then the tears came... Thankfully she was easily comforted and went into full on play mode.

This window - I'll always remember as a place of comfort for the both of us.

Wiped out finally from all the day brought to her.  She was so heavy, but it was the best feeling holding her sleeping in my arms.

And NOW! Just look at this thriving little girl! We missed her second birthday by just a week so this year we celebrated big (like the 1st, 2nd and 3rd birthdays combined big!!!).  Stella Claire is so loved and a cherished daughter.  I took these pictures of her today - 3 years old now - she's grown so much this past year.  We are so very thankful to New Day for her care before God brought us together.  Because she knew love, she has opened her heart to love again.

Presenting - the many faces of our beautiful girl:

Happy one year together!