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More "Chinee"

Monday, May 25, 2009

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Although Grace clearly understands Mandarin, and she loves to dance to Chinese music, she won't usually sing (or speak) in Chinese. So, when she started singing in Chinese today, I had to capture the moment! Enjoy!

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Swingin'

Sunday, May 17, 2009

For years, I have wanted a porch swing so that I could sit outside while the kids are playing, have prayer times outside and sit and swing with my sweet hubby in the evenings. Well, recently David realized that he had a gift card from Lowes that he hadn't used (from about 18 months ago). So, one night while we were on a date, we headed on over to Lowes and found this great swing. As you can see, everyone loves it!!!






The girls, with their sweet friend, Sarah.

The boys, hanging out with Jonathan.
My friend, Mary (Jonathan and Sarah's mom) and I.
All the kiddos, with Yi and David.



On a completely different note, thank you so much tp those of you who said that you would pray for the situation with one of our precious children. I know that our God is a prayer-hearing God! I am so happy to say that this child had a great week and things really seem to have settled down. We are so very grateful!




The "Good Mail" Continues...

Saturday, May 16, 2009

Hop on over to Kristin's blog. She is continuing the good mail.

Fun, fun, fun!!!

Playdate

Friday, May 15, 2009

On Monday, Grace and her friend, Sophia, had a playdate. Sophia came home from China a few months before we adopted Grace. Grace loves Sophia, and often asks me to do her hair "like Sophia's" (in two pigtails).

It's especially fun to spend time with Sophia, because then I also get to spend some time with Sophia's mom! (Linda). Linda speaks Mandarin to Grace and it's encouraging to know that Grace still understands it (although she won't respond in Mandarin). Sophia will be two in August and she is already talking up a storm in Mandarin. Such a smart girl!


Isn't she the cutest little thing?! I love her cheeks!!!!
Trying to get the bird to talk to them.





We sure had a fun time! Thanks Linda and Sophia.


Thankful Thursday

Thursday, May 14, 2009

I'm so thankful that even though Lily is one of the "big girls" now, she is still my baby too! She loves to be with me, wherever I go. She never asks what I'm doing. She just likes to come along, regardless of what is happening. The last time that I went to Panera to pray and have my Bible study, Lily came along. She read and wrote in her journal and didn't complain once about sitting there for 3 hours. She was as happy as a clam.

The other day, after getting dressed, Lily ran to her room and returned in this "matching" outfit. It's nice to be loved!

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

For the past 2-3 months one of our wonderful treasures has been having some health/emotional difficulties. David and I have been asking ourselves many questions and have felt quite exhausted at moments. But despite the difficulties, I am grateful for the reminder that I am not the one who is in control. It has brought me to the Throne of Grace, and has caused me to address some of my own issues before our loving Father, who loves me and who loves our precious child more than I ever could.

One thing that God has been revealing to me more and more, is my own pride. I would love to say that my desire for my children to have good behavior is always and only due to a desire to honor God and to show love to others. But this would not be true. So often I feel that my children's behavior is a reflection on my success or failure as a parent. I want them to act appropriately so that I look good. Yuck! Who would want to live with that kind of pressure?

God loves us even when our behavior is atrocious. He is completely and totally in love with us and longs to pour His love into our hearts. Do I convey that same message to my little one who is struggling right now? Oh Lord, let it be so! I do so desire to have a heart like His.

The other (related) thing that I have been learning is that any change that comes about (in my or my child's heart) is due completely to God's grace. I often feel that if I do just the right thing, that will change the situation. And although I believe that God gives us guidance on how to raise/train our children, ultimately He is the one who brings about real change. His grace is absolutely necessary. Without it, I am completely and utterly helpless.

So, I lean now on His beautiful grace. I praise Him for each of my children and for their lives which are precious to Him. May He use this situation to cause me to depend on Him more, and to cause each member of our family to be formed more and more into His image.

And the winner is....

Sunday, May 10, 2009

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Kristin, you're the winner of the "Good Mail Giveaway"!

Kristin and her hubby just got back from Guizhou (the same province as Grace is from) with their second treasure from China. You can visit their blog at http://thompsons2china.blogspot.com/

Moms

Saturday, May 9, 2009

I am just so incredibly grateful for moms. First of all, I am thankful for my own mom. What a gift I was given to be the daughter of this wonderful woman. Anyone who knows my mom is particularly impressed with what a great listener she is. She is completely interested in what other people have to say. Even now, she always wants to know what is going on in my life and is available to listen to me. Her heart was (and is) always for me. This is such a powerful message to give to your children. I pray that my own children also know that I am always for them.

My mom has a heart for those who are hurting and suffering. She taught me to be concerned for the welfare of others. She didn't teach this so much by her words, but by her actions. I am so grateful for this lesson in life and love.

She's also very thoughtful. We are going to visit my parents soon and she asked each of the kids what they would like for her to make for dinner while we are visiting. One night we'll be having macaroni and cheese (Jadon), and another night we'll be having steak and shrimp cocktail (Lily). Yes. We laughed at that! They are so different.

Most of all, I am simply thankful for her heart of love towards me. She truly is a wonderful mom.


I am also thankful today, for moms, in general. I think that God created a pretty amazing set-up with moms and dads. Where one falls short, the other is there to fill in. And usually, the strengths of each parent are different from one another. Today, I am particularly thankful for the nurturing, caring aspect of moms.
Finally, I am grateful, in particular, for all of you adoptive moms out there. A couple of days ago Grace and I were looking at pictures of her orphanage in China. "I no want to go there. I no like that home," she said.
"Sweetheart, you will never live there again. You will always be here with us," I answered.
"I like it this home, with Mama, Daddy, Yana, Adam, Lily, Jadon, Roser..."
"Oh, Grace. We love to have you here with us." I responded, as I gave here a big hug.
"I have a Mama," Grace proudly announced.
So, to all of you adoptive moms, thank you for loving these little hearts. Thank you for giving your wonderful son or daughter a home and a mama this mother's day. I am so grateful for all of you!

Good Mail Giveaway!

Monday, May 4, 2009

On Thursday, I received this incredibly fun package in the mail from Steffany over at http://toliveloveandlaughtoday.blogspot.com/
Now, I'd like to carry on the fun! I'm having a "Good Mail" giveaway. If you'd like to receive some good mail, leave a comment for me. I'll randomly pick someone's name out of a hat, and they will be the recipient of good mail. It would be great if the winner is able to carry on the fun, and send out some good mail of their own.
Leave me a comment by 6:00 p.m. on Sunday, May 10th. The winner will be announced that evening!

Six months of Sweetness

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Last night, as Grace was getting into bed, she started singing the alphabet song, so I had to go and grab my camera. (I think that it might have been a ploy to stay up late, and I guess that I fell for it!!)

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Well...I guess she still has a little work to do on that! LOL!

We love this girl! We all wanted to say a little bit about Grace and the past 6 months with her.

Lily: Grace is a great little girl! She is a blessing to the whole family! When we aren't smiling at her she says ''can you smile me? '' We like to play with dolls. I love her so much!! We like to sing ''Happy Birthday,'' ''Clemintine,'' and a song about coming home from school in Chinese together. I love it when she wants to play with me.

Adam: I like to play with Grace. Grace and I like to take pictures together. I like that Grace always wants to play with me. I'm glad that Grace is in our family. Grace and I had a quiet time together yesterday. We made this video together:

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Yana: Grace is cute. Grace is adorable. Grace is fun to play with. Grace is as sweet as sugar. We like to call her "Gray Squirrel" because she enjoys hearing the song "Gray Squirrel" in the color book. Grace is good at counting. Grace is cute when she sings "Sunday, Monday..." She is loving.

Jadon: I like how Grace laughs and plays. I like to make her laugh. She is fun.

David (Baba): We love this girl: the smile, the wiggle, the dance, the pout, and the sillies. We're glad we get a little bit of all of this every day. Sometimes we are all kind of serious and Grace gives us just the laugh that we need to not take ourselves too seriously. She likes me to throw her on the bed and do other funny stuff like that. She really enjoys people and doing things with everyone. God has blessed us indeed.

Sarah (Mama): When we would look at Grace's referral picture (before we met her), we imaginied a girl with a sweet spirit and a smile that would light up a room. Oh...she is that and so much more! She has truly been a means of God's grace in our life. We love her more than words could express. Thank you, Jesus, for this precious gift! And thank you for six beautiful months as a family of seven!

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