The Reality of the Journey

Today is a hard day. We have been working incredibly hard to raise money for this adoption - through Pampered Chef, garage sales, and working concessions. We are trying desperately to get grant applications filled out and barely have the time. We are burning the candle at every end because we know we need to work hard. Our desire is to be able to complete this adoption debt-free and we have a ways to go (around 13-15K). I think I have just reached the breaking point - I'm tired, so very tired. Fundraising and earning extra money has been even more challenging than I imagined. We are seeing God provide in various ways and we are so thankful but if I'm being honest, I want to be done. Just done. Fully funded, waiting to travel, done.

I feel like we are being left behind. While other families on our same timeline found out their paperwork move forward this past week (or prior to that), we have heard nothing. We have asked but no news so far. It's beyond discouraging. Knowing our daughter is waiting is excruciating. Seeing her pictures is a thrill and is also painfully hard - we can't get to her fast enough.

The tears are close today. I need prayers. We are expecting a child, we are growing our family - it's a big change and a very emotional journey.


She's Smiling!!!

What a joy to wake up to an e-mail with pictures of our daughter - not one or two but TEN! When we sent the care package, we were told that we would receive a picture but I didn't expect it yet and I didn't expect 10. I did pray that she would be smiling in one - she was smiling and laughing in her video but not in any of the pictures we have. My prayer was answered and we not only have one picture of her smiling but several! Now it only they will let her hair grow! :)

Here are a few of my favorites. :)

I love that she is in motion in several photos! That will be fun for the plane ride home! :)

Her caregiver is pointing to our picture and telling her that we are her mama and baba.

She is getting a closer look.

How could this not be my very favorite one - pure joy! Love her!


Care Package 1

What fun to send some things to our sweet girl! Hoping in some way she will know we are coming! Time seems to be dragging - we are on Day 21 of our long (usually) wait. I'm resisting the urge to e-mail and find out if our documents are moving - I can only resist so long. :) 

So many years ago, when God laid adoption so clearly on my heart, I had no idea what He had in store. I feel incredibly blessed. My view of the world has grown, my heart has expanded, and my faith has been strengthened as I understand so much better God's adoption of me. Expecting #4 through adoption is something that I honestly did not anticipate...in high school...or ever...but how thankful I am.

Knowing that I cannot be there taking care of our daughter is hard - she is growing and changing without us - but knowing that God has called us every step of the way, gives me peace. Soon Emmarie - we are coming soon!


A Few Answers

We wanted to take a moment to answer a few questions that we have gotten:

1) How do you pronounce her name?

It's pronounced just like Emmary similar to Emmory. It's one word - not Emma Marie.

2) What is her special need?

While we are choosing to keep her file details private, we can share that she has some birthmarks. She also had an initial diagnosis that was listed in her file but then  proved to not be true. Beyond that, we will have everything checked out when she comes home but she looks great and is developing very well.

3) When will you travel? 

We don't know. We are early in our wait for some of the documents. We hope to travel in January. You can pray that everything will move through the various stages quickly and efficiently. We would like to be there as soon as possible (like yesterday!) but these things take time.

4) Are the boys excited?

Yes! They are thrilled. They all shared in their classes about her and have been talking about her a lot. While I know it will be an adjustment - especially for the youngest - I think she will be completely adored and protected! :)

5) Are you doing a nursery?

Yes! She will have her own room, so it will definitely be girly and ready to welcome her.



We've been keeping a secret...a really big secret... It's been soooo hard. In reality, we wanted to shout from the rooftops and giddily share with everyone. We have restrained ourselves and instead have found ourselves adoringly gazing at some photos and watching a video...a lot...and wishing to share with the world that....

We have a daughter!!!!!!!

There are no words for our elation! We are delighted and thrilled and excited and blessed. We cannot wait to get our sweet baby girl home. I knew the instant we saw her video - a little after midnight on August 24 -  that we couldn't say no but we did not give our YES until Sunday night, August 26. We are amazed that she will be ours. We sent our LOI (letter of intent) on August 27 - the same day we were LID in China. Then we had to wait for Pre-Approval. It was an excruciating wait and longer than we expected. And then it came! And then we could spill our secret! 


Emmarie Doris

We think she is pretty perfect and absolutely gorgeous! We caught a glimpse of her beautiful smile and heard her laugh on the video we were sent - incredibly precious. Our sweet girl is 19 months. We hope to travel and bring her home right before her 2nd birthday in February. 

We are naming her Emmarie which is a combination of a name we love (Emma, Emily) and my mom and my middle name (Marie), Doris after my amazing Grandma who passed away this year (she was so loving and supportive of our family and loved our kids SO much), and her Chinese name (which we will share later) since it is the name she has gone by for over a year and is a part of her story and heritage. We wanted to honor a couple of strong and beautiful women in our family and I love the names. We will call her Emmarie, Emma, and Emi.  

And now...we wait...this will be hard...knowing she is there but unable to be there...this is the part I have dreaded... Praying for a smooth and quick remainder of the process!!!!