Sunday, October 31, 2010

Happy Halloween!

Earth

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Ironman

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The Nerd

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Cinderella

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Saturday, October 30, 2010

She's not so nerdy...

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Abby decided to dress up as a nerd for school yesterday. She only had a half day of classes because of a volleyball tournament, so I wasn't really willing to go all out for her costume.

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We found a cute plaid skirt that she can wear again, an old white blouse, Tim's great grandpa's suspenders and we splurged and bought some nerd glasses.

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I don't think she can even really pull off the nerd thing, she is just way too pretty! She looked like a cross between a nerd and a school teacher, you know one of those ones, that you know is really pretty and that in the end she is going to let down her hair, take off the glasses and be gorgeous...

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Oh well, we tried... she can't help it that she is so darn cute and smart to boot!

Friday, October 29, 2010

Haunted House

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Every year I buy one of these house kits and every year I regret it! They always look so cute on the box, and yet the icing doesn't come out well, the candy falls off and I seem to do most of the work.

The kids have fun though, so I guess that would be why I do it!

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Word(ish) Wednesday: {Micah's surgery}



All is good and he is fine, other than a little dizzy and tired!

Monday, October 25, 2010

Tidbits of information


I have had contact with a lady in the Netherlands since June, when we were both matched with little girls from Guang'an SWI. She is in China now and got her daughter last night. We both have had zero information throughout this whole process of waiting and so I have been eagerly awaiting news from her regarding how her little girl is doing.

She emailed me this morning to let me know that her daughter is doing amazingly well and she feels that she was very well prepared for what was going to happen. When Bianca went into the room to wait for her child, the child was brought in by her nanny and instantly recognized her. When it was their turn to meet, the child jumped onto her lap very happily.

Three children were adopted from that SWI yesterday. A two year old, a three year old and a seven year old. All of them were well prepared and looked healthy (maybe a little underfed) and well cared for. Bianca's daughter even knew how to use a Chinese potty all by herself. The first time she cried was when she was given a bath, but was happy once again when she saw she had new pyjamas. She also knew how to use a spoon.

The hotel is not nearly as nice as the ones in more urban China and the food is apparently not so good either. Bianca is going to try to visit the SWI, but likely will not be able to as it is actually a four hour drive away from Chengdu. We had been told it was only an hour and a half.

I am so excited to follow her blog in these next two weeks (even though it is in Dutch - I translate it with google translator) so I can have a better sense of what to expect. Then it will be our turn to go... 11 more days!

Sunday, October 24, 2010

A time for... Volleyball

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Right now, our lives seem to revolve around volleyball practices, volleyball games and volleyball tournaments.

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We love that our kids are involved in so many sports, but it keeps us going constantly! Sometimes it is overwhelming!

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This is Josiah's first year playing volleyball and being one of the two grade seven's, he doesn't always get to play a lot and when he does he gets pretty hard on himself. But he is learning and doing really well. This weekend he played quite a bit, but their team did come in last in their tournament.

These photos were taken by a friend of mine (thanks Kirsty!) I just edited them a bit.

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Then there is Abby's team...

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It is like watching REAL volleyball. They are so good! Abby has improved so much this year, it amazes me to watch her. She has really great coaches and the team has a blast together, which I believe is what makes them so good.

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I had to take a picture of her favorite ref. This little Asian woman loves reffing these games and is very enthusiastic. She carries her little stool with her everywhere she goes!

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Abby's team won Gold this weekend in the Scona Junior Volleyball Classic.

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Thursday, October 21, 2010

My Cup is Full

You will need to turn off the music at the bottom of this page to hear Lilah singing... I was trying to capture her without her knowing, but she knew right away that I was there taping her. Luckily, she kept singing!

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Opa and Oma

Isaiah 46:3b-4a I have created you and cared for you since you were born. I will be
your God through all your lifetime, Yes, even when your hair is white with age. I made you and I will care for you.”


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I was asked to take some photos of my grandparents. They are both such amazing people and have been such an influence on so many people in their eighty plus years on this earth.

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They are so deeply loved by their children and grandchildren and great grandchildren. There are so many great memories of the time spent with them.

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There is beauty in these hands. Even though my grandma has dementia, and has some good days and some bad days, she is loved and she is beautiful in her old age. The stories that she could tell are now gone...

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I think we, as her family, feel fairly protective over her now, almost like a parent is protective of a child. It breaks our heart to see her slowly slip away from us more and more. We are thankful that her body is healthy and that she isn't suffering that way.

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My Opa is extremely protective of her. He is her primary caretaker and it is not an easy job. But he loves her unconditionally. I took this photo because my Opa always has one hand in his pocket, jiggling the coins.

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How blessed my grandma is to have a husband like this. Who has mellowed over the years, who never complains, who just wants his wife's last days to be the best they can be.

Isaiah 46:4 (NIV) “Even to your old age and gray hairs I am he, I am he who will sustain
you. I have made you and I will carry you; I will sustain you and I will rescue you.”

Friday, October 15, 2010

Miscellaneous Ramblings



We are trying to wait so patiently to go get Zoe, but it feels like it is taking forever! The days are full and go by quickly and I know that the next 21 days will be gone before we know it... it is just so slow! Lilah asks everyday, how many more? The chain is getting shorter...

Lilah saw the plastic surgeon again last week. They have come up with a new plan that they believe will work out better for her. Instead of three separate surgeries, they want to do it all in one big one. Their biggest concern was how they were going to bring the right side of her nose down and they have decided that they will separate that side of the nose and pull the whole right side down as far as they can. Instead of taking bone from her skull to fix the cleft, they will somehow push the whole right cheek over which will give that area the soft tissue it needs and the lower eyelid skin to work with, without having to do tissue expander's. I don't understand the whole process at this point (honestly, I don't know if I want to know the gory details) but I know that plastic surgeons can do really amazing things! I have full confidence in these surgeons.

We are hoping to book the surgery for the spring, so she can heal before we put her in preschool next year. They would like to wait, because she is so tiny, it makes it very difficult, but they do understand that it is best to have it done before school age.

Micah also has some dental issues, due to an infection he had when he was younger. All of his back adult molars enamel is really bad and crumbling. He has already had a bad experience at the dentist, when he needed some teeth pulled and his new six year molars need some work and have numerous cavities. Because this won't be the only work he needs done over the next few years, we have decided it is best to have this work done in the OR at the University Hospital. He will be having surgery on October 27th, and we pray there will be no complications, since this is one week before we have to leave!



I started this blog, so that friends and family and even people I don't know, who are looking at adoption, can follow along. I had posted Lilah's story on the No Hands But Ours website and I have had a few people email me regarding adopting children with Tessier Cleft. I am certainly no expert, but do love talking to others about adoption and especially Special Needs adoption.



This week I was contacted by a family looking at the file of a six year old girl with a Tessier Cleft quite similar to Lilah's and answered as many of their questions as I could. The strange little miracle in all of this, was that this little girl was operated on by EMAS Canada last year! So not only could I give them my personal opinions on this need, but the medical team that Tim traveled with to China had operated on this child and we are looking into getting more direct medical information for this family. Hopefully, they can proceed with peace of mind because of this and this child will soon have a forever family.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Black and White Wednesday: {Thanksgiving}

This weekend was our Canadian Thanksgiving. In church on Sunday we were asked to write down ten things that we are thankful for.

1. Abigail

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2. Josiah

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3. Eli

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4. Micah

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5. Lilah

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6. Zoe

We will have to wait for a picture of Zoe... the photos we have are already so pixelated that they don't convert well to black and white! 23 more days!

7. Tim

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8. My Oma and Opa

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9. My Mom and Dad (who I need to take some new photos of!)

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10. God - for giving me all of this!

1 Chronicles 29:11-13 (KJV)
"Yours, O LORD, is the greatness and the power
and the glory and the majesty and the splendor,
for everything in heaven and earth is yours.
Yours, O LORD, is the kingdom;
you are exalted as head over all.

Wealth and honor come from you;
you are the ruler of all things.
In your hands are strength and power
to exalt and give strength to all.

Now, our God, we give you thanks,
and praise your glorious name."


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Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Thanksgiving Weekend

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This weekend we went to Medicine Hat to visit my family for the Thanksgiving weekend.

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Even though I haven't lived there for almost 20 years, and really only lived there a couple of years before that... it still feels like going home.

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I guess, wherever your family is, is always home.

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Medicine Hat is where Tim and I met, so many years ago... where we got married...

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October has been a strange month weather wise... everyday this weekend was 25 degrees.

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Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen. -- Ephesians 3:20-22