Sunday, January 24, 2010

One Month Home

One month home with Sarah and she has amazed us in 
so many ways. She is a very polite young lady always thanking us and others (in English) for even the little things. She is opening up a lot more at home, yet is still extremely shy with everyone else. Always willing to help. Makes her bed
every morning. If I don't get the clothes folded right away she will see them and fold them. She sees me cleaning and starts cleaning in another room for me. She is so precious. She enjoys helping in the kitchen.
I am happy to say she has become relaxed enough to freshen up and come and have breakfast in her PJ's. At first she would always get up and freshen up and dress for the day. Some may think that is great. Not really. It was almost as if she was a visitor. We want her to feel relaxed and comfy in her home. She is now singing away in the shower and her favorite song so far 
is "My Savior My God"  by Aaron Shust.
I know at times it is awkward for us both. For me the lack of being able to sit and hold a conversation with her is hard and frustrating. I can't imagine what is going on in her mind. (she probably thinks these people are crazy!) That's ok we are! ;)
It sure gets a lot of giggles out of her. Especially her dad is always making her laugh. She can't understand us most of the time unless we are using the translator. I feel like it must be very lonely for her. Yet she continues on.... taking everything in. 
She told me right before we left China she wanted to learn English. She is working very hard with Rosetta Stone Homeschooling Version. She works for hours everyday. She will write out the words and sayings and look them over even when she isn't working on the program. She also uses and studies The New Oxford Picture Dictionary. She is starting to understand more and more English. With little miss J's help she will be talking in no time. As some of you know, especially those from our travel group, Jaden talks almost non stop! She is pretty persistent when she wants to talk with you, "Excuse me! Excuse me!!!" I heard her the other day asking Sarah which name she was going to choose from the Mulan movie for herself and she didn't stop until she got an answer. I was actually very surprised Sarah did answer her back repeating what Jaden had said to her along with a name.
We read her book of God's Attributes together and her Bible. We have started her in a book my sweet friend Jocelyn suggested for reading and she recognized it right away and told me that is what they were teaching her with in China using the British version! She is a very willing student. I know she likes to do school work. 
I thought she was further behind in math until I started doing placement tests with her. She is doing Algebra. (except she can't read the word problems)
Now with Christmas, New Years and birthdays all over we are settling into a new normal and focusing on school.

She is willing to try everything we eat and has liked almost
everything. Except steak!! :-/ I know, I know they don't really
eat red meat in China. She does like hamburgers though, and
beef tacos, chicken, salmon. She is into spicy and hot foods. 
Fruits, yogurt and instant oatmeal.The list goes on. She wasn't 
very found of pork chops and forget green beans and 
salads. She is used to eating most her vegetables cooked.    
Just like Jaden, her favorite is noodles. She didn't even 
want me to buy rice at the chinese store. Hmmm.......... 
I studied her like crazy in China to see everything she was 
eating so I could find foods she would like to eat.  
This tiny little girl can put away the food. I just haven't 
figured out where it goes!?! She is well under the 50
percentile for weight and height. 88 lbs. and 4' 9". 

On Sunday (the 17th) Sarah and Jaden were sitting in
the kitchen as I was preparing dinner. I heard a thud
and looked there was Jaden on the floor crying. I thought
she tripped but much to my surprise Sarah pushed her.
I looked at her and asked if she had, and sure enough, she
did. Jaden had grabbed her arm pinching her and Sarah 
reacted with a shove.
So after talking with her and J about it they both apologized. 
During dinner Sarah seemed extra quiet. After dinner I cleaned
up and went into Sarah's room she was sitting at her desk and J
on the bed I touched her shoulder and told her it was okay and 
she stood up and I put my arms around her and she just lost it. 
We stood there for well over an hour as she cried. Jaden even
asked,"How long are you going to keep loving on her mom?"
I told her, "As long as it takes. I used to do the same for you
when you were real sad and crying also." Her reply, Oh okay,
mommy." My heart was just breaking for her. Towards the end
Sarah pulled away and said, "Mom..... I love you."(First time)
Totally melted my heart. She hadn't really grieved at all since
bringing her home so I was very relieved to be able to just love
on her as she went through it even though it was heartbreaking. 

One month to the day we arrived home her
"Certificate of Citizenship" arrived in the mail.
God is so good!  Shen Ben Wei Shan!

Monday, January 18, 2010

Happy Birthday Sarah!!!!!

We had a quiet birthday on the 11th. I did ask her
 if we could have a small party for her. She gave the thumbs up.
So this Saturday I made her favorite meal so far "Spaghetti" and we had
family and a couple of friends over. She was still very shy. So her big
 brother Chris stuck by her side again. We were able to get her to open
her presents with a couple of us in the room.
After awhile everyone slowly came in and joined us.

My friend gave her the Willow Angel that is signing I love you.
 I was trying to explain and show her the sign for love. Later she
 wanted to put her Willow Angel with some of mine and I showed
her a wonderful spot on her desk for hers.

My friend also made her some beautifully decorated cards with
scriptures in simplified Chinese and English. She laminated them
 and put them on a ring so she can flip threw and read them all.
She is looking at Charlotte (who made them) and smiling because
 the very first one says.....................................
Princess Sarah
Happy Birthday!
He Delights In You With Singing.
Then she put the scripture from
Zephaniah  3:17

We are still pretty much translator-dependant around here.
 So she couldn't understand what I was trying to share
with her about journaling.
Another artist in the making!
She was very surprised when she opened her ipod. :)
She loved mine and basically kidnapped it. What I love is.......
that she likes my Christian music that I have on it.

Hey! I want one of these 5th generation Nano ipods!

Our quiet celebration, earlier in the week. I asked Sarah what kind of cake she likes and
 she told me,"pineapple." So after finding some pictures I figured out she
wanted a pineapple upside down cake. We also had Chinese take out!

I found out in China she would get a rose for her birthday.
 So daddy picked up EIGHTEEN roses for her and put them in her room!
 When we came home from getting her new bling in her ears she
 went in her room and yelled, "Mom!" with a very excited voice
 and grabbed my hand pulling me into her room to show me.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Month Since Gotcha Day!

Yikes! A little behind......
Monday will be time for the one month home post!

It is hard to believe it has been a month since
 we  held our sweet daughter in our arms for the very first time.

Christmas morning.
 One week after we arrived home.

Sarah and Jaden are doing wonderful together.
Jaden loves bossing I mean helping her big sister out. ; ) 
The first day out on her bike she had a few crash and burns and she has done great since then. She loves riding her bike. She also loves to run. She ran in the Special Olympics In China. She is going to keep her momma in shape! Sarah also enjoys being outside just like Jaden and I. The pool will be a new and interesting experience for her this summer.

When Sarah first saw the dog she typed into the
translator "I fear that animal very much".
The pictures say it all!

I love this picture.... it shows how she is becoming a little more comfy around us.
Unscheduled stop............
I wasn't really planning on going to Build a Bear.
As we were passing by the store Miss J saw Hello
Kitty and wanted to check her out. Well we made
the mistake of going inside. I had already decided
with just having Christmas that we were done spending
for a while. Well........ Sarah really liked Frosty. She
giggled when we lifted his hat and it made a little magical
sound, the flower on his hat and his cheeks lit up. To
add to that he was on clearance and I new if we waited he
would be gone. So I talked with Miss J and she very
graciously agreed we should have Sarah get Frosty.
So Miss J having had a lot of experience at Build A Bear
showed her sister the ropes. At first Sarah thought it
was strange and then all of the sudden it was as
if she let the little kid inside out and really enjoyed herself. :)

Having fun air drying and brushing.

Oh, and she named her Frosty the Snowman.....

( Melted this momma's heart. )
The Lord has done great things for us,
and we are filled with joy.
Psalm 126:3

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

God's Gift For Sarah

For Thanksgiving we always go up to my brothers house
about an hour and a half away. We spend the night and
always have a good time. This year one of our nieces
Christy couldn't wait for us to meet her new boyfriend
Austin, especially Uncle Trouble. He always gives the
girls a hard time and tells them he will have to approve
their boyfriends.
Well first and most important of all he has a heart
for the Lord. Then the fact that he is into knifes was a plus.
Oh, and Austin is from Texas and a Dallas Cowboys fan. So
he has been approved! His family recently moved here from
Texas. So they joined in on our Thanksgiving Day festivities.
They have a little girl around Jaden's age who they adopted
domestically. So we already felt a connection with Austin's
family. We shared about our adoptions. Everyone new
that we were leaving for China the next week for our
13 yr. old daughter.
Now fast forward to Christmas...... Austin's family left for
Texas. Christy and Austin spent Christmas night with
us and headed out for Texas early the next morning.
When they were on their way back home. Christy called to
let me know they were stopping by to bring back a tarp they
borrowed. She also had mentioned they had a gift for Sarah.
When they arrived Christy had Sarah's gift in her hand
and told us there is a story behind it she wanted to share
with us first.

It was Austin's SIL's last day where she was working and a woman
at her work came up to her and told her God had put on her heart
to give her this book. (The women & DH are involved in Chinese
Mission work) Austin's SIL took the book and looked at it and
thought it was strange because she didn't know anyone Chinese.
Then at Christmas she is sharing the story and Austin's mom tells
her that Christy's Aunt has a little one she adopted from China
and just came home with their 13 yr. old daughter. Austin's SIL
suddenly realized and exclaimed, "The book is for her!"
ItalicThe book is in Simplified Chinese and English!
Austin's SIL also had written a prayer in it before she
even new who it was for.
It brought me to tears and still does as I share.

We have a loving Father in heaven who knew
my hearts desire to share who He is and His love
with our sweet daughter and He helped give me a
wonderful start with this awesome book of His
Attributes. I am in awe and so blessed at how He
works in our lives.

How great is the love the Father has lavished on us,
that we should be called the children of God.
I John 3:1
Sarah and I sit reading this book together every evening.
I had given Sarah a children's Story Bible written in Chinese
in her stocking for Christmas. I had decided to wait on giving
her the NIV Bible that is in Chinese/English until she
understood more. Well after receiving this wonderful gift I
have decided to give her the Bible on her birthday which is

Monday, January 4, 2010

Family Love

Our son Chris drew this picture of a Koi.
It is amazing!
He filled it in by making little dots.(I am not
sure of the name for that type of artwork)
If you click on the pic. you can see the all the
tiny dots.
This was a special gift he made for his new
sister Sarah. He even did the Chinese Calligraphy.
It says... Family Love
He has become very fond of his new younger sister.
He calls her all the time and has a new word or two
that he learns in Chinese and shares with her.
He stuck close by her side during Christmas so she
wouldn't get to overwhelmed with all the people.
He and his wife also bought her a dvd player for
Christmas and the movie Mulan so she can
play it in Mandarin. Since she can't understand
English yet. We love the picture Chris! Also your
thoughtfulness and love towards your new
younger sister which is helping her feel more
comfortable with all the changes in her life.

Ziva our little Yorkie jumped up on the bed
to see what all the fuss was about. :)
All of our boys are very artistic and can draw
awesome pictures. Just like their dad.
They did not get one ounce of that talent from me!
I draw stick people. :)

The two new pieces of artwork will look wonderful in Sarah's room!

(The Chinese Calligraphy Pic. is from my friend refer to post on

Sunday, January 3, 2010

New Year's

New Years evening roasting marshmallows and smores.
A first for Sarah, the beginning of many firsts.
She really seemed to enjoy sitting out by the fire and
roasting marshmallows. Also checking out the stars and
the Blue Moon.
I sometimes wonder what she is thinking. She is so quiet.
Unlike Jaden who talks non stop. She did think it was funny
and had a good laugh when her and Jaden both caught their
marshmallows on fire. They both ate them, just like me! I love
crispy marshmallows!

A little smoky

Now for the smores.........

The first bite.......Yum! She likes them! (she isn't a chocaholic like her mom and little sister)
Butterflies changing colors and dancing around in the dark.
Soon to flutter off to their positions through out the backyard.
Happy New Year everyone! May we all draw even closer to our Lord
and Savior and His light shine brightly through us in 2010.