Friday, April 29, 2016

I am not ready

I am nowhere near ready.

My list is long and overwhelming.

I have a handful of weeks left to wrap up our home school year.

I have to stay focused on finishing well.

I have medical appointments for a couple of our children that I must attend to.

Those appointments could lead to future treatments (read surgery) but I must be still and trust God with them.

There is also that pesky little house situation.

You know that house that has been on the market for 1 year now?

It is supposed to close in a few days.

Lord willing, we will finally close that chapter.

I am holding my breath until it is done.

The money wrapped up in the house will finally be free to cover a very important trip to China.

I haven't prepared Miss Ruthie's room to become Mei Mei's room too.

I need to nest.

I am not ready.

I want that space to be just right for her.

I have only purchased a handful of clothes for Mei Mei.

I need to find just the right outfits for my baby girl to complete her wardrobe.

I need to nest.

I am not ready.

I want my precious girl to know that I lovingly chose her clothing.

I have menus to plan. 

I have a pantry to stock.

I have a mountain of freezer meals to make.

I need to nest.

I am not ready.

I want to focus my energy on my new daughter not cooking.

I have books to read and re-read in preparation for her adoption.

I need to make a plan for cocooning in order to facilitate bonding.

I want to dig into scripture and try to understand the word the Lord gave us for Mei Mei's adoption..."Restore."

I need to nest.

I am not ready.

I need to receive Travel Approval so we can buy tickets to China.

I need to make plans with grandparents for the care of our six children.

I need to pack six children's suitcases.

I need to pack the suitcases that are going to China.

I need to prepare.

I am not ready.

I am nowhere near ready.

The panic begins to set in.

I feel my heart beating faster.

My mind wanders to the picture on her finding ad.

Suddenly, it comes over me.

She wasn't ready.

She wasn't ready to be born with a broken heart.

She wasn't ready to lose her birth family.

She wasn't ready for the terror of abandonment at the age of 2.

She wasn't ready to be taken into custody and examined.

She wasn't ready to live in an orphanage.

She wasn't ready to be admitted to the hospital.

She wasn't ready to endure surgery on her eye.

She wasn't ready to endure the repair of her umbilical hernia.

She wasn't ready to endure open heart surgery.

She wasn't ready to be placed on a ventilator after that surgery due to respiratory failure.

She wasn't ready to spend 83 days in a hospital bed without her Mommy and Daddy at her side.

She wasn't ready to wait days, then months and then years for her forever family.

She wasn't ready.

My daughter had no time to prepare for all of the trauma she has experienced in her young life.

The truth is...

I will be ready.

I will get all the tasks accomplished.

The timing will be perfect.

My God is orchestrating every last detail.

We pray every night for the Lord to prepare Mei Mei's heart for us and to prepare our hearts for her.

He has this whole thing under control.

Let's do this.

Monday, April 25, 2016

W is 9!


You are amazing. 

You have joy deep in your soul. 

You love to laugh and make other people laugh.

You are tender and kind.

You are a mover and a shaker.

You and B are always dreaming up your next big plan.

You take pride in teaching your little siblings all kinds of things.

You are quick to serve others.

You are a good friend.

You add your own style to everything you do.

You are the life of the party.

You make 9 look good!

You are so loved by me.

Happy Birthday to you!!!

Sunday, April 24, 2016

Chicago with Q and Miss Ruthie

Day 1:

Fly to Chicago

They were so excited about their little suitcases. They were proud to roll them through the airport.

I behaved myself through security. I was awarded the coveted Jr TSA award.

Ready for take off! The last time they flew in an airplane was about 3 years ago so they did not remember it. It was so exciting for them!

When we landed at O'Hare airport we collected our bags and then got ourselves passes for the public transportation in Chicago. We bought 4 of the 7 day passes only to find out that our kids are young enough to ride for free. Oops.

We took the blue line train then hopped on a bus to get us close to our hotel.

This was the view from our room. We stayed at The Omni Hotel. The hotel room was pretty small but it worked. We stayed on the 14th floor. Q and Miss Ruthie took turns pushing the buttons on the elevator. It was serious business. If someone got there before us and had already pushed the button we had to wait for another elevator. It's the little things.

One of our first stops was American Girl. Miss Ruthie was so excited about this visit. I remember the American Girl stories and dolls from when I was a little girl. We don't have any of the dolls but the store was fun to look through.

She left the store with a doctor kit to fix up her baby dolls. Daddy got off cheap here. Those dolls are pricey. Ha Ha!

The next morning they ate a very fancy breakfast of oatmeal in the room. They thought this little table was fantastic.

This is where I tell you how vacations work in our family. We go, go, go. We see it all. Look children, now keep on moving. It actually works well when your kids are so young. They don't want to linger and read the signs at the museums.

Day 2:

Up first, a bus ride to the Field Museum.

Then we walked over to Shed Aquarium.

We walked a bit further to Adler Planetarium.

The faces Q makes. Oh my!

My personal shoe saga:
I could not decide what shoes to bring on this trip. It was supposed to be cold so I brought my uggs. The first day was warmer than we thought. I got super hot while we were walking. I bought flip flops in the gift shop. Then the flip flops gave me a blister. Finally, I purchased a pair of nikes from the Nike store right by our hotel. I paid no mind to the fact that I was wearing dresses and leggings with tennis shoes. It was necessary even if I looked ridiculous. EJ got a real kick out of this sitaution. He wears tennis shoes all the time except for with a suit. He cannot understand why I need different shoes for different outfits. Whatever. He is a guy. They do not understand.

Day 3:

Mueseum of Science and Industry

This museuem was amazing. However, I learned the hard way that the body exhibit is a huge trigger for a woman who has miscarried babies or lost an infant. There should be huge warning signs in front of the exhibit. 

Moving on...

The Lincoln Park Zoo.

These two were discussing where to go next. Like an old married couple.

We finished the night with swimming in the hotel.

Spiderman was hanging out in our hotel.

Day 4: 

Sears Tower (Now called the Willis Tower)

Uncommon Grounds

The first organic roof top farm in the U.S. EJ learned all about it when he went to his permaculture course last year. He was excited to have lunch there, tour the farm and meet the owner and the farmer. It was a delicious lunch!

We finished our vacation with a Boat Tour of the City.

Day 5:

Fly home! We loved our time with Q and Miss Ruthie. It was an adventure to navigate the city and explore. B & W stayed with EJ's folks and D & E stayed with my folks. We thank God for awesome grandparents!