Saturday, August 28, 2010


So much to share, blessed beyond belief.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Miss Tippy Tail soon to be 5

Emma will turn 5 on Saturday.  We celebrated with the family early.  Here is the tradition that the girls have learned to expect.  Licking the beaters for their cake.  Emma does not like chocolate in any form, so her cake is usually a yellow cake or a white cake.  For her first birthday I made chocolate.  It was her first taste of cake, she cried when I gave it to her.

Mommy made her a princess tiara cake this year.

since I took twirling pictures of Meilynn and Lily on their birthdays we did it again.
My sweet Emma!  Such a Mommy's girl.

She loves to dress up.

The girls
Daddy, Emma and Mommy
Does he have his arms full or is there room for one more?
Everyone came over to swim.  Emma could not wait to open her presents.  Here she is opening the one that she really wanted, "a big girl camera".
Lily got one from us while we were in China, and Meilynn got one for her birthday in May.  It was a long wait, but she was so excited.
Mike making the hamburgers and his little sis, Stephany.
Lighting the cake
So happy to finally have her birthday.  She does not like having the last birthday of the kids.
Birthday kiss from Mommy.

I cannot believe that she is turning 5!  Not a baby anymore.


The first day of school!  I have taken the first day of school pictures from the time Kami was in pre-kindergarten, until her first day of college.  What wonderful memories I have of Kami and Meghan going off on each new adventure, and now I am blessed to do it all over again, and again, and again, and again!  Emma on the left, Lily in the middle, and Meilynn on the right.

School Backpacks
The joys of sisters
New shoes too!
And new friends!
And "old" friends
A new teacher! and an "old" friend of a friend
When Meilynn came home she said they were making flowers to put up on the "skeleton" board.
So cute!
15 little monkeys in this class

Lily started her first day of "homeschooling" with Mommy.  She did a lot of work on phonics and math, but the two fun projects were picking out pictures of her trip to Arkansas to make into a scrapbook with the scrapbooking kit her friend gave her for her birthday and sending a card (writing lesson) to her friend with "Sisters of the Heart" necklace.  These two little ones grew up together for 6 years you can't be any more like sister than that.  I meant to give this necklace to Lyla and Lily when we left Arkansas so they would know that they had the same necklace, but I forgot.  Lyla should get it on Thursday.  The day after her birthday.

Lyla, we are sisters of the heart, I hope you like your necklace.
Lily has one to match yours in pink.  She cannot wait to see you wearing yours!  We miss you!

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Obedience to God's Will

I will be the first to admit that I am on a path that has not always been my plan but a plan that could not have come from anyone but God.  I know that to some people they can not understand what we are doing with our lives, yes and there are sometimes when I question this myself.  But we have sought God's will in our decisions and he is guiding these decisions.  I found some excerpts from an article I was reading that has helped me to understand even more clearly.  I have quoted from the article below.

"Fear NOT : Adopt Without Fearing your Decision
Adopt without fear of your failure, but with confidence in knowing that God has led you to this decision. “Fear not for I am with you,” says the Lord. In all you do and in all you face here on earth as Christians, the Lord is with you. God blesses those that give of their heart. What better way to bless a child than to offer them your love through adoption.
Fearing the things of this earth will only lead to stress, anxiety, and a lack of self-confidence. In the Bible there are several scriptures that address how Christians should approach every decision they make objectively, with self-control, and within obedience to God’s will."
There are times when I wonder what my life would have been if we had not adopted,  but the benefits of adoption have by far outweighed the selfish life I would have been living.

"Doubt comes from the voices we allow ourselves to hear. This voice is not of God, but of Satan. If you’ve studied the Word of God closely, prayed for answers, and given yourself over to the Lord in complete acceptance of His decision; Satan will plant doubt, confusion, and frustration within your mind if you’re not careful."

"The Bible supports in over 20 scriptures God’s approval of adoption. He encourages and instructs us to be carriers of the fatherless. Adopting a child is a huge step. It requires a special type of individual to take in a child and care for them. What you do not realize is that if you are drawn to adopt a child, God has already chosen you to be an adopted parent. He will give you a drive like no other to pursue adoption. The mere existence of such a drive will reassure you that God has a plan for you. Recognize it, thank God for it, and do not become fearful."
I know many people that have felt this drive.
"God Calls You to Love Deuteronomy 6:5 (NIV) “Love the LORD your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your strength.” Love is the greatest commandment of all. We are to love thy neighbor as ourselves and this extends to the children of this earth."
"God smiles upon couples that make this important decision not out of selfishness or with high expectations, but out of love and in obedience to His word. You can expect all type of emotions during the adoption process. Don’t be afraid to extend your hand, heart, and home to a child. Adopt knowing you’re following God’s plan for your life."
Mardie Caldwell, C.O.A.P. is a Certified Open Adoption Practitioner, an award winning author of 2 adoption books Adopting Online and Adoption: Your Step-by-Step Guide. Mardie is also the talk show host of Let’s Talk with Mardie Caldwell and the founder of Lifetime Adoption in 1986

There are over 2000 children on the waiting children list in China!!!!!!!

Monday, August 16, 2010

Goodbye to Lyla

This was our last day with Lyla.  I knew it would be bittersweet and it was.  We took the girls shopping. Lyla will start school this week so we did a little school shopping first at Target.

The girls tried on  some Hello Kitty hats.  Lyla was so funny.
The whole time we were in Arkansas we never heard the girls utter a word other than English.  Except that Lyla calle Lily by her name that she called her in China.
Of course they had to try on some hair accessories.
A picture in front of the fountain.
Trying on hats and Gymboree

We then met Lyla's daddy and brother for lunch and then there was just enough time to go to Chuck E Cheese again and then ice cream before the plane.

and then the sad Good-bye.  Lyla was so upset.  Lily seemed fine, but later she kept asking me on the plane if I thought that Lyla was still crying and then she made me text her mom to find out.

One last hug for sisters of the heart.
We had such a wonderful time in Arkansas.  I really hope that we can get together soon.  Lyla's parents family, and friends were so welcoming to us and made us feel right at home.  I really appreciate them taking time out of their busy schedules to let these special friends be together.  We had such a great time and I am sure made memories for these little girls that they will never forget.  We love you Lyla and miss you already.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Princess's in Training

Lyla and Lily

Today we had a very special surprise for Lily and Lyla.  Jennifer had found a new nail salon that was opening today for little girls.

The Nail Salon was so cute.  The name is the Glitterbox.  What else could a princess want?

First the girls chose their polish
"It isn't easy being a Princess, But somebodys got to do it!"
The chairs were so cute.  Here is Lily getting ready for her pedicure
The girls were given girl magazines to read.  They couldn't stop giggling when they scrubbed the bottom of their feet.  It was priceless.
I think you can see in this picture that they massaged the girls legs with sparkle cream.  The girls were treated like royalty.
Feeling relaxed

Now for the manicure
Getting the sparkle on
Drying their nails on the special drying table.  On the top were little snacks of fishy crackers, suckers, and skittles.
Princess Lyla
After the princess' were done we met up with Liem and went to the park.  It was very hot so we did not stay long.

After the park we went to Lyla and Liems Neenee and Papa's house for a cookout.  They had this great blow up waterslide that kept the kids busy.

After all the fun the girls snuggled up on Grandma's bed to watch a movie.
Tomorrow is our last day here in Arkansas.  We have had a memorable time that I hope the girls will never forget.  I am a little worried about how the goodbye's will go tomorrow, but I know it was important for them to see what had happened to each other and that they are  happy and loved.  I hope that their friendship will continue as they grow older.  I don't know if being here has brought back memories or if Lily is just at a point where she is able to share, but each day little things about her life in the orphanage are coming out.  We have not heard anything terrible, just little bits of her day to day life.  Lyla's parents have been wonderful to us and it was so nice to spend time with their family and friends.  I think that Lily will be able to think of Lyla and know that she is in a good place.