Our verse since our adoption journey began:

James 1:27 - "Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress..."

Rachel's Referral Photo

Rachel's Referral Photo

Monday, August 30, 2010

The day is almost here!

Wow, I can't believe we only have 3 more days before we leave!! There are still a few more things on the to do list besides spending some time with our boys, who'll be anxiously waiting at home with my parents for our return! Trying to pack more things today. Hoping it will be under the weight limit of not only the international flights, but also the flights within China. Packing for Rachel has been fun but really strange! So much pink in one bag is a beautiful sight!! A doll? Who would think I'd ever buy a doll for my own home?

We've been told that Facebook and Blogger is blocked a lot of times in China, so if I'm unable to post myself, I'll be emailing pictures and updates to my sister-in-law, so she can update here for us. Thank you Mariane!

The emotions of this all have not allowed me to sleep very well. I don't think I'll settle until we get back. We covet your continued prayers in this adventure. We hope Rachel will feel loved immediately and that she won't be terrified to be with us during our 1st few days together.

We've had many asking about giving her a welcome party when we return. We do want to have one soon, but we have been advised to wait a few weeks before we do anything with a big crowd. As you can imagine, she will take time to get used to her new family, and we don't want to overwhelm her with too many people at once! We cannot wait to share her with all of you! We hope you understand this and try to put yourself in her shoes, being in a completely different environment with new faces, strange language, different foods, new smells, etc., and possibly having no clue what's going on without understanding English. So we thank you for understanding and look forward to a big welcome when we feel she is ready. Please feel free to ask any questions. Adoption is a wonderful thing, but unfortunately not always an easy thing for some people to talk about. She is our daughter just as much as our boys are our sons. She's just joining our family in a different way. We have no doubts that God hand picked her for us and He chose us as her new forever family! (Not sure why us, but He did!) We thank all of you for your support, prayers, love and friendship!! So many blessings to be thankful for. This may be my last post before our trip, so please follow us on our journey!

Fabio and Andrea to some (Denise to others!) :-)

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Itinerary in China

The following is what we'll be doing in China for 2 weeks. We just got our itinerary today, so we thought we'd share so you also know how to pray specifically for us while we're there. (There is a 13-hour difference!) We hope you'll pray for us during this trip, as well as for the safety and great behavior of our boys while they stay here with their grandparents! :-) Don't forget to pray for the sanity of my parents while they care for them (homework, sports, etc.). Thank you Mom and Dad!!!

Sept. 2 - Depart for Beijing
Sept. 3 - Arrive in Beijing late at night!
Sept. 4 - Beijing sightseeing with our travel group (other families who are also adopting).
(Tiananmen Square, Forbidden City, Summer Palace)
Sept. 5 - More sightseeing: Church service, Great Wall
Sept. 6 - Fly to Shanghai in the A.M., MEET RACHEL YONGSHA IN THE AFTERNOON!!
(As far as we know, they bring her to our hotel.) This is what is called "Gotcha Day!"
Sept. 7 - Civil Affairs Appt.
Sept. 8 - Sightseeing and shopping
Sept. 9 - Sightseeing and shopping
Sept. 10 - Fly to Guangzhou for Consulate Appt. and paperwork
Sept. 11 - Rachel's medical exam
Sept. 12 - Sightseeing and shopping
Sept. 13 - Consulate paperwork
Sept. 14 - Consulate Appt.
Sept. 15 - Consulate Oath-Taking Ceremony
Sept. 16 - Get Rachel's visa. Depart to Hong Kong.
Sept. 17 - ARRIVE HOME!!!
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Friday, August 6, 2010

Traveling in Sept!

Our travel dates are official now!! We'll be leaving on Sept. 2nd!!! The Consulate Appt. was not available on the dates needed for the Aug. group. So at least I have a little more time to finish my to do, to buy and to take lists! And at least I'll be here longer for my mom as my dad recovers from surgery (which will be on Monday, the 9th)...I'll be here for Tyler's bday...I'll be here for the kids' 1st day back to school....BUT I'll miss Nathan's 1st day of Pre-K. :-( Can't have it all, I guess. Someone will have to take lots of pictures for me! Overwhelmed with God's blessings and provision. He has been faithful in this entire process. May He get all of the glory!

Monday, August 2, 2010

Our TA has arrived!!!

We got the anticipated phone call today that we received our TA (travel approval)!!!! If they can schedule our Consulate appt. for the next scheduled travel group, we may be leaving next week!!! Aug. 12th!! Ok, my heart is really racing now. That's less than 2 weeks away. I was hoping to get our TA this week, but didn't expect we'd be leaving so quickly. If they cannot get the Consulate appt. scheduled, then we'll be leaving with the next group on Sept. 2nd. Wow, it's feeling even more real now! I'll be really painting her room tomorrow! Can't put it off any longer. Don't think I'll be sleeping tonight!
One thing I'm worried about is that my dad will be having surgery soon. I don't want to be gone for that. He's going to the dr. tomorrow and should know when it will be. Please pray for God's perfect timing for everything and for my dad to have a successful surgery. Thanks in advance for your prayers!