Saturday, January 7, 2012

Update From China

Michelle, Kelly, and Annabeth are going to be getting on a plane in 45 minutes, from the time I am wrinting this, to go to Zhengzhou. This is where Mary Alan will be given to them. The official adoption will take place at the end of their trip but Mary Alan will be with them for the rest of their stay in China. They will get her Sunday afternoon(our time- they are 14 hrs. ahead of us).
I was able to talk to Michelle a little bit yesterday morning about their time at New Day Foster Home and at Mary Alan's foster parents' home. She said Mary Alan is very attached to her foster mother, Joan, and would get very upset when she would leave the room. It did take her a little while to warm up to them but before long she was playing with them and being silly. Please pray for Joan. Michelle said this was her first foster child and I am sure she is very attached to her. I can only imagine the bond that has formed over the last year. This precious family will always be very special to us because they have loved Mary Alan and taken such good care of her. God has put Mary Alan in a very unique situation. Most orphans are not put in foster homes. But New Day is very special. You can find out more about them here.

Joan and Michelle with Mary Alan

Mary Alan's foster parents and her new parents

In case you are wondering, Michelle, Kelly, and Annabeth have been able to do a little sight seeing while they have been in China. They got to go to the Great Wall yesterday, which almost got cancelled due to SNOW!!! I don't think I realized it snowed in China, but then again, I don't think I have ever had a reason to know about the weather in China. Until Now :). Michelle has more pictures and more about their journey here(password: seven). She isn't always able to update so I will do my best to keep you informed.

I will ask you to continue to keep their whole family in your prayers. We have no idea how Mary Alan is going to respond tomorrow when Michelle and Kelly get her. I am praying she will bond with them quickly. That God will give her peace and comfort in her mother's arms. That He will give her a knowing that her new parents love her and she is safe with them.
Michelle and Kelly have 3 other children, who are here at home. They are staying with all of us, at some point, during these couple of weeks. Pray for them also as they are away from their parents for what seems like a very long time. They are busy with school and ball games but still life is a little different for now. Pray the transition for the whole family will be easy when they all get back together. I know it will. God has got this all handled already. Thanks y'all!

14 Days To Go

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Seeing Mary Alan

Here she is- Mary Alan!

Kelly and Mary Alan. Proud Daddy!

Michelle, Kelly, and Annabeth went to Mary Alan's foster home today. They FINALLY got to hold their precious little girl. To see her, to touch her, to smell her. Not just look at a picture of her. I can't even begin to imagine what all they are feeling right now but I can tell you that when they texted the picture of her to me, I was bawling. I had to retype my reply several times before I could send it. Michelle had texted me 45 minutes before they were going to be picked up to let me know they were about to leave. She said she was so excited, she was shaking. I can only imagine. If you can't tell, I am elated and I hope the days go by super fast.
16 Days To Go
Mary Alan and Michelle. Very thankful she isn't screaming. Don't think I would have posted that.

If I haven't said it, I am blessed to have this woman as my sister. She has grown so much through this adoption process. She keeps telling me how God has been teaching her over and over again to wait on His perfect timing. That applies to everything, not just adoption. No matter what you are going through, God has got it and He will handle all the details. His timing is PERFECT!

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

The Journey Begins

My sister, Michelle, her husband, Kelly and their daughter, Annabeth, left bright and early-well not so bright but definitely early- this morning for the long journey to Beijing, China. They are going to get their little girl, Mary Alan. They have been looking to this day for 2 years. I guess this just begins the journey to the day they actually have been looking to. It was an emotional goodbye. We are all so excited and cannot wait to see Mary Alan, but at the same time, they are going to get their child and we will not be there to be a part of this emotional, much awaited experience. It is almost as though Michelle is having a baby and I am not going to be able to be there or share in this moment with her. We have been in the delivery room with each other to witness those first moments of bonding. Of looking our babies over, touching them, loving on them, and holding these tiny babies we have only heard about for all those months. This time will be different. I will have to view it from a camera lens and computer screen.
But you better believe the moment they set foot in Dothan, I will be there to see her and be a part of a different moment. The moment we welcome Mary Alan into our family. I guess that moment won't be so different from the delivery room.
Please be praying for Michelle, Kelly, Annabeth, and Mary Alan's safety and that all will go smoothly with the adoption. We all feel very strongly that God has ordained this time for Mary Alan to be adopted. Not our timing, but His.

"For I know that plans I have for you," declares that Lord, "plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you a hope and a future. "
Jeremiah 29:11

Monday, January 2, 2012

Catch Up

So, it has been a while since I have posted anything and after much procrastination, I decided it was time to update. The reason I blog is so we, as a family, can look back over the years and see how we have grown and how God has worked. Well, if I don't blog, we can't see that can we?
So here we go!

This liitle guy turned 1! I can't believe how quickly that year went by. I have said many times that the first child you want to grow so fast so you can see all the many things they will do and explore, then by the time the others come along, you realize how short the baby stage is and you don't want it to pass so fast.

He got a car. I think he likes it :)

Might I mention, my pictures got a little out of order when I uploaded but we're just going to go with it. This was our Christmas card picture. Funny how sometimes what you want turns out and sometimes it doesn't. This time it did. YAY!

Ellie lost her 2 front teeth. I think there is a song about that.

Now back to the birthday boy. Loved the cake! Made by Ricky and Amanda Chilton.
Cute and yummy!

This is the one the rest of us ate.

Christmas..... My sister, Michelle, and her family.
Christian, Annabeth, Hunter, Michelle, Ivy, and Kelly in the back
Michelle, Kelly, and Annabeth will be leaving the beginning of the month to get their little girl, Mary Alan, from China. Please be praying for them as they travel.

All the cousins

Santa hid our children's gifts this year. SO FUN!
He left them in my car. Good thing I left it unlocked.

The girls in their scarves my mom made. She is so talented.

My brother's family
Jed, Abby, Mary Grace, Watson, and James

Silly girls but, helpful

Our tree, We did colored and white lights this year which I really liked.

Saw this idea on pinterest. Wooden letters, painted, of each first initial. That way when you get tired of stockings, you can sale or give away. No more stacks of stockings with everyone's name on them.


This is my nephew, Watson, and Kendall. They got engaged the day after Thanksgiving and we are sooo excited to finally have her as part of our family. She is such a sweetheart and I can't wait to see how God works in their lives as a married couple.

New Year's Eve
Hunter was wiped out way before midnight due to some early morning hunting.
We rang in the new year at my parents.

I think Charlie is the only one who is still hungry after all the food we have eaten over the last several weeks.

Kendall and Abby were both trying to get Charlie to let them hold him, Sometimes using bribery, which works very well.

Ivy and Beth Anne
Mom and Dad

As you can tell, we have been very busy as I'm sure you have been as well. The holidays are always such a fun timebut fly by too quickly. As I have mentioned, we are adding Kendall and Mary Alan to our family. We are extremely excited!!! We have waited on both of them for a very long time. Looks like we already have a great year in store. I look forward to all the other blessing God has in store for all of us.

May God bless you in a special way this new year!