Monday, June 30, 2008

Our dossier is on it's way to China!

We received an email from our adoption agency today that started out, "Congratulations...Jeff and Karin, your dossier was sent to China today!" Hooray!! We have a tracking number, so we can follow that precious packet of paperwork as it makes its way around the globe.

If there are no slow-downs due to the Olympics, we hope to travel in late November to get Zoey Faith.

Friday, June 27, 2008

Summer fun

Our city had some pre-fourth of July fireworks this weekend, so we decided to take all of the kids. This is the first time we have let the little ones stay up late for this event, so they were excited. They had never seen 'real' fireworks before--only the small ones that older brother, Taylor, shoots up on the 4th. Everyone except Jake loved them. Jake shook and cried and began urgently saying, "Bye-bye, bye-bye!" Since we were sitting right next to our car, Jeff put him in his carseat in the car--and every time we tried to coax him out to sit with us, he started screaming. At one point, we got him out and tried to show him how pretty the fireworks were, but again, he began yelling, "Bye-bye, bye-bye." We gave up--and put him back in the car, where he was much happier. Chloe, SaraGrace and Jordan, loved watching them, though, so it was a successful night!

Ryan, Shelby, and Shelby's brother, watch from the top of his truck cab.

Taking refuge in the back of the van during a brief rain

Watching the fireworks from the bed of big brother, Ryan's truck.

Jordan actually RIDES it this way!! No clue how he came up with this odd position.

"I've been working out!"

", too."

Sweet Jia

I am posting in the hopes that some of you will be willing to offer up some prayers on behalf of one of the children in my LWB foster care program. Jia is urgently in need of heart surgery and will die if she doesn't get it. There is a hospital in the US that has agreed to do the surgery free of charge. (You have no idea what a HUGE hurdle that is!!) Unfortunately, there are some issues from both the US and China that are preventing her from getting the visa that she needs to come here. It seems to be at an impasse and that is why she needs your prayers. We need God to move some mountains for this little girl. She is so precious...and is the life of the party at the foster home where she lives.

Thank you for taking some time to advocate for this little girl. I will let you know if God opens the doors for her to have surgery.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Happy Birthday, Miss Molly

Our little Miss Molly turned eight today! We are so thankful that God has allowed us to have her in our family. We have had three days of birthday to accomodate everyone's busy summer schedules. Her 'party' was on Sunday and she wanted Sponge Bob decorations and cake. We did the best we could with what we had to work with. haha

Her 'best present ever' was a bike but I just realized that I haven't taken a picture of her on it yet.

As I typed this, Jeff convinced her to let him pull one of her loose teeth. She wouldn't let him until he put her favorite song on..."Brave" by Nicole Nordeman. He is rocking her right now and she is sitting in his arms with kleenex sticking out of her mouth. Too cute!

Happy Birthday, precious Molly. We love you!

Monday, June 16, 2008


Happy Father's Day to my sweet husband, Jeff--who is a GREAT dad!! And Happy Father's Day to my dad and Jeff's dad, too!!

Ryan wanted to surprise Jeff with a rolling tool box this year. This is something Jeff has wanted for years and years. Ryan and Taylor pooled their money (with some additional help from me), and Ryan took charge of purchasing the gift. He and Shelby shopped around for the best price, found one at Sears, brought it home, put it together (in a very hot garage), and loaded Jeff's tools into it. It was a very special surprise for Jeff!


JEFF, with the big boys and Shelby (Taylor had just eaten a popsicle that turned his lips and teeth all blue)

Monday, June 09, 2008


I went to the mailbox today, mentally counting the weeks we had been waiting for our Immigration paperwork (I171h) to arrive from Detroit. Our social worker had told me to expect another four weeks. Much to my shock and delight, the much coveted piece of paper was on the top of the stack of mail when I opened the mailbox! Woohoo! I faxed it to our adoption agency and am hoping our paperwork will be sent to China very soon. Once it is sent, we will have approximately a four month wait to travel to get Zoey.

Some of you have been asking about our trip to Boston. I'm sorry I haven't updated you yet. We awakened this morning to the sound of SaraGrace vomiting and she continued to do so for hours--so I have gotten nothing done today. I am praying that the rest of the family doesn't get sick, since Jeff will be out of town for the rest of the week. argh....

The went well. Jake was a trouper--although was a bit scared of the loud plane noise. He was completely terrified on the first flight home, but Jeff was holding him and he ended up just shutting down and falling asleep to avoid his fear. He very much enjoyed being an 'only child' for a few days and we had fun spoiling him!

We found some homes that would work for our family--although the prices are double what they are here. We knew that ahead of time, since we had looked at quite a few online. We had a great realtor who was very friendly and had lined up a lot of homes to look at. I love looking at houses so it wasn't too hard for me to enjoy myself. I had expected a lot of raised eyebrows when people heard about our family size, but not once did we experience that. In fact, some told me they wish they had chosen to have more children and said how blessed we were. Well, that was refreshing!

I love American history and it was really cool to be seeing road signs to places I had read about so many times. The scenery is beautiful...lots of trees, rocks, etc. But was COLD! The first two days we were there it was 61 degrees and rainy. I was freezing! The last day, it was 91 degrees. Go figure.

We had enough time before our flight on Saturday, to drive to Newport beach so that we could see the ocean. Jeff put Jake's feet in the frigid water and Jake wasn't too sure if he liked it, but at least he can now say that he's been in the Atlantic ocean!


God hasn't been too clear about whether or not we are supposed to move to the Boston area, so we are just continuing to pray and seek Him about it. We'll keep you posted.

Wednesday, June 04, 2008

New pictures of Zoey Faith!

We were so happy to receive pictures of our Zoey Faith today!! (This will post tomorrow, but I am writing it on Wed.) An adoptive family visited the orphanage and were kind enough to take pictures of Zoey for us. Apparently, their daughter had been in the next crib and she and Zoey were little buddies. You can see their daughter in the first picture, standing up in the crib next to Zoey, hair in pigtails, and wearing American clothes.

We are grateful that she seems to be doing well. We are still waiting on our immigration paperwork from Detroit. It used to take about four weeksk, but for some reason, it is now taking twelve. ugh.

And on to other news.....
Jeff, Jake and I will be heading to the Boston area early Thursday morning, courtesy of Jeff's employer. This is not a pleasure trip, though. A few months ago, Jeff's boss asked him to relocate to the Boston area. After some deliberation, Jeff turned the job down and we thought we were done with that. Last week, his boss asked him again. So....we have decided that this is not going away, even if we close our eyes and wish really hard. (smile) We have been praying and praying about what to do. Jeff's boss understands that we will not move until next year when Ryan graduates from high school. Neither one of us have any desire to live on the East coast. It is so far from both our families and is a different culture than the midwest, where we were both born and raised. However, we are trying to remain open to what God might have for us, so have been praying that He would clearly show us what He wants us to do. So far, it's not yet clear. (If any of you know of any good churches in the Boston/Providence RI area, please let us know!!) Boston Children's Hospital is there, so our kids' medical needs would be taken care of.

My first reaction to Boston was, "NO WAY!" We had dreams of moving to Nashville--which is a totally different kind of place than Boston. Then I remembered how often I told God, 'Here am I! Send me!" Hmmm...well, I guess if He wants to send us to Boston, I had better not say, "NO!" Wherever we end up--here in Michigan, Boston, or Nashville, I know that God has something good in store for us and I don't want to miss out on what it might be.

Well, unless I want to miss out on having anything clean to wear, I had better get back to laundry and get something in a suitcase. No matter what the outcome of our trip, we are excited to have a mini-vacation! :) Our three oldest girls became hysterical this morning at the prospect of us leaving. sigh.... My mom is coming to watch the kids, so I hope she hasn't lost her mind by the time we get back on Saturday!