Caresse has been doing a great job giving some tidbits to keep ya'll up to date, Thanks sweetie! I thought I would try and fill everyone on a bit more of the happenings. Unfortunately, there will be no pictures, because Shonni and Kalyn took all of the cameras with them! Imagine that!
Beijing - So Shonni and Kalyn made it safely to Beijing on Wednesday. With the wonders of technology, we have been able to Skype with them a couple of times (usually first thing in their am and in the late afternoon for us given the 15 hour time difference). Other than being extremely tired the first day, they have been having a great time. They are more or less getting a personal tour since there is no one else in their group. Also since it is winter (yes freezing temps and snow) there are very few crowds at all of the tourist sites. Even their tour guide has commented that she is getting to see things she has not seen since she was a little girl. as would be expected, in some situations, Shonni and Kalyn have become the tourist attraction, with people asking to take their picture or discretely taking is to capture the foreigners on film!
They have gotten to see several temples, the great wall, forbidden city, the summer palace, Tienanmen Square as well as Kung fu and acrobatic shows. They will be flying to Guangzhou on Sunday and then meet Noelani and Clive on Monday. These few days in Beijing have been a nice opportunity to not just see some of China, but also to adjust to the changes (time and culture) before they meet the children. There is still some anxiety about meeting the children; how they will respond, how they all will communicate, and more, but having a few days prep under their belts will certainly help.
Bones - of course our adventure has included the littlest one, Keshawn, breaking his arm the day Shonni and Kalyn left for China. Pretty traumatic to start things off, but life has settled down now (as much as it can with 9 little ones and daddy in charge!) Keshawn is healing well, so much so that other than the cast on his arm you never know he had recently been hurt! Everyone else is doing well too, missing mommy and sister of course, but making the best of the time they are away. We have had snow and cold weather, which limits any outside play, but we have had inside play time, movies, and even sleeping out in the family room one night!
Blessing - What can I say, we have had numerous blessings to be thankful for: friends who came to help at a moments notice when I had to stay in the hospital with Keshawn ( Thanks Hannah and Theresa!) Help from family with last minute adoption expenses, able to get a last minute loan to cover the in country fees (not what we planned to do, but thankful we were able to and well worth taking out a loan to bring our children home), finally got our full tax refund, unexpectedly and with interest! (now we can get some pesky bills paid off!) Lots of prayer support. words of encouragement, and well wishes. We are thankful for everyone who is standing with us as we walk out this journey of faith.
God is so good and so faithful. We see that each and everyday, through the good times and the tough times. For me the lesson learned (again!) is to always keep Him at the center and to not let the circumstances of life take precedence over Him as I am often guilty of doing. I too easily think I have to focus on the problems to try and find answers or solutions, when in fact what I must do is look past the problems to Him and let Him rule in my heart soul and mind. Whenever I finally get around to doing that it is incredible how He brings the answers and solutions!