Thursday, August 5, 2010

A Moment of Reflection... Home for 6 days

I can't believe we have already been home for 6 days. It seems like we were in China months ago. While we were in China, it seemed like we had been there for a month. I don't understand why time tricks us this way.

China is such a beautiful country. When we flew to Guilin, it was probably some of the most magnificent land to fly over. The hills, rocks, even the way God designed the water to flow... everything was so beautiful, so rich.

Seeing this beauty, it makes me wonder even more, what Heaven is like.

The people of China were so very kind, curious, and always readily available to give a "thumbs up!" Have you ever thought how encouraging it is to get the "thumbs up" several times a day. Where else can you get this but China.

One sweet lady said to me while at McDonalds, "Your baby is so lucky. I know though that you will say, You're the lucky ones." That was for sure. We are the lucky ones. Not because of luck though; but because God supernaturally orchestrated the coming together of this precious little child into our lives.

One thing that made China stand out in such a professional way was their uniforms. Everyone seemed to have a special uniform for their job. They wore them proudly and they did their jobs with excellence. Regardless of the heat or the 95% humidity, they wore their suits or uniforms with class.

Another thing I remember about China is how clean it is. There are more than a billion people there, but when you walk into their cities (we were in Nanning, Guilin, and Guangzhou), they had people in uniforms sweeping, picking up trash, etc. There were people EVERYWHERE working to keep the city beautiful. I wish we would do the same in America. How much we take for granted here in this land of opportunity and freedom.

As we left the airport to drive into the city of Guilin, I marveled at the amazing rockery and design the Chinese put into their walls alongside the road. Everything they did seemed to be by wheelbarrow. No shade, little water, probably not a lot of food, little supplies, heavy labor, no gloves... yet they worked with diligence. I never saw anyone look over another's shoulder. It was as though they worked to build their part of the "wall" or their part of China.

I just had little glimpses into the life of those that live in China. A nation of great beauty. A people of great commitment. A people of great strength.

Her Princess Bed is a Miracle!

My husband and I often look at each other and say, "I can't believe she's ours. She's so beautiful. Such a blessing from the Lord."

Our transition home, since Saturday, has been a challenge during the night, because Gabriella and I are still on China time. Thus, we are often up from 3am until 7am.

Our sleeping arrangements weren't working very well, so Mama and Mei Mei went out and got a princess toddler bed. The first night, that bed was a miracle!

Gabriella slept for 11 hours. I got to sleep for 8 hours. It was a much needed sleep. Sleep hadn't really been a part of my routine since Thursday at 5am.

Now, it's one week later. The princess bed works during the day... let's pray it continues to work during the night as well. Thank you Lord for sweet sleep.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

The Simple Pleasures in Life!

Tonight we got to see how simple life really needs to be... and, how just a bit of quality time and a hose can bring hysterical laughter and joy for the whole neighborhood to hear.

Gabriella and I watered some of the flowers out in the front yard. Since she is yet to stand or walk (though we are believing we will in time see God's supernatural healing), I decided to put her in her stroller; that way, we could concentrate on looking at each other and holding on to the hose to control the water.

To her great delight, she found that if she put her hand in the water as we sprayed the flowers, it would make both of us wet... really , really wet.

It was a fun way to cool off and help the dogs cool off too. Oh, the simple pleasures in life! There is so much for us to be grateful for!

She's a Faker!

We have an amazingly fun little one. Gabriella has this way with her eyes. She seems incredibly bright and funny. She rolls her eyes and makes funny facial expressions to get a response. Each day we share many, many of these moments with giggles and funny faces.

One of the fun things that she does as she is playing with Baba is pretend to sleep... she will instantly "fall asleep" while interacting with him. She generally stays "asleep" for 3 seconds and then pops her head up and laughs or smiles. We call her our "Little Faker." She is quite a character. I think we will have to try to get this on video in the next couple days.

She has brought so much joy into our lives... and, so quickly. I can't imagine our life without her.

She's Repeating English and Understands Everything!

As you may already know, her first word was "shoes". We can't remember what her second word was. We coaxed her into her third word: "Starbucks"... and, her fourth was "Jesus." Okay... so, priorities might be a little mixed up in the word choices.

Today she copied me and said, "So, so pretty." It was in reference to a beautiful dress she wanted to put on.

She repeats English words so willingly. I love her desire to learn.

She understands everything we say in English... though, we know it is only by the grace of God and how we are communicating, because it would otherwise be impossible for her to know.

She's 3.5 and WHAT SIZE?

The photo above is actually taken ONE YEAR home... 6-9 mo. pants, age 4yr. 6mo.

Our little princess has stopped eating like the books said she would... thank God. She was eating more than Jason and I put together. We never could figure out where she was putting it. But, by the first day home, she was eating like a normal 3 year old.

Now, that being said, she came to us at 25 pounds, so what size should she be?

When I shopped for her, I was surprised to find out that she can wear a 6-9 months on her bottom (as long as they are capris). She wears a 4T on top or as a dress. All of her 4T footed jammies are too small, so, she must wear a 5T.

How could this be?

Monday, August 2, 2010

No More... "She Loves Me Nots!"

The first two days with Gabriella were very quiet. She looked at us, she smiled. She went to either one of us equally. But, the third day, she decided that Baba was everything to her.

We loved to hear her squeal at the top of her lungs "Baba!" as she saw him get his food at the breakfast buffet. It's one of those squeals every parent hopes to hear.

As the days went on, we noticed a clear preference to Baba unless he was out of the room. That's when Mei Mei and I would get our own bonding time.

Now, just two days home, she hugs onto both of us, squeals in delight, looks for just another way to be close to us.

Gabriella is such a sweet, sweet girl and has already brought so much joy to our family.

The first few days, there were times that I felt like I was plucking off the petals to a daisy and saying, "She loves me not, She loves me not, She loves me not" But now, I can say, "She loves me, She clearly, clearly loves me."