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Thursday, January 26, 2017

Katie

I still don't have my computer or know if they can retrieve the information for my pictures from the hard drive or not. It will apparently be another week at least. I really miss my computer and being able to load my pictures onto it.

In all the sickness and visiting and everything that was going on at Christmas there was something I forgot to mention. Our daughter, Katie, is engaged. She got her diamond on Christmas Eve and showed us at the candlelight Christmas Eve service. We are so happy for her and Ben. I would post a picture of her and Ben but can't because I don't have my computer. But, I have a couple of pictures of Katie from 2011 that I found and I will post those. Hopefully, she doesn't care, as I never know if one of my girls will say -- why did you put that up? 




















































I asked Katie when they planned on getting married and she told me she had no idea. Funny thing is that she is marrying a guy whose mom has been a friend of mine for around 17 years. Katie moved out in June of 2016 after she graduated from nursing school. She moved into an apartment with one of her friends. Katie was so quiet and calm when she lived at home, and I can honestly say I don't think I ever heard her say one angry thing to my younger kids. I have no idea how she lived here with so many kids and stayed so calm. But, she did, and they all love her to death -- especially Bella. 

Sunday, January 22, 2017

Reading Log and Memory Lane

We are still using our mark-your-time bookmark when we read each day. Each day that we read we pull out the bookmark and push the button and it continues to log our time. Yesterday it read 10 hours and 2 minutes so far for this month - 21 days. I am a little surprised we haven't read more but we have had a pretty busy month getting things done and putting away all the Christmas stuff. We haven't even read today. But, we do enjoy just seeing how much we have read each day. We still have 9 more days this month so we will see how that goes.

Since my computer is in the shop and my hard drive being replaced I have no pictures really to post. Then I decided to go back through old folders that had a few pictures in them that we had used in the past. I got on Bill's computer and found some old pictures of several of the kids and had fun looking back. So, I am posting a few of them. They are from 2007 and as I look at them I kind of miss my girls being so small. 

The first one is of Caroline and Katie on the merry-go-round at Kings Dominion. Caroline was around 6 years old and Katie was 13. 






































I'm not sure why, but I have always loved this next picture of Sarah raking in our front yard. She was around 8 years old. How I miss her being so little. 



























Next is Abigail having a tea party when she was 10 years old. She used to love to have tea parties with her dolls and the other kids.































And the last two are of Megan. Megan is a resident in Georgia and she is an Internist. She graduates from her residency program in August of this year. She has always worked so hard at everything she does. It has been a long hard road, but she is just about done. In these pictures she was in Ukraine working in an orphanage. We adoped Caroline from Ukraine in 2001. One of the families that we traveled with started a special needs program there to help kids that were not adopted and families with special needs children. Megan traveled with them every year to help in the orphanages or to teach Bible School or whatever they needed her to do. She was sad when she joined the army -- to help pay for medical school -- and they would not allow her to travel to Ukraine to help in the summer. But, knowing my daughter, she will travel there again one day to help with a medical team. She is just that kind of person - always wanting to help.































Not having my computer and pictures has sent me down memory lane looking at the really old photos we have of our kids and I have actually enjoyed it this evening. Maybe I will look at more tomorrow. 

Friday, January 20, 2017

Computer Problems

Yesterday I had a post planned as it was the anniversary of Bella and Sophia arriving in America four years ago. I was just going to write a little on how they are doing and then post some pictures of them. I went up to send pictures to Bill to size for me for the blog and something was wrong. I managed to go through a couple of pictures, but things quickly went bad. I couldn't look at my pictures and couldn't send the ones I had chosen. Bill spent the rest of the evening trying to figure out what was wrong, but he couldn't get my computer working. Bottom line - I have a bad hard drive and my computer is at the Apple store for the next week. Then we have to send the drive to some place that tries to recover all of your stuff. It will be several weeks before I have everything back -- and hopefully with everything back on it. 

So, I had no pictures to post and couldn't really do the post on Bella and Sophia. I can still do that later, though. But, if you would like to see the night they arrived four years ago just go here 

I decided to just post the latest picture in Bethany's sketch book. She has been drawing a lot of animals lately - probably because I bought her a book on drawing them. Anyway, I had this picture on my phone so I can post it. 


Sunday, January 15, 2017

Almost Wordless Sunday

Today was quiet. We went to church and then pretty much did nothing, though Bill did get the Christmas tree out of the house. The rest of the day the kids just played and then decided they wanted to take their dolls for a walk around the neighborhood. So, we walked and walked till it was getting dark. 

Please remember my son, Joey, in your prayers as he has had a hard few days. We are hoping that he will be feeling much better this week and able to get out and do some things with Shannon and the kids.

Pictures from today.























































































































































































































































The kids insisted that this hole in the road looked like a giant's foot. 











































































By the time we were finishing up our walk and almost home, it was starting to get dark. Piper said she walked a long, long way and her legs were tired. It really wasn't that long. It was nice to be able to get out and walk. I love it when the weather is not so cold. 






It was a pleasant walk and then when we got home the kids had pizza and some of the brownies that Zola made. 




Wednesday, January 11, 2017

A Year Ago

A year ago today we were in China. Actually, Abigail and I left for China on January 2, 2016 and arrived very late on January 3. We then got up early on the 4th and went and picked up Piper. The next day we had to go out early and get Piper's passport and then catch a flight out to the next province. 

Piper on the day we picked her up. She was out of control wild once we got back to the hotel.


































































































We landed in the next province on Tuesday night and when we were picked up we were told we would be getting Tess in the next hour. We were still in the airport and realized that she would get to our hotel just a few minutes after we did. We were a little surprised, as we were supposed to go pick her up the next day. We were exhausted from the running around and Piper was not on her best behavior, but we were excited. A few minutes after we arrived at our hotel Tess was brought up to our room. We could hardly believe that within two days of arriving in China we already had both girls. 

Tess, right after she got to our room -- she was very quiet and said almost nothing at first. We were so tired that we took very few pictures. Tess was so different than Piper. She was very quiet that first night - and I mean for the first night only. She also cried when she went to bed. She didn't cry out loud but we heard her sniffing and we knew. I lay down beside her until she seemed better and then she fell asleep. The next day she was a different person. 




























The next day, Wednesday, we got up and ran around doing all the stuff you have to do - pictures, etc. Then we went back to our hotel and took the girls out for a walk. It was nice to get out by ourselves for awhile and let the girls walk off some energy.






























































































































It was quite a trip and Abigail and I remember it fondly - with a few bad spots. But, it went rather smoothly. We had time to shop and walk around and the hotels were all very nice - something I wasn't used to when traveling to adopt. Abigail and I have been talking about our trip and sending and showing each other pictures from it for several days now -- usually saying "a year ago today". 

The girls are doing great. Even better than I expected. I know we could have some attachment issues and I may talk about that later, but for now things are going very well. They are great kids. I am so glad I decided to ask if there was any way we could adopt from China when I saw Piper's picture one night. So glad I gave it a shot. 

Saturday, January 7, 2017

Snow Day

Today it snowed most of the day. It actually started sometime during the night, as we were sleeping, and we woke up to several inches. It continued until late afternoon. Of course, the kids couldn't wait to get out in it and I kind of dreaded it as I know the mess. But, they went out and had a lot of fun and actually stayed out a pretty long time. Then they came in and had hot chocolate. I think Tess stayed out the longest. 




































































































After they had their hot chocolate, Bethany got out her knitting loom or whatever it is called, and started working on a hat for her doll. We had gotten two different colors of yarn so she could make a hat for each of the dolls she got for Christmas -- she got twins, a boy and a girl. 



















































Then Tess decided to get out the sewing kit she got for Christmas and Caroline got out the embroidery set she got. Everyone wanted to sew or make something. Even Sarah got in on it - she is usually not that interested in doing many crafts or sewing. After watching everybody for probably almost an hour she decided to run and get her beads and make a necklace. 

It was nice. Everybody had something to do and if they didn't - Bella - they watched and played with all the yarn and scraps of material. It was a very pleasant afternoon. 



























































































































A hat for Sarah's doll that was started the night before. The very first one from Bethany's loom.