Category Archives: China

My Dearest Daughter,

You’ve been home for three months now. Time is flying by.¬†I look at you now compared to day one, and oh my how you’ve blossomed (and grown)! You’re the epitome of joy, hope, and strength. You radiate light.

I don’t remember what life was like before you. It’s like you’ve always been here. You fit with our family perfectly, a perfect piece to our family puzzle. You’re a part of us and always will be. It’s amazing to witness God’s love and timing. He knew exactly what he was doing when he gave us you. We have so many similarities, all I can do is smile and thank God. I’m so thankful He picked me to be your mama! Mama and Baba are here for you, forever.

I love you always,

Mama

Someone wanted to dress herself for this months picture ūüėČ

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I stressed so much about what to wear in China.¬†Many¬†of the Facebook travel groups talk about being modest. We traveled in July, the hottest time of the year, how could I be modest??! Ha ha, I stressed for no reason. There were all kinds of tourists there wearing everything, and I mean everything, ¬†you could imagine. ¬†You have enough to stress about with the adoption, don’t worry about this! My main goal was not to offend¬†anyone or the culture. I’ve already shared my thoughts¬†about what shoes to wear, and you can see that post here.

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Here’s 5 tips for your China travel:

1. If it’s not something you would wear here in the states, then don’t purchase it for travel. There’s no point in purchasing clothes that you can’t bring back and wear here. A lot of the clothes I took, I already had.¬†The same goes for your child. Dress them just like you would at home.

2. If you’re visiting temples or going to adoption appointments, then yes, you should be a little more modest and dress nicely. Use common sense peeps. ¬†

3. Even though we traveled when it was warm, I still brought a travel blanket and a sweater. I was SO glad that I did. The plane was freezing and some of the hotels are cold. Pack a light sweater if you get cold easily (like me!).

4. Do not wear green hats in China. My husband took one hat with him and it was green. We had no clue that it meant your wife has cheated on you. No wonder I got some dirty looks! Luckily he only wore it one day, we posted a picture in a group, and someone told us what it meant. Whew! Thank you sweet person.

5. Not sure if where you’re going is dressy or casual? Dress it up with accessories! I would wear a t-shirt, but would fix my hair nicely, wear makeup, jewelry, and bam! You have a “dressier” look.

I share¬†this picture so you can see people in the background are wearing a variety of different types of clothing. Shorts, pants, dresses, jeans, etc…¬†KLP_CHINADAY2-1

Court day: I’m wearing a long skirt in this picture and the hubby is in jeans. Jewelry, makeup, and hair fixed nicely always makes an outfit more dressy (and makes you feel better too!).¬†KLP_CHINADAY5-1These Under Armour sweat-wicking shirts were my favorite thing for the hot days…

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LOVED having this cool hat for the zoo. KLP_CHINADAY 11-35

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Remember the less you can pack, the better! Tide travel packs were my best friend. I washed many of our clothes in the hotel sinks and hung the clothes around the hotel room. It worked out perfectly and we had lighter luggage because of it.

I hope this post blesses you or someone you know who might be traveling soon. Have a great Tuesday everyone!

 

I already think she looks taller compared to last months photo…IMG_6020-2I feel like I was just writing the one month blog post and here it is already September! That was fast. We¬†had a¬†great August with our sweet P princess. Every day I’m overwhelmed with love and gratitude for this amazing gift God gave us. People say she’s lucky, but we’re the lucky and blessed ones! My journey to motherhood has been SO hard, some days I would just crawl up in a ball and weep. I wanted so bad to be a mom, why was God having me wait?? Now I see that his timing was perfect, and I could not be more grateful. Everything fell into place, and now we are one happy family! Please know that his timing is perfect for you too! Whatever you are waiting on, God’s got this. I began writing in my journal yesterday and before I knew it I had two pages full of thanking Jesus for all that he’s done for us. I could’ve kept writing and writing. We have a daughter! God is so faithful. Ok moving on before I start crying…

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Attachment: Bonding and attachment are getting better and better. She definitely knows who her mama and baba are, and I’m so thankful! It will just take her some time to know that we are here to stay. Two months isn’t long enough. A good sign is that she won’t let me leave her. If Baba takes her out somewhere she will gladly leave me home, but if I try to leave her and baba at home? Not happening. We really need to work on this because eventually I will need to leave her for work. However, I’m so thankful that she doesn’t want to leave my side. I’m soaking in every minute of it!!!

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Language: Her English is getting better and better! She still speaks Mandarin mixed with some English here and there. She’s doing well on short sentences and trying to explain to us what she needs or wants. Last month she learned “head, toes, fingers, nails, hands, arms, head, hair, and knees”! She knows “thank you”, “you’re welcome”, and many other words and phrases. She will get out books and read out loud. When Baba is done reading¬†her a bedtime book, she has to take over and read it back to us (in her own language). She’s doing amazing and learning fast. We’re so proud of her!

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Sleeping:¬†She is sleeping through the night great, usually 11-12 hours straight. We’re slowly cutting out naps and it’s “kind of” going well, ha!¬†She’s good about telling us if she’s sleepy so if she wants a nap she takes one. Some days she does fine without one, but most days she needs one. I’m thinking she’ll continue to sleep with us for a bit longer… as long as she wants! ūüėČ

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Food: She’s still eating very well and discovering new foods that she loves every day. Most recently was corn on the cob…she’s obsessed with it! Oh, and Cracker Barrel grits! She’s not a huge fan of meat, but she’ll eat it if it’s on her plate. She loves to drink water, milk, orange juice and sometimes apple juice. She’s¬†discovered string cheese and that’s her current favorite!

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Overall she is doing amazing and we could not be more proud of her. A transition like this is hard on anyone, and she is doing so so well. Thank you to everyone for the continued support and thanks for following along on our journey! We love you all!

Happy Monday everyone! There’s a lot of talk in the adoption boards about¬†what shoes to wear while traveling. You do A LOT of walking, so you want to wear something comfortable. We traveled in July so I wanted something cool as well. Other than a regular pair of flip flops to wear around the hotel, I took two pairs of shoes:

Keen Rose Sandals: These shoes were amazing! I wanted something that was like a sandal, but also covered my toes. These shoes were cool and comfortable. There’s an adjustable velcro strap which I loved. They are waterproof and easy to clean. It rained a lot and I was very thankful for these shoes. You want something that will be easy to dry (same for clothes!). They are very true to size. I can’t say enough great things. I got mine from Emory River Outdoors. They rushed ordered them¬†for us¬†and we got¬†them the day before we left. We’re very thankful for this local business!!

Sketchers Go Walk 3:¬†Picture walking on clouds and this is what it feels like. I don’t know how else to explain it. These shoes were perfect with socks (I’m always cold) for the plane rides in country and to slip on ¬†without socks while walking around the hotel and China.

Here’s a pic of the Keen’s that we took while in China…

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I couldn’t find any pictures of me in the Go Walk 3’s but if you click on the link above you’ll see them. Anywho, I hope this post helps someone getting ready to travel! If you have anymore travel questions, please let me know. Have a great day everyone and God bless!

 

A month has already flown by! I can’t believe one month ago we were in a conference room in China meeting our daughter for the first time. To think that we barely made the July trip or else we would’ve had to wait until this month. I’m SO glad we made that July trip! The Lord knew she needed to be with her family sooner. Adoption is hard. It’s overwhelming, it’s expensive, and it’s an emotional roller coaster… but it’s SO worth it. It’s a God thing, literally! We were all adopted.

People ask how we feel about it all and I can’t describe it. There are no words. I try to think back on what life was like before her and I can’t remember. It’s like she has always been a part of us. She fits in so well! Adoption rocks!!! We’re so thankful¬†that out of everyone God chose us to be her parents!

So how is she doing? I saw another mom do this on a blog I follow so I thought I would do the same¬†but with my own twist…

picsforsale-5Attachment: When we first got home I was worried, and still am, about attachment. Everything you read about adoption tells you that this is critical. It broke my heart that she would so openly go to anyone (like at the airport homecoming). She shouldn’t be doing that. Right now, she should only want her momma and baba. It was hard for me to grasp that she’s always had people in and out of her life, and that she might not understand that we are here to stay. Forever. She can stick with us. So I wrote a blog post in hopes it would help people understand why we aren’t around or why they shouldn’t be reaching for her. We’re still working on her being attached to only us. I know it will take time, and every day I see that it’s getting better.

Language: She still speaks a lot of Mandarin, but she is picking up English pretty quickly.¬†She understands things we say to her, and answers all of our questions. She is SO smart! She can count from 1-10 and is learning her ABC’s. Right now we are working on forming better sentences. She is starting to call herself by the name we gave her, but sometimes uses her Chinese name. Yesterday I gave her two options as a snack and she didn’t want either. Clear as day she said “applesauce”! I couldn’t believe it. That’s not even a word we’ve been teaching her. She’s just overheard us talk about it, and picked up on it. She loves to talk, and we love listening ;

KLP_CHINADAY 10-8Sleeping:¬†Once we got over the jet lag, she started sleeping pretty well! She takes daily naps for about a hour, and pretty much sleeps through the night. Every now and then she will wake up in the middle of the night and pat us on the back or leg. It’s like she is making sure we are there. ¬†She currently sleeps with us and we wouldn’t have it any other way! Soon enough we will move her to her room, we just don’t feel she is ready yet. She LOVES her room and I know we will have no trouble with this transition when it’s time.

Food:¬†She loves pretty much anything! Fruit is her favorite. Bananas are a must. She loves veggies. She isn’t a huge fan of¬†bread or fried stuff. She has no problem with eating and no problem letting you know when she is full. I’m so thankful for this because so many times you hear otherwise with children from orphanages. It’s usually “eat all the food you can or someone else will eat it for you”!

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Physical Development:¬†She is definitely small for her age, but is growing and gaining weight. With the help of her step stool she can now get to the sink and her bed on her own. She’s learned how to climb up on the couch, and climb in and out of her car seat on her own. She IS potty trained (thank ya Jesus), but of course needs help every now and then. She is learning new skills every day and we’re very proud of her. We’re amazed at all she can do considering we’ve only been home a few short weeks!

Medical Need:¬†Many people have asked about her special need since many children adopted from China have special needs. She doesn’t have a special need, but she does have a medical condition. It’s not a minor condition either, more major actually. She’s already had one surgery in China, and will¬†need another at some point in the near future. It’s not something we’ve openly shared yet and I’m not sure when we will. Eventually I will share it to show awareness, but I don’t want her to be defined by it just like I don’t want her defined by adoption. She’s SO much more than either of those things, and she’s a miracle! She’s doing great right now and that’s all that matters to us!

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Below is the day she was placed in our arms. WOW. I can’t believe how different¬†she looks now. It’s amazing what LOVE can do to a person. I’m not saying she wasn’t loved in her orphanage, but she wasn’t shown the attention and love of parents. What once was a scared little girl with a fever and quiet demeaner, is now a blooming, sassy, smart, humorous girl that puts smiles on the faces of everyone she meets. She is such a LIGHT. We love our little Sweet P…

111IMG_4180 copyAnd we’re obsessed with these¬†sneak peeks from our good friend Kayla with¬†Kayla F Photography of our first ever family session! Look at this first one, she is striking a pose!!! #model

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We are so blessed this girl is ours!!! Thank you everyone for the continued love and support! <3