Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Happy 5th Birthday, Ivy!

What a day it was...seeing Ivy open a present for the first time in her life. She wasn't even sure how to do it. She kept acting surprised that this celebration was really all for her! Even the cards were such treasures to her. She continues to look at them several times a day. I don't know who had more fun, Ivy, or her family, who witnessed the surprise and joy in her face.

"Orphans are easier to ignore before you know their names.
They are easier to ignore before you see their faces.
 It is easier to pretend they're not real before you hold them in your arms.
 But once you do, everything changes.."
~David Platt

Thursday, May 17, 2012

3 weeks home

I see the remarkable changes in Ivy each and every day. But when I saw this photo of her I saw it in her a flower that just opened. What a joy to watch her blossom. The toil of tending the garden is so rewarding.

“I am waiting and God is teaching me this: I beg Him to bring me close to His heart, to even transform my heart that it might be more like His.  I think orphan care gets us close, because He sees us as orphans.  I think adoption gets us close, because this is how He brings us into His family.  The poor, the beggar, the widow, the prisoner, they get us close to His heart because these people are so dear to Him."  Katie Davis.. Kisses from Katie..A Story of Relentless Love and Redemption

P.S. The Archibald Project interviewed us : If you're on Facebook please "Like" this ministry! They are passionate about adoption!

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Airport Homecoming Pics

"God has a way of using inadequate people, and sometimes He calls us to reach a little higher or to stretch a little further, even when we feel we can’t do any more. We simply trust Him. And then, He gives us everything we need to do the “more” that He is asking of us."
Kisses from Katie.. A story of Relentless Love and Redemption by Katie R. Davis

Thursday, May 3, 2012

One week home!

It's hard to believe we've been home a week. Ivy has done remarkably well in many ways. She is developmentally delayed in some areas, due to lack of exposure. It's hard to imagine an almost 5 year old that has never seen 'stuff' just lying around, such as a picture frame, house decor, toothpaste, anything and everything. So everything needs examined for the first time just as a young child would do. She has no reference for the stove being hot, knives being sharp, or the idea that some things are dangerous to put in your mouth. Have you ever tried removing White-Out from a child's eyelids and lashes? It's not as easy as it sounds! The stuff is not water soluble. But she is very smart and learns quickly. She is extremely advanced at observing details and emotionally sensing situations. She doesn't miss anything! I'm sure these are things survivors learn to do.

Her hardest adjustment is sleeping. The first couple nights she slept out of total exhaustion. Now we are facing sleep issues that are very common in children with this type of history. Fortunately she is allowing us to comfort and cuddle her. There are many hurts to heal. We are privileged to be the ones that get to teach her what love and family are all about. Every sight, sound, smell, taste and person in her world is different. That's just plain scary. Clearly she enjoys so many new things in our home, but feeling safe and secure will take time.

Ivy has mastered the following English words: Hi, Bye, Potty, Eat, Doll, Good Job, Uh-oh, All Done, Apple, Banana, I Love You,  and here's my two favorites.."Amen" and "Are you Okay?"  We were shocked when Emma tripped and Ivy asked her if she was Okay! The other night she did something, and I said to Dan, "She's really bright".  Ivy immediately repeated, "She's really bright!".  She often says an unidentifiable Chinese word in front of "Mama". It sounds like she's saying "Crazy Mama".  Everyone gets a laugh out of that. It's an appropriate title these days! She hums 'Jesus Loves Me' throughout the day, and can identify her head, eyes, nose, mouth, hands, knees, tummy, feet, and her water cup. She loves all the foods we give her, even green smoothies which she begs for. The kids get a kick out of that and try to give theirs to her! The only food she's rejected so far is avocado. She acted like that was pretty strange. She begs for fruit of all kinds which is like dessert to her. Tonight some sweet friends brought us Chinese food, and boy or boy did Ivy enjoy dinner. It was so entertaining to watch her gobble it up.

We will post our airport pics once we get them. Here's a couple backyard shots for now. Running in the grass and playing on the play set are the highlights of her day.

The Lord is near to the brokenhearted, and saves the crushed in spirit -Psalm 34:18

“As I do what I can, I am able to watch Him do what only He can.”
 from  'Kisses from Katie' A Story of Relentless Love and Redemption