Monday, October 17, 2011

Hurry Home Little Man!


Finally China has issued our Pre-Approval and I can share our news!

It turns out September 16 was a big day...bigger than we originally thought!

It marked 1 year to the day since we left for China to get Rylie.

Also, our agency called and said our dossier was complete and heading to China.

And.....they had a file of a little boy they wanted us to check out.

Well, Rush left early the next morning for Guatemala on a mission trip so we didn't really have too much time to review the file and discuss things before he left. We had zero contact through the week, so we were each on our own to consider things.

He got home on September 25th and we pretty much decided that night that we were ready to move forward. I called our agency the next morning and we sent in everything needed to pursue adopting him! We've just been waiting on our pre-approval so we could share the news officially!

So, without further ado.....

...let me introduce our newest kiddo!

Isn't he adorable?!?!

He is 16 months old, from Zhongshan in Guangdong province in China. (This is the province where the American Consulate is, where we spend the 2nd half of our trip with Rylie.) He is quite tiny though. We're praying for him to put on a few pounds!

He had a unilateral cleft lip and palate, but his lip was repaired in June. looks like we will go through another palate surgery! At least we know what to expect this time around.

His Chinese name is Yi He Fu. We are going to name him Judah Colton Hefu M********.....and call him Jude.

Anyway, we are in love. The kids are smitten as well. In fact, Jonah asks every single day when we can go get him. Unfortunately, I am expecting it to take a while for various reasons...probably at least 6 months or so. :( But we are trusting that whenever we are able to go, it will be the right time. We're just praying for patience now!

We absolutely cannot wait to bring him home!

Thursday, October 13, 2011

My Guatemalan Education

Another post from Rush....who is apparently trying to take over my blog. :)

I recently returned from a short term medical mission trip to the Pacific Coast of Guatemala with a team from my church. Thirteen of us spent eight days in the beautiful Central American country providing medical care to some of its more needy communities and working with a missionary who has dedicated much of his life to Guatemala and its people.

I met incredible people and got to do things that I never thought I would do in my lifetime. Releasing a baby turtle into the Pacific Ocean, spending hours painting faces of little kids, pulling a tooth, helping with a surgery (more like a minor procedure --- but to me, it was surgery), playing soccer on the beach, laughing non-stop at inside jokes, and connecting in a new way with Christ are just a few of the memories that are now forever a part of who I am.

People have asked all types of questions since my return. What did we do? (Work & have fun) What were the people like? (Awesome) Would I go back? (Yes) What did I “get” out of the trip?

When I think about that last question I realize I got a lot of things out of my short time in Guatemala. An appreciation of a different culture, a renewed passion for missions and friendship come to mind. But most of all, I got an education.

I learned that we are all the same. Kids. Adults. Churches. We are all made in the same image and we all need the same things.

I learned that broken Spanish makes Guatemalan kids laugh. More broken = more laughs.

I learned that doctors, dentists, pharmacists & nurses do amazing things every day --- everywhere.

I learned that in some circles of Guatemala I’m known to be quite an artist.
(In America I can’t draw.)

I learned that I can do things that are outside of my comfort zone.

I learned that a multivitamin can give hope.

I learned that this world doesn’t make sense sometimes.

I learned that one little girl in Guatemala thought I was Justin Timberlake, even if just for a minute.

I learned that contentment doesn’t come from stuff. It comes from relationships, from community, from Christ.

I learned that Virginia really isn’t that hot.

I learned I love my church even more than I thought.

I learned that trying to fulfill Christ’s Great Commission is hard work, but it’s also the most enriching and rewarding work I’ve done. And as Christians we have a lot more work to do.

So why go on a mission trip? Why spend the vacation time and money? Why be away from family, friends and comfort for a week? There are a million reasons one could give I guess. For me though, it was all about getting an education.