Thursday, October 18, 2012

Introducing...Joy Noelle!

Hello, everyone! I have been totally out of commission the past couple of weeks since travelling to the Philippines and returning home with our new daughter. We have had a couple of rough weeks with our adjustment to becoming a family, but things are finally starting to settle  down, so I thought I would introduce you to our new daughter. I am not allowed to post pictures of her until we "finalize" the adoption after all our paperwork is filled out for our 1, 3 and 6 month post placement reports and we get the official consent to adopt from the Filippino government.

Here are some things I have learned about Joy in the past couple weeks and I would like to share with you to introduce her to you.

Joy loves to swim!
Joy loves chips (ANY kind of chips), ice cream and pizza! (Also, noodles and rice with various sauces, including salad dressing, mayo, and any other kind of sauce you can think of. We introduced her to Chick-fil-a sauce and she loves that as well!)-Typical kid, huh?
Joy does not eat much meat, veggies or fruit yet...we are working on adding that to balance her diet.
Joy ADORES her new big sister Natalie.
Joy was VERY afraid of Cooper, our miniature schnauzer when she came home just over a week ago, but now she LOVES the puppy. (Most of the time!)
Joy does not like loud noises and is very afraid of any banging, roaring, etc. (She's still getting used to the garage door opening/closing and is TERRIFIED of automatic flushing toilets!)-And yet, she has no qualms about being loud herself-Go figure! She can be very loud and sometimes at the most inopportune times!
Joy does not like stuffed animals...(She is scared of them, especailly at night)
Joy LOVES music and to sing and dance.
Joy is very artistic and likes to paint and draw.
Joy is learning new English words every day and I am very proud of her for starting to express herself with words.
She is super excited to go to school with Micah and Natalie and asks us EVERY day when she can go.

I am very proud of Joy and how she is adjusting. It cannot be easy leaving the only home you have ever known to
go with a strange family. She didn't even really know what a family was, or how to act. She was the oldest in an orphange and all the others were toddlers and younger. She has had so much transition and so much new to learn. She is still learning and testing her boundries, learning to trust us, and learning a new language. She also has a language and development delay, so learning new language is difficult for her. (She knew some English, but mostly spoke Tagalog).She has come a LONG way since meeting us 2 weeks ago and I am truly amazed already at where she is from the first few days we met her. Even though I am exhausted, sometimes I have been frustrated, and the adjustment has been difficult, I know that God will give us the strength and see us through.

Please continue to pray for us as each new day brings different challenges and as we try to be the best parents we can be for Joy. 

Monday, October 1, 2012


Tomorrow. TOMORROW we fly halfway across the world to bring home a little girl who we have never met to be our daughter. I'll admit, I have spent more than one night the last few weeks laying awake in bed,  wondering, "Are we crazy?" Are we crazy to bring into our family a 7 year old girl with a seizure disorder? Are we crazy to adopt a child we have never even met and add a whole new dynamic to our family? Are we crazy to spend the kind of money it takes to adopt internationally when we live on a youth pastor's and administrative assistant's salary? Some of you may think we are, but I have to look at the Bible and see how many seemingly "crazy" things God asked His people to do. Do you think Noah felt a little ridiculous building the Ark, when the earth had never even seen a drop of rain? How about Abraham, when God asked Him to sacrifice the "miracle" son He had provided for him? Do you think David, in his humanity, stopped to wonder "What in the world am I doing, facing this giant with a sling shot and no armor?" But in each of these situations, God was leading them and they followed by faith and obedience.

When God asks you to do something in faith, it may not always seem like the "sane" thing to do. If you step out in faith,it doesn't mean the road will always be easy, but it does mean He will provide for you every step of the way. Am I anxious? Yes, honestly, in my humanity, I am. I worry about how my new daughter will adjust, leaving the only home she has ever known to come home to a new culture, a new family, a new EVERYTHING.  I worry about her medical condition and her learning delays.  I worry if I can be the mom she needs and if I can love her the way she needs to be loved. I worry about how she and Natalie will get along sharing a room. I worry about a lot of things...but God says "Cast all your anxiety on Him,  for He cares for you." (1 Peter 5:7)

I have no doubt in my mind that God has led us on this adoption journey. The long wait and the paperwork and more waiting, has not been easy and I know there will still be many more trying days ahead; but, since God is leading us, I KNOW He will provide. He will provide the finances. He will provide the peace. He will provide the strength. He will provide EVERYTHING that we need.  So yes, we may be a little crazy, but hey, it takes being a little crazy to step out in faith sometimes!

Thanks so much for your prayers for us as we take this crazy journey of adoption and fly halfway across the world to bring home our beautiful little daughter! We appreciate so much the love and support we have in our family, our church family and our many friends! We can't wait to share with you the next part of this crazy journey!