Thursday, July 27, 2006

And the Decision is....

Makenna is going to stay home, and will not travel to China with us. And I say that w/ out breaking into crying as I have been all week!. It has been a long week of many tears, but most of all many prayers. We made this decision as a family. We got many opinions from everyone, which we wanted. But when it came down to it, Mark and I agreed, our number 1 priority of this trip, was Sage. Could we give 100% of ourselves to Sage, if we were worried about Makenna missing school, worried about Makenna being bored etc.. And Makenna agreed. She is excited about going on vacation w/ her Grandma and Grandpa while we are gone, and getting to be back in school on time w/ her friends. It is amazing, the peace we all seem to feel here. God is so GREAT isn't He? If we are just willing to lay it down at His feet, He will make it clear.
Thank you for all your support and your prayers for us over this decision. We ask that you keep them coming for all 3 kids. They have NEVER been away from us like this before. And Sawyer will start kindergarten w/ out me, Makenna 3rd grade. I am sad, but I know that God knew our travel dates LONG ago, and so I just continue to trust that He is going to see us through.

Tuesday, July 25, 2006

Vacation Pictures

If you scroll down, you can go back through our posts from our trip and I added some pictures. Check out that volcano, doesn't it look YUMMY!! Though I am STILL working that off, along w/ all the other foods we dined on! Worth every bite!

Monday, July 24, 2006

A No Win Situation...

We still do not know when we will be in China for sure, but today we got a message that said they hope to have us there around August 17th. We would get Sage on the 20th. Her 9 month birthday! This could change by a week later. So here is our dilema. The entire time we had planned to take Makenna with us. She wants to go, is EXCITED to go. And part of us wants her to go. What a trip of a lifetime! However, missing your first week of 3rd grade, possibly your first 2 weeks, seems like a big deal. And she is torn over this also. She loves school, misses her friends, misses the routine. So we have been leaning towards maybe she should stay home. It would be alot easier trip on us if she did not go in many ways. I think she would do pretty well overall, but there are going to be times when she won't. There are going to be times that I won't do well! I am literally sick over this. I wish she could go for part of it, and fly home early. I just feel like I can't win. If we take her, she misses that much school. If we don't take her, will I feel guilty over it the rest of my life? So please pray for us as we struggle over this decision. We have to make it NOW!

Thursday, July 20, 2006

Happy Birthday Sage!

Today, July 20th, our Sage is 8 months old. How I long to be with her to celebrate another month in her little life. To take a picture to celebrate this birthday. To record all the things she is doing. To snuggle with her and kiss those chunky cheeks! Please pray for us that we will be with her before she turns 9 months old. In honor of Sage, we went back to the mall of course! For lunch I ate chinese, the kids don't go for that. And we went back to Build a Bear. On Monday we made our first animal, and the plan was that was that. The kids had made a bear for Malaine while they waited for her to be born, so of course they wanted to do one for Sage, but not the same bear as they did for Malaine. The kids chose the BIG bunny. And they had fun stuffing it, fluffing it, and we all kissed a heart and made a wish for Sage and stuffed it into the Bunny. They chose the red white and blue outfit for the bunny to wear. And they named the bunny Faith. Before we even started the adoption God placed Hebrews 11:1 on my heart and I have repeated that verse over and over through this neverending wait. "Now FAITH is being sure of what we hope for, and certain of what we do not see". When Mark seemed so against me in the beginning, I had Faith that God had spoke adoption to me for a reason and that He would speak to Mark. When the wait went on and on, it took ALOT of Faith to hold on and trust in Our Father, but I was certain of what I hoped for and I trusted that God would give me what He promised. So we all agreed that Faith seemed the perfect name for our bunny, who was waiting for the little gift we still have yet to see! After getting Faith done and the more I thought about it, i wished I had insisted the kids chose a smaller animal, so that Sage could actually hold it and not be scared of its size! So today, to celebrate Sage's 8 month birthday, we went back. And stuffed the velvet little bear. And had just as much fun(ok to be honest, build a bear is NUTS and 3 kids fighting over who does what, only slightly fun!) but we now have a small bear that is very kid friendly and who is named Qiao Qiao. Which we are guessing is what they are calling Sage in China. We plan to take this little bear w/ us to China and we are planning on playing w/ her, sleeping w/ so that she will be a part of us to give to Sage.
Please pray for our Sage. That she is healthy and being loved on. Please pray we get our travel approval quickly. While we have enjoyed our week, we are all anxious to get home and start working on our packing for China. And last please pray for her birth mother & father. I can't help but wonder, as my heart cries for missing her so much this day, does her birthmother hurt to? We both have sad hearts over this little girl that we can't hold. My day is coming though, and she will be in my arms. Her birth mother will never get that.
Happy Birthday Sweet Sage.

Wednesday, July 19, 2006

The Park at Mall of America

Sorry, no pictures, will try to add them in the morning. Last year the park was called Camp Snoopy, and everything had a Snoopy Theme. I guess there was some thing w/ $ and keeping the name so now all snoopy is gone. But the kids were not sad, still had their same favorite rides. It is the perfect park for our kids. Makenna can ride everything, Sawyer everything but one ride. It was crowded, but the lines were not bad. Poor Malaine will be 10 before she gets to ride anything but kiddy rides, she is so short. Which is ok w/ her, she is not the daredevil that her siblings are. She will be happy to have Sage w/ her hanging out in the younger area!
It is always a challenge trying to take all 3 kids to the park during the day while Mark works. I am exhausted trying to keep up w/ them all, and I can't even imagine if we tried this next year. I am not sure i will be that brave on my own. i told Mark we should have brought along our favorite babysitter, (who is so kindly watching our dog back home!), but another person involves another room blah, blah, blah... The only real problem i had was at lunch. We were eating in the food court, and as soon as we sit down malaine announces she has to go to the bathroom. So what does a mom do? I won't even admit it, but lets just say it all worked out fine!
i did get a lecture from some "nice" man when Sawyer got on the escalator ahead of me, before i was ready so he came running UP the escalator to get back to me. The man said" i hope you know these are dangerous". And so I, w/ my "nice Christian attitude" said, Yes, I realize that and I don't make it a habit of letting my children play on them, thank you very much. What i really wanted to say was, yes, i am going crazy here w/ all these kids, can you help me get them down the steps in a safe way? It was a man by the way, another mom, would have been nicer, i hope!
Of course this area has so many visitors from around the world. And so we saw lots of little asian girls. One family was waiting on a ride next to me, and seeing those girls, just made my heart cry. I started thinking, here we are having a blast, and our daughter and sister is sitting half way around the world, in an orphange. So I did what any good mommy would do. Took the kids out to the mall for a quick shopping trip and bought Sage some clothes. Doesn't make up for her not being here of course, but buying her things makes me feel like we are getting closer to actually putting these clothes on her.
Mark did join us at the park after work and the kids had fun taking him on all their favorite rides. We finished the night w/ dinner at The Rainforest Cafe. We had The Volcano for dessert. Sinful is all i can say! YUM! It is alot of fun, they bring it out and all the waiters yell VOLCANO and it is all lit up and sparkly and the kids thought it was amazing. Sugar high before bed always a good thing!
We did get calls from home about the terrible storms. My parents said our trampoline was around the neighborhood. Bummer. I feel bad everyone is w/ out power there. Thankful I am here! Prayerfully the air will be back on tomorrow for everyone. Just an FYI, we are not able to access our e-mail from here, so if you are trying to reach me, you have to comment here. Off to try to sleep off some calories, sure!

Tuesday, July 18, 2006

Last Vacation as a Family of 5!

Makenna & Malaine at the ski show.
Forever Mama's Boy!
To much for Malaine to check out at the Lodge!
Our Pirates at the Ski Show!

In June we had planned to go up North w/ Mark while he was in training for work. Thankfully the trip was cancelled since our referral came the week we should have been gone. Lucky for us he was still able to schedule a week to work from St Paul, Mn. And this is the week! We left our house on Friday and stayed 2 nights on the drive up at the Wisconsin Dells. We had a blast! We stayed at the Great Wolf Lodge which was wonderful. Our room was very nice, the place has waterparks everywhere. FUN, lots of FUN! We did go and see a ski show while there which was ok. the kids liked it, but it was hot. And on the drive out we wasted our money on Ripleys Believe it or Not. Cost a fortune and we were done w/ in an hour. The Dells is somewhere we would go back to for sure.
Sunday we drove on up to St Paul. We are staying close to the Mall of America. Mark drives into work and the kids and I take the shuttle over to the mall. i would like to think i am walking off all the junk we are eating, but I have a feeling not. There are so many good places to eat! Sunday we had Famous Dave's BBQ. Monday we had steak. Tonight we ate Bubba Gumps. I LOVE thier food and it is such a fun place to eat! The kids have been begging for Rainforest Cafe so that is tomorrow. Lunch was a fabulous italian place. So much for sticking to my diet. We have shopped, made a bunny at build a bear for Sage(more on that later), shopped, played, been swimming and shopped some more!
I added a few pictures from the Dells. Tomorrow we will spend the day at the Park inside the mall so hopefully more pictures to come!

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

2 Weeks Down..

i can't stand not having her picture at the top of the blog! 2 weeks down since referral. How many days till we hear something? ANYTHING!! Please continue to pray for Sage, especially for her health. We are praying for updates. Greedy isn't it? 2 weeks ago we finally get her pictures, now we ask for more! But these pictures are so old, they were taken in April. I know babies change alot in 3 months. I would just like to see her now and especially to know that she is doing well. Our agency requests pictures and measurements , but never knows if they will get them.
We have Sage's crib up in our room. We are quickly filling it w/ all things China. I am supposed to pack light. And I am trying, really trying. But what if... Any tips on packing, PLEASE pass them on!

Thursday, July 06, 2006

From the Mouth of Sawyer

Sawyer finished up his first year of coach pitch last week. Not sure he is headed for a career in baseball!
On the drive to church Sunday, each of the kids had a picture of Sage to "show off" to their friends. Sawyer says, "This baby is not that dark". We replied that she will probably look darker in person and might get darker as she is older. Sawyer"Oh, so right now she just looks like a regular person" Of course this is said w/ all innocence of a 5 year old, and so it was a little funny. However, we might need to have a lesson in being "politically correct" in our house before Sage is home!

Monday, July 03, 2006

One Week Down!

Beautiful Glass Art from Mark's parents on referral day.
Sweet Card from our friends the Harriss Family
Chocolate ladybugs, musical ladybugs and sweet girl ribbon from Aunt Judy & Uncle Ray.
Ladybug Purse, pen and bear from our friends the Dickmann Family.
The kids got ladybug suckers from Megan our babysitter.

Mark & I both agreed, last week was the LONGEST in the adoption process so far! We were busy, but it just seems like we have had Sage's picture forever already! Mark asked on Friday, shouldn't we have our travel packet, shouldn't we be filling out paperwork? Oh yeah, it has only been 5 days. Sigh... So right now we just wait. We wait to hear from China that we can go. And I think that you typically hear in about 3-4 weeks. Then travel about 3-4 weeks later. We are ready, oh so ready! We have Sage pictures everywhere. We blew them up to large sizes, so we can study every tiny minute detail about her. By the way, her little nails are long and she is scratching her face! I need to be there so i can cut those for her. We really hope we get updated pictures and measurements before travel. We are in love with this picture, and yet she probably looks nothing like it! We can't wait to see if she has hair!
We hope everyone has a very Happy 4th of July!