Friday, May 23, 2014


Our son who doesn't say much--you know that Chase guy??

Well sometime last week he told us he was getting "an award" at the Vocational Technical ceremony for graduating seniors this week. And that he needed to be at the ceremony at 6 pm.

So you can imagine our surprise when he was called up for "his award" FIVE TIMES!!!

Yes, he got more awards than any other student within the combined 4 schools of senior students. This guy of ours who has only been home 4 years! They joked with him and said hopefully he had a truck to take home all his bounty:)

He got ---

Outstanding Senior award (for his department- Culinary Arts)
FCCLA award
US Food award
HS Alumni scholarship
ServSafe certification 

He's considering going on in Culinary Arts but at present his English skills have not caught up enough yet for him to go on. So he's looking at employment locally while he continues working on his English. 

Unfortunately it takes much longer than the 4 years he has been home to catch up to college level of English especially for an older child which is hard for him because he doesn't want anything to hold him back.  He works very, very hard at everything he does--- proof positive with this awarding winning night:)

We are so proud of him, for sure he has found his "niche" within culinary arts and has really excelled within this program. It's given him a place to SHINE.  

And shine he has:)  WAY TO GO CHASE!! We couldn't be prouder. 

 From orphan to SONshine and now award winner..... so thankful to God,  this one, this son of ours, was not lost.

Each and every older child needing adopted- they are so IMPORTANT--  they just want the chance to shine---------------

Monday, May 19, 2014

Two Years

It's been a busy month so far- here we are with another "Gotcha Day:)"

Yep, this one a bit different, no jet lag was involved, not a super long wait.  Really a surprise to us, but no less wanted-- our Paisley girl arrived late at night via a long car journey but came smiling and very ready to give us a go.

We weren't sure what to expect with this "new one" in some ways. We were well prepared for behaviors she would eventually try out on us, but we didn't know how open and willing she would be to us. This  was HUGE for the success of her becoming one of the family.

Not that there weren't bumps. Please, understand, not one adoption has been without bumps. Bumps big and small, tears from them and us, worry about how things are going, if we are helping them enough, too much, etc.

 There's no magic here-- just God guiding and helping us when we are uncertain-- that's Who we go to- God.

We made the day Paisley arrived as her "Gotcha Day" because that's the day we got her. Her time in China  being adopted reminded me of Chloe's in many ways-- she doesn't remember a lot, she's blocked out a lot because they were in shock. Chloe over leaving her brothers, Paisley over being adopted.

We have not-one-doubt she NEEDED to be adopted. Her adoption was a God thing, first family led to adopt her last minute. Her health issues were so severe and poorly managed in China that she really needed to be here for her to have better health. The "forever family" was big too, but it didn't go well for first family.

Our joy in adding her to our family is now first family's peace. Peace and healing that God DID intend for her to be adopted by them, we were not able/ knew nothing of her at her adoption time, which was days before she would have aged out. BUT the steps that led to her coming to us were clearly God given. 

First family made some of the HARDEST ever decisions when things did not go well at all and this child was one very unhappy camper. Unselfishly they looked beyond themselves and they accepted that she needed a different family dynamic to start over in.  Language was huge to her- we had  teens who were still fluent in Mandarin so there were immediate connections for her. 

Chloe helped pick her new name, one she took with happiness from the start. She was Paisley from Day 1. 

Another plus- a big sister to help guide her along the way, one who had already walked through adoption from China as a teen.

She even "paid it forward" when we adopted Phoebe, helping to guide her way within our family.  

She's a treasure, that's for sure. Doing great in school, she's quiet but will make her needs known, when needed. She has gone from to being "on guard" to "comfortable." Very clearly she's found her place. She's more apt to write me a note to tell me something important, but that's fine. It's communication:)

She does have a passionate side, which we see when Chance "gets her goat"-- they pick at each other mostly about who knows more, who is smarter, further ahead in school- etc. She raised the bar for the boys which was a very good thing. Gave them some healthy competition in learning.

Not to mention how neat she is, and my only freckled face girl:)  I love those adorable freckles. She's tiny in size but mighty in spunk/ personality. Without-a-doubt. 

Her recent doctor appointment brought some bad and good news. Bad news, her hips are deteriorating more. I expected to hear this, her gait has gotten stiffer and I suspected as much. But to her complete JOY-- she grew ONE INCH. Now, no laughing, when you are told you will likely never grow and are 4 ft 6 inches, that's a huge amount. 

So big she came home and told dad she is SIX foot, 7 inches, and he said "WHAT???" We laughed together and I corrected her, it's 4 foot, 7 inches or 55 inches. 

 I thought she had gained some weight and was over the guidelines her doc had given her but she had gained (she's 70 lbs) and it was okay with her new height--phewwww. Still tiny as can be for 16 1/2 years old but the motto is "Good things come in small packages."

And she's a "Good Thing." For sure. No doubt about that one. A different route but no less "ours."  A treasured daughter. Loved, forever more, our freckle faced China girl.

Happy Gotcha Day Miss Paisley, daughter o' ours, we love you!! Couldn't love you more...........

Saturday, May 17, 2014

A Graduation Day

I don't think we could be much prouder of our first born girly today. 

Here she is...................... A college graduate!!

Whooo Hooo Malaree-- we know you are going far and going to do big things:)

A social worker (no surprise there, huh?)  SW in "adoption lingo" but not OUR SW, 'cause that's not allowed.  Of course not. 

Our daughter, a young lady whom we think the world of.....  we can't wait to see what wonderful things your future holds:)

CONGRATULATIONS Mal, we think you have done well and deserve all the best!

Job interviews are next..... 

Sunday, May 11, 2014

Happy Momma's Day!!

Happy Mother's Day to All Momma's out there:)
Thanking God for the gift of many children, I am so blessed!!

Wednesday, May 7, 2014


Keeping you up on the totals for the Anderson boys:))

Cause God is good and I want to be sure we are seeing Him work. Yes, He is. 

You see, often when fundraising it's really, really hard to not look at the total and think--- wow, so far off:(

But that's not what God says to do-- We have to rejoice in His provisions. And He is providing, in His time, in His way---

$884 total of the $15K needed.

Yippeeeee!!!  It's happening!

And if you need the link again because you thought, "Oh, I'll do that later......"  and missed it, just don't miss out!!

Adding Andersons (Click for caring donation site)

or here  Danny and Wayne (Click here for Reece's Rainbow donation site)

Monday, May 5, 2014

4 years

Seems so recent that we were headed off to China to collect our sons. 

Yes, sons we never expected to be collecting, ones we learned of on the very day I arrived at the civil affairs office to meet our new daughter, Chloe, their sister.

Having no clue she HAD 2 brothers sitting at the orphanage, brothers who had  said goodbye and expected to never see their sister again. 

 The boys didn't know that we were unaware of their existence and they had seen the pictures we sent Chloe with our many sons, so they believed we didn't want them:((

So to say we were shocked is a huge understatement, as well, we didn't begin to know how we were going to fund 2 more adoptions and get both the boys approved to be adopted by us. 

BUT---- we laid the burden in God's Hands and He provided every need.

When paperwork needed to come through, funds were short--- EVERY SINGLE NEED WAS MET.  We went to "collect" our new sons with not one doubt that God meant for them to be adopted by us. Not one.

And we needed that!  Teen adoption is not for wimps. Nope, it's not. It's HARD. Doesn't matter if you get an easy going child either, it's just plain TOUGH.  

And we've had the tough. BUT--- we've also had the blessings. Indeed. BLESSINGS.  These boys, now young men have given us many things.  Lessons in loving. Lessons in God's guidance. Lots and lots of lessons:)

Lessons teaching them. Lots of things to teach. Still doing it, today it was "How to fill out job applications, 101."  Ha ha.

But, yes, JOBS. Graduation next month. Such different guys from the boys we met 4 years ago.

Mostly you notice the physical growth- they both have gained over 50 lbs. Not that they have an ounce of fat on them, nope, not sure where all that food goes? We tease them that they must have hollow legs and it's all going there. Because they can really pack away the food. For sure.

Might be in their upward growth, Chance is 5 ft 11 and Chase is 5 ft 9.  Yep older bro is shorter. Chance is still growing too.... wouldn't be surprised if he is 6 foot+.

The boys are also like night and day. Where Chance is a total goof off, Chase is totally serious. Where Chase is quiet, Chance is a chatterbox. Where Chance is more open to affection, Chase is not.  Where Chase is very particular about his stuff, Chance's stuff is everywhere.

Chase's room is in perfect order. Chance's a total mess:)

Even as different as night and day, there's no doubt that both of them are indeed a blessing to us and many others. 

We had no idea how far and wide their story would go and what a blessing it would be to others to help get the boys home with their sister. 

It's been 4 years and their miracle adoption story never gets old:) 

Family makes such a difference. Chosen. SONshines. Loved. What a difference adoption makes in the lives of us ALL.  

Friday, May 2, 2014

Promises, promises

I want to make you all a promise. A great one, I assure you.

You see, this Sunday coming will be 4 years since we got our boys.  Yep, our Gotcha Day anniversary.  Seems like there was never a more important, special, amazing gotcha day in history.  

 The brothers.  If you don't know the story of "the brothers" you need to go back and witness a true miracle of God and His provisions and blessings to get our 2 teen SONS home with us, adopted to the same family as their teen sister.

Chosen by HIM, we didn't know a thing about them when I arrived in China to adopt Chloe. And wouldn't have learned of them until much later and probably too late without God's Hand in that too. The story is here on the blog from Chloe's adoption (Feb 2009) up to their adoption (May 2010).

If you already know their story then I am sure with 4 years under our belts you are wondering how they are doing. And I want to share it with you.

But first I need to bring another adoption to your attention----

2 Brothers to be.  And a need. A BIG need. One of the boys  health condition is rapidly deteriorating and it's made this adoption step up  wayyyyy FAST, as in, the sooner the better to get him (and the other son)  HOME faster than expected.

The need is funding to get there sooner-- this was not an expected part of the adoption of these boys. BUT---- God KNEW. And He knew this family He has chosen to bless with these 2 precious treasures that they would rise to the occasion and remain committed to these boys. THEY WILL NOT GIVE UP.

They are needing to SHARE the blessing of these guys-- their blog explaining much more is here (Click)---Where You Want Me To Go

And where to donate is here--- (Click)You Caring donations

And here's another place to donate (CLICK)----

For health reasons the adoption is going fast paced and I humbly ask that if you can donate to get these 2 precious guys home please do so.  Because as I have said before-- this is not God's problem, it's OURS.  It's within our reach to help a family already deeply committed to bring 2 children who have no family to their family and make them SONS.  To show them love, belonging, commitment and teach them about Him. 

So many times people say to us-- we can't adopt. Or we are done adopting. Or I'd like to but I don't meet the requirements. I don't know what to do for "the orphans" God calls us to care about.

Here's the chance to DO SOMETHING and not just do something-- BE PART OF GOD'S BLESSING in these boys' lives.  YOU, and YOU, and YOU making a difference- you can PRAY (It's totally free and #1)-- you can DONATE-- no amount is too small-- your $5, goes in with someone else's $20 and someone else's $50 and there's another $100 wiped away. 

The need is great-- $15,000 needed in 3 weeks. BUT---- this is NOT impossible. It is NOT BIGGER THAN OUR GOD!!!

PRICELESS. These children ARE.  Priceless. No better way to spend money than to invest in a child's life. Here's YOUR chance.

I'll share my boys, our promise to them, their progress, their growth and our last 4 years as a family with them, up next........ just know they too were priceless and yet here they are now, home 4 years with us.  Let's give these boys the chance to have 4 years with their family that loves them and desperately wants to get them home and healthy.