“Jesus, thank you Maria home.”
“Thank you,” I said, and she raised her skinny arms up, bursting with joy, up to the sky, then around me with a hug, and we both started laughing before I tucked her in.
It was just the night before, while we prayed for Kate to find her home, that I showed her a picture of who Jesus is, and told him what he can do. She looked in awe.
I mean, they may ask to spend all morning playing stuffed animals together in the same crib, their laughter filling your house.
Your adopted child may teach gentleness to your previously oldest child while they play, joyfully.
Your son may start becoming bilingual, and when you serve him small pancakes, he may shout out, “MALINCKY!” and when looking for papa, he may say, “G’dia papa?” (He may teach her to say, ‘No HANK you,’ instead of ‘No thank you.’)
|lunch outside with my best friend.|
We have a lot of big things to celebrate this week, but I want to start with Elijah.
See this boy? Well, in the past four weeks, he has gained 3 pounds.
That may not seem like a lot, but it is actually a growth of 20% of his original body weight, which is huge!!!
|Turns out families are good for kids|
The first week he was home, he wanted a liquid diet, milk, water and formula–he completely refused the spoon even though I so badly just wanted to feed him. But he was still gaining weight, so I kept feeding him bottles. He would then eat those expensive squeeze packed foods once in a while–but the cost! The next day my friend called to tell me she had boxes and boxes of squeeze happy baby food from her husbands work, did we need some? What a cool coincidence, huh? 😉 Haha, just exactly what we needed to help him the most.
So we freely gave him so much food, and this week he has resumed eating off a spoon! I think that previously, eating off the spoon in the orphanage was stressful, quick, do-or-die–shoot, it stressed me out when I saw babies getting shovel fed. And now, at meal time, he looks at me, he smiles, he is not stressed or worried, and he eats, and he laughs, and he’s so happy.
I have been nerding out making baby food. I always loved doing that for Finley, but for a child who so needs all the nutrients, it is so fun. This week he had; butternut squash/cottage cheese/ oatmeal mixture. Cauliflower/creamcheese/chia seeds/banana mixtures, and a trail mix/kale/boiled egg yokes and wheat germ (Crazy right? He loves it) And when we saw a 19 on the scale instead of 16, we all started cheering, even Elijah.
Who is this boy who learned how to sign, ‘milk.’ This little boy who held up a harmonica as if it were a phone, and pretended to talk, then held it to my ear. This little boy who is growing, and thriving. I suppose every child’s most special need is a family.
|Check me out!|
This week, after the doctors we made popcorn and hot chocolate while watching a Christmas movie by the fire. Best part? It was raining outside. No, best part was our family.
There are so many little girls in the world who need fathers, but this one has one, she she will be forever blessed, protected and loved by her papa.
|Even though he’s goofy|
//Dear, dear Corinthians, I can’t tell you how much I long for you to enter this wide-open, spacious life. We didn’t fence you in. The smallness you feel comes from within you. Your lives aren’t small, but you’re living them in a small way. I’m speaking as plainly as I can and with great affection. Open up your lives. Live openly and expansively!//
There is a need for families. A need for families to take kids into their arms, their homes and allow them to grow and heal. Sometimes I think it can be hard to get out to soup kitchens and serve the homeless when you have tiny kids, but you can still serve those in need within your home by adopting. If you are making dinner already, if you are driving kids to school or the park anyways, if you have a toy box, a roof, a family, you have everything you need to radically and forever change the life of a child. To break cycles, to give hope and a future. And in the process, God makes beautiful things, and you get to be a part of it.
|Advent Calendars (Savannah and Amelia stopped by, they asked if they could move in…yes! 😉|
Adoption; all the cute, none of the stretch marks … or
Adoption; all the fun, but no middle of the night feedings…
I could go on for days…
I think for Finley, adopting two siblings who he can instantly play with has been his greatest joy, his greatest opportunity for growth.
Laughing and running after a ball, playing puppies. Andrew and I loving every, single moment.
She is such an awesome big sister–she is helping them blow up balloons. No seriously, such a good sister.
After the beach today, we walked to the end of the long pier and ate at Ruby’s. Finley and Maria shared a kids meal, Andrew and I split a burger, and Elijah, well, just slept.
We saw helicopters and pelicans.
Oh how God loves to restore brokeness. Oh how He loves to give to his children, while drawing them closer to him, the best gift of all bringing his intimate love.
I say go for it. I say dive in.
And as I was saddened for the children who instantly died, as well as for the millions of children slowly dying in orphanages, moments like these where people chose to rescue the ‘least of these’, fill our family with such joy and hope, despite our crazy world.