It has been 6 days since we arrived home. Wow, almost a week. It feels like a blur. We remember this jetlag very well. Yuck! We are getting dressed and functioning again.
Wow! We were really blessed to arrive home to a group of dear, smiling, loving, precious friends at the airport. It was a long trip home and we were so glad to get back to Little Rock. It was wonderful to re-unite with our other children.
Leaving Hong Kong....
Arriving home to Little Rock....
We are trying to stay really close to home & build some routines for the girls. We are working hard at playing, laughing, touching, eating & living together. Adoption stuff! It seems so easy but it is not. It is especially tricky with an older adoption. God is faithful and He is meeting us in answered prayers.
Both girls are loving siblings, toys, playing & JUMPING on the trampoline in the backyard. It is HOT here!! It has been in the 90s to 100s. It doesn't stop them a bit. They want to JUMP. We have yet to bring the camera with us for some shots. Working on that! Just imagine 6 crazy kiddos jumping- hot & sweaty!
Mercy loves her room with Allie (no necessarily sleeping in there, yet). She had a lot of fun trying on some of her clothes. She especially enjoyed the dresses.
Food is a particularly hard area for our Mercy. Zoey, on the other hand, will eat anything we put in front of her. We visited a local Asian grocery market together. We asked her to pick out some of her favorite things. This Mama has some serious learning curve in the kitchen. I thought I was prepared with my skills in making Jiaoza dumplings, fried rice, steamed veggies and such. These kiddos are bringing it to another level. I am learning about quail eggs, chicken feet, bean curd Baozi and so much more. We are so grateful to have some friends at the local Chinese church who are willing to teach me. I am heading back to their cooking school soon!
We want to be transparent with you and let you know we need your prayers. Adoption is beautiful, miraculous, thrilling, amazing and incredible. It is also....hard. We are trusting HIM with all of our hearts as we press forward day by day. One of the greatest needs is for the English language to come quickly. It is very difficult and probably frustrating for Mercy especially to have to use the Google translator for most communication. It is fairly easy with a toddler to act out needs, play and be silly together. It is much harder with a teen. She has a lot more going on in her head. We long to be able to have some in depth conversations with her. Google translate is very limited. Sentences need to be basic. Even then.... it is clear meanings get chopped up. She woke with a stomach ache the other night. She was hurting. We were trying to figure out her need. It was so hard to pass the phone back and forth and keep missing the meaning. For example... she couldn't understand, "do you feel like you are going to throw up?" Who knows how that translated. We ended up typing, "vomit?" The answer was "no", by the way! :) We worked through it, but all we wanted to do was help her and fix it. It was really hard.
Another major area is fear. Mercy has a lot of fears. We learned that nannies at her orphanage locked the building and left the children every night. Wow, just heartbreaking to us. We have so much compassion for our girl. There are many more details, like having access to scary movies, etc. Our girl has some pretty serious fears. She is currently sleeping on the floor in our master bedroom while Zoey is in our bed. We have a full house in the master bedroom. We would appreciate your prayers in the area of fear. We have already begun some discussions (through Google translator) about our faith and our hope in Jesus. She is open to learning more. We explained that we don't have to live in fear because we know God is in control. We know He is always watching over us and His plans for us are good. We showed her some verses in her Bible. It was good for her and for us!!! She said she wanted to learn more about Jesus.
Clinging to HIM, trusting HIM & praising HIM-
Art, Jen, Allie, Mercy, Zachary, Jacob, Zoey & Bethany Joy