Tuesday, December 23, 2008

My Current Obsession

I love this new Christmas song, I hope they still play it after Christmas. I think you'll love it too*, so here's my gift to you, Merry Christmas.

*This video has images of Jesus being crucified and is not appropriate for children.

I believe

We had two visits from real life Santas this week. It was such a neat opportunity to talk to Kylynn about Santa Claus, why he does what he does (he loves Jesus) and how exciting it's going to be on Christmas Eve to have Santa come to our house and leave behind a gift and fly away into the night.

Saturday night there was a knock on the door and there were the N's. Mrs. N is such an amazing lady, she loves babies- a lot! And just like Santa she wants to make sure that everybody who has a baby in our church (and it is a lot!! of people, it's a big church) gets a present. So she makes them a blanket and bib, and sometimes more and then delivers it to them at the hospital or at home. These gifts are precious and say on each one, "Jesus loves...." Like Santa she's a bit magical, both her personality and how she always knows when someone's had a baby. It was such a blessing to us that Jack will have a blanket just like Kylynn's made by Mrs. N.

Monday night we were eating dinner and again there was a knock at the door. Kyle got there pretty quickly, but of course had to try and get our dog to get back from the door, when he opened it there was a giant Christmas bag with a card and no person or car. He walked in with it and said that nobody was there, the little girl inside of me jumped up and down!! It was just like seeing my presents Christmas morning that magically appeared there. We opened the card and it was a gift from a friend of Kyle's and his wife. Inside the bag was a giant stuffed pony! Oh my, Kylynn and Jack had a blast last night "riding" him and hugging him.

It was a huge blessing to me and reminded me the joy in believing in magic this Christmas season. I had been praying over some of our traditions with Christmas and making sure that what we did with our children was honoring the Lord. Then in the next couple of days I heard a talk by Dr. Dobson, and had two visits from modern day Santa's, reminding me that keeping Christmas as full of magic and wonder for as long as possible for my children is a good thing. And maybe if I'm lucky someday I'll be able to be swept up by their excitement and remember what it was like to believe.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

The Story

I was babysitting a friend's daughter on Wednesday the 3rd. I was in a bad mood, even though I truly believed God had told me to pray for Jack to come home by Christmas, the calendar had read December for 3 days so far and they played Christmas songs constantly on the radio and my baby was not home! I started to doubt the Lord and became angry every time I saw Christmas decorations...which was very hard for me because typically this is my favorite time of year.

We had been playing outside and I went inside to make sure my friends hadn't called saying they were here to pick up their daughter and I wasn't answering the front door. Sure enough there was a message. So I played the message expecting it to be my friends and instead it was my social worker saying she had good news for me and to call her back. I became frantic, yelling at Kylynn to be quiet so I could hear the number and completely freaking out! I called her back and as she was telling me the good news our power went out..which made my phone stop working. Luckily she immediately called my cell and gave me the details. Kyle came home early from work and we spent the rest of that day trying to book airfare and hotel, arrange someone to watch Kylynn, and make a huge list of all we needed to get done.

Three days later, on Saturday, we flew to Korea. The travel went great we had absolutely no problems, we flew Asiana Air to Korea and I felt like I was in first class, I have never experienced anything like that...and I've flown internationally before. I cannot sleep on planes, so we stayed awake for 24 hours (mostly) and easily adjusted to Korean time, just went to sleep when we got there at 9pm and woke up the next morning.

That morning we woke up was Monday morning and we had a 9:30 appointment to meet Jack. Miraculously I was calm and not about to throw up (which I really do when I'm extremely nervous). The foster mom walked in and our social worker said here's your baby! And I looked at Kyle like, do you see him? I know he's supposed to be small and all but there is no baby here. Then she took off her coat and underneath was a baby tied to her back. We both got to hold him, but Jack was not having any of that he cried instantly and after a few minutes the foster mother would take him back. We enjoyed meeting him but were a little concerned about how scared he seemed of us. We got to spend 20 minutes talking to the foster mother (our social worker interpreted for us) asking her questions about his preferences and their family. I will write more on the topic of his foster mother soon, but let me tell you she desperately loved him and raised him as her own precious son, I could not believe how God blessed us again. We said goodbye to Jack and his foster mom and were told to pick him up Wednesday at 4pm, 24 hours before we were scheduled to fly out, due to his stranger anxiety, they thought the longer he got to spend with us the better (usually you pick up your baby 3 hours before your flight).

Amazingly we were both fine saying goodbye to Jack, it was obvious to us that he was very loved and happy. We spent the next 2 1/2 days exploring Seoul. I cannot remember if I was smart enough to pray that the Lord would make us fall in love with Jack's country, but thankfully somebody did. We loved Korea, the people were amazing, very helpful and respectful. They bow, and I loved that so much, I want to start that in the US, we could learn so much for them on how to treat our neighbor the way you'd like to be treated. The city is huge! with so many people everywhere I couldn't believe it. When you use the subway during rush hour they come off in a large mass and rush towards you, they walk everywhere and are always in a hurry. And I couldn't stop looking at them, they were the most beautiful people I've ever seen and everyday, everybody (I'm serious!) was dressed to the nines, amazing fashion! We loved the food and there was always somebody who could speak enough English to help us order our meat cooked! It was a little pre-baby vacation for Kyle and I and we shopped and sight saw all the time we had so much so that our bodies ached and we slept like logs at night.

Wednesday we went to the agency to pick up Jack. The second I walked in the door I was crying, I could not imagine the pain his foster mother was going through. They gave us lots of stuff and instructions, the foster mother gave us about 5 outfits for Jack, Christmas presents for all of us, photo albums, and toys. Then they gave me a carrier and put Jack in it. His foster mother was crying and telling him goodbye in Korean, after a while the social worker told me to go ahead and walk off, so I did. But his foster mother ran after us and held onto Jack one last time and hugged Kyle and I. For days I would break down crying replaying that in my head, I feel so blessed by her love for my son, and I cannot wait to see her again someday in heaven.

Unlike the first time we met him, Jack was very calm during all of this, not a tear. We began walking back to our hotel and he fell asleep in the carrier. When we got to our room, I sat and let him sleep till he woke up. When he woke up he was very scared, he had no idea who we were or what was going on. That first hour of him crying was hard, but I comforted him the best I could and eventually realized that maybe he would be happier if I was not holding him, we put him on a pallet on the ground with toys and I sat next to him and he was happy. Ever since then, he seems happy to see us and only unhappy when he has a need that needs to be met or during the night. For the first couple of days he asked for his ooma (Mommy in Korean) several times a day, but lately that has lessened. He appears to have bonded with me on some level and cries when I leave the room. He is a very happy baby and his favorite past time seems to be laughing and making funny noises.

God worked out some miracles on our behalf on the flight home. We had three different people move us to the front of lines so that we could make our connecting flight in Los Angelos. I cannot thank you all enough for your many prayers, the Lord immensely blessed our travel, Jack did great never crying for too long, and sleeping some, I couldn't have asked for it to go better. Of course I hope to never have to get on a plane again, two 24 hour trips in less than a week is crazy!!

Kylynn loves Jack, but is not crazy about sharing me with him, but is getting better everyday, now that we're back to "normal" life and routine. Our parents cared for Kylynn and she had a blast while we were gone and tells me she wants to go back to Nana/Grandpa's house (I'm pretty sure there was less rules there :). My parents came that first weekend we were back and it blessed us to have them here loving and admiring our new baby, we were really sad when they had to go.

We'll see what the future holds but right now Jack seems like a very happy baby who really loves his family, and I even think he'll be a great sleeper once he figures out we've left Korea! :)

All I want for Christmas is some sleep

I'm a sleep junky. I can sleep 9 hours a night ever night easily and still feel groggy for the first hour I'm awake. Now anyone who's met Kylynn probably knows why that's possible, let's just say she wears one out.

Today it's been a whole week of having our beautiful baby boy, but it's also been a whole week of being up most of the night. In Korea it's 14 hours ahead of us, so basically Jack thinks it's daytime when it's night time and vice versa. We've had some nights better than others but based on last night we're still not there yet.

I am planning on blogging the whole story of finding out Jack was ready, flying to Korea, meeting Jack for the first time, and so one...but right now I'm so tired I'm not sure if my story would be coherent.

I will say, THANK YOU, for all your prayers. To God be the glory, great things he has done. Our whole trip was one huge answer to prayers and God worked out several miracles for us along the way. Jack is doing great, he is a million times easier than Kylynn was at this age, very happy, just doesn't understand why I'm keeping him up all night and wanting him to sleep all day. This too shall pass...

Saturday, December 13, 2008

Jack's Home

*This is an email Kyle sent out, in my state of tiredness I will copy it here, and write more later..when Jack learns when's it's night time and when it's day time.*

Howdy Family!

Because of God's wonderful blessing, I'm delighted to announce that Jack is home! Jenny and I enjoyed our trip to Korea. We learned what a wonderful place Korea is, that their culture is welcoming and respectful, the sights are impressive, the city is clean and modern, and the food tastes great. Kylynn spent a few days with her grandparents during our trip.

Jack is cute with short black hair, a small stature, and eyes so dark I can't distinguish the pupil from the colored part. He likes to smile and when he get's excited he kicks his legs. He crawls on his belly, army style, and mostly keeps himself upright when he's sitting.

5 Do not be afraid, for I am with you;
I will bring your children from the east
and gather you from the west.

6 I will say to the north, 'Give them up!'
and to the south, 'Do not hold them back.'
Bring my sons from afar
and my daughters from the ends of the earth-

7 everyone who is called by my name,
whom I created for my glory,
whom I formed and made."

Isaiah 43, The Bible

Please join Jenny and me as we rejoice over his homecoming. God was faithful, as ever, by bringing Jack home by Christmas, caring for us tenderly during the travel, and causing Jack to quickly trust this pair of strange looking, smelling, and sounding foreigers. Thank you for praying for us.

In peace,


Tuesday, December 9, 2008


Well, we made it. The flight was long, very long but all went well, with no problems, thank you for your many prayers. It is very nice here, very clean, and the people are very polite and helpful. There are times when I can forget that I am not in the US. We're really enjoying the food and the weather is thankfully "warm" for this season. We have done a ton of shopping and visited two different palaces that were beautiful.

Yesterday we met Jack for the first time, it was a bit magical and overwhelming. His foster mom came into the room with him tied to her back and her coat was over them both, so when the social worker said here's your baby I was confused what she was talking about. He is very attached to his foster mother (a huge answer to prayers) and she is absolutely wonderful. Please be in pray for us as he is very shy and every time we held him he became instantly upset and scared. This is going to be a very difficult transition for him, please pray that he would trust us soon and for the adjustment of us all, including sleeping together, flying on a long flight, calming him and feeding him well.

Somebody give Kylynn a big hug and kiss from me and tell her we miss her but our buying her lots of gifts to make up for it! :)

I will write more later when we have time. Thank you all for your many prayers!

Friday, December 5, 2008

Dear Jack,

I hope that someday I'll be able to express to you the way you were anticipated, prayed for, and celebrated. I hope that in the times you find life to be hard or you perhaps try to think no one loves you, the number of people who called and wrote me crying and praising God for you yesterday will carry you through. I hope that you will be strong enough to be just who you are, your story is unique but I hope you take pride in that. I hope you stand tall that the Lord has such plans for you that He would give you three mothers who love you, two countries to call your own, and to have God worked miracle after miracle in your short 9 months.

Someday I'll understand this miracle of adoption better, right now I'm just walking in obedience and love and anticipation. It is only by faith that I know what I'm doing, practically speaking I have no idea how to raise a son, how to deal with the issues of being an "interracial family", how to help you through the certain hurts of not knowing your birth mother or father. But I promise you to always pray over my decisions for you, to walk in faith, to trust God's plan for your life, to parent you by the only Book that gives me true answers, the Bible, and to say I'm sorry when I mess up.

I've missed you for a long time, I cannot wait to meet you. Your big sister is so excited. Yesterday she gave me a long list of all the things she's going to do for you. Today she said, I'm ready for my baby brother to come home! We all are and this is going to be the best Christmas ever. I love you baby boy and if I'd go to the ends of the earth to get you once, I'll do it again, don't forget that.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

My hands have finally stopped shaking

We got the call this morning that Jack is ready for us to go and get him. Now we have the task of arranging hotels, flights, childcare for Kylynn, luggage, and on and on so that we can go. We are trying to book the flight/hotel right now, as soon as I know more I will share.

Please pray for us that my hands will continue to not shake (feel the Lord's peace and prescence), that He works out all this crazy travel perfectly so we can go quickly, that He would calm Kylynn down (she has picked up on the frenzy and is worried), and take care of the million of details, most of all that Jack would feel safe and loved with Kyle and I.

Thank you for all your prayers, I will write more I promise about this miracle that God has worked out every step of the way...I'm so glad I didn't miss out on this.