Wednesday, January 11, 2012

March!  No, June...
Since August, our target date for travel to China to get Airlie has been mid-March.  I have been very cautious about getting excited because there are so many ups and downs when it comes to adoption. With the turn of the new year, we decided it was time to get excited!  However, yesterday afternoon our social worker told us that our projected travel date had been changed to May or June.  I am sad because I do not want Airlie to be an orphan any longer than she must, but I simultaneously remind myself that God's timing is perfect.

Sunday, January 8, 2012

A Perfect Name

Our Sweet Family, April 2011
My name is Stacy.  I am married to Chris.  Anyone that knows anything knows that there are 5,000,000 Stacy and Chris's out there.  I guess that is why we like unique names.   All of our kids have beautifully unique names to reflect their distinct, one-of-a-kind personalities.
Cavan and Santa!  December 2011
This is a picture of our oldest son, Cavan.  He is three-years-old now, or "almost four" as he prefers to say. He currently loves superheroes, cowboys, and dressing up like an army guy.  He is anxiously awaiting his yearly birthday gift from Gigi, cowboy boots! Cavan's full name is CAVAN PLEAS.  County Cavan is a beautiful county in Ireland dotted with many lakes and hills.  Here is a snapshot:

County Cavan, Ireland
Pleas Green was my paternal grandfather.  As a child, I can say with certainty that he was my best friend.  He would do anything I wanted, and we were often in trouble with my parents for that.  He didn't care though, and it didn't stop him.  He was a perfect grandparent!  That is why our oldest son's name is Cavan Pleas.

Little Kian, 2011
Our baby's name is KIAN ZURICH.  At home, we often call him "Little."  He's just so cute and little and lovable that we can't help ourselves!  Kian is a sweet little Irish name that we fell in love with.  It means "mighty warrior."  We figure that is a fitting name for the youngest child in a family!  Zurich is one of the most beautiful cities I have ever visited.  It is a magnificent city in Switzerland, and I had a beautiful stay there.

Zurich, Switzerland

Beautiful Airlie

The name we have selected for our little girl is so dear to our hearts.  Her name will be AIRLIE IRENE!  Airlie Beach is a breath-taking portion of the Whitsunday Islands on Australia's east coast.  From the moment my eyes glanced at the pure blue waters and the sweet smelling air, I knew Airlie would be a perfect name for a little girl.  Irene is a family name on both my side and Chris's side of the family.  Chris's mom passed away in a car accident in June of 2009.  Her name was Irene.  She absolutely loved living life to the fullest.  My paternal grandmother's name was also Irene (Green).  My grandma was my best friend, just as my grandaddy was.  We feel so blessed to have had two beautiful "Irenes" in our lives and feel it only appropriate to name our little girl after them.  Thus, we are proud to say that we are AWAITING AIRLIE....!!!

Airlie Beach, Australia

Monday, January 2, 2012

The Rest of the Story...


I am typing today's entry with one hand while holding my sweet little baby with the other hand.  He is feeling lousy today.

When we began this process, we chose to adopt from the country of Bulgaria.  We remained in that mindset until God began to change our way of thinking in July of 2011.  On July 1st, Bethany (our wonderful adoption agency) sent an email to all home study approved families.  It told of a group of children in China, mostly special needs, that really needed a home. They were older children, most of them three or four-years-old.  Since I do not work in the summer, I didn't actually see that email until mid-July, days past the deadline set by the agency to express interest in the children.  That email was God planting a seed in our minds.

On August 1st, the agency sent out another list of Chinese children that were in the same situation.  Some of the children on the second list had also been on the first list and a home had not been found.   This time I received the email on the day it was sent!  After looking over the list, I called our precious social worker from Bethany.  She had studied the list as well and suggested that we seriously consider a little girl named Jingshu.  It appeared that her medical needs had been resolved or did not impact her significantly.

We peeled over her medical records, consulting with an international pediatrician from Memphis as well as physicians at Vanderbilt's International Adoption Clinic.  After much prayer, we decided to notify the agency and let them know that we were interested in adopting Jingshu.  We had mixed emotions to learn that SEVERAL families were also interested in adopting her as well.  We were elated to know that she had certainly found a home, but thought that it would probably not be with us.  Our social worker had explained that Bethany's China Team Division would compare all of the families to determine the best fit for Jingshu.  She warned us that we might not be selected because our paperwork was not "China ready" (translated and registered with the country) and that preference would likely be given to a childless couple.  She told us that on a Friday, assuring us that the China Team would have an answer by Monday afternoon.

That weekend was long, but my prayer for Jingshu was a prayer of gratitude to God for finding her a family.  Monday afternoon came and went, and we heard nothing.

On Tuesday, I emailed our social worker to see if she had heard anything.  I knew the answer to that question already, but I suppose it made me feel better to at least ask.  On my drive home from work that day, my prayer was one of those "jumbled-up-I-don't-know-what-to-pray-or-how-to-pray-it" prayers. 

On Wednesday morning, a little thought crossed my mind reminding me that we are supposed to make our specific desires known to God.  Then I targeted in, praying for Jingshu to be matched to our specific family.  We received no phone calls from the agency...

On Thursday, I emailed/annoyed the social worker again.  This time she told me that she called the China Team and talked to the secretary who told her that Jaclyn had not made a decision yet about placement for Jingshu.  Well, I didn't have any idea who Jaclyn was, but I did know that she was going to be included in my prayers!  That day I began to pray for clarity and peace in her decision. 

On Friday, I just laughed.  It was one of those funny/weird days when I just decided that I had to get some other thoughts going in my mind because it was going to be a long weekend if I thought about Jingshu all weekend.  At 4:52 pm, the social worker called.  She said that she was getting ready to leave her office for the weekend when her email "rang."  She said that she saw the email was from Jaclyn and she almost didn't open it.  She didn't want to have to call us and ruin our weekend.  She truly thought we would not be selected and had prepared us for that. Guess what???  Her news was the we HAD been selected for Jingshu!!!  Yippee!