Tuesday, June 23, 2009

We've Got Our Girl!!!!

First of all, it is so weird to be sending my posts to an email address and not being able to access our blog to see what it actually looks like. I hope the pictures post ok. I know that's what you've all been waiting for anyway. :) But, shocker, get this.... I have hardly taken my camera out of the bag since we got here. (I know!!) And when I do take it out it, the lens gets so steamed up, I can't take any pictures for a while. Have I mentioned it is HOT here? :)

OK, enough chit chat, you all want to know about Kara, right? Yes, I said Kara. We had our guide ask her when we got back to our hotel room which name she wanted to be called and she said Kara. I find myself going back and forth between Kara and Da Xin, and I've found that using Kara doesn't get her attention 100% of the time because she's not used to it yet. But, she drew a picture yesterday and wrote KARA at the top of it.

Kara is such a tiny little girl. Many people have thought that Leila is the big sister and are shocked to find that Leila is 7 (nearly 8) and that Kara is 11. Kara is maybe an inch taller than Leila, but everything about her is petite. They can definitely share clothes and wear the same shoe size. They wore matching outfits today and they received LOTS of stares. Many people said they looked like twins. (Ummmmmmm.... not really.)

Kara picked our restaurant last night.... McDonald's. Leila was a happy camper with her choice. Kara is very energetic and has a very outgoing personality. I think she knew how tired we were last night, so she turned off all the lights and tv at 8:00 am (even though her bedtime is typically 10 pm), so that we could all go to sleep. I think she did that for our benefit, not hers. What a sweet girl. The funny thing, though, was that we all woke up at midnight and were wide awake. ;)

She and Leila quickly became best buds. They have their own little way of communicating. Mainly by bossing each other around by pointing their fingers at each other. LOL. Leila taught her how to play her new DS, they color together, they walk around holding hands, race each other to the elevator buttons, etc. It is very cute. And by the way, Rock, Paper, Scissors is a universal game. Who knew? I'll tell you, having Leila here has made this so much easier. The moments of silence because we can't communicate can get a bit awkward, but there is very little downtime with the two of them. We have two adjoining rooms in every hotel, so they share a room and that has been very nice for all of us. It also allows me to sit here typing this while they nap in the other room.

This morning, we finalized all of our adoption paperwork, so it is now official. Our guide told us on the way from the airport yesterday that because of her age, Kara will be asked if she wants to be adopted by us, and if she says no, then we will return home without her. This really freaked Leila out, as she was very worried that Kara would say no. I am pleased to say that Kara said "yes" both times this morning when asked, so she is officially our daughter!!! Leila kept asking, "Is she ours? Is she ours?" She IS ours!!!

Her very good friend from the same orphanage was adopted yesterday, too, and she was given an American name, Lela, so it's nice for her to know her friend has a new name, too. Lela and her family are staying in the same hotel and the girls are so happy to see each other all the time. We are going out to Pizza Hut tonight with them and then to the nearby People's Park. The other family is from Virginia and we have already talked to the girls about using Skype to communicate with one another. They are so excited!

My last words before I sign off.... I think I'm moving to Nanning. Everyone here takes a daily nap - adults and children. I must do as the locals do, so I'm off to nap!! :)


Grace at Home said...

Congratulations!!! I can't believe I discover your blog on the very day you post about adopting your new daughter. What perfect timing. :) I look forward to reading more...

Shelly & Rob said...

Great to finally see you all together! Thanks for updating the post and sharing. We're very happy for you all and look fwd to following the rest of your journey!

Love ya, R,S,J,L&J

Faye said...

Oh Michelle--- I have tears in my eyes reading your post. I am SO VERY HAPPY for you and your family. Kara has no idea about the fun we are going to have with her but especially the love that she will get to share with you all. God sure does work in an amazing way.
I have been thinking about you and praying that all is well.
Alex told me yesterday that Mia is her best friend and when can she play with her again. She even asked about Leila and Da Xin. She says to me " Mommy, me like Mia's sisser Leila. I get to pay with Da Xin too" . so cute.
Much love to you my dear friend. Have so much fun.

Felicia said...

Congratulations!!! Kara sounds like she has the sweetest spirit. So glad she and Leila are bonding and that her friend from the orphanage will be in Virginia (God is good)

Norah said...


MeganSgt said...

What an awesome God we have!! I am so happy for you guys!

DiJo said...

Tears of joy for ALL of you!!! What a blessing to have such a sweet beginning with your precious daughters!!! Kara is clearly one very special girl who has been loved! Congratulations!!!! I will continue to pray for a wonderful, peaceful, fun and safe trip!


Somewhere In The Sun said...

Congratulations!! The pictures look wonderful, masks and all. It was great to read about how she is doing. I just about lost it though when I read about Leila asking "is she ours." I'm so glad that the two have already formed a bond. Can't wait for more updates!


Denise said...

Oh, I am so happy for you...congratulations!

Sherri & Todd said...

Congratuations!! on being a family. And Kara is a beautiful name. I teared up when Lelia ask if she's ours. We're very happy for you and are looking forward to following the rest of your journey.
hugs from Florida,

Ashley said...

Oh YEAH - PRAISES!!!!! I can't believe she is with you!!! I love the pictures and Leila and Kara must be loving all their sister time!

After such a journey you must just be loving every second - and to think once you get home with your ball of energy Mia things will be even more complete! Congratulations!

I will continue to think of you and pray each day for a safe, peaceful and enjoyable trip!

Blessings and HUGE Hugs, Ashley

Julia said...

Michelle, Kara is SO beautiful and I agree with those in China - they may not look like twins, but they definitely look like sisters. Kara seems like she's young at heart but may have an old soul, how sweet was it to turn out the lights early so you all could get some rest. It sounds like something my 11 year old would do. Just wondering about Kara's size, my Libi is 4'7" and the second smallest in the 6th grade last year; so Lib was reading this with me and she wants to know if Kara is actually shorter than she is. LOL

Y'all have a WONDERFUL time, specially enjoying those daily naps, that's something I could easily get into also.

Shelly & Rob said...

Thanks for the pictures. I was so looking forward to seeing you all together. I love that Leila and Kara are having such a good time. I can't wait to see more pictures and read more about your awesome journey! You better get that camera fired up!
Love, Shelly

Stacy said...

Michelle- Congrats!!!! I'm so happy for all of you, and Kara too! I love that the girls are getting along, and that you'll have a friend not too far away for her! I love the picture of you all together - can't wait to see how Mia reacts too! Love ya!

Ohilda said...

She is beautiful! I love the picture of all of you with masks on....such a treasured (and unique keepsake). Kara sounds PERFECT for your family, Michelle. I am so very happy for all of you!!

By the way, go to:


You can VIEW and POST to your blog from there, including and seeing pictures!!! I did it in China when we couldn't access our blog.

Good luck! Can't wait to keep reading.

Todd said...

Michelle, first of all congratulations, it looks like things went pretty smooth. Faye has been chomping at the bit waiting for an update. I read that you cannot access your blog, have you tried? I know the first time we were there we couldn't, but we had no problems accessing our blog why we were there in April. I don't know they seem to change things over there so often that blogs may be banned again. Congratulations once again, we look forward to hearing more and seeing more. Thanks for sharing

Lilia said...

congrats congrats congrats!!!
so happy for you!!!
and Kara is such a lovely girl!

Joe and Jane said...

Huge congratulations! I'm thrilled that's it's okay so well. It seems like Kara was very prepared for this and I'm really glad for that! Love the mask photo of you all, of course. Kara looks so happy!

day by day said...

Oh, what a special day! Congratulations!!!! I love the picture of all of you together and the masks will make for a good story as she gets older. : )

I want to tell you that when I looked at the pic of the two girls hugging...I assumed it was one of Kara's friends that she was saying good-bye to...then I read it was Leila and I was so touched...what a precious picture!!

Michelle, she really seems like a happy little girl. What a beautiful and sincere smile!!

Did you know the part about her being asked if she wanted to be adopted...that she could refuse and you could go home without her? I wondered if they told you about that from the beginning. That must have been a bit scary...I am so happy she agreed as she will now be a part of a VERY special family....FOREVER!!!

Isn't that so sweet that the girls share such a bond already??

I am just so happy for you, my friend!!!!

Courtney said...

Congratulations. She looks so happy to be with her new family!

Marla said...

Oh yay!!!!! It's so nice to see her with you at last!! How sweet that she let y'all go to bed early, she sounds so precious. Have fun getting to know your sweet girl and thanks so much for the awesome update! Can't wait to see all of you without the masks. :)

Gail said...

Congratulations! I've got a big smile on my face seeing your pics and reading your post. Sounds like she's doing extremely well...what an amazing little girl she is. Can't wait to follow the rest of your journey!

And my word verification is 'blessed'...how perfect for you all!

Don and Lisa Osborn said...

Michelle (and family)~Congratulations!!! It is so wonderful to see you with your beautiful Kara and know she is now yours and you are hers...

I am amazed at how manners, love, and enthusiasm come through without being able to speak the same language. I got so tickled trying to picture Leila and Kara together as best buds. It is a beautiful sight, I'm sure.

My heart is brimming with excitement and joy for you and I can't wait to hear more of your adventures together.

Praying for your peace, good health, and remember that sometimes the best photograph is the one stored in your memory.

Love you~

Dawn said...


Jill said...

Hi Michelle!
I have been anxiously awaiting this post!!!
CONGRATULATIONS!!! Glad to here things are going so well! Can't wait to see more!
Hugs, Jill

Mandi said...

She is so cute. I am so happy to finally see Kara as a part of your family. I cannot wait to continue your journey.


Steffie B. said...

OMW......Michelle.....I can hardly see my keyboard.....the picture of your two daughter hugging.....I am just sobbing..... beautiful, beautiful, beautiful! ;)


Amie@WildOlive said...

PTL!!!!!!!!! WOW!!!!I can't believe it!!! why you always got to make me cry???? At least they are happy tears!! I just LOVE to see her all smiles! so good to see the sisters together!!!!!! How very very very cool! This MADE my day!!!

Sending you lots of love and many prayers!!!

Love you!

Joanne said...

Congratulations to you all! I am so glad things are going well - Kara & Leila sound so happy together! Make sure to order the green onion pancakes in the restaurant downstairs in the hotel (if you are at the Majestic) - not where you have breakfast, the one around the corner from the main desk. The kids will love them!

Missy said...

Congratulations Michelle and family! Kara is just beautiful and so petite!!! I am so thrilled to hear that she and Leila have hit it off. I know you must be so proud of Leila.
Keep giving those forehead kisses and hugs...she'll grow to LOVE those soon, for sure.
God is sooo good!

mommy24treasures said...

oh Michelle I am just so happy for all of you and can't imagine all of the feelings you are all feeling right now. She is just so so beautiful, I just knew she was going to be a tiny girl.:)
I am so glad Leila and she are bonding well. love all the pics. they are so special. Hugs, Connie

Loren said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Rebecca said...

AMAZINGNESS! I am thrilled, excited, praising God, wiping tears from my face... just can't believe it has really HAPPENED, that she's there with you and you're there with her! Wow! She is beautiful Michelle - and you all look like you've just "always been". Praying for the adjustment because I know I certainly had my moments while in China... especially the communication barrier, like you mentioned, that can be hard. But she will learn quickly with siblings to keep up with! :) LOVE the photos. Love you all!


ellie said...

Congratulations!!! I saw your photos on Flickr first and had to hop over here to check out how everything has been going. It sounds like you are all doing awesome!

It is soooo good to hear that Leila and Kara are doing well together. Children just have a way of communicating don't they? love that. Looking forward to the posts when Kara and Mia meet! Have a fun time the rest of your trip (take more photos!)

Half Gaelic, Half Garlic! said...

CONGRATS!!! So good to see you with her.....you all look so happy!! Good to hear the girls are already bonding....so sweet!!

I was so excited to get home from work today and find all these beautiful pictures!!

Enjoy your time and China....and OMG about your camera fogging up....I cannot imagine!!

Hugs to you all,


Stefanie said...

What blessed news!! What a beautiful family... surgical masks and all :)

Wife of the Pres. said...

She is BEAUTIFUL!!! Thanks for sharing your story. I linked over from NHBO. We are almost DTC for our waiting 9-year-old SON!!! Your posts are very encouraging and informative. I am going to get DH to read the remote story. I'm guessing it was intentional … the door locking? I could totally see my almost-11-year-old locking himself in his room!!! Actually he does. LOL! So amazing to see your two older girls together. Confirms for me that our boys are going to China to adopt their brother!!! Thanks again and our Daddy's blessings to you for the rest of your trip.

Kris said...

Oh I was SO glad to find this post!! I have goosebumps!! God I really missed out on all of this!!!! Congratulations WAY late!!! SO love that pic of Leila and Kara hugging!!!