Isaiah 43:5

Do not be afraid, for I am with you; I will bring your children from the east and gather you from the west. Isaiah 43:5

Sunday, December 29, 2013

Lucy's First Christmas Home!

As we continue to experience so many firsts with our sweet girl, I'm constantly wondering about Lucy's first three and a half years.  Celebrating firsts with her has been so much fun but it's also accompanied many times with a sting of sadness and wonder. Christmas was most definitely one of those times!

TEN stockings were hung....
 As mentioned in the last post, when Lucy was given her first gift, she wasn't sure what to do with it.  (not to worry, she quickly caught on and although it was not easy to unwrap a gift with only one working arm, she only needed a wee bit of help!)  The "sting of sadness" I feel at times is NOT related to thinking about her not having received wrapped gifts in her past!  Instead it comes from thinking about her not being surrounded by  her own family, love and laughter.  To our knowledge (gathered from records) is that little Qu Yan (Lucy's Chinese name) spent her first two Christmas' in the orphanage.  This then leads me to wonder, "What does Christmas look like in an orphanage?"  Then I usually proceed to thinking about the 799 other children that are still at the Xi'an Social Welfare Institute (orphanage) when we left there in mid-September to bring Lucy home.  A lot of the children there have spent many more than two or even three Christmas' inside orphanage walls and without a family!  Last December (2012), Lucy was chosen to move into a foster family's home (located on the same grounds as the orphanage).  What did Christmas look like with her foster Mama, Baba and siblings?  IF Lucy was given presents (and I highly doubt she was), she had to leave them in China because little Lucy came to us with only the clothes on her back and a teeny ladybug backpack that I had sent to her in July.
But let me turn from thinking and writing about Lucy's past to her present!

In our family during the holiday season (which starts at Thanksgiving and spills over to the New Year), we have several extended family "get togethers"(as we call them).  Fortunately, Lucy has adapted  incredibly well in the past three and a half months to not only our immediate large family but to our extended families too.   This is a gift and we are fortunate and recognize it as such! **  Many times adoptive families are not able to attend large social gatherings with a newly adopted child because it can cause a lot of stress for the child (being away from their semblance of routine, nervousness, agitation), or it may possibly impede the bonding process.  So, for those of you reading and wondering, we are "on alert" to these things. **
As I type this we have one remaining family gathering to attend.  Lucy seems to have loved these intimate times spent with HER family.   She enjoyed shaking  "jingle bells" with her "good arm" and flashed many big smiles as the family sang during our Searfoss family Christmas program!  Her fractures haven't seemed to dampen her spirit in the least!  She's still our happy, silly and not so quite little girl!

Because I was trying out my new camera, you will see several pictures that were taken on Sunday (Dec. 22) BEFORE our little Miss broke her arm.
So for those of you that are more interested in pictures then all this sentimental writing, without further adieu, here are some more random snapshots from Lucy's first Christmas home!

Yes, we're all a little nuts!
Lucy's NEPHEW!  (sweet baby Isaac!)
checking out the "big" box of craft supplies

Opening presents with one hand

Sadie Joy - Lucy's (niece) and favorite playmate!

"Baby Isaac"

Oldest Sister, Linsey with hubby Joel and children

Helping Mommy make pancakes

Brittser Bob!

Kurt and Lucy

No caption needed :)

Christmas Morning Breakfast

YAY! - the new pajama shirt stretched over the splint!
 Last Christmas, I wrote Someones' Missing from Our Christmas Table.  This year we know who that special someone was!  Thank you God for your guidance, direction and provision!

I honestly can't put into words, how much love we all have for this precious little girl whom God saw fit to bless our family with!  We prayed from the very beginning of our adoption journey that a supernatural bond would be in place when we would first meet our little girl.  God heard those many, many prayers and that bond and the deep feeling of love that accompanies it has been nothing short of miraculous!  We have such a good God.  (and if that bond wouldn't have been there supernaturally, God would still be a good and faithful God!! )  Praise God from whom ALL blessings flow!
If you'd like to read about another sweet orphan waiting in the same province in China as Lucy was in, please read my post entitled "A Call for Caleb."

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