Sunday, August 3, 2008


I am sure that you will be able to tell this is Ruthi as you read grammar is not like Vickie and Nan's. First my thanks to God for these constant prayer this time was please grant us safe passage to and from, for Penny to do well and for me TO FEEL BETTER! All prayers were answered...and yes I did finally after the first full week start feeling better. Penny has been amazing, I can only say her foster mother prepared her so well. This is a match for our daughter in coming to our family, only for one thing and that is she needs three hands and three "sides" and be able to sit in a triangle at meal time so all three girls can sit by her.My thank yous to our son Eric for being the baggage handler, the tipper, the play mate to Penny, the photographer dad and Bev for accepting Penny into their list of grandchildren and for the treats they gave her and for not complaining about the heat that we all suffered thru. IT WAS SO HOT! And to Vickie and Nan for handling the blog since my laptop died the first time i turned it on in China....We went to the Great Wall and dad and Bev stayed at a certain level with the guide, Eric took off for the top and I decided I wanted to experience the Wall with my son so trailed behind him about 5 minutes. Well for the first time in China i was sure i had made a huge error. I got to the top of the first level and was so bad off that i sat down where Eric would have to trip over my body when he came down. I was sure i was going to pass out...from being sick and hot i was just in bad shape. I stayed out of the sun in my sure to be tripped over spot and finally felt well enough to go back down to where dad and Bev were...i did not get the long awaited for photo of Eric and i together at this huge landmark of the world... We will have to return someday. From there we left and flew to Chongqing.We received Penny about 10:30 am on Monday and it was amazing to say the least. She seemed very accepting, nervous, and was not crying until i suggested she help her little foster sister Hong, and then she had tears while rubbing her chin...So we waited a few minutes and then shuffled out leaving Hong with her family. They told me she stopped crying shortly ....In the van on the way to the hotel I thought once again to ask the guide to ask Penny if she had an English name only to have tears dripping when she said her name was Penny...I guess Bev and the guide were with tears too. God and that Red thread sure does tie our family together!After being at the hotel for awhile it was time to settle down a bit and Eric went out and i was on the phone for a short phone call to Claude when Penny handed me the Electronic translator and on it was the question "what do i do now?" i agreed, what do we do now? Adopting an older child versus adopting a toddler is hugely different! A toddler you have the options of balloons, baths, sleeping, bottles etc...lots of ways of connecting and yet here we are! So i said a shower and pajamas and so even though we were a bit "embarrassed" and bashful she asked for me to help her wash her hair and then a shower was next and she did indicate she would do that by i went out leaving her to privacy..thinking boy she had better savor those few moments for when we get home you won't have a minute of it!Penny was amazed at a blow dryer...and a curling iron, so she went to breakfast the next day with curls in her long hair....she is very venturesome in trying food, and not bashful about spitting out things she does not like. (although she does it very politely) she loved Eric's psp and digital camera...she was relieved to see Hong Hong the next day at the civil affairs office while we did paperwork and we also ate dinner with the family that night funny thing, on the first evening we ate dinner with the Millers they had Penny ask Hong if they were doing things ok for her. She said yes... (she is 6) and then they had Penny ask if if she needed anything different. she had Penny type the answer. the answer was "please stop feeding me instant noodles every day" that brought us to our knees laughing!and i thought oh my i wonder what Penny was going to thing at our house as that is what Vicky and Addie would live on if we let them???The swimming pool was a nervous success...she loves ice cream....she liked to sleep in a bit and one morning I had already went down to eat and called the room to say hey are you guys coming down to have Eric tell me "she won't get out of bed, she keeps saying just a minute" so i had him give her the phone and in a stern mama voice said get on your clothes time to eat...she tried to tell me too in a minute and i said now! she did say ok...and in 6 minutes there they came to breakfast. it was also funny to watch her take a drink out of a bottled drink, screw the lid on and hand it to Eric to hold for her. His face was so funny to watch! even funnier to see him accept holding the bottle....he did catch on quickly and would occasionally say no....All in all the trip to China was great. The several times we ran into old guides that we had had was great! But walking into the stores on Shaman Island and have the ladies say "ahhh we see you before! you here last year too?" was a bit daunting...and then one shop owner even said " you here more than one other time right? you a very good customer" she is the one i picked to barter with the hardest for another suitcase i had sworn to Claude i would not need....yes i had to buy another one!So we landed Thursday night almost at midnight in Peoria and Penny let Claude hug here...we had our usual fan club of Ed and Brenda and Elaina and Kaylee...we so appreciate them being there..and Aunt Carrie and Jodi...we also had a couple people come up and say thank you for caring for these girls....Penny arrived here at her new home in the dark. Claude had turned on all the outside lights but imagine driving 1.5 miles back a one lane road with corn 8 feet tall on each side of the the dark, with people sitting with you that you really don't know...I give such credit to these girls strength that they have as each girl has done the same ride with give us the trust they put them on an airplane that will have them cramped up sitting for 15 go thru the airports for flight haul the little bit they own and put in in a suitcase that they can no longer see when we check it. To having Claude shut off the van and it goes dark, to get out of the van to be greeted with our dogs black wet nose and us all saying its ok, its ok....penny walked into our house with two girls on each side and the other three of us walking in front and behind her...welcoming or guarding i am not sure. She was juggled back and forth with three excited little girls to rush up the stairs to see her new room...i saw a huge smile cross her face when they showed her...we snacked and we tucked all in bed. Addie and Kate on the floor by the other two big girls for one night...Vicky for the first time in one year, and 3 months exactly to the day has slept in her own herself and was okay with it. she has spent the past nine months promising that when Li comes that she would be able to sleep in her own bed. I pray that Li is Vicky's strength to conquer all of her fears of sleeping alone .....we are battling jet lag...i am anyway...Penny is doing well it seems and will catch on fast.tomorrow she meets several aunts uncles and cousins and friends thru the day but today was spent swimming, napping, checking out the chickens and the lama...Claude and i have been asked a dozen times if we are done, are we adopting again, are we are we are we....when this journey all started you have to know what happened. I was struggling with knowing God had me in his embrace....i actually was sitting in my chair and remember screaming out God i need a sign that this is right, that i am yours...and i felt Him. He was there! but after that moment i said a prayer, i say rambling prayers, ask anyone about Grace being said at our table...but every prayer after that moment ended in Please give the children that are hungry food, the children that are sick medicine and the children that are without parents please give them parents to hold them...hmmmm....who would have known that because i screamed at God that He was going to scream back at me and guide our paths in this fashion? Aruba I love...we have not been back since 2003, we had the Harley...Vicky asked Mama why I get a old baba with no motor cycle? Kate wants a sum it up girls we had those things all once but now we have you....will we adopt again? Ask the meantime til he answers we have to teach Penny English, convince Kate she won't be taking her blankie to kindergarten, Get Addie to remember to call her teacher Mrs instead of just their last name and we have to say thanks for Vicky being able to finally sleep in her bed!i hope to constantly post so check back...i tell people we are just moments away from being a reality tv show :)


Linda said...

What a super update! Congratulations on your new daughter and such a great initial adjustment period. It's exciting to hear that the girls are welcoming of their new sister and that sleeping arrangements are going well!

Julie said...

I just read your post through to the end twice. It's such an incredible beginning for all of you. I love the part about the "no more instant noodles," by the way. That had me cracking up! :-)