Thursday, February 28, 2008


Okay, this may not be my normal kind of post...but I thought I would share some memories. Today Yan and I went to Target and ended up stopping at the little eating area there to have lunch. I happened to see an old friend and we talked for a while and were reminiscing about our young, college days.

Just as my friend left and older gentleman came and sat at the table next to us. He ordered a cup of "Starbucks" (but later informed me that he always just has regular coffee with a little cream and a little sugar-none of those crazy flavors) and sat there waiting on his wife. I spoke to him and just smiled. Tears welled up in my eyes, because I could just picture my dad escaping from a shopping trip to sneak out and get a cup of coffee. Oh what I would give to share a cup of coffee with dad and mom again.

Sometimes it seems so wrong to be crying because I miss them still-but it still hurts. I know I can go on-but with each new chapter in my life, I still grieve; as I would love to share it with them. I would love for them to see their granddaughter. I would love for her to have the privledge of being spoiled by a grandma and grandpa. I would love to just talk to them and hear their voices, or get a great big hug. I would love to hear the title "daughter" again.

I can rejoice because they are in a better place. With each sunset I see I think about them. For me a sunset is glorious-but I can't imagine the glory that they must witness on a daily basis. Regardless, they are still missed and loved!

I'm posting a couple pics of Yan at the cemetary in Indiana, visiting their gravesite for the first time. Love you mom and dad! Jenn

Saturday, February 23, 2008

A Heart Toward Jesus!

One of my greatest prayers for Yan is that she would come to know the Lord with all her heart. I have no idea what her mental capacity is, what theology she will understand and whether or not she will grasp all the concepts that others spend lifetimes trying to understand. But I do believe she, like any of us, can feel and accept God's grace, love and forgiveness. Who knows? Perhaps a simple acceptance of love is what we could all use.

Lately I've been noticing little signs that she is grasping some of what I've been teaching her about Jesus. She suddenly has a keen fascination with prayer. She is trying to say words and little phrases in the prayers. I've been trying to say my prayers throughout the day (when we see someone hurt, ambulances, fire trucks, those in need) outloud, so that she understands that we can pray about anything. She wants to pray more.

Tonight, as I was sorting and organizing toys (for a huge consignment sale next week) she found a little yellow duck that "prays". He quotes some of "Now I lay me down to sleep...". She was so excited and probably played it 20+times. Each time she would push his tummy, bow her head, fold her hands and try to repeat some of it. Then at the end, after "Amen" she would say her new favorite phrase "Good job".

I told her that Jesus loves to hear her pray. Then she motioned for me to come and sing "The B-I-B-L-E". I just think it's very cool that she is linking these things together. "The BIBLE" song doesn't have the name Jesus in it-but she made that connection.

She has such a sweet heart and spirit and genuine love...I just pray that this is a desire for Christ that will grow as she does. Jenn

Monday, February 11, 2008

Some Oldies but Goodies!

I'm working on my photography and editing skills a I'm going through some old pictures that are my favorites to see how I can improve them. I picked a couple to work on tonight. One was of Yan in the bathtub, getting her hair washed, just a few months after coming home. (She looks so small!)

The next one was taken while Yan was running in the backyard, in her dress-up clothes, chasing her friend Caitlyn, who was driving her jeep. Ahhhh the memories. I could look at pics all night, but alas, I need to go to sleep! Enjoy!

Sunday, February 10, 2008

Happy Chinese New Year!!!

We had a great day today! We went to the Dorris' home to celebrate Chinese New Year!! We had such a fun time. Yan loved all the rice and noodles and of course her favorite friend, Mr. Charles. She loves it when he carries her around. I snapped a great shot of Charles, Yan and Zola together-so cute!!!

Yan was able to wear an outfit that her foster family gave her last year for her birthday. It was perfect! It was adorned in butterflies, which Yan-Yan loves!! The minute she put it on she had to get up and twirl for me. She is such a little blessing!


Wednesday, February 6, 2008

We survived...

the horrible storms and tornados that hit Tennessee last night! Praise God! It was a bad night, weather wise. We ended up losing power for a while (which Yan did not like) and huddled in the hallway together as the worst of it went through. The noise was unbelievable and I thought that something was going to rip the roof apart. But after it was done I went outside and found nickel sized hail all over. Yan and I had fun looking at it. We are praying for those that did not fair so well.

For pics today, I'm posting another pic when we were on our way to a Christmas party. I'm looking forward to nicer, warmer weather when we can get outside and play. Oh...we did see a rainbow today, and that was beautiful!


Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Birthday Pics!

I thought I would post a few pics from Yan's actual 7th birthday. We are waiting until the weather warms up a little for a fun party with her friends. Our house is not too big and I think it would be nice if we could play outside during the party (at least for a while). It will, of course, be "Barney" themed...complete with a Barney cake and a dinosaur egg hunt!

On Yan's actual birthday we just spent the day together, and Yan went to see her favorite orthodontist, Dr. Mark. She enjoyed holding up 7 fingers to let everyone know how old she was! :-) Big Girl!!!

She also received a very special package in the mail from her foster family in Hong Kong. They sent her a new Chinese outfit and an electic guitar with a working microphone headset! She enjoys jamming on her guitar and singing! We are both so grateful for her wonderful foster family that she was given!

My gifts to her were some new "Signing Times" and a four foot slide that is now sitting in the middle of our living room. Though it may not add to the decor, it does wonders for getting out wiggles and energy in the middle of the winter! Love it!


Monday, February 4, 2008

Catching up on Yan Yan news

I'm attempting to catch up on the latest Yan Yan news! Let me just say, she is one BUSY girl! I kind of thought we skipped a few of those "exploring" stages, but apparently she was just saving them up for me.

For a while, Yan would wake up a little earlier than me and just play nicely. Well, those days have passed. I must get up when she does, because she's no longer going to sit down and read a book. Over the holidays she did the following:

-Got up and found that I had left some glitter in a bag from a recent craft project. She "decorated" the house with it from living room to bedroom. She was so proud because it was "Pretty"! :-)

-Got ahold of the dishwashing detergent and covered the kitchen floor...apparently in an attempt to help mommy "Clean"!

-Keeps putting the remotes, refrigerator magnets and kleenex boxes in the fridge; especially the crisper. The remote has now been missing again for 2 days...and I cannot find it anywhere!

-The final "UH-OH" morning Yan had just woken up and I was drifting in and out of sleep. Something told me to get up immediately. I ran to the living room to find my creative daughter with 18 eggs (not hard boiled-just eggs from the fridge) spread out on the couch. She was playing with them. There must have been an "Egg Angel" because not one of them broke. When I saw her I just froze...didn't want to yell, scare her, or anything because she usually crushes them in her hands when she's trying to help me cook. I have laughed about it every day since then...she keeps me on my toes!

I'll post a couple of Christmas pics! Later! Jenn

Sunday, February 3, 2008

My new HOBBY!!!

I have a fun and fabulous new hobby...EXTREME COUPONING!!!! It is a blast! I joined a free site called "Hot Coupon World" ( and I'm totally hooked. The women (and a few men) on this site show you how to combine coupons with advertised specials, rebate and rewards programs to get your groceries, toiletries, items for free or next to free. They encourage you to build a stockpile of items, so that you can wait for the next sale. It is one more step to be a little more financially sound.

My favorite new store-CVS!!! The Extra Care bucks program is amazing! Here are a couple of my purchases and amounts from the last week:

This one cost me $18.00 out of pocket, but then I got $26.00 back in credits and essentially they paid me $8.00 to take all these items! :-)

The next one is from today. I ended up paying $7.00 for all of it, but ended up with $23.37 back in they paid me around $16.00 to take all of it.

It does take some focus and learning and a few trips to the store, but it is well worth it! You should check it out!


Hello Friends!

Let's try this "blog" thing again! I was so frustrated with the last blog because I couldn't figure out how to add pictures...but I think I've got it on this one. I will "attempt" to keep up with the updates!
I picked this picture because it cracks me up. It shows Yan's love for "Barney"! :-) I've never seen someone so head over heels in love with the purple dinosaur!
My baby just recently turned 7!!!! I cannot believe how quickly the time goes by. She is enjoying holding up 7 fingers to tell everyone how old she is. She really is just blossoming and amazes me everyday! I just love her like crazy!!!!