I do have a post brewing... so just read away!
First, let me start with Bay and Brook. Nana reports they are doing GREAT. :) We enjoy skyping with them every few days. My mom and Bay report that Brook won't pray out loud for us.. because when she does she SOBS... :( They are both doing good though... Bay is really worried and asks daily if we'll be home for Christmas. We've promised her that even if we aren't... we'll have Christmas when we get home! She's not so convinced that's ok.... ;) Please keep praying for them.... I know that all of you are.
The twins were good today. The caregiver told us today that Violetta (Faith) keeps forgetting her 'new' name and she will ask Stella (Grace), "What's my new name again?" Grace will frustratingly tell her, "It's FAITH... You are Faith. I am Grace!" The caregivers were laughing and said it's been SO cute and funny to listen and watch them!! :) They again told us what a difference they can see in both of them and that they are already changing so much.
Faith is really bonding to us VERY well... She is already playing the "ouch, I hurt my finger game"... and runs to us for attention, love, hugs, etc.. Grace is much more stand-off-ish. She is not nearly as loving and generous with her affection. She was better today... but, still has a definite wall up. It's amazing though the difference in them. Grace is not as affectionate, but remembers EVERYTHING we've ever told her. She retains words (in English) and remembers and repeats with NO prompting. She is signing quite a bit and speaking LOTS more English than Faith. She catches on to tasks and directions quicker. They are just so different, yet so alike. :) They definitely keep us guessing. Today when looking at the book we brought of our house, etc.... Grace turned to a page in the book and told Symbat, "Look, that's where Faith and I will sleep... that's our new room!" (in Russian) (It is pictures of the 'boy' room, but it is their room! Symbat explained that it will look differently, but that is correct... That is their room!)
I just see so many behaviors disappearing and changing right before our eyes! The miracles just continue!
Today is 6 weeks. 6 weeks ago this morning we said bye to our girls and left OKC airport! WOW! It has been an incredible 6 weeks.
I have so many things rolling around in my heart/head right now that my thoughts are most likely going to be scattered... (sorry about that!)...
We know that God has not brought us this far to leave us... we know that his promises are ALWAYS fulfilled and that his word will not return VOID! We know that he desired to see this very thing he's called us to do come to pass... we know that HIS plans are exactly what we need... and that honestly we don't know anything about what's best for us or our girls (all 4 of them).... We started this journey with NO money, no idea where to even begin, and nothing but FAITH and complete TRUST in our Lord and Savior. We took the biggest step of obedience that we've ever taken.... we risked it all and said, YES Lord! He has brought us SO very far... over 3 years... an amazing amount of memories... and over 7,000 miles!!!
For this very journey we are so thankful... I am thankful for the opportunity to live in a foreign country for 6 weeks... I mean honestly who gets such an opportunity? I am thankful for the amazing memories we've made. This is truly a chance of a lifetime and we are so thankful to have been given this awesome gift... (If you can't tell I (and the Lord) gave myself an attitude adjustment last night... via some bible reading and good prayer time!)
I realized that I was saying the 'right' things... but, down deep I was frustrated at the delays... the unknowns and the unanswered questions I have. I realized (through reading and prayer) last night that I was trying to shoulder it all... I was trying to figure it all out... (if we get a court date on such and such.... we will ________!) This is NOT my job.... This is NOT what God has for me right now... I need to just go back to the original plan and have PEACE and TRUST my Jesus... my Lord and my Savior!! He is always RIGHT on time... and perfect!!!
God knows all about everything.. from our finances, to both our jobs, to all 4 of our girls.... he knows the number of hairs they all 4 have on their heads..... why would I not trust him that he knows best in this situation?! Silly, foolish Lanetta! I realized last night that when I am trying to figure it out.. I am really saying... Lord, I don't completely TRUST you!
We received the sweetest package from the girls today. There were several notes inside, but this one struck a chord with my heart... It says, " Dear Mom and Dad, Thanks for being YOU and for following Jesus! I love you and miss you ~ love ~ peace ~ Bailey
Dear Lord I hope and pray that above all else our 4 girls know and see that we love and follow Jesus. Honestly, what else is there in life that we really need to teach our children? Why do we push so hard for material things for them... why do we (as a society) want them to be the most successful, best dressed, etc? We should want them to simply live their lives for Jesus! We should be teaching them daily to live for him in everything they do.... we should be showing them by example to love, speak peace, radiate kindness and attempt to be exactly like our risen savior. Dear Lord, help me.. help us all to be more like you...
Thank you Lord for your amazing peace, love and your amazing grace. We are in awe of you and desire that EVERYTHING we do is for you!!! WE TRUST YOU, LORD!
Just wanted to hit some of my favorite memories so far:
If not for this amazing journey.... I would not have experienced the following:
- seeing Phil fall out the orphanage door and today up the steps at the post office... hee hee! Just a warning... if you are thinking of building a building.... just FYI.. don't make your steps out of MARBLE... it gets really slick in the winter! hummmm....
- gazing across the crowded elevator and locking eyes with my gorgeous hubby... ;) it's romance baby.... (I won't mention the 15 smelly people between us... or the sheer look of terror on Phil's face!) ;)
- realizing that it's not a good idea to take your vitamins on an empty stomach while rushing out the apartment door on your way to the bh... the mixture of boiled liver, cabbage, fish, and crawdad smell that you smell at the baby house will make you VERY nauseated... VERY VERY nauseated... for the entire 2 hour visit.... (yes, very smart Lanetta.. very smart)
- Answering the apartment phone and hearing my brothers voice.. saying HELLO! :)
- Skyping with Bay and Brook when the postal carrier happens to bring the package we sent them from HERE to the door... (yes, truly a God thing!) We got to see their faces and watch them open it!!
- Hearing Faith and Grace say, "I love you too!" (in English)
- Knowing that you are EXACTLY, TOTALLY, and COMPLETELY in God's perfect will for your family!
- Cuddling on the futon and watching movies with my sexy hubby!
- Brown/yellow water - fun times!
- No water...
- No electricity for HOURS on end... :)
- THE MEAT MARKET!
- Crunchy clothes everyday (there are NO dyers here ~ honestly we are getting used to this!)
- Locking eyes with Phil across the twins head on Nov. 4. 2010 and both KNOWING instantly that we were meeting our daughters! The look on his face was so sweet... pure love and Jesus! I seem to remember similar looks on his face 2 other times... Once on Feb. 13, 2001 and then one other time on May 9th, 2005!
- The INCREDILBE miracle that occured on the night of Nov. 4th, 2010!!!! God said YES and provided!!!!
- Just being here with Phil! I am so honored to be on this journey with him. He is such a blessing to me. In June 2011 we'll celebrate our 15th anniversary! I can't wait to celebrate 50 more with you Phil... I love you!
I could go on for hours... I mean.. we've been here 6 weeks... the list of memories is LONG!!! I will save you the boring reading and stop... and the batteries are on charge for tomorrow... so there should be some pictures.. and less of my thoughts... ;)
Have a WONDERFUL Thursday!
Paka from Pavlodar, Kazakhstan!