Monday, April 29, 2013

Ready, Set, PACK!!!

Ready, Set, PACK!!!

So yesterday was "Packing Day!"  And the day certainly lived up to it's name.  We spent over 7 hours getting everything packed into our two checked bags, two carry-on's and two backpacks.  Whew!  Not an easy task!

I have been "packing" for over a month now, meaning I have been collecting and gathering all of the items on our six-page packing list in a common place...our master bathroom.  By the end, it took up half the room!  And yes, I got it ALL into our suitcases!  Now the real test is going to be when we weigh them tonight.  Eeekkk!!!  I don't know what I will do if our luggage comes in overweight, which is quite a good possibility as there are more than a couple of bulging seams!

It's hard to believe that we now have everything packed and we are ready to go.  The next couple of days are full of last minute errands and preparations, and then we will fly to the other side of the world!  Oh, my arms are aching now more than ever to hold my baby girl!  I cannot wait to see her beautiful face in person, and to tell her that her MOMMY and DADDY LOVE HER!  

Monday, April 22, 2013

A Day Out with Thomas - 2013

This weekend we were able to do one of our favorite annual activities as a family.
We went to "A Day Out with Thomas!"
This is a super, fun activity that occurs every April at the Heart of Dixie Railroad Museum in Calera.

If you have little train enthusiasts at your house, like we do, then I totally recommend this event!
Clay talks about "A Day Out with Thomas" all year round, and he really looks forward to it.

My parents have been so sweet to make sure that we get to do this every year (for the last 3 years).  We always have such a great time with them, and the boys love spending extra time with GiGi & PaPa!

We had such a wonderful time making special memories with our boys.  

And what precious little blessings they are!  God gave each of them such unique and BIG personalities!  It is truly a pleasure to be their mother!

Tuesday, April 9, 2013


We got Travel Approval!!!

We are so excited to finally reach this huge milestone before traveling to our little girl!

Travel dates are still being worked out, our Consulate appointment has to be made & flights have to be booked, but we are in the final days of waiting.

Eliana, here we come!

Thursday, April 4, 2013

A Gift Fit for a Princess

A Disney Princess, that is!!!

Today is my birthday (those things seem to be coming around much quicker these days), and my awesome parents gave me a really cool gift!  Tickets to Hong Kong Disneyland!!!

When we take our BIG TRIP in the next month, we will be spending our first few days in Hong Kong before we take the train to Mainland China.  Thanks to my parents, one of those days will be spent hanging out with the coolest mouse I know...MICKEY!

For more of my crazy Disney ramblings, you can visit my Disney blog...Disney Days with Candice.  I have been a bit too busy to blog there lately, but I'm sure this trip will give me lots of blog material!  I look forward to sharing it with everyone!

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

God Gives Endurance & Encouragement!

As you may already know, we are currently waiting on a very important step in our adoption process...Travel Approval!  Today is day 8 of our wait.  (This wait is generally anywhere from 7-28 days.)

Once we have TA we will be able to nail down our travel dates, and go get our precious little girl!

Just in case you haven't already heard (or witnessed), I (Candice) am quite the Type A person!
I like to make plans.  I like to feel in control of a situation (even if it's just an illusion).
Well, right now I have NO CONTROL!  
I have certainly tried to plan as best I can by coming up with different scenarios, but the situation is still completely out of my control.

So do you think maybe God is trying to teach me something??? be honest, I'm really not in the mood to learn any lessons right now, but let me say, today has been a wonderful reminder of God's great LOVE to me in the midst of learning a hard lesson.    

God has gently and sweetly reminded me that HE is "the God who gives endurance and encouragement"  Romans 15:5.  

Wow!  He has whispered this truth to my soul this morning, and calmed me with His peace!
Thank you, Father!

This morning, I was blessed with an email as soon as I woke up that informed me that I had just won an awesome giveaway from Jiayin Designs.  They sell beautiful Chinese character charms and Chinese dolls.  The charm that I won is the Chinese character for "adopt."

I just LOVE that the Chinese character for "adopt" is made up of two characters that have been merged into one.  The first character means "To Gather Close," and the second character means "Raise Up."  How beautiful!

Then God so sweetly directed me to Romans 15:5 which promises that God gives endurance and encouragement.  ENDURANCE and ENCOURAGEMENT!  At a time when I am struggling with the wait (yesterday I was weepy and physically ill), He reminds me that He will give me the endurance to finish the race, and He encourages me with a beautiful reminder that very soon we will gather close as a family and raise our family up while following Him.  Praise Him!

I am so thankful for my Abba Father!

Monday, April 1, 2013

Happy Easter!

"You are looking for Jesus the Nazarene, who was crucified.  He has risen!"  Mark 16:6

We had a wonderful Easter spending time as a family and celebrating our risen Lord and Savior!!!

We spent Saturday enjoying the beautiful weather and God's amazing creation!
We took the boys to an Easter Egg hunt at a park, and then we played outside and grilled hamburgers.  It was lots of fun!

 On Sunday we went to church and celebrated our precious JESUS!  We are so thankful that God gave us the ultimate gift, His Son!!!
We gave the kiddos Easter baskets to celebrate this glorious holiday.  They each got a Disney movie, some bouncy balls and bunny shaped marshmallows.