Monday, June 20, 2016

Adoption Update.....Waiting for travel approval

Little M eating cake

We received pictures of Little M learning to help bake in the kitchen and this darling picture of her eating cake.  We are getting very close to the travel stage of our adoption process.  We have been anxiously awaiting to hear if our Article 5 has been dropped off at the Consulate.  It should have been dropped off last Monday or Tuesday but our agency contact was out of the office and so drop off was supposedly on Thursday of last week.  

The agency was supposed to call us on Friday to let us know but we haven't heard anything as of we are just praying that it was dropped of on Thursday.  

A Little Bump in the Road

We received notification that because Little M is living in an orphanage/foster home dedicated to helping visually impaired children she must return to her province and the orphanage she came from in order to obtain her visa.  

This could have literally meant that Little M would be sent back to this orphanage for a week to wait for her visa and then could come back to where she has been living for the last 3 years when it was complete.  I cannot imagine how traumatic that would be for a blind little girl to go to a strange place where they are not equipped to understand the needs of a blind child and stay there for that long.   

We are so very thankful that the orphanage in which she is living loves these little ones in their care and wanted to avoid this traumatic situation.  We arranged to pay for Little M to travel with someone from her orphanage  to get her visa, they will stay in a hotel with her and then return when everything is completed. She will not have to be with strangers or stay in a strange place at all....  We are so thankful!   

We planned for unexpected expenses in the beginning of this process and are grateful that we could make this possible to help ease this whole process for her..even if just a little.   We pray every single day that God will prepare her and help her during the transition of adoption and I will say that this was an answer to this prayer...even in just a small way, but we are so thankful for a loving Heavenly Father who watches over her.

Baking Day

She is learning to help in the kitchen, using a rolling pin and baking.   She has had some wonderful learning experiences lately, meeting the motorcyclists and being able to get up close to a motorcycle, horseback riding and learning how to bake.   We are so grateful that she has been blessed to live in an orphanage where she is loved and well cared for!

Learning More About Little M

The orphanage allowed us to ask them questions about Little M so we could learn a little bit more about her, things she likes, what she is afraid of etc...  Dave emailed questions and we waited to receive the email back so we could learn more about this sweet little girl.  I wanted to share with you the answers to some of the questions we asked so you can learn a little more about her too.

  1. Does she have any vision or light perception?
She is completely blind in her right eye but she does have some light perception in her left eye.

      3.  Who are her best friends at ****** Orphanage?

Her best friend is a very loving little boy named Caleb who is able to calm her down when she is scared or upset.  He explains what is happening to her so that she can relax and not be afraid. 

     3. What are her favorite toys to play with?

Her favorite are toys that she can easily manipulate with her hands, plastic animals, paper, plastic toys.  
She does have minor sensory sensitivity and does not like playdoh, clay, or fuzzy stuffed animal toys.
She will find a way to play with any toy that she is given.  She does like to play with balloons, roll a ball back and forth and jump on the trampoline.

**She likes smooth and simple toys, she does not like fuzzy textures.

    4. What does she like to eat?

She does not like 'messy' or juicy fruits like watermelon, oranges, grapefruit etc...
Her favorite fruit is apples, but she also likes bananas and grapes
She is generally happy with the food that she is served at meals

   5. What does she like to do?

She likes to play on the trampoline
She LOVES music! 
She heard a Katy Perry song on the radio and memorized the whole song after hearing it once
She likes to play a game where she sings a line of a song to her caregivers and they play it for her

Some of her favorite songs:

Let it Go 
All of the songs from the movie Frozen
Roar by Katy Perry
The Hamster dance
Oo eeh ooh ah ahh ting tang walla walla bing bang
Crazy Frog
A thousand Year by Christina Perri
Happy by Pharell Williams
One Love by Bob Marley
I like to move it move it
Don't worry be happy
Party in the USA by Miley Cyrus

She LOVES music and can memorize lyrics after hearing a song once

    6. What makes her nervous or upset?

She struggles with changes in activities if she doesn't have explanation before hand.   She can become frustrated when others can't understand and because of her lack of ability to communicate...she only speaks a limited amount of words in either Mandarin or English.    When she is afraid she likes to be held or have her back rubbed to help her calm down.

     7. How is she doing in her English class?

Words & phrases that she knows:

Go outside
Go inside
Go upstairs or downstairs
Roll or bounce
Fast & Slow
wash your hands
Come here
Stand up
Sit down
She knows her classmates names

She does not say these words or phrases spontaneously on her own but she understands what they mean.  She speaks more when she is one on one with someone.

    8. How well does she get around using her cane?

She can use her cane well in a familiar environment but she has a difficult time using it in unfamiliar places. 

     9. Does She understand what adoption is and how does she feel about it?

Many children from the orphanage have been adopted this year and she understands that it is a good thing. 

    10. Is there anything else we should know about her?

She gets scared easily but can be comforted by being held, rubbing her back or singing to her.

I hope you enjoyed seeing some updated pictures and getting to know a little more about Little M.   We are SO very excited to travel and pick her up soon!  We are assuming our article 5 was dropped off on Thursday which means it will be picked up two weeks from then and the last thing left is travel approval!

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