Monday, December 21, 2009

A Very Blessed Christmas!!!

For the last four holiday seasons my prayer has been "Please Lord, bring KayLi home before next Christmas." God has answered that prayer in His perfect time and in ways I never could have imagined. Not only is she home but she is healed. Glory!

While I haven't had time to post, bake a single cookie or even wrap a gift we have been celebrating around here. Ryan & Ana were here last weekend and helped decorate the tree.

They also drove KayLi and I to Dallas to have her stitches removed last week and I'm so thankful for them. Allie had no time off left and the thought of driving almost six hours alone with KayLi and than navigating Dallas was, well...ugh!

Emily has put the angel on the tree for the last ten years and she was happy to do it again this year. We have teased her the last few years that next year KayLi would do it. Somehow it just felt right for her to do it one more year.

KayLi loved having Ryan and Ana here. She simply adores her big brother!

Sunday Emily went to see the Nutcracker ballet with the girls youth group. Oh, how I wanted to go but I'm not sure KayLi is ready for that yet. So we went for pizza and then relaxed while we waited for Emily to get home and we could take a few pictures under the tree.

I love these pictures beyond measure. They are an awesome reminder to me that the same God who kept His promise of a Savior for the world over 2000 years ago, also kept His promise to bring this sweet child home.

And He is keeping His promise to heal her. Less than two weeks after surgery, she is doing so well. She is still a little swollen and the interior stitches haven't dissolved yet but look at what God has done!

I am so glad that KayLi's surgery is over and that she is home this Christmas. But for the record we have a new rule around here. There will be no more surgeries during the month of December unless it is a matter of life and death. We have kept many of our traditions in spite of two trips to Dallas and KayLi's surgery. I'll be posting about those after the holidays. There simply isn't enough time to to celebrate, enjoy the holiday and blog about it.

I am behind on my Christmas "To Do" list like never before. And to be honest, that list has been spoiling the season I have waited too long for. If no cookies are baked, oh well. If I don't have time to finish a few gifts, everyone will understand. Because for the rest of the holiday season I am choosing to focus on the fact that God has given us the perfect gift in His son Jesus. Oh, how I want to give him my life in return.

May you have a very blessed Christmas!!!

Thursday, December 10, 2009


I was completely and utterly amazed when we walked into the recovery room yesterday and saw KayLi for the first time after surgery. I knew we had found a wonderfully talented doctor. I had seen all of his before and after patient pictures. And I KNOW God is a mighty and powerful healer. But to see Him heal and restore MY child, almost physically brought me to my knees.

Her lip no longer arches higher on the cleft side. The wide scar from her first surgery is gone and only one small line will remain after stitches are removed next Wednesday. The old slipped tubes in her ears came out without any problems - PTL! Dr. Genecov built up the cleft side of her nose and once the swelling subsides, her nose will be very symmetrical. Perfect is the word I really want to use!!!

She was doing so well at the hotel yesterday that we decided to come home. She sleep well through the night and has been awake since 6:30. She hasn't even needed Tylenol today! Amazing!!!

I fought anxiety so hard over this surgery. Did she really need it? Was it worth it to cause her pain and possibly cause her to be fearful of doctors? Should we wait until after the holidays? What if we put her through this and something terrible happens? Yeah, our enemy was fighting dirty but our God was victorious!

Nothing terrible happened. Her pain level was very manageable. I'm pretty sure Christmas will go on as scheduled. KayLi is home, happy and has less of a stuffy nose than she did with a previous sinus infection.


Oh, just for the record...I'm a terrible photographer to start with and these pictures were taken with my phone. Have I mentioned that I'm having camera issues. And if you are wondering why her upper lip is shiny, there is surgical glue on the incision to minimize scaring and create a protective barrier from germs.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Three Years and Three Surgeries

KayLi's first surgery was to repair her cleft lip and it took place in 2007 at the Hospital of Jining Medical School, in Shandong, China. She was seven months old and I pray that one of the nannies from her orphanage was with her as she recovered.

Her second surgery was to repair her cleft palate and it took place on Sept.23rd, 2009 at the Medical City Children's Hospital in Dallas, Tx. Praise God we were with her to comfort and care for her as she recovered.

Now she is having her third surgery to revise her lip, reconstruct her nose and replace both slipped ear tubes, this Wednesday at Forest Park Medical Center in Dallas, Tx. We will be with her again and would like to ask you to pray for her. Last time she had know idea what to expect. This time there is no blissful ignorance.

When we took her for pre-surgical clearance last week she was not happy about it. She wanted to take one of her babies with her and the nurses and doctor were so sweet to take it's temp, blood pressure and check it's ears. All was well until they had to draw blood. Let's just say it wasn't pretty. Now when we talk about going to the doctor "to fix her lip and nose" she says "No KayLi doctor. Baby doctor."

It should be a simple day surgery to "build more of a ball tip and make her nostrils more symmetrical." I'm praying that the shorter surgical time will mean less anesthesia and that she comes out of it easier than last time. I'm certain that God placed her in our family to heal her and trust that He will be right there in the operating room with her.

Her palate surgery felt so necessary that I really just wanted to get it done and over with. This time...well I'm going to miss her little smooshed nose. I can't help but think that since I no longer notice it that no one else does either. My head knows that her appearance will play a huge part in developing a positive self image. And that it's best to get this done while she is hopefully young enough to forget all about it. But my heart wonders if it's really necessary to put her through a third surgery. Can't we just send her to karate classes to take care of the teasing kid on the school play ground? I'm kinda having to talk myself into this one. So would you be so kind as to say a little prayer for KayLi's mama too :0)

Oh Yeah, the silly picture above...she loved it when Allie came in from the cold last week and put his coveralls on her!!!

Friday, December 4, 2009

First Snow?

For the season yes but most likely KayLi has seen and played in it before. Shandong, China gets a lot of snow each year. We just weren't sure if KayLi and her friends had been allowed to play in it.

We have been making a big deal out of the seasons lately and getting excited over pictures of snow in her books. I've asked her a few times if there is snow in China and she very casually says "yeah." We still weren't sure though.

When she looked outside for the first time this morning, she gasped and said "Oh no. Snow."

Right when we walked outside to play, Allie pulled up to see how she liked it. She loved it!!!

He quickly started to make a snow ball to throw at show her and she just as quickly told him no! I think that's a pretty good indicator that she has seen this cold white stuff before. He hadn't even finished making it when she warned him.

Emily was so happy to be home until 10 am and be able to enjoy it with KayLi. She and her friends were playing in it before I could get all three layers of clothing on KayLi!

She was thrilled when they canceled school for the whole day. Yep, it probably wasn't two inches and they called it a snow day. It snows so seldom here that this is a very big deal!!!

Emily had never seen snow at all until we moved here just over three years ago. She still loves making snow angels! She tried to get KayLi to make one but she was not having it. She just kept looking at Emily like she was crazy or laying down in the snow.

She thought it was pretty funny that there was snow on her scooter though.

Not long after I took this last shot (with my phone because I'm having major camera issues AGAIN!) we headed in to make a warm breakfast. Our friends Sundai, Shelby, and Logan came over for pancakes. Then the older kids went to the baseball field for a block party in the snow.

They will all be here again soon to watch the movie "Up". We are hoping KayLi will enjoy it. Until now she hasn't shown much interest in actual movies. This girl loves her some Sesame Street and Ni Hao Kai-lan though!

It's almost two in the afternoon now and most of the wonderful snow has melted. KayLi thinks it's raining because it's all dripping off the house. I'm hoping Allie will get home soon to pile on the couch with us and start the weekend a little early. I think a big pot of soup and a warm fireplace is in order! Hot coco anyone?

Favorite Photo Friday

Thursday, December 3, 2009

So Much To Be Thankful For...



Favorite Trees

Good Food

Aunts & Uncles

New Tricks

Sweet People

I hope you all had a very blessed Thanksgiving!!!!