This blog covers our wait, travel, and adjustment to our 4 year old adopted Chinese daughter Sarah Shui Qing from Nanjing. There are over 1000 posts. I have moved my blog to Catching Butterflies 2. I hope you will enjoy reading this blog. It has alot of information on Special needs adoption. Follow us to our new address Catching Butterflies 2! Thank you for reading!

Friday, March 31, 2006

Here is some information about Amity foundation. They are a social development group run by the Christian church in China. They have hugging grannies in Sarah's orphanage. It is so encouraging to me our daughter has been blessed by Christian Chinese grandmas!

Here is a link to Shaohanna's Hope. They provide grant money to families that desire to adopt internationally.

Wednesday, March 29, 2006

There are allot of waiting kids in the world. I just saw this boy for adoption in China. It cost allot of money to adopt from China, $12,000 to $15,000. The Us government will pay $10,000 of those costs, and many orginations will give grants or low interest and no interest loans to families. Other countries like Thailand have even lower costs. The total cost of a Thailand adoption could be covered by the US government. You don't have to be rich to adopt! Here is an article on paying for an international adoption

He is a HepB carrier; normal physical and mental development as his peers; a lovely little boy; a bit timid at times; fits in with the groups and gets along well with other kids; is expressive and has strong comprehensive skills; better concentration than peers in story listening and learning things; closest to care takers and roommates; yearns for adults’ affection; friendly to others and easily pleased; loves milk, meats and fruits.

For more information about this boy look at
He is 63-2. Fu Fan Hua

*Just read he found a family!!!

* I just found this link on paying for an international adoption. It might be helpful?

Tuesday, March 28, 2006

This is another Chinese proverb often quoted by people adopting from China. I don't really call it a red thread, but the hand of God. I believe that God directs us, leads us, and provides for us. I believe His hand has been on all our children, keeping them safe, and blessing us with their lives. It is sad they will not know their birth parents. But God has been with them, and will continue with them long after I am gone. I still like this proverb, because it basically says if it was meant to be, it will happen.

Juergen (my husband) has a new favorite saying. It goes "It's better to light a candle than curse the darkness." This quotation is widely attributed to Eleanor Roosevelt. Adlai Stevenson used a version of the proverb when he spoke before the United Nations General Assembly in 1962, in praise of the First Lady and her lifelong efforts to promote human rights. It seems that the origin of the quote is a Chinese Proverb, which reads, 'Don't curse the darkness - light a candle.' (Most sources reference Confucius as its author). This proverb was written in a picture book on China. Juergen gave this book to me two years ago for Christmas. I told him even then he was only adding fuel to the fire! We know this world is full of darkness, but it gives us so much joy to be adopting once more. I am sure our little Sarah will be a bright candle to everyone around her... us included!

Here is the link to another great video. This is by China care, a wonderful organization started by a 16 year old young man who was touched by the need of orphans in China. They do a great work!

Sunday, March 26, 2006

Video sent by ludo

Hi, I read this on another blog. It had me crying with laughter! It is kind of long but oh so real!

"Laws Concerning Food and Drink: Household Principles, Lamentations of the Father"
by Ian Frazier

*Laws of Forbidden Places*

Of the beasts of the field, and of the fishes of the sea,
and of all foods that are acceptable in my sight you may
eat, but not in the living room.

Of the hoofed animals, broiled or ground into burgers, you
may eat, but not in the living room.

Of the cereal grains, of the corn and of the wheat and of
the oats, and of all the cereals that are of bright color
and unknown provenance you may eat, but not in the living

Of quiescently frozen dessert and of all frozen after-meal
treats you may eat, but absolutely not in the living room.
Of the juices and other beverages, yes, even of those in
sippy-cups, you may drink, but not in the living room,
neither may you carry such therein.

Indeed, when you reach the place where the living room
carpet begins, of any food or beverage therein you may not
eat, neither may you drink.

But if you are sick, and are lying down and watching
something, then may you eat in the living room.

*Laws When at Table*

And if you are seated in your high chair, or in a chair such
as a greater person might use, keep your legs and feet below
you as they were.

Neither raise up your knees, nor place your feet upon the
table, for that is an abomination to me.

Yes, even when you have an interesting bandage to show, your
feet upon the table are an abomination, and worthy of

Drink your milk as it is given you, neither use on it any
utensils, nor fork, nor knife, nor spoon, for that is not
what they are for; if you will dip your blocks in the milk,
and lick it off, you will be sent away from my presence.

When you have drunk, let the empty cup then remain upon the
table, and do not bite it upon its edge and by your teeth
hold it to your face in order to make noises in it sounding
like a duck: for you will be sent away from my presence.

When you chew your food, keep your mouth closed until you
have swallowed, and do not open it to show your brother or
your sister what is within; verily I say to you, do not so,
even if your brother or your sister has done the same before

Eat your food only; do not eat that which is not food;
neither seize the table between your jaws, nor use the
raiment of the table to wipe your lips. I say again to you,
do not touch it, but leave it as it is.

And though your stick of carrot does indeed resemble a
marker, draw not with it upon the table, even in pretend,
because we do not do that, that is why.

And though the pieces of broccoli are very like small trees,
do not stand them upright to make a forest, because we do
not do that, that is why.

Sit just as I have told you, and do not lean to one side or
the other, nor slide down until you are nearly slid away.

Heed me; for if you sit like that, your hair will go into
the syrup.

And now behold.....even as I have said, it has come to pass.

*Laws Pertaining to Dessert*
For as we judge between the plate that is unclean and the
plate that is clean, saying first, if the plate is clean,
then you shall have dessert.

But of the unclean plate, the laws are these:

If ye have eaten most of your meat, and two bites of your
peas with each bite consisting of not less than three peas
each, or in total six peas, eaten where I can see, and you
have also eaten enough of your potatoes to fill two forks,
both forkfuls eaten where I can see, then ye shall have

But if ye eat a lesser number of peas, and yet ye eat the
potatoes, still ye shall not have dessert; and if ye eat the
peas, yet leave the potatoes uneaten, ye shall not have
dessert, no, verily I say unto you, not even a small portion

And if thou tries to deceive by moving the potatoes or peas
around with a fork, that it may appear that thou hast eaten
what thou hast not, ye will fall into iniquity.

And I will know, and ye shall have no dessert.

*On Screaming*

Do not scream; for it is as if you scream all the time.

If ye are given a plate on which two foods ye do not wish to
touch each other are touching each other, and your voice
rises up even unto the ceiling, while ye point to the
offense with the finger of your right hand; but I say unto
you, scream not, only remonstrate gently with the server,
that the server may correct his transgression and peace
shall prevail throughout the land.

Likewise if ye receive a portion of fish from which every
piece of herbal seasoning has not been scraped off, and the
herbal seasoning is loathsome to you and steeped in
vileness, again I say, verily, refrain from screaming.

Though the vileness overwhelm you, and cause you a faint
unto death, make not that sound from within your throat,
neither cover your face, nor press your fingers to your

For even as I have made the fish, and it is as it should be;
behold, I eat it myself, yet do not die.

*Concerning Face and Hands*

Cast your countenance upward unto the light, and lift your
eyes to the hills, that I may more easily wash you off.

For the stains are upon you; even to the very back of your
head, and there is rice thereon.

And in the breast pocket of your garment, and upon the tie
of your shoe, rice and other fragments are distributed in a
manner beyond comprehension!

Only hold thyself still; hold still, I say.

Give unto each finger in its turn for my examination
thereof, and also each thumb.

Lo, how iniquitous they appear.

What I do is as it must be; and you shall not go henceforth
until I have done.

*Various Other Laws, Statutes, and Ordinances*

Bite not, lest you be cast into quiet time.

Neither drink of your own bath water, nor of the bath water
of any beast of the field, or any fowl of the air nor of any
kind; nor rub your feet on bread, even if it be in the
package; nor rub your feet against cars, not against any
building; nor eat sand.

Leave the cat alone, for what hath the cat done, that you
should go forth and afflict it so and bindeth it with tape?

And hum not the humming in your nose as I read, nor stand
between the light and the book.

Verily I say unto you, you will drive me to madness.

Neither forget what I said about the tape.

Friday, March 24, 2006

Nicole is reading me the far side. She keeps me laughing!

Thursday, March 23, 2006

Why do we call our site catching butterflies? Well, this might sound a little strange to some people if you don't believe in God, and his direction, but here is the story... I was going to visit my best friend Cindy who lives in San Diego. I live in Germany. This was just after Christmas. Cindy has a small group Bible study group she meets with. She mentioned to them we (myself and 3 of my kids) where coming for a visit. The group prayed for us. One of the people had what is known in the Bible as a word of knowledge. That basically means they had a vision or prophetic word from God. They said they see me catching butterflies. When Cindy told me this, I knew right away it had something to do with the adoption. At the time we had not even made a final decision to adopt again, but I wanted to adopt. I just thought it meant I was collecting beautiful children. Anyway, when I saw the face of my new daughter Sarah on a waiting child s list,I just knew she was the one. I noticed she had butterflies on her ball in the photo of her, but made no connection with the word of knowledge. I showed the picture to my daughter Nicole, who is 12 years old, and much smarter then me. The first thing she said was "OH, she is catching butterflies"...

Wednesday, March 22, 2006

For our Dossier:

We need to have:

* Adoption Petition (done)
* Juergen's birth certificate (done)
* Amy's birth certificate (done)
* Our marriage license (done)
* The I-171-H (US adoption visa)
* Home Study(April 5)
* Employer Reference Letters(done)
* Local Police Clearance Letters (done)
* Medical Exams/Bloodwork
* Photos of our family, inside of our home, & front of our home
* Copies of our passports and 2 passport size photos.

We are hoping to get this stuff together in the next month. Our home study is April 5th. We can apply for the visa after the home study is finished. This is really just a home study update, so it shouldn't take very long. I will check the list off as we finish each task.

the building crane China's national bird.

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Just playing around with her picture. I wish I had more pictures to work with. I wish I had her around, and not just a picture :)

Just a thought for today, ...We can accomplish difficult tasks fairly quickly but that the "impossible" ones take a little longer.

Sunday, March 19, 2006

Parents applying for international adoption must put together a "dossier," or an application containing all the information the country needs to assess your ability to be suitable parents for the child you wish to adopt. Each country has different requirements of what should be included in the dossier. With China adoption, parents have to gather copies of their birth certificates, police criminal clearance forms, medical forms, employment verification forms, financial statements, a home study, and permission from our country's government to bring the child home. Parents who have previously adopted have called this process, "the paper chase." We are now in the paper chase.We have done this two times before. It should be easy. The real hard part is just finding the time to do it! At some point I think Juergen will just need to take a few days off, and we will get it done. The sooner we finish this,the sooner Sarah can come home. Really, it is like doing your taxes. Not many people like to sit down and fill out the forms, but we all love to spend the tax return. Maybe we should have a April paper chase deadline!

Saturday, March 18, 2006

Hi, I found a link that shows a few pictures of Sarahs children home. Half the sky has a program there. It sounds like a very good home. But as they say, "there is no place like home". I don't care how nice an orphanage is, it could never replace a good family. I am very grateful to God she is in a good place. I am sure she is receiving very good care. Here is the link

I did find the bunk beds for cribs a shock! It just shows you the need!

I also found this story about the childrens home.

Friday, March 17, 2006

I read this today about doing what you feel is right, even if others do not under stand or agree...
"You never know how any small act of obedience on your part
will result in huge blessing! Don't give up! "

The house is pretty loud right now. The boys have a friend over for a sleep over. I don't think we will get much sleep around here! I am sure I could not add another boy to our family. I sure hope Sarah is the sort of girl that likes to do art, and play quietly with her dolls. The boys are having a good old time, and I need a hot bath!!!

Thursday, March 16, 2006

I'm creating pictures to send to Sarah. Here is the first page.

Wednesday, March 15, 2006

What does the Bible say about caring for needy children?

James 1:27 – Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.”

Psalm 127:3,5 – Sons are a heritage from the Lord, children a reward from him. Blessed is the man whose quiver is full of them,

Psalm 68:5,6b – A father to the fatherless, a defender of widows, is God in his holy dwelling. God sets the lonely in families.

Psalm 82:3 – Defend the cause of the weak and fatherless; maintain the rights of the poor and oppressed.

Matt. 25:40 – The King will reply, “I tell you the truth, whatever you did for one of the least of these brothers of mine, you did for me.”

"Why This Child?"

Words are like flowers in a summer field,

when I reach to pick them they often yield

unwillingly, or wither in my hand,

limp and useless, not nearly as grand

as before I gathered them on demand.

And today someone asked me, “Why this child?”

“Why her, so foreign and Eastern-styled?

Why do you want her?” The words would not come,

in all that bright meadow of words there were none

to declare the reasons my heart calls her home.

My mind like a new-planted field gently lies,

quietly holding the hows and the whys.

We stand at the deep edge of need, she and I,

across the cold seasons we silently fly

to warm one another, and words don’t tell why.

For words are like flowers, delicate, rare

and when I would pick them, are not always there.

As sunlight and shadows on field flowers dart,

or in dim forests ferns flourish apart,

words sometimes don’t tell us what blooms in the heart.

Tuesday, March 14, 2006

This post was made by Amy Eldridge the founder of "Love Without Boundaries" in response to the question what is the percentage of "special needs" children in orphanages in China?

I just had a meeting in Beijing last month about these very
issues and it is still running about 80% of special needs versus non
special needs. We have helped over 120 orphanages now, and that
runs consistent with the numbers we have been given by each
individual orphanage. We always ask for a breakdown on their kids
before we begin a project. Normally for every healthy baby that
arrives, 4-5 kids with medical needs come in. I think as we
continue to see the success of China's "Girls Count" campaign, the
number of healthy children being abandoned will continue to
decline. As you mentioned, in one orphanage we recently visited,
out of 87 kids, only 3 were NSN. Of course, as I met each child,
all I saw were completely adoptable kids. I think the CCAA is doing
a wonderful job of encouraging SWIs to submit more and more kids
with medical needs for adoption. I hope the numbers just continue
to climb. In my daughter's orphanage, just a few short years ago
they didn't even realize that kids with SN could be adopted. This
year they will send FIFTY files to the CCAA. What a cause for

As you know, the CCAA has now started a domestic adoption campaign
and has set up an office to handle domestic adoptions (it is in its
early stages). I hope that if the number of "healthy" babies
available continues to decline as more and more Chinese families
realize that adoption is a wonderful way to form a family, that more
and more international families will come to realize (as those on
this list have) that the waiting child route is a wonderful one.

I know that it was mentioned that someone didn't see SN kids on
their orphanage visit. Often, many cities have separate facilities
for children with SNs, but they are under the same governing

After repeatedly seeing the love and agony that birthparents feel
for their kids with medical needs, I do believe in my heart that the
vast majority of times it is a lack of funds for medical care and/or
extended family that lead to abandonment. I can't even tell you how
many times we have done a surgery on a newly abandoned child and
healed them that I have wished for a magic way to tell the
birthparents...."they are healed....come back and get them." But
of course that is sadly impossible.

Amy E.

I read this song on another adoption blog. This family is adopting a 3 year old, and she learned the words in her orphanage. This is the English translation. I am so happy I am going to be a mom again. I am so thankful to God for my own mom!!!
Here are the lyrics in English:

Mommy's the only dearest in the world
With a mom, you have the most valued treasure.
Jump into mom's heart
and you have endless happiness.

Mommy's the only dearest in the world
without a mom you are like a piece of grass/straw
away from mom's heart,
where will you find happiness?

Saturday, March 11, 2006

Well, today was a pretty big day! We wrote and faxed our letter of intent to adopt a special needs child. On this form we are required to write out what kind of health care,education, and enviorment (her own bedroom, a garden with a swing and a swimming pool near by) we can provide. It was a first step in a long stack of paper work. It should take 4-7 weeks for the Chinese government to give us a PA (pre-approval)to adopt a Chinese child. While we wait for the PA, we will try to finish all the other paper. We want to be able to pick Sarah up as soon as we can! The work has begun...we are really on our way!!!

Thursday, March 09, 2006

Could it be? We found Sarah Qing on a waiting child list. On this same list is another 3 year old, who I personally find very sweet and very beautiful. She has the same minor special need as Sarah, and happens to be in the same Children s home as Sarah. There is a good chance they are friends. Her name is YuHong. I am praying she finds her forever family soon. I am beginning to want her too. For me this is not such a big deal. After all, what is one more? They could share a room, cloths, etc... but poor Juergen had such a hard time saying yes to Sarah. How could I ever ask him about YuHong? It would cost more, we would need to get a bigger car, and China would need to agree to let us adopt two at once (this is really rare). But she really captures my heart! I know it would probably be best if she is adopted by her own (other) family. I know I can not see clearly what would be best. All I know is if know one else wants her... I do!

PS. I just read she "has a family"! I cried tears of joy! I've prayed all day for this special little girl. I knew Juergen would probably never let me adopt her, but I just hated the idea of maybe going to China to get Sarah, meeting YuHong, and leaving her there. Now I know she will also have a family. I am super happy!
I saw this posted today on a yahoo adoption support group. I thought it was pretty good. I can hardly fall asleep at night because I am so excited about this adoption. The reality is we are just at the beginning of a very long trip. We have not really stepped our foot out the door. We are in for what could be a long wait. I hope this is not true, but I know it probably is true! Today I think about my girl in China, the gift at the end of this journey. But God is with me today. I must learn to enjoy now, and not live only for the gift that waits (God willing) at the end of this long paper trail that stands before me! Today , and I hope everyday I can just plain say, God is good!

...Lately I have been wondering why God so often
sends us into the school of waiting. Does He send us
there so that we will learn our lesson and never
have to wait again? Or does He send us there to
learn to savor times of waiting (times that will
inevitably come again and again), to learn to look
at them as opportunities to draw close to the heart
of God? In his book "Waiting on God", Andrew Murray
makes these observations:

At our first entrance into the school of waiting
upon God, the heart is mainly set on the blessings
which we wait for. God graciously uses our needs and
desires for help to educate us for something higher
than we were thinking of. We were seeking gifts; He,
the Giver, longs to give Himself and to satisfy the
soul with His goodness. It is just for this reason
that He often withholds the gifts, and that the time
of waiting is made so long. He is constantly seeking
to win the heart of His child for Himself. He wishes
that we would not only say, when He bestows the
gift, 'How good is God!' but that long before it
comes, and even if it never comes, we should all the
time be experiencing: it is good that a man should
quietly wait. 'The LORD is good unto them that wait
for him.'

Wednesday, March 08, 2006

For many years people have argued over the question "when does life begin?". I ask a similar question, "when does an adoption begin?". Today the UPS man delivered an envelope to my next door neighborers house. It was, thank God, unmarked. I am not ready to announce to them we are paper pregnant . The envelope contains all the important papers we need to sign for the adoption agency. Everything we must do in order to begin the adoption process. Clearly this adoption process was not started when the UPS man came knocking! For me it began over 20 years ago with a dream. I can not say what year it was, but once I had a dream. I was standing on the side of a very busy road. On this road there was what I would describe as a river of bicycles. I knew even then that this was China. I also knew God had something special for me to do in China. Many of you know this is not our first adoption. It is, if fact our third. My oldest daughter Jessica wrote once that her father works too much and that her mothers hobby is collecting children. I've read a great deal about Chinese orphans. I've been strongly influenced by books like "The Lost Daughters of China" by Karin Evans, and " Wanting a Daughter needing a Son" by Kay Ann Johnson. These books describe the situation in China, the one child policy that makes it necessary for many Chinese people (especially those who work on poor farms) to abandon their daughters. I guess you could say I felt the "call" to parent one of these girls. Juergen has struggled pretty hard agents this calling. Our house is full, crazy, and very very busy! Certainly no one would expect us to adopt again. I am sure most people would strongly advise us not to do this. I personally tried to consider this very sound and logical advice. But I felt called! The longing did not go away, it grew stronger and stronger.Poor Juergen! I thank God he decided to consider the possibility. He thought and thought. He prayed and prayed. He finally decided we could do this. He finally said "yes"! I would say the adoption began with the words "yes"!