Thursday, December 4, 2008

12.4.08 Farewell China... Homeward Bound!

Our amazing journey to China has come to a close, and whole new chapter in our extraordinary life journey begins. God has been so good to us, and has entrusted us with a very special gift. We’re so very blessed to have this opportunity to provide a new future, a loving family, and a life that she deserves.

We are extremely grateful for the wonderful people that we shared this journey with. We could not have asked for, or ever imagined, a better experience. We’ve developed what we know will be a life long bond, and deep and meaningful friendships, in a matter of a brief few weeks. We shared a life changing event, a marker and milestone in all of our lives, and witnessed the answer to many prayers. It’s been humbling, inspiring, exhausting, and joyful honor to share this journey with our Guandong group family of Midwesterners: the Franz’s, the Burna’s, the Rigney’s and Uncle Steve, the Gill’s and Pappa Jim, and the Swiatek Porter family.

We were also blessed to share our Beijing exeperience, and some of our post 'Gotcha Day' time in Guangzhou with the Bray's from Tennesee, and the Seattle area families, the Williamson's, the Dalton's, the Nunes, and the Wolf's.

We also owe a tremendous debt of gratitude to our representative and guides from Faith International:

- Charlotte ‘Du Yong’, who welcomed us to China, introduced us to the splendor of Beijing and the Great Wall, and primed us in the culture, leaving us well prepared for the adventure to come.
- Our Quangzhou guide, dear sweet Cordelia, who coached us through the process, immersed us in the culture, cried and laughed with us, sang to our babies, and showered us with compassion and love, and always reminded us that we were her ‘dear families and friends.’
- Myriam, from Faith Seattle, who was a huge help to Charlotte and Cordelia, and so many families including ours; master of the haggle, a guide in her own right, and for me, a Guangzhou subway companion.

One last hurrah to share with our blog watchers – last night we gathered for a post consulate approval farewell celebration. Knowing our daughters would be U.S. citizens in a matter of hours, and tha that we were finally heading home was a huge relief. We all exhaled, and laughed and reflected on our experience over a few buckets of beer on the patio at Lucy’s. A final great memory with these awesome families!

Blessings and heartfelt thanks to all of you who have prayed for us and encouraged us, who loved our boys while we were gone, and who will greet us with joy as Liana comes home.

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