Life After Bigger Dirt

Life After Bigger Dirt

Monday, January 9, 2012

AEX to PEK and beyond

I never blog.  For this, I asked Melissa's permission. 
Where to begin.  We began this journey 9 months ago, and now it has culminated into an 18 day blessing from God.  We left Alexandria bright and early, with 3 newbie flyers and one who greatly dislikes planes, jumped over to Atlanta (as all proper flights should) and then on to Seattle.  The three girls (Melissa, Allison, and Melissa's sister Kelsey) huddled together in their seats as Corbin asked every possible question for the hour and a half first flight.  The girls never seemed to warm up to flying, though they made the trip bravely and much better than anticipated.  Corbin finally crashed from the excitement and got 4 hours of sleep en route to Seattle.
6 hour lay-over in Seattle
Nobody knew.  Our tickets only said we stopped there. 
Oh well.  It was a welcome break from the plane, but a bit long for a 4 year old.  Big sister listened to her ipod, and was quite happy to be on solid ground.
12 hours to Beijing, on a plane with 1/4 of its capacity---praise GOD for places to lay down and sleep. 
We arrived in Beijing at 1040pm (14 hours ahead of Louisiana time), and all our bags met us.  Again, praise God!
A long van ride to the hotel, with snow! and smog, got checked in and everybody to their rooms.  We promptly fell asleep (at 3 am), and up for 6 to head to the Great Wall.
The Great Wall was amazing to see and climb, but with jet lag and frigid temps, we were more than happy to finish our day of touring and head to our hotel. 
January 8, another flight.  This one short, and very tolerable, as we headed to Zhengzhou, capital of Henan Province.  Here, we would culminate this whole 9 month "pregnancy".  After settling in to our hotel, we did as any self-righteous Louisiana family would, and visited McDonald's and Wal-Mart!  You get a whole new perspective of the meat department after this trip.
Anyway, we managed to sleep some that night, but were up at 5 ready for the day.  THE DAY.  GOTCHA DAY.
We loaded into the bus, 7 families, backpacks, cameras, kleenex...
This is THE day.
We arrive at the registration office, where we would receive our children.
We walk into the building, look to our right, and there he is...Mr. Samuel WenHao Smith.  He was beautiful.  I know, boys are handsome.  He was beautiful.  I wanted to cry, shout, praise God. 
His caretakers brought him to us, once we were identified, and tearfully passed him to his new mother.  I cannot describe how amazing this felt.  I think (as only a human can i guess) that it is similar to what God feels when we give ourselves over to the adoption of sonship with Him.  I don't know, but for me, it was incredible.  My heart space was filling. 
Very shortly after, in walks two precious little girls from Luoyang orphanage.
Adaline, at last my sweet Adaline.
She was gorgeous!  So beautiful.  And full of life!  She came right to us, especially Allie.  Finally, the little sister she had anticipated.  
My two new babies, in our arms.  In our care.  Already in our hearts, but now in our presence, and now officially our family. 
We have some more paperwork to do, another flight to finish the legalities.  But they are ours, and we are theirs. 
God, thank you.  You have prepared us for this journey, for these children.  We rest on your promise to never leave us or forsake us.  Go before us and pave this road.  Surround us with your protection, your peace, your love.  Anoint our babies with comfort as they leave their world and enter ours.  We know it is hard for them, but You are the great Comforter, el Shaddai.  Lead us Lord.

More to come.



  1. Ahhhh!!!!! I have Ben checking to see this!!!! They are both so beautiful a finally yours!!!!! I am do thrilled for you and can't wait to see them in American clothes and Addie with bows!!! Look at that hair!!! Wen is just adorable!!! Looks like your Gotcha Day was pretty easy!!! Btw... Your husband should be given permission to blog more...he did great and made me cry!!!! :) I'm do glad tgi day ga come and I will be praying for you and your kiddos for adjustment and for the love that you two obviously have for them already (which like he said is just like our adoption into Christ' family) the unconditional love to shine through!!! Hope you can post more!! Have fun with your two new babies!!!!

  2. Wooohoo!!!finally a gotcha day post from your travel group!!!! They are gorgeous!!! Pray that bonding goes well:)

  3. So HAPPY for you guys! Great post and it is so good to see them in your arms :)


  4. Oh Brian! This brought me to tears. Thank you for sharing your heart. :) Sending lots of love to you, Melissa and the fam! :)

  5. They are gorgeous!! So happy for you guys! Can't wait until we're in the same room for our Gotcha Day! Many prayers for you as you continue your journey!

  6. Brian, my sweet, sweet son-in-law, you have made me cry AGAIN!! Wonderful blog! Will talk to Melissa about giving you permission to blog more! We FINALLY have our new babies, and they are gorgeous. I am praying their transition will be relatively easy. I love all of you so very much. Grandma can't hardly wait to get her arms around her new babies!! Hurry and get safely home!!!

  7. Congratulations! Your babies are absolutely beautiful!!!!

  8. Oh Melissa, I have tears in my eyes. I'm so happy for you and your family, and your two newest are gorgeous!

  9. Awww....goose bumps on my arms and tears in my eyes. Praising God with you all. What a miracle.

  10. Praying for God's grace to rain down on your family...for the most amazing transition. Thank You Jesus for this family and their heart for the orphan. Orphaned No More !!!! Praising God back in Louisiana. Much love to you guys.

  11. Congrats!!! They are beautiful children. Praying that the rest of your trip all your children are filled with comfort. 2 less to the heart!

  12. Love the blog... love your family! Wen & Adaline are precious.... Can't wait to meet them!! Enjoy your trip... it is a definitely one you will have etched in your heart forever.

  13. Congratulations!!! Praise God... double blessings! Enjoy this precious time in China. TWO less. Amazing.

  14. Thanks so much for the share. Finally got a chance to read this when I got home from visiting my new CHina dolls in Alexandria at the Warrens. I am crying tears of joy for all of you! Blessings on all!