Reluctant Husband Syndrome

January 31, 2017 adopting again, January 2017 Feature - Reluctant Spouses, large families, reluctant husband 7 Comments

Choosing to grow your family is a monumental, life-altering decision. And choosing to grow your family through special-needs adoption? Even more so. Which makes this decision an understandably difficult one to make – one that is typically easier (or harder) for one spouse than the other. This month we’re focusing on Reluctant Spouses. Or, when …Read More

Adopting a Child with Unpredictable Special Needs

January 31, 2017 adoption realities, bronchiectasis, dysphagia, Family Stories, medical needs checklist, referral, swallow study, undiagnosed SN 0 Comments

When you visit a carnival, some rides are very predictable. The frog hopper, bumper cars, flying elephants, and even the tea cups come with a high level of predictability. You hand over the ticket and, with almost 100% certainty, you can foresee what the outcome of the ride will be… steady, smooth, and timely. Then …Read More

How to Know When It’s Time to Adopt

January 30, 2017 a father's perspective, adopting again, Dads, January 2017 Feature - Reluctant Spouses, Perspectives, pre-adoption, Randall, reluctant husband, should we adopt? 3 Comments

January last year, my wife sat across the couch from me as we do most every night. She has a way of asking a question that doesn’t leave you alone, even after you’ve answered it. The lights in the living room were dim and an episode of The Office was playing in the background. I was …Read More

Find My Family: Toby

January 30, 2017 Family Found 0 Comments

Meet Toby! Toby is an introverted and quiet little boy. In general, he is a sweet boy who is close to his caretakers. He is somewhat independent though and plays alone well. One of his favorite activities is being read to and looking at pictures in books. Toby is listed with AAC Adoption. Toby recently …Read More

Reluctant Spouses: Waiting on God’s Story to be Written

January 29, 2017 adopting again, adopting later in life, January 2017 Feature - Reluctant Spouses, large families, reluctant husband, should we adopt? 0 Comments

Choosing to grow your family is a monumental, life-altering decision. And choosing to grow your family through special-needs adoption? Even more so. Which makes this decision an understandably difficult one to make – one that is typically easier (or harder) for one spouse than the other. This month we’re focusing on Reluctant Spouses. Or, when …Read More

My Daughter, The Teacher

January 29, 2017 limb difference, Mandy, symbrachydactyly, visible special need 3 Comments

We were in the waiting room at our kids’ new pediatrician’s office when another little boy saw my daughter’s limb difference and ran away to his mom because Lydia’s limb difference scared him. Five minutes later, a little girl ran up to Lydia and Barrett, and with a grotesque look on her face said, “What …Read More

A New Year in China!

January 28, 2017 adoptee perspective, adult adoptee, Chinese Culture, Chinese food, Chinese Holidays, Chinese New Year 0 Comments

Xīn Nián Kuài Lè! Happy Chinese New Year to you all! Chinese New Year is also known as the Spring Festival or Chun jie. There is nothing more exciting or anticipated in China than the New Year celebrations with all of their traditions and activities! It’s an important familiar and societal tradition to reflect upon …Read More

Waiting to be Chosen: Liam

January 28, 2017 Children Who Wait 0 Comments

Liam is 8 years old and is a very happy little guy with the most contagious giggles you’ll ever hear. I have no doubt that he’ll bring much joy to his forever family. He was hosted in the US over the holiday season and this is what his host mom has to say about him: …Read More

Biologically Yours

January 28, 2017 Attachment, Rebecca 3 Comments

My sweet one, you and I might not share DNA, but I am forever and always, biologically yours. Biology: the science of life or living matter in all its forms and phenomena, 
especially with reference to origin, growth, reproduction, structure, and behavior.
 Dictionary.com /// If you researched our story, you’d begin with the origin of …Read More

The Road To Compassion

January 27, 2017 Andrea O., complex heart defect, should we adopt?, siblings 0 Comments

When contemplating the adoption of a child with complex medical needs, particularly those needs that may very well result in a shortened lifespan, families are often confronted by well-meaning friends and relatives with a variation of this question: “How will this adoption affect this children already in your home? How will this affect your marriage?” …Read More

An American-Chinese Treat: Fried Crab Wontons

January 26, 2017 Chinese Culture, Chinese food, Chinese Holidays, Nicole, recipes 0 Comments

Although Fried Crab Wontons are not authentic Chinese food, they make an appearance at many of our family gatherings, especially the ones celebrating Chinese holidays. We’ll definitely be making them for Spring Festival, coming up in just a few days! A friend taught us how to make his recipe years ago, and we’ve been using …Read More

Waiting to be Chosen: Wayland

January 26, 2017 Children Who Wait 0 Comments

I’d like to introduce you to a precious 7 year old boy. His name is Wayland, and he’s amazing. He delights in simple pleasures and always has a smile on his face. He is joyful, friendly, affectionate, thoughtful, social, tender, and incredibly patient. And he’s waiting for his family to find him. Through a trip …Read More

The Skating Rink

January 25, 2017 adoption realities, Andrea Y., Attachment, attachment challenges, cocooning, large families 1 Comments

We walked out of church — baby in the arms of daddy… a few bigs walking behind him and I trailed behind with my two little loves born across the ocean with their hands folded in mine. We jumped in the van — and out of no where I just said, “Who wants to go …Read More

Chinese New Year: Finding Your Own Way to Celebrate

January 25, 2017 Chinese Culture, Chinese food, Chinese Holidays, Chinese New Year, embracing their story, recipes, Stefanie 1 Comments

We love China for a million reasons. The biggest is that it is the birth country of nine of our thirteen children. But we haven’t always done the best job at reflecting that love in how we celebrate Chinese holidays and/or incorporate China into our day-to-day life. Because, honestly, with a big, busy, and on-a-budget …Read More

On the Ground in China: Prayers Answered

January 24, 2017 agency-orphanage partnership, AWAA, Beyond Adoption, medical mission trip, orphan ministry, other ways to care for the orphan 0 Comments

Prayers answered overnight, relationships forged, and a path cleared to serve more than twice the number of children planned – this is the incredible impact of a recent medical mission trip to help orphans in China. On this recent trip, Dr. Kanhka Linthavong and his team saw God work in powerful ways. The group of …Read More

Confessions of a Former China Director Turned Adoptive Mom

January 24, 2017 adopting a boy, Attachment, attachment activities, cognitive delay, complex medical, developmental delays, Developmental System, Family Stories, first weeks home, first year home, low muscle tone, Newly Home, should we adopt? 8 Comments

Alternately titled: What I wish I would have known, and what I would like to share with other adoptive families I first started out with adoption in 2004 when I was just 21 years old. It was the summer before my senior year of college when I got a job as an intern at All …Read More

Little Did We Know

January 23, 2017 complex heart defects 4 Comments

Seven years ago, on this very day, we boarded a plane for China. Little did we know… Little did we know how fuzzy your little head would be, or that you had the most beautiful dimples, or that you had the sweetest voice ever. Little did we know how brave you would be. Little did …Read More

Using Your Skills and Talents to Fundraise Successfully

January 23, 2017 fundraising for adoption, Kelley B. 0 Comments

Through fundraising for our adoption, I’ve met many determined adoptive mamas. I never tire of hearing others stories of adoption and how, despite seemingly impossible odds, God brought in the funds. When I meet other families that have fundraised I am always amazed and inspired. Each person puts their own spin, and uses their own …Read More

Waiting to be Chosen: Maya

January 22, 2017 Children Who Wait 1 Comments

Maya is a beyond precious 2 1/2 year-old girl who is waiting for her forever family to fall in love with her sweet face! Maya can sit independently and can reach for objects around her. She likes to play with her hands and sit on the rocking horse. Maya can stand up in front of …Read More

Reluctant Spouses: Worth the Wait

January 21, 2017 adopting a boy, Down syndrome, January 2017 Feature - Reluctant Spouses, pre-adoption, reluctant husband, should we adopt? 3 Comments

Choosing to grow your family is a monumental, life-altering decision. And choosing to grow your family through special-needs adoption? Even more so. Which makes this decision an understandably difficult one to make – one that is typically easier (or harder) for one spouse than the other. This month we’re focusing on Reluctant Spouses. Or, when …Read More

Waiting to be Chosen: Trent

January 20, 2017 Children Who Wait 0 Comments

Two year old Trent could not be any cuter? Trent knows the nanny who takes care of him and he is very close to her. He is active and has a ready smile. Trent likes to listen to music and enjoys toys that make sound. He can hold his bottle and he likes playing with …Read More

Finding Me

January 19, 2017 Katie 6 Comments

I started out this new year of 2017 by sitting down with my kids and filling out a form for goals and ideas for goals. A small part was, “What Makes You Happy.” I watched my kids fly through and write down at least twenty things. I struggled to write down more than five. Like …Read More

Waiting to be Chosen: Robert

January 18, 2017 Children Who Wait 2 Comments

In September of 2015, I met the most special baby boy in an orphanage in China. He was to be advocated for as ‘Robert.’ Robert was 14 months old at the time and he didn’t have a file even started. This precious baby boy was found abandoned in a toilet. Unfathomable to me, but I …Read More

No Hands But Ours: Looking Back at 2016…

January 17, 2017 2016 in review, Advocacy, Year in Review 1 Comments

2016 was an amazing year for No Hands But Ours. Hundreds of posts shared. Twelve special topics featured. Guest series. Family stories. Book reviews. Recipes. And advocacy posts written that turned faces across the sea into treasured sons and daughters. Here is just a glimpse of all we shared… …………………… A Look Back by the …Read More

Child Who Waits: Whittingham

January 16, 2017 Children Who Wait 0 Comments

“Yi, er, san, qiezi!” (One, two, three, eggplant!) I can still hear these words in my head and remember exactly how he says them. Every time I took my camera out, he would yell this phrase loudly and throw his two fingers up in the air in “V” and put them right in front of …Read More

Reluctant Spouses: Of One Mind….

January 15, 2017 adopting again, adopting out of birth order, aging out expedite, January 2017 Feature - Reluctant Spouses, older child adoption, pre-adoption, reluctant husband, should we adopt? 0 Comments

Choosing to grow your family is a monumental, life-altering decision. And choosing to grow your family through special-needs adoption? Even more so. Which makes this decision an understandably difficult one to make – one that is typically easier (or harder) for one spouse than the other. This month we’re focusing on Reluctant Spouses. Or, when …Read More

Homemade Jiǎozi: Making Chinese New Year a Family Affair

January 14, 2017 Chinese Culture, Chinese food, Chinese Holidays, Chinese New Year, Nicole, recipes 1 Comments

I learned to make dumplings a few years ago when we hosted an exchange student from China. Everyone in the family enjoys eating them, and the process is so fun! Making dumplings, or jiǎozi, is definitely a social affair – it’s meant to be shared as a group. We enjoy making and eating them to …Read More

Waiting to be Chosen: Gia and Gage

January 13, 2017 Children Who Wait 0 Comments

Meet Gia. Gia is 5 years old. She is a special focus child, on Lifeline’s individual list, and has a left finger deformity, G-6-PD deficiency, and Down syndrome. Gia gets along well with children in her class and uses gestures to express her own needs. It is reported that she is fairly attached to her …Read More

In the Meantime

January 13, 2017 adopting again, Courtney, either gender, referral, waiting for referral 8 Comments

Right now I am in a place I like to call the sweet spot. The paper chase is finished. There are no more adoption documents to sign or forms to fill out or fingerprints appointments to attend. All of our paperwork is submitted and everything on our end is done and out of our hands. …Read More

Waiting to be Chosen: Danielle

January 12, 2017 Family Found 0 Comments

Introducing precious Danielle! Danielle was born in November of 2012 was admitted into the CWI in January of 2013. Her special needs are macroglossia, heart disease, and hypertrophy of limbs on the right. Danielle was found abandoned at the park in January of 2013. When she was first admitted to the CWI, her height was …Read More

My Plan vs. His Plan

January 11, 2017 adopting a boy, adopting as a single mom, adopting as first time parents, December 2016 Feature - Adopting a Boy, either gender, working mom 0 Comments

You know how you make plans for your life and then God has something completely different in mind (and probably laughs at you for thinking your plan would measure up)? That was me. In fact, I had my whole life figured out. I was going to go to college, fall in love, get married, and …Read More

Child Who Waits: Seth

January 10, 2017 Family Found 0 Comments

Meet Seth! Little Seth is 5 years old and is on Wide Horizons For Children’s Individual list. He lives in one of their orphanage partnerships so I have met with him a few times. Seth is described as a social butterfly! He loves playing with the other children at the orphanage. He is quick to …Read More

Reluctant Spouses: Am I Ready To Be Ready Too?

January 9, 2017 a father's perspective, adopting again, January 2017 Feature - Reluctant Spouses, reluctant husband 6 Comments

Choosing to grow your family is a monumental, life-altering decision. And choosing to grow your family through special-needs adoption? Even more so. Which makes this decision an understandably difficult one to make – one that is often easier (or harder) for one spouse to come to than the other. This month we’re focusing on Reluctant …Read More

Child Who Waits: Lydia

January 8, 2017 Children Who Wait 2 Comments

We had the joy and blessing of hosting 11.5 year old Lydia this Christmas. Lydia is from the Jilin province, China. She lives at a boarding school for orphans and is a great student. Lydia absolutely LOVES to read and while she was here, she read Chinese versions of Harry Potter and Charlie and the …Read More

I Am Not a Babysitter, I Am a Dad

January 7, 2017 a father's perspective, Attachment, attachment activities, Bryson, Dads, Perspectives 5 Comments

I have been unusually emotional lately. At the drop of a hat, I am tearing up. This week is our son’s “famiversary.” One year ago we stamped our thumbs in red ink and officially made him part of our family in a humid government office in Nanning, Guangxi. As I write this, today is also …Read More

find my family: Timmy

January 6, 2017 Children Who Wait 0 Comments

Timmy is a precious little guy who needs a family so badly! He was born March of 2011 and admitted into the orphanage in August of 2011. He has cerebral palsy with high muscular tension. In May 2012 he was sent to Rehabilitation Hospital for treatment. At the beginning he could not raise his head, …Read More

The Wonderful Blessing of Boys

January 5, 2017 adopting a boy, adopting again, December 2016 Feature - Adopting a Boy, Kelley B. 7 Comments

When we started our China adoption journey, I was certain we would be bringing home one tiny baby girl. Sometimes God has bigger, different, and even better things in store for us. Our journey to our two boys has proven to be one of the best things to happen to our family About four years …Read More

Waiting for Our Story to be Written

January 4, 2017 2017 Features, January 2017 Feature - Reluctant Spouses, pre-adoption, reluctant husband, should we adopt?, Whitney 0 Comments

My journal contains the overspill of my heart, my prayers, my questions, fears, and joys. If you could read my journal entries from four or more years ago, you would probably come away believing that adoption was just never going to happen for our family. You would have read about the times we helped other …Read More

Child Who Waits: Jude

January 4, 2017 Children Who Wait 0 Comments

Jude is a hardworking and caring 12 ½ year old (born April of 2004). He will age out of his eligibility for international adoption on his 14th birthday, so he is running out of time to find his forever family! Jude’s nannies report that he is shy around strangers, but he gets along well with …Read More

The Year of the Rooster

January 3, 2017 Chinese Culture, Chinese food, Chinese Holidays, Chinese New Year, Faith 2 Comments

Last year, we had been home for a couple of months when Chinese New Year rolled around. Still adjusting to our new normal, I remember frantically ordering a few decorations from Amazon Prime to celebrate the occasion. This year, I wanted to be much more intentional about how our family celebrates this important holiday, so …Read More

Feeding Challenges, Attachment and Trust-Based Parenting

January 2, 2017 Attachment, attachment activities, attachment challenges, feeding challenges, feeding/swallowing therapy, Newly Home, oral aversion, refusing food, Sensory Processing Issues, Trust Based Parenting 1 Comments

My introduction to the world of feeding challenges coincided with me becoming a mother. My firstborn son – a perfect, squishy newborn – refused to eat. He had no physical limitations or reasons for refusing food, he just didn’t see the need nor possess the desire to fulfill his hunger by eating. The first six …Read More

Snips, Snails and Puppy Dog Tails

January 1, 2017 adopting a boy, adopting again, adopting out of birth order, December 2016 Feature - Adopting a Boy, either gender, medical needs checklist, older child adoption, referral, waiting for referral 3 Comments

I sat down one afternoon after our decision to adopt and filled out the application and MCC. The MCC is a Medical Conditions Checklist where you check boxes of special needs that you and your family are comfortable with. There are also boxes to fill out for age preference that range (from 0-13 years old) …Read More

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