Sherry Waits for Her Family

February 6, 2016 by nohandsbutours 0 Comments

This gentle, beautiful little girl is Sherry!


She was born in May of 2013 and her legs are paralyzed. Sherry was found when she was about 2 years old and had an EEG, head CT, and lower limb testing (results in file). She was very timid, depressed and scared of strangers but the nannies spent a lot of extra time with her and encouraged the other children to play with her. Over time, she began to be comfortable and is now optimistic and easy going. While her upper limbs move well, she had some delays with fine motor skills and has been receiving therapy for that.


Her teachers report that her intelligence, emotion, and language ability development is good and she can speak many words. She needs assistance with eating but is learning to use a spoon. She can hold a biscuit and clean her mouth with a towel. Sherry enjoys playing games and playing with new toys. Her favorite food is candy!! Sounds like every two year old I know smile emoticon Sherry is described as shy, quiet, introverted, quick in reaction, and gets along well with others.


Watch her incredibly sweet videos:

Sherry’s file is assigned to BAAS through an orphanage partnership. Her orphanage is known for their excellent care. Please contact Xiaoqing at BAAS for more information!

Kaleidoscope: One Year Home

February 5, 2016 by nohandsbutours 0 Comments

Today our family celebrates our One Year Home anniversary! I’ve often imagined what it would be like if I could travel back in time to those early days; what would I say to myself? What words of encouragement would One-Year-Home-Me have to say to Me-From-A-Year-Ago?

This is how I imagine it would go…


Hi there, Me-From-A-Year-Ago!

You are so tired, aren’t you?

Up until this point, you never even knew that this degree of tired existed. You made it through two weeks of the unimaginable; a hurricane of emotion, stories that will be told around the dinner table for decades to come… some funny, and some really gross ones, too!


You are so overwhelmed, aren’t you?

You never imagined the storm of emotion that could exist in your heart, loving a child you first loved via a computer screenshot and then seeing her walk into the same room you were in. Her. Your daughter! Right there in front of you! You never anticipated the paradox of having a daughter who was both undeniably resilient, and yet unmistakably fragile.

That is what you are, too. Fragile. Resilient. These first days might threaten to break you, but they will not. The firestorm of emotions might feel overwhelming, but you will not be overcome.

You know what, Me-From-A-Year-Ago… there is more to come. In the following year you will continue to be tired, and there are many times you will feel overwhelmed, but you will also find new life.

You will cry.
You will throw your hands up in frustration.
You will wonder how the world can continue turning on its axis like your world isn’t upside down.
You will question your sanity.

You will learn to depend on others more.
You will learn to depend on God more.
You will pray with a desperation you never knew before.
You will become a better mother and a better wife.
You will become a wound care expert, at least when it involves your child.
You will live what you learned on paper, you will figure out what works for you slowly.

You will mess up. Many times. 
You will also seek forgiveness and revel in the peace that overcomes you when it is given.

You will watch your children learn to be siblings.
You will eventually sleep through the night.
You will figure out schedules, and how to communicate the needs of your children to others.
You will be gracious in responding to ungracious inquiries.
You will read about Chinese holidays in hopes of communicating the value of your daughter’s heritage to your family. You will find familiar snacks and buy them just to see that smile light up her face.

You will rock your girl, give her bottles, and carry her all so she can better handle the emotions she is processing.
You will make new friends who will become a lifeline for you during the most stressful of moments.
You will be amazed… simply amazed at who you will be on February 5th, 2016. Like a kaleidoscope twisting and turning, life will be a series of beautiful pictures you see for a moment before another twist takes it away to be replaced by chaos. The picture always returns, always a little different; a new normal.


Other people will tell you they are so proud of you, that you are doing a great job. You will hesitate to agree because the picture doesn’t look anything like what you thought “great” would look like. That’s okay. Just know that one day, you WILL think it’s great. You will know that the job you are doing is important because you are living a Yes you never dreamed for yourself. You will recognize that God is great, and that through you, His greatness found a finger print covered window to shine through.

You will be humbled this year.

It will be the best of the best and the worst of the worst, you just have to take every day as it comes.

Hang on to the good, discard the bad.

Take lots of pictures, but don’t berate yourself when you happen to take ZERO pictures on Christmas Day. 😉

You can do this.

A slightly older and wiser One-Year-Home-You

find my family: Layla

February 4, 2016 by nohandsbutours 0 Comments

Layla was born July of 2014. She is described as an extroverted little girl who likes playing with mirrors, and being held by her nanny. Though her development is behind compared to other children, she can babble and say “mama,” and will clap her hands in greeting! As of December she was crawling and standing while holding onto railings. When her name is called she will turn to respond, and she can find toys to play with.

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She is diagnosed with albinism, and when WACAP staff visited in May she would turn away from the bright sunlight coming in the windows. Her caregivers reported that she can see, but they aren’t sure how much since she’s so young. At that time she didn’t have much core strength, but she has gained some and is making milestones! She needs a family to help her continue making strides!

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Contact WACAP for more information!

The Perfect Fit for Our Family

February 3, 2016 by nohandsbutours 1 Comments


My husband and I were only married a year when the Lord called us to adopt. Separately, we both felt the Lord speak to us about adopting a little girl from China – we told each other a few days later. It was encouraging to hear that call, and we were both excited for the …Read More

Celebrating China: Children’s Books

February 2, 2016 by nohandsbutours 2 Comments


In years past, I’ve scoured websites and bookshelves for every Chinese New Year/Spring Festival themed kids’ book around to read to our clan in anticipation of the holiday. We found some good ones and some not so good ones. Overthinker that I am, I hope my musings help you decide which ones are worthwhile for …Read More

find my family: Gwen

February 2, 2016 by nohandsbutours 2 Comments


Gwen was born in September 2005 and brought to the hospital to be treated for Neonatal Septicemia when she was about a week old. During her hospital admission her parents did not return for her and she was declared abandoned. After spending several weeks in the hospital for observation she was moved to her orphanage. …Read More

Heart Month: Little Hearts Medical

February 1, 2016 by nohandsbutours 0 Comments


It’s February 1. Happy American Heart Month! To start off heart month here at NHBO, I asked Andrea Olson to share. Andrea has shared here before, as mom to four children with complex (some with very complex) heart needs. But today Andrea is sharing as the Executive Director of Little Hearts Medical. One of her …Read More

My Family’s First “Real” Chinese New Year

January 31, 2016 by nohandsbutours 2 Comments


My son was only 18 months old when Chinese New Year approached last year. From his perch on my shoulders, he gasped in amazement at the dragon dancers advancing along Market Street during San Francisco’s Chinese New Year parade, but he was too young to understand the cause for all the fuss. Now a year …Read More

I Could Never Do That

January 30, 2016 by nohandsbutours 5 Comments


I could never do that. I could never adopt. I could never foster. I could never have more than two kids. I could never adopt multiple children. I could never afford adoption. I could never say yes to a child with special needs. I could never bear my child needing surgery. I could never parent …Read More

find my family: Austin

January 30, 2016 by nohandsbutours 0 Comments


Meet Austin, a playful – but very determined – five year-old boy. Austin has cerebral palsy, but don’t let that scare you. Austin doesn’t let it stop him. Through Austin’s hard work at physical therapy, and the support of his orphanage, Austin has learned to walk short distances and to climb stairs without assistance. Austin …Read More

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