An Advocate

January 25, 2014 by nohandsbutours adoption realities, Chinese Culture, Kelly 0 Comments

It had been a rough few days. I had advocated for a little boy once. A family stepped forward for him, traveled to China for him, and came home without him. Then, there I was, advocating for him again in a post on a Friday afternoon, after which I spent the following several days dealing …Read More

He is there

December 23, 2013 by nohandsbutours adoption realities, Kelly 0 Comments

Christmas 2009. Four Christmases ago. I was a wreck. We were so close to finding our new daughter. I just knew it would be a few weeks after Christmas; I hoped it would be a few weeks after Christmas. I was filled with expectation that Christmas. And, that meant that though I didn’t know who …Read More

The need for adoption talk never expires

October 25, 2013 by nohandsbutours adoption realities, Chinese Culture, Kelly 5 Comments

A family for only a few months, I took my toddler daughter with me to visit a friend, an older women, a faithful woman I loved and respected. While Lydia was mesmerized with the dust in the air visible in the sun light, my friend shielded her mouth and whispered: Are you going to tell …Read More

Why you may hear me singing daily

September 25, 2013 by nohandsbutours adoption realities, Chinese Culture, Kelly 9 Comments

I love shiny. Shiny is pretty. I love shiny…. She’s the finder of pennies. Everywhere she goes, she manages to find a penny. Today’s found treasure led to a song. Your turn to sing a song, Mommy. You make up a song. Not feeling particularly like a Maria this morning, Oh, I don’t know what …Read More

Disclosure Within Reason {Adoption and Back to School}

August 25, 2013 by nohandsbutours adoption realities, Chinese Culture, Kelly 4 Comments

There are backpacks lined up in my dining room today. When backpacks are hanging on chair backs with zippers bulging with supplies and tissue boxes, even they look excited about a new year. Lydia doesn’t start kindergarten until next year. But, she’s joining me two mornings a week at a women’s Bible study. And, based …Read More

A letter to my four-year-old on her birthday

June 25, 2013 by nohandsbutours adoption realities, Chinese Culture, Kelly 0 Comments

My sweet, You are such a big girl now. 4 years old. Wow. You remind me all the time of what a big girl you are. And, I know I always agree with you. But, now that you’re 4 years old? You are really big. When I put you to bed last night, I talked …Read More

Another parenting epiphany at the fair

May 25, 2013 by nohandsbutours adoption realities, Chinese Culture, Kelly 6 Comments

He had to take her to the emergency room. We had been waiting in line at the fair for our tickets. I had told her to stay still too many times. Up and down, jump, up and down, jump. And, every time, the rickety metal steps leading up to the ticket trailer would rattle and …Read More

"What's fair {for the brother or sister of a child with special needs}"

April 25, 2013 by nohandsbutours adoption realities, Chinese Culture, Kelly 33 Comments

“Tell your mom I need to talk to her before you leave.” Please tell me I’m not the only mom who receives that message from her child and sinks a little. Come on. I figure either (a) someone wants me to do something (which I likely won’t want to do) or (b) my kid did …Read More

Dear Teachers {what I wanted to say and what I actually said}

March 25, 2013 by nohandsbutours adoption realities, Chinese Culture, Kelly 5 Comments

I was tracking with her. Lydia runs away. She can’t stay still. She’s not listening. I nodded my head, identifying with her sympathetically, “Yeah, I know what you are seeing because we see that at home too.” “Well, it’s not okay here.” (Apparently, time outs are though.) Okay, no longer tracking. It was dismissal, moms …Read More

the counted

February 25, 2013 by nohandsbutours adoption realities, Chinese Culture, Kelly 3 Comments

Forever changed by the experience of being adopted and adopting, Kelly Raudenbush is a stay-at-home mom to 4 children and a professional juggler, juggling her calling as wife and mother with her secondary callings (editing professionally and serving adoptive families through The Sparrow Fund). You can learn more about their adoption story, how they’ve been …Read More

Re-entry

March 26, 2012 by nohandsbutours adoption realities, Journey to Mazie, Nancy 6 Comments

In the middle of the night, between the screeching and the pinching and the hitting… …the sweetest moments happen. Since coming home, Mazie and I have been awake 4-6 hours every night with only 1 exception. In the middle of the night while we sit on the couch, without knowing it, my head falls backwards, …Read More

March 7, Wednesday: {grief}

March 7, 2012 by nohandsbutours adoption realities, Journey to Mazie, Nancy 4 Comments

If the posts recently have been hard to read, you may want to skip this one. I put it out there for those who might be in our shoes next. Our girl is grieving so hard. I mean very hard. So much harder than Tess or Jude ever did. Harder than the other babies in …Read More

cries in the night

March 3, 2012 by nohandsbutours adoption realities, Kam 2 Comments

Our Joel never mourned his losses in the same way a lot of children do. He came to us the day we met him, having just turned three years old, all smiles and hopped right into his daddy’s lap. When we left with him, he had a quite serious look on his face. Fear, I’m …Read More

I am the Abductor

February 16, 2012 by nohandsbutours adoption realities, Journey to Mazie, Nancy 0 Comments

This might come off sounding awful, but here it goes. When my new daughter comes into my arms, {17 days from today!} I think it’s ok if she cries. Screaming, wailing, flailing… it’s all ok with me. And here’s the awful part, part of me is hoping there will be “a reaction” or some kind. …Read More

A SISTERHOOD

February 9, 2012 by nohandsbutours adoption realities, Gwen 0 Comments

I am going to try and help you under something that may SEEM a bit odd, but I am finding it occurs more and more these days and before you get knocked over w/ the EMOTION of it perhaps I can make you aware of it, so that is can be ignored … One of …Read More

Why Hello Spinabifida…

August 21, 2011 by nohandsbutours a father's perspective, adoption realities, Adrian, Parenting Special Needs, spina bifida 0 Comments

Ping:  Dad!  Dad!  DAD! Me:  What’s up baby? Ping:  Can you take my picture?!Me:  Of course!  Let me get the camera. Ping:  YAY!… a few seconds later … Me:  Okay baby, smile for Daddy! Ping:  What?  No.  I no smile. Me:  But you gotta smile for the picture.  You gotta look cute.Ping:  I want you to take a picture of my …Read More

His heart

July 11, 2011 by nohandsbutours adoption realities, heart defect, Kristi 0 Comments

I’ll never forget meeting our Daniel for the very first time.  We had met both Caleb and Darcy around the same age and while Ian and I were thrilled, it could be said that neither of them were…  I was prepared for a similar reaction from our youngest. As we approached the courtyard, the red …Read More

I am a Coward

June 21, 2011 by nohandsbutours a father's perspective, adoption realities, Adrian, Parenting Special Needs, spina bifida 0 Comments

Hello, my name is The Yeti…… and I am a Coward. Ping enjoying a horse ride, even with Spina Bifida Now, I’m not ALWAYS a coward.  There are many many things in life which I face bravely.  I can wrestle with bears wrapped in bacon… but for the life of me, children scare me. Now …Read More

New perspective on loss

April 11, 2011 by nohandsbutours adoption realities, Kristi 0 Comments

It has been almost a month since my grandfather died.  Long past the the initial shock, and the trip “home” to Ohio for the funeral, the tears have continued to come, usually at unexpected times.  Most recently it was over selecting a bunch of asparagus at the grocery.  Standing there in the produce section I …Read More

Sink or Swim

January 21, 2011 by nohandsbutours a father's perspective, adoption realities, Adrian, older child adoption, Parenting Special Needs 0 Comments

Our daughter Ping has Spina Bifida.  Normally her Special Need doesn’t impact her day to day activities.  There have been the odd emergency trip to the Spina Bifida Clinic… and the numerous check ups, and test, and MRIs, and neurology type things… but other than that… her Spina Bifida has not been on the forefront …Read More

The A Word in Adoption

December 27, 2010 by nohandsbutours adoption realities, Wife of the Prez 0 Comments

Abandoned. Webster’s defines abandoned as “given up, forsaken.” And Webster’s defines forsaken as “to renounce or turn away from entirely.” The questions have begun crashing in for our little girl. My Mom asked me if I thought her overhearing our talks with her older brother about his China Mommy had brought this about more quickly …Read More

Parental Disappointment

November 21, 2010 by nohandsbutours a father's perspective, adoption realities, Adrian 0 Comments

Doctor:  Congratulations!  You’ve got a son!Me:  Wow!  A son!Wife:  Oh look at him!  He is beautiful! Me:  He sure is!  Handsome!  Rugged!  He is going to be a star Athlete!Wife:  He can be anything he wants to be…Me:  So long as he is Athletic!  And rough and rugged like his Dad!Wife:  Ummmm… I don’t think …Read More

I prefer "Emotionally Challenged"

October 21, 2010 by nohandsbutours a father's perspective, adoption realities, Adrian, pre-adoption, referral 0 Comments

Wife: So, what are you looking forward to most when we get our new baby? Me: Uh… I donno. Wife: Okay, um, what colour do you think we should paint in their room? Me: Uh… I donno. Wife: Okay… what do you think about the new chainsaw? Me: OH! The new Huskvarana 21″ with dual …Read More

Adoption Reality #2: Special Needs Do NOT Define Children

August 30, 2010 by nohandsbutours adoption realities, heart defect, Wife of the Prez 0 Comments

This post is a bit of a detour for me from my original plan for my #2 Adoption Reality. I feel the need to share this though, and to add a disclaimer that these Adoption Realities I’m sharing are MY realities. They may not be the same for all of us, but for me this …Read More

Adoption Reality #1: When Your Vision Is NOT Your Reality

August 8, 2010 by nohandsbutours adoption realities, Wife of the Prez 9 Comments

Bear with me for a few lines while I share with you about this post and hopefully a few more to follow. I mentioned in my last post on this blog that I was taking a break from posting at my personal blog … and I still am. For now. I received so many beautiful …Read More

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