You’re not in Kansas anymore

May 17, 2014 by nohandsbutours adopting SN: the process, adoption realities, birthmark, Chinese culture, hemangioma, Kayla 3 Comments

I’ve told the editors of this blog that I am running out of things to write about regarding the special need that Jubilee (that’s my daughter) has. It simply doesn’t matter to us any more that she has a skin deformity on her torso. It will matter to her one day, no doubt, but we …Read More

You Only Live Once

April 17, 2014 by nohandsbutours birthmark, hemangioma, Kayla 4 Comments

Sometimes I think people think too much. My husband and I, on the other hand, tend to err on the side of reckless. But I have to say that in our 12 years, reckless has served us well. Our very nuptials were hasty. We jumped into love like a kid into cold water. We got …Read More

Wonder

March 17, 2014 by nohandsbutours birthmark, hemangioma, Kayla 1 Comments

My daughter and I reclined comfortably together at a park yesterday, beside a calm lake in which Chinese men, bent with age, stood stirring the water around their boats with long oars. A thousand Chinese faces passed us by, upturned at the sunny sky and squinting at their beloved kites in the wind. Some of …Read More

Known by name

February 17, 2014 by nohandsbutours birthmark, hemangioma, Kayla 1 Comments

We call her Jubi, or Jubi Sue, or sometimes Jubes. But her name is Jubilee, and she loves her name. The other day her daddy wrote “Jubi” on her paper cup and she was not happy. “Where are the rest of the letters, Daddy?” she asked with a frown. “My name has an l and …Read More

Cheering section

January 17, 2014 by nohandsbutours birthmark, hemangioma, Kayla 0 Comments

Jubilee didn’t just get a mom and dad when she was adopted. She got three brothers, three grandparents, three uncles, one aunt, and three cousins. But even though adoption brings children into extended families, church bodies, and communities, the most important thing adoption does is place children into immediate families. Not immediately families, mind you, …Read More

There comes a time

December 17, 2013 by nohandsbutours birthmark, hemangioma, Kayla 0 Comments

“To everything there is a season, a time for every purpose under the sun.” Ecclesiastes 3:1 Adoption has seasons of its own. The first season can last for years. It starts as a seed, usually, planted in our hearts, by friends, or media, or God. During this time, we pray for wisdom, seek the counsel …Read More

THREE GENERATIONS

November 17, 2013 by nohandsbutours birthmark, hemangioma, Kayla 0 Comments

For the past three weeks, my mom and mother-in-law have been visiting from the States! Jubilee has especially loved it, with two more women in the house to offset the incessant wrestling matches and Lego building. “Let’s read magazines,” she suggests, handing each of us a copy of Good Housekeeping or Rachael Ray. We snuggle …Read More

Love Tank

October 17, 2013 by nohandsbutours birthmark, hemangioma, Kayla 1 Comments

All kids have “love tanks” – deep wells within their hearts which hold the fuel they run on: love. What happens when those tanks run low? I’m no expert, but I can tell you what happens when my Jubilee’s tank is low. “Mom, what did you buy at the store? Hi Mom. Mom? Mom, where’d …Read More

Chinese if you please

September 17, 2013 by nohandsbutours birthmark, hemangioma, Kayla 3 Comments

Once we’ve had our adopted Chinese children home for a while, they become very American, don’t they? Fluent English speakers, pudgy and healthy, faces aglow. Video games, Kraft mac-n-cheese, Gap Kids clearance clothes, and all the rest. But then there are moments when Jubilee will stop what she is doing and stare off into space, …Read More

Why did we sign up for this?

August 17, 2013 by nohandsbutours birthmark, hemangioma, Kayla 11 Comments

I do not run marathons. I do not run at all, in fact, although I used to, once upon a time. To train for soccer, I ran high school cross country; my short, muscular legs weighing me down as I trudged through sand and even snow (I lived in Michigan). While I struggled to keep …Read More

The question we are asking

July 17, 2013 by nohandsbutours birthmark, hemangioma, Kayla 3 Comments

Jubilee doesn’t throw fits, hoard her toys, act irrationally, or withdraw emotionally. In fact, on the surface she is a very “normal” child. Except when no one is looking. Then she destroys things. She tears the wheels off matchbox cars, scribbles on her brother’s artwork, takes apart completed Lego sets, sits on things, rips things, …Read More

Leap of Faith

June 17, 2013 by nohandsbutours birthmark, hemangioma, Kayla 12 Comments

Kayla is a home school mom who loves to read, write, cook, and travel. She lives in East Asia with her husband and four awesome kids – three biological sons and one daughter, Jubilee, who is adopted from China. She blogs at Life is But a Breath. We all face that moment of truth when …Read More

Carli Mei

November 26, 2008 by nohandsbutours birthmark, Family Stories, hemangioma, port wine stain 0 Comments

By Brandy, mother to Carli Mei from China, with port wine stain birthmark Chosen We’re matched! We’re matched! I just remember that feeling of elation like it was yesterday. After a round of “matching” 3 months earlier and our family not being “chosen”. It was a day I tried to remain guarded…tried. My heart was …Read More

Reese

October 20, 2008 by nohandsbutours birthmark, Family Stories, GWCA, Skin Conditions, Sturge Weber Syndrome, Vascular System 0 Comments

by Monica, big sister to Reese, from China, who has Sturge-Weber Syndrome We originally were aiming to go to China for a NSN girl, as young as possible. As we were gathering paperwork, some friends called us and said, “you have to look at these kids on your agency’s waiting list”. We did, and found …Read More