February 13, 2015 by nohandsbutours Chinese culture, Hannah, orphanage realities 1 Comments


We were advocating domestic adoption around the table. Somehow I had been seated to the Director’s left – the most important seat, and one much too auspicious for comfort, and our chopsticks clinked upon the same plate of celery and mushrooms. He turned to me and looked me square in the face. Of course I …Read More

going back and paintbrushes

January 13, 2015 by nohandsbutours Hannah, orphanage realities 0 Comments


January 4, 2014… I mean 2015. Where does the time go? I have my ticket. I’m flying back to China on the 9th, a Friday afternoon. By the time you all read this I will have been in the good ol’ PRC for about three days, and will hopefully be sleeping soundly (why are you …Read More

hanging on to language

December 13, 2014 by nohandsbutours Chinese language, Hannah 3 Comments


Language. It’s not something that any of us can really ignore, is it? When my first two little sisters came home they weren’t even a year old, and so our words were not nearly as important as our tone… it didn’t matter that our Chinese was very non-existant. We taught some sign language to make …Read More

5 Things Your Kids Will Learn When You Adopt

November 13, 2014 by Hannah Hannah 0 Comments

Today is my youngest sister’s second “Adoption Day”! Aren’t anniversaries like this the best? Because it’s National Adoption Month right now, Orphan Sunday was two weeks ago and World Adoption Day was last Sunday, it’s been hard to not think about adoption. Similarly, it’s been hard not to think about my sweet sisters. I still …Read More


September 27, 2014 by nohandsbutours adoption realities, Hannah, orphanage realities 1 Comments


I’ve been in America since May, which means that I haven’t been to an orphanage since April, which means that it’s been many months since I last took pictures of orphans. Because of this I’ve had some extra time (ha! Is there any such thing?) to go through old pictures. Y’all, I’ve taken a lot …Read More

changing the world

August 13, 2014 by nohandsbutours adoption realities, Hannah 1 Comments

I’ve often sat in front of a blank computer screen and wondered what in the world to write. What do I have to say to you? Each and every one of you readers: pre-adoptive parents who are wading through the trenches of paperwork and up to their necks in notarizations and acronyms; traveling families who …Read More

Cora's story

July 13, 2014 by nohandsbutours adoption realities, Hannah 2 Comments

Twenty-three years ago she made her mother-in-law angry. Cora had just given birth to her first child, a daughter, and the news did not bring any celebration into the household. Her husband’s mother was angry; the older woman fumed and refused to hold her new granddaughter. As the weeks past she finally agreed to hold …Read More

making a difference

June 13, 2014 by nohandsbutours adoption realities, Hannah 1 Comments

Making a difference is one of those things that everybody aspires to do. I sure want to be one of those people… someone who is dynamic and passionate and yet caring and sweet-and-happy-all-of-the-time, all at the same time. Don’t you? It’s hard. It’s really, really hard. Sometimes I can hit three-out-of-four. I can be dynamic …Read More

I know that she was loved

May 11, 2014 by nohandsbutours adoption realities, Hannah, orphanage realities 2 Comments

Over the past ten months I have watched baby after baby arrive at the orphanage we work in. In my first four years of orphan care work in China we were working with a foster home – a place of healing and hope, where orphans with medical needs that the orphanage could not handle arrived …Read More

little white one

March 29, 2014 by nohandsbutours Hannah 0 Comments

They call her “little white one” and the name suits. She’s a pretty little thing and can flit about like a little pixie at times, her snowy white head bobbing here and there, her cold wet bottom peeping out of quilted pink split-pants. She’s a little singing fairy at times, but usually… she’s crying. When …Read More