Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Eva's Furry Friends

Max the Cat

We were a little unsure how Maxwell, our cat, and Eva would get along.  On their first meeting both were curious, but showing no real signs that this was love at first site....


Our 1st Play Date:  Learning to Share

Why does she get all the presents when I'm just as cute?

 Max & Eva are showing great signs of becoming lifelong friends.
Max has been a little worn out lately, however, from all the extra excitement around the house.
Poor Maxwell.

Best Bud's

Eva's best bud is Violet and was a gift from Sally, my sister's co-worker.  Violet sings and speaks and even makes up silly songs with Eva's name.  Violet enjoys riding in the car with Eva too which makes any trip more enjoyable.  Thank you, Violet.  

Look, Violet!  We match!!
Hey, Eva, do you want to play a game?
Your move, Eva.
Eva and Violet laughing it up together.

Sorry, Daddy, Violet's being a little camera shy today.


Eva received an adorable Make A Wish Bear for Christmas from our friends, Hilary & Les.  She's quite fascinated by the bear and especially his glasses.  We call him Teddy.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

"...a longing fulfilled..." Proverbs 13:12

A lot can change in 60 seconds...
                                     60 minutes...
                                         60 hours...
                                                  and...                                  most definitely in 60 days.

We were playing with Eva Monet on our bed this morning when I told David that I couldn't imagine life without her.   He agreed.

There is nothing quite like opening up her bedroom door and hearing the excitement coming from her crib as she realizes Momma or Bà  (Chinese - Daddy Daddy) is coming.  To catch the first glimpse of those eyes filled with giggles and smiles while arms 'flap' passionately to be picked up and held, is simply magical.  

But, of course, all the parents out there already know these things.  <sigh> So, thank you for indulging me, once again...   : )

It's been 60 days since officially meeting Eva.   A very significant moment for our family.  And since that time, David and I can see so many wonderful signs; day-by-day-by-day-by-day, moment-by-moment-by-moment-by-moment, we are being knit together.   We are so encouraged by her development in mobility and communication showing that she is attaching to us and feeling safe in her environment.   Eva is so much fun and we feel absolutely blessed by what God has done with our family.

For those who have struggled to have children and/or have considered adoption, I hope this is an encouragement to you.  I realize, It's not an easy road.  There are many bumps, definitely some pot holes, dead ends, detours, and even exits that can be taken.  Though the road for us has been very, very long, I am so glad that we did not deviate from what we set out to do.  The journey looked different from what I originally plotted on my map, but never-the-less, it's been a trip worth taking.  Along the way, I've learned a lot about myself, just how special of a man I married, and how faithful God really is.  And now, neither one of us can imagine having any other child at this moment in time, but little Miss Eva Monet Jiawan Baltes.   And while we still have much to learn, we will never be the same again.   

Thank God.

Designed by Erin Rodriguez

Last week David and I received a very special gift in celebration of our adoption.  One of my dearest friends, Erin Rodriguez, gave us one of her own custom designs.  Beautifully handcrafted, this picture captures the heart of our adoption journey and will be hung in Eva Monet's room with beautiful ribbon that  came with the gift.  I am still working to complete Eva's room, but plan to post photos at a later date.  In the meantime, here is Erin's website for anyone who would be interested in learning more about her work and what she might be able to do for you.  Many of you already know she is a graphic designer and gifted illustrator:                                  

I have worked with Erin on numerous projects and am always amazed at her talent and creativity.  Check out her site and enjoy!

Saturday, January 15, 2011

"...whatever is pure, whatever is lovely,..."

8 PM

Eva Monet is snuggling up, savoring every last drop of her bedtime bottle. With the tender sounds of contented suckling & the sweetness of her face cast by the evening moon, I am drawn to pray the words from Philippians 4:8 out loud over her:

"Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable - if anything is excellent or praiseworthy - think about such things."

Though Eva is too young to understand, I pray someday her heart will capture the truth and richness of this scripture.  It's in these qualities that real beauty exists.

As my prayer concludes and Eva's bottle is emptied, with her soft little fingers she begins to delicately explore my lips.  A pronounced moment between Baby & Momma.  Though no words are exchanged, it is in her gentle touch that I am reminded once again:  Momma's Lips, Daddy's Love, Our Home...  this is where she will first learn the value to "think about such things."

And so I pause and reflect... "whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable..."

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Certificate of United States Citizenship

Eva Monet Jiawan Baltes' Certificate of United States Citizenship arrived on Friday, January 7th, 2011.  As Eva played on her bedroom floor, we opened the big white envelope.  She had no idea how significant this piece of paper was to her and the life that lay before her.  David and I, on the other hand, did.  We cried.  

Thank you Lord.  You have blessed us richly.