God, who loves them intensely, called us to adopt Nina, and the Loraines to adopt Oksana. Our families, strangers to each other, adopting 2 little girls that were like sisters.
There were a couple of times when I visited Nina at the orphanage and Oksana cried asking to be with us. I then asked for her to join us, I did not mind having her around. Little did I know, the day I visited with Nina while holding Oksana in my arms, that I would give her a hug once more in my own home. I never imagined that her family would become so dear to our family, and that this friendship would be a treasure to last a lifetime.
While we know nothing about Nina's birth family, and Loraines know nothing about Oksana's birth family, we do know that they will always have each other. And in this new life with a family, they have hope and they have a bright future. And through these little girls, our entire families are blessed!
This Thanksgiving, the Loraines come to our home, and we enjoyed our time together immensely! The days were full of talking, playing, thankfulness, and joy.
You can visit the Loraine's blog, since they have much better pictures, but I will copy Erin and give you a little summary by day, along with some snapshots.
Loraines arrived and it was fun just hanging out, getting settled, and talking. They brought lots of very yummy treats so we were looking forward to dessert!
We had an easy morning and Nichole willingly shared her iPad with Oksana and her family.
We had the 3 big girls wear matching outfits, hoping for a nice picture of Nina and Oksana to send to their orphanage and to frame for their rooms. These 2 girls had serious problems posing and smiling!
But they were all so cute together so we did get some nice shots of the girls.
Thanksgiving dinner turned out pretty good if you ask me! Although my mashed sweet potatoes turned out the consistency of baby food, the rest of the meal was good!
We went to Legoland in Chicago, and it was a lot of fun!
The girls loved riding in the giant swing. They rode this thing over and over! Ellie and Nina both wanted to ride with Oksana every time!
Nichole had fun, although I think her favorite part of the day was eating a bag of chips!
On the way out, the girls had to have their picture taken with Sponge Bob, who happens to be a celebrity at our house. Don't judge me, as a parent, you have to pick your battles, and I would rather have Sponge Bob than Hannah Montana or iCarly at this time in life.
And, even Legoland was happy to see me!
We ventured into the world of bounce houses and craziness! And let me tell you, helping a child with mobility issues is quite the workout! But we all had fun!
Loraines came to church with us and got to be a part of the service. It was such a blessing! Larry played the guitar and Erin and I shared how God worked in our lives through our adoptions. It was so good to have them here at our church.
Where would our girls be if we had not adopted them? Where would we be? God's blessings are many, and He showers us with His love as we live life thriving to honor and serve Him. This weekend, we got to experience some of those blessings throw this friendships that have come to us thanks to our girls. We really had so much to be thankful for!