Here are a few of my favorite pictures taken in La Romana at the Wyndham Resort.
Bailey's Dominican look
A fun trip to the Zoo with Tio (Uncle) JP!
Scenes from Villa Mella
This a picture of a lady on a moped with a beautifully decorated cake. We could not believe what we were seeing! They were moving along in traffic like it was completely normal to be transporting a cake like that!
We made a special trip to visit Emily's orphanage a couple of weeks ago. It has taken me awhile to put my thoughts together..and hard to put down.
She is still as sweet and sassy as ever. Just a little treasure. I adore her.
Our family enjoyed interacting with all of the girls. We were there for several hours jumping rope, coloring with chalk, playing games and painting fingernails.
Emily and Bailey really connected. Where you would find one... you would find the other. JT and I tried to spread ourselves around. Those sweet ones just wanted our attention, our hugs and just to be held. I wanted to be about 20 people that day...I wanted to give each girl what she wanted/needed at that very moment. What I feel for those treasures just touches deep into my very soul.
I wondered how I would feel as my family finally met Emily. I truly believe God used her sweet life to get us where we are today...to our son, Alex. Emily was a part of His plan. We can now SEE and UNDERSTAND.
What I do struggle with is... what about her, Lord? Does she have to stay in the orphanage? Are your plans for her to have a home with a Mom and Dad? I have a hard time with that part. I continue to pray that God will protect her and I continue to trust His plan for her life.
Today is day 43 for me in the DR. JT went back home to Charlotte yesterday morning. Alex and I were out of sorts. It was a tough day. I don't like my family to be seperated especially for 3 weeks! It is just what we have to do right now. The girls wanted to stay in the DR with me...and I am so glad they did!
We moved to Arroyo Honda before JT left. We are in the same neighborhood as the Tuckers. It is such a blessing to have them close by. Our kids get along great and it's like Mercy and I have known each other for years. We are now staying with a missionary couple in a fairly large house. We have the third level (4 bedrooms/sitting area with tv) to ourselves and we share the main level with the kitchen/living room. They occupy the very bottom level. There is plenty of room for us all. It is a very nice gated community with a swimming pool. So- we are definitely comfortable as we make it through the last leg of our journey.
I am really digging deep as we go into this last phase of our adoption. We are looking at another 30 days for it to be completed. This has been harder than I imagined...but it's only for a short time when I really look at it. I remind myself that 2 months is absolutley worth a lifetime with our little guy.
My devotion yesterday, reminded me that when I am weary and need rest, I need to turn my thoughts to God and trust him. God wants me to lean on him, trust him and be confident in him. Isaiah 30:15 says, "In returning to Me, and resting in Me you shall be saved; in quietness and trust shall be your strength."
Alex was dedicated in Pastor Mario's church yesterday. Words can not describe how much that means to us. During the ceremony, I looked out at the congregation to the people JT and I have met over the years. They are Alex's Dominican family. They are the family in this country that agreed before God to pray for him. They are the family he will visit as he gets older.
JT and I agreed to raise Alex to know God, we agreed to care for him and to pray for him. As JT spoke to congregation, he said that we would also make sure that Alex always knew his heritage. Where he was born. It is a part of his story that God so intricately planned for our son's life.
We are so grateful God chose us to be his parents. We are blessed beyond measure.
Alex has enjoyed many new "firsts" with us. It has been pure joy watching him explore - sometimes from the safety of his PaPa's arms. He has been to the swimming pool, played in the sand and ocean and made a trip to the Santo Domingo Aquarium.
The Tucker family invited us to join them at the beautiful Juan Dolio beach. This was another first for Alex. He would scrunch up his little toes as he walked in the sand. Too cute!
I am having a great time in the DR but, I am missing my friends Sullivan and Sarah and, my Gammie but , most of all my dog Oliver! ; ) I have made plenty of new friends, Jose a 3 year old boy who knows how to dance, and his cousin Noamie, a 10 year old girl full of fun across the street. Upstairs is Doniel a 7 year old boy who likes to play soccer or (futball) and his sister Giselle Marie also known as Giselita she is a 5 year old trouble maker but is fun to play with. Yes, everyone of them speaks spanish, but a language barrier can not stop this social butterfly from making friends!
Alex is sooo cute but don't let the face fool you he is a a trouble maker. But he is a 2 year old boy so what can you expect! He LOVES agua (water) when he gets out of the bath mom calls him her chocolate drop!
We all love to play dominoes we play for hours!!!!! I SERIOUSLY miss asian food from Pei Wei. No AC doesn't really bother me nor hot water. We play outside all day with our friends -we have so much fun. We jump rope and play hide and seek. It rains all the time here and the thunder is SO loud.
Please pray for our family so we can be home with chocolate drop soon.
This picture was taken one day after Alex's nap. It was a couple days after our Gotcha Day. He woke up out of sorts. He did not want me to hold him. He just went and sat by the door all by himself. He was sad. I sat close by waiting for him to come to me.
I felt like he was grieving all that he has ever known. He needed to figure it out in his little mind. It hurt so much to see him like this. After about 20 minutes of sitting there, I held my arms out to him again and he came to cuddle up. I told him that I would always be here and would never leave him. What he could not understand in my words, I pray he felt in my hugs and kisses.
Thankfully, it has not happened again. Truly-my answered prayer.
Hi, It's Olivia. One of the children of Angie ( but not from the Dominican Republic.)
Just so you know I'm typing by myself Mom isn't doing it for me. Anyway, I was thinking when I was on the plane a lot. I was wondering why would God pick ME? Why not someone from my class? Why not my neighbor? No one really knows. My family has been on a rollercoster of ups and downs here in the DR. Food is an up :). Cold showers are a down :(. And Alex is a.... well, who knows!? I think the most word we use around here is, "no."
We've done a lot of cool things here. But my favorite was Barra Payan. It's a resturant. They have soooooo many different juices. Dad is addicted to thier mango juice!!!!!
Our family has been meeting with another family thats using the same agency as we are "Hands Across the Water." They are the Tuckers. You might of read thier blog. They are a really nice family.
Well, little Alex is a handfull!!!! Usually here's what happens to Mom at least fifteen thousand times a day. She thinks that she can have a couple minutes to herself while we handle our brother. So... Mom plops down in the rocking chair. At first when she heard screaming she ran and said "Where is the fire?" Now, when she hears screaming and we yell, "Mom!" she just walks over calmly and Alex settles down.
Please pray for our family as we complete our adoption of John Alexander Thomas. My little brother.
Olivia Thomas (Liv)
PS - If you are a Mom of any of my girlfriends...please tell them "Hi!" from me.
We are the Thomas Family. Our family of 4 is soon to become a family of 5. We received our referral for our son on February 24, 2011. Follow our adoption journey to the Dominican Republic as we bring John Alexander home!