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Welcome to my family blog. I have been married to Mike for over half of my life. I love my Savior, Jesus. I am a stay-at-home, homeschooling mom to six terrific, interesting children. My 3 oldest were born to me in my younger years, while my 3 youngest were given to me by God in my older years. I am very blessed. ~Cheri


The Orphanage

Now that Ivy's English is improving after being home two whole months, I thought I'd ask her a couple of questions about her life in China. What was it like? Who were your friends? Were you happy? Did anyone love you? Did you take baths or showers? Were you afraid? Ivy told me that she slept with Ma Pei. I'm not sure if that happened recently, since quite a few of the girls her age had been adopted, or if she always slept with Ma Pei. She also said that she showered, never took baths. Now I know why she always wants a bath. When I asked her if anyone loved Ivy, her replied was quite sad, "A little bit." Did Ivy love anyone? Again, "A little bit." Since she thoroughly enjoys ice cream cones, we asked her about having this treat. She just shook her head and said no as she licked her delicious vanilla cone after dinner.

Then I brought up adoption. Were you happy to be adopted? She had a very sour look on her face. She said she was afraid. I asked her about the package I had sent to her. She looked a bit confused on that one. I knew she had received it because she had the photo album. Then I showed her this picture:

"Did you get any of the gifts we sent you? The candy, card, necklace, doll, shirt, panda bear?" She shook her head no again, as she knit her brows together. I don't understand why the orphanage would only give her the pictures, not the other things in the package. Maybe her fear would not have been so strong if she had more from us than just a picture album. After a while, I asked her if she was glad I went to China to get her. She sweetly looked up at me, smiled and said, "Yes." She did not want to go back to China.

14 kind words:

Football & Fried Rice

This just about undid me! Oh, sweet Ivy, - I thank God that you are HOME, FOREVER tonight!!!

And LOVED beyond BELIEF! Beyond comprehension! Isn't it so great what God can make of the ashes?

Learning Together at Home

This stuff is all so hard and yet so sweet at the same time. The blessing is that Ivy has someone to ask her the questions and really care about the answers. I will send you the sketch Grace drew of the girls sleeping arrangements too. I kind of went, "Ohhhh now I get it!", when she finally drew it out for me. :) As things come out about the girls past life sometimes I feel like I am left with more questions, but weeks or months later, when she's ready, then more comes out and we seem to be better able to understand each other. It's not all due to a language barrier. A lot of it seems to be when she realizes just how different her life was compared to how it is now. It takes so much time to unravel it all.


Precious. I love her! :) trina

Kay Bratt

Ivy is beautiful.

Your post confirms what I've always said about receiving gifts at the SWI. It is sad, but true. Also, now that your daughter is able to articulate, you might begin to hear more stories that will rock your mother's heart. Prepare yourself. Prayers to you and your family.

Bobby and Regina

She is a lucky little girl to be a part of your family! I have asked our agency to have their contact in China call the orphanage to see if Alyssa received our package, and what her reaction to having a family was - we will wait to hear back! Love, Regina

PS I love her hair in the picture

Sharon Ankerich

Thank you for that post! We are waiting to go for our daughter in Putian City China. She will most likely be 3 by the time we get her. I am like Sara... that just about undid me too. We have sent a package to ShayleeJoy and they did say it was received but that just means it got to the orphanage. I guess I really didn't expect her to get what I sent... I guess I did it for me. i wanted new pics and updated info. I really hope she gets the photo album so she can see us. I think our first daughter had seen her album before we came- she seemed to know us all. Anyway, I'm just rambling and all I wanted to say is thanks for giving me this to think about today.
blessings to you and your beautiful girl- she is so blessed to have a mom like you!!!

Our Family

I sent Abby a Barbie too, and a coloring book, and she told me the other kids in the orphanage pulled out the doll's hair and tore up her coloring book. I think jealousy is a big part of why these gifts never make it to some of the kids - they're just not used to anyone "owning" anything, much less toys. It's a sad reality for them.


oh my heart. What a princess she is and so thrilled she is with her family now. Oh to wipe away all the hurts from before, if only it were so easy. Thank you for sharing this. There is SUCH a need for LOVE, for FAMILY...if only adoption weren't so expensive...if only more people understood the magnitude of the BLESSING of adoption...if only...if only...but one child at a time...I will continue to read and share and speak out for those who have no voice!
Holly from Purpose Driven Family


She is so adorable, Cheri, and she looks like she's getting happier every day. :)

Mike and Barb

What a sweetheart! I'm glad she trusts you with all her "history" - may she feel loved now forever and let herself love as well.


It's so sad about the children not getting the care packages in the SWIs. Harper came to us at Gotcha Day with everything I had sent in original packaging. Her Gotcha Day outfit still smelled of JCPenney.
Then I got the disposable camera developed. There are pictures of her holding the items and wearing the outfit. So what did they do? Take pictures and put everything away? The clothes and shoes still had the tags on them. Upsetting to say the least.
Anyway - Ivy is so darling in the pigtails! It sounds like Ivy is continuing to make great progress. It's amazing how soon these kids are able to love and trust us.


Hi, your family is lovely.

I have heard from others that some orphanages will not give the gifts to the child (only pitures and sometimes not even those) because it is too hard on the other kids who are not being adopted.

Best Wishes!


I've asked the same kind of questions and gotten the same kind of answers.


What an interesting truth you discovered about the packages!!! I always wondered! To hear Ivy's response is truly worth noting!! How can she not love you all and rather be with you than in the orphanage? She is such a sweet little girl and just continues to bond with you more and more. I think she is doing so well considering she is older!

Hopefully be able to meet up with you someday!!!

love, Naomi

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