One year ago today, we became a family of four in a banquet room in Nanchang, China. We were the last family to receive our daughter from the Yifeng orphanage that day. I remember thinking how she looked like a little old lady with all of her hair and her serious little face. Looking at pictures of that day now, she was so scared and stressed. I remember that she clung to us for the first days, slowly coming into her own. She could not sit on her own or hold her bottle. She was covered with scabies scars and bug bites. She was very thin. She was the most beautiful little thing I had ever seen.
She changed so much from that scared baby to the boisterous toddler that she is today. She never meets a stranger, greeting everyone with a backward little wave and smile. She runs everywhere, is working on jumping, and would really like to do a somersault. She keeps her Bubba on his toes, wrestling whenever the opportunity presents itself, and holding his hand on the way home from school on several afternoons. She is the apple of her Daddy and Momma's eye. She is starting to talk and giggles often, even throwing in a snort from time to time. She was meant to be with us and we love her completely. I don't know what magic those people in the matching room use, but it is something special.
Here is a slide show I put together, it is long, but shows the progress one small girl can make with good food, tender care, and a lot of love. (There is supposed to be music playing with the pictures, but Youtube took it off. So, imagine The Turtles singing Happy Together up until her first birthday and then Bubbly by Colbie Caillat)