Sunday, September 29, 2013

And the Best Part is... Cleaning Up?!

Living in a farming community on the outskirts of Beijing means that we get to enjoy the harvests of some of the food items that Beijing is famous for! Watermelon and peach season are about over, which means that it's time for peanuts and soybeans! Amy, our foster home manager, gathered up some plants for the children to pick from on her way to work the other day. 

Gloria is our preschool teacher. Learning outside is so much fun!

The kids really enjoyed getting a close-up look at all of the plants. Lucy is a curious little girl who can't wait to get her hands on any new thing...

Wendy gets the hang of new things pretty quick. It's amazing how far she's come since she came... now she runs around and does just about everything!

Lena's condition is quite dangerous and her heart defect complex and at this point inoperable. However, she wanted to learn how to pop the seed pods just like the big kids!

Jonathan loves to run around the backyard and be busy. He's not always the most talkative little guy but he's always got something going on!

Colton and Wendy were efficient peanut-crackers. They are both in the same class during the day and you should hear them speak English! 

After the bean and peanut cracking, the littler kids had to go back inside to have their bottles and the older kids returned to preschool. Rebecca noticed our gardener starting to clean up and she joined right in!

Brendan, one of our new arrivals, happily joined her and she showed him how to put the leaves into the dust-pan like the good big sister she is.

Eventually, Adam, our gardener (and Isaac) came to inspect their work and get the leaves put away. Rebecca thought that jumping on them would help the clean-up go faster.

Sometimes, the best part of an activity is cleaning up. What about your kids?
Saturday, September 28, 2013

NDSouth: Hair Bows

Sadie recently had surgery and they unfortunately had to cut some of her hair. Since it is not the most flattering hair cut, we decided to spruce it up with a cute hair bow! 

Sadie apparently had other plans though as she tried and tried to take that bow right out.

She eventually succeeded. Of course as soon as she got it out, what did she want? That's right.... to have it put right back in! It's apparently a fun game.

Of course not wanting to feel left out, Leila also asked for a cute bow for her hair. 

"I know I look beautiful but I can't see it!"

 "What do you think?"

You girls look adorable with or without hair bows. 
Friday, September 27, 2013

Exploring the Expo

What a perfect day to visit one of the Beijing Garden Expos! Who knew that there was so much to see and to do? The kids sure had a blast!

Meilin met a duck...

...and Henry got a chance to be the team leader!

Joel enjoyed some beautiful views. He's a pro walking with his crutches now! Nothing stops this kid.

Can you believe the beauty here? 

Wendy called the troops together for snack time by blowing on a shell. 

As always, we had a 1:1 ratio between volunteer and children. Noah and his buddy watch the fish and wonder how they're going to cross...

Colton and Meilin were best buddies on this trip!

Colton also got a chance to hold the flag!

After hours of wandering around and enjoying the sights, the kids started getting tired and hungry...

Fast food is always a special treat! Wendy toasts to field trips with Kevin, our fearless leader.

Corrie is a french fry girl through and through. Pass the ketchup, please.

There are even more pictures of our fun outing on the website. Check them out!

Thursday, September 26, 2013

NDSouth: Home Sweet Home

Charlie is 4 months old and most of his short life has been spent in a hospital bed. We got a call from his orphanage on July 4th asking if we would help... they had a newly abandoned baby boy who was in serious need of medical care. Of course we said yes! We met Charlie and the orphanage staff at the hospital that same day and he was immediately admitted. 

Charlie went on to spend the next few weeks in NICU and was finally released several weeks later. Unfortunately with Charlie being so very tiny and weak, he quickly developed another infection and was once again admitted back into ICU  in early August.

Last week this little miracle was released and he is home, doing well. He has gained some weight and although he is small, he is fighting and getting stronger each day.

When we first met Charlie he was just over a month old and did what most one month old's do, he slept. Now we are able to see a little more of his personality. He apparently likes to make silly faces.

And of course loves to be held, which we happily oblige. After so much time by himself in ICU, we are trying to catch Charlie up quickly with holding and snuggling.

We are so glad you are home, Charlie. Keep getting stronger little one. Your story is already a miracle!
Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Wordless Wednesday: Mark

Sunday, September 22, 2013

Transitions and Changes for the Rippees

Randy and Rita Rippee moved to China with three of their daughters in 2004 and began working with New Day Foster Home in the summer of 2008. Within a year they began fostering older orphan girls who needed families, and during the next four years were able to make an impact upon 16 children.

The Rippee family has been able to lavish nurturing love upon these girls, helping them learn and know that they are special.

They have welcomed these girls into their home and given them more than a taste of what a family is like. By folding each one of the girls into their own family, the girls have learned some of life's most important lessons: how to get along, fun, and that you are always loved. 

It was with excitement as we also watched as six of the girls in the Rippee's care joined families of their own. Elizabeth, Hannah, Lena, Serena, Elly and Mollie knew what it was to be unconditionally loved, and now they have the chance to be so loved forever.

The Rippee family has made such a huge difference.

The Rippee's burden for older orphaned girls changed lives here in China. However, the last year has presented difficulties for foreign organizations working on behalf of orphans in China, especially in the case of foreigners fostering children. Because of this, the Rippee's have recently been doing a lot of thinking about how they can be most effective while still doing what they feel called to do. After much thought and research, they have found an opportunity in India where they will be able to work with the older orphaned girls. The RIppee's will be moving in October.

We will dearly miss them - many of our staff were moved to tears when they heard of the Rippees departure. They have made a huge difference here in China and we strongly believe that they will continue to change lives in India.

You can keep up with the family's new adventures in their new blog: Unconditional Love for Orphans

Another New Baby!

It's been busy around here. In the last few weeks we have welcomed three beautiful new children into our care! Poppy was born with a heart defect and hand deformity and has already had surgery, and tiny little Gabriel has ENT defects that will require surgery when he gets big enough.

So, who's the third little one to join our big family?

Meet Mason!

Mason is currently six months old and was born with a heart defect. Although his defect isn't supposed to be extremely complex, his condition is poor and his orphanage was very worried about him. They asked us if we would bring him in and help him get strong so that he would be ready for his much-needed heart surgery.

So far he's doing well, settling in and showing off. Could a baby be more adorable? Mason sure knows how to win hearts with his grin!

We can't wait to see the difference that a few months - even weeks and days! - makes in this sweet baby's life. 

Please join us in welcoming Mason to the NDFH family!

pssst! Mason is available for sponsorship!
Saturday, September 21, 2013

NDSouth: How Hard Can it Be?

How hard can it be?

To get a picture of 3 cute kids.

Well... when they don't want to look or smile at the camera at the same time...

Apparently very hard. Although we gave up, we did get some cute pictures anyways.

Even when they aren't smile, Laura, Cooper, and Asa, are still pretty cute aren't they?

Yes, we would agree.