7.06.2011

a new life.

while the kiddos were out playing in the sprinkler, the other night, i couldn't help but stare at elsa...and think about this life she is living now.
watching her be a child, and splash around in the water.  running with her brothers and sister.
laughing.  just being a kid.
i started thinking about all of the things that she's got to experience here, that she most likely wouldn't have experienced in ethiopia.
things as small as running through a sprinkler...playing dress up with her sister...watching fireworks on the 4th of july...learning to ride a bike.
basically, things that we take advantage of our kids experiencing.
i never thought twice about my kids learning how to ride a bike.
it wasn't until elsa started learning that i realized, this is a privilege.
looking at her, so unsure what to do with a bike...learning what to do with her feet...how to steer.
realizing that if she would have stayed in ethiopia, she probably wouldn't have ever learned how to ride a bike.
and that makes me sad for a life that she once lived...
but happy that she's home with us now.
i'm not saying that we "saved" this girl.
so many times, people have told us "wow, what you did is so honorable...saving an orphan."
we didn't save her.
we were just following our hearts...we knew that it was the right thing to do, even though it didn't make sense to us at the time.
trusting God, that He would provide (and He did...and He continues to do so).

while i'm still getting to know this little girl, that is now our daughter, i can whole-heartedly say that i'm grateful for God placing her in our family.  for giving her a chance to experience "normal" kid things.
to get to run through the sprinkler, to get to be a child.

36 comments:

  1. Beautiful post!
    You have a wonderful family!

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  2. beautiful photos and sentiment!! :)

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  3. I love this. It makes my heart swell to see people living the life they have been called to do.
    It is so beautiful.

    I love reading your blog. Thank you for sharing pieces of your family's life with us. :)

    Ngaio May x

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  4. Nothing beats running in the sprinkler in the summer.

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  5. Such an amazing post, Elsa is adorable and you and your family is amazing for giving her this special life!!

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  6. Tears. i thought the same thing when I watched our sweet little ethiopian blessing in the pool this weekend! he has only been home 2 1/2 weeks so everything is still so fresh and new! there is something very very special about getting to watch them experience all these "firsts" at an "older" age. Elsa looks like she is having a blast!

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  7. so sweet... love you and your family :)

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  8. good stuff. Family is truly amazing! Can't wait to keep ours growing :)

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  9. Thanks for letting us see a bit of the beauty that God has placed in your lives. What a blessing!

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  10. It makes my heart so happy to see posts like this. Else looks like she is quite happy with this new life too. Thanks for sharing

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  11. I think you saved her too, by answering God's calling in your life. YOu gave her a life that may have been cut very short, you gave her a family to love her and you gave her hope and a chance to make some dreams come true in her life...!!!
    beautiful post emilY!
    tara

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  12. Sweet post Em'. Elsa looks so darn cute in her bright colored 2 piece suit. I hope you are enjoying your summer here in KS.

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  13. I had these same thoughts over the 4th about our daughter. She had no idea what day it was, but it was significant to me to have her in my arms, in her new country, enjoying the fireworks and endless watermelon.

    I totally get it.

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  14. beautiful. I have many of the same thoughts when I watch my little boy... :) God is so good!

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  15. Thank you for writing this. Someday, when I am married, I hope to adopt too. This post sums up so beautifully why I want to adopt.

    XOXO

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  16. I'm curious -- how is her English coming along? I'm sure kids pick it up faster than adults.

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  18. Just beautiful all around.. your words, her, the photos, everything! Thanks for sharing.

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  19. So beautiful to see people reaching into a little girl's heart and calling her their own. Christ's joy to all of you and for the little one on the way. Through Danielle knowing you we are enjoying being part of all that was planned long ago by our Father for the precious Anderson family. Each moment evokes a photo of what being Christians really means.

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  20. These are beautiful thoughts. His heart is for family and that all children should be a part of one... Much love exists in your growing fam! Blessings to all of you!

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  21. Yeah for you and Elsa! I just love keeping up with her and your family. I pray that someday soon I,too, will have my little ET girl home!

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  22. Oh my goodness. beautiful pictures, beautiful girl, beautiful words!!

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  23. so beautifully said. i think most people take for granted the normal childhood experiences that our kids have. we sponsor 2 kids in rwanda and we just sent off their care package and it is always so fun getting them little inexpensive things that i know they will be so stoked on. love your heart and your ability to so beautifully speak it.

    that last picture is pretty much perfect with the ray of light across her face.

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  24. It is truly amazing. She is blessed to have you and you her.

    xo
    babymama
    avagracescloset.blogspot.com

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  25. tears...what a lovely, honest and heartfelt post...what a lucky little girl, and what a lucky little family you are...

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  26. i never like when people say I saved my daughter either, or how lucky she is (although, we BOTH are!), I never want her to feel like a charity case- she is just another child that God had a special plan for! I'm the lucky one and she def. saved me from myself!! :)

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  27. seriously every time you write about elsa, i get tingles all over. i want to adopt so bad but, my husbands heart is not there YET! it will be and i am persistent. and God gives us the desires of our heart right?

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  28. God is good! It's so great to see how happy she is!

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  29. I wish I could afford to adopt. :(

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  30. ps. I really LOVE your blog layout. Can you share your secret with me? Pretty please :)

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  31. privilege is an interesting thing, huh? i'm a hapa like some of your little ones, and it took a lot of interesting experiences for me to begin to understand privilege.

    all the littles are so lucky to have a mom conscious of privilege! it'll make understanding their experiences that much easier <3

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  32. love this post emily. only someone who has adopted knows this feeling. people tell me and austin all the time how LUCKY miah is to have us adopt him. frankly, i think of it as being quite the opposite. we just did what we knew we were supposed to do.

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